Dusty Rug

I have a rug in my room. It’s a dusty old thing that makes me sneeze every time I walk in but it goes well with the color of my walls. It has shades of yellow and walnut, this dusty rug, and if you know where to look you will see a charred spot, a reminder of the time I was finding out what a cigarette could do.

It’s on this dusty rug that I do most of my writing.

In the months after we moved to the digs we’re living in now, I always thought my room looked empty. I mean, it had fancy wardrobes and some nice floor tiling but I still couldn’t shake the fact that the room still somehow felt naked.

That time, I had just got onto my writing path and I spent most of my time in bed, writing one story or the other, eager to finish and show it to someone who would go on to spur me on. It was flattering as hell, and, just to show how serious I was with this writing, I would search for newspaper articles on everything literature, slice them up with scissors and plaster them on the wall. At some point there were so many of these clippings that I ran out of wall. My room looked like something out of CSI.

Then one day, at the computer, as I pensively tugged at the little hairs on my chin, it dawned on me that I couldn’t write anything. I had a story in my head but that’s all it was, in my head. I was livid. I couldn’t understand what was going on, how I could be writing my heart out one day and then the next I’m painfully searching for words on the ceiling.

And I thought, If this is how tormenting writing can get, then count me out.

So what I did was, with surprising rage, I approached my wall of paper clippings and tore it down. It must have really looked like something out of a movie, I thought. Only, in the movies, they don’t show you the part where you have to clean the mess you’ve now made.

While I was carrying the crumpled pieces of paper to the bin I thought, So what now? For one thing I didn’t know what I was going to do with my life, without the writing, and also because my room had gone back to feeling like a hollow with nice floor tiling.

So after a while I started to think what I could to the room to make a bit homier. And I decided the best way to do it was to throw in more things.

First I got a book shelf that would double as a night stand. It has two small doors that open up to rows of books and their colorful spines and it smells like watered trees in there.  Next, I got a lamp and put it atop the bookshelf. I got one with an orange shade and a silver neck and it was the lightest thing you ever carried. The lamp light would bounce off the pages of my books as I read at night, and the lamp’s close proximity to my pillow would surely save me the trouble of having to get up and go all the way to the door to find the light switch.

And then there was the TV. When my old folks got another one for their room, and after a bit of arguing with my sister over who should get the damn TV, I won on account that she had the bigger room and that she couldn’t even carry the damn thing. I took the TV to my room with a smirk on my face.

It’s a bit heavy, and it has one of those big behinds that call to mind an era long gone. When you plug it in it lets out a loud sigh, like it really doesn’t feel like entertaining you. There was also a DVD player somewhere and I grabbed that as well.

The rug was the icing, the final touch to this little piece of heaven I was making. At the end of it all I felt mighty proud of myself. I was ready to curve up a career in interior decorating, to tell you the truth.

But, because I’m a lazy bum who never cleans his room, my Ol’Lady really didn’t want me having the rug. “It’s unhygienic!” she said. Wondering out aloud, she added, “Why would you go through all this trouble just to put yourself at the risk of a lung disease?” I said nothing. Before she gave up on telling me to get rid of it, I could have sworn that every time I stepped out of the room she would come in and taken the rug away back to the store so that when I brought it back in, I would sneeze my eyes out of their sockets.

I don’t blame her, though. She doesn’t see what I see in the rug. She doesn’t see that it takes away the problem of putting my feet on the cold hard floor in the morning, and that it now becomes less tasking to go down and do some push-ups. She doesn’t see that, for me at least, the rug takes away some of the untidiness of things strewn about on the floor. She doesn’t see that the color of my rug goes well with my lamp, and that it gives the room a warm cozy feel. Mostly, she doesn’t see how I can sit cross legged on the rug and write.

I don’t much like to write in bed these days because it makes me lazy. It becomes much easier to lie down with one hand down my crotch and think about nothing instead. The rug doesn’t support this habit because it has tight weaving, so when you sit on it there’s not much difference than when you’re on the floor. It still has the ability to numb your behind though, but you’ll be too busy sneezing to notice anything.


The Red Stereo

Comments (2)

  1. DB

    Dusty rag is your necessary evil

    • Mike

      Haha, try tell that to my mother

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Florence Bett-Kinyatti


Columnist Saturday Nation Writer Craft It Author of best-selling ‘SHOULD I?’ and ‘HOW MUCH?’ ~ Guiding word: Overdrive Subscribe to our Newsletter👇🏾 eepurl.com/igmN8P
  • Dear God, 
It’s me again.

I don’t pray as often as I need to, You know that. I don’t kneel by my bed in child-like humility, as Muna does. I don’t whisper a prayer in the morning. Or at noon. Perhaps just in the evening. 

This going-to-church habit is a constant false start. So is reading the Word. 

I’m often guilty but I also know: You and I have a language only we can understand. 

I speak to You through this gift You bestowed upon my Kale shoulders, this gift to write in colour. It’s a gift that sometimes feels like a curse, a burden I have no choice but to pursue. 

Yet other times – most times, actually – it’s the very breath of my essence. Everyday I sit to write, when the words flow from my head and heart through my fingers to the page, I feel You next to me. 

You are here, Lord. Hovering. Lingering. Swooshing about in Your regal robes, like a character from Bridgerton.

Sometimes You get so close I can feel You breathing on my neck and I’m like, ‘Err, God, do You mind, personal space?’

And You chuckle uncomfortably. ‘He-he, of course. Of course.’

I’m here to tell You, Thanks!

I hosted my first in-person event last March, Lord, thank You to all the lovely ladies who granted me their time and full attention. 

I’ve carried them in my heart since and every day, my prayer is that You bring them closer to the life of abundance they each seek. To their own version of wealth. 

I always call them by their name: Becky. Purity. Lindsay. Wangui. Naomi. Shiqow. Mercy. Liz. Winnie. Polly. Nduta. Lynet. 

And Mike. 

Dear Lord, I’m prepping for my next in-person event in June, Inshallah. 

Walk with me as I get there. 

Love always,

  • Highlights from our first-ever in person event hosted by Craft It and @financialfitbit 
Thanks to all the lovely ladies — and gent, hehe — who honoured us with the privilege of their time and attention. And colourful energy. It’s been weeks since and it’s only now that I’m coming down from the high. 

Thank YOU!

🎥 @mikemuthaka 

#craftit #author #MakeYourMoneyMatter #personalfinance #money
  • I am a woman.

I’m strong. I’m brilliant. I’m like a comet shooting across the sky, I’m so bright you have to put on shades to see me.

I’m almost 40, I’m almost fully realising myself as a woman and the power of womanhood I possess.

I’m so powerful that if KPLC connected me to the national grid, I’d power up this country and we’d never have another blackout.

Ho! Ho! Ho!


To recognize and celebrate International Women’s Day today, I’d like to recognize and celebrate eight women.

I have eight things to give away to each of these women:
a) Two tickets to my upcoming event on March 18 with @financialfitbit Theme is ‘Make your money matter’
b) Three autographed copies of my book ‘Should I?’
c) Three autographed copies of my other book ‘How Much?’

To participate:
1. Like this post
2. Tag women who deserve a win of either event ticket or book (tag as many women as you like)
3. Tell us what you’d like her to win and why she deserves the win
4. Make sure your tagged women follow @_craftit and @financialfitbit 

Here are the rules for the giveaway:
— One woman, one win
— Winners will be contacted via DM
— Giveaway closes at the end of this week, Inshallah, on Sunday 12 March
— Only open to people living in Kenya

All the best!

(Swipe right to see the women I’m celebrating.)

#craftit #internationalwomensday
  • My 2022 word of the year was Wholesome. 

Wholesome meant engaging in moderation and in pursuits that didn’t leave me feeling yucky.

An example: there’re weekend nights I’d go out then have too much to drink. On the drive home, I’d tell GB to stop the car every half mile so I could throw up on the side of the road. Then I’d take three working days recovering. 


No more of that nonsense.

Now I have only two doubles of Singleton whiskey and chase it with water. I eat less food and I eat better. I take my supplements. I treat myself to an early bedtime and arise with my body clock, no alarm.

I spend a lot more time hanging with my kids, Muna and Njeeh. 

I buy fewer things. 

I play the piano. 

I created a disciplined routine for my work and take Thursdays off. 

You catch my drift…

Wholesome has become my lifestyle. 

(By the way, I was asked, ‘Where does this word-of-the-year come from, Bett?’ I don’t know about other people but for me, the words present themselves when I’m journaling. My spirit tells me what it needs; I must be still enough to listen and brave enough to obey.)

My word for 2023 is Overdrive.

My two books have unlocked new opportunities for me as a writer and creative. As an urban brand. I’d honestly not foreseen them. 

I know that if I adjust my sails to where the wind is blowing, these opportunities will translate to wealth.

Last Friday, I listed all the work I’m already doing and all the new opportunities – potential and realised – knocking at my door.

I asked myself, ‘What am I taking up here and what am I dropping?’

The response, ‘None – we go into overdrive and smartly pursue them all.’

#craftit #urbanguide
  • Years ago, my best friend said to me, ‘Bett, we’re almost 40 – forget makeup, let’s take care of our skin instead.’

I had to laugh because this was coming from Terry. Terry my Kisii pal, this fine gyal with skin the colour of honey, the only practising SDA in my circle. 

Terry had spent her 20s and early 30s sleek with Arimis. That’s right, the milking jelly with a lactating cow on its logo. 

Arimis addressed all her skin pickles back then. It was her problem fixer. Her Olivia Pope. It’s the one thing that always said, It’s handled.

Now here she was preaching to us about a consistent skincare regimen in the AM and PM.


It wasn’t until Terry shared her selfies on our girls WhatsApp group that I stopped laughing. It wasn’t until we stood next her – and took these selfies – that I reeally stopped laughing: Terry’s skin was youthful and toned, plump. Hydrated. Moistured but not shiny. 

It looked like it had been kissed by the Greek goddess of radiance. 

So we gathered around her feet and said, ‘Forgive us, master. We are ready now. Teach us everything you know.’

She did. 

Terry and I now spend plenty of time before work and before bed squeezing out little portions of expensive skincare products from expensive tubes, we layer them on our face in a calculated measure.

This serum here is for the circles under my eyes and the fine lines around my mouth.

Turns out I’ve been giving away too much of my face: I’ve been looking too hard, laughing too easily.

I’ll have to spend the next year into my 40s with my eyes half shut and laughing little. I'll have a resting bitch face.

Don’t blame me, blame the retinol.

And age.

#craftit #urbanguide #urbangirl
  • I’m Bett. I’m the author of your favourite books about money. I’m hosting an in-person event in March, Inshallah: This is my personal invite to you.

#craftit #moneymaker #moneyinkenya
  • I am hosting my first money event this March, Inhsallah. It’s the first of quarterly events I have planned for the year. 

(Give me a moment here so I pull myself together long enough to write this. I’m smiling very hard right now, ha-ha, I look like a donkey.)


The event will be in-person. On a Saturday morning, a loose three hours which, I am certain, you’d have burned on some other pursuit you couldn’t account for later. (I’d probably be oiling the hinges of a squeaky door or decluttering my sock drawer.)

My guest host for this edition is Lynet Kyalo. 

Lynet is a personal finance coach under her brand @financialfitbit She also hosts @getyourbagrightpodcast 

Buy your tickets from our Market.

Early bird tickets are discounted until the end of this month.

Limited slots available. 

#craftit #millenialmoney #moneyevent #moneymaker
  • Sometimes I sit down and read my own book. 

Odd, huh?

Reading my own stories is like an out-of-body experience. Or getting introduced to myself again. An outward journey inward.

It’s fascinating.

I also read because I need to improve my writing for my next project.

We call them the Elements of Craft: things like sentence structure and punctuation, word placement, story length etc, they all inform your reading experience.

This is what makes the book easy to read, and has you turning the pages.

Cop your autographed copy and #betteryourmoney 

#craftit #howmuch #millenialmoney #moneymaker

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