No doubt many of you have heard of the young boy who once asked his father how much it cost him to get married. It was an innocent question but his father, like most fathers, was point blank. He said, “I don’t know son, I’m still paying for it.” That same father was later overheard telling a close friend that he used to hold his wife’s hand before the marriage out of love and lately, he had been doing it for self-defense. That man was my father, and I was that little boy. Although I later understood what marriage is like, I hated my father since for not doing everything he could to save his marriage with my mother. I hated him a little more on Monday morning when my mother called me, sobbing. I had been trying to decide whether to use the office toilets instead of the one in the house because there was no water. I forgot about my shit, literally, when I heard her heart broken voice amidst her sobbing. Apparently, she had been fighting with my dad and now she wasn’t sure she loved him anymore.
I finally decided the office toilet was a better idea and I was soon on my way to town. As usual, there was a jam on Jogoo Road so the driver decided to take a detour. In Eastlands, a driver is considered qualified if he knows how to use all sorts of shortcuts and routes to avoid traffic jams and get his passengers to or from town in time. This one, clearly, was over-qualified. Anyway, with thoughts about my poor mother burning up my head, I found it hard to fall asleep like I usually do and I couldn’t concentrate on the journey either. For the first time in a long time, I was barely able to come up with readable tweets on twitter. All this changed when I realized we were driving past my former high school, which for fear of retribution I will not name. Let’s just say memories of Blue shorts and badly mismatched red shirts came flooding back as well as those of my first real experience of love.
Few of you know me, but those who do know that I’m absolutely a sucker for romance… Jokes. I just love getting laid. That was what my first experience at love taught me to endeavor to do. Being in form one in a Boys’ High School, I slowly came to terms with the fact that girls were no longer at my disposal to ignore like back in my primary school days. There, it was talk or walk dry. I eventually got fed up of walking dry- we called it breezing– and as we had been brain washed to understand by the older boys, breezing was an early sign of dropping out of school. Apparently, it was a sign that you were as straight as the character known as the tilde (~). According to them, your unnatural love for other men would eventually be found out and then you would be either beaten to death, or you would drop out on your own when you found out there was no one else like you in school. Either way, you would drop out of school. I should say I never witnessed it happen all through my high school life.
So anyway, I psyched myself up one Saturday that I was no longer going to be a breezer and when the girls did come that afternoon, I confidently walked up to one. I had even borrowed the best pair of sneakers in my dorm (we were allowed to wear non-uniform attire in the evenings and over the weekends). I also got hold of the hottest ‘perfume’ then, whose synonym I later came to learn in an English lesson was not : (colon) but cologne. She turned out to be one of those short form three girls who die of laughter the moment you mention you’re in form one. I learnt my lesson and moved on; no more mentioning I was in form one, got it. After enduring a couple more lessons, I finally found the perfect girl. She didn’t laugh at me, she actually laughed at my jokes. What’s more, she was only a year ahead of me. The more I talked to her the more I fell deeper in love and I even took her to the field- I am still trying to find the idiot that lied to me and my fellow form ones that the field was the perfect garden to cultivate your love in.
Anyway, we had to part ways in the evening when it was time for her to go back to school and the very next day I wrote her a letter. She never wrote back. In fact, about a dozen more girls never wrote back and I soon stopped trying to feel loved. It was a difficult lesson that life taught me back then, but you know what, I am actually thankful for it. It taught me to shut out my feelings and the next time I did talk to a girl without showing my emotions, I did get laid. Okay, almost- my mother walked in on us, God bless her. Because of that experience, I learnt three things; to get laid is better than to get loved and two that love is really over-rated that three, that women are responsible for all the cold-lying-bastards called men out there. This is how it works, woman lies to man she likes him, man gets heart broken when he realizes it was a lie, man now uses lie to get back at women and protect him from future heart breaks, man discovers lie gets him laid. He doesn’t go back when he discovers the trick to not having to use Vaseline. Most importantly, men realize that you don’t have to get married to get laid- there is no love. Trust me, most of what men do is geared to either getting laid, or getting money to get laid. Not marriage.
You see, love and marriage, as my parents have sadly come to learn, are two different things; love may be blind, that I cannot dispute, but then that would mean that if two people fall blindly in love and get married, then marriage is basically an institution for the blind. Usually, it starts with, the man talking, while the woman listens. A little later, the woman talks while the man listens. Now, all men get fed up pretty fast and as a result, both of them start talking, while the neighbors listen. It now becomes survival for the fittest. Whoever can get the other shut up gets the bed. Usually, the woman wins. After a couple of nights making love to the mosquitos that suck quite well, the man decides he’d rather spend time in the local bar than on the couch. After all, he’ll still be on a seat, right? It doesn’t take the woman very long to find out her man- yes, she still calls him her man- has taken up singing as his new hobby when he comes home the very next week feeling like a superstar, having learnt overnight all the lyrics to “Mwenda wakwa mariru…” God forbid the married couple live in Nyeri or Pangani because shortly after, the rest of us hear an all too familiar desperate appeal to the government… “Naomba serikali iingilie kati…..” on Citizen TV. In short, love, if it exists, is one long dream and marriage is the alarm clock, so what’s the point?