The Pounded Yam And Pure Water Awards (6)

E sweet o


  • By now I am sure you know that I am a huge ‘longer-throat’.  One of my favourite things is good mood food. I have phases where I start having cravings for a particular thing and at that point, I buy and eat it to death then leave it alone totally forever. There was a time I used to stop by Mr. Biggs at Mobil Filling Station Lekki (3rd Round-about) for sausage roll, remove and toss away the cheap pastry and eat the meat filling.

Then I really liked the Chicken Kebab from TFC, so I would cop that, chew the meat and pick my teeth with the skewer stick.  Recycling at its best – nothing is wasted, you see. I also really liked UTC Marble Cake, which I have made many hawkers run marathons in go-slow for. Only for them to catch up, and sigh ‘Oga, change no dey o’ as I offered them a crisp 1000 naira bill as payment for 2 cakes. Now I can’t stand these cakes.

Now, my new thing is Jack In The Box’s “Grilled Breakfast Sandwich” which is number 23 on their breakfast menu (only available in the US, sorry). Two syllables for how it tastes – Correct! I even boost it further by garnishing the inside with a healthy dose of Heinz ketch-up. Some amebos would ask what does this have to do with a blog on Nigerian life, which should promote Nigerian food only? Well we also have bread, eggs, ham and cheese in Nigeria – please stop acting like say na only suffer-head dey our country. You could ask me for the recipe or you could take a trip to Pride of Eden…Heavenly Foods at Ikota Shopping Complex. Tell them there that Esco sent you for a hook up. First ten people to get there, get a free fortune cookie. With a message inside.

  • All the fathers in the house. Happy belated Father’s Day. You do not have to be an actual biological father to earn my congrats. If you are responsible for someone, are a big uncle, school father, political godfather or an area father, this greeting goes out to you as well. 3 gbosas for you all. I owe you pizza from Papa John’s.

How fatherhood has changed from the days of my youth. Back then, children were divided into different categories – those who called their fathers ‘Daddy’, those who called their fathers ‘Papa’ and those who called them ‘Sir’. Fathers who demanded to be called ‘sir’ were the ones who had a special sofa or couch called ‘senior chair’ in the living room where the kids, wives and visitors were prohibited from sitting in. These kinds of fathers did not sit around and joke with their children or wives, and were the first to be served breakfast or any meal. They were also perpetually decked out in a white singlet, and a ‘wrapper’ with the hugest knot.

The ‘Papas’ were almost in their 60s when their children were born. As a result the kids usually lied to outsiders that Papa was actually their grandfather. Then there are the ‘daddies’ and ‘popsies’ and ‘dads’

Whether you are a Papa, Daddy or Sir, happy father’s day to you all.

  • Finally, a thought for the disasters (man-made and natural) that occurred recently in Abuja and Lagos. GEJ, different parts of Naija have been ravaged by fire (Abuja) and water (Lagos) in the space of one week. What is going on?

 My heart goes out to the families of the victims of the recent Abuja bomb blast. May God give you strength and courage during this difficult time, and to the deceased – Rest in Peace. I will speak on this again sometime soon.

Water nor get enemy...or friend

My sympathy also goes to those affected by the recent major floods in Victoria Island and parts of Lekki. The rich also cry. Unless you live under Olumo Rock, you must have heard or read about the popular story about the couple who smooched on a road while there were serious riots going on in Vancouver, Canada. Well, Naija has bested that by a country mile (no pun intended). The resilience of  Nigerians was evidenced by the above picture which was circulated via Blackberry messenger of a chap surfing on a piece of wood/door on large pool of water. Get your Cameron Diaz on, bro.


Up Yours


  • People who say ‘sturves’ or ‘stuffs’. I really can’t stand that word, and by the way it is a huge grammatical shell. Or people who use the term ‘working class’ to describe professional workers in Nigeria (but that is a story for another day)
  • Naija traders who charge in dollars for mediocre goods or services. I know this lass who used to stop by offices in the Victoria Island and Ikoyi area to sell formal clothes and accessories to bankers and other professionals, from the trunk of her Toyota. Her business card read stylist/clothier/ make-over professional. Okay fair enough. She used to pop into my office during lunch time to call out some of my work colleagues who were usual customers of hers, but I never really paid her any mind.

Then one day, I was walking back to the office after lunch, and passed her by her open car boot, trying to sell some articles to a work-mate of mine. She intercepted me, and insisted that I take a look at stuff she had for sale. I decided to take a look just to be polite.

I really shouldn’t have: Marks and Spencer’s pants (underwear not trousers o!) for $100?! A polyester trouser suit for $300? I thought M&S was a British store chain – why the conversion to dollars from pounds? Well, Ghana-Must-Go bags are charged in naira, here. Ok bad joke.

And some gullible people get carried away once they see a dollar price; they believe that the goods must be premium or genuine or are really imported from Jand/Yankee. Take this yimu yimu.

  • Those Nigerian doctors who never tell you what the problem/ailment is. It seems that their own version of the Hippocratic Oath extends to the patients themselves. They always use one coded medical term to bamboozle you into thinking you are done for. Instead of saying you have malaria, the doctor informs you that you have an acute attack of plasmodic protozoa, or says something like “this is a concentrated case of chronic dermatitis”. Chei, doctor, biko nu, I have not built a house yet o!

And one patient was like “Doctor Nwubiko, seriously, what is wrong with me? Am I going to die?”

The doctor just smiled sheepishly as he gave a light-hearted dismissive explanation: “You will be alright though; it is just that…..”

The patient wasn’t finding this funny. He started remembering all the symptoms he had been having from the past few days and even since the day he was born and started imagining the worst: “Just that what?”

“Just that…” the doctor’s voice trailed off as his eyes and concentration were distracted by Nurse Ngozi’s massive gluteus maximus (bakassi).

 Ignoring the patient, Doctor Death said “Nurse Ngozi, I hope you know that you are on night duty today…”

And he was grinning mischievously like he had just sniffed helium laughing gas from a dentist’s chair. Maybe he had…

Even when they are prescribing drugs for you, some of them hardly look  at your face or even act like you are there. They press the buzzer or use the intercom to summon Nurse Ngozi, who they give instructions “Administer 50 milligrams of iodine sulphate via his gluteus Maximus stat!”  In case you didn’t know, it means that the nurse should chook your nyash with iodine – immediately. I prefer injections though.

Heaven forbid that you are assigned to Matron Temperance rather than cute curvy Nurse Ngozi. Some older nurses do not give a damn if you are sick. They more or less ‘stab’ you with the syringe when giving you injections, and pump in the medicine. Oh, and if you vomit, you will clean it up by yourself, even if you have a terminal disease.

Why do some Naija docs like playing 419 with people’s health? Whatever happened to plain-speak? Some of them look at you through their thick frame glasses, like they are turning up their nose at you, since they are great paragons of knowledge while you barely managed to graduate with a major in Yoruba Education at your state university.

I have a mind to start acting like they do in those Nollywood movies where a character receives bad news from the doctor that the patient (a loved one) didn’t make it. The character would usually feign some kind of mock horror, look to the skies in disbelief and then start beating on the doc like ‘Doctor, it is a lie. Don’t tell me that Wazobia has died. Do something doctor – Wazobia cannot die. Ah doctor, you must be telling lies, please yarn another story, Wazobia cannot be dead’ All this while grabbing the dokinta’s lab coat hysterically and almost strangling him with his stethoscope. I usually cheer on at this point.

By the way, why are the doctors in Nollywood movies so cold, unsympathetic and unapologetic? They blurt out bad news like the obituary section of a newspaper, without even considering the mental state of the recipient. In one Nollywood movie, the doctor announced to the waiting relatives ‘Both your only son and husband have kicked the bucket…by the way the bursar says you are still owing the dispensary”

Nigerian doctors you know I love you. A doctor’s reward is in heaven. At least our government seems to think so..

10 responses

  1. Oh my! I just discovered your blog and I am loving it! I thought I was the only one that categorized people’s fathers based on what they called them. Plus, a friend sent me the Yimu icon (abi she na smiley) some weeks back…the one you have here looks more….(what’s the word again?)…”yimu-ish”….

    And by the way, I like the “sturves” you write about (evil grin)

  2. Thanks to the minor (mis)fortune of having a father who was both an austere academic and an itinerant preacher, I had to call him ‘sir’ on pain of death.

    ‘Sturves’, ‘stuffs’ – language evolves my friend…. Maybe by 2015, it might make it into the Chambers Dictionary of 21st century English…

  3. Haha Esco… first… I just gotta say this: you must be fat!! Second, nothing wrong with calling your father Papa… that’s what I call mine.. and he was faaarrr from 60 when I was born.. he’s still a couple of years away, still a good looking guy, and still my Papa 😉 Ermm… pardon my ‘esco-speak’ ignorance, but what does ‘get your Cameron Diaz on’ mean? Don’t mind those yimu yimu people who say stuffs!! Stuff connotes a lot of things.. it is plurality in itself! Just like saying 2 pairs or 12 dozen or the two both of them!! LOL… though I like sturvs… its naija slang abi… which makes it alright.. 😛 Don’t get me started on Nigerian doctors. Some days I totally hate all of them, but then I have to remind myself that its not all their fault… the system allows them to be totally irresponsible and get away with it… If you have not lost someone you love because of our pathetic health care system you will never understand.

  4. @ Relentless Builder – Haha, Nice one there. Have you read through our extensive catalogue? We have plenty ‘sturves’ on offer..

    @ Ohj – Haha! That means you must have stacked PHDs yourself. ‘Sturves’ doesnt even sound nice. It is almost as bad as ‘Loves it’ but the latter sounds like something a deluded fashion designer from Europe would say.

    @ Ubercool – Me fat? That is politically incorrect. I prefer to say I occupy the earth amply. About calling your dad Papa, never said there was nothing wrong. I hope you are referring to Papa (as in Nigerian style pronounciation) and not Papa (like the French do). Ole like you. lol

    Cameron Diaz is a keen surfer. Let me guess, you don’t send her! I don’t either, and somehow I feel ashamed about knowing more about her that I should.

    I am not having a go at all docs – just at some. You sound like you have love and lost,,My heart goes out to you as well

  5. Esco, it’s been a while I checked up on my favorite blogger. Going down memory lane , my late father was daddy but once he yelled your name the only befitting response was ‘sir’ at a higher father clocked 50 in the year I was born,but I never for once lied that he was my grandpa.

    The sturves/stuffs just grates on my nerves…I mentally mark down anyone who uses it in a doesn’t just sit well with ranks very close to ‘jean'( the denim trousers), growing up it was jeans..I did not get the memo stating the change.(Please correct me if wrong)

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