The 419? Project

First heard about this project from nigeriansfornigeria.org and I took interest just long enough to get the general gist and then bone. In my mind I said, we have started again and I freed the matter. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to get to know more by visiting Sir Fariku’s site  and I must confess I didn’t know the origin of the project, neither did I know how far it had spread within the country. However regardless that day was not a good day for me to see it (not with the Boko Haram threat). Why? I will tell you. Before I forget though, please do not hesitate to visit the site and play your part.

In Nigeria we like to give things fancy names that never seem to work. I remember Operation Feed the Nation, the Grassroots Movement and PTF back in the day. I remember Lightup Nigeria (please where are they?). Now we have The 419 project running and I can only wonder, how long will this phase last? To what end? We are complaining about 419 now, but I remember when the song Maga don pay by Olu Maintain came out. I can remember how many people complained. I remember when I go chop your dollar came out, I remember how many people complained. I know how many friends I have that dabbled with the 419 program and I know how many wanted to get involved. I wonder, is it those same people that want to join the program?

I wonder, how different are we the people from our government? We can like to to talk the talk and do all the complaining but when time comes to do actual work and keep at it, no one is there to be found. I remember the movie District 9 (great movie by the way), Nigeria complained about the way Nigeria was portrayed in the movie. Warlords, cannibals, e.t.c. they took offence at a time when militants were ravaging the oil industry in the South a time when some politician was caught with a goat or something weird like that. I can’t remember.

I remember when Abdulmuttalab was caught with explosives in his boxers and we were blacklisted. Nigeria complained, screamed and talked plenty. We are not terrorists. Where are they now? We are now complaining of 419 because of a blog post a man wrote about a scam mail that he got. We are complaining because the people that sent the mail talked about Nigeria. We are complaining while we do know that a lot of our boys are involved in the 419 scams. People will scream and shout if they ever visit this page but then I will state the following points…

  1. If you remember when the EFCC first started, if you remember the work they actually did, you will remember the number of people they actually caught doing the 419 business. You will also remember the outflow of Nigerians to neighbouring countries. You will also remember Ghana complaining of the number of Nigerians that came to their country to start the 419 trade.
  2.  You should know that putting up different blog posts of 419 reasons to love Nigeria will probably generate a feeling of resentment from me and people like me. Why? If you have seen all the lies MTN, Glo, Banks and our government tell us on the news and you compare it to what you actually experience, then you might know what I am actually talking about. Personally, I think it might help the good feeling in Nigeria, but then only for a short time. Reality will set in.
  3. I remember Muttalab and the issues it caused between Nigeria and the international community. We are not terrorists, Nigerians said that no normal thinking Nigerian would blow himself up. We love life too much and all.. It didn’t take long for us to eat our words. Words we are still eating. Fast forward 18 or so months and our president and leaders have the guts to say terrorism is here to stay. SHAME!!
I know I will probably get slaughtered about this, but here are my reasons to love Nigeria
  • I love our ability to blow things out of proportion in the heat of the moment and then conveniently forget about it all 6months down the line
  • I love how the motivation behind most Nigerians is to be of benefit to just himself and maybe a few others
  • I love how we can be good practising Christians in times of trouble.. We fast and pray when there is a crisis but we lie, cheat and steal to make a quick buck when it involves the hustle (hard work for the right reasons ba?).
  • I love it when we are quick to sing praises of thieves and looters when they are in power and can contribute to our hustle but we are quick to castigate, insult and degrade them when things go sour (please why not fast and pray then?)
I love my country people. I love it to bits.. Prayer worketh much indeed, but only when the people are righteous. No matter how you try, painting a dirty pot will never make it clean. I wish this project the best, but having seen the ones before it, I will prefer it if we don’t make this a “Nigerian” project.
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Regards,
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I will say this once and then rest my case… Being positive about Nigeria online, will not change Nigeria, neither will it change the impression people have of it. If I want to find out about Nigeria and I go to google, seeing blog posts, websites and things put up by Nigerians all saying 419 reasons will only make me go to BBC, CNN and so on, to get the truth. Or I simply go to Wikipedia. I wish you all the best people. But our people are hungry, jobless and slowly losing all hope. That is our problem. Every society has its vices.. We don’t overcome the vices with words and posts.. That is what our government is doing, it HAS NOT worked. Why join them?
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Let your light so shine, that men may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven – Matt 5:16
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Need I say more? If we clean up or society, it will reflect worldwide. WORLDWIDE I SAY!!
Finally I would like to ask, who brought up the idea? Was it Peter J Reilly? Or was it us? If it was him, then shame on us all for going ahead with this!
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Disclaimer: This is a reflection of my views, not a reflection of the Nigerian populace.
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Oh I did forget to mention JJC and the 419 Crew
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Talk might be cheap today, but the cost of it tomorrow might be much more than you ever foresee.
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God bless Nigeria.

Thoughts and Ramblings…

This is one of them posts that one neither knows how to start or how to end. It is one of them posts that one has no idea what the title should or can be. Yes, it is one of them posts I write when I start thinking too much. I am pretty much your average Nigerian; I work for the government, make little or no money, have no girlfriend but want many girls and struggle everyday to live right. One thing makes me stand out though, something I try my best to hide and shield daily and it is that I care too much. I resolved long time ago that I would make a difference in the lives of people whether directly or indirectly and although I have long stopped beating my chest or head on how to do that, I know I WILL do it.

Work carried me to Minna yesterday, very bumpy ride otherwise it was uneventful.. I say uneventful because the last time we made the trip, a goat had the misfortune of being run over by us. Coming back was pretty much uneventful save for the awesome weather that met us. If you live in Abuja, then you know exactly what I am talking about. It was like all them Bible movies I watched when I was a kid. And the narrator reads in his boring voice “The sun went to sleep, the clouds came out in their many numbers and the sky went as dark as night. It rained for hours and hours till there was no more land in sight…” anyways you get the point before I start getting carried away. We got into Abuja and met traffic, the sort that only Third Mainland Bridge people should testify of. Long story cut short we had to enter bush to beat the traffic. Heard this morning that it took 3hours to get past that traffic. Picture was taken at 6.20pm in Abuja. It should have been a lot of brighter (note to self – I have to get a camera)

God has blessed me with awesome parents, a wonderful family and privileges that I can’t deny have kept me alive for this long. I will forever be grateful. However reaching Abuja and seeing the crowd of people waiting for vehicles to take them home, touched me and then cut me deep. I saw an old woman standing in the rain who looked so tired and it broke my heart. I saw young men and women, people who should be the hope and future of our country stand for hours with no way whatsoever of getting home and I began to get angry.

Angry at the government for not performing their basic duty in providing for the citizens of this once proud nation. Our president claims he was born in a village, he went to school without shoes, trekked for miles and miles… Does he still remember? The Senators, House of Reps and all, the Ministers of our country, they know. At one point in time they would have seen the sights that I saw last night and still they do nothing. I wonder what is it all for? You have a 100million dollars in your account, you can only ever spend 20million or so.. Why on earth would you want to have 900million more to your name? Why?

I am angry at the church too, so many pastors now are all interested in preaching money to their church people. How to make money, how to be successful, how to live hoping for a better day. How about preaching on how to make a difference? How to change lives, touch lives? What happened to being your brother’s keeper?

I am angry at the helpless situation I find myself in. I want to do something and sometimes I do, but even that is not enough. No it isn’t and even that hurts me. I see kids running on the streets begging for bread and food to eat. I see them with all the energy and while other people curse them, I wonder how they got into town, how they would get back and who on earth brought them here.

I understand the hustle, I understand how we have to better our lives. But I do remember a time when a whole village could pool resources together to send one bright talent to school so he could have a better life and so promote the village in the future. I remember a time when parents would go for days without eating just so they could feed their children and send them to school to have a better life. I see those children now in some cases not caring about the other bright talents in the streets. Talents that could move the nation forward. Bright lights extinguished by the lack of hope in the streets. Survival is for the fittest they say, but the truth is, the fittest is not always the best. That has been proven time and time again in our society today.

Everybody is on the hustle nowadays it seems. If you can’t hustle then you ain’t worth the time. In society however there is a place for everyone. I thank God for your hustle, but then in most cases someone, one person helped you to where you are today. If 1 person helped you, you can help 2, 3 or more. It should be a ripple effect. It should be

My dearest friend calls this me, rambling. A period when I just sit down and let things out in bits and pieces. She also showed me that in this state I do not make any sense at all and I realised that writing brings everything together for me. Today I will mention you directly, thank you (If you ever do read this).

Another dear friend helped me realise that long walks in parks and places help me think. There is only one park in Abuja I can walk in, the fear of Boko Haram keeps me in one place. I thank you too.

So many people have brought me to this point, to this place I am in right now. A lack of space will not let me say them all.

My mum, the strongest woman I have ever known, my dad (my superhero), my entire family, my church, the one place I ever considered as truly mine. The people I call friends… I can’t continue, writing this ish makes me think I am gonna die soon. I won’t. My book is still being written. It has not reached the end yet.

Enough of this, let me start work for today. Minna calls

Regards,

Single Nigerian Man

As a person of power in government, if any decision you make does not benefit the common man then you are not doing your duty – Can’t remember where I read this

Disclaimer: I am rambling, forgive the gbagauns and things. I have to work soon.

I will make a difference!!!

In other news Boko Haram has promised to unleash carnage in Nigeria, make we dey watch.

God help us all…

A series of Unfortunate Events

In case you are wondering why I am starting this post with a half naked picture of a well known man, do not be worried. I am not gay, he is not pregnant and neither am I. That people is my resolution for 2012. Yes I said it. No more dulling or messing around, I need to burn the carbs, get some abs and muskles. I want to be able to take my shirt off and have it speak volumes. Yes I said it, after 3 years of thinking I want to be an African Beau Wonder with brains. Why the change of heart? Why not? I have two brothers from other mothers who have been attempting to kill me for the past couple of months. Yes I am reporting Senor Baroque and Blaq Bobby to you all. We are all involved in something called the #movement where they do pushups ranging from 250 to 300 and situps ranging from 100 to 200, the sad thing is, they expect me to be a part of it. Me? Kai!! Before I bore you with my physical constraints, I shall proceed with my post.

Now I must confess if all what is written below had happened in one day to just one person, I have to admit, that Aladdin’s genie would have a lot of work cut out for him (oh I forget, we are in Nigeria). Without further ado, make I proceed.

Event 1: The Sweaty Episode: If you have ever been in a car, driving or being driven and had a serious case of the runs, this is for you. Now this is the average scenario, you manage to get yourself into an eatery or you get home on time right after you break into a cold sweat. In the story you are about to read, this is not the case.

Imagine yourself as an omo boy, you jejely dey inside car dey relax, when you start feeling the heat of the runs. Now that is normal. Imagine that you are in a car driving at a 120km/h in the middle of nowhere when you hear In the Air Tonight by Phil Collins playing (don’t ask me why it just seems perfect for the scenario). Your tummy rumbles, and stops, no shakings make we dey go. Tummy rumbles and then stops (now playing Breathe and Stop by Qtip) and then starts and won’t stop. All of a sudden sweat starts breaking loose and running free and you know deep down in your heart that there is a problem. Did I forget to mention that there is this quite stunning beauty in the car with you have been trying to hit it with? SHIT (and I mean that literally)!!! If you were in that situation, what would you do? I would weigh the following options; the chances of meeting her again, the chances of actually getting something started and the chance that I would do a little doodle in the ride. Mathematical equation below

Chance of meeting her again: Close to zero

Chance of getting something started: Close to zero

Chance of starting something smelly: Close to 1

If that is the answer people I would face bush squarely…

Event 2: The Blackout: Now if you have ever blacked out before, then you may know exactly what I am talking about here. I must point out that a blackout as I mean it has no relation to a knock out or a pass out. They are totally different terms.

Anyways, I had the misfortunate fortune of going to a gym for a workout session. My first session in nearly 18months. No wahala there. Now I like to act like I am power mike in things like this, push my body to the limits and things. Na so I climb treadmill o. Instead of me to on the thing they waka dey go, na so I climb am on am put the thing on full speed and started running. 15mins later I got down, all the gym people where hailing me, I was feeling like a stud. There was a football match going on, sat down to watch it on a chair that gave crappy massages and I lost my sense of vision. I swear, PHCN took light in my brain and I was blind for like 5 mins. I freaked!!! As in I nearly ran mind numbingly mad. I was blind. Thoughts that ran through my mind included; who send me? How will I find my way home? Them don swear for me from village. CHINEKE!! Thinking about it now, I laugh but people, it was far from funny.

Event 3: The lift, the chick and the smell…: I remember that day like it was this morning.. It was very early in the morning and I was rushing out of my building because I was quite late. Ran to the lift and pressed the call button, as I was contemplating running down the stairs, the lift door opened and I saw this beautiful girl alone in the lift. I opened my mouth slightly, closed it firmly and entered the lift. And as I turned to say hi, I smelt it. My mind blew. The aroma that wafted up my nose was not gentle, it was not perfume. It smelled like a mixture of fart, onions, eggs and coke. I am a man, but there are some things I CANNOT take. Fine woman and gas is one of them. I came down on the next floor and took all 12 flights of stairs to the parking lot. I fit shout o, but I no ready die. If it was you, what would you do? Oh yeah, this is totally fictional. It did not happen or did it?

I have a new definition of disappointment today. It is watching a very boring film for 70mins on cable hoping to catch a glimpse of boobies with one or all of the following happening when the scene comes up

  • Light goes.
  • Light goes, comes back and then goes again
  • Light goes and the generator refuses to start or the security guard is sleeping.
  • All of the above happen only for the light to come back on and the cable station edits the scene because it is deemed inappropriate for viewers
That people is a series of unfortunate events.
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Regards
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Single Nigerian Man
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Disclaimer: I am not to blame for the series of laughter this may cause.. Any attempt to link any of this to me will end up rather badly.
In other news, I am going to have a wish come true in less than a month. I am going on vacation.. Happiness 🙂
Now I am wondering if I should just start blogging on the regular, bi-weekly or tri-weekly.

The Relationship Contract…

I have been quiet for a while, except for that rant I posted on Ennui which has been quickly taken down. It’s Wednesday, 4pm and I am bored stiff. Finally decided to put this up. Its something that has been on my mind for a while and meeting a friend of mine on Monday finally gave me the 3rd ball neccessary to put it up (no having just 2 ain’t enough sometimes). Before I proceed, let me get some definitions out of the way…

The Relationship Cycle: This can be defined as the time it takes for a single Nigerian to get into a relationship and get single again. Without beating any bushes, let me define in some detail. This is somehow related to the series I never started, found here.

First Phase – The Hook Up: We just met and we are getting to decide if we can do one of the following; date, sleep with each other or be friends. Whichever one it is, deciding leads you straight to the second step. That is unless there is typeographical error somewhere in which case the cycle ends… Immediately.

Second Phase – The Honeymoon: Having decided what we want to be, we just can’t get enough of each other. We go everywhere together, kiss a lot and hold hands (if we are dating) or loads of nookie (if we decide to sleep with each other as well). Deciding to enter the relationship leads you to the third phase. This ends if one of the following happens.. The babe chop your money finish, the babe meets another guy, the babe sleeps with another guy.. Guys no dey hear word, even if they are seeing, sleeping or meeting other girls they will still want you.. SMH!!!

Third Phase – The Relationship: This is usually the maker or the breaker. It is the point where guy and girl come out in the open and start meeting friends and minor relations. They start fighting, kissing less, sexing less and actually start doing what they should have continued from the first phase, talking to each other again. Usually, the wahala(problems) the other person carries is more than can be handled and the second person bolts. Other times, they both reach a compromise. In mathematical terms, see below

Quality of sex is directly proportional (or more) to the amount of wahala received or (The amount of good times/the amount of bad times) > 1 = Good signs. Anything less na problem o, for both parties

After all has been said and done, depending on what the couple decides, they decide to move on to the next stage…

Fourth Phase – The Engagement: This is the point when they decide to marry… I shall stop here for now because I truly cannot talk about what I haven’t experienced. Honorary mentions to Marriage, Honeymoon and yet another Relationship till death/divorce do you part.

Having said and done all of the above, if I was to get into the relationship cycle again, here are some laid down rules I would want to get established.

  1. I am a guy, regardless of what you think or what you want, I will remain a guy and think like one. Do not be offended if I want to act like a guy when you want me to do your chick things with you. I will take you shopping, take you to make your hair, but I will not sit with you through it all, unless there is sex involved at the end of it. Meaning? I have to be a husband, fiancée or a one weekend stand.
  2. If you know you have no plans whatsoever, I mean NO PLANS, of getting married to me and you are just here for the kicks and fun, please make plans for lots of nookie, or else kindly move on and don’t waste my time. Thank you
  3. If you kiss me any time after 9pm during the week and it involves tongue, God will punish you if you let it stop there. Same swearing from 9pm on Friday till 10pm on Saturday. Sunday is Holy, lets keep it that way.
  4. I like food, I like to cook, don’t abuse that. My mama, God bless her soul, imbibed those skills as a backup plan on the days the wife goes funny. Note the key word wife.
  5. I agree fights have to happen, but after the first 4 fights please lets establish a pattern. We fight, you bone after 4 days of begging please forgive me. All you have to do to make me forgive you is take off your top and bra. I am easy like that.
  6. If I propose to you and you say no, knowing fully well how I feel, there is no problem. However if you decide to still hang around me.. There is a saying where I am from and it quietly relates to pregnancy. Be warned!! However if I do tell you I do not want to marry you and you still hang around, be ready for loads of dodgery* from me (did I just form a new word? *shrugs). Is this one sided? Sorry, I will reduce the print.
Having said all this, kindly sign
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Thank you.
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Regards,
                                                  .
Single Nigerian Man
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My heart is broken, I did not create the word dodgery, it already exists.
In other news, I have a crush, totally seperate and different from Jane Doe. Totally seperate from my blogwife Kiah too. Everyone meet Miz her twivatar is calling my eyes mehn!!! No I am not a…, what’s the word for internet ashewo again?
Disclaimer: I was under the influence, please forgive me. Faced a minor difficulty above; I know of “problems are” but “wahala are” just sounds weird
Dear Wonuola, the diclaimer is for you.
OMG, I am still staring #nowcrying
Now running home.
Yeah you got it right, I have almost found my muse again *sticking tongue out* at Kiah

Ennui…

Had this at the tip of my fingers for a while now. Ennui: he one word that captures the feeling I have had growing in my chest this past week. Disenchantment, dissatisfaction with the state and stage of my life. So many things I want to do that I can’t, so few things I really want to do that I am actually doing.

As a kid, I was quite gifted, played the keyboard at my church (yeah the main church) at the age of 9, learned the rhythm guitar, the bass, the recorder, the drums, the harmonica and even knew how to sing. I had the artistic streak, was the best student at Technical drawing, knew the basics of how to take off and land a plane, all this before the age of 17. I had life at the tip of my hands, I could have been anything I wanted to be. How did I lose all that?

Growing up I had the wonderful ability to shield my feelings, keep up the blank facade, the strong silent type, like the cowboys of years gone by. Clint Eastwood, Steven Seagal, the guys who didn’t need to speak much but who you knew could get the job done. Met people who confessed to me that they didn’t think I could speak or smile. Now I am just a bubbling mix of emotions, emotions I can only keep back with an effort. How did I lose that strength? Do I need to mention that the Nigeria I grew up in, is no more? We never thought it would affect us, shielded within the homes of our parents, we are past that now, the problems in the country glare at us daily and all we can do is glare back, keep quiet and pray (for those who still do)

Time flies, things change. Met a woman that changed my life, brought out the writer in me. Have a kid, two degrees and a couple of certifications. A brain I hardly use, words I barely say and underneath it all, a growing feeling that there is more to this life than I am getting.

So now I have a son I barely see, a woman I constantly dream about and a daughter I dare not have. I am an emotional wreck, lost my musical talent, slowly losing my ability to write, I have a job I would have jumped at 6 months ago with bosses that slowly wreck it. I have lost my faith in religion and so find it hard to go to church, however I find it hard to hold on with just my prayers and daily devotionals. I need fellowship but too many falsehoods around, methinks I am one of them. Ennui, a word so strange with a meaning so familiar… growing steadily, daily. How did I get here?

I would go to church, but last week they spoke about tithes, this week is thanksgiving, two weeks ago it was about giving to build the house of God and I wonder, how many houses will my God stay in, when there are supposedly 150million hearts in this country. I understand omniscience but then if every church in Nigeria wants to build Solomon’s house, who will feed the poor, the broken in spirit? In all this, not once do I hear a sermon for the weary heart. For that, we are to remember that salvation is a personal race. Building God’s house is a collective issue though.

We choose to lock our feelings in and lock people out when we could share, not share to the oversabi’s who always have theories and no solutions, the ones who would rather fling mantras at us than offer their shoulders. I know your type, but rather than tell you how I truly feel, I murmur my thanks and walk far from you, I appreciate your efforts but it is not what I need at the moment. I want Jane Doe, I want a baby girl, I want a high paying job, I want my boy. I want to write a lot, most of all I want to feel like I belong somewhere.

Not your usual post or rant, just airing my feelings, maybe yours too. Thanks OhJ and Twinnie… Sometimes reading stuff pushes you to make that move… Dearest Kiah, I still dey wait you oh

Regards,

Single Nigerian Man

Disclaimer: Just airing my mind, clearing things… I am not Job.

Dear Jane Doe, if you see this, I am fine.

MsLuffa this does not qualify for a crisis session 🙂

Yes I am saying it, you have probably thought it… I AM BORED!!!