I am turning a new leaf today, finally hitting the quarter of a century mark. It’s no mean feat, it is very easy actually. It was mostly fueled by a desire to see more of each day and greased by my mother’s prayers. It’s safe to say I made it. But who am I kidding right? Made it? How? At least not in the definition of the term; at least not until I can put up a dozen black bottles of Belair on Instagram next to a bill with numbers longer than the Great Wall of China. Till then I am still in the fake it category. So let me moan a bit (hehe I am too dumb sometimes. Don’t let the pun hit you on your way out.)
Look here; hold off your birthday wishes for a minute and let me write about this life I have so far lived. This life that was given to me without my asking. Do you realize how selfish that is? That I am the product of someone else’s orgasm – if I was lucky – that is a topic I do not think I would broach with my mother. Ever. Or maybe I am just the product of an accident. It is really hard to tell whether they sat down; over coffee, or tea and decided that they should have a second kid. But here I am, an opinionated 25 year old man; with a penchant for fine whisky that I can barely afford, an Instagram following that knows nothing about me as far as the bio goes, skinny legs, coarse voice, neat beard and a conflicted liking between 3 series BMW’s and STI Impreza’s.
But the one thing that remains is that in the decision to have me (or not) I wasn’t involved. Which is quite amusing because almost all my decisions after I came have been influenced; if not coerced, by a slap or three by the ones that brought me here. I want to cry freedom. That maybe 25 is the year I gain my independence. You know? The day I can confidently say “yeah I chose to wear those brown corduroy cowboy pants. Me. Not anybody else.” Even if I look atrocious in them. But the irony is; I know I will look atrocious not because I have worn them and seen myself in the mirror but because I have worn them in my head and seen myself through my mother’s eyes. Yeah; she has that effect. Ever since I was 4 years old and she made me think I could pick what to wear for Sunday school. I see everything through her eyes; which is both a gift and a curse. To anyone that I have ever introduced to my mother; it is because I saw you through her eyes and she liked you. Now you know.
I talk about her a lot. My mother. After 25 this should probably stop; I might come off as a mother’s boy; but who isn’t? Or who would not want to be? She’s a safety net that has been there for the last 25 years. With her around I do not need to worry about the consequences of most of my decisions. Plus I was the last kid to leave her tit. That’s the strongest bond there ever will be. And yes, I do agree sometimes she babies me too much. Asking if I have eaten, or if I want to have coffee with her on a Sunday afternoon (She usually says the bill is on me but ends up paying. Won’t have it any other way too. To her I am the child and she’s the mother. I could own the whole world but she would still pay the coffee bill and the occasional beer – yes she’s cool like that). But to be honest; with life and its uncertain trajectory it is a blessing to have someone like her to fall back on. So 25 will not see me try to put a distance between her and I; whatever false sense of growing up that will bring to me will not be worth the emotional turmoil it will give her. So yeah, 25 sees me become more of a mama’s boy.
Enough about mum’s. You are probably here for the juicy part. Mum, this is where you stop reading, go to church, kneel at the pew and pray for your boy hehe.
I thought that by at 25 I would have gone ahead and gotten a tattoo. I kind of like how they look on other people’s bodies. I do not see myself with one though, even with my imagination. But my biggest problem is not being able to decide what type of art I want mutilating my body. Should I pay tribute to my writing? What would that even look like? A quail dipped in ink? An old scroll? The nib of a fountain pen? What? A torn page with the date of my birth scribbled across the top? A scroll inside a bottle like the pirates did? Crazy. Maybe I should just go berserk and put a typewriter across my chest with all the letters spelling out my name and a tribute to my future daughter? Also I hear it is painful especially if you are skinny. Have you met me? There’s no other person with skin closer to bone than I am. Maybe 25 will see me add weight hehe.
Most people say that by 25 you should have fulfilled your most weird sexual fantasies. I don’t know what counts for weird really. Mum? Are you still reading? Please stop now. Sigh. Mothers.
I do not have any weird sexual fantasies. You will not find me on google trying to find out how to have sex with an avocado. My sex life is pretty much boring as much as it is non-existent. Also I am your normal shy writer that blushes from here to Jupiter when anyone brings the sex topic up. I cannot even say “sex” in public. How do you people do it? I would still call it niniing. Or tabia mbaya. Which would maybe get me in all sorts of awkward scenarios because I could be talk about the shagging niniing while the other person is talking about making a salad and that’s when I would show up naked to a kitchen holding a lettuce. I wanted to make a bad pun about salad tossing but meh… that one has gone down south. Also I do not understand why the style mostly proclaimed to be for boring people is named after the most adventurous people. Missionary. Do you know how hard it must be to get on a boat, sail thousands of miles, with a book and convince people that some chap turns water into wine at weddings?
Recently (this being in the past five years give or take two) a pal asked me how many hearts I have broken. He was quick to chime that mine does not count. But I think mine counts the most. I have been disappointed in myself over the last five years than I have ever been in my life. Sure, there are some great days. Rays of hope here and there that creep through the dark clouds of self-doubt and shitty moments but those became so far apart that you honestly do not see any good in yourself. The worst part is everyone that is never short of praises of how well you are doing. Like what lens do they use to view your life? (This has nothing to do with the damsel that hit me up asking for a soft loan of three hundred thousand. Yes! One… Two… Three hundred thousand. Have I been implicated in some IEBC – NYS esque scandal I need to know about?) Maybe it is just general goodwill, maybe it is just them making conversation and having nothing better to say; god knows I should invest in better shoes and take the pressure of people. It is easier to say “hey bro, nice shoes” than “I like how it looks like you have it figured out”.
But then again my biggest mistake might be listening to other people and what they are doing. Or what they claimed to have done when they were your age. Of the great epiphanies that hit them smack in the butt like a sexy seductress and seduced them into their destinies or success or whatever. So you sit and wonder when the hell will your epiphany will come and will it bring with it a nice good spank to jolt you into a blue Subaru and a ka-plot somewhere in those Maina Kageniesque matatu radio station locations.
But when it comes to other hearts; I think I have only broken one. Crushed actually. Made my peace with it. Made my peace with her. Now we are good ol’ buddies. Anyone else claiming to have had their heart broken by me might have to step out of the shadows and confront me. I do have a few sincere apologies left in me.
It is weird that by 25 I have never been a player. Waits for crowd to gasp. But it is true. Though I hear it a lot; that being good with words or being funny means that I have many girlfriends. No. It is like saying that a guy working as a mortician must love death. Though I did give it a try a while back when I was 22 (looks around at the people trying to do the math) hehe. And what I did was try to talk to as many ladies as possible with the aim of having at least four inside the box. It was terrible. Handling one girlfriend is already a full time job; how do you handle four? Suffice to say (yeah when you are 25 you get to use terms like that. Now look at how sophisticated I am people. Look.) It did not work out. I am a one girl kind of guy.
Change is the only thing that is constant but the amount of change varies. Ask me; I know. Like the amount of change I got from a thousand bob when I bought a bottle of whisky at 20 is not the same change I get now at 25. These bloody prices keep going up every time the government decides that citizens need to fund its stealing. The worst part is that income is not rising at the same level; but someone called it adulting. Like it is something we should look forward to. Who invented it in the first place? Like someone decided let’s start off this buggers as young helpless toddlers that are shitting of themselves and end them as young helpless adults with life shitting on them? It is unfair.
I want to start a petition at 25 to have sin tax removed. This will be the one and probably only revolution that I will start and endorse to the end. It is so bad that I cannot even casually pop up in Nairobi West with the guys for a polite drink over nyama. The size of nyama has to go down if the drink quantity should stay the same and you know how guys devour that thing like Jesus’s last supper?
Also getting to 25 I have experimented a lot with the creative world. Not enough to get paid for it because that world is a tight knit group of people that know each other and I am the weird outsider. You also have to be ready to pucker up kiss some ass and massage some egos. It is a mine field out here trying to get views and listens. Also it feels like that fashion fad that everybody has jumped on. Which is not a bad thing because we are all creative and we all have something to say the internet has given as this platform so I do not mind when everybody uses it. But by 25; me and my poor networking skills hoped to have at least gotten two or three writing gigs. Paid. But; here we are.
I tried my hand (mouth?) at pod-casting and it was really fun. You have that sense that a radio presenter has when they are in studio talking to themselves on the mic. I do think that at 25 I am comfortable with the sound of my own voice. All the rough patches have been smoothed out by whisky and it has a rasp thanks to the brief stint I enjoyed the tobacco sticks. I do not think it is something I will keep up with after 25; it feels like too much work with very little reward. But then again, I am not known for my sticking to things so I might just not stick to not doing it and do it. See what I did?
Also 25 might see me get a girlfriend. (Waits for screams and cheers). It is not coincidental or planned things just worked out the way they worked out in the time they worked out. But, being the person I am; you will not hear a lot about her. She will be a mention in an article here and there like a passing wind but she will mainly feature in my life. Which is private. Thank you in advance for respecting that.
I do not know how long I have left in this life. But I am thankful for having lived my first quarter century. I do hope a lot comes after this (ahem writing gigs). I hope to get a little bit more serious with my ventures; save more, feel more, see more and become more. I want to share a lot of experiences with my readers as well (who for some reason seem not too very keen to catch beers with me).
This has been a long write and it is probably about to be a long night for me as well.
So on your behalf to me I wish myself a happy birthday.