Wake up! Saturday morning! How did you spend your Friday night. I woke up pretty late, all thanks to insomnia caused by watching movies. Here is Saturday with its loads and loads if cooking, cleaning, mowing, scrubbing, work, work, work.
I had to sneak away from my unending chores to host my blog cast, don't tell my mother otherwise I'll be done for; not that she would whoop my ass. Well today on the blog cast we are going to talk about the punctuation mark called semicolon (;). I would go beyond the grammatical relevance of the semicolon, so for you not to be bored I am not giving a grammatical lecture. Our prime focus would be on the life relevance of the punctuation mark; that is how we can achieve a #Flawless life through it. Now someone might ask again, what is the relevance of a semicolon to the blog cast for today; My life is not over yet;? (Jeez there is so much punctuation marks muddled up).
Recall that Writing 101 taught us that a semicolon is used when the writer is not willing or sure to end a sentence. Now we can get the picture of the inevitable relevance of the semicolon when we are writing the story of our lives. This shows that despite all odds we are set and inspired to never be chocked by the the thorns of life, to continue after various challenges or after we notice a clog in the wheel.
The semicolon campaign is gradually gaining grounds over the world. I am loving it and it is my wish to indulge us. It started by a girl who had had her fair share of life's trashy trash; death, hopes dashed, drowned dreams, twisted expectations. Taking a bold step she tattooed an almost invisible but powerful semicolon on herself to tell life in its proud face; "Do your worst! My story is not over yet!". Today, I want each of us to join the semicolon campaign. Not necessarily by putting on semicolon tattoos but by having a firm heart and determined spirit and saying aloud to ourselves that; "my story is not over yet."
Word of advice; add the semicolons to your abandoned hopes, to your once unrealistic expectations, to your seemingly megalomaniac aspirations, to your stalled dreams. You have to do this because you are the graphic designer of your life and its sole navigator. Wake up and continue you life's story.
Thanks for #WAKING UP FLAWLESS
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Saturday, 31 October 2015
Wake up! Saturday morning! How did you spend your Friday night. I woke up pretty late, all thanks to insomnia caused by watching movies. Here is Saturday with its loads and loads if cooking, cleaning, mowing, scrubbing, work, work, work.
Monday, 26 October 2015
Today I would liklike share a story that would illustrate the beauty that is locked up in a seemingly ugly figure or situation. Wherever you are waking up from: a cramped apartment somewhere in America, a disco hall in Africa, an subway somewhere in Europe, a cotton field in Asia. As you rub off your sleepy eye to tackle this new week squarely do me a favor to stop by this post, read it and share or talk about it.
On today; the first episode of #WAKE UP FLAWLESS, I think this story we are about to tell will keep you in a positive frame of mind throughout the week. Now, push aside your bedraggled sheets and read:
A rich man somewhere, many years ago when kittens never meowed. He was having the royal garden in his castle trimmed to look more beautiful. Apart from this, this rich man wanted to get rid of an old, ugly tree stump right in front of his porch. That ugly mass of wood always spoilt the day of this jolly good bourgeois, I mean being the first thing he sees every morning.
A wood carver who coincidentally passed by the rich man's gate begged to take the tree stump. "Take it, it's not worth a penny!" The rich man must have blurted out. Back home this skillful wood carver worked on the old tree stump all night. The next morning he lay on the floor of his studio wasted, tired, and famished. But as the sun rays caught the brilliant ages of the window panes, it was not the old tree stump that lay on the floor but a beautiful sculptured bird. To cut this short story shorter, the wood carver sold his irresistible masterpiece to the same rich man. The rich man obviously obsessed with the beauty of art was willing to part with half of his fortune for the sculpted bird!
A brand new working weeks. What ideas are you afraid of dreaming because you feel that they are unacceptable? What aspirations have you stifled? Have you given up on yourself? Have you being reduced to that tree stump? Wake up! Mould, refine and nurture yourself to the apogee that even life would be willing to part with all its fortune. Remember as they say no dream is too big and no dreamer too small!
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Sunday, 4 October 2015
I woke up this morning with this cranky feeling in my joints. Indeed, it was a very cold night, coupled with the fact that it rained cats and dogs yesterday evening through till this morning. It was as though the skies were mourning the loss of someone special. It was like any other rainy morning. I said my prayers lying on the bed still wondering what was special about this morning...
Then it dawned on me that this was not just any other morning - It was a Sunday morning!...Then the puzzle pieces in my mind found harmony. I had to go to CHURCH!!!...I got off the bed, dragged by weak legs with my joints crackling (they were still asleep) and went across the room towards the door. I went out the door and saw that it was still drizzling heavily...
The Sun was hiding in great fear and trembling, lest the rain drops quench its Flaming body. The rain drops fell like watery arrows to the already saturated Earth.. I reckon the Earth must have drank to its fill because She was throwing up water...
Now I found my Sweet mum and greeted her with a smile (gosh! My facial muscles were sleepy too)...She was already half- way through with her preparation for Church. And here I was, still in my nighties...She then asked me to hurry up so as not to end up going late for the 8am Mass at St. Philomena's...I did just that, and before long we were on our way to Church... We arrived just in time to meet the Parish Priest's Opening Sign of the Cross...You know, I have always attached great importance to this part of the Mass. Entering into the church, my eyes met with a cynosure of brightly dressed women...
Most of them were gorgeously dressed in Blouses with matching Hollandis Wrappers. Now coming to their head gears, i assure you, its always a sight to see every Sunday...It occupied the air space like canopies or better still, parachutes....Well, Well, I must give It to womankind, they sure have the time and skill to create such well crafted head gears from starched pieces of long Silk...
The Mass readings were taken and the Priest gave a very resounding homily and interspersed it with fine humour every now and then...'kpam', fell a plastic bottle containing water and this drew my attention.. And then I saw a tiny hand reach for the bottle, I looked to see who that hand belonged to...and behold I saw a very little girl dressed in a jumper jeans with straps across the shoulders and a white shirt....she was quite dark and really small...she picked it up hurried back to her mother...She was so hyperactive all through the Mass...She was busy pinching and saying angry babyish words at anyone who tried to curtail her freedom...
She kept me smiling all through the Mass....and before the end of the Mass, I had given her a secret name In my Mind ~Little Miss Mischief....Other parts of the Mass passed without any eventualities of interest...Offertory, thanksgivings, etc went by, Consecration followed suit...Announcements were made by the Catechist....
Then the priest gave his final blessing... I hurried home, relieved to be finally set free....I actually enjoyed service today, thanks to my unknown little friend ~Little Miss Mischief...Now am at home, writing this piece....waiting to do justice to whatever is on the menu ...I just love Sundays ...
Thursday, 1 October 2015
JEWEL Of AFRICA
A land endowed with a multitude of Human and Natural treasures;
Blessed by God at creation beyond all imaginable measures.
Its an epitome of God's creative and artistic prowess;
But is also a characteristic example of the mix between the faithful and the lawless.
In times of of peace, it resounds with a rhythmic melody;
But sadly, in periods of strife its environment becomes bloody.
But yet, its trumpet stills blows loudly;
Because among other nations, its stands proudly.
It is indeed a land enriched with an awe-inspiring cultural heritage;
One which will enjoy the envy of nations from age to age. O God! Bless our FatherLand,
for we have attained an age so Grand.
Yes! We still bask in the euphoria and glory,
I believe we will all live to tell the story!
Long Live Nigeria!!!
God bless Nigeria!!!
Happy Independence Day!!!
Friday, 18 September 2015
Ernest really disagrees with me in many ways, especially about hair, ideology and most importantly about Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Lol, you would enjoy this post of his.
INDIVIDUALITY VS. REALITY
In my first year in the university, I carried an unrelaxed, ungelled kinky afro to school. The hair was jet black and massively full on my already big head. A choice I expected everyone to appreciate. But they were problems. And when my hair problems came, it did not come because my head is big, no. It did not come because I was a guy carrying big hair, of course they were many other guys carrying big hair too. But to 'stand out', in the quest of driving my points home, I refused to either relax my hair or gel it with products I could not pronounce the names of the chemicals written on it with which they were made. I only used oil and hair cream to 'anoint' it and 'enrich' it and I hadn't even read 'Americannah' then.
Most times, we decide to be comedians on reality just so we can 'stand out'. And it sounds good because America supports it; 'be yourself' you know. But the question really is, Are we really being ourselves at those moments or are we being what we believe people, the society expects us to be. We call it "Originality", "individuality", "authenticity". It is not as if am against these things but Shakespeare said "all life is a stage." And the character William Schuster in the favourably reviewed musical glee referred to it as 'art' when he said, "the purpose of art is pushing boundaries." But unfortunately he goes on later and says "but when just pushing boundaries is their only aim, the result becomes bad art."
Reality has taught me in my still short life that I don't have to walk the streets of West Africa on stark nothingness just for the babes to feel and see my sex appeal! It has taught me that in suggesting or partaking in jungle justice (a situation where one who is accused of a crime, say stealing is gruesomly mobbed or burnt alive in public without trial.) I do not really single myself out as one who hates thiefry. Neither do chauvinism or feminism isolate me as one who respects the male or female sex as the case may concern. That was the same thing the great inventor George Washington Carver saw when over a century ago he said out of a probable knowing that "when you can do the common things in life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world."
We have been advised not to make decisions when we are too angry or promises when we are too happy but on a daily basis, my kins in different crannies of the world, pierce their bodies, draw an ogreish tattoo, wear a disturbingly ragged and rugged afro hair (or any other hair), wear too many or too few clothes just because they need a 'singling out', all the while forgetting that when you can do the common things in life in an uncommon way, you will command the attention of the world. And stopping the eyes from seeing the real beauty which is you, which is me.
Life is too hard when we struggle for individualism. An African music star I impoverishingly respect, 2face Idibia in his song 'just me' said "individuality can not make us tall" and I agree with him in this, just as I agree with him in many other things (family size inclusive). And I state again, life is too short to live it out struggling to stand out.
While my hair lasted, among the whole students and lecturers I met on campus, only one saw the point when she said "you look like a writer." From others (those that ever talked about it), I heard the name "prof!" A name I later found out was a mock title from many.
At the days end, when the water I poured on my head as I took my bath reached my scalp immediately it was poured, when many people could no more recognize me because of the deforestation I had embarked on, when I stopped knowing different throes and fits of pain as I tried to comb a hair that would never stay combed, when my disturbing, ragged and rugged hair gave room to decency. When I finally had a haircut, a very fine haircut, I found out that I did not become a worse-off writer. I also found out that the decision to carry an unrelaxed African hair, not to follow popular culture on hair affairs, not to look young and cute for them sisis just to prove that I could write was a sin against me. I found out that what makes me write good is within and not without. And with that finding, came upon me, a sort of loving for me. Now I know just how to stay flawless.
Read the posts always, view, like and comment. It's my friend's gift to you.XoXo.
Ps. Am not saying jump onto the bandwagon, am only saying, its the computer age people and I'd rather be in the bandwagon, have a kind knowledge of my destination and alight early so than avoid the bandwagon sweat a trek and come late and dusty.
Tuesday, 8 September 2015
That Lonely Moment
It rained cats and dogs last night, the rain just kept coming as though the Earth was crying out for more water to drink. Those type of rains that made mischievous teens post 'weather for two' on Facebook. It was on the verge of becoming a storm. The thunder hurled at my window and rattled our old zinc. I held fast to my blanket to keep warm.
But this Morning, there is so much calm, a calm so deafening that made me wonder if it rained at all last night. Needless to say that it is always after a storm comes that peace and calm quietly sets in. As I stepped out of the door this morning, the cool and clear atmosphere caressed my face. I deeply inhaled the fresh savor of the morning air which journeyed down my lungs so gracefully and I exhaled thankfully.
My heart is filled with gratitude to God for another wonderful day. I look around and see Nature still drowsy with sleep on its eyelids. The trees show evident signs of life, as a gentle morning breeze flows by and the tree leaves rustle in rhythm with its passage.
Quietly, Nature starts to awaken from its slumber, after such a Cold night.. A bird calls excitedly from a far away tree and another one of his species (probably a close colleague) replies from another tree not so far away from from where I stood and flies off to see what the matter was..I wondered what they were talking about. What ever it was, it must have been important, for they seemed excited...Now a group of ants appear, as if out of nowhere, to begin the day's hustle...You needed to have seen them...You see, ants have always fascinated me with their high level of hard work, organization and Civilization.. Perhaps they are the most civilized of Little creatures...And so they march off in a single file determined to make good use of their day...As I look more, a tree squirrel runs up a palm tree, eyes its yet unripe fruits hungrily and scurries along disappointedly...At long last, the Sun too decides to finally rise from its bed. I guess it must have also had a cold night like I did...Its yawns hungrily and then Smiles happily, spreading it's light rays all around. Slowly, Nature fully awakens and goes about its business...A kite hovers around in the sky scanning the horizon for breakfast with its pin-point accuracy eyesight.
This looks like any other beautiful morning with the crickets chirping excitedly and talking about some important matter...Indeed, this morning is so serene and peaceful! What other place can this peace be experienced than in the Village..Yes! Am at my lovely Village in Imo state....#NoPlaceLikeHome #ASweetMorningInSeptember... I_am_Mario_Cruzo✌....
Saturday, 5 September 2015
I have a funny and jovial lecturer in school. A jolly good fellow and an academic doctor. I remember missing a deadline for a group assignment submission. I was a freshman then and was scared when I walked into that office. I managed to cough out and said; "Sir there is a problem." Hilariously he replied; "the problem with you is that you have a problem." That got me thinking. Prior to this, I had practiced how I would tell him how my group members were not helpful in the assignment process but those words of his made me feel the dignity of accepting my own problems, taking into consideration that I caused them myself and not my group members or the weather.
The analogy above does not illustrate that I submit assignments late but that just like the most of us, we find a way of tracing back our problems and translating them into other people's fault. We fail to get a job and you blame it on how harsh the interviewer was, you fail a course because you did not work hard enough to pass yet you mount trailer load of curses on the lecturer, you stuff yourself with high calories yet when diabetes and high cholesterol level comes knocking on your door you blame the so called wicked witch from your village, you cannot get a good husband because of your bad character still you do not miss series of prayers to break the wicked forces of the enemy. What is the problem with all of us? Face the cold fact and swallow the bitter truth; look closely and find out that most a times we are the architect of our own problems.
Wait, think and think again. Before you start blaming a herald of enemies for your troubles, have you talked to the man in the mirror? The first step is to quit portraying the man in the mirror as a saint and extricating him from all the blames. Its quite unfair! I know its hard, yes its quite hard to take full responsibility of your problems. Now if you continue blaming others for your problems, they would still be minding their business leaving you stalked with your problems because it does not affect them, its your life not theirs. If you continue blaming people for messing up your life, you would succeed in not going anywhere. Try channeling the energy that you expend on placing blames to solving the problems you are facing.
Someone might want to ask; why do we have to relieve all blames from the third party? Well its simple, my group members made me not to submit my assignment so I continue to blame them instead of doing my assignment; I end up getting a zero in Continuous Assessment. He hurt you badly and you can't move on, you are still gloating over this while he is married with gorgeous kids. My best friend turned against me; really, he is living his life without a flinch of doubt. The point is, cross analyzing matters is not the way forward ( at least for being Flawless). Admit it and whisper to the man in the mirror; "your problem is that you have a problem. Sure as hell, we are going to fix it!" Just like my friend would say; "leave matter for Mattias!"
KEEP ON STAYING FLAWLESS.
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Sunday, 23 August 2015
Are you from anywhere in the Sub- Saharan Africa and you graduated from secondary school, then you must have come across this name: Ciroma Chukwuma Adekunle on your Secondary School Certificate Examination paper. The name is always written with a thick shade as a model of how the examination candidate. The problem was that many students spend hours trying to fathom who was this mystical being, who had this name!!!
I, for one, wanted desperately to know who had that name. I asked my parents, teachers, relations, classmates and what have you. I received various answers. A particular wiseacre of a classmate told me that this mystical name belonged to a man who has the highest grades and scores ever in the history of the Regional examination! I almost believed it, in fact it became like a compulsory prayer to score have the highest scores in that exams. Heave knows that Ciroma of a guy must be a genius!
Well, this misconception continued until I stumbled into the truth one day. Yup, that day I was just lying down on the bed with nothing to do. My window was opened and the air of wisdom was flowing in. Eureka! I have found it! I have finally unravelled the mystery behind the equally mysterious name: Ciroma Chukwuma Adekunle. The answer was below my nose all these years. The name was a blend of three native names from three different parts of Nigeria. Ciroma came from somewhere in northern Nigeria, Chukwuma has an Igbo origin and Adekunle was a Yoruba name. Seriously! I had lived in the misconception of the truth for long. That moment that you learn the right thing.
Now was the moral behind the story? Emmm... guess I cannot say. No, I've got one: do not go around questioning what you can think out on your own. That might sound dumb but I don't care. My greatest happiness is that the mystery behind Ciroma Chukwuma Adekunle has been solved!
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Thursday, 13 August 2015
Now let us take a cue from the world of science. We all belong to a set of rational beings called homo sapiens, to that effect, we can see ourselves as thinking men. We are confined, as always, to this straight, rational and realistic way of thoughts and actions. Our little spark of madness comes when we start thinking way outside the box, when we deviate from the normal. This in turn accentuates our uniqueness, highlights our individuality, makes us stand out and picks us out of the band wagon of Everybody does it.
After all this, what then is my spark of madness. I decided that if a little spark of madness could fetch Lupita an Oscar, I would need fifty shades more. Is it my writing? My speech? What is my spark of madness? I soon got tired and bored of finding it.
Then this morning, as I woke up flawless, I had some revealed knowledge of my little spark of madness. It was staring me in the face and I could not even notice it. I was the spark of madness, my whole self and my personality. My constant for individuality or doing things differently from what everybody does. Trust me it made people feel exasperated and might earn me a Highly opinionated Person. Truly we all have a spark of madness, what is yours? Delve and dig deep into yourself and find it. That is what keeps you going. If I can find mine you can, O Yes you can.
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Sunday, 9 August 2015
Some evenings ago, I was dust my father's old books and stumbled upon a collection of poems. Bored and with nothing else to do, I dove into the vast world of rhymes and rhythms. One particular poem caught my attention, it was a poem that told the story of a hen and a carp ( a certain kind of fish). The hen, after laying an egg shouted her thanks from the rooftops to Progeny for making her a worthy hen. In the nearby pond, the carp scorned the ecstatic hen. Mrs. Carp, having laid thousands of egg, felt it was too stupid for Mrs. Hen to disturb the whole neighborhood because she laid an egg. According to Mrs. Carp, it would be an unimaginable hullabaloo if she screamed her thanks to Monsieur Progeny for every egg she laid.
Now, when we move from this nicely crafted literary intentions of the poet, we find ourselves stuck with one word which is; value. The Oxfords dictionary defines value as the degree of importance given to something. The biologist would say that we have different genetic and physical makeup and this justifies why individual conception of value is subjective.
Value systems and clarifications is a social issue that goes beyond FlawlessBlog™. We sometimes wonder why we struggle to get a good job, build a house, get married or pursue an academic ambition while Ciroma Chukwuma Adekunle is just contented with having his name on every WAEC examination paper.
The field of morals and ethics is gaining grounds. It tries to explain to us, to a large extent, why some values are worth keeping and others are not. Hey! No matter what these moralists propose, prescribe, argue and concur, the truth is that values are purely on personal convictions.
Is it art? Is it music? Is it food? Whatever it is, trust your own judgment and don't mind what all the Mrs. Carp would say. Yes the society, they would care. Our unique values are the luster or sheen that makes us glitter away in the society. Remember that if you don't stand for anything, you would fall for everything. The society might wag their tongues, but who cares? After all, the mouth is meant to perform two functions; talking and eating. Keep up to those values as long as the remain valuable to your life.
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FROM FLAWLESS, HAVE A VALUE FILLED DAY...
Saturday, 14 February 2015
I WOKE UP - FLAWLES
The gentle rays of the sun hit my windows this morning announcing the dawn of a new day. I woke up in time for sober reflection, a glowing cast was evident on my face. I turned back to my ripped off and charred yesterday. I discovered that someone, somewhere and some how nearly walked away with everything I could call mine- esteem, dignity and self confidence!
One of my grievous mistakes in life is setting standards for myself to follow. I was always self-concious of my "petit" nature. I inposed stretching exercises, I raided fashion malls for ultra high-heeled shoes so as to add a few inches to my height. What did I get? I tumbled down the hallway and "yammy" lumps started popping out of my legs. I banished those heels from my closet. After all I had attained the height of wisdom.
I looked at my pimply face and rushed to the cosmetic shop for the most "effective" face smoothners and pimple removal cream. I wanted to be in the Nigerian context "fresh boy". It was not funny, my skin started to peel and getting bleached. I was not ready to give up my skin colour for anything. I had to appreciate what I have.
Next were my clothes. They were too "non-swaggy" and "un-fresh". I wanted to spicing things up. I acquired the newest chinos trousers and bad-boy shirt s and gold chains and rings to go with. I felt wacky wearing them. I brought back my "un-fresh" clothes and started walking tall again.
What should I do with my hair. I just couldn't stay brushed as dry elephant grasses spring up when they are trampled. I bought bottles of chemicals called "relaxers". I even thought of dying my hair that was before Ifemelu in Adichie's Americannah taught me that my hair was my unique signature.
Then I turned to how I spoke. I thought it was "un-English". I bought a phonetics textbook and started speaking in a shrill voice. That was awful. I was angry and had a fake voice, I was angry because I had a fake voice and I had a fake voice because I was angry.
I stopped everything. I could not keep up to the standards I kept for myself. I felt to realize that they were mere societal conventions, they were not standards at all. I started realizing that I was flawless because I know my flaws.
This is for young and colorful men and women who drawing to the wit ends. Just to say that we should wake up every morning- FLAWLESS.
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