Celebrating East African Writing!


Bigger changing rooms.
I think this would have to go hand-in-hand with the banning of ‘exhibitions’ in town. How do you explain rows and rows and rows of clothes but only ten square centimeters to change in? So many times I have shoved my dignity aside as some determined salesman or saleslady shows me to a ‘changing area’ where there’s just enough space for both feet to touch the ground and the curtain is a flimsy cloth held up by the very same salesperson right in front of you. I’ve never really been the trusting type, so you can imagine how much courage it takes me to wriggle into the selected items, all the while fearing that the salesperson’s biceps might just give way due to exhaustion and oops! The curtain comes tumbling down, or that a sudden gust of wind could expose me en masse to shoppers and sellers alike; everyone knows these exhibitions are more crowded than an ancient Roman amphitheatre.

So, for peace of mind and common public decency, either the exhibition stalls should be banned, or, the owners should be forced to construct proper changing rooms with enough space and – I cannot forget to mention this – lockable doors.


I went to my nephew’s birthday party – he just turned five. I was decked out in a beautiful kitenge that my tailor-Peter- made for me. Everything was going well until Sam, my nephew, refused to pick me to be in his hide-and-seek team because he thought that due to my size, I would be too easy to find. The humiliation! Me and my size quietly parked ourselves into a corner and tried to blend in with the wall.


The only thing I dread about my job is the suits I have to wear. I look like a boerwoer in any trouser suit, but there’s no way I can freeze my legs off in a skirt suit. So in the battle of fashion v/s warmth, warmth always wins. Privately, I’ve started calling them my clown suits. My boyfriend, Marcus, thinks I’m overreacting. What does he know? He’s as thin as a toothpick (relative to me, that is.)

Evening: I went to the gym and I felt encouraged. Met a lady with three stomach layers; compared with my own two and felt much better. This could be a plan. Whenever I get too down on myself, I’ll go to the gym. On the minus side, there was a slim woman on the treadmill next to mine. Felt like throwing her out or, the ultimate punishment-sitting on her. Ha ha! I am a bad person, why do I have such evil thoughts?!!!!!


Morning: I am so psyched. Today is my chapo day. I love chapattis, but in order to make myself feel less guilty for indulging in such an oily substance, I always invite Marcus over for dinner on chapo days.

Lunchtime: One of my colleagues had a birthday yesterday and brought us some cake. Was it just me or…did my piece look suspiciously small? Or maybe I’m just being paranoid. But I could swear Wahu’s piece was bigger. Anyway, I’m not going to sweat the small stuff.

Evening: The chapos were delicious. Marcus adores my cooking. Thank goodness. I must hone all my girlfriend skills to perfection in order to ward off all the slim girl competition. He also finds me very funny. Bless him for seeing past the lard…


Mid-afternoon: The lifts in our building weren’t working in the morning. Had to trek up five steep flights of stairs. I almost died. Found my colleagues waiting at the door to see if I’d made it. Ha! Even with my dying breath I manage to defy the odds. Go me!

Evening: Went to the gym. Question: why do they have mirrors all around? It just makes my stomach more visible in four different angles. Achievement of the day-lifted weights and felt so powerful, like, I could audition for a Catwoman assistant role.


I knew it was going to be a bad day when I was forced to wear my red clown suit. No wonder everyone noticed when I was late for the meeting which took me by surprise-did anyone mention it yesterday? Anyway………………..somehow the day ended. No gym today. My chi wasn’t down for it.


The weekend! Yippee! I’m going out with my girlfriends tonight. No gym today-the dancing will take care of that! I’m stopping by the salon after work, I have to look hot.

Lunchtime: got home at four a.m. All my joints are aching. Can you believe I actually did chini kwa chini right down to the floor? Oh, am so proud! I don’t mind being unable to move from bed the whole day, really I don’t.

6.00 p. m: I bought Robb, rubbed it all over and then bought pizza. Yummy! This is why I like living alone. I also have a stack of Nigerian movies to watch.


10.00 a.m.: Went to church, later surprised myself by signing up to join the choir. I must confess-the black and orange choir robes are a major attraction. Maybe I can just be wearing an old t-shirt and skirt under my robes-no more stressing over what to wear!

If you would like this piece to be the Story of the Week, please vote below on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being weak, and 10 being excellent. The numbers will be tallied on Friday and the story with the highest figure shall be Crowned Story of the Week. Be sure to fill in your name and verifiable email. You can include your critique/comment after the vote.


15 comments on “DIARY OF A FAT BLACK WOMAN By Stella Riunga.

  1. oluochcliff
    May 19, 2009

    Rating 4.
    The diary format or genre is one of the richest form of writing mainly because its chatty nature allows the reader to have a peek into the characters world.
    I find this diary not exhaustive enough. There is a lot more that the writer would have let us know about this woman. And a little dialogue would break the monotony of telling telling telling.


  2. Machahi
    May 20, 2009

    Gets a vote of 6.

    You should live all your days as Tuesday, girl.


  3. wanjira Hirst
    May 21, 2009

    Hilarious….I feel you…


  4. wanjira Hirst
    May 21, 2009

    I vote an eight.


  5. Sheila Ongas
    May 21, 2009

    A 7 for sure!Too funny and too too real!!!


  6. Pingback: Story of the Week - May 18th, 2009 :: Storymoja

  7. Stella Riunga
    May 26, 2009

    Thanks for the comments people. I never even expected to get published here! Am excited 🙂 Cliff, are you a professional critic or do you work with Storymoja? I see your comments on ALL stories-thanks though!


  8. Miss.Zahra q
    May 26, 2009

    Hehehe,u go gal!at least the pots don hinder ur chini kwa chini to the floor.hav u ever considerd writin a comic bk.lolest.fat women b filin u


  9. chrispus
    May 27, 2009

    a good piece but the attempts at humour were abit stretched, feels like self-flagellation to me. a vote of 6 isnt bad.


  10. Thomas Fabulous
    May 29, 2009

    meru princess this is a good read, dairy of a chubbling for sure al give you a seven (7).hope its not too harsh.


  11. oluochcliff
    June 4, 2009

    No Stellah, I am neither a professional critic nor work with story moja. Its just that I have read more engaging pieces in this genre and I want you to grow.

    Check the diary of woman out to spread AIDS.


  12. boyfulani.
    June 8, 2009

    Nakuona you going places!
    Have printed this story.
    My comments afterwards.


  13. Ceasar
    June 12, 2009

    You still love writting go on girl from the days of our lady humor really hasnt really left you but i read in between the lines id go for smashing 8


  14. Mwangi
    June 29, 2009

    Lovely story.

    You bring out the story in a painfully honest way.


  15. michelle
    December 6, 2013

    lol story of my life hahaha i loved it…..


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: