Friday, January 30, 2009

A guy in a saloon

Or is it salon.

So I went in to have my hair cut the other day. Walked in. There was a guy seated there seemingly waiting his turn but the barber was idle and he didn't seem too interested. So I walked right past and into the seat.

The usual. Back to school. No frills. As I sat there, I began to wonder. How futile was this. You come in, they cut your hair, only for it to grow back again. Then you come in after a couple of weeks and go through the whole routine again. Does the hair not get it. Why does it keep growing back.

My philosophical contemplations were interrupted by a sight in the mirror. It was that guy. The guy who didn't seem too interested earlier. He was walking out of the salon. From the ladies section. Two other odd things. He was carrying some kind of oil. And he had matutas on his head. So that's what the head gear he had on earlier was for. It was almost too much to take in all at once. But it is a free country I suppose so if a guy wants to have his hair done, then more power to him. It actually reminded me of another time I was at those really executive barber type places. Where they cut your hair, then wash your head, then oil it. This lady asks me what oil I would like her to use. I'm like "Whaa...?". There are people who know the answer to that question?

Friday, January 23, 2009


I was talking to this guy I used to work with back in the day. He's since left the company and apparently so have most guys who were there when I was. Actually, like he said, everyone with options has left.

Which was a sad indictment of the place, and workplaces in general. I had this idea that a guy should work at a place where he wants to work. So when I left campus, I only applied to one place. Foolish huh. I didn't buy a tonne of brown envelops, dropping my CV anywhere the receptionist would take them. I didn't want to work anywhere. My ideas of what I wanted as work were pretty narrow so I didn't have many options actually. I did get to work there, eventually, and it was a lot of fun pretty much. My ideal job. So much for that.

I've come some way since then, and have accepted some realities. But I still find myself asking people what their ideal job would be. Mostly people out of campus. That kind of thing still intrigues me. Where would someone work, or what would someone do if they didn't have a mortgage to pay and such. And I find it really unfortunate that a lot of people would be doing different things in such circumstances. Given, for most people [more] money is the bottom line so they would go anywhere and do pretty much anything as long as it paid a certain amount of money X. Or more than their current employ at least.

Further I had this idea that employers would want guys to want to work for them. Guys who want to work for them. Rather than guys who are there because they don't have options. Rather than guys who show up at 8 because of the threat that comes with not signing the register at that time, and lament about all their time there at every opportunity. Rather than guys who do only what they must to ensure they continue getting a salary. So much for my ideas. The real world is much less idealistic.

Apparently there are many labourers and not enough places to labour at. Like one guy said, if everyone could do IT stuff we would be paid the same as guys who flip burgers. Or whatever local equivalent that would translate to. It's a good thing then that software is hard. Another guy was talking about how the concept of a fair wage is really subjective. I went to a department once to set up some system and was quite bemused to find a manager there, swivelling in his seat, looking around, nothing on his desk, basically twiddling his thumbs. The sight was one to behold for sure. I didn't know what to make of it. This can't be how things are normally, surely not. It must be a slow day or something. The business analyst type guy I was doing the tour with assured me these types had no clue what goes on. Wasn't so sure about that but I thought they probably got paid a load of cash. And slept pretty soundly at night. I didn't get it. But who is to say what a fair wage is. We had a watchie killed some time back by thieves. And for what. 5K? Puts things into perspective such.

So in the real world people are driven by options. Employers will only give significant pay rises or generally better conditions when guys threaten to strike. Or start leaving in droves. If they are critical and hard to replace that is. If you flip burgers, it was nice knowing you. Guys will only stay at an employer because none of those interviews they've gone for have panned out. Or they haven't got an opportunity to interview yet. Sad.

Good enough

I was reading this article on Agile modeling. In there somewhere was this idea about good-enough documentation. Lovely concepts like "update only when it hurts". Generally not spending inordinate or incommensurate amounts of effort to fulfill the requirements of a project.

Perhaps it's my lazy side that found all of this very appealing. And that side can be pretty persuasive, so I really took it to heart. And got to wondering if there is a place for the concept in other things. I figured that there was. It's nice to have outstanding anything but it's not so bad necessarily to have good-enough something. Someone commented that the only reason Microsoft has free versions of .NET IDEs for download was because of SharpDevelop. And he does have a point. Visual Studio is brilliant, but if you don't have some cash to spare [I wonder how much Team Suite costs] for some reason, it's a pretty decent alternative. And so it is for a lot of open source projects. Innumerable actually. I use OpenOffice because I thought MS Office costs like a gazillion bob, rather than the 7K at the time. But it's good enough for me. Actually if someone comes up with something good enough for a much lower cost, a company has to rethink its strategy. I always wished there would be one shop where I can go and buy everything. Where there were things of decent quality at reasonable price. I don't need luxury or highest quality necessarily. As long as it doesn't fade entirely after two washes, and doesn't cost as much as someone's salary, I'll buy it. I'd be their best customer actually.

So not everyone can be brilliant, but there is a place for those that just move things along. Being the best or whatever often comes at a price. A lot of hard work and such. Sure, guys should be encouraged to be the best they can be and all that, but one eye has to be put on the price. And whether they are willing to pay it. Those spelling bee kids for instance look pretty miserable. Or like this guy in high school who was pretty brilliant then went on to pursue music as a career. What a waste I thought. This guy should have been putting his mind to use at NASA or other similar facility where people with brilliant minds put them to use. Singing was such a waste. But what do I know. Perhaps if he had such a view forced on him he would be at NASA. And perhaps he would have been miserable. Although to be fair most people are miserable wherever they are.

Still. I think there is a place for good-enough. That it need not be a bad thing. I'm not the flyest guy around but I'm willing to bet there would be one or two gals who would have me. And not in the last-man-on-earth, either you or a goat context. I'm pretty sure I'm good enough for someone. If guys serving life sentences for murder can get galfriends, there's hope for a guy. And that's all that I need. There needn't be anything wrong with a good-enough salary. And not applying yourself too much necessarily for a better one. Because utility must be measured against effort. There is no free lunch. So what if you aren't the best or the biggest or the brightest. Good enough is OK.

Looking good naked

There are some posts that are obviously not about me.

Anyhoo. There's this chic who mentioned that she looks better in clothes. It's just hit me that I keep referring to random chics, like I know a whole bunch of them, or it's the same one, or they are make-believe. But I assure you that I have a white bucket, and she isn't made up.

So. As I was saying. The presumption of course was that she didn't look too hot in her birthday suit. Which is a fair comment I suppose. Clothes can be a really good thing. Take them off and I don't know what happens. Things just fall apart. But I think most any woman can look hot in say tight clad. Given that guys are pretty simple minded. Or is that single minded.

I stopped doing sit-ups long ago. I accepted the futility of it all. At no point in my life have I not had a pot so for me it was like fighting a tsunami. Pointless really. Then there are those press-ups. Stopped doing those soon after. Was never into the buff look. Don't have too much muscle to play with anyway. What else. What else is there for women to indulge in, in a visual sense. Nothing. Pity. But what's a guy to do.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Chuck vs The Rat

I had myself a right royal battle.

So I'm heading to do a number one. [who comes up with this stuff] Open the door and I'm immediately scared back out by what I hear, and a little bit of what I see. I shut the door quickly behind me. I know what lurks in there. It was a week before or something that I had the first encounter. This time I was in the process of doing the so called number one. When I was stopped in my tracks. Well, maybe not quite, but I was stopped is my point. Literally and completely. It's amazing how a whole body system can shut down in fractions of a second. By the mere sight of a rat scampering about. After I froze [literally again], that infamous fight or flight response really kicked into gear. I just wanted to get out of there. But the door was shut and the rat was ahead of me. At the door, experiencing a similar need to flee. Finally I gathered enough courage to stretch my hand, feet remaining implanted where they were, and open the door to let the unwanted guest out. Even as it scurried away, and I was left there alone, nothing would come out. I could have gone for the rest of my life without peeing.

So this second encounter wasn't as terrifying. I hadn't started doing my do. I knew what was in there. Wasn't even in the toilet yet. Or should I say bathroom. This concept of having both in one enclosure, with only one door has always been puzzling to me. I didn't get it first time I saw it, and still don't get it every time I see a different incarnation. Why would you want to put those two together. Surely two different people can't use the facilities they provide at the same time. Perhaps in those United States. Is that why they say "going to the bathroom", rather than "going to the toilet". Euphemistic and accurate. Two birds gone. For this kind of thing to work, you'd have to have several "bathrooms" in the house. Or not have too many kids. Or not have some people who take really long baths. Otherwise there'd be all sorts of crises. Definitely wouldn't have worked in the house I grew up in.

So I shut the door. I knew that the rat was in there and wasn't going anywhere. What to do now. Kill it. I could throw some poison laced bits of food in there and wait for it to die, but who knows how long that would take. Besides. If I'm really honest with myself, I'm pretty useless at fixing things around the house. Apart from changing bulbs. Things like administering poison aren't part of my repertoire. The only other thing I could think of was a stick. So I head out and get some sort of stick. Other folks in the house notice my odd, preoccupied look and behaviour and soon I'm furnished with some gloves. Didn't know we had those. As I head back for battle, I become aware that I'm not appropriately dressed. Shorts and bare feet just won't do. What if it jumps on me and bites me or something. What if it touches me. Perish the thought. So I get into a pair of shoes and a set of pants that leaves no skin exposed. It's on now. What a blood bath it's going to be.

First things first. Open the door, jump in and shut the door. Then head for the farthest corner of the room, away from the enemy. Who was hiding behind some mtungi. Lucky for me. I get closer and hit the stick around. It comes out of hiding, makes for the door, and on realising that isn't a way out today, it heads back into hiding. Before I can gather myself and steady myself, and strike. On and on this sequence went on. On one occasion it tried to like jump out the door or something. It jumped anyway. Pretty high actually. Desperation was starting to creep in. I was playing the long game. The patient game. Waiting for the right moment. On another occasion it kind of stopped and faced me. Like it was going to attack. Actually made my heart race. I learnt right there if you are in a fight. Don't run. It will only raise adrenalin levels in your opponent and bolster him. Instead stand there and stare him down. Give him something to think about. Make him consider if he really wants to do this, and deal with possible outcomes.

But it was too late for me. People were waiting for my shouts of victory so I had no choice but to carry on. The end did come swiftly. One strike to the head. And it would do the usual routine of returning to it's hideout. Prod it out of there, then another strike. Like that for a couple of times. Getting successively better blows each time. Until it was all over. Was pretty surprised that there was no blood. Got a paper bag and that was it. I was reminded that in some parts that would be considered as supper. In the sense of an only meal rather than an exotic one. Unfortunate.


It starts with an email. Every couple of months. Job forwards and such. Then it becomes an email every couple of weeks. Then every couple of days. Then SMSs. Then you're doing cake [there is a thing like white chocolate cake]. And talking about going to the movies. Then she calls. I could be in so much trouble. Could get myself into so much trouble. [it's times like these that I'm relieved no one reads this place, and no one is likely to find it]

The B word

It's no secret that women really fascinate me. In all sorts of ways. But I was wondering the other day, as I sat with a chic and she used the B word in reference to other chics. And herself.

I thought it was derogatory or something. Or is that just when guys from my home planet, Mars, use it. Sort of the way black Americans can use certain lingo that white Americans can't. Kwanza I typically sense unease even with the term black. For some reason white folks go out of their way not to say black. I find African-American too long. And I'm not sure it's entirely appropriate as far as accuracy is concerned. Otherwise bantus here would be referring to themselves as Congolese-Kenyans. We did come from those densely forested parts? Cameroon-Kenyan perhaps. Hey. I mostly used to read for exams and after... ignorant bliss.

Is it that the B word is in vogue so using it is cool. Or what does it mean really. Maybe I think it's some sort of four letter word when it isn't. Maybe it's pretty normal for a chic to call her friend such a bitch. Maybe it isn't vitriol laden. Maybe there is no hidden vile emotion behind it. Ni kitu ya kawaida tu.

The other side of crazy

I was watching a programme the other day. Basically a bunch of comics sitting round a table and later doing a 5 min set each. Even when these guys were just seated, chatting away in unscripted fashion, I couldn't help but wonder how they did it. The comeback lines were just amazing. These guys minds must work at the speed of light almost. Their neurons must be made up of some special stuff. How do they think up stuff. Which reminds me. There's this one chic I know who is pretty mind blowing. Witty as hell.

Anyway. They say that genius is the other side of crazy. Or something like that. Which is what makes crazy so appealing for me. Crazy that doesn't involve grandiose delusions and such. A lot of exceptional fellows tend not to conform to what is considered norm. Those campus lecturers [those who actually knew their stuff] were certainly a bit off. Uncle Mjomba trying to illustrate some three dimensional concept on the board. WOO going on about that computer architecture stuff, all the while knowing that nobody in class has a clue. And chuckling to himself about it. Getao and all those strange things she used to teach. How many trees between here and the main academic block you asked? Huh?

I'm not sure if it's a requirement. That to be exceptional you must be mad in india. Whatever the case. I like crazy. If only because I believe on the other side is genius. Some admirable stuff that I can only envy. Because normal is boring. And I'm pretty boring.


That there is a teachers strike going on and there are no kids running about the neighbourhood having a time of their lives. Which could only mean one thing. That the parents are forcing their kids to go to school even though there's no one there to teach or care for them. But this is like day 4. That kind of thing is expected on day 1 or 2 but not a week down the road. And if that's not it, there's only one other explanation. That there are no kids in these parts who attend public schools. Not a one. Which is really odd. When I grew up [I am still trying to stop all this old folks type reminiscing phrases], we all went to city council primos. And we had a ball. Guys of academies were such a minority.

A generation later [and free education perhaps], and things have certainly changed. Anyone with a little money to spare I guess is taking their kids to private schools. Nothing wrong with parents wanting the best for their kids. I actually considered my primo one of the better ones. So nothing's changed there. But does it now mean, I wonder, that guys have to work day and night to provide certain lifestyles for themselves and their families. Actually this hasn't changed either. Our folks sacrificed a whole bunch for us. So it seems the more things change the more they do stay the same. I just think it's unfortunate that some kids aren't enjoying a couple of days or weeks yet of frolicking about.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Guts and Texts

Some chics have guts. they can write stuff over the mobile network. This would be okay if we "see" one another often. But someone you talked to last in October? Apparently left angry .I am sure if i were in their shoes i would be a bit more reserved. May be this is common to you guys, but it hits me off the cliff. It doesn't put me off. Just question her nerve
Take this sample. A message i received yesterday at 10:30 pm

>Hi honey, i hpe ur doing okay.just want u to let you know that if you need me am a cal away. Have a lvly nigt.


Beyond the ring

I have been gathering some heuristics of some sort to help me keep off approaching married women. I tried looking at rings and the like and failed terribly. But all is not lost. When i am talking to you and you mention such words as " another family friend", or you portray measured dignified response to every dirty joke, or you look uneasy to subtle mentions of any remote $ex topic, however well covered or de-grossed( if such a word exist), or you don't display any dodgy hard to get normal (after 2 minutes ' hey i gonna go'), or you seem too concerned about the state of kids discipline in your area, or you look tired, or you don't attend to cellphone calls over evenings and weekends, then your wify behaviour has betrayed your married status. I RUN. Personal social responsibility and escape from potential Karma.
And if you know van persie and the team he plays for, or if you can only visit me on sunday morning then you have a boyfriend, even if you are not married. Just happens i don't mind there as much.
Else, don matter what you tell me, i ain't taking none of that. I am in

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The joy is mine

I watch the swearing in ceremony going ons. Can't help but remember days i woke up at 4 am to watch a clinton -obama or obama- mccain debate, listening to analyses of state by state poll numbers.
I kinda needed that. Bearing in mind i set to vote in a fellowship of thugs miles away from here, only for them to rape my vision, and turn brothers into foes. Little had i known that our neighbours would be dying of hunger, eating wild bitter fruits and roots, and watching in awe of their leaders as they excited nerves of the poor, and eat of their last help.
For once, i needed to see someone different. someone that matters to me. someone with a story. someone who didn't use his victory speech to taunt the loser. if only the leaders who have flown with our grain money to watch him could be swallowed by his example and reborn into humanity.
Let me watch and hope, lest i be swallowed in regret and utter bitterness.

Monday, January 12, 2009

campo, through my eyes


before i start i'd like to say that first and foremost, i have nothing but love for all the guys i went to campo with, for 4 years they were my family, we had the best of times and the worst of times, and we all emerged stronger. before i move into the good times i had which i'll write at a later date, (which far outweigh the bad), i have to go through some of the bad...the beginning was just hard for me, just the whole new experience and being female in a male-dominated class and being a para, anyway, here it is.

chapter 1

day 1: my official day 1 in campo was basically the friday before the official start of classes (the last day of orientation week, we'd been asked to come in to be shown around the building that would be our alma mater for the next 4 years, ie to be shown classes, comp labs, and given a short intro). i remember waking up that morning with mixed feelings, knowing that this would be where i'd spend the next four years getting the final 4 years of my 8-4-4 education. i was excited at the prospect of moving away from home and being independent, but scared of what the future had in store for me, the unknown.

so that first day, 11 of us turned up, myself (the only female), and 10 heart sunk, i was in shock, culture-shock would be the more appropriate term, i'd just spent a very sheltered 4 years in an all girls high school that had unrealistic ideals about the outside world, the unrealistic part being that they acted like the real world didn't exist, and hence never prepared us for it. a fish out of water is what i was, and definitely not liking it. so, when i saw the 11 of us gathered there, i thought if this is it, i'm doomed. needless to say, i was not looking forward to going back on monday which was going to be the official start of classes. that whole week more students started to treacle into class, and by the end of the second week or so we were more or less a full class of about 36 (later on a few dropped off along the way, but 36 is what we originally started at), 6 girls and 30 guys, sigh.

chapter 2

the first few weeks were not easy, the 6 of us girls (who were clearly living in a mans world) were more or less to be seen but not heard. we had a comp lab which had about 20 comps to begin with (i think it was about that number initially before they started breaking down one by one) and with 36 of us everytime we had a break from class we'd all have to rush to grab a pc to yourself to be able to check mail and surf the net. there used to be a poem when we were kids, it went something like, 'girls are made of sugar and spice and all things nice, and boys are made of frogs, and snails and puppy dogs tails'. so basically, when any one of us girls (or should i use women? no that would make me sound too old, hmmm, i'll stick to the word girls), as i was saying, when any one of us girls would be lucky enough to find our own pc, we'd check email from loved ones and thereafter continue on to open all forwards which had nice poems and cards and pretty pictures of cute cuddly animals, flowers, nature etc, you catch my drift, nice easy breasy beautiful things. but nooo, this was not the case with the guys.

now those first weeks, or should i say first few days, the guys quickly discovered the world of easy access porn at the click of a mouse...and as much as i can understand that alot of guys had never had exclusive free access to it, i have to say from the girls perspective it was a torturous experience. For us girls, who simply wanted to check our email, it would be an agonizing and down right humiliating experience. There you were, innocently reading your email, and to your left, there would be 3 guys drooling at a computer screen watching those free 5 second porn video clips (thank goodness they didn't have full access to the movies as credit card details were required, so they had to make do with short clips and pictures), anyway, as i was saying, that's the pc on your left, and the one to the right, there'd be another one or two guys giggling at some twisted sh*t like some girl getting nailed by a horse or something just as bizarre...oh the torment of it all....and afterwards there was an attitude change from a few guys in the class, their jokes became more sexist, bolder, ruder and down right disrespectful, whether we were in earshot or wasn't easy. i can understand for alot of guys it was the first time they had access but surely they could have found some pc's in a ka-corner, and told the rest of us those corner pc's are off limits except for those who dare...but to have all comps with it on was just too much. all of a sudden the need to check my mail or surf the net wasn't that urgent anymore i made do without...untill much later when things in that dept seemed to have simmered down and we all had to get down to surfing class related material for assingments and stuff.

chapter 3

now, as if being female wasn't tough enough...on top of everything, i happened to be a para student...and let me just add first of all that being a para student wasn't even my choice, it was my folks's choice for two reasons, the first being that i was going to join only a couple of months after high school as opposed to the usual wait of more than a year (ie they didn't want me sitting on my a$$ doing nothing at home), and the second reason being they wanted me to choose a so called 'professional' course from a handful of options available at the time that was more or less limited to, doctor, lawyer, engineer, or comp sci, so i ended up choosing the course which i hated least out of all the options.

now, in campo at that time, being a parallel programme (para) student was not easy, it felt like it was some punishment i was being made to go through for some crime i may have committed in a previous life. the year i started my course was the second year the para programme had been running at campo, there had been lots of fights about it, lots of resistance from the regular students (regs), but the admin wasn't budging and said they would start offering even more courses to paras. so it just so happens that for the particular course i was studying, i was in the first official group of para's...if i remember correct there were 5 of us in total out of the entire 36. initially i guess it wasn't really known who was para and who wasn't, and we all tried staying 'in the closet' for as long as we could, but it started becoming more apparent by little things such as our registration numbers being different from the rest, etc

this is how things would more or less go on a daily basis from day one, your sitting in class and talk would just begin about how daft paras were and how we were bringing the quality of education in campo down and how just because we 'apparently' had money the uni would rather it's standards be lowered just to get more money etc etc... now this conversation would be had on a daily basis in class, outside class, even riots broke out enough times over it. initially when classmates would talk about it, i don't think they even knew there were any in our class, but once they found out made a point of trying to be sensitive about the matter, but outside the class walls, those who weren't classmates hated paras and weren't afraid to show it. change is never easy, and to some extent i definitely could understand where the regs were coming from with the argument that they'd gotten top grades, they were the creme de la creme (and i give them my utmost respect for this), but i just couldn't understand the resistance because the uni also needed a new source of funds, which they could now get and be able to rejuvenate its facilities. nevertheless, whenever that line of talk would begin i'd find an excuse to make a quick exit, as listening to talk about me and my ilk being referred to as stupid on a daily basis was not my cup of tea. those first weeks it got so bad i remember thinking i should just wait it out and end up doing bsc gen as a reg which is what i was called for, that way i wouldn't have to take all that crap. i don't know if the regs ever knew this or not, but all of us paras had problems paying fees, we'd all be constantly called to the office on late payments, and we'd all be constantly given enough letters telling and threatening us about how we'd be disenrolled and not allowed to attend classes or sit in on exams if payments were late, basically being made to live in fear that we could be kicked out any minute, what misery. all i wanted was an education, which apparently was too much to ask for.

chapter 4

as if not ostracized enough, to add insult to injury 'paras' could not get uni accommodation. of course they never told us this at time of application, but first, they didn't have the capacity, and second, they'd tried converting a certain hall to accommodate us but the usual riots ensued and it never happened. so paras had no uni accommodation and had to operate from home. i longed to be able to say i stayed in box, or hall xyz, or whatever to be able to identify, but this never came to pass. only in my second year when things in class got really tough, and i needed to join in on study groups did i move into the Y which was the closest option available. i finally got to blend in and not feel as much of an outsider, and things started looking up as i joined a reliable study group and more importantly could finally get a taste of campo night life (stories for another day).


this was more or less the rough start i had, but next time will write about the many fond happier memories i had, just thought i needed to get this off my chest first. and as i said earlier, i have nothing but love for everyone who was in my class...and for the record, i wouldn't trade in my campo experience for anything.

el fin

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Tough generosity

i met e-wreck today. I have had to share 3 employers
with the character.That reminds of that time one baniani boss harassing him for not finishing his coding, the guy stood up to him and asked him "so you are not going to pay me?" This guy can honestly call you an arse to your face when you deserve.
Wanted to sit down for a few minutes with the guy over some nyama, talk some honest crap.
And he really takes peoples problems to heart. he was actually attending some guy's wedding.

Ever attended a wedding, i always feel out of place.
I know i have gone to the wedding to escape the guilt of missing a relative's ceremony.
Just to make sure i shake their hands, and may be have pictures taken, so that they guy will be sure i went.
I would just be happy to send money via mpesa and never get involved in this hypocrisy.
But at the very end of the afte, a guy comes to thank everybody- from the flower girls, to page boys, to pastors to security,to drivers, to cooks, to parents,to neighbours,to instrumentalists, to the MC, to the government and even You (i mean me).
This guy is one hell of a list expert. is he hired or what? is he a local headmaster?
E-wreck goes to his wedding and i am left with a kilo of meat and 45 minutes to being ready. Luckily a chic calls...
the "umenyamaza sana" type. I am also in town, come over.
she is not cleopatra, but she is very cute and with a warm smile.
She does one more thing: narrates the effects of the financial armaggedon to his life dreams. The new rent, constant income, high food prices. Not directly, but through the talk the message is subtly sipped into my conscience.
My instincts are ignore and move next. My conscience is pushing on give fr heavens sake. But when i ask her to come to my place, she jumps off like i was gonna fry her in a container of french fries. Actually i wanted to give some cash which was at home (and relieve the guilt that was slowly haunting my disturbed soul), but i now get to save the money and have a reason to purge the guilt from my tormented soul.
I can tell you giving money to a chic is hard. Hard if she asks and hard if she doesn't. It's an area i do not do well, even when i feel like i save someone's dinner from a cabbage only option, and may be make someone's life smooth for a while.
On a separate note,there are too many beggers in town.6 months down the road and this economy will have hit so hard that foreclosures might be the order of the day. Rent and everything is actually on a serious rise, and it doesn't rain any more.
But then again, i am no financial expert

Thursday, January 08, 2009

two people, same domicile

i'd like to know what the determining factors are that decide if two people can strike up a decent, and actually enjoyable conversation. i'm not even talking about girl-boy chemistry type of conversation. just two people talking, person A and person B.

how is it possible that there are times when you can bump into a total stranger but somehow strike up an actual 'i'm-enjoying-this' conversation? and on the other hand, there are others who you interact with on a daily basis but can't think of a single thing to talk to them about? it's not that you don't want to, but you've tried and just couldn't be bothered to anymore.

i'm talking about living arrangements, not with family, not with friends, not with other half's, but with total the ever-interesting 'flat-share' agreements. when two or more people agree to live in the same living quarters, not because you don't want to live by yourself, but because you can't afford to.

so, here's how the story goes, i've been living in this particular flat-share agreement with one other person for almost a year now, and this is what baffles me. first few months, it was hard for us to carry on a conversation for more than 5 minutes at any given time, which would be riddled with deafening awkward silences. a few months later, we had moved into the polite 'how was your day' phase. as for the last few months, it's just been reduced to 'hi'. and i just want to scream 'HOW IS THIS POSSIBLE' and better yet 'WHY ME'?

two people, same domicile, literally breathing in the same air...but 'hi' is all i get after a long hard day.

as luck may or may not have it, i just got word my rent is being increased, so it's that dreaded time in my life yet again when i have to move...but this time round, i'm actually looking forward to it, in this case it's 'better the angel i don't know, than the devil i do' i've found a new place and i move next week. this time round with more than just one other person in the household....i didn't want to take the chance

this time next week, i get to delete yet another number from my phone book and won't feel a regret, no loss, no void, nothing

two people, same domicile, strangers when we met, strangers when we'll part

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

That guy

I have tended to find myself in that situation. Not that I like it. Or am I a closet masochist. Boy meets gal. Boy doesn't do or say anything overtly sexual. Boy becomes friend. Boy becomes that guy. That guy that she calls at 2am, crying. Or texts at midnight when her stomach aches. Can't really blame her. It's only natural. If you aren't a lover you must be a friend. It doesn't irk me as much these days. I've become more philosophical and stuff. Age does that kind of thing to you. I can do mundane SMSs. And taking a phone call in the middle of the night, while I'm still awake, doesn't take much out of me. It's not a big deal. I think I can be a friend. Not a very good friend of course, neurosis and all, but I can do some of that stuff. As long as it isn't taken to another level and you turn into that guy. That guy to do shopping with. That guy to chauffeur her when she wants to get drunk. That guy I don't want to be.


I got it into my head that I wanted to get some music. Happened to be in town so I thought I'd pass by Assanand's and see if I could pick up a CD or two. It is the only place I knew where a guy can buy music. Used to go there back in the day. Actually I'd probably not stepped in there in 10 years plus.

First thing that caught my attention was the tapes. They had tapes. How now. Who buys these. Didn't even go near them to see what kind of stuff they had there. Of no use to me those. So onto the shelf with CDs. Is this it, I wondered. There were even fewer CDs than tapes. And the predominant genre of music was anything-but-what-I-liked. Or knew. All sorts of strange fellows. There were like 5 Jim Reeves albums though. Unbelievable. I did ask the attendant if there were more options somewhere. At the back perhaps. Or another shop? A blank stare is all I got back. Couldn't blame the guy. So where does a guy buy music from these days.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Now that I cannot drink

It started about two years ago. I used to be a guy who could enjoy his pint on Friday and/or Sato night and still be able to have a productive day. Then all of a sudden I started getting some really nasty hangis. I recall vividly this one weekend when after a Friday night of hard drinking (can one really dring beer hard?) I was relegated to lying on the couch nursing a nasty hangi for the rest of the weekend. Just an year earlier I could go to class on Sato morning, check into Choices at around 4 with students scripts, chase tail drink merrily and make my way home at around 4 so that I could get into bed early enough to make the 11pm mass followed by some marking in the afternoon. I am not sure what happened to me but the thought and pain of wasting a day or a weekend just so that I could drink for 2 or 3 more hours was not acceptable so I was forced to change. I started drinking a little less, less often.

The fact that I have found an answer to the proverbial question "What do you do on a Friday or Sato night if you are not drinking" was answered. I discovered the physical pleasure of spending a Sato morning in the gym and the joy of going through a two hour work out followed by some alone time in the steam bath. I also discovered the joy of waking up on Sunday morning without a hangi to do nothing but go to church and read the paper.

As if hangis were not a sufficient impediment to my drinking habits, sleep has now become another. Since a month or two ago I have started sleeping in pubs. It works like clock work give me 2 pynts and I start dozing, by the 4th I am struggling to keep my eyes open. At this rate I may have to stop drinking completely and unfortunately over the years I have picked up interests that can easily take the vacuum left by the drinks