JAMES’ JOURNAL (Entry 47)

JAMES’ JOURNAL (Entry 47)

August 29

The Onyx drama from this week was interesting and quite revealing. There was the side that believed he did a brave thing and others wished he’d keep quiet.

Both sides had very valid points. I agree with one side and understand the other. What he did was brave and foolish. Onyx decided to wake a sleeping lion, blah-blah-blah. I think true bravery is one where it appears foolish to be brave, where the odds that what you are doing is dangerous but because you passionately believe in what you are doing, you decide to face the danger.

Many of us want to be free to be our happy gay selves with no discrimination. We want to have varying degrees of freedom. Some want to hold their lover’s hands in public. Others want to be able to tell family with little or no fear of judgment. Even those who don’t want anybody to know would very much like to live in a world where if they are found out, they needn’t fear death by burning tires.

Pray tell, how we are going to get this by being meek little mice who refuse to bell the cat? Nigeria needs to be shocked into awakening (something I read, for those who are on the lookout for plagiarism). It’s essential. The outcry that follows such an awakening would also necessary. A lot of things will happen, but in the end, it will lead to tolerance and acceptance.

My point is that sitting on our asses or being ostriches hiding our heads in the sand isn’t going to solve shit. Will what Onyx did solve anything? I don’t know. But I strongly believe it’s better than doing nothing. You don’t have to agree with his methods, but agree that he is doing something which cannot be said for most of us (including me).

No major overhaul to a system started with quiet talk and hiding. Okay, I’ll use Christianity as an example. Heck, a man of flesh and blood was claiming to be the Son of God! Do you know what that meant in those days? It was blasphemy of the highest order. Never mind the miracles and all that; it was that singular thing that caught the attention of the people. One man did something outrageous. He claimed his son-ship, not just in his closet, but openly, and because of that (and a lot of other chain of events), Christianity is one of the most practiced religions ever.

Onyx might be an attention-seeking person (I don’t really know about that, I don’t frequent LIB). He might not openly admit to being gay (that would be too dumb; even if he was, at least he can say in court if anyone decides to charge him that he never admitted to being gay). But he is doing something very few of us have done. He’s getting people to talk. He’s letting people know we exist. He’s calling out homophobes and he’s doing it publicly.

It’s alright to sit comfortably in your closet and make a nest with your fabulous clothes, but try not to put down the work another human being is doing. It might not be to your taste, but he is doing something. Respect that.

And about his safety, I feel like he’s got a game plan. I’d like to believe he’s not being unnecessarily foolish. And if he does get beat up and shii because he’s talking, of course we won’t be there, but that won’t change the work he has and is doing.

And about his family and honoring them and all that, maybe he just doesn’t care. Maybe his sentiment about your family isn’t as deep as yours. Maybe his family doesn’t care. Maybe he has realised his life is his to live. Whatever the case is, we really need to stop taking panadol for another person’s headache, especially when that headache might give us some headway in the future.

There’s something that was broadcasted on my whatsapp. It confirmed that I wasn’t the only one who had a theory that there’s a way to mould the mindset of a people. It stems from the fact that as organisms, we tend to ignore repeated stimuli that isn’t harmful. But basically if something is talked about long enough or we are exposed to it long enough in a non-threatening way, we as humans learn to adapt to it.

I remembered watching Glee and seeing how Curt quickly became a favorite character of many girls I knew and even a few guys (who turned out to be gay sha). One thing I’ll forever be grateful to Glee for is how it helped people understand that to be gay is also to be human. That’s the major thing that made me hold on to the show even when it turned very crappy (and the awesome covers they sometimes did).

When my friends watched the gay guy on Glee, their initial reactions were shock and disgust and dislike (mine was shock and elation); but as the show progressed (for the ones who stuck to it), though they didn’t get the Curt character, they became used to him and some even began to say that they don’t mind a person being gay as long as he doesn’t bring that “shit” near them. It’s still kind of homophobic but it’s much better than downright revulsion.

Then I received a whatsapp broadcast message. It’s quite long; maybe I’ll share it some other time. The message reeked of homophobia, but it did tell the truth. The gist of it all is that for something that was initially a taboo to become generally accepted, it goes through 5 stages: the shocker, the outrage, the discussion, tolerance, acceptance and veneration.

Nigeria, I think, is currently in Stage 2, slowly transitioning to Stage 3. We just need people who will be willing to speak up. I wish I could. I know I could, but I’m still in that place of fear and it’s mostly fear of the perceived shame my family will feel if I decided to say something or openly fight for a cause. So I will do what I have been doing. I will talk to my friends and teach them that homophobia is wrong.

It can be very disheartening, hearing the comments from some people though. It shows how humans can be hypocrites.

Someone I know who frequently brings girls to the house, a different girl every three days, fucks them and all that, had the gall to say the Kardashian family has a special place in hell, especially Caitlyn.

Another person who, when I was little used to do that child’s play of touching each other, was talking about how he’d do more than what Luscious Lyon did in Empire and kill his son if he was gay or wore women’s clothing. I had heard that people say that but hearing it with my own ears left me with a sinking feeling in my stomach. I felt sick that such intolerance could be spewed from a person’s mouth.

*sigh*

He was my younger brother’s friend and my younger brother could see I was visibly upset. We talked about it later and he maintained his stand that he believed it was my life to live and only God can judge me, that what he thought hardly mattered.

*

So I was jejely on my own, fretting about something I had left to the last minute, when I see my younger brother had tagged me to a picture on Facebook. It was a picture of me and him on New Year’s Day of this year, and I was showing my teeth and he’s showing his teeth too and it was a nice picture because we were happy and stuff. So I liked it.

Now my younger brother is very fine, finer than me, as I’ve been repeatedly told. Personally I feel he’s just a lighter version of me, and that people simply have a thing for fair skin and not darkies like me. It bothered me. It still does sometimes, especially when a person of interest says something foolish like, “Is he gay, I wouldn’t mind doing him if he was gay…”

It’s flattering and all that you think my younger brother is cute. It’s alright to point out that he’s cuter than me. But seriously, whatever dirty thoughts you’re having about him, please don’t tell me. It makes me uncomfortable. If you’re a person of interest, it also makes me jealous and disappointed because I apparently like a douche bag who thinks it’s okay to make jokes about fucking someone’s brother.

Anyway, I liked the picture and went on my merry way. As the morning progressed, I get a bleep on my phone. It was my ex. He mentioned me taking pictures with my brother on Facebook and I was wondering where that was going. I was actually expecting him to say he’s so cute and I’d roll my eyes and proceed to ignore the pointless conversation; but then he said – and I quote – “People will just keep staring at him and forget you are in the picture. Lol”

Okay, that felt like overkill to me. I mean, I know my brother is handsome (so I’ve been told) but I can also stand my own ground because I’m not bad-looking either (that’s up for debate sha)

I coolly asked my ex why he was telling me this. He said it was just an observation. I got kind of pissed and told him to keep his observation to himself next time. The gall of it all! It’s bad taste to actually decide that a good conversation opener is how good-looking your brother is and that you fade into the background because you pale in comparison. I added that next time he should think before making such a remark to me.

Was that an insult or me trying to be witty? He queried. No, that was me getting pissed, I replied.

He told me I needed to stop getting tetchy (that apparently is a word) over harmless humor.

Harmless humor?

Okay, maybe he wasn’t trying to offend, but he did offend me. Maybe this was where I’d get an “I didn’t mean to offend you, I’m sorry” and my angry heart would stop being angry because a good ole heartfelt apology can cool me down. But the apology wasn’t coming. So I just said, “Whatever, still insensitive.” He then told me to upgrade my esteem and man up to the joke.

So I reminded him all those times he told me I was just second best while and even after we dated. He would tell me I’d look better with pink lips so I should go get some. (Sounds like friendly advice but it was really more of an order. And artificial pink lips? Urgh!) He’d tell me about the way my knees are not pleasant to look at and that he wouldn’t have given me a second glance if he’d seen me normally on the street. He’d mention that thank goodness I had a great smile, otherwise I’d just be a plain ole Jane (I added the plain ole Jane part). All this while we were dating.

Then I realised he wasn’t exactly the one for me and I was selling myself short, so I ended things with him. But I still tried to maintain some relationship with him. And he spends some time with me only to tell me that I was just a means to get back at his ex (who is hot by the way). This was after the breakup.

Now perhaps, y’all can see why him coming around to tell me I fade into the background of a selfie I took, thanks to my brother, is leaving me miffed (And I bet y’all can see I’m a bit vain too, but that’s not the point).

My bestie thinks I overreacted. I probably did. But I also think it’s allowed. It’s not every time someone remains calm. And believe me, I have my issues. So as much as I feel like I should be wise and stuff, I find myself doing utterly stupid shit.

The plus side is that I get to have lots of stories to tell and hopefully when I’m older, I’ll look back on them with some sort of fondness. The downside is that once I’m done being stupid, the immediate embarrassment is mortifying.

It reminds me of a meme that went: “Being twenty-something, you’re not old enough to have your life completely together but you feel like you’re too old not too.”

I admire the super humans who already know what they want and are getting what they want at my age, and sometimes I wish I was them. Then I remember that my life journey isn’t theirs and theirs isn’t mine, and I take a deep breath and go make garri with groundnut because pizza is not available.

*

Am I the only person who tells whoever is interested in dating them that they are dealing with a crazy person? The conversation sort of goes like so:

Poor unsuspecting guy who thinks I’m sane: James, I like you a lot. You make me laugh and you seem like a really cool person. I like your eyes and your smile is one of the best things. (Note, this smile is more like a grin, where my upper lip curls and I show my 32 and gums, and I think it’s hideous but other people beg to differ so)

Me: LMAO! Run while you can, mister. I’m barely containing the crazy.

Some people think they can handle it. You even give them a test run and they pass. And then, you decide to go all the way and slowly your insecurities and hopelessness starts to show and they freak out because apparently you’re not who they thought you were and they run screaming into the night.

That’s the best case scenario.

The worst case scenario is that they stay but instead if trying to understand you or working through it, they want you to change. And though it’s hard, though it makes you feel like you’re choking, you manage because you love the person, and even though he drives you nuts, you can’t imagine life without him. So you sort of manage to change (or suppress the crazy). And even though it’s making you unhappy (and he sees that) you’re happy because you get to spend the night with him and feel his lean frame against yours and wake up to that morning breath you hate and love at the same time.

Okay this thing is turning into something else. I feel like I should stop writing, but I’d really like to see where this goes.

Let’s see… Yes, lean frame and morning breath.

Things suck, but they suck because you’re with him and that’s what actually makes it worth it – you being with him. You don’t understand how he can be so inconsiderate and he doesn’t understand how you can be so weird, but it doesn’t matter to you because love isn’t perfect.

Unfortunately though, love is ever hardly enough, and even though you’d go to the end of all worlds with this person if they asked you to, they on the other hand decide to let the fire die. You try to keep it alive for the both of you and it makes you do those stupid things you know you shouldn’t do. You can feel him slipping away but you start to fight to keep him in your grasp, which only makes things so much worse for you, because the more you try to hold on, the more he’s slipping away. Common sense tells you to let go, but you’re scared because you don’t think you could ever find someone like him (though he’s a complete ass hole, he’s your complete asshole) and you want to keep him.

It’s moments like this you see the loveless glare, the refusal to have sex with you, the fact that he keeps his phone closer than normal, he refuses to cuddle you in bed, he reminds you that you have your own room. And every day, even though your heart is breaking, you wake up hoping the daydream-turned-nightmare would turn back into the daydream.

But that hardly ever happens, does it? One day he tells you it’s over and he says things that hurt you like how he wishes he never dated you, that if the kind of love (behaviour) you’ve shown him is what love is, then he’s scared of ever hearing those words from another person. And those words are sown in your heart so that whenever next you can feel yourself falling, you start to panic because your love is the incorrect kind. The one that feels too deeply and too much. The one that can consume you soul, body and spirit.

Anyway, you’re older now. You know better. Or so you think. Until it starts again. Lol.

Sometimes you go back down memory lane and you wonder where things went wrong. You blame yourself, then you blame him, but you mostly blame yourself. Because, face it, maybe if you were a bit less open and didn’t let emotions/worry/paranoia/fear rule your thinking, things could have worked out. But hey! For you, it’s a package deal. They want your love? They have to deal with all that too.

I’d like to think that with time, you’d find someone who won’t see your emotional baggage and run. Instead he’d open them with you, sift through them and help you throw away the ones that you don’t need and help you with the load and hopefully you’d help him do the same. After all, we are all humans, damaged one way or the other in this storm called life. Whether you’re old, young, rich, poor, a student, a salary earner, hoe-ly, saintly, whatever… We’ve all got some tough issues to deal with and the world is a much nicer place when you find someone who’d stick around and help you with them.

That someone is Jesus. Lol.

I feel so much better. It’s 11:23pm on Saturday. And James is about to watch Rosemary’s Baby (the miniseries, not an actual baby).

Written by James

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14 Comments

  1. Francis
    August 30, 07:13 Reply

    Gosh, your ex is simply the worst of oniranus and I wonder what good qualities of his you’re holding on to ’cause if I were in your shoes, I most probably wouldn’t want him around ever. Niggas that walk around making people feel like complete shit. Aaaargh.

    The last part is the reason why it took me years to get over my ex. He completely understood the madness that was me and treated me like I was EVERYTHING while helping me try to become a better person. Till date I wonder if I would ever jam someone like him again. *sighs*

    Loved today’s “rant”. Thanks man 😀

  2. Chuck
    August 30, 12:07 Reply

    Someone who’s dating you and pointing out who they want to fuck clearly doesn’t believe in exclusive relationships. #writingonthewall

    So many misbehaved men in this country. Could it be patriarchy? I need data.

  3. Tiercel de Claron
    August 30, 12:43 Reply

    Whoever said your bro is finer than you is not just blind,but daft as well.
    Per your ex,you underreacted in my opinion.He’s a nodcock,to be charitable.Saw the pic you talk about,you were the one that stood out.Btw,both your smiles………….that’s something else.

    An ex so inconsiderate he throws it to your face that he settled for “less” while still being with you……………it never was you that had issues,but him.And him own na weeks of deliverance go solve am.

    • Max
      August 30, 22:58 Reply

      My sentiments exactly, his ex was a father jerk. And to be honest, James was the finer one in that pic.

  4. Marius
    August 30, 14:02 Reply

    Idioms can’t be plagiarised.

  5. Flecks
    August 30, 17:34 Reply

    The reason I love this series is cos it’s very relatable ☺😅😅

  6. Sinnex
    August 30, 20:13 Reply

    People can’t help but be annoying.

    it’s in their DNA. You think it is a process and it would pass but it become worse. Everyone says the person is not right for you but you don’t see it. You think he is the best thing that every happened to you. You think he is just going through a phase and he would get over it….if only you knew how wrong you were…..

  7. Max
    August 30, 22:46 Reply

    This is one of your best entries yet.

    I concur with everything you said. It happened to me recently.
    The worst part is, you’d think you’re old enough and know better… But you don’t. Every relationship is different, so whatever you might have learnt from the previous one might be useless in the current one.

  8. The Night Nemesis
    September 06, 09:52 Reply

    Well, our ex(s) tells us truths we don’t ever like to listen to or acknowledge. You overreacted.

    • Francis
      September 06, 12:12 Reply

      Na wa oh. My self esteem issues no reach your own level sam sam. *in the name of the father and of the son and of the holy ghost*

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