LESSONS FROM 2012: NOSTALGIA AND HAPI NOLIA EDITION
Guest post by Anthony 'Lanx' Lungaho
We've seen it all, the highs, the lows and the mid is weak. 2012 was an
amazing year, with lots of lessons, here's to an even greater 2013; the
looong, greatest 12 of 2012.
12. It takes a village to raise a
team, it takes a village idiot to almost destroy it. Ingwe's march to
glory was scuttled not by Oguda, or Tusker, or Gor, or a towel - it was
disrupted by our own who took the club to court, mishandled the playing
unit and TB, wrangled unnecessarily and even stole the club's cash.
'Shetani gani huyo hata hajui kazi ile imefanywa...'
11. It was
the year of new learnings, and new confusions. It started with team
line-timeline-replicas cc. Pamela Lutta, and reached the peak with the
FKF statement that 'the results of Gor vs AFC will be held in abeyance';
I will never forget Osinde proclaiming, 'Asanda! EffuKeYeff wamesema
tukuwe na vuyanzi! Nyamweya juu!'.
10. AFC Leopards SC is a
recognised mental affliction. This year we witnessed many symptoms of
Ingwemulalulytis, such as Translatiosis, where fans think in KiPokot but
speak in Fat-Ingilish-Etuketet-London; for instance Aseka's 'You have
gardening - uko na ushamba', Gaxdon's 'Hippopotamus of theirs - Ingwe ni
Kiboko yao' and El Cap's 'I am up of things - Niko juu ya vitu'.
9. Ingwemulalulytis which was most prevalent on match days, (all the
way till late at poolside cc Apacha, Mukokha, Oj), but it always started
here on the wall. Credit to Dj Skush aka Mbulakatyooo, TJ Choram aka
'Pause!' and Sam MpEdna Wahu for introducing the hot alapam; Ingwe
Riidims. Riidim of the year was undoubtedly MpEdna's 'Gdi Ndi Gdi Ndi
Gdi Ndi - Gada Riitsim'. Mbulakatyooo!
8. The matches were often the climax of Ingwemulalulytis, from Bern Ndeda Wanga/Mayuka/Renard/Gyan/Ingwe
First XI screaming MATAAASII loud enough to awaken ancestors at Langata
cemetery (even during throw ins when Matasi was nowhere near), to Cax
and Victor drinking Jik only to black out and wake up the next Tuesday
asking 'ngapi ngapi' Mabango style, to Weru speaking in more languages
than the disciples on the day of pentecost when Barasa closed KCB, and
to all of us, the republik that watched the Leopard prey, danced to the
gada 'hoover' and sang ourselves hoarse; may Ingwemulalulytis live
forever and double in 2013.
Mulalu Moment of the year was the
Isukutieer on panji against Chemelil, suddenly shouted, 'Hii Tunisia leo
wamelemea Oliech namnakani!!'
7. There were moments when AFC
came dangerously close to becoming a cult, and no ocassion more so than
during the 6 - 2 drubbing of Rangers. Kollo and Sober drunkenly tried to
walk on water, fans invaded the pitch kupiga nyasi duster, and Shem aka
Masiolo, completely drenched, hang his jersey in the rain to dry!
6. Out of town started for some of us with Afraha in 2010, then
Mombasa, Thika and Naivasha in 2011, but in 2012 even having followed
the Leopard everywhere, the most memorable fixtures were without a doubt
the ones in Mumias. It's enroute to 'Pukasi' that we discovered
Amalemba Fwaya, Trokupa of Kabula, saw Diamond celebrate a 'world
record' of running 100m in 28 seconds, where 'Mwana wa Laban' alikatika
kukatika with no music (usicheze na amalemba fwaya), where DT, Chair,
Mabango na wengine ambao hawako mbele ya korti hii 'acquired' a new
chang'aa by the name DOCK (walilewa 2 weeks); and in Mumias also where
the most vibrant branch was born; 'Kuna Nduru Gizani Branch'.
Bora ikuwe Saturday, 2013 Mumias oyee!
5. 2012 saw us celebrate some of the most incredible goals, and some of
the most epic victories ever. There was Barry vs KCB, Bagaye vs
Rangers, Wanga rounding the keeper in the FKF cup, Okwemba running Thika
rugged...but was there a greater strike than Victor Ochieng vs
Karuturi? 87 minutes of frustration. Determined tackle from Paco.
Purposeful charge upfield by Masika. Pin point cross from Wanga. What a
bullet by Ochieng. Chair, Apache, Samwana, Otero, Mabango Inc and
thousands of Leopards all lose their heads. Such are the moments that
make me proud to be a Leopard - and the moments that make me salivate
for the new season.
4. This was the season when a '13th man'
was discovered thanks to the FKF performance of the Mapunda Towel. But
let us also celebrate our own practitioners - the supporters who tried
everything to 'help' Ingwe -from wale wa 'kushikilia pandy' cc Edna,
Aidah, Kamle; to wale wa 'ni nyinyi mnafunga team toeni kofia na belt
hata lichaketi' cc Pweza, Angulu, Namai; to those who walitudanganya
watapitisha mvua na wakashindwa furutei tukanyeshewa kama magomia -
Onyino, Mabango, Denis Chesa, Omusawa, Wanyore Choir. I salute y'all.
3. Though Ingwe gave us breathtaking highs, we also did not escape
heartbreaking lows; the loss in a foreign country, the inexplicable loss
to Gor, the tipping point at Afraha that saw our brothers locked up,
the self sabotage at milimani as well as within the club, the dark days
when we only seemed to have wrangling over the anthem or the replicas or
false mourning or the mid is weak or 'businessmen' or subtribal feuds
or foreal...those are the events that we must bury in 2012. Some low
tides are inevitable for such is life, but the ones that we inflict on
ourselves must never return; so help us God.
2. 2012 was
incredible because of 20 or so Leopards who valiantly clawed and kicked
for us, but mainly because of the thousands more who gave their souls
for AFC. The songs in the stands from thanking 'matako ya nyuki' to
abusing 'ya referee'; to the Ingwe Ladies and Ingwelets who made our
matches that much more beautiful; to those who taught us so much more
about our club, Nandi, EM, Luyuku, Bwibo, Tasso, Ambani, Selebwa et al;
the unsung heroes like Cassim Zuberi, the Nakuru bodaboda chap who
attends all games and many more we may have no idea of; to the suporters
who got involved in electing a new office and averting silent crises;
and to the many Leopards who got involved in the biggest campaign of a
generation - to bring our bus home...YOU are the Leopard. In whichever
way you contributed to our unforgettable 2012, salute, the journey to
glory is unfinished, may we celebrate together even more in 2013.
1. The greatest lesson of 2012, however, was the reason why AFC is the
greatest club in the land: We're not the greatest just because of our
trophies and our heritage and our fanbase and whichever other things:
We're great because many Leopards in countless ways decide to do great
things for AFC; choose to give of themselves wholeheartedly to the club;
and refuse to let the crest burn. May we always remember.
To a great season, to victory, to an incredible 2013.