I’m not sure how things are among Nigeria’s other ethnic tribes but among Yoruba’s there is a definite preoccupation with greeting. I am not talking about the fact that we have a greeting for every imaginable occasion. I was recently introduced to “your own to will come” which is what you say to the chagrin of all singles at a wedding (it would however be ill advised to use it when addressing elders at a funeral but that’s another story)
What I am referring too is the morning, afternoon and whenever- you-encounter-anyone-older greeting that we are expected to sprout when we encounter people. I get constantly chastised for not adding ‘sir’ or ‘ma’ when I do remember to say good morning. It has often occurred to me to rebut with the fact that what they consider to be a ‘good’ whatever-time-of-day might actually suck for us bottom feeders. But I swallow my rebellion because my mother’s eternal shame is too high a cost than my momentary smugness would warrant.
I find it particularly insulting when my peers (those of the cousin variety) demand this curtsy. “Hey, I gave you a nod” but no pretend you don’t know that I just woke up and spent half an hour on my knees ‘Oing’ to the excessive greetings of seniors and at least one of them prayed for me to have triplets by the end of the year. Geez get over yourself” I’m not against greeting but people who get no power elsewhere take great pains in getting it from acknowledgement by those of us cursed to be born after them. Seriously wouldn’t you prefer my true respect? Half the time I really did not even see you. Seriously think about it