Thursday, April 30, 2009

Shattered lives

I found Norma the tea-lady crying alone in the kitchen yesterday morning when I went to fetch myself a spoon for my yoghurt. I don’t usually know what to do when people cry but I put my arms around her shoulders and shut the door. When she stopped sobbing I asked her what the matter was. What she told me will shock you as it did me.

I know that Norma lives alone with her 2 children across the city at a place called Dandora, in the vicinity of a garbage dump. I’ve dropped her off a few times when it’s been raining a storm and I was privately appalled at the condition of the place she calls home. It’s a gloomy but clean top floor 10ft by 10ft claustrophobic room in a 6-storey high lift-less tenement block, the kind where Nairobi’s forgotten millions live.

In between sniffles and using my tie to dab her eyes I managed to extract the story behind the tears. Errant husband David returned from a 4 year-hiatus last month and Norma unwisely welcomed him back. All was going swimmingly well until Monday when Norma arranged to meet prodigal hubby at lunchtime to draw money from her Barclays account Masaba road. This money was not her savings but rather a loan taken from the cooperative to be repaid over 3 years. 150k. It was intended for setting up a small shop for their 20 year old daughter Alice who like a majority of young people can’t seem to find any meaningful work nowadays.

Well here comes the bad news. David has taken off with the cash. All 150,000 shillings of a loan that Norma has to scrimp and scrape to pay back. And the nightmare part where you need to be sitting down is he has run away together with Alice, who I came to learn is his step-daughter. I didn’t take in the full impact of the last statement, until Norma explained bitterly, ‘Amemchukua kama bibi yake.’ (He has taken her as his wife). I had to sit down; I thought I was going to pass out. During Norma’s only answered phone call to her husband he drunkenly told her they were both at an undisclosed location and Alice even came on the phone to say she was ‘taking care of baba because mum you have failed to play your part!

To be continued.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Getting shafted

Can you digg it? Thought you might like a mid-week special. He's a bad mutha..

RIP Isaac Hayes, thanks for the refreshing memories. No questions.

Steaming piles of manure

What started as a trickle has now turned into a steady torrent of anonymous hate mail. All this noxious slime goes into a bulging folder I’ve lovingly labeled ‘colostomy bag’. And I’m not alone; Pater Nostra seems to enjoy a similar fan base.

Haters don’t keep me awake at night. On occasion I confess to having trouble falling asleep, like the other night when I was tossing and turning, George asked me what was on my mind. I said I was just wondering what if a woman has a sex-change and now dates men, are they both gay? He said it’s interesting but he never thought about it. He asked me do you think Caroline Mutoko, from the radio, is that a man in drag? I said it never crossed my mind. Then we both nodded off.

Swine Flu

This I penned just for you
Hide away from your boo

Catch a sneeze a-tissue
If you don’t we’ll come for you

First you shake and then you pull
Wash you hands after the loo

No more porkies am no fool
Sorry Babe you’ve got the flu!

© Tamaku 2009

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

IT guy's story

Well, what did you make of Hitesh’s body double? Lovely, isn’t he? I see the real Hitesh regularly as he works in our IT department. He joined the company 2 years ago straight from a London university. The way he speaks now you wouldn’t tell he’s originally from our lakeside city of Kisumu. He’s also a jovial lad, always tapping me on the shoulder ‘hello mate’. His greeting is a hybrid of Oginga Odinga street-Gujarati-English-meets-Cockney-market-lingo in a high pitch so it sounds like ‘allo mai.’ Bantu readers may appreciate the other meaning! He is also polishing his acquired accent on us now, at times popping his grinning face in the doorway to say ‘don’t forget to loag oaf tonight’.

I’ve harbored suspicions that Hitesh is gay since the day of his interview when we first met. I’d say the lisp and the walk, like he’s pushing a shopping trolley with only his pelvis, are what give the game away. And get this, he has an old newspaper cutting of Kalonzo Musyoka’s picture pinned on the notice board in his office! Our VP doesn’t know it but he is the thinking-homo’s pinup. Also Hitesh never uses the urinal when there’s anyone else there (another dead giveaway), he’ll go to the cubicle to take a piss. See, it’s not difficult to have politicians and urinals mentioned in the same paragraph.

One morning I walked into the office to find Hitesh on his hands and knees fiddling with cables on the floor, I heard him humming away hips don’t lie which he attempted to disguise with a sudden coughing fit when he spotted me. However I’m secretly grateful to have his flamboyance illuminating our office; it deflects unwelcome attentions of colleagues away from me.

So yesterday Hitesh stopped me just as I was getting ready to leave the office, ‘Ok, for a chat?’ ‘Uh-huh. Let’s go for a quick drink,’ I said. This is how we both ended up at that sports club in Parklands. Sitting at the bar he leaned sideways to tell me, ‘My papers have come through. I’ll be emigrating to Britain in 2 months’ time.’ Apparently Hitesh was able to claim settlement in the UK, something about his grandparents; I didn’t want to seem intrusive by asking details. He added, ‘I’ll finally be myself,’ a vague confirmation of my earlier suspicions. Then quietly, ‘Kenya is killing me.’ In the silence that ensured because I only nodded, we both acknowledged that he knew about me too.

I felt happy for Hitesh. Sitting there, unfastened jacket on his shoulders, I hoped he realizes how lucky he is – free to live life without the heavy shackles of this deep-seated homophobia. Indeed Kenya is slowly suffocating many for whom there is no escape, only a secret life.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The IT guy

I’ve just arrived home from unplanned after-work drinks with our IT guy, Hitesh. I can’t tell you the full story now because George wants us to have an early night. Tomorrow I’ll try and tell you more about Hitesh who’s the spitting image of the guy in this picture.

Funny Pictures

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Queer Kenya

This article appeared in Makokha’s Memos column of yesterday’s Daily Nation.
I am cautiously excited to see these honest views expressed within the pages of a major newspaper. Let’s hope it heralds a new era in changing attitudes away from ignorance and hate.

Very apt given Simon Collery's article on how Homophobia and ‘Morality’ impact HIV.

Breakfast in bed

I extricated myself gingerly from George’s embrace to roll gently out of bed. I didn’t want to wake him but he stirred and mumbled come back to bed, I knelt on his side of the bed and whispered,’ Honey, I’ll be back. Please let me go make some breakfast,’ and kissed his eyes shut.

Going downstairs just in my pyjama bottoms and tattered slippers to the kitchen I wasn’t feeling too great perhaps due to the dinner party we went to last night and the liberal amount of booze we quaffed. Must learn my limits, I said to myself for the umpteenth time as I popped one of the 175mg Milk Thistle capsules that I keep incase I fall off the wagon again. On the fridge door Imelda the housekeeper had left me a post-it note, Tamaku, make sure you eat the salad I made. Remember your cholesterol, no red meat today (this last instruction underlined twice). Awww Imelda what a sweetie, my heart and I both love you. And I’m full of admiration too because she doesn’t have the benefit of a spell-checker. She spends today and every Sunday with her son Paul and mother in Kawangware.

Then I made my signature dish of Spanish omelette Kenyan-style without the milk but with hot green chilies, accompanied by farmer’s choice sausages (let’s all pretend I saw Imelda’s note after breakfast) and four slices of toast. I also put a flask of sasini gold tea ‘packed with passion’ and a jug of carrot juice on the tray to take upstairs to the bedroom.

So George and I sat up in bed eating, both blissfully quiet. Sometimes you don’t even need to say a word; the silence says it all.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Award Acceptance Speech

Fellow homos, closets and fag hags,

I have deservedly been awarded the Honest Scrap Award by Maya, Shiko-Msa and Rebekah. Not surprisingly the citation says “This award is bestowed upon a fellow blogger whose blog’s content or design is, in the giver’s opinion, brilliant.” The money that I paid to get this award is a small price for the glory that I am destined to enjoy throughout blogosphere.

A condition of this award is I have to list 10 honest things about me:

1. I am wearing a pink mankini as I type this
2. I drink beer and wine, never whiskey
3. I read the Daily Nation never The East African Standard - hence no known link
4. I stole a toy car when I was at Lady Northey nursery school. Carjacking is not new but you can never drive away the guilt
5. The quote in my head right now is "I'm a just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her” (Notting Hill the movie)
6. I love Tibet even though I’ve never been there
7. I live in fear that there are naked pictures of me somewhere on the web
8. I always take my clients with me when I change jobs
9. Dormans for coffee dates, never Java
10. I was once stopped at an airport because someone wrongly thought I was a drug dealer

So, now that you know the real Tamaku who is currently easily identifiable from the size of his swollen head, I will follow tradition and bestow this award on Anengiyefa, Billy GNM, MYSTIC, Pater Nostra,Wildeyearnings and last but not the least the indefatigable Leonardo who upon accepting should also list 10 honest things about themselves and then pass it on to seven others. Work it boys and girls!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Nameless You Are So Hot

A man's man. Congrats on Best East African Song at Kili for 'Salari'! But this one is my fav...

Have a great weekend all...xx

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


I was going to white-lie and say my safaricom line was crossed when I eavesdropped on two women sharing on the tricks of keeping a good man once you find him. The truth is I’ve heard this myth traded by superstitious Kenyans during many a drinking session. Apparently many women will stop at nothing to hold on to their man, the competition in these stakes is fierce. The props needed are a rolling pin and the dough to make chapatis. A good wife will never let the maid make the chapatis. The prescription is that once the dough is rolled out, these women will then climb atop the kitchen worktop and proceed to sit, yes s.i.t. on the flattened dough before cooking the chapatis. It’s what the doctor ordered (are you seriously asking which doc?), because once your man has partaken of these chapatis he’ll never go astray.

So fellas, next time you see a smartly dressed lady standing at the bank queue with shoes that have a mild sprinkling of white dusty flakes, don’t rush to assume it’s dandruff.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


It was just another day at the office yesterday. I am stuck in routine. This is how it goes: Get in just before 9, say good morning to reception, good morning, good morning accounts then down the corridor to my office. Norma, the tea-lady is usually two minutes behind with the brew.

Turn on monitor, log on. Browse the free Daily Nation while waiting for systems to load up. IT don’t seem to want to create a quick launch for all the applications I use. Perhaps they don’t know how to. So it takes 15 minutes to get everything up and running. Start on sudoku.

Check and deal with overnight email. Review diary - the work one, not this one! There’s an important client review for 11 am, thankfully within Upperhill area. I avoid driving into town during the business day whenever possible. The traffic-jams are legendary. Before this appointment, we have our daily departmental meeting. Norma makes her second appearance with the teas and coffees, this time with freshly minted mandazis and samosas.

Left the office with Sheila at 10.30 for the client’s office. They want to evaluate agreements and recap Q1. Sheila does the presentation while I look around to gauge the audience’s reaction. We are in their boardroom, 9 men including myself watching this young woman whizz through razor-sharp powerpoint. The men look like Gentoo penguins in their dark suits, I distractedly think to myself. I do the faq thingy with great enthusiasm like my life depends on it, but I know it doesn’t because I long became aware that it’s all just a game. Round the table they say they are impressed so we shake hands and the head penguin tells me thanks, it’s gonna be bau. It’s always the same, business as usual.

Sheila and I go for lunch. We share a bottle of white wine to reward our earlier team efforts. When she’s off to the ladies, I snatch a quick call to George. ‘Yes honey, I’ll get the nivea for men on my way home’, which is what men want (that’s what nivea says). Then we finish off the wine and head back to the office. It’s just gone 2 pm.

Back in my office, I check mail, return calls and adjust the venetian blinds. Then I do the report from the morning’s visit and now because of the wine I’m feeling drowsy. I catch myself doodling Martha Karua for President 2012. I was not even thinking about politics, so I start looking on the web and discover a blogspot that is for hotmalebutts so I don’t do any more work.

Norma brought me another cuppa, I finished off the sudoku, logged off and left the office. I wish I was doing something more meaningful with my life, like being a farmer or sailing a dhow off Funzi Island taking tourists to watch dolphins. Of course I know I shouldn't really complain, I know many would wish to trade places.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Nairobi Photos

I went to the Fuji shop at the Village market to collect photos from our holiday last week. I was pleasantly surprised to find some pictures of Nairobi still saved to my camera. Here are some of them:

The first one I like because of the architecture and texture of the building.

This second one of a partly pedestrianised Mama Ngina Street I took standing on the steps of KCS House.

Picture number three was taken from the balcony of Tacos Bar (gay Nairobians say yeah!). The statue is of Dedan Kimathi, Freedom Fighter.

Last pic is a side view of Hilton taken from the shaded steps of KCS House. Admittedly I'll never make a photo-journalist.

There are many many more pictures of Nairobi and a heated debate here.

PS. Uploading photos to your blog over a slow connection is not for the impatient!

Gay Solution to Migingo Row

Please Presidents Kibaki and Museveni, stop fighting over Migingo Island - just decree it a gay zone for your 'undesirables'. We’ll show you what a beach should look like...

Friday, April 17, 2009

Dear Tamaku…

I’m increasingly getting emails from readers asking me for help about some emotional/relationship issue or seeking advice on a subject. Here’s a sample of some of these and my responses. I always add a disclaimer to say I’m not trained to help these people with their problems and to consult a professional. Feel free to chip in with your own advice.

Dear Tamaku,

I enjoy reading your blog. I have an issue that I’d like you to advise me on. Is 7.5 too small? Thank you. Mr P*, Nairobi.

Tamaku says: Dear Mr P from Nairobi,

7.5 is the manufacturer’s standard size for the tool you refer to. In other words you are currently driving a Toyota 110, which thankfully has more torque than a Toyota Duet. However you are not in the league of Hummer drivers. Happy safe motoring! -Tamaku.

Dear Tamaku,

Please help me decide what to do with my dilemma. I am married with 3 young children and live with my husband in a nice part of town. My brother who was recently laid off from his job is living with us while he looks for another job.

Last week I got the biggest shock of my life, even now I’ve not recovered. I came home early from work to find my husband in bed with my brother. I cannot understand how my husband could be sleeping with another man.

Please Tamaku, what should I do? Mrs N*, Mombasa.

Tamaku says: Dear Mrs N from Mombasa,

Get a grip on yourself woman! Are you upset because you found your husband with your brother or because you discovered that your husband is gay? If the same happened with your sister would you not be angrier that your husband was sleeping with your sister rather than with another woman?
My advice: Why don’t you accept him for what he is? And a final question, how did you manage to make these two men gay? - Tamaku

*Names and some details hidden to maintain anonymity.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Shout it from the rooftops

The weekend is here, again! This one is for all the gay Kenyan boys and gals and their supporters…there’s no stopping us now! How about this for an anthem?

I promise to be a good boy and not bore you with more videos (for a while, lol!)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Heroes of our time

This piece of important news was tucked away inside the Daily Nation last week. It goes to report that 15 million Kenyans do not know their HIV-status, despite millions of shillings spent on setting up voluntary counselling and testing centres (VCT) as well as the accompanying media campaigns. How ironic that this apathy may be the unintended outcome of message overload. I share the view that knowing one’s HIV status should be empowering regardless of the result.

On a happier note, I applaud the work done by Liverpool VCT who continue to provide an excellent standard of health care for men who have sex with men, alongside that given to the wider community. MSM sexual health needs are unique and Liverpool have risen superbly to meet these challenges. I’m mulling over the idea for some public acknowledgement from gay Kenyans in recognition of these immeasurable contributions that have been made under difficult conditions. Dear reader, please let me know any suggestions you may have.

I also came across this interesting chronicle on the virus’ journey that continues to threaten the futures of many Kenyans (we are not out of the woods yet); M the Kenyan gay blogger also bravely shares his personal account here.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

When I first fell in love

He was one of the most beautiful souls that ever lived. Those eyes, those lips, that voice…gone too soon…thanks for the memories.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Memories of love

First of all thank you God for the gift of rain, even the thunderstorms. Amen.

It was a magical time. The journey down in the Toyota tour van was uneventful. We were three couples; two middle-aged canoodling Kenyans who didn’t look married to me and a grayscale Japanese man with his chatty Australian wife sat at the back. The gay brigade was behind our skilful driver, who dutifully pointed out the unmissable vistas that are the Rift Valley. George was listening to an FM station on his phone-radio while I half-heartedly attempted to balance the Sudoku from a magazine the driver lent me.

The lodge in the dark sprinkled with flickering lanterns was even more alluring than I remembered from last Christmas when we had our company lunch there with work colleagues. Just as promised by the travel agent there were no hitches. The youthful staff cheerfully checked us in as a double before nonchalantly calling the porter, please show the guests to their room. So we followed the porter with the kissable athlete’s bum to our love cottage, a crescent-shaped building including a luxurious ensuite bathroom wrapped in Galana-stone tiles and a lavish four-poster mahogany bed. The porter seemed unnerved by our pairing so I eased his discomfort by the experienced covert handshake of a 500-shilling note.

That first night we had dinner in the grill restaurant, George chose a cut of Molo lamb and I had a most succulent marbled rib-eye steak, both served with roast potatoes and assorted vegetables and washed down with a forgettable red from a Naivasha vineyard. After dinner we had more exciting drinks with other guests at the bar by the fireplace. The guests were all really nice especially as by this time I was acting quite outrageously queenie and tipsy it didn’t escape anyone’s notice that we were a couple. I kept saying to George loudly, ‘honey please get me another one’, whenever the waiter came round. Yes, there are some safe places for gays in Kenya.

During the day I just pottered around the gardens or the pool, while George went on a tour to a flower farm. I chose not to go because I have problems with the effects from these dubious enterprises that courageously defend their 30% share of the EU market. He came back to the cottage bearing a surprisingly unproblematic bunch of exquisite blood-red roses, so we spent an energetic hour in bed before lunch. Later I went horse-riding through forests of lime-coloured acacias and the guide even pointed out a black and white colobus but I couldn’t look because I was not feeling confident riding the mare (pun unintended!). Of course I broke my blog-fast during our holiday because I was missing you guys and spent some time on the laptop laughing like a banshee when I read Pater Nostra’s confessions.

Then it was pizza for dinner another night and more drinks and being in love. I looked around the shop selling souvenirs and chose an orange ‘Kenya Dig It’ polo-shirt for Imelda, a Masai beaded armlet in patriot Kenyan-flag colours for her son Paul and a delicate batiked-necklace made from animal bones for her mum. Afterwards everything and everyone else was forgotten for us as we soaked together in the deep seasalt-filled bath.

One afternoon George treated me lying nude to a stimulating massage on the balcony daybed overlooking the private gardens. The room-service waiter bearing iced-Baileys surprised us when we didn’t hear him knocking. He didn’t even bat an eyelid; I suppose the confessions of a room-service waiter is an x-rated read. Nonetheless, I scandalously over-tipped him by a day’s wage. Keep ‘em sweet, that’s my de rigueur mantra. Upon our departure this morning the staff and their excellent manager graciously told us karibu tena Bwana George na Tamaku.

Oh, and something else. Last night lying in bed beneath the 400 thread count Egyptian cottons and limbs entwined like a python round his willing prey, George said the three magic words. I knew it all along but it was wonderful to hear him say them. I said them back to him too.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Going away

We are all packed and ready. Just one more sleep before we go off for our Easter break tomorrow. George and I are both excited and looking forward to spending quality time somewhere romantic alone together for the first time. Incredibly George was expected at work and knowing he wouldn’t get his leave authorised so soon after the 2 week holiday in March he purchased a week’s sick note from a doctor at Corner House. I think we would both have been more sick than the diarrhoea if we had to cancel, that's our justification. We’ll set off to the lodge in the Rift Valley after I finish work tomorrow afternoon and stay there for 4 nights. As usual Imelda is also going away to spend time with the family who include her young son Paul and elderly mum in Kawangware.

I am sure you’ll understand that I don’t intend to go near a blog during this time, so here’s wishing you all a Happy Easter weekend. Hope to have some juicy ones to share when we return. Have a lovely time wherever you are.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A straight view

I like this one, hope you do too!

Is it gray when you mix black and white?

Jérôme is the lead partner at the firm of architects on the floor directly below our office. I don’t know his name but he looks like a Jérôme to me in his chinos and short-sleeved cotton shirts carrying a well-worn canvas and hide Sandstorm bag. I’ve spotted him secretly spying me through the mirrors’ reflections when we’ve shared a lift on several occasions. My gaydar was stirred but it was at the car park yesterday after work when someone said something which confirmed these doubts.

Actually it was Sheila who pointed out Jérôme who was getting into a Jeep driven by a youngish looking man. She nudged me with her elbow don’t look now but there’s that Belgian with his Kenyan boy! Then claws showing as we watched the Jeep climb out of the basement, ‘these white men are spoiling our young men.’ I couldn’t let this one slip by so I said, ‘Who’s to say they are not equally enjoying whatever it is they are doing together.’ Sheila said nothing just shrugged. She’s a clever girl, steers clear of controversy whenever challenged.

It got me thinking on the way home. This is not the first time I’ve heard the view expressed that the black Kenyan half of an interracial couple is being taken advantage of, or that the ‘foreigner’ is being cheated off his money. Somehow Kenyans in these pairings are seen as calculating but naive gold diggers while their usually white lovers are viewed as lovelorn hapless victims. If you add a substantial age gap to the mix you have a recipe for a potential riot. Is there any truth to these stereotypes?

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The barbecue to remember

We were up early yesterday and dashed to sun-splashed Village Market to pick up some drinks and fresh flowers to take to our hosts. I felt irrationally better after reading George’s horoscope preferring it to my own … 'This looks as if its going to be a lively day, and one in which you must be prepared to take advantage of what crops up completely out of the blue…', Capricorn in the Saturday Nation magazine promised.

It’s a 20 minute drive to Mike’s imposing residence; securing large government tenders has delivered ostentatious rewards. Mike’s wife Zawadi in a dazzling kitenge cloth dress greeted us warmly as we parked our car on the cabro-paved drive. I was told the children have gone to the grandparents for the weekend. She cast George understandably a sneakily devilish once-over and I heard the familiar shriek of Tandy the African Grey parrot from his perch inside the mansion’s upstairs indoor- garden announcing our arrival, ‘alo’, ‘alo’.

Mike was sitting proprietarily at the gazebo in their garden behind a table overlooking the criminally indulgent lush lawn studying us sauntering across the footpath. He stood up to give me the customary hug. I could sense him looking over my shoulder at George before shaking hands as I introduced them.

I sat between Zawadi and George, who was to Mike’s right side round the table garnished in exquisite crystal ware. I feigned interest in my chat with Mike’s wife as I strained to hear what he was talking about with George. The snatched snippets were safely around the theme of cars, corruption and our politics, interrupted with hearty mutual laughs. Is my best friend bonding with my secret lover, I wondered wildly. Two hours later they were both carving the deliciously charred racks of tropical heat spice- inspired goat ribs served with lashings of kachumbari salad with hot green chillies. The mood encouraged by cold tusker lagers had lightened and Mike said to George come let me show you the pool. I sensed danger but I couldn’t do anything to avert the impending disaster. So they left us to go see the swimming pool behind the house and I started the pork chops and beef steaks on the barbecue for round two as Annie the housekeeper cleared away the plates while humming Ahadi zake by Marion Shako.

They were gone for ten minutes. In that eternity Zawadi pointedly asked about George, who is he? I answered truthfully taking off my sunglasses, he’s a friend and he’s living at my house now. I surprised myself how quietly profound I sounded. She nodded, looked at me straight in the eye and said he seems like a nice person. She knew; and she knew I knew she knew! It’s the way she tapped my arm gently as she said it.

We didn’t have time to talk more about George because we saw them walking back to the gazebo; I was shocked into soberness to see Mike’s hand resting Obama-style on George’s shoulder. I put my sunglasses back on as they sat down. Zawadi went to the fridge to fetch some drinks. George was now unusually quiet, staring at his beer. Something was not right but I was like a sitting duck. Mike started speaking to me. ‘Buddy, I’m disappointed in you’. He sounded sad. I braced myself. ‘All these years I’ve known you and your family. You are my children’s godfather and yet you hide things from me’. Zawadi, how long does it take to fetch beers and wine from the fridge? Then the bombshell: 'It takes a stranger to tell me you are homosexual’. I was stunned, but strangely felt only a mild anger at George for putting me through this. ‘I was afraid our friendship would end; I didn’t want to lose that,’ came my hoarse answer.

There was a short pause. The sound of a light breeze caressing bougainvillea vines before Mike spoke. ‘I’m sorry I made you feel anything would change our friendship. After all we’ve been through; I don’t understand about this gay business but I love and respect you. It only matters to me that you are happy.’ Then casually a good-humoured call, ‘Zawa, bring the brandy we need something stronger!’

So there it was. My life was starting all over again. I felt sadness that I had ever doubted the capacity of my relationship with my best friend. Over 20 years of secrets from Mike undone in a few sentences and all because George had the courage to tell the truth and set me free. With these clouds lifted away, we had a most memorable afternoon. Mike played our favourite 80’s disco music and we all danced together until early evening.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Homophobic best friend invites us to lunch

My best friend Mike called me today. We haven’t seen each other much lately. It hasn’t escaped my attention that since George came into my life I’ve been purposely neglecting Mike. I’ve known Mike for years; we were room mates in college and I still bear the emotional scars of my secret unrequited nightly lust. Then Mike was the perfect man I knew my family prayed I would become and for many years I tried but failed to become that other man.

Mike has invited me to his house tomorrow afternoon for some nyama choma with beers, that seemingly benign social activity enjoyed and frequently abused by many Kenyans. I instinctively said yes before remembering that I now come as part of a unit that must include George, so I said to Mike I’ll bring a friend. I could hear the raised eyebrow of disbelief in his voice when he joked ‘eh you found yourself a girlfriend, bring her along and if she’s hot then we can compare notes ha ha ha,’ not harmless under different circumstances especially coming from this philandering married man. I told him no it’s a dear friend called George that I want you to meet and he breathed disappointedly oh, bring him along.

George is looking forward to meeting Mike and his family. He understands how important they are to me so George says it’s a small but crucial step we should take for the sake of expanding our joint social circle. I agree but I’m also anxious about tomorrow because Mike is a vocal homophobe from whose acidic scrutiny I want to shield my lover George.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Blast from the past

Can you imagine turning up at Carnie dressed like this? I think the music is good though. Enjoy..

Indecent Proposals - Should I?

A rather strange email landed in my inbox yesterday. AR obviously wants to turn my life into an experiment or a circus depends which way you look at it. Let me explain: the email contained two intriguing proposals. Both are fraught with unpredictability, one is even downright reckless and dangerous to me. Anyway here is what this reader is asking me to consider:

Proposal A
– To charm a woman stranger in a bar or nightclub for a night and then come out to her as gay. Aim is to see whether I can pass for a straight man for an evening. Apparently my writing sounds queer, so I must be as camp as a row of tents.

Proposal BTo publish my own picture here on this blog. Aim is to dispel the myth of the non-existent gay Kenyan.

I was a little unsettled when I read this and mildly offended as you can well imagine. What gives this person the temerity to think my life is for hire. Is this taking things too far? When did I become a puppet?

But another part of me is up for a challenge. What do the good people here think?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Gay Kenyan Politician A Hoax

I confess to this story being a hoax. Thanks for those who commented, I hope you can forgive my little juvenile prank in the spirit of April Fools' day. I left a little clue for the hawkeyed in the label, 'swineflight'.

Of course I did not publish any comments for that post, just had a private chuckle. Love you all!

Kenyan politician in gay row

A senior politician in Kenya has left his wife of 20 years for a younger male lover – his official driver. It has been reported that the wife confronted the politician with explicit photographic evidence gleaned from hired private investigators following what the wife termed as prolonged denial of her conjugal rights. Sources have told the media that the man who has three adult children left his wife after last-ditch efforts to reconcile the pair collapsed when the politician refused to end the affair with the man.

Neighbours speaking on condition of anonymity, describe the politician as being overly friendly with their teenage sons, a matter causing speculation as to who else the politician might have ensnared. As Kenyan media went to press the politician was said to be holed in meetings at a city hotel with various supporters including church leaders. The whereabouts of the young man at the centre of the row remain unknown.

More to follow.