The Aliens Have Landed
When: Feb 25th, 2006 5:10:01 am - Subscribe
I'm feeling: SUPER PISSED!
Talk, Opinion, Music, Life, Stuff: Opinion


There's a new species in town. OK, not new, but it is strange all the same. It’s the yuppie i.e. Young Urban Professional Person. The profile reads like this: Young Kenyan, earns a whole lot of money, drives a car (or rather rolls in the ride), lives in a "high rise" apartment on the richer side of town (furnished with imported furnishings), dresses in Remron or Prada shoes, sports a Rolex, reads international magazines like Time and Economist (only), and will not be caught dead in a disco or using public transport. These new age Kenyans live for their career, friends and image. They could care less about their family.

Not that there's anything wrong with spending money you have earned through hard work. I would buy myself Manolo’s any day as a reward for hard work (just as soon as I get that job). But I have another name for these types: Eggplants - Black on the outside, White on the inside. Why do I call them that? They have the melanin of an African, but some mental traits of a white person, like individualism.

The fact that they don’t really care for their family makes it worse. This individualism is not African. But then, they become yuppies to distance themselves from their African-ness. I don’t know about you but I can’t marry someone who doesn’t care for his own family. What's to stop him from leaving you and the yuppie-ling in the high-rise apartment, to go discuss investment plans and mutual trusts with his fellow eggplants? You become part of the expensive imported furniture, another trophy on the shelf of yuppie achievements.

Some of them earn huge salaries but are in debt. My cousin told me of a person who earns 200,000 Kenya shillings p.m. (which is big bucks here) but is broke 2 weeks later. What a loser! They try so hard to fit in with their peers that they overshoot their budget. So on the outside, they look real good, but are a walking financial and emotional mess.

To make matters worse, I don’t like the furnishing these people do in their houses. I have worked in a furniture making business, so I can tell the different types of timber and their quality. I cringe when I see yuppies showing off their "imported" furniture made from 2nd rate wood products. This type of furniture is made from material that looks like wood, but is obviously not the real thing. I can tell the difference between real and fake mahogany, so imagine my infuriation when someone announces that their imported leather couch has mahogany, when I can see that it is made of synthetic wood-ish material and generic leather. The wood finishing of the apartment is also synthetic material like MDF, so I secretly know that there’s nothing to brag about.

Well, these yuppies are also part of the "MBA movement", a generation of Kenyans who must do MBA’s. I will start mine in September, so I will have to meet them at uni. Two things can happen, either I become a yuppie by osmosis or I remain amazed at their shallow definition of themselves. Who knows what the future holds? And how do yuppies in other parts of the world behave?

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Comments: (2)

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    Comments:

    anonymous - March 05th, 2006
    as always Eva you never fail to impress me.anyway i hear what you are saying living here in an all(mostly) white community you realise all you will ever be is an african ....black poor less quality human . as in hotel rwanda"you are worse than a nigger .......you are an african" i came to learn its just we lying to ourselves when we want to be more like the west we should appreciate and embrase our culture .........wahenga wali sema "mwacha mila ni mtumwa"

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    gatwiri - March 06th, 2006
    Its true - mwacha mila ni mtumwa. I think people will come to the realisation that being an African is not an inferior thing. Its already happening, but in the meantime, the yuppie phase is something we have to go thru. Kwani how do the people behave towards you where you live? PS- si ujitambue?


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