Ripples: The Brute, the Bad and the Snitch

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ripples

My absence on the blog has fetched me several names in the past, but none has been more solid than the one I got some weeks ago.

He must have seen me in his dream or something. I’ll bet he woke up and decided to drag out the object of his nightmare. BBM helped him do that. I’ll call him Brutus.

Brutus: You eh? Na wah to you!

I was waiting for my garri to elevate to the benchmark at the time.

Me: Sir, what I do??

Brutus: You have backslid.

Just like that! Read the rest of this entry »

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Musings: My Top Ten

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writing-is-hard

 

 

 

 

 

Writing a new year good wishes at this time seems like something most people won’t do (seeing that the year is not so new anymore), but I guess it’s either this scribbler isn’t really like most people or something is not entirely right. I’m more comfortable with the former.

This is several weeks overdue, but I’ll go on regardless and wish readers a wonderful and fruitful new year and new month. On the bright side, I got the opportunity to wish you on the double, probably better than the “gyn-ish” double the Eritrean government supposedly has to offer.

By now, resolutions that would really stay will be in motion already, while the other resolutions―those guidelines for the first few days/weeks of the year that usually fade away with the frenzy―would have met their usual fate: total abandon, or if you like, calamitous waterloo (I miss Honorable Patrick Obahiagbon).

In my defense for my one-month long hiatus post- last post (pardon that combo), I’ve been doing a little reading on the blog, trying to figure the major glitches that caused the bad market last year. Okay, scratch that. That was me being dramatic.

So far, it’s been a long interesting read. I think I found a bit of what I was looking for, in addition to the typos and omissions of course. Some of the posts made me laugh and got me asking myself what I was thinking when I wrote them. I marveled at the experiences I never thought I could share but did. A few were products of testing new waters; attempts at new style/genre. I still can’t pinpoint the ghost readers or send them a little dose of insomnia until they comment and share, but I can do my part and see where it goes from here.

In no particular order, below are my top favorite posts I’ll like you to check:

Dear Future Bae
Sour-prano Untamed
The Judge Next Door
The Things We Share
Client X: The End of Me
Knocked Out
The Things in Your Heart
A Tale of Sevens and Perfection
Sow a Seed
Life Drama

I would love to start the year with your feedback on these posts or any other post that interests you. Perhaps this would help identify a niche or two that should get more devotion.

This is me grinning in anticipation that you’ll read and say what you think.

I am @jossef69 on twitter.

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Dear Diary: Day 365

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Empty white space.

That’s all I see trying to write this. I’ve been here for several minutes staring at the blank space, as though forces unseen are in control of my fingers, preventing me from striking a letter.

But I dared them already. You see, I struck the first letter D.

I don’t exactly know where to start, but looking back at the several lines so far I think I have started.

It’s the last day of the year; lots of days since I did something like this. This won’t be a transcript of a 365-day journey, but you’ll get the point. I hope so.

I apologize for my inconsistencies and fizzling on the blog this year. I got the WordPress annual report for the year and I was ashamed! I mysteriously grew a thick skin to post notifications of blogs I follow; erstwhile constant reminders of my inactivity on the blogosphere. Regardless of the fact that I wrote more this year like I set out to, I had to choose between blogging and another form of writing. It was a Hobson’s choice and I had to go all the way with the latter. It dawned on me that I miss the wonderful readers and their comments, more than I miss writing on the blog itself.

Speaking of the blog and awesome readers, I almost lost one―not to death―around the last quarter of the year. I got so carried away with “things” that I became unaware I was passing the wrong clues. The proverbial blow that broke the camel’s back was a strange attitude, or rather, negligence that became a part of me under the guise of being busy. I would miss calls, get pings and texts and then promise to respond when I’m free, only for me to get the freedom and never fulfill my promise. I automatically got sobriquets with “pride” as root-word from some, and a surgical unfriending and unfollowing from others. I blame no one else but me. That wasn’t my real face o, and I am sincerely sorry. I learnt my lesson and I know it won’t recur.

The year came and went so quickly (I remember the first few days of the year like they weren’t so far away), but that’s just an illusion informed by how great or otherwise the year has been for respective individuals. Mine was nimble-toed because despite the little bumps, it was a smooth ride: no accidents, hospital admissions, unfortunate events even in strange lands, etc. Many thanks to the Gracious God for life and for the gifts and privileges, even though we often classify them into categories of basic/general/simple blessings and major/customised blessings; usually taking the former for granted. Sometimes when we have a piece of a thing we ask why we don’t have a truck full instead, despite the efforts we put in. Surprisingly, we usually forget that breathing for just another day automatically qualifies us for greater things.

I’m grateful for my friends, colleagues and family; their micro soft words of encouragement and punchy power points that nudge one to excellence. Life would appear in monochrome without them, I’m sure of that.

I did things I never thought I could do or be trusted with at the time this year. The saying that we don’t know how much we can do until we’re thrown to the deep end held true for me, and I appreciate the opportunities. Borrowing an expression from a blogger friend, Monsieur Kingsley, you never really know how long you can hold on until you find yourself dangling between the devil―or the blue sky―and the red soil.

I was constantly reminded this year that I have grown and qualified for some feats and milestones; but the year also reiterated the fact that there are no strict rules, and that being ready to pick up the mantle is a great prerequisite to shouldering responsibilities. I have not leaped, but I have moved and I am thankful for the pace and the many lessons therein.

Contrary to the opinion of some friends, and their attempts to convince me otherwise, this year buttressed the fact there are no straight answers to most questions. Many opinions/ideologies will not withstand 365 days split to three, and obvious can sometimes double as oblivious. The lady/gentleman that got you humming Titanic’s theme song at first sight may turn out to be a zonkey and the end of you. A simple answer to a seemingly simple question can haunt you for a year or for the rest of your days. You can hate and then love a thing within a month, and the shift will be lost on you. Sometimes, there is a third option after yes and no, and it’s your prerogative to state what it is. Think hard before you make major decisions and say huge pronouncements. Matter of fact, never say never!

Among other things, this year has taught me that:

  • opportunities can find you in boxers and no shirts, when you least expect one;
  • love can creep up on you at any time or place (cupid won’t send you a memo);
  • you’ll always find a flaw if you won’t stop scrutinizing;
  • things can go all the way down south even when you think you’ve got it all figured; and
  • death can knock on anyone’s door; keeping it locked out won’t be an option.

I don’t have a list of strict to-dos or resolutions, as people are wont to draw one at this time of the year. I’m aware that there are lots of things to do and improve on, but I will take things easy, one step at a time, poco a poco. I will enjoy life, laugh out loud, get down to business and ditch the cutlery sometimes, cry if the movie/story is too touching/emotional and laugh at the cry-cry chicken, keep 69 as my favorite number combo even if the world finds it mundane, try new things… live, love and learn.

Thanks for a great 2015.

2016_Happy New Year (SJB)
Bonne année! Bonne santé!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Appreciation

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Forgive me for I have erred. I have gone AWOL for another forever and that feels bad. Believe me, it does; but man has gotta do what he gotta do.

Even though it will be rushed and haphazard, I have to do this. I’ve got fun on hold to get back to.

Do you really know what it feels like to have over 40 million followers on a social media account? (Relax! I don’t even have 400!) I mean, that’s like saying that the total population of a country (no offence Charle) likes/digs/trails/monitors/spies one person. All I did was a gentle wait for the clock to countdown to this day―with the help of the Most High, and I had a faint idea of the feeling.

Today, I woke up to texts, pings, display pictures, profile messages and the shebang all having a thing in common: me. October 3rd brought all my friends―the good, the bald and the hug-ly―to a common ground, and for real it felt special. I felt like the nimble-toed Messi, only without the millions and a golf ball in the stead of the Ballon d’Or.

Many thanks to the Gracious God for everything: His escorts without sirens with me through the valleys of the shadow of death; the rejuvenating push when I’m low and running on fumes; the little-big miracles and serendipity sent my way… many other good things in the background that I just can’t fathom.

A lot happened between this time last year and now. Trust me, it’s not a cliché. I lived―had fun in little packages; loved―and still loving; learned―spanning the mundane and the germane; strengthened relationships and made new bonds in addition to the list I managed to make in My Candid Vote of Thanks, when I was still quite dramatic. I’ve taken starch and its signature soup (I’m not so glad I did), left work on a Friday and got home on a Saturday, ordered for black and got pink… and the list goes on. I’ve had varying measures of disappointments and surprises, agitations and chills, ups and downs, rice and beans… and I’m glad and I’m still standing tall, sane and sound.

I can categorically say that today ranks high in the list of the cool October 3rds I’ve ever had. My day was made with the loads of fun, the calls, happy birthday songs―the “tush” Harvard/Corona school version, Mwopopopo Community Grammar school version and various remixes of the real mix; and the funny chats I had with some friends I’m more than willing to lease to charity.

Permit me to digress a tad and share two chats below. Words in brackets are my thoughts.

Charity Gift 1: Happy birthday dear. Wishing you all the very best in all your endeavors.

Me: (Me? Dear? What happened to a sweeter name?) Thanks dear.

Charity Gift 2: Wishing you plenty wives and plenty children too.

Me: (Really? Not even the popular “long life and prosperity”?) Hol’it! Just hol’up!!!

Charity Gift 1: No way!

Me: Plenty wives and children for what? (the economy is sad yet she wrote this!)

Charity Gift 1: I have said it already; if you like toss them away.

Me: *mutes* (Mba! I won’t take this from you fam)

Charity Gift 1: 12 children and 3 wives.

Me: *unmutes* Ma ba mi sh’ere k’ere o… (don’t even joke with me)

I will try and dash her to an orphanage. You’ll help me decide where the second should be thrown to.

Charity Gift 2: Bajinatu plenty for the birthday boy!!!

Me: (Emi? Who is this one calling boy?)

Charity Gift 2: May you prosper and increase speedily.

Me: *inserts MFM-style Amen*

Charity Gift 2: May your kids never give you problems like you gave your parents.

Me: *raised brows* (y’say whaaatt?!)

Charity Gift 2: May your wife never quickly discover that you’re bald.

Me: *furious… checks pictures* But I’m not! I’ve not even discovered it myself!

Charity Gift 2: …and if she discovers, let “bald” be the new cool then

Me: LOL! (this is the part where I couldn’t hold the laugh anymore)

I have decided to lease and not sell them because they’re really special I can’t afford to let them go. If you’re reading this, Charity gifts 1 & 2, do not let your heads swell; I could as well be planning to put you on OLX at a very discounted price.

It’s the beginning of another journey for me: the start button to more objectives to be achieved, grounds to break and fishes to fry. If I could only ask or wish for just one thing, it would be God’s grace to excel in everything I do (sorry to disappoint you if you thought Camry would rank first). With that I know every other thing will turnout good. If I could ask for two things, they will be the one above and more opportunity/ability to affect lives for good. If I could ask for more I’ll go for all it takes to be a better son to my parents, brother to my siblings, reliable pal to my friends and a responsible boo to future bae.

In other news, I wish the banks won’t charge me for all the multiple birthday messages they sent to me today. If MTN will kindly stop sending me the “SMS MUMU to 55501 to receive very Comic free for 7 days” text and its kind too, I will so much appreciate it.

To everyone who made my day with great wishes, prayers and several other gestures, thank you! Your days will be long and filled with the wonderful things you so much desire. Customised thanks to “Margaret Thatcher”, for the gift that broke the jinx of no-gifts and the customised pepper soup that reminded me I’ve not enjoyed life at all.

Thanks a lot fellas!

 

Blame the toothpaste!
Blame the toothpaste!

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To The Faceless Woman

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faceless-woman

The day ends in a few tick-tocks

Proletariat’s period of relief

Couple of days off the routines

She must have had the smile on her face

This I know ‘cuz I had it too

Beaming, packing… beaming again

Whistling all songs and no song

The weekend is here!

 

Keep calm little mini-me, Jane

Momma is coming home

We can have our girl-time soon

 

Hold on hubby

A weather to ― ahem…

Hold the thought till I’m home, try!

 

The weekend is here Màámi

Your jokes and drama I really miss

We’ll chat and laugh like old times

 

Life and the many roles we play

 

But Momma never came

Wife lost the warmth

Daughter never showed up

 

All along was the hood-man

Lurking with a scythe and a cold mien

Trailing the wheels till the very end

A clash, a fall and a thud

A smashing sound and the gory scene

Altered feature of a once beautiful face

Abrupt end to plans and aspirations

Dreams and whims doomed to fizzle

A painful and rushed exit

 

I hope she finds home

I wish she had what it takes

To rest and have peace

Sleep on

Sleep well

Dedicated to a faceless woman who lost her life in a motorcycle accident.

photo credit: google images

I am @Jossef69 on twitter.

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Dear Diary: Dusk Before Dawn

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Dear Diary,

I found myself in a serious imbroglio recently. I’ve heard of the danger in lines and messages with multiple meanings to different people, but it never blew at my face this way before.

We all have our share of friends met during dire circumstances, who later turned out to be great pals akin to a brother―or sister―and family. In my case, John ranked high on the list of such friends, and many times I wondered how it happened.

John, like his friend, is a young man who never feels comfortable with tons of praises and felicitations. Place three beautiful seguing adjectives behind his name and you will have him tweet and retweet like a mockingbird, persuading you to stop the hype like he has a chronic allergy for it (that is still under investigation though).

You can imagine having to bench the idea of putting a well-deserved post for him on Facebook on his birthday (because it would be lots of sweet words); sticking to the limited number of characters the profile message space of a blackberry messenger has to offer. I remember typing a few words about how we got this far, bla bla bla… and a final full stop.

But the stop was far from full.

Have you ever been at that point where a person is the trigger needed to start a chain reaction? The full stop was the beginning of hours of reminiscence. He reminded me of how I almost didn’t get into the university when I did, with a heavy heart and disappointed face so wrinkled you would think I served a long sentence atop a compost pit. By the way, John was the first person to see the face.

He reminded me of my deployment to a state that seemed like a nightmare during my service year, and the dream job I didn’t get even when it was just about a meeting away.

What I later found out was that most times, disappointments and let-downs are blessings, which in retrospect would make one shine one’s not-so-white-teeth or otherwise in acknowledgement.

The fact that I almost didn’t get into the university when I did―that anyone can fail if careless―is one of the reasons I got serious and graduated when and how I did. The nightmarish location NYSC deployed me to, turned out better for me before the end of the service year―being the highest-ranked (and maybe highest-paid) corps member of one’s local government comes with respect, challenges and responsibilities that will mold rough clay to smooth vase. Erstwhile dream job would’ve been good; it just wouldn’t have aligned and added value to me quickly like what I have. I found out after failing to get the former.

Now, imagine retiring to bed later that night, and then summing up all the memories into something about “heartbreaks that were in the real sense, blessings in cloak.” I put this up as my PM after a final chat with John. This would’ve been a normal thing; just another update you put up every once in forever. Right?

Wrong!

The timing was wrong! In fact, it was way so uncanny.

I had a relationship some years back, and the lady with whom I had it got introduced (a pre-wedding event) that same day! A disgruntled ex-boyfriend could have written what I wrote as my profile message, and she pretty much came for my hides with smiles and knives. The update seemed like a fitting shoe size, but I never did the shopping for her. I tried to see the situation from her perspective (perhaps ‘heartbreak’ wasn’t the best word choice), but then Thesaurus even disagreed. Heartbreak relates to despair, grief, pain et al; and not matters of the heart alone.

She never believed me; I didn’t flog myself trying to explain either. There is no value-add clarifying issues to someone who has chosen not to be objective about it, or even believed I could go to the extent of sticking it to her in the first place.

I would’ve kept this to myself but I couldn’t suppress the yearn to let it out and move on. I owe it to myself to come clear. I owe my friends (including those that never voiced their doubts) the facts, so they can be reassured I’m not that guy!

On the bright side though, I won’t be surprised if this fiasco turns out to be another good thing; an unfortunate event that is really a blessing in disguise. 🙂

Only time will tell.

*****

It’s been three months since the last post! *I cringe* If I had cultivated maize then, I should be chilling on the sofa now with my legs crossed, devouring a well roasted corn with my eyes set on the dough cribs full of harvest would rake in.

I didn’t.

Apologies for the long period of inactivity. The past three months were about lots of travelling and engagements that required serious attention. A lot was at stake so I had to give the needed devotion (multi-tasking isn’t always the best, believe me).

Now that things are calm, I’ll make-up for the gap.

I am @jossef69 on twitter.

Hustle Living

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Gingerly, he approached the figure, wrapping his hand around the neckline to loosen the little knot that held the mini-gown in place. I had no idea what a gown like that is called, but I was certain it should be something not so expensive though seemingly fancy, judging from the way it fitted around the firm curves on the feminine shape. Even as it dropped through the slightly protruding waist down to the feet that put an end to the fair long legs, revealing the pesky pair of mounds on the trimmed porcelain skin, he never seemed to be distracted for a second.

I sat, squeezed to the window side of a creaking 18-seater bus finding its way in the traffic congestion, watching the stranger undress the mannequin. It was about 30 minutes to the 20th hour; the end of the day’s work for some and the beginning for others. I belonged to the former category, the road-side cloth merchant and his mannequins gallantly occupied the latter.

The bus dragged briefly towards the 11.82km bridge. I knew it was the beginning of another 2hours–characterized by rough à la distress driving, cusses and attendant spits, honks and bashes–even before the bus came to a halt, the persistent gridlock remaining the factor.

A bucket of many bottled drinks sped by, and I looked out the window to confirm or discard the sorcery I just saw. For a person of really brief height, I didn’t expect the hawker to be so nimble-toed even with the conglomeration of drinks he balanced on his head. Others of his ilk had gala, plantain chips of countless brands, cashew nuts and several other consumables clutched to their sides; all meandering through the congestion trying to sell their wares. I shook my head in pity as I watched one of the hawkers almost get squeezed between two buses while he rushed to get payment for what he just sold a passenger.

“There is a Junior and/or a wife at home, a sister or brother in school, or a mama in the village depending on them… and so they hustle with their every fiber.” An elderly who seemed to have been watching me all the while said. I knew she wasn’t any off from the truth.

A couple of hours, countless hisses and serious body aches later, the third gear of the bus finally became useful. Perhaps from the reprieve brought about by the draught into the moving bus, the occupants of the seat behind me began to discuss what awaited them at their destination, the crux of the discuss being their grievances with the wage they get at work, and how the foreign owners of the factory they work in maltreat them like a flock of quarantined pigs.

I got home a few minutes to 11pm with a smile on my face; PHCN decided to put a little something in our bulbs. I settled in quickly and refreshed to get some sleep, for the alarm would do its job by 4:20AM the following day irrespective of how I feel. I remembered a joke a colleague made about the episode introductions of a movie I was seeing (he thought it would be cool to have the prologue in pidgin) and I decided to indulge myself briefly.

The player came to live as my then recumbent self began the pidgin prologue:

“My name na Oliver Queen

After five years for ogbonge hell

Na so I waka con’ home with only one goal…”

PHCN didn’t allow me save my city. They took the light.

Ironically, I wasn’t pained. They take power more than they give it and we all know. It’s bad, but I’m somehow used to it already. As I rolled over to sleep I flashed to a headline I saw on CNN a few days earlier:

D.C hit by power outage.

I would guess many Americans were in panic throughout the blackout. In some climes, blackout mostly precedes bad things, say terrorism, a headless horseman with a big axe roaming the streets, or simply the beginning of the apocalypse.

The same blackout an average warm-tempered Yoruba/Ibo/Hausa man (trust me, you don’t want to read the hot-tempered man’s version; I don’t want to write it too) would roll his eyes over and say “awon dìndìnrìn”/”mcheew, iti boribo!”/”kai! Shege!” became breaking news in some other place.

And then I did a conscious recap of my day.

Ours is a country of stoic and hard working people; we strive and hurdle regardless of the barriers and hardship, ironically with a smile bearing countenance. But it doesn’t mean we don’t want things to be better.

Maybe I wouldn’t have spent so much time in traffic if there were functioning alternative means of transport or route. Maybe there won’t be a horde of hawkers on the road at the risk of being crushed if power is regular to the point of making some other business ventures profitable. Maybe the factory workers would have ceased being garri-and-groundnut-driven robots in the sight of their bosses–slave masters–if there were other opportunities for them. Lots and tons of several other maybes!

Maybe I wouldn’t have had reasons to write this.

I am @jossef69 on twitter

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Duchess Of The Rings

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It’s late in the month of March in the year 2015. The weather is a little humid and Jonathan is still president. I can conveniently call myself an adult male, but I still don’t fully understand a few “basic” things. What’s the import of the situation report you ask. Chill. This will be brief.

But that’s not a promise.

There’s a difference between dog and dingo (maybe not as glaring as the difference between a cockerel and a broiler) and it doesn’t take understanding rocket science to know, but it’s never a crime if you don’t (lawyers, please cover me if I just lied).

Imagine walking down Thompson Street (go ahead and google the street, inquisitive chicken). You have no thoughts of work deadline making your heart beat rock and reggae concurrently, and your self-esteem cum confidence are really at the level that they should be —full.

Then it happened.

A beautiful daughter of Eve walked elegantly past you and you couldn’t help but to notice (you’re a handsome great grandson of Solomon after all). She walked gracefully and her gentle sashay gave you a vague idea of something you saw recently, but you couldn’t get a grip of it. She looked back at you, as if she could feel your eyes roaming her skin, especially at the area around her waist and a few staggering inches down; and then the eureka moment hit you: she reminded you of the newly married dapper wife of the handsome prince (make no mistake Challey, this is not a Ghollywood script).

Speaking of being married, you realized she could be already hooked to a fortunate Mr. Donald (Seriously? You’ll google him too?). Voices kept telling you to pursue and find out, for it would amount to letting the village witches prevail without stress if you assumed and let her go. What if she’s just so pretty but single like you? So you walked, determined steps after another, wishing it would be the last time your spontaneity in the art of pick-ups would be required.

A few inches away from her, something caught your attention. Pretty ma’am had all her fingers adorned with rings; sparkling rings that would make Frodo and Gollum scream “Our precious” at once. You’re an adult male but you still don’t fully understand a few “basic” things, like meaning of ring placement on different fingers of a lady, apart from the fourth finger of course. She didn’t stretch out her hand for your review (remember nail inspection on assemblies in secondary schools?), but you counted about two to three rings on one hand. You mouthed a subtle “Obaro Cheesox” unknowingly. How do you proceed from here?

You swallowed hard. Your cluelessness grew as the traditional Ndigbo flute started playing in your head, further increasing your confusion. The voices began to speak to you again, telling you how to proceed thence.

“She’s married… no she’s not, they’re just fashion rings,” a voice said.

“Oga you’re only single, not foolish too! Three fashion rings versus five fingers? Is she the duchess of the rings?” Another voice countered.

“You’re not seeing right. There are two rings, not three.”

“Are you drunk or just momentarily dumb? Do the Maths. Two or three fingers out of five, the probability that she’s married or engaged is high!” The educated mathematics-inclined voice finalized.

To approach, or not to approach? You asked yourself.

A fortnight ago you went after a young lady who you later found out was married with the “sharpest” tongue ever. Of course she didn’t call you a blind fool for making such move, she only shook the finger bearing her wedding ring before your face with the look-carefully-I’m-married attitude and then walked away muttering words that sounded Russian to your ears. Maybe she was in a bad mood. Maybe.

Quit the imagination and join me in reality bro. Will you advance against all odds to confirm her status, or move on and watch out for other free fingers? Ma’am, put yourself in bro’s shoes, what will you do?

I’m not sure what I’ll do, I only know it won’t be the former.

It’s in vogue; the fad as far as ladies are concerned. Question is: have we ever thought about the likely implications? I do not plan to argue in favour of a party or judge another, but I think it’s significant enough to be mentioned. Other growing trends include remaining single lady because marriage is overrated or independence is bliss; trooping to religious conventions (relax, I won’t write Shiloh here joor) for the gift, fruit or seed of a life partner; etc. I believe you can link the dots.

You want to rock the rings the way you like? That’s your prerogative. Attempting to point at the fallouts of rocking them in some ways? That’s my civic responsibility.

What do you think? Use the comment box for comments, corrections… and abuses. 🙂

I am @jossef69 on twitter.

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Lost

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I saw, sought and took the shot
Heeding a strange voice that numbs control
Lending motion to emotions held at bay
A moment of no restraints
Succumbing to what thrills, yet profane

Free like a bird, I’d sing
But the hollow remains what it is:
Hollow. Sunken. Empty
Gallivanting in captivity
A flighty bird in a see-through cage
Freedom in bondage

A part of me is missing
Nay, not entirely gone
It shrinks and dwindles
A dying ember longing to be fanned
Mumbling from a place remote
Stifled and bound, seeking liberty

I miss the familiar voice
That directs against the temptress’ wiles
How did I get here?
To this brink of glaring abyss
Fleeting bliss that choked my peace
I have to find my way back

I miss HIM

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Knocked Out

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I could open this post by giving a trite but dramatic “happy new year” followed by many good wishes, but seeing as that would be tantamount to saying opening prayer when it’s already time for benediction, I’ll save myself the disgrace and wish y’all greatness within myself. May we never run out of fishes to fry nor lose our certificate(s) to the utmost mockery of our enemies.

Of course, I’m murmuring the above within myself.

Many thanks to everyone who took time to go through my scribbles in times past despite my shortcomings and inconsistencies; it’s a great honour to have you. To ghost readers who stroll in for a peep like the biblical thief in the night (most thieves get caught eventually you know?), God is watching you. And Amadiora too. Thank you…but you must repent. 🙂

Hearty “shout salute” to avid commenters; the core to my reactor and source of immense encouragement. Leonardo Da Vinci must have really understood the importance of feedback before he wrote this: You have not farted if nobody grumbled nor contorted their face upon your gaseous release. Totally, I concur! I appreciate y’all. I hope it turns out to be a year of great and concentrated releases from SJB.

Here’s a little something I wrote late last year, featured on Elsieisy’s blog. Grab a bottle of coke or sorrel and enjoy.

*•*•*

A soft voice reached me from a distance, though not strong enough to bother me. I was in a state that felt great, but I couldn’t describe it. The voice got louder and harsher as a masculine voice chipped in an inglorious roughness, dragging me from my unknown state to what I later realised was consciousness.

“Damn! I did it again.”

Two days earlier I had slept off in a car en route to work. The driver I told my destination upon getting on-board had taken me several bus stops away from my stop, making excuses that he asked me but I didn’t answer. I believe people reason and talk in their sleep in his village.

I sat up as my tired eyes fixated on the source of my disturbance-cum-saving grace. The last time I checked, I was in a bus with five passengers. I must have dozed for so long, for the bus had filled up and almost at my destination.

“Madam, take it easy.”

A man likely in his forties said calmly in an apparent attempt to settle the ongoing vituperative exchange between a woman and another man; a well suit-ed man for that matter.

I wasn’t interested. I’d experienced a lot to last a lifetime in bus rides—from terror-voiced singing passenger to four full hours of chronic beansy farts endurance from an obvious source, to a preaching driver who paused intermittently to call for passengers, etc. Experience has taught me that such dramas are often not worth the effort of thinking them through. They are best enjoyed than understood.

I turned from them, but the Judas Iscariot ears I posses wouldn’t turn with me.

“Stupid woman! You have no respect. I wonder what you do to your husband at home…” He vented.

“I wonder what unfortunate woman married an insane man like you. Tragedy!” She parried.

I didn’t look back but I knew her counter crawled up his spine and sank into his brain. A rough scuffle ensued, but a familiar calm voice came in again.

“You two should stop this. You’re grown-ups. Woman…” he called with a bit of an elevated pitch, like he had some control over her, “…it’s time you kept quiet for good. I mean it.”

It worked like magic; I almost requested for a bit of the juju. She muted, but her fellow-in-dispute took it as the beginning of his victory. I had a feeling doom lurked in the boot for him, but he spilled more invectives like it was expedient for a promotion at work. He raved and dropped the thick one that broke the proverbial camel’s back—or nose.

“Woman, I’m not so worried about your insanity. From all you’ve been saying I’m sure you married someone like you; someone equally supercilious and condescending.” He paused, probably in admiration of his vocabulary. I wondered what the matter had to do with the husband. “Get home soon, woman, and let your irresponsible numbskull of a husband know how sick you are.”

She broke her silence and replied curtly, in an unbelievable low voice, “You can tell him yourself.”

Action flew first class.

Something cracked. It was more of a snap. It seemed as though the human nose is plastic like people say after all. Much as I tried to think otherwise, I knew it wasn’t just a crack of the calm mediator’s phalanges upon his fisty impact on someone else’s face—the face of a familiar man in suit. Something else definitely got broken.

I missed the action, but not everything it left in its wake.

Blood trickled down the nose of a corporately dressed owner even as he attempted to help his distressed organ with his hands, letting out grunts in pain. His vituperation-laden mouth contorted with confusion. I pondered as the dots connected before me.

Mediator was madam’s numbskull.

I am @jossef69 on twitter.

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