I haven’t had a considerable amount of sleep for over a week now. No matter how intentional I try to be and have some shut-eye by 11, I find myself drifting to the youthful hours of the morning. When the ambience is all quiet and the only things that float are brazen leathered folk, malevolence and acute darkness that hangs in the ether. Only then do I find sleep and my eyes get drowsy. It’s usually a smooth transition. I’m not the type that flips their phone and sleeps shortly after. I’m the ilk that drifts off doing something, many a time reading an article, treading the dicey streets of twitter or watching a movie.
By 6.30 I am up. I have this visceral thing that jolts me awake every day just before 6.30 am notwithstanding how late I sleep. I never sleep past 6.30 am in one take. This weekend, I want to try and have a behemoth of sleep. I want to shut my eyelids and wake up with tread lines on my face. That’s the hallmark of good sleep. When someone wakes up with their face all shades of contortion, their kissers lopsided. Good sleep is messy. Good sleep is sleep that takes time to unravel its haze after you first rouse. That’s what I need this weekend. Good slumber.
Every day on weekdays I churn at least five 250 word copies from 8 am for a local entertainment lifestyle magazine you might have heard of. I pore through my phone with a crease on my left brow, researching under the confines of tunnel vision, bending over backwards to glean content to write. If I knew a thing about tailoring I would be sticking the pinked hue tip of my tongue from the corner of my mouth.
When lady luck feels a tad risqué, I’ll be tasked with an assignment to write and I’ll hop onto it promptly like a dog on bone food. Oft-times I’m on my own, I have to intuitively single out five pieces that I think would fly and run them by my supervisor as a prerequisite. Wontedly, one or two take the axe and never get to see the light of the paper. My supervisor runs a tight ship, she is curt and pithy and brutal with her response. She vanquishes my flimsy ideas and sometimes offers replacement stories for me to pursue, sometimes she doesn’t, bestowing on me the prerogative to generate something on the soil of my floundering knack to scour for entertainment pieces.
That changed today, my supervisor gave me the green-light and all my pieces had a chance at life. They morphed into words and are probably in the motherly lab of an editor who’ll imbue a little pomp into them, smoothen their edges and let them fly to about 600,000 followers on Instagram. Hell, that’s a lot – 600k. That is like 13 full stadia of Kasarani’s depth.
Their Instagram account recently followed me and my measly online presence. I was stoked to have a verified account seek me. I gushed over it, well, to myself. But still that doesn’t take the throb away from it, right? Should I now start introducing myself as; Hey, I’m Allen. I’m followed by a verified account. What’s your name, no? Distasteful? Childish? … Okay I yield.
It’s not much what I do – writing five short pieces a day. When the sun kisses a little past midday I’m usually done and sending in my work for the editor to probe. But I usually don’t get off my work station until later on.
I made this resolve to write every single day to finesse my skills. I felt like I wasn’t consistent enough and I wanted to, so here I am exerting before this art. I’m intent on unconditionally writing something every day non-work related even when I feel like I can’t bang copy for shit. Even when the plain faced writer’s block comes knocking. Even when someone says; ‘Sanaipei Tande isn’t even that beautiful’ I’ll get my knickers in a twist and not engage. Even if I’m nursing a festering heartbreak. I have to write through any inhabitable or disreputable conditions.
Here I am at exactly 4.12 pm, penning this frivolous piece down. Endearing to my intents. Hat in hand at its feet. Listening to chilled reggae laced with raspy voices. I don’t even intentionally listen to reggae but today I woke up feeling a little high…okay… a little high-spirited for reggae. At the moment Alaine’s – Higher is playing, next on cue is Jah Cure. I wouldn’t be able to pick out his face in a catalogue to save my life, but he sings like someone with a viscous beard. A beard that can foster bugs. That’s what I’d look out for, a biblical Jah beard. Get it? … Jah and biblical beard … too soon? Reggae has soul. It is candid. I think I’ll start listening to it more. It is grown folk showing contrition over lost love. It is men and women appreciating fondness. It is this simple structure that embodies discourse. Reggae is stoic and yet ever so vulnerable.I am disillusioned, I have listened to this music for the whole day and nothing has changed. I thought I would have grown dreadlocks by the time evening unfurled. I haven’t garnered the remotest whiff of any Caribbean accent. I’m dubious I would be able to effortlessly slice the skin off sugarcane with a machete. But you know what, I don’t have to. Morgan Heritage inherently affirmed my stature when they said; you don’t ha fi dread to be Rasta.
Anyhow, I’m Allen and i have a verified instagram follower.
But most importantly, legalize.