CRY, OR DIE TRYING.

There’s always gonna be another mountain, I’m always gonna wanna make it move.

Crying refers to a secretomotor phenomenon characterized by the extrusion of a salty substance, tears, from our lachrymal apparatus. Nerves like to be typical middlemen, always alert and gossipy. They offer a communication channel between our lachrymal gland and the areas of the brain involved with our emotions. When we are overwhelmed by emotion, stress levels in our bodies go up and consequently ‘stress chemicals’ like prolactin, adrenocorticotropic, leu-enkephalin, potassium and manganese increase. Emotional tears are then produced from our tear ducts, which are situated under the eye-lids, as a sort of negative feedback mechanism to expel these excess chemicals. The medical term for this is to lacrimate, but this also refers to non-emotional shedding of tears.

Crying is the grandest emblem of heightened emotion. They say (or rather Tech told me) some physicists have been so overwhelmed upon beholding Einstein’s ‘E=mc2’ equation, tears of awe escaped them. The priest in my high school would spend a significant amount of effort unsuccessfully hiding his own pearly (and shameless) darlings behind his spectacles during the transubstantiation at every mass (that’s the part in a Catholic mass where bread and wine are transformed into the body and blood of Jesus). And remember Najib Balala in 2007 when he forfeited his bid for the O.D.M. party presidential candidature to support Raila? Well, I bet you remember his grand-daughter that looked like a million dollars neatly wrapped up in a beautiful Arab girl’s body reciting a poem, but that’s beside the point; more acutely, I remember Najib’s tears.

It sounds quite unmanly, doesn’t it?  To me, it even sounds absurd. However, I admire them. I admire the fact that these people have found something they love so much, it makes them lose themselves. One day I want to have tears well up in my eyes because of the objects of my passion. To take but one example- stories. One day I want to find a story online, or tucked away in an old book, or in the intimacies of my friend’s notebook, or in a book I picked up impulsively or otherwise at my book-store. I want to find a story and break down. Not necessarily because it is sad, but because it is so beautifully crafted it summons my tears.

Better still, one day I want to craft a story so splendidly reading it myself makes me cry. Now I write like… well, let’s not grade me at the moment. Perhaps I will spruce it up with Bikozulu’s easy humor. I’ll even dare to dream that with enough effort I’ll pull off cultivating Chimamanda’s notoriety for weaving out a captivating story. Then I’ll complement these with Jodi Picoult’s knack for building fabulous creative fiction from a careful research of fact- crown it all with Alex Smith’s enviable mastery of literary technique.

For stories, I want to cry, or, to die trying.

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OKASUNGORA (I brag not)

Today someone made the following comment about my status: “you so poetic”. This compliment forms the fundamental element of a profound opinion I have of life. I hope that I am able to articulate it here, to the extent to which the idea has been rooted in me over the years.

We all have flaws. Thing is, (and here I am referring to the sound-minded breed of society), we are all more aware of our flaws than anyone else is. I have my flaws, myriads. I do not wake up even at the sound of, “The house is burning! The house is burning!” I know you think I’m exaggerating, right? Right? True story, imagine. I have never met someone less aware of their surroundings than myself. It’s dangerous; you need to be me to understand just how much. (By the way short story: the people at Optica told me if I’m found walking without my spectacles they’ll have me arrested, and I still don’t wear them. I’m GEE like that! J)

Anyway, I was saying, most of us think that people have a higher opinion of us than they should, right? (I can hear you chorus back riiiight.) I know modesty dictates that we shouldn’t let ourselves bathe in this glory, but I think that people’s favorable opinion of you is something encouraging, something to be appreciated. I like when I think I’m going wrong, when I think I’m failing, and then I hear someone say, “but it’s you, you’ll figure things out.” Or when I’m stressed up about a paper and someone exclaims, “you’re stressed?! So what will the others be?” Or when I’m feeling all low-self esteem over something I have on and someone says, “stop covering that top, you always have such nice clad and then you cover it up.”

On my part, I love telling people what I find amazing about them, and I do that to detail- the way my English teacher taught me. First state your point, then expound on it, and finish with a tangible illustration. I find that that way, my sincerity is clear, and nobody will think I’m flattering them. I like the energy that one gets when they remember they are good at their IT, even though they have not been giving it much time in the recent past.

We have an automatic predisposition to be hard on ourselves on matters pertaining to the things that we are passionate about. I have a friend whose writing is beautiful, and when he gives me the pieces he finds unworthy to the public eye because he finds them embarrassing, I swallow hard and sing, “Our God is an awesome God.” (Cool how that’s an appropriate exclamation any day any timeJ) I have a friend who has banned us from complimenting her artwork, and that’s the only reason we don’t, even though when we see her pieces our jaws drop… but ni sawa tu, let her wait for the day when she’ll see tears in our eyes with our lips pursed because she has denied us all other channels of expressing ourselves. (You know how those talks about how hard it is being an adolescent always emphasize the importance of communication mpaka you start questioning if you are withdrawn even if there’s an academic list you have been topping your whole life come rain come shine- the noisemakers’ list.)

Anyway, where I come from, one can’t attempt to make a list of their friends’ strong points, even if your life’s goal is to become a scribe. (I know I’ve hurt all the scribes in the house, cue lowering head apologetically.)  At this point however, I would like to excuse myself and retreat to thinking up status updates, because the previous ones have had someone help me discover that my language is poetic. #blush. Tokasungora, I… brag… notJ.