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Kiiru Macharia

Ladies and Gentlemen, Lifestyle

Puppy Eyes

It caught her by surprise. It’s not every day that your boyfriend of three years proposes in the presence of all your friends and some of his. It was supposed to be just a small birthday party. Well, your age is no longer a small number, but still, nobody had seen this coming. You weren’t even keen on hosting this party and were it not for Adam’s insistence, not many people would have known you were turning twenty-eight. Now it made a lot of sense. How Adam was so excited about the party; how he had made arrangements for the barbecue, drinks and music. He even went ahead to handle the invitations, personally reaching out to all your friends and some of his. These friends now have all their eyes on you, eagerly awaiting your response, as Adam looks up to you, on one knee, grinning from ear to ear. The diamond on the ring on Adam’s right hand is enormous. It would look perfect on your finger. It is sparkling against the camera lights as they shutter away from all angles. You look around. Your besties are giggling in excitement. A band starts to play some music. They have […]

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Featured

Are You Sure?

You have just finished your KCSE exams. Four years of your life have been evaluated in just three weeks. You find yourself quite broke but you are comforted by the fact that you can now wake up after the sun has risen. Hmm, I should get me a job or something before I join campus, you think to yourself. You phone that uncle of yours that always kept telling you to look for him as soon as you were done with your exams. He owns an Insurance firm and he can get you something to keep you busy in exchange for a small stipend. He is happy to hear from you. You ask about your cousins and your aunt. They are all fine. Then he proceeds to break your heart. ‘The economy is not doing very well, as you can see on the news. But you do this, join campus and let me know when you go for long holiday ama when you need to go for attachment, sawa?’ You join campus. Time flies and it’s now time for your first long holiday. You ring your uncle, again. ‘The economy has not improved, in fact, it has become worse. Do […]

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Ladies and Gentlemen, Lifestyle

Brake Fluid

The first time he ever hit her, he was blind drunk, and she was six months pregnant. The slap landed on her left cheek like a flash of lightning, followed by a thunderous buzzing in her head. Her face turned red. Her left eye turned black. Her jaw moved and her tongue was caught in between it. Her blood became hot. She felt the baby turn, as if in protest. And why? Because she had questioned where he had been all night, who he had been with and how much money he had spent drinking. He refused to answer and sprawled himself on their bed, with his muddy shoes still on. Njeri spent the night sobbing on the living room floor, wondering what the hell she had gotten herself into. See, Njeri is a good conservative girl. The kind that would prefer to spend Saturday nights baking mandazis for her man, with only his oversized T-Shirt on. Ngugi, on the other hand, is kind of a dick. The kind that would rather hop from club to brothel every weekend than stay home and be with his pregnant wife. The kind that would rather splash half his salary entertaining his fake […]

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Lifestyle

90’s Kid

This is for you, 90’s kids. We started off this decade still under our parents’ care, and the only worry was how to log onto 2go and how to afford the latest Supras. How to do the Skip to My Lou Dance and grabbing the front seat during Saturday Night entertainment back in High School. Getting a seat on the school bus during the school functions and talking to that pretty girl or guy from the neighbouring school. Thrashing your friends on PlayStation 3 and playing Spartacus and Fast Five on replay. The decade saw us sit our final O – level exams and join various institutions of higher learning. We lost touch with childhood friends and made new friendships with people from other parts of the world – male and female, young and old. We smoked our first joint and had our first sip of alcohol. We had our first sexual encounters and learnt how to use contraceptives. We lied to our parents about school trips and spent that money club – hopping. We got turned away in night clubs for being ‘not old enough’ and got thrown out in the clubs we managed to get into, for probably […]

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Ladies and Gentlemen

Mother Teresa

Her virginity was ripped away from her, gruesomely and gut – churningly. No one but her mother had known about it. For eleven years, the heart-rending memories silhouetted her every move. How he had come to her room, tore apart her dress, slapped her when she tried to fight back, pinned her against her bed and squeezed his way in, her cries for help echoing against his sickening moans of pleasure. When she came to, she was lying on her mother’s bed. Her mother was in tears. She told her how sorry she was for bringing that man into their lives. She told her of her step – father’s illegal narcotics business and how the money had supported them ever since her daddy died and her mother started seeing this man. She told her reporting the matter would open a web of police investigations that would tie the two of them as accomplices and possibly land them in jail. She convinced her to not say a word to anyone. She packed two bags, one for each one of them, and they drove away, five hundred miles north of the little town of Kisauni, Mombasa County. They settled in Kasarani and […]

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Effervescence, Ladies and Gentlemen, Lifestyle

Baking Soda

Taxi drivers have the best stories. They just cannot shut up and drive. Especially when traffic is a bitch and they need to pass the time with something other than changing the stereo stations. They happen to know a little bit of everything. You might be astounded to hear stories about you, being told to you. Like now, this one is showing me Mheshimiwa’s house. One of his many houses. He tells me how Mheshimiwa grabbed the piece of land from a children’s home. He boasts of how he has dropped dozens of girls there in the middle of the night. He also whines about how this Mheshimiwa guy hardly tips. From what I gather, this Mheshimiwa guy must be one mean old guy. And bald. And potbellied. ‘What’s your stop again?’ he asks? ‘Right there,’ I say, pointing at Mheshimiwa’s gate. ‘Haiya!’ ‘Hii Nairobi ni kutafuta,’ I say, jumping out of his poorly – maintained Toyota Fielder, ‘Ntakupigia unikujie’ I add. The gateman sees me walking up the gateway and swings the sliding door open for me. He gazes at my rather well – fleshed thighs tapering into the knee-high brown leather boots. He must be wondering what on earth is wrong with me, wearing leather boots on such a hot Wednesday […]

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Ladies and Gentlemen

Who’s Your Daddy?

She is her father’s look – alike. She has his aquiline nose, pouty lips and descending hairline. Her short stature and chocolate perplexion are the only features she took after her mother. She is a constant reminder of her father to the people who knew him. Her mother had told her that he died in a road accident when she was three, twenty years ago. As she grew older, she had pestered her mother to take her to his grave but her mother dismissed the idea. ‘It will bring more pain than relief,’ she said. Kristin never brought it up again. When she joined State House Girls, she carried his passport photo and pinned it on the inside of her locker. She would look at his grinning face every day and smile back at him. She believed he was watching over her from wherever he was. During the school visiting days, her friends would buzz her ears with stories about their fathers. ‘My dad does not even know how to shop. He brought me Dettol Cool soap instead of Dettol Even tone,’ one would grumble. ‘Lucky you. My dad only brought a newspaper!’ another would chime. ‘Mine came late and […]

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Flash Fiction

Angie from the Office

‘So how did you two meet?’ she asks. She is pretty. Probably prettier than you. 5 ft 4 with heels on. Spotless skin. Chubby cheeks. A thin waist and an opulent bottom. You can tell from her hairdo that she has a very good fashion sense too. He has mentioned her before. Angie from the office. 10.00 pm on a random Wednesday, cuddling in bed. ‘Stan, who’s calling you at this time?’ He checks his phone. It’s just Angie from the office,’ 9.30 am during your tea – break, you call Stan. He answers on the tenth ring, which is rather unusual. ‘Stan, who’s that laughing at the background?’ ‘Just my stupid colleagues‘ ‘Angie?’ ‘Yes. And Jamie. And Keith. And others you haven’t met.’ 11.00 am on a Saturday. ‘I’ll call you back later babe, I’m getting into a meeting. ‘With Angie?’ ‘Don’t start,’ Angie from the office. Finally you get to meet her. You’re standing across from each other. It’s Stan’s company’s End of Year Party and after much coercion, (and blackmail), Stan agrees to take you with him. She walks over the moment you arrive. Stan courteously hugs her and you can tell that she is not the […]

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Poetry

Karma

Why won’t you return my calls? Why won’t you open the door? Why are you building walls? Why are you sobbing on the kitchen floor? You just don’t get it, do you? What we had was a mistake You have a wife and kids, don’t you? Please, give me a break What if I actually leave her? Will you finally come back? She does not love me anymore either Say the words and I’ll start to pack As much as I ache for your touch and kiss I have to be selfless and just give up Because one day, I will be where your wife is And I will not want karma to eat me up So what? This is it? I don’t even get to see you one last time? Yes, please don’t ever visit Go home to her and live up to your vows Because, we only get one life And karma, karma is counting

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Photo by Pixabay
Ladies and Gentlemen

Cut – Out

They called themselves The Backpackers. A clique of friends who had maintained close contact since their campus days. Two gents and three ladies. Initially, they were six. Then sometime in their second year of college, Wanjeri fell out with Jaymo after their Rachael and Ross relationship went sour. (If you were born just the other day, Rachael and Ross are friends cum lovers from a 90s sitcom called Friends.) So Wanjeri had that kind of ego that makes you choose new friends after one of your old friends dumps you. Who can judge her? I would do the same. The others always made fun of Jaymo and his Wanjeri connection. They blamed him for ruining the balance in the group since they were now three ladies and two gentlemen. But this fallout with Wanjeri kind of tightened the bond around them. They came up with this little rule that no member of the group would do it with another member of the group. They were strictly platonic friends. They became inseparable and always had each other’s backs. When Kwamboka’s mother passed on in their third year of college, Mike, Jaymo, Shiko and Kui put together their little savings, rented out a small Probox […]

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