Campus Rant: Bedbugs

By DjRe

A few things set me off completely. First, on that rare occasion when I choose to wear a suit (I don’t own one, yet), it decides to rain… direct anger.  Second, the guy who walks over to the church MC on a Sunday to whisper some announcement we can all hear, but pretend he wasn’t so loud. He could pass a note, but oh well, what is life without a loud whisper (Let me not even start on those mugs who could just not whisper in class. Y’all who had me on noisemakers lists for listening to you whisper loudly, on Judgment day, I will tell God everything). The other is people who leave their lights on and radio on a low volume just in case… you know, a thief might pass by and see the same trend every day and go like, “Yeah, there’s definitely someone in here. Can’t steal from this place’… I’d like to drink from the cup such thoughtful Kenyans drink of. And lastly… bedbugs.

Let me tell you my story with these tiny devolutions of evil.

I’m still in school, but at least it’s the last two semesters for me. I should be celebrating, I should be elated… But here I am, biting nails over how I’ll miss the hogwash and fracas that comprises this university. From the blaring second hand Ampex woofers that know no better than a concoction of Dj Lyta and Selekta Demakufu to the annoying wild animals we share our beds with.

There is no better name for a bedbug. It is an animal, and it is big. Don’t let the size fool you.

This is how my university works, they never raise the bar. There is no bar to raise after all. Up there, where they sit, have a cup of coffee and make a decision that affects over 15000 of us, this is how I imagine they think: Rather than raising the bar, why not knock it to the ground and start over? Be so terrible now that there is no possible way that next time could be any worse. Then they clap their hands in agreement, sip more tea, fasten ties, adjust potbellies, yawn, go home and earn their stipend. Simple. Bedbugs started with one bedbug, some boyfriend or girlfriend visiting from elsewhere carried the little Lucifer in his surrounding, dumped it on one bed and they hatched their way into all beds and drawers in ten hostels. Of course we complained, but complaining is part of the syllabus on this side of the Country. And campus leaders don’t try as hard. Instead of trying to win us some piece of calm and comfort, they’d rather advocate for glow-in-the-dark condoms… Okay that’s a little too far but something close to that.

Back to bedbugs….

You’ve been spitting your A-game for seven months and this girl is about to give you her room number for a visit. What’s a campus girl without taking you round and round like you were not born of a woman like she was. By the time a campus girl gives you her room number, you’ve spent three dispatches of HELB on carpets, mirrors and clothes only for her to say she likes guys who can sing. You know your voice can scrub sufurias clean. So she gives you her room number, then she remembers bedbugs.

“Aki lakini kwangu kuna kunguni.”

Like most guys, you figure you can tell her to just bring you packed lunch instead and you can hang out at your place. Of course you are a hog but then we have to be modest about it. You can’t cook either, because Sossi, noodles… you know. And in my University’s hostels, Omena doesn’t smell right. Everybody who cooks omena murders a piece of your soul each time. With all that smell, you can’t pretend you want also want to start something up in your sufuria. Smells get mixed up, and you lose out the love of your campus life to omena.

Back to bedbugs. She suggests you can meet at your place. But gentlemen and ladies (that’s on purpose by the way), a bachelor’s house is messed up. A campus bachelor’s house however is not even messed up. It’s just not a house. It’s a place to sleep and wake up from. There is no order, no cleaning, no life. The smell of socks is too convoluted for anything romantic to go down. Again I know in people’s minds, bathrooms are an excellent place to take a shower, wash blood off a murder weapon, or attack the societal menace known as constipation. But in campus, a male hostel bathroom is the end of life. You walk in, die for a few minutes and walk out… So what if she wants to pee. That’s how clever people strategize by the way. If I were to play monopoly for example, I’d play it so clever: Instead of being the banker, play as the government. Seize all properties in the game through eminent domain. Then kill all the poor people with a hurricane.

“You know what, our place also has bedbugs so alive, they stare at you after biting,” I said back.

So my conclusion… Bedbugs are killing love around here. And word spreads fast. If a girl gets a bite in your room, the walls around here are so idle; you’ll find your face gleaming and decorating notice boards with no so kind words on it.

So unless y’all have better advice, tunaomba Serikali.

My name is DjRe and I will miss this wilderness.




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