I Played Chess with the Devil

Have you ever been in situations in which the only logical explanation is the hand of the devil himself, and no one else, not even his angels? If you have not, grab your pop corn and read on.

My name is Betty, and I once played chess with the devil himself. Just after high school, I was dating a nice guy called George. George was one of those husband material guys: Does not drink, does not party; and that is not to insinuate that guys who drink and party are not husband material. I, on the other hand, was the exact opposite. I was still young, heck still am.

My old man worked in a different town, and was hardly home. Then, I used to live with my older sister. Our other older siblings had already moved out, and my younger brother was in a boarding school. Sometimes, George would come visiting always when my dad was away. At other times, he would come visiting when my sister is at her boyfriend’s place. Focus here, stop looking at me with those bad eyes. We would just watch movies till late, then we would go sleep.

This one time, when George was around, my sister was conveniently at her boyfriend’s place and the house was all to ourselves, we (George and I) heard a knock on the door. My old man was scheduled to come in the following day, so I figured it must be the new estate guards. Being the cautious person that I am, I went to the balcony to check, and what I saw made my bladder weak. My dad’s car was packed up front. It was 8 PM!

The devil’s first ‘check!’

I kid you not, on another day, I would have broken a bone or five after falling from running down the stars, but the devil had other plans. So, I tell George, things are thick, go to the bedroom as we try to figure this out. I call my sister to tell her, the owner of the house has paid his children a surprise visit, but she is drunk as hell. Finally, I go to open the door, 15 minutes later. So for 15 minutes, the only thing I thought was, “George, go to the bedroom, we will figure this out!!!!

Today you have slept early?” is my old man’s greeting.

I did some laundry, and so I was tired, decided to sleep early.” I reply. And that was the beginning of tripping.

So far so good. I get some left over food, warm in the microwave, and he eats as we talk about nothing in particular and catch up.

Shouldn’t you get some rest?” I finally told him. The second mistake.

Is your sister asleep?” He asked, ignoring my plea to have him go to bed.

The devil’s second ‘check!’

She went to visit Carol (my other sister)!” I answered. He looked at me the way he normally looks at someone when he is sure you are lying to him. It did not matter much, one crisis had been averted.

For some reason, he had to read something, and his spectacles were in the car. He asked me to fetch them. So far, the devil has just been moving his pieces on the chess board waiting for the opportune moment to check-mate me.

It was a ritual that after removing clothes from the clothes-line, we would put them in my bedroom. My old man decided to get clothes for the following day – since he was flying out – from my bedroom. And the idiot in the room had locked the door from inside!

My trouble for getting the old man his glasses is repaid by, “Why have you locked the bedroom door?

The devil’s third ‘check!’

Laundry had been done by mama fua so I had to lock the bedrooms?” The thing with a lie you have not thought much about is, it is easy to contradict yourself.

Okay,” he said, “Get me my shirts I show you which ones you will iron for me!

He went to the living room, and I got my chance to ask George to open the door. I brought him the shirts, and he insisted some were missing. He got a bright idea from the devil to go get the shirts himself. My old man never enters my bedroom, but that day, the devil was working his magic.

On getting in, guess who is just there, shaking like he had been snowed on in Siberia?

I noticed something was going on here, how do you explain this?” my old man asked.

And, I can swear, I heard the devil say, “Check mate!”

[Guest Post] Busted by @SamKitots

The phone beeped and I looked at it. I wasn’t too sure whether I wanted to read the message, but right there and then I knew I was in trouble. This had been going on for too long and now, as the saying goes, “when it rains, it pours”. I knew who it was that had messaged me, we were chatting only minutes before and it was quite cordial. But I didn’t expect that he would actually respond to my last message. Kind of the same way you would say, Cheers man, I’m off. Then the 5 minute wait and no response could only mean that you really need to be off.

I looked at the phone and debated in my head whether I should read the message. Then, my stomach sunk, I had waited too long. This game had been going on for too long. My heart raced, and my sweaty palms didn’t know what to do with the confusing signals my brain was sending. The car behind me honked its horn, the lights were green, I don’t know how long they had been green. I tossed the phone into the door pocket, a place I never toss my phone “FUCK! Now I am digging my grave” I thought as I sped off. I had to remember the way home. I had only been in this new city for three months. Wide, wide roads meant that you should know your lane way in advance.

The drive home was uneventful. My 3 year old daughter in the back seat was sweating bullets and aircon was not working. Windows open seemed to let more of the harsh sun striker her face more than the breeze from driving was helping her stay cool. After picking her from kindergarten, I dashed to go pick my husband who was oblivious to my state of mind. Things sort of seemed to clean themselves up as we drive home. My phone didn’t beep again and I was no longer in a panic. We decided to go for some late afternoon shopping and maybe an early dinner at a nearby restaurant; this meant I needed to get out of my work clothes.

We got home and he decided to stay in the car and watch the girl while I dash in to the house to change. I kicked off my red stiletto pumps and the red blouse. Got out of the uber short black skirt I had on. A quick peek in the mirror and I was happy. I know I was posing for the mirror, but I was happy I had my body back. The still birth earlier in the year had me damaged emotionally and physically. My figure was a mess back then. I jumped into my jeans and a tee. Nothing big was going on tonight. Geez, I didn’t put on my bra strap after taking that bathroom selfie for Frank. All fixed up, I went back to the car.

My stomach sunk when I looked into the car as I stepped out. “Bloody hell!!” my brain told me. I wore a smile but World War III was going on in my head as I argued with myself. Why the hell did I leave my phone in the car? And now Jim was going through my phone. “so where are we going shopping?” I asked my husband.


“Who is Frank?” he asked with a very condescending tone.

I knew that was the next question, and I knew where the conversation was going most of all, I knew we weren’t going to go shopping or have dinner. I sucked it all in and knew this was where the rubber met the road, it was either another lie, or the truth. One of us was not sleeping at home tonight.

For awesome articles like this one, drop-by Sam’s blog, and

Help Take Down This Facebook Page Swindling Kenyans

The Facebook page Kenyan Recipes Ebook is stealing recipes from Leo Tunapika and selling the recipes to people in the form of an E-Book, thereby using other people’s intellectual property to enrich themselves.

The first recipe in the Ebook is from Leotunapika’s post here. The second recipe from here while the third is from here. If you check throughout the book, ALL the recipes are stolen.

The owner of the page is one SAMUEL  NJOROGE MUCHOKI of number 0711149392. And shameless as he is, he does not change anything. Everything is as it is in the site, including the pictures.

When Samuel was asked about it a few months ago by the owner of Leo Tunapika (Gatuiri), he promised he would stop putting the recipes in his E-books.  However, he continued putting the recipes and Gatuiri had no choice but to contact BAKE (Bloggers Association for Kenyan Bloggers) for help.

BAKE did try to contact Samuel, but as soon as he knew it was people from BAKE, he put disconnected the phone call, and blocked their number. Thereafter, the temporarily removed the page from Facebook.

However, recently, he is put back the page, and he is still selling the ebook with someone else’s recipes. The recipes are FREE on and you need not buy them.

To teach this Samuel a lesson, and anyone out there who will sow where he has not reaped, how about we first of all report his page as Gatuiri is reviewing her options, which include legal action (as advised by BAKE).


fuck cancer

R.I.P. Betty

Hey to you, the few of you who still read this blog. It is August and the number of posts I have penned down  here this year is equal to any number raised to the power of zero then subtract that number by one. If mathematics was not your thing, then that equals to zero. The last time I took a hiatus, I was going through ish, and it took one ivorypunk to get me to write again.

She dropped me a DM and asked what was up. Now, to the few of you who have no idea who this is, this girl is up there with the best of the best writers. She is an editor with “the paper that smart people read.” I am not even worthy to remove the lid off her pen. (equivalent of untying shoe lases but in the writing world). Anyway, so where have I been? I do not know where to start. A friend of mine put this up as her profile pic. And that is where I will begin (oh, and forgive my French).

fuck cancer

It has been nine months and nine days since Betty went to be with the Lord, thanks to cancer. I already knew one or two things about cancer. This is what I wrote two years ago. Now, the cancer stats are on my finger tips. Cancer kills 50 people in Kenya daily. About 20 people are diagnosed with cancer every hour etc. Cancer, really, has to be fudged.

Who is Betty, you may ask. Well, she was the love of my life. I wrote about her here and here (how she died). For the first three months after she died, I sort of perfected my acting skills. You know that state where you smile because you are required to. Not many people knew what I was going through. I preferred it that way. Moving through the CBD was difficult. For some reason, everything sort of reminded me of her. And my memory being what it is, it did not help much. I remembered it all. Whenever I passed that beige National Archives building, it was a constant reminder of where we first met. I could remember where we had our first to our fifth dates and what she wore. I could remember how she tilted her head when replying to a text … every little detail about her.

Not once, not twice and not three times did I take out my phone to text her something funny that I had seen, only to realise she was no more. Reflex action, I guess. They say one of the best ways to get rid of someone in your head is to rid yourself of anything that reminds you of them. I, on the other hand did not do that. Her number is still saved in my phone (and head). Her photo is still the first thing I look at when I wake up as it is strategically placed on my bedroom table.

In the words of another friend of mine, “…Old father time is a great healer, (but sometimes you) just wish he would well bloody hurry about it!” Of course things are not as they used to. I can now genuinely smile. I have some  life returning to me. Things are better today than they were a month ago, and they will be better than they are now a month to come.

In marking the ninth month anniversary since she died, I visited the place we first had our first date. I was going to have lunch there, alone. Weird, I know. But that is me, the weird of all weird. Apparently, the place doesn’t exist anymore. Across the street was the place I first told her how I felt about her. Again, it was no more. Not even under new management. It is as is if these two places had gone with her. And so, I guess, it was time for me to let go. In stealing from the words of one Lemar:

You’ve broken the bond
I gotta move on
But how do I end this lonely feeling?
You’ve gone, I’m here, alone
I guess it’s time to grow

Moving on, last night, someone asked me, “By the way, why did you stop blogging? I remember that is how we became friends in the first place!”

Well, this is the answer that I want to give everyone who used to read this blog … If you have watched House of Cards, you will appreciate the way Frank Underwood narrates in the series. In the first episode of the second season, he does not do the narration till the very end when he says,

“You did not think I had forgotten about you, did you? I’m BACK!!!”

The Day I Almost Led A Protest


S/O to the Harvard student who faked a bomb threat this morning to get finals cancelled. Good to know smart kids are stressed too – @tayyq

One day I was, as usual, busy doing nothing and basically minding my own business as I waited for a lecturer to issue CAT questionnaire papers. No sooner had I seen the questions than it, momentarily, hit me that I may have accidentally stepped into a rocket science class? Of course it took a lot of convincing from my brain that the college I was at did not have a rocket science course and I could see my classmates; who were equally bemused at what the lecturer had set as exams. 

What followed was an uproor I had never seen. The lecturer – realising that he could be the cause of a major protest, which (as we all know) is always accompanied by damage of property – decided to give us the CAT as a take away. And everyone left happy. 

There are two types of people in campus. There are the sane ones. Then there are the idiots whose hands cannot stay down. They will raise their hands when the lecturer is just about to leave to ask an idiotic question like, “You forgot to collect the assignment you are yet to give us which I have done, or should I bring it to your office?” Sometimes, they even raise their hands just before the lecturer asks any question because they always know the answer. 

Back to my boring story. The second CAT was three weeks from the first CAT. The sane people spent three weeks doing different things while those who couldn’t keep their hands down spent the entire three weeks trying not to be surprised by the second CAT as the first one had. Some of us only remembered there was a CAT a day before the CAT. Based on the happenings of the first CAT, we got an idea which was flawless. We were going to stage a repeat of what had happened in the first CAT and get a takeaway, again. Clever, yes? 

I strategically sat at the front. Immediately the lecturer stepped in, there was a bigger uproor than the first time. And that was the first mistake. The lecture hall was charged. Some people were so intoxicated that their breath would make any alcoblow gadget malfunction. I tried signalling people to calm their tushies down and stick to the plan ie, start making noise after they get the questionnaire, but it was in vain. 

When all was calm, the lecturer proceeded to give out the papers. I got mine and pretended to look at it in disbelief. Just when I was about to raise my hand, the lecturer went like, “Greatrnk, I believe you have something to say!” Let me get a few facts out first. First, the lecturer had just blown my one and only chance of me raising my hand in his class. Second, the plan was that I was to raise my hand and tell the lecturer that the CAT was hard and we could not do it. Third, how the hell did the lecturer know my name? Fourth, there must have been a snitch somewhere!!!!! Fifth, the lecturer had just pulled a “Can’t-keep-my-hand-down” on me, a student!!!!! 

After a pin-drop silence, I finally found my tongue, and in a shrill voice, I was like, “I am sorry, sir, but we cannot do this CAT. You haven’t taught us these things!” I looked back at the class and gave them that, “Now would be a good time to make that noise!” signal. Everyone suspected, just as I did, that there must have been a snitch. Someone who couldn’t keep their hands down and their words in their mouth. 

The lecturer came towards me and declared, “But your neighbour here is already in question three!” Mistake number two, sitting next to one of those who cannot keep their hands down! Let’s just say that between the lecturer who manned me the whole time, and the chop who was constantly smiling as I was scratching my head, it was a long 1 hour!


DURING EXAMS…Wakati wa exam invigilator anakam na kusema skip Q5 iko na shida yet io ndo ulikuwa umeangukia na umepata jibu….. – @munenelynx 

Uko exam room alafu chopi fulani anaitisha graph paper na ushamaliza paper na hujaona mahali inatumika. – @tintseh

Now That You Could Not Avoid That Date

So last Friday, I was busy doing nothing, basically minding my own business when a friend of mine went to great lengths (greater than the lengths the Government is going to have ICC cases against UK and cry-baby WSR deferred) to hook me up with his cousin. Read all about it here. I tried evading the bullet as much as I could but it was tagged with those GPS thingies that can locate you even if you hide inside Rachel Shebeesh’s weave. 

So even after I sent the girl to a fool’s errand to Kawangware while she was thinking she was coming to Upper Hill, switched off my phone and all, she still managed to get me through the office line. Damn technology! I resigned to my fate that I had no choice but to meet her. I left the office for Equity Centre, dejected. 

I got to Equity Centre and realized I did not even know how she looked like. But my guess was that she would not be hard to trace. I should just look for someone who looks lost and out of place. I remembered my phone was still off, put it on and there were enough missed calls and texts for every lie we have been told by Ole Lenku and Karangi about Westgate. All texts were from one person save for one from Safaricom reminding me to pay up the okoa mandazi, I mean jahazi credit I had taken. I called her up. 

HER: I am at this nice open air hotel.

ME: Which one? Rocky?

HER: I don’t know. This place next to equity centre that has plastic chairs and…..

ME: (in my head) NOOOOOOO!

 For those who have never been to Upper Hill, let me explain something. There are vibandas near Equity Centre where I do not eat. Mwanaume ni class, na tuliambiwa you can pay for school but you can’t buy class. (Un)fortunately, these vibandas will be put down as Britam wants to construct a 30 storey building there. With Rahimtulla Tower a few blocks away and KCB constructing another 25+ storey building, there will be three tall buildings among the top five tallest buildings in the country in a radius of 250 metres. Anyone who wants to commit suicide in Upper Hill will be spoilt for choice.

Back to my boring story. I finally found her. She had ordered already…. Tea and mandazi!!!!! Yenyewe mluhya ni chai, coffee achia Shebeesh. (I know I am overdoing it with these stale jokes). But seriously, did any of you see how hot the sun was on Friday? How is it possible that someone would take tea, at 1 pm, at a place with no shade? The bill finally came and I almost disowned it. It was only Kshs. 110. That is the amount I will be leaving as tip when I become a bit rich.

 Time to leave came and I was to be a gentleman and take her to NHIF where she would get a jav to wherever she was going. It so happened that just after Britam, as we were heading to NHIF, she saw Rahimtulla Tower. Her eyes shot up like she had seen angel Gabriel. She started asking a million questions about the second tallest building and I felt like I would die. No sooner had she stopped asking questions, than she spotted someone who sells mihogo outside Capitol Police Station. And for some weird reason, she wanted some. (I mean the cassavas, not what some of you may be thinking.). She offered to buy for me, convinced me for like five minutes with little success. I will not be caught dead eating mihogo in the street. I also maintained a five metre radius thereafter till she boarded a jav.

 Her number has since been deleted, blacklisted and blocked among my contacts. I am told the only way to be safe is to change my name, move out of the country and probably enroll in a witness protection thing.

*This story is fiction.

How To Avoid That Date You Do Not Want To Go To.

First, I need to make a few apologies. One is the fact that I have not written much over the last year or so. I was diagnosed with a serious case of writer’s block and I am still trying to cure it. This post is dedicated to the few of you who have been there for me during this trying time as I tried to rid myself of this bad disease. Secondly, I did something to this blog and just like that, I lost everything. If it is any consolation, I went to the bathroom to cry like WSR. I am still working on getting those posts back, but if it is not possible, we can just say I have started on a clean slate. On that note, do not mind the state of the blog and what not. Adjustments will be made in coming days. Third, the title was just to get your attention. 

So last Friday, I was, as usual, busy doing nothing – basically minding my own business and (like any Manchester United fan) wondering how Moyes was going to spoil the weekend for me – when out of nowhere, I got a phone call from a friend of mine. I quickly tried to recall if I owed him money or something like that. It was that time of the month (no pun intended) when someone who paid Kshs. 30/- fare for you (when Moi was still chancellor of all public universities) will call you and ask for his money back which has accrued interest at the rate of are-you-freaking-crazy-percent. This is how part of our convo went. 

HIM: Boss, my hot cuzo is in town. She is from Shamakhokho…

ME: (in my head) She is from what now?

ME: (on phone) Shama-what?

HIM: Pay attention Greatrnk. She is hot, I am giving you a Xavi through pass!

ME: (in my head) From Shamakhokho? I will pass… to the opposing goal keeper.

ME: I am kind of busy with work and all, I do not think I will…

HIM: I won’t take NO for an answer. Expect her phone call…

ME: You already gave her my ….

(Dialing tone……)

 Her call came in immediately, just as I was trying to call that idiot back. After the stupid introductions, this is what happened…

 HER: Can we meet before noon?

ME: (in my head) Are you freaking retarded?

ME: (on phone) That will be tricky, I am a bit busy. How about in the evening?

ME: (in my head) or never….

HER: I have a meeting at 10. Can I call you after the meeting?

ME: (in my head) I hope the meeting lasts till Jesus comes back.

ME: (on phone). Sure, no problem. TAKE YOUR TIME!!!!!! 

I hope you all noted that these convos were taking place before 10 am. Two hours later, when I had no recollection of what had transpired earlier in the day, guess who calls…. 

HER: I am done with my meeting…

ME: (in my head) So freaking fast!!!!!?!!

HER: I am at GPO, I was told you work at Upper Hill…

ME: (In my head) I will kill your cousin.

HER: Will it be faster if I took a boda boda?

ME: (in my head) Lord, why have you forsaken me?

HER: Hallo, are you there?

ME: Uhm…, yes …, I mean take bus number 46, ask them to drop you off at Equity Centre. 

I am not the smartest person, but you must admit that was pretty clever. Number 46 buses go to kawangware or something like that. I figured, by the time she found her bearing, I will be on my third beer in at my local. I switched off my phone. A major crisis had been averted. I put on my headphones and started listening to Chris Martin’s ‘Baby I Love You’ as my mind was filled with thoughts of Betty. (not the innocent girl heading to Kawangware). Mwanaume ni riddims, roots achia Rabbit (pun intended). Half an hour later, my office phone rang. 

RECEPTIONIST: Someone wants to talk to you, she says it’s urgent.

ME: (in my head) It is a few minutes to lunch on a Friday. This will have to wait till Monday.

ME: (on phone) Put him through…

RECEPTIONIST: It is a her…

ME: Greatrnk speaking…

HER: Hey, it’s me! Your phone is off. I just alighted at Equity Centre.

ME: (in my head) What the Fudge? How is that even possible? There is only one Equity Centre and it is not in Kawangware. Wait, how did she even get my office number.

HER: So how do I get to your office?

ME: (in my head) There is no freaking way you will get to my office and have my colleagues make fun of me for eternity and a half.

ME: (on phone) Where exactly are you I come get you?

HER: Near this tall building that is being built.

ME: (in my head) Good Lord, you are actually at Equity Centre!!!

ME: (on phone) Good Lord, you are actually at Equity Centre!!! 

So if it were you, what would you have done? Let me know and I will let you know what transpired next. To be continued…