I didn’t know I was an angry human being until I got to the campus where I met this friend who always chided me with Why are you always angry? Better pray God to fix your anger. Now this my guy had the H-factor which meant that his sideswipe sounded like Why are you always hungry? Better pray God to fix your hanger.
As I didn’t want to disturb the Almighty, I got Musa the carpenter and he took a long look at my hanger and he found nothing wrong with my hanger. So whenever my guy told me to have my hanger fixed, I would tell him my hanger was perfect and my hanger was nobody’s business anyway, and he would go mad. Then he got tired one day and told me that Moses didn’t enter the promised land because of hanger and that my hanger might lead me to affliction. Then I realized he wasn’t talking about a wooden frame in which my raggy clothes hung, but about my temper!
But at this time I was working on my project and my supervisor was making me see my ears without the aid of a looking glass (one day I will write about my supervisor, I am never going back to ABU, why not?). I had little breathing space to think, working on my anger, infinitesimal, in fact I began to wish I possessed Moses’ tsunamic hot temper with which he broke God’s handmade ten commandments on Aaron’s big head then melted the golden calf and forced it down idol worshippers’ throats. Atta boy!
I couldn’t do any of this to Dear Supervisor. It was an unequal battle, man vs bulldozer. My supervisor eventually got bored of seeing my smug face every morning and my stalking him behind shrubs and cars and ordered me to go bind the damned thing. Thus an angry man was loosed upon the world.
The Nigerian society I met made my supervisor look like Father Teresa. I was like a chick fresh from an egg right into a world ruled by a legion of hawks. Like a chick unable to return to its embryonic comfort, I decided to make sense out of senselessness, to tame a wild cat with bare hands. It’s this Nigeria that taught me the usefulness of anger. In fact, I have come to the understanding that Nigerians are not angry enough. We need to be more angry, and vex with patriotic fury. Our suffering and smiling mentality has put us in a casket and is already five feet gone.
If we are capable of real anger, the government will not, for instance, look 170 million people in the eyes and say they need 3.2 billion naira to renovate Aso Rock clinic, an amount nearly twice more than what was voted for our 17 teaching hospitals put together. We have a president who works with body language so this expense is totally understandable.
But I have not come to bicker about the budget debacle, much smarter guys have espoused on it (and still on it). Comedians as well. And cartoonists. And conspiracy theorists. No, I have come to record for prosperity Nigeria and her concussion. Every week, or bi-weekly or monthly or bi-monthly (it depends) I would gather the bullshit happening in this theatre of absurd and put it up here, and call it out. If time holds and I find the energy I should do this every week. Yes, this country is capable of a serial melodrama of weekly basis. Anezi Okoro’s novel One Week, One Trouble comes to mind.
In the last few weeks alone, big boys have gone in and out of prison, a ruling party kicked against the posting of a priest, some people said some people found a million dollars in a suckaway pit, a certain president went to a foreign land and dissed his people, naira continues its cheerful descent to the bottom rung, a bread seller turned an overnight celebrity just by bombing into a photograph! (and I know how many times people have abused my ancestors because I bombed into their black and white photo while celebrating their matriculation into a private college of education (God forgive them for they know not what they do).) etc. I could write two thousand words on each of the above accidents/incidents.
But the the photo-bomb story fascinates me most. You wake up one day as a bread seller and the next moment CNN is interviewing you, you are cover on ThisDay Style, you are the face of Stanbic IBTC… It’s a fantastic story, the kind some sadist editor will squeeze up and dump in the waste basket because it’s unrealistic, implausible and other lazy wornout terms they peddle. Yes, reality is stranger than fiction.
Statisticians are yet to determine the number of Agege bread sellers that have invaded our markets since Jumoke’s story broke, in search of a TY Bello. That is Nigeria for you, a country that can transform your fortune in the blink of an eye in the most unsuspecting, improbable and melodramatic form. It’s beginning to make me feel this is a country of chance and wild goose chase fortune, no real safety nets for dreamers to dare, just a million gods throwing dice. Remember that widow Oshiomhole said ‘go and die’ to, didn’t her son get scholarship for that insult? Didn’t people go about looking for a politician/millionaire that would abuse them? These are a once in a thousand years story but people will never stop trying. And I must confess I have thought of buying a basin of bread, and take it to the American or German Embassy and sing ‘buy bread, buy sweet bread’. I’ll be flying this year but you can never tell the style God wants to use and give somebody visa.
This post is generally an introduction to what I hope will be be my major blogging project of 2016. I will also bash myself here, mercilessly, sure. Mostly I will be recording something for my grandkids to laugh and cry about. So these ramblings are my response to a descendant’s question of What were you doing during the madness of your age?
Wait! I was featured in an anthology of a special Valentine ebook. You may download it here and enjoy yourself.
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