i am a tomato

My father looked at me in the eye and told me, that once I can make good ugali I should get married.
I stood up and said too late
but inside I stored what he said like an ugly precious. Festering inside me, soupy in a puddle of my hurt; that he measured me, as such. That this was the only qualification, my only use.

Months later I met a man who told me that male privilege doesn’t exist; the type of man who would nod at the sentence my father told me in the paragraph above, openly counting my worth against the tomatoes in his store as opposed to the education he paid for which I guess was useless.

He said ‘women are more likely to get jobs now because they are women’
He said ‘women are everywhere now’ like a cancer
He said ‘we can’t just give everything to you because you are women’

and I said to him that my struggle was not to be given everything but to be given a chance
I said all lives matter but these ones are more at risk
I said it’s about time we got jobs too

He said ‘feminism is bullshit’
I said if you don’t think humans should be paid the same for the same job then you’re bullshit

If you think that guys get attacked nearly as much as girls then you’re blind
If you had to plan your route to the matatu everyday to avoid being grabbed at and fend off advances nicely because you think they might attack you because he’s your watchman and knows where you live then maybe you’d understand
I said we fought so much to get to the point where you think we are a cancer

Then I said the fact that you think male privilege isn’t a thing, is male privilege
That you don’t care because you are not made to or taught to empathize with anything outside of your sandbox
but I saw his eyes glaze over with boredom instead of reason
Bet he was thinking about ugali

3 thoughts on “i am a tomato

  1. such profundity! candor laced with the peppercorn that is the subject itself. something about it would thaw the heart of a hardcore chauvinist. everything about it would open eyes. and yes, one readily relates … thanks for this, Akello!

Leave a Reply