Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A note of Indignation

Happy new week once again guys. This week is in much a lighter mood than the last but no less serious. I had a great week working on the Tinsel set where everything actually works except the pay. I had a green room all to myself and even though sparsely furnished with just a reading desk, chair and bed, oh and an ugly industrial fan, was just great! It was nice to just have one’s privacy to be alone with one’s thoughts and well, much else. The fuel scarcity has been biting and I sometimes wonder if it’s being brought on artificially.

One very bad fault I have is the ability to express my anger inappropriately at times. I went for lunch on completing one of the scenes in the spa. It had been a grueling scene where I’d spent most of the time standing on my feet for hours on end until it was time for lunch. I got to the canteen and joined a long queue waiting to be served. For some reason the line remained the same even after five minutes, which is an agonizing eternity when you have a growling tummy and are looking at steaming tureens of food; until, with some frustration I called out to the supervisor to do something about the people shunting the queue. The quickest solution to the problem the man could see was to serve me right away. Nigeria!.. I told him that that was not the point because doing so would be cheating the people in front of me.

Actually, I was itching to give him the plate but I had been chatting with two pretty temps who were standing in front of me and so I was ‘compelled’ to be the beacon of chivalry. On getting to my turn the servers told me that the food I’d had my eyes on had run out! I was so furious I didn’t know what to say. I just left them there and went to sit down at the table to collect my thoughts. They brought the same dish to my table and implored me to accept it but I refused it and left so as not to attract further attraction to myself. Different thoughts ran through my mind. Should I go and report the matter to the line producer and put the supervisor in trouble or just throw a tantrum, refuse to leave my green room and look like a diva? I decided to quietly go and order a meal from some fast food joint in the neighbourhood to sate my gnawing hunger pangs until I realized I didn’t have any cash on me. The cash I’d come out of the house with earlier in the day was in a jerry can in the boot of my car for use to fuel my car back home. I had just sent one of the production assistants to buy fuel for me at the black market owing to the prevailing fuel scarcity. I was now in a quandary. I was damned if I did and damned if I didn’t.

Tears of hunger stung my eyes; the kind that just gather at the corner of the eyes near the bridge of the nose. They just hang there and don’t drop even if you blink. I had the kind of hunger that makes ones tummy wring like a rinsed out family towel and when you walk, your feet point inwards. The kind that makes you focus on a target to walk to and make for in a determination not to get distracted. When someone really important calls you, you don’t turn immediately; you stop, get your bearings, turn slooowly and keep mute. I think what aggravated it so acutely was the fact that I had all of pride, indignation, uncertainty and hunger raging in me at the same time. I finally reached my room and sat on the chair at the desk and thought about what to do next; with no cash on hand I probably wasn’t going to eat till I got home. Or maybe the offending miscreants would appear at my doorstep with groveling apologies and a meal. I decided to wait for the apology even if it didn’t come with the meal, at least I’d have the relief of having my anger assuaged. I waited, and waited and waited. Several times footsteps came close by, and went by. I had to think of a way of getting myself out of an impending ulcer. I took out my laptop and began to write. As I wrote exactly how I felt my gnawing passions began to abate. A slow smile began to spread across my face as I stood further and further away from my predicament by putting words to my persecution. Not long after a friend dropped by to inquire after my well being and complain about the pittance he was being paid to sew costume for part of the production. It was not long before I was in high spirits chatting away with him.

We wrapped up for the day a few hours later and I resolved matters with the supervisor who apologized for the lack of structure in place and promised to put things in place. At the parking lot I met an amiable acquaintance with whom I had worked on a project a year before. He had come to look for a job and even though he still had his characteristic cheerful attitude, there was a quiet desperation about him. He was leaving as well and asked if I could give him a lift home since he was going my way. I said yes and asked him to assist me in putting fuel in my car from the jerry can in my boot. On our way he began to tell me what the real situation with him was. He’d lost his three year old son and everything he owned in a house fire only a month before. His wife had been badly burned trying to rescue their son and had just been discharged from the hospital. He recounted how his son died in his arms in the hospital. It was all I could do to concentrate on the mercifully sparse traffic around me as he told me how his son kept crying out in pain and calling out for him. He had a wry smile on his face as he spoke. There were clearly no tears left in him. I was speechless. Even my worst enemy would I not wish such a calamity to befall let alone this wonderful young man seated beside me. I have rarely felt so foolish in my life. Here I was sulking about poor service, a meal I didn’t like and inadequate recompense and another was struggling to comprehend his near total loss while trying to pave the way forward for his remaining family. I couldn’t say anything except put myself in his position and wonder how I’d cope. I also thought about what had upset me so much earlier on and how it compared miserably to his situation. I dropped him off, gave him what assistance I could and still couldn’t find any appropriate words to condole him with.

In summary, I find that life is a journey round a bend; you never know what’s coming round the bend at you. It is all valleys, mountains and plains. We have been equipped with the emotions to cope with the terrain. When one has occasion to be happy, one should be happy and enjoy it. When angry, one should express it and let it go, not dwell on it. When grieving or one feels like crying,one should do so. Let the pressure valve release the grief and sadness and clear the way for your system to keep functioning properly. That’s probably why women live longer than men. Let’s live life to the full, keep things in perspective, and let’s have a wonderful week everyone!


  1. "I had the kind of hunger that makes ones tummy wring like a rinsed out family towel and when you walk, your feet point inwards"...lol...
    sorry oh...

    Sorry about the young man's little boy...life!

    I love ur summary...very well said...

  2. This is really interesting and I can see that Nigerian actors are moving out of the stereotypical and traditional role of acting that ends on screen or stage. Keep this up!

  3. on point k!
    thanks for sharing.
    Life trully is a CHALLENGE !
    I'm not going to start about Niger's problems.... could go on and on...
    a few selfish people making ''living'' almost impossible in a vastly blessed nation.
    God bless Nigeria!!

  4. Although i agree that there's always someone else who has worse woes, (it serves as perspective), it doesn't mean our own feelings aren't legitimate. The trick is to be at peace with one's own emotions no matter what they are and strive to resolve them in a manner that is beneficial to everyone and for the greater good

  5. Very impressive write up, thump up Kalu, you are just a bunch and loads of creativity, keep keeping our eyes glued and always be there to give us something to look forward to.

    Wish i had seen your face at the rage of the hunger and bitterness,(ROTFLMAO) would have been lovely u know, not just seeing only the gorgeous face on the screen ,but also the other side of your look.

    You were crying you had no shoe until you saw someone without leg!!.... Thats life for all, full of it challenges and comes in it's kind.

    What a fate!!? i feel his pain, his agony,fustration and hopeless life, but at the dark of every tunnel, always comes a shinning light. Let him keep Hope alive and have Faith in God.

  6. Mmmmm...u know, av experienced that kind of hunger too. hey! u're light skinned! meeen! it would av been a great movie to see ur hungry/angry green face...

    but...i find ur situation control most impressive. uve managed to tell us a lot about ur personality and ur good heart. well done K.

    so sorry 'bout ur friend. lost my mom last year so i guess i know how it hurts. we cried in silence. Reason? we are all girls!... who's going to hold my dad if we are somewhere weiling? anyway, we all pulled through by God's Grace and so will ur friend. he's still got his solemate and with faith and petient, God will raise them both from those ashes to greater heights. ur little show of concern and affection will give him more healing than ur words can ever give.

    like i said, uve got a good heart K... and a firm grip on ur pen. lovely piece.

  7. What have I done that you're trying to kill me with laughter today ehn?lol!On a serious note though,my heart goes out to your colleague and his wife,so,so sad...:-(

  8. what a lovely story,my eyes was full of tears when reading about ur friends story(how his son kept crying out in pain and calling out for him) but u just have to kn that life is a full of upside down. remember god said that in any situation u find urself we should give thanks to him weather good or bad, but my heart goes to ur friend's family.i pray that god will make a way for his family and u keep on doing the good work and god will see u thru.

  9. U sure know how to capture the imagination of ur readers.but u handled that hunger/angry feat far better than most people would have...

    Sorry 'bout ur friend... God will see them through and lift them from the ashes of their ruins to his Glory for all to see. ur encouraging gestures am sure has worked more than any words u might have been searching to give.

    u've got a good heart and a strong grip on the pen K. A nice "Note" indeed.

  10. Hey Kalu, I just kinda stumbled upon ur blog. I saw "The Wrong Woman" on Friday and just like the previous erm, dare I say, 5 times I had seen the movie, I was very pleased...and enjoyed it like it was my very first time.

    Readn thru this, i lafffff taya! U r funny Kalu! But what I appreciate most about this particular write up is the warmth and trueness of ur kindheartedness conveyed in the words that describe how u felt about ur friend's misfortune. I pray God in His infinite mercies grant him much strength to deal with the pains of the present and bless him with the gift of a promising and fulfilln future for him and his!

    Thnx 4 sharn Kalu.. Have a happy Thursday...

  11. "Actually, I was itching to give him the plate but I had been chatting with two pretty temps who were standing in front of me and so I was ‘compelled’ to be the beacon of chivalry."

    Very funny hahahahaha!

    On the other hand this is a great blog about putting things into perspective. being told something sobering like that can really make you rethink previous actions and make you really grateful for what you do have.

  12. That was a very thought provoking narrative from your daily journal. It was funny, then it was sad. I especially enjoyed the moral of your story. It was definately words to abide by .... as long as we live!

    Please post more.....

  13. i totally love this piece.

    Yes, women are so emotional, lol, but i believe being able to control your emotion is the true art. Knowing when to release your anger and knowing when to put it in check or better yet WHERE to release your emotions. people never see me cry or angry, those emotions are for me and my bedroom. lol. To stop crying, i always remind myself that they are others out there that have it worse, no matter the reason for my tears, i always count myself lucky to be able to arise from certain situations.

    again, love your piece.

  14. now i know you were being modest when you said you were not quite confident of your writing skill which you so evidently possess and wield like an extension of your self but better because you are in charge. way to go!!!
    lovely piece your use of words is so on point. let me say you have "away with words".florence

  15. Great writing.Grand blog!May Gods grace rest on that friend of Urs and on You too.

  16. hi......
    just went thru yr note and to be honest it made me chuckle a few times but i didnt actually LOL....the truth of the matter is what u experienced dat particular day is a form of injustice dat goes on every day in our society....fortunately for you..d supervisor apologised to you..though dat did not actually satisfy your hunger...i'm sure it went a long way to reduce the extent of your anger...
    personally,i believe you got that apology because of who u are and dat is in no way a bad thing...u worked hard to become you......

  17. hmmmm....leave one thinking about what is really important in life, nice one.