Monday, 18 June 2018

Hard Facts About Being An Average Nigerian Citizen

The average Nigerian citizen must accept a number of hard facts as the reality, then decide if these facts should be embraced, managed or superseded. As a part of this group, few of these facts I have been able to cull over the years are;

- I am worthless
- The Labour Union Congress who are meant to fight for the rights of workers in Nigeria, have become fat from all the corrupted stuffings and can't perform any longer.
- I must provide adequate security for myself
- Without personal finances, I am doomed
- There is a strong sense of entitlement mentality in the country over what I own, either by relatives. or especially by random strangers who could go as far as hurting me for it.
- Lord have mercy on my soul if I become really sick and cannot afford to leave the country to get a "solid' treatment abroad since the facilities in most of our public and even private hospitals are more suitable for the dead than the living.
In Nigeria, the youths are surviving on their own despite the government's inadequacies...
These are a few of the numerous hard facts about being an average Nigerian citizen. Thankfully, I've decided to live, excel and maintain a healthy mental balance despite these realities. As I will always say, in Nigeria, the youths are surviving on their own despite the government's inadequacies but it'd be nice to have the government's backing.

Recently, my sister and I were threatened on our property by some hooligan who hangs around aimlessly within the neighbourhood. It shouldn't be a problem, right? Since there's a respected traditional ruler and there's never been reports on any form of dangerous activities within the neighbourhood but one can never be too safe. Since these threats were made in the wee hours of the morning, my sister decided to call the Police. When I overheard her speaking with whoever picked her distress call, I almost laughed out loud. Only a Nigerian will understand what a joke it is, calling the Police? The entire street might as well be dead before they show up That is; if there's petrol in their cars in the first place! So, when she was done, I went over to ask her if she was actually speaking with the 'Nigerian Police' or maybe a US SWAT team that happened to be in town, and she confirmed it was the Nigerian police who are on their way. In my head, I'm thinking, "maybe past events have made me such a pessimist, let me give them the benefit of doubt and wait for their arrival". Now writing this, I can't believe I allowed myself believe anything different from the usual would occur.

An hour later, the Lagos Rapid Response Squad (RRS) who are constantly driving randomly within the city hoping to make some cash off innocent citizens, were nowhere near sight. My sister calls again and the responder sounds just as scripted as telecommunications customer service agents, "We are sorry for the delay Ma, I've placed a call to the squad closest to you and they will be there shortly. Is there any other issue you'd like to report?" At this point, we just ensured the house was properly secured against intruders and slept off.

The next morning, we discovered no one bothered to show up or call back to check on us. This should be completely normal to me by now but I was disappointed because the emergency line actually went through and someone picked! That's a huge milestone! But I should have known better, After all, our government are the best at putting things in place they neither have full knowledge of nor understand how to control- there are simply no checks and balances.

In all, I remain a die-hard Nigerian, I understand the blessings and limitations in my country and have decided to LIVE regardless.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Dealing With The Complications of Love

Now that I am becoming more aware of myself and patterns that have led to most of my life decisions; thinking back, I can almost put choices I've made around my relationships in perspective.

I remember back when I was in the University, I was called a lesbian, sugar daddy lover and all sorts just because I wouldn't date anyone in school. Not that the boys in my school weren't attractive, actually they weren't at the time, but that factor had nothing to do with my absolute disgust for them.

My father, who is my god on earth, happens to be a very intelligent, soft-spoken, calculative man whose every move I'd habitually admired especially; his relationship with my mum and therefore, I desired to end up with someone like him. I guess that led to my attraction for older men with similar qualities as my dad's - nerdy, soft-spoken blah blah. As long as I can remember, I've always wanted to end up with a man at least 10 years older than I am.

But something changed in my 3rd year in school, not a complete change but a detour.

On my resumption day in school, while my mum was dropping me off, she drove past one of the male dormitories which was at the time, about 5 metres away from the female dormitory, and I spotted this really cute short chubby boy with no visible neckline standing right in front of the male dormitory. I continued staring at him until he was out of sight, little did I know that petty occurrence would lead to a major heartache in the future.

So school year kicks off fully and I'll spot the cute boy walking past and lose all my senses while still doing a great job at maintaining the "Don't even mess with me" front of course! This continued until my 3rd year in school when somehow, he found out I'd always had a crush on him and then we had a rather brief relationship.

After this relationship, I'd felt strongly for other men, but never what I felt when I spotted the cute boy from school. I don't know if that was a conscious decision or if I just had to meet another person my spirit or whatever deemed special. So I went with the flow for years and at a point, met this special man who loved me beyond my comprehension but for very complicated reasons, we couldn't end up together. He thought me how to love and I LOVED everything about him and still do to date. He could do no wrong in my eyes. He knew me completely and happened to be an older and calmer version of me. We shared the same sense of humour and interests especially eating pancakes while watching Judge Judy and one other very absurd American series- Dallas.

The relationship was bliss but in all, what I felt for the cute boy from school didn't come back so I wrote it off as youthful exuberance.

It became a case of, what I want didn't want me in return but those I had no care for were all over the place like leeches

Then late 2017, while at the lowest point in my life when nothing intrigued me, I come across this picture of a man in a hat with the most charming smile, greying beard and piercing eyes full of intelligence. He just looked so peaceful and calm in the picture .... and there it was! That feeling I'd forgotten was back! I wanted to meet him by all means and know all about him. Somehow we connected and got talking. I ensured to push my baggage forward because I'm at that point where I am either accepted for who I am or left to be in peace. Talking to him brought me back to life! He became a human version of Rant Avenue since I ranted about everything to him. It felt like ecstasy having someone to be so comfortable with until he became so busy that we barely communicated and in few months, he was gone.

In dealing with his silence, I found yoga and started making peace with the idea of being by myself for the rest of my life. It became a case of, what I want didn't want me in return but those I had no care for were all over the place like leeches and there's nothing more lonely than that as long as I am concerned. So I took solace in Yoga till I bumped into the Mr with the charming smile again. We were meeting for the very first time physically! I'd only spoken to him the day before we were to meet and I couldn't sleep that night. I was excited, angry and sweaty in the cold. Everything in me loves this man and want to be with him but there are deterrents almost out of both our controls. I have a pending case which could be a huge stumbling block if we are to progress into something serious, he, on the other hand, had gone into a relationship. I was SHATTERED, mad at myself for responding to his messages but still so excited about our rendezvous.

The next day, I walk out of my apartment and there he is, right at the gate! My legs become weak, I don't know how I am managing to walk while he's standing right there smiling at me. I begged him to look away but he wouldn't until the very last minute. I got close to him and he told me he liked my hair... I can't remember what my reply was since my emotions were all over the place at that point. He looked so GOOD, Hmmm!

We got into a car and started off for Coffee and I'm thinking "He's the ONE"...

So much I want to say but can't find the right words. I guess it is because I am still in the process... I'll be back with more...

Thursday, 22 February 2018

Butt Grabbed By A Yoruba Demon

Few weeks back, a friend and I went to the most weirdly fun house party I'd ever been to. The ambience was just the way I like it- pretty chilled, yet fun. I kept eating and laughing about the other attendees’ nostalgic stories while also picking on fake accents all over the place. Omo, the way babes be switching accents in Lagos these days leaves me dizzy, what?!

Anyway, in the midst of the merriment, one of the attendees started talking about his son, whom he watched play with his neighbour’s older daughter and while they were playing, she suddenly kissed his son on the lips. His son stood there shocked and didn’t know exactly how to react. Then he completed his story by saying how proud he felt having a little player in the house.

That last statement irritated me beyond words. I you are thinking, ‘Titi relax, they are just kids being kids’, and I partially agree. However, I also know that na from clap dance dey start. Meaning, it’s the tiny things you do today that leads to the big ones you do later on. 
I asked what he did about that occurrence and he initially said he did nothing, up until he was attacked by some other lady in the party, then he tried exonerating himself by saying, he told his son how wrong that event was and also told him that must never repeat itself. I was like, the hell does that even mean’? He asked what he was meant to do, and I replied saying, "either calmly ask the little girl what made her do that or tell her parents so that they handle it the best way they can". It’s possible she’s picked that from TV or actually sees her parent’s getting it if you know what I mean. This story eventually led to a lot of us sharing our varying encounters with molestation. I didn’t have a drop of alcohol but somehow, I felt the need to share especially being aware of his son's reaction to the kiss. That reminded me so much about myself while I was being molested.

Even though mine happened while I was really young, it somehow came back to haunt me at some point in my life and probably still has some adverse effect on me, and I shared this with everyone at the party.   While sharing, one man looked genuinely sorry for me and came over to sit close to me, telling me that I needed to see a therapist/shrink even though I told him I was largely over my encounter. He told me he’ll cover the cost of one of my sessions and went on to narrate the liberation he felt after sharing his deepest worries with this shrink.
Knowing that the cost will be covered, I agreed to see this so-called shrink on a fixed date. Lord knows I most certainly do not see the sense in paying someone to hear me talk!

After having such a fun and deep night, it was time to go home. Mr Onye Obi Oma- Mr. Kind Heart who seemed so deeply concerned about my mental well being, offered to walk my friend and me to my car. We get there, and he hugs my friend then comes over and hugs me as well. I got into my car, turned to my friend and told her I thought that man was demonic. Then she tells me he grabbed her bum while hugging her. The most shocking part was that he did the exact same to me. For whatever reasons, I became numb and couldn't react.

We both still can’t understand why we didn’t react. Maybe because we knew he was drunk which is no excuse or we wanted to avoid creating a scene or couldn’t believe he’d do that subsequent to the conversation we had at the party. A dude who heard me speak about being molested as a child thought it’d be a great idea to grab my bum in the dark. O di egwu! I was weak! Titilayo who's normally fire and quick to speak or react against anything any derogatory move targeted at the female gender, couldn't do anything in the face of a sexual assaulter.

Monday, 19 February 2018

I guess there's a lot to live for after all

Too early to speak but I can't help noticing that the result of my approach to 2018 is already becoming clear.

In my previous post, I expressed most of my frustrations with the year 2017- that year was indeed a thorn in my flesh. Majority of my decisions came from a place of frustration and short-sightedness, but I later realised that; most situations we have to tackle stem from our own decisions and attitude towards life and all it throws at us.

 I felt out of place, struggled with extreme road rage, was constantly appalled by the stench in Lagos State and the epileptic power supply, I was blown away by the blatant wickedness of people and absolute disregard for human lives. In the midst of the storm, I thought to myself, "Maybe I am this overwhelmed because of loneliness. Perhaps if I had a bae *knowing how much of a lover girl I am* my attention will either shift completely or at least I'll have someone to share my frustrations with". So, what I did was choose the best amongst all the degenerates that were hovering around me at the time, harsh right
Boy did I shoot myself with that decision- going into a relationship for the sake of filling an unexplained void? At this point, my misery knew no bounds. An unfathomable flood of emotions started making way to my physical appearance; my hormones became imbalanced, single threads and I were struggling for the weightiest, my skin became pale and reacted to every single thing, acne found its permanent home on my face… I was an absolute disaster!
Most situations we have to tackle stem from our own decisions and attitude towards life and all it throws at us.
After wallowing in self-pity for a very long while and realising that if I didn't do anything quickly, death will start seeming more attractive to me, I was forced into re-evaluating myself and my priorities. Often times, we make the mistake of dwelling on a bad experience, organising pity parties in the midst of a storm, throwing blames at everything else but ourselves and not learning from our experiences whether good or bad. I was just tired of being tired and needed something good to happen quickly!

You know what I did in 2018 though? I changed and not in the Buhari way!

I mean, I'd still curse out people while driving, and those morons that stand literally in the middle of the expressway waiting for buses while chatting away with fellow morons? I still drive as fast towards them and hit them a bit my side mirror. Then, to my favourite, the ones that cross the expressway even with a pedestrian bridge right above them, I maintain my speed with a straight face and which often results in them yelling Ashawo! But who cares? Na today? The stench of Lagos state still baffles me and the rainy season is here… Lord, have mercy!
My point is, these events now simply entertain me and that desire to just evapourate is completely gone! Well… almost.
 We make the mistake dwelling on a bad experience, organising pity parties in the midst of a storm, throwing blames at everything else but ourselves and not learning from our experiences whether good or bad.

The law of attraction now makes more sense to me than it’s ever done. My positive energy is attracting positive vibes all over the place. I’m taking on more adventures, baby girl's skin is glowing like never before, I've added a reasonable amount of weight, finance isn’t looking too bad and the men, uurrrgh! Sit tight, I'll tell you all that's happening in my subsequent posts.

P.S- I wrote this post on the 18th of February and wanted to showcase my glow up, so I tried transferring the images to my laptop but I kept getting errors. I then opened my blogger draft on my phone but the menu icons had no writing on them and I kept tapping every one of them hoping that I’ll finally find the insert button. While doing that, I mistakenly deleted the post. There was no verification message to ascertain if I indeed wanted the draft deleted and I wonder why the hell that is the case. Super disappointed in you Blogger, I lost a very good post and can't retrieve it!

Thursday, 4 January 2018

New Year Delusions

While everyone is so hyped about the New Year and turning into self-acclaimed motivational speakers on social media platforms, I stay reminiscing on what happened to 2017… I mean, it started out positively, I attended a Crossover Service to 2017 with my sister which got us so flipping hyped, I was in the honeymoon phase of my relationship, I quit my then job for a better job which I have now quit again K, I even opened a miscellaneous section in my agenda- which was really for having a baby. I had a gratitude Jar in which I placed all these things I was meant to do and those I’d accomplished.

I actually almost accomplished everything I had in my agenda/jar for 2017 but by the end of the year, I had lost everything. I do not only mean everything in my jar, but also my savings- my journey to having 30 Billion in the account!

There were some astounding lessons and accomplishments though; I got to visit new countries- went on an actual vacation- I mean wearing nothing but a bikini with sunglasses and getting fried by the sun while glancing at eye candy all over the place kind of vacation! Lest I digress, I also experienced a new phase of my career and understood that human/client management isn’t as easy, but I pulled through it quite well, My mum’s health improved tremendously, my nephew and I bonded so well that sometimes I take decisions as though he is mine- I need to work on this though, my dad’s words helped me through a major heart break. You know, my dad’s words make me feel like such a queen that when he’s done talking to me, I begin to wonder what kind of roach I’m letting bother me. Bless you daddy!

Despite losing all the major accomplishments of 2017, there were all these accomplishments and more which kept me afloat, but 2017 still happens to be the most disastrous year I have ever experienced, to the point that everything in Nigeria started ripping into my peace of heart like hell- paying at Lekki toll when the road is wack! Useless electricity tariff, employer handling my salaries as though it’s such a huge favour not that I worked hard for it! Louts, security guards, custom/immigration officers, police traffic wardens and the likes asking for money as though they forgot some in my wallet! Little beggars strategically placed by their guardians all over the place surrounding my car at the traffic stops and repeating the same damn words that constantly hit my “don’t give a flying ****” zone! Like, have you freaking asked me how I’m fairing? I have my burden too!  I’ll never understand why these begging mafias are allowed to stay on the roads, threatening commuters, but that’s a story for another day. Did I forget the money spent fixing my car? Even though I normally dislike ‘something has gone bad’ sounds emanating from my car and fix it up immediately; now, due to bad suspensions in my car, the noises I hear when my car hits a bad road sounds like love song to my ears.  

I’d normally let things happen while acting as though I am not expecting it. Let me try to explain this; so I’d take certain actions towards my plans but won’t actively push to avoid jinx or to trick life into not throwing unwanted energies. This strategy works-ish for me, but not to a full potential.

This year is definitely going to be different! I have drawn out plans which are split into quarterly subsections and have realistic processes to reach my goals. And hey, I didn’t arrive at this point by reading some lame quote on social media; I arrived at this point in a quest for something different from the usual.

In all, I am not getting unnecessarily hyped over nothing that is; without tangible reasons or over baseless quotes such as ‘people will be saying congratulations to you in 2018’, ‘you will receive a call that will change your life this year, ‘your helper will locate you’ and what not. You know, very unfounded reasons to be thrilled.

In fact, I am almost tempted to advice on better ways to handle a new year, but I refuse to be that annoying under-qualified motivational speaker. Haha!

Friday, 22 December 2017

My Encounter with Hard Drugs

Having been brought up with a God infused fear for my dad and an iron fist by my mum, hard drugs are things I only hear about or see in the movies but never had any opportunity to see or touch. Well, except for weed, which I have seen but never smoked or eaten (I promise, I'm not lying!).

Well, this was the case up until few days ago... Imagine! Someone destroyed this naive sweet girl! How evil can this world get? *Wiping innocent tears off my eyes*

Here's what happened, I met this man that seemed queer from the onset, but prided himself on being special and out of the ordinary. He was so off-centre that I was mostly left stunned by our conversations. I mean, most of our chats were;

Convo 1
Him: Uh oh, the traffic in Lagos is crazy, I'm stuck in one right now
Me: Well, the good thing is you aren't driving yourself; else your traffic stories will be far worse
Him: You need to control your emotions; your emotions are all over the place
Me: Huh?

Convo 2 -on a Friday at 12:30AM
Him: Shall we go somewhere quiet for drinks?
Me: Quiet on a Friday? Hmmm, is there anywhere quiet in Lagos? ‘South’ maybe?
Him: Naaa South is noisy.
Me: I don't think there is anywhere quiet today.
Him: What the hell are you talking about? Its either you want to see me or not
Me: huh?

These are very light examples. He always went from 0 to 100 so fast that I was left dizzy; but being that I have a lot of free time this season, I tolerated it and after a lot of back and forth; we finally fixed a date, time and a quiet place to meet.

On the set day, I walk in and see a white powdery substance poured on the table, I feel it and it is so smooth that and I'm thinking to myself "why does he freaking need a baby powder", but I ignore it, walk up to him, stretch out my arms for a hug, he walks up close to me and I notice immediately that his pupil is larger than usual- this didn't strike any unusual chord because he'd complained about stress the entire day and I simply thought that easily explained the enlarged pupil. In the midst of all these initial observations, my date is sweating a freaking pool in a freezing cold place and couldn't sit the heck down.

I walk over to a seat, settle in and get into my 'teasing to get actual answers' mood. While teasing, baba starts rolling two new 500 Naira notes, then he walks to the table, bends down towards the powder and starts sniffing and I'm like "wait a minute, something is going down here". Then I asked what it was and he went, "It's a cocktail. Wha,t you've never had it? Nigerians love this stuff", and went ahead to mention some names. I asked how he got it and he told me it’s sold all over the place. Loads of questions I cannot recall came rolling out of my mind and mouth simultaneously.

A friend of mine had previously mentioned to me that a lot of guys in Lagos are heavily into cocaine, but I never really believed that as one do not exactly see drug addicts wondering the streets of Lagos. I mean, I see mad people but that is from witches in their village right? I kid?!

But really, do Nigerians have some form of method of shielding this habit? Is it fear of getting caught by the Law Enforcement Authorities or just a typical example of cultural hypocrisy?

The funny thing is, he brought out a very small portion of the powdered substance and told me to try it. It was at that point I understood the essence of that verse 'FLEE FROM TEMPTATION'. I legit considered it just to grasp the thrill but remembered a conversation with an ex who told me that if cocaine is tried once and the body likes it, it'd crave for more. The fear of addiction quenched my curiosity, but the fact that I actually considered it *sigh* I simply carried my bag and strutted out. Of course, Mr. X will never hear from me again in case you are wondering.

I’d always previously said I couldn’t be tempted to do anything I didn’t want to, that night proved me wrong. Guess I’m unhappy with myself for having the thought to try but hey, it could happen to you. And so my boos, stay away from situations that’s likely to bring out your unknown beast.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

Nigerian Soldiers Brutalising Nigerians since Time Immemorial

All Nigerians and surely, the rest of the world, are aware of the nation’s uncountable problems ranging from porous borders to corruption to illiteracy to lack of infrastructures etc. But none of these gets me like the state of the bodies who's responsibilities are to protect the lives of Nigerian citizens. 

Often times I come across either articles or social media posts with the brutalities some citizens pass through in the hands of uniformed men, especially; military men, and the reaction of the Nigerian people to these occurrences are usually, funny memes of how one’s accent will change if slapped by the military or something about crossing to the other side of the road at the sight of a military man. Funny thing is; stuff that should be taken seriously and dealt with is accepted as normal with this sort of reactions, which is one of the major reasons the nation is doomed. Doomed? You might ask. What then can be said of a nation carrying on with life as usual, despite being aware of the refugee camp filled with Nigerians and aid workers that was bombed by the Nigerian military? And oh! Whilst the few reasonable ones are still in shock of that, our lordship decides to take a 10-day vacation, jets off to some foreign land, and we are told, will get a medical examination whilst at it? Or, a rich nation with some of its citizens dying of diseases and starvation in some parts of the country and receiving some foreign aids which can only go thus far, with nothing coming from their brother and sisters (other Nigerians). So, almost all sense of common reasoning and brotherhood is lost in this part of the world and the citizens are equal to/less than animals- and by animals I mean vultures or cows not lions. But I digress...

So a gentleman decides to take a walk and probably think of what prospects exists for him as a youth in this country. He wears a black armless top with a red track trouser and sets out. While at Keffi, he walks by some OP MENSA soldiers and one of the soldiers accustom him asking why he is dressed that way and why he is so muscular and in shape. He tells them he does it for fitness -being a fitness instructor, and besides enjoys working out. Then, he gets slapped by one of the soldiers, while the others pounce on him.

Before saying anything, please take a moment to focus on the question our military men asked the young man? Why are you so muscular and in shape? Is there a law that places some limit on muscularity or being in shape? Isn’t this foolishness similar to that exhibited by police officers who would stop you on the road and ask you to provide purchase receipt of a gadget (either phone or laptop) that you’ve had for probably over 2 years? And then when you can’t provide it, they ask for their entitlement- ‘your hard earned money with zero help from the government’.

I almost had a personal encounter with a clueless solider. I had an international flight to catch and I was way behind the late virgins from the Parable of The Ten Virgins in the bible – I am pointing out the fact that it was an international flight, so you have an idea of the money spent which I wouldn’t have been able to provide for another ticket had I missed that flight. So I hopped on a bike from Obalende to Ikeja airport o! That's a 20km journey on okada! See fear!!! In fact, my heart acted funny few days ago but I thought to myself, if I didn’t die that fateful day I hopped on that bike, it means I cannot die young. Anyway, so about 100metres away from the airport, some man stopped us and was asking why I had a camouflage bag, that wasn’t even the same pattern or quality of material as the military. I didn’t say a word, I who was dealing with anxiety from all the swerving I’d passed through that day. It turned out my bike guy was a military man, and that was how I was allowed to go. Thinking of it now, no wonder the soldiers were so offended by the muscular and fit young man, because the soldier that stopped me looked like I could slap him to yonder had we been in a secluded place by ourselves.

These military men ought to be called to order as soon as possible. I for one, do not feel safe with them around. I remember my cousin telling me the story of how she was almost kidnapped. While running away from the kidnappers, she saw police officers and knew the kidnappers would only need to offer the officers 2 thousand Naira; which is equivalent to $4, and she is theirs. She kept running till she found farmers from the community, then the kidnappers fled. And these are the people who are meant to protect us from our adversaries?

Please help share till someone in power gets this and hopefully, something is done.