Monday, 28 May 2012

How do they do it?

One of my morning rituals is surfing the internet for news; both local and foreign entertainment news. What I kept coming across on the net today was not really encouraging. From one break up to another, I just kept on reading. The scary thing was these relationships were ended after so many years together.

The first I read about was that of Mark Feehily, group member of the Westlife boy band who broke up with his fiance of seven years. Yes he was engaged to a man, kevin Macdaid but what they had was real. I mean seven years? Next was the famous Chuck Norris who divorced his first wife after thirty years of marriage and went ahead to marry another wife whom he also had kids with but the odd thing about Norris is that he says he is an ardent christian but then he also has kids from extra marital affairs.

I stumbled on a picture of Beyonce with her mother, then I remembered Tina knowles also got divorced after twenty nine good years of marriage with two beautiful amazing talented daughters. Though the younger daughter (Solange) is a divorcee, the elder daughter (Beyonce) seems to be getting it right and showing a good example to young ladies out there.

She dated Jay z for six years before getting married to him four years ago, also Jay Z is her first and only boyfriend. I am seriously rooting for them to go all they way and never divorce, at least they still give people hope for a successful marriage, same with Will Smith and Jada Pinketh.

Well so was Bobby Brown and the late Whitney Houston, though they finally divorced after eleven years. Then before their divorce, they were always referred to whenever one was looking for a perfect example of enduring love but I guess love just wasn't enough.

Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise; they got divorced after ten years of marriage and the strange thing about their case is they didn't have a child though Nicole had a miscarriage around the period of their divorce. They both moved on and married different people with whom they both have biological kids with. Shakira, she broke up with her long term boyfriend of eleven years and started dating a younger footballer. Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony got divorced after seven years, Matthew Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon divorced after seven years of marriage.

There is a long list of people who have dated or gotten divorced after spending so much time to build a life together.
You may say this is an American problem but truly it's not. I just stumbled into another Nigerian break up story after ten years of dating. Uche Jumbo, A list actress and footballer, Ike Uche. Another is the famous who wants to be a millionaire presenter, Frank Edoho who divorced his wife Katherine after ten years of marriage. Still the list of Nigerian couples who have such history is endless.

You may say it's a celebrity thing but look around you, amongst your classmates, co workers, colleagues, its happening. I remember a couple who dated throughout our university days but today they have broken up. Even amongst our parents, friends and relatives we see such happening. Once in a while I read about marriages dissolved by Nigerian courts in national newspapers, well established marriages breaking up.

It's scary when I hear about such break ups and divorce. I mean its like spending so much energy, time and resources to build a castle for years only to watch it crumble before your very eyes one day. I agree that no relationship is perfect. We are humans and we differ. Once in a while we are bound to have differences and quarrels, but seriosusly after being together for over five years you would think one should have understood the other and known the best way of settling issues.

So much time and resources, effort, compromise, pain and emotional will is put in to build a life with someone. You people have gone so far, invested so much then suddenly after all these years its over? How? Why? I know people change but how much change could occur? I want to believe relationships are about growing up together. After spenidng certain years together the rate of a break up I think would be minimised after all you've gone through the initial hurdles of making a fresh realtionship work.

What happens to the memories made? The secrets shared? Its crazy thinking about it. One of the main reasons marriages hit the rocks is childlesness but amongst the broken marriages after many years you still see those with children.

When it comes to dating for many years, the reason of we are on different paths or we are not compatible can't really spring up here. What were they doing all this while? Where they blind or sleep walking all these years that it's now they realise they are not compatible? Or could it be that one was really believing they had a future together while waiting and hoping some day the other would feel same? Could it be that one was leading the other one giving false hope of a future meanwhile he or she was just having fun all the while?

I once parted ways with a long time best friend of about two and a half years, that's nothing to be compared with long lived relationships or marriages, still I know the hurt and pain I felt. I knew how hard it was leaving the life I had nutured with that my friend behind. It felt like two and a half years of my life just went down the drain. In fact I can't explain it, but I know it's been hard for me to build that kind of friendship with anyone again.

Shit happens I agree, but then certain thing are really not just supposed to be. It's scary thinking of starting afresh with another person after giving so much of you. It's like letting a part of you go. You'll definitely feel lost for a while. A part of you definitely would be lost and you'll forever carry with you imprint of the other person. I may not be able to ever comprehend why such long term relationships come to an end or understand the gravity of probelms faced that could cause such separation, maybe a cheating partner or addictions or absusive spouse, but I know for sure I don't want to ever expereience it.

Seriously, how do they do it? How do they survive it? How do they start afresh and build a new life with another like what they once had never existed? How can one recover from such wasted years? I wonder if I could ever survive such because when I love, I love to the fullest without holding back. Yes time heals but time doesn't erase memories of a life once shared.

Whatever happened to 'for better for worse, for richer for poor, in health and in sickness, till death do us part'?

Friday, 25 May 2012


It was Sunday school morning. The topic was preparing for marriage. Our youth teacher threw a question to the class – “if the day before your wedding you realize you and your partner are no longer compatible, what would you do?”

My answer was short and simple. “I’ll call off the wedding.”

She nodded in agreement. “In such a situation, let’s say out of ten couples, how many of them do you think would choose to do that?”

“One or two,” I replied.

‘Or none at all” she added.

Truth is, that’s the right thing to do. Yes, I know, easier said than done. I guess it all boils down to the same attitude of thinking short term and thinking only of the immediate consequences most people have when planning and making life choices. I personally don’t make important decisions without thinking critically about its long term effect.

There are so many reasons why one may have to call of his or her wedding. We’ve heard stories, and would still hear more stories about weddings being called off or tales about people being stood up at the altar. It could be as a result of a recent discovery about your intending spouse just few days to the wedding. You find yourself torn between a hard place and a rock.

You think of the shame you’ll have to bear if you call off the wedding, the invitations already sent out, the money, time and resources spent planning and preparing for the wedding. In my opinion, I don’t think all these are anything to be compared with what you’ll have to live with for the rest of your life. To me marriage is one big risk especially for those of us who don’t believe in divorce.

Are you ready to endure pain and sadness for the rest of your life instead of bearing few months of shame, hurt, embarrassment and a broken heart? Time would heal you and you’ll recover the resources wasted. But if you go through with the wedding, you might never recover. In fact if a miracle doesn’t happen to change the situation, you just might remain bitter and frustrated throughout that marriage which might eventually crash.

The chances of extra marital affairs become even higher.
Having to live in the same house each day with someone you are bitter at really isn’t a life I wish for anyone.

It could be that you discovered your partner has a child already but kept it from you only to come clean days to the wedding or you found out somehow, or he/she is impotent, has a terminal disease, was once married, has hidden traits you never really noticed or it could be anything very serious enough to place doubts in your heart. Depending on different persons, these and other situations could easily be over looked and forgiven while for others it’s enough to cast serious doubt.

Naturally, I being very critical of people and a bit paranoid would believe I have been trapped into the wedding. If it’s something I know I can’t live with or tolerate, that wedding is off. Yes, I would forgive but I wouldn’t make the mistake of putting myself in bondage when I have a good chance of escaping it before I say I do. I love my home peaceful and easy.

Well, what do I know? I am but just a kid… (Hoping never to find myself in such situation)

Monday, 14 May 2012


I really don’t know how to start this note. I have a lot of issues to thrash out concerning our society’s predisposition towards blackberry smart phones. By society, I mean Nigerians, mostly the youths (teenagers and young adults).

I was in a gathering this week and the topic on ground was peer pressure. While trying to motivate various persons to come out and speak on it, the moderator gave an example of four female friends who all had blackberry phones with the exception of one. One day, an important information was passed. The three blackberry users pinged themselves and disseminated the information amongst themselves leaving the fourth girl out. He went further to ask ‘wouldn’t the fourth girl be pressurized to get a blackberry by any means?’

At first he was trying to create the notion that people are mostly influenced by what they see their friends do and what their friends have. I totally agree that peer pressure can have such effect. I was glad when each speaker kept on reiterating that peer pressure has both positive and negative influence. Concerning the blackberry example, I believe that situation is enough reason for her to desire getting a blackberry phone; else other vital information would keep eluding her. The main issue should be why is she getting it and through what means.

Picture this all too familiar scenario; you are in a public function. Your phone beeps. You reach into your pocket to get it in order to check your alert. The person around you doesn’t have a blackberry. The minute you bring yours out, he becomes uneasy. Next thing he is thinking is you are just showing off. It happens thanks to our messed up society, low mentality and most especially inferiority complex.

Why is it that when someone starts stepping up, people start saying the person is showing off and trying to feel larger than life? Seriously, could people feel anymore inferior? People go about living their lives and being themselves, then some others start hating because they let themselves be intimidated. Unfortunately, they become blinded by jealousy they can’t reason properly to see the advantage in technology advancement and why they too should endeavor to improve/upgrade themselves. Fine they may not have the immediate means, but there is something called saving. There is also scale of preference. It may not be the most pressing issue for you now but that doesn’t mean if another person gets it they are being wasteful and foolish. Just as our faces are different, so also are our needs different.

Placing so much importance to a blackberry above pressing and more important needs that have to be met just because others around you have one is sheer indiscipline and a negative influence of peer pressure. Lying or stealing to get it is just as bad. Also, buying it not because you know its functions, but just because everyone is buying it, well that’s just dumb!

Two reasons I feel people hate on blackberry are – out of ignorance and inferiority complex. I was a blackberry basher out of ignorance. I had my Nokia N72 and Nokia N97. What drove me crazy was the fact that I had 32 GB internal memory to play with on my Nokia N97. That’s something no blackberry phone can offer, at least for now. I had whatsapp, I could browse the internet through monthly data mobile plan and whenever I needed to download stuff or do other serious ish I had my Starcomms modem and my laptop. What more did I need? Pinging? Nah!
I was already on enough social networks. That was before I stopped chatting away my productive time.

I was ignorant of the many advantages a blackberry had to offer me which my Nokia couldn’t. Each phone has its own advantages and disadvantages. I browsed the internet one day to know what was so special about the blackberry. It was then I realized how much I had missed. Try opening an email attachment on your Nokia phone or try sending numerous scanned documents from a cafĂ© to your mail box when you could just snap them and send them straight up to you mail at no extra costs. Or try downloading so much or even browsing heavy pictured sites with your limited mobile data plan, then you’ll appreciate what I am talking about.

These and more I now enjoy on my blackberry. I get to download a lot of things without the fear that my megabyte would get exhausted, I can search for information straightaway anytime, anywhere when there’s an argument on ground or I hear a new term I need to understand better. I’m a music junkie. Now I can easily stream and download songs on the go. There’s no more stress of carrying my laptop around everywhere I go. It’s so easy maintaining my blog now. So much money I have could have saved certain months if had a blackberry. I can’t remember when last I subscribed on my Starcomms modem. Imagine paying N6, 500 every month when I could have had it all just for N1, 500!

Still the blackberry has its own flaws like low battery life but I’ll still say it’s one of the best things in the mobile world. I can’t imagine using an i-phone. It’s way too selfish. It doesn’t even have a Bluetooth device! Still it all depends on personal preference.

It took me months before I got mine. I knew the advantages but I just had cold feet. I needed a motivating force plus I really didn’t have the money to afford the exact model I wanted at the time. All my friends were getting theirs; slowly I was losing my contacts. I knew I had to upgrade lest I’d be left behind. This leads me to the issue of upgrading. I knew I had to upgrade but I had my heart fixed on getting a very good model. So I waited patiently till I had enough money to get what I knew was good for me.

People keep asking must you do what others are doing. Valid question I agree but not in all situations I must add. If I may ask, why are they wearing the latest clothing everyone is wearing? Why don’t they continue wearing those old school attires? Let’s see if they’ll fit into the society. Man is a social being, he wants to fit in and fell accepted in order to function properly.

To the blackberry haters, why aren’t you using your Nokia 3310 anymore? Oh, you want to snap pictures with your phone and listen to songs on your phone and also access the internet on your phone. Why stop there when you can advance to better phones that would give you even much more.

Just because some lot in the society have decided to abuse the blackberry and turn it into something that boosts their ego doesn’t mean you should be blind to its advantages or the fact it has a lot to offer you. That people abuse a thing doesn’t make it bad. You can cause a change amongst your friends and educate them about its right use. Pinging away your productive time? Is that why you bought it? You seriously need to set your priorities straight.

Flashy cars? If you have the means I don’t see why you shouldn’t upgrade your car to the latest model which I bet would be more comfortable and would even conserve fuel better. Remember the period asbestos roofing came on board and how people started changing their zinc roofing to asbestos. Or is it the sliding windows era? That’s upgrading not I’m doing it because my neighbour is doing it. You see someone doing something new and he’s getting positive results, ask yourself what are the advantages and how it can help better you. Ask yourself do I really need it? Would it benefit me better than what I have on ground? Do I have the means to upgrade immediately? Do I need to save for it? Do I have other pressing needs I need to attend to first? Don’t start feeling inferior and intimidated. Next you start hating and you become blinded to its advantages, limiting your advancement. We should know ourselves first and know what we really need.

The blackberry porsche is an upgrade, though I haven’t yet looked up its features I know it’s going to be far better than what I have now but its way above my means now. So getting it isn’t really on my mind now. Maybe later when I can comfortably afford it, that’s if a better model isn’t out by then. The thing is, I am contended with what I have now and I am not killing myself to get a porsche. If you can comfortably afford it that is after settling other more important needs, what are you waiting for?

When it comes to fashion, you really have to know what’s in vogue and acceptable. What matters is the size of your purse and what fits you. Don’t go wearing suspenders when no one else is all because you don’t want to follow the trend. You’ll just end up being a laughing stock.

Maybe when no one invites you for functions or your name just keeps getting missing from the guest list; you’ll realize that appearance really matters a lot.
Change they say is constant. We live, we grow. Our society develops and advances. We too must advance to function properly. Keep up with the change or be left behind. Wisdom is the principal thing.