Author Archives: Eddy Karanja
I received a message on Whatsapp that read, “Have you seen this? Nakumatt are giving away 200x20000KSH vouchers. You can claim one here: http://srtlk.com/nakumatt There are still few of them left!” I did not think much about it but decided to check it out and opened the link. You are first taken through a three-question survey then it asks you to invite 10 whatsapp contacts, then enter your shipping address.
The web address itself looked suspicious and I decided to call Nakumatt and esquire about it. The lady on the other end told me that they had nothing of the sort going on and their online team was working on sensitizing people. A few minutes later I saw the exact same thing but this time they are using the name of another supermarket chain, Tuskys.
Before I get into anything more, please know that this is a hoax. I do not know what these people are up to but I can guarantee it’s nothing to do with promotions. My first guess is that they are crooks looking to acquire your info for no-so-legit reasons. What they are doing is what is better known as phishing(read as fishing).
According to Wikipedia, “Phishing is the attempt to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details (and sometimes, indirectly, money), often for malicious reasons, by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication“. exactly what I suspect is going on here.
Please be careful to give out your personal details online. It’s the new frontier for fraudsters. Before participating in any promo online or elsewhere, do a background check and be sure that you are dealing with a genuine company. It costs little to call or Google for conformation but it may save you lot.
Spread the word.
After a second encounter in the same week, I feel this is something that needs to be aired and rectified. Matatu operators have become more like robbers, taking money from Kenyans by force. What am I talking about? Here’s my story…
Monday morning. I board a matatu for town at the Roysambu round about. It’s one belonging to a company called Zuri (those living there should know them). Next to me is a lady employee of a local bank (I saw her staff ID ;)). As usual, the conductor does his rounds collecting fares from the passengers on board. I give a Ksh.500 note because that was all the money I had. The lady next to me does the same. We don’t get our change immediately but it’s understandable; he probably doesn’t have it yet and is waiting to collect from other passengers then refund us. We get to Ngara and the lady has to alight. She asks for her change but the conductor insists that he has no change. Instead of asking a fellow conductor for help and release the lady, the conductor rudely tells the lady she has to get to town for her change. She gets hysterical and starts to shout and insists that she has a meeting and is gonna be late. I tell the conductor to give her back her money and deduct both her fare and mine from what I gave him but instead he slaps the bus on the side and we are on the move.
By the time we get to town, the lady is at the point of tears. We alight. she asks for her change again. The arrogant conductor still insists that he has no change. Gives us a Ksh.500 note and some coins and tells us to share the change. Here’s my problem. The lady and I are going to different directions. It’s already 7.30am and time is running out. I decide to be the bigger man and offer to walk the lady to where she is to get her matatu as we look for change and she luckily agrees.
Today, Friday, I get into another matatu from the same company. Unfortunately, all I had was a Ksh.500 note. As expeced, the conductor had no change. Politely he says, “Boss wacha tufike town nikutafutie.” He seems like a nice guy and I oblige. We get to town. I deliberately alight last so that I get my change, but the moment my foot touches ground the bus shoots off towards the Globe roundabout with the conductor having jumped on it and leaving my hand stretched out as if I was begging.
In my confusion I forget to take down the matatu’s plate number. Luckily, another conductor from a but that was waiting to fill up comes up to me and asks if I’m OK and after telling him my story, he offers me the conductor’s number. I try to call. No answer. I try again and again, no answer. I give up. I decide to walk to Upperhill where I work.
Now I’m sitting in the office writing this post and I can’t help wondering. Who are the owners of these buses? Who are the managers at this company? Why are they employing crooks as conductors? Who protects the customers from such? I need answers. Am I that unlucky or are there others out there that have similar or worse experiences? Please comment and share your story and if anyone has the contact to that company, Zuri, Please share.
The first thing that comes to my mind is a value with no known end, and my dictionary confirms it for me. But I recently had a conversation with a dear friend of mine and it left me wondering a lot about infinity and what it means, especially in relation to my life, and yours maybe.
Allow me to ask a simple question; how many numbers are there between 0 and 1? One? Two? A thousand? The answer is that the number is relative to the perspective of whoever is being asked. In my opinion, the number is infinite. Why do I say that? Let me explain.
After zero, the next number could be 0.0000000000000000000000000……1 and there is no limit to the number of zeros there could be before it. Then follows 0.00000000…….2 where the same applies. You could go on and on forever before getting to 0.999999….9999 and eventually 1.
To be honest I don’t know why I decided to write about numbers but that should get you thinking…..or not.
I’m a great admirer of creativity and especially when it comes to cinema. It takes a great deal of brains to keep people entertained for at least 90 minutes; especially me. But that said, a trend is coming up that’s really raising concerns in my point of view. It’s one thing to make a movie based on a Bible story, but another to completely twist the story and change the whole story and meaning.
The first example that I’ll give is Darren Aronofsky‘s 2014 movie that seeks to tell the story of Noah and the flood. According to the Bible, the story behind the flood was the evil that had plagued the world and God’s regret for having made man. Only Noah was righteous man and God chose to save him from His wrath. That said, I don’t recall anywhere stone giants were mentioned, or another person that got in to the ark apart from Noah’s family. But the movie has all that. Also the name of God is really cautiously used if not at all.
Now another movie has been released this year; Exodus Gods and Kings. It’s supposed to tell the story of Moses and the liberation of the Israelites from the 400 years of slavery in Egypt. The story has been told but the attempt to give a more detailed account has completely led to the creation of a whole new story. From the conversations between God and Moses, The plagues, the depiction of God as a young boy…. and all these leaves me wondering.
If eventually all the bible stories are made into movies in this manner, will our kids know the real bible? Will Christianity still mean the same thing it meant when the disciples first received the Holy Spirit? What happened to the good old movies like The Ten Commandments, Jesus of Nazareth and the likes of those?
….to be continued…
Death is a painful thing for the bereaved but possibly the best rescue from the pains of this world-probably because I have never died and lived to tell the story. But that is not my point today.
I attended a funeral yesterday and it got me thinking a lot. In the midst of the tears, messages of condolence and everything that has to do with funerals, one thing stood out for me- the legacy the departed left behind. People with testimonies of how their lives were transformed stood to speak. Some attributed their educational success to the departed. Others talked of the generosity, kindness and love; and many more. Truly, that was a life well lived and I couldn’t help but ask myself, when all is said and done, will mine be a life well lived?
In our lives, our main goal seems to me to make tomorrow better than yesterday. We work hard at school to get the best grades so as to land a great job. Even then, after landing the job, we go back to school to upgrade our resumes and hopefuly get that promotion. We buy a home and a car, get married and have kids. Then the struggle to make it better intensifies. We start a side-hustle business to get that extra cent. Take the kids to the best schools, save up for retirement, watch our kids become independent and move out to start their lives, in the same cycle as we. We retire(that is if we are blessed to live that long), spend the rest of our days waiting for the innevitable, and when it happens, well, I can’t say what happens after because, like I said, I have never died and lived to tell the story.
On the last day above ground, people cry, some just stare and talk. But my question is, why do they cry? What do those that talk say? For those left behind, what do you live behind?
The greats of this world, the likes of Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Margaret Mathai, Dr. Miles Munroe and the rest are not remembered for how they died but for the works they did in their days on this beautiful place called earth. The movements they started, the lives they touched, people they helped….
Now when you die, what is it that you’ll want to leave behind? Is it a bankload of money being fought for? Or acres of land full of possession issues? Is a struggling family without a breadwinner or a homeless widow regretting ever meeting you? Will people cry in regret of the untapped potential in you that will never be realized? Or will they cry bitter-sweet tears, celebrating a life well lived and the loss of a great person? I now know what I would like to live behind.
In conclusion, the book of Mark chapter 8 verse 37 asks the most critical question of all; What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?
Think about is.
It’s that time of year when everyone apparently deepest in love with their special someone and I felt I have to share my feelings about the day and the events surrounding it.
Am I a believer? Yes and no. I believe in love. I believe it’s the greatest gift of God to man. I believe it’s the greatest thing for two to share.. Do I believe in this Valentine’s day craziness? NO I DON’T. No need to ask me why; I’ll explain anyway..
I do not believe I Valentine’s day for these reasons:
1. Who said that the only day you can buy roses and chocolate for your loved one is on the 14th of February? Why not 23rd May or some other random day of the calendar? Even better, why not every day?
2. What is the real story behind the day?
3. If I love someone, I’ll spend each day showing them what they mean to me; not waiting for that one day to do it.
4. I’m a realist, not a fanatic. I don’t do stuff just because everyone else is doing it. To show you love I’ll wait for they oddest and least predictable time and place. That’s just me.
Now, besides my reasons for my unbelief, I have sentiments that I believe many out there can relate to. For starters, the fact that everything is just so expensive on Valentine’s- from jewelry, to food in restaurants. Is it that people also get more money and I’m the only one left out? Or ambition the only one who gets things at double price? No kidding, I went to get my cologne and it’s price had doubled. I have to stay without till this madness is over.
Another sentiment, and this goes out to my yet-to-be-married brothers and sisters who will take advantage of this to indulge in activities that are contrary to religious morals,and even cultural ones. Don’t roll your eyes at the screen as you read this and yet you know I’m telling the truth (unless you’re guilty).
I could go on forever but I need to concentrate on other things. But my opinion is this. If you love someone, show them every day. Buy then chocolate every Tuesday. Send roses to them every Thursday. Send them a lovely message every 3 hours. Pray for them always. And love them with the love of Christ – be ready to give up everything, even lay down your life for them.
On my drive to work I saw something that got me thinking; is it right for someone with all limbs, eyes, ears and brain functioning properly to go begging in the streets at 6am for handouts? I am not hating on the poor because I know it’s not by choice for some, but some characters just tick me off.
Allow me to explain: I am sitting on the passenger seat of my friend’s car(she was so kind to give me a lift to work) then this lady comes to my side of the window and taps on it. I lower it and notice that she has a baby strapped to her back with a leso. She opens her mouth and utters, “Uncle nisaidie 20 bob nikanunulie mtoto chakula. Tumelala njaa.” I’m not shocked by the fact because I know what it means to lack; but by the pungent smell that comes from her mouth. In my head I go,”You slept hungry but definitely not thirsty,”
Now, on the other side of town is a shoe-shiner who does a marvelous job like all shoe-shiners in town, but what makes him stand out from the rest is the fact that he is visually impaired(or blind for the layman). He doesn’t rely on handouts from passers-by but chooses to earn his daily bread; and a decent living does he make from that.
This then leads to my question, what makes an able-bodied person go begging for handouts and one with disability work against the odds to make a living, no matter how small it may be? Why does one person trek all the way from Kibera to the Industrial area for a job they are not sure about and another walks all the way to to town with a plastic bowl to ask for handouts? Are some people built to work and others to beg?
I have nothing against begging-its the only solution for some; but if you are able-bodied and nit in pain, go work and earn your living. Let those that genuinely need the help do the begging. The scripture, in the book of Proverbs tells about the ant. So tiny but works so hard.
As my motto states, as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he. So if you consider yourself poor and hopeless, then poor and hopeless shall you be. I may not have a bank account overflowing with millions (yet) but I consider myself rich. And lso should anyone with the hope for a brighter future.
There is a reason, despite the fact that information is power, that I don’t watch local news-Politics. Someone said politics is a dirty game but Kenyan politics has taken dirt to a whole new level.
Let’s start with the “Okoa Kenya referendum call. Maybe I’m a little ignorant but does it make any sense? Is the motive behind it meant to benefit the Kenyan people or a select few? Will the Yes or No vote change a thing?
The other thing that really pains me is the tribal nature of our politics. Just the fact that I am from your tribe doesn’t make you the best leader for me. Authority is bestowed on one by God and that means that anyone who purports to believe in God, should respect that.
Finally, to all my Kenyan brothers and sisters, before you sign up for anything, make sure you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. The future of this nation is not on any individual’s hands, but those of the greatest tribe, the tribe called Kenya.
I get into a matatu to go to town for some errands, that happened to be playing some loud dancehall music. Not that I’m a fun, because that’s one of the genres I can’t stand; (I’m into the laid back genres of music- neo-soul, Gospel hip-hop and worship are my type of music.) and normally I prefer to listen to the music I have saved on my phone..
but I decided to listen.
The 14″ screen at the front of the passenger area was showing the videos and what I saw got me wondering. I know you’re no angel to know what I saw so I’ll explain.
Well the song playing had a give jumpy beat but the lyrics were in a language I couldn’t understand, performed by a deep-vocaled guy, but That’s not that caught me. The video was the one. I remember this scene where this girl in an outfit that barely covers a thing is vigorously shaking her ‘goodies’-you know that I mean- and the camera really focuses on those parts.
Not my point but the recent banning of some local music videos from playing like Sauti Sol’s ‘Nishike among others got me thinking.
Why do we claim that videos shot locally by our local artistes containing skimpy scenes are obscene and yet we give so much airplay to foreign ones with worse imagery? Are we protecting our youth and kids from seeing people they know doing the scene and saying that it’s OK for them to see foreigners at it? What’s the difference?
Why don’t we stop this hypocrisy and either allow or ban all “immoral” videos from playing in our air waves? Because immoral is immoral, whether local or foreign.
Well, I have been asking myself this question for a while and you won’t believe the answers I’ve got. But as a man I can’t help but ask, do we all deserve to be called men? What distinguishes men from boys?
For starters I thought to myself that the cultural rite that we pass through involving the cutting of skin in hard-to-mention organs or removal of teeth and such is what makes a man, or is it not? Then what about those that circumcise their boys at one week? Does that mean they are men from the age of seven days?
Some say that growing a beard makes you a man. Well let’s see how true that is; I met one, drunk to a stupor, wet with pee, unable to speak or walk. Quite a man, huh?
Now if drinking like a fish, irresponsibly neglecting your family, having mipango za kando and you all know the list, makes a man then I think I’m on the wrong world.
I’m not one to judge and neither do I have authority to draw the line that separates the men from the boys but I believe that character makes a man. Honesty, hard work, responsibility, resilience and above all the fear of God.
I rest my case..