e604ff1ec1dcba3225d6333c2202c1fbcaab65bfd3be076c16081323ddb02b29Like a broken record, I have been ranting and raving against abuse of drugs by my comrades for two years now. I have fought tooth and nail to see my comrades shun deleterious substances such as boiled marijuana, liquefied miraa and second generation hooch.

It now seems like my comrades got tired of my nagging and decided to modify the way they conduct their favourite pastime—drug abuse. The authorities were also watching, and thus my comrades devised new ways to legitimize their faux pas. Reminds me of an analogy from Grandpa Richard’s favourite book, Things Fall Apart. Eneke the bird said that since man had learnt to shoot without missing, he had learnt to fly without perching.

My comrades’ new poisons of choice, it turns out, are prescription drugs. Young people are always on the prowl for a ‘quick cure’ or a ‘quick fix’ for all ailments, from self-induced hangovers to laziness. Yea, they do have a pill for laziness.

The galling fact is that my comrades never even bother to acquire a legit prescription from a decent medic.

Last week, a local daily ran an ominous front page story detailing how university students are falling over themselves to acquire a Sh 90 pill that is widely used to procure abortions. The drug, Cyrotec, is reportedly flying off the shelves near institutions of higher learning. The facts that it is designed to cure cancer and experts warn that it can corrode stomach walls seem not to worry my troubled colleagues.

On Tuesday this week, this paper reported of a study that showed the use of emergency contraceptive pills increased the risk of a baby being conceived outside the womb. I suggest that my female colleagues sit at a corner and ruminate over this factoid, given that they are accustomed to popping morning-after pills like candy.

My bearded colleagues, on the other hand, have been accused of misusing that small blue pill called Viagra. Few things rankle  Grandpa Richard more than the fact that young people today seem intent on laying claim to ailments like erectile dysfunction that were previously the purview of seniour citizens.

“I’m hardly surprised at this trend,” says Grandpa Richard. “It is typical of your comrades—always looking for shortcuts. In my days people got chicken pox, measles and mumps and were satisfied with that.”

Indeed, legend has it that by the time Grandpa Richard was a young man; his immune system was so strong he could cure his brother’s measles just by standing next to him. Save for the occasional blood pressure that’s caused by my comrades’ asininity, the old man hasn’t fallen sick in fifty years. He attributes his good health to not popping drugs whenever he loses sleep.

Even though he’s not physician, my old man warns that some commonly prescribed drugs can have adverse effects which include heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, irreversible bone loss and cancer. “It’s a frightening state of affairs. And it’s going to get a lot worse if someone doesn’t step up and straighten these young people soon.”


Jowal Jones is a columnist and correspondent with Kenya's leading newspaper, Daily Nation. He also dabbles in fiction works at times, hoping to be the next Stephen King. Sometimes he takes time out from writing to perfect his deer-dancing and goat-screaming skills.