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How to use the Covid-19 free time

Monday May 25 2020
By ABIGAIL ARUNGA

Here are a few things you can do with your time in May, going into June, as the majority of the population has a lot of time on their hands, but not much else:

1. Make sure you remind Babu Owino that teaching a chemistry class online doesn’t erase from our minds some of his past dramas, including the court case in which he’s accused of casually shooting a dude in the club, casually, and puffing on shisha right after.

2. Don’t worry about whether or not you’re being productive in the times of Covid-19. Not everyone can be. Do what you can each day. It isn’t everyone who can learn a new skill or a new language or start an online side hustle or be on multiple Zoom meetings in a week. Some of us in this camp are trying to fight off the exhaustion from panic and fear of the unknown. Breathe. Meditate. Pray. This too shall pass.

3. Commit time to trying to find out where Ezekiel Mutua got his PhD from (spoiler alert: nowhere). There’s a handy Twitter handle for this with varied suggestions that might be helpful in your search, implying locations such as your phone gallery for your downloads, the boot of the car in your estate that has stalled there since the 80s, and the monkey on Kenya Power’s payroll - basically, not Moi University.

4. Check on your family. Your parents. Your neighbours. Your older relatives. The people around you who need help. The people who you know for sure need help, who are suffering during a time when the economy has significantly slowed down and the government can’t be relied upon. Once again, Kenyans are largely on their own, and it will be up to other Kenyans to help them – for a while.

5. Message your respective but not respectable government official about what they are planning to do about Covid-19 in their jurisdiction. Are they giving out masks? Food? Advice? Campaign t-shirts? They’re probably on Facebook, if not taking very important PR savvy pictures to look like they care about their constituents. Ask them every day and see if they respond (my MP, Jaguar, didn’t respond. My MCA responded to say nothing is being given out).

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6. In the spirit of number four, watch all the things that all these artists are putting out - from DJs to authors, and tip them using that little number indicated at the bottom of the page. Everyone is trying to live, and haba na haba hujaza kibaba (little by little fills the measure). I would say art is an essential service at this point, because without it, the masses would be losing their minds further than we already are, don’t you think? Entertainment is a vital distraction – something we all need every so often – in these times, and something that contributes to a certain quality of life. Don’t feel bad for indulging, and thank its producers.

Wash your hands. Wear a mask. Don’t go to Tanzania, but if you have to sneak out through a panya route (illegal crossing), just don’t sneak back. Stay there.

Twitter: @AbigailArunga

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