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The simple things that brought me joy this week.

I write every day. I only publish when I feel worried enough. For the past few days, I haven’t published — I haven’t written words that I feel have pieces of my soul in it. I don’t even know how to explain what that means. I just know when it’s not it. This week, I haven’t found it.

So, I’ve been trying something else.

My drafts contain the reason why this week is critical to my career. It involves severed bonds, coping mechanisms and healthy ways to stay on top of personal failures.

In that draft folder, I also have a recollection of the video games I played with my brother; how much they made us who we are today. It wasn’t until I wrote that down that I realized how much video games had impacted my life, and still will.


These three things include things whose roles in my life I am just coming across. It is the minimalist call of these actions that brings me gratitude in times when I need that feeling the most. What are they then?

1. Long walks

With my cab fare in hand, I’ll latch unto my backpack and do something that brings me peace in ways I never appreciated.

I’ll walk.

I don’t exercise regularly. I don’t pay attention to what I eat. I suck at all sports. I don’t know my MBI. One thing I do know though, is that for the past 6 months, not walking has made me seep into this mental place where I don’t like the shape I see in my mirror.

By most descriptions, I am definitely not overweight. But I don’t look so athletic either.

I still need to figure out why or how I am able to walk these long distances or stand all day and feel nothing. I might be a mutant. Nice.

I’ve turned to observing the city as I walk down home. I imagine conversations and describe scenes to myself. Sometimes, I take out the coins to pay for the cab, but I just hold unto them, then, walk home.

It casts a soothing spell on me. I feel a healing from the inside. It’s as though the city hears my pain and swathes it with every footfall.

2. Random Notes on Evernote

I’ve completed more texts on Evernote in the past week than in the last month. I’ve also found that I enjoy leaving sentences halfway, knowing I cannot finish them at the moment. It’s a daring anticipation, waiting for the words to come as I pen the ones already present.

It was strange at the start. I usually start and finish my poems or posts immediately. I hardly leave texts to be edited later. This, I found, through massive consumption of how-to’s on Medium, wasn’t a good practice. Now, I l edit at at later time, taking up to weeks at a time.

This has allowed me to provide a skeleton for the book ideas I have and to do so freely. I don’t have to complete the work I start at that time. I know I will. And even when I write a complete text, I let it simmer for a bit.

Given the number of incomplete drafts I now have, I know I cannot lack what to write about every single day. Is this a bad practice? I don’t know. Between you and me…I don’t care.

What you’re reading was written straight on Medium a few hours ago. I think that writing down my thoughts allows my ideas to flow more. It’s less limiting and it reduces the pressure on my desire to create work that touches the soul.

3. Face to Face Conversations

I am an introvert. I have learned how to be comfortable around people in a way that makes me seem extroverted. But, if given the choice, I’d rather be by myself.

I do my best work when I’m alone. You should see me after a party — a wreck, physically unable to accommodate humans.

One of the most common problems introverts face is energy level management: knowing your threshold. It’s important to know how much of humans you can handle, for how long, and how long it would take to recharge.

I take one full night of alone time after spending a day around people. But, if I have to interact with these people, it could take more. Last Saturday for example, I attended a party. I had fun. A lot. I danced, drank and slept on a couch. I really, really needed to let out that night. Guess what? It took me two days to recover. Not from the hangover, but from the interactions with other people.

However, I’ve been able to get inspiration for posts, stories, articles, and even just be entertained, by having face to face conversations.

Because I found it hard to create what I wanted, I started paying closer attention to the people I was with. Listening to what they were saying. Watching their body language. Asking questions. Laughing at their jokes. Paying compliments when necessary.

It’s one of those simple things that make life incredibly worthwhile: having a conversation.

I have lots of them with myself. But it’s only when I talk with others that I hear myself even more through them.


A lot has changed in my life recently. A lot more is coming ahead. I’ve never been this grateful for everything I have and glad that I am living in the greatest era of all time!

From the bottom of my heart, I’d like to thank you for reading this. Please, click on the heart to recommend this piece. It gets more readers to see. You know how much my self-worth depends on this…so…euh…thanks. 😀

If you enjoyed this post, please share using the social media buttons below. Don’t hesitate to ask me anything on twitter.

This post was originally published on Self-ish.

404 Error Kurated 0004 30th June 2016

This is an automated text. If you receive this message, it means either I’ve not been able to fix my Internet, or I’m still at the 2nd Year Anniversary of Visiterlafrique.com.

This is a daily post. Whether I have news or not, if I can get to you, I’ll post.

Why? Because I’m grateful to you.

I’ll take this post to thank you for being with me all these years. New friends and old friends, real life friends and blogger friends.

I have difficulty trusting people in real life but I’ve been able, through this blog, to meet many incredible people : Anna, Kerisha, Anne Marie, Alain Didier, Marcus, Sama Tanya, Esther, Morel, Elodie, Atemnkeng,

There are many more. And feel blessed for this.

That in this world where there is so much noise and connectivity, we can still build real, healthy relationships across boarders.

I’ll be moving to a self hosted site for many reasons. The main being that apart from being a love obsessed narcissist, I work for a startup and I have my own startup ideas.

This blog won’t go away right now, but,  I’ll slowly make sure we all move to the new domain.

On the site, there will be less poetry though. But you will be able to subscribe to the category of content you want.

But trust me, you’ll love it.

You should know how much I’ve been influenced by James Altucher and Gary Vaynerchuk. I have a long road ahead and I’m pumped.

If I tell you things are super great, that will be a lie. I still need to get some equipment, pay bills and stuff like that.

But I’m lucky to have parents who love me as much as mine do.

And I know that when you see the stuff I’m working on for you, you’ll help too.

The journey has just started and I have a lot to let you read, hear and even see.

Documentary ideas, movies, podcasts. It’s just a matter of time.

So, my friend, thank you. You’ve read my stuff and you’re still here.

I’m on all social media platforms with the same name (Tchassa Kamga).

We’re jus getting started.

P.S: I wrote this with my damaged phone. My fingers hurt!!!

I remember her touch.

As well as her kind gaze and warm smile.
They way she gleamed and held her head high.
She left her hand in mine.
Confident that the world wouldn’t mind.
Especially, when we went out to dine.

Fortunately, that time is now behind.

I remember my nickname.
She’d laugh at my sneer, knowing I’d go insane.
She’d pick on me when no one looked,
Only to make that face I’d hate to imitate.
Our kiss? She’d initiate.
Long, tender, nuzzle free meal I’d gleefully partake.

Alas, that time is in my wake.

I remember our goodbyes.
Her sad scream and dark eyes.
Long texts and fake fights.
The stakes were high.
I still hear echoes of her curses in the middle of the night.

The black hole in my soul, sucking, had never seemed so bright.

…And I am Culturally Incorrect.

I’ve been thinking about the responsibility that comes with being at the receiving end of a gift, a favor or a service. One that doesn’t require an exchange of any sort other than the traditional “ Thank you” or “ I am grateful”.

How far do the impacts of such acts of kindness go? For example, someone buys you a birthday present, do you have to in return, purchase the said friend a gift as well?
Now, if you do, is it because you received a present as well, or is it because you actually wish her well?

Or siblings, when you do something for your brother- that white lie( we both know lies aren’t ever white), does she have to lie for you back?

How far does this “reciprocation” reach? How long does it take to eventually pay a debt?

Actually, my question is more of: is there a debt?

Does a child owe the parents his/her life?

Because you are on this earth only because two people made it possible by the heavenly guided meeting of a sperm and an egg( never thought I would ever use a variant of “heaven” and “sperm” in the same sentence in my lifetime), does this mean all your actions, your dreams, your desires, your goals must be approved by your parents.

Is that it?

I have a feeling that I will be called out as trying to copy the West. You know what? Spare no expense. I am copying the West. But keep in mind that I am very mindful of my context. I know where I come from- a Christian family, with catholic married parents. I went to boarding school for seven years and I have a degree from one of the best Universities in the country. So far, I haven’t been convicted and I am not a father. I neither drink nor smoke for sport.

If that doesn’t establish my “uprightedness”, I don’t know what will.

( Then again, worse crimes have been committed by people with a “saner” profile. But…just bear with me)

There is a term I have been fascinated with recently-“Cultural correctness”. I define it as :

“ deliberately avoiding cultural offense;relating to or supporting the use of language or conduct that deliberately avoids giving offense when it comes to what is acceptable by a community.

Yes, you’re right, I stole the term from political correctness.

Now, my “special” definition limits to the behaviors governing those of children towards elders. In the Cameroonian African environment.

Case in point: You’re 16. You love biology. You watch discovery channel in the morning afternoon and evening. When asked why you don’t watch cartoons, you don’t even get the point of the question.
Duh!
Now, you pass the GCE advanced level. You have 5 papers. Awesome grades. You’re going to the Uni.
Yay!
Not so fast.

Mom thinks you’ll make a great doctor. Dad agrees. One of your Aunts is a medical practioner. Both parents call her name with so much respect.

You would love to study biology. Probably get a Phd. Even have your TV show. You try to argue.
Mom isn’t happy. Dad broods. You consider their option.
“It’s not so bad..” you tell yourself.
You’re smart. So you write the the entrance exam. You make it. Every one is ecstatic! The new family doctor is born!

The family biologist just died. You just became a victim of what I call: emotional blackmail ( note to self: write blog post on this. You’ve been a victim way too many times).

How often do we not stand up for what we really want?

How many times do we sit silent and just do what we are told even when we know that we don’t want to. When we can feel our stomach and every nerve in your body telling you this is a bad idea.

Here are some of the verbal cues of emotional blackmail:
This is Cameroon. Not Europe.
You need experience.
You’re in the virtual world. Reality doesn’t work like that.
Who will pay for this??
Where do you think you are?
You’re going to give me a heart attack.
What about your brothers?
What kind of example are you showing.

OR my favourite…

You’ve changed. I don’t recognize you anymore.

You see, I know all too well all (or a lot) about emotional blackmail and cultural correctness. I have suffered from it for a while. But, recently, I have fought my biggest battle ever.

The battle against the voice in my head. I haven’t won the war. But this post, is part of the battle. The war never ends.

And here are ways to recognize people like me- us- who wage this battle everyday.
We are labelled: stubborn, reckless, selfish, rebels, inconsiderate, bad examples, {Insert other derogatory term to describe someone who does what he or she knows to be what is true to his or her DNA.

( Ok, there is a fine line between someone who knows exactly what he or she wants, and someone who is plain confused. Both seem as confident, only time will tell the difference.)

There are others who can stay culturally correct and live a truly decent and happy life. Many who follow what their parents and elders tell them and find true happiness. I have a friend who wrote the entrance exam even though he didn’t want to be a medical doctor. Today, he’s one of the happiest people I know.

There is no harm in listening to counsel and doing as you’re told.

But if you’re not one of those people, if you’re not built to follow orders, if your heart knows what you’re good at, if your DNA tells you the path to follow…if you’re like me…

Then by all means, I urge you to be culturally incorrect! Please!

Learn the rules, break them- but don’t break the law. Give the world an authentic, true, original version of yourself.

By all means- do not listen to me , your parents or anyone. Find yourself. Shine your light.

Am I asking you to be disobedient? To leave home and be stranded because some idiot on the internet said so?
Nah. I won’t take responsibility for what you do. That’s the whole point of being culturally incorrect.

You make your choices. And you deal with the consequences. No pain, no gain.

But, before you chicken out , let me give you a list:

Steve Jobs, The Beatles, Ev William, Bongajum Leslie, Spielberg, Cameron, Bekolo, Francoise Elong.

These may all be artists. But I want to believe that if these people (and many like them) who have changed the face of music, movies, the internet – if they had listened to those who loved them and wanted them to be safe, we would not be benefiting from their true art.

My name is Tchassa Kamga. And I am culturally incorrect.

What about you?

The Light

The light at the end.

There is a tunnel. The proverbial tunnel.
Not Alice’s rabbit hole.
Not Hawking’s black hole.

Nor Nolan’s worm hole.

A tunnel. A path. A task. A journey.

There’s work to be done. Odysseys to be completed.

At any time t, the tunnel could fall. It often does.
Either it falls or you fall.

You fall, you get up. You have a task. Ready.
You fall , you get up. You can’t wait. Set.
You fall. You get up. You will finish. Go.

The light at the end is in the mind. You can’t see it.
It’s all dark and wet. Full of speeches and mockery.

Cover your eyes. Have faith. Walk proud. Beam.

There is a light at the end of the tunnel

Your light. My light.

The Light.

Je Suis Féministe. Tu Crois Que Ça Va Aller?

I am a feminist. Before Chimamanda and “the wave”, I’ll admit I was more confused than proud of that fact. Even now, I am not certain of what the concept encompasses. However, I will keep reading, thinking and talking about equality for all. I believe men, women, children, heterosexuals and homosexuals are humans first before any label. We deserve equal social, political, cultural lives. None should be suppressed or repressed by virtue of his or her gender. Many have fought for this. Many have died too. And if anyone can not see the strides made and the work left, at least he or she can see that there is a logic in this. That it is not fair. That is it not a “battle by angry women who wish to be as good as men or have the same rights as men”. A man= a woman. A man should be proud of his gender. And just like a woman should! We are all born humans and we shall all die( thankfully so). We could as well cut the bullshit and live with each other fairly. Aren’t you tired of fighting? I am. But , insofar as women are treated as ‘lesser humans’ then, I am sorry, but my fight continues too. This is a lovely piece by a talented thinker. For french readers…enjoy.

It's Going Dawn

Je vais rentrer sur le beat comme Xéna la Guerrière dans une bagarre. Nous sommes au 21e siècle, on vend toujours les livres au poteau, Google est gratuit, je ne ferai pas un autre mini-cours sur le pourquoi du comment du féminisme parce qu’en réalité, si j’ai pu récolter les informations nécessaires pour écrire des articles dessus, tout le monde peut le faire.

Je suis féministe et je suis reconnaissante.

Je ne considère pas qu’en tant que femme, avoir été à l’école soit une chance. Je ne considère pas que gagner de l’argent soit un quelconque privilège, ni que m’épanouir professionnellement sous-entende que je sois sexuellement frustrée. Si ces choses vont d’elles mêmes aujourd’hui, c’est parce que des femmes se sont investies dans un combat il y a des décennies de cela. Elles ont arraché à un système qu’on pensait immuable le droit de vote, le droit de s’instruire, le…

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Common (Social Media) Courtesy

I usually turn off my chat when I log on to Facebook in order to ‘work’. You know I am because you can see me commenting on posts and sharing links. But my chat shows I am off.

Am I a liar? Is it polite for me to choose to ‘not chat’ with my online ‘friends’?

Social media has broken many walls – geographical and temporal – but it has built others. Social walls: the ability to choose when I want people to ‘see’ me or ‘chat’ with me. I can ignore notifications and explain: “Oh. Sorry. The network. Meh”.

Since I do all these, I guess I must be part of the new breed of criminals- social criminals?

I don’t know. But I find interesting to…you know…  ‘visit’ a ‘friend’s’ page, check out her pictures, see her friends, comments, interests et cetera.

The sad part is we’re NOT friends and I don’t intend to send a friend request. Is that stalking? My friend once said it is punishable by law in some states.

Hm. I must be a wanted criminal.

What about unfriending? Or unfollowing? (My account was blocked from following  @StanleyEnow on Twitter shortly after I wrote this blog post). What does it mean to click the button with the intent of not being able to get someone’s updates? Is it worse than saying, orally: “I don’t like what you did. We’re no longer friends”.

Since when did a click gain the power to generate such debates?

I will not open the ‘You didn’t like my picture’ page. Or the ‘why didn’t you comment/share/like/RT?? Why? WHY?

A social wall. That is what we’ve erected with the new media. The ability to touch everyone and no one. With the need to re-learn ‘how to’ be social. Some are pretty good at it. Some get the conversation going with just a click, a picture.

If you’re like me, after writing a post, you WRITE a post. You tag, add, share, tweet mention. Promoting content online is almost as important as creating it. Just observe the panoply of social media pundits/agencies.

Has the meaning of politeness changed? Or worse, should I remain friends on Facebook with someone I don’t want to be friends in ‘real’ life?

I am cheerfully confused.

#Help

The Red Necklace: A Review of Sahndra Fondufe’s debut Novel

Books written by contemporary Cameroonian writers are but a few. I have not yet read this one, but I love this review. Enjoy.

ourbookblog

Contrary to all other times when I read a book, I started this book by reading the acknowledgments. I could the author’s excitement as she thanked her relatives, friends and Editor. Aha! Then I dived in, with the same expectation and excitement I have when I have a few hours to spare and a good book in my hand. I was even more excited because I was finally beginning my book tour of Africa and I was starting with a book that was set in the very North West province where I spent a beautiful childhood.

It took me several hours to go through the big book. I got to know Yefon, the main character and the narrator of the book. I met her father, a well to do polygamous business man. I caught a few glimpses of her step sister Sola in between her constant beauty treatments administered…

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Potatoes and Eggs…a Love Story

And one plate to rule them all!

And one plate to rule them all!

Hello there! How art thou? I am done with exams,so, I can afford to get online now. Not that exams were a chore or anything, I just love to be able to surf freely without feeling as though I am supposed to be doing something else.

Anyway, I don’t think I will be going to the mountain.

And yes, I am as disappointed as you are. Some work came up and,coupled with my final year project ,I need this break to cover the vacuum.

BUT! I have been doing ma thaing at @Wasamundi and there is this really cool article I wrote I think you would love.

As you guessed from the title, it is a love story.

Hehehe….

Here is the intro and the link to the full article:

Sometimes, our daily routines do not allow us the flexibility to prepare our meals. That’s one of the reasons why restaurants and other eateries have flourished in Molyko. They are cheap, fast, and often, better than our own cooking. 

Just kidding. I know you cook best.

Anyway, some evenings, you might just want a change of diet.

So, what’s on the menu? Juicy meat filled Sharwarma or rich, salt flavored French Fries and eggs?

If you’re like me, you might have eaten potatoes and eggs at one point or the other. Well, I have definitely eaten it more than you. Why? Because I love food.

Therefore, I am your official French Fries and eggs expert and today, I won’t be giving you the best locations for those. That’s for another time. Today, we do something more fun- TOP FIVE COMBOS!

Did you know there are names for various combinations? And that maybe you have always been passing a command for ‘The One Dollar’?

Read the full article on Wasamundi’s Official Blog.

P.S. : Wasamundi is a Buea(Cameroon) based  software and communications company whose mission is to put all relevant local content on the internet. To achieve this, their arsenal includes:

1. Wasahostel: Where can I rent in Cameroon? This site answers that.

2. Wasafix: Convert your phone numbers from 8 to 9 digits

3. Wasatexto: An affordable bulk sms service.

4. Wasamundi: Let’s just say this is Cameroon’s Yelp.

The company culture is terrific and the dudes really work at it. You should check you their website. You’ll dig it.

Or maybe not…but I sure did!

🙂

Cheers.