Men and Women of Letters

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7

A girl from USIU shows up at our office to interview me. She’s a brown, fragile-looking girl with a thin smile and laughter that can’t fit in her fist. Joy Ruguru. She’s wearing these round-toed flat shoes and somewhat rose-tinted spectacles. She says she’s a big fan. She says “thank you for meeting me,” again. And again. She’s fidgety, perched on the edge of her seat ready to bolt at the first sound of a banging door. She never puts her purse down, cuddles it in her lap like an ill pet. She does  Business IT in uni but that’s not her passion. She wants to write. Out comes two phones, the first one is a white IPhone 6,  where she has structured a bunch of intimidating questions that she plans to pelt me with. (I’m shaking in my socks). She’s at that lovely stage where they write questions down the previous night and studiously mull over them and internalise them. It’s charming how she looks at her questions almost in awe. The other phone looks like something that fell off Pluto.

She’s nervous as hell.

So I do what you would do; I start joshing. She bursts into pockets of brittle laughter so sharp they can crack a wine glass.  Fred walks into the office carrying a donut. Fred hardly ever eats. He’s as waif as a rail. So him carrying food is a sight to behold. I suspect he will eat that donut the whole day and then not eat anything again until the next day at dinnertime. I introduce them: “This is Joy and she is here to interview me.” I think Fred is envious, even though he’s the one holding a donut.

I want his donut. I duck to the next room and fetch myself one from one of Fred’s girls – Charlene – who is trying to lose weight but then some secret admirer sent her a boxful of Mr. Donuts. (And you say Nairobi men are not romantic?) I take a bite and offer one to my nervous interviewer in her snub-nosed shoes. She takes a modest bite because a lady doesn’t open her mouth too wide and politely hands it back. I take another bite and offer her back. She takes another small bite and we sit there chewing and saying how awesome that donut is. Traditionally this is called breaking bread but today it’s called breaking ice.

I crack some silly jokes. I have many silly jokes when you catch me on a good day. And she has. She giggles heartlessly. Nervousness slips down to her round-toed shoes. (OK, fine, I like her shoes) She says she can’t have more donut but whenever a chick says she can’t have more of something sweet like a cake or a muffin she probably means she wants more but she shouldn’t have more because it’s not good for her waistline. So I tell her, “Come, don’t spoil this special moment, finish that off” and she offers a resigned look and takes the remaining donut. See? She wanted more.

She sets up her voice recorder on her IPhone and looks at her questions and sighs and says how nervous she has been whole day and how she feels relaxed now. (Donuts are good for nerves). I want to tell her not to write that winning BAKE was a ‘dream come true,” like they reported in the newspaper but I figured saying that would make her nervous and we don’t want that after sharing a donut. She looks down at her questions and with a held breath she asks, “ Did you see yourself getting here with the blog when you started?”

And that’s a decent opening question. Even for someone with snub-nosed shoes.

Six years ago when we (yes, si we are a family now?) started this blog, Thika Road wasn’t even a highway. Fashion blogging wasn’t a thing yet. Selfies were unheard of. Yoga hadn’t moved to Kileleshwa. Sauti Sol hadn’t started removing their shirts. In fact, Nerea hadn’t even gotten a boyfriend yet, let alone getting pregnant. Folk ate carbohydrates. Instagram was an infant. Vanity was only evolving. Fast. Here, we called this blog High School because we were young and impressionable. We met here every Monday. And we were unhinged. We laughed (still do) and sometimes we got sombre. We didn’t really know what we wanted from each other, but it felt good to meet here on Mondays and have a tickle and a giggle. And nobody gave two shits on who commented first.

We had guys like Kibidubidu whose comments you had to read with a dictionary. Kina Kimutai in his kitenge. Then we blossomed. We graduated from High School and came here and even more people came on board.  Interesting folk for the most part. And when we gave Jadudi a hand we knew that this shit here isn’t for just laughs, that we would step up to the plate when we wanted to. We had become a family; diverse, opinionated, respectful and still fun.  Even the names became louder – kina Peter Wesh. Some with three names: Caroline Achieng Otieno. Kina Cliff the Tall, who I’m sure isn’t even thaaat tall. Kina Anitah and Mwaura Mswati, an admirer of King Mswati, I suppose. There were also a bunch of commenters who hide behind monikers. And then the thousands of ghost readers who came in quietly, read and went back to their spreadsheets and day hustle. Online phantoms. We became lovers of the word. We became men and women of letters.

So did I know I would get here? No. Not in my wildest dreams. Because all I wanted to do was write.

You might already have known that we took the Best Creative Writing Blog again this year, fourth year running. (Someone please light a “fatakra”. Haha.) And that we also took home the Best Kenyan Blog 2016, second year running. That the good Lord of Abraham keeps standing over us. And that you guys keep supporting me. And voting. And being good sports here.

What’s going to happen is that I will go to a bar and someone is going to buy me a bottle of whisky as a congratulatory token. And I will drink it. But of course we all know you made this happen, so I will drink to each of your good health until either I keel over into my fish fingers or someone holds me by the elbow and whispers in my ear, “Chocolate Man, I think maybe you should go home.” Then I will sober up, because you don’t want a man whispering anything chocolate-y in your ear.

I’m trying to say thank you, Le gang. I appreciate it.  

Some readers are always asking me why I never comment on comments. I think it would be crazy to comment on every comment, no? Think about it.

But today I will. I will respond to every comment. Ask me a question, any one question, and I will respond. Because we are celebrating. And because here we beat stories, yeah?

Peter Wesh, you wanna go first?

No, Cliff The Tall. Tell us, just how tall are you that you have to call yourself Cliff the Tall?

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1,066 Comments
    1. She never puts her purse down, cuddles it in her lap like an ill pet.
      Well done Biko. I love your work. I love that it has heart and soul and is still funny too.
      Live long Sir!

  1. I have no question just here to thank you for making my days bright with your “wicked” sense of humor and amazing story telling skills. Cheers to many more…..

    1
      1. @astrah He tends to get over himself and entirely loose the plot this guy.

        @ Biko Good on you mate. So .. What did it come with this time… A trophy and some flowers only..???

        Mater heart run is a challenge btw.

  2. I love love your posts.At least they make my days joyous enough and keep me in check whenever my boss decides to ruin it.On Saturday I so looked forward to see the face behind this funny posts
    Funny because I always find one thing to make me laugh.
    So Niko when do I get to meet you and I’m serious.I even offer to buy that whiskey bearing in mind that I don’t drink.

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  3. I am of the silent ghosts that comes and crawls back into my vegetable patch. I look forward to all your articles and the old ones too. Balm to the soul.

    1
  4. Your blog makes me happy. You and Wanja Kavengi share the blessing of a big forehead, Maybe one day you can have her pen something?

    1. No shade, but i think thats all that wanja and Biko have in common.I have tried many a times to read her rants and tire shortly after. I

  5. How did you begin your journey to writing? What inspired you to do so? Was there any fear of the unknown? Fear of failing? What was (and maybe still is) your biggest motivation?

    1. I lost my job and started a blog. Fear? Fear still lives up to this day. Motivation? To touch someone. Not in that way, Peter!

      2
  6. Why don’t you show up for BAKE AWARDS chocolate man? I personally want to see which shade of chocolate you are.

      1. @clara he never will come… He thinks annonymity is cool, unfortunately he got too old to Have an animated persona like the gorrilaz… There’s an idea.. Maybe the guys at the office aren’t even real…

  7. You have a way of making online phantoms visible. Always waiting for the Tuesday Notification. Thank you Biko.

  8. Cingratulations Biko … And by extension the gang!!! this win is ours!!! ((And the Nairobi Grammar too 😉 ) I cant believe I have been doing this for six years!!! How time flies!!! 😀 Back then I was a phantom but now I’m a person who comments!!! Cheers to building greater memories with this family. Glad to be part of the gang. God bless you Biko…. Keep writing, and we will keep reading and also voting!!

  9. biko will you lend or rather bless me with two of the books tgat give u a hangover every time you think of them.

  10. Well done….i am one of the those will will read and get back to my spreadsheet and hustle. You’re gifted in this..Keep it up…
    .

    1. Of course. I do. The other options is fishing. So yes, this is better. Not that fishing is bad. I like fish, fish is good, but it’s just that…OK, you know what I mean.

      1
  11. Every Tuesday I cannot hide behind my spreadsheet before reading the blog. Thank you Biko its a privilege to read your works. I tried blogging when I was still wearing overalls in River Road but since I started using spread sheet my mojo disappeared. How can i get it back Chocolate Man? Damn I need a cool nickname like yours.

    1. First, stop using the word mojo. 🙂 No, but you will get this “mojo” if you start again. The hardest part is starting. Good luck.

          1. Thank you BZ, when I finally write it I will post it here in the comments section, hope you will still be reading comments.

            @Mufasa hehehe Mufasa is no cool name

        1. Mufasa is that Lion King’s brother,Donge? the bad lion that killed the brother the king so he could be the king.

  12. Your way with words make my Tuesday(blog) and Saturday(paper). Thank you. Has your marriage,your wife, been a strong pillar of your writing?

  13. im in the category that reads and goes back to their hussle but with a smile….thank you for making our Tuesdays chocolate man and congratulations on the win

    1. Yeah Ann, reading and going back to hustle with a smile. Others find it very hard to do. They read, stay on reading and replying to every comment…..haha

  14. Congratulations Biko
    I am one of those phantom readers who whizz by…and please comment on this comment…I need the screenshot to show off

  15. Awww. To the gallant women and men of letter, may you always find the words to tell grateful next stories and may we, the readers, always find piecemeal solace in the few minutes that we take to be regaled by your words. Barikiwa sana

  16. That newspaper part they said you said it was a dream come true, I knew they lied because we were with you all the while the event was going on and I didn’t hear or see you talk or look like you had just said that to a reporter. And then again I figured out a fourth straight win cannot be a drram come true unless you want to be a Ronaldo or Messi.

  17. So I have always wanted to drop you an email but I think I will just ask you right here.Do you think you were as good as you are now when you started? How do you maintain the discpline of posting every Tuesday? What drives you? OK those are many questions :)…..

    1. I don’t know if I’m as good as I am. That’s a big debate. But of course when I started I was more unhinged because fewer people read. Now there are more things to consider, growth comes with some responsibility.
      Discipline? Rent is the best discipline. 🙂

      1
  18. Your way with words make my Tuesday (blog) and Saturday (paper). Thank you. Has your marriage, your wife, been a strong pillar in your writing career?

  19. The problem with having standard names, no mentions…anyone feel me? no?
    Congratulations Chocolate man and a toast to the gang

    1
    1. Hi Emmah Njoroge, I feel you. What year is it?

      Bikozulu telling ‘stories we could tell with our eyes closed’ and making them count. I still visit that article called ‘Black tie.’ because a part of me still mourns, I kind of yearn for a continuation or just a few more paragraphs that explains what happened after, but then again I bet the ending was supposed to elicit such feelings.

      You rock Chocolate man, I was a fan (or still am) of book reviews, can we get more of those?

  20. Congrats Mr B:) even before I logged on to vote for you,I knew you’d win…but then again do you even have compe???Thank you for always putting a smile on my face:)

  21. Congrats yet again Chocolate man. I wrote you an email yesterday – I hope you got it 🙂 Keep up the good work.PS. I’d love to read the final article from Ruguru about you…

  22. The girl with round-toed shoes, yes, that one from USIU that munched on the donut. Did you get her number? Did she write her story? But why am I kidding? A toast your highness, keep writing!

  23. so Q and A day it is. chocolate man, So why didn’t you show up at the BAKE Awards. Some of us wanted to see a forehead so much talked about.

  24. Wow so today am here top 10!lol…Congratulations Biko.I would love to see that pair of snub-nosed shoes.Your blog has not only being educative but inspirational too.Keep doing what we you doing man.We will be following behind the scenes.For all the lives you have transformed be blessed chocolate man.The forehead may become smaller.lol..

  25. Hi Jackson,
    I’m one of the readers who come in quietly, read the current post and go back to my spreadsheets.
    I started off by reading your columns on the daily nation after Oyunga Pala took a hiatus (my mum detests the poor bloke – university mates) and I must say I was enthralled by your diction and I decided to give your blog a go when you started writing it.
    I have two questions – can you give me an assurance that you shall keep writing for the foreseeable future and keep aside some tales to regale us with in case, God forbid, you swing over to the other side?
    Cheers.
    PS: No ill will meant

  26. i loved writing back in the days(read:high school) but never had the guts to let anybody read my day to day life as seen through my eyes.Reading your blogs always transforms me to a place i only wished i worked hard to be.Perhaps,maybe just that one day..this person in me will ‘come out’.Thanks for being you.

  27. Congrats Biko! Your stories make me move my weight from leg to leg to hold the urine back!! I must complete the read first;other things can follow, like a call of nature….haha

  28. I just love your writing, the plan was to read 2 lines then come back and read the rest(because have a deadline)…I have finished reading it(will tell the boss deadline was not met and its Biko Zulu’s fault!) I have one Q – what kept you going at year 1,2,3,4 when you wrote and wrote but no one really knew about you?

  29. Hahahaha. Biko lol. Boss i am very tall. I am 6’5. If that is not tall enough then i do not know what that is hehe. Short people avoid me like plague because i ’embarrass’ them with my height . Congratulation for winning that Bake ‘Okombe’ hehe. Long live Le gang.

  30. “Because all I wanted to do was write”. I like this statement Biko. Because it makes me believe that you would still be writing even if no one gave a shit about your blog or what you write. Like if we all never existed. Right? Well good for you – that’s what we call passion Gang – and you little Tamms and Missus. And congratulations too! 2nd year in a row! I bet you rubbed your ka-forehead kidogo at the news, did a ‘twisty’ dance (are you that old?) and even felt important and all! Even made a dirary entry ‘Mama I made It’ haha. Did you get nervous when they called your name? Sweaty palms? Too many questions I guess. But I am sure you had a witty speech hidden somewhere in your pockets. Now that I am a lover of the word, I’ll simply say cheers to many more amazing stories!

    1. Passion is what drives writers, good one. but Biko’s forehead is not a ka-forehead, its is a ki-forehead…haha

      1. Wesh, I sneaked through your blog and sure you are such a great writer too!You will be my new Junior Biko!I am struggling though to subscribe, please welcome your newest fan!

  31. Congratulations Biko. Le Gang is proud of you.
    Can I offer to be editing your pieces before you publish them? ☺☺So that am among the first to read, too. It is a free service.

  32. Long live Biko, thank you for making my Tuesday’s awesome. Congratulations for the win!
    `certified ghost reader

  33. “someone light a Fatakra”…..I fell off my couch LMAO (didn’t expect you to know what a Fatakra is to be honest!)…… you are as good as ever Biko. Keep it up!

  34. Gang power!! We are proud of you chocolate man. For some of us who don’t get pizza every Tuesday, we come here to plant our literary teeth in the musings here. Plus I was mentioned…sign that my forefathers still want me to meet you to ask whether you changed your password from ginene1. So when can I meet you? I promise I bring you a donut if it will please your forehead…

  35. Well I’m not a ghost reader anymore Biko ,and I voted for you 🙂 I’m glad you won….so Biko..would you hold a party for your gang? I’d love to meet you 🙂

  36. If this doesn’t get me out of the closet; probably nothing ever will.I love your way with words. You are all kinds of amazing. Congratulations on your well deserved win and please continue wowing me.

  37. Hi Biko my auto correct insists you should be Niko. Do you believe in the God of Abraham like you stated? Then do take Him a token of appreciation on behalf of le gang “phantoms” chapter. That would make many of us truly happy and continue praying and thanking God for us. Will you do that? You can even go to Kongoro’s or Gabantu’s church in case you have non of your own that you are loyal to and they keep you on the straight and Narrow. We pray for you.

  38. Your stories make our day in the office. You should see us in the office and we are government officers. The minute your story checks in and one person notices, everything is put down and a mail is sent through lotus to check out your blog. And within minutes you start hearing chuckles and laughs from every cubicle. Thank you Biko for making our day from the government office. And for the taxpayers that come on Tuesdays to be served at around 11- 12 and we have left you waiting we are sorry but we will continue keep you waiting as we read Bikozulu first.

  39. Being one among the thousands of ghost readers who come in quietly, read and go back to their spreadsheets and day hustle, I have to stand up tall and say “Biko you are amazing”. Thumbs up Biko…

  40. I was almost disqualified for a communications internship position sometimes in 2014 for not knowing you.The comms’ manager for that organization could not understand how a communication student fails to Know Jackson Biko’s and his blog. My first assignment was to know you and read “Visa Denied”.Since then I have never turned back.How long does it take you to write an article?

        1. Nobody knows everything but everybody knows Biko.Not knowing Biko is actually a crime in Kenya,look it up!

          1. Please tell her… 😀

            Now y’all are turning this into some kind of a cheer leading thing but its okay. hahahahah

          2. surprisingly,we were 4 interns and only one had an idea,infact she had just heard about him and knew nothing about his blog.so please do’t be soo hard on me Ivy

          3. On a light note Mugure…we don’t always have to know people(well unless it’s Biko of course:)))

  41. My best ever of your work was where you tore into the Brits for their arrogance and denying you the chance to see the [mighty] Thames. I still re-read it over. Did you ever go?

    1. Hahaha…I kinda remember that one…does Biko almost get arrested by a lady cop due to something drink related?

  42. Wow!Congratulations Biko (and the Gang). You write wonderfully well,therapeutic reads (from the laugh). What has happened to Joy Ruguru’s Interview now?

  43. hooo… did you have to mention the spreadsheets…. i am a spreadsheet lady and my father once told me to go to school to be able to understand shit like CAPITALISATION n now i do… congrats Biko.

      1. Actually both spellings are fine. Capitalisation is British, which is what our Kenyan School systems teach, while the Capitalization is US.

  44. I’d love to try my take, and maybe guest blog on the best Kenyan blog? Should i just drop you an email? Speaking of which what is your email? Of course assuming you answered the first question in the affirmative? Then maybe i can take over from where Joy from USIU left off?

  45. I did not watch the awards but I followed online and know “we won” so here is my question: Did you pick up the award in person?

    The answer to this will determine if I go photo hunting just to see your forehead.

  46. Congrats Biko. We’ll keep reading as long as you keep writing. I’ve always wondered, what does a guy like you read when you want to get out of your head for a bit? Not that anyone would want to get a break from that, your mind is probably a very interesting place to be…

  47. Thank you, especially on those tough days when you just need a laugh. You always come through. You deserve the awards.

  48. The other day, my dad asked me who stand’s out for me as a father? I said Biko…Zulu. Isn’t that guy dead already, he asked. Dad, I am not talking about Steve Biko from South Africa. I am talking about Tamm’s Dad. Who is Tamm’s? Some girl from Nairobi, and No his dad is not my sponsor. He is a writer and I read about him every Tuesday. What has he given you so far? He’s freed me to be vulnerable in my writing. Which newspaper does he write in? he asked. I read his blog mainly not his articles in the newspaper. What is a blog? Dad I am sorry , I need to run. Wait isn’t today tuesday? Tell me what he writes… Biko, your writing has an after taste that makes me coming back for more.

    1. I stand out as a father? Goodness. I struggle with it. Some days I suck so much I think, these kids are screwed! But thanks! And thanks for the vote of confidence and for reading. Say hallo to your old man.

  49. “Traditionally this is called breaking bread but today it’s called breaking ice.”

    And then they continued breaking the ice with the donuts… 😀 😀

  50. I look forward to Tuesday! Thanks for making me laugh so hard! Also your I made a new friend because of you… one time my neighbor knocked on my door to see why I was so cracked up… I sent her a link to your blog..now we sip tea on Tuesdays and talk about you. Congrats on the win

  51. Biko,

    Mine is to say thank you for making Tuesday’s count! I mean, all other something going for them..MCM, WCW, TBT and the other one for Fridays. I am sure Tuesday looks at you with a lot of affection for making him count 🙂

  52. First, congratulations chocolate man. You mesmerize us with your words and the least we can do is vote for you;aside from praying for your zeal to continue. When are you writing a book for the gang to buy?

  53. Great job Biko. Question? Do you ever fear that maybe you reveal too much of yourself when you write coz there are posts you get figuratively naked before the gang. Does that ever scare you and feel like aiii, this is too much?? Or your camera avoiding ways affords you the anonimity to get persona?

  54. But does it maybe mean there are no better writers? Or Le gang is just too loyal to let another win? 4 years running without a running mate? Hehe
    I’ll still religiously walk in here like a ghost with every post anyway.

  55. Congratulations Biko….when going through some of the pictures taken during the award, I was also trying to find you! Unfortunately never saw any conspicuous forehead! Were you there?

  56. Congratulations. I started reading when my sister did a fatherhood story sometime back and Ive not stopped since then. Keep up the good work and the good reads that keep the laughs and tears coming.Do you think your kids will write in future? Do Tamm’s compositions look like she has the gift?

  57. You are welcome, Biko. I am in the category that hardly comments due to annoying spreadsheets. Congratulations to you for the win and for being a good sport by giving me my weekly dose of sanity. Keep up the good work!

  58. Biko, I’m one of the ghost readers who comes quietly, read and go back! Smiling and sometimes laughing out loud without telling my colleagues what’s funny (personally I hate it when someone laughs alone). Recently I read somewhere that it’s bad manners to laugh alone and not let people in on your secret. Now I do tell them about this blogger from home… and they love your blog too. It’s my prayer our good Lord keeps you motivated as I would wish to let in my children on this blog that keeps me laughing alone in the car on my way home. Merci…

  59. Congratulations Biko, you blog bring so much sunshine into my life. Wish I could read a piece of yours everyday. Question, is your life as perfect as it is portrayed?

  60. Congratulations Biko!!!

    Have you ever deleted any of your blog posts? Can I manage to re-read all your posts since you started the blog without missing anything? You know like an old book?Six great years, I have been here all through, never commented.

  61. Your pieces are always entertaining. Question, what was she writing for because I would like to read someone else’s thoughts on you. Is there a link or something?

  62. Congrats are in order, may you continue to be healthy, loved and inspired enough to keep entertaining us with your well crafted words

  63. Well, no questions here but a big thank you for making Tuesdays worth it. Today I raise a toast to THE Chocolate Man. Here’s to BAKE 2017 and many, many more!

  64. it’s hard to believe that all this talent would have gone to waste you know, analysing waste. considering what you schooled for?
    Wish everybody could just do what they are passionate about, including myself. The world would be one happy place.

    1. We should be grateful to the guy who was courageous enough to fire him or run the company he was working for down!

  65. Congratulations on the win. I am one of those phantoms but today I
    decided to comment.
    I love this blog.

  66. Congratulations Biko. Am one of those phantom reader. We wish you many more to come and every year we hope to raise a glass to creativity that makes productivity possible. Cheers

  67. Hey…Congratulations for you and your gang for your..Question…Did your loud friend from Seme ever respond to your “Onge pielo oko e pap e gwengni” whatsapp message that you sent him? I have always wondered what his response was!

  68. biko i have always had so many questions for you but today i am blank! let me get breakfast then maybe return with one at the very least. Otherwise, shukran sana kwa kutufurahisha kila juma.Maulana akustiri.

  69. congrats biko zulu.
    Great achievement.Your blog always makes me look forward to Tuesday mornings.keep it up

  70. Hi Biko. First, congratulations! Question.Do you feel constrained when writing for a magazine? You always sound reserved on DN. Next, are we (we are family remember) past the oyunga’s shadow? Final.Do you mentor someone who will take over the blog or forsee anyone who will command such a cult following on creative writing? You were once touted as “the guy who replaced oyunga” ( we are past this I presume),won’t you be kinder to the next guy through mentorship?

  71. Hi Biko. I feel like a child on Christmas day or my birthday when i get the bike I have being begging for by washing utensils and working my ass off in school. I have too many questions and I am too excited to actually settle them into actual words. Therefore all I will say is that your writing has inspired me. It has challenged me. It has moved me with emotions I never thought I had. The way you take the reader through the story is almost magical. Anyway, thank you Biko. Congratulations on the awards. One thing I would like to ask is whether you will have a book compilation of your blog posts or is there a book already?(I could be ignorant…hehehe)I didn’t start with you six years ago but what I know is that your stories as entertaining as they are also take as through time and events as you described in your article. ( Nerea’s boyfriend…really lol) I would wish to tell my grandchildren of mohawk the lion or of the times when jogging in karura forest was the in thing. (Hopefully it will still be there). So Biko…a book?

  72. Hi Biko. Thanks for making Tuesdays better than Mondays. Are we going to know how the rest of the interview went or this was it from the brown, fragile looking girl?

    1. Arrrh, don’t get me going on Kabalagala and Ggaba Road. Don’t even get me started. Nostalgia, Jacquei. Mad.

  73. You are an inspiration to me. You have inspired my infant blog,nancynjokablog.WordPress.com in ways you cannot understand. In case you find time in your busy schedule you can check it out. Thank you for helping me step out of my comfort zone and do what I love.

  74. Very well done Chocolate Man. My Tuesday commute on the underground train is more bearable because of you. Keep them coming….

  75. Congratulations, as always its a pleasure to get your notification, minimized the spreadsheet immediately.

  76. I always wait for the Tuesday email notification and the one day I was so sure I would be first to comment, my phone was stolen. Congratulations Biko, it was well deserved (Refers to Outliers). See you one day at master class.

  77. “And then the thousands of ghost readers who came in quietly, read and went back to their spreadsheets and day hustle”-that’s me,congrats !

  78. intimidating questions that she plans to pelt me with is that what you give your guests?intimidating

  79. I am one of those thousands of ghost readers who come in quietly, read and go away. I enjoy reading you!!Thank you

  80. you got talent man. It took me so long to get to know this blog, but i am here now a life member of the so called gang. Thanks to one Charles Mureithi for leading me here, it feels like home, maybe it is.

    1. It is, Nico. This is home. Karibu. Take a seat. How many sugars will you have with that tea? Screw tea. Whiskey?

  81. Mmmmh, what do i say? Congrats is not enough………thanks for bringing the real emotions out of me, especially when you write about death. My dream was to write but ended up in Finance and Investments, but i like reading what you write because that is how i would want someone to communicate to an audience like me.

  82. Yangu tu ni kusema wazi mzito. Keep going. I’ll keep reading and please tell Nation wawache jokes. It is so hard to find your Sato and Business daily articles online sometimes.

  83. Congratulations Biko, it’s a pleasure to have read your work for the past six years. We are proud of you.
    When will you write about the Misuss? We are familiar with Tamms & Kim.

  84. The thing about a gift is that its always a commodity…a best seller actually. Message from Phantoms United.

  85. Sometime back you told us theres a woman who said she was sent to you by God. Now do you see why even God is thanking you? You make people happy. You are the only good thing to come out of social and print media in Kenya. Everything else is political horrors. Thank you.

  86. Hey biko. True, it would be so crazy to reply to every comment but today we are celebrating so i hope you reply this. Did you get a fake tooth (or you ain’t modelling any time soon) and finally did you succumb to temptation and read Tamm’s diary?

  87. Congratulations Biko.you deserve nothing but the best. Thank you for always being an inspiration and recommending goodreads for me once in awhile. That brings me to the question; what is your current read?

  88. I’m one of those who wait for this every Tuesday, read and disappear without a word…it’s mean but we appreciate your work. Congrats Biko.

  89. Thank you for always making my Tuesday( Blog) Biko atleast i get time to have a laugh with my colleagues. I introduced them to your blog and that automatically made me the coolest kid in the block…so yeah thanks a lot and keep up the good job…

    1. How big is that block, Chechi. It doesn’t matter anyway if you are still cool. Thanks for reading and sharing.

  90. “Ask me a question, any one question, and I will respond.” Biko it is inadvisable to have such a blanket provision. When a girl says i can do anything it normally leads to a happy ending. Lets hope this loophole is not exercised

  91. Your writing inspires me Bicko. I’m a trained journalist fresh from college and is currently at JKUAT, running the University official blog.First time I discovered your blog I spent the whole day reading, and reading, and getting challenged.It was great, thrilling and refreshingly good. Almost better than winning a Sportpesa jackpot. Almost. Hope to meet you one day and have a chat over coffee (that I hereby offer to pay for). Anyway just know that beyond the writing and entertainment, your writing is making massive impact in the society. It’s touching lives, and isn’t that a writer’s biggest goal and motivation? Cheers Wuodmin! This is to long life and greater things to come.

  92. Congratulations Biko,
    Just how big is your forehead anyway?
    Your writing reminds me of the literature lessons, my all time favorite!!
    Can I subscribe to getting the books you want to dispose?

  93. I have been a faithful reader and stalker of your articles , It’s only your work on Msafiri that I don’t read…. Because I don’t do KQ. Biko you have influence with your pen, I visited Pinklake man because of a review you did on this blog, remember? And that Facebook chat we had on my experience on the visit has never been deleted. I still insist, you need to write a book…… Any hopes on that?

  94. Your writing inspires me Bicko. I’m a trained journalist fresh from college and is currently working at JKUAT, running the University official blog.First time I discovered your blog I spent the whole day reading, and reading, and getting challenged.It was great, thrilling and refreshingly good. Almost better than winning a Sportpesa jackpot. Almost. Hope to meet you one day and have a chat over coffee (that I hereby offer to pay for). Anyway just know that beyond the writing and entertainment, your writing is making massive impact in the society. It’s touching lives, and isn’t that a writer’s biggest goal and motivation? Cheers Wuodmin! This is to long life and greater things to come.

  95. One of the phantom yet ardent readers, commenting here for the second time. Thank you, Biko, for making my days brighter with your humour and your wit. Congratulations on your win!

  96. No question just a congrats and keep the humor in the stories. “…Maseno was so egotistical that they refused to acknowledge the high in high school” will never forget the one.

  97. ahem chocolate man, are you a friend of Nyakundi? he direly needs lessons on real humour and decent blogging without insults. You have no idea how many times I have had to take my tea cold every time a new post comes up. And congratulations by the way. It was well deserved biko

  98. well done Biko! I knew I am an addict while on bedrest on a Tuesday a few weeks ago and I still struggled to ensure I read my Biko’s email. I look forward to Tuesday. Oh and my friend Judy from Sweden was so excited that you could meet her in January.

  99. All I want to say is, well in. N thank you for writing. You literally cannot fathom what is does to us. Been with you since “High School” n hope to be with you, for much longer. Enjoy the Single Malt, it’s well deserved.

  100. some men bet, some watch football, some drink a lot, some love music, but, I, being among the chosen few, love a good read.
    Ehe. people do their stuff I’ve the weekends, I usually eagerly wait for my dose eery Tuesday.

    kudos man! Bikozulu blog all the time. I usually read articles fr as back as 5 or six years ago.

    regards,

    @shujaamrefu Black_Outlaw

    1. Some men bet, some watch football, some drink a lot, some love music, but, I, being among the chosen few, love a good read. Make that 2 of the chosen few!!!

  101. Congrats Biko,i really love your writing.Today i had to comment because you will reply.i like attention that much

        1. Carol, i’m trying! I will. Doing this from my phone between running errands. I will get to yours. Sawa?

  102. In previous articles, you’ve written how you like to ask people if they are happy. Are you happy Biko?

  103. Biko!!Congratulations are in order sir. But you have bitten off more than you can chew I’m afraid!The love and appreciation for you is immense, you’ll be stuck replying all day. But thank you for making our Tuesdays better. We laugh with you, we tear up with you, we are Le gang.
    But since you so graciously offered; has anyone ever gotten cross after you wrote about them?

    1. Zuku is down in our office. So I’m doing this from the phone. Pain in the ass, I tell you. Cross? A few times. Occupational hazard. Thanks baba

  104. Thanks for making our Tuesday Ja Kendu Bay. Do you know whenever I go shags for a burial and all the yelling and rolling on the ground go on I take my phone or whatever gadget I got and read “How to Bury a Luo’ and sit far away from the crowd to read and laugh? Takes away the pain and yes, maybe one of these days I will get myself lynched for ‘bewitching’ the deceased. I mean who laughs by himself away from the other mourners? Even to the extent of skipping the serious business of feeding at the funeral? Good day big baas!

  105. Congrats Biko!!!! Strength in numbers ….let gang is super proud. Cheers to more posts and Awards ☕️

  106. When my writing grow up, I want to be juts like yours. Can you check out my blog, kambura.wordpress.com and give some writing tips. I just love writing. Someday it might even pay rent!

  107. I made my way to Yaya that time you were giving away
    books at Chivas Lounge but you didn’t make it *boohoo
    so I went online and googled you to master your face so that
    next time I’m on the road about
    to join an acceleration lane and you’re behind me I stall intentionally just to
    get to you hehe

    Congratulations all the same for the wins…*sips coffee and opens a new spreadsheet

  108. Do you regret your decision to reply to every comment?
    Congratulations for another deserved win, I stand with those in the gang who hope you write a book some day.
    -Biggest Tanzanian fan.

  109. Congratulations!I am not much of a reader i will admit but I find myself here thank you for showing us beauty and creativity in your writing

  110. You know how people say if they ever met Brandon from HONY they wouldn’t know what to say to him? This feels like one of those moments. Then the perfect question will surface a week from now. 😀
    For now, I have nothing to ask.
    Okay, maybe one random question. According to you, what is the perfect number of days to go on holiday? I’m looking for the perfect number, somewhere between “Oh crap, I haven’t done anything here! That wasn’t enough!” and “I really need to get back to work. This is too much.” What’s your magic number?

  111. Kudos for your beautiful work and for taking time on this particular occasion to treat each post as a standalone object – more like a relevant call to action on almost all posts. With that said, I have four questions:

    What’s the biggest mistake that you’ve made blogging that you’re comfortable disclosing and what advice would you give to other bloggers so that they could avoid it?

    In your opinion, is it better to blog about something that you know personally that has low search volume or blog about a topic that you would have to research that has high search volume?

    One thing about blogging is having the ability to find your voice since there are millions of other blogs out there to compete with. How did you find “your voice” or your style of blogging for your blog?
    How would you rate your own blog on a scale of 1 to 10 and why would you rate it that way?

    1. Napster yaye, en ango’? Eish. OK, let;s go.

      1. Mistake. Hmm.. apart from numerous typos that I commit on IG? Mistake I guess would be not knowing what to charge clients, and ending up charging so low. Then there are some jobs I have taken which I didn’t like or feel because the money was good. It showed when I wrote them. Now I’m only taking on jobs that I love. I’m rebooting to factory settings and doing shit that I enjoy. Do you get?

      2. What is search volume, boss? I’m just a writer here. But the rule is blog about what you LOVE. Things that excite you. Things that you experience.

      3. You don’t realise that you have found your voice. It just happens. My voice is an influence of Yunot Diaz, Jd Salinger, Tom Junod, Aa Gill. Devin Friedman. It’s like a cocktail of sorts.

      4. Some days it’s a 8. That’s when I write a story I was really invested in. Some days it’s a 4, when I write for the money. The balance is hairpin.

      1. True, I believe doing what one loves in any aspect of life is the ultimate satisfaction. Junot Díaz, the Pulitzer was created for such!

        1. Los and charging low. I used to borrow this beat up Beetle that used to break anyhow, take it to Burundi and there was this Luo guy, he could fix anything in a Voki. After a day of fixing and asking for damage he would be so guilty explaining how much work it was. Then charge me 200. When I had more I gave him more

  112. I always appreciate that you callon us to read more. Which books by female African writers would you recommend? Any favourites?

  113. My boss must be wondering what is put in our tea on Tuesdays because of the number of times he has walked in on my colleague Susan and I balancing tears because of trying so hard not to burst out laughing. It’s our ka ritual that we always look forward to.

  114. I am one of those phantom readers, but today is just to celebrate with you for this achievement. Congrats

  115. I most enjoy the dialogues in your stories. And I know your stand on writing a book but will you please consider writing a script?.

  116. Hi biko mine is just to congratulate you for the win and to thank you profusely for entertaining me throughout the years.I comment once at the end of the year to wish you happy holidays which you promptly reply .Otherwise I am an ardent reader,I don’t need to compete to be number one to comment.Well done,keep it up.

    1. So your next comment is next year? Come on, Baba Alvin. How is Alvin anyway? How old now? Thanks for reading baba.

  117. you should see how excited i get wheni see the notification for a new post….. you are a great writer and i would like you to mentor me… active mentoring… as always awesome read

  118. Congratulations Biko. I’m a proud member of the gang. I discovered your blog in 2012 and binge read all your articles to catch up. I have never missed a post since then. I especially love your tributes to your Mom.

  119. It’s been 6 years already? Oh Lord! We are old! ave literally gotten my babies
    the duration of this blog. Hongera ndugu Biko.Keep winning.

    1. I remember you TechMan! From high school. Good to hear from you and that you got tois. Having fun with fatherhood? Thanks and keep reading.

  120. Hongera Sana Biko, it’s ours! The win, I mean. How do you deal with negative people, who want to steal your shine? Bless

    1. Those will be there. One day they will hear a knock on their door and when they open in their lousy sleeping shorts….

  121. Congratulations Mr.Biko (dn referred to you that way).
    I read your articles first in all the publications you contribute- True Love, Msafiri, BD Life, Sat mag and the blog of course.

  122. we met on twitter since then its been always a good read,keeps me hooked waiting for the next one.do you have books you have written i could access?

    1. Imagine, no! (Nairobi speak). But what to do, replying comments never killed anyone. From here, straight to have a stiff one.

  123. you should see how excited i get when i see the notification for a new post….. you are a great writer and i would like you to mentor me… active mentoring… as always awesome read

    1. Phanice, thanks. Are you below 28? If yes, that age group don’t need mentoring. They want it today. On a silver platter. Nobody wants to go to the trenches anymore and get dirty. Do you want to get dirty? Don’t answer it today. Let it soak.

  124. I read all your works. You are a breath of fresh air. If only the gang knew how real you get on Instagram! Sad we had to wait for blogs to discover you…Keep doing what you do. Well done on the win.

  125. As an online phantom this is that one time we say something!!! CONGRATULATIONS!
    reading your stories form part of my workday morning rituals at the office.
    You bring sunshine.Keep up the good work.

  126. Congratulation Biko, Tuesdays are my favorites because you make them, One day my boss walked on me laughing and he was really interested in knowing what was so funny, so I introduced him to your blog (I am very sure he now reads even your newspaper articles. Biko, I know you won 2phones on Saturday, can I please borrow one for my sister?

  127. Can I buy you a drink,27th September,2017? I know it is over one year away but it will be my birthday; a drink with you is on my bucketlist and I plan to be back in Kenya by then. Deal?

    1. Been wondering the same. Even if it’s a compilation of all past articles. Mr Forehead,when that happens please let me know. The proceeds from the book sales could also ensure you don’t dig too deep in your pockets when you get that philanthropic itch.

  128. Congratulations to you…what was the 2nd question and did it come with another doughnut or a cup of coffee???

  129. A long post …that post has stayed with me and the posts that followed. It touched a nerve. You make my Tuesdays and any instagram post. congratulations chocolate man!

  130. Congratulations on the award Biko. You deserve it. Did you ever start jogging at Karura forest on Saturdays? Or was that one of the many fad new year’s resolutions?

  131. I only discovered you after Jadudi happened. Then I am one of those who read and go back to my hustle. Guess what? I have set notifications of your instagram, twitter and this blog. So you can imagine how proud I was when you kept retweeting about the award last week. Keep the good work sir.

  132. Just a congratulatory message for the BAKE award Biko. Surely your forehead has a bright future for you, wish I had one.

    1. Joe once wrote to me and said that he was suffering a writer’s block. Then went under. Joe, say something.

  133. I’m definitely one of the phantoms that stops by in between spreadsheets and powerpoint slides but today I want to congratulate you and thank you for my Tuesday Treat…that’s what this blog is to me! What’s your favourite chocolate?

  134. Someone should stealthily take Biko’s photo, print it on a placard, hold it up and take a photo with it. It should have the big words, I am Biko and that member of the gang shall be a héro.

      1. Hahaha Biko, sooner the gang will realize how brilliant my idea is and they will sing along and before you know it, it shall be a song, and then a movement, we shall even put a price on your face. What does Nyach mean in Dholuo?

  135. Well done chocolate man, we’ll keep coming back for more. I remember refreshing your page every Monday when I was in campus(in class), still doing the same every Tuesday in the office. Love your writing.

  136. Biko will you really manage to respond to all?lol. Congratulations for winning again. You deserve it and much more. Keep the posts and the articles coming.:-)

  137. It’s been a while since I read the comments section… And truly truly… The gang… Though of many new names and faces deserves an award for the fire they have always lit here… You spark it up and they burn it down with so much life in the comments. Well done to you and your community… Those who read, comment, share, quote and plagarise alike !!!

    Ps. I’m done commenting… It could take my entire work day

  138. Biko and the gang, kindly give a round of applause to one of the ghost readers!!!
    Biko, I’m always moved by your creativity bro. Keep it up

  139. Good piece as usual, never disappoints. We await the full interview from your interviewer whom you’ve described in detail. Congratulations on your award. ….So how does it feel to win the award back to back? (I bet you had to answer that from an interviewer/journalist).

  140. Your writing talks to many people and you have changed lives with what you do best! Congratulations on your win and keep them coming (wink)

  141. Congratulations r in order! I am an ardent fan n will keep making referals. I have recruited so many friends n i am glad u never disappointed. keep up the good work Chocolate man.

  142. It’s always a good read…i keep refreshing this tab hoping the good lord touched you and you posted something on an odd day. I hope one day i will refresh and find a new post and it will not not be a Tuesday *smiles*
    That’s just how much i want to read even more.

  143. Congratulations Biko. Just curious… when you look at your google analytics or whatever you use, what percentage of your readers are out of the country? How many of us are reading from Charlotte NC? Just need to know which ones of my Kenyan neighbors are “progressive” readers. I look forward to your writing every week, thank you!

    1. Rocket Man. I will look at those stats after this. I hardly ever go backend, that’s the job of Fred and his people. Lakini thanks for reading boss. I appreciate it.

  144. Heko Biko kwa hilo ‘shindo’ lako. Thank you for putting a smile on my (and many peoples’) face(s). I would love to know how other writers relate to you now that you are evidently very gifted in writing. Do you feel spited by some? (no specifics though).

  145. We’ve been mentioned those of us who come in quietly, enjoy every post and leave quietly. Congratulations Biko!

  146. Tuesday’s mornings are different, am those who do read, never comment, but have a good laugh,
    Keep doing what you do, congrats on your win.

  147. Congratulations Chocolate Man. You never disappoint and I am addicted. And now to my question….what do you have against weaves? And, because am Kenyan, make it two – What do you have against lawyers?;-)

  148. Hi Biko, First and foremost I want to congratulate you on your win.I came on board late last year when my daughter introduced me to your blog and my tuesdays have never been the same.I am one of the phantom readers so it’s my very first time to comment.

  149. Thanks Biko for keeping us entertained. I look forward to your blog every Tuesday. Accept my gratitude though Iam a silent reader

  150. Mr. Chocolate, would please read my blog? (allanpowerjr.wordpress.com) and tell me what you think maybe…? over at my e-mail? ([email protected]). You don’t have to read everything, at least the latest post. I wouldn’t mind if you read everything though. 🙂

  151. Greetings from the land of a thousand hills…I love your way with words.i always ensure I put everything aside and concentrate,I am a big fan..keep up this awesome work and thank you for always showing us the other worlds that we don’t or know.you chocolate man are gifted!!!! No questions but merci merci beaucoup

  152. I’ve become addicted to this man, used to read OP alot back in the day,this, this is better. Keep on doing this, I’ll keep on coming for more.
    Greetings from the land of Magufuli.