In conversation (maybe ranting) with writers. A transcript
Let peace prevail... ha... not until I get into the New York Times.
Good Evening ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you for coming out tonight.
I see many faces I recognise: those of writers, journalists and varied media types..
You all know as much as I do that the Kenyan crisis is bigger, much more sexier now, than HIV babies...
You all know that in Africa, careers are made in adversity... are we going to let Bono and Angelina Jolie beat us to this one?
The speed and accuracy at which shit hits the fan in Africa means that we the chroniclers of this continent- of its body count mainly- will never go out of business.
The question we as writers have to answer before the international gaze shifts to the next crisis is not why Kenya happened or Rwanda...or Chad... but where we were when it happened.
To those who were no there, may fame and glory elude you. Elude you unless you are Ngugi wa Thiongo and have a book of prophecies to sell.
And the book of prophesies is indeed the easier way out... The template exists for an African crisis: The Shona and the Ndebele, the Igbo and the Yoruba, the Kikuyu and the Kalenjin are all by a singular thread of atavism conjoined.
Indeed, all of Africa is but two tribes: The Killers and the Killed.
So where was I when Kenya happened? Story for another day but I can tell you this:
For one moment at the beginning, Britney spears had a tantrum and we got thrown of the News Charts.
Then we blew up a church and the Christian civilisations up North stopped to listen.
Damn, Kenya is so big now, even George Bush knows where it is...
We have weathered a storm in china... the slave trade in Chad, the siege of Ndjamena even Amy Winehouse's coke and Grammies party.
And now people who know people are telling me that Don Cheadle has been spotted at the Hotel Sirikwa in Eldoret.