Confession

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In the eulogized and buried light of the late evening, the only element left with the Harlequin task of illuminating the night is Carol Odero’s flaming red braids. You know Carol, right? Trained lawyer turned journalist. Editor, Drum magazine. Columnist, Sunday Nation. TV hostess, Fashion Show. Redhead. Carol, like most of us, believes in burning the candle from both ends.

She’s leaning into the table now. She listens raptly and talks softly like a falling feather, so soft I have to lean close, our noses almost touching. Carol is shrinking me. She’s prodding me, prodding and prying, like the late 80’s detective, Derrick. Most of you hecklers here in High School won’t know who Derrick is, you were still using potties. Regretful you didn’t witness the one-channel wonder of television.

Behind us, in the inky and ominous darkness somewhere, the sea moans and sighs like a lover seeking attention. We are at Hemmingways Watamu, one of those media trips. Gorgeous, this and full of personality…like Carol’s hair. I could tell you a lot about Hemmingways Watamu. I could tell you how they hauled us to deep sea to fish and we caught a long furious fish called Wahoo (not to be confused with Wahu) and how to kill it and stop it from cutting someone in half with its sharp fin and teeth, one of the guys in the boat had to bludgeon it’s head with a piece of wood, sending shudder down my toes.

I could tell you how Ferdinand Omondi of NTV posed with that slimy long fish and did a flawless Piece to Camera. Twice. In English and in startlingly eloquent Kiswahili. I could tell you how in that deep sea, as our boat bobbed in the adolescent waves, chaps lined up to pose for pictures holding the 12kg monster that later ended up on our lunch plates next to the lime and rice. And how at some point Laura Walubengo of Capital FM, holding up the fish to her bosom, as the camera whirred said to me, Hey dude, don’t you want to take a picture? And I said, No Laura, I’m Luo, we don’t pose with fish, we eat it! And she cackled and rejoined, “Aaaah, it’s like me posing with chicken, eh?” and the boat rocked with laughter. Aah, I thought to myself, when you find a funny lunje, they are funny even when they call you ‘dude’. So yeah, I could tell you about all that, about how gorgeous Hemmingways but I today I want to pound other drums.

But now, we are all at the pagoda. Saturday night. I’m on Jameson, on the rocks. Any other day whiskey makes me cocky but today it’s making me vulnerable, honest, reflective, and thoughtful. I’m supporting my chin on my hand as Carol lays it down for me, brick by brick.

Carol is telling me about creative burnouts. About her own struggles and insecurities with writing. It’s all familiar and it makes me feel better. OK, almost, the Jameson is also doing its part.

And now a story, for perspective.

In 2001, while I worked as a very miserable laboratory technologist in a small health clinic, I kept my sanity by writing. I wrote in the silence of the night, after work, after poring over numerous samples of stool, urine and blood, looking for malady and doing my small part to rid the world off diseases. Using black ink I wrote short stories on a hard-covered book, stories about escape, something I was gathering courage to do. Of course I showed nobody these literature, essentially because I didn’t think much of them. They were a vaulted narrative of my misery, of my rut but I always felt they drew me closer to redemption.

Below the bedsit where I hanged my coat, lived a hooker, or rather a chic I suspected was a hooker. I say suspected because she always left at 10pm when I was coming in from work, dressed in short shiny clothes, and pitched back at 6am dressed in short shiny clothes and tired make-up. Si that’s a hooker?

We had water problems in that block and once in a while she would come up and ask me if I would kindly go down and close her tap if water came in the middle of the night. One day she saw the notebook in my hand when I opened the door to take another please-close-my-tap instruction and asked if I was writing a diary. Standing to my full length, chin thrust defiantly in the air, I muttered that diary was for girls. She asked to see. I remember her standing there for longer than I had thought she would, raptly reading that hard covered notebook, very slowly flipping the pages like they were brittle and they would shatter. The word, engross, comes to mind. She stood patiently at my doorway, a hooker reading a random story from a notepad. Of course I was ill at ease, because I was afraid of judgment, even from a hooker.

But I waited patiently leaning on my doorway and to kill time I stared at her cleavage that stared back indignantly. When eventually she looked up – slowly – she was wearing a different look; a questioning look. “ Maybe you should just write,” is all she said before bundling down the staircase, her burgeoning and overheavy cleavage struggling to catch up with her.

“Maybe you should just write.” Those words stayed with me for a very long time. I’m certain men have been told more interesting words by hookers: “Woi, mimi siendi Mushadha,” “Ngai Mwangi! Si hiyo underwear ni mzee?” But all she said was, “Maybe you should just write.” And those words, even spoken by a hooker, is sometimes all that can stir motion. And when you start hearing them from different sources, it gets into your head the word ‘maybe’ is introduced into the equation. And when that gets in your head, it doesn’t leave; it squats there reading a newspaper until you do something about it. And I did. I look at those days with envy, because I was deranged with proving something. Now, I don’t. I don’t need to. My ass is grown.

Let me break this down to gang, very slowly. You sit in your office, crunching figures, fixing systems, balancing books, setting up communication strategies, troubleshooting IT, selling products, recording in studios or writing course works…whatever your hustle is. I don’t write poetry to feed the arty ogre in me. I don’t write part-time to balance out my life, to purposefy* it. I write for a living, to live. Writing is my dinghy in these seas we ride. It’s all I have.

Since not many people want to pay top- dollar for some tight copy, since many people imagine words come out of your ass they won’t pay

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you your worth because they won’t appreciate your art (that almost rhymed, “worth and “art”…eh?). So you resort to whoring your art to the people who can pay you the most. You write your fingers out until they bleed. That’s what I have been doing the whole year; whoring.

Are we together, so far? Because I can stop here briefly and let Hardened Mama there go use the bathroom, she seems squeamish in her seat.

As I was saying, this simply means you write as much as you can, you work as twice as hard to make half what those white-shirted chubby yuppies that work for blue chip companies make. Those chaps that throw more office parties than they change the printer’s toner. You write to pay bills yes, but you also write because it’s who you are. Folk say, you shouldn’t be defined by your job, that such bollocks, those are guys who are motivated by living through to end month for their jobs to seem relevant. Take away my pen, and watch me drift off to an abyss of confusion like a hollow trunk.

When you churn out over to 10,000 words a week for a year, you will burn out. And that’s something you can put in your pipe and smoke. I knew I was burning out, hitting a plateau. That straight line. I could feel it; I took longer to write intros; I lost creative consciousness in the middle of sentences; I struggled with thought and construction, I stared at a blank word document longer. And that shit scares you.

I’m at a point where I’m having a conflict with my art, I’m insecure of it and I’m questioning it. For months now I acted like I was okay and like the proverbial ostrich I buried my head in my ass. Sorry, sand. But when one or two readers – Fra and Mufasa – raised a flag I had to be honest with myself. I had spread myself out too thin and it was showing in everything I wrote.

Two days later, on a late night, I called Clay Muganda (he writes very late in the night when the devils roam the earth), and asked him if this has happened to him before, he said all the time. When you write for a living, you don’t have the luxury of burning out, he said. You keep writing. You change the times you write, you change the desks you write from, but you don’t stop writing because stopping is a learned habit that eventually works against you.

Here is my confession. There is something I do; I never say bye to people I’m drinking with. It’s called an Irish Exit. You slip your portion of the bill under your half finished glass and you step off your stool to go to the loo. And you don’t come back. You can’t adequately say bye to folk on alcohol, they will whine and ask you to sit down for just one more. They will make fun of you, and offer to make a call home to extend your curfew. So you save yourself that drunken gibberish and you slip out unnoticed, like a dark knight.

Last week the blog wasn’t under construction. The jury was out on it. I had the half mind to shut it down. I really did. To

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walk away without a word and concentrate on gigs that actually pay me because the blog takes the best of me and someone who takes the best are usually the ones to destroy you. But first I bounced this idea to my go-to-writer, Oyunga, because he walked away from writing at some point but got seduced back by the evil temptress that is words. “You’d be foolish to walk away!” he said, “Hosting me in High School gave my blog a lifeline I’m still feeding on. That’s how important I see it. That is intellectual investment you have.” Of course, he had to show off with phrases like that; intellectual investment.

It’s hard to walk out and bang a door when you are not sure you won’t knock on it again. It’s even harder to walk away from who you are.

So what I’m going to do here is, I will put my feet off the pedal of this blog and post only twice a month. First and last week. And during this time off, I will head to the Congo forest, where I will live with the pygmies and do nothing but hunt, fry and eat monkey meat, grow armpit hair and swim buck-naked in meandering forest rivers. And I will not read any form of literature save for primitive inscriptions in caves and on the backs of their women who are slightly taller than coffee plungers. And if I’m lucky, I might just be made King of the Pigmies. I’m going native.

Gang, it’s not you. It’s me.

 

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212 Comments
  1. I always wondered if you ever get burnout or if you ever question your art….and in an existential way… Thank you for revealing your human side which makes it all the much easier for us who look up to you.

    All the best Biko.

  2. genuine tears dropped Biko. it’s not fair-never is.
    try something Biko b4 dropping us, u just tried running. try talking to another ‘hooker’ en she may say keep writing, try prayers or a believe in any kind, therapy if u have to Biko, couples -gang- therapy if u may.
    just don’t give up on us-gang Biko.

    it’s not fair. for what’s worth my two middle weeks will not be anything.
    I will sure miss u Sir. say hi to chimpanzees in Congo.

    u will be so missed. all the best though.

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  3. from the beginning i had a feeling this was a lot like a dear John, Biko you cant run out on me now,high school is the reason i look forward to Mondays… Look back before you decide to ruin half my months…:(

  4. Maybe you shouldn’t plan to write twice a month, you should just write when you damn feel like. That way, it maybe be everyday or twice a year. The gang will understand, we always do:)

    NB: The “underconstruction” scam was quite transparent, saw right through it. lol.;)

    1. I think Njoki has a valid point.What you need to do is write when you feel like not because you have to.Write when you feel you have something to share and not because its a Monday. Relax,smile,life’s to short……….

    2. I totally agree with Njoki – just write whenever. As it is, it is already a privilege to read all your wonderful writing. And you should not feel obliged to keep gifting us with it

    3. I agree with Njoki. Write whenever you feel like writing. When you pressure yourself or put yourself in the Monday box or first and last week box the pressure will be mob. What if you have something super exciting to write about the white armpit hair that’s growing? Or the translucent caves in the Congo? Just write. I totally understand the need for a break but please no Irish exits on high school. Please. I speak for all of us – we enjoy your writing. Period. But that doesn’t mean don’t take care of you.

      All the best Biko. Keep writing.

    4. @Njoki is a smart cookie. I would listen to her if I were you….

      10 average expected posts have nothing on 1 unexpected great post.

    5. Now Njoki just said it, that is a piece of wisdom you should take to the forests with. Hit us up when it happens, and it feels much better than Monday therapy…gang!

    6. I agree with Njoki. It must be difficult sticking to a regiment like you have of an article every week. You can write when your creative juices flow and it may not even be an article; your insights, anecdotes, musings would do. Whatever you do, maybe you should just write and by all means share because your writing inspires some of us to follow our dreams and most importantly show up even when it’s hard to do so like Mondays.

    7. I second that. My Monday’s won’t be as they were before but hell it ain’t about me! do what’s best for you then we will get more inspired posts. In the end what works for you works for us. All the best man.

    8. “Two days later, on a late night, I called Clay Muganda (he writes very late in the night when the devils roam the earth), and asked him if this has happened to him before, he said all the time. When you write for a living, you don’t have the luxury of burning out, he said. You keep writing. You change the times you write, you change the desks you write from, but you don’t stop writing because stopping is a learned habit that eventually works against you. ”

      Biko do what Clay Muganda said

      1
  5. I’ve been a ghost reader for the longest time.I’m a huge fan and the only reason I looked forward to coming to work on Monday was because at some point,I knew,Biko will make it better.I can confidently say,for the next two weeks,there shall be no Monday!

  6. At the beginning of this post, I think when you were talking about Carol’s hair, I was thinking about a tweet (Yeah, Imagine some people have to think for 10 mins about tweets) I should post. That “I love @Bikozulu so much I wouldn’t mind if he filled all the white space on his blog with ads”.
    I was struggling if I should really use the word ‘love’. Is it too much? Is it appropriate? But I do!
    Little did I know this is how the conversation would end.
    At least he says we can still be friends.

  7. Now I feel guilty for harassing you to post every Monday. Enjoy the break Biko, looking forward to your bi-monthly posts.

    1. And also host Noelle her writing is dope.love her writing too….i knew this was taking a toll u.Go recherge your battery ang come back.bigger…and better

    2. Biko am afraid it will be twice a month then never.a slow fade.
      i reiterate,post whenever.

      And btw i drew so much inspiration from High school to start writing.Thanks man!

    1. yeah! lol!! more like; ” it’s not you, its me.. 😉 you feel me??

      The best thing about your articles biko, you can keep reading them over and over! non rigid, candid stuff.

  8. Do your bread and butter baba…and this post goes to tell, you havent yet lost it. that hooker had fore sight, eh? eyes closed. see u in a fortnight-makes more sense…but im bias!

  9. Writing huh. A break is worth it when you feel a blanket coming over your creativity. Sometimes I find its better to churn out zero copy than bad copy. And you had to have a go at Carol?

  10. About time you did a bunk. With all the habitual orgasmic oohing and aahing from your regular ego-masseuses it was hard getting through to you in the din. Hackneyed jocularity was becoming your stock in trade amidst the bountiful fluff shop you had long set up. Go find yourself Abiki and when you do come back and keep the hustle flowing.

  11. Still you are an amazing writer Biko. My favourite writer, and no, i aint flattering you. So don’t beat yourself so hard…Remember when this blog was young (Primary school days) before we moved to High school, you once wrote very beautifully on why you write, why you started this blog.If i remember correctly, you said something about writing being an art, being an eclipse of the heart, you recounting on your life and your experiences and the people you interact with…writing as a profound expression of your inner most musings…do you remember that Biko? I don’t believe your writing has taken a dip, may be changed a little bit, but ain’t that art? Isn’t change the only constant thing? Isn’t writing supposed to be free? Not confined….not governed by rigid expectations…just art!? What i’m saying is…keep writing Biko, i’ll keep reading. Just be you! And when i feel you are starting to sleep on the job, I’ll honestly and candidly state that. Take heart…you fit the bill…so go go go! I celebrate you!!!

    By the way, that story of High school being offline last week for maintenance, i could have bet on my entire salary it was a trick!See? Vey smooth, Biko!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. Sob, sob, sob. Some of us hadn’t seen anything wrong with style or whatever you, Mufasa and Fra are yapping about. We kept enjoying the humor and the word play. The only thing we lacked at high school is a way of paying your bills. In case you change your mind, you know where to get us.

  13. Mufasa and Fra, see what you did????? Biko, wea do I get that hooker? she did it for us then, she can do it again!!! Please dont walk out on us!! I dont mind anythng you write as long as I get my Monday dose, am bad at withdrawal.

  14. Do your bread and butter(and beard) baba. Its the least we can expect. And judging form today’s post, you really haven’t lost it yet. The “it” factor is still there..alive and well…and i wouldn’t just say that. That hooker had mad foresight if you ask me…need to find me one to tell me what i need to do with my life…. Take care….also i propose we just do a fortnight…enough time to shut our eyes??..but you run this ship so catch you on the 29th!!

  15. There are a gajillion billion blogs out there in space…web…interwebdom…or whatever. Another trillion by “serious writers”. Only 2 or 3 have thousands of loyal readers who come back every day and sit by your stool at sunrise toes wriggling in the soil with contained excitement…every single blog post literally took me to where you were, every single time.
    We forget Biko Zulu the legend is housed by Jackson Biko the human. Sucks but…do you boo! Later then *waves dejectedly*

    1. Couldn’t have said it better, especially the ‘come back every day and sit by your stool at sunrise toes wriggling in the soil with contained excitement’ part. It did feel like that every Monday, hmmm?

  16. I can imagine the pressure lakini Biko that was a msiba wa kujitakia..! Who told you to be creative, entertaining, etc….You saw us falling for your trap every Monday without fail and you just kept wooing us sometimes even being apologetic for being late, or when you couldn’t write we forgave you, we understood you, we stood by you. The out the blue like most men in relationships you find a reason to up and leave and claim that we have been giving you pressure!! Then there’s the random Fra and Mufasa who are they anyway, Now that they have put you in this situation can we now migrate to their blogs since äpparently” they know……..
    …Seriously, why don’t you just write everyday then just upload weekly Arrggghhh why dump us on a Monday of all days???? Ptho!!!!

  17. Thank you for the Mondays. Thank you for the fit sense of humour. Thank you for inspiring some of us to write. Damn the growing beard and sobriety month experiment!

  18. *sob *sob
    I feel so sad for two reasons; one, Biko being out of my Mondays and two, having never posted a comment to express my appreciation for the great work that he always did on his blog!Tis true, you never know the worth of what you’ve got…till you lose it. Biko, enjoy the rest for you deserve it…but know that I will be here waiting for your next post. I will check this blog every Monday morning of my life…now you know

  19. i actually too the prescribed commercial break on this piece then came back afterwards to find out things had changed. anyway you always(or that one time am not sure which) wrote about going off to central africa it’s good you get to get that off yout list. and yer 10,000 words a week does seem murderous

  20. My Mondays will never be the same. How about hosting guest writers in between? i love coming back even in between the week to see what you have been up to. sobs….loudly. enjoy the rest. don’t kiss the chimpanzees, they are not humans.

  21. *sob* I could see this coming from a mile away *sob* how can you lead us on then leave us hanging? I know the writing has not been on point as it usually is and that maintenance storo *wiping tears* … hmm, let me leave it there! Good luck with those Pygmies *sob* I hope they love you as much as we have loved you *sob*.

    I hope you will be back full time sooner rather than later though.

  22. i’ll still log in every monday,don care how stupid that is!
    and y did u hav 2 listen 2 fra n mustaf..sorry,mufasa,or wateva.
    this is so tragic Biko:-(

  23. you have done a great job with this blog, will surely miss you.
    Reading today’s post, the first few lines, i knew the end would be a painful punch, whenever you start with something funny, light, it ends with a sad bit, or lesson. And vice versa.
    Its like the horrid ‘we need to talk’ line people use, brings chills, of dread

  24. Go Biko, it’s time for you to grow some arm pit hair. A forth night is good, you deserve the rest. We salute you.

  25. That is the lamest dumping excuse of all time “its not you its me” you could do better, but as you say maybe you are drained, enjoy your monkey meat but remember monkeys carry strange viruses, good luck in your hiatus Biko

  26. Maybe….. You should keep writing!!!

    Mondays will be a lot bluer now!! But hopefully u find the fire to come back on a regular!

  27. How sad is this piece!!
    I enjoyed every piece and i know i will love the pieces to come.
    I love your word play. If you love writing and writing loves you, you were meant to be. Enjoy your break and when you return, the gang will be here..you will be back Biko, because writing and you are one! 🙂

  28. As a member of white shirted yuppies club I am very happy to see the end of this blog. It made us look bad. Our wives kept asking us why we aren’t more like this Biko fellow who is so in touch with his feelings and goes to fabulous place and comes back with such nice stories. Your name will no longer come up when our wives are giving us the riot act. You shall not be missed.

    1. IT IS NOT THE END you wizard, if I knew those wives of yours I’d tell them not to call Biko’s name when in bed with you ever again because they are making you prophesize such horendous unthinkable things!!

  29. I actually just literally stumbled upon your blog a week or so back. Short version: saw the tweet from on treating underlings, followed to the blog, read ‘Room with a view’, read a few other non-fiction posts. Totally loved them all (especially the one on the Fathers’ meet at school!). So, while you’re on your well-earned sabbatical, I’ll be delving into and patiently savouring all the stuff I missed meantime which will be a journey of discovery for me. Good reads are tough to find and your copy makes for fantastic reading. I hate suspense (one of those still thumbing to the end of a book to find out how the plot ends) so this is a perfect story for me: I already know the end, so can read with no feelings of increasing disappointment or frantic wondering about ‘what next?’. Taking all this on board, I’ve no doubt I’ll enjoy ‘connecting’ with you via your written words. PS: Plus, I’m also from that generation that travelled all the way to Germany with Derrick the detective on many an investigation

  30. This song kept playing in my head while reading this. Even the best fall down sometimes, even the wrong words seem to rhyme, out of the doubt that fills your mind, you finally find you and ‘gang’ collide – Howie day. PS; When you create art, the world has to wait, Will Smith

  31. Biko, putting it all on the table like you just did must have not been easy. Thank you for not thinking small of us and letting us in, sharing with us what it is that you are going through and what you have decided. Ihuoma and her clan are cool and A Ok with whatever it is that Biko decides, as long as you are good then l will be good and l will enjoy whatever it is you share. Kudos Biko.

  32. The thing that causes your burnout is the ‘must’ write situations, just change this blog to something you write when the muse strikes, that way we get it at any time.

    Even Pavlov will tell you that it whets the appetite more.

    Thanks for not doing the Irish Exit.

  33. Like all vices; taking it regularly and consitently will make you addicted..

    At this point you will not care of the quality of drug/alcohol that you get…. a whisky connesiour becaome a murats drinker… a casual cocaine sniffer becomes a crack-hoe… a social smoker becames a 2 pack a day smoker…

    At one point its better to walk away from relying on Biko’s writing and enjoy other blogs or random things that will light up the Mondays… So that when you do stumble upon a memorable post from Biko(be it once a month/year) it will feel like you just discovered greatness once more(goosebumps and all)

    Big thanks to fra and mufasa for realising that theGlenfiddich was turning into Muratina/Dunhill’s was turning to Roosters….

    @Biko take a break… even longer than the 2 weeks if you need. But please keep the blog up so that the archive of great material can bring joy to a stranger who will stumble onto your blog on a random Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday…

  34. I have been a ghost reader since you started high school and every monday i have always been keen to be challenged and entertained, maybe we are selfish and expect more of you, but the truth is, we are ADDICTS of you fine pure ‘meth'(work). Enjoy monkey meat down in Zaire, and whenever you show up, we shall shave ya armpits(pun intended) and get you back to class!!

  35. monday mornings wont be the same again..moral of your story go for your passion.you hav done to me what the hooker did to you.challenged me.

  36. Biko we understand 🙁 it may b harder to love mondays without you but you come first. Thank you for letting us see the world through your eyes and for making us your unofficial family. Take your time listen to music with your eyes closed 🙂 and when your ready if you will ever b ready again. Highschool shall go back 2 its normal routine. We love u biko thanks for everything

  37. Biko,
    If our English teachers in Pri School learn about this; they would be so disappointed especially Mrs Ogada of class 4R. Should I tell her you are a quiter or not?! 🙂
    Anyway I feel you bro……

  38. Am a bit sad that at some point u wanted to quit(Irish exit) but am happy u did some soul searching and decided not to do so. Me thinks we are partly to blame because we expect that every Monday there’s an article to read,i do concur with some of the avid readers of the blog that you should write when you feel like, that way you will ease the pressure on your self……priss that thing ati site is was being repaired i dint fall for it..

  39. I’m sad that i won’t get my literary dosage every monday but i pray that you get your blog mojo ASAP!!!!!! It’s been a pleasure Jackson:)

  40. This is one of the most honest pieces of writing I’ve read in a while. I can’t write for sh*t, but I read a lot and that is why I appreciate authors/writers. They feed my addiction. My dealers if you will.
    Just do it. Nike.

  41. Biko,
    Thank you… some of us have grown up in our writing, and are still growing, because of people like you and Oyunga. So, just to let you know, I have enjoyed reading you… I hope you keep writing because you write well, you tell stories, you’re a mirror that reflects you, and sometimes reflects beyond you.

    Have fun in Congo. If you can’t send us letters, send us postcards.
    You’ll be missed.

  42. This is high school we can’t go down without a fight, we have to do a “haki yetu” and burn the principals 504. I mean we used to get “loaf “every Monday and now you want to reduce it to once in 2 weeks?

    Eventually we will get used to it ; we are grateful, we never knew Monday blues all this while, and yea I agree with Njoki up there, you should write whenever we would all appreciate a surprise. 🙂

  43. Biko, this was a nice honest piece. Take the break.. We wont even hold you to that twice a month thing.. coz honestly if you are burning out.. which you are…”When you gotta go, you gotta GO”

    There are many dynamic layers, to the artist and the art form – one of them is knowing when to leave.. the other when to go. You’d be surprised..it does heighten the value of your intellectual investment.

    All the best in this new journey, on strange n foreign seas- who know’s when the tide will wash you up on our shores again.. but go well and plunder whats left of the intellectual, artistic realm!

  44. Well Biko…what would Derrick have done….was a big fan of the show because of consistency. Like your blog writing ten times better than your copy on print…there is a certain free flowing openness…long prose which is not achievable on the print (limited by word count?)

    i pay for your print articles….why should i not pay for the better copy on your blog if you can find a hassle free way of getting the payments done…challenge to you…

    or will the pressure of paid writing kill the free flowing spirit?

    anyway all the best…we definately identify with the drudge of being required to deliver consistently on demand…

  45. I have been a ghost reader for a minute now,thoroughly enjoy your writing and your sense of humour.Enjoy the monkey meat and i do hope you can write again soon.

  46. Why not have guest writers for the other two weeks?

    That way
    1. High schools doesn’t have to close,
    2. You get to write for two weeks,
    3. We all have a surprise awaiting us every Monday,
    4. You (and the gang) get to groom the next generation of writers -giving them a platform to start off .

    We also just might discover the next Biko zulu.

  47. Guess this feels like “sunset” on a chilly evening. You know it’s going come back tomorrow, but you can’t help feel the disappointment in the wake of the night. Well then onto chilly Mondays’, I’ll have to be patient for those that the Sun will rise with me. It’s the broken hope that you know lingers on and keeps you coming back.

  48. Mufasa & Fra, mnaona sasa vile mumefanya? are u feeling better now? nkt. Biko, the rest of us appreciate your work, keep it up, kudos.

  49. Been reading you since June 2010,never missed a post and always enjoyed coming here every monday and make an ass of my boss who always wonders why am always smiling monday morning….mybe you shouldnt put pressure on yourself,don’t say you will write twice a month,write when you want,whether on a sunday morning or at 4am monday morning….Suprise us biko,that way nobody will remind you that its end month and you haven’t posted………..just make sur you post before the second coming…………

  50. Is there a like button so that i can support you on your decision. Good luck bro but you can host guest writers for those two weeks you won’t be posting.

  51. As a ghost gang, I really want to understand you Biko but my heart is not insync….so what becomes of long Mondays, anyway I share Njoki’s sentiments above …write whenever you feel like and hoping its gonna be Monday to Monday 🙂

    Ohhh yeah and I knew you were upto something naughty last Monday…gang’s in High school,remember 🙂

    xoxo

  52. Biko… Even though am seated im giving you a standing ovations.
    And while you are away class prefect ni nani coz the class will get messy trust me.
    Plus i can now copy paste some of your quotes as mine.hahaha..
    GO BABY GO….

  53. I also have a Confession…i blog every week because you inspired the discipline in me…Anyway, listen to the last line of Hotel Carlifornia…

    “You can check-out any time you like,
    But you can never leave! “

  54. High school belongs to you Biko, post when you feel like it. Take the have-to-post thing off your shoulders and your writing mojo is back.

  55. This must be the Jimmy in Biko :-)…raw heartbreaker and clearly “Big bosses close their doors.”

    Enjoy your reign in DRC abd may the pygmies recognise you just as we did 🙂

  56. Funny,the predicament am in. I write,occasionally,and do poetry too. My friends have told me that am good at it,and one of them suggested that I think of featuring as a guest writer for Biko’s blog. So, today,at 16:58, i decide this is the day to do it, but first,I have to read some of the recent posts, since I’ve been away,then i read the Confession. So,am still debating on what to do(calling my friend will probably be the first thing I do)then after that……..well……I have no idea

  57. Biko,

    “It’s not you gang it’s me”! really your even using the classic high school break up line huh?

    Thou shall rise again to your element Jackson.

  58. so long Soldier, we shall see you when you get back. In response to your cliche ‘Its not you, its me’ closing line, here’s one for you – take all the time that you need : )

    save us some tales from Congo. I can see High School seated around a fire eagerly hanging onto your every word, as you spin tales of your adventures.

    Black ink pen and paper.

    x0x0x0x0

    1. fra, not even an apology with an ‘it had to be done’ at the end, really?! You put this in his head. we would have had a couple of more assemblies before he realised he had to get that break (hopefully he wouldn’t have collapsed while we are watching).

  59. ooooooohhhhh! Biko, this is my worst post ever! I know it was quite a challenge but really, u were doing just fine. Wish u all d best but…… my Mondays will never be the same.

  60. Love the whole ‘Irish exit’ just not when its done on me (last week)……Otherwise, enjoy your well deserved rest Biko. You have been amazing since forever (wordpress primary school)

  61. ..Its not you, its me???? Oh so low a blow.
    I understand you have to be the best you to write as well as you do. So go do you, I will be waiting, patiently waiting for your return. Mondays will never be the same, because you see, just like the rest of the gang you were what made Mondays bearable for me…
    Thank you for your awesome work that inspired, entertained, enthralled me for some time…
    Until next time…

  62. Had i known this would end in tears, i wouldn’t have laughed as hard at Mwangi’s underwear. I am no hooker and my cleavage keeps up with me just fine… but i could try the shiny clothes… would that make you stay?

  63. You’ll be back, because your blog is the only one where you write whatever you want, it’s your out, it’s your diary. Only now you have too many people looking into your life, judging you, asking for more, making demands and giving back nothing.

    But still you’ll miss your blog and you’ll be back, maybe not on this particular blog but on another one.

  64. How could you dump me in such a heartless way. i always looked forward to Mondays cos i knew there was a date awaiting me with you. So last week you stood me up and now you are here telling me to take a break from this relationship that meant alot to me.

    its okay i will take the twice per month date and see how it goes.

    enjoy Congo .

  65. …we all get to this point in our lives ..the decisions we make at such crossroads is what makes us different… i mad respect biko.

  66. You have very high ambitions…king of the pygmies.that’s a pipe dream my friend if I know anything about the short-man syndrome. They will never give you the bountiful complements we give you and in no time and you’ll come running back to us.

    All the best in your pilgrimage Biko.

  67. “It’s not you. It’s me.” Truer words have never been spoken when it comes to the art of writing. Enjoy your much-needed break.

  68. Broken by Lifehouse is the only song that’s been playing in my mind since i read this on Monday. Break ups are sad sad sad…so much for our happy ending gang!

    1. Been a ghost reader for the longest time…Sob 🙁 sob:( will miss you Biko. My mondays wont be the same again…People inspire you, or they drain you; You keep inspiring me!!!b

  69. At least I won’t have to whinge about the blurry words every week.

    Retract your statement about posting twice a month. The thought of having to post might make it seem too much like work. Post whenever you feel like posting. Surprise us.

    I also like the idea of guest writers. You already have a fanbase and it provides a unique opportunity for creatives and posers to write and have their mettle tested by a pretty hard-to-please crowd. Could be your way of giving back. Think about it, Mr. Forehead.

  70. Its okay Biko.We salute you and love you all the same.
    For those who want to make high school look bad by whining,tantrums and all,i will apologise on your behalf,see we are all visitors here and so far the host has been kind and always offering more than he should (“we sleep on a comfy couch,eat popcorns and watch tv all night,play the music loud etc”…..so lets smile and say thank you and not be the visitors one hosts for a week and by the second week they feel they should have the bed while you sleep on the couch,,lol

  71. What’s up, Jack. I always read up your weekly post’s, though I rarely comment. This week’s post was especially distinguished. You sounded vulnerable, exposed. And I felt the need to speak up.

    To begin with you’re a gifted writer, Jack. You have the makings of a great writer. Writing is a thing with you.

    Don’t think about quitting.

    Some two rabbit-ass tried to put you down. Of course they’re insecure. They don’t have a life. It’s a thing common among Africans, you know, pulling others down, like crabs in a glass jar. Very sad.

    If you want to adjust the routine, its fine. But let it not be associated to the two Jamaaz. But rather, do it because you feel more comfortable that way.

    1. Jack…that’s strange… never heard anyone calling you that. Anywho, maybe High School just graduated to Rehab for us addicts.

      s’alright…we shall seriously miss you but we shall survive… wish you all the best

  72. Its alright Biko. we salute you and love you all the same.
    For those who wanna make high school look bad by whining, tantrums and all, i will apologize on your behalf……see we are all visitors here and so far the host has been kind and most generous,,we sleep on a comfy couch,eat popcorn and watch TV all night,we play the music loud etc…if he needs a little space,,we should understand and smile,at least we ve not been kicked out..lol
    Biko go cool off,rejuvenate or whatever it is you writers do and whenever you feel like it,we all gonna be here 🙂

  73. I feel like a jilted lover. But as with every other break up, I will keep a stiff upper lip, pretend its okay but still find myself sneaking back to read old posts and think, “Damn, you were good!”

    And as with all honest. breakups, once I get over the hurt and insecurity, we will find a way to work with this new relationship…and maybe we will find that things are much better this way. Thanks for the honesty though.

  74. ..hey man I feel you, when your creative batteries run down this is certainly the most logical step..we don’t want you picking papers on the street ha..
    Now a suggestion, with the number of hits this blog gets weekly, I don’t how many but I suppose your host server can find out..this blog oughta make some dosh,real mbesha for you while you put your feet up on a log somewhere in the Big bush..I hear them pigmy girls give some real mean massage; anyway back to my suggestion, a creative investment as man Oyunga puts it, to me should also take care of your bills.
    I know one Ole Itumbi, ya the ICC hacker if the press and police should be believed..I know him by reputation but he has a good heart and if I were in your shoes I would get all the help I need from a techie/blogger/journalist like him.
    ..and what’s with the line ‘it’s not you it’s me’ it doesn’t work anymore it turns girls into stalkers..

    You’ll be back I know, I didn’t intend this to be long but I’m the guy who sits at back of the class and never puts his hand up until he’s prodded..and yes I know Derrick.

    So long.

  75. I’m really, really going to miss ur writing, but i guess will have to survive with two posts a week, enjoy the break biko, we will still be here when you get back……you will get back i hope?

  76. and words like these are the reason we always come back!

    Those words stayed with me for a very long time. I’m certain men have been told more interesting words by hookers: “Woi, mimi siendi Mushadha,” “Ngai Mwangi! Si hiyo underwear ni mzee

  77. there’s only a handful of posts since Primary School that can match the emotion that this post unveils. The emotion, this one, is heavy my friend; thickened and raw, straight from an aching heart and a burdened spirit. The passion and sincerity plucks the chords that cut across ‘Biko Zulu as the legend and Jackson Biko as the human’ {borrowed from SugarPuss up there. thanks Sugar : ) }

    I wouldn’t be wrong in assuming that each of us has come back to this post more times than any since that dreaded day it saw the gates of High School. Read, and reread. Scroll back up a notch then read again. Breath out slowly, scratch your forehead, then nose. Rest your chin on that very hand then read again. It makes sense what he says, you tell yourself, do I have a choice in the matter?, you question.

    High School is now quiet, we hear the silence then we hear ourselves.

    3 weeks, and counting….

  78. Write when you feel like it bro….I’ve always enjoyed your posts but the one’s that really left an impression were the one’s that were inspired. So take time off, maybe I’ll read just one post a month but I will keep coming back. Enjoy the break and bring back the Inspiration.

  79. its a tough life writing, especially if you have to write so much different kinds of article, on a daily basis, it becomes a kind of a burden even; one which you can’t walk away from.

  80. Biko….boss!!? acting up like a paycheck beginning and end month..asiii!!..you can’t leave,the gang is giving you a cross eyed look ”this means war”..Your ears thirst for your heart knowledge…you don’t want to leave….repeat it slowly.

  81. Hey Biks,

    Someone once dropped a gem of a quotation and said, “No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow.” ……..

    Biko it is no doubt that you are jealously gifted, but I appreciate that we ALL come to a point in life when our insecurities take out all the yolk and white of our eggs (read ambitions and purpose) and mock us with empty shells. So I suppose you deserve a vacation. Travel to Congo, grow armpits, hunt some more and fry some Monkey meat. Find yourself, find some inspiration under some rich canopy of the Congo Forest…and when it is all said and done, I lift a heart-felt prayer that you will find it in your heart to come back home. Home to your once old familiar pillow, that is your blog (Bikozulu) and find solace and rest.

    Your articles have seen most of us through some “Impossible” Mondays, please don’t give up on us. Don’t give up on yourself, get back to your element and give us some more stories that we can tell with our eyes closed.

    So long Biko….Know that you are cherished and celebrated. May our good Lord, watch over you and lace your days ahead with the dew of Heaven.You will be dearly missed. Bless you…Cheers!

  82. writting has always been a passion of mine but i always wondered about going blank one day and it scared me shittless(pardon my french). but i guess it happens to even you pro’s so thanks.

  83. I hope Biko is up to his tricks…I hope this is a hoax and that on 8th Oct, we will find his next scintillating article. If you are serious, then I am crushed. If it’s dough, may be we readers need to pay to access and reading the articles in you blog. You get to earn and we get to continue enjoying you writing. I would pay for sure…

  84. Why do I have this deep feeling that Biko is going to upload a post come Monday the 8th? Someone once said, “Time is the best answer.” So let the students watch this space. Take it as that period Derrick has been paused and adverts are running. And you get a chance to rush to the bathroom, go to the fridge for a refill before it’s back. Biko won’t be gone for all that long!

  85. Biko,

    What happened to this Kidibudi accounts fellow maybe you can host him here we see whether we can get him out of his misery into writer or crash his dreams…..?

  86. Its Monday the 8th October and I cant help check if the”its not you,its me” thing is real.Acceptance is the first step to healing slowly we will heal.

  87. After reading the whole post, I still ask you to come again please. You will make us bitter students and bitter students make bitter schools. Surely high school is not bitter, or is it?

  88. Hi
    pole if we chokoza’d you too much, just wanted to bring out the best with you…. I agree with people who’ve commented, write when you can, when you’re inspired…. you will be missed

  89. …..biko salute for making your bloggers addicts.,..no complains whatsoever,just a word of gratitude for the monday ‘lift’….

  90. A shy, brightly colored monkey species has been found living in the lush rain forests at the heart of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The Lesula, as is known locally, has strikingly large, almost human like eyes, a pink face and golden mane.
    They forgot to mention the extraordinarily large forehead and a brush of a beard…

  91. You are a good writer Biko…enjoyed every bit…becoz today i read the bible and i bounced on Colossians 3:23, have a read, it just made my Monday

  92. I may be the only one who feel for the site is under construction…trully i did coz for me you are formidable (im luo please forgive the big words)….and you were going to write forever,…i live on your words and laugh more coz of them….i knew the sobreity thing wont work but it was a nice attempt hehehe…Oyunga came back, with a whole page to boot, so dont kid yourself….do Congo, eat monkeys but the urge to write again will soon overwhelm you…….

  93. alaaaa, i go get married, come back from my honeymoon and just when am settling in to read all ur blog posts i see u be dumping us, ahhh , but for real, take a break and find ur mojo……..we will be here, always!!

  94. I will miss you on monday mornings:-( but do what you have to do to get ur spark and mojo back. Ur art cannot and will not die. And pics form Congo please at end month lol

  95. Saddens me that you actually seriously considered giving up on what I consider my favorite blog. I remember when I first got hooked to this blog. I saw a link on my timeline, accessed it and read the piece on the life advice you received from a wisened old mzungu buddy you were hanging out with at the Coast (the Coast brings out some of your best works, I’ve noticed. Must be the pristine sandy beaches). It was so good a read that I read it several more times that week. I have since been a faithful reader, like everybody else here, gobbling up the archives and eagerly awaiting the next post. It goes without saying that you are great at what you do and if a break is what is needed to restore your creativity, then by all means Biko, do what you have to. High School will be all the more grateful for it someday soon. I have often stated that I like your fiction pieces best and it remains true but your travel pieces and general life adventures are just as enticing and i look forward to more of them in the near future.

    I second the idea of guest writers. It will motivate some of us wannabe writers to actually get past our own writers block and stop judging you too harshly on yours. Girly as it is, may I recommend keeping a diary? Actually helps with the free flowing creative thoughts and no one’s there to judge. Anyway, as most said, post when you feel like it – just don’t stop writing.

    On a somewhat related note, only reason I don’t buy Kenyan literature (save for magazines) is because most are centered on colonialism. I’m all for knowing your roots but really, it gets boring. I do love the short stories anthologies though, so perhaps you should publish the ones you wrote whilst in that dingy apartment (you were once a lab geek? Hard to picture that).

    Ahh yes, the era of Inspector Derrick on telly and Sherlock Holmes in books (or was it The Famous Five?). Those were the days. Though I recently saw Sherlock Holmes on my screen, complete with a smartphone and a GPS system in his car…there is hope for today’s kids yet.

    Rolled my eyes at the “under construction” sign last week. Hadn’t we just had the walls painted the previous week after the high school anniversary? What, El Nino struck at night? A tad predictable Biko 🙂

    And oh yes, worth + art = noticed the rhyme before you even pointed it out 🙂 Michelangelo would roll over in his grave though at how art has come to be neglected in this day and age, that one has to “whore” it out to the highest bidder. Gone are the days when people lived for art, when poets were the people to marry and writers were the king’s buddies. Sad really, because writers offer the perfect escapism. I should know, your writing has saved me from many a boring Mondays. Thank you for your posts and for this particular one; it takes a great man to be honest with himself and with others and I personally appreciate that. I’d say good luck but you don’t need luck, you were born to write, you’re Zulu-blood for pete’s sake 🙂

    Enjoy your break, may the mojo find you (or is it vice-versa?) Come back soon though; we miss you already. (sorry for going on and on; clearly, i hate Irish exits; stay for one more round please).

    1. Nicolette,if Fra says you write well, then you best believe it. Given that she is one of the two people inspiring Biko to take a break.lol not that i have anything against that,everybody needs a break,since it cant all be good all the time.anyway,point is, you do write well.

    1. you need to read more,then you will know that Biko has a big forehead,(atleast that’s what he says…but don’t they say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder?) and oh, he also has a missus and a daughter…its all here on his blogs Cherry…read read read!!!

  96. Omera you can’t be serious you’ll be cutting down on my weekly dose of your writting high school students are going to strike. Anyway i wish you all the best coz i have to say maybe you should write….

  97. Omera you can’t be serious you’ll be cutting down on my weekly dose of your writting high school students are going to strike. Anyway i wish you all the best coz i have to say maybe you should write….

  98. i supported you when you didnt post on some days, when you said that you just didnt have anything to write, even now, we all understand Biko, we feel sad coz our mondays wont be the same again without you here, but write whenever you can dear, dont put timeframes to yourself, when it flows you write, we all behind you in this, we are high school!, the Gang.

    All the best Biko, Miss you already!.

  99. Thanks Fra. Guess that’s my ‘maybe you should just write’ moment – your words carry a lot of weight around here you know 🙂

  100. seems your exit has in someway encouraged ghost readers to emerge from their ‘closets’.I am one of them.
    it is sad that high school has come to this…I really hope this is not a slow fade.u know,1 post a month then a post never.

  101. I resepct your decision to stop. I know burn-out; i have felt it too. Walked away from a job when i had none in sight. Needed me-time. to think and re-charge the batteries and re-strategise. So, yeah, take that break; you’ve earned it. But dont box yourself. Write whenever you can. because writing is you; its what defines you (at least in our eyes). in the meantime, host guest writers. Post pictures. Share other interesting pieces you find along the way. Keep this page alive. and whenever the inspiration bites, then write. So good luck Biko, but not good bye. See you soon.

  102. This is the universal problem of getting used to free things, people develop a sense of entitlement. Biko, find a way to monetize your posts moving forward, develop a Bikozulu app and for a small fee some of us can get it and get an instant update when you post.

  103. It’s my first read from you and whaat? Too great. Especially with the touch of natural and aspect of reality, I will definTely look up to you.

  104. “It’s hard to walk out and bang a door when you are not sure you won’t knock on it again. It’s even harder to walk away from who you are.”I can totally relate to this statement.
    But damn Jackson…do you still stare at a blank screen? Because your writing is life.Its magnificent more than the mona lisa smile…

  105. *Conversation in my head right now*
    Biko: It’s not you. It’s me.
    Me: Nooooooo! Are you breaking up with me? Are we on a break? Don’t leave meeeee!*Sob! Sigh!*
    *crawls into fetal position*

  106. Well me thinks writing for you is like white on rice,without it you cannotbe.Unless you have a date with the maker you’ll be here.

  107. Diet cleared your mind….
    Yeah do you write when you feel like but like running, walk, crawl, stumble along but do not stop.

  108. Biko… That felt like a breakup.. My heart did a little flop… Sigh.. Bimonthly? Really? I do understand but wish it was more. Thanks for being so candid about this.. Is why you shall be sorely missed..wherever you set out to with your dinghy kindly let the gang know.. Wishing you all the best.. Sigh…

  109. Breaking up when we thought everything is working out right? Thought we would be able to be seeing each other more often. I’m smelling a break up. We dont want to be selfish,Biko write when you feel like it.I support your move

  110. I felt in love with your blog halfway through your evolution. I had to go to the archives and really have a picture of where you come from. Hats off Zulu, this confession was endearing.
    I could read on through the archives, but I hope you did rule the Pygmies!
    Your dearest reader…

  111. Of all your posts I have read so far ( I have read more than 54posts so far) this is so reeaallll. It’s so bare, so human! How many times do we doubt our career paths? How many times do we think “it ain’t worth” it? How many times do we feel overwhelmed and start packing.
    It’s 2017, thank God you overcame that moment.