30 June, 2010

Pearls of wisdom . . .

Money can't buy happiness, but somehow it’s more comfortable to cry in a Rolls Royce than on a bicycle (make that ‘okada’ for naija hustlers)

Forgive your enemy, but remember the (bastard’s) face – an enemy is someone anti-Father, and that makes him/her a bastard doesn’t it? Either ways, pardon the cuss . . .

Help a man when he is in trouble and he will remember you when he is in trouble again

Many people are alive only because it’s illegal to shoot them

Love your neighbors as yourself but choose your neighborhood

The postage stamp sticks to one thing till it gets to its destination... learn from it

Finally … and this is my favorite;

Alcohol doesn't solve any problem, but then, neither does milk.

25 June, 2010

Mee, forGIVE and forGET? No Way!

Job lost everything: children, cattle et al, and his health inclusive; ALL save the servants who brought him the news about his loss … losses is more appropriate if you ask Mee. In response, he began to voice (curse) his distress, words easily criticized by those sitting in a place of comfort, health and ease.

Looking back over my life I have been a victim of words uttered out of sheer ignorance on the parts of those who uttered them. We all run off at the mouth don’t we? I have been abused and misunderstood by those too comfortable to feel or imagine the pain of another.

And these words have cut Mee to heart.

But rather than sit and mope, I have exonerated these fRiends of mine for their lack of knowledge. And like God, I have promised to remember them (their sins actually) no more. Asking Mee to forget is like telling Mee to wish for amnesia.

God did not promise to forget our sins, He only promised to remember them no more.

There is a difference between forgetting and choosing to ‘remember-no-more.’ Love gives and forgives. Love does not forgive and forget! In my opinion, the mantra ‘forgive and forget’ is buhahaha. Don’t ask Mee to forget about it, cos I cannot and in fact I will not.

The best anyone can do is to choose to NOT nurse a grudge or wrath to keep it warm! Remember the offences no more and move on. It is easy for Mee to say this because I have hurt a lot of people in the process. Hurting people hurt others.

So putting Mee at the centre, take a cue from Mee: with respect to other people, you have hurt and you have been hurt. What goes around comes around. Don’t let the next ‘coming’ season meet you at the same spot!

Unforgiveness (choosing to forgive-not) would hurt you more than it would (if at all) hurt the one you are bitter against.

Move on! Forgive! …and whilst you’re at it, dare to ‘Forget’ *** God help Mee and so be it ... sigh!

24 June, 2010

Parkinson, Pastor, Mee-and-My-Expenses

At the beginning of this decade, I went to 'see' my pastor for counseling and prayer against 'agbana'* ... because ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION I HAVE WONDERED WHY MY TAKE-HOME-PAY DOES NOT 'TAKE Mee HOME' .

My dear Pastor made Mee realize THAT ... INCOME 'COMES AGAINST' US IN FOUR (4) MAJOR WAYS BUT 'FLEES FROM' US IN OVER TWENTY (20) WAYS ...

HOME UTILITIES: MORTGAGE, RENT, HOUSEHOLD SUPPLIES, MAINTENANCE, FURNITURE/APPLIANCES, GROCERIES, ELECTRICITY, GAS/OIL, WATER, SEWER/TRASH, INTERNET, PHONE-HOME, PHONE-CELL, CABLE/SATELLITE TV, CLEANING SERVICES, LAUNDRY, FUEL (GENERATOR), LAWN/GARDEN, REAL ESTATE TAX, SECURITY GUARDS, RESIDENTIAL ESTATE LEVY ... OTHER ... OTHER

CHILDREN: MEDICAL, CLOTHING, SCHOOL TUITION, SCHOOL LUNCH, SCHOOL SUPPLIES, BABY-SITTING, TOYS/GAMES, OTHER ... OTHER ... OTHER

EDUCATION: TUITION, BOOKS, TRAINING/SEMINARS, OTHER ... OTHER ...

HEALTH: DOCTOR/DENTIST, MEDICINE/DRUGS, OTHER ...

GIVINGS/CHARITY: TITHES, OFFERINGS, GIFTS, PARENTS, FAMILY, OTHER ... OTHER

OBLIGATIONS: FEDERAL TAXES, STATE/LOCAL TAXES, LOAN - STUDENT, LOAN - OTHER, LEGAL FEES, OTHER ...

ENTERTAINMENT: DINING OUT, EVENTS, CONCERTS/PLAYS, MOVIES, RENTALS, MUSIC, FILM/PHOTOS, SPORTS, OUTDOOR RECREATION, GAMES, TOYS/GADGETS, OTHER ... OTHER

TRANSPORTATION: AUTO LOAN/LEASE, INSURANCE, CAR FUEL, BUS TAXI FARE, REPAIRS, LICENSE REGISTRATION, OTHER ... OTHER ...OTHER

VACATION: TRAVEL, LODGING, FOOD, CAR RENTAL, SHOPPING, ENTERTAINMENT ...OTHER

SUBSCRIPTION: NEWSPAPER, MAGAZINES, DUES, CLUB MEMBERSHIPS ... OTHER

INSURANCE: AUTO, HEALTH, HOME/RENTAL, LIFE ... OTHER

PETS: FOOD, MEDICAL, TOYS/SUPPLIES ... OTHER

MISCELLANEOUS: BANK FEES, POSTAGE, OTHER ... OTHER ... OTHER

I was subsequently advised to 'be guided' in MY spending because it is NOT what you earn BUT what you keep that counts in the long run. Parkinson was so d****** right when he said "expenses rise to meet the income"

God help Mee because I intend to earn MORE income :-)

*agbana - in my local dialect (I'm guessing here) means a devourer (of some sort) that only shows up when you have resources. (its subtlety is implied in the lyrics of the song "more money we come across more problems we see" ...)

22 June, 2010

Being " Wise as Serpents" . . .

Be wise as oSiNAiKEs but as innocent as doves . . .

whatever you want in life, other people are going to 'want' it too. Believe in yourself enough to accept the idea that you have an equal right to it.

from the principles of strategic living, I dont have to be nasty, I have to be SMART. Even though someone wants to bump Mee out of MY position on the queue, my job is to not let them!

Be wise as serpents, blameless as doves !!!

15 June, 2010

Schizophrenia - The Eruption of a BEAUTIFUL MIND

I INTRODUCTION

Schizophrenia, severe mental illness characterized by a variety of symptoms, including loss of contact with reality, bizarre behavior, disorganized thinking and speech, decreased emotional expressiveness, and social withdrawal. Usually only some of these symptoms occur in any one person. The term schizophrenia comes from Greek words meaning “split mind.” However, contrary to common belief, schizophrenia does not refer to a person with a split personality or multiple personality. (For a description of a mental illness in which a person has multiple personalities, see Dissociative Identity Disorder.) To observers, schizophrenia may seem like madness or insanity.

Perhaps more than any other mental illness, schizophrenia has a debilitating effect on the lives of the people who suffer from it. A person with schizophrenia may have difficulty telling the difference between real and unreal experiences, logical and illogical thoughts, or appropriate and inappropriate behavior. Schizophrenia seriously impairs a person’s ability to work, go to school, enjoy relationships with others, or take care of oneself. In addition, people with schizophrenia frequently require hospitalization because they pose a danger to themselves. About 10 percent of people with schizophrenia commit suicide, and many others attempt suicide. Once people develop schizophrenia, they usually suffer from the illness for the rest of their lives. Although there is no cure, treatment can help many people with schizophrenia lead productive lives.

Schizophrenia also carries an enormous cost to society. People with schizophrenia occupy about one-third of all beds in psychiatric hospitals in the United States. In addition, people with schizophrenia account for at least 10 percent of the homeless population in the United States (see Homelessness). The National Institute of Mental Health has estimated that schizophrenia costs the United States tens of billions of dollars each year in direct treatment, social services, and lost productivity.

II PREVALENCE

Approximately 1 percent of people develop schizophrenia at some time during their lives. Experts estimate that about 1.8 million people in the United States have schizophrenia. The prevalence of schizophrenia is the same regardless of sex, race, and culture. Although women are just as likely as men to develop schizophrenia, women tend to experience the illness less severely, with fewer hospitalizations and better social functioning in the community.

III SYMPTOMS

Schizophrenia usually develops in late adolescence or early adulthood, between the ages of 15 and 30. Much less commonly, schizophrenia develops later in life. The illness may begin abruptly, but it usually develops slowly over months or years. Mental health professionals diagnose schizophrenia based on an interview with the patient in which they determine whether the person has experienced specific symptoms of the illness.

Symptoms and functioning in people with schizophrenia tend to vary over time, sometimes worsening and other times improving. For many patients the symptoms gradually become less severe as they grow older. About 25 percent of people with schizophrenia become symptom-free later in their lives.

A variety of symptoms characterize schizophrenia. The most prominent include symptoms of psychosis—such as delusions and hallucinations—as well as bizarre behavior, strange movements, and disorganized thinking and speech. Many people with schizophrenia do not recognize that their mental functioning is disturbed.

A Delusions

Delusions are false beliefs that appear obviously untrue to other people. For example, a person with schizophrenia may believe that he is the king of England when he is not. People with schizophrenia may have delusions that others, such as the police or the FBI, are plotting against them or spying on them. They may believe that aliens are controlling their thoughts or that their own thoughts are being broadcast to the world so that other people can hear them.

B Hallucinations

People with schizophrenia may also experience hallucinations (false sensory perceptions). People with hallucinations see, hear, smell, feel, or taste things that are not really there. Auditory hallucinations, such as hearing voices when no one else is around, are especially common in schizophrenia. These hallucinations may include two or more voices conversing with each other, voices that continually comment on the person’s life, or voices that command the person to do something.

C Bizarre Behavior

People with schizophrenia often behave bizarrely. They may talk to themselves, walk backward, laugh suddenly without explanation, make funny faces, or masturbate in public. In rare cases, they maintain a rigid, bizarre pose for hours on end. Alternately, they may engage in constant random or repetitive movements.

D Disorganized Thinking and Speech

People with schizophrenia sometimes talk in incoherent or nonsensical ways, which suggests confused or disorganized thinking. In conversation they may jump from topic to topic or string together loosely associated phrases. They may combine words and phrases in meaningless ways or make up new words. In addition, they may show poverty of speech, in which they talk less and more slowly than other people, fail to answer questions or reply only briefly, or suddenly stop talking in the middle of speech.

E Social Withdrawal

Another common characteristic of schizophrenia is social withdrawal. People with schizophrenia may avoid others or act as though others do not exist. They often show decreased emotional expressiveness. For example, they may talk in a low, monotonous voice, avoid eye contact with others, and display a blank facial expression. They may also have difficulties experiencing pleasure and may lack interest in participating in activities.

F Other Symptoms

Other symptoms of schizophrenia include difficulties with memory, attention span, abstract thinking, and planning ahead. People with schizophrenia commonly have problems with anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts. In addition, people with schizophrenia are much more likely to abuse or become dependent upon drugs or alcohol than other people. The use of alcohol and drugs often worsens the symptoms of schizophrenia, resulting in relapses and hospitalizations.

IV CAUSES

Schizophrenia appears to result not from a single cause, but from a variety of factors. Most scientists believe that schizophrenia is a biological disease caused by genetic factors, an imbalance of chemicals in the brain, structural brain abnormalities, or abnormalities in the prenatal environment. In addition, stressful life events may contribute to the development of schizophrenia in those who are predisposed to the illness.

A Genetic Factors

Genetics and Schizophrenia

Research suggests that the genes one inherits strongly influence one’s risk of developing schizophrenia. Studies of families have shown that the more closely one is related to someone with schizophrenia, the greater the risk one has of developing the illness. For example, the children of one parent with schizophrenia have about a 13 percent chance of developing the illness, and children of two parents with schizophrenia have about a 46 percent chance of eventually developing schizophrenia. This increased risk occurs even when such children are adopted and raised by mentally healthy parents. In comparison, children in the general population have only about a 1 percent chance of developing schizophrenia.

B Chemical Imbalance

Some evidence suggests that schizophrenia may result from an imbalance of chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters. These chemicals enable neurons (brain cells) to communicate with each other. Some scientists suggest that schizophrenia results from excess activity of the neurotransmitter dopamine in certain parts of the brain or from an abnormal sensitivity to dopamine. Support for this hypothesis comes from antipsychotic drugs, which reduce psychotic symptoms in schizophrenia by blocking brain receptors for dopamine. In addition, amphetamines, which increase dopamine activity, intensify psychotic symptoms in people with schizophrenia. Despite these findings, many experts believe that excess dopamine activity alone cannot account for schizophrenia. Other neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and norepinephrine, may play important roles as well.

C Structural Brain Abnormalities


Normal and Schizophrenic Brains

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) reveals structural differences between a normal adult brain, left, and the brain of a person with schizophrenia, right. The schizophrenic brain has enlarged ventricles (fluid-filled cavities), shown in light gray. However, not all people with schizophrenia show this abnormality.
Photo Researchers, Inc.;Science Source/Photo Researchers, Inc.

Brain imaging techniques, such as magnetic resonance imaging and positron-emission tomography, have led researchers to discover specific structural abnormalities in the brains of people with schizophrenia. For example, people with chronic schizophrenia tend to have enlarged brain ventricles (cavities in the brain that contain cerebrospinal fluid). They also have a smaller overall volume of brain tissue compared to mentally healthy people. Other people with schizophrenia show abnormally low activity in the frontal lobe of the brain, which governs abstract thought, planning, and judgment. Research has identified possible abnormalities in many other parts of the brain, including the temporal lobes, basal ganglia, thalamus, hippocampus, and superior temporal gyrus. These defects may partially explain the abnormal thoughts, perceptions, and behaviors that characterize schizophrenia.

D Factors Before and During Birth

Evidence suggests that factors in the prenatal environment and during birth can increase the risk of a person later developing schizophrenia. These events are believed to affect the brain development of the fetus during a critical period. For example, pregnant women who have been exposed to the influenza virus or who have poor nutrition have a slightly increased chance of giving birth to a child who later develops schizophrenia. In addition, obstetric complications during the birth of a child—for example, delivery with forceps—can slightly increase the chances of the child later developing schizophrenia.

E Stressful Events

Although scientists favor a biological cause of schizophrenia, stress in the environment may affect the onset and course of the illness. Stressful life circumstances—such as growing up and living in poverty, the death of a loved one, an important change in jobs or relationships, or chronic tension and hostility at home—can increase the chances of schizophrenia in a person biologically predisposed to the disease. In addition, stressful events can trigger a relapse of symptoms in a person who already has the illness. Individuals who have effective skills for managing stress may be less susceptible to its negative effects. Psychological and social rehabilitation can help patients develop more effective skills for dealing with stress.

V TREATMENT

Although there is no cure for schizophrenia, effective treatment exists that can improve the long-term course of the illness. With many years of treatment and rehabilitation, significant numbers of people with schizophrenia experience partial or full remission of their symptoms.

Treatment of schizophrenia usually involves a combination of medication, rehabilitation, and treatment of other problems the person may have. Antipsychotic drugs (also called neuroleptics) are the most frequently used medications for treatment of schizophrenia. Psychological and social rehabilitation programs may help people with schizophrenia function in the community and reduce stress related to their symptoms. Treatment of secondary problems, such as substance abuse and infectious diseases, is also an important part of an overall treatment program.

A Antipsychotic Drugs

Antipsychotic medications, developed in the mid-1950s, can dramatically improve the quality of life for people with schizophrenia. The drugs reduce or eliminate psychotic symptoms such as hallucinations and delusions. The medications can also help prevent these symptoms from returning. Common antipsychotic drugs include risperidone (Risperdal), olanzapine (Zyprexa), clozapine (Clozaril), quetiapine (Seroquel), haloperidol (Haldol), thioridazine (Mellaril), chlorpromazine (Thorazine), fluphenazine (Prolixin), and trifluoperazine (Stelazine).

People with schizophrenia usually must take medication for the rest of their lives to control psychotic symptoms. Antipsychotic medications appear to be less effective at treating other symptoms of schizophrenia, such as social withdrawal and apathy.
Antipsychotic drugs help reduce symptoms in 80 to 90 percent of people with schizophrenia. However, those who benefit often stop taking medication because they do not understand that they are ill or because of unpleasant side effects. Minor side effects include weight gain, dry mouth, blurred vision, restlessness, constipation, dizziness, and drowsiness.

Other side effects are more serious and debilitating. These may include muscle spasms or cramps, tremors, and tardive dyskinesia, an irreversible condition marked by uncontrollable movements of the lips, mouth, and tongue. Newer drugs, such as clozapine, olanzapine, risperidone, and quetiapine, tend to produce fewer of these side effects. However, clozapine can cause agranulocytosis, a significant reduction in white blood cells necessary to fight infections. This condition can be fatal if not detected early enough. For this reason, people taking clozapine must have weekly tests to monitor their blood.

B Psychological and Social Rehabilitation

Because many patients with schizophrenia continue to experience difficulties despite taking medication, psychological and social rehabilitation is often necessary. A variety of methods can be effective. Social skills training helps people with schizophrenia learn specific behaviors for functioning in society, such as making friends, purchasing items at a store, or initiating conversations. Behavioral training methods can also help them learn self-care skills such as personal hygiene, money management, and proper nutrition. In addition, cognitive-behavioral therapy, a type of psychotherapy, can help reduce persistent symptoms such as hallucinations, delusions, and social withdrawal.

Family intervention programs can also benefit people with schizophrenia. These programs focus on helping family members understand the nature and treatment of schizophrenia, how to monitor the illness, and how to help the patient make progress toward personal goals and greater independence. They can also lower the stress experienced by everyone in the family and help prevent the patient from relapsing or being rehospitalized.

Because many patients have difficulty obtaining or keeping jobs, supported employment programs that help patients find and maintain jobs are a helpful part of rehabilitation. In these programs, the patient works alongside people without disabilities and earns competitive wages. An employment specialist (or vocational specialist) helps the person maintain their job by, for example, training the person in specific skills, helping the employer accommodate the person, arranging transportation, and monitoring performance. These programs are most effective when the supported employment is closely integrated with other aspects of treatment, such as medication and monitoring of symptoms.

Some people with schizophrenia are vulnerable to frequent crises because they do not regularly go to mental health centers to receive the treatment they need. These individuals often relapse and face rehospitalization. To ensure that such patients take their medication and receive appropriate psychological and social rehabilitation, assertive community treatment (ACT) programs have been developed that deliver treatment to patients in natural settings, such as in their homes, in restaurants, or on the street.

C Associated Problems

People with schizophrenia often have other medical problems, so an effective treatment program must attend to these as well. One of the most common associated problems is substance abuse. Successful treatment of substance abuse in patients with schizophrenia requires careful coordination with their mental health care, so that the same clinicians are treating both disorders at the same time.
The high rate of substance abuse in patients with schizophrenia contributes to a high prevalence of infectious diseases, including hepatitis B and C and the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Assessment, education, and treatment or management of these illnesses is critical for the long-term health of patients.

Other problems frequently associated with schizophrenia include housing instability and homelessness, legal problems, violence, trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, and suicide attempts. Close monitoring and psychotherapeutic interventions are often helpful in addressing these problems.

VI RELATED DISORDERS

Several other psychiatric disorders are closely related to schizophrenia. In schizoaffective disorder, a person shows symptoms of schizophrenia combined with either mania or severe depression. Schizophreniform disorder refers to an illness in which a person experiences schizophrenic symptoms for more than one month but fewer than six months. In schizotypal personality disorder, a person engages in odd thinking, speech, and behavior, but usually does not lose contact with reality (see Personality Disorders). Sometimes mental health professionals refer to these disorders together as schizophrenia-spectrum disorders.

Contributed By:
Kim T. Mueser

Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2007. © 1993-2006 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Anyone can be great with money

With money, greatness is not a talent but an obligation. The trick is to be great without money – Robert Crichton

If you bring forth what is within you, it will heal you. And if you do not bring forth what is within you, it will destroy you – from the Gospel of St Thomas

These are the reasons why I always strive to do the 'WRITE' thing

The Firm - ACN - a means to an END

Sh-air this with everyone that has ever dared to be or been compelled to be a TIGER – by choice or under duress. Being a TIGER is a means to an end, and trust Mee, a very good end. Today I can proudly say I was once a “TIGER”.

No knowledge is ever lost or wasted and like the CMD has shown / been able to prove, working at the Firm is just like going to school (getting an education). The knowledge gained isn’t solely for school “survival” but for life after school (life outside school). Those who school solely for school will live to face the real world soon.

Working at A C N is designed for the real world – life outside!!! Duh, See Mee – of course, it’s a Management Consulting Firm! I am grateful for my A C N experience. Even though I regret it was very short (no thanks to the unprecedented eruption {or corruption} of my BEAUTIFUL MIND) but I am glad that whilst it lasted, I learnt a LOT.

I freaked out on NipeX, crazy project (oops). I inherited bills and expenses that were incurred on projects that took place long before I left the University . What else is a PMO but a Minister for Errand Affairs any way? – It was really bad timing more like bad attitude on my part I guess … I just wasn’t a Tigress! TIGER-ESS.
However, If the 6-months training I received has taken Mee this far … I envy those who are and have been privileged to have stayed longer. RISE on guys … Go on and be Tigers (oops)! In my days the mantra was to be a Tiger, what or who are you guys now?!?

I’d recommend A C N for a START any day, BUT definitely not an END. It’s a means to an end. However, we all have Younique assignments, so if ACN happens to be your END, take charge! Go on be a TIGER!!!

WEED

A couple of days ago, I was forced to point out (at my own risk) the subtlety of my hyperactive mind when I mentioned that I once cracked a code from innocently and graciously sent recharge card digits! Talk about unbridled and un-channeled energy. But this happened during my NYSC days so …Anyways, I was (as usual) restless a couple of days ago and I decided to read an article in Encarta. Kindly see below my deductions from a harmless agricultural piece on weed! Yes! Weed …

I INTRODUCTION

Weed, term applied to any plant that grows where it is not wanted. Equate weed for unwanted people and or relationships so you can follow this argument. A weed is usually characterized by rapid growth, and it typically replaces other, more desirable plants. This is my grouse! You’re unwanted, why displace or rather replace the ‘wanted’ ones? Some plants, such as crabgrass, are considered weeds everywhere they grow, but many plants are considered weeds in some regions and not in others. Which explains why some people are ‘rejected’ by some people in some places but are ‘accepted’ by some other people in some other places. For example, the shrub lantana is raised as an ornamental plant in many parts of the United States, but has become a serious pest in Hawaii. Point! Who or what is ‘Weed’ to Mee is an ornament to another and vice versa. Case closed!

Although most weeds damage cultivated plants by competing (it’s bad and sad enough that you’re a nuisance, why damage a budding plant? Why compete) with them for sunlight, water, and mineral nutrients (my required and necessary undivided attention), some weeds are parasites that grow directly on other plants, and thus either weaken or kill them (sometimes, it’s not the fault of budding relationships that they wither and die, blame it on the weeds ***sigh). Many weeds are also hosts for disease-causing organisms (this is a great cause for alarm, heeelllppppp I don’t want you, don’t gimme a disease joorrrr). For example, some of the fungal diseases that infect food crops spend part of their life cycle on a weed that typically grows near the crop (typically grows near the crop? sad sad they’re always around, and sometimes with fungi too … ***sigh).

Although generally harmful or undesirable (generalizations, whilst capturing the similarities, obscure the differences – weeds are not so useless cos), weeds can also provide benefits for agriculture (everyone, every weed I mean, can be useful – either as a driver, a chef, a meal ticket, a maga, a great source of inspiration. Usually though, from my ‘personal’ experience from weeds, WYSIWYG).

Some weeds may provide a source of food (food here can mean anything actually, WYSIWYG again e.g. maga and whatever he stands for or rather, whatever he provides). In addition to their agricultural uses (did someone just ask why I use weeds? They have agricultural USEs), many weeds, such as tansy, chicory, and smartweed, have medicinal properties (whatever medicinal stands for – balm, soothe, calm, maybe) and are used extensively in homeopathic and naturopathic medicine (admit it, you know this already by NOW – I need (homeopathic and naturopathic) help!).

II TYPES OF WEEDS

Weeds, like many plants, are usually divided into three categories: annuals, biennials, and perennials. This division is based on how long a single generation lives (or is allowed to live). Annuals complete an entire life cycle in one growing season (well, some are faster than others when it comes to ‘catching’ ‘up’ – growing up or out of love, out of season I mean). They germinate, flower, and fruit between the spring and winter of the same year (pretty fast init). The seeds, (seeds – emotional ties, soul ties, smts real seeds) however, may live buried in the soil as long as 70 years (the major problem with serial dating and sleeping, err…slipping mybad, slipping!). Repeated plowing and cultivating may be necessary to control annual weeds (don’t just keep planting seeds, prune the weeds … repeatedly? *** sob sob, this sounds like a lotta work).

Biennials live through two growing seasons, producing only greenery the first year, and bearing flowers and fruits in the second (they don’t show their true color on time – second year? Well, a year could mean anything, for instance one man-year is seven dog-years).

Perennial weeds are often the most troublesome weeds to control because they have strong, well-developed underground parts and produce large numbers of seeds (heavy sigh, did anyone just say I should tolerate these weeds? Not on my life, see the consequences?). Perennials live for at least three years, flowering and producing fruit each year after reaching maturity (wart?!?)

III METHODS OF CONTROL (hope at last!)

There are various methods of weed control, ranging from simple pulling-by-hand (yeah baby, nip ’em in the bud, strike while the iron is hot. Trust Mee this option is much preferred) to elaborate chemical weed killers (chemicals hmmn, now that’s tempting but …). Generally, more than one method is necessary (and the synonyms of necessary are compulsory, obligatory, essential, required) because of the resilience of the weed plant or its seeds (see that? ‘The resilience of the weed or its seeds... They live among us and also reproduce’).

Pulling weeds by hand is effective (bingo!), but it should be done only when the soil is moist (there is a time for every activity although a matter weighs heavily upon a man – and here’s why) so that the underground roots are removed along with the tops (total annihilation). Although tiresome and time-consuming (yeah, that’s what WORK is – tiresome and time-consuming but), hand weeding is the most effective control for weeds growing in rock gardens or between rows in vegetable gardens (the rewards far outweigh the costs). Removing weeds using a hoe (third party) is effective, but only when weeds are not well established and the weather is dry (God is the only 3rd party in a ‘growth’ that can make it work. But we’re talking about making it not-work here arnt we?what am I thinking? ). In moist weather many weeds revive after hoeing and continue growing (you just gat to DIY – Do It Yourself - mehn). Repeated hoeing at regular intervals is the best direct approach for hoe weeding the home garden in moist conditions (Who wants to repeatedly ‘hoe’?!? I want a LIFE!).

Another effective (goody, effective?!!) method of weed control is mulching, which consists of applying a layer of leaves, straw, or other organic mulching material over the weeds (by being evasive or just blanking them out? Maybe). Mulching prevents weeds from germinating and growing and adds nutrients to the soil (goodie goodie, silence doesn’t always mean consent). For shallow-rooted plants (people who are not worth the effort), such as azaleas, blueberries, and rhododendrons, mulching is necessary because hoeing injures their root systems (be nice, don’t damage their (very weak/shallow) self esteem).


Ok enough theory on weeds and tips on removing them now, I need to go do some practical on my field!

Body of article culled from Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2007. © 1993-2006 Microsoft Corporation. Everything in Parenthesis/bold face MINE. All rights reserved.

11 June, 2010

Tempus Fugit

I am FULLY aware that time flies, but I believe that time should be spent and/or invested and not wasted...TIME is the ONLY thing common to ALL men; we all have (just) 24-hour days!

Believe me, wise men don't say 'I shall live to do that', tomorrow's life's too late; live today. Martial - Spanish-born Roman satirical poet. Epigrams Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2007. © 1993-2006 Microsoft Corporation.

On the night that Jaco was shot dead he promised to see Mother tomorrow. His last words to Mee were, “I will see you tomorrow, aurevoir…" I have never used those words (or meant them) ever since. I will see you SOON maybe, but not ‘I will see you tomorrow!’ Less than 3 hours after he left home, I received a call that he had been shot! Why make Mee the bearer of such news? I can never forget the details of the 15 years that followed…and the trauma that has resulted from the fact that ‘tomorrow’ never came.

But I have learnt the lessons. Never leave that till to-morrow which you can do to-day. Benjamin Franklin (1706 - 1790)

Apart from teaching Mee the likely results of ‘procrastination’ his impromptu demise taught Mee to prioritize my activities (my trips inclusive) using the Time Management Matrix. Some things are urgent, some things are important. Some urgent things are not important and some important things are not urgent. Deciding the appropriate class for every activity (and trip) however is subject to MY primary goal, another reason I now appreciate goal-setting.

I will not let anyone bamboozle Mee or decide for Mee what is important or urgent or trivia. I live to make Mee eternally glad (I want to die and rest-in-peace)

Jaco took a step in one direction and failed to follow through. Well, he did not actually plan to fail (nobody ever really does) but … {I wonder why I’m writing about this} … he was shot DEAD! His killers, dead or alive, will know no peace plus their generations after them. Pscheewwww. He was the only one that always addressed Mee as SimiIjogbon. (Oh yes, and Jato too, naturally). Now I live to blow my trumpet all by myself.

I have ALL my life been guilty of standing people up after agreeing to meet with them. My alibi…? Some things (and people) can wait. And like the King said in Coming to America: Let Them Wait! (This is where priorities come in) … no offense guys!

Events after Jaco’s untimely death also made Mee promise myself not to be so tied to the apron strings of anyone to the extent that their death would affect Mee. Yeah, it hardened Mee against meaningful and/or close relationships (same sex or opposite, filial or other). As a result, I made, built and kept friendships on the road. I was a ‘street girl’. No more, no less. The street was my hood and as I was ever-ly on the road, there was no room for intimacy!

Mother once accused Mee of being the only non-friend-ly child at ‘home’. She was sure I did not have friends (sometimes, I think she’s right) because I did/do not have bosom friends. Err for what Ma’am? When prosperity comes, they will come (I kid you not Maa’ma). PS: Bosom friends are rare … and wanted! (What I’m actually asking for is a rain of wealth)

The good thing is that NOW I live everyday like it would be my last. I try to tidy up loose ends and whilst I’m at it, I reduce the occurrence(s) of error due to negligence. If I have ever promised to see you but did not, understand my heart; something more important may have come up. (Rest for Mee inclusive)

Trust Mee, I will see you SOON, not necessarily tomorrow! But when we do see, the wait would have been worth it.


Footnote
In addition, kindly accept my apologies for 'standing you up' - in the past, present or future :-)

10 June, 2010

Only Reason Why You ShOuLd Get Married ... (soft landing)

This is a sequel to the note: "Why Should I Get Married?" which caused a stir after publication... Since I am a piscean, on the flip side, I have come to terms with 'my other half' ...

I cant speak for you or any one else but ... I should get married because according to FATHER, "It is NOT good for man to be alone" and "Bode" is currently a-LONE.

However, 'better' is the comparative or superlative of 'good' (it is not good for man to be alone) so I am not so sure which or what is better (to marry or not-to-marry) ... (God will shine more light on my path)

Epilogue

According to Screwtape, “humans often regard as the basis for marriage, a highly colored and distorted version of the promised result –‘being in love’ ”. the result of this according to him is that “any sexual infatuation whatever, so long as it intends marriage, will be regarded as ‘love’ and ‘love’ will be held to excuse a man from all the guilt, and to protect him from all the consequences of marrying – a heathen, a fool or a wanton. (Screwtape Letters : CS Lewis, page 97)

He however pointed out that the motive for marriage is:

• Loyalty to a partner for mutual help
• For the preservation of chastity
• For the transmission of life

Since I cannot solely determine the actions of another 'man', it would be fool hardy of Mee to decide to get married based (solely) on any of these.

1. Loyalty – I know ‘happily married’ couples who are not loyal to their partners. I’m not so sure ‘happily married’ is a right tag but … I know couples who cheat, have cheated and are STILL cheating on their spouses. Cheating here refers to every form of deprivation and I mean it in every sense of the word DEPRIVATION (social, emotional, spiritual, physical, mental) – extend that to time, money, food, fuel, car-use, form of religion or no religion, relationship with in-laws, to budget etc – to get a clear(er) picture.

But if we take it as is: Loyalty to a Partner for MUTUAL HELP ... then it’s fair enough … it’s a matter of WE not Mee ***sob sob (well ME too, but not just Mee***sigh)

2. For the Preservation of Chastity – I reckon with that (only because I refuse to take it literally)for the purpose of my “reason to …” It is NOT good that ‘Bode’ is currently a-Lone! (but ‘better’ is a superior form of ‘good’ so … anyways … (LOL)

3. For the Transmission of Life – if that is taken literally again, what do we do about couples that do not have kids (YET) and some who clearly CANNOT have kids? But then, life is so much MORE than bearing or raising biological kids.

Thank God for ALL the foster parents who gave Mee life… (Singing) give a little hope to the ‘disturbed’ child (not necessarily motherless!)

okay, the rest is his-story.

08 June, 2010

Committee of P.A's - the irony

Prior to now (now that I am in the know) I used to wonder why my 'uncles' and 'aunties' hardly, if ever, responded to my mails or treated them as urgent! NOW I KNOW *** ssshhhhhh *** ... they probably NEVER got to read them :-)

In my hunting days, I sent an average of 50 CV's per day to everybody in high position who I thought was 'connected' enough to be relevant. Alas, no job, no calls for interviews, no feedback! I used to think they were lying each time I spoke with them over the phone or face-to-face only to learn they were yet to 'see' my email (habba, uncle! elders don't tell lies ... or do they?)

Anyways, now I know oohhhhh (revelation)

NB: A great piss-off advice for you: Never Mail a Man in High Position Asking For HELP or Money or Other - He Wouldn't Have Time To Read Trivia (except it's about a project that would add to him financially). Don't make the stew-pea'd assumption that he has your interests at heart :-) ...(per se)

Everyone is out to serve 'self' first!

So, be nice to the security men, the drivers, the house-helps, the chef, the body guard, the P.A ..... yes oohhhh, the P.A!!! The P.A is the Boss's Manager! ****ssshhhhhh***** na d P.A. be da real 'oga' (well, without the FULL benefits but ...)

A word is enough for the "whys" ... ciao!

07 June, 2010

Committee of P.A's - the Perks

I dont know about my colleagues, but for Mee, the life of a P.A is probably what is aka 'DA LIFE'! Well, depending on who you're P.A to ... but being a P.A is possibly the most socially rewarding 'career' any(restless)one can build... HONEST!

When we meet, it's easy to identify who's who ... did I say when we meet? I mean where we meet ... OMG, what was I thinking all this while? Building a Career?!?

Psscchheeewwwwww let sleeping dogs continue to lie*** when all the while, even my Branch Managers were complaining ... was I really planning to end up like them? IF not for 'Jazz intervention', I would have been a level what bank officer and nothing but now ... omo, the mass retrenchment was a blessing in disguise mehn, BABA I tank u oh ...even though, it came as a BIG shock, then relief, then VERY rude shock at the time! Fired? Asked to resign?!? After ALL Ive done for you?!?! "Crazy Bank Ass"

Now, I'm LIVING da LIFE ... with ALL the complexities thereof! The Exposure to power is worth ALL the hazards abeeg (oooppp mybad, did I really just say that?!?)

I need to prioritize before I make my FINAL submission ... Being a P.A is an indirect way to "Live Da LIfe"

Committee of P.A's - the hazards

*.*.* wrt my recent RESIGNATION...don't judge Mee till you hear the details

I had to resign (AGAIN) as P.A to my boss (who else would I have been P.A to but MY boss?!?)about three weeks ago... as lucrative as it was...**sobbing out loud***

OK, here's why...

My boss returned from a trip and told Mee he was tired...'expectedly'!!!

I said ok Sir, and he goes on to ask Mee if I could get olive oil...no qualms...I dashed off... ("what's a P.A for if not for errand affairs?'') The Ministers P.A is the Minister of Errand affairs ... which I happened to bee!

On my return, he said his thanks and I began to pack my sack...sorry, bag... ready to go home... home sweet home :-) (home is where the heart is abeeg)

As I was approaching the stairs to bid him farewell, he told Mee he needed a massage...sure thing Sire, lemme get your masseuse on the phone...

err...he calls Mee and says, "can you define the word 'Personal Assistant' ...?!?"
shocked to my marrow...I stammered as the real meaning dawned on Mee...hmmn...talk about job hazards!!!

...you really don't want to know what followed...

takea...till I'm stable again!!!

Younique

Committee of P.A's - Part ONE

The Life and Times of a P.A

zilch!

no life!

no personal time!

job hazards? yep yep yep

a personal assistant is just that; as the name implies, a-personal-assistant! PERIOD

hence, s/he's always at the beck and call of oga ... dear, very dear (expensive) oga!

I would speak about the hazards later, but as I am... a P.A's life is a miniature of his/her oga's life. no more, no less

05 June, 2010

Our Parents Tried Mehn ... We're NOW Living GrazeFULLy!

Graze FULL Living

I am grateful for my job but I am probably the ONLY person in the entire world that looks better when out of job! ***very heavy sigh***

Every other person I know and have come across seems to get more robust once they start getting fat, getting paid I mean. Yeah fat is appropriate, financially fat!
Blame it on rung genes, blame it on my make-up, blame it on whatever… I look better when I don’t have to go to work! PERIOD (forget that I’m getting paid, getting fat I mean***LOL)

But truth is, ever since I read or understood the meaning of freelance (the very early 90’s); I wanted to be a freelancer! I think so far, judging from my resume, I have done a fairly good job LOL. I have never worked long enough on a job to go on vacation, not ever! Neither have I ever been confirmed on any job***sob sob. I’m not a difficult employee, no; I just have not found any organization/industry worth my absolute loyalty YET! And I tell you why, they’re non-existent. I work for Mee

To some, this ‘jobaholism’ might not be something to be really proud of, but we all have different priorities… and by extension, different goals in life. I actually did not plan to be such a job-a-holic but err…these things happen!

Success has been defined as fulfilling your Younique assignment. Going by this definition of success, I cannot judge myself by the standards of another person. We are different. Having gifts that differ, let us use them…***

It would be foolhardy of Mee to compare myself with another person. ‘…for they measuring themselves by themselves are not wise.’ I am Mee, he is him. We are different and even our titles indicate that much! Which is why I wonder why they keep trying to cage Mee so I can fit into their mould… limee alone yall, LiMee! LOL

Although I love (good) food, I often forget to eat. But it’s no excuse for looking gaunt, all head and bones. As much as I try not to be grazefull, there has to be a balance (a chef and driver would see to that).

There is a now seemingly archaic Yoruba saying, which literally means ‘it is wrong to eat with all the ten-fingers’. It is now near extinct since this blackberry generation lives from one pay slip to the next. Graze fully living. Feeding fat and drinking to stupor … chop chop. God help Mee but I so love hanging out!

Young guys now roll about with pot bellies making Mee offer to single handedly perform a scan to determine their EDD! But it doesn’t end there. When my brothers are finally delivered, they realize how d**** expensive baby food and pampers are, not to mention baby clothes and shoes, school fees etc. AND these BILLs gat to be paid! ***sigh***

(being introspective now)Our parents tried mehn …

Savings is a wonderful thing, especially when your parents have done it for you!

Why Didn’t You Tell Me?

If you steal for Mee, you will one day steal from Mee. I am watching silently … LOL

Due to my Younique background, I learnt at a very early stage to swim with shark without being eaten alive. I was always caught in between, and (usually) when two elephants fight, the ground suffers. In order to avoid bearing the brunt of their constant bickering, I often withdrew to lonely places to prey LOL. By eavesdropping on conversation and reading lips where necessary amongst other things, I learnt to steer clear of impending trouble.

One question I am often asked by the elders (guardians) in my life that I have been privileged to address as Parents is this, “why didn’t you tell me?” whenever they meet, as they usually do, behind my back, they begin to ‘jabo’. Let Mee explain.

There was a time Popc gave Mee a tiny bit of information in strict confidence. “… I just thought I should let you know” – that was it. And so it was. Six months down the line, he was discussing the same issue with my Dad, who obviously had no idea what he was talking about. “But I told your daughter….” (sigh) and my Dad calls Mee and asks, “why didn’t you tell me?”

On another occasion, Father invested in a liability (popularly referred to as an asset) and called to inform Mee. I don’t want your Mom to know about this YET, so please just keep mum. Yessir, e ku’nawo Sir! I went my way only to get a call from my Mom asking why I was hoarding information from her! E gba mi oh… I was literally sworn to secrecy!

Momc and I discussed my decision to leave medical school. The rest were very strongly opinionated about who I should become (albeit conflicting images too)! Well, apart from Father, she was the only neutral Parent I could confidently confide in with all the distorted images in my head. By the time I was done telling her what had transpired between Mee and the rest she asked, “Why didn’t you tell me, earlier?”

Implied confidentiality: - except otherwise stated, a conversation with somebody else is for your ears only. If I chose to make my shit known, kindly gimme the great privilege of doing it by myself, by Mee! It’s tempting to reveal the secrets of others but …the golden rule is where it all begins and ends.

Today, all six Parents can confide in Mee and go to sleep rest-assured I will not tell. I am guided by two assumptions: - (1) If you steal for Mee, you will someday steal from Mee. (2) He who is faithful in very little will be faithful in much. It’s the very little things that count.

So I was surprised when my friend walked up to Mee a couple of weeks ago asking why I dint tell her that her boyfriend had been cheating on her! Mybad … he’s also my friend! Besides, I was only MINDING MY BUSINESS(the Golden Rule is where it all begins and ends). I felt very bad that I’d kept such ‘serious’ information from her because ‘keeping quiet about the truth is as bad as telling lies’ but on matters of principle, I stand like a rock!

Since I have peeps like you, custodians of knowledge, as friends, kindly give advice … or defend Mee as they case may be!

sob sob and sadly so too - I am about to lose another friend for ‘keeping quiet’ ***heavy sigh

04 June, 2010

ForGIVEness: Our Response - Ability

Forgiveness: letting go of the desire to revenge. If truly meant, it is NOT easy but it is our responsibility. Love GIVES and forGIVES

Responsibility: Jesus did not want to die, He had to die. Parenting is not a choice…it’s a necessity, a MUST (as long as you make or get babies, you 'gat' to cater for them...)

Usually, when I get into arguments I often simply back out (chicken)... Apart from the fact that I do not really like exchanging words with people, I think it’s a sheer waste of time. A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.

I respect the fact that it is necessary to state your case and in the process, blow your trumpet, but it is futile to save the ship at the risk of the cargo. Many people lose their friends and reputation (eventually) simply in a bid to win an argument. There is only ONE way under heaven to get the best of an argument - and that is to avoid it. Avoid arguments as you would rattlesnakes and earthquakes.

No matter how thin you pour the batter, there are ALWAYS two sides to a pancake. No one is entirely dumb or ignorant (in the long run) if you bother to ‘see’ things from their point of view. I wish I could state a valid case here but …

I remember a time I had an argument with my Mom’s husband. These Fathers can provoke their children to angaaarrggghhhhh! (Raising your kids doesn’t mean raising your voice) Anyways, like she always retorted when called to meddle: “what does the Bible say?” honor your father and …” blab bla bla. Hogwash (at least so I thought)! “The same Bible says he should not provoke Mee to anger joorr”! “So until he starts playing his part, you’re not going to play yours?” replied my Mother. Two wrongs never make a right and FYI I am FIRST a Wife, then a Mother...(partial)(sigh)

I find this ‘argument’ everywhere. We all wonder why the other person is not playing his part and stew-pead-ly wait for them to do so, so that we can re-ACT and or play our part. ***sigh*** each one will give an account of his own life to God … at the end! The *home has been well described as the test of Christian character and rightly so too. It is at ‘home’ that wee people find it most difficult to practice the tenets of our self-professed claim – being Christian – being like Christ!

‘Home’ is anywhere you spend a great chunk of your time: - in traffic (for lagosians), at work / the office (with colleagues), within the building aka house (with parents, siblings, flat mates, housemates, house helps, security men, driver, plumber, electrician, etc), on the web e.g. www.gbeborun.com

The love walk is you-specific in that it is unconditional. It does not ask us to love only our nice and friendly neighbor, or the well dressed and easy going one (I admit these ones are easier to ‘manage’); neither does it allow us to choose whom to love! Neighbor (unkempt, dirty, arrogant, cantankerous, silly, impossible, inconsiderate, etc and all the other vices you can think of) no wonder it is referred to as a ‘labor of love’! Walking in Love is a LABOR

*home - The definition of HOME for Mee, due to my Younique lifestyle, is where the heart is. I wonder where, who or what that is …

God help Mee! I NEED to become response-able SOON ***bGg!

Trending NOW ... Daystar Leadership Academy

On more than one occasion, I have been told by friends from my past that they don’t hear my voice in my write-things. (I think) I can explain. Three things happened over time:

1. LIFE - yup, I FINALLY grew up ... err, subject to debate :-)
2. I started drinking / getting filled (not only with wine and other spirits but also with The Spirit)
3. Daystar Leadership Academy (Basic Leadership School)

The focus of this discourse is the last point: - Daystar Leadership Academy – Basic Leadership School

In a bid to get out of the woods (my hunting days) I did a lot of ‘german-german’! By this I mean I was like a drowning man, clutching tightly to every straw. Getting a job is work! As a matter of fact, by the time I finally got a job, I realized that work itself IS MORE WORK! But I had (have) something (knowledge) to break my fall from the impending RAT RACE.

The sessions I had at Daystar Leadership Academy helped Mee a great deal…at least the bit I put into practice. It’s one thing to be taught, it’s quite another to imbibe and apply the lessons. If we choose to, we (can) (should) learn something every day. If we fail to, LIFE will be full of nothing but hard knocks, and that (a hard knock) is often better heard than felt (experienced).

I cannot speak about the New Generation Tertiary Institutions, but I cannot remember many things I was (overtly) taught back in School that are applicable to the ‘real world’ for which we were supposedly being prepared. Considering the fact that I was in The Social Sciences, I wonder how people who studied some other courses are coping in the real world!

But then again, like Father said to Mee when I opted to drop out of School (before the approval to leave Medical School for Soc) University Education is to train the mind. The discipline of attending classes, writing exams, confining you to a curriculum and working with others plus participation in departmental politics and students’ unionism is a great avenue for ‘real world’ preparation. Looking at it that way, school was not a waste of time.

However, with respect to time management and finances, err … I had it coming. Attending lectures for instance was not (usually) mandatory and no one monitored how I spent MY money. After all, I was a student privileged to spend Father’s ‘hard earned’ money. (Nail biting: eye don clear now oh, chei) The man no even ’gree send Mee money again. (But I get back up plan - the receipts are all waiting for ‘Bode’)

Anyways, school was fun even though I did not really realize it back then. I had fun, but it could have been better. I was eager like so many other people to get to the other side that I failed to live and enjoy the moment. (The seaweed is always greener in somebody else’s lake … Ariel’s advice to the Little Mermaid). OH Yes, I love Walt Disney Films or cartoons, they are DEEP! I can read meaning into anything ... so maybe they arnt really deep but ...

(Sigh) this is about Daystar Leadership Academy

Experience, they say, is the best teacher and I totally agree. However, it does not have to be yours. As a result, I always (always?) strive to avail myself of learning from others. As a matter of fact, back in school, I so availed myself of others that I almost did not have to read. By simply attending discussions or having someone break down a course material, I was fine! This doesn’t work for everybody though, some people just gat to read … (head shaking) mo s’ope temi!

OMG Daystar!!!

DLA Basic Leadership Course
• Lecture venue: Plot A3c Ikosi Road, beside GTBank Oregun Ikeja Lagos
• Lecture Period: Monday 7 – Friday 25 June 2010
• 8:00 am – 1:30 pm
• Download forms online at www.dlaonline.org
• Pick hard copies at 71 Kudirat Abiola Way, Oregun
• Tuition fee: NGN 7000

In my days, tuition was 5K and that money hard me ehn, LOL. But in retrospect, it was worth it. That 5k has earned and saved Mee over 5k. Time spent was not wasted but invested. Not that I had any other thing keeping Mee particularly busy at the time though (movies yeah). But the discipline of waking up early and attending ‘school’ again was err … a great discipline! That’s work init? Getting a job is WORK!!!

01 June, 2010

The Interview - Keeping It Real ... JUST BE!

Be yourself because when you’re not who you are, it’s difficult for God/your employer to use you (effectively).

An inventory into my life shows I am (now) an expert at getting a job – although with respect to keeping jobs, I am still a novice! I say this to the glory of God, the former I mean. I guess I just have not found my niche yet – whatever or where ever that is … *sigh

When I first started hunting, I had a problem with “the interview” – as a matter of fact; I always had a scare as soon as I got an invite by mail or phone. I did get several invites for a chat and on all occasions I sent SOS messages to family, friends, and third parties asking them for tips on what to say and their prayers as I prepared to or went in to face the panel.

Apart from being “shy”, if you know Mee “wella” you will understand this; I really did not know or understand myself enough, as I now do, to sell Mee. I still have reservations about knowing and understanding Mee well enough right now. God will shed more light on my path

The usual question, “Tell us about yourself”

Rather than set the ball rolling as intended, this harmless question almost always made me lose my tongue. I guess because in all honesty, I did not know much about myself. What about me, besides the obvious on my resume?!?

Like I only recently discovered, working with others in groups or in teams is a great platform for self discovery. Being the loner I had been, I carefully (ignorantly) avoided close relationships and avenues for self exposure/disclosure. I used to brand myself as being “a part and yet apart” and this made me really proud; ignorant fool that I was.

That being said, I can now say with all sense of 'Younique' that it is highly unnecessary to get an offer or a job that you’re not well suited for – or that’s not well suited for you. It can be frustrating. The only problem is that we are so keen on getting money that we’d accept almost any offer in desperation. Bills have to be paid!

I have attended interviews where I saw people reading scripts / studying carefully typed-out-notes about likely questions and their appropriate responses. I support the notion behind this, preparation. However, considering the fact that I have been guilty of this practice before, I think there is a more excellent way.

Have the end in mind.

You really don’t want to get a job / build a career that would frustrate you – but seriously, which job doesn’t frustrate…at some point, in the long run? It’s tough out (t)here. There will always be the usual “work” challenges (issues – work, internet, mails, communication, colleagues, memos, files, customers, servers, calls, and meetings ... aka time wasters).

The idea is to get into an environment whose soil will make you blossom. Not every seed will thrive on just any soil type. Agriculture taught me about sandy, clay, loamy, etc or something like that. Experience has taught me that some firms (companies’ organizations or industries) are loamy, some are sandy and some are ….soily!

And yes, whether you work or not, there will be bills! And the interesting thing about this is this;

"Expenses always rise to meet the income" – Parkinsons Law.

No matter how much or how little you earn, if you don’t learn how to spend money or deal with your income, it’d never be enough! People are considerably experts or semi experts at making money. What I think is necessary is how to manage money. i.e from earning – growing – spending – investing – saving - sowing – etc.

I have seen people, who in their prime could afford to lavishly spend money like water, suffer dearth, paucity. Money takes wings and flies and it’s amazing! In middle life, saddled with the responsibility of school fees and housing, many people bulk at the pressures of parenting. Then they say they’re having a midlife crisis. Oloun o ni je ka je eni oni gbakan ri (Amin).

Some are not so lucky and are only victims of circumstance. In their own case, they never learnt to increase their earning power, forgetting that a failure to plan is in itself, a plan to fail. Thus when the bills come tumbling in, as these things always do, they crash! If you faint in the day of adversity your strength (financial strength inclusive) is small.

I know a few people who today are having a “mid life crisis”. I remember too well how buoyant they were in their prime. I do because I hung out with them (awoof). I am guilty as charged since I don’t go to some of these places except on someone else’s dime. I learnt at a very early stage of my life that it’s important I live within my means. Dear friend, you will rise again. A righteous man may fall seven times … I can only help to break your fall.

But honestly speaking, some people don’t know how to spend money, chei! I am learning myself, since they dint deem it fit to teach me these things in school. Sometimes I wonder what I am supposed to do with some of the materials we were given as lecture notes. Seriously! But then again, if you teach a man anything, he will never learn – Bernard Shaw

Learning is an active process, we learn by doing.

(Learning by doing helps us to appreciate the spills in the kitchen)

Only knowledge that is used sticks in your mind – practice makes perfect

Ok, so I started with the interview and I am ending with middle life crisis and spending and money. All join. One always leads to the other. Next time you have an interview, just be! Seriously, simply ‘tell them about yourself’ …the skills and training and everything you’ve acquired in the past that makes you a good fit for the job role. And once you start earning the money, plan ahead for the future, to prevent an early mid life crisis.

If this makes any sense to you "Feel free to share" - life's better shared with coy

Serial Dating: - The better you look, the more you see

The long term commitment many of us seek in marriage cannot be achieved by the short term relationships we run today.

For some, marriage is a covenant established simply due to a surge of testosterone.
On more than one occasion, I have had to tell a gurl that her man is safe with Mee. If I had wanted him in the first place, he’d (probably) not have gone after her. One of the men in my life walked up to Mee about 3 years ago and said, “I can’t wait again” and in fairness to him, I said no problem darling, go! Today he is married and seemingly unhappy too ‘cos he’s still asking for my hand; which to Mee is a great insult…a really great insult. If you think about it that’d only make Mee either a mistress or a second fiddle.

I remember another incidence; Mr. X decided I was the one for him, even though I made it clear I did not want him. After a lot of investments that were clearly not going to yield dividends, he said to me, “you’d never find anyone like me again” err… ‘If I don’t want you, why should I seek or find anyone like you AGAIN?’ however, I thanked him for the prayer/prophecy because it was a big relief! I had been asking God to take that ‘cup’ from me and presto! Halleluiah!

Due to my small frame and stature, I come across guys of the 80’s who think they’re man enough for Mee. I always politely tell them I have no intentions to cradle-snatch. I am well aware that age is in the mind but I’m no sugar mummy. Respect doesn’t come easy for Mee and I intend to submit fully to my own ‘husband’ as unto the Lord. So in fairness to guys that come that I clearly won’t (will not, not cannot) respect, I employ my base ball bat! Pammmnn!

Natasha Roberts, Sandy Rowland, Trisha Williams … lovely names! So when Olu Jacobs came I was glad. Not for Mee per se as I was not attracted to him in any way. It was solely for my children’s sake. When I thought well about it, I decided against it cos it was putting the cart before the wheel. I know married couples who don’t have kids YET and some of them actually (medically) cannot have kids. And since I was not attracted to him physically, I buried the notion. Case dismissed!

Then came Reuben, the life of the party and I could be sure to have a good time in the company of his friends. But when we were together alone just the two of us, it was a battle! LOL There is no point in a bird marrying a fish, where would they build their nest; in the tree or in the river? There are a lot of things I would rather not do, and not just for my children’s sake now (that’s a priori) but for Mee. A great time for Mee is a great conversation – interview, not intercourse! I miss his friends…

I have ‘fallen in love’ so many times with so many different people I’m not even sure what love is anymore. But I’m sure when I see it, I will know it. That’s what I always think …till I fall and recover again from the fall!

However, like my mentor advised, “I won’t let someone become a priority in my life when I’m just an option in theirs. Relationships work best when they are balanced.” Trust Mee, ‘balance’ in this context is difficult to define…at least for Mee! People always take Mee to task for what I perceive as balance or imbalance based on the attributes of guys that have dared to love Mee.

In self defense (there’s almost no one else defending Mee these days anyway), I had very good reason not to be bothered about the claims of some of them. Take for instance:

Kola Waziri the senator – like most noveau riche folk, he had the clout and the money, but lacked finesse. This guy spoilt Mee silly and stupid! The interesting thing is that money does not respond to ….ok ok, that discuss will be for another day. I totally agree that it is more convenient to cry in a limo than on a bike (okada) but as much as it brings comfort, there are some things money cannot buy. Anyways, Kola was at my beck and call - money, car, driver, and time - all the works! But I was reluctant to show him off to my friends. I subtly asked him to go to finishing school but he thought it was a sheer waste of his time. I eventually realized that hanging with him had a similar effect on Mee. I love food and comfort, but I also enjoy ‘good’ company! Besides time IS money, so err…I had to weigh my options and reprioritize! Next….

Dare Kelly the dude – he had it, good looks, great friends, money, a touché and taite background (albeit chrislam) and a very sweet mouth. But that was where it ended. A noisy gong and a clashing cymbal, he was all talk and almost nothing else. He obviously (clearly) did not have clear (obvious) plans at the time … LOL he did not know where he was going and he was willing to take Mee along! But I endured his nonsense syllables till I found my next catch. In retrospect, I wonder why I was attracted to him…maybe it was the power bikes, maybe it was the background, maybe… I guess it was his sweet mouth. A word spoken fitly is like apples of gold in settings of silver. But something hooked Mee to him till another came and ‘cleared my doubts’. Thank God for friends who are bold and nice enough to say the truth to us; directly.

I didn’t actually find my next catch, he found Mee. And for my sake, I am glad he did! When God brought Eve to Adam, she kept quiet and waited. All Eve did (had to do) was to follow God and make herself available for the ‘presentation’. There is no record that she spoke. Adam however, saw her and spoke. It was up to Adam after naming and seeing all the other animals to ‘find’ her, the helper suitable and complementary to him. Considering the trend I wonder, what if out of desperation Adam had named the Chimpanzee or Monkey a helper, seeing there was seemingly no other suitable choice … ? Adam wasn’t so bad after all, he made God think and re-create! But then again, HE is ALL knowing … this GOD sha!!!

Time will fail Mee to tell you about Chikezie, Mohammed, Tosan and Baron whom I had to reject due to my parents non-consent. Parents here, refers to Father (all 3 of them) and Mother (all 3 of them). In fairness, I personally single handedly turned my back on Igwe, Ghandi and Ogun due to spiritual di-vision; and last but not the least; Sean, Cicero and the rest who upon new discovery, just like water, found their levels. Acquaintance always gives insight to character no matter what appearances reflect.

God is faithful cos, I have NEVER lacked a man to sit on the ‘throne’ of my life… and even though I have loved and lost, it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all!


Disclaimer: any similarities to any one dead or alive is more than a coincidence. Since this is a true life account, it follows that the players mentioned are real too ... Names have been changed to protect actors; however, no ridicule or harm is intended!

Best regards,

Younique

My First Time …

Inasmuch as I do not subscribe to Morbid Introspection ... some intro' is good!

I got into the University with my life and plans of becoming a medical doctor ahead of me. Luckily sheltered all my life and lucky enough (again) to have been solely surrounded (at the core) by Christians (make that moralists); I was naïve with respect to the ways of the world. Filled with the aspirations of becoming a surgeon, I surrounded myself largely by nerds and social riff raffs. Show me your friends and I can tell who you are. Besides, water always finds its level.

Camp was interesting especially because it was a novel experience filled with sturvz I had only heard about in conversation with friends outside my regular circles (academic, church, family). Having been literally walled up all my life I was exposed for the first time, to the ‘outside’ aka ‘real’ world, at least so it was called. For the first time, I (in spite of my hyperactive conscience) was completely free … no roommates monitoring my movement, no matron or mistress hounding me for getting back late to the hostel, no parental figure cramping my style. I was FREE!

Plus we had the soldiers, who gladly made us stay out late in mammy market as long as we squared them with bottles. I was living the life! Oh yes, by the way, I started taking alcohol … although the conversion was gradual (albeit a timeframe of 3 days). Malta Guinness soon completely gave way to Guinness. And Guinness eventually introduced me to its cousins. The thrill, excitement and elation you get from St. Bottles is better experienced than read about. (Singing ‘it takes me high unto the sky …) Besides, I stopped taking fizzy drinks long before I got out of University so a ‘change’ from water was very welcome!

During NYSC proper, a couple of us newly-found-friends (acquaintance gives insight into character) got together to get accommodation; three 2 bedroom flats. Mine contained (by the original design) me and two other girls. Next flat, there were 4 guys; the 3rd contained this guy, me (again) (eventually) and another guy. Like you might have figured out, apart from the bottle, there was ‘this’ guy. He accepted me and loved me and it always felt (these feelings ehn) so good when he touched me. Being a troubled child, his touch nsot only comforted me but also err…took me to places I’d only heard about in 3rd party gist…ok ok TMI (Too Much Information).
Rumor has it that being a virgin in this blackberry generation is as outdated as carrying a telephone box around simply to stay in touch.

What’s ‘virginity’ got to do with it?

There is an account of 10 virgins which made me realize it is ok to share your light with others, just don’t give them your oil/source. Works well in the office as well, share information – help others to grow/rise – make yourself approachable – but keep your trade secrets – how do you balance this? The record also states that 5 of them were foolish and 5 of them were wise. So obviously, being a virgin is not enough considering not all the 10 virgins eventually married the bridegroom …

Another school of thought says it’s ok to go but just don’t go all the way. I mean, what else are you supposed to do on a date after eating anyways? Discovery time; ‘init? As long as penetration doesn’t occur, no harm is done. To every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction so I have reservations about the definition of being a virgin. My point however, no matter the definition is this; it is not enough to be a virgin QED.

May your fountain be blessed…let it be for you alone and not for someone else. How do you tell when the person is someone else’s and not yours? Being a serial dater, I like so many other people, have had several opportunities to assume the current date was ‘the one’ so … how can or when do you tell s/he is yours and not for someone else?

You cannot carry fire in your bossom and not be burned. Who has been burned before? And by what were they burned - Syphilis or … what burns?

How many guys out there really want to marry a virgin? To many guys, it’s a lot of work! Although to some, the task of ‘doing’ it would be a pleasurable experience (different strokes for different folk)

Another school of thought says you pay the price for the prize. So do I take the risk of losing the partner for the status or the status for the partner? Which/what is the prize? If virginity is truly a gift, whose is it, the girls’ or the guys’? At least for it to be a prize!

On the flip side, some guys can’t ‘get it out’ … so what if you wait till it’s d***** too late to find out? (The no sex till we get married BS) err BS: bull shit. It is about knowing anyway, more especially since marriage is ‘supposed’ to be a lifetime contract. You have to know if your man can run, walk or crawl.

Take the case of poor Bola, who being fully aware that the woman is often the obvious (sole) victim of getting caught in adultery, requested a no-sex-till-we-get-married contract. Contrary to expectation, her ‘man’ was surprisingly willing to ‘wait’ the entire dating period – a whole year. Unbeknownst to her, he could not perform. She had waited so long only to be ‘stood up’ forever and thus possibly (going by noble definition) rsemain a ‘virgin’ for the rest of her life.

On my last trip to Ghana, I met a girl that has been abused emotionally! She was more than willing to trade that form of abuse for any other kind until we pointed out that no form of abuse is palatable to the recipient. A problem reserves the right to be addressed as such as long as it is yours. Ab-use is abuse no matter the form it chooses to take. Like we said to her, virginity is something you give away, not something you lose. This should also comfort and console rape victims who have suffered discrimination from virgin-friendly ‘men’!

When I started marriage counseling classes, we were told, “the more you smoke, the less you cough” that, I believe is a good summary for those who are bent on the ‘dividends’ of practice. I’m glad I took those classes mehn. It just makes sense, we spend 4-5years studying to get a university degree BSc. & Co. (minus the preliminary primary and secondary school years) but when it comes to getting or making someone MRS. we think we can just count on ‘being in love’ – sigh!

In addition, being a virgin just like being in love is possibly nothing but a state of the mind. If the Book is considerably nice enough to tell us adultery is committed right in the heart and by mere looks then …

Ok, back to my original point, “what’s virginity got to do with it?” TO-DAY?!?