Why I: Am Not Bothered Anymore

What is your priority?

What is the thing your habits, thoughts, mannerisms and basically everything you do slowly moving you towards? You, like most normal Kenyans 20-something year olds probably have absolutely NO idea what i’m going on about huh?

Now what manner of BS is this Brian guy about to tell me?
Now what manner of BS is this Brian guy about to tell me?

I was moved by this article on A Life Less Bullshit (check the article out here) on prioritizing your life and it got me thinking: “What the hell are my habits moving me towards?” Of course there was the kawaida “Oh my God! Jesus take the wheel!” moment, a bit of panic and kicking and screaming, the declaration that I will get my life together NOW and a few days later, back to the same old. Isn’t that the 4-stage process we all go through when something potentially life-altering happens?

Step 1: Go ape shit: – Make a declaration that you will change your life. And DRASTIC change at that. Your life must know who’s boss. I am sure anyone who’s tried to go on a diet or get serious with working out, or begin saving or get serious studying (I swear every semester would begin like this!) can relate.

Step 2: Actually trying to implement these sweeping changes – Newly-Saved Christians will usually delete all their secular music (I would know because I’ve done this, twelve times :-( ) and vow NEVER to listen to anything that speaks of anything except God (which is perfectly alright by the way). If you’re trying to diet this will entail you not eating your daily dose of fries, soda, bread, fried chicken, beef burger and pizza that you must consume at least 4 times a day to stay healthy; if it’s saving it’ll mean you cutting down your consumption and aiming to save 99.95% of your income starting tomorrow and form the folks studying it will usually mean writing a study plan that will have you studying 25 hours a day and having no social life whatsoever.

Step 3: In trying to implement your completely ridiculous, fantastical, whimsical, comical and impractical plan, you will quickly realize that you simply cannot. You, like the rest of humanity, is resigned to the fate of being just a man. You are not (believe it or not) from Krypton, green and hulky all over, you do not own a super-hammer thing or have the sheer will power of Kenyan politicians to annoying Kenyans. You cannot change your lifestyle over night. So you slip- and eat the burger and fries for lunch, buy that completely pointless accessory on your way home, listen to the radio station that plays all the evil music you ever heard and watch all 5 seasons of Breaking Bad at a go.

Step 4: Back to normal – So you find yourself back to where you started. Only this time, you are worse off. You are now sure you “cannot do it,” “are not strong enough,” or whatever other negative self-talk your mind tricks you into making.

In recent weeks I have been sort of forced by life to take a whole long term outlook to things and stuff. It’s a long story, you don’t have time to read that sob story :-) Back to the point: priorities.

Thinking about my habits and stuff I realized that my priority was being stressed out. Reading every stupid blog that comes out about why ladies are the reason men cheat, caring what car I want to drive in a couple of years, planning for the NEW YEARS plan in July (turn down 4 what?), “balling out of control,” stopping fights in Westlands, bribing bouncers for people while fighting off prostitutes from my friends (hehehe), avoiding alcoblow by taking every dark alley known to man, strolling into the house at 7:30am on Sunday morning and scrolling through my social media streams every hour was definitely NOT going to make me the rich and happy person I want to be. A few days of reflection later I came to the conclusion and made the conscious decision that my priority is (now) my peace of mind.

What does that mean for me? It means I am living a life that has minimal stress; I am simply not paying any attention to things beyond my control. I am paying keener attention to my personal health and overall well-being. I am putting a lot of emphasis on my personal development and simplifying my life (check out this article for some wisdom on this whole weird zen-y, monk-y thing) as possible, de-cluttering the BS.

How am I doing this?

  • Eating better -less red meat, plenty of water, less coffee, well-balanced meals
  • Exercising regularly
  • Throwing out the stuff I don’t need and investing in fewer, better-quality items
  • Reading daily
  • Minimising the time spent on TV and video games (yes, even as the new Last of Us and FIFA 15 are about)
  • Reducing the time I spend on social media (you can check out why I quit Instagram here )
  • Slowing down the pace at which I live
  • Being mindful (although I’m not yet where I want to be with this) and minimising the noise
  • Saving and investing – as in, actually making this a real thing I do permanently, not just for a few months until I max out my cards :-D
  • Enjoying the more now
  • Challenging the assumptions, biases and stereotypes and adopting a “just do it” mindset
  • Sleeping
  • Being very plain – telling it like it is, saying “No” a whole lot more and being literal – which makes it weird sometimes when someone says a joke and I’m like *crickets*

Life is way better now. I am skipping step 3 and 4 and hey, I don’t know about you but it helps that my account balances don’t make me feel like listening to an Adele song.

What’s your priority? Where are your habits taking you?

What You Know?

It has been a while since you and I spoke. I know, I know. I promised I would never leave you, then I did. I kept you in the cold, and you were so very lonely, and that kind of thing. I am sorry. Folks, every time you and I speak, I lay things bear. I unwrap the towel around my waist and I go “tadaa!” I’ll be frank with you: sometimes (often) I get “What the f*ck is that? Eeewww!” and sometimes (rarely) I get an “Oooh la la, tihihi” kind of response. But I always keep it real with you. Of late I have not been in the state of mind to do that.

I know between graduation, Masaku 7s, the circus that was the recent police recruitment drive, graduation (just in case you didn’t get it the first time ;-) , and the movie that is the life of a 20-something year old Kenyan today, there has been plenty for us to talk about.

What I do want to talk about is a conversation I have been having with a friend of mine:

How clueless, disconnected and ignorant, are we?

Source | beyondchron.org
Source | beyondchron.org

Pssst! You! Yes, you. You with the nice phone, attending the nice campus or college, wearing the nice clothes, smelling nice, eating well, serial-watching series, driving the nice car (your parents’ of course) or with access to it, partying hard every other weekend and ofcourse, Instagramming it. It doesn’t count if you don’t share it on Instagram folks. We must know dammit! Rules of being a teen/ twenty-something year old in the 21st century.

Do you know that there are people who have not had anything to eat in the last 2 days? Do you know that in a few years or less, you will actually have to look for a job? You will attend an interview, you will be scared shitless, you will do your best to make those people see how amazing you are and they will pick the bloke who was waiting next to you, the one you thought was weird. Yes you drive that moti today for free but do you know you will actually have to fuel it on your own? Yes, that V6 in all its guzzling glory. Do you know that your father and his bottomless wallet will stop being all ATMish for you and you will actually have to earn your own money and pay for things? Do you know that the British or German machine you have access to costs several millions of shillings? And that you are currently worth, financially speaking of course, approximately nothing, give or take a few cents? Do you know that yes, even if you await a nice inheritance that could leave you in a big ass house in Karen, it is likely you will not get it tomorrow. Or even ten years after tomorrow. And you must maintain until then? At this juncture allow me to turn to the wise words of Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr: “You’re like a b*tch with no ass, you ain’t gat shit!”

Do you know that you cannot admit to be a Christian or a Muslim in certain parts of the world for fear of death? Do you know that people your age or younger than you have become paralyzed or even died because they got into a car accident (like the one you had the other day), driving drunk or under the influence of something a little bit more potent? People in the same school as you. Do you know the shit your parents or guardians go through to give you the life you have? Do you know that some day you will be 30-something and you will be struck by the thought that hey, “I actually WANT to ‘settle down’ now”? Do you know that you may actually WANT to have kids of your own? Do you know that all the shit you have done and will do does not really go away? The memories do remain with YOU. Do you know that the policeman who harassed you for your disorderly behaviour outside Molly’s thaaaat day was at the Westgate when hell on earth struck? And that he was shot in the ass? And that he nearly died? Saving people just like you and I?

I could go on and on, but my point is not to somea anyone or myself. Be calm! We all “know” these things right? My point is this: we should all be a little bit more mindful, aware, in touch with reality you know? Life is not only Big Square, S5s and shoooots. Even as we live our lives the way we want to – of course there’s a time and place for everything, heck! The Bible itself says so! Ecclestiastes 3:1-8 for you non-believers. Jesus loves you! :-)

But come on, we cannot live like there’s no tomorrow, because there is. What will happen then? #justsaying

That said, welcome to the new look blog. Yup, moving onwards and upwards. Soon you could be hearing about “This is Brian!” Okay, I kid. I’m not as pretty. And I have the fashion sense of a blind chameleon. Maybe i’ll become a socialite instead. :-D

 

 

Why I: Stopped Using Instagram

“Other people’s lives are so cool and here I am, so damn boring… I mean look at this dude, holidaying in the middle of April… or this, having an amazing dinner at Villa Rosatribe Sankaraways while I’m here chewing this hard ass githeri… or this, look at her great ass while I’m here fighting the craters on mine scientists call “cellulite!”

Is what most people, if they spoke honestly about their Instagram experience, would say. As we lay in our beds late at night (under the covers of course! You can’t have the demons from American Horror Story kill you as you stalk people now can you? Hehe), wondering why we’re such losers and we have no friends… and scroll down our Instagram hoping not to double tap someone’s shit! Untap trippletap taptap tapytap! If I unlike it now, will they get a notification? Noooooooooooooo! Now they’ll know I was stalking them. Must create stupid lie for why they got a million notifications from me now. I hate my life. Yes, some of us will say how amazing it is that we can share the beautiful experiences about our lives with the weirdos on the internet, as the founders of the app intended, but for most, it (unfortunately) feels like an avenue to stalk and see how amazing other people’s lives are, in contrast to your own. You don’ think so? So why exactly are you refreshing every half hour and clicking the “FOLLOWING” tab huh?

If you feel this way, fear not! You are not alone. I am here with you. Though you’re far away. I am here to stay. Okay, I am lying. And those happen to be lyrics to a Michael Jackson song. Focus!
But I know what you feel. Nakufeel mpenzi wangu. The problem with us human beings is that we’re competitive by nature. When someone posts a photograph of something cool, people tend to generalize someone’s life on it and say hey, based on that one photo of a single moment of Gash’s life (which he then edited for roughly 4 hours give or take a day, #nofilter for who!), Gash’s life is pretty awesome. Yes it’s just one photo of a single moment of a pretty kawa day but his life must be epic all the time! Ama aje ladies? Si you woke up like diiiiiisss? Hehehe.

There’s supposed to be an “N” somewhere in there. Unless you have a blocked nose. Then it’s EASTERGRAM for you

I’m sorry for the many deviations from the point, i’ll get back to it soon. Enough :)
But really, Gash’s life is awesome.
But really times two kalamba down, Instagram is a pretty cool app. It is. I mean, how would I take my daily dose of stalker juice otherwise? But if I (and by “I” I mean “you”) feel weird about your life, venye you’re missing out on such cool plans and stuff, you need to check yourself! Do not judge a book by it’s cover. Or a girl by her filter.
People’s lives aren’t all nice and normal and #nofilter all the time. Once in a while we may need to put on amaro or mayfair or willow, heck! I know some niggas who need sutro, to re-align and brighten their shit up! Most of us need to crop kidogo because we can’t fit into that small square box. And in the end, the picture always looks great doesn’t it? Such is life. It’s not perfect. Not a bed of roses. You usually don’t just select normal and get a million likes.
And no! You absolutely did not wake up like diiiiiisss! Except my girlfriend, she’s gorgeous!
That is how life is meant to be. We need the bad to enable us truly cherish the good. The mediocre to make the good great. The duck faces, to make normal faces look way better than they ordinarily would :)

So ladies and gentlemen, as much as you like playing with filters and crossing your fingers hoping you get maaany likes, enjoy your lives much in the same way.
Only that in this case, you have control over how much you can crop (that stupid square maaan!), the filters and the captions. And #yesfilter