IBK’s JOURNAL (Entry 17)

IBK’s JOURNAL (Entry 17)

January 12

I have started my IT in a clinic in Victoria Island. So far so good; I’ve been having an okay time. The place is alive with constant barking that fades into the background of your mind after the first day. There’s a steady supply of customers and cases to keep me occupied. They tend to come in waves. For an hour, there’d be a period of relative calm, and then the next thing you know, dogs are trooping in and out with owners. It also doesn’t hurt that I get to see exotic breeds too.

There’s also a fine-ass mixed-race fella behind the counter. I try not to ogle too much so I don’t give myself away by staring. His sexuality is out to the birds, but I try not to think about it because, well, (1) Le boo; and (2) there’s no point.

All in all, I like it there. Does it make me feel better about my choice of course? Perhaps. It’s so much better learning this way without all that pressure of exams and tests, and the doctors here are friendly and willing to guide me and my classmate, both of us who are interning there.

So on Monday, I was fiddling away on my device when I realised that one of the doctors and this person who works at a pet shop were talking about me, and the doctor was saying I’m Yoruba. He then gestured to me, asking in Yoruba if I understood what was being said, and I responded in English because I can’t speak Yoruba but I understand plenty of it.

Of course they went into the expected tired rant of how it was criminal for me to be unable to speak my mother tongue, and I shrugged and smiled sheepishly, hoping they’d drop the topic so I wouldn’t have to say I don’t really care that I can’t speak Yoruba. So far, I’ve been fine without it. The only reason it’s an issue is because other people make it an issue. It used to bother me before, but now, it’s like meh.

Anyway, what they wanted was for me to man the pet shop while the person that was supposed to be there wasn’t around. And I, as politely as possible, said, “Ko le werk.” Lol. Not in those exact words sha. I explained that how could I be in the pet shop and ignore the clients and patients (that are my primary concern) coming in and out.

However, because my parents raised me to be good shide, I said I would however man it whenever there was a quiet period in the shop. Simpu!

The person who was supposed to be there was however yarning dust about how running a pet shop was part of the veterinary business and it’d be important to learn. Tori! Learn what? How to write receipts? Mtcheeew! I’ve decided I don’t like him very much.

Later on, a lady who is there (I dunno what she does but she is just there) commented on my tab’s case. It’s very battered and worn out. She asked why I hadn’t changed it and I said I hadn’t seen the need to. It still protects my tab adequately and that’s what it’s for. Not for aesthetic purposes. She responded that I must live a very simple, easygoing life. I laughed in my head. She had no idea that sometimes I can be very self conscious and anxious and stuff. And I think maybe I have been trying to put up that front a lot lately, you know, self assured and stuff.

There’s stuff I’m pretty sure about, but there’s plenty I don’t know about. I think however that I’m getting less volatile and I’m settling, getting a bit hard. I guess life does that to you. I however wouldn’t want to get hard to the point of being unfeeling to the plight of other people.

I have seen it happen a lot – where people develop an “I don’t care” attitude or try to be so bitchy they begin to lose sympathy for their fellow humans in suffering because they feel like they brought it upon themselves because of things they could or could not control.

This might seem like such an open-minded view, but I think nobody deserves to suffer or be harmed. They might have it coming to them, but for another human to suffer… I feel like it shouldn’t be a thing of joy.

Of course my sensibilities are fighting against that notion. ‘You reap what you sow’ is a common aphorism. But just because someone is reaping what they have sown doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t sympathize.

A person gets kitoed and probably because he is a slut and in your eyes you are not, or he isn’t rich enough to afford the luxuries that you can afford that can indirectly proffer some protection, you feel like you shouldn’t sympathize. I’m not buying it. The heart shouldn’t be so cold.

I remember when a newly built church building fell and an atheist peep I follow on Facebook started to ask where their God was in a bid to prove his atheism. It annoyed me. People died for heavenssakes! Save the argument for later.

Speaking of religion, New Year’s Eve found me in church watching people pray. But I couldn’t connect anymore. I felt so cynical about what they were doing or what was being prayed for. So I decided to deviate a bit and prayed for what I actually cared about, and I finally felt that connection. And I must say: it felt good.

I was worried. No, ‘worried’ isn’t the word. More like anxious that I was becoming an atheist. Anxious because atheism is a bit of uncharted waters for me. But I don’t think I am. I am still very cynical about religion in whatever form it comes, but it just ends at cynicism.

This is all I can muster for now. Have a wonderful week up ahead.

Written by IBK

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  1. Pjay
    January 15, 08:43 Reply

    You’d get a pass from me if you can speak another indigenous language or any other language for that matter fluently. If English is the only language you can speak, you should truly be ashamed.

    • Ade
      January 15, 09:04 Reply


    • IBK
      January 15, 09:48 Reply

      Shame on you for thinking it is shameful

      • Pjay
        January 15, 09:53 Reply

        More shame on you for your inability to realize that being monolingual is more a curse than a blessing.

        • IBK
          January 15, 10:24 Reply

          Such exaggeration.. Curse ke.

          It’s neither a blessing nor a curse.. Just what is.

          Lemme come and be going before someone gives me a curse I don’t have ???

    • Francis
      January 15, 10:00 Reply

      He should truly be ashamed because he can’t speak a language?! ??????

      Those people stuck under bridges and jobless, how the language don epp dem? Just because you can speak your dialect and possibly several others don’t mean you should look down on those that can’t it. It’s very annoying. My lil bro was bullied frequently as a kid because of that mess and it was a freaking nightmare.

      Enjoy your talents and let others enjoy theirs

      P.S: learning a language doesn’t come easy for some. For some they find it easy to understand but difficult to speak.

      • Pjay
        January 15, 10:22 Reply

        Hi Francis. My heart goes out to you and your brother and I’m sorry for what he had to go through. Also know that I don’t subscribe to bullying in whatever form. However, I’d like to examine the reasons or the motive behind IBK’s inability to speak Yoruba language. Obviously it is not due to a difficulty in learning language because he apparently had/has none mastering the English language. Probably he was raised by all this middle-class parents who think it’s a mark of class for their children not to speak “vernacular”. It used to be the vogue in South western Nigeria at the time IBK was growing up. It’s utter rubbish, colonial and racist, if you ask me.

        • Francis
          January 15, 10:32 Reply

          Parents banning their children from speaking their dialect?!??? Guy that’s some too difficult to believe ish. Abeg any of such individuals dey here? Raise una hands bikonu. Very strange something. Their parents must have some deep rooted issues with their people. Lol.

          We were raised by middle class parents and pidgin was the only vernacular that was banned in the house.

        • IBK
          January 15, 10:37 Reply

          Biko don’t make assumptions. My parents spoke yoruba to us, still do but assumed since we understood enough to comply or respond we could speak it. They tried to encourage is to speak after learning we couldn’t and my brothers actually are much better than me.. I was never really bothered with it and the only reason I’d fret was because others were making it a big deal.

          And my dad admitted language was never his Forte when we had a discussion about it. If your reasoning is accurate all the French I was taught from primary till secondary school I should be able to speak now. However you are right about yoruba being made vernacular. It was punishable to speak any other language in my school and I think I just carried the attitude with me subconsciously for while so that the period I would have grasped the language much more easily passed.

          Trust me, I have thought long and hard about this and I have decided I’m fine with the way I turned out. If it is upsetting you or you feel I should be upset it’s none of my business. Na me get the tongue wey I dey use speak.

          • Chuck
            January 15, 18:01 Reply

            Were you taught French properly though? It’s not about how many hours you spend in class.
            That doesn’t invalidate his argument.

            You mentioned that you weren’t bothered. That’s what he finds shameful/ racist/colonialist – your attitude toward indigenous languages.

            Back to the ManU game

    • ambivalentone
      January 15, 10:29 Reply

      O ti e le so, o n binu? Fluently ehkwa? Even if u were drenched in tongues, if you do not see ppl to practise on, mo sorry. O sa gbo yoruba. Its Ekiti’s terrible loss to this day that we av a mush-for-brains governor (tout). Beht of course, Buhari haters beg to differ

      • Francis
        January 15, 10:36 Reply

        True that. Lack of practice don make me begin forget how to speak the 3rd language wey I take study for uni BUT I still know how to read and understand it sha…….for now ?

        • Pjay
          January 15, 11:03 Reply

          Erm.. Francis… You won’t believe the shit that happens in many Nigerian homes. “However you are right about yoruba being made vernacular. It was punishable to speak any other language in my school” If this happened in school, why couldn’t it have happened at home? If the parents erroneously believe they are building on what is taught at school.

          And IBK, it’s not a surprise that you don’t know any French now since you probably treated your French classes with the same nonchalant attitude you approach your mother tongue with. Majority of us didn’t pay attention in those high school French language classes. Like most of the curriculum in Nigerian schools, it was all about reading to pass. Also, in my school at least, we had no motivation to learn the language and nobody made us see why we needed to. It basically felt like we were being forced to do what we had no interest in. We even made up a definition for French language in Yoruba which goes along the line of French being a primitive language which our parents do not understand but we were being coerced to learn. Such ignorance! Who knew it was actually an exotic and romantic language. Till today, I still regret not paying attention.

    • King Mufasa
      January 15, 22:27 Reply

      I couldn’t possibly agree more with your comment, It is imperative you learn to speak an indigenous language.
      Just make an attempt to work on it.

  2. Nel
    January 15, 08:51 Reply

    PJay, really?
    What’s even in the indigenous language?

    • Pjay
      January 15, 09:34 Reply

      The emphasis isn’t solely on speaking an indigenous language but on the merits of bilingualism. For example, the ability to speak more than one language has been linked with a number of cognitive advantages. And about the indigenous language, whether we like it or not, most people find it easier to relate with “sons of the soil”. Those who seem like one of them because they speak to them in languages that they can understand. That are close to their hearts. This is why a more urbane and seemingly intelligent Fayemi lost the Ekiti governorship election to the uncouth grassroots man, Fayose. The Yorubas, and I think the same goes for most Nigerian tribes just can’t deal with that bourgeoisie “who cares if I can’t speak my mother tongue” rhetoric. Forgive me but coherence isn’t my strongest suit.

  3. Mandy
    January 15, 09:15 Reply

    There are some people, some very perverse people who when they get their comeuppance, you can’t help but thoroughly enjoy their suffering. I for one was very thrilled when Otokoto and all them other human sacrifice dealers in Owerri got what they had coming to them.

  4. Elvis
    January 15, 10:15 Reply

    God please take all my Igbo and give me the man of my dreams..

  5. Lopez
    January 15, 15:53 Reply

    Lwkmd Elvis i’ll share my hausa with u when d igbo is taken away. Just find that man of ur dreams first.

  6. Chizzie
    January 15, 19:24 Reply

    Please if you want to change your tab case, I know a person, who knows a person.

  7. Z
    January 16, 08:02 Reply

    Like someone said, all those people living under the bridge… How the language don epp them

  8. Jeova Sanctus Unus
    January 17, 16:13 Reply

    Because the world transacts business in any other languages apart from English, abi?
    Most Americans speak one Language, are they all dead? Most Europeans (excluding Brits) speak 3-5 (world) languages, has any shamed you?
    Biko ga-noro ana.

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