The joy of being around sports people is the banter that comes with it. It costs a thick skin, a light but vengeful heart for comebacks but mostly funny ticklish bone – but it’s worth all the pleasure.
Last weekend, I made yet another bad decision of registering for an open division tournament well aware that I hadn’t trained since October of last year. Like any other sport, if you don’t train consistently in scrabble, a player is likely to suffer career threatening injuries. This too I knew, but still with the promise of free pilau and assured laughter, I was willing to risk everything else for a good chuckle. I’m vain like that.
When Mokaya called me to check whether I’d attend, I knew my die was cast. It was invitation to destruction but I still went. I was starved of good laughter. I needed to “put head” for Outi VS. Kienja but also be there when Koyyoko yokos Mr. Amuke aka size yangu, who had openly dared team acacia to a duel. That was either brave or rush and I needed to know which one it was. Previously in a one dayer, Kienja had beaten kinoo people blue black including Tony and Outi but led by the spirit of discernment had, without reservation pronounced acacia club as his only fear. In his whatsapp declaration, he pointed out that the said club comprised of Nyangaus and a Nyangau let (yours truly). That only Oyez was bullet worth shooting in that direction. So Oyez was set up in absentia for a beating he knew nothing about and Gongolo was his ordained antidote. Metric Tush would play the diplomat, opening his pockets as bait so that enemies could be lured to the battlefield for massacre. Smartex and Outi were playing submarine mode. I was the designate cheerleader.
Sasa si Sato we gathered at Stima. From the look on people’s faces you’d be forgiven to think they were saints. Saint Onani, Saint Auka, Saint Chavutia, Saint Limo, Saint MVP, Saint Mawondo, arch angel Michael Nganga, Saint Kondia etc. But I promise you, they all were and still are bingo spitting – game blocking – word challenging devils on the board. Every single one of them.
The clocks started and it was show time! Blood shedding rituals that would run into the day that followed and last well into the evening begun. I could see from the provisional round standings people suffering in the hands of friends. Someone had decapitated Magu, Okechi dismembered Gongolo, Auka ran over Beryl as someone else buried Powel and so on and so forth.
Then truce was called and the judges took to the bench. Auka prevailed in open division like the whirlwind he is named after while the acacia Trojan Tobby Outi kicked ass in premier division. It was his maiden admission into the podium cartel, signed by Allan. And here, ladies and gentlemen, is the great acacia club victory dance choreographed by the two musketeers and looking on is the chairman, definitely planning a scrabble genocide for the acacia tribe.
The new face of threat in matters scrabble! And oh! Did I tell you about the youngest sponyo in town? Daniel Chanjez.
By Awuor Okado