PSA: My fellow Nigerians stay in line

bukka

    So this guy tried to cut ahead of me in line the other day. Poor guy, there was no way for him to anticipate how seriously mistaken he was about to be. You see, I was in line for Amala. Let me put things into context. In my world, Amala is king! I have been a lover of food for as long as I can remember. If I could, I would eat for a living (I mean beyond the eating for a living I already do) Sure, I flirt with cheesecake, burgers, ice cream, donuts, party jollof, suya, small chops but at the end of the day my true love is Amala.
    My dad likes to tell the story of my very first time in a Chinese restaurant. It was a huge gathering and there were many options but mini-me was not impressed. After looking around, I turned to my folks, crossed my arms and declared, to their eternal amusement and my continual shame, “Me, I want Amala!” (I was about five) While I have learnt to love Chinese food, my love of Amala continues to trump all. In fact, the last time I went to the village, I had Amala for breakfast, lunch and dinner for two whole days and would have continued to do so if I had stayed any longer.
    So you see, when this imbecile, took one look at me, all prim and proper in a suit and heels at a local bukka and though, “What could she possibly do?” He was asking for it. On a scale of one to Tonto Dikeh releasing another album, his mistake was worse than Tonto doing a “High” remix.
    Did I mention that there were ten people before me and only three people behind me, though the three were standing in the sun.
    Being a reasonable person, I asked him if he was supposed to be ahead of me. He must have been to chicken to lie because his response can only be described as a half nod/wink hybrid. In my experience, people who do not want to get caught in a lie, tend to give vague replies, designed to mislead. Unfortunately for this guy, his face wasn’t made for winking. His wink was the eye equivalent of the palm-scratch handshake. MALES OF THE WORLD, Nobody likes this handshake!
    Searching for intelligent life, I tapped the lady in front and I asked her if he was with or after her.

“NO!”

    she wasn’t buying his wink either.

black wonderwoman

    Like that but a lot less smiley.

“Please, go to the back of the line.”

    He nods but continues to stand there.
    So I go up another bar and repeat my statement.
    At this point people began to watch, some smiled but mostly they did nothing, my coworker began to try and sooth me, but there was no going back. I am not ashamed to say that I was prepared to fight him. What I lacked in size, I made up for in craziness, an inability to be embarrassed where Amala is involved and an impressive history of Kung Fu movies. I walked round him and give my coworker the stink-eye till she joined me. I would not let the honour and dignity of Amala to be tainted by that man.
    During rush hour the three people behind me would have turned to 20 and that would have showed him, but I had arrived early to avoid long lines. My one regret was that there was no walk of shame for him. He got his food and when he caught up to me in the stew line, he tried to flirt. Smiling, he asked if I am happy. Luckily I’m not brain damaged.
    If Amala wasn’t the nectar of gods, I would have introduced my plate to his shirt and happily lined up for more. Instead I gave him my bestthe-new-guy-crazy-eyes and walked away.

People standing in line
Ladies and gentlemen, no one wants to be standing in line, so when you find yourself in one please remember:

Line cutting is inexcusable except when someone’s life is really on the line or the line cutter is really old or very pregnant.

2. Yes I know that when one person allows their friend into the line it will not significantly increase my time in the line but if I allow one person then there is no good reason to disallow others.

To people who pretend that their friend has been here all along, you are fooling nobody, especially not Karma.

4. If a line is too long do not just show up and start a new line unless instructed to do so. If instructed to do so, people already in line have priority.

To the people behind the desk, when you cater to line jumpers and line creators you are rewarding and encouraging their bad behaviour. This goes double for people who join such lines.

6. If you are in the company of several friends or kids don’t all line up. This keeps happening at silverbird. One person should hold all the money and buy the tickets while the remaining people stand in the corner. If the person in line gets lonely, only one other person should keep her or him company.

It’s a numbers thing. It’s sometimes acceptable to allow one friend into the line, but if a whole bunch of your friend show up, do the right thing and all go to the back of the line…together.

8. You have no business being in a line if you have no idea what you want or if you are there to visit the person behind the counter. It’s not therapy, get to the point and get gone.

Even if you hate people, endeavour to tell the person in front of you when you are stepping out and tell the person behind you when you return that you are just returning. People are not mind readers. A sure way to enrage a stranger is by squeezing in front of them without offering an explanation.

10. Finally, don’t fall victim to one of the classic blunders. The most famous of which is “never get involved in a land war in Asia” but only slightly less well-known is this: “Never try to cut in front of a Nigerian girl when Amala is on the line.”

victory
This is what victory looks like!

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Aero dysfunction

    No more apologies, I’d like to say that I was very busy, or that I broke my typing arm(…ehm..fingers) but the truth is far more typical. My name is Yami and I suck at time management. I’ve sometimes have brilliant blog post ideas, but my powers of procrastination keep them from being written We can only hope and pray that I change.


    Now unto the tragedy that is my life experience. May it amuse and guide you. Show of hands, who here has flown aero contractors? If your hand is up, then I’m willing to bet that you have at least the very least sworn at them, at the most sworn off them or if you are like me done both only to find yourself inline to board yet another aero flight.
    Their list of crimes are extensive, in my personal experience:
    1. They have faked flights: Here’s the con, when two consecutive flights are not full, the powers that be cancel the first one and merge it with the consecutive flight. Thus causing a huge delay for the people who paid for the earlier flight and dooming anyone who planned to seek into work in the nick of time. By advertising the availability of more flights, they sucker more people into buying their tickets. If you must be aerodynamic take the first flight of the day which is the least likely to be delayed or better yet walk.
    2. They are constantly late: If you asked a room of frequent flyers to raise their hands if they had ever been on time with aero, I’m pretty sure they would find other uses for the hands.
    3. They duct tape seats: No offence to the makers of such an outstanding product as duct tape, But when I walk unto a plane, I do not want to see chairs held together by duct tape, unless it was part of the original seat design. All I’m thinking after I see that is, “if they don’t know how to replace a chair, what else?”
    4. They charged me directly for airport charges, I mean who does that? NOBODY, THAT’S WHO!
    5. They gave me food poisoning: In my ignorant youth (Last year) I was frivolous, I actually bought airplane food. Not only did I waste my money, I also proceeded to waste the next two days in the hospital. Everyone thinks food poisoning is glamorous vomiting with a hot male nurse holding back your braids (yak) These rumors are all true… that is if you survive the excruciating pain, lack of glamour and the fact that the hawt male nurse is actually a masculine matron with a moustache.
    6. They kicked a woman off the plane for being fat, they said she looked pregnant which she didn’t. While I respect their decision to follow policy, I thought that it was in very bad taste to let her board before making accusations. They proceeded to argue with her for up to 30 minutes, then when she deplaned (It’s a real word) they spent another half hour rummaging for her luggage.
    7. Did I mention that they are sexist: In their defense, I’ve experienced some level of sexism on almost every Nigerian flight I’ve ever flown in It ranges from allowing men have overweight carryons, to attending to the needs of males before females. Anyway, the last time I dropped my sister off; aero attempted to make an otherwise painful experience into a figurative kick in the face.
    Her flight was cancelled without notice, the next flight was in four hours (minimum of eight hours in aero time) They wanted to put her on the 7pm flight of the following day. Naturally she decided to get a refund in order try her luck with another airlines but aero personnel managed to turn that into a frustrating two hour production. Now the argument can be made that my sister and I are short and therefore easily over looked but the truth lies less with our height (we are not that short) and more with our gender. Scores of men cut the line in order to get their refunds or buy tickets and our attempt to complain or copy these men was met with almost aggressive disdain and verbal rebuke.
    Did I mention she was a woman, why does it feel worse when the sexist is female? Shouldn’t we be on the same side? Nigeria’s sexist propaganda is so diehard and so effectively administered in childhood that most people are unaware of them. But that’s a blog post for another day.
    Anyway, as I write this, I am planning another trip and yes aero will be considered. What can I say; they are often the only flight within my price range. I hate and love them for that.

What happened in Benue…is hard to explain

    I recently got to cover a story in Benue and I (Silly Yamika) thought that it was an acknowledgment of my past performance. Sadly, reality (the huge meanie) was setting me up, in a nice office game of pass the buck to the unsuspecting newbie. I am happy to report that rumors that the devil has relocated to Makurdi in Benue are all false. Although I personally think that the red guy would be comfortable if he settles there because, it is hotter than Hades.
    Like a country song , I rolled into an unsuspecting town. I found the people stylish… well about as stylish as 2009. They were polite and overly welcoming in a way that suggests that they expected me to entertain them. Everyone moved at a speed that was mainly slow. The heat only served to exaggerate their nonchalance. I woke up for a 7.30 assignment that finally got going at noon. My articles all got written up and sent by Blackberry, because my laptop couldn’t or wouldn’t catch the internet and it seemed less strenuous than asking for a café. I was given the superb choice between okadas and unmarked taxis. I wonder what it says about me that I prefer the rude bustle of Lagos to the Makurdi calm. I thought it was funny, until it hit me. As bad as it is in Lagos and Abuja, it is worse (and slower) in other places. For many people this was no assignment, no twilight zone and no Truman show, when I left these people would remain there. This was their life.
    Their culture was also very strange to me. There seemed to be a huge aversion to brooms. My arrival coincided with what can best be described as the Salem Makurdi broom trials. As my bus pulled into town, the first thing I noticed was a slew of ‘wanted’ posters with brooms on them. Now I can’t tell you if they were all the same broom or completely different broom because most brooms look pretty much the same to me. Maybe they have a reformed quidditch referee to help with that. The signs were everywhere. Another thing I noticed was the high price of brooms. You would think that with so many brooms going bad, their market value with depreciate.

HAVE YOU SEEN THIS BROOM

    Traffic came to a standstill on the next day as a crowd seemed to have apprehended a family of brooms. They proceeded to drive through town in a huge convoy. There was music and dancing with lots of merriment. The street crowd parted and cheered, as five cars and countless okadas paraded their captives. The celebration continued throughout my stay. I was still wondering what the brooms did, when two days later I rode out of town. There were many decapitated brooms hanging in the wind, I guess as a warning to other brooms. Though, I never did figure out why. Drop me a line if you know.



This is not an endorsement… or is it?