One of the reasons I have managed to stay out of kito trouble in all the years I’ve spent hooking up as an adult is because I worked hard to tame that wild beast called konji. It’s a regular saying among Nigerians that “konji is a bastard” – a way of explaining away the disasters that result from our obsession with sex. For straight people, this disaster could be as mundane as expending a huge amount of money, time and attention on that person who’s got you pussy-whipped or dickmatized. For gay people, it’s as serious as literally life and death.
People do things they would not ordinarily do when they are caught in the vice-like grip of their sexual desires. When they are konjified. But what happens if you can recognise when to stop and think? If you operate with “Better safe than sorry” instead of “Last-last, something will kill a man”?
I remember when reports about the kito person named Repented Ageless or Davis Alvan began coming to me. After I got the first report, I asked the complainant for the pictures of the guy he was reporting. He directed me to his Facebook page, where I saw the photos of a face that had me doing a double take.
He was somebody I knew. Somebody I’d once come close to hooking up with.
We met on Grindr. On an early Saturday morning. I’d woken up that morning around 6 and was idly going through Grindr, reading messages, chatting with some guys and checking out profiles. We’d begun chatting and the pictures he sent were attractive enough to keep me interested.
But even then, that early in our acquaintanceship, the conflicting nature of the things he was saying had me feeling some type of way about him. First, he said he was at a hotel in Ajao Estate, and then minutes later, he said he was in Ajah. I was trying to understand how anyone could’ve gotten all the way to Ajah from the mainland in less than 20 minutes, when he began talking about how he’d be back later in the day to his aunt’s house. But earlier, he’d said he was in a hotel in Ajao Estate to see off a friend whose flight was that morning.
These were small discrepancies really, but they were enough to weaken my interest in hooking up with him. in the following couple of days, the more we chatted, the more my interest waned. But then I would go check out his pictures every now and then, and hear two voices inside my head carrying out a conversation.
Konji would say, “But he’s fine. I mean, look at him.” To which Common Sense would reply, “There is also something not quite genuine about him. he’s not worth the risk.”
The day I finally cancelled him was on an evening, around 8 PM, when I’d just gotten home, and I saw some messages from him, wanting to know if he could come over. He’d sent the messages earlier in the day; I just got around to seeing them. I typed back, apologizing for the lateness of my response and expressing regret that it was now too late to expect him.
He swiftly replied, “It’s not too late. I can start coming. I could even spend the night.”
This kind of recklessness is something I’ve never found appealing. Dropping everything to go meet for the first time a hookup, at night, in his turf – this is something I try to discourage in me and with people I know. I don’t always heed my own advice (as evidenced here), but I think of it as a red flag when someone gets that desperate to hook up with me.
Plus he’d invited himself to be my overnight houseguest – something that should be my prerogative.
Because I didn’t feel right about him, because I try to pay more attention to my gut, and because I’ve been reading way too many kito stories, I calmly typed back that it wouldn’t be possible to see that night, that we should fix our meet for another day.
His response was a nasty text that made me realize I’d made the right decision and sent me straight to the block button. It read: “You are not serious. What nonsense are you saying? Is it because I’ve been wasting my time with you? If I don’t come and see you tonight, then don’t bother expecting to see me again.”
That was our last correspondence and I thought I was well rid of him. imagine my surprise when he came up again as kito scum who sets up other gay men.
I thought about all this again recently when I got chatting with someone I met on Tinder. A guy named Taiwo. Good looking. Dropped his number after a few exchanges for us to move over to WhatsApp because he wasn’t steady on the app. It was apparent to both of us that we were interacting with the intention of fucking.
I took a beat, at this point, to chuckle to myself and ponder on the conversation. This guy was evidently NOT gay. Either that or it must not have been long since he started sleeping with men. In a community where sexual roles have even become a way of life for some of us, where we use labels to make sense of our interactions with one another, who on earth – if he were gay – would be this vague when posed the question of about his role?
The most hesitation I’ve gotten in a hookup when the “what’s your role” question came up was from a guy who was trying to explain to me that he was a Side. Gay men are usually very clear when it comes to answering this question, especially when the circumstance is an imminent hookup. The person who fumbles with that question, who says things like “Whichever way you want” is either playing at being gay or is just discovering his gay – none of them who I’m remotely interested in having sex with.
And “I am the guy here”??? The last thing I’d ever tolerate from any gay man is the insinuation that I’m less of a man simply because I am the receptive partner during sex.
The icing on the cake was his presumption of a transaction when we hadn’t even talked about it.
Send me the location and funds.
Funds? Kini funds? When did we talk about this being a transactional sex?
All of these summed up to one thing: this guy was a hustler. Most likely a straight man who sleeps with guys for money. The very last kind of man on earth I’d ever want to fuck with.
I was already done with him at this point. However, even then, Konji tried to argue his case. Konji started with, “But he’s so fine. I mean, look at him.” To which Common Sense retorted, “Shut up. You want him to bring to his house someone who will either carry police and come or disgrace him before his neighbours because he didn’t get the right amount of funds.”
The road to a kito situation is often dotted with small flashes of warnings, little red flags that stand by the roadside, flapping in the wind, demanding that you notice them. And oftentimes, we ignore them, so consumed are we by our sexual needs. And then, when the bus stops at Kito Junction, we’re left with a wry acknowledgement of how konji is a bastard.
But it’s not though. You give your libido power. It doesn’t take it from you. This “helplessness” is the line of argument most men use to justify rape. And I’m yet to get a rebuttal whenever I ask those men: “If you knew the woman was HIV positive, would you still think of yourself as “body no be wood” and violate her?”
Konji is not a bastard. We simply do not listen to our common sense often enough to know when to stop.
Written by Pink Panther