Site icon Alan Ochen


I have discovered male friends to be the best thing to happen to anyone, irrespective of one’s gender. Before you crucify me here, remember that some people loved Jesus, yet some cock found it wise to betray him. Point is, your opinion differs from mine. This one is mine.

My work as a junior editor took a toll on my time. I kept the number of friends I made to the bare minimum. It was so low that I was almost the only self-partner I had. I associated with those who could help with coursework and handouts and helped as a verbal memo for tests and exams. I also keep in touch with Pinocchio who knew who was sleeping with who and from where on the campus. Believe it, such information was vital.

I knew or at least laboured, to know about everyone I shared a class with. I particularly found Psychology students interesting. A lot of them assumed they would graduate and be able to tell a prostitute by touching their foreheads. My knowledge of people in the class was extensive. I got to know everyone but one short, brown who possessed between a fake smile and exposed teeth. She was extremely bright and partied as if it contributed to her class marks. Her name was Jackie.

Jackie quickly became one of my closest friends. She would occasionally visit me over the weekend, cook, do laundry and chat away at every instance. The campus felt more fulfilling with her in my life. Before I knew it, I was successfully placed knee-deep into the friend zone. On the days Jackie spent a night at my place, it was like two straight guys snoring away. Nothing but little, almost silent farts happened in the night.

During our brief cameo of getting to know each other over the course of two semesters, Jackie mentioned nothing about her boyfriend. She was unlike other girls who, by now, would have mentioned who their boyfriends were, where they stayed, what they did and asked for advice on their perfect relationship. I asked to meet Jackie’s boyfriend not because I liked her, but because I needed to know the guy who was dating the girl who wore my shirts, vests, and shorts at will and tell him to buy hers.

Jackie and I cut our weekly meetings for a while. During this time, I travelled to Rwanda for the inter-university debate competition. However, we kept in touch via WhatsApp from the minute I left Uganda till the landing in Rwanda. One could still buy a plot of land by simply installing this app for people.

On the evening of my return from Rwanda, Jackie sent me a text asking if I needed to meet her soulmate. I said, ‘yes’. I mean, it is very rare that a university student turns down the opportunity to attend a meeting where food may be served. ‘Of course. You know I want to meet him, I told her. ‘She, not he’, Said Jackie. ‘I am a lesbian, Alan. Always have been, Jackie added.

The bus ride from Kigali was smooth. I did not like gay people. I did not hate them either. They disgusted me. I was also part of the crew that did a documentary titled Uganda, the world’s worst place to be gay. Honestly, gays did not really matter to me. I kept wondering how I would feel about this whole incident from now on. I went ahead and ‘googled’ how to maintain a friendship with a gay person.

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