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Cap'n Write

Featured

Rustyke Sophistications

Rust is ugly. It corrodes beautiful things and turns them into just pieces of metal. Even its chemical formula is nothing to write home about. Fe3O4. Looks like a nuclear bomb launch code somewhere in North Korea. On the other hand, its adjective form is beautiful. Rustic. It’s chic and artistic. Aesthetically pleasing to the eye and nourishing to the soul. Its simplicity breaks the abundance of all the urban trends, offering a fresh breath of warm distinctiveness. It inspires creativity. It exudes luxury. It radiates class. It tells of your personality without you saying a word. It can be as simple as a leather strap on your wristwatch or as complex as a country farm, complete with acres of pasture and a castle made of oak. A ligneous lampshade on your dresser or pallet shelves in your kitchen. Leather upholstery for your car seats or the vintage car itself. A laptop skin for your PC or the bag you carry it in. A wooden coffee table in your living room or the homespun mat beneath it. A treen watch on your wall or the wallpaper behind it. Whatever it is, Rustyke Sophistications have got it. Rustyke is to rustic […]

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Quick Reads

Meta Morphe

One of the things we have trouble accepting is the sad fact that our childhood is over. Maybe it’s because of how instantaneous the transition to adulthood is. One morning you are daddy’s little cute girl, without a care in the world; the next, you are just a girl, no longer little, no longer cute. Just a girl with a pile of responsibilities, bills and deadlines. People no longer ask you what you wanna do when you grow up. Now they ask you what you actually do. Sometimes you stammer coming up with the right response that will make them not pry further. Sometimes you exaggerate. Other times you just tell them the truth. It’s not what you used to dream of doing just yesterday when you were daddy’s little cute girl, but it’s something. Everything around you has changed. You now work for a living. You buy your own food and you have your own place. Your taste in music and fashion has improved. People take you a little more seriously. You even have a gynaecologist. And an entirely new set of friends. The ones from your childhood are scattered in different places and it has become increasingly difficult […]

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Quick Reads

Let It Go

You can tell a lot about someone by what is stuffed between the back of their phone and their phone case. The contents can range from an extra SIM card, a SIM card tray ejector, an SD card, their Identity card, an ATM card, a passport photo of themselves, several business cards, a spare key, a few sticky notes and some cash. A simple phone that would usually weigh around 150 grams ends up being twice as heavy. And that is just on the outside. Inside their phones are dozens of applications that have not been opened in weeks. The gallery is filled with photos, videos, screenshots and memes. Their contact list has hundreds of numbers, some they no longer even remember who they belong to. And it does not end with their phones. Their environment is filled with dozens of stuff that hopefully, will come in handy one day. Sitting cozily on the TV stand is the box their new phone came in, Movie DVDs that they binged three months ago, the installation manual for the GOTv decoder, three remote controls and a bunch of coins. The kitchen is filled with empty packaging containers and bottles, shopping receipts from […]

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Quick Reads

The Eyes Have It

Have you wondered how someone on the streets still recognised you even when your mask was up to your nose? Sometimes you even had a hat on but they still identified you. It’s your eyes. The mirror to a man’s soul, in Shakespeare’s words. They snitch on you by expressing the reality of your inner being, despite what the mouth says. They can reveal if you have been crying even if you are smiling. Or if you are in pain. Or sad. They can disclose if you are lying. Or if you are just shy. They can tell if you are exhausted. Or angry. Or bored. Or intoxicated. Or hung over. Or just sleepy. They can even divulge if you are lusting over someone. Or completely disinterested. They can break down your entire personality without you uttering a single word. They can tell the state of your health and the state of your wealth. They can even be used to estimate your age! Your eyes send and receive messages all the time. Like when someone says something stupid to you and you just roll your eyes at them. They get the message. They need to shut the fuck up. When […]

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Quick Reads

We’ll get back to you

Do you remember the first time they told you ‘We’ll get back to you‘ after a job interview? You would get up earlier than you normally do and refresh your emails as if corporate organizations somehow send emails in the middle of the night. You amplified your caller ring volume and added that vibration setting in case they called you while you were aboard those noisy matatus to your place. You even quit all form of drugs just in case this organization does that drug test thing before they hire someone. Then a week passed and they had not gotten back to you. Well, maybe they do take their time. You know, good things take time. Another week passed by. No calls. No emails. A month. Three months. Nothing. And then it hit you. Their word meant nothing. They were never going to get back to you. You had spent Ksh. 1,050 applying for a certificate of good conduct for nothing. You had cleared your Tala loan and paid Ksh. 2,200 getting that Credit Reference Bureau clearance certificate for nothing. You had shaved the baby locks you had been nurturing for the longest time, for nothing. You now owned a […]

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Ladies and Gentlemen

The Tattoos on My Back

No woman is more abhorred by her fellow women than she that gets all the male attention. I am this woman. I have been this woman all my life. I don’t know what men see in me. Maybe it’s the sparkle in my smile. Or my bountiful behind. Or my hourglass shape. Or my soft dark hair. Or maybe it’s the charm in my personality. Or the tattoos on my back. Whatever it is, it drives other women crazy. They like to think that I do not deserve all the hullabaloo. They discredit me, yet, deep down, they hate that they want to be like me. They hate that they want to be me. It is not easy being this woman. I have to bust my ass at work, lest the rumours being spread around that I slept with the boss to get that promotion get confirmed. I have to pretend not to be bothered by the constant shameless whistling of men every time I walk past them. I have to politely turn down offers from random men (and the occasional woman) every single day. ”Can I buy you drinks?”. ”What’s your dream destination? We can go vacation there for […]

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Ladies and Gentlemen

Oblate Spheroid

The year was 2011. Seventeen year old me was fighting a losing battle with acne whilst trying to nurture the three strands of hair growing from somewhere under my chin. I was in my final year at some school in the chilly highlands of Nyandarua County. I happened to be pretty good at what we used to refer to as kuchora giza, so I spoke my way to the finals of the National Science Congress Fair with my good friend Douglas. He had big eyes, Douglas. So we used to call him Kamaritho. He had no problem with the name, as long as you did not call him that in the presence of a girl he liked. So Kamaritho and I found ourselves in Bungoma County where the fair was being held. We would be there for a week, doing what high school kids do at such school functions. Kamaritho and I had never been to Bungoma. We had never heard such strong Luhya accents before. We had never seen sugarcane sprawling in acres like it was grass. Neither had we seen so many beautiful girls at the same place and at the same time. So we decided to do […]

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Featured

Natural Spaces

There is something therapeutic about an indoor plant. It just sits there in its pot, serenely minding its own business, occasionally swaying to the soft breeze coming from the window it has been conveniently placed below. You know, because of the light. Plants need a lot of it. They also need water. And fresh air. And an occasional fondle. I know this because it is on the plant manual of the Dracaena I bought from Vivianne Nyogoro the other day. Vivianne knows everything there is to know about houseplants. A chubbly twenty-six-year-old, she does not seem like the kind of person whose fingers could do more than just type. Her well-groomed nails look like the kind that the only tough work they ever did was scrub the dishes. But here she is, in gumboots, all soiled with her hair pulled back, as if she is in that ‘Dirt is good’ commercial. So how did this happen? Vivianne majored in Events and Convention Management (Yes, there is such a course) at the Technical University of Kenya. Graduates of this course are supposed to plan and manage international conferences and exhibitions across the world. You would think that landing such a job […]

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Quick Reads

I’ll Take The Stairs

Life is all fun and games until you get stuck in an elevator, by yourself. At first, you console yourself that it is just a technical hitch. Maybe the power went out. Ten seconds pass by. Nothing happens. Fifteen seconds. Don’t they have back -up generators here? Thirty seconds. Suddenly, the elevator lunges down and stops abruptly, jolting you to the reality that you are trapped in a fifteen square feet metallic cell. Your first reflex action is to press the open button. There is no reaction. You ring the bell. It is as dead as a dodo. You frantically run your index finger on all the other buttons hoping one of them will activate the rest. They are all unresponsive. You grab your phone and dial the emergency number right above the buttons. It is out of service. The elevator briskly lurches downwards again, this time at a jaw clenching speed before stopping instantaneously, followed by a blanket of darkness. The lights have gone out. That’s it, you think to yourself. I am screwed. You have seen this in the movies. The only way to save yourself would be climbing out and scaling down the greasy wires with your […]

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Lifestyle

One Last Time

Death is brutal. One moment you are within six feet of your loved one, the next, they are six feet under. Sometimes there is no forewarning. It just strikes and closes the curtains as if it’s just another play at the theatre. Dreams get shattered. Unions get halved. Futures get disoriented. And the saddest part about it all is that there is absolutely nothing you can do to change the state of affairs. You cry yourself to sleep and pray that it is just a dream and that when you wake up, they will be there. Their bright face smiling down at you. Their familiar voice buzzing through your ears, probably complaining about why you were sleeping for too long. The mixture of their sweat and their cologne filling your nostrils, choking you a little. You wake up and it’s just you. Just you, surrounded by their stuff. Their clothes. Shoes. Handbags. Car keys. Cellphone. Everywhere you turn, everything you touch, reminds you of them. The TV is still stuck on their favourite channel. Remains of their favourite meal are still in the fridge. The bookmark you bought them for their birthday is still peeping from between the pages of […]

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