BBNaija Lockdown 2020 Updates: Down to 7

With less than two weeks till the end of the BB Naija Lockdown season the reality show has been nothing short of creative compared to previous seasons. After the unceremonious exit of Billionaire son – Kiddwaya and unlucky HoH arena game contender Prince last weekend the remaining HMs had no idea about the twist to come the following Monday with the arena games.

The usual snake and ladders-inspired game was played with much dexterity by all the HMs because it meant immunity from being nominated for possible eviction. Nengi had luck on her side as she emerged the HoH winner but with no provision to choose a deputy HoH. Then came the twist from Big Brother – unlike previous weeks where HMs would nominate two HMs each, this time around BB divided the losers of the arena games into two groups (Black and White team) and asked each team to nominate two HMs from the opposing team after a 30 minute period. Lovebirds Neo and Vee were different teams but that did not deter them from stylishly saving each other from being nominated in each other’s opposing teams.

After what appeared to be a carefully executed strategy of misdirection by Vee and Neo the final four up for possible eviction are Dora, Ozo, Laycon and Trikytee. Well, I would write more but the show is about to start. See you on the next post 😀

BBNaija Lockdown 2020 Updates: Down to 9

It has been the best of times and the worst of times. After three housemates were evicted two Sundays ago (Tolanibaj, Wathoni and Brighto) tension was on the rise as the remaining housemates tried to cope with the absence of a close companion. But the worst of it came from the HoH for last week (Erica) who had a series of altercations with various housemates and broke several Big Brother rules in the process. She provoked several housemates with insults and also deprived the DHoH of sleeping on the bed in the HoH lounge by pouring water on the bed. Big brother gathered all the HMs and played back the events ahead of Erica’s announcement of her third and final strike leading to her immediate disqualification from the game.

Following Erica’s unceremonious exit with no interview Ebuka, Lucy was announced as the next evictee and she scurried off to the exit door without looking back at the HMs. During her interview with Ebuka she explained that the reason for leaving abruptly was so that she could avoid shedding tears. The HMs seemed quite relieved that Lucy had left but there were mixed feelings about the way Erica left. My unbiased thoughts – she deserved the disqualification. She had 2 previous strikes and a stern final warning yet she went too far with the abuse, goading and complete disregard for her DHoH. Kiddwaya seems to have moved on fairly quickly.

It was all jubilation after the Arena games ended in a five-way tie and then a deciding game resulted in Trikytee becoming the HoH. His surprise deputy choice was Laycon (which made sense because all the other HMs would never have picked him as DHoH if they were picked and had all already been inside the HoH lounge). The warm embrace between the two was the stuff of movies and really tugged at my heartstrings. The other HMs all gave an applause almost as if to affirm that he made a wise choice which they certainly would not have made. Trikytee so far has been the funniest HoH from his poses on the BB throne to the swag with which he reads out BB’s tasks. This will be his first week of being immune from eviction after being up four consecutive times.

This week the four HMs up for eviction are: Kiddwaya, Ozo, Prince and Dorathy. It will be tough determining which of these HMs will be going home this Sunday. If Erica had behaved herself and controlled her alcohol intake perhaps Vee would have been evicted along with Lucy. With the dynamics in play Vee is safe for this week. Nengi isn’t seeming too concerned that Ozo is up for eviction – after all she was only up for eviction last week. Ozo is concerned as it is his first time but Trikytee the veteran assures him that by midweek he will be fine.

With only three weeks left to go before the voting public will have to decide the winner from the last five, it’s going to be interesting to see how HMs behave and interact with each other.

Ships status

  • Kiddrica – Capsized
  • Neve – Adrift
  • Ozone – Still at the dock

Why Women’s handbags should come with Google search

Have you been in a queue at the supermarket and had a woman in front of you rummaging through her handbag for her credit card?

Have you dropped a woman off at her place after a romantic evening and waited while she ransacked her handbag for her front door key?

Have you had to place several phone calls to a woman whom you had no idea couldn’t answer your phone call because she hadn’t found her phone in her handbag?

What is it with women and big handbags? Why do they seem to keep getting bigger and bigger? It wouldn’t hurt for somebody to tell the manufacturers to stop increasing the depth of these handbags because of the externalities that result from their production i.e. the shoppers queuing behind at the teller point, the driver waiting to zoom off, and the concerned friend at the end of an unanswered phone call. Wouldn’t it be nice if handbags in the 21st century came with a pre-installed Google search to help navigate inside the handbags? This is how I propose these special handbags should work if, for example a woman decides she needs to locate her wallet to pay for some goods:

Step 1 – Handbag owner performs a search for her wallet by saying, ‘Google, wallet’

Step 2 – She inserts her hand into the handbag and is guided by a voice in the handbag; ‘Deeper…Deeper…that’s it…you’re almost there…left a bit…’ (Well, I’ll have to work on the lingo not sounding like a Rated R movie.)

Step 3 – Once the voice says, ‘Wallet found’ the handbag owner can grab accurately.

Well I better send a proposal to the app developers at Google pronto 😛

Just Leave It!

It’s been 3 months of working from home and I think the most popular phrase I’ve heard myself say is ‘Leave it!’. Sometimes I’ve said it in succession so much so that I’m thinking of releasing a cover of the King of Pop’s classic with a chorus like this:

Just leave it! (leave it) Leave it! (leave it)

All she’s gonna do is break it

Sure she’s not working. Sure it’s my plight

If it gets broken who’s gonna buy it?

Just leave it, leave it, leave it…(leave it ×4)

Bless my daughter. She is quite the inquisitive type, always wanting to know how things work, why things light up, and how everything that can fit in her hand tastes. Interestingly enough like me she takes hygiene very seriously – when I use the sanitizer dispenser I rub my palms. When I pour some for her she rubs both palms and then uses one palm to clean her tongue (only she knows where she’s been).

Working from home couldn’t be more adventurous because you don’t know what she’s almost going to damage if you’re not looking. I have a rough daily count of my Leave It chorus:

My phone whilst charging – Once a day

Water dispenser without a cup – Twice a day

TV remote already replaced – More than twice a day

My official laptop – I’ve lost count

Well my consolation with this behaviour is that it’s only a phase and like the Corona virus it will pass very soon 🙂


Fiction: 2021 (Pt.2)

I walked into my office and met the usual two early risers: one cleaner employed to vacuum-clean, mop the floors and wash dishes. The other was contracted to neutralize the Corona virus handle detailed cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing of every visible surface in the entire office space. I knew the latter was hard at work from the offensive bleach odours invading my nostrils. No doubt about it – when it came to hygiene my office could go toe to toe with a 5 star hospital.

My colleagues began to troop in one after the other in mask-off mode. We had all gotten quite acquainted to sitting beyond spitting distance from each other. The result – tendency to focus more on the work at hand and less time for idle chit-chat or probable virus transmission. Lunchtime was implicitly observed at one’s desk or in the lunchroom if only one person had a 4-seating table to oneself. Unfortunately one could not exercise proper social distancing in the restroom (at least I can speak for the males). The urinals were not designed for this new era as evident from the distance between them.

Curfews had been extended gradually every fortnight by the state government until midnight but nothing beyond. This was obviously bad news for night crawlers but for old fashioned family men like me (Disclaimer: I have been known to have quite a few doppelgangers on the bar scene) I was happy to close from work and get home as early as I could. On that day in particular my wife and I were not eager to walk into a sea of scattered toys, a gallery of amateur graffiti walls and a solo-performance from our unsigned artiste (no amp required). We heard that a new movie experience was in town – at least new to Lagosians.

The pandemic took its toll on the local movie theatres while Netflix and Cable TV giants were cashing out on both the health-conscious and the care-free couch potatoes. One movie theatre decided to launch a drive-in cinema. You could enjoy your own air space, recline your seat to 180 degrees, mount your feet on the dashboard, binge on whatever picnic basket you prepared. Only thing I’d have to worry about is getting good seats parking space also within pee-holding distance to the restrooms. Movie wasn’t due to start for another half hour so we decided to stroll to a nearby bar to see what anti-COVID enhancements may have been made. We were pleasantly surprised…

Image credits: autojosh.com

The White-Collar Nigerian Wears T.M. Lewin

He wakes up around 4.30am and eventually drags himself out of bed by 5am (after engaging the 5-minute snooze button six times, of course). He does this from Monday to Friday; not because he wants to but because he knows if he doesn’t he’ll risk reporting to the office after 7.30am, by which time his line supervisor would issue him a well deserved query. He does a fast clean – no literally, FAST as in Face, Armpits, Scalp and Teeth. It’s arguably ineffective but fools all his colleagues ,whom may actually be birds of the same feather. He throws on his T.M. Lewin shirt – the shirt that makes a bold statement in the business world, the shirt that is so often used to impress at that desperately awaited job interview, the shirt that shouts to the world, ‘I care about how I look and I know I look damn good. Don’t cha wish your T.M was hot like mine?’ But after all this he complements this pristine shirt badly with his overworked suit before dashing out to hustle for sardine space in an overloaded public bus.

Nasal carbon dioxide exchange is on the high especially on those rainy days where you can’t open the windows too much. The sweat is no match for his Brut antiperspirant but his T.M Lewin collar gets it, and so does the full length of his arm sleeve rubbing against the perspiring brute aka bus conductor. He gets off at the usual bus stop and walks down to his office 10 minutes away. His T.M Lewin isn’t looking as sharp as when you first put it on. The starch-effect is fast fading and as he speeds up the stairs and arrives at his desk with one more accessory than the neck tie and cuff links he left home with – sweat beads. He makes it just in time for his weekly review meeting which is no different from the Spanish inquisition.

Alas, T.M. Lewin can’t impress his boss if his sales figures can’t. In fact, it becomes a source of ridicule; how he can look so good and yet have his figures look so bad. He returns to work after the meeting…dejected and demoralized…he goes to the restroom to have a private moment to reflect. He’s arrested in his tracks as he’s greeted by Mr. T.M Lewin staring right back at him in the mirror. His momentary admiration borders on narcissism but he suddenly leaks a little smile, adjusts his lopsided necktie and tells himself, ‘One day I will rise…I will break away and do my own thing…The world hasn’t seen the best of me…I’m the man’. He rolls up his sleeves then leaves the restroom. He walks back to his table with his head held high with an air of confidence…in his sparkling white (but slightly wrinkled) custom-fitted T.M. Lewin. He looks good so he feels good. He is ready to face the day’s challenges and slave put in some overtime to get back into his master’s good book where the latter was once impressed by the T.M. Lewin look…

How to make a Chapman drink

For as long as I can remember there has been this fascination with the large red cocktail more commonly pronounced by the average Nigerian as ‘Shapman’. It has become synonymous with the popular orders made at our local Chinese restaurants, Recreational Clubs and more recently, weddings (though our wedding planners are notorious for being extremely selective with Chapman distribution – I‘ve never been offered any to date). Its origin is arguably in Nigeria but no one knows for sure. It isn’t necessarily expensive to buy (between N300 and N1000, i.e. $6 max.) nor is it difficult to make. But I think I know why there’s such a fuss over this bitter-sweet refreshment – it just tastes so damn good!

Today I’m running a small Chapman factory in my apartment (okay, not really but I do make them rather frequently) and I want to share the recipe for you to enjoy. Learn how to make Chapman is 6 easy steps!:

CHAPMAN RECIPE FOR 1 PERSON

  1. Get a large tumbler/glass mug (necessary if you want to make your Chapman-experience last a bit)
  2. Fill the glass halfway with ice cubes
  3. Pour a capful of Grenadine or any blackcurrant cordial into the glass (for that red glow)
  4. Pour in 2shots of Bitters – Any bitters you can find but you can also use Campari (In Lagos, Angostura Bitters is available at Goodies for N3,200).
  5. Pour in equal amounts of…believe it or not…Fanta and Sprite then mix it up
  6. Throw in a slice of lemon, garnish with a cucumber slice and dip-in a bendy straw
  7. Sip slowly and try not to hum too much as your taste-buds go into a frenzy.
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Well there you have it. Simple, isn’t it? So the next time you’re sitting by your computer and one of your (anti-social) friends sends you a mouth-watering cocktail…via Facebook, make a Chapman to quench that insatiable thirst your ‘friend‘ created (remember to do point 7 ^^)…and then proceed to delete that friend from your Friend list (optional).

CHAPMAN RECIPE FOR 100 people

You’d need the following (if you are serving in small plastic cups):

– 1.5 litres of Ribena/Blacurrant cordial/Grenadine (about 1 big table spoon poured at the base of each cup)
– 50 cans of Sprite (half of each can poured into a cup)
– 50 cans of Fanta (half of each can poured into a cup)
– 10 medium lemons (each sliced in 10, making 100 slices)
– 10 medium cucumbers (each sliced into 20 and served two pieces per cup)
– 4 bottles of Alomo bitters or 3 bottles of Angosturra bitters (a capful poured into each cup)
– Probably 500 ice cubes equivalent (cheaper if you have ice trays at home. 5 cubes per cup)
– 100 bendy straws.
– Mixers (long plastic stirrers) are optional as you can use the straws to mix the drinks

N.B – If you use large mugs instead of plastic cups then use 100 cans of Sprite and 100 cans of Fanta (1 can of Sprite and Fanta per mug). Everything else remains the same.

Four Weddings and a Refusal

At most wedding ceremonies I’ve attended in Lagos I was a mere spectator; marveling at such things as the reprimand of poorly clad bridesmaids by the priest, the sometimes risqué shenanigans of the MC or the conversion of the dance area to a bureau de change for showering the newly weds with. But back in London I got my first taste of participation when I was asked by my good friend (and university classmate) to be his Best Man.
Wedding 1: Role – Best Man (Novice)

  • I substituted the groom’s shadow for the duration of the wedding ceremony
  • I was entrusted with wedding bands which I had no choice of forgetting…or else
  • I served as an eye-witness and co-signatory on the marriage certificate
  • I had to give a (memorable) toast at the reception without shooting myself in the foot

Wedding 2: Role – Best Man (Fairly experienced)

  • I was approached by a colleague at work whom I knew fairly little about
  • My selection was based on: looks, availability, and capacity to afford a new suit
  • I was armed with handkerchiefs to wipe the sweat off the groom’s face
  • I had to pick all the cash thrown at the dancing newly weds for about an hour or so
  • I had to give a best man speech…about a guy whom I knew fairly little about

Wedding 3: Role – MC and Groom’s man (Experienced)

  • I was the impromptu MC at my younger sister’s traditional wedding ceremony
  • I helped usher different veiled women who came to deceive the groom but failed
  • Some months later I was a groom’s man at the follow-up white wedding
  • I bought yet another custom suit
  • As for the entertainment, let’s just say Michael Jackson would have been proud!

Wedding 4: Role – Best Man (Veteran)

  • I had to purchase a plane ticket, charter a taxi which drove me over 6 hours to Oz
  • I bought yet another custom suit and a pair of shoes.
  • Resumed cash collection duties and exchanging small denominations for the large
  • I gave the proverbial toast…to an audience unwilling to raise their glasses *hmm…*

And now for the grand finale – who got a refusal at the fifth wedding; the bride or the groom?

The answer is BOTH. It was I who categorically refused to be their best man just so I don’t I become the butt of some MC’s joke (e.g. ‘Wait a minute, weren’t you the best man at the last wedding I performed at?’). I thought to myself, ‘The next wedding I get actively involved in will be my own so help me God.’

Four years down the line this became my reality! My Crazy Nigerian wedding – that’s a post for another day 🙂

Image credits: Partycity.com

The Set Up of All Set ups

In recent weekends my wife and I have been getting our fix (or should I say ‘flix’) by way of series and movie binging. Thanks to Netflix we have more affordable variety compared to Cable TV; currently useful for only reporting new Covid cases and Khloe Kardashian’s latest meltdown. We’ve so far binged on Ozark, Prison Break and now we’re on Breaking Bad Season 4 (no spoilers in the comment section please). When it comes to movies though we sometimes want to give Nigerian talent a chance. On one of such occasions we decided to watch a Nigerian movie titled ‘The Set Up’. This movie sucked more than a 6-month old baby from a bulimic mother.

Before watching a movie my wife and I do this thing. Everybody has a ‘thing’ like watching movies with subtitles.  But our thing is to watch the first ten minutes and resist pressing the Exit button – once that time has lapsed then it’s more than likely that we would watch the rest of the movie. Sadly this movie did not make the cut after the eighth minute and here’s why.

To begin with the movie opened with three baseless flashbacks back to back spanning from the pre-teen, teenage to adolescent years of the two female childhood friends the story is based on. Fast forward to present day and you can perceive they live a criminal life once law enforcement agents storm their apartment. Just before they scram they get a visit from a recruiter who is need of their skills. All this while I contemplated wedging matchsticks under my eyelids to stay awake. The dialogue was the stuff of bedtime stories; yawn-worthy.

There were rushed scenes of the girls getting trained and executing scores with zero dialogue. I was disappointed at the missed opportunity for character development. I was not attached to a single character and couldn’t care less if any or all of them fell into an abyss. I wasn’t glued or caring to know where this story was going. I was contemplating my existence and wondering when last I called my parents.

Hopefully others who watched it got some entertainment. However, my wife and I have seen better Nigerian movies so this movie lived up to its title – we felt set up.

TCN rating – 2/10

Staying At Home: Side effects

Staying at home side effectsIt’s been 4 weeks since I’ve been staying at home and it’s been a bittersweet experience. Let’s start with my appearance. I look like the result of a Rogaine experiment gone wrong. My abstinence from shaving has given my scalp false hope of a full crown. On the contrary my facial hair is going haywire. With my moustache hell-bent on dating my teeth and my sideburns trespassing into my ear holes.

Per adventure I decide to dust my hair clipper or avoid every mirror in my home, staying at home still has some negative side effects. Missing going out for social gatherings. I want to meet up with my coworkers, friends and family members and share a real drink with them – virtual doesn’t quite work for me. I long for church and partaking in holy communion. I yearn to visit a restaurant with my wife and be served something we cannot pronounce or prepare at home. I want to turn up at a nightclub and dance near 6ft loudspeakers under rotating disco lights with a long island tea in one hand.

Until then I’m learning to appreciate the upside of staying at home. I have more control over my day. There’s time to exercise, meditate and plan my activities. I get to spend quality time with my family. My baby daughter and I are having longer and more serious conversations. I’m getting more office work done though I had to convert my wife’s closet room into my office and conference call room. I get better rest as I don’t have to be up early in the morning to beat rush hour. I’ve saved a total of 2-3 hours being off the road. not to mention the fuel and car maintenance costs.

But I can’t help but think, ‘Am I ready to embrace the new normal?’ I am not exactly planning to throw caution to the wind when the lockdown order is eventually lifted. I’m going to be armed with my face mask and sanitizer. And I’m ready to engage in evasive manoeuvres when confronted with people who spit when they talk 😀

Dodging bullets in The Matrix