You aren’t deliberating on messing up again, not this time. The repercussions last time were dire – her passive aggressiveness; how she perpetuated cold treatment for months on end. Every remote attempt at a conversation seeking to pacify her and abate the consequences were vain, like trying to figure out how the 1000 bob you broke diminished to 50 bob. She dished out one word answers to open ended questions; fine, alright, okay, nope and even worse ‘zae’. Posted cryptic messages on her social media like ‘they don’t know what they got until it’s gone.’ Of course it’s yours, but you’re helpless, if you’re brazen and reply you’ll be met by ‘If the shoe fits’ so you don’t. There’s not much you could do but to soak it all in like a sponge, with her you would apologize for anything, notwithstanding who was wrong, there was no winning against her – not when she is gutted, which is most of the time. She could sulk for something you said in her dream, that’s how mercurial she is. Limits were non-existent to her but that’s what love is, tenacity?
Her birthdate is on turbo, foot on the gas, fast approaching and you have three days to weave something up quick – a single cake won’t cut it, a strip club might but there’s nothing cool about a man’s junk around your girl’s face. Her birthdays are regal shindigs, second only to Christmas or its variations. That’s what you were oblivious about the preceding year; you don’t get the fuss around birthdays. It’s just another day on the calendar so you just wished her a happy birthday and ordered a dress from an online store, a misstep. What came was a sore sight – you could have a hemorrhage from it. Something worse than seeing a rotund uncle in skinny jeans. The dress, a ridiculous replica of what you ordered looked like something that could be pulled out of a quack magician’s hat, okay that analogy doesn’t make sense but you get the drift. You had to be on A-game this time, creative juices were revved, google was summoned and a plan was devised.
She chews her well-done steak gingerly, the miniscule steak that cost a small fortune – just because they’ve been adorned with a German name that sounds like choking gasps. But this isn’t the day to b***h around over value for money, not when a restaurant has spotless glass for walls and more fundamentally not on the day her ambience filled the earth. It’s her day and it demanded utter reverence which you have already infringed on by underdressing, jeans aren’t that bad for dinner, eh? She has on a red dress that cut mid-thigh and heels that aggravated your height insecurity. As a chugger, you’re done with your second can of beer before she is halfway through her 1950 Italian red wine. You’re fidgety and trepid but you’re trying to hold it together, so as to give zilch away. This is going to be a Paris night, you’re on the fringes of unveiling the city of love in Nairobi, about to annihilate the notion that Kenyan men aren’t romantics by any ‘jeans’ necessary (see what I did there, can’t touch this).
“What! you did this, yes yes!” A lassie In a maroon dress, from the opposite side erupts. New Edition’s Stand the rain promptly plays. Her date sits bemused. Spaced out. Shell shocked about what’s happening. And then it hits you when you see her hand.
“Shit!” You cuss.
“What?” She quizzes. (the birthday girl)
Meanwhile, the man tries to quell her elated date who’s now hopping with tears in her eyes, “No, it’s not mine.”
The plan crumbles like a pack of dominos; what seemed so impeccable in mind had a contingency. On the day you decide to seal IT, the restaurant’s staff counter by being in cahoots with the devil. You wave robustly in the air and the waiter locks eyes with you, holds his head as if to say ‘I’m done’. The manager gets wind and joins in on the 3- man triangle. The waiter shrugs and points fingers at the manager who in turn makes a beeline for his accuser and drags him to your table. The blame game is on, all of you belaboring about. The manager did do as instructed, partially, by hitting the right song but giving ambiguous orders to the waiter.
“For heaven’s sake, that’s Maroon not red,” the manager belts.
Pans out the waiter put the engagement ring in the wrong lady’s glass. When it rains it pours.