MUSING WITH DARLENE: THE PEOPLE OF MY KIND

MUSING WITH DARLENE: THE PEOPLE OF MY KIND

Last Sunday was thanksgiving in church. I was sitting on my own, jejely minding my own business. The usual me would probably have been chatting away with Angela, my church friend, about what people were wearing right or wrong, who liked to show off, who needed help with styling, all that jazz. You see, she is the fashion and styling expert and I am just the guy who is not friends with anyone but knows everything. I like to have someone I can chat with and share the occasional gossip with, seeing as I’m not very friendly with everybody in church.

On this day, Angela was not in church, so I was seated by myself, pretending to be listening to the Sunday school lecture, while wondering to myself what made Mummy Ajibola accessorize that gown with a terrible belt. First off, abortion belts – or waist managers, as professionals call them – are so five seasons ago and they are not making a comeback anytime soon. Secondly, that gown was ill-fitting and the interlocking works on the décolletage extended beyond her waistline, so there was no need for a belt altogether. Thirdly, the belt was just ugly. I mean, who puts a light burgundy on an ash-coloured gown nitori olorun? She is a regular on the church best-dressed list, so I was confused altogether. That day was just not just her day. Maybe her husband was at it again.

This was what was going on in my mind when another Mummy (let’s call her Mummy Jay) crept up behind me, put her hands on my shoulder and whispered into my ears, “Please do you know how to tie gele?”

“Gele biitibawo? No I don’t o,” I responded.

“Ah-ah, why nah?” she queried.

“Because I don’t wear gele and I don’t have a wife yet who wears gele,” I retorted. “In short, I have no reason to learn how to tie gele.”

What she said next has stayed with me till this very moment.

“But people of your kind are usually good at tying gele and things like that,” she returned, before promptly walking away.

People of my kind?!

The only thing I have in common with this woman is the fact that we attend the same church. We’ve only ever exchanged pleasantries, and she had already stereotyped me.

Now that I think of it, I should have followed her up immediately and told her to bring her gele let me tie for her, provided I would be permitted to follow her home and cook for her husband as well. He would be in for a treat since cooking is one of the things people of my kind do well. I wouldn’t have failed also to educate her that once her husband takes a person of my kind to bed, he would always come back for more. I also would have told her that people of my kind may very well be looking for someone to tie their gele in church on a Sunday morning, because people of my kind love to get to e function all glammed-up and in style. All these I should have told her in a mocking manner, in such a way that she’d get the message without the impetus to act insulted.

I knew exactly what she meant by that statement. She had assumed that because I am a tad flouncy, then I’d therefore know how to tie gele, do make up, make hair, cook well and so on. If only she knew that I am as lazy as the guy next door in the kitchen; I can cook, yes, but I do not until I absolutely have to. I do not know and have absolutely no interest in learning the art of cosmetics and hair-making and tying gele, or any of that stuff expected of the people of my kind.

At the end of the day, I like the people of my kind. We are talented and brilliant and always excel well in anything we put our minds to do. We are resourceful and we are deep. Through all the feelings and emotions we bottle up inside, we still are the liveliest people to be around. We light up the room. We take the stage and own it. We are resilient, powerful and yet tender. We are survivors.

A time will come when the people of my kind will teach the female fold how to be women. What can I say? I LOVE THE PEOPLE OF MY KIND!

Written by Darlene Sirilo Johnson

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38 Comments

  1. goldd1st
    April 07, 10:50 Reply

    Cheers to dat…we can survive any stone they throw at us….n this antigay bill they fink they tie us down…yes we r a fighter!…n I strongly believe dat dis bill will break loose…that’s my dream…thank u Darlene

  2. Mandy
    April 07, 10:53 Reply

    “But people of your kind are usually good at tying gele and things like that,”

    Hahahahaaa!!! What kind exactly is that? Darleene, you should have clarified biko. So you’ll know whether you are out of the closet to your church people. 😀

    • daleen
      April 08, 16:11 Reply

      whether or not they think am gay is yet to be known so far as they have not confronted me

  3. Keredim
    April 07, 12:08 Reply

    What exactly is the issue here?

    That she didn’t call you “gay” or she asked you to tie a gele??

  4. Kenny
    April 07, 13:00 Reply

    Until I know what she meant by that my mind will not be at rest. You should have asked her. She might not even think you’re gay though, it could just be that she thinks you’re ‘flouncy’ as you said. At least there are flouncy people who aren’t gay. No?

    • Peak
      April 07, 15:39 Reply

      Forgive me @Kenny and @Keredim, but I think both of you are being overly patronising right now.

      I understand that one would get a better understanding of the situation, if they witnessed it directly. Make no mistake, the message is always loud and clear no matter how well coated and camouflaged in niceties when presented. It happens all the time, Ppl are calling you gay when they make dismissive remarks such as ” boygirl, woman, we never see you with woman before, you sure say ur prick de work, you look like a woman, you are so flamboyant, you are too refine for a man, okunrin bi obirin, okobo, ome ka nwanyi e.t.c”. So forgive me if I don’t see what both of you are seeing,

      No be until person speak language way fowl and goat go understand before you know say them de yab you.

      • keredim
        April 07, 16:31 Reply

        “No be until person speak language way fowl and goat go understand before you know say them de yab you.”

        Maybe that’s the issue . We see being called gay as an insult.

        All the examples you gave (with the exception of “Okobo” I think) does not mean one is gay. There are many heterosexual “Ome ka nwanyi’s out there. So it is not a given.

        The woman was brave enough to talk around it, I think with all Ms Darlene’s sass the woman should have been asked to clarify what she meant.

        As it stands “your kind” could have meant “Tall or Short people”; “Bespectacled people”; “Light-skinned people”, or “Guys with big bottoms” etc.

        By the way, you are forgiven…twice

        • Peak
          April 07, 17:46 Reply

          Hahahahahaha, Nnam, biko what did I do to you, to command “By the way, you are forgiven…twice”…?

          “Maybe that’s the issue . We see being called gay as an insult.” I would have gladly agreed with you if only we don’t live in a world where masculinity isnt everything and where people feel the fastest way to diminish urself esteem and worth is to call ur masculinity into question. We see it happen all the time. All around us and even in Hollywood. The fastest way to start questioning anyone’s credibility (usually men) is to start a gay rumor (in hollywood) or insinuate that they aren’t man enough. Unfortunately a lot of us think that way (there is no shame in admitting I am one of them). 2ndly, remarks like this have a way of forcing one out the closet, hence why “we” pick offence. Cos we feel someone is giving unsolicited assistance to unceremoniously drag us out of the closet. So it’s only natural for us to go on the defence because we are being threatened on two fronts. An out and proud man won’t take offense being called gay, unless it’s being used in a derogatory or fashioned in a demeaning context.

          ” There are many heterosexual “Ome ka nwanyi’s out there. So it is not a given.” As much as I’d like to take your words, I can’t cos they don’t match the realities a large majority of us deal with everyday. Men who are effete, are generally regarded as “GAY” (remember that we live in a country where are sentenced before committing the crime) and less than mean. Women even see them as lessors. A lot of Kdians have equally said in the past, that they would have a hard time believing an effeminate man is straight. So where does that live the straight folks and their superior knowledge about sexuality?

          “As it stands “your kind” could have meant “Tall or Short people”; “Bespectacled people”; “Light-skinned people”, or “Guys with big bottoms” etc.” Once again, I really really would like to agree with you cos your point makes sense…if only we were in the court of law and u are defending a client who made a slanderous comment. Unfortunately, I can’t help but say no. “”Your kind” in this context, was brilliantly crafted to hit a target without leaving a trail that would hold the yobo in contempt.

          • keredim
            April 07, 18:50 Reply

            You said “Forgive me @Kenny and @Keredim,….” and “….So forgive me if I don’t see what both of you are seeing…..

            That’s is why I said you are forgiven twice

            • Peak
              April 07, 19:48 Reply

              Awwwn! How gracious of you angel mgbayali.

      • Kenny
        April 07, 17:24 Reply

        PEAK I wasn’t patronising in anyway. Even the writer wasn’t sure what the woman meant by ‘your kind’. First of all they barely know each other and unless she has a very strong gaydar, I see no reason why she should suspect he’s gay. Secondly, Darlene didn’t say the woman was condescending or whether she gave him a sneering attitude so I don’t think she meant any harm. It could just be that she thinks he’s a fabulous guy who can tie gele that’s all. He shouldn’t make something out of what is not.

        • Peak
          April 07, 18:02 Reply

          Na so! So inside all the men way possibly de church that time, na only am she see abi? Bcos na only Darlene waka come *in my Patience Jonathan voice* She leave all, the protocol and usher ppl and her fellow women, way brekete for church come waka come meet Darlene with the idea say his “kind” suppose sabi tie gele, abi be ko? Lol abeg kenny forget matter.

          FYI: People don’t ve to have some sort of interaction or relationship with you to know you. Even Darlene said it best when he said ” I am just the guy who is not friends with anyone but knows everything.” So Mama jay may not “know-know” Darlene, but that don’t mean she doesn’t know everTHINGS!

          • daleen
            April 08, 16:20 Reply

            hmmmn! thanks so much for you in dept analysis. her entrance makes me know that tongues have been wagging in that church. might be time to leave but before i do, ill jist Angela and see what she has to say. ill update you guys anyway.

  5. Khaleesi
    April 07, 14:33 Reply

    Preachhhhhhhh Sista Gurl!!! we are lively and talented and brilliant, despite our often turbulent emotions, we have mastered the art of being lively and yet sensitive!!! yassssss gurl!!!
    ***flips hair and sashays away in a twirl of flouncy skirts****

  6. Peak
    April 07, 15:16 Reply

    “At the end of the day, I like the people of my kind. We are talented and brilliant and always excel well in anything we put our minds to do. We are resourceful and we are deep. Through all the feelings and emotions we bottle up inside, we still are the liveliest people to be around. We light up the room. We take the stage and own it. We are resilient, powerful and yet tender. We are survivors.”

    Chile! You better preach on it and make a believer outta me, so that the unholy winged creature called lucifer be further damned and shamed! Thank you Chisos

    This account is funny as hell. And that read you felt you coulda-woulda-shoulda given her? Would have been of epic proportion.

  7. ambivalentone
    April 07, 16:32 Reply

    My ‘aaaahhh’ at that “…people of your kind…” part was so loud, I felt I could sink in the ground (for you of course). In retrospect, I got angry all over again. You know ‘my kind’ are useful in more ways than that, yet your derision of ‘my kind’ never lets you see beyond how and with whom I get down. Really???

  8. ronniephoenix
    April 07, 19:05 Reply

    Wow, it’s been a long time since I came on here.

    I just want to clarify some things.

    1, There is someone named phoenix, who isn’t me and whom I have no idea existed till today.

    2, I am not dead “yet” unlike what many people would have wanted.

    3, I “ran away” from here cause I didn’t feel safe here anymore. I came here last year because I felt a connection, I felt safe, but I don’t feel so anymore.

    I know a lot of people “hate” me cause I’m different, cause I’m trans and asexual. A lot of gay people hate trans people, I’m not bothered by that, I just feel I shouldn’t be bothered with what two timing ungrateful bastards think.

    I don’t think I will fully come back, but I just want to remind people that I’m still alive unlike what some dark minded bitches on here would want.

    Xoxo

    Ronniephoenix.

    • ambivalentone
      April 07, 19:20 Reply

      Chile, I don’t believe anyone hates you on here so relax. You are no different from Max, DM, Pinky, Jemima, Keredim, Delle, etc. When u r at the fore, it only seems u get hit hardest. Do not feel unsafe. We asked after you whilst u were gone (if only to pick on someone…lol)

    • Peak
      April 07, 19:27 Reply

      Oh shut the hell up you wean and give me a hug. Nice to see you are well.

      Do try to pop every now and again, worrying endlessly is not good for my blood pressure. And enough with that hate nonsense, we say a lot of vicious things to each other, that doesn’t mean we mean them *bear hug*

    • chuck
      April 07, 21:57 Reply

      No one wants you to die. They’re just not interested in paying attention to your tantrums or taking your pleas for attention seriously.

      • Mandy
        April 07, 22:29 Reply

        Thank you, Chuck! Clearly, he’s returned with his flair for drama

        • ronniephoenix
          April 07, 23:25 Reply

          One more thing you stupid lowlife, at least have the decency to adress me with FEMALE PRONOUNS.

          DAZALL.

          • Pink Panther
            April 08, 00:35 Reply

            Ronnie, if this is your attitude, kindly refrain from commenting. Because I. Will. Not. Tolerate. This.
            If all the time you’ve spent away from here hasn’t instilled any maturity in you, then please go back there and keep looking. It’ll come to you in time, I’m sure.

          • Mandy
            April 08, 00:40 Reply

            Call you a ‘she’, with this your bratty immature attitude? Yea, I’d rather fuck pussy first. Child, clearly both your drama and delusions are making a comeback. Tsk tsk

      • ronniephoenix
        April 07, 23:21 Reply

        Hi chuck or fuck or whatever your stupid fucking name is supposed to be GO FUCK YOURSELF.

        Hi mady, brandy bitchy mandy, you should also go fuck yourself along with fuck, or maybe you should both get a room, I feel disgusted by the smell of your idiocy. *spits*

        I am a fucking drama queen, DEAL WITH IT BITCH!!!!!.

        I’m going through real issues and I don’t need a couple of stupid dumb fuckers to come add more stress to my life.

        Bye bitches, see ya soon.

        The resident devil is here, bring on the hate.

    • Delle
      April 07, 23:55 Reply

      Hey Ronnie! Actually, I must admit I’m among those who were scared you had harmed yourself but apparently, you’re alive and ‘kicking’. Nice seeing you again, hun.

    • daleen
      April 12, 17:15 Reply

      am so glad my submission could do this for you. its makes it all worth it after all. this gladdens my heart.

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