Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Kenyans and Insults + Thank you.....

I recall a long time ago making a comment as my alter ego about the the then tendancy of many bloggers to blindly go with the flow to "seal clapping," and the major ramifications that I didn't expect.

It is during the drama that followed I think Rista mentioned that in many ways I am a quintessential Kenyan because of my insult and the way I shrugged it off as something minor,
despite the damage it did to some people's egos. But she did have a point. We Kenyans by nature are a curt people.

Have you ever been in a Kenyan matatu and listened to how the touts talk to passengers, how the driver talks to other drivers on the road? We tend to be very gruff in the way we relate to each other as a people. It goes all the way to the top, Kibaki with his "wapumbavu" , the 1st
Lady referring to ODM politicians as not having parents or something of the sort and who can forget Moi using unprintables as the press called them to refer to his cabinet.

I remember I had this group of pals I used to hang out with in uni that had both guys and chics, when someone was acting the fool we would call them a langa (prostitute). So once we were part of a conference and there were some students from Uganda who were hanging out with us. One chic was acting up and one of the dudes told her that she was being a langa. The Ugandan student asked us what that word meant and when we told her, she was shocked. For us it was nothing to write about because that was the way we were used to talking to each other.

There was this other time when I was sitting in a matatu and a friend came to sit next to me. In typical guy fashion I had my legs wide open occupying half the seat, he looked at me and said; "kwani you're pregnant? Ebu close your legs!" I looked at him, laughed and complied.

Of course this does not mean that I am justifying going around hurling insults at strangers but I think what I have made is a poignant observation about Kenyans. I think we are among the few people who go around hurling insults at friends and enemies and let them gauge the expression on our faces to tell the difference.

Moving on, if you look at the link bar of my blog you will notice a new list of links entitled "the best of the Acolyte" It is still not yet finished but what I have been doing is going through my posts of the last 2 years and putting up the best posts.

I have to be honest about one thing. My blog sucked! From 2004 to mid 2005 it sucked so bad that I should take that part out and sell it as an industrial vacuum cleaner. But thanks to Nick, Milo, Msanii, Nick and other regular visitors who gave me support and motivation I carried on and got better with time.

I also noticed many changes. I actually used to make a stab at serious blogging way back when! There is also a large amount of soccer blogging there, one would think that I am no longer a fan. In my opinion my blogging got better as soon as discovered a style and topics I liked blogging about.
Once again to those of you who used to read my blog, to those of you who are still reading it I would like to say Asante Sana!
Ps: This the height of irony, insults and gratitude in the same post!

19 comments:

Half 'n' half said...

FAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
haya, Will be back after reading,
Told you all I was addicted to blogs

Half 'n' half said...

and Seco!
Anyhow, that is true about kenyans, I remember one time our shite of an adminstrator (may he rot in hell)called a meeting to discuss how Lugha chafu kenyans in the camp had! unfortunatley our reaction was to ask him if he was crazy!
You are welcome and thank you for visiting with me always.

aegeus said...

Quite true. When i think about it we tend to be quite abrupt. The other day i walked into a shop and as is customary for me i (also a quintessentially kenyan combination of ...me i...) ask, "may i please have 2 packets of milk and a loaf of bread?" and dude gave me such a strange look. I guess we tend not to be the 'polite' kind and tend to behave 'familiarly' with strangers who we met scarcely an hour past.

Acolyte said...

@ half n half
Thanks for the support! Kenyans will be Kenyans and it is about time people got used to that.
@ aegeus
Spontaneous shows of politeness stun Kenyans.

Msanii_XL said...

Lol..truth about Kenyans and insults among friends and the like.

Btw it was never touts to passengers alone passengers were rude as hell too...

Blog lazima we read it...

joe said...

Acolyte said...
@ Gathara
At the moment all I can offer you is www.webstat.com the only problem is that you have to set the time setting on your blog exactly the sane as your account so you can pinpoint exactly who is commenting plus they dont give archives so it is best you download your visitor reports daily and save them so you can know who is hovering on your site.
ps: Kenya77 is one of Joe's aliases.

8:57 PM
i hope you are talking about another joe here could you clarify

bankelele said...

actualy i think we are very polite, helpful people and matatu crews are an exception. We only use these 'insults' with good pals who understand that we are joking, not with strangers who might reply with their fists. Oh, and when you're a paying customer, also tends to give one the right to insult!

PS: best of list is a good idea

Acolyte said...

@ Msanii
I do remember passengers would talk smack too, those were the days!
Thanks for the support.
@ joe
Wasn't reformed playa one of your alter egos and wasnt his handle kenya77?Kenya77 is the identity of the person who wrote that blog and you fessed up to writing it. Please elaborate.
@ bankelele
I do think compared to Tanzanians and Ugandans we do seem a bit curt but I do agree we dont go around insulting everyone most of the time.

joe said...

Acolyte i suggest you keep away from politiking and insinuating things you have no evidence about .wacha siasa for those being paid to siasa it might be tooo dirty for you.when things chafuka you will only have yourself to blame .

Acolyte said...

@ Joe
Do you stand by your words that you are not Kenya77?
As for siasa, I have no time for it whatsoever.

bomseh said...

do matatu touts still tell passangers to "kaa square?" i think that is a very rude remark that goes ignored by kenyans. whoever came up with that phrase! how does square sit?

coldtusker said...

Aco - Your blog sucked so bad, my eyes couldn't come...

OK... I will keep my day job!

joe boy aka NARCist aka NARCKist aka kenya77 is here...

He is like moi... the bastard never goes away!

Msanii_XL said...

Joe is threatening pple now?

I remember you admitting that was your alias

Acolyte said...

@ bomseh
I think that is the touts' call to box ourselves in or something.
@ coldtusker
I am not a politico but there is glaring evidence to connect the two but I am not going into it, the truth will speak for itself.
@ msanii
That is what I am wondering. I too remember that, I am just too lazy to search for it at the moment.

alexcia said...

Agreed we can be curt.
we love silly phrases like fala, ufala, "kweanda huko" "ishia" whcih are actually insults

gishungwa said...

I agree with you that we do that alot esp among friends. We are not polite when compared to tanzanians and ugandans we leave alot to be desired anywhoo thats us.
Kusoma tutaendela kusoma maybe late but will be here. Keep it upiqkcg

Prousette said...

After a while you develop thick skin for being called names especially in your circle of friends.

Matatu touts have had to change with the times no more kukaa square and almost throwing the passengers out at their destinations.

Girl next door said...

True! Kenyans are rather abrupt people compared even to Tzians who have politeness ingrained in their everyday language "naomba..."

It's great to evolve over time. Looking forward to reading your "best of!"

Mysterious said...

I love your blog, it's one of the many that inspired me to start my own. About your post...its so true about Kenyans and lack of courtesy. My friend and I recently talked about this topic and its a funny coincidence you wrote about it. Things like "wewe ni fala sana" are not taken lightly by other people!