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Flu and Sniffles


The July cold is wrathful and wants us all to die from colds.

Thick dark clouds form above us but they don’t threaten us, not even one bit. They’ve been gathering for a month now, with heavy rain threatening to descend upon us. But nothing. They’re empty threats. Blank shots. We don’t even carry umbrellas.

I have been sitting at the food court for almost half an hour now waiting for those people who say “Nipee dakika tatu nitakuwa hapo.” And as much as I hate liars, this is a lie I condone because I’ve been caught at the end of it too many times. So I bear with this liar.

It’s midmorning but it looks like evening. Everyone is in dense attire. Some press handkerchiefs tightly against their nose. They sniffle and wipe. They wipe and they sniffle. They need Flugone.

(Once in high school, I had a bad cold and the nurse gave me Flugone. I took them and by the end of the day the flu was gone. From then on Flugone has been the epitome of modern medicine for me. I recommend it everywhere. “Simon, I have a headache.” Try some Flugone. “Simon, I’m nose bleeding.” Get some Flugone. “Simon, it hurts when I pee.” I don’t know about that but I’d recommend Flugone.)


In the booth I’m seated in, it’s only me and a girl who doesn’t sniffle. She’s studying ferociously, this girl, tearing through pages and writing down points like a mad scientist. Like the rest of the school, she’s begun her exams and probably hasn’t started off on a high note.

It’s all so familiar to me how she muddles around because I’ve been in her position ever since I joined campus. Ours is a lethal group where we waste away the semester in golden drinks and smoke, then fumble with bulk notes a week or two to exam. Unlike her though, my exams are a month away and I still have more of the semester to fritter away.

I want to take out my speaker and play some music but I fear she might rip off my limbs in a way Flugone might not be able to repair. But she’s too pretty and I want her attention. So I play some music and wait for her to bop her head to something she likes.

She has those expensive weaves socialites sell on Instagram and to be honest, she’s pulling it off. She smells like strawberries and sunshine. All round, she’s an 8, and we don’t get 8s often.

Minutes pass and she doesn’t bop her head to anything. I need a different approach.

So I gather my inner voices and we start:

Simon, this might be the first and last time you ever see her, shoot your shot.

But she’s studying and doesn’t have time for your lies.

Well maybe she wants you to talk to her, si you know you’re looking dapper today with those new sneakers.

Ah, if she wanted you to talk to her she would’ve showed you a sign.

A sign like what?

Like looking at you randomly when you’re not looking and looking away when you catch her looking, that shit they do in movies.


*I look away while subtly looking at her with side eye as I wait for my sign*

*She doesn’t even raise her head. It’s like I’m not even there*

The voices continue.


Aaah, that doesn’t mean anything, maybe she still wants you to talk to her.

But you said girls show signs…

I know what I said, it doesn’t matter, talk to her!

I don’t’ want to, I can’t…



I cave in to the voice and start.


“Hey. Go slow with the studying, it’s only a degree you won’t use.”

She laughs. “I have an exam in the afternoon that I’ve just known about this morning.”

I laugh. “Really? How did that happen?”

“Long story.”

“Did it involve alcohol and bad life choices?”

“You separate them like they’re not mutually exclusive.” She chuckles.

We go on and on until she tells me the magic words every man loves to hear. “We should talk again.”

Because those are the words that lead up to: “Give me your number.”

And suddenly it wasn’t cold anymore.


PS, This is not a sponsored post by Flugone. Like MikeMuthaka, they don’t pay me enough for this shit.

Be a darling and share this:


King is a mad writer on the loose. He is suspected to have lost his mind a few years after he was born. Since then, he has been writing his mind almost everywhere he can put his pen on. Someone – a government, a state, a police force, a parent, a teacher, a rabbi, a president, a sacco, a doctor, a deranged ex, a church, a therapist, or anyone with a bit of power bestowed upon them – should reprimand him and help him.

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