“Ideas: they have a mind of their own; still, they try to make your mind their own” – Imisi
Hi and welcome back to DeMeStified. Hope you’ve been up to great stuff in the time it’s been?
They say every good story begins with a damsel in distress. It’s true, but mostly in the movies. In fact, maybe only on Hollywood. For me, every good story – everything I consider of any worth along this journey – began with a stupid and flat-out laughable idea. It’s happened so many times I’ve come to embrace it – even right from the very beginning.
“I’m gonna get a degree”. “How??? Get serious while you’re at it”
“Let’s get married”. “That’s a joke, right? You know we’re from cultures that don’t get along.”
“We’re having another baby”. “For real? Are you having a laugh?”
“I’m going to explore writing”. “With your handwriting? Come on!!! Be fair to yourself”
“I’m leaving”. “At this critical phase? You can’t be serious. I wouldn’t if I were you. What if those plans don’t come together?”
“I’m gonna take that course?” “And do what with it? There’s no market for it here.”
“I’m gonna do this”. “Are you sure? Hmmmn. What’s to become of all your education?”
“Don’t snatch; it’s rude and bad manners. Don’t you know your manners?” – Bethany [from the Book “In Comfort of Mary“]
“Our planet is poorly equipped for delight. One must snatch gladness from the days that are.” – Vladimir Mayakovsky
“Successful men usually snatch success from seeming failure.” – A.P. Gouthey
There are two cardinal types of dreams we all have from time to time; one type probably more than the other. There’s the one where we go over what already exists, and remind ourselves how good our lives are. That’s the kind that gives respite and soothes our many aches. There’s the other, more conscious, in which we reminded ourselves how undeserving of rest we yet are. Where we instruct ourselves never to settle for less than we deserve. It’s one that calls comfort a prison and questions the purpose of such courtesies as ‘taking whatever comes’.
Imagine waking up in the cold and damp confines of a prison cell. The loudest sound you hear is the beating of your heart’s drum; clearly, you’re all alone and help is far away. The list of crimes for which you’re being held is neatly engraved on one of the walls. You smile. You may not remember how you got in there – but you know exactly what you have and haven’t done. The phoney charges won’t stick. You’re convinced. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, Change, Choice, Comfort, Dreams, Life
Tagged Choice, Comfort, Dream, Life, Prison, Snatch, Work
“Appreciation is the highest form of prayer, for it acknowledges the presence of good wherever you shine the light of your thankful thoughts” – Alan Cohen
Sometime this month, I stumbled on the story of a lady who’d just lost one of her legs. The trauma was so bad she looked forward to what many would consider a nightmare – running in her dreams. It was her escape form the reality of life without one limb; something that brought her brief comfort – until she woke.
The best I could do as I read the words was empathize – but it was absolutely impossible to fully understand the true extent of her ordeal. Such loss really is just not something even the most masterful words can aptly convey. I gave some thought to it, nonetheless.
In fact, the thought was still warm on my mind when I stumbled on the most hilariously sarcastic message I had seen in a while. It was a notice in an office parking lot (signed by the ‘less ignorant occupants of the building’) chiding those without disabilities with a habit of parking in spaces for the less able. “…….if you’re fortunate enough to be in good health and have no disabilities, we would suggest that you leave this space vacant for those who actually require it. I’m sure the short walk from other spaces will not delay your activities too much”. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, 5-12 iMagInG, Anger, Friends, Friendship, Logic, Loss, Soccer
Tagged Amputation, Anger, Friendship, HTC, Let Her Go, Logic, Loss, Passenger, Soccer
“At fifteen life had taught me undeniably that surrender, in its place, was as honorable as resistance, especially if one had no choice” ― Maya Angelou
“The greatness of the man’s power is the measure of his surrender” ― William Booth
Sometime, towards the end of 2013, I had the strangest feeling of all. From right out of the blues, I felt a prodding to write about my deceased uncle. The usual pattern had been to think about something consciously for a while – then, feel a push to write about it. I hadn’t even been thinking about him in the months or years leading up to that moment. I had simply accepted his passing, mourned him and moved on. So, there really wasn’t anything ‘bottled up’. I didn’t expect the ensuing post to make enough sense to complete – so I never bothered with starting. But, there was something else about that moment.
I would later find that it coincided almost to the minute with the timing of Paul Walker’s fatal crash. That definitely caught my attention. What ghastly coincidence! Made me think a little more than I was prepared to about the uncle. I started to think maybe there was a little more to that nudge I felt. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, 2013, 2014, Death, Disappointments, Life, Plans
Tagged Ayrton Senna, Brazil, Cars, Control, Death, Formula 1, Life, Maya Angelou, Murphy's Law, Nigeria, Paul Walker, Plans, Surrender, Toyota, Usain Bolt, William Booth
“Why am I dying to live, if I’m just living to die” – Runnin’ [Tupac ft. Notorious B.I.G.]
“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” – John 12:24
It’s been 168 days since I last put up a post; about the same time since I wrote anything that wasn’t official, a tweet or status update. In all that time, activity around me has been teeming. Yet, for the craziest of reasons, it felt like everything stood eerily still. I won’t even bother to insult you with pseudo-apology for my absence. This one time, no matter how much I wanted to write something, no matter how well the words aligned in my head, I just couldn’t find the strength to put them down. The story of ‘why’ is what follows. But, more than a mere story, it’s like a song by a newborn about a painting etched by piercing sunlight during a riot.
They say a magic trick has three parts: the pledge, where you mentally commit to and assert reality; the turn, where all you’ve affirmed suddenly changes – and the prestige, where whatever is taken away is brought right back. But, this isn’t a magic trick. If it were, it’ll be all about turn – the all-defining change; anything before or after gets mindlessly muted. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, 2014, 5-12 iMagInG, Change, Christmas, Determination, Disappointments, Life, Resolve, Soccer
Tagged B.I.G., Bandits, Childbirth, Chinese, Death, Doctor, Fabrice Muamba, Failure, Fear, Heart, Life, Resolve, Soccer, Tupac
“Which is worse: A lie that draws a smile or a truth that draws a tear?” – Defense counsel to judge [Miracle on 34th Street, the movie]
Hi, and welcome back! Disclaimer: Today’s post has nothing to do with the TV Show you’re thinking about – or any other one for that matter!
I started writing this shortly after a few of my ex-schoolmates (@SeunAlade, @FeyiShayur, etc) and I got together [online] to recount experiences from our secondary school days. And, just yesterday, I bumped into another pal from back then who had recently become a medical doctor. It just made the reminiscing all the more intense. I only spent three years at the school, but those years proved critical in shaping the person I’ve now become.
There were lots of memories, but one towers high above all others – and I remember it more today because I don’t know when I’d see the hero of the story again. Very true what they say about twenty kids and twenty years. Even truer when they’re siblings and well above twenty!
From my very first day in that compound, I knew I was in for a different experience. For the accomplished primary school kid that I was, secondary school felt like the chaotic afterlife. For every familiar face I saw, there were 40 previously unseen. For every previously held idea of how stuff worked, there were four better alternatives. For every one thing I thought I knew about life, there were a billion I was now to learn. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, Big Brother, Childhood, Esteem, FGC Ikirun, Lies, Perception, School
Tagged Big Brother, Childhood, Esteem, FGC Ikirun, School
Hi. Welcome back to DeMeStified. Thanx for the very warm reception you gave the Terminal 8 series. Glad to have gotten that bout of silly out of the way. I had thought it’d be another while before the silly feelings returned. #Bleh…. Anyways, we’ll just have to see what becomes of the lingering cravings now. If this year’s busy outlook is anything to go by, they’ll come in handy at some point.
The past few months have been pretty eventful, personally, nationally – even globally. The twists and turns just keep popping up, leaving the distance between events no more than a few steps. You’ll marvel at the sheer number of alarming stuff that’s happened between the last post and now. Continue reading
Hi. Welcome back. This will be the last episode of the series. It was an absolute pleasure for me, getting to work with some writers I hold in high regard. I have to thank you too for staying with us. Let’s hope all dots connect [visibly] after this episode. [Here’s where we left off]
Today’s writer is @SeunAlade – a trained lawyer, proper good guy and forward thinker. He’s a fantastic writer on top of all that. His enthusiasm was the fuel we ran on……
I had absolutely no clue how my day would go as I left that state house that morning. With the weekly executive meeting out of the way, I thought I’d coast into the weekend. My planned visit to some construction sites was mere formality – nothing I considered disturbing. It looked like a smooth sail. What did I know!
Even Macbeth’s witches could not have predicted a call from the president – but there he was on the first line. It was the last thing one could have expected, seeing as we weren’t from the same party – or on particularly good terms. But, elections were around the corner; sh*t happens. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, 5-12 iMagInG, Easter, Leadership, Nigeria, Nurse, Politics, Terminal 8
Tagged Easter, Executive, Governor, Nigeria, Nurse, Politics, President, Terminal 8, Trains
Hi and welcome back to #DeMeStified. My most sincere apologies for how late this post is coming. It was 200% avoidable this time; entirely my fault. I did something really silly that set the team back three weeks.
I hope you’ve been able to identify some trends and see what should go where? Today’s writer, @Feyishope, is a medical doctor and a proper marvel. He did all of this from his mobile device.
If you’re just joining in, you’d need about 1 2 3 4 quick breaths to catch up 😉 This would be the penultimate episode – and, with your permission, we’ll proceed.
The pain in my left knee which is usually so slight I forget it’s there had surged to an agonizing throb. The way it does when the cold descends or something bothers me a lot. The jolts of pain that shot through my bad knee as the train shuddered made me regret my decision-albeit necessary-to leave my walking stick in the office. It was going to be a rough walk to my destination. I wasn’t looking forward to it.
I set down the PM newspaper I was trying to read to put the maelstrom in my head at bay. It was futile; I hadn’t gotten past the first line of the headline news since I picked it up. I couldn’t get rid of my friend’s apologetic voice echoing in my head. Loudly. I barely stayed above the overwhelming urge to cry and laugh at the unfair hand life had dealt me. I may have lost all else, but I wasn’t going to lose my dignity and my sanity, not in front of my fellow train passengers. Continue reading
Posted in #512iMagInG, 5-12 iMagInG, Hospital, Suicide, Terminal 8
Tagged AfricaConnected, Agbero, Death, Doctor, Google, Hospital, KabuKabu, Lagos, Suicide, Survival, Terminal 8, Trains
Hi, and welcome (back). Thanx for all the love you’ve shown the series so far. We didn’t plan for the break to be this long. Glad we can pick up from where we left off. Happy val’s in arrears. 😀
Today’s writer is a man with hands in lots of pies. He does as he preaches and is amazingly thorough. I’m excited to have Obafuntay on here – and he’ll be waiting in the comments section too. Let’s dive!
“Police is your friend” – #Naija Police
You know that pungent feeling of impending doom, when you walk through a hospital corridor? That one you recall for years after the last visit? I don’t feel it anymore; I’ve been through so many it’s begun to feel normal. The past two years have seen me go in and out of hospital more times than I can count. A part of me dies every time I step back in. So, more of me has gone in than has come back out. Still, my concern is not for myself; I’m healthier than a race horse.
I work in the police department and fight crime by day. At night, however, I’m reduced to a living statue besides his wife’s dying bed. We been here at this point so long I know the names of every nurse and doctor in over ten hospitals. I’ve seen patients come and go – some to joy and cheer, others to tears and eternal silence. Continue reading
Posted in 5-12 iMagInG, Anger, Cancer, Corruption, Crime, Death, Decisions, Determination, Devotion, Dreams, Family, God, Hard Work, Hope, Hospital, Naija, Nigeria, NoFilter, Nurse, Police, Resolve, Stereotypes, Terminal 8
Tagged Cancer, Compromise, Corruption, Death, Decision, Family, God, Life, Naija, Nigeria, Police, Resolve, Terminal 8, WhistleBlower