It’s my birthday today and I am truly grateful to God for his mercies. This post is just to share some fun stuff concerning my life. Let’s get this party started.
My UniLag days-
So I finally got admitted after roasting at home for 4 years. I was given a room in what was then called New Men’s Hall. So what did I do as an obedient student, I remained in my room for almost a month. Why ? Because that’s where my accommodation was. What was I supposed to do? Okay, truthfully, I taught someone was going to ring a bell or something and say “new students gather” . I never went to class and kept waiting and waiting till a friend who was also incidentally my coursemate whose room was opposite mine asked me what course was I studying and which year. I told him and he asked me, why I haven’t been in class. I told him I taught they would call and tell us when to start. Don’t laugh. This is a true story. Needlessly to say, I rushed to the Department the next day and discovered that truly they had gone far. Now the good news. I emerged the best student for that 1st year despite being one month behind when I started. I read till smoke came out of my head.
Secondly, I didn’t know which courses to register for outside the compulsory courses. We were given guidance on this yes. Did I read it? No. Don’t laugh, after all you didn’t read your television manual. We are all Nigerians. Manuals bore us. So what does an intelligent Nigerian student do? Go to other colleagues and copy what they wrote. So I did that and over registered. I registered for 24units when everyone else registered for 18 units which were the standard.
Result. While my colleagues were in their rooms sleeping or relaxing I was running up and down attending lectures and doing assignments. Why didn’t I collect course correction form. Well, nobody told me that, that was possible. At least I emerged the best student and used the scholarship money that was given to buy myself a double-decker Boom Box Cassette player and became an instant oppressor back at Osogbo.
I grew up in Kainji, not in the Dam o. And as a young child, an egg was not given to you because we were told that eating eggs as a child would make us become thieves. So none of us was permitted to eat one full egg alone. Since God moves in mysterious ways, I don’t know how the adults ended up giving me a full egg. As I was about to eat it, a friend gave me my first investment advice. He taught me how to make a profit from an egg investment. So I did the right thing. I invested my egg by planting it in the sand and watering it. I am well into my fifties now but I still believe that my investment would soon yield great profit. Just imagine my personal tree suddenly bursting out of the soil in Kainji Town bearing fruits of boiled eggs. If you are a distributor here, you may register as an early bird for discounts because when this business really starts, I no go look una face o. I need business partners who have faith to register promptly .
My first nickname-
I don’t know what those my beloved MOG Church people call me at the back. God forgive all of them in Jesus name. My first nickname was a tongue twister. I got it because of my speed in rolling used car tyres around the neighbourhood. Its Awondoriskejabajabakorikokokoriko.
Don’t ask me the meaning. I can’t also know who gave it to me among those my troublesome Kainji childhood friends. OK its too long. Yea, I agree. There is a shorter version. When we are set to start our Formula one car tyres, to races, someone would hail “Awondo” and I would respond Riske Jabajaba. As soon as I left them all behind in the dust, it became and echoing koríko, korikoko. CARVEAT EMPTOR. If I ever catch cm you calling me Awondo, 3 days dry fast for you and the rats and cockroaches in your house.
Television and Video-
There used to be a girl at a place called Otakiti at Osogbo. They were one of the first people to have a TV. That’s actually where I recall seeing a TV for the first time in this my one, singular life. To watch TV, a line was drawn on the floor and if you crossed that line while watching, you were flogged. I can’t remember anyone crying after being flogged at that place. The allure of looking at that Black and White TV automagically nullified every pain. Our parents also didn’t know that when we were sent to fetch water or run errands, we first went to watch TV. The early birds got to sit in the house and got flogged and later arrivals had to strain their necks from outside the window. It’s was better to have the front row sit and risk getting flogged because of your over excitement than to be outside. That way, you could tell other people at St James primary school, owope the next day that you saw it on TV with your two eyes. “Ain’t that a miracle” ?
The children of nowadays don’t know what they are enjoying. In fact, they take too many things for granted. I remember when my late senior sister saw a coloured TV for the first time and came back home to tell us. I would sit back and look at her mouth lapping up all the revelations she was giving us. Do you know that Big Bird of Sesame Street is colour yellow? What, yellow? I couldn’t believe it. She gave us more. Barney was Purple. Guess what that made me the next day at school. MUFASA. I was on top of the food chain telling others with my chest out the colors I hadn’t seen. Well, did you expect me to tell them I hadn’t seen it. Never, thats part of what makes a man important. Imagine the girls staring at me in wonder for being the first person to say Big Bird was color yellow.
Later, I started imagining what it would look like to have a TV at home. I was so shocked that when he eventually did, he bought a black and white TV. Well don’t worry, he fixed the color issue by taping coloured screen over the TV. Colour na colour. If you don’t know about that screen, ask anyone who grew up on the Eighties. At least, I could boast in front of the girls that we had a TV at home. None of those “wicked” girls fell for me. Honestly, I am not sure they would make heaven for rejecting a man such as I that had a TV at home. Well, it was their loss. Those girls couldn’t recognise quality even if it perched on their noses.
I also recall how my junior brother and I used to imagine having a video in our house. We would sit for hours till late in the night talking about it. Why my Dad wouldn’t just go to the store and buy one like every other person we didn’t understand. Every time he would say he doesn’t have money. To us, that was sheer wickedness. After all, money was always in National Bank. I saw it in front of the cashier the last time I went with him. He collected small instead of collecting plenty. Such a easy thing and he complicated it. Well, wetin small pickin sabi.
Enough for now.
Wait for my memoirs. It would truly tickle your ribs.
Thanks, everyone for being there for me all these years. Forgive me if I offended you during this great journey. There are much more victories ahead of all of us.
Thanks to you all my MOG family. Thanks to my beloved Wife, Keji and my beloved babies. They are the only one who can tolerate me and my “wahuness”. Don’t worry, they know what that means.
To my three partners in the waka-about Port Harcourt ministry, Prophet, Iya toooooo and Ob5, let’s go for more Wakawaka.
Happy birthday to me.
TRULY, ALL THE GOOD PEOPLE WERE BORN IN SEPTEMBER.
Is na me be dis.
The one and the only Ogbonge Traffling Poet wey neva travel since because say im been dey fear Covid-19.
I salute una as I tanda for my door.
Buy garri before you buy data.