SIR JAY

If you call yourself Sir (something) you better look the part. From dressing a Stephano Ricci diamond plated tie to an elegant gold wristed watch that has a heavier ego than all the new found IT cum hacking gurus and crop of wannabe lawyers trying too hard to impress on social media,..you rather be rocking a genuine burnished toe, pair of shoes. Note genuine. Boy, besides, you should never develop the guts to text me out of the woods for a soft loan that will be refunded in 48 hours. I’ll consider it highly offensive and a dire disservice to your name. And by the way, you better be dating a Taita lady and not one of those slay lasses who bombard our timelines with fruit updates and in high heels taller than their ethics. Aaah and; I prefer you be an exceptional public speaker. I mean, how would you introduce yourself as Sir Charles, with a voice that has esteem issues? Something else, you can never afford to be self-absorbed with such a coveted name. And self-absorbed includes dangling with your car keys in boardroom meetings or in those local hotels where you make the rest of us drool at your lonely success ladder like we were made from a different cut.

And, you must be an alpha male; domineering in every polite manner. Sophisticated too and sort of mysterious. Your financial freedom must evoke jealous in all corners of our taste buds. Your phone must be always engaged, striking deals on one end or quietly tossing to expensive champagnes with your boys in hotels that have rooftops. The thing is, we must struggle to keep up with your moves. Moreover, you must be a bigwig outside of social media and your presence should only be commanding if not more. However, you shouldn’t be carried away by that hype, humility must be seen and felt at your every utter. Before I forget, you must give a run to Ezra Chiloba for his fame, at least according to the ladies.

That aside, meet Sir Jay, a contemporary fashion designer, model and largely positive minded young person. You’ll assume he is reserved until you hear him speak. A combination of intellectualism, humility, buzzing optimism and visionary attitude are elements that comfortably suit him. An American height guy, overly tasteful when it comes to fashion and unapologetically metrosexual as you’ll tell from his urbanite demeanor. He stands tall on everything boy child, from mentoring to giving back. Sir Jay, is a marketing genius too and brainchild to the coveted brand – Sir Jay Suits. I met him for the first time in a forum organized last year, for Nanyuki male professionals whose objective was to shed light, empower men in us and provide solutions to the struggling boy child phenomenal. That being last year, we’ve kept tabs and recently had a Tet a Tet with him when I saw the need to feature him in my new series of exposing young people with compelling stories that can be used to mentor and inspire the rest of us.

So, grab a seat as we unravel and make sense to this smell of inspiration.

When I quizzed Sir Jay about where he grew up and how it was like, his grandma name kept resurfacing in his brief responses. His childhood was hugely dominated by his shush and thanks to her, here is a guy who attributes his life principles to have been carved from that shrewd and tough upbringing. Shrewd because grandmas back then (Not millennial shushus) didn’t entertain nonsense while bringing up their grandchildren. They were discipline masters in as much as they were tender and loving. And how was it like, in those early days of Sir Jay life?

He used to collect firewood, feed the goats and chicken and later, stroll downstream to fetch water. Thanks to the fact that, back then rivers would flow freely, unpolluted and full of life unlike the days of our Lord today, where a stream of water is not only seasonal but heavily polluted in its short span of life by our selfish acts and baggage. Why is it that grandmas are extremely passionate when it comes to taking care of their livestock? A case in point, my grandma would rather sleep hungry but ensure her goats and cows have enough supply of dairy meal and Maclik salt. She will also ensure any regular guest at her home assists in cutting some stinging nettle around her house which she puts in a big sufuria and boils the greens and later feeds them to her dear cows. You should see her cows fighting for the cooked stinging nettle, it’s like pizza to the city slay queens. You know that happy face while one takes something delicious. For men, it should be Nyama choma at Tums in Giakaja because beer is certainly not tasteful.

Sir Jay changed schools so often both at Primary and High school level. To be exact, he was in six different schools between primary through secondary school. But why? Lack of funds featured prominently in his childhood hence why apart from changing schools due to lack of school fees, was brought up by his grandma back in Muruguru, Nyeri County. Interestingly, he always emerged the cleanest boy in high school and at some point, he became the school captain due to his neatness. Arguably, almost a decade after, he has still kept this self-made ethos. In addition, he was very sporty in high school unlike me. I tried basketball but my height became the undoing. Tried football, but every lad played football and it became too competitive and congested. Attempted hockey, barely succeeded since it was too crafty. Moved to rugby but couldn’t risk my ribs. Left with no option, I gave up. But on a brighter note, I was very passionate about Art stuff hence resulting to joining Drama club, music club and predictably – Debate Club. At Form 3, I was elected the President of Debate Club. Did I love debating and gathering points for motions, oooh boy! So, back to Sir Jay; he played Football, Handball, Rugby, was in Athletics as well, Triple and Long Jump too.

He joined Nairobi Aviation for his Diploma in Mass Communication but before securing a chance, he was a casual laborer in construction sites in Nanyuki. After seven or so months of carrying heavy loads and moving around in dusty clothes without any protection gear but armed with an optimistic mindset, he juggled from one construction site to another. He built his life a brick at a time but would later move to Nairobi where he switched gears to hawking. Yes, you should remember spotting him along the streets selling everything from flash disks, scratch cards, memory cards, disks and so forth. Hoping he was not a nuisance hawker like what the celebrated Wanja Kavengi writes on Facebook. By the way, have you stumbled on her brilliant writing?

Anyway, Sir Jay was desperate to survive and raise funds for his college fees, hence why he did anything rational to steer his life forward. Incidentally, at college, he participated in a beauty pageant contest for Mr. & Miss. Aviation 2013-14. Guess what? He won! On that very minute, an eggshell was broken and a dream was validly born. Modelling became part and parcel of Sir Jay life and one of his several streams of income. After his breakthrough at Aviation, Sir Jay contested in many other pageants scooping awards left, right and center just to name a few;  Mr. & Miss Mountain Mall and Mr. World Kenya – Laikipia County where he easily won. He also strutted on many runways for instance; Kenya Fashion Week, Festivals for African Fashion and Arts (FAFA), Swahili Fashion Week, French Embassy Fashion for Charity and would later join commercial modelling. While at commercial modelling, Sir Jay featured as a cast in Safaricom ads, Guiness Made of Black, and as the main cast in Blue Moon Vodka, Crown Paints and Fresh chewing gum. He has also been involved in other adverts as a semi-featured cast like in Orange Kenya ad.

Early last year, he took a break from modelling stuff to concentrate on his other brainchild – Sir Jay suits which is a clothing line that features mainly signature suits made for the contemporary man and woman. I asked Sir Jay if he is a tailor or a designer and what’s the difference. “I’m a designer. I design, cut the fabric then the tailor does the rest. For handmade bespoke suits, I do it in tandem with my tailor.” What’s bespoke? Forgive my native upbringing where words like bespoke- suits are vocabulary names I should have used in my English composition. What a loss! “Not to worry, bespoke is a name used to describe suits that are made from scratch by the tailor, customized or rather fairly adjusted to meet a client’s typical measurements and specifications. Normally, the rest are suits designed from standard measurements. ” He points out.

Apart from suits which other products are offered under Sir Jay suits?

“We do office and wedding suits and smart casual attires. We also sell gowns as well. Just recently, we launched a new product called Sir-Jay-Lust-List which encompasses female and male inner wears from lingerie to boxers.”

You recently had an incredible event at a Nairobi hotel?

“Yes, we were launching Sir Jay Lust list as I have just mentioned. It was an invite-only event where I lined up models showcasing my latest products in the offing. There was a lot to learn for my team and me as a person about organizing events. All I can say for now is that Kenya should watch out for the next event from Sir Jay Suits because we are bringing Paris to Nairobi!”

What was the objective of the event?

“To basically broaden my brand and launch Sir Jay Lust List officially to the consumers.”

Where are you based?

“My shop is in Nairobi but also hold a very aggressive promotion on social media.” By the way, check out his Facebook page – Sir Jay Suits.

Tell me more about your clientele base

“I have clients in Canada, Frankfurt Germany, Australia, Doha – Qatar and locally in Kakamega, Kisumu and Mombasa. They are scattered all over the place.”

Where did you acquire your tailoring skills?

“Downtown Nairobi. Different tailors taught me different skills regarding cutting the fabric and designing. YouTube too has helped me greatly on my researches.”

To what extent is talent important towards one achieving his success vis a vis hard work and street smartness

“You can never wish away talent. It’s very important but again there are ethics that ride with it like integrity, honesty, patience and persistence.”

Do you visit the gym?

“Once in a while. I prefer body fitness exercises rather than building muscles.”

Where did you collect the name, Sir Jay?

“I have always been the center of attention when it comes to dressing. I got the name Sir from the streets out of respect for my style.”

Married or dating

“Dating.”

You are very passionate about the boy child.

“Extremely passionate. I have been involved in many mentorship programs attributed to the boy child. Most of these young men lose hope in life for lack of mentors. It’s my urge to every male professional to find time and mentor the young boys around them. If we all do our part, the society will have moved a step ahead in narrowing the gap between girl-boy empowerment.”

For a fact, there is a lot of imbalance in empowerment in this country. It’s time we narrowed the lenses to the very aggrieved boy child without doing any harm to the girl child who has had a fair progress. How do we strike the balance, sir?

“If we leave one part of the gender behind, we will be inviting self-defeat and danger ahead. In other words, we will be running in circus by pulling one side up and going for the other, only to find the side that was earlier on pulled up, disgruntled as we changed attention to the other.”

Basically, what you are suggesting is; we accord the boy child the attention he deserves and while doing so, not lose track of the girl child. Which specific campaigns have you participated in regard of the boy child?

“I have been involved in mentorship programs in rural schools for instance; Inooro Secondary School and Waguthiru Primary in Laikipia County. In addition, I have participated in programs in Nanyuki Children’s home, One More Day and Youth Entrepreneurship Summit. I also participate in street campaigns by Inua Society Initiative where we mentor street kids in Nairobi.  Similarly, I have been involved in Chapati Forum which again serves the less fortunate kids by mentoring and counselling them.”

We leave it on that note as I let Sir Jay catch a flight to Kampala for more business. Cheers, Sir Jay!

 

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A GATHERING OF THE BOY CHILD – PART TWO

Image result for Kenya boys in public schools

Over the last one week, I have received many emails and Whatsapp messages; of some impressed readers, some who couldn’t wait for Part Two and a few others who dragged a seat for me, and gave me a dress down on how I was castigating the boy child which ideally, belong to. I’m happy though that a majority found sense in what I was putting across and partook in appreciating the cloudy reality that seems to hover around the boy child.

Itemised  below were bits and pieces that I was able to gather from this meeting organized by one, Moses Njoroge as pointed out in Part One of this article.

I was here seated with deflated humans just like me battling life fears and societal expectations that not only keep glaring at us but also toppling over whatever little confidence left behind.  Amongst us were men married to beautiful, spiritual and devoted women who perhaps were worried of what could their men be learning from this meeting. Was it about radicalizing them to be tougher husbands who shouldn’t show emotions nor accept to be corrected when they fail? Was it about telling them to be a bit careful on giving out money to their wives? Or was it all about emphasizing to them to be ignoring ideas fronted by their spouses? Far from it, this was a forum attended by gentlemen who meant well for their women. They were coming from a school of thought that was willing to learn something new; to approach life with a wider scope of people’s experiences and backgrounds; to laugh about their weaknesses and mistakes and more importantly to create new networks to bond and to empower the boy child in us.

Here is a wounded lion that is still expected to roar. He is wounded by imbalanced upbringing, lack of role models, under empowerment and steady rise of single mothers. He is sidelined by the media and all other stakeholders, who now put all their attention to the other gender at his expense.

We are grown up men struggling to let go hangovers of our childhood. If it’s not about dad’s who didn’t live up to our expectations rather succumbing to the wild-fire of alcoholism then it has to be how they ruthlessly battered our mothers right in front of our eyes. These imageries have refused to go or die of. They keep haunting us and replaying over our minds. They stubbornly question why we had such horrifying dads; insecure, unambitious and who loved the beer bottle than our family.

Some have learnt to cope with realities of dealing with dads who passed on when they needed them most. They died even before, these men who were boys then, learnt how to pee on their own. They were left to be herded by older sisters in the jungle of adolescence and moms who had no idea on how to instill these sons, manly attributes. The best they could do was to provide them with all they could afford but nothing to do with how gentlemen think and are wired. These boys grew up in an environment where there was no man to look up to and to identify with. Their dads passed on pretty early in life exposing them to tough rays of life that were not only itching but with far-reaching ramifications.

For others, it was a case of finding themselves being molested by close relatives and not knowing who to trust or talk to. A majority of us (men) being fundamentally introverts in some quarters have a tendency of keeping it to ourselves from a very tender stage. To some, they got it really bad in Form One after going through hostile environments full of bullies. These changed who they were and how they perceived people. It eroded every good virtue in them. Living in a chaotic environment has consequences and one of them is succumbing to the ugly mess of turning out to be as the rest.

Family gatherings that are expected to harness unity and create identity to an extended family are no longer fashionable to attend. They are now scarce and far between. You know, we are busy humans; busy chasing money, cutting financial shortcuts, bribing and embezzling funds. We’ll also be spotted in middle class functions drink driving to look cool, having sagged our pants and mentality as well, hand in hand with lasses donning waistline skirts and showing cleavages from here to I don’t know where. Uncles, who should essentially play a critical role in mentoring nephews; are in fact busier souls to have some time with. Family gatherings have been reduced to show offs and a place to trade subtle, perennial family feuds. We attend these occasions to enjoy beer with cousins we’ve not met in a hundred years. Unfortunately, there is nothing like mentoring of boys by the uncles and being shown how to skin a goat or having a sitting to learn about traditional cultures.

I recall one participant who co owns a company in real estate and land business giving very cold statistics on the gender portfolio of their clients. You’d imagine men are big in investing, right? Imagine the numbers don’t seem to add up in days of our times. In fact according to him; Out of 300 sales of land, only two pieces were bought by men, the rest being purchased by women. As pointed out in the previous article, women are deliberately investing more and spending less. For men, we’re doing the reverse; spending more and investing less. And included in our entertainment expenses is treating these same ladies (who own acres of land) by taking them out with cars on defaulted loans, and paying bills with credit cards. Shouldn’t that worry you?

Society should further be scared by the overwhelming number of singer mothers. The boy child should be scared even more. With all due respect to voluntary single parents, and their devotion to their children, I mean well for all of you. However, allow me to look at the bigger picture, especially on the boy child issue for the sake of this article. According to Pastor Gillis Triplett of Embassy Christian Church headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia; your son IS NOT the man of the house. He is your child! Most single mothers will never understand the psychological damage they cause by anointing their sons to be the man of the house. By falsely convincing their boys that they are men, these single moms pigeonhole their adolescents into a pressure-based environment God never intended for them to be in.

We are giving these young boys lots of emotional duress and what Gillis calls mom’s fanatical demands of manhood. You know, many single mothers are not in good terms with their ex-husbands. Note I used the word MOST not ALL. It is a case of subtle war between the two. So this boy child is brought up in an environment where he is quickly ushered to a war field right after birth. It’s a case of who succeeds in winning the kid’s trust over the other. Going by the statistics of the rise of voluntary single mothers; the boy child poses to lose big time as he is brought up by a woman who has very low regards about men generally. Meaning, in as much as the boy would be provided with everything he’d desire of, except for a dad, he will be hugely exposed to narrations of how his dad was or is a failure. How then, will such a kid ever admire being a great man if his world exists of none?

I’m aware of men who’ve got their acts together, so to speak. They have intentionally dared to be the most committed fathers and husbands they can ever be. They have persistently raised the bar for contemporary men notwithstanding the overwhelming challenges facing the male gender. I salute these blokes and encourage them to create forums in their neighborhoods to empower the rest of us.  No man is self-sufficient. And, we are human first before anything else. It’s natural for human to crave for acceptance, motivation, general empowerment and to be listened to. Men are of no exemption!

A GATHERING OF THE BOY CHILD – PART ONE

Image result for Kenya's boy child I met Moses Njoroge in the company of a very good friend of mine for coffee early this month to brainstorm on a totally different conversation, away from the boy child issue. It happened that along the light moments, he mumbled to have been organising a forum that was to bring together male professionals of the town (Nanyuki) to a meeting meant for purely networking. I quickly interjected, asking him why it was meant for exclusively male professionals. He immediately gave a brilliant answer that hadn’t caught my mind for this long.

Men only meet in clubs for beer and to watch football. They are unlike women who have chamaas and other informal gatherings where they share and empower themselves.” 

I listened as those prudent observations penetrated deep inside my heart and to the bone marrow. They played repeatedly rhythmically for some minutes. The faster they oscillated the more naive I assumed to have been. It was a fact, we, the gender that worships ego hasn’t found it imperative to empower each other. It perhaps sounds feminine, and weak and too metrosexual for men to empower each other; isn’t? But aren’t these thoughts misleading? I tell you what! Far too many men are dying from premature deaths out of stress related illnesses which could have been solved if only we reached to each other for help and advice.

Moses was coming in to feel this void that very few notice or get bothered about. He was here to create a springboard to motivate us and a vessel to air our frustrations and worries and in the process benefit from a platform where, being listened to becomes healing in itself.

In fact the many times men go out to clubs, it is mainly about catching up and talking about biashara (business). Actually, we talk for two minutes, stick to our phones for the next one hour. We drool at the curvy lasses, drink the cold beer, laugh mildly over a funny meme shared on whatsapp and get back to our phones for a whole one more hour. That’s what we call catching up! It has nothing to do with the hard surface stuff that bothers us. We never open up, not even to our friends. As men, we are wired to soldier on kama wanaume (like gentlemen). Men are supposed to be bravery and not cowed by life challenges; we assume.

But there is more than meets the eye.

At least this is what I found out when we met last Friday. To start with, I have never been in such a forum that has men only in attendance speaking about empowerment and rewriting history. Here were male professionals from all walks of life from lawyers, teachers, fashion designers, young entrepreneurs, journalists, mentors, aspiring politicians, accountants and many others, keen to decipher and write solutions to issues regarding the contemporary boy child. And in order to empower each other, we had to take an inside – out approach. That way, we were in a position to appreciate history, table the facts, predict the future going by the statistics and come up with realistic solutions.

This is what I found out;

For most us, we are struggling with big time baggage acquired along the treacherous trajectory of progressing from boy to man. From the looks of things, we haven’t shed off stereotypes and perceptions instilled in us, since our childhood years. In any case, that kind of thinking has hardened and grown roots. For instance, if you grew in an environment where your mother was always battered by your dad; if your father was a philanderer; if he was always found in the trenches drunk and unconscious; you are more likely to end up like him. What ends up in our subconscious mind is tough to neutralise. It’s in fact worse when one is brought up in unstable family set up.

Ponder this;

Why do we have more cases of husbands being extremely brutal to their wives? Why do we have more cases of men succumbing to cheap liquor addiction? Why are men dying premature deaths from chronic illnesses? One fact seems to address these questions. Nobody along the childhood path, not even our dads, uncles nor grandfathers warned us or rather advised us that during our adult life, we will be dealing with an extremely empowered woman who knows her rights; who is financially independent and more ambitious than her mother. See, the contemporary man still has the same archaic thinking mindset he bequeathed from his dad or the men he watched while growing up from his village. Unfortunately his female counterpart has in fact embraced new ways of approaching life far different from her mum. She is dynamic, competitive, a go getter, fearless, unbowed, educated, intelligent, self-aware, socially balanced and a dreamer. She wants to buy land within the first two years of employment if not earlier through a chamaa, to drive by 28, to take a business loan by 30, to have that PHD by 33 and to quit employment by 35.

If lucky enough to find an equally organised and ambitious man, she will settle down. But don’t be fooled, it won’t matter anyway since it is nowhere near her prime priorities. The contemporary woman is not intimidated by family expectations of settling down by the time she is 28. Unlike man, who will literally stop everything including life to at least get a partner and then signal God; “we can move on now” – the woman is having none of that. Men value marriage and kids and coming home to meet a homely house with dinner prepared and kids crying or jumping over him saying “Baba umeniletea nini?” (Dad what have you brought me?). Men admire driving their family to church or other social places like weddings or shopping and being addressed as father of two charming boys. They treasure such kind of a system where they are looked up to and celebrated as the supreme beings of the family.

Unfortunately, that reality is fast fading and replaced with an alternative that is not begging for acceptance. The contemporary woman is willing to bring something to the table too. She is earning more, spending less and investing wisely.

Was man prepared for this?

Who is he blaming for his current woes?

What are the statistics insinuating?

We shall find out in the next article.

Watch out for PART TWO of A GATHERING OF THE BOY CHILD.

WHO WILL MENTOR THE MEN IN US?

mentormen

 

When my Research lecturer gave us an assignment on writing a proposal, my mind juggled with so many topics for some days. Ultimately, my Proposal heading read; A STUDY ON THE PLIGHT OF THE BOY CHILD IN KENYA. It is no coincidence that I’m passionate about the male gender threats and prospects in this country. At times I will sound harsh to them (I included)with criticism, sometimes supplying sympathy and reassurance all in search of mentoring avenues for this incredible human species. It is also not a coincidence too, that this is the umpteenth time I’m writing an open letter to dear men.

I start by affirming the riddle; You never throw stones when you live in a glass house. My perennial criticism however, is not baseless but out of anger, shock and disappointment  on how low we have lowered the bar of qualifying to be a gentleman. That said I can confirm the following;

A majority of fathers have miserably failed to be good role models. A good number of us have also welcomed the idea that it is humanly normal to have several sidekicks, not even one at your disposal! That man is the greatest loser from the upsurge of single parenting is not being emphasized either. Alcoholism has shattered our dreams, emasculated everything will hold dear and disenfranchised our families. These four facts have costed us immense reputation and track record. They have weakened our enviable history we bequeathed from our grand fathers. Furthermore, they have peeled every tasty flesh in man’s legacy and reduced us to mere scavengers with no heritage to hold on; left us bare, feeling vulnerable and battling with exposed flaws.

Enough of that.

Fellow men, I confirm to have partaken in dealing with the burden of unprecedented pressure, contemporary man is grappling with day in day out. If it’s not to have a loyal wife, then it has to be a decent car then expectations evolve to an imposing piece of land, then a mansion worth inviting humans to attend for the official opening. That done, they call for a million dollar wedding and before that you save for a commercialised dowry occasion. From there you will be required to steer and show direction to a family set up that is bleeding from over empowerment. You will be expected to hold this same family in one piece dealing on the sidelines with a mother in law who is briefed daily on the metamorphosis of your behaviors and bank balance. You will also deal with mother in laws who will dare you to stress their too educated but fragile daughters. You will grapple with village men who expect something small every time you visit up country. You will either deal with it willingly or from their manipulative skills. Your kids will be expected to go to schools that cost an arm and a length. A lot will be expected from you in ensuring you give them decent upbringing. Dear men, I know the weight of expectations from close family members. Out of circumstances you will be compelled to be ambitious and opportunistic. In the end you will be worshipped for being wealthy regardless of where you amassed it from. The quicker your bribe your way to riches the sooner the celebrations will start otherwise the reverse is also true.

However, there is more that matters to man. To achieve all the above we need to cultivate a strong foundation. We need to bank and invest on mentors. But who will mentor us, really? To prove how tough it is for a man to celebrate his 35th birthday sober, spiritual, and full of life; here’s some of the challenges.

Not so long ago  a couple of my classmates and I gathered to catch up after we found out one of the day’s unit had been cancelled. A spontaneous convergence had taken place whereas the rest had hurriedly left on learning the news of cancellation of the class. Within no time, a heated conversation was growing and soon enough we were basking in laughter and tears of joy. The cost of leaving this elusive gathering was too high. I savoured every minute of this encounter since it’s not an often thing. You know how evening or weekend classes always have students in a rush even when it is unnecessary. If it is not hurrying to get to class on time then it could be to head home before the rains pound or before it gets too late to prepare supper or it could be to catch up for a big game with the boys. These students are always on adrenaline. Every single announcement of cancellation of class brings along its fair share of impromptu events and activities that must be honoured. In fact, these students live for the cancellation of a class!

Anyway, we laughed and sympathised with each other on life’s experiences. The dominant topic of discussion was about the plight of men in this day and age. Why this arose was because a lady who was scantily dressed made a mistake of passing next to us. Yes she was badly dressed. She had a kikoi to cover her exposed thighs given that she would sit down at some point in the day with her waistline-long dress. I never get the drift but I leave it there. That dressing was a game changer to our conversations. Thanks to her, it resulted to us sharing the most fundamental aspects of life. We came clean and unashamed of our past mistakes. For once, there was no judgment or eye -rolling.

A lady in the group spoke of how one of her male colleagues who by that time was a bachelor had been trapped in a love web with a lady that used to clean his clothes over the weekends. The banker dude had fallen for a Mama Fua. It all began when the said lady started by leaving some of her items in the bachelor’s digs every time she came for her kibarua(hustle), deliberately. This dude didn’t decode the signals right on time until she left her undergarments. They guy still unperturbed remained mum. The following weekend, Mama Fua came late and so her task ended in the late hours as well. She said she was worried to go home in the night. It was risky for her. The guy suggested to escort her but his suggestion was outwitted skillfully by Mama Fua. Mama Fua spent the night in his house and ……..one thing led to another. Whatever magic that lady used worked soundly.`

Since then, the poor guy fell for this damn woman with all his naive heart and soul, wealth, time, inheritance and with any other resource he owned. Oblivious to him, Mama Fua was a single mother. Daring enough, she brought her kid to live with the new dad. It became impossible for this man to cut links with her. Friends and colleagues tried in vain. When word reached the dad, his result to anger and condemnation bore no fruit. The only thing that worked was to literally pack the belongings of his son, uproot him and leave Mama Fua with the house all for her. He had to also influence a transfer of his son to another station in a different town. It worked.

We moved on to this bloke who confessed to have been enfeebled by this female colleague with unrelenting and disturbing theatrics to woo him. Clearly, this guy had been pulling uninterested looks to this chic who in turn seemed not to be in short supply of tricks to lure him persistently. He got trapped to this female colleague type of play. He naively chose to play in her court. By not admonishing her and telling her he was not comfortable with her moves, he made the lady assume silence meant affirming her motives. Not once, did this ingenuous guy find his coat sneaked in some scribbled notes confessing her love to him.

At another end, a guy broke to us how he dated a lady who was few weeks pregnant by the time he started hitting on her. Oblivious of what was to shock him, they warmed for a relationship with the lady throwing all the signals that she wanted to be laid as soon as possible. Were it not for Jesus who did a miracle to this lad, making him be patient enough, by now he would be paying school fees to a son or daughter he didn’t father but having been convinced it was his.

From my assessment, the society has negated its role of mentoring and looking after young men with the presumption that having gone through campus/college life, they are mature enough to make sound decisions and steer a life independently. On the other hand, too much concern is put to ladies which at some point means living with their relatives even with they get jobs. They are monitored constantly and every decision they make questioned by their parents. They truth of the matter is, young men soon after getting employed and living away from the watchful close relatives, fall into the gaping holes of naivety. They are never advised beforehand, that living in far a town away from family comes with a lot of trust and responsibility. Lest they will be swallowed by conniving eyes and tricks of swindlers who come armed with the so called love. The most regrettable mistakes men make don’t happen when in High school, not even in Campus or thereafter but during their formative years of employment. Evil has undying love for new money.

Guys with promising career prospects are getting duped so cheaply for lack of solid foundations and principles. They are dating and divorcing interchangeably. They are marrying the wrong spouses out of peer and societal pressure, raising kids they didn’t sire unknowingly, get battered and humiliated by their so called wives and scamper for help in bars when they meet female barmaids, who devour on whatever else that is left. In the end, we bury these promising young men, in their miserable state having been drowned by alcohol, HIV, depression, senseless society pressure and anything in between.

What young men are pleading for, is the society to churn out enough good role models who can advise them from childhood to even when they attend parents’ day meetings (before they are abolished by Matiang’i) and beyond then. Men need to be monitored, held accountable and reassured that there are people out there who cherish them and hold them highly. Parents should also cease from imagining that since their sons have landed fancy jobs after campus, that their parenting concludes then. In fact real parenting commences from this stage.

A very Happy Birthday to one Joseph Wairia a huge fan of this blog back in TZ….Bro, may you live to be a great daddy.

 

 

 

MAMA’S BOY SYNDROME

mama's boy

Mama’s Boy has always been a hot-potato-topic loved and loathed in equal measure, one that is too sensitive for many writers to juggle with, that pierces through what we hold dearest to, compelling us to be on either side of the divide. You are either a mama’s boy or not. It is as clear as black and white. There is no middle ground or consensus in this. Sorry.

I’m not sure how I will fair but while at it can I throw a disclaimer? There is nothing personal in here apart from much respect to all the incredible MAMA’s out there.

 

Did you know six of every 10 Kenyan women are likely to be single mothers by the time they reach 45? The research by Prof Shelly Clark, an associate professor of sociology at Canada’s McGill University, and Prof Dana Hamplová from Prague’s Charles University and Institute of Sociology, also found out a Kenyan woman is more likely to be rendered a single mother by bearing a child out of wedlock than other, more unavoidable causes, like the death of a spouse or divorce. The alarming figures are one of the highest in Africa, mirroring the quickly changing dynamisms of Family in the country. A man’s roles at the family level is slowly being dwindled and riddled by reckless behaviors meaning many women are opting to raise their kids without the baggage of an irresponsible husband/dad. Moreover, faced with an increase in Female financial muscle, a good number of women are opting to go it alone in this whole family idea.

That said, where does it leave the boy child? What are the consequences of a child raised by a single mother be it from controllable or uncontrollable reasons? To some extent it disadvantages the boy child to the extent that he is constantly fed with how his dad was incapable, irresponsible if not unambitious or one that missed in action.  This boy grows with a very negative attitude of his own gender and tending to hold highly the role of the other gender.  Allow me to focus on the disadvantage of such a background for the sake of this article. That does not in any way water down the role of the female gender in bringing up a family.

That brings me to my point;

We are a society that is churning out legions of men who have never had an intimate conversation with an all rounded, mature man. The problem with that is, the boy child upbringing is hugely predisposed to one gender meaning the boy sheds off or even fails to attract manly attributes. Like appreciating the buck stops with him in matters family stewardship. Not getting to know the difference between crying and over-crying. Or rather, that signs of being too emotional are considered unmanly. Not learning early to tie a tie or how to skin a goat – Your dearest mum will never teach you this. Or how to jump start a car and that love is stronger than muscles……and how to be a gentleman. Neither your mum nor your aunties will ever help you in learning the ropes of being a gentleman than a father figure.  Remember you can’t give what you don’t have. They say baggage in baggage out. We are what we are predisposed to. Period!

That said, it’s one thing to passionately love your mum and to have her, love you back overwhelmingly and it’s another thing for her to overshadow your life in the sense of her approving every decision you make. Talk of lads who will not speak two sentences without mentioning their mums. These are the same fellows who will have a problem with their spouse’s cooking style, or type of lotion she applies if does not match that of the mum. No pun intended to mums though.

I strongly believe a man must chart his own trajectory at some point in his life. Where he will come to the realisation that, it’s okay to reach out to her when life becomes over bearing but also appreciating it’s not her role to sort out every challenge in his life. The sad reality is, the society is churning out quarter baked men who cling on a family’s heritage if not idling around waiting to bequeath what their parents toiled hard to acquire. It’s even despicable when you are 30 and bearded, battling an oversized belly, a receding hairline and unashamed attitude, wagging your tail home to pester your mum for not ensuring the house servant counted you for dinner or harassing her for not giving you money to fuel your car that she bought for you.

I’m talking about men who refuse to live independently.  Who still need motherly wings to cover themselves from the harsh life.  Blokes who can’t make a single decision without consulting their mums. Men who take advantage of the politics between their wife – mother in law relationship for their selfish gains. Of married men who back-bite their wives from A to Z from her bad breath to her poor taste of clothing forgetting there are married to their wives not their mothers.

This is beyond a caving mess that has me so infuriated. Saddening because it has become an all too familiar game that has risen and fallen, re-emerged, buried alive and at times refused to die or just fly away. Stubborn life stories that leave one disoriented, mad and tempting one to go uprooting these heinous men teeth, gouging out their eyes and hammering their heads hard enough until they shed off the unmanly attributes.

Bottom line: My Man to Man Talk has it that, as men, we have failed miserably and must come to peace with that. We must also resolve that we will not mould our sons to be quarter baked men. Otherwise that will be an injustice to the posterity generation. That we will dare to see beyond our Mama’s horizon. Whereby, we will be bold enough to make them believe in our self made dreams.