Is WhatsApp the new MySpace?

Originally posted on PandoDaily:

whatsapp_windows_phone_7

The last year has been very active for WhatsApp. The world’s leading messaging app has continued to see explosive growth, and is now seeing 400 million active monthly users – an important metric that shows people are not only downloading the service, but also actually using it. This dizzying milestone is the cap of a busy 12 months or so in which it was rumored to be the subject of big-money acquisitions by first Facebook and then Google, and in which previously quiet CEO Jan Koum came out of his shell for on-stage appearances, pointing out that WhatsApp has more users than Twitter.

In announcing 400 million active users, Koum was again uncharacteristically vocal yesterday. “We want to steer the conversation to be about active users, not registered users,” he said, according to AllThingsD. “We’re a bit fed up and frustrated about people talking about registered users. We think…

View original 771 more words

My Nostalgia with United

Times have not been good for United, am already feeling jaded going to the local base for the matches. We are the motif for derision like The Gunners were for 8 fucking years! Am angry. Am mad. I hate the lanky Crouch, he has a funny name. The only salvo I can throw at any Weare19 against 1 today.

I like him as a player but not against United. He rakes havoc. He has these long unfettered legs, he doesn’t need to jump to get a high ball. He is not a normal footballer. He lurches at the ball and like every football god ready to draw blood, leaves horrid thoughts in the supporters. Every United fan sits tight stunned, holding breath. His leg slashes at the ball which seems to join him in collusion to rob us of the very important fourth win. The ball has been in cahoots with the legs and heads of united opponents this season. DeGea sees red. He’s mad. I support him.

The Bundesliga game is raging on. I am furiously typing in my phone hoping to vent enough so that I don’t hit the boy sitting behind me, who can’t shut up and stop the ludicrous swipes at my team. 
The game is back on Supersport. I feel bad about this game. I am pessimistic. I watch Nani Waltz around the ball and lose. Today his game is terrible. Terrible.
The second goal of the opponents came from a player with the name that sounds like the name of a gun. His shot swirled to the right corner of the goal like my mind is swirling with hate ideas. It bamboozled the keeper.

Rooney. Oh! He tries. He plays almost alone these days. To imagine we almost parted ways earlier in the season.
Januzaj the young sensation dances with the ball. He taps this, twists that leg and swims with his legs on the white boundary, the opponent defender are wary of him. He stamps on his boots, the pain must surely travel to the head faster than lightning. But Januzaj is not creative and acrobatic like the other players in the field when fouled. He is coiled on the ground until the whistle is blown. He looked like the picture of a foetus inside the womb, like the pictures in biology books, or on the walls of the doctors’ offices. They look so alive on TV those pictures. He’s young. He does this little juggle on the ball that confuse defenders. He needs to be nurtured, this one. That’s a yellow card. I want a red card. He’s young and suave. He’s the latest Midas touch. He lets the ball flow and eddy on and almost off white line, he can’t lose the ball. He is like an eland. Not fat but lean and fast. Very fast. 

We have another goal. Rooney’s header. A face thump that ferries the ball to the corner where Crouch had earlier placed his. It’s the second half. His goal cancels the free kick by the man with the name that’s sounds like artillery. My chest is pounding relentlessly. I am excited but also horrified. ‘Ikoo’ I celebrate with the other fans. Smashing my shoulder against that of a neighbor. This happens a lot during celebrations in games like this. Total strangers suddenly become bosom buddies. We cool down. Nani finally was replaced. He had a dismal performance. Some times he behaves like a moron. Shooting screamers so wide off. Losing possession and rolling on the ground like a maniac on pretence of a foul play. His crosses as high as conversions in a rugby game. His shots at goal as feeble as weak cold coffee. Or wide as if chasing the expanse of the field instead of focusing on the on the open two post.
We are upbeat. The players, the fans on TV and us on this dusty room. We are happy. We’re horrified that we won’t win. We’re scared we can lose. Hernandez the poacher. Sets us ahead for the first time in eighty something minutes. He does a thousand Hail Marys and several crosses. He would scare any goalkeeper with this. God listens to him this man. Jesus never wants to let him down. He’s a scoring machine. Plays only a few minutes. Gets tired easily and is afraid of chasing. He would lose breath easily and pant like a tired hunting hound with nothing to take home. He is good in his job. My boss would love him if he did my job with the same precision. In football there are errors but still a striker of his calibre is expected to avoid these like am expected to avoid any typos or policy flouts. I would literally burn in hell. Means I would be jobless in the swamped job market floundering with a million papers.

I hate the curriculum vitae. It creates something digital divide. A lowly paid defender in the same team with a platinum honours striker. The pay is almost stratified in terms of sponsorship. Goes like an announcement over the PA on during an event: Our event sponsors are: Gold bla blah insurance , platinum: bla blah technology, Silver: bla blah Schools. The list never ending. Even in football it’s much alive. Van Persie has a CV that a professor of atomic energy cannot fathom. He has goals. Goals give money. Goals move people. Goals bring fame. The right popularity. Goals bring hatred. United today has earned another coterie of haters. The other haters were brimming with confidence we’d lose. We win. We are still off the big four tag. We’re not doing well, but we win all the same. 
Going home now is not an option. I have a liking for El Classico. Barcelona beats Real on the days I watch. I will stay and break that jinx. Am expecting a fast and furious action by Madrid. Two Gold sponsors. Bale and Ronaldo. They can sponsor budgets of so many counties in Kenya. But Madrid are quite sedated against flick, flip, snap and jerk game of Messi and co. They sometimes just follow like Zombies not really sure whether that’s a ball they are chasing or their brains are just numb. I can smell some kind of miasma tonight. Ronaldo will lose again. They are already trailing courtesy of the Brazilian Barcelona striker.

Neymar has a thing with balls. Like the light of a candle some times dances rhumba on a night of draught, he moves with the ball. 
Am busy not watching the game after Sanchez puts number 2 behind the net. It’s a beautiful goal. Personal effort is highly paid in football. Ask any goalkeeper how they rate strikers. They hate good strikers in the opposing team. They become helpless. Hapless almost. Pitiable how a ball diced with the suave dribble like a tomato chop from a chef suddenly finds way between the legs or just past the ears. The keeper is caught flat footed. He looks back in awe hoping the looped ball will miraculously hit the bar and skid off the pitch or sway above the post. It glides in like a perching bird after a long flight.

Supersport will surely show with red and blue dotted marks in the TV screen the trajectory of the projectile. Their producers will also draw saintly halos around the players’ heads and bring them down to their legs, move them with players until finally the back of the net swells back and bellies inwards painfully. They will also advise on the preemptions that the defenders, the goalie and the coach should have had prior to the goal. These people know a lot of football. They are like the proverbial fan who scores all the goals while sitting. Even when playing FIFA on PS2, losses happen.

On Supersport they know that losses are mistakes that can be prevented. They can’t lose if allowed to play. They have new technology. They write and cast with vivacity. I love them. I can’t do without them for now. I will not watch the blue and red polkas. I almost suspect I know what they will say. But they have a lot of kindles, iPads and tablets of History with them. They pull George Best and Drogba swiftly from their archives, if need be. They are good, or simply the best.

Today we win, am happy. I hate Moyes less. He looks harassed of late. His blue eyes look like rain on the silver screen. He wants to cry. I want him to cry most times and fuck off my team. But he’s the Chosen one. I love that. There’s trust that comes with trust handed over. The fans trust slowly. The trust slithers like a snake down or up as the games are played. My trust with The chosen one is going down hill but I hope somebody somewhere is whipping him better than am cursing him. He looks like a good man, I hope the Glazers will give him more time to prove his mettle. And he better prove it or pack. It’s my way or the highway here. He has no choice

I am going home now. I am not so disappointed that Madrid lost, Bale is pale even with all those millions. He probably may end up the Owen way. God forbid. I loved his speed in EPL. But good players always outgrow their teams. Like a village hero leaves to fight in better leagues. I hope Ancelotti won’t bench him a lot. I will cry.

The best teams will win. Today we were the best. I hope tomorrow we shall repeat this feat but always ahead. I hate the tension and soul searching that comes with being just a goal ahead or below. It rakes knives, forks and broken glasses in the mind. So next game I expect the chosen one to prepare for being ahead or tirade of barbs from the fans. Me.

Slow Dance More

They say life is a battle field, I say bring it on, these are the words of a killer hit by the legendary Usher Raymond. I barely catch the other lyrics but the beat is a chat cracker I have to admit.
Now bring out your
little jotter and lets do some mentation.
As a Kenyan and a citizen of the world, the world is a playground for the gods of war. They push this button
here and tweak that tuner there and a barrage of seemingly inextricable issues effuse from every expected and unfathomable corners. The budget for
all but one EAC nations are out in the media, I am more concerned with Kenya. The government is not keen on austerity, not bad as they have a grand plan for the country’s economy and hopefully, eventually the people may enjoy the fruits of this labour.
Building a strong economy is war and masters of subversion lurk by the side like conniving thieves. The bloodied
soldiers in this case are the majority working and unemployed lower classes. They may shout, pray,
even induce self inflicted injuries to be heard but they are like a herd most times. Herd mentality sometimes
is ineffective against strong willed systems. Keeping on rehashing the same issue to the same
people who are unwilling to come to a round table is akin to repeating a process hoping to get different
results. It won’t happen if you did it a million times.
The battle front has been drawn, it’s not about the people though, probably it may not come to pass as the government has a sound reason for the Tax Bill soon to be brought for discussion in the National Assembly. Some thieving politicians with no good
intentions may want to block the bill for parochial reasons while other sane fellows in the house will try
to amend it to disallow more agony on the already
overstretched budgets of most Kenyans. What do I do as a Kenyan who can only throw soft salvos and rebukes at the executive and parliament. If my representative in the house is already on an incendiary path and expects my full support, what am
I to do.
Don’t believe in them, they have perfected the art of sabre-rattling without fighting. Most of them muckrake but with ill intentions, not your desires to fulfill.
Here is what to do, work hard, and go for that elusive dream. Tap into the financial aid that the government
is bringing to the county, insist on accountability; and if you have to, use the anti-corruption bodies and the
office of the ombudsman. Do your best and let the rest be. In the words of Kenny Rogers, love your neighbor as yourself, don’t use money to measure
wealth, trust in God but lock your doors, buy low sell high and slow dance more.
Have a sound Sunday.

The snake and ICU

When I was a little kid, there are so many things I feared. Exams is not one of them. Failure is not one of them. I was afraid of snakes and red ants. I loathed things that could bite or sting. It was not only because of the stories I was told about them, I experienced them a few time except the snakes of course. That would be deadly. Of the few people I know who have been bitten by snakes, there is a 50 percent survival rate, and that’s an exceptional performance considering they the fact that they didn’t know the type of snake that bit them. They were only two and oh, this is very interesting in this year of year equitability; it was a male and female. The male died in the process of being put in a rickety bicycle for a five kilometre journey to the local Dispensary.

The female who is somehow a relation of mine didn’t succumb to the bite. She took advantage of the pain and acquired everything, she had wanted before the bite. Besides a soft pillow for her head, she got a 1 month leave off her duties of being an unpaid house help. She got the rare opportunity of ordering people around. Any delay would cause a wince and short breaths that would be deciphered by her poor mother and extremely naughty sibling as a sign of death. That was scary especially if she added a slight sob.

Every machinery would be running 100 percent during such times. The family would be running up and down, water for the girl, calls for the medicine, the dog would be yapping encouraged by the movement. Oh! i loved that dog, but that’s another story. The home suddenly became code red during such times and this helter-skelter movement suddenly attracted a mob of neighbours to the home. You know how villagers have this camaraderie which is just a keen nose for rumour and a sharp eye for strange motion in the neighbours compound. Quick and short unexpected movements mixed with a sharp call and they are all in for the real and whole story. They behaved like kids waiting for the gate of a playground to be opened after a long ban on the ground. That was the first time my extended family ever got into ICU. I mean my family is full of quacks. It’s the family trade, of course there are people who have taken it a notch higher by going to college and graduating with medically related degrees. I mean they are real doctors but I still feel like they are just modernising the family trade. What a shame I couldn’t make a doctor myself. About the ICU, forgive me for rumbling, it was not a real hospital, my relation got a drip set for her in her bedroom and everybody coming around would pop in a neck or sometimes their whole person to check out how the patient was doing, the rumour mill was not enough. Today I would consider this relation of mine a fraud. She was smart. She still is. And I still fear snakes.

My percentage proof they are poisonous using the evidence above is 100%, and that they may actually kill you is according to me 100% and anyway why would a non-poisonous snake bite you. Personally I will only bite you if I want to hurt. So why would a snake bite you? To show how much they like you brown skin or for pride?

20130224-185159.jpg