Archive for the ‘Media’ Category

Kneeling down in her cramped kitchen, the pharmacist opens her fridge door and removes the freezer compartment drawer crammed with three packages wrapped in black bin liners.

As she carefully opens the brittle bundles, she boasts of her ability to use the contents to make a pill that can cure all known ills.

‘After taking two tablets a day you will feel the difference after just one week,’ she says.

End product: The conventional-looking pills, filmed by a South Korean TV crew – they are in fact the remains of foetus’

Even though the parcels are frozen, they exude an unpleasant smell that quickly permeates her nondescript apartment in a small Northern Chinese town.

But pushing the plastic freezer box across the floor to her new-found customer, the woman, who works at a Chinese hospital, appears almost proud as she says: ‘Choose one. Please, choose one.’

Each of the bags contains a single aborted foetus; one of them is said to be of seven months’ gestation. The infants’ remains will be cut up into small pieces, dried, microwaved and then ground down into a coarse powder, to be made into tablets of an ‘alternative medicine’ that plays on centuries-old superstitions and folklore.

Each tablet, containing the infants’ flesh and bone, and possibly hair and nails, are believed by many to have fantastic healing powers which fight the ravages of ageing and are capable of defeating even cancer.

It is a sickening, cannibalistic and illegal trade that the Chinese authorities do not want the world to know exists.

Horrifying: A pharmacist shows foetus’ to undercover reporters

Yet it is disturbingly widespread. This week the South Korean customs department revealed it had foiled 35 attempts to smuggle these ‘human-flesh pills’ across its border and seized more than 17,000 of them from China in just nine months. The contraband was either taken into the country in passengers’ luggage or posted in parcels registered as traditional Chinese herbal medicines.

This grotesquely unsavoury industry appears to cash in on China’s strict family planning laws, which limit most families to just one child each and are said to result in 13 million abortions a year, the equivalent of more than 35,000 terminations a day.

The country, which has a population of more than 1.3 billion, is said to have ‘dying rooms’ in hospitals where unwanted newborn babies are abandoned to perish. Those trying to avoid a huge fine for violating the one-child laws have even been known to commit outright infanticide.

Now, unscrupulous pharmacists, hospital workers and even the relatives of those having abortions are making money from archaic beliefs that consuming infant cells can cure and rejuvenate us.
This bizarre notion dates back hundreds of years to China’s Ming dynasty. And the belief if that the nearer the foetus is to its birth date, the more healing properties it harbours.

The true extent of the trade in China’s human-flesh pills emerged when an undercover team from South Korea’s SBS television channel highlighted the problem.

The footage taken by the team showed how placentas — the most common form of illegal human flesh traded in China for alternative medicine — are sold alongside the dried organs of creatures including snakes and bats from around the world to satisfy an appetite for powders, soups and potions said to have tremendous healing properties.

It also reveals how herb ‘clinics’ or ‘chemists’ in northern Chinese towns, including Yanji, Jilin, Qingdao and Tianjin, sell pills made from human foetuses.

Secretly filmed footage shows a pharmacist wearing pristine white overalls at one chemist admitting that she stocks ‘human-flesh capsules’.

She is filmed in a room containing huge wooden cabinets with row after row of small rectangular drawers containing drugs and rare herbs, and at one point she stands on tip-toe to reach a top shelf where she pulled down a hidden bag of red and yellow capsules.

She opens up a pill, agrees that the contents give off a bad smell, and then explains that the foetus that made this batch of tablets was nearly seven months old before its life was terminated.

‘They were made recently,’ she says. ‘These are really good for you. Take it twice a day. Don’t take too much, otherwise you will get a nosebleed.’ After agreeing the sale with the undercover reporter, she decants the tablets into a pill box marked with a prescription label for back pain.

Later, another shopkeeper advises ‘patients’ to take the pills only during colder months to avoid sweating out their health benefits.

Monstrous: The respect for human life seems to have been completely bypassed as this Chinese pharmacist makes up foetus pills

What they fail to explain — quite apart from the appalling moral issues raised — is just how dangerous swallowing the powdered flesh of another human being can be. Tests on tablets seized recently by South Korean border control officers found the contents of some were made up of the DNA from three human foetuses.

The television crew discovered that the make-up of the pills they bought were between 97 per cent and 99 per cent human. And they all contained high levels of harmful bacteria, many of them of a type that could only have come from decomposing bodies.

According to ancient Oriental lore, material from babies or foetuses contains life-giving human properties inherent only in such young cells.

They are credited with boosting stamina for the frail and old, as well as improving sexual performance. They are also said to help those suffering respiratory problems or lung disease.

While the trade in such drugs is thought to be more frequent in communist China, smugglers see the capitalist state of South Korea as an increasingly lucrative market. Pills that were once sold for as little as 50p are believed to be fetching up to £25 among the population of China’s affluent near neighbour.

According to the undercover team, the smell at this stage was overpowering. Hair and nails were discernable in the human material

The pills used to be shipped to South Korea brazenly in clear plastic cellophane bags, but more recently smugglers have had to become increasingly sophisticated and use orthodox dark brown pill bottles, with sealed caps and labelled with the names of legitimate drugs or more traditional Chinese herbal medicines to evade detection.

Ground-up aromatic herbs have also been added to the capsules to try to disguise the smell of what is, to all intents and purpose, rotting dried flesh.

The frozen ‘raw ingredients’ (a euphemism for freeze-dried human flesh) are also for sale. A single foetus fetches hundreds of pounds because it can be ‘processed’ into so many tablets with a far more lucrative street value. An entire placenta sells for about £100.

Perhaps the most distressing element of this horrifying trade is the pitiless nature of the manufacturing process. During the undercover  filming last year, the SBS journalists saw how a foetus could be turned into pills in just two days.

Once the hospital pharmacist had defrosted the foetus stored in her kitchen fridge, she cut it into ‘manageable pieces’. Overnight she dried it out on absorbent paper before slowly microwaving it on a low heat.

According to the undercover team, the smell at this stage was overpowering. Hair and nails were discernable in the human material.

Once it was thoroughly dried, the pharmacist placed the flesh into a herbal grinder, not unlike a kitchen food processor, to render it down to a coarse, light brown powder, similar to the texture of human ashes following a cremation. That powder would then be put into soluble capsules which were counted out into bags for packing, shipment and sale.

Gruesome: These brightly-coloured pills hide a horrific inside – the remains of dead babies

Those who have sold or taken such pills speak remarkably candidly to the television team about the perceived effects of the tablets.

A Korean woman living in China explained how she had given her son the pills because he had a lung problem. She says: ‘The hospital had said they couldn’t help him. My child took the capsules for one month and he got better.’

A small trader at a market in Seoul, South Korea, adds: ‘A couple of years ago we took them many times. When we ran out I contacted my son living in North East China who posted them to us.’ At that time she was just paying about 50p per tablet, and would get them shipped to her in batches of 100 or 120.

She adds: ‘It’s really good medicine. You will be jumping around because you will be so full of energy. But the pills are now expensive.’

Another woman had so much faith in the treatment that she bought a foetus on the black market and ground it down to make her own tablets. ‘I would get it raw, cut it, burn it and powder it,’ she says, adding: ‘It’s widely known that it’s very good for you.’

Modern research has shown all such health claims to be baseless. Indeed, far from being curative, the pills are far more likely to be poisonous.

Earlier this week, China’s Ministry of Health spokesman Deng Haihau said his officers would investigate reports of the trade, but said no proof that such capsules were being manufactured had yet been presented to him.

‘Improvements have been made in the regulation of such drugs, but we do come across bad practices’Professor Dali Yang, University of Chicago’s Beijing School

Last night a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman refused to comment on the South Korean customs findings or the investigation by the television journalists.

But Professor Dali Yang, of the University of Chicago’s Beijing School, said that while there had been a concerted effort by Chinese authorities to tighten up food standards, traditional medicines had been largely overlooked.

‘The traditional Chinese medicine sector has been under-regulated and this is because there has always been a claim by the manufactures that their medicines contain a secret ingredient, but they refuse to offer details,’ he says.

Professor Yang believes the practice of using human flesh in pills exists, but is probably quite rare.

‘Historically, in traditional Chinese medicine, the placenta has been used,’ he said. ‘If aborted babies have been used in this instance, I would say it is an isolated case.

‘Regulation of such drugs in China is a work in progress. There have been improvements but at the same time, because of the size of the industry, we do come across bad practices.’

Clearly, if true, the claims by South Korean customs would  suggest the trade is rather more widespread. And the concern in the months to come will be just how seriously the Chinese authorities take the allegations — for it is a state that does not take kindly to criticism

……again, I ask would you do anything just to get better…to get rid of that chronic cough or back pain??!!…Is this what they meant when they said research was promising and “in the right direction”… some mortifying, horrific version of stem cell research??


The most dangerous drug in the world: ‘Devil’s Breath’ chemical from Colombia can block free will, wipe memory and even kill

  • Scopolamine often blown into faces of victims or added to drinks
  • Within minutes, victims are like ‘zombies’ – coherent, but with no free will
  • Some victims report emptying bank accounts to robbers or helping them pillage own house
  • Drug is made from borrachero tree, which is common in Colombia

A hazardous drug that eliminates free will and can wipe the memory of its victims is currently being dealt on the streets of Colombia.

The drug is called scopolamine, but is colloquially known as ‘The Devil’s Breath,’ and is derived from a particular type of tree common to South America.

Stories surrounding the drug are the stuff of urban legends, with some telling horror stories of how people were raped, forced to empty their bank accounts, and even coerced into giving up an organ

Deadly drug: Scopolamine is made from the Borrachero tree, which blooms with deceptively beautiful white and yellow flowers

VICE’s Ryan Duffy travelled to the country to find out more about the powerful drug. In two segments, he revealed the shocking culture of another Colombian drug world, interviewing those who deal the drug and those who have fallen victim to it.

Demencia Black, a drug dealer in the capital of Bogota, said the drug is frightening for the simplicity in which it can be administered.

He told Vice that Scopolamine can be blown in the face of a passer-by on the street, and within minutes, that person is under the drug’s effect – scopolamine is odourless and tasteless.

‘You can guide them wherever you want,’ he explained. ‘It’s like they’re a child.’

Black said that one gram of Scopolamine is similar to a gram of cocaine, but later called it ‘worse than anthrax.’

In high doses, it is lethal.

It only takes a moment: One drug dealer in Bogota explained how victims are drugged within minutes of exposure.

Victims: One Colombian woman said that under the influence of scopolamine, she led a man to her house and helped him ransack it.

The drug, he said, turns people into complete zombies and blocks memories from forming. So even after the drug wears off, victims have no recollection as to what happened.

One victim told Vice that a man approached her on the street asking her for directions. Since it was close by, she helped take the man to his destination, and they drank juice together.

‘You can guide them wherever you want. It’s like they’re a child.’

She took the man to her house and helped him gather all of her belongings, including her boyfriend’s cameras and savings.

‘It is painful to have lost money,’ the woman said,’ but I was actually quite lucky.’

According to the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology, the drug – also known as hyoscine – causes the same level of memory loss as diazepam.

In ancient times, the drug was given to the mistresses of dead Colombian leaders – they were told to enter their master’s grave, where they were buried alive.

Devil’s Breath: The drug is odourless and tasteless and can simply be blown in the face of someone on the street; their free will vanishes after being exposed to it

In modern times, the CIA used the drug as part of Cold War interrogations, with the hope of using it like a truth serum.

However, because of the drug’s chemical makeup, it also induces powerful hallucinations.

The tree common around Colombia, and is called the ‘borrachero’ tree – loosely translated as the ‘get-you-drunk’ tree.

It is said that Colombian mothers warn their children not to fall asleep under the tree, though the leafy green canopies and large yellow and white flowers seem appealing.

Experts are baffled as to why Colombia is riddled with scopolamine-related crimes, but wager much of it has to do with the country’s torn drug-culture past, and on-going civil war.

click here to watch a documentary on it….WARNING: CONTENT MAY BE UNSUITABLE FOR SOME READERS!

New book raises more questions on the death of Olympics star

A Dutch writer who has been documenting the circumstances surrounding the death of Olympic champion Samuel Wanjiru for months describes his tragic fall as “strongly suspicious”.

In an exclusive interview about a new book marking the first anniversary of the star’s death, Frits Conijn makes a series of extraordinary claims regarding the mysterious death of the runner in his home on the night of May 15, last year.

“The evidence concerning his death is not conclusive. But I can smell a rat,” says Conijn, who has co-authored Death Runner, the tragic end of Olympic marathon champion with Simon Maziku.

“The technical evidence is very strange — blood in the bedroom, maybe he cut himself shaving — but the contradictions in the testimonies are even stranger.”

Next Tuesday, the sports world will mark the first anniversary of Olympic marathon champion Samuel Kamau Wanjiru’s death.

And to commemorate the star’s passing, Dutch journalist Frits Conijn on Tuesday launched a book that seeks to answer many questions that surrounded the star’s mysterious death following a night fall from the balcony of his Nyahururu home.

Unique talent

The 288-page book titled Doodloper – Het tragische einde van Olympisch marathonkampioen Samuel Wanjiru), which translates to “Death Runner – The tragic end of Olympic marathon champion Samuel Wanjiru,” has been published by Tirion Uitgevers of Herculesplein in Utrecht, The Netherlands.

The Dutch version hit the shelves on Tuesday with the launch of the English version expected soon.

Doodloper is a story about unique talent, adultery, poverty, witchcraft, humiliation and the world of top sport.

“I knew Samuel Wanjiru as someone with a perpetual smile on his face,” top athletics manager Jos Hermens of The Netherlands said in his foreward.

“This story clarifies the tragedy that was hiding behind it,” the Global Sports Communications head adds.

“Kenya was plunged in deep mourning. Samuel Wanjiru, the Olympic marathon winner of 2008 fell from his balcony and died at an early age,” Conijn, who co-authored the book with Tanzania-born Simon Maziku, now a Dutch citizen, told the Daily Nation on Wednesday.

“There were rumours of suicide and murder in international media but a thorough investigation after his untimely death was not carried out.

Until today, speculations about his fatal fall continue.”

International fame

Conijn and Maziku spoke to people from Wanjiru’s inner circle.

In their book, they describe how the super athlete is confronted with the downsides of his international fame.

How he ran on a road with a dead end.

In collaboration with a Dutch pathologist, the authors found evidence of a cover up and their final conclusions are staggering.

Wanjiru remains an intriguing character, a man who gave the marathon a whole new dimension.

“He was someone who brought Kenyan tribes together, but ironically the dark circumstances around his death drove them apart again,” Conijn said on Wednesday.

Conijn raises numerous questions regarding the statements made at the time by his widow Terezah Njeri, with whom they had well publicised run-ins before and, apparently, on the night he died.

The athlete died on the day he returned to Nyahururu from a training camp in Eldoret at the request of his wife, who said she was ill and in need of medical treatment.

After arriving at 9pm to find no one home, the runner drove into town and set on a drinking spree before returning home for the last time.

It is clear that he returned home later that night with a female companion, Margaret Nduta, and that Terezah found them and stormed out in a huff but no one knows yet what precisely happened next as to lead to the runner’s death.

In emailed responses to the Saturday Nation, Conijn is scathing of the police investigation and their failure to extract more information from Terezah, Nduta and the watchman who must have seen more than he said.

He castigates the police for failing to protect the crime scene that was visited by numerous people allowed into the compound on the ill-fated night, saying this was a deliberate move to cover up evidence.

After a year’s review of the evidence and interviews with witnesses and acquaintances of the family, the author lists numerous contradictions that have yet to be answered:

  • How come Terezah, Nduta and the watchman were never thoroughly interrogated?
  • One time Terezah says she discovered Sammy and Nduta in the living room, next time it is the bedroom. Which is the truth?
  • Terezah says she only knew the next day her husband died. But two witnesses (independent from each other) told the author that they found her at the police station 20 minutes after Wanjiru’s death.
  • How come Terezah was not aware of the fall of her husband? She could not have been far and round that time of the night it is very quiet.
  • Terezah is not very clear on the reason why she wanted Sammy to come back to Nyahururu. First she says it was about dowry payment, then to ‘take her to hospital’, and lastly she wanted them to discuss about an investment in a transport firm.
  • Terezah is not very clear on when she came back from Nairobi. And why would she come to hospital in Nyahururu when there are better facilities in Nairobi where she was?
  • Where did the blood in the bedroom come from? Whose was it and did detectives carry out any tests?
  • Why did the police do such shoddy investigation?
  • How come the watchman knows nothing? He claims he knew of the events when he saw Wanjiru under the balcony. Strange, if the story of Terezah is true, there was a lot of shouting before.
  • How come the watchman did not see Nduta in the car when Sammy wanted to enter the compound? The star stopped at the gate and asked him if Terezah was home.
  • Why was Terezah insisting on the funeral? Why not wait till the investigation was finished and the results were published then she would have been off the hook for good?
  • Why are the authorities not cooperating with Sammy’s mother, Hannah, push for more investigation?

The author claims the plot to kill the athlete could have been hatched five months earlier when police found foreign currency equivalent to Sh33 million in his house during a swoop for an alleged illegal pistol.

“On December 31, 2010, police stormed Wanjiru’s house and allegedly found an AK-47 rifle and also took away a small portable safe where they believed a pistol was after Wanjiru declined to open it.

“According to three witnesses (independent from each other) there was Sh33 million ($390,842 by today’s exchange rate). So maybe the police wanted to cover this up, now Wanjiru can never claim the money again.”

Prior to this Wanjiru would buy friends and strangers drinks at local pubs and then proceed to engage in rowdy behaviour, fighting and breaking glasses in pubs which he would later pay with a handsome ‘tip’ for the waiters.

Police officers called to the pub would quickly withdraw after receiving instructions from their seniors not to ‘touch’ Wanjiru.

On December 31, 2010, Wanjiru came home drunk and a quarrel erupted with his wife. Terezah fled as Wanjiru went to collect a gun to “teach her a lesson”.

She ran to Nyahururu Police Station where she reported the matter.

Then Divisional Police Commander Jasper Ombati and CID counterpart Isaac Onyango led a raid on the house during which an AK-47 rifle was recovered and Wanjiru arrested for threatening to kill his wife and his then watchman William Masinde, who had allowed Terezah to drive out of the compound.

Terezah later dropped the charges saying she had forgiven her husband. She also disclosed that they would invest jointly and spend more time together to cement their relationship.

The couple kept off the limelight until February 14 when they turned up for the Valentine’s dinner at the Carnivore Restaurant in Nairobi.

The couple was evidently smitten with each other and the public display of love convinced many people that they had recovered from the tumultuous events that led to the athlete being charged in court for violent conduct.

When Wanjiru won the Olympics gold medal, he organised two homecoming celebrations sponsored by corporate giants. The first was to celebrate the country’s first marathon victory and the second for winning a Sh100 million jackpot marathon in October 2009.

There were meet-the-people tours in Nairobi, Nyeri, Nyahururu, Kinangop, Kipipiri and Ol Kalou which culminated in a State House trip that confirmed Wanjiru’s moment had come early at 21.

Looking back, his Japanese coach could have been right to say the Kenyans who turned out for the tours never took care of Wanjiru’s soul.

And the few who passed for his friends only cared about his deep pockets (money).

“According to me there should be programmes for young athletes. How can you expect them to deal with such amounts of money without any education? Maybe the youngsters should be connected with experienced or former ones who experienced everything,” said Mr Koichi Morishita.

In Japan everybody described him as a very kind young man. When he was second in London and already a big star, he still paced for his team-mates to help them make the Olympics cut. Sammy was an excellent pacer, but in the last few metres he wanted to win, adds Japanese international athletic coach Koichi Morishita.

Morishita says he knew Wanjiru, liked him very much but was still puzzled that he (Wanjiru) remained largely ‘unpredictable’.

“To me it feels as if the tribal culture was insufficient for Wanjiru. Normally the youngsters are controlled by a lack of money and by the elderly. But what to do with a young man who earned more than $6 million? The only solution is they (elders) can control themselves (to keep away from Wanjiru), but the tribal culture seems to be more about social control,” he said in the interview.

That Wanjiru never appreciated his new status is not news. He was often caught up in pub fist fights, and was said to have once drawn a pistol on a pastor after their vehicles were involved in a minor accident.

The shocked pastor reported the incident to police but no action was taken. Only a group of local coaches and athletes visited the marathon icon and urged him to shun binge drinking.

Wanjiru loved his beer and would revel with non-athletes late into the night. Anybody who cared for a free drink, including security officers, was invited to the open party as long as they continued singing praises of the star. As many would say, this was one generous man who knew how to buy beer and liked being praised for what he was.

To fit his stature, Wanjiru would change cars like clothes with top of the range vehicles being his favourite.

But amid all this chaos, the father of two would also find them to nurture, support and donate cash to budding athletes in Nyahururu. He set up a training camp for them.

After the gun fiasco, Wanjiru left Nyahururu and reportedly bought a house in Nairobi where he moved with his young family to escape the bad publicity that was threatening to overcome his prowess on the track.

The Dutch author says Terezah ‘really’ wanted to meet Wanjiru in Nyahururu and not in Nakuru or at their Nairobi home.

“It is not very clear on when she came back from Nairobi. Strange to come back for the hospital in Nyahururu! Why did she want to see Sammy? Sometimes it is about the dowry, the next time he has to take her to the hospital, another time they have to talk about an investment in a transport firm” says the Dutchman.

Wanjiru’s close associates say Terezah kept calling him as he left Eldoret where he had been training for an international race.

Judy Wambui, who bore Wanjiru a son he never saw, says when the star arrived at her house in Nakuru, Terezah called him several times. Wanjiru would later travel to Nyahururu that evening.

And when he arrived, he went drinking turning up at home with Jane Nduta. It’s here that the detail is lost in contradicting tales by the police, his widow and watchman.

Conijn does not believe that Terezah learnt about her husband’s death the next morning. He says Gatheru and a Mr Ngatia said they found her at the police station 20 minutes after the incident.

“How comes Terezah was not aware of the fall of her husband?

According to Nduta, Wanjiru opened balcony door after Njeri locked them in the bedroom.

The CCTV shows Terezah leaving the small gate followed by the watchman who then abruptly turns round and runs towards the balcony.

Confused he runs to the pedestrian gate and goes out. He returns and runs back to the guard house then towards the balcony gesticulating in despair.

Nduta, in an earlier interview with the Nation, said she followed the star to the balcony only to find him missing. She then called the watchman.

“The watchman asked me, can’t you see him lying down here”, but this could not be verified as the security camera at the balcony was not working.

The watchman said Wanjiru jumped over the balcony in a bid to stop Terezah from telling the world he had a woman in the house despite his earlier promise that he would never do that again.

..courtesy of the Saturday nation…

…share your views and opinions on this…

Believe it or not, this is not just any other witchdoctor.
Does this magic work? Well in some yet to be disclosed area in Kenya, a man was caught cheating with another man’s wife stuck inside.
It is said that the two were committing adultery and the woman’s husband got wind of it and decided to apply the magic normally associated with cheating couples.
In this video that was uploaded today, everyone in the vicinity who had gotten wind of the happenings came to see in order to believe.
This is in Kenya because the crowd is talking in Swahili and others at the background are talking in Kikuyu.
The cheating man wants to do anything and pay everything he owns in order to get it out but luckily a man of God comes and prays eventually it is out

…hehehe..funny as it is….the guy appeared dazed and confused for a while…like a deer infront of a headlight!!

click here to watch…

This is a prepared text of the Commencement address delivered by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, on June 12, 2005. 

“I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, it’s likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss…

I was lucky — I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn’t know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down – that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple’s current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.

I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.

My third story is about death..

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.

This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960’s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Thank you all very much.



Disclaimer: Please sit down before reading this real life story ordeal narrated to the Kenya DAILY POST.
Elizabeth Wanjiru ‘Shiro’ is a young lady whose life history has unfolded in a way she never envisioned. 2007 was a big year for her. She was a young, beautiful, healthy, perfectly endowed and charismatic student at the University of Nairobi. Her zeal and ambition in life was overflowing.
Elizabeth was quite vocal and active in campus politics. An avenue that her fellow female mates refrained from. She pushed for agendas and actively participated in motions in the university’s political sphere. This made the then Secretary General of SONU, G.G Kariuki notice her.
 Kariuki approached her with a proposal. He wanted to have her in a project dubbed as ‘Vijana na Kibaki’ – an initiative aiming at conglomerating the youth in support of Kibaki’s second presidential bid. The young individuals were meant to advocate for the president to have a second term in office and in reward were flooded with hefty allowances. Shiro like many other University students survived on a shoe string budget. Making some cash outside the pocket money she received from home sounded like the ideal plot.
She was the only female in the 8 member group. Her presence in the group was meant to alter the composition of the group to seem like it was gender sensitive. The group kicked off with a lot of vigour. Days flew. Contacts were made. Her presence was felt….
One day, a youth meeting was held at the PNU headquarters bringing together diverse campus representatives. The meeting was only meant for those in PNU’s pay roll. In attendance were individuals such as Sylvester Kweyu , the then Kenyatta University Students Union (KUSA) chairman. Additionally, Mike who was a Secretary General of one of the Universities was also in the congregation.
The meeting went on well until KU’s Mwenda Gitobu noticed that Mike was in the congregation. He shot up halting the meeting, firing accusations that the meeting had been sabotaged by ODM snitches.
Note:  At the time, bad blood was precipitating between ODM and PNU. The situation was nasty with some individuals swearing to die to keep their partisan loyalty alive.
 A scuffle mushroomed between the two groups causing chaos in the area. The meeting was being held at a house next to the DOD (Department of Defence ) along Lenana Road, where the PNU HQ’s were located. Other executive officials of the party were in attendance and were situated in an office just opposite the press area where the youth were. A trail down the headquarters led to some rented external public toilets.
Having heard the noise made from the scuffle, a powerful PNU Cabinet Minister came to calm the situation down. Since time immemorial, the Minister has always held top respected positions in Government. His influential nature calmed the situation down.
Shiro in a bid to ease the chaos tension, walked down to the loos to relieve herself. Coincidentally, Mheshimiwa also headed to the ‘Public loos’ to take a breather. There, he met the beautiful Shiro and introduced himself. The two gave each other their compliments and exchanged numbers. A friendship bond was formed. Little did she know that this friendship would grow to something more.
Shiro forged a head viewing that the meeting with the Minister was just but a contact she had created. The  following week she attended a PNU meeting at Manor house situated in Manor Lane in Karen.(Manor is a posh exclusive avenue where a fairy tale wedding was once conducted by Kiss 100 as a reward to its avid listeners. ) The group of 8 campus representatives spent the night there. However, on the day that the group was meant to leave, the PNU Cabinet Minister called up Elizabeth. He told her that he had sent his driver to pick her up as he longed to see her again.
True to his word, he sent an exquisite limousine that drove her to the Serena Hotel where the two had late lunch and spent some time getting familiar with each another.  They continued their rendezvous and sooner than later they became more than friends.
Years passed. Kibaki retained his position as the president of the Republic. The Post Election Violence almost consumed the country. By the time the situation had calmed down, Elizabeth was through with campus. Hungry for a job, she consulted the Mheshimiwa who through his influence got her a job at Kenya Re-Insurance. Shiro was not the type to date young men who she deemed to be immature. She now had herself a rich sponsor (Mheshimiwa) who bought her a lavish car and a beautiful apartment in Nairobi’s South B area. How to spend money was what the big question for her now. Her love life with Mheshimiwa flourished….
However, in 2010 she began falling ill. A cold wouldn’t leave her side. One day as she was driving from her parent’s house in Thika suburbs, she decided to check in St. Francis Hospital in Mwiki. The doctors carried tests on her and after taking her blood samples found out that she was HIV positive. She was shocked beyond belief. She had been faithful to Mheshimiwa, had he returned the favour? No. Intriguingly, he was quite aware of his health status and had kept it a secret. He had ruined her years of hard work and spiked her future.
Late last year she called Classic 105 Breakfast show and narrated her ordeal to Maina Kageni and King’ang’i in the morning. As she spoke one would tell that she was engraved in so much pain. Her conclusion in the show was simple, if she went back in time, she would never hook up with the Minister. In her words she says, “He gave me everything that mattered then, but took away everything that I need now…”
“We live and we learn….To take one step at a time. There’s no need to rush. It’s like learning to fly, or falling in love. It’s gonna happen when it’s supposed to happen. And we find the reasons why. One step at a time….” These are lyrics of a song by RnB artist Jordin Sparks that Shiro wishes she listened to years back.
Elizabeth Wanjiru has vowed to go public in 2013 (After elections) and tell her story even name the Minister. She aims at campaigning against the animosity that influential politicians subject innocent girls to.
We at the DAILY POST thank her for giving us the exclusive interview at 680 Hotel in town. We will continue supporting her emotionally.
All the best Shiro
courtesy of the : The Kenyan DAILY POST

Roberto di Matteo’s Chelsea side will face Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday with renewed hope of securing the top four finish that would guarantee their Champions League qualification.

The two teams will meet just three days after the FA Cup final that ended with Chelsea celebrating a third success in the competition in four years following a 2-1 victory at Wembley.

And while Liverpool have only pride to play for in the rematch, di Matteo’s men were given fresh incentive as Newcastle and Tottenham stumbled in their quest for maximum points.

Had either of those two teams won last weekend, Chelsea’s hopes of finishing fourth in the Premier League would have all but disappeared.

That would have left the Stamford Bridge club needing to win the Champions League final against Bayern Munich to ensure a return to Europe’s premier club competition – and consign the fourth-best team in England to the second-tier Europa League.

But Chelsea could yet provide themselves with an insurance policy against losing the Champions League final by finishing fourth.

That would happen if they beat Liverpool and Blackburn in their final two league games and Tottenham and Newcastle failed to defeat Fulham and Everton respectively on Sunday.

The odds are stacked heavily against them, but Chelsea’s end-of-season revival has shown the danger of dismissing their chances.

First, though, they must carry on where they left off at Wembley.

“It’ll be a bit weird playing them (Liverpool) again so soon after this,” Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard said.

“But we still have two league games to play before the Champions League final and we want to finish as best as we can.

“It will be a lot easier going to Anfield with a win than if we had lost,” added the England international.

Success is breeding self-belief at Chelsea and the prospect of appearing in the Champions League final is providing added motivation.

“We will carry the confidence through and hope it carries on in the Champions League final,” said Lampard.

“We have one more cup final to go, then who knows? It is nice to go into the next game – then the Champions League final – with a win.”

Chelsea, beaten on penalties by Manchester United in the 2008 Champions League final in Moscow, have never won European club’s football greatest prize and Lampard said: “It is huge, we have been close a few times and everyone at the club – the fans as well – is desperate to win it.”

Temporary Chelsea coach di Matteo, the former Blues midfielder put in caretaker charge after Andre Villas-Boas was sacked in March, must decide how to manage his squad after a draining run of games.

Ramires and Didier Drogba were the goal scorers at Wembley and while Ramires seems certain to start at Anfield, Drogba may be rested, paving the way for Fernando Torres to start on his return to his old club.

For Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish, there is the difficult task of raising his players after such a demoralising cup final defeat.

Poor for an hour, the Reds were revived at Wembley by the introduction of striker Andy Carroll who scored one goal and was denied an equaliser only by the heroics of Chelsea keeper Petr Cech.

Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard has already set his sights on next season when the Reds, who won the last of their 18 English titles back in 1990, will be expected to improve on a desperately poor league campaign.

“We’ve been fantastic in the cup competitions this year (Liverpool won the League Cup prior to their FA Cup final defeat) and the players deserve a lot of credit for that,” said Gerrard.

However, the England midfielder added: “We haven’t been good enough in the league this year. We deserve criticism and we need to take criticism like men.

“We need to do better. We’re Liverpool Football Club; we’re not seventh or eighth in the league. We’re better than that.”