Keisha’s Diary: Made

Keisha’s Diary: Made

​May, 20…

Aah, hiatus… What is the plural of hiatus? Hiatuses? Hiati? Whatever it is, they are good. I took a break from chronicling my awesome life this year and came back with even juicier tales for my diary, which is sure to become a bestseller once a notable publishing house notices it. Yes, that is the bulk of what I reflected on during my extended… hiatus. 

Where did I stop? 

Yes. My mum and Number One were planning something nefarious. Possible target is my father. My father and my mum spent a couple of days holed up in the master bedroom. Afterwards I was given a credit card and orders to move out. Trust me, it didn’t make sense to me either. 

But move out I did. And I loved it! 

I even did one better: I moved out of the state. I moved a thousand kilometers away from home. 

But it wasn’t instantaneous. First, I made a couple of calls. I needed a job in wherever I was moving to. I called my friend Karla, with a k. 

“Hey girl, what are the chances of getting a job in your area?”

“Hm, depends on a couple of factors. Age, marital status, meat preferences, accent, and eye color, among others.”

It was like Karla made it her life’s mission to be of no use to anyone. 

I called another friend, Favor. 

“Girl, you need at least twenty years of work experience AND some volunteer experience before you can think of applying here.”

Huh, a conspiracy. 

I left my dearest friend for last. Eren (pronounced eh-REN, meaning ‘doing’, as in, present continuous) lived far away from her own family and seemed to be doing well all on her own.

“Hey dearest friend, you have got to help me, or I am done for. Absolutely done for.”

“Keesh. Drama queen extraordinaire. Your mum kicked you out yet?”

She knows me so well. And only Eren can call me Keesh and get away with it. 

That was how I moved a thousand miles away, got a house, got some interesting housemates, got a job, and lived my life exactly how I wanted it. Well, mostly exactly how I wanted it. You know what, I lived. Let’s leave it at that. 

Somehow, something happened that made it necessary for Eren to move to my house, making her my second housemate. I don’t know what, and I don’t care: she was more than welcome. It was a pretty big house, with five bedrooms and six bathrooms, so we all paid rent to co-exist in the building. My first housemate, who was there before me, was beautiful, strong, and mental. 

Aisha woke up at 4 am and played grunge till 6. She did a series of exercises that required a lot of moaning and groaning from 6 to 7. She then proceeded to her ‘vocal exercises’ from 7 – 8. During this time, she would cook something that smelled like disease and death. And she would eat it. Or drink it. 

This happened every. Single. Day. 

After four days of this nonsense, I had to act. 

I woke up at 3 and put my favorite Sasha Fierce album on high-volume-repeat. Then I took my yoga mat to her door and did my stretches as I sang off-key in a very loud voice. Aisha was tough though: she didn’t react till 4, when she opened the door looking like a confused cat. 

“What are you doing?”

“What does it look like I’m doing? My morning routine set on ‘Loud’.”

“But I was asleep… ”

“So was I all those days you played terrible music and grunted like you were having bad sex! As if that wasn’t enough, you cooked poison and screamed while you did that, in the name of vocal exercises. Vocal exercises my ass!”

I was really angry. 

“But you could have told me that all that was bothering you! Isn’t this a little extreme?”

What the hell? 

“You honestly didn’t think that you were being a world-class bother? You want to stand there and tell me that you did NOT know that you were being a pain in the auditory and olfactory asses!” (I am not sure I knew what I was saying at that point). 

“I swear I have nasal damage from the smell of the death you cook in that cursed pot of yours! And your screeching would kill a banshee! And you have the nerve, the NERVE, to say I am extreme?! Let me tell you something, girl, this is not extreme, not in the least. Keep up with that rubbish routine of yours, and I will dance to a mix of Wizkid and Davido every morning IN YOUR ROOM. Shey you don’t lock your door. No wahala. Try me first.”

She winced at my music choice. I perfectly understood: no sane person likes those two musicians. And I use the term ‘musicians’ loosely.

But Aisha got the message. The next day I heard soothing strains of Enya floating out her door at the reasonable time of 5 am, and Aisha actually had a pleasant voice when she wasn’t screeching. The malodorous plague she brewed also stopped. In it’s place was the sweet smell of cinnamon and apple. 
A week later she told me she had been testing me. Apparently, I over-aced the test. Aisha didn’t just respect me now: she feared me. 

Cue evil laughter. 


Keisha’s Diary: Reactions

Keisha’s Diary: Reactions

February, 20…

Dad’s reaction was very predictable. He laughed.
“Come on Keisha,” sometimes he surprises us by actually knowing our names, “why would they want to kill me? I presume you are talking of your mum and one of the others.” I don’t think he remembers his wives’ names either.
“Yeah, Number One, to be precise. They… ” Jonas trailed off. Dad looked shocked. That was something you didn’t see everyday.
” Number One went to see your mother?” he asked with false calm. We could see the index finger on his right hand tapping against the book. He does that when he is angry or scared shitless. As he should be.
“I think it’s time I paid your mother a visit.”

When Dad says he is ‘paying his wife a visit’, the long and short of it is he is going for conjugal relations. I don’t get it. Nobody does.
Get what, you might ask? Well, that is hard to explain too. So I won’t.

Three days later, Dad came to the house. He stayed for two nights. We only saw them at breakfast: all the other meals were taking to Mum’s room, where they were holed up. Doing whatever.
The morning Dad left, we cornered him on the front porch. He gave me one of his credit cards. Mum came to the door, looking all sorts of satisfied.
“Boys, girls, go back inside. We need to talk to Keisha alone,” she purred. Mum was purring! And what was this about talking to me alone?
The twinses huffed back into the house.
“Are you throwing me out?” I ask.
“Yes,” Mum says.
“Okay, not throwing you out, per se. Giving you money to get your own place. Get a job. Get involved in other people’s business. Stuff like that,” she said. Dad stood stoically, saying nothing.
I shrug. I always wanted my own place anyway.
“Well, this is very anti-climatic,” Mum sounded upset.
“Aww, Mum, you wanted drama? The thing about us drama queens is that we know when to ruin the moment for others. I am also moving out with that little Venza. It has grown on me.”

Little did I know that moving out was setting me up for greater things.

Keisha’s Diary: Plots A-Brewing

Keisha’s Diary: Plots A-Brewing

February, 20…

At some point in her life, Number One had a name. I remember, as kids, Number One would insist that we call her Mummy, ’cause she felt she deserved to be recognized as such by us (we used to call her Aunty. She was NOT our mother).
When she became too insistent, we stopped calling her anything. We would just walk up to her and relay our message, whatever it was at the time, like:
“Merry Christmas, your rice was half-cooked.”
After Core i5 came on the scene, we had to give the first wife a name. So she became Number One.

And Number One meeting with my Mum is never good news.

Mum dislikes Number One. The only statement we have ever heard her say to Number One is
“I am the main beneficiary in my husband’s will.”
And now Number One is going to our house? This was an emergency.
My brothers and I race to the car while I call one of my lil sisters. The orange abomination is no where in sight. Seems Number One snuck out and left without us knowing.
“What’s up?” Gina says. Her twin’s name is Aura.
“Number One is on her way to the house right now.”
“That is not possible,” Gina says immediately. See what I mean? Some things just can’t happen.
“Better believe it. We are forty minutes out: listen in on whatever it is they are planning!”
“Got it,” and she ends the call.

45 minutes later…

We get out of the car to the horrific sight of Mum and Number One shaking hands and smiling. Smiling! At each other!
I look at dining room window, and, sure enough, Gina and Aura’s faces are there, looking terrified.
We nod at the two women, acting as casual as we knew how. The minute we got in the front door, Aura burst out,
“They are planning to do something to Dad!”

* * * * * * * * * *
Dad is really Samson Tar, a tall man with a commanding presence and a weakness for fine women and wine. Overall, he is a pretty negligent father, but he has his usefulness. Like we can always get his credit card and empty his bank account whenever we want to.

We had no idea what Number One and Mum were planning, but we felt it necessary to let Dad know. And that was how the twin boys and I got into the Venza,  once again,  and drove another forty minutes to Dad’s house.

His house is three stories high, with beautiful landscaping, two fountains out front, a huge garden out back, and the servants. It feels weird calling them that.
“Mum definitely hired these people,” Jonas muttered as we walked into the house. I nodded. Yup, it definitely was her.
Dad was sitting in the first floor living room, sipping a glass of some foreign wine and reading a book. Looks suspiciously like Lord of the Flies. Hate that book.
“Hi Dad.”
“Hey guys! What brings you here today?”
Dad calls all his kids ‘guys’. I think we are too many for him to remember our names.
“Oh, nothing. Just that two of your wives are planning to kill you.”

Keisha’s Diary: Page One

Keisha’s Diary: Page One

February, 20…

When I say that I live with my parents and siblings, I mean that in the loosest possible sense of those words.

Dad has four wives. There is Number One, Mum, Core i5, and Pentium. None of these women meet if they can help it, unless it’s Christmas, New Year, or the odd family meeting. They all live in separate houses, miles away from each other, but in the same town. Oh, and Dad lives with none of them. Somehow, he lives in a house with a live-in housekeeper, a cook, a cleaning maid, and a gate man. He has never had sex with any of those women. The first time I met them, I knew why. And I instantly knew who had hired them.

Mum is the most enterprising of Dad’s wives. Dad married her four years after Number One, and she still managed to give birth to the overall first born, a.k.a me (bragging rights, anyone?). Then she went on to have twin boys and twin girls, sealing the Tar dynasty in her rigid fist. Oh, the other wives have kids, but, like I said, Mum is enterprising.

My siblings and I usually visit the other progeny. We don’t really have the feud that our Mums have: we share the same gene pool, so we feel it is in our best interest to know each other. And that was how we knew that something was afoot.

My twin brothers, Zachary and Jonas, took the annoying little Venza and drove us to Number One’s house. At the gate we started seeing fishy things. The gate man saw us in the car, then didn’t open the gate. We were at the gate for ten minutes before he opened it. We drove in.
Number One’s third favorite car, the orange Mazda space-wagon, was being washed. That car is the most annoying thing to move on the road since keke-napep. And Number One only pulls that car out for special occasions.

We went into the house. Number One has three children: two boys and a girl. The eldest is three months younger than I am. All three of them were in the living room, looking like they were forced to be there.
“Who forced you people to be in the living room?” I asked. I do not believe in mincing words.
“Mum. She says we’re to stall you,” Ter, the eldest of the half-lings, said. (Ter is pronounced ‘te-EH’, meaning ‘father’).
“Why? ” Zachary asked, moving to sit down. I grab his shoulder, pausing him mid-sit.
“Hmm. Gate opened late. The orange monstrosity is being washed. Number One is not downstairs, but you are, to stall us… To stall us, specifically… ”
We look at it each other. The half-lings look like they’re eating sour grapefruit.
“Number One is going to see Mum.”

Keisha’s  Diary: Preamble 

Keisha’s  Diary: Preamble 

Somehow, it happened that I would start to keep a diary and publicize it for your perusal, thus making me a celebrity. Now, I don’t care how you take that statement: you will read this, and I will be famous. Wait, I already am.

The name is Keisha Tar. Tar, pronounced ‘taa’, means ‘world’ or ‘earth’ in Tiv. The Tiv are a tribe in Nigeria. Since even Nigerians don’t know that there is such an ethnic group as the Tiv, this will be your second assignment: find out as much as you can about the Tiv.

That said, this diary is going to be as vague as possible. You really don’t need to know where I live, or where I’m from, or anything regarding specific locations. Because I am lazy and don’t have the time to go into specifics. This is not a world-building project. 

Occasionally, I live with my parents and siblings and assorted animals. Other times, I live in my own house with friends-turned-family. I work, I eat, I play, I meet people. Oh, the people I have met! There was this one time that I actually spoke to a Sphinx…

Which brings me to my next point: you might not believe half of what is written here. To make reading this easier for you, just make up your mind now that all you read is true, or all you read is fiction. Pick a side, and proceed to page one. Because read this, you must.

In The Bank (1)

In The Bank (1)

These days, the bank is always full. People trying to register for JAMB are everywhere; ATMs try their best not to work; people are paying fees or lodging money; others want to do transfers. Basically, everyone doing something with money is in the bank. And, as is the norm, only two cash and teller personnel are attending to the multitude. I am part of the withdrawal group: it’s stuffy, noisy, and annoying. At least NatGeo is on the telly, not news about Trump, North Korea, and Syria.
“My God. That thing is a crocodile o!” says a man invading my personal standing space, who also has mouth odor. I have seen the clip before: it’s of a cat facing down two crocs in Florida.
“That cat is playing o. It doesn’t know what it is messing with”, the same man says. I move away. The cat actually drives the predators away. Then something about the deadliest animals in the world comes on. Everyone is riveted and, suddenly, everyone is an expert on bees. A guy being chased by the insects jumps into a swimming pool.
“That man is dead”. 
“If you enter water after bees sting you, you die”. 
“Don’t even drink water when a bee stings you”. 
“Are those flies?”
The volume is low, and the noise level is relatively high, so no one can hear the narrator. The bee victim, however, survives the jump into the pool.
Next up, a rattle snake. For some reason, the camera refuses to show a full shot of the snake: it keeps isolating the tail from the rest of the body.
“Is that it’s tail?” asks the lady who thought bees were flies.
“No,” says another guy authoritatively. “The thing is like a drum: if you play it, the snake can’t bite you”.
Kai. I am tired.