Monday, December 21, 2009

Painful lessons

In Budalang'i, telling the weather isn't Binomial expansion or Logarithms or some equally complicated exercise. All you have to do is listen to the weather forecast on the radio and then stay put for the exact opposite.

So when the weatherman, courtesy of my grandfather's SQNY[It's a world receiver!] promised intermittent showers throughout the day with the possibility of a heavy downpour in the afternoon, I immediately dispatched onr of my nieces to the lake with my dirty laundry since I fully expected them to be dry by evening.

With the rest of the morning to kill, I thought about going to the lake myself for a dip and breakfast at one of the many kiosks that dot the fish-landing site where a jugful of sweet, fermented porridge goes for only ten bob, but looking around the compound, I had an idea.

Of course like virtually all stupid ideas, this one struck me like one straight from the brains of Solomon.

My grandfather keeps a bunch of huge, ungainly creatures in the homestead he insists belong to the cow species, although I doubt they are even herbivores, given their ugliness even by cow standards and the relish with which they went through the packet of Dettol I came with from Kampala. But my skeptisism about their dietary inclination notwithstanding, I nevertheless could tell they were mammals capable of giving milk fit for human consumption, and by looking at their undersides, I could even tell which was a bull and which could fit the purpose of my great idea.

The gist of my idea? Operation No More Strungi.

However, the only person I knew there with anything approaching competence in milk extraction procedures was my grandfather, and quite unfortunately, he had joined his friend John Osodo at Taddei's, joint for a 'Power Breakfast' and discussions on a wide range of sensitive topics, mostly about PNU and ODM and other equally political abbreviations.

But not to worry. After all, milking wasn't exactly Algebra now, was it? I reasoned. All I had to do was remove that silly calf that was milking its mother dry, then get down to milking its mother dry. Simple as ABC without mathematical signs.

So with that, I approached the lactating calf and after a brief struggle, managed to secure it to a nearby tree stump. Then jug in hand, I positioned myself beside the mother's left rump and bent down to do my thing.

I was about to learn that cows too are capable of cold calculation.

Upto that point, the silly animal had shown absolutely no indication it dissapproved of what I was doing. It had looked lazily at me as I dragged its calf off, it had accepted the few tufts of grass I had offered it as incentive to shower my jug with milk. For God's sake, it had even swished its tail in apparent pleasure as I approached its hindquarters and started to bend! Upto that point, no dissent. upto that point...when my crotch was in direct line with it's left hoof.

I have been hurt before. But even on the day I got caught up in a UoN riot in Town and got struck on the head by a GSU man's baton, the pain wasn't nearly as bad as the terrific surge of searing hot sensation that exploded on my balls when the hoof connected hard and squarely with my crotch and burnt through to the pit of my belly. It was so painful, I actually screamed out for my mother.

It's embarrassing enough telling you this, so I won't tell you how the children around howled like hyenas with derision at my plight, or repeat ad verbatim how my grandfather, when he came back, loudly wondered what idiocy could make a full gown man milk a cow without tying up its hind legs first.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


It is not everyday that Moses turns down gorgeous female company, so when he curtly told some lady he was unavailable and hung up on her the other night at Elvis' place as we swilled beers to celebrate the end of our week-long alcohol-free sentence, we were quite understandably concerned.

"What's the matter? Have you lost your Mojo?" I asked.

"Are you sick? Have you lost your mind?" Allan added.

"Relax, fellaz. My Mojo and my health are perfectly in order, thank you very much." Moses protested. "And my brain is too, which is more than I can say of some people in present company." He added and shot Allan a withering look.

"Then why did you behave so contrary to character just now? Allan asked. "I mean, I haven't encountered such strange behaviour since when I saw a Moslem at a confessional."

"When was that?" Elvis' wife asked, shooting her husband a warning glance as his hand moved towards yet another bottle of Pilsner.

"Er...Never." Allan replied, and the ensuing laughter provided enough distraction for Elvis to grab the bottle and pop its cap in one fluid motion.

"Hey, tone down guys. You'll wake the kids." Elvis' wife cautioned. "But seriously, Moses, I'm also curious. Why did you blow that girl off like that? If someone did that to me he'd better be able to run faster than I can drive."

A most apt comparison. The mere thought of Mrs. Elvis behind the wheel of a vehicle was enough to send a chill down our respective spines.

"Let's just say Sasha must be the reason the concept of 'extreme' even entered the realm of human perception." Moses said, and Allan pointedly told him that this was modern day Kenya, not Shakespearen England. "In modern day Kenya," he finished, "people try as much as possible to get straight to the point."

"Sasha is this Russian girl I dated a couple of months ago. Her dad is some attaché or the other at the Russian Embassy in Nairobi." Moses started to narrate. "I had to leave her because I found her preferred ideas on sex and relationships a tad bit too hedonistic even for me."

"Whips, cuffs and garter belts?" I asked.

"For starters." Moses replied. "This girl is into some really deep stuff. Swinger, sadomasochism, ritualistic, the works. At first I thought it was a good way for me to push my horizons in the carnal dimension, but when it got to the drugs, I decided that maybe some horizons should just remain horizons."

"Drugs?" We all asked incredulously and in unision.

"One evening she invited me to a party thrown in honor of some visiting Kremlin official." Moses went on without missing a beat. "Obviously, we retired to her place after the party, and there we were joined by a friend of hers, a norwegian whose name I didn't catch because it was entirely made up of consonants."

We all laughed and again, the uproar covered the hissing sound of Elvis popping yet another Pilsner.

"Anyway, Sasha made us all drinks. I'd asked for Vodka but she gave me Whisky, and we made light conversation. However, we had already drunk enough at the party and both girls' English was just a little better than atrocious, so we soon moved on to what had really brought us here. And it was spectacular!"

"So where did the drug come into all this?" Elvis asked.

"They came in the drinks. Literally." Moses answered. "You see, the experience was altogether really intense and we were at it for quite some time. When we were done, I heard Sasha tell the Norwegian girl she hadn't believed there was Ecstasy in Kenya, but now she was sure there was.Initially, I thought she meant ecstasy, as in the emotion. But towards morning, the Norwegian girl suddenly started convulsing and passed out. We immediately called an ambulance, and at the hospital, toxicology tests revealed very high levels of Ecstasy, the drug, in her bloodstream."

"You mean she overdosed on the drug?" Someone asked.

"Yes, that's exactly what I mean." Moses said irritably. "And I also mean that she overdosed on a drug that had been meant for me."

"What!" We all asked again incredulously and in unison.

"Remember I asked for Vodka and Sasha gave me Whisky? Well, the Whisky had been for the Norwegian girl, and Sasha, who had all along meant to spike my drink, mixed up the glasses and gave her my Ecstasy-laced Vodka instead."

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Of crochets and needles

I never told you how the Mr. Big saga ended. So, here goes...

Few people like sharp pointed objects, and fewer still appreciate having such objects introduced onto their anatomies. The three of us definitely belong to the larger percentage of the human population that views sharp, pointed objects uncharitably, but since our misadventure at the pub necessitated a small medical procedure called a tetanus shot, we had to set aside our personal prejudices and, with a glaring lack of enthusiasm, allow Mr. Big's doctor brother to jab our behinds with sharp, pointed objects.

Our tribulations however didn't end there. Not content with making us confront our rabid fear of needles, the doctor had one more nightmare for us. No alcohol for the next few days, or the shots would be useless, meaning needles all over again. We all took this pretty hard. I felt like someone had switched off the sunshine in my life and posted a note saying "Back in a few days," while Allan looked like someone whose personal demons had all gathered together and decided to pay him a sudden, unannounced visit. Moses I was almost certain we would have to hire someone to follow him around, unless we were comfortable with the possibility of dealing with his sudden suicide within the next very few hours.

The only person who didn't have a problem with all this, and found it all very hilarious actually, was Elvis. This was only normal, considering he had been at home asleep when battle royale and the subsequent visit to the clinic went down and thus hadn’t suffered our misfortunes. Such circumstances bring out the sadist in Elvis.

"Holla man. How are you doing? I heard you people had a blast last night, with particular emphasis on the word 'blast'." He called the next day to ask, at an hour when only chicken thieves and employees of Nakumatt's 24 hour outlets could conceivably be awake.

"I'm trying to get some sleep, you moron." I curtly told him. "If you are so concerned about my health, let me remind you the risks of sleep deprivation...And how did you find out so fast anyway?" I wondered.

"Moses just returned my car, and I could tell he'd had himself a swell time. So swell in fact, that his head is still swollen." Elvis replied.

I said something nasty.

Elvis ignored it. "So why don't you all come over to my place this evening and fill me in on what happened? Six O'clock. And don't worry' drinks are on me. I'll have the missus make a lot of Ketepa. Bye." He hung up without waiting for a response. In any case, I was too tired to argue, and after making a mental note to call in sick at the office immediately I woke up, I went back to sleep.

It was not until much later when I showed up at his place that I remembered accepting Elvis' invitation meant I would have to face needles again, albeit of a different kind.

Allan was already at Elvis' place when I arrived, and he was trying hard to force down a cup of tea as well as a conversation with Elvis' wife, who was busy knitting what I guessed was a sweater for one of their children."That's a nice sweater you are knitting." I said to her as I hugged her in greeting. "For the boy or the girl?"

"Thanks. It is for my sister's child, actually. You know how expensive ready-made ones are nowadays..." and as she launched into a critique of the impact of the global economic downturn on the price of textile products, I relaxed.

Allan winked at me as if to say "you lucky bastard." And I smirked back. He hadn't been so lucky.

Presently, Moses arrived, and despite the fact that he had carried a kilo of meat for her, she didn't hug him in greeting, and when he complimented her knitting, she curtly told him that she was crocheting, not knitting, and returned to our conversation which had inevitably moved on to the global economic downturn's impact on food prices. Like Allan, Moses was unlucky.

Elvis arrived soon afterwards, and he burst out laughing as soon as he walked through the door. "You people look like hell!" He said between fits. "Hi baby. How's the crocheting?"

"That's what they get from engaging in primitive drunken violence." His wife replied. "And I'm knitting, not crocheting."

Elvis ignored her. "Come on, guys. Fill me in on the details. I've already heard Moses' and Allan's tales, so Edgar, tell me how you fared with that Orang Utan."

Upon hearing this, Elvis' wife suddenly cast me a very pained look, and my heart sank.

You see, Elvis wife, although warm, homely and usually very affable, has a very interesting eccentricity. She is always knitting, and whether or not someone's presence is welcome can be discerned from her response to any comment that person makes about her knitting. If she agrees with your comment, all is well. But if she contradicts you, then too bad.

Thus she had all along been cross with Allan and Moses but not with me because having come out of the previous night's bar brawl with a relatively unscathed head, I was the only one of us three who didn't sport a bandage on my cranium.

And until Elvis' question gave me away, she had assumed that I hadn't been involved in the previous night's 'primitive drunken violence.'

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

iran vs Uncle Sam

When not busy beating the living hell out of dissenting citizens, Mahmood Ahmadinejad, President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, splits his time equally between scaring the living hell out of Israel and pissing the living hell off Uncle Sam.

Ahmadinejad: (Beating the holy crap out of a dissenter) So you wanted Mousavi, heh? I am your president, mpende msipende. You think Mousavi is your mother? Just wait till I'm done with you...

Uncle Sam: Now now, Mahmood, that isn't the way democratic leaders deal with dissent, especially when there is such ample justification for dissent...

Ahmedinejad: You stay out of this, you infidel! You want Mousavi to win so that you will connive with him to steal our oil, like you did in Iraq and Afghanistan...

Uncle Sam: You are mistaken, Mahmood. I'm only interested in promoting democratic practises and human rights, both of which you are seriously violating right now.

Ahmedinejad: But I won fair and square, only for this son of Iblis and his ilk to come in and cause trouble! ( Continues beating the dissenter) Ati Ahmedinejad must go, heh? Niende wapi! Just wait and see. I am going to kick you so hard between the legs that your nuts will pop out through your eye sockets...

Uncle Sam: Mahmood!

Ahmedinejad:...I'll make your face look like Israel after I've dropped a nuclear bomb there...

Uncle Sam: As a matter of fact, that is why I'm here to see you. Thing is, the rest of the world is very concerned about the high number of nuclear weapons in the world, and I feel it is my duty to ask you to abandon your nuclear programme.

Ahmednijad: (incredulously) Now why would I do such a dumb thing? You have nuclear weapons. Russia has nuclear weapons. Pakistan has nuclear bomb, as does India. For Allah's sake, even that crazy dwarf from North Korea has a couple of warheads. Why are you so hard on me?

Uncle Sam:
Because everybody else is open about their nuclear programs except you. We are afraid that you just might decide to fire a missile off in the general direction of Israel.

Ahmadinejad: I wouldn't do such a thing! My nuclear programme is purely for energy purposes. (aside) Enough energy, of course, to wipe every Jew and his fourth cousin twice removed from the face of the universe.
Uncle Sam: That may be true, Mahmood, but the I and the rest of the International Community would feel just a little more comfortable if you abandoned the programme alltogether.

Ahmedinajad: Well, you and the rest of the International Community can apply your favourite lip balm and kiss my Arab behind, because that is not going to happen.

Uncle Sam: Stop being so difficult, Mahmood. You know I can put more sanctions on you and cripple your economy.

Ahmadenijad: (Laughs) Surely, Sammy Boy, that is so old! You have got to be more creative at threatening me than that.

Uncle Sam:
(Now at the very end of his tether) Mahmood, this is no laughing matter. Either you report to the negotiating table or I will allow Israel to go ahead and obliterate anything that even looks like a nuclear facility.

Ahmadinejad: OK OK! Don't get yourself all knotted up. I'll be at your disposal as soon as I receive the specifics from Arak, Ardakan, Bushehr, Isfahan, Qom...

Uncle Sam: Now just a minute. You mean you have another facility, another nuclear facility, at Qom?!

Ahmadinejad: Oops...