Tuesday, 16 May 2017


Guilty confession: I'm one of those people who sometimes get so busy that they forget to eat. Now as you know, the average Nigerian man sees himself in the role of provider which probably explains why 10 out of 10 Nigerian girls have had that one phone call from Le Boo or Le Applicant asking what she had for dinner or lunch. Some even go so far as to monitor breakfast; you go, guys.
My point is, that rarely works with me because not only do I sometimes forget to eat, I often also forget WHAT I ate: weird but true. Some of my friends can testify.
Anyway, God has a sense of humor. So yesterday afternoon I was on my way to court for some process filing late afternoon-ish, and there sat this girl in the front seat of the cab munching happily on some boiled corn. One glance at her and I suddenly realized I hadn't had breakfast! As if that wasn't bad enough, my stomach took one look at the 'gourmet feast' my eyes were focused on and chose that precise moment to let out an embarrassingly loud growl. Honestly the sound was loud enough to wake the dead and every head in the cab swiveled toward me in varying degrees of shock and stupefaction.
It was one of those moments when I was truly grateful for my dark skin else I would have been red as roses with embarrassment. Being a Nigerian girl without the tendency to blush, I simply hid my embarrassment beneath my imperviously dark skin and stared everyone out of countenance until they all looked away. Didn't matter; my 'ajebo' certificate was probably already in tatters in their minds.
Unperturbed, I proceeded to study the eater. My mind went in all sorts of dark places as i began to contemplate how to satisfy my sudden craving for food.
What would happen if I smacked her one on the back of the head and grabbed the corn before she had fully recovered from the shock? "Not good," my lawyer mind volunteered, "Assault and battery!"
Okay what about if I simply snatched the corn cob as I alighted and made a run for it? "Theft." I could be looking at a couple of years cooling my heels in jail over one little boiled corn!
Alright how about if I just slammed her head a little against maybe the headrest and grabbed the corn? Even worse!!! Assault and battery and MAYBE even manslaughter; she could die and the criminal law equivalent of the eggshell skull principle would apply right?
At this point I was exasperated enough to tell the driver to pull over even though I hadn't reached my bus stop. I hotfooted it to the nearest restaurant for urgent refilling to keep myself from committing murder over a bit of corn.
Your momma was right; don't skip breakfast! It can mess with your mind.

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©2017 by Sherina Okoye

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