Saturday, 30 January 2016

REFLECTIONS ON 2015...DECISIONS FOR 2016 and other random stuff...

I recently received a text message from a colleague I once thought we'd be very good friends. We all have flaws and friendship is all about accepting each other’s flaws but then, don’t mistake people’s shitty ways they are obviously making no effort in changing for flaws.

Old annoying shit just kept repeating itself. After his last episode in December, I told myself it ends in 2015. I saw the message, it was about us drifting apart and how he was missing our paddy goons ways. I smiled. The drift was actually me, all on purpose.

Someone posted this online - 2015 taught me we outgrow friends and that's okay.

I did some thinking through 2015. Initially when I got transferred to Benin, most of my colleagues here were married. Basically it was just me to chill with myself on weekends. Early 2015 new guys were employed, single young dudes.

I thought, maybe now I’ll have a social life. I hung out with them several times at bars, lounges and clubs (even though I said I'd never follow them again as bars and clubs were not my scene). But then, it was as if I was always hoping the next visit would be better. I was expecting something that never came. Each hang out just seemed full of idleness and left me feeling shallow and empty. Wasted nights I could have spent having a nice sleep. I mean, there's nothing like too much sleep.

Each week you'd see them with different girls, jumping clubs by 1am, 2am...what kinda lifestyle is that? I'd just stay watching them, wondering what fun they were possibly getting. I'd try to reason with them once in a while but obviously it's who they have been since their university days.

The last incident was when some girls used one of the guys as 'cab driver'. Dude went to pick the chick and her friends from her house, drove them to a lounge where one of the girls was having a birthday hangout. The girls were just having random conversations ignoring him (not me! cuts I first nor get their time) and of 'cus there'd always be a Beyonce amongst them who was the ring leader.

We got there and they so distracted him, he actually left his car on with the keys in the ignition. After a while the security came to alert him. That’s how they would have stolen his brand new car all just because he wanted to score. From there he drove us to a club where they did some drinking and dancing. I just sat at one corner observing. Before I knew what was up, I was asleep. My colleague came to wake me, I was like dude take me home o. The girls eventually dumped him for other guys they met at the club. For the next two weeks I kept calling him cab man.

That's one thing that's sure going to die with 2015 - Idle hangouts with no meaningful conversations.

I posted this on IG, (well that was before I deactivated my account. The app drinks data like cray, got me subscribing for data three times a month) - To do the things I love; listen to music, write, read novels, watch movies, eat junk and cuddle... to enjoy life without too much effort.

Basically that’s me, well you can add to have meaningful deep conversations probably best when it's one on one and I cherish my quiet company.

Thinking back, I realize that what made me hangout with those guys was mostly due to pressure from people at work who kept teasing me that I didn't have a social life. I'm not the type to be affected by such pressure, really wonder why I gave in. *sigh

This post I saw on twitter helped me get back to me -

Be an individual and stop seeking validation from others that don't even know themselves.

The hard truth is; people are shit. I have never really been a people person. Honestly, I don't like humans. We know how to give advice and tell people how well their lives should be lived but we are so clueless about ours. In truth, most of the people who give advice most times are envious of the freedom other people have to live as they choose. Their advice isn't 'cus they genuinely care. They just want to infect others with their negative energy.

I'm not advocating that those engaged in self destructing habits shouldn't be cautioned. People just tend to not know how to mind their business. Be who you are and the world would adjust. You owe no one explanation for how you live your life or the choices you make neither do you need their approval (well, as far as your choices are not hurting anyone or making life horrible for others).

Watching suits makes my heart bleed. The way Lewis Litt keeps living his life seeking for Jessica and Harvey's pathetic. Sad thing is that's actually how lots of people live their lives. Just sad.

This 2016, I think I’ll go back to 2014, when I didn't make effort in keeping in touch or fighting for any friendship. But this time I won't go all the way. Keeping in touch hasn't really been my strong suit but I'd try to keep in touch with a few friends that have been constant. For the others, who wants to stay would and well, those who fall off...never mind.

Fewer people around, less bullshit to deal with.

Better to be alone than be around people who don't get you and don't try to understand you either but make your life miserable with their several unsolicited advice on how you should live your life while trying to turn you into their own perfect idea. Crazy thing is, it's the same persons that will preach be yourself but when you try to actually do you, they'll judge you from UNIBEN main gate to Capitol!.

Something happened recently, my paddy did something that made me question his loyalty and I really didn't feel safe having him on my blackberry messenger (bbm) anymore. Bbm to me is an extension of myself. A safe haven where I lose control and just let out my crazy. So I really screen the people I have there. Just a select few who know the real me and won't have weird opinions or come preaching or trying to fix me because they get I'm just letting out stuff.

I removed him since I couldn't trust him anymore. I called the next day to explain why I did what I did, though the previous day when he did what he did I told him via chat I am now questioning his intentions. During the course of the phone call, he said he had updated I deleted him and that I had lots of enemies and they all were saying crap...well to be honest these are people who were more or less monitoring spirits on my bbm, spying on updates so they can go about making idle rumours et all. Same people that made me delete my bbm after making my bbm feel like a crowded house.

Then on Sunday 17, I came across Michael Ogah's Facebook post where he expressed just how I felt. I took away these four points (I wish those people would read this and just get me once and for all) -

- The older I get, the smaller my circle becomes, and it's best; because I've got dreams to pursue, and so have you; so let's not waste each other's time-- the lesser the distraction, the better for the both of us.

- If you can't understand, by now, the kind of person I am, having known me for more than a year: how I may not call you for months, or years; but doesn't mean I deleted your number or started holding a grudge-- there were just many things happening in my life at the time, but never once did I forget you, I just had to deal with these things

- I get it, friends make the world go round, and loneliness can be a disease, but some of us are better without it. Some of us ACTUALLY enjoy our own company and misery

- As for those friends who still hold on to hurt, I never left, I'm still here, waiting for the day you realize I never left, I was just too busy being happy without your negative energy

Valentine used to be so hard on me, like he was trying to make me conform into a socially acceptable human. He meant good and I knew it. I never really held it against him, though sometimes it was quite tiring. I just wished he’d get me. I know I’m weird and all that, but I feel perfectly okay. This is me, accept me for me or well, you could find your way and leave me in peace and not in pieces.

Recently, I sent him this excerpt from one of my previous blog posts -

"I'm complicated and I have different sides depending on my mood. The thing about us humans is we have this natural instinct to judge people forgetting our own sins and flaws. I'm paranoid and insecure. I hate the feeling like people are watching me. Sometimes I just start accepting request then maybe it gets to 40 contacts, I start feeling suffocated, like my life is crowded.

One thing I learnt from my University days is people are a big problem in life with their numerous opinions about how well you should live your live. It's best you just have a few around you. The less persons around you, the less bullshit you have to deal with. Trust me on that."

That was a turning point in our friendship of our over 8years. After reading he replied with - I'm sorry I've contributed several times to your 'suffocation' with my opinions about how you should live your life. I promise to try to be more understanding/accommodating in the future.

This 2016 I hope to have just those who get me, those who matter and those I truly care about close to me. There’s room for meeting new people but I’m not so keen on it. Then there are penpals I’d like to finally meet in person, someone like Asiwa whom I have known for years but haven't met yet. I missed the opportunity of finally meeting when I was on vacation last year. 
That's one cool person who got me back then when I was going through some dark shit and posting suicidal updates on facebook. He was one person who knew where I was coming from, he knew I wasn't going to do it but I just needed to channel all the pain into dark posts for release. It felt good knowing at least one person got me out of all the seas of many admonitions I got from friends, all trying to provide advice I sincerely didn't need, neither did it help me get any better.
Out of the blues someone sent me a message about my dark posts and that's how we got chatting and it was of great help just having someone I could relate with.

One day, mid-December, I was listening to One Republic's burning bridges and the Lyrics got to me. I get its okay to burn bridges with some people but I realized trying to do so with certain persons would just be us putting ourselves through torture. I'm all for not speaking with a cheating ex but then I think after a while, after healing has taking place and all...when everyone has moved on and learnt their lessons there's still room for friendship.

I thought to myself it had been a year since the hurtful break up, I was hurt yea, but I had moved on and was missing my friend. I reasoned, I was in constant communication with other exes from way back, why is this one different? Why was I putting myself through torture? Maybe it was 'cus it was the most recent but being true to myself, I was suffering more trying to burn the bridge. I had to reach out, only then did I find peace and the friendship is back to normal …well after the initial weirdness of course.

I'm still surrounded by married women at work eh! Even the new staff in wapic is married. That's how I was telling Iyen that the babes set well, only for Iyen to inform that the lady is married. I was like huh? Married ke? Iyen said when next she passes I should take note of her ring finger. *sigh.

Same thing that happened last two years, happened again. Wedding band I never saw appeared by force! Now the first place I look at when I meet a lady for the first time is her wedding finger, enough of all this wasted admiration.

That’s how I used this really cute picture of my colleague and I as whatsapp profile picture. People were admiring and commenting on the picture. She fell ill three Fridays ago and we had to rush her to the hospital. In the process I had to save her hubby's phone number and he got my number also since we were communicating. I jeje quickly removed the picture o, before her hubby saw it. Nor be me wan scatter person marriage ni.

For now (maybe later in the year it would change), I’m not looking for love or a relationship. I just need good company; someone with whom I can get different types of cake from cake lounge, drive to a field and just sample songs, have great conversations about music and life in general, have a deep connection and well, basically just have a nice time bonding.

Cheers to 2016! Here’s wishing all my readers a blissful year ahead…

Tuesday, 19 January 2016


Disclaimer: I’m not a fan of rap/hip hop. Kindly note that the lack of Kendrick Lamar’s critically acclaimed album in this post doesn’t mean I’m saying it wasn’t a good album. I just I don’t do rap. Though I enjoy one or two rap/hip hop songs (e.g drip drop from empire), but generally that genre just doesn’t work for me.

I want to start this post by appreciating my music buddies...Aweezy, Lynda, Avidole, Melvin, Ibukun and Efe Cruz. We had some really nice music conversations the past year and shared songs we discovered both recently released songs and old ones. I still remember long chats and conversations, purely about music had with some of them and they were just so fulfilling, amazing conversations….music is life.

I've realized that like art in general, songs written from pain are the most beautiful. Sad songs sound a million times better when played at night, in the dark. The quietness, minimal distractions from the environment, when you are most relaxed and vulnerable emotionally, each word hits home as the song plays on.

You hear the strings and chords clearly. Your defenses breaks down with each note as the song takes you down memory lane to one or two life experiences. It shatters you all over again, bringing the pain to life once more. You re-live the hurt and the best part is, the healing the song brings, making you feel alive. Reminiscing makes you know that you being where you are now means you survived whatever it was, heartbreak, loss or just anything.

"Albums, you remember those? Albums still matter. Like books and black lives, Albums still matter, tonight and always." - Prince's speech when he came up to present the award for album of the year at the 57th Grammy Awards.

2015 was a great year music wise, with some really good albums and of course, my music buddies and myself discovering artists especially relatively unknown indie rock artists.  I've always stated I’m an album person. Most of these artists don't release the best songs as singles from what I have noticed. In addition, listening to the entire album gives you understanding of where the artists is singing from. The experiences and all that led to the creation of the body of art work.

Albums releaszed in 2015 I played a lot the past year include - Kelly Clarkson's Piece by Piece, Mikky Ekko’s Time, Demi Lovato’s Confident, Adele's 25, One Direction's Made in the A.M and Coldplay's A head full of dreams. That Coldplay's album saw me through the holidays. This is second Coldplay’s album I like all the songs, the first was Ghost Stories. Personally, Ghost stories is still my favorite Coldplay album of all time but of course, their old songs - The scientist, Fix you, Speed of sound, In my place, Viva la vida, and Clocks would always forever occupy a special place in my heart.

There were also cool songs I got from movies and series I saw last year, though some of the songs are old -

-       Hard to find by The national (Suits),
-       Say anything by Ashley Nite (the vampire diaries),
-       I think I’m in love again by Kat Dahlia (Grey's anatomy),
-       All of the stars by Ed Sheeran (The fault in our stars)
-       Oceans (where my feet may fail) by Hillsong (Captive trailer)
-       Don't dream it's over by Crowded house (The Perks of being a Wallflower)
-       Conqueror by Jussie Smollett & Estelle (Empire)
-       I'm not ok by Trent Dabbs (Mistresses)
-       Writings on the wall by Sam smith (Spectre)
-       Earned it by The Weekend/Love you like you do by Ellie Goulding (50 shades of grey)
-       Powerful by Jussie Smollett and Alicia keys (Empire)
-       See you again by Wiz Khalifa ft Charlie Puth (Furious 7) and so many others...

The beginning of the year was sort of slow ‘musically’ but then towards the end of the year, tight albums started dropping. I thought Rihanna's Anti album would be one of those released but seems the babe is scared. Not with the way everyone is focused on hit singles and chart dominance these days. It's sad.

That's one thing killing music now. I miss the old Rihanna who sang what she wanted to sing and dropped albums every year not caring about the charts. It's sad when an artist loses their freedom and allows the charts prevent them from doing what they truly love. That's what I love about Coldplay's latest album. They changed their sound and did something different - an album full of different genres.

Then Taylor Swift going the way of pop in 2014 with ‘1989’, and making a really good pop album! At first when she announced she was going to do a pop album, I was like nooooo! But then 1989 turned out to be one of her best albums.

That’s something I hope Adele does with her next album. Enough of the same sound. She was too safe on 25, I mean, those songs could easily fit into 21 album. I need something different, something fresh and new from her. Justin Bieber did good on Purpose album though I like probably just about half of the songs - Mark my words, Sorry, The feeling, Purpose, What do you mean, Love yourself, Company, Life is worth living, Hit the ground, All in it and We are. For a 20 track album I thinks that's really something. Initially I didn’t feel the album, but after several listens it began to grow on me.

Imagine Dragon's Smokes + Mirrors has started growing on me also. Though their first album (Night visions) was an instant hit with me, this one kinda took a while to sink in but I’m feeling the songs now. Songs like I bet my life, The fall, Shots, Smokes & Mirrors, Second chances  are kinda making me want to give the album another chance. (Notice my rhymes there? *wink)

Demi Lovato reaffirmed her place in my heart with Confident album! Though she really made me feel like she had given in and sold out to the stereotype pop songs that are more radio friendly seeing those songs came first on the album, but after the first few tracks the true picture of the album began to show. She hadn't betrayed what she's best known for - ballads which showcase her very strong vocals. Reminds me of Beyonce 4 album. Initially, I heard songs like Run the world, End of time and Countdown, then I thought to myself this is going to be a pop album, only for the album to finally get released and discovered it was one hell of a proper R&B album.

Remember that guy Rihanna featured on Stay? Mikky Ekko. Dude finally released his album early in the year. You should hear tracks like Time, Burning doves and my favourite - Comatose! The album didn't disappoint. Though I don't know why he didn't include Feels like the end in the album. I mean, he included old songs he had released before (Smile and Pull me down). I'm biased about Feels like the end ‘cus it was the soundtrack played in the Grey's anatomy episode Mcsteamy was on life support and about to die. The song was just the perfect song for that heart wrenching scene.

Errm...Hillary Duff tried to break into the music scene again. I really loved her Metamorphosis album back then. This her latest effort (I have even forgotten the title) was kinda lukewarm. Most of the songs are forgettable but one had some deep lines it definitely stock - you can't put your arms round a memory. The Song talked about long distance relationships ish. Title of the album is Breathe in. Breathe Out. The song I was referring to is titled Arms around a memory.

Adam Lambert released The Original high. He sort of changed his sound too. There was with less screaming this time around. I love Ghost town (especially retro sound at the staring part of the song), There I said it and Rumors. In my opinion, the best song happened to be an extra bonus track - These boys. It really got me wondering how artists choose their lead singles or decided the songs to make the final cut of an album. That's how Rihanna wasted a good song like Half of me as bonus track, same way Beyonce wasted Dance for you and Schooling life *sigh

I have been reading great reviews of Ellie Goulding's Delirium album. Songs from the album that have caught my ear are don't panic, Army, On my mind and Love me like you do. I haven't been able to listen to the full album at a stretch ‘cus her voice sounds like she sings via her nasal cavity and that's just too painful for me to song after song for an hour plus.
I still don't understand the hype over The Weekend's Beauty behind the madness album. Biko the album was kinda boring! Just a few songs like Earned it, Can't feel my face, Angel (my favourite) and two or three more tracks were really good.

David Cook, my guy! He released Digital vein. The album was okay but not as good as his previous albums but still it is something. Feel deep in love with Broken windows on first listen.

5 seconds of summer also released their second album. I really can't say which of their albums I prefer, though i'd say they are both decent albums with good songs on both. I particularly love Catch Fire and Broken Home from this new album. She’s so perfect and Amnesia were my favorites off of their previous album.

Albums released last year I haven't had the opportunity of getting and I feel would have good songs are Honeymoon by Lana Del Rey, Higher than here by James Morrison and Title by Meghan Tranor.

Downloading albums can be quite a risk though. Imagine using your data to download a full album only to discover the album is shit! The thing can pain! E.g – Morning Phase by Beck (I still don’t know how that won album of the year).

I discovered my wedding song! The one by Kodaline! The lyrics, the instruments, the sound!! Just so apt!

Kodaline is really cool. Songs like All I want, Lost, Better...the album was released early 2015. I have some of the songs and I plan on getting their two albums! They are that cool.

One major thing I love about Christmas is Christmas songs! I still haven't found a better Christmas album than Mariah Carey's own. But my favourite Christmas song changed last year. It used to be Hark the herald angels sing, but when I heard Kris Allen's cover of Mary, did you know? I was hooked!
I got to hear Pentatonix's version, I fell in love. The recent winner of the voice, Sam Jordan did a cover of it on the final show and he made it sound like angels were singing the song. Officially, Mary, did you know? is my fav Christmas song. I played it for my colleague and he made me put it on replay for over ten times.

One artist to look out for is Jordan Smith, boy, that guy's got mad talent! His rendition of Sia's Chandelier blew me away. Even O'nelly who is hard to please when it comes to covers of original songs hailed him and admitted he impressed him so much. Listening to Sia’s original version, you can hear the strain and effort when she hits the high notes, but here's a guy who just sang it effortlessly hitting all the high notes without any stress.

There were some really cool tracks I fell in love with over the course of the past year, though not all were released in 2015. Most of them I played over and over for day. I probably would need to download fresh copies cause I must have played the life out of the songs.

That reminds me, do songs have expiry date? Cus some people would be like, 'that song is old na'.

Me, I don't gerrit o, do songs have expiry date? #askingformypeaceofmind

Here’s a list of 50 songs out of the numerous ones I played over and over in 2015 -

  1. I'm not ok - Trent Dabbs
  2. Chasing cars - Snow Patrol
  3. Traveler's song (acoustic version) - Future of Forestry
  4. Everglow - Coldplay
  5. Mercy Mercy - Hillsong
  6. Organs - Of Monsters and men
  7. Army of one - Coldplay
  8. Withholding nothing – William Mcdowell
  9. Love yourself - Justin Bieber
  10. Oceans (where my feet my fail) - Hillsong
  11. Remedy - Adele
  12. One meant to be - 16 Frames
  13. This is amazing grace - Phil Wickham
  14. Shyer - London Grammar
  15. Hello - Adele
  16. All I am - Phil Wickham
  17. Alive - Sia
  18. Comatose - Mikky Ekko
  19. Run - Nicole Scherzinger
  20. Do we even matter - Loreen
  21. Feels like coming home - Jetta
  22. The one - Kodaline
  23. Running - Naughty boy ft Beyonce &
  24. Die with you - Beyonce
  25. This love - Taylor Swift
  26. Four five seconds - Rihanna ft Kanye West & Paul Mccartney
  27. Hard to find by The Nationals
  28. Say anything by Ashley Nite
  29. Better - Kodaline
  30. Promises - The Boxer Rebellion
  31. New York - The Boxer Rebellion
  32. You could be happy - Snow Patrol
  33. All I want - Kodaline
  34. Lost - Kris Allen
  35. Let it rain - Matt Kearney
  36. You belong with me - The Boxer Rebellion
  37. Lost - Kodaline
  38. Carry me - John Wilson
  39. Take your time - Sam Hunt
  40. Battle Scars - Guy Sebastian
  41. Hymn for the weekend - Coldplay ft Beyonce
  42. Burning doves - Mikky Ekko
  43. But you won't - David Cook
  44. Shatter me - Lindsey Stirling
  45. Orente - Adekunle Gold
  46. Duro timi - Yemi Alade
  47. The one who never comes - Asa
  48. Hotline bling - Drake
  49. Lost in the world – Kanye West ft Bon Iver
  50. Powerful – Jussie Smollett & Alicia Keys