Tuesday, June 25, 2013

One Step Foward, Two Steps Backward

Since Uganda attained Independence in 1962, we have strived to move on. But the journey has not been easy that I am beginning to think that in the next 50 years, Kampala City would not have changed. It will still look like the Kampala City that it is today. There will still be numerous boda’s and taxi’s clogging the streets. There will still be other versions of Erias Lukwago and Jennifer Musisi fighting over who should head KCCA and that chap who preaches at the traffic lights of Shell Jinja road – his son would have inherited the spot to continue his father’s legacy.

That aside, the small strides that we have so far made, some people have made it their mission to unravel those strides for despite having travelled, and also having access to the information superhighway, for every step of progress that we supposedly make, we in fact take two steps backward.

This is the deal.

Thank you for that question: On Monday, a young lady who is the spokesperson for the Director of Public Prosecutions was interviewed on NTV news. When Rachel Arinaitwe, the newscaster asked her the first question, this was DPP Spokesperson’s response: “Thank you for that question” then started blabbering in an effort to give out the best possible answer. I know it’s polite to say ‘thank you’, but why be thankful for the question in the first place? Would Rachel have been peeved if DPP Spokesperson did not say thank you? Or was the question such an easy one that she felt obliged to say thanks for not being put on the spot?!

Am sending my greetings: I have never understood why, people call radio stations and sometimes at an un-godly hour. They then send greeting to friends - OG’s and OB’s who are probably fast asleep. By the way, what is OG and OB? The one I really can’t get and which tends to happen on CBS, are men and women who send greetings to their spouses yet they are in the same room for the message often goes as follows: “I am sending greetings to my wife Hilda Nasuna who is sitting here right next to me.” Why send greetings to somebody sitting next to you?

Turn over there: We have a problem because many people don’t know the difference between left and right. Nine times out of ten, ask a person to show you their left or right hand and they will first glance down to make sure they have picked the right hand. Whilst driving and I came up to a fork in the road and asked if I should turn left or right and the answer was: “Turn over there…” And my response was, “over there where? Left or right?” No need to guess what answer was spewed out but: “Over there!”

Making Friends: The lovely but totally ‘airhead’ ladies who go to university not to do a degree but to ‘pursue’ a degree have still not grasped what the word ‘hobby’ means. When Airhead presented me with her CV recently, I asked how she goes about her hobby – that of making friends. She had an answer which went along these lines: “Okay, I will come up to you and ask for your name then I would ask you if you want to be my friend!” And all this came from Airhead who is a 2nd year university student.

Our choices are limited. Either we stay here and continue sending greetings or we bust and return when greetings are a thing of the past.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

They Thought They Had Class!

Last Saturday, I was at a sagai, which is sort of an engagement party for Meera Ruparelia who is Sudhir Ruparelia’s daughter. It was bound to be a party that had everything from class to pomp. And it did.

But there was something amiss for society has gone to the dogs. While a good number of people who were invited were wealthy people, one thing they didn’t have was class.

I spent a good part of the evening with Dr. Martin Aliker and his wife Camille who have class. Dr. Aliker was dressed to the nines. His suit is not a Select Garment suit – it would be beneath him to be seen in that shop. Rather, his come from Savile Row in England and they are tailored to meet his every specification.

I too have class but I am not at the Aliker level yet for it showed when I was opening a bottle of champagne. You know the wire caging that fits over the cork which incidentally, is called a muselet so Google tells me? Well there is a correct way to opening it so Aliker assured me.

As far I was concerned, it was a matter of twisting the wire handle till it fell apart. That is the way us mere plebs or baleebesi do it. But people who have class will tell you that the wire handle is only supposed to be twisted six times. That’s Aliker’s level of class.

However and still at the same function, there was Tycoon who had difficulty with a knife and fork so he opted to use a spoon. Worse, he tried to act out like he had class simply because he wore an Indian outfit. What he didn’t know is that you can’t wear the Indian outfit if you don’t have the Indian shoes to go with it. He wore Clarkes or was it Bata?

Then, Other Tycoon did not know the difference between a water goblet and a champagne flute. And just in case some of you who don’t have class are reading this article, let me explain. A water goblet is a big glass on a stem while a champagne flute is also a glass on a stem but it’s narrower – thin almost.

When Waiter tried to pour the champagne into the flute, Other Tycoon was adamant that it be poured in the goblet. In Luganda, he said, “Gwe, you just pour the drink. What is your problem?” Now what do you say to a man like that except: “You have no class!”

Just when I thought I had seen it all, up pops Flamboyant Tycoon. When his table was called to go and serve themselves, with his flamboyance he walked over to the serving points with his napkin firmly tucked into his shirt collar. I wanted to tell him this: “Dude listen here, the napkin only starts doing its job once you have settled down into your seat and you are about to start eating. You with me?”

But if I had told him that, he would have said and in Luganda something along these lines: “Gwe TB, I have travelled so what are you talking about?”

But the classic that night was Lady Guest. Rather than first finishing her food then dance, she opted to do both at the same time. She would take a bite of chicken, stand up and dance for a while then sit down eat some rice then stand up and dance! Worse, she thought she was all class! Bambi!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Hypocrites In The Church

There is something about religion that I don’t understand. Weeks ago, there was a church conference in Munyonyo that was attended by bible wielding delegates from across the globe.
Whilst I am not overtly religious, I think I get along with the religious types though, I wish KCCA would remove the street preachers for noise pollution, and close down the funny churches where ‘miracles’ supposedly happen.
Bible Wielding Delegates turned up en-mass. They were a jolly bunch who displayed all the attributes one would expect of a person who worked for the church. During the day, they wore ‘dog collars’ with their finely pressed robes. If not, they clutched at rosary beads while the Jews (I think they were orthodox Jews), looked more like members of the Al-Shabab fraternity than orthodox Jews in their robes and head gear.
Obviously it was prudent that I give them space just in case they did turn out to be Al-Shabab. I also gave the rest space because on one occasion, Nun decided to join me at my table. Why would she do that yet there were plenty of empty seats to go round?
But she did and no sooner had the words: ‘Praise the lord’ spewed out of her mouth, than out came her bible for a bout of prayer.
Any sane person would have bolted but Nun gave me the ‘religious look’ so I stayed put. As she whipped herself into a religious frenzy, a message filtered though on Facebook. “Carwash. Tonight, 8:00pm”.
While Nun did her thing, I kept wondering, of all the people in Munyonyo who need some form of divine intervention, why pick on me? Had I really slithered that far off the religious radar?
I was at Carwash at 8:00pm. Those who live on the road to Munyonyo will know that there is more to Carwash than meets the eye. It happens to be a popular drinking joint that side of town. It has a health spa, aerobics, steam, sauna, gym, food and beer.
It is also a place where fading celebrities like Ivan and Zari go to parade their new cars and show off their wealth.
It was Thursday which meant an adult theme which, is not for the squeamish. The jokes melted out by the comedian are hardcore jokes full of sexual innuendos. And when the girls take to the dance floor, they simply defy the odds for their dance moves make Rihanna, Beyonce and Niki Minaj’s dance routines look like something from the Julie Andrews movie - Sound of Music.
While the obscene and vulgar jokes where being thrown about and the girls engaged in the most suggestive sexual gyrating that I have ever seen, I looked round and in the crowd, were people I did not expect to see and who were indulging in behaviour that was not becoming of the men and women I had earlier in the day seen wearing dog collars, clutching rosary beads, reading passages from the bible and of course, preaching to me.
They were cheering. And they were clapping and some of them were drinking beer. They even danced and almost as raunchy as the girls’ had earlier done.
The following day, I saw them at lunch masquerading and pretending to be squeaky clean men and women of the cloth and who gave an impression that they had spent the previous evening in ‘bible study’.
Seeing that His Grace attended the conference, perhaps I should give him a call and let him know what his people get up to after the sun sets. What do you think?         

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

What Are M7s Working Visits?

Sarah Kagingo, is a publicist for State House. As a publicist, she has three tasks on her job description that read as follows. 1. To tell the truth. 2. Not to comment. 3. To tell downright lies.

Going by her ramblings on Facebook, she does a good job because she posts something every thirty minutes or so that tell us about the affairs of state.

Recently, this is what she had to post: ‘President Museveni went to South Korea on a three-day working visit.’ A ‘three-day working visit’, what does it mean for usually when he goes abroad, she just says: “M7 has gone abroad”.

Does it mean that in all other visits were the words ‘working visit’ didn’t appear M7 had been going on a ‘full chill’ and merely sightseeing? Or perhaps and just like me visiting a friend on a Sunday, it means that I will end up doing the laundry and general cleaning while I am there?

So I sent Kagingo a message asking her to clarify and this is what happened. There was no comment forthcoming which led me to believe she has no idea of what a working visit means.

Moving on, I really like Uganda because it is one of the few countries that I have visited where laws are broken a dime-a-dozen. We have politicians and morality idlers who jump out of bed and start ranting on about how this or that should be banned. Let me put it this way.

In their wisdom, Uganda Communications Commission decided that our phones should be registered otherwise we would be cut off. They set a date that we had to comply with and when that date came and went, guess what, happened. Our phones still worked.

So they set another date and when that date came, our phones still worked. But they persisted and set another date – that of May 31 and this time they swore blind that we would be cut off. But guess what happened. We all ignored them, we didn’t register our phones and life went on. So until UCC decides to grow ‘balls’, I have no time in listening to what they have to say.

The top brass at police headquarters on Parliamentary Avenue also woke up one day and decided that enough was enough. Anybody caught driving without a seatbelt would be fined or arrested and likewise driving while talking on a cell phone. Any boda rider or passenger caught without a helmet would also be whisked off to the nearest police station to face the law.

Some people quaked like Nuns, Sister’s, Balokole the entire congregation of All Saint’s Church, Rubaga and Namirembe Cathedral’s and probably people like John Akii—Bua, Nodin Muzee, Gerald Baliddawa and Julius Mbabazi whom I know, freak out at the sight of a police car.

But I hardened along with boda boda riders and taxi drivers. What was Police really going to do? Were they going to arrest us because we were not wearing seatbelts or driving while talking on a cell phone? (By the way in my defence, I once told a cop who stopped me for sending a txt while I was driving that, the law did not mention sending txts while driving and it worked).

I have broken so many traffic laws and the fact that I am seemingly bragging about them which, I am SO NOT, I now have to behave for once Cop reads this he will be looking out for me!

Expelled From School And Sent to Prison

I was fortunate enough, that during my academic career, I was never suspended or expelled from school – not because I was a good boy who to...