Dirty Talk …

This is not for the faint hearted. Mimi mwenyewe ambaye I thought I had moyo wa jiwe couldn’t help it – macho yalinitoka kama mjusi aliyebanwa na mlango, tena ule wa ki-Zanzibari. That door is so solid and heavy, I promise you hata ikibana kidole tu, last years’ food will come out!

Anyway, we have heard of Wamakonde who name their kids anything that passes in front of them – anything they acknowledge, celebrate and appreciate, I suppose. My aunt had a mlinzi who named his son Fridge. I’m guessing the mother was grateful for the cold water she got from it. With this heat, I would too – infact I sometimes bow to my refridgerator – but I wouldn’t go as far as naming my kid Fridge jamani.

When Nyerere finally allowed us to have a tv set per family – that could afford one – the Wamakonde were so happy that we started seeing little boys called Television running around half naked, sweating with bloated tummies. There are so many Makonde kids called Nyerere running around too – yes, this was the era of the great Mwalimu. There are even a handful called Mzungu – pronounced Mjzungu, by our cousins Wamakonde. This must have been from working for them, bwana wazungu.

While my Wahaya cousins make sure the names of their children zimeenda shule kweli kweli! Even the Britons with their Queen English have difficulties pronouncing the English names Wahaya have for their children. They are the ones who introduced apostrophed names and hyphenated surnames in Bongo. Kweli! Kokushiba Dorie’Ann Jordette Smith-Mwaikambo (ph.D, MSc, BCom, MBA, LLB). The Kokushiba tells you she is Mhaya, who landed in the arms of a Mnyakyusa brother, the credentials – yes – are part of the name as for the rest, don’t ask. Utajiju!!

Sasa these are guys can be excused – lack of school and too much, sina unajua tena – school and all. A good friend, whose name is also apostrophed and hyphenated – has a food delivery business, so every now and then she would send e-mails to her customers with updates of new restaurants, new menus and such – since yours truly being one pf her customers I got a copy.

So quickly I go through the e-mail. What new restaurant is there in town … I silently wondered. My eyes then suddenly pop out. Actually they did a somersault. Then I went back again – in a flash – while rubbing my eyes, incase they had deceived me and played a trick. Yes, I wasn’t wrong, that’s what it said …”AL BASHA” a new Lebanese restaurant. Sasa hii mijamaa – didn’t they bother to learn the language kidogo. I mean, I know we all do this – when we go to a foreign country, the first thing we learn as far as languages are concerned are curses, si ndiyo? Sasa where were these guys?

I know for guys, once you have landed on a foreign land, after testing their beer, you then have to conquer a few local chickadees. Surely they would teach you a few words. Okay, so maybe the guys are happily married and don’t wonder about – good for them – but really they don’t have any Swahili speaking friends?

My surname means something very interesting in one of the European languages. When my father was there for varsity, he quickly had to change the spelling of his surname. Tena alipofika tu! He didn’t wait to get to Residence and get taunted. I noticed once when I was going through his papers and books – then he told me the story.

Now that’s nothing. I tell you, my Makonde cousins are nothing compared to this lot. Bila hata kitabu they are a lot smarter – atleast they name their kids after the great one, a great necessity of today’s life, the refridgerator and such.

Basi bwana, one morning on my way to work I see this wheel cover – in huge letter – Yaani, tena screaming kabisa in capital bold letters … “CUM” … I almost choked on my tongue! Ati abbreviation for “City Urgent Mail”! Could it really be true that they don’t know the meaning? Haiwezekani bwana!! And when registering the companies – weren’t they advised? Shouldn’t they have?

Imagine Salama Condoms using them to deliver their package – “from Salama Condoms, brought to you by CUM.” Duuh! Okay, call me filthy minded – granted – but jamani imagine a wheel cover with something like KU*A as an abbreviation for something. I know the whole country will freeze.

A fellow blogger, Isae, sent me this picture. 


Imagine driving by the building with a four year old who is learning to read, proudly and loudly says “A-S-S, how do you say that, mommy?”

          Before the little fellow knows what’s hit him, he gets a whack at the back of his head, “what?  who taught you that nasty word?   I told you not to hang with akina John. 
They are children of the devil!  Their mother doesn’t even know how the outside of a church looks like!”

Dumbfounded and confused the poor little fellow starts crying.   With shaking fingers he points at the big and proudly displayed banner on Vioo House -wherever that is.

Sasa imagine being guarded by ASS.  Hivi do these people actually know what these words mean?

          “The alarm has gone off again!  Hembu call ASS for a quick fix!”

If this was in an English speaking country, I promise yoiu their clients would never have their houses broken into. The thieves will have a hard time stealing anything as they will be too busy laughing their sides off. Sana sana the clients would be complaining to the police about noise pollution.

I have made a point to visit ASS, AL BASHA restaurant and CUM offices just to see the proprietors. My question would probably be – do they name things after things they acknowledge, celebrate and appreciate – like my cousins, the Wamakonde?


~ by saharasoulfood on January 25, 2007.

20 Responses to “Dirty Talk …”

  1. I still curse the day i met you. lol. lol. Sandra, i know this is not light talk, but would you think about making your articles read on a wider scale… this can open people’s eyes. sometimes I think sisi watanzanian hatufikirii before doing something. anyway, i enjoyed it but our names are cooolll. i am a koku shubila by the way. and I am proud to be haya.(i do not have hyphen or dash….until i get married to a nyakusa.! lol, hahahah! thank you sandie. I am sure starting my day on a jolly mood.
    bless you.

  2. @Ebony: So I right, about the Kokushiba bit – so I missed out the ‘la’ – but it was close enough … lol … I was think of you and Doe when I wrote about the Wahaya. Pole, that’s the price you have to pay for being my friends … lol …
    Let me get Sia here, then we will write about Wapare … lol …I’m glad you enjoyed it, love.

  3. Please dont touch Wapare!:-)

  4. @Simon: Lazima Simon! Lol! Ni watani wangu … lol … But then again, maybe I shouldn’t. I have a few crazy Wapare friends … I would live to see the daylight. Let me just stick to Wahaya. Lol.

  5. good articles as always Sandra.

    You remind me of a day we had to make a trip with my director to a small town in New South Wales called: KU*A . I just couldnt help it… a kenyan girl who was with us laughed her head off!

    I think one of sunday newspapers would benefit from pieces like this – I mean their readers – keep it up.

  6. nitachukua fursa hii kuangalia kama bado kiswahili changu kinakubalika. uandishi mzuri huu hapa dada/kaka? lakini hata hivo nafikiria kwamba wewe unawadhania vibaya akina CUM. kwa watu wengine haswa wale wa kitambo hawawezi kuwa na mafikira mabovu kwa maana siku labda siku zao CUM ilikuwa na jina lingine labda kama “MWAGA” ama MWAGIA kwa hivo sioni ubaya wa neno hili.

    i think i might be more of a pervert than you are. what did you think CUM meant? just so that we are on the same wavelength.

    now write about the wagogo na wazaramu.

  7. @Mwandani – uwiiii!!! Did you live there or were you there for just a short while? Lol. So how did your family/friends who can speak Swahili address your letters? I bet you were so grateful for the e-mail era! Lol!!!

    @Bomseh – what did I think or what do I think. Cum is cum – lol – there is no thinking about it. I still have to meet the proprietors of those two establishments and shake their hands. Lol … 😉

  8. goodness, it took me a while to visit your blog but man was it worth it. ati CUM … that will have me laughing for a while. woi! mpaka folks think i’m a bit demented.

  9. @Spicebear: I am so glad you enjoyed it. Karibu sana tena!! :-0

  10. it took me time to savor this post! see ya!


  11. jamani si u get published in one of our local dailies? I need a reason to buy tanzanian news papers, i keep buying kenyan papers just to look at things from the lighter perspective.

  12. Mmmh, I can’t beat ‘city urgent mail’ but here’s a pic of a local security company:

  13. No I never lived there, Just visited. And there is a chain of jewellery shops which started from that town. All the shops nationwide are called by that name. Lucky they dont know what it means. (Does it matter if they knew or not… it would be positive anyway)

  14. @Jonell: karibu tena!!!

    @kyekue: Lol. I’m so glad that you are enjoying my ranting. Which daily, my dear? Si mpaka wanifuate hata hivyo?

    @Isae: I just had to add the pictire and another paragraph! Haa haaa … =)) … is it possible that this guys don’t know what they are writing au?

    @Mwandani: I’m cracking up here! =)) … imagine their advert, “k**a will dazzle you” … lol!!! Jamani!!

  15. Do you know of a place called Kaswende in DRC? And these people actually speak swahili

  16. I remember when I was doing my O levels at Same Secondary School back in the early 70’s we had a guy whose surname was Mboro. Teachers always asked twice if that was his real name, and he would always answer in the affirmative, with a smirk on his face!

  17. Unfortunately, Mboro is a surname in Machame area, na msichana wa ukoo huo anaitwa Mamboro. Are you there?

  18. Great stuff for a break!

  19. what does HEMBU mean? can someone please tell me, thank you very much

  20. Kuna utani mmoja niliusikia mmakonde alienda mbatiza mwanae padre akamuuliza jina la mtoto, baba akajibu proudly ‘shetani’ heck padre akamwambia hapana taja jina lingine, mama akadakia ‘ibilisi’ padre hoi nalo akalikataa.. wote baba na mama wakamwambia basi tumwite Yesu kama hayo mawili huyataki..

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