Real Heroes Don’t Wear Capes

Remember as a kid how anxious and restless you were when your parents told you they were going to take you somewhere? The previous night would be a battle between you sleep and you’d always come up on top. Up earlier than usual. Brushing your teeth wasn’t a cold war with your mum and your favourite bag was waiting for you by the door. There was usually nothing out of the ordinary but the excitement was always present despite the number of times you had visited the said location.

It’s been a while since I last had such an experience. I went to boarding school very early and the only days I looked forward to were closing days and mid-terms. As an adult, I look forward to the end of every month for obvious reasons. Last week, I had the chance to go to a restaurant I’ve been to before but hadn’t really indulged in appropriately. On Friday afternoon, my colleague and I had lunch at Snack Attack, Adams Arcade.

For the past month, the restaurant has been communicating its signature wrap, the Wrappa and I had to go and see what the fuss was all about. I know they have what are probably the best loaded fries in Kenya. Not just because of the variety in sauces but the quality of chips as well. They aren’t those lumpy potato chunks most restaurants serve. On the way to the restaurant, my colleague was talking to me about something but all I could see and hear was “Wrap this and wrap that.”

We made our way to the restaurant and this lovely lady, by the name Faith was at hand to serve us. I was very anxious about the wrap but from the moment she handed us the menus and took our orders my expectations were higher. She was very polite and knew the products. At this point even if they told me they’d run out of filling for my wrap I’d come back just for the service. Delivery time was set at 10 minutes and those were probably the longest 10 minutes of my life after watching Arsenal win it late against Leceister City.

I’d picked the Wrappa and a strawberry burst. Let me tell you about the burst. One, because it was the first to arrive and two, it is made using strawberries. Real strawberries, not strawberry concentrate, the fruits. I took my first sip and my brain froze. This was too much for my mind, tongue and throat to take in all at once. My tongue was shouting more, my throat chilling in the cooling effect and my mind trying to convince the rest of my body that good things do exist.

Moments later my Wrappa arrived. You’ve probably watched Lion King and remember the defining moment where Rafiki literally unveiled Simba to the cheering fans, prey and competitors alike. When Faith laid the tray with my Wrappa on the table I could hear the Lion King theme song playing in the background and a light from the ceiling shone on the wrap. It was definitely the chosen one.

As I unwrapped the wrap from its packaging I couldn’t hold back my tears. This was beauty and perfection made in the kitchen. I had ordered a spicy wrap and from experience, very few restaurants understand the term spicy. Some translate hot to scorch my taste palate while others translate hot to heat. I was secretly praying the wrap wouldn’t be spicy so that I could find something to hate on about Snack Attack.

My first bite was heavenly. The chicken and jalapenos blended so well, they could do a remake of boys in the hood and win an Oscar. I don’t know what spices or flavours they put in the wrap but they got me at the first bite. This was love at first bite. Sad I didn’t have my ring because I had found the snack of my dreams. I literally wanted to spend the rest of my meals with the Wrappa. Upon confirmation that my taste buds weren’t playing tricks on me, I wanted to take photographic evidence of that meal. I do not violate food with unwarranted photographs but trust me, when a celebrity woos you, you don’t mind posing for a photo with them.

Due to the excitement of feasting on this gem, I couldn’t hold my phone properly. Said gladly offered to take a photo of my colleague and I enjoying our flavour attack. I did mention the fact the service at the restaurant was outstanding, didn’t I? I can’t write exactly what I felt throughout the rest of my meal because I transcended into a food appreciation portal where taste is just one of the parameters used to judge food.

I didn’t enjoy my meal. I greatly enjoyed my meal. If I knew the spices used in preparing the wrap I’d break down how each taste affected my palate, but is that really what’s important? What’s on the inside? After the meal both Faith and Said asked for our opinions of the meal and I had nothing but positive reviews. It was all plus signs for me.

I barely fill those feedback forms restaurants dish out but this time I asked for one. Do you know the kind of courage it takes to ask for a feedback form when you have no complaints? That’s courage that can change generations and that meal gave me that courage. I even gave out my number and email address. Now you know how serious this is.

Would I go back to Snack Attack? Today? Yes! Tomorrow? Yes! Every other day that ends in day, Yes! The food was great but the service and warmth of the staff won me over completely. This is a brand that understands, people come to your restaurant for more than just the food. The service, ambience and all that good stuff plays a very important role in attracting and retaining customers.

I’m not a food blogger if you can tell by my description of the food but I’ll write about any experience I feel someone else should go through and this is one of the few experiences you shouldn’t miss out on. I’m an African writer so I have to shout out Faith and Said for the exemplary service. The two of you were my heroes last week.

 

 

 

Home

Mama, where’s papa?

He said he’d be back yesterday,

And why can’t I play with Aziz?

He’s been sleeping for too long,

When are we going home?


Everything is ok my son,

Papa will join us,

He’s making tomorrow better,

Aziz is tired,

Let him rest, he’s home.


What about school?

I already did my homework,

I learnt about addition,

But I don’t understand division,

Is it time to go home yet?


We’ll go home my son,

Division is simple,

Distribute according to need,

Share without greed,

Time to go home will come.


Who are these mummy?

What do those signs mean?

What does immigrant mean?

Are the guns to protect us?

Or is it like home?


These are friends my boy,

Worry not about the signs,

The guns won’t keep you awake,

We’re here to make a start,

We are home now.


You told me this was home,

But is it really home?

They mock my accent,

Call me a terrorist,

Will we ever be at home?


They try my son,

We are strangers to them,

Make yourself at home,

But don’t forget your home,

Till we find our way home.

I may just have found Chivalry!

There’s this one time I was walking from the shop late at night. It must have been Friday in another galaxy because the stars were lit. I was with my trusted feline, Chivs, full   name, Chivalry. She would always accompany me to the shop just in case another feline would try to convince me to take her home like she did. This night we didn’t meet a feline, we met a dog and I wasn’t about to fight my own species. So I took off and Chivalry stayed back to fight for us but never made it home. I rushed into the house and let out a scream, “Chivalry is dead!”

So, I have a friend. A true friend, not a Facebook friend, Jay, who has his own blog and he did a piece on chivalry. I read it and in my head I was thinking is chivalry really dead or was it bottled and presented to us as Chivas Regal? These are the questions Einstein asked himself on his way to becoming one of the most respected mathematicians if not the most respected. In my home, I am a respected Mathematician. All the bills have to pass through me and I do the calculations mentally. Yes, I am that talented ladies, now what was your number again?

Is chivalry dead? I don’t know but what I do know is Chivas does taste like someone is holding the door for you without the intention of taking you to bed; immediately. Chivalry is one of those few words that are misused and inappropriately used by different parties. What is chivalry? Is it holding the door for a lady? Pulling out a seat for her at dinner? I’ll share the basic definition of chivalry with you. Chivalry is the combination of qualities expected of an ideal knight, especially courage, honor, courtesy, justice, and a readiness to help the weak.

From the above definition, the only part of the definition people seem to notice is the courtesy bit. How should you treat a lady? Is opening doors and other mundane gestures as a show of chivalry? And does everybody deserve a piece of your chivalry? Honestly, no. Not everyone deserves such treatment. You know the way religion morphed to adapt to the changing times, that’s how chivalry has morphed. Who deserves this royal treatment?

To be sexually correct, I’ll not restrict chivalry to gestures towards ladies only, even Steve wants a piece of chivalry from someone out there. Chivalry is all about respect and it varies with different people. The environment you’re exposed heavily influences how you treat other people, including the ones you intend to bed. What does me opening the door for you symbolize? To some it’s a show of affection and emotion. To others, it’s a sign of weakness as a man. In the hood it’s literally translated as kukaliwa, being sat on.

What does it mean to me? If you do it after sleeping with the recipient of the act of chivalry over a period of time; it’s affection. I’m speaking from the perspective of an observer, participant and judge, just like the Ugandan government during elections. All these terms are relative and you can’t really pin one action and expect it to cut across the board. Your gentleman isn’t necessarily your sister’s gentleman; though I have seen some twins do that. Shout out to all twins sharing a man out there. You are the true MVPS.

I’m I chivalrous? If you base your definition on doors, I most definitely am. I’ve made girls breakfast, and I don’t eat breakfast. I pour their drinks in their glasses and even say hi when I meet them in the streets. Chivalry is relative. However you choose to look at it, we all have our versions of chivalry. Some girls like lions for males. These are the guys that only do the basic stuff. Change bulbs and bring food to the table; the hardworking type.

Some ladies like hyenas. These are the kind of guys that open doors and do all that romantic stuff according to the book. I’m not basing my choice of animals on their eating habits but rather social structure in the species hierarchy. Others simply like weaver birds. This is the group of men who like being followed around, or ladies, depending on whether you’re a frankfurter or fish kind of person.

It all comes down to preference. What does the person these gestures are intended for prefer? And being the 21st century where everyone is clamouring for equality, should chivalry be reciprocated? If you ask me, no. I don’t need a lady opening doors for me and pouring my drink (Wherever). Maybe you do, it’s all about how in touch you are with your feminine side.

I’m a semi-traditional guy. I’m not fully modern in other words. I like doing some things my dad would frown upon but there are things I do and the old heads use me as a reference in, “How to be the McCoy” classes with their sons. The thing about chivalry is that it takes exposure to know what to do and when to do it.

What I can tell you about all these variations of chivalry is that the end goal is the same. They want to see what that mouth do and know when those pants come off. Chivalry is essentially beating around the bush in a structural way. Instead of feeding on the fish before feeding the fish, you show the fish how it’ll be feeding around you. Yes, even your boyfriend or girlfriend (all butches out there) wants a piece of that ass.

Show me some skin
Show me some skin

So does chivalry really exist? Or is chivalry just a means to an end? Valentines is coming up in a few days and you’re either single or hooked to someone. I’m going to be candid about Valentines. If anyone started texting you late last week and is nice, feign a busy schedule until the 15th. This is the month chivalry will be misused with guys carrying red roses all over the street and girls trying to squeeze into red dresses probably meant for their teenage daughters.

Chivalry is a code of conduct and has no season. It’s something you show to anyone deserving of it and should be part of your life. You can’t go around saying chivalry is alive or dead when you barely know its definition. Also, if you see me holding any door for a well dressed lady any time between now and the 15th, that’s not my mum so don’t say anything about us looking alike.

Being a gentleman has nothing to do with the hood definition of chivalry and the people resurrecting and killing it every other time. Being a gentleman is about treating whoever you’re treating with respect and that’s what chivalry is about. You might be the only one he opens doors for but not the only one opening random things for him. Treat that person in a way that makes them appreciate everything about themselves. Leave the door business to doormen and do things that actually make sense. Also, I’m free to book for dates ladies. I will even throw in a literature piece of the date. Just make sure it’s within Nairobi and you’re at least 800 words interesting. I’ll fill up the rest.

You need to be swept off your feet?
You need to be swept off your feet?

And on the 7th Day, humans created conspiracies

Now I don’t bother with if Jay’s Illuminati or not but / I know TSA got me throwing the Roc up / Hollywood rules, the illusion is cruel / Bank awards planned and confusions’ a tool / In fact, vampire swarms attack us, grappled with corporate Draculas / Tried to consume our worlds, battled Unicron, Galactus…” That’s an excerpt from Rakaa Iriscience’s Century of self. No, it’s not a book, so don’t look it up on Amazon.

In this century it’s practically impossible to be under 30, listening to hip hop and not getting caught up in the Illuminati conversation. Is the Illuminati real? Who are they? Is it a religion? How do I get in? Can I get out? There are more than 100 questions you can ask in regard to this group. I’ve never really been into conspiracy theories and that’s why you’ll never see my social media accounts riled with bible verses predicting the end times and how Rothschild runs the whole world.

I’m a liberal guy that believes there’s always a story behind the story but we only get the third version of the story. The PG version if I may add. Do I believe in the existence of the illuminati? Yes, I do. Is it really the Illuminati people talk about? Not really my friend. I do believe in the existence of an elitist group of individuals that want to centre power in their social circles, which essentially comes with power and the need to hold on to it.

If you’ve had the privilege to listen to hip hop or even had an argument with a religious person, you must have heard of the idea of selling your soul to the devil. The first time I heard this notion, I had one question. Who evaluates the value of my soul? Is it valuated at the time of selling or is it dependent on potential? And, is it renegotiable? Personally, I believe we all sell our souls to something at different points in our lives. It’s not a one time transaction. And I believe that if I sell my soul I should be able to renegotiate at any particular time depending on my potential.

Drug addicts sell their souls to different forms of drugs for different reasons. Some want to escape reality, which honestly is becomes too tough at some point. Others want to build a reality. Some simply want fit in or prove something. In my world, the use of devil is metaphoric. Who is the devil? In my definition, the devil is any decision that makes you lose your principles to gain something. Work can be the devil for you.

Picture this. Tim is a mid-level company CEO, with a wife and two lovely kids (OK, I’m not sure if the kids are lovely or not). He spends most of his time at work and barely gets to see his kids and wife. Over time, Tim resigns from his job and starts a small business. He is now able to spend time with his family. He realizes his son is always in his room and his daughter is never present. He could’ve asked his wife, but she’s barely in the house either.

Technically, Tim lost his family over work. Would blame Tim for providing everything but his presence to his family? However you look at it, Tim sold his soul to his work and lost his family in the process. The Illuminati does exist and we’ve all fallen prey to it. Our vices, habits, needs and wants are the driving factors. People describe the illuminati as a secret society, but what’s so different about it compared to religions?

Religion encourages you to join but doesn’t encourage you to question the doctrines it operates on. Illuminati apparently allows you to join, but doesn’t allow you to divulge its secrets. Any society or group that needs you to give up a part of your life in order to get another is essentially the illuminati. It’s only that one offers immediate results while others offer the promise of future rewards.

The question I always ask myself is what determines which route I follow? Should I give up the chance to live comfortably on earth for the opportunity to live miserably in the afterlife or should I suffer on earth await my rewards in the afterlife. It comes down to a simple issue: When do I want to suffer? Depending on how good you have it or how desperate you are, you’ll make a decision based on your situation.

Selling your soul has nothing to do with literally giving out your soul to someone or something. It’s a matter of giving another party the opportunity to pull the cord whenever they feel it necessary. Take rappers for example, who for some reason are the most affected by the illuminati scourge. When you listen to all the claims from these rappers it boils down to music promotion and bad record deals.

Any rapper that falls off the radar after being hot for a minute blames the illuminati and any rapper that stays hot for a minute has people attributing his or her success to the illuminati. To some extent it’s true. Promoters, record label moguls and top Djs want you to kiss ass or get on your knees for airtime and the road you choose technically determines your level of success in the industry.

On the other hand, we have seen rappers without any major record label deal making it big simply because of their strategy and business models. Nippsey Hussle, Techn9ne and Slim Thug are just a few of such kind of artists. When most of these rappers come out all guns blazing on the illuminati, it’s usually as a result of them turning down something they felt would jeopardize their street cred or was against their principles.

I’m one who always judges depending on how people present their arguments and how well they can factually defend these statements. So, I won’t throw stones at anyone for selling their soul for a few dollars as long as it’s not something that will in turn affect people who weren’t involved in the deal. You know why you need that money now and if you can sell your soul and keep it as that, I’ll gladly take you to your auction.

My problem is having people busy talking about morals and they aren’t any different. Whether you’re a religious person, atheist, agnostic or whatever other option there is, your life is your sole business. We all have different needs and wants are different points in our lives. If selling my soul for two years will keep me comfortable for the rest of my life, where’s the problem in that? If suffering on earth and enjoying my afterlife is my idea of salvation, so be it.

Never be quick to throw stones at any house; glass or stone. Before you do, always remember, religion tells you to give your life to a supernatural being, either physically or metaphorically. The illuminati asks you to give up a part of your life for gratification on earth. It’s a give and take situation between both and every man knows the weight they can carry on their back.

You have sold your soul for something at one point in your life. Remember that, “I’ll do anything for this” moment in your life. The illuminati presents itself in different forms, you just need to know what’s worth it and what’s not worth it. It also depends on how much you can handle in life and your preparedness to deal with the consequences of your decisions. Also, could you by any chance know where I can get oversize Damani Dada shorts?