Thursday, 29 May 2014

Bon Appetite

Some consider it rude to eat on the run, but I never invented the rat race. Wake up late, enough time to shower and dress, out the front door.
Really need to look up, read the name of the local pattie shop. Ms. Volupte is not there today, some other older lady, her moms maybe. She berates me for drinking strong black coffee, says I'm black enough as it is. I try to ponder what she just said, makes zero sense. She's fcuking with my mentals. We laugh heartily. I like her, humour as cranky as Volupte's
Bench, platform 1, Catford station. I proceed to have breakfast. Bon Appetito


"I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings" (R.I.P Maya Angelou)

"I Know Why The Caged bird Sings", classic musical interpretation of a classic book, a joy to hear Maya's recital on it. Great album from Marsalis with DJ Premier a.k.a Primo on the production duties

 R.I.P Maya Angelou. And R.I.P to the Black President, Fela Kutii

My skin is black, My hair is wooly

Talib Kweli's take on Nina Simone's classic Four Women.  Possibly one of the greatest hip hop songs ever made

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

It was a beautiful day, she could have been living in Panama

Interesting nights. I finally got hold of my girl after almost four years. A long time, especially in London minutes. Last time I saw her was on her wedding to a European guy she met on Fakebook. I asked her "and what exactly have you got to say for yourself ey?"

"I know, but it was a beautiful strange day" 

It was a beautiful strange day.. lots of sunshine, her dad completely forgot the groom's name during his speech, every speech ended in a poem, the sister invoked our ancestors, the chief bridesmaid very bossy, a live band belting out 80s classics, a photo booth for personalised wedding pictures, a comic book invitation card, a giant chocolate fountain, a silly football match between the groom's men and the bride's girls, a open top bus ride to the reception, a woman's dream, a.. Divorce.

She's OK. Back with dude she broke up with to marry European guy she met on Fakebook.

Life ey?..

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Rain cheque

Tuesday morning, all geared in my cycling outfit, I go to get the bike from the garden, it's raining cats and dogs (dogs?).   Nah, dusting down the oyster, can be catching a cold, the training can wait. I really felt the five days of riding last week, and not always in the positive way. As one gets older the recovery time becomes longer, and you so don't want to do it the next day, just about getting your frame onto the cycling devices. Must admit, after day three of cycling I did feel fitter, faster on my feet, reflexes noticeably quicker (all that weaving in and out London traffic :) I'll do public transport, give it a rest till the rain clears up a tad.


So I argued politics with the boys as we smoked high grade trees. My man Wes unashamedly stated he voted UKIP, Father voted for labour, the rest of us ingrained apathy. We laughed, rounding on his "misplaced" xenophobia. We reserved ridicule for Sammy who said he voted the nicest sounding name, couldn't remember who or what party. Typically political animals, we had all the talk about  Europe and what not, but jack to say on the local level. Can't remember it being this apathetic. Wes is an interesting one, electrician by trade, mixed race African, employs two guys, off the boat Jamaican and Croatian, obviously cheaper than local equivalent, yet bangs on about "our country".  I work for a company that enjoys lower cost of labour by employing Ukrainians and Indians.

I think it's an economic issue, not political

Monday, 19 May 2014

How long is a minute?

Been a London minute.

Sunshine, family, football finals (Arsenal won Yay!!!), erotic fuelled party nights, quarrels, make ups, elation, regret, fun, laughter, music, swimming, rose wine. Love. Always love. Sometimes it's difficult to describe one's time line, especially one that perhaps has too much stuffed in it.

"I walk across water the depth is deceptive, devils charm my route their diction deceptive. I walk across water, glide upon land, 1/3rd is human, the rest is pure sand.. I'm Jackie Chan"

Can be difficult to keep up sometimes. I am like Bruce Wayne.  So we pray (..5 times a day, but still carry an AK47, dreaming of 72 virgins and heaven..). I went to a new church yesterday, one very local to where I live, few minutes away. Beautiful building and interior, spoilt by white pictures of Jesus. The statue of Mary did look a tanned European, my scatter shot thoughts, weaving bizarre in my atheist head. It was a very peaceful Sunday mass. The cranky old lady next to me smelt of piss, I may have spoken to her a few times on my street, might be a neighbour. We exchanged handshakes in the sign of peace. Irish reverend father, mid 50s, sermon about Jesus the son, very blunt. I like Irish people, very blunt.

It was a lovely day so I took my three sons swimming. A 10 year old, 7 year old, and Mr baby. I marvel how baby looks like my Dad. Same single minded, bow legged coolness. Can babies be cool? Mine is, like my old Dad.  Sometimes as I change baby boy's nappy I tell him of my misdeeds, he just smiles. Maybe he understands.  I tell him grow up and be different from his old man. I watch my sons in the swimming pool, my past, present, my future. I very definitely don't want any more children, I thank Allah for his bountiful gifts, pray for him to bless others without.

My thoughts broken.. the train's just arrived at London Charring Cross train station.

My London minute is up.


Thursday, 8 May 2014

William Onyeabor - An Afro Electronic Funk Pioneer

Wow! This documentary was a trip in pure nostalgia.  William Onyeabor's electronic funk music was the backdrop to my childhood in the late 70s/early 80s of Enugu, Nigeria. Constantly played on the radio, my dad playing Onyeabor's songs on the 8-track car stereo, my young Uncle Bart (rip) doing the moves from the video. I can already see the flare trousers and platform shoes lol!  My brother and I used to run around singing "Atomic Bomb". Ridiculous but such was the richness of life and childhood. William was one of the many musicians who popped out of Enugu back in day, but dude was way way ahead of his time.  Enugu was, and still very much is, a very creative city with an abundance of musical talent.

Big up you guys for releasing this great documentary!

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Leslie Jones

So is she insensitive and crossed the line?  Is she simply being a comedian?  Yes I laughed in parts, but not much to laugh about really.  Argued by many, the Transatlantic Slave trade is a legacy with no closure, off limits as a source for joke fodder.   For a lot of us the world of the west is still a plantation.

I see the irony and applaud her application, but I'd rather not hear that joke.

The city doesn't sleep

Bright morning, greyish clouds. I ate so many nuts last night I was too full to have breakfast. Lazyish prep for work. Another dollar.

London, transient. 

Saw a girl that looked like Anna. Whatever happened to my beautiful Anna? My Anna I shared a passionate kiss with one drunken night, witnessed by the full moon.  We pretended it never happened.  Whatever happened to Rockin' Robin of Barnet? Robin swore he was my English Nigerian brother from another mother, even learned a few words of Igbo. What became of Nemo?  Left for an internship with the Guardian Newspaper. Did he get the job?  Some one said his dad passed away. His old dad had stories for days, stories of Yom Kippur. We never smoked that spliff. Where is Lisa? Someone shot her boyfriend at Lazer Drome. She had asked if I liked him, I said he looked like a dealer. What happened to Tai? My brother Tairu? Lizzy, Marlon, Anne, nova.. too many. Already the memories fade.

Where do peeps go when they fade from your life stream? Why do some stubbornly remain? Why is the sky blue?

The sky. It's almost full moon. We see the same moon.

"I want you to myself I can't help this"

Nice weekend, bit of everything. Hip Hop Karaoke @the Jazz Café, plastered on drink and surrounded by a gaggle of beautiful black women, a visit to the in-laws, swimming with a bunch of screaming boys, late night TV. Long bank holiday weekend, short working week.

Ordo Abchao. Order out of chaos.

I was in reflective mode this evening. Spoke to a friend who shared a personal situation I really wish I didn't hear, made me question them, something I feel I have zero right to do.  I honestly felt they were incapable of doing the wrong thing.  A part of me is bankrupt and needs fixing and maybe I had unreasonable expectations on them to serve as my moral compass, my wailing wall, beyond reproach.  Maybe it's the fact this was never shared much earlier when I would have had little in the way of forming an opinion. I fleeted between emotions, anger, the wry smile, realizing I was cast in the role of father confessor. I know what it is to tell a lie, be what I'm not, jeopardise things. Nothing to be proud of. 

I've lost good friends because of some shitty situation I caused or the other. I also know what it feels like to be lied to, that inner anger, perhaps knowing you have to cut slack and pretend you agree with the liar, justifying to self on accepting the lie told, on some oh, I'm too morally broke to challenge what they've just said, blah. The better way is to call the person out, maybe painful, still easier closure.  But human emotions are very complex and every situation is different. It is uncomfortable and a big burden. As it is I took my friend to task on their matter and they were grateful for my brutal honesty.

Sometimes we are selfish in our pursuit of pleasure, not pausing to think of others or even ourselves. But there is hope. In my friend's case, I want them to fix their issues, get back to being my personal shrink. See, there I go again, being a selfish so and so.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Boko Haram

Boko Haram. Western education is sinful. 


The name cloaked in mystery, as impenetrable as the far northern Nigerian Hausa people from whose language it's name comes from. I lived in Nigeria for many years, a few years in the deep North, and despite my best efforts, never learned much in the way of Hausa norms and traditions. Their's is a rich culture, full of colourful music, festivals, food, but everything is cloaked in Islam. Mind, was never of the fundamentalist variety.  Given the legacy of the Biafra war, it wasn't in one's interest as an igbo man to ask too many questions of the locals. Now with the scourge of the Islamic terrorist, the region is even more alien and impenetrable to the average Nigerian.  The few folk I knew from up there have all fled to the South. It's like two countries in one. Christian vs. Muslim, North vs. South, Igbo vs. Hausa. A very strange situation, and a reason it is that simple to walk off with over 300 school girls and not a word is said.

The national politic doesn't care about that part of Northern Nigeria. Maybe they dare not care that much in Islamic areas. This can be seen from the inept insensitivity and abject stupidity of the Nigerian government, their wives and their security forces. Hopeless monkeys.  Those girls could be in Chad, Northern Cameroon, or Republic of Niger for all one knows, the borders along that part of Nigeria porous as hell, desertification making it the perfect abode for nomadic and travelling folks. Perfect hideout for terrorist camps. These girls may already have been sold off to Sudanese merchants.  The armed forces will find nothing.  The solution is something completely different, armed conflict will solve nothing.

In my younger days we naughty kids used to get threatened with being sold off to the Arabs. Not so funny now.

The writing has been on the wall for some time now. Libya, Mali, CAR, Chad, Sudan, countries destabilised by Islamic fundamentalism. And yet the virus spreads, seemingly unstoppable. The genie, the open bottle. Nigeria is slowly being overrun. We never thought it will happen to us.

So where lies the answer to this scourge? Western intervention? Split Nigeria up, give the terrorist their beloved Islamic Northern states? Drones?

Still.. I pray the girls are safe.

Love is not for sale

"Transactions? I've never heard prostitution described as such"
"What you bleating on about woman? Man pays pro, pro fcuks man. Business init?"
"Your family is cold, I've heard your older brother describe things in this way. No empathy!"

My familial lack of empathy aside, how else is one supposed to view prostitution? "Love for sale" on Channel 4 last night didn't seem to have a view too, other than explore the type of men who patronise workers in world's oldest profession. Interesting programme.

One Madame broke the category of patrons into three. The man who isn't really there for sex, visits for a kiss, a cuddle, the listening ear, possibly doesn't get this at home. The uber professional type, wants sex and possibly bdsm domination, sex serving as a way to de-stress, addicted even. Then there's the archetype mother fuck, the total wanker, wants a woman to treat very rough and abuse, secretly hates women, borderline psychopath.  Some descriptions of what their patrons request were.. Not worth repeating. And here I was thinking it was simply pay, bone, move on. I am naive.

I suppose one has to be in that world to know its inner workings. I've never been to a prostitute before, against my religion. Why pay for sex? Much as I argue "transactions", some shit is just not for sale.

I've linked a radio program that discusses the issues above. listen and critique

Online Relationships Radio at Blog Talk Radio with mrmakeithappen on BlogTalkRadio