Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Ponder Your Navel

This post is dedicated to our ex.

Have you ever had the opportunity to tell someone, "Go jump in a lake!?" It's a plus when you can tell them exactly what lake too!

For instance, Lake Magadi, back home in Kenya's Rift Valley would work perfectly because in the dry season it is 80% full of soda ash, a.k.a. washing soda. Our ex can just jump in there and be cleansed thoroughly of the senseless behaviour that has been the source of such negative energy that has caused the untimely death of our vanpool.

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When someone sets out to kill a van, containing a load of professionals trying to get to and from work expeditiously, stress-free, while reducing traffic congestion and fuel consumption, that person needs to go jump in Lake Magadi!!

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In Lake Magadi they can scrub the toxins off the flesh, and then maybe, just maybe, they can return to reclaim their self-ascribed "salt of the earth" status.

I don't think we'd take them back on the van though, sorry.

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In fact, a next step would be recommended:

Climb my Mt. Kilimanjaro and at 19,000 feet above sea level, do this:

Find Your Belly Button! In that lovely thin air. Breathe faster, deeper, expose your soul to the fresh air. Perhaps the hyperventilation will assist in elevating your spirit. After all, altitude determines attitude au siyo? However, don't let the pulmonary edema set in as this would defeat the purpose of your going to the mountain-top...

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...to ponder your navel. Your big fat, round navel. Whether an innie or an outie, that very first scar, left over from the umbilical cord joining you to your mother's placenta, is your unique fingerprint. Examine it. What happened to all that nourishment from the womb? Did society get the best of you? Trace backwards, the complicated path you have taken recently. Your motivations, the surging negative energy, the undermining, conniving, back-biting, causing havoc amongst reasonable and appreciative riders.

Ex-Primary Driver: Goodbye, Good Luck, Good Riddance To Bad Rubbish.

Kwaheri ya kuonana.

Mama Shujaa.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Teachable Moments

This old man and this old woman, they played knick knack on my drum this weekend. And with the knick knack, they paddy whacked me. So much so, I ended up without a bone! I had to settle for a measly nanosecond of an opportunity to rise up; to beat my drums the way I was taught by Mama. African-style with rhythm and flair in remembrance of Bibi's [grandma's] teachings.

This old man and this old woman, played knick knack on my drum this weekend, in Greenville, South Carolina, whose State motto incidentally, is the Latin proverb, Dum Spiro Spero, "While I breathe, I hope."

It was our first visit to the city; our kitindamimba [last born] was playing in an elite youth soccer tournament. And play well he did; he turned it on, gave his team the striker mmpphh! they needed up front, for four convincing wins and a terrific Final Championship game. Kudos to the boys for winning, through the rain!

The rain was like a dance, this weekend. It came and went, and except for the duration of one half of a match, it was sporadic enough; it rained after the matches, and during breaks, as we did some sightseeing around town.

It was on one of those breaks that I was rendered boneless. We had just deposited hubby at a free Wi-Fi location, a Barnes and Noble, so he could catch up on the English Premier League matches online; Chidi and I headed out to see some sights. It was not long before we came upon two odd-looking old geezers. There they were, off the main thoroughfare, on the corner of Woodruff Road; where the City has done its finest to display Greenville’s beauty and Southern charm. And standing facing growing traffic, consisting mostly out-of-towners (we could tell by license plates) those ancients bore all their paraphernalia.

A stroller, a baby Bjorn and a few baby dolls; they stuck out like flags of heritage. The old man and the old woman, their stance was warlike; their placards, disturbing - STOP ABORTION, NOW!!! – they shouted. The old woman advanced with her double stroller, complete with two dolls, one white, one black. The old man marched, wearing the bi-racial baby on his chest.

A car honked several times, in support, it had South Carolina license plates.

"What is abortion, mom?"

And that was when I had a measly nanosecond of an opportunity to rise up; to beat my drums the way I was taught by Mama: African-style with rhythm and flair in remembrance of Bibi's [grandma's] teachings. To educate my eleven-year-old in his first ever question to me, on the body, the matter and its environs.

What did I do? I did not dance, or drop some bones as brother man and I loved to say on the dance floor, when the beat was in sync with our senses. Instead, I skidded around the body of the matter, sucked my teeth at the old man and the old woman, wondered what in goodness sake possessed them come out on this touristy weekend and express their contentious views?!

The series of sputtering that emitted from my lips were not the nice lucid, well-orchestrated ngoma [dance] that I had heretofore envisioned. And upon our return to Barnes and Noble, I did not steer him to age-appropriate books to discuss the matter further. I was caught off guard. The teachable moment had come and gone.

Now, I’ll have to wait for that nice letter from the principal requesting permission to teach my son Health Education.

Jamani! [gosh]

Mama Shujaa.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

English as a Second Language

An English grammar session in the Nigerian House of Representatives. Listen keenly to the third politician, you might need your dictionary...:-)

Enjoy the weekend.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

2010 World Cup African Qualifiers

Lovers of soccer, fanatics, Africans in the Diaspora, there is an outlet for your pent up demand for the good game. It is crunch time, qualifier matches for the 2010 FIFA World Cup and CAF's Cup of Nations (Angola 2010), are on this weekend. And AllSoccerAfrica in partnership with Sport Five and My African Football presents the matches to you LIVE online.

Will both Cameroon and Nigeria (the giants of the African game) get kicked out of contention? Can Ghana and Ivory lock-up their spots?

Click HERE for all the action this weekend as Africa's finest do battle.

Saturday Sept 5th.

Malawi v Guinea 8.30 am EST.
Rwanda v Egypt 9.30 am EST.
Gabon v Cameroon 10.30 am EST.
Ivory Coast v Burkina-Faso 1.00 pm EST.

Sunday Sept 6th.

Mozambique v Kenya 9.00am EST.
Benin v Mali 11.00am EST.
Togo v Morocco 11.30am, EST.
Nigeria v Tunisia 12.00 noon, EST.
Ghana v Sudan 1.00pm, EST.
Algeria v Zambia 5.00pm EST.

All matches streamed live at AllSoccerAfrica....yeah! Check your local listings for kick-off updates.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Two Steps Forward, One Step Backward

I received these oldies from a friend recently. Take a look at some of Africa's matunda [fruits] of independence and the interesting headlines.

(Weekly Review, Oct. 1976)

Current President of Kenya, Mwai Kibaki, pictured above, two years before he was appointed Vice President by Daniel Arap Moi who had just taken over the Presidency, following the death of founding President, Jomo Kenyatta in August, 1978. Kibaki has over thirty-one years of experience in politics, as cabinet minister, Vice-President and then President.

(Drum Magazine, August 1986)

"Zimbabwe, along with Kenya, have become the success stories of Africa. There aren't many?" - a quote taken from the above article, click the snapshot to read in its entirety. President Robert Mugabe today at the ripe old age of 85 is still going strong after 29 years in public office, having served as Prime Minister, then President.

"Kibaki’s Challenge" and "The Men Who Must Make Peace." Here we are in 2009 and Kibaki’s challenge seems to have multiplied, while Mugabe has not made peace but is following the path of other despots.

Kibaki and Mugabe are by no means the oldest and longest-serving African leaders. See Reuters FACTBOX: Muammar Gadaffi of Libya seized power in 1969 and is still going strong. The late Omar Bongo of Gabon ruled for four decades before his passing in June this year. On August 31, His son Ali-Ben Bongo declared victory in the presidential elections. It's a long list or rulers - President Biya, at 76, has ruled for 29 years, Santos of Angola, has ruled for 30 years, Museveni of Uganda, has ruled for 23 years.

Kweli, tell me, are the matunda green, ripe, overripe, or preserved? Marmalade?

One step forward two steps backward?

Mama Shujaa.