G.E.L (Gays, Extremists and a little pink Lamp)

So let’s start with a disclaimer. This blog post is meant to be rude. Don’t read too much into it. I am now going to start from the beginning … or as close to it as is possible.

NOTE: I am not homophobic. I am not homophobic. I am not homophobic. I am not homophobic. I do not hate LGBTs nor anyone for that matter. Even if everybody hates Chris, that does not include the “Little dude from across the street. Lemme hold a dollar” guy. Well, you can look at me like that fella except without the implied “I will beat you up if you don’t comply” threat. We good? Good. Shall we?

So I bought a rechargeable lamp a week or so ago. It is mostly white but with a little pink. I didn’t think too much of it at the time and didn’t really use it much until tonight. Well, the 9KVA generator tried to pull a “spontaneous combustion” on me last night (well, actually it was the plug on the cable that tried to do that, but I guess one can’t blame it – after all, it can’t tell a holy day apart from a weekday). Anyways, tonight I whipped out some tools and decided I was going to fix it since NEPA (the power supply company) had not deemed it fit to supply electricity throughout the weekend. There was still some juice in the Inverter but I wasn’t going to wait until it was completely dead.

But I digress. So I had the lamp on the kitchen table and my cousin once removed (truth be told, I can never seem to get that “removed” thing straight. She is the daughter of my much older cousin) comes into the kitchen, sees the new lamp and goes “Isn’t that a little too pink?” to which I responded: “I am connecting with my gay side.”

Which of course got me thinking and that is how “we” arrived at this blog entry.

Now, I don’t have anything against gays (or more appropriately LGBTs – that’s Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals and Transvestites). Having said that, so that people know where I stand in the ongoing debate (not the one about whether there is a global “Gay Agenda” or not), I would rather prefer that all gay people are straight (says the chap who has never had a girlfriend – but that as they say, is another story).

So anyways, I cut the two cables from the burnt plug (fully convinced that I could tell them apart), only to return later with an older plug I found lying around to discover that the two cables where actually the same colour! I called up a friend who is a mechanical engineer (but into the Inverter business) and he said it is unlikely that I would do any damage no matter how I connect the cables (neutral and live) but just to be sure I don’t mistakenly reverse the polarity, he would have his electrical engineer staff come around in the morning to fix it (fortunately while I was battling the plug, NEPA, a sure member of the pantheon “brought” the electricity supply back!).

So I abandoned my electric dreams and went back to the kitchen. There was a whole smoked chicken to cook and fry, along with some Irish potatoes (cook only). So there I was at 38, scraping away at the skin of a couple of potatoes (no, I am not talking about myself. I am younger than 38. I was referring to my twin who turned 38 back in April). Now I don’t have anything against peeling potatoes. In fact if I do get married, whoever the lucky (opinions may differ of course) lady is, we will man the kitchen together for as long as she wants me there. What I am saying is that I do know how to be a couch potato – I don’t mind sitting back in the parlor and knocking back a few or playing with whatever console (game) is available along with that 55-inch OLED TV and 7-speaker surround sound system (just saying).

But again I digress. What I was saying is that I don’t believe all that nonsense about “I was born this way” (Lady G. can literally lick my … and if you want to sue me, make sure it’s in the US of A. Don’t forget to send a one-way ticket while you are at it. I can be your house guest while we duke it out in the court system and the court of public opinion – whatever that is worth nowadays).

I warned you before. This post is “rude.”


Now, I concede that there is something to be said for “predisposition.” We will consider “predisposition” along with “environment” as they are invariably linked. Let me explain. Take a boy who has 5 sisters. Let’s say he is not the first born but somewhere around the middle. Now there are several possible outcomes.
One, if he is effeminate to start with, he may grow up to be:
a. just still effeminate, or
b. gay (“wow sis, that dress looks great on you, but I bet it will look even better on me!”), or
c. just a regular chap who has seen it all (maybe even jaded), or
d. Terror on the girls.

Two, if he wasn’t effeminate to start with, we could probably cross out option (a) above.

If any of that doesn’t make sense, you are in good company. I don’t understand it either. Nothing to lose sleep over.

Which reminds me of a pair of twins we had back in my secondary school days. I went to a boys-only secondary school. They were reasonably alike but definitely not identical. Very good footballers so they were quite popular. But they had another skill up their sleeves. They both had a tendency to want to share several juniors’ beds. I think they were lonely (tongue in cheek). Well, it got to a point where what they were up to became common knowledge. In addition, certain of their “victims” started walking “funny” (the Yoruba term was “gan-di” as in “gan-di rin” – “walking uncomfortably with the buttocks jutting out or as if they had something between their legs” – that’s actually not very explanatory – all men have something between their legs – but you get my meaning I am sure).

Well, one Saturday, the whole boarding house ganged up on them. An assembly was called, where they were named and shamed. Then the whole student body (boarders) literally ran them out of the hostels and the school. I can’t for the life of me remember whether they actually finished their education in the school (may be as “day“ students if the shame wasn’t too much – but definitely not as boarders!)

Their case is probably an aberration. Two twin brothers! On the other hand, maybe they were “experimenting” between the two of them before they then found themselves in the much more “fertile” grounds of the boarding house.

But I digress. So I told my cousin I was getting in touch with my gay side. Let’s leave that there for a minute shall we.

But what has extremists (in the subject) got to do with all this? I am glad you asked. If you live in my country and you don’t know what “Boko Haram” is, stop reading right now. Go over to Google and “google” the term. When you are familiar with the term, come back here – I am not going anywhere soon. Unless of course the second coming happens, in which case if you are still reading this, then you are in a shitload of trouble and you better start praying that “Boko Haram” gets you soon!

If you still don’t know who or what “Boko Haram” is, here is a brief explanation. They are a group (or several loosely affiliated groups) of extremists who have sworn against “Westernization” in all forms. They have caused untold damage to lives and properties in the country. The government finally woke up one day, suddenly had an “Eureka” moment and decided “we won’t take their shit anymore!” and sent the military to put them down. That “engagement” is still ongoing.

Now, while I continue to pray that common sense prevail in this country, and we somehow get beyond our tribalistic agendas which are holding us back as a nation, one should still plan for all contingencies. After all, it wasn’t raining when Noah built the Arc (that’s not an original saying from me – I borrowed it). Though it is highly unlikely (they thought the titanic couldn’t sink), there is a chance (even if it is one in 170 million) that this country may become the fiefdom of the extremists (God forbid bad thing!). But I am prepared – can you see the “tuft” on my chin? If you are  a man and you don’t have one, better start growing one now – the difference between keeping and losing your head may just be that fuzz on your chin!

Now, as I have said before, I do not know if there is (or not) a “Gay agenda”. But if we swing to another extreme possibility, and we become more gay than not, then I am prepared as well.  All I need do is whip out my pink-white lantern and I am totally in there (as in “Everybody hates Chris” in-there)!

Which brings us back full cycle to where we started from. No one has a right to hate another (or another’s way of life – you may of course dislike their way of life – but that’s totally different from hate – and it shouldn’t prompt you to do heinous things). God gave us all free will (to choose). We can try within reasonable limits to convince another of what we think is right or wrong, but under no circumstances should we turn that to hate or denigration (of the party or parties with different sociological “leanings”). If indeed someone’s way of life bothers you, the only way you can achieve lasting change is to show constant love – let your own way of life convince the person.

I have to stop this now before I start ranting. Before I am labeled a right-winger. I am not a right-winger; neither am I a left-winger; I don’t belong to the center either. I am a “can’t we all just get long?” kind of guy (that was from Rodney King).

At last, I think with that I have succeeded in convincing you (as opposed to my learned colleague) once and for all, to make love not war! You are probably wondering why I am so excited (same here too). It is either I am going to win the lottery tomorrow, or the sugar and alcohol in the bottle of Coca-Cola and Smirnoff Ice I took just as I started writing this article that’s responsible (“I feel good!”).
“Kids, don’t mix Sugar and Ice, hmmn-kay.”

18/06/2013 (01:34AM)



The taxi was old and rickety. I watched it as it made its way slowly down the street. A couple sat in the back. The man looked straight ahead. The woman looked out the side window. I know them. How long has it been since the big day: the wedding? Four years give or take a couple of months. How long ago did the raised voices late at night become a constant source of distraction? Two years give or take a couple of months.
And how long before the wedding were the walks in the evening, hand in hand; the whispering; the giggling? The outings? Maybe a couple of years give or take a couple of months.
I have marked time by the events in their lives.
More importantly, I think I have been here too long. Time to move on.
But to what? To where? It’s not like I have it any better than them. Yeah, there is a case to be made for two people who may be unhappy together over the single person haunting a building he calls his house, but does the headache beat the loneliness?
I know you will ask if I am lonely, why don’t I do something about it? Good question: complex answer.
When Cupid came for me, I was having a bad day. So instead of leaping for joy, I said f**k it all, and went my way. But the arrow was in my heart, so I had no peace. Then work issues cropped up and I went round like the living-dead for a couple of months. By the time I sorted that out and came back to myself and senses, it was too late. Even I could see how bad it looked. I wasn’t that guy, but my actions made me look like some vindictive, callous, unfeeling, selfish fellow who is nasty if he doesn’t have his way or get what he wants. I am not. But R. Kelly got it right when he sang (paraphrased) “Cause when a woman’s mind is made up (no matter how you beg no) There ain’t nothing you can do about it. It’s like running out of luck …”

The taxi has stopped. The man gets out, pays the driver and goes in the house with not even a single glance: the lady could have gone away with the taxi for all he cared. The lady follows shortly afterwards, bag in one hand and shoes in the other.
Lovely lady, I would have been perfectly happy with her if she was free and my heart was otherwise unoccupied. But I guess beauty and character are not always enough to keep the fire burning in a man’s heart, but I have been told that for a lady, the fire burns almost unceasingly: maybe, maybe not.

So if that’s not working out, why don’t I look elsewhere? You would be surprised at the reasons … as it is said in these parts: “… condition …”
But enough about me. I can hear the voices again: anger, despair and disappointment rolled into one.
Same lips that whispered those 3 universal words; that recited vows with glinting eyes in front of a few hundred well wishers and family.

Why won’t you give me a chance? Why do I make you so uncomfortable? All I want is to see you smile at me.

The raised voices are replaced by the noise of the crowd at a soccer game. Their TV.

I will see them in church tomorrow. Nicely dressed. We will share a word or two of greetings when the service is over. We will smile and comment on how the weather is changing. I expect to hear their raised voices later in the day while I think about you.

Time passes. Nothing changes.

Home Alone …

It’s Saturday evening and I am home alone (well not literally, there are a few other people in the house but I am alone for all intents and purposes). I could dress up, hop in the car and do what? Roam the city? I can’t be  bothered. I think such things should be done in pairs (in company).
So I think I will re-visit a path I have thread before since I am feeling blue.
I love all genres of music, and songs from all ages. But the oldies have a certain special place in my heart. And even narrowing that down further would be the category of songs that are called by various names including “tragic love songs” and “teenage tragedy songs”. I am including the lyrics of one of my all-time favorites below – “Tell Laura I love her”. I believe I heard this song first on some lonely day back when I was in the boarding house during my secondary school days.
To counter the “blues” effect, I am also including the lyrics of a song “Jambalaya” I first heard/learnt at a YMCA camp a very long time ago when I was little (Nigeria was different then). Jambalaya is one of those folksongs you sing in company at any time – the more the merrier!

Tell Laura I lover her

Laura and Tommy were lovers
 He wanted to give her everything
 Flowers, presents, but most of all, a wedding ring
He saw a sign for a stock car race
 A thousand dollar prize it read
 He couldn’t get Laura on the phone
 So to her mother, Tommy said
Tell Laura I love her
 Tell Laura I need her
 Tell Laura I may be late
 I’ve something to do, that cannot wait
 He drove his car to the racing grounds
 He was the youngest driver there
 The crowed roared as they started the race
 Around the track they drove at a deadly pace
No one knows what happened that day
 Or how his car overturned in flames
 But as they pulled him from the twisted wreck
 With his dying breath, they heard him say
Tell Laura I love her
 Tell Laura I need her
 Tell Laura not to cry
 My love for her will never die
Now in the chapel where Laura prays
For her poor Tommy, who passed away
 It was just for Laura he lived and died
 Alone in the chapel she can hear him cry 


Goodbye Joe, me gotta go, me oh my oh
Me gotta go, ole the pirogue, down the bayou
Oh my John, the sweetest one, me oh my oh
Son of a gun, we’ll have big fun, on the bayou

Jambalaya and a crawfish pie and filet gumbo
’cause tonight, I’m gonna meet, ma cher amio
Pick guitar, fill fruit jar, and be gay-o
Sun of a gun, we’ll have big fun, on the bayou

Thibodaux, Fontaineaux, the place is buzzin’
Kinfolk come, to see my john, by the dozen
Dress in style, go hog wild, me oh my oh
Sun of a gun, we’ll have big fun, on the bayou

Jambalaya, and a crawfish pie, and filet gumbo
’cause tonight, I’m gonna meet, ma cher amio
Pick guitar, fill fruit jar, and be gay-o
Sun of a gun, we’ll have big fun, on the bayou

Settle down, far from town, get me a pirogue
And I’ll catch, all my fish, in the bayou
Swap my mon, to buy my John, what he need-o
Son of a gun, we’ll have big fun, on the bayou

Jambalaya and a crawfish pie and filet gumbo
’cause tonight, I’m gonna meet, ma cher amio
Pick guitar, fill fruit jar, and be gay-o
Sun of a gun, we’ll have big fun, on the bayou