Increasing your daily page views, not your BP

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Imagine you’ve just bought a pair of unique, classy, new shoes (the pair you’ve been eyeing for a couple of weeks while waiting for your paycheck at the end of the month). You step outside with them excitedly for the … Continue reading

Choose my book title

I’m days away from completing my first book (woohoo!) and I would like YOU to give your honest opinions on which title I should use (yikes!). But here’s a few things to note:

What my book isn’t

  • Boring
  • Voluminous
  • Conservative
  • Complex
  • Depressing

What my book will be (hopefully)

  • Revealing
  • Informative
  • Playful
  • Funny
  • Unique

My book is in two parts: Part I is a collection of all my intriguing childhood and teenage experiences within Nigeria and the United Kingdom; and Part II is a collection of the most popular posts on my blog. My story is a comical take on my journey to self-discovery and my desperate attempts to fit into this odd world. My wish is that this book will inspire readers from all walks of life to accept themselves for who they are no matter what critics say, and to pursue their passion because that’s usually the one thing that makes us feel alive.

Book titles for consideration

  • The Crazy Nigerian (Same title as my blog)
  • Crazy Nigerian Boy
  • A spoonful of Imbroglio
  • This joke’s on me
  • X, Y, Me
  • Moonwalking down Memory Lane (I’m a big MJ fan)
  • Shut up! I’m talking…to myself
  • What they didn’t know
  • So you thought I wouldn’t publish this
  • Experience was my worst teacher
  • They don’t teach you this at school
  • Right off my chest
  • My brain is at the drycleaners
  • Air miles and plastic smiles
  • The Write-Off

If you could spare a minute and just Cut & Paste the title or titles you like, or you could conjure up a catchy title that you think will suit the type of book I’m writing – that’ll be great!

The Reward!

As part of a giveaway, I will be making an online version of my book available to all the people who comment on this post with their choice of title (or suggested title). Entries will close by April 30th, 2012 and thereafter I’ll send your exclusive free e-book to your email addy 🙂

Your’s truly,

*Jollof*  

10 Day YOU Challenge: 9 Loves

Day 2 – Now that I’ve got my secrets out-of-the-way (and out in the open) I’ll probably go into some detail as I talk about my loves (I could count 99 but I’ll stick to the rules). Here goes nothing…

  1. He has been there for me in the darkest of times when I felt all hope was lost. More importantly he died for my sins even before I was born and wants me to get to Heaven. I pray in his name whenever I want something from God. I love Jesus.
  2. There’s no surprise that this next love is coming second. From Bran flakes in the morning to yoghurt and fruit, pancakes, bacon, sausages, pasta, cheese, pizza, fried rice, plantain, ice-cream, hotdogs…you guessed it. I love Food.
  3. I’ve got to have the slick portable mp3 players or the Nokia E75 with the fancy slide qwerty keypad. What about camera’s with in-built mp3 and video camera (I lost that after being pickpocketed at a boring wedding – boo hoo). I’m a far cry from 007 but I love Gadgets
  4. When I see the table I get excited like a little kid who was about to ride his first tricycle. Racking up the balls and chalking my cue is the beginning of complete isolation from the outside world. I could sit at home and watch game after game when world tournaments are on. Any girlfriend I’m with at the time has no chance of getting my attention (except with food, of course). I am an absolute sucker for it so much so that I blew 200 pounds sterling on my very own in London and even shipped it back to Nigeria when I relocated! I love Pool/Snooker tables
  5. Ever since I saw ‘monkey suits’ (oversized suits which make the wearer look like he stole them from Pavarotti) I vowed I would NEVER wear such (and that would go into my will too). First impressions count. Style matters. There’s a thin line between SWAG and SAG. I love Fitted Clothes.
  6. Clear white sands. Cool sea-breeze blowing through the palm trees. Barbecue sizzling nicely and the fizz from when I open a can of ice-cold Heineken as I recline on the long sun bed. My Police shades on a 45 degree tilt as I watch the action pass by. I love Beaches.
  7. The thrill of the take-off is the only thing that comes close to a roller coaster ride for me. It’s like an adrenaline rush as the plane thunders down the tarmac. Economy, Business or First class – I don’t care. I love Air travel.
  8. The Moonwalk, Crazy legs, Ballroom, Salsa, Ethnic, Yahooze, Alanta, LMFAO Shuffle, etc you name it. As long as I have to move my feet to the beat you can say that I love Dancing.
  9. This is my passion and I can only thank WordPress for helping me to keep up this increasingly addictive hobby. This is a no-brainer for those who know me. Fact, Fiction, Funny, Freaky…I looooooooooooooooove Writing!

What are YOUR loves?

Table for two, please!

Yesterday I had lunch with an unexpected guest. Half an hour earlier I was slaving away for my boss as usual when I suddenly heard my stomach grumbling. I decided to call the office canteen on the internal phone line and place my order. I even insisted that the food should be warmed up and reserved for me. I was told that everything would be done as requested. Fifteen minutes later I went downstairs to the canteen to check if my food was ready. It was covered, warm and ready to be served so I went over to one of the vacant tables that wasn’t directly in front of the head-numbing air conditioner. I bumped into a junior colleague whom had just finished eating lunch and was on his way out. As he was still chewing what seemed to be a stubborn piece of goat meat, I asked him how his lunch was. He gave me a ‘thumbs up’, probably because he didn’t want to respond with his mouth full.

With that sign of approval I was really looking forward to my meal. Apparently he had the same thing I was about to have – Eba and Ewedu with stew (Pounded Cassava with a watery vegetable soup topped with a peppery tomato gravy). Most of my colleagues had already had their lunch earlier so I was sitting at a table all by myself…at first. I attacked the first wrap of Eba and had gulped down half of the Ewedu soup, which I must say was deeeeeeelicious. The best thing about Ewedu soup is that it is so plain and thin that you wouldn’t expect to see anything other than liquified green leaves with no extras. But as I poked my fork into the bowl of soup again I pulled out my guest whom I had been dining with all this while. It was a baby roach.

Well I say it was a ‘baby roach‘ but this 1-inch, 6 legged, lifeless insect was more like a teenager – any bigger and it would have been a ‘cockroach‘ complete with wings! I immediately lost my appetite. I dropped the roach and my side plate and called the canteen attendants. I would love to say that I took advantage of this classic ‘Waiter, Waiter, what is this roach doing in my soup?’ moment and then I got the response ‘Looks to me like the breaststroke, sir!’…but sadly, that wasn’t what happened. The canteen attendant was shocked. I left the food in disgust and went back upstairs to continue punching (rather aggressively) on my keyboard. Some minutes later the chief chef came up to me and the old lady began to beg for my forgiveness. If ‘forgiveness’ meant saying ‘apology accepted’ then that was alright. But if it meant that I was to continue patronizing her cuisine then she had another thing coming!If I wanted roach soup for lunch then I guess things would have worked out perfectly. She stood by my side for about 5 minutes begging but I just wanted to get on with my work without her encroaching my territory.

The fact that I have a phobia for cockroaches, also known as Katsaridaphobia (fearofstuff.com), doesn’t make matters any better. I can recall an article I wrote in 2009 on the same issue where I made this perfectly clear.  In the end, the chef wanted to give me a free drink as some kind of peace offering.  Don’t get me wrong, she’s a nice lady but I didn’t like her approach. Was a can of malt really going to make a difference?  I think a bottle of Dettol would have been more appropriate, don’t you think?

How many cockroaches can you see?

How I increased traffic on my blog (Part I)

I woke up this morning and decided to attend the 7 o’clock service at my local Anglican church. There the Vicar explained the essence of Boxing Day – a tradition celebrated on December 26th whereby excess gifts (including food) are ‘boxed’ and sent to people in need. In a similar vein I published this post as a gift to readers who would like to see a significant rise in the number of visitors to their blogs/websites.

I have come across various tips from numerous sites on the Internet, including WordPress. However, I will only highlight tips that have worked for me on my blog, The Crazy Nigerian.

 

1. Write about a popular ‘niche’ topic

Last week I was pleasantly shocked to discover that my blog had received 352 views – the highest number of views ever on this blog in one day. There was widespread talk and forwarded text messages about vacancies at a giant Telecom company in Nigeria – Airtel. However there was also controversy about the authenticity of a particular website being used for submitting job applications. What did I do? I wrote about it. 

 

The results not only showed that there is a high level of job seekers but also that the topic is of significant interest to a niche of people. Writing about a popular topic and writing about a popular ‘niche’ topic are two different things. Popular topics are published by a greater proportion of writers and so your post/article is less likely to appear in a top 10 search on Google. When writing a popular ‘niche’ topic on the other hand consider the following:

  • Using a catchy title for your article/pos (consisting of keywords likely to be used in search engines)
  • Including relevant links in your articles/content that would give the reader further information
  • Writing about the topic while it is still generating public interest
  • Prior research in order to provide a relatively holistic view on the topic

Entry #64 – You goofed!

I don’t know why I felt like writing about this…maybe it’s because I feel a few of us might have experienced something similar in the past. People’s reactions vary when they are accused of doing something they didn’t. Some flare up, some argue, some ignore it and some just give in maybe due to fear (if its coming from a huge mo’fo), uncertainty or just plain forgetfulness. I tend to get a lil’ heated when I get accused falsely and I don’t blame anyone who feels the same way.

About 3 weeks ago I popped into a fast-food joint and asked the bored looking sales assistant to give me a Lemonade drink(which was called ‘TEEM’). There were other brands in the refrigerator but I distinctly remember telling to give me TEEM as she hesitated to choose the right one. To my surprise she brought out two lemonade drinks and started to run the till. I looked about me just to make sure I didn’t come with anyone else and then I asked her she gave me 2 drinks instead of 1. She said I told her so!

Somewhere between ‘TEEM’ and opening the fridge this deaf lady heard me say ‘TWO’. And that was how a trivial argument started. She wasn’t planning to charge for 2 drinks but she was adamant that I said I want 2 drinks. I told her she heard what she wanted to hear. Perhaps she wanted one for herself and this was her sly why of trying to get it. She goofed!

Another similar case (of a milder nature) happened yesterday while I was preparing to write a professional exam. I was sitting at a desk marked ‘004’ which was my examination number. A fair, pretty young lad strolled up to me, paused and But then said to me, ‘You’re in my seat’. I didn’t even flinch because of how wrong I knew she was. I kept calm and just asked her (nicely) to show me her examination card. She handed it over and then I read out to her really slowly ‘104’. Her embarrassment and scurrying off was enough pleasure for me. She goofed too!

Now I have to reassure any potential (female) readers that I’m not a misogynist and that men goof too. I just didn’t recall any similar examples at the time I wrote this piece!

I LOVE YOU MUM (see! I love women :D)

Entry #63 – SA 2010: The Worldcup of Upsets

Before I proceed to clog up  this space with my usual banter, I feel inclined to put things right with The Crazy Nigerian first. Er..erm:

‘Forgive me O blog, for I have sinned. Its been a month and 2days since my last posting. I can’t wait for this (World) cup to pass over me…aaahhh…Bafana bafana Vuvuzela bafana bafana…MessiOzilAsamoahVillaVillaKakakakakaSchneider! ‘

Ok, I’ve got WC fever and I still haven’t managed to pick up my dropped-jaw since watching the recent knock-out stages. Who would’ve thought that Brazil would be out in the quarter-finals??? Who would have thought they would have been beaten by the Netherlands??? Who could have predicted that Argentina wouldn’t make it to the semis??? I love a ‘Winning’ mentality but did the Germans really have to annihilate the Argentines with a 4-0 score line? Did Suarez (Paraguay) suddenly forget what sport he was playing and decide to pull-off what appeared to be a Volleyball lay-up in obstructing Ghana’s goal??? Have the poor decisions of the referees and linesmen in this tournament been as a result of the distracting chats on their Blackberries???  Is England ever going to make it to the Finals???

There are so many questions left unanswered but its obvious that nothing in life is certain (except Death and Taxes of course). In Tennis, Roger Federer got the shock of his life when he was ousted by Tomas Berdych (a great underachiever) in the QF at Wimbledon, bearing in mind that Roger has previously made it to the Finals 8years in a row.  But back to the WC, I would love to know what kind of Energy drink the German squad is drinking – It sure as hell makes my Red Bull seem like 100% decaffeinated coffee. At the very least I wonder if they would fail a drug test…or has that been overlooked in this tournament like England’s disallowed goal? I must say that the Germans have shown that Youth is very key in your game plan. Experience goes a long way too but that can be inserted in little bursts (in the guise of the older professionals) during play. All the critics who said the German Coach was insane to bring a bunch of ‘inexperienced’ players to the WC are still recovering from indigestion as a result of eating their own words. You can never write-off the Germans in any WC. They are clinical in their execution of set-pieces, passes, and free kicks. Scoring 4 goals, each in 3 matches, is no feat that Brazil, Argentina, Spain or Italy could achieve. Germany is the hot favourite to win the WC this time around I pray I’ll have some fingernails left after their match with Spain.

I’ve seen a lot of grown men cry over the last few weeks…both on and off the football pitch, and in severe cases some have died from heart attacks. It has been emotional indeed. On the other hand, what baffles me in Nigeria is that an estimated N900m (close to $6m) was spent in preparing our team for the WC. I didn’t see where that money went though (kinda like the Blair Witch Project (1999) which took in $140m at the box office but only costed $25,000 to make!). Like Nigeria (and the no.1 Fifa-rated Brazil) the English team needs a complete overhaul. Young blood and raw talent moulded by a focused and experienced Manager (of any nationality but whom is ready to learn English if necessary) could probably help England end their 4-decade WC drought.

Well, it won’t be long till the WC final and then the world’s nerves can be steadied (only for another 4years by the way). May the best team win! 😀

Entry #62 – Couching Blogger, Hidden Laptop

I feel like I’ve been on the longest holiday ever…away from WordPress, that is. I’ve been focusing more on other aspects of my life in recent weeks and the demon of Procastination has been deterring me from adding new entries to my blog. Well, so much for the demon…I’ve exorcized him like Constantine and finished him off with a roundhouse kick – Haiii ya!

 Speaking of movies, I believe I am officially the last person in Lagos to have finally watched Avatar last weekend. I feel so behind with movies. You would think that the Avatar clock on the right-hand side of this blog would imply I had seen the movie at least 5times (fooled you all, hehe!). I must say, it was worth the delay…the story line, the action, the cast, the love scene…ok, the love scene could have been better. I believe this movie would have beaten The Blind Side if they had done justice to the Avatar love scene. Yes, if Jake Sully (in human form) made love to Netiri then James Cameron would’ve probably cleaned out the Oscars. I guess the only dilemma would be how to make a cripple mating with an 8ft blue alien with a tail look convincingly romantic. Anyway, the ending leaves more to be desired…but it does take care of the ‘mating’ puzzle!

 Straight after Avatar (as if I had not already gotten a high enough dosage of Sam Worthington) I decided to watch Clash of the Titans. Quite frankly, the original and even Jason and the Argonauts (2000) were far better. Medusa wasn’t scary-looking at all. The build-up to Medusa was perfect until I saw how pale she was. She should have looked dark green or dark grey with no pupils or cat eyes and razor sharp teeth – imagine waking up next to that in the morning. The killer scorpions were too big (the director should have stuck to about 7ft). The Craken definitely wasn’t the climax it was ‘craked’up to be either. What would it have costed the director just to wait a month or two for Sam’s hair to grow long a bit? He looked ridiculous as the only guy in the movie who appeared to have stepped back in time (equipped with his pair of Wahl clippers) and sporting a shaven head. That just killed it for me instantly. Where was the romance between Persius and Andromeda? This remake is a good guide on how NOT to do remake. As far as getting my money’s worth I’d say that for the ridiculously low cost of the N200/$1 bootleg copy I got (yeah yeah, shame on me), it still wasn’t worth it – It was just…er…worthington!

Next time I’ll get some hot buttered popcorn and some wine gums to get me through my movie binge. Rediscovering my laptop has almost been like resuming school after a summer break – yep, it kinda sucks. But I do love my leather couch. It’s stolen the best part of my time from WordPress and is beckoning me now………Must…resist…the coziness……Need to keep typing…can’t go on much longer…ass-to-cushion attraction at 85%…situation critical…attempting evasive manouvre…shit! May day! Mayday!…The ass is going down, I repeat, The ass is going down!!! Do you copy??? 😀

Entry #58 – My 100th Post!

Phew! It has been a long but exciting ride for me on WordPress.com. I’ve learnt a lot from the website and from fellow bloggers. I’ve tapped into a subconscious being within and given it a voice…a home…some fans…some critics…and some friends. I’ve been able to view the visitors that have stumbled upon my blog from all over the world thanks to Feedjit. I’ve been able to see the popularly viewed posts and pages via my Dashboard. This post would have been more memorable if it was posted on the day I got 5000hits on my blog (4714 at the time of this post). Well, the bubbly is cooling in the fridge so that leaves me some time to think about how to make this post a memorable one.

I could recall things I’ve said in the past that I wished I hadn’t: Like telling a girl at Uni that I liked her moustache (it wasn’t overly prominent but since I was drunk at the time it became astonishingly more visible); or I could write about the time I had a face-off with my car (yes, my car) as I stood with the car-remote for close to 10mins pressing the lock button only for the car to lock and unlock simultaneously (what I didn’t realize was that the boot was open and the car in its ‘car-speak’ was trying to tell me ‘Look, you moron! I aint f***ing locking this car until you go and shut my f***ing boot!) ah…good times; that same night I was unfortunate enough to have locked myself out after taking out the trash (the kind of thing that happens to bloggers who get lost in thought).

Or what about the time I was frying an egg and was careless enough not to realize that I put a little too much oil in the pan and the oil was exceedingly hot – the result? Egg drops into the pan, oil splashes out of the pan…and straight into my right eye! Hmm, what were my words at that time…I believe they something like ‘Aaaaaaaaah shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit!!! God please…not my eye (washing my eye out frantically in the kitchen sink while my ‘sunny-side up’ was fast becoming a ‘black-hawk down’). Thankfully there were no scars…just tears…of joy (I swear! I can see! I can see!).

And what about the time one of my so-called friends talked me into taking on a 7ft bouncer? The turning point of this particular face-off must have been in the basement-style niteclub when 2 of the bouncer’s mates (beefcakes compared to my two puny mates) arrived and then he went, ‘LOCK THE DOOR!’ (need I tell you I made a run for that door like my life depended on it). The whole incident started when the bouncer shoved me while I was distributing promotional flyers for my upcoming club gig (this was about 5 years ago whilst in the UK). I wasn’t hurt by my 2 mates wanted vengeance. In the end, we talked the talk and shortly after we walked the walk (who am I kidding – I ran like hell!); Oh! I almost forgot about my bubbly in the fridge!

I guess this would be as good a time as any to make a toast (raises glass of juice…only because I know you wouldn’t really believe I would open a bottle of MOET to celebrate 100posts on my blog). I’d like to make a toast -” To another 100posts in the near future. With any luck this blog will blossom into something bigger than I could ever imagine, and at the very least this blog would remain on the World Wide Web for the Whole Wide World to see long after I make an exit – The Crazy Nigerian will live on…cheers!” 😀

Legend of the Lost Follicles

They were curly. They were jet black. They were about 4inches in length when stretched. At the tender age of ten I was quickly able to manipulate their direction by harnessing the power of the Comb; and so, like sheep to a shepherd they obeyed my every command. Back then I could boast having over a billion in my possession. Now I have barely a million left. What happened? Was this some kind of curse? Was this the evil work of my arch-enemy, Genetics? Today the silence is broken as I embark on a quest to discover what really happened to the follicles that once crowned my fertile scalp.

 From my second year at primary school I was the Lord of the Afro. I had a few worthy competitors but none could keep theirs as rounded and silky-soft like mine. I understand now why girls spent a long time in the bathrooms. I would admire my curly black locks and think, ‘Mirror Mirror on the wall/ Whose is the fullest fro of them all?’ And my imaginary response from the mirror was, ‘Yo dawg! You sport the meanest, bad-ass, afro on the f***ing planet!’. However, something went terribly wrong in my sixth year. It was an accident at the barbershop and it was an experience that I will never forget.

After school one fateful day I was escorted by mum to the guillotine. How I wish it was my head that was chopped off – that would have been quick and pretty painless. I sat in the black leather chair and watched as the female hairstylist cleaned the clippers she planned to execute my beloved possession. I remember my mum giving her specific instructions: ‘Make it low but not too low’. Ok, perhaps this could be likened to the How long is a piece of string – dilemma. It was a conspiracy and I think my mum and the hairstylist were in on it together. The mirror was so high up that I couldn’t see what the f*** she was doing. She was having some mindless gossip session with her colleague and I just watched chunks of fluffy black follicles rain down before my eyes…and the chunks got smaller and smaller until…my mum eventually came to my late rescue shouting, ‘WHAT DID YOU DO TO MY SON?’ I went from Gary Coleman to ‘Scary Old-man’ in 10mins flat. My mum said it wasn’t that bad but when I beheld the horror in the mirror I looked pretty much like…a dick, to be brutally honest. I found one of my dad’s golf caps and I tried it on to hide my baldness – now I looked like a dick with a cap on.

The next day at school would be a real test of my guts. Could I get away with wearing a cap throughout the day without being confronted by any of the teachers about it? Fat chance. I barely made it through the first hour of Mathematics when the teacher told me to take my cap off. I hesitated. He repeated it and promised to flog the living daylights out of me if I didn’t (and believe me, that guy could flog a dead horse back to life). I slowly reached for my cap and I after I took it off nobody really paid attention to the Long Division Technique on the blackboard. My classmates were jeering and pointing at my perspiring, glowing head. I don’t think I looked at anybody in the face for more than 3seconds that day. I didn’t go for recess, but that didn’t help. Some just stayed back to pick on me even more. I was called all sorts of names. It was the giggling and whispering amongst the girls that really pissed me off. I was a 4ft walking microphone…with arms.

Alas, my tale is far from over. My head would not remain a shiny, opaque crystal ball forever. My hair would grow back like Samson in the bible (and then I‘d push the pillars of my school building apart so that the concrete came crashing down on all those who mocked me!!! – nah, not really). I would regain my crown and join the big leagues again with Soul4Real, Craig Mack, Undercover Brother and The Nutty Professor…

Entry #56 – Hit and run

The (Black) Chery A520

2days ago I was driving back home in my black Chery after work in the evening when I encountered an overzealous motorpsyhcolist motorcyclist  at a roundabout. I was well on my way to detour into my street when the bike decided to cut across at the last minute. It was a very close shave. I braked suddenly and the motorcyclist also swerved to avoid a head-on collision. However he scampered unto a nearby kerb in the process and lost balance – both he and his male passenger stumbled to the ground. I, on the otherhand, sped off!

Technically I didn’t hit the bike or its passengers so could this really be called a Hit and Run? I think the appropriate expression would be Brake and Run – that’s what I did. The reason why I ran is that Lagos motorcyclists can be notorious for their guerilla justice i.e. ganging up with other motorcyclists and then outnumbering Poor You. Before you know it, stories are being fabricated against you and everything you say is a lie. Your car could be vandalized and you could even be picked up by LASTMA (these road marshalls are the equivalent of the Gestapo around these parts).

Sincerely speaking, if I had made contact with the bike I would have stopped and parked off the road to attend to the pseudo-casualties. I had the right of way and the bike cut across, jumping a red light. Well, I’m sure the motorcyclist and his passengers were okay. It’s not like they lost balance on the main road and got trampled upon by uncoming motorists. Now that would have been a sight…yikes!

Lagos Life – A guide to choosing stuff

Grab your trolley and lets go shopping around for…stuff in Lagos, Nigeria. I’ll show you the top choices of the average Lagosian but note that the list is not exhaustive.

Mobile phone network/line:

  • MTN
  • Zain
  • Glo
  • Starcomms
  • Visafone

Bank account opening:

  • GTB
  • Zenith
  • UBA
  • First Bank
  • Stanbic IBTC

Eateries:

  • Tasty Fried Chicken
  • Barcelos
  • Nandos
  • Big Treat
  • Mr. Biggs

Alcohol/Beer:

  • Star
  • Guinness
  • Gulder
  • Heineken
  • Satzenbrau

Malt drinks:

  • Malta Guinness
  • Maltina
  • Amstel Malta
  • Maltex
  • Power Malt

Chinese cuisine:

  • Jade Garden
  • Golden Gate
  • Mr. Wang’s
  • China Town
  • Flamingo

Flat Screen TVs:

  • LG
  • Samsung
  • Sony
  • Phillips
  • Panasonic

Cable/Satellite Television

  • DSTV
  • HiTV
  • MiTV

Cinemas:

  • Silverbird (V.I & Yaba)
  • Shoprite
  • City Mall

Generators:

  • Honda Elemax
  • Tiger
  • Hyundai
  • Mikano
  • Suzuki

Domestic airlines:

  • Virgin Nigeria (soon to be ‘Eagle Flyer’)
  • Aero Contractors
  • Arik
  • Dana Air
  • Chanchangi

Recreational centres:

  • Ikoyi Club
  • Lagos Country Club
  • The Beach (Island)
  • Shoprite, Lekki
  • Metropark

Bars/Nite Clubs:

  • Soul Lounge (News Cafe)
  • Club Towers Prive
  • Black Pearl
  • Bacchus (formerly ‘11.45’)
  • 10 (JJ Okocha’s)

Okay, that’s enough shopping for one day. Let’s proceed to the checkout! Show me the monaaay!!!

Entry #54 – Don’t panic…it’s only a card!

…my examination card, that is. After leaving the examination centre yesterday I could have sworn it left with me and got into my car as I drove home. I was gravely dissappointed when I started looking through my folder close to 15times. I must have checked the ins and outs of my car to the point that a passerby would have thought I was clearly under the influence of some class-A drugs…or that I was looking for a stash of the same.

What can I say? I’m careless. And so the inevitable torture cycle begins:

Anxiety – Which I’ve already pointed out. Accelerated heartbeat, dry mouth, struggling to study for the next exam…reading the words but they’re just not sinking in (because you lost you’re f***ing examination card, that’s why)

Time-travel – Retracing my steps (in my mind) and seeing that card when it last rested between my fingers…yes, I could see myself dropping it on a table as I submitted my answer sheet. The invigilator must be keeping it safe for me…yay! 😀

Doubt – What if I took it out of the exam centre, carelessly dropped it outside the premises before I zoomed off and its sitting by in an algae-infested gutter somewhere with my passport pic getting a slimy makeover? nay! 😦

Self-blame – Well there’s no one else to blame but me. It was all my fault, no blonde-girl distraction, no ice-cream truck, and certainly no facebook mobile update. This was pure, unadulterated, crazy nigerian- carelessness!

And after all this what comes next? What other ordeal do I need to go through in order to move on with my life?

Hope?. I hoped I would still be let into the exam centre the following day to do the exam anyway (even though entry without the card is strictly forbidden). I hoped that I could probably bribe one of the invigilators with a stripper (or two) if that was what was required. I hoped I would look in my folder for the 16th time and maybe, just maybe, I would mysteriously find it. I did a lot of hoping…but no, the answer was Prayer, and at precisely 8am today (an hour before the exam) I had an epiphany.

I was staring at the same page of my study pack for the last 20mins (quietly worrying) when something said to me ‘Look again around the passenger’s seat and look carefully this time’. I pulled the lever underneath and pulled the chair forward and at the side of the chair facing the car door, a white half-A4 sized card stuck out. ‘HALLELUJAH! Thank you Lord, God thank you thank you thank you I love you….oh man…whooo!…where’s my phone…Mum, guess what? I found it!…’

Well let’s say that the words I read started to sink in a bit better and now that my exams are over all I can do is sit and wait…ok…sit, blog and wait 😉

Entry #52 – The bullet in my bathroom

Just when I thought life was becoming a little bit boring and predictable I experienced a sudden rush of adrenaline 2 nights ago around 8pm when I heard a loud bang in my bathroom. There wasn’t any electricity at the time and I was alone in my flat. I walked past the bathroom (which serves as a spare for guests and is separate from my ensuite) and for a second I thought it was a gun-shot. The next I thought was that my sink had fallen apart or the shower curtain rail came crashing down…but surely it must have been a fire cracker or something. With the light from my Nokia E75 I sneaked into the bathroom and inspected the surroundings and then I tripped on something metallic. I picked it up and at first I thought it might have been part of a heavy duty nail but on closer inspection I realized it was a bullet.

The first thing I would have done at this point is call in the CSI (Las Vegas) team to do their nifty forensic work. I would let Grisham bamboozle me with words like ‘Trajectory’ and ‘Ricochet’ and the watch them as they scamper around looking for the ‘Entry point’. That night I barely slept because I felt this wasn’t random. I’ve lived in this flat for close to 6months and nothing like this has ever happened. I couldn’t help but ask myself, ‘Was someone trying to kill me?’

I had a mental list of people I suspected I had ticked-off and probably wanted my blood as payback:

  1. My recent ex-girlfriend – Looks innocent but is capable of something like this now that I think about it.
  2. My neighbour – I told her off for shouting like she was the only one living in the compound going ‘MAAARIAAA!!!’ repeatedly
  3. The Security Guard’s mate – They wine and dine with my security guard outside the compound and I don’t like the dodgy ‘I kill you!’ looks I get from them sometimes.

I found later the following day that there was a hole in my bathroom ceiling. Part of  the shape was an exact replica of the bullet lying horizontally. I expected the shape to be round. There were no holes in my window or walls so I got Googling…asking the seemingly dumb question, ‘Can a bullet go off by itself?’

I was pleasantly suprised indeed when I came across the following answer from Yahoo! Answers: “No. Something has to make contact with the primer or cause the primer to get really hot. Dropping or hitting a round, or throwing it into a fire can cause it ignite.”  So it was actually possible for the bullet to have just gone off without being in a gun chamber. By the looks of the photo above, the bullet must have been lying flat when it suddenly penetrated the ceiling unto my bathroom floor. So how could this be explained further?

If you observe in the diagram opposite, my bullet is very similar and there is actually a primer at the back of the bullet (labelled ‘5’). What could have triggered it? Heat? If so why didn’t it go off in the peak of the hot afternoon? Why in the evening after dark? Could a mouse or rat have been tampering with the primer before the bullet went off? I didn’t see any rodent body parts or blood around the crime scene. This bullet just descended by its own free will.

Thankfully I wasn’t doing a ‘Number 2’ when this near-homicide took place. Just imagine, being found dead with a bullet in your head, pants halfway down, toilet unflushed and no trace of a killer. That’s what I call a freak accident – Perhaps this can be used for the next Final Destination movie installment ( …I think they should be working on part 5 now.) But this begs the question, what kind of tenants where living in this apartment before I moved in? Drug barons?, Assassins? Ex-military mercenaries? Are there anymore bullets lying up there in my ceiling. Even worse, is there gun cache up there? a dead body? If I start to smell something funny (and I know it’s not me) then I’m going up there to investigate…

 

N.B – That black spot in the celing is the bullet hole…crikey!

Entry #51 – Plan C

In ‘Operation Daybreak’ (the 1975 World War II film based on the true story of the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich in Prague) the 2 spies behind the assassination were in for a nasty surprise when their plans went terribly wrong. The first attempt to shoot their target on a moving train was a bit of a stretch but then came Plan B but would you believe that even with one of the spies standing a few feet from his target pointing, eye to eye,  with a fully loaded semi-automatic the unexpected happened…

I believe that no matter what you plan to do there is a probability that due to life’s unforeseen circumstances your plan wont always work exactly as you expected – that’s not a pessimistic perspective I’m just being realistic. Look at Weddings, for example. I hear such things as ‘the perfect wedding’ and here I’m not referring to the ‘wedding you dream to have’…I’m talking about ‘making sure every single thing goes according to plan. You could wake up late on the wedding day (perhaps your slept through your alarm), or you could be down with a cold or an upset stomach (especially if you had the dodgy curry last night), the car you’re supposed to take doesn’t start, or it rains cats and dogs, or you stain your rented tuxedo, or the bride and the bridesmaids  arrive late, or the 3 year-old ring bearer boy decides it would be fun to swallow the wedding ring…the list of unfortunate events is indeed endless.  

What you might have observed in my examples is that it’s not always just other people that could let you down…YOU can let yourself down (e.g. you slept through your alarm, remember?). So whenever you have something big planned you need to have a back-up plan or what is more commonly known as a ‘plan B’. Such contigency plans are priceless tactics employed by just about every meticulous government, tycoon, stockbroker, wedding planner, boxer (well, in the case of Tyson Vs. Holifield I do not condone biting a chunk of our opponent’s ear when you’re losing)…you get my drift? You need to think of the worst thing that could possibly happen to ruin your plans and then plan for it and be sure that as much as possible your plan is air-tight, blunder-proof, anti-Enron…but is that enough? surely if I set my alarm on my mobile phone (which I will be charging overnight and is preset on the highest, most irritating tone and volume level) then I don’t need to do anything else, right? WRONG.

There is of course Plan C and the best part about this plan is (not the obvious fact that it takes care of the shortfalls of Plan B, duh) this plan makes you want to say, ‘well, why the hell did I bother with plan B in the first place?’ Ah, yes plan C is a thing of beauty, a work of art…only the brilliant minds can pull off one of these…but I beg to differ. Plan C’s usually require a third party that you can count on with your life. I’m talking ‘Bonnie & Clyde’ loyalty here. We all must have at least one person who wont let us down no matter what and you never know…someone might be relying on you to be their Plan C. Enjoy the ambush clip from Operation Daybreak to see how it went down…

Plan C…because Plan B’s not always enough.

Entry #50 – From Con artists to Terrorists?

There’s something about the suffix ‘ist‘ that just really leaves a bad taste in my mouth – words like Racist, Facist, Schauvinist, etc. But just as my country is desperately trying to bleach out the stubborn stain of corruption from its reputation some Nigerian decides to  give America a reason to tag us  ‘terrorists’.

First of all, the American government’s decision gives me cause to tag them ‘extremists’. But that aside history has shown that Nigeria and its indigines have shown more interest in making money. Subdivide that and then you have those who choose to make money legally and those who want to make (quick) money illegally. This second group are  commonly known as fraudsters or con artists. In recent times they have been taking advantage of the technological age and all those who’ve been less fortunate to grasp it in its ever increasing pace. In Nigeria we have just as many victims as there are perpetrators of online fraud alone. Setting one’s pants/trousers on fire to detinate an explosive substance doesn’t quite appeal to the average Nigerian – I mean, what exactly is the pay off?

If I’m to be really objective about how possible it is for Nigerians to be branded ‘terrorists’ then I’d say that in the northern region of Nigeria there have been some acts of terror so to speak. Extremist muslims, or to put it mildly, religious fanatics who’ve taken their belief too far and decided to impose it on the rest of us – refusal to which you could (but not necessarily) expect a Jihad a.k.a certain death to the unbelievers…the sinners…the obstacles that separate them from their eternal paradise. Be it as it may the fact remains that these religious wars take place within Nigeria and may well take place anywhere else in the world. Perhaps all it takes is just one terrorist act committed by a non-citizen of a country and then that citizen’s country gets to be labelled a Terrorist. I didn’t come across that in anywhere in the American constitution or in any constitiution for that matter!

Probably the mere presence of the word ‘Terrorist‘ in this article and the recurrence of the word over 10times (and remember, straight from a computer located in Nigeria) is sending the American Intelligence into a frenzy. All I need to do now is google for cheap flight tickets to Yemen and I bet the CIA will be on red alert. Don’t forget my blog title, Nigerian Interrupted, is not helping matters either!

In ‘other news’, I want to make reference to one of the biggest con artists in Nigeria to have been exposed by the EFCC (Economic and Financial Crimes Commission – a Nigerian Govt organization). She is the former MD of Oceanic Bank, Cecilia Ibru, who embezzled bank funds and acquired…wait for it…N399bn worth of assets all around the world (www.thisdayonline.com). She has property, estates and shares mostly in fictitious company names and also in some of her relative’s names. Nigerian con artists have been in the game for as long as I can remember. I personally doubt that we’ll see another Nigerian terrorist plane bomber anytime in the next decade.

…And one final point: if anyone wants to point the dreaded finger of blame at the muslim community, the American Airline, or the radicals in Yemen, then think hard about what role the parents played (or avoided) in nuturing Mullatab (talk about a Nigerian interrupted indeed) and monitoring his behaviour. I blame the parents, period.

Entry #47 – Remember September

chaseWell how can I forget September 2008 when my bank was having its financial year end (which in the Nigerian Banking industry means every bank starts to scramble around for large money deposits in order to claim the no.1 spot for having the largest liability base…the grand prize being that you get to keep your job!).

I remember how fellow colleagues would genuinely fall ill with stress, some with high blood pressure, and why? All because they got SMS/text messages at odd hours of the day (including weekends) from bosses who taunt them to AGGRESSIVELY PURSUE current accounts and fixed term deposits or to REALIZE GROWTH in their account portfolio. I remember when each week would be inundated with impromptu meetings – meetings with other bank branches’ marketing team and their respective managers. Such gruelling sessions were like the ‘Show and Tell’ in Elementary/Primary School…only, you were showing to the whole audience how you planned to leap from a balance sheet of N100m (One Hundred Million Naira) to N250m in under 3weeks. I remember the tall tales marketing staff used to tell…stories of fat cheques that were due the following week…and then the following week…and then the following week. I remember how they had to defend their jobs by justifying why they should still be paid their salary.

I remember how the boldest and most confident of marketers would suddenly be reduced to a bucket of nerves as they stuttered through their cock and bull Deposit Mobilization strategies. Of course their bosses were quick to ridicule and threaten them with a letter of displeasure – that’s a prelude to a sack, in simple English. I remember how some marketers avoided the subsequent meetings especially when the millions they promised the previous week never materialized. Oh, how I remember how some banks would accept to pay to willing Fixed Deposit customers outrageous rates well above that of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and in some cases staff would make up the interest difference from their own personal funds to pay to the oblivious, greedy customer. I remember the pressure got so much that you could cut the tension in bank branches with a knife. You were almost driven to the point of holding customers at gunpoint just so they took you more seriously and coughed out the millions that we so stupidly thought they were hiding at home under their matresses.

I remember how some marketing staff would encourage their known customers to move funds from competitor banks into ours. Even worse was when a branch within the bank moved funds from another bank branch, meaning the bank as a whole wasn’t actually growing but suffering a bout of indigestible cannibalization of accounts. I remember hearing stories of female marketers who would ‘stoop so low’ just to get a measly million into their account portfolio…and in some unfortuante cases were given dud cheques: a classic Lose-Lose situation.

I remember how the month would draaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaag and your demanour was truly tested. Some who couldn’t take the heat or the humiliation any longer dropped their resignation letters and stayed at home waiting for the grass to get greener somewhere else…anywhere else. I remember how some skilled marketers would turn on the waterworks when a customer came into the branch to make a portfolio-shattering withdrawal in this ’ember’ month. I remember how I almost uttered to my superior ‘What are YOU doing to ensure that we grow our deposit base? Show me YOUR prospect list! How much money have YOU brought today? How many phone calls have YOU made? Why should the bank still be paying YOUR salary???’ I remember it all too well and now I have another 13days to go before I can even begin to forget September 2009. “Lord, give me strength…”

Entry #46 – Tea anyone?

tea‘I would like some tea, please. Don’t ask me HOW I would like it. Don’t try to make small talk with me. Up until 2minutes ago we were total strangers. You are not doing this because you want to. You are doing this because you have to. Don’t try to stall me with questions that would only intensify a thirst which, before you came prouncing along, wasn’t initially there. Just pour it and drop it and I’ll try not to sip it and spill it. I don’t care if it’s Iced Tea or Regular hot tea. I don’t care if its Earl Grey, De-Caff, Herbal or Chai Tea. I don’t care if it’s made by Lipton, Twinning’s, PG Tips, Tetley or low-budget teabags made for Economy class passengers. I don’t care if it comes with milk either so don’t ask me if I want full creamed, skimmed, semi-skimmed, evaporated, condensed, powdered, or any other white liquid substance that was supposedly drawn from a cow…or goat for that matter. Don’t assume that I would use the sugar in the sachet. You don’t know if I like to use sweetners. You don’t know if I take my tea with honey. You must be thinking that if I allowed you to ask how I take my tea I could have responded with a single-sentence which would save time and energy for both you and I? Well I would have said something like “I take it in a teacup like everyone else” – not the kind of answer you would like to hear. So now that you’ve probably learnt a thing or two (or not) ask me how I would like take my tea…I dare you’ xD

Entry #45 – If there’s any justice in the world…

names of lockerbie bomb victims…Al Megrahi would still be in jail. Well unless there is any evidence to say that he was not involved in the Lockerbie bombing I think he shouldn’t have been released on ‘compassionate grounds’. Yes I deliberately put that in inverted commas because, let’s face it, that’s a whole lot of bull****! Why else would Seif Al-Islam, the son of Col. Gaddafi (the ridiculously oil-rich Libyan leader) claim that every time British diplomats came over to discuss business in the past he would push forward a written request for the bomber’s release which was constantly refused…until now.

To make matters even worse for Britain, Gaddafi himself makes a public statement to the news media thanking UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Andrew for encouraging the Scottish government to release Megrahi. Of course Britain quickly steps up to the plate in the guise of a creepy Lord Mendelson (Business Secretary) to deny all allegations of a trade deal as ‘implausible’ and ‘offensive’. Have you stopped to ask yourself whether the Scottish government have ever released a prisoner on the grounds of a terminal illness? Is there absolute conclusive evidence to confirm that Megrahi really has only less than 3months to live?

Britain has to be careful that it doesn’t damage its relations with the U.S government. 270 innocent people lost their lives after an explosive was detonated in a passenger plane in Lockerbie, Scotland. About 170 of the victims were American. Al Megrahi was convicted after Scotland Intelligence claimed that he was involved in the bombing but was not willing to cough up the names of his accomplices. Megrahi (more commonly referred to as The Lockerbie Bomber) claims he is not responsible for killing anyone but he doesn’t actually deny being part of the syndicate that masterminded this massacre…hmm.

Americans and other revolting citizens watched as Megrahi returned to Libya…in style – cruising in Gaddafi’s private jet, relaxing at a nifty 2-storey manor and enjoying celebrity-acclaim amongst the Libyan residents. The sickening bit for me is that I have not seen one sign of remorse since he was released. He’s smiling now though, probably thinking, ‘بفضل النفط الليبي أنا على الأراضي الليبية’ ! (Ok, if you’re that curious you can translate this in this pretty cool link…or not)

Entry #44 – Sanusi and the Half-Wit MDs

Iron Man

Iron Man

The hottest news that is sweeping the country (Nigeria) right now is the recent sacking of 5 Managing Directors by the governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Yes, the end was nigh for the fraudulent five on 14th August 2009 at a monthly meeting held in Abuja. I like to think of the whole ordeal as something straight out of The Apprentice…with Sanusi staring down at the MDs through his spectacles sternly and then shouting and pointing suddenly going, ‘ YOU, YOU, YOU, YOU AAAAAND ESPECIALLY YOU WITH THE PRIVATE JET..YOU’RE ALL FIRED! NOW GET THE F*** OUT OF MY OFFICE!!!’

Did those MDs see this coming? (Doubt it). Did those MDs deserve this? (Hell yeah!) Does anyone disagree with Sanusi’s actions? (Who the bloody hell cares? Its too late crying over spilt milk anyway). The banks in question were amongst 10 that were ‘stress’ tested to see whether, put simply, they would be able to pay up if per chance all their respective customers were to demand for their money all at once. Those banks are off the Nigerian stockmarket for obvious reasons.Meanwhile, there’s another 14 banks left to be tested so there’ll be a lot of fingernail clippings in the waste-bins of those MDs.

A Nigerian newspaper disclosed that there were hints of further shake-ups in the banking industry. Customers and bankers alike are all kind of anxious to know what other possible ‘executions’ lie in wait. I’m more interested in knowing whether Sanusi will eventually end this never-ending deposit mobilization drive aka corporate begging – which pretty much entails bankers who run around the streets literally begging customers to open accounts with them and/or fund the accounts.  Such bankers (or ‘marketers’) have been taunted by their immediate bosses to get funds in at all costs. Marketers are losing sleep, falling ill, working late, paying money to cover shortfalls in promises of ridiculously high interest rates, snatching accounts from within their bank’s network, etc all in a bid to beat the pressure and stay in the job.

Sanusi may be our last hope. He appears not to be worried about taking difficult decsions and he seems to want to get Nigeria back into full gear – he just injected N400billion to jumpstart the economy. The audacious CBN governor is akin to a Nigerian Harry Potter who has succeeded in proving that he has a few tricks up his sleeve…and by the look of things, he’s just getting warmed up…

Senior High – 1st year

As the principal of International School Ibadan announced that the JSCE (Junior Secondary School Examination) results would be posted up in front of her office I felt nauseous. I wasn’t sure if it was bad luck to have already gotten trouser measurements done at my local tailor before the exam results were released. What if I didn’t make it through? My trousers would be bloody useless and I’d have to endure another year in I.S.I wearing a pair of A.H.Is (AssHole Irritants).  Girls had no problem because their blue-white striped dress/uniform didn’t have to look any different from junior to senior year. Thankfully I breathed a sigh of relief as I attained 2A’s and 5C in my 8subjects (I’m not mentioning what I got in Yoruba language). I vaguely remember jumping up and down like a deranged rottweiler that had a piece of meat dangled over its head. I proceeded to run into the nearby open field with fellow classmates who also sailed through the exams. We ran like we were being chased by… Rottweilers. I almost failed to take notice of the few guys whom we left behind moping at their inadequate grades and therefore bore long faces (okay, not like Rottweilers…more like Dobermen!)

Of course this next chapter in my school life called for a celebration. I took it upon myself to have a small get-together for my ‘Class of 1993’. Unfortunately I didn’t have an much more than the Naira equivalent of £10 back then which could just barely cater for about 20-30 guests max (I must have been nuts!). I invited 25 schoolmates to my cousin’s crib where I resided, about 60 eventually showed up and filled up almost every part of the house! I soon quickly realised that 48 bottled drinks (2 crates) would not quite cut the ‘3:1 guzzling ratio’ of my invitees. The 2 small coolers of cooked rice and chicken didn’t go round because I didnt plan for the following: Boarder boys and girls sneakings out of their hostels; Geeks/Nerds/Bookworms/Efikos gate crashing; and schoolmates from the set below mine (JSS3) also taking advantage of the fact that I did not have a bouncer to ‘man the door’. So I had geeks playing video games in the TV room, boarder girl escapees changing clothes in my cousin’s bedroom, boarder boys slow-dancing with girls in the living room whilst my Aunt was within the house. There was no DJ but just one raga tape being put on the loop courtesy of all the horny boys hoping to literally tap some ass from a slowdance. The 5kg cake and 2 tubs of ice-cream I had planned for dessert was not going to be able to feed THIS multitude. This wasn’t a get-together…this was a get-together-everybody-who-heard-about-this-party. I mean some of the guests there didnt even know my name or the fact that I was hosting this fiasco. To make matters worse, the girl I had a crush on was busy slowdancing with some guy I didnt even invite, Meanwhile I was busy trying to feed the hungry, entertain the bored, and save my shaky reputation all at the same time. I was glad when it was all over, to say the least. The house  survived with 2 shattered drinking glasses and a broken window lever. I on the other hand remained intact!

In an amazing twist of fate, I was hailed by the majority of my set for making a noble effort at throwing a shindig (which  I’d rather remember as a ‘shit-dig’). The geeks were even more grateful because they knew that they may never gain such easy access into a party again. I somehow became everybody’s pal…the one who didn’t discriminate…the one who didn’t stop the music and shout “ALL BOYS OUT!” and proceeded to reveal a list of boys who were not given the fake invitation cards…no, I wasn’t seen as cruel…I was Mr.Nice guy Subsequent parties got better and better (no thanks to me). I do remember one guy who threw a party but would have sooner thrown himself over a bridge after only 1 girl turned up amidst a house filled with over 15guys…a case of bad advertising? Well, the grub didn’t go to waste.

Ah yes, those grey trousers really were worth the 3 year-wait. I was ‘toasting’ girls a one class year or two below me and feeling pretty cool with my skinny self. I was later appointed by my principal as the school’s Health Prefect, though for the love of God I never found out what a health prefect was nor did I know what my responsibilities were supposed to be. I just made sure the sick bay was hygenic and wasn’t congested or saturated with students who were feigning illness. I was given a badge which I wore proudly like a sheriff. If only I went guns blazing a little less when it came to asking a girl, ‘Will you go out with me?…’

Entry #42 – One man’s trash…

prism…is another man’s treasure? Well I’ve got a Nokia 7900 Prism that says ‘NO!’ – thats if you want to keep beating the life out of it everytime it freezes when a message comes through it. I can vaguely remember how I strolled into the Nokia shop barely a year ago, coughed out N70,000 (which is over £200 or over $300) and was one of the ‘privileged’ few to be pouncing around town with a phone which got quite a lot of  ‘Ooh! Nice phone!’, ‘It’s unique!’, ‘I haven’t seen this before!’, (Hindsight – thanks to you gawkers I didnt return the phone sooner to get a refund).

It was as slim as kate moss, black as Whoopi’s lips, had more colour theme choices than Amy Winehouse’s make-up artist (oops, I forgot she does it herself), and boasted more tricks than Harry Potter’s wand. Well I was tricked alright.  I was tricked into thinking an engraved Aluminium casing was mega cool. For N70,000 I should be getting at least Titanium, shouldn’t I? For N70,000 I should be getting not just 1GB of built-in memory but 3GB! For 70,000 bleeping Naira I should be getting more than a 2 mega-pixel camera, FM radio and bluetooth – bluetooth! What genius came up with THAT term? The next pushy salesperson that offers me a ‘BLUETOOTH’ will get a ‘BLACKEYE’.

I will not be ripped off again (Aaaaargh!!!) I shall not succumb to the…oh my…could it be? Could Nokia be entrancing me yet again with a nonsenical technological blunder utterly unworthy to be categorized as a cutting-edge mobile phone? Its so slick…stylish…kinky…qwerty…look at it slide…the screen is huge…how much is it? How much? I think I’m falling for the E75…shh, I just can’t help it. I hate you Nokia…making me spend my money…and in 8months I know this’ll be trash too…but for 11years now when has that ever stopped me 🙂

Entry #41 – Coming to Nigeria

nigeriaWhy would you be crazy enough to come to Nigeria? I mean just look at that crazy colour scheme on all those unnecessary number of states (currently 36 when 12 would do!). I see popular searches like ‘relocate to nigeria’ being used to get to this site and I can only wonder ‘What’s chasing them?’ Well I can tell you that Lagos (the former capital of Nigeria where I reside) is like a metropolis – commercial and bursting with business. It is increasingly becoming cosmopolitan too, with Brits, Asians, Chinese, South Africans and Americans on the scene. I’d say Lagos is like New York but with a lot more black people and a hell of a lot more poor people. Sure we’ve got that minority who are stupendously rich. Then we’ve got the majority who are stupendously poor. Then you’ve got people in the middle of this spectrum…people like me…who persist in applying the principles of becoming rich but end up feeling stupendously…stupid. Anyway, there have been a number of job cuts since the recession first surfaced the newspapers but now there are recent cases of pay cuts. Banks are not so willing to lend to customers who may sometimes even have collateral which triples the requested loan amount. Electricity supply has gone from fluctuating to weak to virtually non-existent in the last few months. Owning or renting a generator is a must. You will need a car to get around town, a Nigerian guide who has lived here for at least 10years, a dose of anti-malaria drugs, light clothing (not too warm), and a valid form of identification on you at all times (e.g. driver’s licence, passport or national ID card). Get acquainted with some of the local lingo so that you don’t stand out like a sore thumb. If you can’t fake a typical Nigerian accent (which sounds like a fatigued loud-mouth whose been woken out of a deep sleep at 3am, pretty much) then try not to sound like a JJC (Johnny Just Come) or you will get duped sooner or later. Get a mobile phone and start with any of the pay-as-you-go packages – all the networks are just as good (and bad) as each other. When in doubt, don’t ask a crazy Nigerian a.k.a mad man for any assistance. He could flip you over a bridge or push you into high-speed traffic or something. There are so many crazy Nigerians out there – I’m the real McCoy 🙂

See my ‘Survival Kit’ for more info

Interview with the Crazy Nigerian

reporterInterviewer: “Looking back to when Nigerian Interrupted hit WordPress, what has made it worth your while?”

Jollof: “I can’t explain it – That feeling of excitement when I suddenly see a surge in my page views, the reviews, the comments…I guess coupled with the fact that I’m the ‘Author/Moderator/CEO’ around here I know it’s mostly my effort (well, WordPress have to take some credit for the tools). It got me questioning myself, ‘Am I writing what I want or what I think people want to read?’

With me it’s a bit of both. I’m a bit of a control freak so there’s no way I’m letting anyone type for me, first of all. All ideas come from my exposure to the Net, all media, the real world, my experiences and random thoughts. If I don’t have a gut feeling that I should write about something then I don’t. I need to chuckle a bit when I’m typing the material so I know it deserves the CrazyNigerian seal of approval.

However I do listen to feedback. What I gathered before changing my blog design (to incorporate the iconic ‘Photo fun’ redneck lizard) was that I needed more pictures and a better web layout. Surprisingly my page views have since picked up. The comments on my content have mostly been positive. I don’t know if I wrote what they wanted to read or if they were just curious about the utterances of a crazy Nigerian. Either way, it seems I’m doing something right…but not always right. The highest number of page views I ever received in a single day was a measly 96 until 23rd June when I received 103 views (so the 100-mark is not that elusive after all!) Today I average about 10-20 views daily and…HEY! WHERE ARE YOU GOING? I’VE NOT FINISHED YET! I’M STILL TALKING TO YOU!!!”

Entry #40 – Recess is over but the Recession continues

recession21.37pm – As I sit here in this corporate prison, choked by my own Finelli necktie and nauseated by this cologne that I use predominantly for this ‘Five to Nine’ (No typo – I wake up 5am and get back by 9pm), I already dread the impending road congestion parade and the utter disregard of the highway code by notorious ‘motorpsycholists’ (Again, no typo).

I begin to analyze the principle of Cause and Effect with relevance to the current state of economic affairs. Most Nigerian banks have been exposed to risk by careless lending (Cause) which may potentially lead to colossal money losses (Effect). Some banks go on a defensive and start to cut their ‘losses’ by cutting jobs. Cutting jobs leads to lowered morale within the retained workforce, but jobhunting and high blood pressure for the booted. Jobhunting for 1month = Anticipation. Jobhunting for 2-3months = Frustration. Jobhunting for 4-6months = Desperation. Jobhunting for over 6-8months =  (Possible) Suicide contemplation. Jobhunting for 8-10months = Partial transformation to Schemer/Scammer. Jobhunting for over 1year = Complete transformation to Schemer/Scammer.

Everyday you are thankful that  you still have a job…a reason to get dressed in the morning…a reason to smile at the end of each month. The hard-hitting reality is a pill too bitter to swallow – the Recession is the new stealth virus whose only close rival is Swine flu. But the Recession doesn’t just stop at cutting jobs, deteriorating health and inducing paranoia about job security. It goes on to have an adverse effect on the economy. With the rise in unemployment comes the surge in crime and there are bound to be casualties.

Alas, my lunch break is over. I see my work before me and the ghost of Recession hovering in the distance with a dark cloak and a razor-sharp sickle. It is ready to harvest jobs but I am not ready to yield it any fruit. I am armed with my product knowledge, I.T and Marketing skills, an excellent appraisal, and a prayer. I must remain relevant in the system to avoid being weeded out. I must avoid the weeds around me who harbor toxic attiitudes. I will not be choked up. I will loosen my Finelli necktie and switch to another cologne. I will take control of my destiny, look the 8-foot Grim Recession Reaper in the eye and say, “You want my job? You’re going to have to get past me first!”

Blog Wars

star warsIt is the year 2021. Blogworld has been riddled with mayhem as there is a never ending battle between the Bloggers and the Spammers. There is one blogger however called Luke Skywriter who is the best there is at blogging and he is the last hope to restore Blogworld to a state of useful information circulation. His predecessor, Anakin Skywriter, was supposed to make this possible. The elders had noticed that the Words were strong in him at the tender age of 9. But following his transaition to the Dark Side he was presumed dead after an epic pen-fight with Obi-Wan Kenotey.

Luke Skywriter, with the guidance of Princess Writea and the Scribe training from 900 yr old Posta, was instrumental in his execution of a well-laid out plan to anihilate the rebels of the Spam armed forces. In a terrible twist of fate, Luke comes face-to-face with his arch enemy, the devious Darth Pager, who later reveals that he is infact his biological father – Anakin Skywriter. The confrontation leads to lot of ink being shed during the posting battle but Luke rises victorious and the blogs are restored to full circulation in Blogworld. He is now married to Princess Writea and has taken over from Posta to train younglings in Blog academy. There he shows them the way of the Scribe. 

I salute Luke and all that he has done for Blogworld. He is the wordsmith that all bloggers would aspire to be. On that note I’ll sign off saying, ‘May the Words be with you’. 

 

Entry #38 – Feeling peckish

Earlier today I was just craving for a bit of toast, which I dont eat regularly. And I suddenly had a flashback to the early 80s when I heard this peculiar song by Streetband (A UK group). The song is kinda irritating now when I hear it but as a kid it made me laugh for whatever reason beknown to me. Was it the way the lead singer, Paul Young, was just chatting away throughout the song, the cheesy chorus, the crunching sounds of someone biting through toast or was it just the monologue-rap with the corny beat and the silly sound effects…wait, I think I hear the kettle boiling! Well, I’m going to share this excruciating audio experience with you, my inquisitive readers. Get your butter knives out and lets make…

Entry #37 – My affair with 4 women

lipsWomen – a mystery to some, a weakness to many (men and lesbians, that is). I too have fallen prey to the clutches of the female species. I vaguely remember one particular woman who locked me down for about 9months. I felt trapped. I wanted to break free but at the same time I wanted to stay. I was so confused that I had to have a third party separate us. I actually cried my eyes out but today we’re still in touch and on good terms.

The second woman whose birthday was on 27th June (so if you’re reading this, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!) was one whom I shared a Mr. & Mrs. Smith relationship with…literally. On one occasion she chased me round the house with an 8-inch kitchen knife – she couldn’t catch me though (phew!). We have an understanding now and we’ve learned to keep our distance – I’m in Nigeria, she’s in Great Britain…

The third woman who messed with my mind was like a brother to me…the brother I never had…actually, I wished she was a boy…okay I know how that can confuse you right now. You probably wondering, ‘…but I thought he liked women!’ I do…and I’m not bisexual either. Let me break it down: 1st woman – My mother; 2nd woman – my junior sister; 3rd woman – my baby sister.

Yes, my ‘affairs’ with all these women still continues and I’m not done yet. I mentioned ‘4 women’ in my post title. Well in 2010 the fourth woman I deeply love will be the one I’ll spend the rest of my life with…God willing 🙂

Entry #36 – Gone too soon

mjThis pic is the way I remembered Michael Jackson as a child and will always remember him. He’s the reason why I would sing or hum a tune in the shower every morning. He’s the reason why I still keep pairs of trousers that have outgrown me. He’s the reason why I body-pop whenever I’m in front of a mirror (alone). He’s the reason why I moonwalk whenever I’m on a slippery surface (again, alone). He’s the reason why most of the CDs in my car don’t get as much airplay on a daily basis. He’s the reason I’ve become a fan of Usher, Chris Brown, Ginuwine, Sisco and Justin Timberlake. He’s the reason I have a romantic, imaginative and sensitive side. He’s the reason I’m writing this impromptu post at 6am in the morning even though I should be getting ready for work. He’s probably the reason why it’s been raining non stop since 4am this morning…and perhaps the reason why it still looks dark outside. He’s the reason why the world is in mourning today. His performances were electrifying and his legacy is unprecedented. For this and generations to come he is a music legend, a dancing maestro, a philanthropist, an icon of our time. He is and will always be remembered as the KING OF POP. Michael, I salute you…I miss you…and I’ll see you Neverland… 😦

R.I.P Michael J. Jackson (1958-2009)