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Monthly Archives: October 2013

Once Upon A Time

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So I started watching a new TV series and so far so good, I’ve been thoroughly impressed. The storyline is great, it’s made by ABC studios and called “Once Upon A Time”. The story is centred on a town in Maine called Storybrooke (don’t bother googling that, it doesn’t exist), and as the name implies, you’ll find all the story book characters we grew up knowing in it; Snow White, Prince Charming, The Huntsman, The Seven Dwarves, Little Red Riding Hood, The Evil Queen, Cinderella, Jiminy Cricket, Pinocchio and the ultimate Bad guy Rumpelstiltskin. Now in case you think you know how the story would pan out, I ask you to think again. The writers are good and the actors do it justice, so if you’re a movies person, I’d recommend it, it’s on its Third Season now.

Anywhoo, that’s not the gist, this column attempts to extract life lessons from these movies and I was able to pull one out of this too. It’s about the man Rumpelstiltskin, his (in) actions and how it relates to parenting. In the movie, Rumpel started as nobody, a lowly peasant labelled as the town coward, his life was so pathetic that his wife felt she had no choice but to leave him despite having a child for him and she followed the captain of a pirate ship that docked at the town port (Remember Captain Hook?). He was miserable, poor and could easily have given up if he didn’t have to prevent his son from suffering the same fate he did – living without a father figure. And as it stood, he had nothing in the world but his son.

There was a war going on and it had so ravaged the populace that the soldiers were recruiting children from the age of 14 upwards and his son would turn 14 in two days time. Now this was a man whose only reason for living is his son and the king wants to send the son to battle to die. He couldn’t live with himself if that happened, it’s one thing to be helpless about your own life but when it concerns someone who looks up to you, it’s a whole different ball game and it’s not easy to just sit by and do nothing. But in this case there was nothing he could do; he was powerless against this fate or was he? He thought long and hard and finally decided that they should run away. By nightfall, they took a lamp and ran, they hadn’t gone far when they were caught, the soldier asked for his name and when he said “Rumpelstiltskin”, the soldier laughed and told his son “do you know why your father here is called the town coward? It’s because he ran from the battlefield like a little girl” he and his men laughed hard “and now he is doing the same to you running like a coward” he threatened to throw him behind bars unless he begs him, the soldier made him kneel down and kiss his boot in order to let them go scot free.

If anything is obvious, it’s that his life had many problems (the more accurate thing to say is ‘his life sucked’) and needed serious fixing as soon as possible but he couldn’t see a way out. A beggar on the road told him about Dark Magic and how it would give him Power to control his own fate, save his boy’s life and do whatever he wants. Even if you are not desperate, that’s a solid pitch but to a desperate man who is about to lose everything, that’s a life-saver. Needless to say he took the beggar’s advice and got the magic and the power that followed, the one thing the beggar told him was “Every magic comes with a price” though he failed to mention how much. When the soldiers came to take his son the next morning, he killed them all, anybody goes as far as pushing the boy, the person had to be punished, and he became mean, wicked and unkind. His son pointed it to him and in his defence, he said “didn’t I walk into the middle of the battlefield and command both warring parties to drop their weapons and go home? Do you know how many lives I saved by that action alone? Enough for a dozen lifetimes I tell you”. The more power he got, the more he wanted and the more he got, the more he got the more his son was repulsed by him and was pushed away until he totally lost his son, the son ran away and never came back.

In fixing the faults of his own life, he ended up losing his son. He was no longer called the coward(no one dares try that); he could turn yarn to gold so he had wealth and power with fame to boot. But he lost the single most important thing to him – His son. Where is the lesson you might ask? Nobody is perfect and we all are trying to be better people. However we do that is the point of concern. If you start down a life of crime and wickedness to make money for yourself, if you go about making enemies without second thought, if you keep sowing seeds of wickedness, I think you should know that it’s someone that will reap it. Remember that Karma is a mean bitch, and she never forgets. If she doesn’t catch you, she’ll catch the ones close to you. A life for a life! Be careful you’re not living a life that is setting land mines for your offspring. Are you running an organization in trouble presently? Be wary of the choices you make in finding a way out; be sure it’s not a temporary fix that will result in a bigger tear after you’ve gone. We all will die eventually and it’s our actions and memories that will live on after us.

I have a friend who is chronically lazy; he would practically sit down and expect everything to be done for him. He doesn’t like to cook, sweep, wash and iron, he doesn’t like to go to the market, and he’s not good with homey stuffs at all. If you tackle him, he’ll tell you he has a plan. To deal with the laundry problem, he once said he’ll own a laundry business, get space, purchase a washing machine and employ staff to run the place while he goes about doing other things. That way, he doesn’t have to wash or iron again. Problem solved right? For the food conundrum, he also has a plan. He’ll own a restaurant! Where he’ll have a table in the corner and eat all his meals like a boss. He says he’ll make sure they are able to cook every meal he likes to eat properly. Another problem solved. As for the home situation, he’ll get a housekeeper that will take care of all that. All this before he gets married. Tell me that don’t sound great? Turning his own faults into money making ventures is genius.

Quick recap: you have a man who just sleeps and wakes up in his house; he does nothing whatsoever in its upkeep. This man will get married and have kids. The wife would only have to cook so no biggie unless she is lazy too and they both eat in “Our Restaurant”. But that’s not the real problem, it’s telling your child to go and cook and wash and sweep and do homey stuff when there is someone to do that for you. It’d take great grace for the child to obey so you run the risk of producing spoilt brats who won’t be able to do anything for themselves; a girl who won’t be able to cook and take care of the home isn’t on any guy’s wish list. Problem solved right? Err… I’d reckon no. In fact its multiple problems created. He ‘fixed’ his life only to create problems for his family. And that itself is a potential chain reaction.

So, in conclusion, find a way to fix your own flaws but also think about its potential future effects so that you won’t end up doing more harm than good in the long run. This is a wise course I tell you.

I remain @OverlordNoni

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Posted by on October 25, 2013 in Inspiration, Parenting, Social commentary

 

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I Am Not Fat

I’m not gonna say this twice! (If i do, disregard the others.). I AM NOT FAT! Y’all got that? I just happen to be blessed by the genetic pool that define my make up. For as long as i can remember, i’ve always had a bumbum bigger than most, i cant apologise for that. Plus i also have large bones to go with them. So its not my fault okay? I am not fat!

In case you dont understand my rant, i have recently noticed that accusation a lot. From people who are thin and cant add weight even if they were force fed. People who dont have bumbum and that are jealous of mine. They open their mouth and call me fat. I dont blame you at all . To add salt and pepper to injury, they now ask me to slim down and lose weight. I tell them in my mind that i am not fat. I eat good food and it shows. Shebi a big tummy is kuku a sign of good living. I have an healthy digestive system that extracts the nutrients my body needs to grow. So mind yourself seriously. Ka ji ko?

**** End of Rant****

Now, this is something i’ve wanted to write about for a while. You know how men desire women to have the perfect Figure 8? Even after 2 or 3 children? And they now complain that she isn’t looking like what he married and she argues that he is supposed to love her anyway since its his children that turned her this way. Man then sees another figure 8 and well endowed lady and starts cheating on his wife. Sounds familiar? Well let me rant before i put a twist to it.

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Having seen some women in their 60s, take Vera Wang for instance, that picture above was taken when she was 62. That body rivals a lot of young girls’ nowadays.

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This woman was 55 years old at the time.

Lets face reality, very few people in Nigeria can pull that off. My mum is 50 and she looks great for her age. Better than a lot of her colleagues who are even younger. In other to put this in perspective, you need to picture Lagos, if you are still on your bed by 6am, you can be sure you are not escaping that traffic, that early morning logjam that defines the streets of “Lasgidi”, you get to work and eat something, afternoon you eat something, by 4,5,6pm you leave the office, get stuck in returning traffic and pray you get home on time to prepare food for your family. You’re lucky you get home 8pm. And now, someone expects you in the middle of all that find time to work out? Come on! Lets be as realistic as possible here. Lets say you try more than most and watch what you eat…sometimes. After a while you realise its just not enough.
Another factor to consider is that by the time you hit 50, you’re pretty close to hitting a top position at work, less hard work, more paper pushing, document signing and of course more pay. So you do what everybody else does, you chop your life! And before you know it, your sides fill up, the figure 8 disappears, fat starts piling up in the stomach and voila, you are rotund!

I used to criticize those women, calling them lazy for allowing their bodies to lose shape. And siding with the foolish husbands who use that as an excuse to frolick with girls far younger than them. Saying stuff like “look at how soon Beyonce dropped her baby fat and jumped right back on the saddle” while forgetting one critical thing. Beyonce doesn’t represent the common American. Her type of work gives her the luxury of time. Heck! Even if she never sings again, she’ll never lack with what she already has. Forgetting that This is Nigeria! Where hustle has a face, has a voice, even has a name. And there is no time for serenren.

Before i started work, i used to think “hey just wake up early and do 30minutes to 1hr workout” and you’ll put the fat in check. Tell that to a mother of 3 who has to wake up and prepare the kids for school and still prepare herself for work all before 6:30am. I mean, whats there? How hard can that be? Right?
Now that I’ve started working, I’m So positioned that 10mins is all i need to get to work, factor in the time I’d use to get ready and all that,.I’d still have pretty notable time for my workouts. But alas it is not so! Even when I manage to wake up between 5:30am and 6am, I use it for my devotion! And sometimes sleep back, before u know it, It’s 7am and you have to be at work by 8, So I manage do 50-60 pushups and sometimes Add some sit-ups not regularly, dress up and his to work. Note that I’m single and take care of nobody But me.
So little by little, I’ve been adding weight these past months, and people are now talking and It’s pissing me off.

I tell myself many things, (my rant above), defend myself with genetics and the fact that I’m a guy, all that matters is How successful I am, I’d still be attractive. Shebi ladies kuku like money. I go further by saying, It’s not even that bad, when it gets really bad, I’ll do something about it, people just like putting their noses in other people’s matter. Screw them, It’s my life, It’s my body, and I will do with it as I please! Yada yada yada, meanwhile the paunch grows. I stand in front of the mirror and pull my stomach in, while telling myself “Is Nothing!”

Here comes the twist, its all about CONTROL. How much control do you have over yourself? Are you a victim of your desires or were you just living life as it comes? Do you close your eyes to the drops of water and start fixing when it becomes a flood? CONTROL! Many of us just live life singing “Que sera sera, whatever will be will be”, That’s all well and good until things take a turn in a direction you never anticipated or saw coming, life throws you a curve and you now have to “deal with it”. I’m gonna admit This, we know So little and can control that much, But wherever we find out that we indeed have control over, let’s not leave it up to chance.

Take a step today, you’d be amazed at How much just regular jogging daily can do to your body, your heart, lungs skin, and overall mental acuity. Just set a time, whatever distance you cover in 30minutes for instance, after which you head back home and prepare for work. If you don’t have that luxury, get a treadmill, get your whole body working and You’ll see the effect in a short while. Talk they say is cheap, So I’ve bought my running shoes and started. You might Wanna take the initiative too, take control. And when you don’t see the point (which trust me will happen in the first few days) just remember How Good You’ll feel both in and out when you’ve successfully lost some weight, you wont have to spend forever in the market just to find something that both fits and is attractive, you also get the extra benefit of shutting up your ‘beefers and haters’.

You can’t deny the power of habits and how much effects they have on our lives, the way I see it, we’re still young and this is an habit that once you inculcate, has many pros and few cons (can’t think of any off the top of my head ). Whether you’re male or female, young or young at heart, it’ll be to your own benefit. Especially ladies, you have no idea how sexy a flat tummy is, I shit you not when I tell you It’s damn hawt! You’ll immediately start feeling good about yourself.

Finally do it for you! Not for anybody or what they say. If you know how many people have asked me to start working out, some even went as far as instructing me to do so. Zilch is what it did. I decided to start jogging when I went to the market to get new trousers, I told my roommate I use size 32, got there and 32 felt So small I had to say What?! I picked up size 34 , took it home and it was soooo tight I had to go back to pick up size 36. Now calm your balls and listen. It was way too free and not corporate at all. I didn’t return it, I kept it as my Ginger source and the next day I started jogging. My terms! So don’t go doing cos you read this, find your own reason, it’ll Help you stay focused.

P.S. Try and use the word Big instead of Fat, it sounds nicer.

Thank you for reading. Feel free to drop your comments below.

I remain @overlordnoni

 
2 Comments

Posted by on October 6, 2013 in Discussion, Inspiration, Social commentary

 

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