Viva Las Gidi 3: Fine Boy

This story is fictional and again, inspired by @88factor”s illustration but is also based on actual occurrences and experiences.

See the first here and the second here.

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Idris was working the back of my head when it happened.

I knew it had happened. He knew I knew it had happened. I could see from the way Baba Lasisi flinched and, catching my reflection’s eye, quickly looked back into his newspaper, that he too knew it had happened. And yet, none of us said anything; we all just acted like nothing had happened. I think it’s called denial what I was going through as I sat there and let the buzzing go on behind my head. I can’t speak for Baba and Idris though. I can’t say what made them not say anything. I can’t speak for anyone else either, all the other folk who discovered what had happened later. What happened must have had a way of leaving everyone who saw it dumbfounded and unable to tell me when they discovered it.

I’m still not sure what caused it. It could have been one of or a combination of several things…

Goal!

Spain had scored again and the entire stuffy room of young men and the odd girlfriend here and there had either groaned, winced or just fallen into a grave silence at the occurrence. I witnessed Idris through the mirrors visibly wince while glancing up at the suspended tv to see the replay. Everyone seemed torn by the goal, all except Peter. He had jumped out from behind his customer and lifted Idris clear off the ground screaming “Gooooooooaaaallllll!” directly in his face. Followed after dropping him by, “Tiree zero! I don win, men. You musto pay me my money today. Next time you no go bet wit shampion! Haha! Rubbish Eagles.” As Peter returned to his customer, leaving a dejected man in his wake, Idris’ girlfriend, the daughter of theiya alata  who also sold indomie and bread just outside, came over and gave him a peck, which drove the entire Fine Boy Cutz into a frenzy of slobbering catcalls and whooping hecklers. In all of this, somehow, the device buzzing never left just behind my head.

It was when Idris’ full attention returned to what he had been doing I realized something was amiss. From the way he froze for a few seconds, the gears in his head audibly whirring and then looked up to see if I was looking, I could tell that a problem had presented itself. If that was not enough to convince me, seeing Baba Lasisi, who sat directly behind me, look away the way he had made me sure. And yet, none of us said a thing. Idris just returned to what I would later discover were attempts at corrective measures.

The match came to an end, the spectators dragged their dank selves out and away dejectedly and the fresh air was let back in, thankfully. Idris finished his work and removed the protective cloth around me, letting me up, all the while refusing to meet my eye. I paid him and tried to make small talk while I expected he would be trying to swindle me out of my change as usual but no. He seemed really distracted as he handed me my correct change and stepped out. Probably in search of his gehfren. I looked in the mirror one last time, swiveling my head this way and that to be sure I looked good and having assuaged all doubt, left, hailing Baba Lasisi on my way out. Ordinarily, the old man would choose that time to reminisce on the years back when he was more tormentor than mentor to us kids while I would be trying to escape his nostalging, but not today. Today, he seemed really engrossed in whatever stale news it was he was reading in those papers and replied my hailings with only a grunt.

As I made my way down the street, odd stares burned into the back of my head. Everytime I tried to meet one of them, the eyes got averted, a mischievous twinkle in the eye every time. Friends I had grown up with, new neighbours, ex-girlfriends, street boys, young uns… They all would just looked away.

I arrived home and stepped in front of the small mirror hanging in the bathroom, wondering what it was that had happened back at Fine Boy that had Idris so spooked. As I turned my head this way and that, my little sister, Yimika, steps in behind me and bursts out laughing manically.

In turning to look at her, I catch a glimpse of the profile view of my shadow, cast against the wall by the lone bulb affixed to the wall just above the door. My previously nice, round afro is now flat at the back of my head, forming a wedge-shaped crown.

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VIVA-LAS-GIDI-MID-RES

The Big Picture Viva Las Gidi by @88factor

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Viva Las Gidi 2: Shooter

This is the second installment in the Viva Las Gidi project inspired by (a section of) an illustration by @88factor. See the first here.

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Idris shoots. Stupid boy.

We discussed this before we started. “Don’t just be shooting anyhow o. Ees not only you daees playing.” And naturally, the missile he sent flying gets easily deflected.Stupid, selfish boy.

“Ah! Mo block e!

Haha. This Peter is just a clown. His heavily igbo-accented yorubanglish is a tragedy to the ears but a comedy to the spirit… but the comedy is lost on me right now. Who wants to hear the braggadocio in the nonsense omo-nna’s voice when he is flailing one with it in such ill-timed mockery? Him and Abdul are leading us 3-0. Somehow, his deflection brings the ball my way and it is revealed to me from above the perfectly-timed opportunity to teach this Peter a lesson in how not to kick men… or boys when they are down. This is divine orchestration and I am the tool the almighty has chosen to use in humbling this wicked child.

I can see the opening I need to aim at and I swivel on my dunlop slipper-clad toes to take the deadly kick that will transport our worn and patched double-leather into the waiting monkey post. My target is the space between the pile of school bags which make up one upright of our makeshift post and Peter’s heavily-planted bare right foot. The space is barely a foot wide, but that is more than enough to shoot through.

As I move toward my missile, I hear the crowd begin to cheer behind me. They can see what I am trying to achieve and, impossible as it seems, they are cheering me on to greatness. All around the arena, chants of “Tolusky! Tolusky!!” are picked up and echoed on till they rise up high and crash down into my ears and spur on my growing momentum. The dust around my feet whirls up excitedly creating a cinematic effect. My left foot is planted firmly into the ground just behind the double leather and my right begins the drive for the deadly shot. This is magical.

The dunlop on my right foot is hardening and expanding to envelope my whole foot. Through the soles of my now shoed left foot, I feel the studs sprout out underneath and create a firmer rooting to the ground. My focus is still on the ball but I can make out from the corners of my eyes that there are now socks and shin guards on my swinging lower limbs. Flashes of light appear and disappear in the periphery of my vision distracting me momentarily. I glance up in the middle of my hyper-timed drive to realize that Idris is now clad, like me, in full gear; as is Peter in his full goalie regalia. The stark white upright has replaced our school bags and shoots into the ground a good yard, at least, from Peter’s right foot. My target has increased, but then so has the distance between us.

My right foot connects with the glistening Brazuca with a resounding thud which silences the entire arena. I can see the ripple effect that the impact makes on the lush carpet grass around me even though that should only be visible from some distance. As the ball sails away towards my target, it spins wildly, clipping and sending grass flying up and away from it. It slowly comes out of hypertime, its speed increasing by over a thousand times in the process. Peter’s eyes cannot even see the shot anymore; it is that fast. This is proven by the big ‘O’ his mouth is frozen in. But for his neck swiveling to allow his eyes follow the ball as it rockets past him into the net, he doesn’t move. The crowd goes wild!

“You dey crase! Why you dey shoot like dat nah? You think say na full field you dey play?”

I blink away the sounds and images from my mind’s eye to come to terms with the realities of Idris yelling at me for my correct lago. Apparently my shot went wide. Very wide. Sailed over the fence and into the next compound.

“Eyss! Amokanshi! Odabi pe like ees you dat will be climb di wall and bring di ball o. Daz how Baba Lasisi catsh me last week.” says Peter as he rubs over his buttocks, reminiscing on last week when he got a nice walloping for his sojourns over the wall.

I break into a jog to gather enough speed to make the leap and first perch atop it.  Scrambling over the moldy not-so-high fence into the Ajagajigi compound is usually a simple feat, but not as simple as retrieving the ball itself. We always have to look out for Baba Lasisi. What are we expected to do? He won’t toss the ball back and he chases us around the compound with a stick every time we enter the compound, whether by gate or fence. This time seems easy enough though, no Baba Lasisi in sight. I grab the double-leather and also seeing the felele we lost just last week, make for it.

I am still bent over, arm outstretched and fingers wrapped around it when I hear a low, undoubtedly canine growl behind me.

Uh oh.

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Omo-nna – Yoruba slang for person of igbo descent
Double-leather – Soccer ball popular in the 90s designed with white pentagons and black hexagons and made from a layer of rubber and one of leather.
Monkey post – Makeshift miniature goalpost
Brazuca – New FIFA-approved soccer ball for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Lago – Slang for a missed shot
Felele – Small, single-layered rubber ball

Viva Las Gidi 1: Ajagajigi

I know… I know… I’m here to make amends.

This is the first of three serial posts which will go up today at 3hr intervals. That should help me catch up nicely on my Every Day This October challenge 😉

@88factor is a fellow illustrator and sometime last year, a beautiful piece he did called Viva Las Gidi inspired a series of tales I wrote for Art Stories on TNC. The illustration was a collage of sorts and so each story was inspired by a different section.

Please enjoy…

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Alhaji Ajagajigi throws the best parties in town. No one can ever rival an Ajagajigi owambe. If you ever catch wind that an Ajagajigi groove is going down near you on a certain day, you must do one of two things: one, move very, very far away the day before the party and do not return until at least twenty four hours after you have heard the party has finally come to an end. Two, if you will not run away, you must surrender entirely to the Ajagajigi groove machine. Cancel all appointments, turn away all visitors, exit your abode and yield yourself totally to the gyration that is about to go down!

Shortly after we moved into this area, my baby sister was born. As is customary in Yoruba land, she was to be named in a celebratory manner in the presence of family, friends and well-wishers eight days after her birth. On mama’s arrival from the hospital with our new bundle of joy, the neighbours came to wish us well, sneak a peek at the new baby and… inform my father that he may (would) have to shift his baby’s naming a day forward or two days back. Didn’t really matter which, papa could just not hold his daughter’s naming ceremony on the day his customs said it was to be held.

I remember Baba Lasisi licking the tips of seven of his gnarled fingers counting the days to the day Ajagajigi had announced he would be celebrating his latest marriage, to his wife number seventeen. Looking upon Baba Lasisi’s heavily scarified face, one could see the relish with which he licked each finger tip, like he could actually taste the shaki and brokoto and pomo and cow leg and orishirishi and turkey and lots and lots of beer that he would undoubtedly be having that day. He and the whole neighborhood had been invited, as they, we now, had been since Alhaji took wife number six and the neighbours seemed rather convinced that we could not possibly hold our own modest celebration a whole three streets away from the Ajagajigi’s. Papa was and still is a traditionalist and would have none of it, he would name his daughter on the day he was supposed to. He was not convinced. We have long since been convinced.

That fateful day, the realization of what an Ajagajigi party entailed began to dawn on us from early in the morning when we would awaken to what appeared to be a great exodus occurring outside our gate. The sound of rustling clothes and slippered feet accompanied by excited chatter and anticipatory chuckles making their way up to the Ajagajigi household would soon mingle with the talking… no, sorry, shouting drums. The shouting drums, ranging from the konkolo omele to the mighty Dùndúnwould be present all of that day… and all of that night. Tents would magically appear, coloured plastic chairs under the tents would follow, with iron tables of course, then the guests would fill the chairs, then their stomachs, and as the skies darken, the chairs would be pushed aside and the tables folded up to make room for the many green and brown and a myriad other colours of bottles that would then make their appearance, ushering in the gyration that is bound to come along when such bottles appear. The noises would begin to subside around four or five a.m. the day after.

That year, my small sister was not named until three days past the day she was supposed to be named. You see, an interesting occurrence was discovered. Because we had only recently moved into the area, many of our few guests had not previously been to our house and so, on reaching our neighbourhood and discovering a party going on, assumed it was ours and just settled in. The few who made it a duty to find the celebrants to greet them specially and make their presence known, would wander through many streets in search of us or our house until they would either tire and just settle into the party too or turn back to whence they came in frustration. When daylight returned, our guests would be found strewn in the streets all around alongside the staggering drunks and Ajagajigi guests who had ensured they were nicely entangled in the much refuse that it would take the entire day to clean up. These guests had to be cleaned and rested before they could join in any new celebrations. The ones who had returned home, after being placated over our old Nitel phones, would be given a new date and clearer, more precise directions to the house.

We were convinced, oh we were… No party like an Ajagajigi party. In the following years, we would time our celebrations, much like others in the area, to coincide with the Ajagajigi parties. This was found to be a rather economical way of celebrating… co-celebrating sef, our own ordinary little celebrations and turning them into a bigger thing than we could ordinarily afford. The only challenge which would then exist would be our guests locating each other… but what does it matter? The most important thing was that there were celebrants, there was a celebration and there were friends to celebrate with. One could celebrate, drink and gyrate with friends they were just meeting, could they not?

Me and mummy have been planning Yimika, my younger sister’s eighteenth birthday party. We hear Alhaji is about to take wife number twenty-two and that the celebrations will be occurring two weekends from now. Yimika turns eighteen next week thursday. Perfect timing.

Super Woman

You see them everyday but pay them nothing more than a cursory glance because you’ve come to see them as the norm rather than the exception. You forget that to achieve the feats they do under the kind of conditions they endure on a daily basis, they must be super human. Deep down, you want to admit to yourself that if you ever let yourself dwell even a little on their circumstances, you would probably crumble. But you do not dwell on them long enough.

When you see them now, you do not even think at all. Not of how they ended up in their ‘little’ predicaments. Not of the kind of shitty existences they must live. And certainly not of what hopes or dreams they must have. When you see them, you just honk your horn to get them out of the way as fast as they can so you can roll on by. They cross the road in front of your vehicle and they’re so sluggish that the people in the next lane chance you before you can rush forward. And then you arrive at work late. All because you were nice enough to let one woman like that across the road. Now, so scarred by such events, you try to kiss the bumper in front of you just a little bit everytime you’re in traffic, just so no one can cross in front of you. From the corner of your eye, you see them begging you to make room for them so they don’t have to walk all the way around you and your car but you just troway face, memories of the tongue-lashing your boss is infamous for haunting you. You send dem message? Bloody pauper women.

You’re on your way home from work when this one crosses in front of you at an intersection. Perhaps it’s because of the longness of the day you’ve had; or maybe it’s the relief you feel at the fact that you’re just around the corner from home anyway; but this time, you do not honk. For whatever reason, or perhaps the lack of it, you enter into a moment of sober reflection as the woman waddles across the road and you actually dwell on her for a few moments. Big mistake.

She is heavily laden. She is heavy laden all around. There is a bundle balanced on her head, one protruding from her front and another strung to her back. The bundle on her head is big. Bigger than anything anyone should have on their head. Yet, perhaps miraculously, her head and neck have not somehow sunk into the crevice between her shoulder blades. That bundle could contain anything: bales of okrika clothing you would never touch again in your life; or human skulls strung together tightly and padded by swaddling cloths on the outside to disguise their appearance; or the cinders of the hopes and dreams she strives everyday to stoke and keep alight for the children she bears on her back and within her.

The woman makes it safely across and is beginning to get swallowed up by the ocean of other desperate people and the yellow-painted vehicles which ferry them, when you make out something. The very small boy who is saddled to the woman’s back such that he can move nothing but his head turns his head in your direction. His big eyes catch your staring ones and you both hold each others’ gazes for a beautiful moment in time. Despite the distance and the motion, you see many marvels in that small frame of time. Marvels which go beyond the way the bright lights reflect off the shiny innocence in his eyes. Marvels which are darker than the darkness beyond your headlamps which is now swallowing him and his mother up. Marvels that are more likely than not only the figment of your over-active and now over-stretched imagination.

The mongoose behind you is honking away your reverie. And even as you ease your foot off one pedal and unto another, you have already forgotten what colour or colours the woman might have been wearing or whether her little boy was fair or dark of skin. You’ve forgotten if her hair was braided up into a convenient shuku or if she had a mismatched scarf tied around her crown. Only a few seconds later and you can’t remember any details about her appearance or if perhaps, she and her laden self were even nothing more than an apparition. That same woman could pass you tomorrow, even in that same spot and you would be unable to recognise her or her child. There’s one thing you can’t forget though, just that one thing…

The certainty in your mind that, regardless of her situation, her attitude towards it or what she may be doing to drag herself and her children out of it, she must be Superwoman.

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Jury

I have a lot of drafts. A lot!

This is very unlike me. I procrastinate sometimes, but typically, once I take that first step, I’ll see it through. So for a long time, my wordpress had practically no drafts. I mighh have a ton of ideas in my head at any one point in time, but I would rarely jot or draft or sketch before I am ready.

So why do I have a lot of drafts?

I draft Art Stories here. If you need to know what Art Stories are, go here.

You should see the back end of TheNakedConvos. I bet even thetoolsman and the Alchemist get lost in there sometimes. Utter madness. So I draft here and then when I’m ready to post, I paste in there, fine tune and then publish. But the drafts here remain.

So yesterday, I added a new category to this my small cranny in the blogosphere. It’s called Every Day This October and I’ll be posting … Well, everyday this october. Duh, right? I know. I’m sorry.

Well, I thought I’d start off easy and serve you the very first Art Story which went up on TNC. This intro could serve as a post all in itself but…

Okay, let’s not overdo it. Enjoy the story, and the accompanying art 🙂

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We walk in and as always, I can feel the judgmental glares being flung in our direction, smacking us rudely in the face and then dripping down to the floor. A shake of the head here, a grimace there. From a mere glance, they know our whole story, and there is great disdain towards him and pity towards me. His tall, imposing figure and my diminutive one do not help matters much. I can see what they see when they look at me. I can see it in their eyes as they judge him, indict him and sentence him to a thousand deaths.

I can see how wrong they are.

I can feel the righteous anger beginning to stir. It will soon claw its way out of me once again if not suppressed. I can feel its frustration, and so can he. He lazily puts his left arm around me to soothe the beast, calm it down some. But his action only releases the other beasts in the room. Hisses and dirty little whispers defile the air around us.

“Oma se o…”

“Animal. Old bastard…”

“All these dirty alhajis sef…”

I’m already spinning around to release my angered demon in response but the soothing arm around my shoulder has becoming steel, he won’t let me. He presses me close to his side, again, the wrong move. This time around, a chair or two scrape back in response as a customer or two rise to leave in disgust. I can’t take it anymore, I release my demon by bursting into sniffles and sobs. Hot angry tears are not the way my indignation had sought to be released, but they would have to do for now.

I can never understand these people, these people and their dirty judgmental selves. Can’t a girl choose who to love any longer? Why can’t a 20-year-old girl decide for herself? Why can’t I just…

The gentle squeeze I feel on my arm, just above my shoulder, a squeeze that is not from my husband’s hand, is the one that opens pandora’s box. It is barely a touch but it speaks volumes.

I understand. I’m here if you ever want to talk. I can rescue you, just let me.

The demon is unleashed. This time around, the husband’s steel will not, cannot, hold it back.

“Don’t you dare touch me again, you dirty whore! Who told you, any of you, that you can judge me or my husband? Did I come to you people to beg for help? Did I tell you I did not love my husband as he loves me? I can marry whosoever I choose regardless of what anybody thinks. Unu agaghi ekwu maka nke gbasara unu. Anuofia!”

I see the desired effect as I scan the room. Confusion. Shock. Remorse. The igbo was a nice touch, wasn’t it? I’m not so good at it, growing up in Lagos is to blame, but the chances of these people in the heart of Ogbomoso being able to tell that is highly unlikely.

My eyes come to rest on the middle aged woman who touched me, she is smiling. I am confused.

She replies, “Unu abuo yiri ka di na nwunye. A na m eche otu mu na di mu no mgbe m dika gi. Ka mkpuruobi ya zuru ike na ndokwa. Lee anya, a na m ahu panti gi.” I was just thinking how you both make a cute couple. In fact, you remind me of my husband and I when I was about your age, God rest his soul. I only meant to let you know your skirt isn’t quite zipped up at the back. I am shocked.

I have judged this woman and all these people, perhaps too hastily. It appears I am guilty of the same crimes of which I have accused them, in thought and in words. The tears keep pouring as I look from my kinswoman to my husband. I am remorseful.

The end.

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See ya tomorrow 🙂

The Day After 30 Days

Ladies, gentlemen, Nostalgians, The 30 Days of Hope is now… almost over.

No, no, no, it’s not over yet. What? You thought I’d just end it like that? Without having a go at it myself? Naaaaaaaahhh… I’ve got hopes and dreams and expectations too nah. How will it look if I got all these good folk to come share theirs and then just stood back and didn’t show no faith myself? Not cool, that’s how… ( ˘˘̯)

Where do I start? Well, I already pretty much did… Seeing as this year, my mainest goal is to bring my writing into a new dimension. Like many writers, my writing experiences flows, ebbs and stops. I need to move into the same realm of those folk who seem to always be able to just write. Whenever, wherever. And I realise that this takes discipline. And discipline involves taking steps. And this blog is one of such steps. Writing more, on a schedule, is one way of achieving this. Writing through the block and frustration and inspirationlessness is another step to achieve what I aim for and so I’ve decided to post more, much more, going forward. Hey, look who posted every single day of January. *beaming*

Of course, I realize I didn’t do this all on my own but I did manage to edit most, if not every one, of the posts that went up and I wrote an intro for each one too, short as those might have been. So yeah, I managed to write something practically everyday in January.

In addition, I was offering folk an outlet I’ve come to appreciate, same one I’m taking advantage of right now. Sharing a platform. Helping old friends, making new ones. As evidenced by testimonies that have already begun to roll in from people who’ve participated in the project. They’re not mine to share (except of course y’all are offering. Hey, I’m open *hint*), but I’m really glad I was able to be a part of making them come to pass.

Back to writing more and honing this talent into more of a skill, I would like to announce to you, my beautiful nostalgians, that I shall not be posting here so frequently going forward… *crickets* No, I’m not contradicting myself and ,yeah, I expected y’all to cheer really loudly and shii but y’all just can’t seem to see the bigger picture so I’ll just go ahead and paint you one… literally. Well, sorta. Okay, enough with the dramatics. My good friend thetoolsman over at TheNakedConvos has offered, and I have accepted, to move one of my largely under-utilised categories on here over to TNC. Basically, I shall be running a column, Art Stories, on TNC weekly. Art Stories will feature pieces that bring together two or more artforms including the literary, applied, performing and visual arts, one inspired by the other(s). What does this mean for me? Well, I’m a practicing artist, but I’ve left certain skills to go fallow overtime. By running this column, I get to power these back to life, developing them in the process and achieving all-round fulfillment as time goes on. You feeling me? So I’ll be doing much more drawing and illustrating now, also exploring other styles and media as time goes on and y’all get to go on this journey with me. Yay!

The column has already premiered- this last tuesday- and you can expect a post every tuesday going forward at 4pm, naija time (GMT +1). You can read the first piece/story titled JURY based on a drawing I did a while back title AlhajaiPlease hit this to read the post. Leave a comment o ( ._.)

I can tell that some of y’all might begin to wonder, patriotic Nostalgians that you are, whether this doesn’t contradict my earlier stated resolution to post here more often (than I did last year). It doesn’t. I shall write here still, only I might not be writing fiction as much, those shall be going to Art Stories.

That said, now, finally, we can bring 30 Days of Hope to a beautiful close. I’m so thankful for everyone who participated, RTed, commented, encouraged… Y’all are precious. By God’s grace, we shall all continue to see positive fruition from doing this. We shall testify, we shall grow, we shall become better people… because we said and wrote it and because we believe.

A blessed and a purposeful 2013 to you all, my beautiful Nostalgians.

Bless.

Papa must Die!!

Well, I can lie to you like all these other bloggers that ” I’ve been really busy cooking up something wonderful for you but in the meantime, please enjoy this small offering while I keep working endlessly on some other wonderful post that will blow your mind ” (after which you don’t see another post for like 2 months)….. but I won’t. This is all I’ve been able to come up with since my last post three weeks ago….

Okay, now I’m lying :p. I now actually have enough material to be a little more consistent without my brain’s OS freezing on me. Let’s just hope I can keep avoiding my good friend, Procrastination and his brother, Indiscipline…. *covers face*

Please enjoy…

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Poison.

Yes, poison was the way forward. I had tolerated plenty from that old bastard but this… this was the last straw.

This my by-force neighbour had taken things too far. We had lived in peaceful co-existence only because first- I no just get im time and second- because I dey respect im old age. After all, like my brother, Chinedu, said the last time he was over “E kuku first you reach hia. Free di guy jarey”

We called him Papa because of all his grey hair but to be honest we couldn’t really tell his age. Couldn’t even say whether he was old or young. Just that he was a very experienced rogue.

Papa took my food without permission, I didn’t say anything… slept in my bed when I was out, leaving disgusting traces behind I must add, I let it go… pulled the power cord while I was watching television, I just plugged it back in… repelled my guests with his sudden appearances and gymnastics, I would calmly apologise on his behalf… He would enter and leave as he pleased, eat whatever he felt like, sleep whenever he liked, shit wherever he wanted… I no talk shishi….

But trying to get with my babe, in my own house, on my own frigging bed?! Ehn eh! Mba o!! Dat one was intolerable.

So poison…

Poison was the only way.

It was after hearing that scream, a shriek that would frighten any corpse… After seeing my woman flee from me like I had a scythe in skeletal claws, all the time wailing how she would never step into my place again… Only after she’d told me that I had to choose between her and Papa, my long-time squatter and co-inhabitant… That I knew the pest had to go… permanently.

I knew then that I had to smoke the rat out…

…And kill him.

Kill it.

With Poison.

Or how else would you react if your babe told you she’d awoken in your bed, in which she’d fallen asleep alone, to find a rodent on top of her?…