THE BAPTISM

Whenever I zipped down to urinate I remember the greatest incidence of my adolescent. As my urine hit the floor of the urinary, my mind would sail in it to the slum of Lagos, fifteen years back when I was twelve, extremely inquisitive and hopelessly foolish. Then I had just discovered I had a phallus and my small sisters didn’t. I stood to urinate, sending the piss three feet high, then watch it descend like a small waterfall; the girls squat, digging small holes with their pisses. I thought myself special to possess a third small leg or in a spark of stupidity, a small tail which unlike that of the bony cat was in the front. I was proud of my small tail that I would lay awake at night touching it and thanking God for the extra limb which showed that the girls were silly and incomplete.

There was a little problem. I discovered that my small tail had no special use beyond urinating. The girls who are tailless equally urinate so I was sure my ‘thing’ was not just a urinary tap, it was more than that and I wanted to know. I approached my father. But the ill-tempered forcefully-retired police corporal was too embittered to reason with me. As soon as I asked him the roles and duties of my stick he brought out the koboko and flogged me till I bled. My mother who always begged him to take the whip easy was surprisingly happy to see me whine in pain. As I whimper like a breathless dog at the corner, my father threatened to cut my special leg off if I ever referred to it again. I nodded.

Then I rebelled.

I approached Uche, the one-eyed fowl-thief opposite our house. My father had warned me from buying him cigarettes but I didn’t obey. Now was the time for Uche to repay my faith. I asked him the use of my stick. ‘It is used on women,’ he told me. ‘Look for woman with big ‘’mama’’ and she go teach you.’ I was grateful. ‘’Mama’’ was the two pawpaws women carried on their chest.

Excited, I decided to ask my landlord’s wife for help. I was the only one who helped her fetch water and I was sure as pay-back she would let me use my thing on her. So I approached her and boldly said, ‘I want to use my stick on you.’

She frowned, ‘Don’t you know I’m married, you fool!’

‘But I fetch you water,’ I snapped back.

She glared at me then shrugged.  My stick was small, she told me, I needed to baptise it first. She asked me to grind pepper, pour them in a bowl of water then deep my ‘thing’ inside.

I selected twenty fine peppers, grinned them on the mortar, poured them in a bucket of water then dipped my thing inside!

I am presently at the seminary, studying to be a Reverend Father.