It is the week after Valentine’s Day, so let us speak the truth. Whereas Thursday and Friday last week belonged to wives, official girlfriends and so on, there are gentlemen out there who are ‘community husbands.’
This phrase was made popular last year by an infamous TV anchor who was angered that her baby daddy, a loaded local businessman, who had opted to spend Christmas with his family - instead of with her and their new baby. She labeled him a ‘community husband,’ yet she was the one who has refused to accept her role as a ‘mpango wa kando.’
So, here we go, ten commandments for community husbands and their side dishes.
(i) She is the Lady of His House
Men, thou may have other woman/women other than her (watch out for herpes!), but None shall be Greater than She. This means, ladies, during holidays like Xmas and Easter, you must take the back seat (in fact, if you can, squeeze yourself into the trunk at this time, and lay low like an antelope). Ka ni Valentine’s, she is the main course, girlfriend, and you are dessert. Wait for a weekend like today to see ‘your’ Thursday Valentine.
(ii) Thou shall not have a Side Dish who resembles the Main Course
In recent weeks, a certain murder case has played out across both mainstream and social media. While we are not interested in rehashing details of the actual case, I was surprised by one detail. All three women in this man’s life - the first wife, the second (murdered) wife and the long term mpango wa kando - all resemble one another. So much so, they could be first cousins. They are all kinda light-skinned, with jug-shaped chins and bottom torsos that resemble man-sized pears in shape. The rule should be that the side dish should look nothing like your main woman. If Number One is petite, light and with slit eyes like a Chinese, then the side dish should be big, curvy, dark chocolate in complexion, with eyes as large as a frog’s.
(iii) Mentally, too, the Side Dish should never outshine Number One.
If she does, the Community Husband may begin thinking of replacing Wife Numer One. And that is a vicious cycle. So if the main squeeze is a top banker in some firm, then the MWK can be a ditzy college student or hot waitress.
(iv) Thou Shall NOT use Family Finances on Fine Women other than the Wife…
Have you taken care of the rent/mortgage, all the bills, savings and so on? Only ‘spare’ money can be used on MWK, not school fees, you foolish fisi! There is a reason why, even in novels and films, only men with money have mistresses.
(v) Thou Shall Not Let The Concubine Diss the Missus
There is a scene in Narcos (Season One) where the drug lord Pablo Escobar chokes his TV anchor mistress, Paulina, and growls: ‘Never mention my wife (Paulina) ever!’ This is after said mistress asks him if Paulina does for him ‘these things’ (in bed). Respect your First Lady! Don’t go sharing negative stuff about her to your MWK.
(vi) Thou Shalt Not Phone the Wife or share pictures with her on WhatsApp!
Many mistresses nowadays are mannerless (perhaps stemming from Rule V). They will not only call wives and say nonsense like ‘I have taken over,’ but even send nude pictures of themselves to the wife (to show how much hotter they are). One last year sent pictures of herself pregnant, complete with insults – and ended up dead, the poor foolish lass ( whom, I truly hope, will be avenged by the Courts).
(vii) Thou Shall Stay Hidden like a treasure (or dirty underwear).
There is a reason why you are called a ‘clande’ (clandestine lover). You are like a bat in a cave, and must learn to behave that way. Learn to sneak in and out of lodges -- or if he can afford to rent a place for you -- to stay put in your ‘one-man’ brothel. If you are fortunate, he takes you for weekend getaways in places even the Devil has no idea exist – like this place (in Kenya) called You Were Never Here (a nice counterpoint to a pub in Porto we once were at called ‘You Were Already There?’)
(viii) Thou Shalt Not Cheat on the Community Husband, especially using his cars or money.
(ix) There’s No NEXT level. You are not meant to graduate to Wife Number Two, have kids, etc.
(x) Guess the tenth commandment, please; and mail it to me on the address below.