Anyone familiar with the work of German philosopher, Hegel, will be no stranger to the word ‘phenomenology’. For those of you that have a life, it’s geek-speak from studying perception from the first-person point of view; something men often wish women would do and women wish men would do too. That way we can see the world through each other’s eyes and just maybe there would be a spell of peace in the battle of the sexes.
Following my debut appearance in the classic all white Yoruba boy swag, complete with my fila (cap), feeling fly and dapper; I was met with a barrage of memes. If your nose has been in the Internet, I’m sure you remember that wedding photo with a row of guys standing with the celebrant in the middle. My personal favorite meme was one captured ‘This is how they celebrate a Nigerian man after breaking his 500th heart’.
It was all good fun, but juxtaposed with all the other Yoruba-boy memes, I had to apply some philosophical thought to this matter. Last time I checked, girls in the East weren’t exactly celebrating their men for profound loyalty. In the North, with polygamy still acceptable cultural practice, the notion of loyalty has an entirely different meaning. And even here in the South, this incident of Yoruba demonry seems particular to only Lagos, where the Yoruba big boys dwell. This led me to only one conclusion, metropolitan problems.
Every metropolitan city is by default a romantic city. Now calm down, I am not exactly comparing Lagos to Paris, New York or London. But in a sense, the hunger for romantic connections is just as powerful in all these cities, because busy cities can be very lonely leaving us feeling almost invisible in the midst of all that is going on. The idea of having someone we can count on through all the madness, a trusted partner for a break out of the manic traffic and demanding schedules. We can’t help but crave escape. Automatically, this makes the weight of expectation in any dating scenario higher than normal. You don’t have to be a psychologist to figure out that disappointment is directly proportional to expectation. Heartbreak is just the romantic term for romantic disappointment.
Given that women are the gatekeepers of sex and men are the gatekeepers of commitment, it is only normal that women try to play whatever card they have to get men committed and men try whatever we can to get sex out of women. When it comes to commitment for men, the sheer demand women come with makes us rather relaxed about the matter. If a guy really wanted a committed relationship, he could get it any day, so why be in a rush? It’s not like we have a ticking biological clock to worry about. The same is true for sex with women, the sheer demand men want it in, makes it lose value to females. If a girl wanted a different man a week, it is hardly an issue.
Unfortunately for women, the pretense of commitment is probably the strongest currency when bargaining for sex, and this is exactly what the average Lagos boy leverage on. If it was socially acceptable for a guys to just demand for no-string attached sex to every girl they wanted, there would actually be no need to play the demon card. Unfortunately, unlike other metropolitan cities, like London, where there is even a term for casual relationships ‘linking’, Lagos women in the majority remain opposed to the idea of rampant sexual relationships and so the men ‘adapt’ with faking commitment.
Please do keep in mind that this isn’t an appeal for anyone to change their lifestyle or values; just a modest analysis of what has become a cultural stereotype in these parts. I hope you enjoyed it 🙂
Photo Credit: Dreamstime