An Arithmetic of Alphabets

Alphabets

Let’s meet at the crossroad

Where sacrifices are offered in alphabets

Let’s capture whisper

And mooch out a syllable

Let’s sew syllables

To make seamless similes

Let’s plough paragraphs

And pry on phrases

Let’s wring wordiness

For a punch of punctuation

Let’s clothe nouns in gerunds

Adorned in adjectives, flowery verse

Perfumed metaphors and chaperoned by prose

And, maybe, just maybe

We would understand the science of feelings

***I did this poem a while back but I’ve found it useful for my mood today, enjoy!***

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Juju, Life and People in Lagos City

Common with metropolitan cities are urban centres where a push usually turns to a shove [I like the sound of that pun]. Places where you can’t avoid bodily contacts.

Oshodi before 2009
Oshodi before 2009

You’ve got to discount Lagos from such a list if there’s one…

“Lagos is the only city in the world where, if your body brushes off another mistakenly they clutch onto their John Thomas before letting you out of sight—in other climes, folks take a tap at their purse.”

You can’t take the spirit of brotherliness from Lagosians. So, with the rife belief in the ability of a man to cart away another man’s JT by mere bodily contact in crowded places, the mob of urbanized centres in Lagos don’t tolerate any alleged or attempted attempt to deprive a man of such vital organ. They will come to the rescue.

A story is told of a man who, having seen the rallying around of victims of such claims and the procedural examination of such victims that includes a treat from willing ladies to ascertain “its” functionality, decided to cry a claim.

On that fateful day at Oshodi, not only did he ram violently into the arms of an innocent man he jerked him up by the trousers screaming…”Oti mo oko mi” [He has taken my manhood]. His victim was still writhing in pains when slaps flew in from all corners on him. He denied as expected and the examiners were called upon.

As they – “the victim” and the tester- made for a make shift-stall some gossips quipped:

“Why e bi say na only this HIV Ashawo dey test all these guys?” [Why do they engage this HIV positive call-girl every time?]

“Before nko? if na your own wares, you go sell quality for free?”

On hearing this conversation, “the victim” took to his heels screaming:

“Mi o se mo” [I am not interested anymore]. The accused watched on in dismay, grabbing unto his dislocated shoulder, as the mob made a chase for the liar.

 

Rendering Assistance? Do it with caution…

In Lagos, another thing you need not do aside from not giving directions is giving unsolicited assistance to people.

I was driving with a pastor friend on a Wednesday evening to Agege. And this litter of people were stranded at Pen-cinema. The pastor requested we gave some people a lift at the back of our Honda Pilot. As we pulled over the pastor popped out his head and asked:  who is going to Agege here… the whole bunch of them scampered out of sight chanting “blood of Jesus!”Blood of Jesus

I burst into a hard laughter at the sight but the pastor was so infuriated he got down with his giant study bible telling them he is a son of God too… In Delta, we say “dem no dey carry Juju worship juju!”

Going Somewhere? Go with GoogleMapTM

Here, I was given a dose of my own pill without any coating.

I was invited to a church sometimes ago and told to alight at a particular bus stop but as with the ways of Lagos bus drivers, he took another route and dropped me way of the mental course I had in my head. I needed to find my orientation—which way to the north or south. So, I approached an on-coming lady. Me: “Please, excuse me, excuse me …”

Lady: “I don’t know what this country is turning to… do you want to tell me you don’t have a job too? Sorry, I gave my last change to the other guy down the road”

google mapsI smiled. I don’t even condescend to hale beggars too.

Henceforth, I use good O’ GoogleMapTM which is by far a worthy companion on the streets of Lagos.

 

 

 

PS: This is the sequel of “Of Diabolical Powers And The Nigerian Mentality” which my dear friend, MPH made so popular [Thank you].

 

***Black magic [Juju] is a belief grounded in Nigerians, west of sub-Saharan Africa and this guides the conduct of everyday life of the African people with suspicion. Even with the advent of the ecclesiastical missions natives look for potent power of Jesus to counter household demons and wickedness. People have had testimonies to the miraculous power of Jesus Christ however, we can’t but notice some hilarious moments.

What do you think? Is Juju overemphasized in the country or too trivialized on this blog? Share your tale!