In companionship, the independent will always be in touch even to ask how lunch was, but the incumbent won’t unless there is trouble.
If there is any bad news to any victorious politician in the recently concluded NRM primaries, it is the word Independent!
Independents come in various colours and trades, but if it is the rival you have just trounced in Primaries, it is not only bad news, but a very bad bulletin.
In many parts of the country, Parliament knickers get off once you contest on an NRM ticket.
Well, until rivals return as Independents. After dusty, muddy, injurious and prickly Primaries, you need healing, rest, recuperation much more than you need another rap.
It is not a time and state in which to be told that your rival is not dead yet. No one wants a Season II of a gruesome battle.
History shows that Independents are not dismissible as a mere inconvenience. They have felled the mighty.
In many places, the ground context also changes to shift the votes off the winner at Primaries.
And even when they do not win, they may scatter the party vote and clear the way for a rival from another party to home in on Parliament.
So, Independents are not good people, depending on whose side you are.
But if they are so bad in politics, they are worse in love. If you take dating as the Primaries, it is unwise to imagine that the rivals you floored on your route to a wedding swear in, retired into oblivion.
More often than not, they crop up in the marriage as weeds, with the capacity to remain invisible.
We all hope that the men and women we trounced did not measure up to our standard of love and acceptance, but sometimes that is not the case.
You may have stolen the vote, bribed the voter or promised more, but it may also be because the rival took time to be serious, was not as wealthy or just peer pressure from elsewhere.
It can be ﬂimsier. A lover can choose you because the alternative delayed to apologise over something trivial.
The marriage won't erase the love. Many times, we marry people whose ‘exes' are not really vanquished.
And they return as independents in the marriage. Unlike politics where you can pay them off the ballot paper, or get another opportunity to trounce them in the ﬁnal elections, in love, you are left in the darkness of invisible Independents.
And even when you smell them from their dark shadows, you cannot cut a deal.
Forget the Independents of the Besigye's people's government's alternative leadership, Independents in love get to sleep with government coffers.
Because they are never labelled, it is easy for the incumbents to bask in the illusion that their gods are with them, yet the bark cloth is empty.
Opportunities may arise when couples get to know and ﬁght over an ex, who is refusing to step down, but many cases abound where partners do not get to realise that the ex is not clothed in a loser's cloak.
He or she stayed on as a ghost partner, munching at the glory when the incumbent is not looking without assuming the responsibilities that come with the husband's or wife's chair.
The incumbent works hard like a bee to raise honey in the hive, only for the Independent to sneak in and harvest the honey, leaving empty honey combs for the incumbent to reﬁ ll.
But that is not the worst. In most cases, the independent knows the incumbent but the incumbent doesn't know the independent.
And because the independent is in a competition mode while the incumbent is not, there is no way the incumbent will be perceived as a better lover.
When it comes to sex for instance, the independent plays the ﬁrst team, with eyes to the trophy while the incumbent simply plays for duty, with reference to such inconveniences as too much work, children, fatigue and fading enthusiasm.
In companionship, the independent will always be in touch even to ask how lunch was, but the incumbent won't unless there is trouble.
Eventually, the spouse will associate good time with the competing independent, but not the incumbent who doesn't expect an election any time soon.
I can go on but that is enough torture for married people. Let us quickly go to the part of so, what can the legitimate incumbents do?
The best solution would be to kill everybody who looks like an independent.
But that will make us look like Herod who killed every baby in Bethlehem and still failed to eliminate Jesus.
And, worse than that, it may take away many incumbents. For your wife may be an incumbent in your home but an independent in your neighbourhood.
You may also be tempted to look for partners who are not so attractive in order to have a peaceful marriage.
It sounds logical but is actually laughable. There is nobody on earth too unattractive to appeal to nobody.
It is like dressing in rags hoping that the lion won't eat you. The lion knows what it wants and it is not the package; in fact, it is better to be eaten while smart.
So, I have an idea: Avoid the mistakes of incumbency. Don't deceive yourself by imagining there is no rival.
Even when you don't see one, live and love as if you are competing; it will bring out the best in you.
Remember, like politics, independents are a reality but, unlike politics, they are not always visible in love.
To deal with them, always imagine they are there and leave your competition mode on.
The Lord be with you!