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:
My recent ex-girlfriend – Looks innocent but is capable of something like this now that I think about it.
My neighbour – I told her off for shouting like she was the only one living in the compound going ‘MAAARIAAA!!!’ repeatedly
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!
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…
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…
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?…’
…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 🙂
Why 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 🙂
1.37pm – 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!”
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…
Women – 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 🙂
This 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… 🙁