Kenya, Music

A Californian Kenyan DJ?

ILRI apparently has an international “theme night” once a month (music, food, dancing, socializing, etc). This month is Kenya, and some women in the Human Resources department said they want me to be the DJ. Oh dear, what have I gotten myself into? I guess when you walk around speaking Swahili and sheng and reciting lyrics from local pop music you’re bound to get noticed!

In fact, just that morning I was wondering when they were going to ask me to be the MC for the Friday morning coffee ceremony. Every week staff meet in the courtyard around 10:30 to listen to announcements, drink tea/coffee, and meet new staff and visiting consultants, students, researchers, etc. We have a guy from Finland here to help us out with some pressing issues on our Linux cluster and research computing network, so our team is supposed to introduce him. Just before it was time to introduce the guests my boss told me he wanted me to do the honors. I don’t know if I’m funny, I certainly wasn’t trying to be, but people always laugh. I even made a comment like, “This isn’t supposed to be stand up comedy” because people started laughing right after I said, “Hey, guys” in the mic.

So I wasn’t surprised when a woman I know in the Human Resources department pulled me aside at lunch and told me she had a proposition for me, and to stop by her office later. She told me there is a Kenyan theme night next week and “we” have been thinking you should be the DJ. Hahahaha. It’s flattering, but what?! I’m from California! I don’t even speak Swahili (leave alone SHENG!). I guess I’m being modest, because obviously I know enough to get myself into trouble. She said she had suggested it to her friends and they said, “Who? Ohhhh, THAT guy!” Wow. We’ll see what happens.

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