Crashing the High Metal Fence of A Fungible Reality
by Eric Ng’eno on Wednesday, 08 September 2010 at 11:17
One of the best people I have had the good fortune of counting as a friend is a woman. A woman in full. And she has been my friend since fresher year, back in the day. Intelligent. Sensitive. Strong. Feminine. And a stark raving mathematician.I suppose the latter attribute led me to be plentifully wary of her.By the way, under the constitution – yes, you idiot, there is no old and new when it comes to constitutions, because that would imply that you are governed under two sets of laws, which is impossible, meaning that you are generally an idiot, QED, thank you very much – you are obliged to report any mathematician you spot to the authorities ASAP, otherwise you become guilty of ‘harbouring a mathematician’. If you have ever scored 6% in Mathematics, in High school, and someone known to you scores the Full Red in the same paper, then you know that the law is excellent and all mathematicians ought to be computing their iterations inside Kamiti.
Anyway, this best friend was full of very unsettling insights. For example, she once made known to me that the term ‘out of body experience’ is a male construct, because for women, it is everyday life. In fact, so is ‘multiple personality’.We were discusssing designer wear, actually, and the fact that an utterly shapeless person will cram her entire self – body, mind and soul, i.e. the hips and butt – into an ill-fitting, expensive jeans that will not flatter her at all, and walk about in arrogant majesty, as though she has never seen herself before a mirror. This puzzled me, but did not puzzle her in the least. Why?
Apparently, a vast category of women make their choice of attire, accessories, make-up, name it, not based on their physique, complexion, personality and other personal attributes, but, rather, on the firm conviction that they are virtually the twin of whichever model advertised the product, and that once she is geared up in the item, the ineluctable result will be a gigantic chorus of oohs and aahs all round. This means that there are two women wearing the jeans. One is the one physically cramming her entire life into skin tight trousers and the other, the one who inspects the result and decides that there has never been a more perfect booty this side of creation.
A wise man is necessarily a democratic man. This means that he quietly succumbs to the will of the majority – the woman.The numbers do not matter one whit; the gender does. Each woman therefore constitutes an overwhelming majority, whereas all men combined cannot even raise a decent minority – look at the census results. So when several women, who clearly get the cue, see the quivering, semi-liquid mass of utter shapelessness trapped in denim and borne on heels, they recognise at once an insuperable ass, the one that Beyonce and J-Lo light candles for at St Paul’s. And they let this be known to the wearer of the jeans and bearer of the youghurt-in-12-micrometer-paperbag-butt:”Wow Georgie! you look fabulous!” Whereas we in the stark minority see an unprecedented disaster-on-two-feet. As a rule, all women get this. As a sub-rule, all men live in eternal perplexity and horror and ask, Why?
Because I am, naturally, ahead of the pack, I accept my mathematician’s verdict as read, and bow to democratic reality. You do know, of course, that all reality is democratic, right? That is why the man was beheaded despite the fact that the emperor was actually naked.If he wasn’t, he should be.
I was at the National Bureau of Statistics a few days past. I learnt many incredible things. However, the statistics on potential for unreality were really eye opening. Let us summarise it this way: more women are likely to wear ridiculous-but-fashionable outfits, affect an accent, date and marry a foreigner whose only going thing is his foreignness, and depart this country for the West for no particular reason. There are men who do that, naturally, but we can’t be hating on professional beach boys here in this new dispensation, can we?
The reason girls will do this without batting a fake eyelash is simple: the female reality is completely fungible. In their mind, the pre-Cambrian, huffy-puffy,limping, apoplectic, overweight octogenarian is a dead ringer for Mr Brad Pitt, Esq. The clearly illiterate, awkward, redneck truck driver wallowing in the grossest tattoos is, in reality none other than Master Theo Walcott in the flesh. And the fact that this nobleman of Europe and America has finally rewarded her over-made-up, slutty-dressed, blatantly whoring gyrations with a brandy, then Viagra-assisted, unremarkable sex, and has not yet sent her off with 50$ , is all the evidence, if any was required, that on her part, our girl is Halle Berry, Rihanna and so on. Hence the accent. Hence the fact that our girl is keeping poodles in a bedsit in Uthiru. Hence the frank, adoring gazes, holding of the pink, wrinkly hand, and PDA with the octogenarian.
You think, because of you limited education, that the girl had big-time daddy issues and is compensating in Freudian form. Bure kabisa. You are the minority, the ones not yet admitted to the fungible reality of the elect, and, obviously, you can’t see that the Agweng-Octogenarian couple before you is actually Alejandro and Paloma moments before they go into the golden sunset.
Once in a while, the blinkers somehow fall off, and she calls me up for coffee and goes, “Gosh, Kip. He turns really pink when aroused, and his nakedness made me want to puke, so lights off for the Deed.” But that is only before Joe the Plumber arrives to sweep her off her fake leather boots. Before you know it, she has children with a Nigerian, Swede, Iranian and Frenchman, and all nationalities signatory to the Declaration of Human and Peoples’ Rights. So when the fathers’ visitation day comes, she is to be heard calling out,”Ricky, your dad’s here, Joanne, present, Gilbert, apologies, love, Ruth, present, Jack, absent.”
Anyway, this ability to substitute reality – replace a drab existence with a soap opera and reality television episode occupies girls throughout their 20s and most of their 30s. This explains the attire, the accent, the mannerisms and gestures, the cocktail sipping brokeasses dissing Kenyan men and gazing hungrily at a Hosni Mubarak look-alike on his fifth by-pass and third kidney transplant. It explains the bedsits in Gigiri, which have caused matatus to plague the leafy suburbs,and the bashes, gigs and do’s in places no one has ever heard of, but where all white-dating Kenyans are considered life members.
The ones who get the passport will be heard of, eight dead husbands later, in connection with some Pension fraud racket, facing 380 years in prison, or dead of an overdose, S&M strangulation or a simple knock in some dockside hovel in Belgium, or in a documentary, cleaning melons at an organic farm. Very few of them ever put their KCSE, BAs, etc to any good use apart from fellatio.
The ones who do not get the passport continue to litter the lobbies of the Stanley, InterCon, Tribe, Serena, swigging cointreau, doing the salsa like a dervish, singing the men-bashing girl-anthems on the Karaoke and looking wistfully at portraits of the Aga Khan, whom they confuse with George Clooney, and it does not matter one bit. Oh, and they continue to hate Kenyan men, who are neither romantic nor sensitive nor deep nor gallant, until, without a sound, they sneak off to become mistresses of politicians and unhygienic millionaires, bearing children named Mau and raising dairy cattle in Kiserian.
Others hold out longer until, one morning, they fill in 35 in the ‘age’ section of their income tax returns and then the penny drops. Reality shatters into a million shards to reveal a pot-bellied, jelly-assed, double-chinned harridan in designer jeans, dreadlocks, a slight bald patch, and a huge handbag – in other words, a Halle Berry still waiting for Denzel. This, ladies and gentlemen, is the girl who wanted to take down the fence at KICC, having fully convinced herself, in her wash-and-wear reality, that a Nigerian fraudster has crammed his suitcases chock-full with handsome husbands. She was resorting to her right to self-help, in order to rescue her David Beckham out of a Louis Vuitton travelling bag for her eternal delectation, amen. She was Being a Better Me,exercising The Seven Habits, finding who Moved Her Cheese and appealing to Her God and Her Man, and actualising all the toxic ‘motivational’ nonsense she has been reading on her way to work every morning of her life.
Yet the beauty of a fungible reality surely must lie in the vast array of possibilities in every combination, including overt acts of abject desperation before national television, right there in your capital city.