The Mathare Social Justice Centre (MSJC) office is located off Juja road in Nairobi’s Eastlands. It is situated in a single-storeyed building planted right at the edge of Mathare Valley. The building stands out in contrast to the sea of tightly packed shanty dwellings with rusty brown tin roofs dissected into two parts by the congested Mau Mau road running through the bottom of the valley. Dark grey smoke rises from the valley depths and one catches a glimpse of the murky waters of the Mathare river flowing parallel to the busy throughway. Visitors are primed to see ruins and deprivation, but residents speak of its beauty. A Rastafarian man named Jah Driver told me to think of Mathare as a chocolate city, and in a phrase, that captured the essence of Mathare’s complex sensory qualities.
Do you know how hard it is being a sensitive guy these days? Girls can be so demanding. You finally meet a man who buys you flowers, open doors, calls his mother often and his female partner retorts, “Spineless wimp. Grow a pair. What kind of a man are you? Mama’s boy. Go back to your mother and come back when you have learned how to treat me like sh*t”.
Once you start talking about men and their mothers, women react sharply. Women are not exactly into threesome especially when the extra wheel is a man’s mother. Do a google search on mama’s boy and one encounters hundreds of articles on how to spot one from a mile.
The signs of an unhealthy attachment are usually self-evident. We are talking about a man who fulfils his mother’s every wish including the unreasonable ones, like an interrupted dinner date in the middle of a night out, to rush to the chemist to buy his mama’s pills and deliver them personally to her residence in Rongai.