It is the season to be jolly. The excitement is palpable. Jingle bells are tinkling. Drumbeats rent the air. All over, people are singing, wiggling their bottoms like lunatics in the name of dancing and feasting like there is no tomorrow.
In fact, as I hurriedly punch away and edit this magazine (from the comfort of my bed!), I can sniff the sweet scent of baking ugali, roast meat, pilau and other delicacies wafting into my bedroom (how I wish you saw how my nostrils are flaring — they now look like Kibaki’s! Gosh, let me pause and salivate!).
As I write this, someone somewhere has just cut a big chunk of steamy ugali, kneaded it into a bolus, used it to drag and scoop oily vegetables, a fatty piece of meat and thick soup and, shwap, shoveled it into his mouth!
Others are sinking teeth into choice meats and tearing into roast goat ribs; some are gulping beer in copious amounts; others are on the beaches sunning themselves like lizards, others are having a good time on their phones, gossiping and yapping away to no end. Put succinctly, the festive season is upon us.
To hell with work! The party is on. Save for Muslims, it’s livin da vida loca for everyone! Of course, the ‘grinch (those grumpy party poopers who hate Christmas)’ are sulking and cursing, “Damn it! When are these festivities ending!”
Well, when it’s all said and done, many forget Christmas is about celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. They overindulge — as if it were their birthday bash! Brethren, for crying out loud, it’s Jesus’ birthday, not yours!
Tone down the pandemonium and take it easy. Christmas is time to spare a thought for the homeless, visit the sick, feed the poor and such like activities. Not feasting. Again, remember January is a few days away.
Need I stress January blues and heavy financial demands that month comes with? Mark my words; it will be hell! Let me not belabour the point. Just ask yourself: What would President Magufuli do? Go figure.
My unsolicited advice, however, is, don’t dare travel to your village. It’s a reckless idea in these hard economic times. Doubting? Ask me. Things are so bad there, you buy a villager 300ml soda and he declares you the best candidate for governor, senator or MP post in next general election!
Just M-pesa your parents, siblings and relatives. And send them text messages, telling them you haven’t changed your mind; you still love them to bits. Alternatively, even in the city, like myself, shun Christmas and New Year celebrations.
In fact, parents, after reading this, go pay your kids’ school fees (some of it, I know you can’t afford all of it), do ‘back to school’ shopping for them and pay heavy January bills such as house rent.
Once you’re done, sit petty and just watch how these fellows running all over like headless chicken, singing Mary Christmas and Happy New Year make broke fools of themselves. Well, I know someone is reading this and scoffing, “When did this bugger become a financial expert? Ati we shun Christmas? Kajinga sana!”. Okay, go ahead and take that Sacco loan to fund your Christmas feast and make a Christmas fool of yourself. Oh, and have fun while at it. Oops! I’m getting carried away, and now sounding like a grinch, ain’t I?
In other news, we have two new columnists. After Grace Nakato took a rest, we went for Uganda’s finest. She is witty, insightful and, at times, blunt like a kick in the nuts. She is a peerless storyteller with unrivalled mastery of the queen’s language.
Her sentence are so sweet, you want to eat the newspaper. She can order a sentence to dance, and dance it does! Flip over to page 8 to see for yourself. Annett Kasiime, welcome to this family of crazy intellectuals. Bellow is yet another new column, where Nanjero, a clown who doesn’t need introduction, will henceforth tickle you as he help us laugh at ourselves. Enjoy. Follow me on twitter @tonymalesi.