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#Dear Future Husband

 My one&only husby,

I’m hoping you read this but even if I haven’t met you, I know I will soon. We’ve all been waiting for you for a while now. What’s keeping you? Was your flight delayed or are you too busy making our millions? My aunties keep asking, my mum keeps praying and even my father has a look in his eyes these days like “Oh girl, how far? Wetin dey happen?” I used to tell them you were on the next bus coming into town but then I realised that my future husband would have a car and not just one of those that went toh-toh-toh with thick exhaust fumes and body-odor laced wind-conditioning. Also he would not be a johnny-just-come so brothers in the village or who recently moved to town please do not see me in a vision or ask pastor about me.

My dear husband, tribe is not important but surnames are important. I don’t want our kids teased in school. If you cannot pronounce your own surname without gulping air, I suggest you get a new one. Also if your parents named your nephew Victory-over-satan or Hygienius please inform them that they will not be naming our kids. I heard about a woman whose Mother-in-law gave her kids horrible tribal marks while she was at work. May I inform you that if that ever happens, I will sue! I want bright kids so if you are an average-joe, I suggest you up your game and get a Ph.D so you don’t have to lie to your children that you came first in school.

Smelly, hairy arm-pits are disgusting, I want to be able to smell your pheromones without choking. I like CK euphoria, please make it your primary scent, especially when you want me to give you some after a long day…it makes me all warm inside! I hope you are not one of those men who don’t flush toilets. Your shit ain’t one of the seven wonders of the world and I couldn’t care less if it took you ten minutes to get it out. I will not applaud the feat and the sooner it’s forgotten the better for us all. If in your single days, you and your friends thought it amusing to entertain yourselves with fart of different sounds, duration and concentrations, please note that I am royalty and such behaviour will be severely frowned at. Boxers should not be recycled unless I am out of town! Any funky smell whatsoever would land you sleeping on the couch! And if you think an Al Qaeda beard or a body hairy like a bear is cool or you have to wear boxers a size larger to accommodate all the hair in there and you think it is sexy, then obviously you must have used jazz to get me and I must warn you that my mother is a pastor and I will not visit you in Yaba-left when you finally go mad as punishment for casting a smell um I mean spell upon me!

Now I’ll be second wife to only one entity, football. Not because I’m so crazy about the game but because I figure you can’t cheat and watch football at the same time. So your attachment to your team is inversely proportional to your straying. Yes, about straying…I know you’ll be a CEO or a senior manager one day but my dear husband, female secretaries and PA’s with boobs are a no-no. I also don’t think a house girl is ideal but since I don’t want a house boy molesting my girls, I’m considering hiring a 42 year old female day time house-keeper. Not that I don’t trust you boo but nobody leaves meat around for the dogs to learn self-control with. Also if we are driving by or surrounded by women, I expect you to have tunnel-vision and I should be the only light at the end of your tunnel. I’ll ask you if I’m hotter than Halle Berry every once in a while and knowing how smart and peace-loving the man I married is, his answer will always be an enthusiastic ‘Yes!’.
You are allowed to enjoy your beer though I will not tolerate drunken displays, you are no longer a teenager. If you come home late at night with stale beer-breath and expect me to kiss you without throwing up in your mouth, please make use of the Listerine in the bathroom before any amorous attempts. I do not condone smoking and I can sniff out cigarette smoke a mile away. I really don’t care about it killing your lungs, you are an adult and if you choose to make me a widow early in life, that’s your choice but permit me to remarry. The reason I will not stand you smoking around me is that secondary smokers die first, so if you plan to kill me off, do it in a more ingenious way rather than making me die a long painful death in cancer’s cold grip!
Please be warned that my uncle’s an AIG and so if you are presently a swindler, yahoo-boy or gambler I will hand you over to him without remorse and never bring you food or come see you in jail. I cannot have police coming to my house with search warrants. Have you seen a house after the police search it? It takes days to get it back in order not to mention the neighbors’ gossip. We are a good christian family and I’d like to keep it that way, who knows you may be deacon one day!

Where staying out late is concerned, please make sure you take your key and if you expect any late night loving or a listening ear for your alcohol-induced excited chatter, please come home before midnight. When we argue please do not storm out of the house. Be warned that I’d have locked the door prior to a fight if I notice you are one of those men who run when mad. I don’t want you driving into a tree and killing yourself before I have a chance to apologize and tell you how much I love you. I hear you men like to storm off and head to a beer-parlor where you can drink your beer and calm yourself down when angry. Well honey, there’ll be beer in the fridge and we have a parlor, I won’t intrude, knock yourself out! Please remember that we are on the same team and that the sun must not go down on our anger. Please always remember to fight fair. I will not call you names or bring up a list of your past faults and I don’t expect you to do so either. Also do not under any circumstances hit me or even push me. I am your woman and I bruise easily. I know I did not marry a coward cos what other sort of man would hit a woman? Remember I may be irrational, impulsive and impatient sometimes but you are still my protector. Don’t make me learn karate!!!

Please do not be a one to three-minute-man. I will not fake the big ‘O’ so that you know when exactly you are not getting it right. I will try most things but draw the line at bizarre. I know men are useless after *** but please muster up enough strength after I tire you out to cuddle me and call me those beautiful names that make me blush before you doze of and try not to snore, it ruins it for me and keeps me tossing and turning hours after you’ve made your grand entry into dreamland.

I will cook any and everything for you as I am an accomplished cook and I know that being a reasonable man, you will not err as long as I keep your tummy, ego and junior well satisfied but I would prefer you didn’t send me to the kitchen to make fufu, starch or groundnut soup. If you have a strong affiliation for those foods that cannot be satisfied with pounded yam and banga soup or eba and edikainkong or semo and egusi soup, I suggest we visit your mother from time to time so you can suck breast but much as I hate the above listed food, I will cook them all day, every day to keep my home. If you ever think the money you give me for food is too much, please know that you will be accompanying me to the market on my next trip for a feasibility study!

Please don’t think that because I haven’t listed the usual ‘ten things I want in a man’, I do not require them. I want a man who stands up for me, one who defends me 100% in public even if he’ll chastise me in private. I want a man who massages me after a long day and doesn’t think it unheard of to give me breakfast in bed more than once a year since I’ll be pampering him 363 days in a year. I want a man who knows how to handle my PMS in a compassionate and kind manner and is patient with my imperfections. I must warn you that I will not be a ‘Stepford-wife’ and I will get on your every last nerve once in a while but I will love you unconditionally, pray for you unfailingly, trust you implicitly, worry about you when you are sick, share all your burdens, take care of our children, stay awake till you come home at night, stay faithful even when you have a gut the size of china and need viagra the same way you need water and still be your number one fan. I’m your woman and I cannot wait for the first day of the rest of our lives….

Come quick!

Yours sincerely,

P.S: I wonder how much DHL will charge to find you and deliver this letter. Have a lovely night my husband, your unborn children say wassup…xoxoxo 😉


Posted by on May 23, 2011 in Hall of Fame, Relationships


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10 Signs That He Is Not Ready For Marriage!


Are you dating or about to date this hunk of a man and you are already choosing asoebi colors and dreaming of your dream wedding with yours truly? Slow your role babe, this seeming 10 yards of husband material may not be ready for marriage at all. It’s akin to making a baby king because he is next in line to the throne. A good man regardless of his background or assets needs to mature to the point where he personally wants to make the commitment to marry. This is regardless of his age or successes and forcing or cajoling him prematurely would only lead to disaster. So here are 10 signs that bobo is not going to be ready to get hitched any time soon and even if he says he is, you’d best be advised to give him small space to grow some!

1) He has just enough money to comfortably take care of one!

Every guy has a dream, a lifestyle he always wanted to live and if he is living the dream don’t immediately assume he is ready to get married. 200k a month is good money for a single guy, average money for a couple and barely enough for a family with kids. It’s all about perception (and number of mouths to feed)!

2) He wants to settle when he is a certain age (which is years away)

If he wants to marry at 35, nothing is going to change that. Not you, his new car, his posh apartment or the money in his bank account. Not even his parents could make him change his mind. Going into a relationship believing you can make him change his life goals is selfish and foolhardy and trust me if he does change his mind, you will get the memo!

3) He is a flirt

A guy who flirts, genuinely enjoys women and is definitely not ready to commit to one. Forcing him to settle down is like taking a kid to a candy store and forcing him to pick only one candy. It takes serious discipline and nine out of ten guys are labelled cheats and Yoruba demons by women who were trying to force monogamy out of a man who was only out to have fun. A man who is ready to settle down will most likely have had his fill and be much calmer.

4) He has no plan for his life

If your guy is barely holding his job together, has no future plans to speak of and is more concerned with clubbing, football, get rich quick schemes and fun in general, don’t fret- just know he isn’t ready. Trying to force him to grow up so you can quickly be his Mrs would most likely backfire. Every one matures at their own pace. He is doing alright by his standards and should be left alone to figure life out at his own pace.

5) He seeks constant validation from friends and family

The opinion of his family and close friends are the only voices in his head and they guide his every move. This dude is not his own man yet, he has absolute faith in the opinions of those nearest and dearest to him to the point that he is oblivious to subtle manipulations and subjects you to the will and whims of others irrespective of what you want.

6) He has odd ideals about marriage

Marriage has no handbook, every couple finds out what works for them and then create their own customised handbook. If he is rigid about his ideals and they are odd to say the least, he probably has a lot to learn about life and marriage and you should most likely sit this one out. So if you are a 21st century woman and he says stuff like a woman must not talk when her man is talking or she has to give the head of the family all her income every month or he never wants a house help and at the same time doesn’t believe men should ever help out around the house (even if the woman has a full time job), don’t succumb to a heated argument because your words won’t sway him instead he’d be judging you and cutting each yard of wife material away from you so just take a chill pill and leave him to figure things out in solitude.

7) All his friends are not married

If none of his friends are married, getting him to be the first to commit may be hard if it isn’t initiated by him. Men usually begin to think of settling down when one of their close friends or close male relatives takes the lead.

8) He still lives with his family (parents, sibling or other relative)

This is not absolute, but most men who are yet to get their first apartment (which is usually christened the bachelor pad and then thoroughly baptised) are far from ready to settle down. Unlike many women who dream that the first house they’d live in after their parent’s would be their matrimonial home, men dream of a seriously pimped out bachelor pad before the more sensible matrimonial home.

9) He is focused on some other non-marriage priority

Men are single-minded unlike women who can multitask so if your man is focused on his career or his job or his business or maybe just making money or some other priority like getting a degree, no matter how you hint, push or cajole he will stay focused and eventually see you as a distraction that he needs to cut loose from. If you can’t wait for him, keep it moving!

10) He is about to relocate

A man who is about to leave the country either for work, school or permanent residence is not going to be looking for anything serious before he leaves. He wouldn’t want anyone tying him down or putting undue pressure on him and would be excited about the possibility of meeting an exotic woman abroad so a man who is about to relocate, no matter how appealing he may be would most likely not be looking to settle down till he has settled in his new abode.

Of course it wouldn’t be real life if there weren’t exceptions to all of these warning signs. Sometimes a guy may just surprise you but babe, better to err on the side of caution so that you don’t get your hopes dashed to pieces by a good man who just wasn’t ready to settle.

Have a great night Chutzpah fam,

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Posted by on September 23, 2016 in Manology


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Perils and Pleasures of Dating after Thirty IV


Bunmi was sure Tito was the one.

Well it hadn’t been Kunle, Seun, Bariyu or Emmy so this was just a logical case of elimination!

Tito was the last man standing and she was basically tired of dating. All her friends were married with kids and she was tired of being the ‘aunty’. Most of her friends were no longer even called their names. They were either Mrs This or Mrs That or Mama Tolu or Mama Ngozi. She was tired of the match making too. She had been match made with every man there was, even her friends’ exes. Why God saw it fit to keep her single at thirty was hard to fathom.

The name calling wasn’t even funny. Old cargo, akugbe, big girl, older woman in fact sooner or later they’d be referring to her as ‘elderly’. Geez. Thank God for Tito. Yea he wasn’t faithful but at least he was fine, successful, hard-working and ready to settle. The thing was for some reason he hadn’t put a ring on it despite the fact that she had only agreed to date him because he had said he was ready for marriage. Naija men could teach the devil a thing or two about telling lies geez!

Now she had devised a plan. She named it OPERATION P.A.R.O.I (Put A Ring On It). It was just too bad that her sidekicks Amaka and Fikayo were not in support. Well they would be sorry when she sold them aso ebi at the end of the year. Tito didn’t stand a chance. He would be begging to be her husband by the time she was done.

She had eliminated the competition and that was just the beginning. Next on her agenda was to get him to announce her to the world. She was talking bbm, Facebook, instagram, his office, his church, his extended family. Tito’s birthday was around the corner and she had a plan…

She knew his younger sister was getting married next month but he was yet to invite her and seeing as she was his only sister, she knew all his friends were going to be there and the wedding would get great social media coverage, now she had to find a way of getting herself not only invited but decked in family asoebi. She picked up her tablet and scrolled through Tito’s Facebook page till she found his sister on his friend’s list. She added her on Facebook and then sent her a message.

“Hi dear,
This is Tito’s girlfriend Bunmi. Congrats on your upcoming wedding dear. Tito and I are so excited. I bought you a really lovely Marc Jacobs reception dress with shoes to match. I hope you haven’t gotten a reception dress yet, I was hoping you and I could meet up for dinner one of these days so I can give it to you, I know you will be mad busy in a couple of weeks as the D-day draws closer. Please don’t tell Tito I contacted you, he wants to introduce me formerly at your wedding, I just needed to give you this early wedding present. Buzz me soon.

She read it, smiled and pressed ‘send’ before she had a re-think. She hoped the girl would come with asoebi so she wouldn’t have to bring it up. Meanwhile she had a phone call to make.

“Hi dearie”
“You know how I said I would one day need that favour you promised?”
“Bunmi Kai what do you need?”
“Don’t worry I know you can deliver. I need a Marc Jacobs dress with a pair of shoes to match for a wedding. Actually the bride’s second dress and I want it to be fabulous.”
“You are getting married? *screammmm”
“No not yet hon, it’s for my future sister in law”
“Are you sure you wanna spend that kinda money because I am looking at the perfect ensemble and it costs 6 figures”
“Great, I will take it on credit. Ask your girl to wrap it up and send to my office today”
“We don’t sell on credit madam”
“And that’s the favour you owe me. A size 8 dress and size 6 shoes BTW. Thanks hon, kisses”

I cut the phone before Amina could change her mind. I knew she would deliver. She owed me big time. I was the only one on this planet who knew that her precious son did not belong to her precious husband. I was great at keeping secrets and she knew that.

Now I know you are wondering how I knew Tito’s sister’s sizes? Well I have a penchant for that sort of thing and I had some help. Apparently the babe loves to shop online and I read some of her comments on fashion pages on Facebook where she kept asking if they had the dress in size 8 or the shoes in size 6. Omo, people had their entire lives on social media nowadays…

3 hours later.

“Dear Bunmi,
You really must be Tito’s best kept secret. I am so excited he has a serious girlfriend now. Here’s my BlackBerry pin, 26ba77f. Add me on bbm so we can chat more, I don’t do Facebook so often. Can’t wait to see the dress. I know you haven’t been introduced formally to the family but I am gonna keep 6 yards of asoebi for you at no extra cost.
Take care dear,

Bunmi grinned. By the time she was done, Tito would have no idea what hit him. She thought of the 120k she owed Amina and dialed Tito’s number.

“Hi baby”
“Hi dear, how are you?”
“Not too good hon, I am in a bit of trouble. I need 120k urgently to pay for something but my salary isn’t coming till the end of the month and I am totally broke. Please help me baby, I will pay you asap.”
“Babe you know I would have loved to help you but with my sister’s wedding coming I am so cleaned out right now”
“Please Tito, I wouldn’t ask you if it wasn’t important. Please I have no one else to turn to, besides you know you owe me after you cancelled the Ibadan trip…”
“…sigh. OK babe, will see what I can do”
“Thanks dear, love you and to show my appreciation I am gonna make you your favorite amala and ewedu soup with ogufe and guess what’s for dessert?”
Tito laughed a naughty laugh and then she made kissy sounds over the phone before hanging up.

She wished he was that malleable where putting a ring on her finger was concerned. Anyway her plan was bound to work. That evening just as she was leaving work, she got the credit alert. They were her very best type of text messages. Tito had come through for her. She used the mobile banking app on her phone to deftly transfer the money to Amina.

She smiled…mission accomplished and this was just the beginning…

…To be continued


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When doctors weep…

The past couple of weeks have been a turbulent one for the medical profession in Nigeria as 788 doctors were issued queries and then sacked as a result of a strike action that resulted from futile dialogue with the Lagos state government over its failure to keep its side of an agreement signed by both parties more than a year ago.

We’ve heard the patients and concerned citizens air their views. Doctors have been largely misrepresented by the media according to Dr. Y who believes one of the medical association’s biggest problems is those we select to represent us (hence the losing PR battle). Doctors need to be heard and here’s what some doctors had to say:

Dr. D, an NMA spokesperson said; “Bola Ahmed Tinubu was part of the government team that signed an agreement with Lagos doctors last year, Fashola should honor the agreement. FYI, Lagos judicial workers earn more than Federal judicial workers. Fashola must be a Governor of all not a group”

Dr. IN, a Lagos state doctor has this to say: “The consolidated medical salary scale (CONMESS) was the salary structure designed by the Federal Government four years ago with the aim of providing a uniform salary scale for doctors irrespective of the state, kind of hospital and area of specialization with an annual increment denoting years of experience. Most states in the country immediately began paying CONMESS in full. Two years after this, the medical guild wrote several letters to the Lagos Government to remind them of CONMESS as they were yet to be paid. The governor then SIGNED an agreement that he would commence payment in 2011 with arrears being owed. The Federal Government made it clear that if CONMESS was paid, doctors would ignore the poor work conditions, work extended hours like they have been accustomed to (but this time they would be happy doing it) and they wouldn’t have to leave the country to work abroad. More people would be encouraged to train as doctors and the health of the people would be secured! Instead, tax was increased, CONMESS was not paid, work conditions were not improved, doctors’ lives were lost to stress related illnesses and medical hazards and call rooms were not provided for doctors on call. When Governor Fashola was reminded in January, he simply said the President couldn’t dictate how much he would pay doctors in his state and the tax increase was necessary so the doctors should get used to it! He said he couldn’t afford to pay CONMESS (but he could plan the most expensive birthday party in the World for Alhaji Tinubu). We then embarked on a legal 3-day warning strike with prior notice to sensitize the people and remind the government of the signed agreement. On resumption, all doctors were given individual query letters (for a joint action!), another one was issued, and then letters were issued for “call to panel / impending dismissal from duty”.  A week later, armored tanks were brought to all Lagos General Hospitals and Teaching Hospital Lasuth, Ikeja with doctors walked out of their clinics while seeing patients. The Med guild immediately called for an indefinite strike and the Lagos state government was sued for breach of agreement and victimization of doctors. Fake pay slips were published in the papers some weeks ago claiming doctors were being paid as much as 900,000 whereas a medical professor of 20 years has never been paid as much as 500,000. A Neurosurgeon (brain surgeon) consultant still collects 171,000 as basic salary (excluding allowances). Be informed we have only about 20 in Nigeria (Two of them with Lagos state, they trained in America and they have both been sacked!) and these are doctors who work round the clock due to the number of head injuries daily as a result of road traffic accidents. 3 days ago, we were issued sack letters and 97 doctors (not 373 like you heard) were employed as Locum doctors (doctors paid per hour). These locum doctors need residents and consultants to put them through. It takes years of experience to perform a caesarian section on a woman or a brain surgery (especially bore hole to relieve increased brain pressure or blood in the brain) or an appendectomy or treat a sick child or even to help a mentally ill patient. The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) has made it clear that the newly appointed doctors should not & would not accept the job offer and that all doctors across the nation would join in the strike against victimization on Friday after the ongoing professional exams. The issue is now beyond CONMESS struggle – the government is aiming to devour the medical and dental profession. Be informed that doctors are not slaves, our Hippocratic oath explains that we owe an obligation to our patients and they owe an obligation to us and our services must be paid for.”

This is the Hippocratic oath that binds doctors all over the world:

‘I swear by Apollo, the healer, Asclepius, Hygieia, and Panacea, and I take to witness all the gods, all the goddesses, to keep according to my ability and my judgment, the following Oath and agreement:

To consider dear to me, as my parents, him who taught me this art; to live in common with him and, if necessary, to share my goods with him; To look upon his children as my own brothers, to teach them this art; and that by my teaching, I will impart a knowledge of this art to my own sons, and to my teacher’s sons, and to disciples bound by an indenture and oath according to the medical laws, and no others. I will prescribe regimens for the good of my patients according to my ability and my judgement and never do harm to anyone. I will give no deadly medicine to any one if asked, nor suggest any such counsel; and similarly I will not give a woman a pessary to cause an abortion. But I will preserve the purity of my life and my arts. I will not cut for stone, even for patients in whom the disease is manifest; I will leave this operation to be performed by practitioners, specialists in this art. In every house where I come I will enter only for the good of my patients, keeping myself far from all intentional ill-doing and all seduction and especially from the pleasures of love with women or with men, be they free or slaves. All that may come to my knowledge in the exercise of my profession or in daily commerce with men, which ought not to be spread abroad, I will keep secret and will never reveal. If I keep this oath faithfully, may I enjoy my life and practice my art, respected by all humanity and in all times; but if I swerve from it or violate it, may the reverse be my life.’

The original text of the Hippocratic Oath is usually interpreted as one of the first statements of a moral of conduct to be used by doctors. Being a doctor from ages past has always been an honorable profession. The doctors were not usually the wealthiest citizens but they and their families did not suffer untold hardship and they were revered. Many doctors in Nigeria die unsung, unable to provide for their families in their death, from diseases mostly due to medical hazards. Those alive and working can barely make ends meet and cannot substitute financial aid for the time and attention their families are deprived of. So what is a doctor’s reward in Nigeria? Or should we also join the queue for 70 virgins in heaven?

Dr. OF, a doctor working outside Lagos says: “Where I work, I have not gone on leave for 5 years because of the patients. No time to see my parents or siblings, attend burial of friends and relatives and weddings of close friends. I have lost many friends who think that I’m only pretending to be busy meanwhile I see patients every other day that can only be equated to church sessions. Many people cannot sit near a HIV positive patient, but these are the people, whose blood I put hands in everyday during surgery, and their blood splashes into my eyes, mouth and face yet I endure because I won’t abandon them to die. I risk my own life and my family’s life every day to care for others. What I get as hazard allowance monthly is only N5000!!!  If I ask my employer to keep an agreement to help me feed my family, is that too much to ask?”

Dr. B, a Nigerian medical doctor practicing in the US says; “Nigerians need to change their mindset, doctors have lost it all in Naija, from money to respect. The respect and pay of registered nurses (RN) in the US is unthinkable let alone doctors. In many instances you will have to downplay being a doctor because of the attention you get”

Dr. OO had this to say: “We live in a tribal society: ethnic tribes, religious tribes and in this case professional tribe, so I understand why non-doctors would find the fact that doctors should ever have a reason to go on strike repulsive and why doctors would find the lack of understanding from the general populace unbelievable. Like all polarized debates, people are leaning towards their gut instinct, which is hardly objective, but emotionally driven. The doctors’ association needs to get off the emotional debate because trust me statements such as “oh, I work too hard and earn so little” is never going to come out tops against sentiments like “my dad died yesterday because doctors were on strike.”  Looking at it in this manner, it becomes easier to understand why we are losing what Dr. F calls the “PR war” and why we are likely to lose future ones. As a doctor, I know first-hand what it is like to treat patients without light, giving injection drugs in the dark, putting myself at the risk of needle stick injuries far from the watching eyes of the public. I do it because, like the public, I care about your dad not dying even though I know you would never ask if a needle pricked me last night. I remember a particular incidence. We had an emergency, an unconscious pregnant woman with a blood pressure 280/220mmhg (severe hypertension) who was almost at term. She was unbooked and my call was almost over but I was available. Her husband had just 200 Naira on him. We had to operate on her within the next hour with no blood, no money and no drugs. But guess what? We did! That was the first time I had a needle stick injury because NEPA/PHCN was at their norm. Minutes later the air was filled with the cry of a pretty baby girl in the arms of a doting grandmother and father. In the background were the moans of a slowly rousing mother and then there was me with a pensive look on my face while awaiting the results of my HIV test. I was okay. Even though, I had worked overtime and had to be up to make work in the morning which was now 2 hours away, there was no complain, no feeling of accomplishment because in my “tribe” I was not unique. It is the story of 788 and thousands of other people I share a proud profession with. I got a gracious thank you from the family, a thankful smile from the now recuperating mother and a smiling appreciation from my parents when I narrated it to them. So to the “court of public opinion” we don’t just measure remunerations in cash only, we do in kind as well. I am sure I am a thousand “thank you” richer and a million “smiles” wealthier because of the job I do. Now all we are asking is that the LASG should match our generosity with trustworthiness and our patience with understanding.”

Today the punch newspaper announced that doctors in Federal Government Hospitals in Lagos State have begun an indefinite strike.

Dr. K summarizes the doctor’s plight in these words: “Back in the days the next to a nation’s president was the surgeon General…what do we have now? Back in the days doctors used to get accommodation for free or for cheaper prices now doctors are being evicted from the shams they call quarters. Back then you would never want to travel to America after medical school because you were entitled to a car and good pay but now doctors go to even Ghana where circumstances are better for doctors. Back then we had functioning hospitals but now we cancel surgeries week-in week-out because there are no sterile materials, no dependable power supply…”

Dr. T warns: “A government not sensitive to the health of its citizenry is like a walking corpse. Worse of all is the senseless approach to employ rookie doctors to fill in for consultants. I sympathize with the poor people of Lagos state, I pray for the doctors who have always left their families to take care of us despite the harsh conditions, I would advise Governor Fashola to have a rethink and reinstate the sacked doctors.”

There’s no citizen who hasn’t benefitted from health aid provided by a doctor. Doctors have served you tirelessly, thanklessly and in all manner of conditions both safe and extremely dangerous but these doctors are human too and if it has gotten to a stage where a strike is the only way the Government will pay attention to their cry then be angry with an uncaring government, be mad at a government that would frustrate one of the most important sectors of the economy while they fly their families overseas. Be mad at a government that will put the lives of its people in jeopardy. Be mad at a government that callously breaches legal agreements made with its workforce but please do not be mad at the doctors, they are the victims here. When a doctor weeps, his patients weep too…Fashola harden not your heart!

Have a great day people. xoxoxo


Posted by on May 18, 2012 in Hall of Fame, Health, Uncategorized


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Gay Nigeria?

The first time the average un-molested Nigerian is confronted with homosexuality is in secondary school at an age where gender confusion is common and sexual orientation may be blurred. Their only ammunition being what’s been taught on the pulpit by their spiritual leaders or the feelings of shame that accompany any expression of sexuality at that age. For many, experimentation is the driving force. It is usually outgrown, but for the few who don’t ‘outgrow’ a love for the same sex, they are faced with inner conflict, shame, religious crisis and a stigma even worse than the HIV virus.

I remember hearing about two Nollywood movies where homosexuality was the main theme and the general reaction to them was comical. The stars were bashed thoroughly and guys threatened to beat up one of the actors especially, for ‘enjoying’ his role a bit too much. Without doubt, Nigerians are homophobic!

Over the years I have read many stories. From the Nigerian boy in Germany who took a husband, to the few oddballs speaking up for gay rights in Nigeria who have been terrorised, some needing to seek refuge outside the shores of Nigeria, to the weekly City people gossip on what top-shot is gay or not in our society. Nigerians have embraced every part of the Western civilisation but deep down have crowned themselves better than the rest of the world since they have continuously resisted homosexuality. Does that truly make us better?

I’m not sure what the Islamic laws on homosexuality are but the Christians leave no question about it! Our God frowns at homosexuality. He sees it as despicable. If He came down to earth, He would first rain fire down on all the gay people and then the terrorists and probably the corrupt politicians stealing Nigeria’s money and then perhaps, if there was still some fire left, He would then throw a little spark at every other sinner in the world but really is that how He operates?

The bible says in James 2:10-11 ‘For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said, “Do not murder.”If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker…’
Why do people decide to isolate one sin and judge it with such hatred when for the most part every time that sin is brought up in the bible it is listed amongst an array of others ranging from fornication and pride to drunkenness and witchcraft? Yes, our religious sensibilities are insulted by the thought of homosexuality but have we ever stopped to wonder about the excuse it affords us to be cruel to another human being? Do we ever ask ourselves what would Jesus do if he walked amongst us? Surely he must have met some homosexuals in his time since the sin is as old as the city of Sodom, dating long before Christ was born.

The story of the adulterous woman is worthy of note. In John 8:7b Jesus said: ‘Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her’. In verse 11, He said neither do I condemn you… He never held back showing love to all those who were outcasts in society. He was accused of dining with sinners, walking with rejects and misfits and basically shunning societal norms but He demonstrated more love to these people than they had ever known. Matthew
7:1 says ‘Judge not that you be not judged’. Verse 3 says ‘Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye but do not notice the log that is in your own?’

For some reason, human beings seek validation by bringing into focus the sins of others. I believe it makes theirs seem a little less awful. As the world has been consumed with ‘righteous anger’ over these people, I sit back and wonder ‘where is the love?’. God hates sin-no doubt, we should too, but didn’t He send his only son to die on the cross for sinners? Would you, holy as you are, let your son die in the place of a criminal even if you knew you had the power to bring him back? I guess not!

Dear friend, who made you ‘the avenger’? When did we become bullies in the school yard who pick on those different from us? Are we any better than the Ku Klux Klan who used extreme violence to achieve their goals of racial segregation?
Homosexuality is not an illness so why the homophobia if you can’t catch it from them? If you fear you may be a target and hence justify being on the offensive, look at the mating ritual, a proposition is made to you, if you are not interested you decline and move on. It ain’t that hard. People have been jailed, brutalised, attacked, vandalised, assaulted, cussed at, shunned, criticised, stigmatised and murdered just because they were different. Why don’t you allow every man the opportunity to face his maker and account for the life he has lived? Why take matters into your own hands?

14 years in jail if you ask me is a bit harsh. Armed robbers walk free, corruption is swept under the carpet. Rape cases are dismissed. This issue is as old as time. As far as I’m concerned, all they were saying was keep being gay in secret, if you rub it in our faces, you go to jail! I’ve heard of stories of people who committed suicide because they couldn’t deny the feelings they had and I know that before these people ‘come out of the closet’, they struggle and struggle with these feelings, trying to suppress, deny, rebuke and reject them, very aware of the effect it would have on their lives. People around them have tried to save them, from prayers to ‘deliverance’ to psychotherapy to shock-therapy to forced marriage to forced sex with the opposite sex but all these people have gotten from the saving is a broken spirit and a scarred soul.

Nigerians have a right to refuse to pass a same sex marriage bill and I’m in support of that, if we condone it who knows what would be next, maybe a bestiality marriage bill may be the next topic, not to say that the two are comparable but becoming a wholly permissive society may not be in our best interest and it is our right to protect the moral standing of the nation and give our children a future not thoroughly exploited by New Age ideas but what is truly in our hearts? Are our hearts filled with trepidation and fear? Is there intense hatred in our hearts? People fear what they do not understand but surely it is not an excuse to be cruel. Jesus asked us to love our neighbours as ourselves. He didn’t add ‘except they are different from you or sinners!’. The British even threatened to sanction us and I smiled when I read this. We are no longer under their rule, without doubt we still need them but who died and made them king? In Nigeria’s defence and this is from a non-religious angle, we have always been conservative and guided by norms and traditions that the rest of the world would never understand. It is a taboo in our culture, I asked my friend’s grandpa who is ancient and he confirmed that. Commendably, Nigerians are becoming aware that not everything the world sells to us must be bought but isn’t it hypocritical that men love lesbians and have great fantasies of girl on girl action but shudder at any guy on guy action? Isn’t it saddening that men who believe they can cure a lesbian by raping her till she appreciates the supremacy of the male genitalia are allowed to go scot free? I read about some incidences in South africa and they were from a lesbian’s perspective and I shed tears for her because there’s never a reason to rape or assault another human being.

I am not condoning sin as my bible states that it is, but i have had my own personal struggles with other sins and I don’t see how judging or hating or discriminating someone else would atone for my seemingly lesser sins. I am a true Nigerian and it is ingrained in my genetic encoding that this act is taboo but all I’m really trying to say here is that our manner of approach is all wrong. There’s so much hatred and pain in the world already, why add some more to an overflowing cup? Are we speaking the truth in love? No religion gives you an excuse to be cruel to your fellow man. Because you offer a bit of kindness to a man in need doesn’t mean you partake of his sin or lifestyle. Let us be kinder and less judgemental. If your child confessed to be gay would you make it your life’s ambition to ‘cure’ him even if it killed him or would you save yourself the hassle and murder him like Marvin Gaye’s father did in ‘righteous rage’? or would your heart grow cold and cease to love him because of his sexual orientation? Don’t be a Pharisee! Heal the world. Love covers a multitude of sins, what would Jesus do?

For my friend T, who ‘gingered’ me to write on this highly controversial topic. 😉
Have a lovely day peeps…xoxoxo 😉 🙂 😉


Posted by on December 6, 2011 in Hall of Fame, Inspirational


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Plenty yarns…

Okay I pondered and scratched my head till my brazilian hair threatened to go Noble on me, wondering about the best way to apologise to my fans for going AWOL. I didn’t elope cos if I had, that would be gist exciting enough to waiver my misdeeds. I didn’t win the lottery or I’d have bribed you all but since my reasons for not blogging for weeks on end are all cliche and over-used, I’ll just apologise from the depth of my designer-clad heart. I love you guys and I’m sorry. In Wizkid’s voice ‘I swear my baby, I say no be lie…’ 🙂

So a lot has happened since the last time I blogged, so I’ll get right down to business…

Kim Kardashan asked for a divorce! After a ten million dollar wedding? What the heck?! Now I can’t decide if she’s a hard-hearted b***ch or if she’s a die-hard gold-digger. Some women give good women a bad name. If her man had done a Tiger Woods on her, we’d have totally understood the 72day-I-do! Anyway now she’s saying “I don’t” maybe she just loves weddings…after all, a divorce is an opportunity for a future wedding and this isn’t her first time. The search for Mr Perfect continues…Always the bride, never the wife…sheesh! 😉

Baba Suwe’s shit saga finally comes to a shitty end! Baba Suwe said he did the nasty 15 times and the NDLEA guys still didn’t get what they were looking for. I heard jazz was implicated. That jazz must be badass if it’s gonna get Baba Suwe the millions of naira he is suing them for. I pity the poor dudes that had to sift through the shit for evidence! I’d poo in a green bucket for that kinda money, butter-chick aside… 😉
Anyway I was amazed at how Nigerians followed the shit saga so closely… “Hey Baba Suwe, can I get ur ‘shitograph'” 😉

I’ve been called stale and I won’t lie that once in a while, I act like I’m from another century but here are 2 NEW and super cool things I just discovered. 1. I can download movies for free on my blackberry. 😉 I don’t care if you knew that ages ago and if you said ‘duh’, I would like to beg you to kindly hug transformer! 🙂 2. I can get a second twitter account for my alter-ego. @neetahblaq is my official twitter account and I tend to basically watch the stuff I put up cos there are tons of people who know who I am but @_a__y___t___s is all mine and I’m having tons of fun. Now I see why twitter is addictive. 😉 A million yen for the dude who catches me red-handed! 🙂

I was recently transferred to VI and walahi talahi, going from the Mainland to the Island everyday, twice a day just so you can be at work from 8-6 is gangster to say the least. To all who’ve been doing it since they were old enough to hustle, I hail you! Sometimes the traffic is so mad that I wonder if the drivers in front have fallen asleep. And the constant driving in the dark is awful not to mention the lack of sleep. Thank God for the public holidays of recent especially Sallah. Speaking of Sallah, my friend O was driving to Lagos when he saw a ram running for dear life, he was chased by an old man, a young boy and a shouting woman who could barely keep herself together as she clutched her wrapper and gele which hung loosely, threatening to make her just another ‘mad woman’ running by the wayside. All she could think of was the ‘star’ of her pot of soup running away and she wasn’t about to let her savings go amok besides how would she show Iya Salatu that her ram was bigger if the said ram did a Martin Luther King on her? Except for the deeply religious, regardless of sect, every Nigerian seems to be infected with the sallah meat craze. Sallah is reportedly the most generous festive holiday in Nigeria and sallah meat is mighty delicious. If your lips don’t smack excitedly and glisten with oil then you have not tasted ram! Barka de sallah to my muslim peeps… 😉

Congrats to my cousin T who tied the knot some weeks ago. What amazed me about her fairytale wedding was that her husband did her make-up for her. Benin men are highly versatile and metrosexual. My cousin was looking like BM pro had spent hours on her face. I think more men should take up the finer arts, it’ll save cost cos we women can never get tired of paying in kind! 😉 congrats luv.

I recently learnt the value of friendship and reconciled with one of my dearest friends in the whole world A. Life is short peeps and sometimes you never get a chance to say ‘I appreciate you’ or ‘I’m sorry’ or even ‘I love you’ to those you care for the most. Everyday people die, don’t wait till it’s too late. Some people don’t get second chances. And as for ‘A’ my friend, thanks for the sallah meat, travelling to Ogun state and back, battling ferocious traffic and evil pot-holes was well worth it! 🙂

I told you I had plenty gist! As I round up, I’d like to announce that I have decided to step up my game. Seriously I’m tired of feeling guilty every time a fan pings me to remind me to write. So I came up with a plan and I’m announcing this publicly so I’m forced to comply. Chutzpah fam, I’m gonna be writing articles 4 days a week. Menday (Monday) for Men, Sex, Relationships, Marriage and the bizarre, Newsday (Tuesday) for Nigerian politics, celeb gist and shocking news, Thursdays for my personal rantings and raving and Sundays for inspirational blog posts. Y’all can hold me to this! So help me God. (Shaking…)

Don’t forget you can advertise your products and services on our yellow pages…

Today is 11/11/11. Won’t even bother with the scary broadcasts, just remember to be thankful cos the God who has seen us thus far, will surely bring us safely into 2012!

Heavy D passed away some days ago. Loved his music…RIP. Here’s part of the lyrics of the one song I loved the most…

Trust me not too many fly like me,
Big dada says you admire me,
I be digging you a long time,
Wishing you was a friend of mine,
God bless, nothing less, give you more,
And all you’ve gotta do is tell me what you’re looking for,
Right, right… 😉
(hope I got the lyrics right, learnt the song in JS2)

Have a great night peeps, thank God it’s friday…xoxo 🙂 😉


Posted by on November 11, 2011 in Uncategorized


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Making your man give up his bone!

  Women seem to think that they can train their men like lab rats or a cute puppy that’s taught to sit and roll over in exchange for certain treats. We always have the best intentions. Wanting only the best for our significant others. After all if we are gonna be divas and the men are gonna be our better-halves then they have to be a whole lot better than average. And like real estate, getting a man who fits your exact criteria may be either impossible or just more than your resources can attract so we’ve all resorted at some point to purchasing the run-off-the-mill house and hoping with love, care and some choice prodding, we can revamp the house and bring it to its former glory. Sounds like a plan right?

Well what do the men have to say about this? Research shows that after nagging, behavioural modification (manipulation) is man’s second biggest phobia in relationships. The fastest way to send a man packing is to give him a healthy dose of phobia 2 wrapped in phobia 1’s unattractive package. Why do men resist change? A woman will re-invent her entire being if it would please her man. I know women who would give a chameleon a run for its money because their appearance and outlook undergo constant change as dictated by the men they date. I have been an Arsenal fan, a Man-U fan and a Chelsea fan and that says nothing of my taste in sports/football clubs but more of my taste in men and my eagerness to please. And in comparison, I must say I have had it good. Some women have gone beyond the edge of reason tryna to be ‘Stepford wives’ and while only a small percentage of women will resist changing to please the man they love, most men in contrast, expect you to love them for who they are and leave them exactly how you found them. Take my friend T for example. He waved a red flag immediately I started talking about taking him with me to church for weekday services and accused me of behavioural modification. T’s a well-grounded fella but the thought of having a woman control his affairs made him squirm. It took gentle female persuasion to make him relax. What is it about tryna make a man better that has him running out the door faster than you can say ‘Jack Robinson’? Is it just his ego or the fact that manipulation and control are deep-seated in the heart of behavioural modifications and are antonyms to the love they represent?

I’ve always been a woman on a mission and many times I’d get bored if I didn’t have an ailment to nurse in the relationship. Amongst my more memorable ones were saving an ex from potential lung cancer, saving another from potential hell fire and saving a phlegmatic ex from potential mediocrity. One thing these men had in common was their resistance to change. It was akin to a man refusing to be saved from a burning building. How could I be a superhero if my heart throb didn’t wanna be super-saved? Like all men, they wanted love, they wanted understanding but more importantly they wanted acceptance. Now one would rightly quote that men are like leopards who don’t change their spots and that you shouldn’t smell what you cannot eat but c’mon you must realize that at the start of a relationship every one puts their best foot forward and vices are often downplayed or hidden! Hence we are faced with a dilemma of sorts. How do you keep your man from running while you pimp him up? I had a friend O, who had a really great relationship till she decided her man had JayZ’s million-dollar potential but wasn’t ambitious enough and it was up to her to unearth this potential and push him towards high-reaching goals. The pushing finally scared him off. He felt she was hard to please and he’d never be good enough for her, yet all she was tryna do was be the strong woman behind her successful man. Tough luck huh?

So what’s the secret to making a man give up his bone? Is it possible? Is it easy? As easy as making a dog give up his bone one would say. But I know a girl and I’m sure y’all know a girl like her too. A super human who somehow transformed her man into a tailor-made, excellent finish, well-bred specimen and you’d be amazed what she had to work with in the beginning. So how did she do it?
What did the women who dated him before her do wrong? Could’ve been something or could’ve been absolutely nothing! Sometimes all your hard work may be for some clueless babe coming after you to enjoy. Annoying innit? After my last breakup, I began questioning the save-your-man theory. If he was gonna leave in the long run, I might as well give the next babe some work to do but a wise aunt pointed out the fact that #dearfuturehusband whoever he was, would only be my dream man because of the experiences and behavioural modification he’d gotten from previous relationships. Agreed?! Yes the world is round and what goes around, comes around! #Q.E.D 😉 So how do we get our significant others to drop that one thing that makes them frail human beings? Just so that he/she can ascend to the realm of perfection…

The matter is quite a sensitive one and it could blow up in your face if not handled properly landing you in a hot ‘soup-opera’ starring as the bad guy with your man on the war path if he even concedes to stick around…
So here are some guidelines to follow:
– Constant appreciation makes criticism easier to handle.
– Remember you are both on the same team.
– Correcting each other should not be with a holier-than-thou attitude.
– If you say the same thing three times you are nagging.
– Prayer is your secret weapon!
– A perfect man/woman will make your imperfections stark and inexcusable, do you really want that? (We will not even delve into the matter that perfection in itself is a myth)
– Remember that there’s a woman out there who will gladly accept him warts and all.
– Time and Maturity are factors! (Don’t bother your head about issues that your man will inevitably outgrow as time and maturity set-in).
– It’s a tough world out there, no one wants to come back home and be judged.
– Communication is key. Unlike a goat, a man will change if he sees reason to. Make him see what he stands to gain and that your motives are unselfish.
– Be patient with him and soft-spoken. Gentleness calms even the most stubborn man.
– Tell him how happy the change would make you rather than telling him how sad/angry/disappointed the habit makes you.
– Boost his ego. Make him feel like a king and he’ll cross seven seas to do right by you.
– Do not command/threaten/bully him into changing.
– Understand where he is coming from and why he is the way he is and then take it a step at a time.
– Examine yourself. Sometimes putting all your energy into changing someone may be a psychological way of running from your own faults/weaknesses. #doctor-heal-thyself!

The only constant thing in life is change and people regardless of gender are all about self-improvement but if your motives are less than honorable and your man feels he is failing to measure up to an invisible standard you have set, he will get discouraged or defiant and find a person who makes loving less like engineering maths. Men are simple creatures. My male buddy, N always says women have 85% of the power in relationships but immediately they make the man realize that fact (mostly by being controlling or rubbing it in his face), the man regains all the power!

So Ladies, a behavioural modification is possible and even quite successful with the right approach and amount of sensitivity but when it becomes a behavioural manipulation, it can only lead to disaster. Remember to give your man a treat when he’s doing good and encourage him! #teamcheeryourman 😉

Guys, this post also applies to you! There are ways to make your woman ditch the wrapper and hair net forever 😉 or forsake that annoying habit…without manipulation!
…learn to speak her love language and a change in behaviour will be easy as pie! 😉

Shout out to my friend T, who inspired this post!
Have a lovely night peeps and if you haven’t voted, please go to to vote for ‘Memoirs of a woman with Chutzpah’ in the 5 categories we were nominated! Thank you.
xoxoxoxo 😉


Posted by on July 3, 2011 in Hall of Fame, Manology, Relationships


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Don’t love me with slaps!!!

  I just googled ‘windeck’ the title of the Cabo Snoop hit song and it means ‘sex’ *scream! Did i actually promise to make a 2 second sex video for my fans if I win? Course not! Paris Hilton I am not!!! 😉

I got a shocking blackberry broadcast this morning about some dude killing his wife 5 days ago. Heaven knows why on earth I got the news so many days late since some of the contacts on my BB are self-proclaimed CNN reporters abi na WikiLeaks?!! They somehow manage to be at all places at once. Informing us about police fights in Mushin and Agbero fights in Bauchi at the same time! Anyway this broadcast was very different because it not only carried the news of Titilayo’s demise but a picture of her husband grinning menacingly at her on the wedding day! Also there was a note attached to it about domestic violence and that got me thinking…

When I was younger I used to think stories like that only happened to poor people living in face me, I face you apartments cos every time Frank Olize’s Newsline reported a gruesome story such as this, it was always in that setting but Titilayo (May her soul rest in peace) was a Lagos girl and worked at Skye Bank, I imagine she did the same things we did and gave her man the same dose of shakara that we all have given our significant others so why is she six feet under while we are going about our daily business doing the same old s**t? It hardly seems fair! How does a sane prince charming morph into an unrestrained beast? One who not only stabbed his wife to death but took delight in cutting off parts of her body, parts that probably attracted him to her in the first place. What could she possibly have done to deserve this? Reports say her parents warned her about him but hey, everyone knows someone whose parents warned them about a certain man and they ain’t dead! Heck! My mama warned me about two of the men I dated and though mama turned out to have old people’s foresight, my heart was the only part of me scarred.

I look at the cute little boy sitting across from me in his mama’s laps. He has the cutest dimples in the world and he definitely will become a heart-stopper one day but will he be a Kolade? How can one tell? Some people blame it on dysfunctional families but hey, I know lots of men with family drama and they haven’t murdered anyone yet neither have their fathers. Could it be an evil spirit masked as blinding rage or a borderline case of schizophrenia? In those days parents would investigate families before giving out their daughters but nowadays if there’s money and prestige, mental stability and psychiatric history seem to be pushed aside. Could Titilayo have cheated on him and if she did was that enough reason? How many signs did she ignore while they were dating? How many times did she forget a hot slap after a reaffirmation of his undying love?

I can relate with domestic violence because I was hit by a guy once. We’ll call him K. He’d been on my case and I’d been giving him the regular UNILAG girl shakara, one day we got into an argument late at night while walking down the street of my house and he flipped and threw me slaps that made me see stars yet undiscovered. He pushed me on the floor kicking and cursing like I was a lifeless sack of garri. I screamed, I begged, I tried to run and I fought back but it was a lonely road, he was high on weed (a later discovery) and I was on my own. An hour later (nose almost broken), he had calmed down sufficiently and with tears in his eyes, threatened to jump into the silent lagoon because he knew he had lost me. The irony of the matter was that while my insides were screaming bloody murder and ordering all the mammy waters not to have mercy on him when he jumped in, I mustered all the energy I had left into an audible plea. I was actually begging him. I reasoned that if his body was found floating in the Lagoon, I would be charged with murder even though I was innocent. He walked me to my house giving me strict orders to put ice packs on my swollen face and not let my family see me till the morning. I barely made it to my house. Now little did he know that my family is close knit and akin to the Italian mafia. By morning my neighbourhood was crawling with police and he was on the run. Some days later, he checked himself voluntarily into Yaba Left. I heard that he had abused every one of his ex-girlfriends yet each of them had dated him for years at a time. I wondered what would make a woman stay in a relationship while a man got his kicks off punching her.

Over the years I have heard stories of women who have lived with violent men, some getting maimed, others long dead. They stayed cos of their children, they stayed cos they couldn’t live with the shame of a failed marriage. Who is taking care of the children of the deceased now? Who is paying the hospital bills of the battered wife? My friend W said she stayed in an abusive relationship for years because when he was not abusing her, he was the kindest, sweetest, most generous man alive. It makes me remember Eminem and Rihanna’s song; ‘Love the way you lie’, I love that song but no one should willingly be in a relationship that burns them to the ground. My friend became a bully after a while, taking out her aggression on course mates and room mates and beating them up at the slightest provocation. Some people would have envied her for having such a devoted boyfriend but only her inner caucus knew about the stone in her shoe. Thankfully today she is with a good man who may have faults but would never raise his hand to hit her.

When I first started dating, my mum gave me two nuggets of wisdom. First of all, she said; ‘Never manage a boyfriend, because he will do much worse as a husband’ and secondly, ‘Before you commit to a man, make sure you know the limits of his temper’. Yes once in a while, you can find me provoking an otherwise sleeping lion (aka boyfriend) just to see if he bites. Many times it isn’t intentional, PMS ensures it happens often enough! Marriage may hold surprises but we don’t want our jack-in-the-box to be a coffin!

So what to look out for in a man….(I know it can be hard to spot an abusive man when love blinds our eyes)

-He pushes too far, too fast, planning your future together right away. (The relationship moves forward very fast. Abusive men woo as fast as they can. They know that they can’t sustain consistent good behaviour for very long)

-He hates his mother and is nasty to her.

-He wants your undivided attention at all times and it is mandatory.

-He must always be in charge. (Overly controlling and always wants things to go the way he wants them to go).

-He always has to win.

-He breaks promises all the time.

-He can’t take criticism and always justifies his actions. (He makes excuses to justify his behavior or actions instead of feeling sorry).

-He blames someone else for anything that goes wrong. (Denies every single mistake and refuses to claim responsibility for his actions).

-He’s jealous of your close friends, family members, and all other men. (He can always find reasons for not spending time with your friends and family and he may try to discourage you from spending time with them also.)

-He always asks you where you went and whom you saw. (Uncontrollably jealous and extremely possessive).

-He has extreme highs and lows that are unpredictable. (Mood swings and Bi-polar behaviour)

-He has a mean temper. He starts fights and always wants to bicker and start conflict with others.

-He often says you don’t know what you’re talking about. (Invades your personal space and treats you without respect).

-He makes you feel like you’re not good enough. (He’s not happy to accept you the way you are and  reminds you regularly what a wonderful guy he is and how lucky you are to have him)

-He withdraws his love or approval as punishment and destroys objects around you, especially those that are dear to you when angry.

-He pushes you to do things that make you feel uneasy, like taking the day off from work or even breaking the law.

– His vulnerability may appeal to you. (You might find yourself saying: “he just needs someone to really, really love him (and heal his pain.) Why does it need to be you? Feeling sorry for someone is no basis for a loving, equal relationship.)

– He expects a big return on his investments. (He may seem happy to put your needs and wishes first for a little while, but it won’t be long before he starts saying: “Look at everything I do for you. You should be doing X, Y and Z for me.”)

– All the women who he’s had relationships with in the past didn’t understand him and let him down or behaved badly and he admits to hurting and attacking a woman in the past but blames that person for making him do it.

– There are areas of his life he refuses to talk about.

– He’s got a history of alcohol and/or drug abuse, and possibly violence.

– When you first meet him, there’s something about him that you don’t like. If you choose not to trust your intuition, you’ll probably pay for it. Big time.

–  He’s all sweet with you, but he acts differently with other people. (Rest assured that, with time, you’ll become ‘other people’.)

– There are times when his behaviour leaves you feeling like you’re dealing with someone you don’t even know.

– He exhibits low self-esteem.

– He is unable to identify and express emotions in the right way and shows it by being angry with you when he is angry with somebody else.

– He lies to you constantly and plays with your emotions in any way possible such as calling you names, degrading your being, ignoring your emotions, depreciating your achievements, insults you in front of others and poisons your mind with constant bad-mouthing and threats.

– He is cruel to animals and weaker people.

– He forces you to have sex even when you are ill.

– He has an over bearing, aggressive personality which you have mistaken for confidence and he is a control freak.

If you have any doubts that your partner may be, or may become, abusive, take the relationship slowly and listen to the advice of friends and family whose judgement you can trust. If you don’t like what they say and find yourself replying: “But you don’t understand. He’s not like that…”, the chances are, you’re wrong and they’re right.

For one woman (Titilayo), it is too late. She will never hear the birds sing or the wind in the trees or more appropriately the horns blaring in Lagos traffic! She loved a man, she gave her all and he repaid her with death! May she find rest for her soul. I sympathize with her family and friends.

Dear reader, it is not too late to get out of that abusive relationship!

Men please take note, women can be abusive too! I guess the reports are less because it’s far more embarrassing. Pele dear but if you are in that situation run for dear life oh cos women have been known to murder their better halves!

Please treat your wife like the delicate flower that she is…whether she’s a rose or a wall flower!

Have you voted? If you haven’t,please go to to vote or click on the link on the lower right side of my blog. Remember to check your mail boxes/spam for the confirmation email and to click on the link in it so that your vote can be counted! Thanks for your support and encouragement.

Have a great day peeps…xoxoxo 😉


Posted by on June 29, 2011 in Relationships


Tags: , , , , , ,

Black Laughter (A novel)

‘Jack and Jill went up the hill, To have a bit of fun,
Silly Jill forgot the pill
And now they have a son

August 21st 1991, Washington D.C., U.S.A

It was raining.
That wasn’t a good sign.
Her mother had died on a stormy day just like this one.

As Enitan trudged down the dark wet street, shopping bag in hand, she shuddered. She dreaded coming out on days like these, days when the sky was gloomy and threatening. She noticed little children in their Wellington boots and raincoats playing in the rain and she felt anger well up in her. What caring mother would allow her kids play in such awful weather she wondered? She would never have been caught dead outdoors in such horrific weather had it not been for little James. She smiled as memories of him pervaded her thoughts. He really was a cute baby. And she’d brave any weather even this one for him. She had really begun to have strong maternal feelings for him but she had to admit she was still just getting the hang of it. She was far from being a perfect mom. What would the social workers think if they knew she had remembered just five minutes before his next meal that poor Jamie had run out of food? Well, they’d never know, she said smiling. At least she was a better mother than Jamie’s real mother could ever have been. She knew it was bad to speak ill of the dead but she just couldn’t help it. Sarah had always been irresponsible and allowing herself be lured by that no good ex-soldier had proven to be her downfall. She had gotten pregnant at 18 with her baby’s father nowhere in sight. The coward had fled as soon as he realized he was going to be saddled with responsibilities. Sarah had died at childbirth leaving Enitan her adopted sister with the responsibility of raising her son.
Enitan’s mother had won an American Visa lottery 23 years before and departed from her home country Nigeria where a civil war was brewing with her husband and unborn child. Her husband had died three years later in a car crash leaving her with a three-year-old daughter and hardly any means of support. They had been poor; Enitan remembered that vividly. She also remembered having to wear a tattered uniform to school and do without Christmas presents. Her mother had to keep two jobs and quite sadly she had died because of her job. She had been working in a tobacco factory and all the smell of smoke had finally gotten to her. Enitan shuddered again as she remembered the doctor’s diagnosis. “You have lung cancer and cannot be expected to live for more than three months.” She was all her mother had and her mother had never hidden anything from her. She had begged her mother not to leave her and had done all she could for her mother but her mother had left her. She had died one stormy day. Enitan remembered the storm and as she heard a sudden crack of thunder she jumped. Visibly shaken, it seemed her mind was transported back in time…
“ Hello can I speak to Dr. Harver?”
“ Dr. Harver is at home, he has cancelled all appointments for the day because of the storm.”
“ B…but he’s gotta come, my mother’s dying.”
“I’m sorry he cannot be reached right now, good bye.”
And the nurse had hung up.
Her mother had died with her head on her daughter’s lap…
Enitan gritted her teeth. Were doctors allowed to do that or was it because her mother was black? Tears filled her eyes as memories of the funeral and the days after came flooding back. The only other person at the funeral apart from the priest was a kind social worker who was to take her to an orphanage after. She hadn’t cried because mama would have wanted her to be brave. The priest had ended the mass and that seemed to signal the end of life, as she knew it. She had been adopted by a white family with a daughter much younger than she was and she had had a good life though devoid of human love and sympathy but who was she to complain. Her adopted parents had died soon after her 22nd birthday and some months later her wayward foster sister had died during childbirth leaving her all alone in the world for the second time in her life, well at least she had Jamie. She smiled through her tears. She hadn’t even realized she had been crying. It was something she hadn’t done since the day her mother’s heart stopped beating. Her tears mingled with the rain and as her smile made itself a crack wider, she found herself battling with the feelings of pain and dejectedness of the past and the lighter feelings of joy and hope of the present. Jamie had brought joy into her life, he and his cute dimple and toothless grin. He was her world. She had even stopped noticing the raised eyebrows she got anytime people saw the black woman with the blond baby. She was more than determined to be a good mother to him. For the first time since her mother’s death, she felt a sense of direction in her life. As she arrived at the grocer’s she realized it had stopped raining. The sun was bursting through the clouds with brilliant rays. That was most definitely a good sign. She smiled as she entered the grocer’s shop and it seemed heaven smiled with her.
She got back home in record time and considering the time she’d spent musing about her past, it really was a record. She picked up Jamie from her neighbour’s house and thanked her. Mathilda was a nice girl and would have made a good friend if she had had the time to develop the friendship. As she unlocked the door, she stared critically at her home. It was clean and practical but not ideal for raising a kid. She wanted the best for Jamie and that would involve having to choose between always being there for him and going to med school which had always been her dream and which would eventually lead to a better life for she and Jamie. She was really confused but she couldn’t leave Jamie to pursue her dream. She didn’t want him to feel as alone in the world as she had felt. No, never! So in the mean time she had to be satisfied with working at the bookstore on Fifth Avenue. She had a good pay and her boss Mr. Brown was nice. She had gotten the job purely by luck or more likely God’s intervention. Her mother had always told her that luck was for gamblers. She missed her mother. She had been standing outside the store when she overheard Mr. Brown complaining about how much work he had to do now that his assistant had left to get married and she had offered to help. She hadn’t known then that it was a real job and she’d be paid for it, she had only offered because she loved books and Mr. Brown was nice. She’d been given the job and she loved it. She was even allowed to bring Jamie to work with her, as he was a favorite of Mr. Brown’s and a peaceful child. She also met very interesting people like Mr. Grant, an eccentric millionaire who shared her love for books. People said he was actually an earl but she’d never been one to pay much attention to gossip. Also there was Mr. Sule the funny looking Afghan who in a bid to learn the English language bought a new book each week but sadly enough that didn’t seem to help him. She remembered their last conversation…
“What can I do for you today Mr. Sule?”
“Well, I would like to acquiesce a book.”
“Acquire a book you mean.”
“Acquire, acquiesce, what’s the difference?” he grumbled.
“O.K., what do you have in mind? A romance, political novel or fiction?”
“Anything that has to do with men shooting themselves and presidents presiding!”
“What? Hmm… I think I know just the book.”
“Which is that?”
“Jeffery Archer’s ‘Shall we tell the president!’”
“I think that will do!”
As she sauntered across the room to get the book she chuckled to herself at how funny Mr. Sule made the language sound but as she returned to him she put her laughter in check because funny as he was, there was something menacing about him. She wondered if he had any family. Thinking of family, her thoughts left her job and returned to the problems at hand, Jamie was too small to really notice his surroundings but soon he would and she wanted them to be nice enough to look at by then. She had even considered getting married but had quickly dismissed the thought. She knew very few men and besides who would want to marry a black woman with a baby anyway? Her looks weren’t bad she said consolingly, only she hadn’t had time enough to take care of herself properly. She wore her hair in a tight bun at the nape of her neck, which made her look older than she really was and usually went devoid of make-up. Even then she still looked uncommonly pretty and had had more than once to whack a man with the tip of her umbrella because he wouldn’t behave himself. She wondered what life held in store for her. She desired more from life than a menial job as a bookstore clerk and single mother. She had often passed by the medical college at the university and would slow down her pace till she had taken in everything observable; from the view of students in a classroom being taught by professors to the dignified way all the medical students carried themselves along, as they walked purposefully about in their long white coats. She had wished again and again that she could be a part of them; she wanted to be a doctor, wanted it more than anything else in the world. She wanted to help the poor people in the world so that they wouldn’t have to suffer as her mother had done in the hands of doctors without human sympathy. But her dream seemed so far out of reach…
Jamie whimpered and she was taken out of her reverie as she looked down at him to see what the matter was. He smiled at her and grinned and then gurgled in delight as she took his finger. Her heart warmed. Jamie was family and she would give it all up for him.
She hugged him close to her heart. He was really a beautiful baby, blue eyes, blond hair, dimples and quite chubby. Maybe she could make him a baby model but the thought of so many people handling him and all those cameras and bright lights in his eyes put her off. She was sure Jamie would hate that. They both had no one else in the world save for each other. Jamie’s father was as good as dead and her relatives in Nigeria especially her mother’s estranged sister seemed galaxies away.
“Jamie! One day maybe, we’ll visit Nigeria. I’m sure it’ll be fun.” She said to the wide-eyed baby on her lap and Jamie looked at her as if he really did understand and smiled.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Yesterday’s gone,
Tomorrow may never come,
Live today, like it was your last,
Don’t let it slip away, hold it fast!

September 9th 2001, Washington D.C., U.S.A

“Jamie come here at once!”
“Yes mom?” A small boy of ten answered as he got up from the floor where he had been playing with an old train set and hurried along down the hallway to the laundry room.
“How many times do I have to tell you not to leave your felt pens in your pockets?” the young woman admonished warily.
“Sorry mom, I had to hide them from a boy at school and I forgot. I’ll never forget again honest!” he replied with sobriety written all over his face. He knew his mom ought to be mad because there were huge ink stains all over one of the sides of his pants. Why had he been so stupid? Mom had too much work to do already and this would only mean she would go to bed later still. Tears filled his eyes. Enitan noticed the tears on her 10-year-old son’s face and her heart went out to him.
“Come here honey, you don’t have to cry, mommy isn’t mad at you anymore” she coaxed as she dropped the clothes and drew him into her arms. She loved him dearly and seeing Jamie cry was almost too much for her to bear. Just then the phone rang. She disentangled herself from her son and ran to answer the phone.
“HELLO am I to speak with Miz Smith?”
“Oh Mister Sule! How did you get my number?”
“There are many things I know about you miz Smith!”
Enitan didn’t like the tone of his voice.
“So what can I do for you?”
“I just wanted you to know that there are people after you and your son.”
“What? Who? I never did anybody any harm, so why would anyone be after us?” she said with a slight tremor in her voice.
“It is partly due to me” he replied grimly
“You! What do you mean, you?”
“There are many things I cannot speak of but I must warn you as a friend that you have to leave Washington tonight. Speak to no one and tell no one where you are going, it is for your own good and the good of your son!”
The phone went dead and Enitan was left with the receiver in her hand and a dry feeling in her throat.
“Mom?” Jamie called as he walked into the living room. He could see his mom standing by the window, receiver still in hand and as he gazed at her face, he felt terror tear at him like he had never known before.
“Mom what’s wrong?” he shouted in alarm as he rushed over to her.
Enitan turned to look at Jamie and began to cry.
“Mom?” Jamie pulled his mom down to sit on the sofa and put his arms around her.
“It’ll be all better, I promise!” he said as he hugged her even tighter.
As Enitan’s tears fell silently, her thoughts wandered… Washington had been her home for so long, Jamie’s home. She had watched Jamie grow into a handsome young lad, had made friends around her never once imagining that she’d be forced to evict her home. It seemed like just yesterday that she’d carried Jamie in her arms and silently vowed to love and protect him and in the same instance had seen her dreams of becoming a doctor go up in smoke. She had worked hard at the bookstore and Mr. Brown had become like a father to her. Now she would have to leave it all. She would call Mr. Brown to say good-bye; she owed him that much for how good he had been to her. As she reached out for the phone she said a silent prayer to God to help her and had to restrain herself from cursing the horrible men responsible for ruining her life. She remembered a verse in the bible her mother had once read to her; ‘All things worketh together for good to them that love him.’ She felt better afterwards and gave Jamie a hug. “Everything will turn out right!” She whispered.
Jamie nodded and then returned his head to her chest.
Enitan dialed Mr. Brown’s home but no one picked up the phone.
She hung up and called the bookstore instead. The phone rang and rang but no one picked it up.
“This is strange.” She thought aloud. Mr. Brown lived alone and had no relatives living in Washington. His wife had died years ago and he seldom went out. His life rotated around his home and the bookstore. She replaced the receiver. This new development worried her. She glanced at the clock. It was three-thirty p.m. Mr. Sule had said she had to leave tonight. She had a few hundred dollars saved up. She got up, if they were to make the night train she had to work fast. First of all she needed to tell Jamie. She sat down again. Jamie who had been watching his mother closely felt a sense of doom as she turned to look at him.
“Yes mum.”
“We have to leave tonight.”
“Where are we going?”
“Bad people are after us and we have to leave tonight.”
“What do they want with us mama?”
“I dunno. Honey let’s go pack, we’ll talk later” and the discussion ended there and then as Enitan hugged Jamie briskly but tightly.
As Jamie watched his mom hurry down the hall, he battled with the tears threatening to fall. Mother had always taught him to be brave and even when he had been bullied at school because his mother was black, he hadn’t cried. He wouldn’t start now he decided, as he robbed his eyes with his sleeves, squared up his shoulders in determination and followed his mother. He knew he was going to miss this old house and his friends Sally and Jacob but he’d write to them.
Enitan packed up hers and Jamie’s belongings in two suitcases and with a sigh looked at the house she was about to leave. She couldn’t take all her property with her even though she would have loved to because each item of furniture held a special memory. She walked around touching everything, memorizing everything with her fingertips. Tears ran down her cheeks but she hastily cleaned them as she heard Jamie’s footsteps. She had to be brave for both of them.
“Are you all set?” she asked him
“Yes mom” he replied. Jamie had on two coats and looked like a cute overstuffed teddy but she knew it would help him against the chill at night.
They looked around the house for the last time and sighed.
“Mom where are we going?” he asked,
Enitan had been trying not to think of that little problem but she knew she had to face reality.
She closed her eyes and took a deep breath.
“New York!”
“New York?”
“Yes, New York!”
“But mom, who do we know in New York?”
“Nobody but we’ll make new friends and I’ll get a job and you’ll go to a new school. Everything will be fine.”
Enitan glanced at the clock, it was six-thirty and the sun had started to set.
“C’mon Jamie, let’s go”
As Enitan closed the door behind her she said a silent prayer to God. After locking the door, she placed the key under the foot mat.
“So that the landlady can find it!” she thought.
She glanced at the elevator just as she reached the flight of stairs and smiled. The landlady had promised when she moved in, that the elevator would be repaired that very week and now after more than ten years the out of order sign still hung proudly on the doors of the elevator. She was sure going to miss this house. As she passed Mathilda’s apartment she wondered if she should walk in and say goodbye but changed her mind when she realized that Mathilda would ask questions and might talk to the wrong person later. She sighed and walked past quietly. Jamie had been very quiet all the way down and she glanced at him. He had a strong look of determination on his face and she squeezed his hand, trying to tap into the strength of will she saw so evidently displayed on his features. They walked down the sidewalk towards the train station and all the while, Enitan couldn’t help looking over her shoulder as they moved farther and farther away from their old home. She hoped they weren’t being followed. How her peaceful life had been transformed into the life of one of those die-hard actors in the thrillers she had taken Jamie to see at the cinema, she just couldn’t understand.
At the train station she bought two one-way tickets to New York and was informed that departure time was in twenty minutes. Those twenty minutes where the longest in her life as her eyes darted nervously around, watching everyone, trusting no one. Her only source of comfort was Jamie’s hand in hers. At the highest peak of her fear and paranoia, she uttered another inaudible prayer to God and felt instantly relieved. Finally they boarded the train. They got a seat at the back and for the first time since the whole affair began, she relaxed a bit. The man sitting across her tried to get her into a lighthearted conversation. He could see that she was tense and made a joke about, Jamie looking like a chubby cherub sent to earth to take away the dead. Enitan’s face turned white at the thought of death and the man admonished himself for his apparent bad timing as Enitan looked away.
“God, please don’t take Jamie away from me!” She whispered as she hugged Jamie possessively. Jamie who had already begun to doze off woke up and looked at his mother worriedly.
“Honey are you alright?” She asked.
“I’m hungry!” Jamie replied as he snuggled into her. Enitan panicked. She had forgotten to pack any food and it was already way past dinnertime. The train began to move just as she considered running off to the grocer’s to get some food. Tears of frustration stung her eyes.
The man who had been silently observing them since he cracked the really bad joke saw a way to make amends.
“Hey lady, don’t cry.”
Enitan and Jamie looked up immediately. Enitan hadn’t realized she was being watched and Jamie hadn’t realized his mother was crying.
“I’ve got some food here that you can manage and you could buy more at the next station O.K.?”
Enitan smiled gratefully as he handed over a brown paper bag containing a sandwich, an apple and a can of juice. The man couldn’t help noticing how lovely her smile was. As the train left the station, Enitan said a silent goodbye to her old home and city and looked forward into the night as her future lay in front of her.

In life, when troubles come,
It doesn’t just rain, it pours
But after the rain the sun will
Shine again…

September 10th, 2001, Manhattan, New York

Enitan’s eyes flew open as she heard the coach master announce that they had arrived at their destination. She woke Jamie up and alighted from the train with the other passengers. The nice man who’d given them food was nowhere in sight and she felt sad that she hadn’t been able to thank him properly. She had walked down the busy road taking in her new surroundings. She glanced at Jamie and saw that he was doing the same. She spotted a café in a corner and walked towards it. She felt her stomach grumble and patted it softly. Food was on the way. At the café, she ordered hot, freshly baked doughnuts and some tea for she and Jamie and as she sunk her teeth into her first doughnut she glanced at her watch. Eight o’ clock already, eight hours had already gone by since she left her old world and started life afresh. She looked at Jamie, he seemed to be taking things well, and his inquisitive eyes darted about taking in as much of his surroundings as he could. Just then the sound of the television in the café, which she hadn’t even noticed before now, interrupted her thoughts.
“Breaking news, a three storey building in Washington D.C.’s suburbs was bombed early this morning. All the occupants of the building were killed and there are no witnesses. The Washington police are looking into this matter. They are yet to name possible suspects. Also a man, Mr. Brown was murdered yesterday night in cold blood. His neighbour discovered him this morning. No one has yet been arrested for this horrendous act and the police have continued investigations into the matter. And that’s all for now, I am Sarah Welsh and you are watching channel 7, have a wonderful morning…”
Enitan dropped her mug, spilling hot coffee over herself as the news she had just heard began to sink in. The waitress ran to her side with paper towels immediately and offered her aid amidst apologies. Jamie too seemed to be in a trance. He rose from the table and moved over to where his mom sat and put his arm around her. Enitan began to cry. “Dead all dead!” She said as she wept to herself.
The waitress muttered her sympathy while commenting on how violent the world was today. Enitan didn’t hear her as she was still in shock.
“Jamie they are all dead, Mathilda’s dead so is the landlady and Mr. Brown. What would have happened if Mr. Sule hadn’t warned us? Does he know who’s responsible? He must know. Innocent people have died all for our sake. Oh God!” she sobbed unable to talk any more and Jamie hugged her, tears in his eyes too. The nice old landlady was dead and so were Mathilda and kind Mr. Brown but why Mr. Brown?
“Mommy, Mr. Brown didn’t live in our building, so why was he murdered?”
Enitan stopped short. She hadn’t thought of that before.
“It can only be one of two things. Either they were so desperate to kill us that they killed everyone else we associated with, or…”
“They are out to kill everyone who ever had anything to do with Mr. Sule. That would explain him knowing about it and warning us, but is he in league with them?” Jamie asked. Enitan was surprised at how fast Jamie’s mind worked.
“Most likely. I never really trusted him.” Enitan answered tearfully.
“Don’t cry mother, everything will be O.K. We are safe now. Let’s find somewhere to stay before it gets late.”
“You are right Jamie, c’mon let’s go!”
They paid for the meal, packed up the rest of the doughnuts in a paper bag and left the café.
Enitan decided to look for a house first and then a job after. She asked a passer-by for the address of an estate agent and she was directed to the office of ‘Messrs’ Barley and Sons Estate Agents’. She walked in and was greeted by a ruddy-faced lad who looked like the receptionist or a clerk of some sort.
“Hello, what can we do for you?”
“Good morning, I am looking for an apartment in a decent part of Manhattan at an affordable price.” Enitan replied.
“You’ve come to the right place, we have just the place for you. Please step into our manager’s office” he said, pointing to a door at his side and promptly rang a bell to alert the manager of his unexpected clients before running in before them to brief him on what they wanted.
As they entered the manager’s office, both mother and son took in the surroundings. The office was decorated in Victorian style and was old and shabby but what struck you the most about it was how magical it looked with the sun streaming into it making it look beautiful and ancient instead of commonly old and shabby.
“Good day!” said the manager after clearing his throat.
“We have just what you are looking for at two locations. You make your pick.”
“Where and where?” Enitan asked
“There’s one on Madison Avenue owned by a nice old lady and another not too far from the World Trade Center on Parker’s lane.
“We’ll take the one on Madison Avenue.” Enitan replied. She had never liked noise and she feared that living so close to the World Trade Center would rob her of her peace. She looked over at Jamie to see if it was all right with him and he nodded. She paid for the apartment for two years in advance, collected the keys and took directions. Then she said goodbye, five hundred dollars poorer. She and Jamie took a taxi, gave him the necessary directions and in a few minutes where at number 42. There lay their new house old and imposing but yet nice in a comfy sort of way. They paid the taxi driver and entered the building. Then they took the elevator up to their new home on the fourth floor.
“At least the elevator is working!” Enitan exclaimed with a cheerfulness she didn’t feel.
She opened the door and they stepped into a new life. The apartment was dark and smelt musty but that could be remedied thought Enitan. The furniture was decent enough and on the whole the house just needed a few homely touches and it would be O.K.
“Let’s unpack our bags” Jamie said in a resigned tone and Enitan felt sorry for him. Change was hard on even grown-ups not to mention kids. He was being very brave. Enitan walked over to him and gave him a big bear hug. They hugged each other for a long time deriving strength from the other’s closeness. Then Enitan tickled him.
“C’mon little man, Let’s explore the rest of the house first!” She said laughingly
“O.K. Mum!” Jamie replied in a much lighter mood.
The house had two bedrooms, a kitchen, a bath and toilet. The kitchen thankfully had some modern gadgets like a dishwasher and a microwave oven but it seemed they would once again have to do their laundry across the hallway where she’d noticed a small sign that read: ‘laundry’.
In less than half an hour, they had unpacked and when they were hungry, Enitan brought out the rest of the doughnuts and they took it with some water.
Next on Enitan’s mind was finding a job but first she decided to find out who lived in the apartment opposite hers. She took Jamie by the hand and walked over to her yet unseen neighbour’s door and knocked.
“Who is it?” A feminine voice asked after the third knock.
“Hi, I’m Enitan, Please we just moved here and we would like to…” Before Enitan could finish her statement, the door flew open and a woman in an apron, carrying a sleeping child beamed at them.
“Hi, I’m Monica, c’mon in!”
Enitan and Jamie walked in and took in their surroundings. The house was comfortable and as the woman with red hair tried to make space for them in her living room amidst the toys, books and shoes littering the room, they couldn’t help wondering just how many people lived there.
“I’m sorry about the mess. I haven’t had a moments rest since my husband and son left the house this morning. The baby’s been crying all morning. You see, she’s cutting her first tooth. I’m grateful she’s finally fallen asleep”
Enitan nodded and smiled.
“I remember how restless Jamie was when he passed through that stage. I forgot to introduce him. This is Jamie, my son!”
Jamie smiled and made a mental note to ask his mother what ‘cutting her first tooth’ meant.
Enitan noticed the confused smile on Monica’s face but made no move to tell the story of how she came to have a blond son.
A delicious smell of oven made pastries filled the air, at the same time dissipating the uneasiness that had come with the momentary silence.
“It seems my chocolate chip cookies are ready. Will you join me for tea?” Monica asked a little too brightly.
“Is it tea time already?” Enitan asked, glancing at her watch. It was one o’ clock. Time flew so fast, she sometimes wondered.
“Yes it is and I won’t take no for an answer!” replied Monica walking towards the kitchen.
Enitan looked around for Jamie and saw him standing beside an aquarium eagerly watching the exotic fish frolic in the water.
During tea, the slight unease between Monica and Enitan disappeared and Enitan learnt that Monica was a mother of two, a full time house- wife married to a construction worker. Her son was about Jamie’s age and had gone to the nearby community school. She encouraged Enitan to enroll Jamie there and Enitan asked her if she knew where she could get a job. Enitan explained that she had worked in a bookstore and Monica suggested looking for a job at the Harper’s Community Library, which was some blocks away. She even offered to look after Jamie while Enitan was away and Enitan was more than grateful. She explained to Jamie that she was going to look for a job and would be back in a few hours. Jamie didn’t mind he was quite contented to stay at Monica’s house and watch the fish.
Enitan said her goodbyes and returned to her apartment to freshen up.
“I really must look my best!” She muttered to herself.
She pulled out a light blue French-cut suit from her newly arranged wardrobe and laid it out on the bed. Then walked into her new bathroom and switched on the taps. She really didn’t have time for a bubble bath so a quick shower would have to do. She undressed slowly taking just a moment to appraise her figure in front of the mirror.
“I’ve lost quite some weight!” She said as she noticed her flat tummy and protruding collarbone.
“Must be all the stress I’ve been under lately!” she said aloud.
Enitan was out of the shower in record time feeling refreshed and in a lighter frame of mind. She dressed up quickly, combed her hair and decided for a change, to let it down. She made a mental note to get some make-up for herself from the stores; after all it was New York…
She walked briskly, only stopping briefly to ask for directions to the library though she needn’t have, because right in the corner was the most imposing building she had ever seen. It was old and grand, definitely a library! She took a deep breath as she walked in through the gigantic doors; she knew instinctively that she was going to love her new job, if she got it- that was!