Nasser Road, the duodenum of Kampala

I had business on Nasser Road juzi, which is such a dubious thing to say. It sounds like I am planning to stand for youth woman MP of a constituency whose latitude and longitude indicate that it is at the bottom of Lake Kyoga and that to show that I qualify for elections I require a certificate saying I hold an MA masters fiscal astrology or something.

I had business on Nasser Road juzi is, furthermore, not something we should be saying in 2019. Why does Nasser Road still exist? Why has it not been condensed into a 13 MB app by  now? Why do I still have to physically lift ass onto boda, don helmet and actually geographically move out of the conditioned air to go to Nasser Road? Juzi or otherwise?

I have not been in the CBD, or Central Business District, or Gotham, for so long that it feels as if I have never even been there. I mastered impeccable avoidance strategies that have kept me out of downtown, Jinja-Kampala-Bombo Road, Luwum, Wilson, Dastur and the whole morass for so long I literally can’t remember the last time I was there. All I have is nightmarish memories, and my mind pictures the place with the most extreme, most bigoted, most virulent, most hateful opposite of fondness

Like this writhing coil of pulsing, sliming species so devolved from human beings, so reduced to essential disgust that you, and me and all of us should not call them humans.

We should call them eugh-mans.

Pause for rimshot. Yeah. That joke has been submitted to the African Museum of Anthropological Research.

Jinja to Bombo Road is one long duodenum and everything on its surface is either proceeding toward defecation or expectoration. I’m sorry to be so gross about this, and I know I could have simply said “I don’t like the place because it is too crowded”, but if I did, what kind of man would I be? African needs Africans who are ready to say what is on their mind with clarity and courage.

I can’t believe I had to go to Nasser road.

Four elements compose Nasser Road. Stone (which makes the buildings and road), paper (which feeds the business as well as the inevitable thousands of rats) people (who, obviously, also feed the rats) and a suspicious smell I can’t describe.

I can’t describe it because I can’t actually smell it, which only makes it more suspicious. But I am certain there is one. The fact that I can’t detect it means it must be hiding itself, which just makes it more nefarious.

Nasser road is famous as a hub for printing businesses: book legers, receipt documents, file folios and the like.

It is famous for  printing, it is notorious for forgery.

I thought the  latter would be the only reason I would ever have to descend to that particular circle of the inferno –I don’t know where this feeling comes from, but I believe a forgery will one day be necessary, at some point in my life. Maybe it will be a fake marriage certificate. Maybe a fake divorce one.

Instead of either, though, it was a routine business matter that took me to Nasser Road. The agent of someone I work with needed me to meet him there to sign a contract.

Which brings us to the lesson for Uganda as a whole. Look, if we will not let the internet streamline and modernise business practices because we keep putting up taxes and laws to restrict its efficiency, at least let us allow the courier departments of the boda boda industry to do it. As if you can’t just send the contract on a bike, I sign it, and neither one of us has to hurt anyone’s feelings.

Behind The Scenes of #NotRadio

Due to circumstances well within my control, such as the steering wheel of my Spacio, I found myself at Blue Flamingo’s studios last Friday afternoon, there to witness with my very own eyes and ears, indeed with both of each organ, the performance and recording of #NotRadio

#NotRadio, as you have learned since you crawled out from underneath that rock (Nga tusanyuse! Eladde! Ab’e Olduvai Gorge mwabalese bali batya?) is Uganda’s first certified hit podcast.

Yes, we have had podcasts before. We still have them. A lot of them are quite good. Mine (now a defunct casualty of my attention dysfunction) was, I dare say, a significant fraction above mediocre in fact. But we have never yet had a certifiable hit, a blockbuster Michael Bay Disney Avengers Sequel featuring Drake and Kanye West plus Stan Lee cameo style hit.

#NotRadio (It’s written like that, with the hashtag. Don’t panic. Just allow) features the line up of Siima Sabiti, Rudende Nkurunziza and Karim Katuramu. Notable personages each.

Siima has the demeanour of one who would have solved a lot of problems if she had been in Seeta at the right time. I am certain that she could have said, “Let’s all calm down and relax, have a cup of tea and talk this through,” and both Seargent Namaganda and the brigadier’s bodyguards would have taken seats. Not least because you sense of a glint of machete metal in her eye, a warning that Siima may well have expert level capacity in applying chokeholds.

Rudende the evil genius is a man of capacious intelligence, conversant on the randomest of topics. It is as if he knows something about everything. In most cases something related to flatulence about everything.

rudey2

KK is like a ricocheting bullet; his wit is fast, unpredictable, wild and lethal. I once thought of starting social media beef with KK. I knew that losing to him would boost my twitter numbers. But the problem is that he rarely tweets. Which is quite selfish, in my opinion. 

This trio first earned notoriety seven years ago as XAM, the morning show on XFM, 94.8.

Since then water has flowed under the bridge, down the trough, out the cistern and into the wetland. Rudy, Siima and KK do not present shows on radio any more.

But chemistry is chemistry, if you paid attention during Mrs Nsangyi’s class. The combination of certain elements will always explode the same way even if you combine them  years later.

siima2

#NotRadio is the reconstitution of these titans without the hindrance of R.Kelly music breaks. It is just the raw uncut, the bare bums, the nyarsh without the knickers, the pedal to the metal. I am positive without a doubt to taint my faith, that this is how God wanted it to be. No R. Kelly breaks.

I arrived just before the trio entered the studio and even though I should not have been surprised by this I nevertheless was shocked to see that each had a pen and paper in front of them. As if they plan and prepare and organise and schedule. As if this madness has a method to it.

Phil Jackson, legendary coach of the championship Michael Jordan and the championship Kobe Bryant once told me, via a documentary of course, that you need a lot of practice to make your art seem effortless. And if it doesn’t seem effortless you have not practiced enough.”

kk

Obviously veterans, with their level of experience and expertise know how to do prep. But it didn’t feel like falling into Mrs Nsangyi’s study group. They kept segueing into conspiracy theories involving testicles and had a few enlightening and encouraging revelations to share with each other about something called the friendzone nut.

Yes, it apparently exists.

Then it was Showtime. And what Coach Phil said was true. Triangle offence. Powerpuff girls, Siima’s erudite exposition of the Michael Coheh deposition, Rudey’s sudden and abrupt … wait. I can’t tell you any more without spoilers. Let me leave the link here and you listen. After you are done, pick your butt up off the floor where it will be lying, having been laughed off.