For anyone that follows fashion, it is quite common of them to have that label that makes them go crazy whenever they come across their product. To me, there are two labels that make go insane over their products and those, in particular order, are Nike and Adidas.
I just love their shoe products especially Nike.
Now, when it comes to wearing brands, I will never. Never ever wear a brand that is misspelled. Yes, we sometimes, especially in Africa, may not get the original product straight off the shelf because it may be expensive but wearing a brand name that is misspelled, I equate it to (fashion) suicide. Never. It makes one look stupid, ignorant and very much hopeless.
Back in the day in our slippery when wet city of Kampala, I used to hustle with a brother. Those days when the hustle got so real your whole outlook showed. When people would pass you off for a decent street beggar. When we would regret why we did not listen to those who told us to go to vocational schools after senior six because they thought jobs from there came easy. Look at mechanics, photography, tailoring, etc. or make better friends during campus, a story I am keeping for another day.
We hustled. Banging, knocking and sometimes charging into any office that had an open door. Well, we had been told to look for open opportunities. What better, ironic way to look for them than that! We even crashed events, corporate ones. Hoping to rub shoulders with a few big shots with more hope that you could make a good impression and be called into their office the next week. Like that! I, being a not so good a friend of anything mathematical, minus calculating the change in my pocket of course, I even crashed economic forums and then hustling with staff of the hotels where they were held to get wi-fi passwords and Google up stuff we contributed in the meetings. Just for impressions’ sake. Like that TV advert where the driver upstages the manager’s sideman.
But a turn in fortunes landed to the side of my man, my hustle buddy and he found his way to the States. As we usually call it. He chanced upon a trip with the local soccer team he was leisurely playing for and once he landed down in the land of Trump, his heels thought better. (Typical hardened African). He upgraded his hustle until he became prodigal and came back a few months back. We caught up and banged the cash out of his wallet. (Like how everyone does when their people fly back). Much had changed apart from the wallet of course and that included the accent.
Dude was spitting twang and his r’s were coming straight out of his nose. People got concerned. As usual. They started labeling him fake and stuff but then I told them like I am telling you right now that sometimes it is natural. That accent has to change. Though some may fake it. I am not talking about a certain dancer, turned pastor, turned M.P (Gosh, how can one have all such talent at a go?) but for some people, quite literally everybody, it comes from the desire to blend in. This is when you start living the life the others are living. How else do you think culture gets absorbed into another? People be complaining about others changing accents and yet they do not complain that they too have ancestors that changed religions which we are now more proud of. Africans were naturally traditionalists not Muslims akina Christians and such. But because there was an influence, we changed. It is then the same with accents. You may want to sound like the people you are with because you think it is the only way you can be heard or such and in the end you get stuck up there. Even Nigerians who have crossed to the other side of the world are having their accents changed. It starts as a lifestyle until it sticks.
Admittedly, I am not so much of a fashion forward person though I endeavor to dress appropriately for a specific occasion as a sign of respect. However, I believe that a person must have almost every piece of fashion in their closet because at any one time a particular occasion may come up & one needs to be fashionably ready for it.
However, there are specific items that I got accustomed to (especially during my dancing & media days) & feel they must always be there. Starting from head to toe, these are.
Flat caps (Baseballs)
When I used to dance, these were part of a uniform for dance sessions. Who is a breakdancer without his flat cap?
I always like to have my eyes covered. Not that I am a bad guy (though I am) but yes, shades just give that chance to see life around me without quite giving myself away.
I am not particular with the size & color. It depends on what I am going to do & where. If it’s a dance session, then I like them buggy & if it’s any other business then it can be a slim fit.
Preferably, baseball jumpers. Damn. They give me the power & because I cold weather affects me sometimes, I usually endeavor to have a jumper in my bag.
Jeans, khakis & shorts
I love my jeans…and khaki pants for the corporate look. shorts when I am lazing around or ripping the dancefloor apart.
You can’t be a dancer rocking dress shoes. That’s where sneakers come in. Comfy, flexible & beautiful to look at.
But these days I am in the formal sector. I sit behind the desk so my fashion switched up. I am a guy of slim-fit khakis & button shirts. The street style is for the weekends and day-offs.
Welcome to the fashion and culture week of the winterabc 2021 and today I am going to talk about colors…or in my case, a color…black.
I really love it to have as many different colored apparels in my closet as possible but I end up putting much love to the color black. black clothes give me a certain kind of energy that makes me feel strong, powerful or whatever you want to call it.
My love for black was influenced by pop culture (like so many other trends) and mainly by three American hip-hop artists; Jay Z, Usher and Young Jeezy. I really loved how they rocked their black outfits. they felt like they were in control of whatever they were doing. their hard lines were the bomb. I followed suit.
Now about the ladies. A lady rocking the color black is my kryptonite. There’s a way it gives them that sexy vibe and a sense of control. When I see them walk around in black outfits, it always looks like they are confident and proud. A complete turn-on for me. And then man mad black lingerie…..umhff.
The harsh reality of life that is affecting African countries is despicable. We have a very large youthful generation that is uncertain of their future. Job scarcity, poor service delivery & resource distribution all mainly escalated by our poor African leaders. This has forced many youths to look to the vibrant Middle East as their only savior. Without putting much emphasis on what one studied or is skilled at, the youths are willing to do any job available to make ends meet & secure their future. Jobs like security, cleaners, supermarket attendants, maids amongst others.
However, there is a common factor amongst these people; many of them who return from the Middle East tend to face it rough as time goes by. Here is what I think are the reasons why;
Poor financial management knowledge and skills. – Many of them do make the money, yes, but there’s the aspect of doing what with it. A scenario; One can make say; 60 million. Maybe buys a house or starts a shop when they return. For the one with a house, they may lack knowledge to start a business with the remaining money so they pimp their house & sit back like as if in retirement. They eat the money either through acquisition of anything their mind desires or by hitting one luxury spot to the other till it all burns out & they have no option but to go back to make more. The one with a shop; some people think that when they make the money, running a business comes easy. Damn. So they’ll pimp the shop & sit in it. Poor financial management skills will see the shop selling stock but not restocking because they don’t know how to juggle the thing. Then they’ll say, ‘bandoga’ (they’re bewitching me). Poor Africans.
Poor skills and academic qualifications – Because they’re doing odd jobs, they can’t fit back into the corporate job sector because first; their jobs abroad can’t equate to something substantial in a corporate office setting. It’s hard to have been doing security the other side to come back & be hired for a PR job. Two; The house maid document can’t get one into the head of corporate banking sector this side mainly because, with being out of touch with the current dynamics of the corporate sector, one lacks current accompanying academic documents for whatever job one wants to be hired for.
Others are detached from friends and family. – Bakukutta nga bagenda (They’re usually hideous when going abroad) so when they come back, they hardly have anyone who can help them navigate around probably because they think everyone will want a piece of their money (which is largely true anyway). Because they ‘sneaked out’ without telling nobody, when they come back, some people who would help them settle & manage a life would care less. If you didn’t tell me when you was flying out, why do you need me when you’re back? In Africa, once people know you have money, then they’ll make manifest their financial problems. So, upon your return, that’s when they’ll tell you of how the village home is leaking, needs painting, people will expect you to contribute millions for their events, that’s when your buddies will point you to the latest hangouts etc. They can’t settle till they’re sure you’ve burned out.
Faced with any of the above issues, the person will usually remain with one option; to fly back to kyeyo (odd job) so that they can sustain whatever they started otherwise many of them end up depressed as they watch their fortunes decline.