AND THEN

Did I show the adaptability of O’Shea? Was I the super-sub that Solskjaer used to be? Well, I didn’t do too shabby. But credits are due to this particular kin of the groom who so ably guided us through the perilous waters of wedding ceremonials. Taking over our responsibilities on so many occasions, many observers concede he was the star performer amongst us. I stand bewildered when he would coax people into having another beer, the same people whom just a minute ago have alleged that hulum neger ale, beqa! But what did I expect? The line I approach them with is a simple min yiCHemer? said just for the sake of carrying out one’s duties; no persuasion, sweet-talk. He, on the other hand, has got a knack for socializing and for orchestrating social events.

Held against such high standards as set by him, small surprise when the bete zemed whom we were riding with in the return trip from the mels suggest, albeit in a playful tone, ager bet bihon mizewochun befilT malet neber! I can’t seem to stress this enough: I am just the temp, and a temp who loathes these occasions at that. Moreover, the other best man’s hatred of weddings has by now run from 80% to upward of a 100%.

On the same minibus, we learn that the best man who had called in sick has to be operated on. I would spend the night with him. Pethidine decides to start to wear off at around 3 AM and patient brings the ruckus. 4, 5 and 6 were him flipping me the bird and letting me in on his plans to tear skin off of his arm with his teeth and graft my mouth shut with it. He then modifies his earlier threat: the skin was going to be taken from my own arms. Kudos! Even in his drugged up state, his attention to detail was amazing. We should always keep an eye out for transplant rejection.

When dawn breaks, we try to see if music would somehow lessen the pain; boy was suffering:

I tell you, a thankless job all around 😦

It’s 20 to 5 on another day. The meeting is winding up. Vacate this place; board a mini bus after not a small amount of wait; once I am on board, there is bound to be another wait at a certain traffic jam (This is why I sometimes miss Bahir Dar. Granted, the bajajs are hard to come by at certain places and times. But once you are inside, it’s on! You hardly stop. There is only one traffic light in the city, after all. The joys of a one-traffic-light-city!) I will be going home; a home that, according to —may God rest her soul—Emama Yewodianesh, is situated in a neighborhood that used to be draped with trees and used to boast a significant number of hyenas that came out after dark. That was then. This neighborhood has now become one where the CSW’s (Commercial Sex Workers) come out after dark. All those houses that we used to refer to as ye’etiye ekelit bet, yegash ekele bet have morphed into rows of bars and pensions (or as so some signs would have it, penisions.) Every now and then, fights break out outside the nightclub next door. I am yet to chance upon one of the good fights (the one time I had the opportunity to observe, it was only drunken posturing and foul language; you would not have believed the mouth on that girl!) but I have heard next morning accounts. Peaceful nights are fast becoming a thing of the past. Talk about the Gordon generation.

Sure, we used to have beggars pass through back in the days. Now, they have set up shop on the sidewalks. There was this bunch near our house who used to pester me whenever I would pass them by. In their efforts to know the name of the person whom they were hustling for some birr, theyhad tried Johnnie and Binnie—real cool names. Those guys were supplanted by the girl with the baby and her friends before I had the chance to figure out what my response would be when they finally discovered what my real name was.

A country of hustlers, do-nothings, beggars, thieves, paper pushers, bureaucrats, lie-abeds, want-outs, screen gazers, coffee/tea cup huggers, sew mesay beshengos, mere passersby in this world in the strictest of senses, and, and, .…, more words and phrases to be added as they come to me, I wonder where we got the nerve to include so bold a verse as hizboch nen lesira besira yeqomin/yenorin? in our national anthem. It is such a farce. And don’t get me started on the myth perpetuated about fitsum Ethiopiawi Chewanet. I need to see other countries and make comparisons  to believe that shit. Perhaps one should get on an airplane to get the whole, better picture.

I guess it’s high time that we started to more strongly call ourselves on our own bullshit. And stop acting as if our ccLTD stood for extraterrestrial.

Anyway, I will be going home. The same street where I bear witness to the chicks changing colors, until my field of vision resembled a TV screen spread out over time:

And as per my new habit, home is going to be where I will spend the weekend. Not too distant are the weekends spent in the office at Bahir Dar, when suddenly in the thick of a Sunday afternoon, I would wish that I had a life. Once I had decided that I needed to get a life, a supermarket would spring into mind which, I was confident, would carry some life. But alas! The best supermarket in Bahir Dar was closed because, guess what, it was Sunday!

Oh life, where art thou?

I will be going home, where the street of fledgling debauchery is flanked by older and more infamous streets, Chechnya being one. So, assaulted as I am by sex-crazed winds blowing from all sides, amidst an experiment of dissipation, how did I manage to become a bastion of sexlessness? This was a question posed by a friend sometime ago. He went on to give the answer himself: you are the control.

Writing long meaningless blog posts is my way of disposing of all that unharnessed sexual energy 🙂 And you may have noticed it: I make sure to include at least one self-deprecatory remark in my posts. If you have hated this entry,  and then Bahir Dar  is just the thing for you; it is odious.

In conclusion,

To the convalescing fella –may you laugh and may it not hurt!

To the couple –may you work well as a unit! And please remember that I was the one –in a roundabout way—who suggested this song be included in the soundtrack to your wedding video:

I know I have been away for some time (as if anyone cares.) I promise from here on out, I am going to post more frequently –on ubuntu no less—in order to masakat the damn raey. Peace.

One

Uh uh uh, along with the track

Uh pardon me, uh, as I sign out

I am IMF, important muthafu..

I matter, what I write or do matters

(Repeat last line with ad libs until fade)

Advertisements

my goodbyes to ba da


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One

yeetiopia biherawi budin limimid. peda meda, bdu.

I don’t know if I am doing the right thing and if it is going to detrimentally affect  our chances of beating Sudan and qualifying for the African Cup of Nations.  Here are some of the pictures that we were able to take from the training session this afternoon. Later this curmudgeon/field caretaker  would come and start all kinds of trouble.

One

Shout-out to Mu’s phone 😀


let’s get thirty

My Savior did not really get to do His thing until he turned thirty.

I was born a premature baby. Not to mean I am anything special: most people are born prematurely. They burst into the scene; head first like they knew what they were doing, only to wonder later –was it the right thing to do?

So far as I know, childbirth is generally painful in only one of the millions of species on Earth: human beings. This must be a consequence of the recent and continuing increase in cranial volume. Modem men and women have braincases twice the volume of Homo habilis’. Childbirth is painful because the evolution of the human skull has been spectacularly fast and recent…. The incomplete closure of the skull at birth, the fontanelle, is very likely an imperfect accommodation to this recent brain evolution.

The connection between the evolution of intelligence and the pain of childbirth seems unexpectedly to be made in the Book of Genesis. In punishment for eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, God says to Eve,  “In pain shalt thou bring forth children” (Genesis 3:16). It is interesting that it is not the getting of any sort of knowledge that God has forbidden, but, specifically, the knowledge of the difference between good and evil-that is, abstract and moral judgments, which, if they reside anywhere, reside in the neocortex.

The Dragons of Eden: Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intelligence

Carl Sagan

Before the little digression, I was about to make comparisons between Him and I. I mean why shouldn’t I? He is supposed to be my Role Model: Very Knowledgeable. As a matter of fact, He invented knowledge.

I wish we could stop capitalizing (on) His name and instead, start and finish the day with him; have a capital day.

Me on the other hand, I have been known to be in the lookout for the knowledge; and if and when it has been acquired, to kick said knowledge (since I am in the business anyways) to anyone who wants it kicked to them. In the meantime, I have been tied down by the collective of paltry things that calls itself day-to-day life. What little knowledge I have gotten is of the sobering and frustrating kind:

I’ve learnt the voice of new ambition

I’ve learnt new sadness but in this

the first will never find fruition

the earlier griefs are what I miss

o dreams , o dreams, where is your sweetness?

where (standard rhyme) are youth and fleetness?

can it be true, their crown at last

has felt time’s desiccating blast?

can it be  true, and firmly stated

without an elegiac frill,

that spring with me has had its fill

(as I’ve so oft in jest related)?

Can it be true, it won’t come twice-

and I’ll be thirty in a trice?

Eugene Onegin. Alexander Pushkin

Yes, He (I mean he) performed a host of miracles after the year thirty and told us that we could do the same with the littlest of exertions. Well, the only miracle I have got to my name is the courage to get through most of my shitty days without alcohol. Let the record show that I concede that I have got ways to go before I can be called an accomplished drunk; before I turn into someone who constantly fights the urge to break the looking glass, kill the messenger like. I am not sure which of the feelings shown below I can ascribe to myself:

My troubles

Forces of nature, air and water

I looked to thee for this exorcism

But sighing,  yawning could not cut it

They stayed inside

I was left out in the cold

Maybe another try

Stretched out my arms, for the wind to take them

Away like the chaff they are

They insisted on their importance

We are the grains you see!

Let’s see, if trying to drown you

Might work like a charm:

a.      For all their weighing me down

They remained afloat

b.      It gave us a well-deserved break

My troubles and I both

They returned well-rested, stronger

c.       By-and-by

The din died down

Laid me down, the bed with

Its aura of wake up!

It was time ages ago

Unbeknownst to them, they wanted me to dance sans alcohol. Very happy that he got married–a very cute couple!–will sure miss him around the house, but oh,  for fuck’s  sakes, stop asking me to join in the dance! I fucking hate ale gena ale gena* , stop pushing me to the center of things! I can’t handle all this (imagined) attention that you have lavished upon me; and my sister.

I am happy but don’t force my smile. Don’t try to remind me that next year, it’s my turn ass because it is not. What part of “gidibu siyalq new yemagebaw.” are you having trouble comprehending?

* Still, you gotta give it up for TSegaye Eshetu for doing a one-eighty,  going from the sad, hod yemibela tone of lesergua teTerahu torecording 15+ minutes long, phew!, wedding songs for the bride, the groom and the crowd to get their groove on. I presume he is still in the same wedding from years back. But he is just drunk and decided to say fuck it, I will get the party jumping!

Zoom in on the bride and the groom. Boy oh boy!  (and girl oh girl!  too. I mean, we have to be gender sensitive. Kind of reminds me of what one guy said on a conference. Jesus was the one who introduced affirmative action; to wit, after he came back from the dead, it was Mary Magdalene whom he first revealed himself to) critical acclaim!!  They, along with their posse, are enjoying their day as it is supposed to be enjoyed. They raise the bar so high for posterity. My bro gets on stage with his wifey, grabs the mic, mizewoch on the guitars, percussion, …, speakers play this song twice, by popular demand. I used to hate the song. But ever since the wedding, I can’t get enough of it:

Tesfaye’s song reminds me of my sister’s wedding and Betty, she is just singing my life:

And so, as the comedy goes, sininesa and fishale ena and shiguT bicha neber yizen yetenesanew. Thirty years later, we are still as fucked up, confused and afraid to act as we were back then. We still need stuff to be converted to filename.tib (Tibebe format) in order to get the hang of them.

They make sure to find ways of letting you know that you are getting older. Twice in the past year have I been told in public places that youth encompasses ages 15-24, implying that I can’t attend such and such gathering. Your loss! Plus that sporadic single white hair on my beard deigns to reintroduce itself on the week of my birthday, just to spite me.

Taken on face value, turning thirty may not seem like that big of a deal — it is just the thing to do after twenty nine; just another year. But once it descends upon you (yes, descends), I tell you, you would be hard put to know what to do with yourself: run for cover or figure out the right-colored wire to cut. It is like a countup:

Regardless, I keep on moving, take the bomb with me.  I can do thirty more of these, easy!

I keep on moving, change or no change. Truth be told, there is change. My other bro and his wife tried to give me a makeover, physical and mental. The jury is out on the outcome of the latter. But as far as attire are concerned, it felt like I was behind green and yellow (like the sites of new construction that one would find in Etyopia);  and when they were finally done with me, I was looking as dapper as the pigeon below:

Turning thirty is so stressful. My advice to you, don’t try it! The post celebrating your thirtieth birthday, you would want it to be so perfect and meaningful, that you ruminate for two months and you come up with this hideous motley thing. But it sure feels great to get rid of residual thoughts.

One

It looks like I will be moving back to Addis Abeba after a stint of three  odd years in Bahir Dar. No surprises there. All this time, my clothes were in the luggage they came in:

Previous Older Entries

wordpress statistics
%d bloggers like this: