A lot has been happening…but then again, a lot is always happening in Nigeria. One minute there appears to be a flicker of hope that we just might be beginning to get things right…you know, news such as the emergence of ex-CBN Governor, Charles Soludo as the winner at the Anambra State polls, and most…
There’s always so much buzz about numbers. You know…” strength in numbers”, how numbers make the difference when it’s crunch time and other sundry claims that make you feel as though if you have a multitude behind you, you can hardly go wrong. And to a large extent, these assertions make sense. Manage to sell a commodity worth a thousand naira to ten thousand people, and you have ten million naira. Just like that! Harness the numbers within your locality to vote for you during election season, and you are on your way to winning. Organise a ten thousand man match and you are likely to get the attention of the authorities for one reason—numbers.
When it comes to matters of love, everyone has an opinion. People have varying views on how they would like to be shown love and even go one step further to attempt to dictate how other people should be loved. It’s why the relationship dynamic between two of the Big Brother Naija Season 6 ex-housemates, Saga and Nini continues to generate controversy among viewers. The majority find Saga’s undeniably enamoured self off-putting; those on the other side of the divide insist a man like Saga is every woman’s dream and critics are only being hypocritical with their condemnation of his approach.
Groups, especially within the context of social media and online platforms, in general, have come to stay. They are conduits for collaboration—tagged the new currency; and avenues for information sharing and building formidable relationships. And so today, we have all kinds of groups: professional, school, business, ethnic, religious, recreational and, of course, fun or gossip groups. The dynamics of each group vary in almost the same way they share similar characteristics; there are the active members who are vocal about their thoughts on every topic, Frankly, without them, the group would be dead.
Many times, the disagreements and fights that find their way to the streets of social media are a result of this clash in values. A party reasons a certain way and tries to foist their conviction on others. There’s never going to peace when this happens.
My individualistic leaning also meant I was hardly swayed by friends. Peer pressure was a myth to me even though I saw others struggle with it, and often, I would joke that if there was anyone who would do the pressuring, it would be me.
But then again, it has become a pattern for our leaders to not weigh the implications before embarking on a course of action. The flirting with bandits and terrorists; offering them the sort of a care package a top executive would envy. The skewed appointments and nepotism, ditching federal character in the mud and leaving qualified persons from other tribes wondering if they are a part of “One Nigeria.” And the neglect of urgent matters such as insecurity and poor health care to dwell on less important ones such as a deleted tweet.
There are not many things as scary as being one of the vulnerable groups in this part of the world. And by vulnerable, I refer to categories of humans such as children, women, the poor, the old, the orphaned, and even single folks. As a member of any of these groups, you are reminded that you are only a hair’s breadth away from abuse at any given time. Unfortunately, when we think of violence, we are inclined to narrow it down to a man brutalising a woman, we rarely think of it along the lines of the many other people who are prone to this threat to life.
One of the interesting things in life is how two people can be so close, share interests and have great conversations, yet view issues from divergent prisms. A person’s thought pattern influences their outlook on life. It’s what makes them kowtow to popular opinion or hold a different view from the majority. I find that irrespective of the situation a person finds themselves in, their perception dictates their disposition to it.
“You need to find balance”: these words can come in form of an admonition, advice or appeal. The most common instance where we hear this is in respect of work and family. We are told to find work-life balance and when folks say this, they mean we should not be found to be tilting towards one spectrum of our existence at the expense of the other. The gender that hears this the most is female. Women are admonished to ensure they never neglect the home because of a career, and so, all her life, she is in a constant state of contouring herself in many different ways to see that she “finds that balance”.