Posts Tagged ‘life lessons’

My hottest poem

August 3, 2016

My hottest poem

Check out the link above to watch a video we did for one of the poetry pieces from my upcoming collection. Enjoy and please share.

 

 

Reading in unusual spaces-June 2016 edition

June 13, 2016

jevanjeeWe shall find all precious substance,

We shall fill our houses with spoilProverbs of Solomon.

Perhaps the above Proverbs explains my own expectations for the June 2016 edition of the Goethe Institut facilitated event ‘Reading In Unusual Spaces’. But just like anything unusual, you just have to prepare for anything.

Curated by writer Tony Mochama aka Smitta Smitten of The Standard Media, writers and other literature enthusiasts met at the Goethe Institut on Satuarday morning 10 a.m. on June 11 2016.

We then walked over to Jevanjee Gardens where we were divided into groups of three. In these groups, we approached random people at Jevanjee inorder to share our love for literature. Since Jevanjee is synonymous with preachers, the organisers felt that some Proverbs of Solomon would be appropriate. I think we could have used other forms of literature too.

The first duo we approached said they were actually in a meeting so we moved on to another guy who was seated solo under a tree. He said his (Kibera) hood name was Wailer and boy! was he a sport. He even read some of the Proverbs out loud for us and explained their applications in life today. Wailer pointed out that he too was a reader. He also had friends who wrote but do not publish since they do not know where to go. He was at Jevanjee because he was waiting for his colleague so they could go for a children’s face-painting job just across the road.

Thereafter, we shared experiences, observations and lessons and one of the craziest ones I remember was from Tony’s group. They had found two men carrying suitcases and looking confused. Upon further enquiry, they discovered that these men were just about to be conned. They had been promised jobs in Kakuma, Northern Kenya in exchange for Kshs. 3,000. They did not doubt the job advert because ‘it was in the newspaper’. The person they were dealing with was still unreachable but they had been waiting there for him for a while already-ready to start their jobs in Kakuma immediately.

Some of the people we found at Jevanjee have smartphones too but none of them was reading as they waited, passed time in readiness for something else or smoked cigarettes. Why not read meanwhile?

Our next stop was the Imax Theatre where we read some poetry printed out by the organiser. ‘Priest accused of not wearing a condom’ by Paul Durcan was quite a discussion starter.

From here, we proceeded to Sabina Joy, a den where sex workers are available around the clock. Along the way, PEN-Kenya current president Khainga O’okwemba tried to derail us into International Life House for what he called an impromptu reading at some airline office. But Tony intervened before this happened.

On reaching the much-anticipated Sabina Joy, we were obviously so many that the bouncer became suspicious> She called the manager who intervened and we were finally let in.

But we were informed that they wouldn’t be switching-off the music since at 12 noon, they were already house-full. The camera people who had been following us were also not allowed in for obvious reasons. As soon as we were settled into one corner of the dimly-lit club, some guy grabbed one of the writer’s phones accusing him of taking photos. But Tony’s prescence was all it took for him to return it.

Over a drink, we continued to read in groups (inspite of the drama and the noise). To suit this special occasion, Potentash read an excerpt from her story ‘Confessions of a high class call girl’. Though I hadn’t come prepared to perform, I was asked to perform ‘my hottest poem’ http://bit.ly/1OkLGyK which I did, really having to raise my voice. This was quite a great voice exercise as one of the attendees cared to point out.

A walk towards the ladies washrooms and wow! The women lined up in wait was unexpected. They were all up and ready for business before lunchtime. I was informed that during the ‘washroom break’, I had missed some drama; a woman had gotten into a fight with a guy –even tearing up his shirt before security could intervene.

I have always been an avid reader, reading everywhere and anywhere I can so I did not have to be converted. I was happy that what we did generated the desired curiousity, which was part of the plan. I also met some really wonderful inspiring literature-loving men and women and had some incredible moments of inspiration and experiences for sure. Not what I had pictured/expected, but definitely worth my time.

The next Reading in Unusual Spaces will be held in Ole Polos.

The 100 Questions Tag!

February 3, 2016

Its been a while since I did this, but its always so much fun… You should try it too-even just for yourself.

  1. Do you sleep with your closet doors opened, or closed? Closed.
  2. Do you take the shampoo and conditioner bottles from hotels? Yes, most times.
  3. Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in our out? Out!
  4. Have you stolen a street sign before? No
  5. Do you like to use post-it notes? Sometimes
  6. Do you cut coupons out and never use them? Yes.
  7. Would you rather be attacked my a big bear, or a swarm of bees? Big bear. I hate bugs.
  8. Do you have freckles? No.
  9. Do you always smile for pictures? No.
  10. What is your biggest pet peeve? Lies and the saying that ‘its never that serious!’
  11. Do you ever count your steps when you walk? No.
  12. Have you ever peed in the woods? Yes.
  13. Have you ever pooped in the woods? Yes.
  14. Do you ever dance even if there is no music playing? Yes.
  15. Do you chew your pens and pencils? Sometimes
  16. How many people have you slept with this past week? One
  17. What size is your bed? Queen-size.
  18. What is your song of the week? Jik’Izinto by Zonke.
  19. Is it OK for guys to wear pink? Absolutely.
  20. Do you still watch cartoons? Love them.
  21. What is your least favorite movie? Very hard to say. Sponge Bob the movie was a disappointment.
  22. Where would you hide buried treasure if you had some? Nowhere, I would share and trade it in or spend it (Assuming there’s gold and diamonds in there too)
  23. What do you drink with dinner? Water or red wine.
  24. What do you dip a chicken nugget in? Hot and sweet chilli sauce.
  25. What is your favorite food? Fish.
  26. What movie(s) could you watch over and over again and never get tired of it?  4321, The Usual Suspects,
  27. Last person you kissed/ kissed you? My daughter.
  28. Were you ever a girl/boy scout? No. But I was a Red Cross + St. John Ambulance First Aider back in the day.
  29. Would you pose inappropriately for a magazine? For a good cause, maybe.
  30. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper? Years ago.
  31. Can you change the oil on a car? No.
  32. Ever gotten a speeding ticket? Not yet, its very likely though.
  33. Ever run out of gas? No.
  34. What’s your favorite kind of sandwich? Tuna.
  35. Best thing to eat for breakfast? Fruit salad mixed with nuts and yoghurt.
  36. What is your usual bedtime? After midnight.
  37. Are you lazy? Definitely not!
  38. When you were a kid, what did you dress up as for Halloween? A bunny.
  39. What is your Chinese astrological sign? Rat…?
  40. How many languages can you speak? Three (Soon four).
  41. Do you have any magazine subscriptions? Yes (Online).
  42. Which are better, Legos or Lincoln Logs? Legos.
  43. Are you stubborn? Yes, I can be.
  44. Who is better, Leno or Letterman? Not sure.
  45. Ever watch soap operas? When I was younger and there was only one TV station.
  46. Are you afraid of heights? Yes.
  47. Do you sing in the car? Sometimes.
  48. Do you sing in the shower? Sometimes.
  49. Do you dance in the car? Yes. (Not sure that’s considered dancing though).
  50. Ever used a gun? Not yet.
  51. Last time you got a picture taken by a photographer? Last year, with my daughter.
  52. Do you think musicals are cheesy? Yes!
  53. Is Christmas stressful? Yes it can be. When you are not alone but you feel lonely.
  54. Ever eaten a pierogi? Nope.
  55. Favorite type of fruit pie? Apple pie.
  56. Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid? Poet and Writer. which I am.
  57. Do you believe in ghosts? No.
  58. Ever have a Deja-Vu feeling? Yes.
  59. Do you take vitamins daily? No.
  60. Do you wear slippers? Sometimes-but I tend to trip and fall when I wear them.
  61. Do you wear a bath robe? Nope.
  62. What do you wear to bed? Deeras.
  63. What was your first concert? I don’t even remember.
  64. Wal-Mart, Target, or Kmart? Never been to any of those.
  65. Nike or Adidas? So hard to choose. Love sportswear.
  66. Cheetos or Fritos? What now?
  67. Peanuts or sunflower seeds? Love both.
  68. Ever heard of the group Tres Bien? No.
  69. Ever taken dance lessons? No. I was born a dancer! I actually teach, sometmes.
  70. Is there a profession you picture your future spouse doing? Businessperson or artist or activist.
  71. Can you curl your tongue? Yes.
  72. Ever won a spelling bee? Yes.
  73. Have you ever cried because you were so happy? No.
  74. Own any record albums? Yes, of course.
  75. Own a record player? No.
  76. Do you regularly burn incense?  Yes
  77. Ever been in love? Yes
  78. Who would you like to see in concert? More poets.
  79. What was the last concert you saw? Prefer Open Mics.
  80. Hot tea or cold tea? I don’t do tea.
  81. Tea or coffee? Coffee is better… and stronger.
  82. Sugar cookies or snicker doodles? Sugar cookies!
  83. Can you swim well? Relatively. 
  84. Can you hold your breath without holding your nose? Yes, of course!
  85. Are you patient? Not really.
  86. DJ or band at a wedding? Love live bands.
  87. Ever won a contest? Yes.
  88. Have you ever had plastic surgery? No.
  89. Which are better black or green olives? Both.
  90. Can you knit or crochet? No.
  91. Best room for a fireplace? My bedroom.
  92. Do you want to get married? Maybe.
  93. If married how long have you been married? I’m not married.
  94. Who was your high school crush? My girlfriend Goldylocs aka Ras Kristy.
  95. Do you cry and throw a fit until you get your own way? Sometimes.
  96. Do you have kids?  One brilliant daughter.
  97. Do you want kids?  Maybe one more.
  98. What is your favorite color? Black, red, purple and white. Love lots of colour.
  99. Do you miss anyone right now? My daughter.
  100. Who should answer these questions next? Goldylocs…. And anyone else reading this.

 

Light another candle and you lose nothing

August 18, 2010

No wonder they say that a candle loses nothing of its light by lighting another candle.

Last evening, I had a meeting with my mentor. In this regard, a mentor (to me) is someone you can just talk and share with, ask questions or get his/her opinions on a certain or variety of topics.

One of my friends thinks that having a mentor is total BS! that she has never had to talk or share or ask anybody’s opinion and has so far been successful in life. Maybe its the title ‘mentor’ that doesn’t hit the right cord. Maybe a mentor (according to her) is someone who is above you. Hell NO! For me, a mentor is your equal.

He/she could have more experience in one area and you could have more in another area. It is therefore ‘an everybody gains’ situation.

A mentorship relationship doesn’t have to be as formal as people assume. It can be as informal as the way you advise your siblings or the way you can call that one person when you need their take on something you are working on. And it comes at no cost either because even the mentor is learning a hell of a lot through sharing.

Yesterday, we (my mentor and I) just shared a meal as we talked about journalism, kids, God, marriage, writing and being Africans among other issues. And it wasn’t just one person talking, it was all of us and it was hearty, inspiring and spiritual.

I must admit that I did not agree with one or two of the things that my mentor said.

Still, the few times we meet make a huge difference in my life and I thank God that I found (early in life) someone I could share almost all aspects of my life with.

Once you’ve been mentored as easily, you’ll find yourself doing the same for others.

A most interesting excerpt: ‘The story of the pencil’

February 28, 2010

The Story of the Pencil-From the book ‘Like the flowing river’ (thoughts and reflections)’ by Paulo Coelho.

I’d love to share this short brilliant piece found within its pages.

The story of the pencil

A boy was watching his grandmother write a letter. at one point, he asked:

‘Are you writing a story about what we’ve done? Is it a story about me?’

His grandmother stopped writing her letter and said to to her grandson;

‘I am writing about you, actually, but more important than words is the pencil I’m using. I hope you will be like this pencil when you grow up’

Intrigued, the boy looked at the pencil. it didn’t seem very special.

‘But it’s just like any other pencil I’ve ever seen!’

‘That depends on how you look at things. It has five qualities which, if you manage to hang on to them, will make you a person who is always at peace with the world.

‘First quality; You are capable of great things, but you must never forget that there is a hand guidng your steps.We call that hand God, and he always guides us according to his will.

‘Second quality, now and then, I have to stop writing and use a sharpener. that makes the pencil suffer a little but afterwards, he’s much sharper. so you, too, must learn to bear certain pains and sorrows, because they will make you a better person.

‘Third quality; the pencil always allows us to use an eraser to rub out any mistakes. this means that correcting something we did is not necessarily a bad thing; it helps to keep us on the road to justice.

‘Fourth quality; what really matters in a pencil is not its wooden exterior, but the graphite inside. so always pay attention to what is happening inside you.

‘Finally, the pencil’s fifth quality; it always leaves a mark. In just the same way, you should know that everything you do in life will leave a mark, so try to be conscious of that in your every action.’




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