Marriage has inspired so many horror stories that seeing a happy couple is like spotting money on the ground.
But that rare creature does exist; the happily married man, fully content with his status and unafraid to show it. He does not roll his eyes when his wife calls him.
He buys her flowers just because. It is impossible to interact with him without hearing about 'My Lucy'. Here are ten things happily-married men have in common:The pet names
A telltale sign of marital bliss is the refusal by a couple to use government names when referring to each other. A happily married man does not use 'Wanjiku' unless he has bracketed it with 'My' or 'My lovely wife'.
He has emojis next to her name in his contact list. If you happen to eavesdrop on their conversations, you will overhear a lot of sweet nothings being sprinkled in, a lot of pet names of the 'sweetheart' and 'darling' school of fine arts.The rabbit diet
Married men have trained themselves to smile at whatever is on the plate when it lands in front of them. Whether it is njahi or viazi/carrot, whether it is rice with a side dish of cabbage, even when it is undercooked ugali with managu, married men will wolf it down in silence.
3. The paunch
The distended belly is a prerequisite of marital bliss. As soon as you pass the first six months of marriage, you are assigned a small potbelly.
A distended potbelly is a tax that is collected at the door, the thing you trade in exchange for sanity and happiness. Just look at those skinny, withered fellas and ask them how things are going at home.
4. Home by 8 pm
Nothing says "I love my wife" as loudly as a man pulling into his driveway before the sun dips. All those tottering, grumbling men in bars are running away from the prospect of spending time with their spouses.
Do you think they actually want to watch Manchester United get humiliated every weekend? So when you see a man rushing home after work... when you are chatting with him and he keeps glancing at his watch... when you invite him to an evening of debauchery and he politely passes, that one has been carried off by cupid.
5. Varicose veins
The wedding ring is not a fun thing to wear. It has the magical effect of turning women's smiles upside down, it dares people to call you 'Sir' unprovoked, and it is a health hazard, cutting off circulation to the finger you use to hit Caps Lock.
So, when a man straps that thing on and does not take it off even when his finger starts to lose feeling, that one is in it for the long haul.
6. Clean socks
Married men have clean socks. It is one of the perks hidden within that marriage certificate, that from the moment you sign away your bachelorhood, your wife is responsible for your presentation to the world. If you dress like a hooligan, it's on her.
If you wear mismatched, torn socks, her shame will follow her for the rest of her days. Check a married man's socks. If they are clean and match his joyous disposition, that is a firm household that no Nairobi woman can infiltrate.
7. Unlocked phone
Married men have no passcodes on their phones. No fingerprint ID, and no hidden folders named 'KRA Returns'. The wallpaper is his wife's close-up photo, the M-Pesa PIN is her bust-hip measurements and the last three calls are to her, his mother and her hairdresser.
8.'My lastborn' stories
If you have ever spent enough time with a man wallowing in marital bliss, you have undoubtedly found yourself on the receiving end of countless stories about his progeny.
"Oh, my youngest slapped somebody in school today, I was so proud." "That my daughter is going to be a genius, let me tell you." "CBC will show us things! I was teaching my kids how to skin a goat the other day..."Unsolicited advice
Married men, especially the ones who are not miserable, are worse than high school motivation speakers. Because their union is one out of fifty thousand that worked out, they appoint themselves love experts, drifting through the world dishing out unsolicited advice to those unlucky singles.
10. Bursts of romance
A good sign that your friend does not despise his wife (as the men's constitution stipulates he should) is when you see him drop romantic gestures straight out of Netflix.
Picking up flowers, buying her chocolate, taking her for a stroll around Nairobi like she was just sworn in as its governor... And, of course, buying her things because 'he saw it and it made me think of you'.