Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Dark Side

A good week to everyone and I hope your Easter was not as uneventful as mine was. Mine was spent in the trenches on set playing a debauched reverend father, an absolute disgrace to the cloth. I don’t know why but I seem to be playing mostly bad guy roles in movies these days but what I do know is that I revel in it. Playing the bad guy is always exciting. It gives me the opportunity to delve into the minds of these social deviants, knowing full well I could easily have been one of them. I think the other bit about it that fascinates me is feeding the curiosity to know what living life without boundaries is like, to be governed by one’s own rules to the absolute exclusion of the Deity’s. I think it kind of gives me a look into what I would have been like on the other side, if I may be so bold as claim to be on the right side.

I wonder if mothers will still hold out their babies for me to kiss when my dark side starts coming to light. You may laugh it off and think I’m being trivial but I assure you I am talking about a very real factor here. Movies, I believe, and the actors, and the audience have the threads of belief and perception running through them. The difference is that while some people leave the reality of the story they’ve just watched behind on the conclusion of the movie, others refuse to let them go and sometimes lose sight of where their boundaries lie. In short, this group of people could range from attacking ‘bad guy’ actors on the street to being obsessive stalkers. Hmm, let’s see how it goes.

Sadly I couldn’t get to vote today; I overslept from yesterday’s near overnight ‘s shoot. I’m just hoping my favourite man for the guv’s job, Fashola, wins again. Thanks to him the plague called traffic in Lagos has been brought down a notch or two. Now I’m packing my stuff to go away for the rest of the week. Hopefully I’ll have something eventful to write about it when I get back. till then, do have a great week everyone!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Just voted! Yaaaay!

Phew! Just got back from the first segment of the voting process, accreditation. It was blissfully simple, quite unlike the shoving and unruly mayhem I envisaged. Everyone was orderly and the unruly thugs I half expected to turn up and disrupt things were nowhere to be found. Oh, and even better news. On my way back, I met one of the estate officials and asked her what was to become of the rubbish heap that was dredged up from the drainage ways and their disposal. To my delight she informed there were already plans for a tipper truck to come on Monday to cart them away. Humble pie has never tasted so good. My apologies to my wonderful estate and her officials; we have shown ourselves to be a breed apart from the norm!
I finally got to vote in the second segment of the voting process at about a quarter past one pm after spending just forty five minutes in the queue. I feel so chuffed (pleased with myself) being the first time I’ve ever voted in my life – don laff! The last time I tried to do so was when I was nineteen and was turned away on the basis that I looked underage (fifteen) despite my spirited protests. The fact that I didn’t have any id on me didn’t do much to help my case.
Anyway whichever way the votes swing, I will eternally be satisfied that I actually took an active role in making a statement regarding how I want my future in this country as its citizen even if it’s just in a little small way. I’m also proud of the way the elections were conducted on the grounds – free of harassment and peaceful, even heavily pregnant women were relaxed at the venue. Much kudos to the Nigerian government for a job well done – so far. Let’s wait and see. Have a great Sunday everyone!

Friday, April 15, 2011

On the Go!

A good day to everybody! Not much to report today except that I’m rushing off to the island to shoot the last bit of the Damage movie. I’m rather nervous at the moment because tomorrow’s the voting day for the presidential candidates and I intend to make it back home tonight so I can vote tomorrow in my area where I registered. What I am not sure of is whether there will be a restriction of movement starting tonight or whether it commences tomorrow because I don’t want to come across any stony faced group of soldiers assuming every late motorist is a potential political thug. I also hope there won’t be any harassment or fight breaking out where I’m going to vote tomorrow, or anywhere in this country for that matter. It’s bad enough having to stand in the queue for hours on end in the blazing sun waiting to have my thumb stained.

Oh well, pray for me everybody and for those of us who live here in Nigeria, and have registered to vote, see you at the grounds tomorrow! Have a great day everyone!

Thursday, April 14, 2011


I just found out the meaning of the ‘word’ lwkmd two days ago! I’m so excited! You people will not understand. I have seen that voweless abbreviation everywhere on social network boards and have spent countless seconds trying to figure out the meaning of the cryptic message known only to the initiated. I have tried everything from “laughter won’t kill my(I couldn’t figure out the ‘d’) to “love weekend, knowsay me down”, I never for once suspected it the code would be in Pidgin English – “Laff wan kill me die”! Non Pidgin speakers should be able to figure out the meaning. If you still want the translation in English, try “I have heard that laughter is the best medicine but this?!” I don’t care what anyone says, I have just added another feather to my cap. One never knows when it may come in handy. I could be stranded on some desert island and have just a chance to send an SOS, then I’d replace the code with HWKMD to buttress the severity of the situation, hoping that someone who’s read this post is at the command console. I’m sure you lot can figure the ‘H’ bit out. Hello everybody! Forgive me for hardly but I have to get on before I lose what’s in my head to write. Nigerians will not kill me, not in this life nor the next to come! Listen.
Recently, in a drive to create a safer and cleaner environment in our estate, we, the inhabitants decided to put up money and erect security gates at both ends of the estate, hire night security guards to patrol the estate at night, mount street lamps and finally, clear the drain ways, otherwise known as ‘gutter’ in Naija. All projects have been completed except the last which is somewhat in progress as I write. The drain ways have been dredged and driving down my little estate, heaps of blackened earth can be observed lying along the sides of the gutters in long rows broken only by concrete slabs on which vehicles are driven by their owners into their compounds. The work had gone on for two days and they finished on Tuesday the day before yesterday. On noticing that no move was being made to cart the rubbish away, my neighbour asked some of the labourers when they were going to dispose of the mess to which they replied that they were only contracted to dredge and not dispose and walked off. Some things are simply beyond my comprehension. It is like cleaning a house of all its rubbish, pile the rubbish in a corner and watch while it is being kicked about the house to spread the filth all over again. We, my neighbours and I then paid them to clear the heap in front of our building in the hope that the adjoining houses would take our cue and do the same.
I came back this afternoon to find the men diligently shovelling wet earth into waiting wheelbarrows. I smiled to myself, said a hearty hello to them and made to buy some biscuits in a nearby shop. One of the men hoisted one of the barrows up, his face tense as his bare shoulder and arm muscles strained with the effort. He finally got the single wheel rolling and my eyes followed him to wondering how far he would be able to push the heavy vehicle before stopping to rest. Pushing that load out of the estate was not going to be an easy feat. I didn’t have long to wait; he staggered all the way to the building next to mine, complete with its dull black wet heap in front, and dumped his load right in its mass! Una no go kill me! Nuff said. See you tomorrow. Nkem, two days to go!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Hello guys! A great week or weekend to everyone! Would you believe it?!! It is two years last week that my blog started! I don’t know what to say. What I can say though is that I find it hard to believe that I have actually had a thing or two to write about in that space of time. What this means is that I may actually have something to write about or I may at the end of the day be a closet chatterbox. Seriously, if I had known that I would have had to come up with something almost every week of the year, I’d have chickened out of the project. This is where I offer my very hearty thanks to my beloved manager Nkem who trusted her instincts from the very first email I sent her. Even now I’m in her black books for not striking the hot iron to herald my binniversary(?) – I knew the computer would have a problem with this word – it already has that ugly red error line underneath it. Fine, my blog’s second anniversary.

The events in the past week have reminded me of a proverb my late dad told me once. I’ll write it in Igbo first. O bu mgba mgba, ka o bu okpo okpo? O bu ya ka nwanyi ji ukwu dimkpa gbaa n’ala! Don’t you just love my language? Okay, it translates thus: should I wrestle her or should I punch her? That’s how the woman hurled the great man to the ground! I can almost see the dazed expression on your faces, especially Nkem’s. I’ll explain.

A renowned wrestler in a community once had a sore disagreement in the marketplace with a woman who was so furious with him she challenged him to a fight. Incredulous, he stared at her and scornfully accepted the challenge. As she circled him in the centre of the spectators that were quickly gathering around them, he stood arrogantly declaiming his dilemma to everyone. How was he to deal with this upstart? He had broken the backs of renowned wrestlers from other villagers and here was this mere woman come to challenge him. How was he to deal with this situation? What tactic was he to use? If he boxed her, she’d probably expire from just a blow to the head! If wrestling, he could turn her into a paraplegic just by hurling her to the ground. As he stood there pondering aloud his dilemma to everyone with an ear, the woman rushed at him , grabbed him by the ankles, pulled with all her might and sent him crashing to the ground! In the Igbo culture, if during a fight one’s back is thrown to the ground, that one is vanquished regardless of how badly beaten the opponent may be. Suffice it to say the woman carried the day. A lesson in indecision.

You guys should by now know I love my culture dearly; it’s also one of the reasons I still mourn my dad’s passing till today; I missed out on a lot of things I could have learnt from him before he left – stuff I would have shoved down your throats and everyone else’s who’d give me a listening ear. Frieda calls me a dinosaur because I use proverbs that 'make' no sense whatsoever when I use them to summarise a point I’m making. You see, proverbs are the spice with which we season words. Like stew to white or even jollof rice, or gravy to mashed potatoes and steak, or afang soup to pounded yam are proverbs to speech.

All this rigmarole is just to tell you that I had so much to write about in the past weeks I couldn’t make my mind up on what to write about as it’s always rewarding to get feedback from you guys.- yes, we crave love too. O bu mgba mgba ka o bu okpo, is what has put me in trouble with Nkem for not hammering out the maiden post of my blog’s second anniversary last week. I will be decisive and choose okpo for my next post. For my punishment I’ve been compelled, against my better judgement, to put out a post everyday for the next four days. I am being pushed to the edge, of the stream, here. Let’s see who will drink that murky water! Have a great week everyone!