Monday, April 10, 2006

I had read a very interesting article on African Bullets' s site regarding advice being given to a newbie coming to college.
I then sought out an old email a friend had given me which was informative, hilarious and vile.

I had it up briefly but have done away with it.
To condemn evil is to do in all its forms.

My mistake.

Karen.

Monday, March 27, 2006

I am in one of the sentimental moods this morning perhaps it is simply the day outside. It is shining and pretty soon it will paradise here on earth again.
Flowers blooming, birds seeing, deers peeking in and messing up flowerbeds, kids playing outside.My afternoon jogs will soon be a pleasure and not a drag.
I guess change in seasons bring with them a certain expectation of hope.
The rejuvenation of nature or it is simply that the days are less grey and much brighter.
I don't know what it is really but it makes me so nostalgic.
I remember the fields that used to behind our house that would spur with the wildest flowers of different colors and how we run through them as kids.
Could come from school dump my bag and join my gals in a good chasing.
Back then when life even though I didn't appreciate it much made awhole lot of sense.
I was more honest then that I am now.
I had a sense of clarity which strangely seems to elude me in my older years.
So what is ol Karen rumbling about today.
Well a run in with a friend from those uncomplicated days had me thinking this morning.
How our actions and words affect people.
Now am not the nicest person, but this girl made me feel like something when she remembered my face came up to me and gave me the warmest hug.
Offcourse I was like okay this is one of those Judas moments I mean whichever nemesis is upto this that really had it on lock.
Shoot me in an open mall.
But, my sins were rested when this beautiful girl about my age stood back and said it is me(name censored) I was taken aback. Then she went on to say to her parents as she later introduced me to as the "girl who was her only friend in school". To which the couple gave me a handshakes and loads of thank yous.
It all came flooding to me now who this girl was.
Back in school she was the most quiet girl in the room.
Everyone picked on her and for some strange reason with all my sins that is one thing I never did quite take a liking to.
So, to stir up drama like I loved doing I became her friend. Picked her in all games that earned me the "why Karen, if we lose it is your fault " I loved it just to annoy people off. To be honest at first I did it because it made my friends mad then later I came to like this girl until she left for what I deemed a step up in prestige back in the days for Hillcrest. I missed her lots and slowly by slowly her image began to fade, but when I saw her again it all came back.

My friend and after all this years she remembered me and was thanking me for what I really didn't think I did. So, after the intial pleasantries we exchanged numbers to find that we have been living like 10 mins from each other, work in the same complex but for different companies.
My friend is back.

I guess kindness does pay off especially when you least expect it to. On the day when I was feeling like the real queen B someone came up to and a simple thank you made me feel like something again.

Who knew? I guess goodness does come back in away and most times it might just rescue one from their depths of lowly.
So go ahead and be kind today you never know that kind word or deed might pay off in a big way.

My friend is back.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Disappointments.

I really don't know which news to break first.

That the discovery channel has the " for real, for real survivor series" or that I braved it and watched the constant gardner?

Well, if you have ever had a chance to see overpampered individuals get thrown into a boondock and asked to live with nothing but real slugs, worms and slamming each other then you must have been one of the many who were awed by survivor, but today I tell that I have found something that makes survivor look like child's play.

Imagine you are a civilised westerner who decides to take a leisurely flight over the african jungle to scout your next big exploit or simply to relax.
Then the worst happens you become a victim of one of the many calamities that follow those like you in Africa. You crush into an African bush.
What would you do?
What would be worse the savages or the wrath of the savagenation?
The discovery channel will be airing the story of one man who survived it.
This folks is the latest comedy series from the discovery channel. Here I was thinking they were all about serious stuff.


Then offcourse I braved the odds and watched the constant gardener. I figured Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Weisz have earned a reputation in my books of being the few worthy actors whose work I support.
Then there are the rave reviews from friends "watch it am telling you Karen it is deep, watch it", and again I take my buddy's opinion seriously she is the one who told me about "crash" which was in every sense of the word an amazing movie. She also told me that ,"Sometimes in April" was more potent than "Hotel Rwanda" she was right . To cut the rumble short this is someone who movie choices I respect.

However, the constant gardner was a wrong prediction. It carried with it the self righteousness that Hollywood is oh so full off never to disappoint offcourse. A fresh faced, pretty and priviledged young Brit gal comes to Africa with her diplomat husband who lets her dance around with miroz in Kibera and stick around some young miro dude who they crash state parties together with. As if such a relationship wouldn't bother any husband.
She has to be the one to break the story of how pharmaceuticals test medicines on Africans before to hasten their marketing in the west.
Are you kidding me?
How many African villages will you hear stories of some strange white man who came giving away sugar and milk if only you let him inject you and accept to go see him periodically?
Then after awhile he disappears.

That is such old news in Africa we don't even talk about it.

Who didn't read the stories in the Standard newspaper about the people who have been paralysed by the medications they were being fed?

With all its high and mighty self righteousness the movie comes to a disappointing halt, the young miss is hacked and offcourse we are left wondering if ever the pharmaceuticals programs ended ?
The only one who got some relief was the Ralph Fiennes who found out that his wife's buddy was no threat to him as he was gay.
That seemed to be the only point of relief or clarity in the movie.
Everything else was baseless and in the air.

There is no way the west will stop its exploitation of our people if our gorvernments and we act as we are depicted in that movie.
A bunch of children in grown up clothes dancing our hearts out to entertain the whites in our midst.
I would dare anyone to point to a moment where people in hell dance.
Because that is what the slum Kibera is.
It is hell on earth.
Who in there right minds is content with that kind of life?
Why is there such a need to show the world that Africans are content with their hardships?
Always waiting with their hands a begging?
Whose backs do you think those cheap slob boers that this misfit of a gorvernment hires backs ride on?
The real Africans who are convieniently left out of the picture.
No, Hollywood can't be caught dead showing that just like they westerners we too strive despite the challenges to make ends meet.
Children are educated. People make ends meet. Despite the hardships life does go on.
How many people even in that Kibera shown in that movie sit with their hands out waiting for a Rachel Weisz to come dancing?
Many are often trekking from their industrial area jobs , where there are pay paltry wages and somehow still they struggle and run a country whose govt has the audacity to hire misfits to come and take away their right to information.

The constant gardener like every other western flick is just that.
Sanctimonious at best. Pretentious and will make only the gullible find some serious issue lurking in what has been the usual image the west has kept of Africa.
The overgrown child that will never find his way home.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

GO, GO STANDARD,

"When you rattle a snake, you must be ready to be bitten," democratic words of wisdom from Kibkai's own Michuki who thinks that he can control the Kenyan media like he does his household.

Mine is the profound effect Kenya govt's iron handedness means for the media in our country.
What it takes away from journalism and what it means to Kenyan journalists who may have a dissenting view from the gorvernment ?
What it means when the govt of a nation doesn't follow the same channels of law and instead results to senseless intimidation and vandalism.
What are the far reaching repercussions of what the Kenya govt has just done to the Standard newspaper?
Does it mean that we are retrogressing back to the days that the ones in this current govt once described as "dark days in the media" referring to Moi's adminstration censorship of the media.


Contrary to Michuki's sully comments there is no pride in govt sanctioned violence hence his arrogant comments speak volumes of just exactly where the Kenya gorvernment stands when it comes to the rights of the Kenyan citizen.

It is indeed clear from the way the gorvernment handles everything from corruption to now going headon to intimidate people that it is time for you and I who feel that the limits of enough have been pushed and gone beyond to stand up and be counted.
That indeed our country is headed on a downward spiral that will be if anything costly.

However, myself I read the standard everyday, all the time and will continue to do so.
No govt intimidation will stop that or dictate to me what I will and not read.
Am a free citizen in my country.
It is my right as a Kenyan citizen to make that choice for myself.
I will choose what to believe and not to believe that will my decision and not Kibaki's govt.

Lastly, some raw nerve in statehouse must really have been sliced to sent the rattled snake out a bitting.

Go, go standard. Go, go standard.

Monday, February 27, 2006

back

happy new year comrades.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

ORANGE COUNTRY

So, the people have spoken.

We are an orange eating, gnashing, grinding and wallowing nation.

Apart from the obvious that wehave again wasted time and money that we the common people do not have and that Raila and Musyoka are political heavyweights after all.

Am clamouring in the midst of all this wondering why I should go out and celebrate an orange win.

What is in it for me or in other words the common Kenyan man out there?

Will after today Kenya automatically fall on the path of a full blown economic, political and social recovery?

By tomorrow after a day of drinking and gloating over the banana republic supporters we will realise that either way the winner in all this are the politicians with Kibaki being the biggest winner of them all.

You and I the biggest losers.

Then the realisation that it was never really in the constitution, but rather in our attitude as a nation and the responsibility we once again must accept for the failure that is our govt and as a direct consequence the decline of our lifestyles as well.

The irony of it all.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

love..........

So, here I am again caught up in one of my many sticky situations.
This time my brother will really kill me.
It has everything to do with his friend.
For years my brother's best friend since I can remember has been the apple of my eye, but my brother has made it very clear that I should file that in ..........."it will never happen in this lifetime.".
Therefore after deep introspection I decided to heck with it and set out firm and sure for my goal.

I don't know if I have just been seeing his best bud through loveheart eyes, but I can name the many times he has saved my sorry behind from the many messes I get stuck in.

Since back in the day when we were neigbhors and my brother was all touchy feely about me going into his room or following him around he(my bro's best bud) used to ask if good ol Karen was coming.
It used to hike my bro's blood pressure to dangerous levels but he gave in anyway.
I can remember all the gifts he has given me for my birthdays even when my brother had this darn "ati leo is your birthday Karen wacha ........." translation" I got you what I get you every year nothing".
Anyways even to this day he is still so thoughtful and kind towards me.
I tried to have a heart to heart talk with a friend who reminded me of the glaring facts.
1. He was an only child so am like his adopted sister (ouch).
2. It has been years and he has not made a move though he has 2 steady girlfriends and is now single like me , .
3. It is all in my imagination.

When I put on my workglasses my best bud is almost making the most sense, but it doesn't explain how me and him were hanging out this summer when my bro was busy racking in the overtime.
The talks, walks and movies.

Now I have a brother and he really doesn't like spending some much time with me and when he does that is a dark omen. I take it that is the norm with every sister who has a Frankenstein for a bro?


Last weekend I was rather down and he came over my brother wasn't there and really did cheer me up.
Last Sunday he asked me out for dinner...........my brother doesn't know it yet and my best bud thinks it is just one of those big bro and small sis spend time together moments.
Am at a loss here because I have it big for my brother's friend and somehow I think he feels the very same way.

Africa burning

Riots in Uganda.

Political tension in Kenya.

Current blood shedding in the Ivory Coast .

Violence in Ethiopia.

Racial cleansing of dark Sudanese by Arabs in Sudan.


What exactly is new? this are simply "normal current events in Africa".
Not to mention the 1000 per minute death rate to HIV/AIDS alone.

Indeed we are a continent that are destined to die if not by a fellow opponent's bullet or machete then a lethal virus will put an end to our own lives or a loved ones.

Ours is indeed a pathetic existence.

So, when all aplomb and applause went out for Liberia why was there a sickly feeling in my stomach.

I mean there she stood dubbed "iron lady" and by all means an African woman since Winnie Mandela to have such political clout.
She is Liberia and Africa's first ever female president.

She is well educated and comes with years of experience working for the agents of Africa's current economic crash the legal exploitation institutions of IMF and Worldbank.
This two institutions have mastered the art of punishing millions of Africans for the shortfalls of the western chosen leaders under their world famous SAP programs.

My problem with Liberia's president has nothing to do with her educational background, political history but her association with this two bodies whose policies are obviously pro-exploitative debt repayment and anti- African development.
My cautious attitude towards Sirleaf comes from years of experience as Kenyan citizen who has seen fully well the implications of replacing a problem with the same problem but changing the name.
Is it any wonder Kenya is in shambles?

A part of me is aware of the dangers of assumptions and hence arriving to my conclusions that Sirleaf is already guilty by association.
Am also aware of Liberia's neighbors one being the oil rich Guinea and how there are many interests that would like abit of that part of Africa's coast.
Perhaps even set up military bases like the Italians decided to drop a big brother device in Malindi under the guise of the world's latest phenomena terrorism.
Hence the evidence is overwhelming and my personal stance on this matter remains Sirleaf is yet another big mistake Africa has just made.

As a Kenyan I have learnt from the best Kenyatta's govt had Moi and Kibaki in it.
Then Moi's govt had Kibaki in it.
Then Kibaki 's govt is here repeating and outdoing the evils of the past adminstrations.

History has just repeated itself in Liberia.
I can see many more Pat Robertson moments where prayer and mining go hand in hand.

What a tragedy.