Friday, August 28, 2015

Curse of Ex-Wifey Greed

“Greed is not merely ‘I want more’. Greed is ‘I want more than everybody else’” while in the 1987 movie Wall Street, Gordon Gekko, interpreted it as – “Greed for a lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies and cuts through the essence of the evolutionary spirit.”

We all have a ‘greed streak’. Some find it in power like Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe whilst former Filipino First Lady, Imelda Marcos, found hers in the 2,000+ pairs of shoes that she owned.

In Uganda, Gordon Wava’s greed streak is, wanting to own every Mercedes model that rolls off the production line while Sudhir Ruparelia, has his in commercial property.

My greed streak usually happens on a Saturday afternoon when five kilos+ of pork have been served at Chogm in Bunga. I kick my greed into overdrive because for every one piece of pork that I waffle down, my tight Nodin, waffles down three to four. 

When it comes to money, there are three types of greed – accumulating individual money, theft of public funds and the demands of Ex-Wifey.

Ruanne Dellal was a mere plebe until she became Miss South Africa and caught the eye of banking billionaire, Jack Dellal, 35-years her senior who probably said to himself: “I want some of that.”

While she didn’t have the brains, she had everything else - looks, body, a bust that didn’t require ‘scaffolding’ to hold it up, legs and a portable booty – compensation enough for lacking in brains don’t you think?

Jack on the other hand was stale malwa - old, short, stubby with looks could that could crack a mirror at 50 meters. Ruanne shouldn’t have given him a second glance but did, because he had what she didn’t – money. Not just lots of money, but billions of it, that he could fret away £1million at the roulette tables and not feel the pinch.

In 2012, he died a few months shy of his 90th birthday and at the reading of the will, the greed streak in Ruanne came to light.

He’d left her £15m. Her response? “How could he do that? He’s betrayed me. He’s only left me £15m!” The rest of his £400m fortune went to his six children from previous relationships. She didn’t have children with him.

Her greed spiralled beyond control that she’s dragged the children to court to fight for the remaining £385m because and wait for it, wait for it, wait for my drum roll - “I am the victim of a gross injustice!” She justifies her greed by telling us that before Jack died, he held her hand, told her not to worry because, “I would get more money than the children”.

Before I continue, it’s prudent that you send House-ee for a muzinga of Uganda Wa and lock up the cat lest you kick it in a fit of anger as you read on.

In the 25-years that Ruanne ‘put out’ to Jack, he in turn made her rich beyond her wildest dreams. She has a £40million+ portfolio which includes three houses in England valued at £8.5million, £3million and £5million. She also has a £1.1million house in South Africa, cars, jewellery, art worth £6million along with investments in the Middle East worth £26.5million.

And without batting her eyelids, she still has the nerve to bitch and greed about being left a ‘partly’ £15m!

On a good note, whilst I didn’t heed the advice I shared with you earlier and lock up the cat, Vet tells me that she’s on the mend and is expected to make a full recovery. In a fit of anger, I brutally kicked the living daylights out of her and all because of the Curse of Ex-Wifey Greed.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

When Saying "Goodbye" Is Tight

Jajja Ernest used to say ‘O’kuwerekera’. When I was growing up, we said, ‘escort’. Today, Teen says ‘a push’. Three forms of saying goodbye.

Back then, whenever I went away, Mum was my biggest escort - even to the neighbours - the Galukandes’ in Muyenga. She would escort me down the three minute walk because it was something that was expected of mums.

It didn’t stop with escorting me to the Galukandes’. Whenever I would fly back to school, she was always on hand to escort me to the airport – putting on hold whatever she had to do. And so it became the norm. At home if we had Guest and it was time for them to leave, if they came by car, we would escort them from the living room to the car. Sometimes Dad took it a trifle too far that when Guest was in the ride, he would escort them from the compound right up to the gate or to the main road.

In the village it was kind of different. Jajja Ernest would tell us to O’kuwereka the visitors. We did and sometimes we got so carried away that the O’kuwrekera went right up to their door step which had them in a fix, because they would then have to O’kuwereka us back to our home.

Just before I hit my teens, I grew up. Suddenly it was un-cool to be seen off at the airport by Parent. If I recall, it was Masembe Kanyerezi, who one day turned up at Entebbe airport without his mum that got the ball rolling.

Eventually Mum and after tearfully accepting that she was a persona no grata in escorting me that I grew a King Kong chest, became an adult, took control of me and became responsible. Responsible? Hmm!

Today we don’t give peeps a push or escort them to the airport like we did in the unreliable days of Uganda Airlines.

But while Masembe, many others and I have grown up that we take ourselves to the airport alone, others have not.

Enter President Yoweri Museveni.

M7 fought a six year+ bush war with a mere 27 others and against the odds, captured power. Then he had to contend with Alice Lakwenya, ADF, Joseph Kony and all, but he didn’t wilt. He persevered.

But the machismo he displayed in the bush and dealing with Lakwenya ADF and Kony, always deserts him whenever he travels abroad. Just like I may have my tights – Oscar, Nodin, Paulo and Doc see me off, M7 has police chief - Kale Kayihura, army boss - Kataumba Wamala, and chief incarcerator - Johnson Byabashaija and sometimes Edward Sekandi at Entebbe to see him off – or to welcome him back.

I did call State House to ask why, but Switchboard declined to comment. Anyway, whenever I have had to escort somebody to the airport, it’s not because I want to escort them. It’s because I feel that if I am the last person to talk to them before they cross the immigration line, without anybody noticing, I could slip them a note of what I want them to buy for me whilst they are abroad.

Though they will strenuously deny it, Kayihura of course slips M7 a note asking for water cannons. Byabashaija wants the entire season of the TV series Prison Break while Wamala wants a drone.

But I could be wrong. It might not be about water cannons, Prison Break or drones. It might be about nostalgia and M7 wanting to relive his youth and the times that people used to see him off whenever he left Rwakitura to go to school or to university in Dar es Salaam.     

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Everyday Is A Con

There are things that give us sleepless nights. I don’t know about yours but on occasion, I have woken up in a cold sweat and petrified that I was clad in nothing but a skimpy scrotum hugging thong and writhing on stage at Nakivubo Stadium as one of Desire Luzinda’s backup dancers or, that I was driving down Kampala Road in a convertible Mercedes blaring out Selina Gomez music on the pimped up car stereo.

Most times I am terrified that I will fall for a con that will have me beating my head against the Idiot’s Wall. The last time I nearly fell for a con was when I got a call from somebody asking if I could meet his agent and buy a mechanical gadget off him. We would then sell it on to a ‘gullible’ German investor at three times the price.

I didn’t fall for it but I know Miki did. Since then, I am always on guard when calls from people I don’t know spring up out of the blue and who are pedalling a deal that’s obviously a con.

Reading the UK papers this week, one story was way off the radar that if I had the resources, I would have tracked down the victims and had them flogged in Wembley Stadium while a baying crowd shouts out – “Idiots, idiots, idiots!”

Alican Reilly is still a kid – if indeed as a 21-year-old, he’s still classed as a kid. Reilly has been banned from all buses and trains in London for his con – that of satisfying his foot fetish. He met his victims – three girls on the bus and conned them into removing their shoes. He didn’t stop there. He started smelling the insides of the shoes and wait for it, wait for it – also rubbing his groin.

It was only when he started moaning in a lustful and sexual way that the victims became suspicious and reported the incident to police.

I think there is a need to put this into a Ugandan perspective for it to properly digest – don’t you think? Take a woman who boards a taxi at Banda stage on Jinja road. As the taxi trudges on, Man sitting next to her asks her to remove her shoes.

Despite having gone to a fine school - Gayaza and scored an upper second from Makerere University, she doesn’t ask why. She doesn’t even slap or hurl a couple of tumbavu’s at him. But she complied because like the victims in the UK said: “It sounded official, like he was a ticket inspector or undercover cop.” Hmm!

Strike a pause there. When exactly did the alarm bells start ringing? Should it not have sounded the moment he sat down next to them?  I guess, but it didn’t. Not even when he asked them take off their shoes or he started smelling the insides of the shoes and it was not when he started rubbing his groin. It was only when he started making ‘lustful moans’ that they figured something was not right. 

Another hmm!

I have tried to be sympathetic to the victims but I really can’t - even if the incident had happened in the heart of Vatican City with that man in a big white hat and robes looking on from his balcony.

You would have thought that common sense would have kicked – not so? Maybe not, because like Waitress in Kitintale once told me when I asked if she had any intention of opening my beer, her response was precise: “But you only asked for a beer – you didn’t tell me to open it.” At least I hurled a tumbavu – even though it was a quiet one because she was built like Floyd Mayweather’s sister.



Saturday, August 1, 2015

Twins Want A Party - So Will Prostitutes, Psychopaths and All

Everybody wants to celebrate and party. In the old world order, Friday and Saturday nights were the designated party nights until somebody got the idea of having parties on the eve of any public holiday. When that was not enough, we went “heck, let every night be a party night” that today – at least in Uganda, every night is party night or a reason to celebrate.

Still in the old world order, we used to party or celebrate because there was a valid reason for it. As a nation, we had every right to celebrate and party when we attained independence in 1962. The athlete John Akii-Bua also had every right to celebrate when he took the gold medal at the Olympic Games as did the boxer, Ayub Kalule with a gold medal in the Commonwealth Games. If not, Parent would throw Tot a birthday party but, once they were three-years-old, they were deemed to be too old for them. Other parties that were thrown were for something as significant as a jubilee wedding anniversary.

As much as I like to party, there is a need to go back to the drawing board with the Party Definition Committee to define what constitutes a need to celebrate or a party being thrown because today, it has gotten all out of hand.

Any excuse for a party then a party it is. Going abroad for the first time? Throw a party. When Tot shows its first set of teeth, Parent throws a party. Circumcising Tot? Throw a party. Tot leaving child care to join kindergarten, throw a party. Getting that new Samsung S6 Curve phone? Throw a party. A place at Makerere? Again, throw a party. Getting Boyfie? Throw a party. Getting laid? For sure throw a party!

And then there are the people – usually white folk, who throw parties and celebrate for bizarre reasons. White Folk throw parties because it’s Full Moon Night, World Population Day, Sanitation Day, Plant-a-Tree Day, World DVD Day. A few years ago, I was invited to a party – World Footpath Day and White Folk threw a party because he had paved the footpath from the main road to his house.

Okay, so I made up World Footpath Day, but, the rest do exist as do World Mining Day, World Peace Day, Cancer Day, even Water Day and of course Valentine’s Day.

Early this week, an e-mail from the editorial desk at Sunday Vision popped up telling me that today has something to do with World Twins Days or something to that effect and could my column be based around that? “No!” was my intended response but I don’t think the boss - Dr. Wendo would have been amused.

What’s wrong with the world? People throw parties for trees and sanitation so now twins, triplets and quads also feel they need a party? I am sorry, but this calls for a rant because so what they were born twins or triplets? And throwing parties for trees, sanitation, mining or whatever will have the men in white coats at the doorstep.

So what next - World Prostitution Day, World Psychopaths Day, World Susu Day, World Siamese Day? Like I said at the start, I do like to party, but within reason. And while I am not a twin, even if I had been invited to the twins’ party today at Hotel International in Muyenga, I wouldn’t normally have gone.

But today I have made an exception because the thought of spending the day gawping at them and trying to guess which one is the psychopath, do they loath each other, have they ever said – “Hey that person looks just like me - they are even wearing the same clothes,” justifies a reason to party. 

Well I think it does – until the man from Butabika comes and knocks some sense into 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...