I spoke of “crazy women” while reviewing a book, now look what happened


The definition of “crazy” in show business is a woman who keeps talking even after no one wants to fuck her anymore.’ – Tina Fey

pissed me off.

I read it, felt annoyed by it and then put it away. But it niggled at my brain like an irritating itch. Every time I thought I Abercrombie And Fitch Outlet had it cornered, it hopped away again. So I let it swish in my mouth, slosh around in my mind, crawl under my skin, until finally in the top left corner of my brain, I managed to isolate the offensive  sentiment.

It was all the ‘crazy’ that got to me.

Men so flippantly men toss around the C word,http://www.acgillespie.co.uk/ the one that often precedes the B word.

‘You guy, she just went ape-shit out of nowhere, throwing her shoes at me, wailing like somebody had died. I thought she was going to go all Bernadine on my ass.’

So while they bond over how hard they have it dealing with these crazy women, a ‘mine is bigger than yours’, charade ensues as the next guy tries to one-up him with details about his own crazy chick.

‘You guy. That is nothing, I had an ex who chased me out of the house, running after my car swinging my golf club like a crazy bat.’

You guy. Did you ever consider she is reacting to something the man did?

Could it be because of his exploits on the green; all that putting and driving of clubs aiming for a hole in one?

Or did those flirty sexts accidentally slip out of his fingers, tumble onto his phone, hitch a ride on a flying carpet, and then slip into another woman’s phone?

What about how every time she tries to talk to him about something that bothers her, he  calls her a nag, instead of actually listening to and dealing with the issue, then when she finally snaps, he is as caught Abercrombie sale off guard as KPLC in the rainy season.

Possibly men don’t get it. Maybe they truly don’t understand that the things they do and say have an effect. I get that, it runs both ways. Women don’t always get it either. It is a human thing. But by painting a picture that her ugly crocodile tears and hiccupping sobbing appeared out of a vacuum, the man is absolved of all responsibility for his actions. Just like that, poof! Magic.

It is all the hilarity about the situation that I don’t get. She must be upset to react like that. It is never funny when another person is hurting.

I suppose what is comical is how men make themselves out to be innocent blameless victims of a silently scheming, evil plotting, fire breathing, glass throwing, dagger shooting, dangerously manipulative woman.

Then of course there is the,

‘Manze. You say the wrong thing to a chick, and out comes the drama. Me, I adopt a strictly one-way traffic policy. In one ear, out the other. Otherwise I can’t deal with that crazy nonsense.’

Women and men are wired differently, socialised differently. But just because he doesn’t agree with how she responds, out flies the paintbrush, splattering her with all shades of crazy. Do you see how dismissive that is? How it completely invalidates another human being’s opinion. After all, it is far easier to just call her crazy, than to try and understand where she is coming from.

But as Biko says, isn’t it crazy how she wasn’t crazy at first? When the fire made him feel like a Mandingo, when her banter made him feel smarter, when she bought him the single malt he loved, it was cute.

I suspect Tina Fey’s words are echoed out of Abercrombie uk outlet women show business as well. Now that he is no longer interested in getting into her pants, her wit becomes acerbic, her passion becomes stifling, her caring becomes creepy.

What if we took this out of the bedroom, because really it is only ever the two people involved that understand the dynamics of their relationship, and I am not even sure they do half the time.

The Star published a list of people who were killed in the Mpeketoni attacks; names and occupations. One person stood out – the occupation – Mad Woman. One journalist thought that the aside from her name, the most defining way for this woman to be remembered was ‘Mad Woman’. And the editor agreed.

It got me thinking about all the other crazy women in our history.

The woman who was crazy enough to think protecting our forests was important, crazy enough to stand up to a gang of bullies, crazy so that you and I, and our children have a refuge from the polluted, noisy, concrete jungle; a space of serenity to replenish our souls, where we can wiggle our toes in the grass, gaze up at the light streaming through the branches and feel ladybirds tickling a path up our arm. The woman who won a Nobel Prize. The same woman that was called crazy on TV by a whole President of the country.


The woman who was crazy to stand up to an oppressive apartheid government, crazy enough to come out of detention, solitary confinement and constant interrogation and still fight, agitate for the freedom of her people.


The mothers and grandmothers of Freedom Corner, bold in their craziness to protect their children, going to whatever lengths it took, stripping themselves of dignity to protest for and safeguard justice.

The seventh bearded sister, Chelegat Mutai, who they came for at midnight when she dared to do the unthinkable, whose spirit they tried to break in the dungeons of Nyayo House, whose crazy defiance helped pave the way for a multi-party Kenya.

There are more. So many more.

These powerful women refused to conform to an expectation of how things should be. They threatened the peace. So to neutralise the threat, they were smeared with the crazy brush.

It is more sinister than it appears. Take it one step further. Remove gender. If somebody doesn’t behave the way you expect them to, think the way you do, they must naturally be crazy, No? Stop and think about how dangerous that is.

I am reclaiming the word crazy.  Because it is the crazy women that are pushing uncomfortable boundaries, challenging myopic perspectives and creating space so that your daughters will be able to stand tall, speak loud, be heard – legitimately, credibly, authoritatively, make a difference in the world in whatever way they want, and most of all never have their opinions, actions or feelings belittled. So they can experience life fully with dignity and agency.

Yours unapologetically and proudly,

Crazy Woman


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  1. Well Biko, there you have it, she flipped the other side of the coin, and I think she nailed it! Some issues may be light-hearted analysis of life, but sometimes I believe it sometimes the whole story may be much bigger and much less funny!

  2. “Men so flippantly men toss around the C word, the one that often precedes the B word.” Biko, si I thought we agreed back in High School that we do not edit these words?

    Biko now you see what happens when you talk about crazy women and 24 year olds? Ha! But knowing Aleya, she might be crazy, but she is also kind. Take comfort in that.

  3. So you seriously want to convince us to compare a bat swinging, hair pulling crazy woman with Prof. Mathai? Good luck with that.

  4. a certain gentlman comes to mind , he keeps telling anyone that has an ear just how crazy his wife is. Imagine she has bipolar’So one day I ask him how the children are doing, assuming that they must be home with the sane househelp, seeing that their mother must be in line at mathare refilling up on her crazy meds.’ooh no we dont have househelps anymore, my (Crazy) wife gets home from work in time to pick the children from school, they do homework while she cooks and finalises the evening rituals of a family before she lays her tired bones to rest. And that ‘s whenI realised that kenyan man is full of BS.

    1. lol Juliet.. did you say gentleman..lol there are so many like that. Basically any woman that doesn’t tow the line.. that is not like his mother (God save her) ie act’s different than he has allowed himself to think.. is crazy.. 🙂

  5. I think you took offence where none was intended. The “crazy” ex-girlfriend and the “crazy” woman fighting for a cause cannot be compared.

  6. Now that is one crazy woman who is not apologetic. The bats swing left, right and centre, and who gets the beatings?

  7. It doesn’t matter why you were called crazy in the first place. It’s that someone feels the need to put someone else down.

  8. I think you took the whole thing too seriously and out of context. Your argument makes sense but the ex girlfriend Biko talked about is not trying to change the world rather, is one failing to acknowledge that life doesn’t have to go the way you want it to. There’s a difference between relationship crazy and reform crazy. Am sure most women would rather be reform crazy and leave the other crazy to the 24 year olds.
    my 2 cents

    1. Faith, Here’s why Aleya had every right to get angry:

      I’ve read the book. Amy is a sociopath. And Biko has decided to use Amy has his example of how, and I quote, “We will never win with women. How scarily a woman’s mind works…This book is about how we, men, are constantly outfoxed by women. How they think and scheme and manipulate us.”

      Please note, he’s not talking about ‘some’ women. He’s talking about women in general. And he’s used a sociopath as his case study.

      I also take issue with the fact that Biko conveniently fails to point out what a foul character Nick is; a manipulative, passive-aggressive whiner and pretender. But don’t take my word for it. Read the book and draw your own conclusions.

    2. In the line of psychology.. when it comes to ex-relationships.. we should be mindful.. of how we term others.. especially since we chose them. Therefore.. for the guy in the book ‘Nick” to date his ex-girlfriend who is now ‘crazy’, he must have been crazy too. Ie. “You are who you seek..”(Aristotle) /It takes one to know one/ – If you read the book you’ll find.. as much as she was ‘sociopathic’ Nick presented classic Narcissitic-psychopathic tendencies.. (who’s crazy now?)

      P.s lets stop calling ex-girlfriends crazy when we’ve only heard one side of the story.. As R.Kelly says in the video of “When a woman’s fed up” ..it takes a bad man to turn a good woman.

  9. I like it. Craziness originates from somewhere, more so because as women we put in all our emotions into the relationship. How do u not go crazy when someone suddenly pulls the carpet from under your feet?

  10. Sounds like this chic is REally crazy.I enjoyed Biko’s article why do we have to go n b all feminist n sh*#t abt it…jeez.women ARE crazy at times.n that’s OK.

  11. Hey Aleya, you nailed it. The undertones of the review (actually of the entire space) mirror something that has always bugged me about our society. That if you examine it closely, you’ll realise that we ladies, are not liked much…like the urge to make her feel lesser is stronger than one’s humanity…Let’s take this comment section as an example, how many guys have gone past looking at someone’s gender and saying out loud “OK, guys, let’s stop being assholes. Let’s treat our women with kindness. Not because they’re women but because it’s the human thing to do?”

  12. Oooh btw the late wangaris ex-husband thought her crazy as well,not to mention a former president! Ati Yule mama ako na dudu Kwa kichwa

  13. Faith got it right your out of contest relationship crazies are weird and most time cause by obsessed parties.

  14. There are things that men do can drive a woman bitch crazy. So men dont get all big eyed when we want to whack at your face with our shoes cause you did something unbelieavable.

  15. Am Steve. A lurker since June 2012 when I stumbled on Bikozulu.The reason why I never commented is because arguments like this one never came up.Normally my eyes scan the comments and all I see is compliments,people relating to whats narrated and that kind of rap.Nothing cognitively stimulating.Having said that,here is my two cents on crazy;
    The word “crazy” has been socially molested.I say socially and not grammatically because its the meaning in reference to social relations or its participants is what bothers me.The Black Americans and Kenyans(the only ones have been able to observe) use this word harphazadly.
    1Mad, especially as manifested in wild or aggressive behaviour:
    1.1Extremely angry:
    2Extremely enthusiastic:

    When I read Bikozulu’s review on “Girl Gone” I assumed(of course contextually) that he was talking about the “mad kind of crazy” girl.And so I had no qualms about it until the opinionated(and rightfully so) Aleya Kassam came in with a different angle of the word crazy.The “extremely enthusiastic kind of crazy”.I think extremely-enthusiastic-kind-of-crazy girls are fun to be with. Even when you are a laid-low kind of guy,dating such kind of girl brings you the occassional ecestacy and adventure.My problem is with the mad-aggressive behavioured girl.This girl should be avoided like an Ebola invested zone.They are the reasons why people kill,commit siucide or disappear for decades.You dont know what you are up against when you entertain this girl.And you know whats worse? They never show their true colours until you commit.
    I am unapologetic for the long comment.

    Aside;Not that you need it but with more of these kind of differently opinionated blog posts,I may be persuaded to come out of the lurker zone.

  16. almost danced to this then realised it wasn’t a song……so true though, i’d rather be called crazy than compromise my standards. Oh and when people talk about women that nag, they should first listen to what founded the argument before making a general opinion about the woman in question.

  17. Being quite the liberal feminist at least I appreciate the art of story telling..Biko’s piece was in my understanding not meant to be interpreted or subjected to this strict sense of analysis…deeper understanding of the course of feminism acknowledges where the lines of misogynistic opinions begin…just where misandry and undue competition with the male gender ends. Feminism appreciates the differences between the sexes while still fronting the concept of equality.So lets not digress and rant over a book review that was just done from a simplistic perspective

  18. I like. I like Aleya. Cray cray women change the world. …. not just for themselves but for their daughters. If acting cray cray makes them pause to listen … then cray cray it is. Beautifully and wonderfully made.

    1. Why in the name of God, in the name of all that is holy, would you use cray instead of crazy?

  19. Lol,… I’m usually very calm, easy person who adopts a 3 strikes policy – on every item. E.g If you’re obnoxiously late without calling (so i dont get worried) I let it pass till no.3. If you fuck up.. I let it pass.. till No.3 .. If you say something stupid.. I let it pass till no.3 … And all this is coz.. i like many women dont want to come off.. as “nagging” and all that crap. The one day a mufukah pulls ALL those stunts.. and they are all on No.3 .. I’ll rain down like thunder, brimstone and hellfire~ a very quiet snap or a very break-plates and light ur-ass-on-fire snap.

    Aleya’s article reminds me when one of my ex-es told me .. (such a muthaf**king puntz).. “.. Where did all that shit come from.. you used to be so nice. You’ve changed!”
    That bastard is lucky i didn’t do those loud snaps.. coz i DREAMT of them..Mine was a very.. tire -let-out-of-air snap.. In the book ..”Their eyes were watching God” the main chick Lyne (i think).. talks about her snapping, right around the time she was with her second husband at the store where like alot of guys…he was being a punk ass, arrogant mofo that thought women are just for arranging things on shelves and not for helping add to the family business.. as “something rolled off the shelf, fell and crushed on the floor” (or something like that..)
    Basically.. once shit happens mentally.. there is no turning back,once you let rip…its not like cellotaping something.. that guy starts to look at you different, walking on egg-shells around you, starts inviting you less and less to parties.. all the while..telling his mboys.. “da chick kray! Da chick is pyschotic! I can’t sleep without one eye open..” lol Which is.. why.. i asked that punk.. nicely ..” Eh heh,… can you repeat what you said.. so that I hear what you said.. not what i think that you said..” .. and then maliza yeye!

    The interesting thing with such bastards really.. is they think.. just coz you are quiet, nice..you’ve taken it..ie you;ve taken their shit.. erego.. they must have been right.. and the more you are quiet.. and taking that shit.. the more you must be some young, green, blonde of a bimbo – kumbe for you.. you are quiet coz its just not worth arguing about.. wasting saliva and air and your short life-span on inconsequential shit. You know.. if its not going to change the price of sugar..”Ok, sweetie, your right, I’m wrong (move on)” #WorldPeace.

    In summary.. i realised guys .. (and some idiot chicks) need to be warned.. some ijiots think,,..coz you are too nice..you have no backbone..no spine.. and can bend like any fern in the wind..So i tell m’guy straight…”Im like candy and spice and all things nice..so treat me like you want to be treated.. coz If you f**k around with me.. i WILL F**K YOU UP!!..and lets pray if so, I’m not pms-ing!! Because… hehe!!” (we’re good 3 yrs later 🙂 )

  20. How she interpreted ‘Gone Girl’ is different from how most of us interpreted it…. I this article as her opinion and better understanding of the word “crazy”….. But she kinda personalized it ✌

  21. True, Biko’s article was rather one-sided, and I like Aleya’s response. When stripped of gender, people do insane, cruel and other unspeakable deeds; when you put gender into the equation, the women are relegated to the crazy zone.

  22. Excellent rejoinder, Aleya. Brings to mind this article (by a man, no less) on the dangers of labeling women ‘crazy’: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/harris-oamalley/on-labeling-women-crazy_b_4259779.html

  23. I am a woman and having read gone girl, i can confidently say amy is a crazy woman gender issues put aside. When a woman fakes her death and frames her husband all so schematically and with no remorse whatsoever, the she most definitely is a crazy psycho b

  24. YEEEEES!!!!!!!
    Also, the comments are kinda pissing me off. She’s not trying to say that crazy relationship women are the same as crazy political women, she’s saying that when a woman reacts with passion to something she perceives to be an injustice, be it a stupid man or a violation of human rights, she’s unjustly labeled as crazy. It’s the passion and emotion she’s comparing, not the actual events.
    So comparing Wangari Maathai and the bat wielding girlfriend works in that they were both labeled crazy for simply being hella pissed off at the actions of a man.