Monday, November 11, 2013

We Are Moving (But Still in Denial)

Hi there!

This is meant to be a letter or memo, or something people use to send bad news... or good, depending on who is sending it.

So this blog, wow, it's been a while. Uum, yeah, I really don't have much to say, so I'll cut to the chase. We are moving, slowly and surely. No more funny MS Paint drawings and tales of zombies and spiders. Okay, maybe a little.

Thing is, your boy here is growing, teething, and in the process he has realized he can sink his teeth into other things. I'm now focusing more on creative writing (the serious type) and so most of my work will be posted on my new blog. For instance, today I posted a post on my experimenting with Magical Realism and also posted a new short story unfortunately titled The Cosmic Dance.

Most of my work will be posted there, but occasionally I will drop by here and throw a few lines, you know, for old time sake.

I know most of you are not pleased....

I will find you...and I will tickle you...TO DEATH!
Before you start assembling the masses and grabbing your pitch forks, here me out.... I am doing this for you.

Oh really?

You have to believe me. Look, the better I become as a writer, the more awesome things you will have to read.

Ya, I'm not buying that load of crap

No? Okay what do you want from me?


Uum, before you kill me, hey look!

See you on the other side.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Feelings of a Yeti (And an Announcement)

Sometimes I feel like a Yeti.

You know the Yeti, the hairy snowman monster thingy that was apparently once a man who got lost in some snowy mountain and slowly grew hair, lost his voice, and eventually his marbles and became a monster, white and cuddly, but monster nonetheless.

Actually I don't want your blood or to kill you, I just want to know how to get to... No? Okay.

A few months ago I decided to quit all forms of formal employment and lock myself up in a room full of snacks and dreams. I think the lack of human contact and light has turned me into a social Yeti. I've become socially awkward, and somewhat rebellious, but in my defense I... I've got nothing.

You want a hug? What's that...?

Anyway, I've been writing a lot, just for writing sake, just to become a better writer. I'm still far from that, but at least I can string along a few coherent thoughts and through about some punctuation marks here and there and actually look like I have something going.

[My friend just called me. He's in a bookshop and he wanted to know which book I'd like. It is people like this that still keep me human.]

Human, as opposed to a psychopathic murderous clown 

Anyway, Yeti, yes I've become one. This is probably false, but I think every Yeti's dream is to reach the summit of the mountain that turned him into the monster he is, and probably every time a Yeti attacks climbers is just an attempt to ask for directions, and in their scared-as-heck foolishness the climbers scare the Yeti, and in return the Yeti... you get the picture. My dream too is to summit this damned mountain, and every so often as people, as they stare back at me incredulously, "Can't you see? Can't you see I'm onto something big?" But that often comes out in verbal blobs of incoherent gibberish, and they run away.

AARRRRRGGGGHHHHH! [Hi, I like your sweater]

But I'm getting there, hopefully without scaring off too many people, and when I finally reach the peak, I'll keep at it, because in all honesty, it reaches a point where it's all downhill, and that is an eventuality I will keep far from me.

Oh look, there's Nakumatt Junction

This blog is slowly coming to an end. I'm working on a site in which I will put all my thoughts together, a page for this sort of nonsense, and one for my more 'serious' work. In the meantime, I'll keep this blog alive (barely breathing), and post my almost serious experiments on this (other) blog.

Here's the latest short story: A Strange Sameness.

Let's keep the love and fun going on there too. Oh and we have a Facebook Page. You know you like it.... (see what I did there.)

To all other Yetis out there, it's possible, keep on.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

#SmallFatesKe: The Old Man

Everyone saw it, the dark blue Toyota Vitz with the bloody back seat. Everyone also noticed how the two men handled the old man; like used diapers, pinky fingers sticking out, noses facing away trying to smell something on their backs. The rumor started immediately the tiny car pulled off the emergency parking, and soon after, everyone knew the story of the man who bled from everywhere.

The collective gasp of the doctors almost sucked all the air out of Mombasa when one of them suggested that the 61 year old man might be ailing from Ebola. The man, who's bleeding they could not stop, was placed in a shoddy quarantine and handled with two pairs of gloves and two masks, for extra care. Later, when the tests came back, Peter Simiyu, the Coast Director of Medical Services, wiped his brow and breathed a sigh of relief, "We can now celebrate," he told a nurse as the old man was moved, unconscious, to the general ward, "at least his severe bleeding will not kill us as well." 

Friday, August 30, 2013

An Announcement (And a Mini Post At The Very End)

Today I woke up to some depressing news; 41 people had died in a grisly bus accident. Before I continue, am I the only one who pictures a big brown bear every time a newsman says the word grisly? You know, like a (grizzly) bear was driving and then it lost control and then there was an accident, or a bear jumped onto the highway and scared the driver off it…. 

Umm... I think I'm lost

Anyway, not to make light of the matter, I wondered what happened, what single action led to the loss of 41 lives, men, women, children, each with a story, a story that had suddenly come to an end and for some, had just started. I mulled over the incident as I rolled about in my bed, and no matter how I looked at it, how I romanticized it, how I thought of the stories therein, the sad fact was 41 people had died.

This story will probably make it onto the front page. It will be announced in bold, a few pictures splashed about, and the whole country will think about this accident, and the lives lost, and we will mourn together, because it will be our loss. But wait, what about the story on page 11 about the child abandoned by its mother (and father), or the drunk who hacked his family then hanged himself on an old sad tree, or the poor child suffering from diabetes who will finally get free insulin. What of these stories, stories that will never make it to the headlines and will therefore not be given the same attention as the bus story. This is sad.

A few weeks back I got a call, and I was asked to be part of a team that would highlight these stories, stories that will probably never be acknowledged except by the few, patient enough to take some time between the headline and the sports news. So this team will highlight these stories in a series of posts called Small Fates. This project was started by writer TejuCole who highlighted these ignored stories in his tweets.

The aim, for me, will be to go past the story itself and try and bring out something deeper from the incident, while trying as much as possible to stay true to the narrative, some good old creative nonfiction.

I will post the first one on Monday, and I will do so until the Story Moja Hay Festival, on the 19th of September. This will be a chance for us to appreciate these small fates that go unnoticed, and for us to appreciate life, including the small insignificant nuances that make up the big picture.
The tag used will be #SmallFatesKe.

Oh, I’ll be posting the small fates on this blog, as well as and my Facebook Page (Ras Mengesha) which you should like and share, or something bad will happen to the little puppy you saw last week and swore it was the most adorable thing in the world.

p.s. There have been rumors going around that the blog is dead. Really? A blog primarily on zombies dead? Ha!

One more thing, I feel like I owe you a blog post (you know, the usual Mengesha’s Colors post) so here’s a mini version, think of it as a bonus for old times’ sake:

My best friend is a writer, and like most writers, she spends a lot of time lost in her head and such times often bring out instances of sheer brilliance. So last night she called me and told me she had a new blog post. I asked her what it was on and she said it was a dumb post that even had a disclaimer because of how silly it was. I insisted that she let me know what exactly it was on so that I knew what exactly to expect. Here’s the conversation:

Her: So I posted something on my blog.
Me: Oh cool! What’s it on? (I hoped it was something close to this: )
Her: It’s a conversation between me and Gath.
Me: Oh sweet, is it like Sunset Company?
Her: Like what?
Me: Sunset Company, the movie where Samuel L. Jackson and Tommy Lee Jones engage in some philosophical conversation on existentialism and choice…
Her: Oh, ya, almost…
Me: Almost?
Her: Ya, it’s a conversation…
Me: Philosophical?
Her: Not exactly…
Me: Okay, what’s it about?
Her: Well… It’s about brown rice…
Me: Say again?
Her: It’s about brown rice…
Me: Okay, what about brown rice?  
Her: Well, you see how our mums…
Her: Hallo? Hallo? Ras? Are you there?

What the...