Last year, I was kitoed.
I had just turned eighteen, and a week after my birthday in April, I arranged to meet up with a guy I met on Grindr who went by the name ‘I Have It Big’. And I think that is the most embarrassing part of this story, not the kito – that I was kitoed by a person whose moniker is ‘I Have It Big’. I did not even get to confirm this statement, because I of course did not get to see his penis.
2019 was the year I discovered sex. Fresh into the university, living away from home, mostly free to do as I pleased, I finally thrust myself into the harsh and unloving ecosystem of Grindr, and one of the first things I discovered was that I was ugly and unfuckable. Imagine the shock I felt, as I had always thought I looked okay. But Grindr told me NO, as I was getting blocked left, right and centre, whenever I sent potential hookups my selzy photos. My self esteem was in the gutter (in some ways, it still is), but all of this was after my first hookup, which I scored surprisingly easily. My disvirgining awoke in me a ravaging desire for sex and I did not have the discipline to tame it. So imagine my horror when I discovered that my uncontrollable urge for sex would not be sated because all the reasonable-looking people on Grindr that knew how to type proper English did not want to fuck me. I had to do something about it, and so I settled for scary, unkempt men with severe mouth odour who had sex with me on the floor while rats ran round us (I’m not even joking).
You can then understand the immense gratitude I felt when, after sending ‘I Have It Big’ my photo, he not only didn’t block me but the picture he sent to me in response contained the image of a handsome, dark-skinned man with rippling muscles and chiseled, well defined features.
Heu! O bago! No way was I not fucking this one!
I overlooked his terrible grammar, his pushiness, his reluctance to relay basic information about him, his WhatsApp picture that showed a different person from the one he sent on Grindr – and I agreed to meet him at 7pm at his place somewhere around Alaba.
I fasted, I douched, I oiled, I smelt nice, I looked good, and I packed clothes for the next morning. I was ready. At 5:30, I left Yabatech, boarded a bus to Orile and stopped at Shoprite to re-douche, re-oil, relook good and re-smell nice. I eventually got to Alaba (Suru, I think), where I called him to come pick me up. He instructed that I cross over and walk down to a certain bank where I was to wait a short while for him to arrive. By then, it was quite dark and since I have terrible, really terrible eyesight, crossing that main road was like a suicide mission. But I did it. I got to the bank and waited for him, and about ten minutes later, he called me and directed me to walk towards his direction. I set my eyes to night mode and began scanning the stream of pedestrians milling about me for my dark-skinned hunk.
The person I however caught waving me forward was not the person from the picture ‘I Have It Big’ sent. This one looked like he had it small. Literally! He was short, at least two heads shorter than me, and he was light-skinned. He also did not have rippling muscles.
“You’re not the person from the picture,” I said tentatively, careful not to let my budding annoyance and disappointment seep into my voice.
He replied, “I don’t like using my real picture on Grindr.”
I took a closer look at him and realized that despite the fact that I had been catfished, my catfisher was actually quite nice looking. He was no ‘I Have It Big’, but at least he had it. There was a burgeoning fear of kito in my mind, but I pushed it aside as the konji hunger overwhelmed all common sense.
And so, I asked, “Which way to your place?”
He explained to me that his place was suddenly unavailable as his sister had popped in out of the blue to visit a friend who lived nearby, and that she was sleeping over. So we’d have to lodge into a hotel.
“Are you scared?” he asked me.
Embarrassed that my face had probably exposed my skepticism, I quickly replied in the negative. I wasn’t really scared in fact, because my reasoning was that a hotel was actually going to be a much safer alternative, seeing as we would be in a publicly-owned space and he would not be able to orchestrate anything fishy.
And so, we began the hunt for hotels. As he led me through the streets of Suru, Alaba, we talked about where we were from, our villages, our languages. He told me he worked as a lawyer’s assistant and divided his time between Lagos and Imo State. We berated the Goodluck Jonathan regime for criminalizing homosexuality and ironically castigated kito scum that were ravaging the queer community in the Orile- Mile 2- Festac axis. Essentially he made me feel safe with him.
We arrived at the first hotel where loud thumping music was playing and he said I should wait outside while he checked out the place. I acquiesced. A while later, he returned and told me the rooms were too shitty for the price they were calling and that we should go check out somewhere else. We walked a little further before stumbling upon another hotel; this one was a bit quieter than the last. In the reception, I sat down while he spoke to the receptionists and then he told me to wait while he goes to check out the room. We had walked a considerable distance, so I was all too happy to relass and be taken kiaroff. From my seat, I watched as a hotel staff, male, led him up the stairs. He returned a while later and affirmed that the room was okay, and as we walked up the stairs to the room, he loudly berated the receptionists and the hotel for not giving receipts after payment. On getting to the first floor, the man who’d previously led him to check out the room was waiting for us, and he effusively greeted me and welcomed us to the hotel.
Finally we were alone and I was ready for hot steamy sex. I pretended to be paying attention to the Big Brother Naija show that was happening on the TV while I waited for him to initiate the sex.
“Aren’t you going to bathe first?” he suggested.
I agreed. It was a good idea, seeing as we’d done a bit of walking. As I took off my clothes, he handed me a towel and said he’d go in after me. I went into the bathroom and I proceeded to scrub myself clean. The bathroom was dark because the bulb did not work, and the water was cold because there was no heater, and my only source of warmth was the hot steamy sex that I was imagining would soon go down.
Little did I know what was already happening outside the bathroom.
After my bath, I put on my boxers and made to go back into the bedroom, but when I pushed the door, it did not open. I pushed it again and it did not budge.
Was it stuck?
I pushed again. Nothing.
Ah-ah, I thought. Which kain wahala be this?
I pushed and pulled and pushed and pulled, to no avail. I decided it was stuck. At this point, I knew I had to call out to ‘I Have It Big’ to come to my rescue, but I was a bit embarrassed at the prospect of him rescuing me from a faulty door, so I gave it a few more tries. But the door still wouldn’t budge. We were not about to have telepathic sex, so I swallowed what little pride I had and began to call out to ‘I Have It Big’. I could not remember his name, so I alternated between calling out “Hey” and “Hello”. He did not come.
Could he not hear me? Because I sure could hear Tacha shouting at another housemate and maybe that bitch was drowning out my voice. I hey-ed and hello-ed, and hit the door and pushed the door and shouted a bunch of Igbo names: “Ifeanyi…” “Kelechi…” “Emeka…”
But ‘I Have It Big’ did not come. It began to dawn on me what had happened – that I had bene locked in, that I had been kitoed – but I refused to accept the truth. I stayed steadfast on the thought that the door was just stuck. That the TV was too loud and that was why he couldn’t hear me. He’d probably just stepped out to get drinks.
I resumed pushing door with increasing force, careful not to slip on the wet floor, hoping each thrust would be the final one that’d set me free and into the arms of my potential lover. But it was an exercise in futility. I was locked in. Panic began to rise in my chest, in my heart, in my head. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t think.
No, I could think. But only about the multiple terrible ways this could end. Konji was no longer blocking my brain and thus began an influx of all the kito stories I’d heard of gay men being beaten, robbed, raped, stripped naked and recorded. I was sure the same thing was about to happen to me. I was sure that Ifeanyi or Kelechi or Emeka had gone for reinforcements and was on his way back to destroy my life. Certainly by tomorrow, everyone would know I’m gay; my family, my few friends, my coursemates. My story would end up on a blog and my life would be over. I could see the bright lights of traffic on the road through the bathroom window, and at some point, I heard a police siren and I was certain they were coming to take me.
With my back to the wall, I slid down to the wet floor (like I’d seen in movies) and I tried to cry, but I could not. I just felt so utterly and completely stupid, and there was no space left in me to even feel sorry for myself. I could still hear Tacha fighting with one of the housemates when I got up from the floor and decided that I had to break down the door. I held onto a sliver of hope that the door was simply just stuck and that ‘I Have It Big’ had simply just stepped out, but I was not about to wait for someone to come find me. I was going to have to huff and puff my way out of this bitch of a situation.
So, I took position at the farthest end of the bathroom from the door and I charged at the door, hitting it hard with my right shoulder.
I did it again and again and again. Charge, hit. Charge, hit. I slipped and fell. Got up. Charge, hit. My body hurt but I did not care. Charge, hit. The top hinge began to come off. I focused all my energy on that area and I pushed and pushed till the hinge came off making the top right edge of the door bend out into the room, giving me leeway to climb through. With my hands on the top edge, I pulled my body up through the newly created space and onto that top edge, such that my head was almost grazing the ceiling, and then I jumped down into the room.
It was empty.
I rushed to the bed where I immediately noticed that my bag, which contained a little cash, my identification, my glasses, change of clothes and school notes, was gone, and my iPhone 6 which I had left on the bed had disappeared. I grabbed the clothes that I took off to take my bath and fished into my trouser pocket for cash. I found nothing.
Oh wait, there was something – my ATM card. It was still there. He hadn’t taken it.
Slightly relieved, I sharply threw on my clothes, my shoes and made for my glasses before remembering that I didn’t have them anymore. How was I supposed to make it out of this place if I could barely see? I dashed out of the room, into the hallway and down the stairs with quivering limbs, bruised body, a rapidly beating heart and blurry sight. Past the receptionists who I did not spare a glance, out the reception that had prostitutes standing at the entrance and calling out to potential customers, me included – “Fine boy. You wan fuck?” At least somebody wanted to fuck me – and out the hotel gates where I finally let out a sigh of relief.
But I was not safe yet. For all I knew, ‘I Have It Big’ might be lurking in the environs or on his way back with reinforcements. So I had to get out of here ASAP. But I did not have any cash, save for the 1k in my account. I narrowed my eyes and scanned the vicinity for any banks in sight, and on finding none, I decided to flag down an okada; the okada man would know what to do. As the man I flagged down came to a stop, I rushed over to him and explained that I had been robbed of my belongings not too far from here and urgently needed to get to an ATM so I could withdraw money to go home. The okada man felt immense pity for me. I could tell from the amalgam of sadness and anger that was splayed across his face, and it was not hard to see why: I was a quivering nervous wreck. He drove me to a bank where a long queue snaked out the ATM booth and told me that he would wait for me. I told him not to bother, that the line was way too long.
“No worry, I go wait,” he said reassuringly.
I thanked him and dashed to the queue. As I waited my turn, I kept staring at the bank gate, certain that ‘I Have It Big’ would bust through it at any moment; that he would have gone back to the hotel and when he did not find me where he left me, would search the surroundings until he found me.
He did not.
I withdrew my last 1k, ran out the bank and hopped onto the back of the okada.
“You collect am?” he asked.
When I replied in the affirmative, he revved his engine and we zoomed off. As we weaved through the streets and then out onto the express road where vehicles flashed this way and that at breakneck speed, some with headlights bright enough to blind, I wondered how I would have made it home in my disoriented state. Surely I would have been carpeted by a car if I had tried to cross that Mile 2 Express by myself. The okada man dropped me off at First Gate, and after I paid him, he told me to be careful and that he was sorry about what happened to me, before zooming off into the distance: my knight on shinning Yamaha.
I eventually got home, and the first thing I did, after mumbling a response to the barrage of questions regarding my reason for showing up at home by 11pm, was disable my Apple ID on my stolen iPhone 6. After that, I logged onto Kito Diaries where I read other kito stories, and then, I cried myself to sleep.
It’s been roughly a year since it happened and I have not told anyone about it, mostly because I have no one to tell and partly because I’d always felt utterly embarrassed about the whole thing. How could I not have seen the signs? How could I have been so utterly careless and stupid?
But I am starting to see that kito for what it truly was: a blessing. Because if this relatively mild kito had not happened to me, surely with the way I was going, I’d have been embroiled in something much worse. Since the incident, I’d had to wean myself entirely off Grindr, which is good seeing as I was on the verge of addiction, and my mental health is all the better for it. I no longer have that sick feeling at the pit of my stomach that I used to have when I used the Yellow App. I’ve also been mostly celibate and feel so much safer, as there is no niggling fear of STD.
I like to think that God tried to warn me about what I was getting myself into, because before I went for that hookup, on my way to the bus park, an old friend of mine whom I had not spoken to in a long time suddenly called me out of blue and insisted on seeing me, as he was alone in my school and needed someone to keep him company. I told him I had somewhere important to be, but he was insistent, so much so that for a split second, I wondered if it was a sign of the risk I was taking by going for the hookup. But of course, konji is king, and so I brushed my suspicion aside and reiterated that I had somewhere to be. I should have listened to my instincts – and I think this is something that has been said multiple times on here; that if it smells like shit, then it probably is. And shit really does happen.
I wish I had more information to divulge about ‘I Have It Big’, more on his real identity, but I cannot even remember the (most likely made-up) name he gave me – Ifeanyi? Emeka? Kelechi?
All I can say is: do not allow the quest to satisfy your konji block your brain like it did mine. Just masturbate and move on with your life. Las, las, we go dey alright.
Written by Geminiguy