Person A: I am a school teacher. But in my secret life I train assassins.

Person B: I’m a night guard. In my secret life I’m a guerilla militia general.

Person C: I am a loving house wife with three adorable children. In my secret life, I plan out espionage strategies against                 my government.

Person D: Am a third year university student. In my secret life, I am a terrorist agent for Osama bin Laden.

Person E: I work in the President’s office as an errand boy. In my secret life, I am the most feared drug baron in the country.

Person F: I am a world renowned supermodel. In my secret life, I am a stripper. Most of the strip club clients just think I am impersonating the famous model.

Person G: I am an E.R doctor and I save so many lives on a daily basis. In my secret life, I enjoy torturing people to death.

Person H: I am a police chief. In my secret life, I am a cattle rustler.

Person I: I am a respected Church elder with a wife and two beautiful children. In my secret life, my wife and I run the biggest same-sex swingers club in the country.

Person J: My father is a Minister in the country’s Cabinet and in the light of day- my secret life- I am the worst con artist you could encounter because I’m really good at what I do. During the night I attend high profile parties to raise money for charity.

I personally don’t have a secret life. What were you expecting me to tell you? That I’m a writer whose secret life is a serial killing taxi driver? Well, I wish I was! You heard me right! I wish I had a secret life. I don’t know what I’d choose to be but I know it would be something on the darker side of life. This is brought about by the fact that I am very aware of my ‘other side’. I’m one of those people whose biggest crime is lying or missing lectures. If you asked the people who are charged with shaping a child into a responsible adult- the grown ups around me- they would probably tell you I’m one the nicest people they know. I’m not saying that i am not nice, I am, BUT that nice and happy person is what I choose to show the world. There is a part of me I am aware of but keep to myself. And so do you! Every human being has more than one side to them but chooses to show the world one side and keep in the other side. What I’m trying to tell you is that your arch enemy is probably a really nice person. You’ll just never know that, even though our other sides often show up once in a while when we’ve let our guard down. Anyway, back to me. So I’m a nice person but with an equally ‘not-so-nice’ side to me. That’s why I often wonder what I’d be in my secret life.

It would probably be something dangerous. Something that would get the adrenaline rushing through my veins. Something like a world travelling art thief! I’d first practice my skills by stealing little arty things like the portraits of the American Presidents that hang on the walls of the White House. Once my skills were perfect, I’d steal the worlds most famous art piece- The Monalisa! I’d sell off some of the pieces to law-ignoring art collectors for millions of dollars. But the best pieces I’d keep for myself. I’d find a little room somewhere where I’d go to admire ‘my handiwork’ and smile deviously as I planned what to steal next.

Or maybe I’d be a secret government double agent who steals and sells secrets to rival governments! Now that would be fun! First I’d try something like pitting two powerful rival families against each other and slowly get to the point of working for and against the American and Iranian governments. That gets me all tingly on the inside! However, I’d do my best not to get caught because if I was, I’d probably be the excuse for the start of the next world war. Both of me do not like the thought of a world war in this day and age.

The sadist in me does however see the opportunity to be ‘myself’ in such a sad sad situation. Being an arms dealer would be fun. Buy from the Russians and sell to the Iraqis and Afghans. Buy from rogue government and military agents and sell to rebels and guerilla militia. Buy from the ‘good’ guys and sell to the bad guys. Note that I’ve put the word ‘good’ in quotes because they wouldn’t really be good guys now would they? Well, because good guys do not sell off their resources to the ‘bad’ guys or people they do not know. Do they? So yes, buy from the ‘good’ guys to sell to the bad guys would be fun! Fun! Fun! Fun!

So all my secret lives would be evil lives. I’d be a villain! If you would be a secret crime-buster, my enjoying my secret life would depend on you. How and why? Because all my secret lives would be fuelled by the thought of being caught. Or not! That’s what gets the adrenaline rushing in the veins. Would you catch me? Stop me from being bad? Real bad? Because yes, I do believe I’d rather enjoy being really really bad! At least it would balance out my good side. A secret life would help let out all the evil I know that is inside me but is not applicable in my public life. But then again wouldn’t the people in my secret life know me since they already know my public life? Well, just as what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, so does what happens in secret lives stay in secret. No military general wants his Government to find out that he is selling off their arms. As long as he keeps my secret, I’ll keep his. And everyone remains happy. I admit this kind of living would present some problems. Three problems actually.

First of all, what if the bad side gets caught? We all have a bad and good side. Right? So what if the good guys on either of the lives catches up with the bad side of me? Simple! Your good side would no longer be applicable. Or believable. So if you get caught, go to court and plead guilty. THEN, go catch the ‘reformed’ bug for a bit. You know, accept your mistakes and ask for forgiveness. Do the whole ‘bad’ guy gone ‘good’ shebang. Then people would believe and sympathise with you and let you out of jail and you can go back to doing something evil on the side.

Second problem is how to keep the two lives from spilling into each other. How do you keep your husband and kids from finding out you are a stripper? How do you keep your drug baron boss form finding out you are an undercover cop out to get his ass in jail? Or your police chief from realizing you like selling drugs? How do you keep the Russian government from finding out you are selling their secrets to the American government? And vise vasa? How do you keep your art dealer brother-in-law from finding out that the ‘fake’ Monalisa hanging in your study is the actual work of Leonardo Da Vinci? Ha ha ha! Ooooh! How utterly exciting!

Third and final problem. What if you do not have another side to you? What if you are all good? Keep telling yourself that dear. You and I both know it was not the cat that ‘killed’ your sister’s doll when you were two. We both know your Dad’s car was not stolen when you were fifteen and could suddenly afford to woo the village beauty. What if you are all bad? That gives me a rush! But then again the local vagabond did not start that food kiosk with the few coins people threw on the side walk at him. Neither is the President the very ‘gracious donor’ who built the children’s home a new building. But then again, I’ve neither met every one in the world nor read all the scientific journals available so I don’t know if there is a DNA strain out there that can deny you the ability to do good. Or to do bad, for that matter. Either way, it makes you a problem because there is no sharing secrets with you seeing as you only understand one side of the equation. Talk about people who need to meet the school teacher’s OTHER students!

Whatever you end up being, make sure one side of you makes a lot of money. Money to start a trust fund for your kids. A trust fund they will use either in their public life or secret life. Me? I have to make enough money to start a fund for my four or more kids. Hoping they never find out where that money came from. Then again, they’d probably understand. Oh, I’d keep some money and start a restaurant. I’d retire from both my public life and secret life and go manage that restaurant into a successful chain of restaurants. Plus I’d never have to cook for my husband. Of both lives, I’d probably miss my secret life more. You?

© afra njoki