Saturday, May 26, 2007

Fashion Unconscious (Part 1)

Me minus the smile

I hardly write anything personal about myself. Not surprising when I think about it as I like to keep my private affairs private. Whatev. Here's a post about me.

I just had the most hilarious/revealing phone call with a guy pal I knew when I was growing up. I don't quite know where to start the story. Starting from the phone conversation may be a little confusing for all ye folks so let me go back a little and give you a little background on my humble self.

I was the sort of child who grew up not wearing trousers. I was clueless fashion wise and I allowed my mom to buy my clothes even up to my University days. I scarcely remember buying anything for myself- even underwear. I really could not care less. My mum would travel to Dubai and sometimes Hong Kong (she bought clothes to retail) and would also get me stuff to wear for lectures. Not all my clothes, mind you, but an uncomfortable percentage way over 60. Try and imagine how I looked wearing mainly mum-approved clothing. To make it even clearer, my mum has only very few funky bones in her body.

For anyone that has followed my blog, you'll also know that I suffer for myopia so I have worn glasses for a long time. Not for me the nice, barely there glasses. They were almost always made of plastic ( I found that I reacted to metal) and at a time, they were red. I remember that pair. I think I was in my 3rd year. A boy in my faculty once told me to get rid of them (he thought he was helping me gain my fashion feet), but on discovering that they were Paloma Picasso, he said reluctantly “perhaps they are manageable". Till today, I do not know if they were the real deal or what I like to call "pirated of the original copy"

Are you forming a picture in your head, yet? Let's move to my walking. I have flat feet and I don't know if this is related, but I throw my feet carelessly when I walk. I could never have been accused of walking gracefully. That would have been a barefaced lie. When I walked, people could tell it was me from miles away. My walk was compounded by the fact that my posture was far from perfect. This already bad posture was made worse, when in a bid to redeem myself somewhat, I bought really small metal frames that I realize now are often used as reading glasses for every day wear. The result was that in order to see my everyday things through my reading glasses, I had to bend forward and peer through it in a certain way. This led to stooped shoulders.

Then I gained weight. Due to a change in my daily diet, I bloomed to 75kg. I dd not see it coming. Just got comments about how I was adding weight and I thought that the whole world was going crazy. I mean, I was still wearing my old clothes. Then one morning, I woke up and tried to wear a top and it was too small. Oh boy, i climbed a scale and found that I had moved from about 62kg to 75kg. It did nothing for my look. Yeah, I lost 5kg in like 2 months but that did not really make any difference. I looked and felt heavy.

At a point, with all the yabs, I started dreaded getting married and falling pregnant as I did not know how on earth I would be able to carry myself. If I couldn't carry myself when it was just me, how was I supposed to manage when I had to carry someone else?

I got a job and flowed in with my "unique" fashion style. This time, I was the one shopping for my own clothes, but it did not make things better. I still had some really terrible combinations. Looking back now, I know that the guys that dated me must really have loved me for the person I am and not the person I looked like. I had some really correct bobos o! Why, the other day, a colleague met one of my ex boyfriends and said "Wow! He's cute- I want to meet him". Hmmm.

Did I forgot to mention that facially, I am really not bad looking? I have an oyinbo (small and straight) nose and good complexion and that just presents the rest of my facial features in a pleasing way.

Fast forward a few years, I got pregnant and slowly, a side of me that I did not know existed, came to light...

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Not my words

Please read this.

It's not my post so I am disabling comments on this end.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Pregnancy Issues

“I am leaving my husband.”

I fell quiet when my friend dropped the bomb. I had last spoken to her a month ago so was not abreast of current changes/happenings in her life.

“I will leave him and then get a Senator to pick up my bills. Someone who will send me on shopping sprees abroad. When we fight and he needs to apologize, he may just do so with a trip to Seychelles or Paris. You know now! Get ready o! I will need someone to go with me on those trips.”

I quietly reminded her that she had a child and was pregnant with another.

“So? Look, Daisy Danjuma had four children when she met Theophilus Danjuma. Four children! Did it not work out for them? Don’t you see her in the papers? She’s even a topshot in government now. She wears diamonds. Diamonds! If you like say you will not follow me when it is time All I need to do is slim down a bit and tone so that my whole body will be one color.”

I asked what her husband’s offence was.

“Nothing! I just realized that I have not been living life to my full potential. This is my year to change things around. All I am waiting for is to drop this child and move on with my life. Kai! There is nothing worse than marrying a poor man. At least if you marry a man that has money, when he annoys you, you can close your eyes to his shortcomings with a shopping spree. Look, In my Head, forget everything I ever told you about marrying for love. Marry a man that has money! Marrying a poor man is not the best.”

I asked her if she has told her husband.

“No, I will just surprise him. When he gets back from work one day, he will find me gone.”

I remind her that I can hear her daughter in the background. She must have listening to her mum all this time. How do we know that she will not run to her dad and report the conversation (her mom’s side of it)?

“I am just praying. Don’t mind that girl, she loves her daddy more than me. She is always running to him to report my every my movement. Scheew”

That was when it dawned on me that this chic was not doing too well mentally. So I asked the next logical question.

How has the pregnancy been?

“Its okay, but you know I have been out of work (true she left her last job so that she could rest during this pregnancy) so I have a lot of time on my hands now to think about things. My mind has been everywhere. Thinking about what could have been if I had not married this poor man. You know the sort of people that were chasing me before now. Kai, if I knew then what I know now, I will not be here.”

Yes, it was the pregnancy talking. This poor guy had better not be anywhere in the labor room as my girl has some real anger issues and may just find some reason to hurt him physically there. Pregnancy has been known to affect people in strange ways.

Some people get bitchy. Some get cravings. Some even get suicidal.

Be nice to a pregnant woman today.

Saturday, May 05, 2007


Please note, I am not a student of Unilag

I had to write some exams recently and as a serious student, I journeyed all the way to Unilag (University of Lagos) to read in their classrooms. This was never my plan but I found it impossible to read at home-what with friends dropping in and staying for hours. In fact, the first day I got to Unilag, I got a call from a friend who told me in an exasperated voice that she had been knocking for a long time and that no-one had come to let her into the house!

Anyways, my game plan was simple: Get to Unilag as early as I can (say 9 a.m) and study till about 6 p.m-with a few breaks in between of course. Nothing was supposed to distract me and I figured that the only way to justify the distance I had to travel from my house to Unilag was to make sure that I actually acheive all the targets I set for myself for the day. So I packed my bag and wandered forth.

In my mind, there would be no distraction. I was not to know that the biggest distraction would be the school itself. I will not say much more, just that by Day 2 I knew that I had to definitely take my camera with me.

Let's go on a journey together. (By The Way, I only made it as far as the Education's the one closest to the main gate. I did not have the strength/need to go further in)

Walking into the faculty. I used the classrrooms on the first floor of the building ahead.

A view of a section of the grounds.

Another section of the grounds. Students are usually found taking a break under the trees.

Ready to come into class with me?

TBack of the class. This is a view from my My back hated these seats. I wonder if they have any courses in ergonomics? The person who approved these back breakers needs to take a course ASAP.

Picture surreptitiously taken of the other people in the class. The school was on strike so there weren't a lot of students around.

This black thing on my seat took me a while to figure out. No matter how hard I wiped, it did not come off. I think someone just stuck their bubble gum on the seat months ago. It has become one with the seat.

Yep, that's my foot. I propped my legs up on the seat in front of me.

That's Madam Amina Hall across the road. I took this picture from the class. I could hear the female porter making announcements: "Residents of Madam Amina Hall that goes out should make sure that they have their ID card with them when they comes in." She said that ALL day! LOL!

Unfortunately, this picture is not clear. See all the writings on the wall? A lot of them are requests for a girlfriend/wife. The one above the door says that the writer needs a girlfriend. He even provides a phone number that he can be reached on. All the classes had these. Why, one even said that he needs a nympho. No Unilag babe should tell me that she can't find a man...I meaan they are advertising in the classrooms. LOL!

The classrooms had windows that went all the way to the floor. So I looked down and took a picture. The presence of refuse was predominant throughout the faculty. Only thing is, I don't think it was regarded as refuse anymore. People had probably gotten used to seeing the refuse that they did not see it anymore. Capiche?

Luckliy, the classrooms were really airy and I did not need to put on the fan.

But then, I wonder if I would have been able to do so. You see, There are 2 fans in the class and the fan in the picture is controlled by the thingabob on the right. O.k, I confess, out of curiosity, I actually tried to put on the fan but I was not able to work all those wires. Meanwhile, some experts would walk into the class and in leass than 30seconds would have the fan going.

About these controls, notice that the one that has the cage is the one that still has it's casing. Is that because of the cage? That would have been an obvious yes, except who steals only 3/4 of a control panel?

That cage is intruiging. If it was closed, then an individual with short fingers may not be able to reach in sufficiently enough to reach the knob and turn it. Who knew that long fingers would actually be necessary to survive in the world?

I was on a break and decide to walk around a bit. Stretch my legs and rest my back. Those seats...chei! That's a picture of the staircase. What you have next to the light is not a piece of string. It's a cobweb! The spider that started this web must have passed on the job to his children who passed it on to their chilren and so on and so on.
This is on a wall along the hall. The exco of that year justifying the dues that each student is made to pay. Need a definition for ugly? This is it.

This was a source of fascination for me. Perhaps because of it's location. Let me give you a better view.

And another.

Yet another

Now, what got me was that this is a roof (obviously) and someone had poured A LOT of refuse on it. What happens when it rains? Note to self: Not having an umbrella in Unilag is not an option.

Anyway, so I went in for a closer look and see what turned up

Did you notice it? On the left hand corner of the picture.

Mmm hmm... I decided to go downstairs for a closer look.

If those are out there and this is the Male toilet....
...with a big padlock on the door, then where are people supposed to go when nature calls?

This room (which I assume is another loo)with all the liquid oozing out of it was on the ground floor. If the outside can look like this, I am not going in there. Lord knows what I will find.

Just opposite the displaced WCs. Nothing like dried flowers to brighten up the scenery.

This notice was stuck on a wall in the faculty.

But they do have a notice board. Here it is:

I guess it's no longer really in use, huh?

And why are they keeping the door? Want to fix it up and use it later?

And for those who aspire to leave the country to further their education, "help" is here.

If the faculty us not winning for points for neatness, maybe they can pick up a stellar award for outstanding Safety practices. I do not care if this thing has no electricity coursing through it (can't confirn that it does not), it should not be there.

The post is about to end and so no-one will say that I did not learn the sandwich method of giving feedback from my "Managing People Effectively" training, here are some nice pictures to finish up with.

Faculty grounds

More of the grounds

More pictures of Madam Amina hall.

I feel that I have to mention that things were not much different when I was in school (LASU). I just got used to seeing those things everyday and they did not stand out that much.
My brother who schools in University of Nsukka tells stories of how there is a wire running through the through his hostel. A naked wire that is obviously overloaded as it glows red hot from all the load on it. At night, it is clearly recognisable from afar. (He just mentioned that it has been fixed, but the job done was really shoddy and the connections are beginning to go haywire).
I find it difficult to believe that the schools do not make enough money to take care of these little things. And because we grow up in surroundings like that, we are not as beautiful as we can be. It also reflects in our attitude to work, our sense of beauty. It has far reaching effects which I will need a seperate post to go into.
Winfrey rejected suggestions that her school was elitist and unnecessarily luxurious."If you are surrounded by beautiful things and wonderful teachers who inspire you, that beauty brings out the beauty in you," she said.
quote culled from Uzo.