The very horrible, absolutely terrible, no-good week

    We wouldn’t be straying too far from the point if we say Nigeria is going through tough times right now, both emotionally and physically. I feel like being a Nigerian at this moment is stress on its own, and the situation of things around is not even helping matters. As a people, we can only hope for the light at the end of the tunnel- because the darkness is not it at all. This week, bad news and heartache have been in surplus supply. First, Nigeria’s favorite entertainer: D’banj lost his one year old son to an accident that could have been easily avoided. The whole country mourned with him and felt his pain like we had all lost our son. He and his family must be going through unimaginable pain right now, and my heart goes out to him as he deals with his loss. 
Then there was the terrible story that after a long struggle, India had finally bowed out, leaving Nigeria with the title of poorest country in the world. A whole bunch of people and I were still sighing about that, when the news of the herdsmen killings in plateau state surfaced. Who have we offended for God’s sake? The level of lawlessness in Nigeria is unreal; to think these people have carried on with impudence for so long without being properly checked, begs for answers and some very crucial steps to be taken. As we turned to our president for succor, he informed us that all the killings have political undertones, and the major perpetrators have political connections and such. The craziness of this whole thing is, using people’s real lives to play politics. It’s like we’re all pawns in a game of chess which hopefully doesn’t come to a violent and abrupt end soon. Politics is not a do or die affair, nothing costs as much as the life of people.
Fostering civil unrest will lead to what end again? What is the use of governing a country or state where all its inhabitants are dead? The answers are almost as irrelevant as the question because they don’t matter much; these people have shown time and time again that they are just after our resources. That wasn’t bad enough, our personal ray of hope, our teleportation device, our discussion and rallying point (Super Eagles), lost their deciding group match to Argentina at the world cup, and I’m livid. Truth be told, I’m not even livid: I’m confused, tired and restless all at the same time. The only thing that kept a lot of people going is the world cup, and the thought that our national team would advance beyond the group stage. ‘Even if the sky is falling, at least we have our super eagles’. But alas, our hopes were dashed, as they were beaten 2-1 by the ‘Europeans of south America’. The consolation out of this is we put up a good fight and didn’t bow to their whims. Our gallant brothers: they fought till the very end. 

Another devastating blow came yesterday, when a petrol tanker lost its brakes at the Otedola Bridge along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway; started sliding back, crashed into a culvert and caught fire almost immediately. A minimum of 54 cars were burnt, and sadly lives were lost too. I was actually at Ikeja when it all happened; I saw the mountain of smoke, but didn’t know what was going on. I had to get home to hear what happened and put two and two together. I can’t over emphasize that these are trying times for Nigeria. We can say ‘pray for Nigeria’, but in avoidable incidents like this, is only prayer really the answer? This isn’t the first time a bus or heavy duty vehicle has lost its brakes resulting in the loss of lives, something needs to be done urgently. Most countries are moving forward with road safer technological advancements, but Nigeria seems to be taking a back seat. It’s either the driver of the truck is driving like he’s possessed, or the exhaust is emitting the same level of smoke a bonfire will, there is always something wrong with them. Why don’t we value our lives? Eventualities like brake failures are the reasons for routine checks.

This kind of emotional stress should be reserved for a mid-life crisis, I feel like I’ve already lived 4 lifetimes in my 28 years on earth. These are trying times for Nigeria, but as usual we will forge ahead. The future looks murky and obscure, but we will pull through. One smart step at a time, Peace and Love

Note to self: Indoor pools are cancelled

Black isnt wrong White isnt right

    I’ve often wondered what the issue with the Black skin is. Have you ever had that ‘what did we do’ moment, and asked yourself the above question: maybe  after seeing a racially charged movie, reading a piece of history or just watching the news and seeing that another unarmed black teenager has been shot in America? I just stare blankly and think ‘this hatred runs deep’. I’ve found that the problem isn’t always the person or the intentions of said person. On one hand, you could have a very nice black person an ‘uncle tom’ even- and on another, the meanest black person ever:  it makes no difference, as both would still get treated with disdain. The problem is not the person per say, just the person’s skin tone.
Asides from the widely publicized and appalling state of race relations in countries like America, America and Europe are not the only places where racism still exist. In India, people are often discriminated against for the colour of their skin. Although all Indian, if they have darker skins, they are considered lowly and the dregs of the society: which explains why their entertainment culture is characterized by people with lighter skins and slicked back hair, then the thieves or rapists are always darker and just a bit more sweaty. Many countries have tried to deny or hide their African ancestry. Such is the case of Argentina, a country that would rather pretend all its pollution is white, and they have never come in contact with people of African heritage- despite the fact that majority of the slaves in south America that account for this new population of theirs are of African descent. 
Imagine them calling themselves ‘the Europeans of South America’, smh. Asides from their lack of identity which is obvious from them claiming or pretending to be Europeans, they are in urgent need of a backbone. Thank God for others like Colombia and Brazil that have embraced the truth and their African roots alike. Before you come to your conclusions, there are actually black Argentineans:  they just don’t show that to you, and monitor association with them like they’re diseased. I remember when comedian Deray Davis said rapper French Montana and comedian Micheal Blackson didn’t come from the same Africa, because they looked different: with one being lighter than the other.  But French is just from the north and Blackson from the west. 
Black people played a pivotal role in the development of most civilizations and do not deserve to be treated and rejected like people with leprosy. We have produced Mathematicians, astronauts, poets, surgeons, footballers and actors just to mention a few, so I can say we have earned our fair share of respect. I find it ironic that the western crusaders of Christianity, the colonizers, the moral high-ground owners  that preach love and oneness, haven’t even been able to reconcile all the races properly and still have race issues in their respective countries. Some people always claim discrimination and racism started from God whenever they cite the Jacob and Esau story, but I think that is taken out of context. Peace and Love

We Are Scum

    I don’t really believe in generalizations. To me, statements like ‘All men cheat’ don’t hold water: because I don’t think all men cheat. I mean, I’m certain there are men out there that don’t cheat. So, when it’s not a 100% guaranteed that all men cheat, making generalized statements like that is stupid and nothing more than assumption. The chances that we live in a world where it’s factual that all men cheat is very slim. Because you’ve come in contact with the one or two, or three or four that cheat doesn’t mean everyone does. Take me for example, I’ve been in a couple of relationships, and I’ve cheated just once ever. Cheated not because there was an inexplicable longing for the girl I cheated with, or I wasn’t attracted to my girlfriend at the time: I only did it to see how this ‘Cheating’ everybody talked about felt and meant. 
I didn’t feel any different afterwards, no emotional attachment whatsoever- I was basically indifferent, after which I moved on. There was no need to do it again as it held no appeal. The craziness of this whole ‘Men are scum’ situation is, somehow women have found a way to shroud the fact that they cheat as well. The percentage at which men cheat may be more than that of the average woman, but to neglect the fact that women cheat too by adding steam to  the narrative of ‘all men cheat or men are scum’  is very surreal. I’m not saying men are not scum- scum of the earth even, but I’m a very objective guy. I like to come to sensible conclusions by judging both sides of the table equally, and apportioning blame accordingly. 
I read somewhere that in this new age, the amount of women that cheat and hide under the banner of ‘men are scum’ will shock even a NEPA official. All you need to do is listen to a couple of experiences or go to my hoe story, and marvel at the exploits of some women. I was speaking to an ex of mine recently, and she explained to me that not only men engaged in one night stands or the occasional Sarewagba: women do it to. Men are simply more carefree about their exploits, but because women are careful and sneaky, let’s not delude ourselves by thinking they aren’t putting it out there. If you live in a glass house, don’t throw stones. Don’t shout so much and make it seem like it’s exclusively happening to female folk and men are not getting their hearts broken out here. Girls always think they have a monopoly on feelings.
I know she’s hurting, but have you taken a second to consider that he might be hurting too? I’m not choosing sides; I always want to be Switzerland. But is it also possible that that man appears to be a savage because at some point he genuinely loved and had his heart broken maybe one too many times? Can we say the reason that girl is a man eater is because she has been with too many broken men that have in turn damaged her, so now her defense mechanism is on overdrive? There are always two sides to a story, and we should weigh and consider each before jumping to conclusions or making general assumption and passing them as fact. There are still very good men and women out there, they’re just a little bit harder to find. Peace and love.

Death by Kilobytes

    It cannot be over emphasized that we need to be careful of what we say and do on the internet. There are so many things we should just let slide, it’s not everything you see you comment on. Time and time again I’m reminded that things can escalate quickly on there, and people take things to the head.  Not everybody is normal, or has the tolerance to stomach an insult- online or otherwise. There are tweets I see and I want to comment on, but I instantly change my mind after briefly imagining the person verbally dragging me all over social media: nothing is worth my dignity by engaging in a tweet fight or online war of words. 
There is a sense of security attached to commenting behind a screen- a feeling of ‘I’m safe here, nothing can happen to me’. You feel at peace with your comment and think ‘I’m in my house come and beat me’. Then you insult someone that doesn’t let things go, someone who decides to actually- real life come to your house to beat you, then your eyes will clear. Back in the day, they used to ask for your location before springing into action: now they just look for mutual friends to question about your whereabouts, or wait for your routine updates with location stamps and that’s that.  I’m reminded of a particular incident on twitter some years back, where a twitter squabble escalated: and one of the persons involved recorded himself driving to the others house to go beat him up. We thought it was a movie until the police got involved, and both parties had to drop statements about something that emanated from as little as spoken words online.
It could have been easily avoided if one of them was the bigger man and just did not respond to the other. Sometimes, the person doesn’t even need to come to your house to beat you, cyber bullying these days has taken on a life on its own. Take the example of Nigerian singer Mo’chedda who got more than she bargained for when she replied to a post by rapper Ruggedman about the #endsars campaign. She apparently bit more than she could chew as fans of the rapper and others who took his side rained abuses and curses on her. She instantly regretted it and made a semi-tearful video where she returned all the curses she received, back to sender. My data was switched off for the most part of yesterday, but when I put it on later, I was bombarded with the news of American rapper xxxtentacion’s death. 
The 20 year old had been shot in Miami. I was stunned. I wasn’t a fan of his, but to think some people had made a deliberate attempt on his life is unreal. Over the past year, he had gotten into a lot of social media beef and received a lot of death threats; he even had someone run on stage and smack him unconscious at one of his concerts a while back. Most likely something he said or did, had rubbed off wrong on the next man. There are also theories that it was a robbery gone bad: after some people got wind of his location from a Snapchat story and decided to pay him a visit. Either way the narrative still stands: we should be careful of what we put on Social media.  It may be funny, but I really do have ‘they can come and beat me’ at the back of mind before I comment on anything online, you never know when your words would be the last straw that breaks someone’s camels back. Please be careful, stay away from online beef today. Peace and love.

Breaking the habit

    I’m not ashamed to say that for the past couple of weeks, I’ve been struggling with some serious writer’s block. I didn’t think it was a thing I’d ever experience- I mean, I had seen it in movies, through my studies I’d read about it, even heard examples of how some writers are so blocked they can’t finish a 2-year project within the 2-year time frame given: but still, I never thought it would happen to me. Contrary to what a lot of people think, I’ve been blogging actively since early this year, but the blog has been operational since August last year. Obviously with ghost activities but activities none the less. 
I’ve never been an elaborate set up sort of guy, so back then when I used to write in school: I would do most of it on my phones notepad, and thanks to Nokia E-61, I could always link all the stories I wrote together to form one big piece. Back then, I didn’t own a laptop, so I typed everything on my phone. Even the initial part of my final year project was typed on my Blackberry, at least chapters 1 and 2. But it’s all good, I got an A in that project anyway. Believe it or not, chapters 1 and 2 were the best part, and you can view it on EuropeanAmericanJournals.com where I was cited as a junior researcher (A super amazing feat). The stories/articles just flowed, it was a seemingly endless stream. It was almost like I had Microsoft Word in my head: as they used to drop edited, with insane syntax and punctuation on point. 
After a couple of theft spells- I stopped, as my phone with all the stories was stolen. That happened about twice, and I got tired of the whole process, so I stopped writing entirely. I noticed this writers block about 3 years ago when I was at a funeral and I tried to type something, after about two lines I was lost. I tried again much later and found that I couldn’t even string a proper sentence together. I didn’t really bother about it because at the time, I was working at a business establishment, so you can say I had other things on my mind, hence I stopped again. Fast forward to last year, after succumbing to pressure from friends and acquaintances who kept telling me I was a fabulous and inspired speaker, so I should start a blog: I finally started one. At first, everything was all good. The stories were dropping promptly: a little bit scattered, but with enough tune up would be fine. Then I got a job at a media house, I was curating and writing for them as well, a few nicely composed pieces here and there, but the clash of intellectual juices was a little bit too much for me, so I figured I’d stop mine.
After being absent from the blog for about six months, I was inspired early this year to come back and start writing again and here we are. My point is, I didn’t have anything to post this morning- but I had to put up something. I have been racking my brain since Friday thinking of today’s post or lack of, and today while reading a daily devotional, it just came to me. This is a true story by the way. It’s a testament to the fact that there are things in life that you must do even if you don’t want to do them. Just trust God and trust the process, grit your teeth and get to it. I was about to say, ‘I hope you don’t find this boring’. But seriously I wrote it, so I doubt that’s ever going to happen. Peace and love

Sorry To Disappoint You

    I can’t be the only one who occasionally gets scared at the thought of new things? No, I’m not talking about trying a new hair style at the barbers or eating Abacha for the first time, I’m talking of things like moving to new countries and taking on new challenges (which strangely includes trying Abacha for the first time, but whatever). It’s a mixture of fear and excitement that can be sometimes crippling. Obviously, the idea of meeting people and experiencing new things can be appealing, but lurking behind that is the fear of the unknown: where would I live, what would I do, what if they don’t like me? 
It can be contradictory, because on one hand and at some point, you’ve felt a rush the thought of endless possibilities had to offer and you’re all ‘Hooray, let’s get it’, but at other times you’re like ‘no, lets not get it’. Take this from a guy that once chickened out of the navy’s Direct Short Service because I couldn’t swim, it’s confusing. Although swimming wasn’t stated as a requirement, I just assumed it was only common sense that you should at least know how to swim when applying to the one branch of the armed forces that deals with water. Apparently, a lot of people didn’t think any form of marine intelligence or knowing how to swim was that important. Either way, that decision was significantly fuelled by fear.
One of the things I hate most is contradicting myself. Its easy to yell out “live your life, don’t let fear hold you back”- you know, the whole 9 yards. But as a good friend always says ‘no matter the amount of self-propping motivational speeches you hear, when the heart isn’t ready, it’s just not. I always like my stand point on issues at different times to remain the same. Because when your statements and viewpoints keep changing, you sort of give the vibe of an inconsistent idiot that doesn’t know zilch. Same thing with my write ups, I read them time and time again: go through for spelling errors, errors in syntax, contradictory or ambiguous statements and the likes. 
But despite doing, I sometimes make mistakes. As you know, nobody’s perfect, we’re all just humans. I keep changing, growing and evolving: so, my opinions yesterday might not be the same ones I would express today. All I can do is take the good with the bad and try to build something constructive out of the stack of Lego bricks I have. I will finish with a hypocritical quote I got from only God knows where though “Never let the fear of losing stop you from playing the game”. Peace and Love

The Boyz in Black

    When are we going to talk about the chord of mis-communication between the police headquarters and the normal policeman on the street. For what it’s worth, the misdirection is so big they could be on opposite ends of the planet for all we know. I’m always angry and amazed when I hear incidents of police men stopping cars to check insurance papers and other road worthy “offences”. I vaguely remember the police headquarters saying that it’s illegal for any police man or men to stop your car under the guise of checking your papers since they aren’t road safety officials. So, I see no reason why a policeman should enter your car to conduct any form of road worthiness, and I’m glad police headquarters sees it the same way. 
But why is that, all this information and change that’s supposed to trickle down from the top of the organisation to the bottom isn’t being effected? It was such a relief when the Lagos state government heard our pleas and removed VIO from major roads. To be honest, those people were doing more harm than good. And although it was right, their seemingly ‘incorruptible’ attitude brought a whole new sense of fear and justice Nigerians found irritating and surreal. We can applaud officers like Yomi Shogunle and police pro Dolapo Badmus who get on twitter to pacify the public by cautioning police and SARS officers, but sadly the same thing is still repeated on the street every day. 
Whatever change you come on social media or any media to implement should be enforced.  You should take steps to make sure your orders are executed. If we the normal citizens are engaging in twitter activism without any plans of execution, the police shouldn’t do the same. We would expect that they will be a little bit more credible. I woke up to a tweet from the police PRO Dolapo Badmus, venting at people tagging her in their SARS stories and reminding us all that she isn’t the creator of SARS, so she can’t end it. Firstly, the job of a PRO isn’t only to communicate with the public, you’re the face of the organization, the go-to person: so, whenever people want to complain, they GO TO you. 
 Also, this would be a good enough time to tell her that we aren’t dumb, and we know she didn’t create the special anti-robbery squad. But by tagging her, we are hoping through her: the powers-that-be notice, and it generates enough buzz to be able to create a discuss in the police upper echelon, where reforms would be mentioned. Yes, we all understand how a few bad eggs bla bla bla, but a system should be put in place where suggestions or voices will be heard, and relevant changes can be made immediately. The police can’t keep telling you they’re your friend while killing you, it doesn’t make sense. Peace and love

Sun Top

    I must confess that when this whole global warming threat picked up steam, I was secretly hoping Nigeria would get colder. I wasn’t one of those people wishing for snow at Ojuelegba, I didn’t even care about that: I just wanted the sun to be a little bit more accommodating.  Is it still a wonder why Nigerians seem to be angry people? Just imagine spending a whole day in a sauna, wouldn’t you be pissed? Hang on, isn’t it even supposed to be rainy season now?I don’t understand the seasons anymore. Rain fell for like two days, and the sun has made life unbearable ever since. Except hell, I can’t imagine a place hotter than this. So, when one person in the abroad complains of a heat stroke or ‘#summers hottest day’, I take it very personal.
That’s how last year, my friend dared to argue with me that the heat wave they were experiencing in London at the time was hotter than or could rival anything Nigeria had ever seen. Are you, are you mad? First things first, let’s get it clear that nowhere is hotter than Nigeria and I mean nowhere. I leave the bath and start sweating immediately, my sweat doesn’t even trickle down anymore, it just forms a very shiny, moist, and annoying semi dried up mask on my face: that’s how hot it is. To think he had the nerve to say they were experiencing an unprecedented heat wave. Imagine the things we go through in this heat and somehow still find a way to laugh and regulate. To me, this is just a true testament of how resilient we are as a people. 
With all this economic hardship; no work, no light, no money etc then someone will come and hit your car that you managed to buy and haven’t finished paying for and will expect you not to be angry: then if you vex they’ll say you have road rage and need anger management classes. We are all mad in this country, the degree to the madness is what varies. I was looking out of the window of a BRT bus last week, when we passed a bus stop on the opposite side of the road: in the midst of a lot of people, I saw two men fighting and almost killing each other, but still nobody intervened. 
They didn’t tell them to stop, neither did they egg them on to continue: they just stared blankly and quietly at the two men as if they were in some sort of trance, lol. The sun had fried their brains. I remember back when drinking cold water or having a shower used to cut it, now you just want to strip and bare it all. Later, some people will be asking you stupid questions like “why don’t you wear boxers?” Shey you can’t see the sun abi? Anyway, please be safe out there, take a handkerchief everywhere you go, and always remember to hydrate. Peace and love.

Reflections of a hoarder

    I don’t know if I can consider myself a clothes hoarder, but I sure know how to keep clothes. I’ve had clothes for close to 6 years that I still wear regularly. My personal motto is ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’. Obviously, I’ve bought a lot over the years to add to my collection: but overall, my wardrobe is a mixture of the old and the new- as I even have some jeans from back in my Uni days (I don’t mean my Uni days at Babcock, I mean my Uni days way back in Unilag).
 Can you really blame me though? I remember when I was growing up, the way my wardrobe was set up back then: I used to have run around clothes for playing, quarter special clothes for when a visitor came by the house, semi special clothes for parties, and clothes I couldn’t even wear. Basically, my wardrobe was divided into 4 categories. The clothes I couldn’t wear was not because they didn’t fit me, but because  my mum who was my primary wardrobe stylist at the time, used to have this thing about ‘You can’t wear this dress now, when you get to primary school you’ll wear it’, then when I got to primary school it would be ‘Don’t spoil it now, when you get to secondary school, you’ll go and use it to do Faari’, and so on and so forth.
 So, you can say I had my clothes hoarder skills passed down to me. Strangely I still adopt that same technique today, run around, quarter, semi and special clothes. But sometimes, I just think fuck it and wear my special clothes around. What I’m I saving them for anyway? You only live once right? Regardless of the financial situation of how I grew up, I’ve always been sort of flashy and had lots of clothes, which you may have guessed. The benefit of saving or hoarding things are: in future they come in handy when you don’t have any other cards to play. It’s sort of like saving money in the bank for a rainy day, the only difference is with hoarding if not saved properly, it piles up and becomes rubbish. 
But all in all, sometimes you just need to go out on a limb and wear your special clothes on a normal day: do you get my drift? Take a chance, live, give yourself a break. It might be cliché but you actually only live once. What if you don’t get to use the thing you’re hoarding or saving because you’re faced with insurmountable difficulty?  Cut yourself some slack. Peace and love.

As e dey hot

    Over the weekend, South African rapper Aka went on twitter to clear the air about his ended 2-year relationship with VJ Bonang Matheba. The power couple’s romance took the South African media by storm as both Aka and Bonang are hot cakes. You might be wondering how this is of any consequence to us? Just hold on, I’ll get to that in a minute. He also tweeted that she cheated on him, and claims he found some stone-like things in his wardrobe (alluding to the fact that she was using voodoo on him). Make no mistake, she’s definitely going to come out with her own statement where she denies these accusations, especially the voodoo story- but what I’m trying to get at is this. In the midst of it all, the rapper stated his regret at abandoning his family for her, only to get cheated on. Lol. My friends, isn’t karma a bitch?
 He had a spouse and a daughter that’s at least 3 years old, karma just dished out some serious jungle justice on his ass. Life is a very funny place, it may seem like some people never get theirs, and karma never comes for them. They always get away with everything and live happily ever after, but I can assure you karma is working overtime on their case. It may take 5 – 6 years, even more years than you care to count, but they always get what’s coming to them. It might not be in the exact way or fashion you pictured for them to get punished, but they get punished regardless. Sometimes people get punished for what they did 10 years ago, and sometimes karma deals with you instantly. But to people like Aka, karma just came back full circle with no delay. I can only imagine his ex’s facial expression when she heard about the breakup: smiling sheepishly and grinning from ear to ear, she could have been robbed blind at that time and still wouldn’t care.
What of Khloe Kardashian that got cheated on by her Basketball Baby daddy Tristan Thompson, while she was pregnant with his baby. As the story goes, he cheated on his then girlfriend with khloe while she was also pregnant and expecting his baby. I personally think no woman is safe around that guy, most especially pregnant women. I’m suddenly reminded of that Justin Timberlake song ‘what goes around comes around’. For a long time, I never used to believe that ‘The universe gives you whatever energy you give it’ theory, I thought it was all rubbish until I started reading up on Ying Yang’s, Chi’s, Feng shui’s and every other belief  the east had to offer. Around me, bad people seemed to be winning so much; I thought life simply wasn’t fair. One or two personal instances helped to change my mind though, so I watch what I do these days.
In our different tribes and in our different ways, we all have names for it. I’m certain the Yoruba’s call it ‘Eleda’, and as opposed to hitting your head with your hands and shouting ‘Eleda mi a da fun e’, now we just say, ‘what goes around comes around’. If you give out positive energy, the universe returns that to you.  If you give out negative energy, the universe gives that back to you too. It’s almost like a cause and effect theory. In those situations where you give out nothing but good energy and the worst keeps happening:  remember, Gods got you. Peace and Love