Douglas is BACK!
If I don’t toot my own horn who will?
Anyway, I’ve been away for two weeks because you know adulting in Nigeria is hard. If you noticed I’ve been away, I’m really touched. If you didn’t, I will be praying for retentive memory for you!
Meanwhile, can you imagine they are now making us resume at 8AM in the Ministry? I can no longer sleep till 11AM. This is not the progress Ambode promised me after I voted for him at two polling centers. Thankfully, they have not taken away the TVs or our DSTV connection; Folake and I still start the day with Africa Magic, as usual.
As I was saying earlier, Nigeria is hard. I don’t have light, my friends are being stopped by VIO and all sorts. It occurred to me that I can turn these stories of suffering into ‘advice’ and ‘inspiration’. Don’t worry I haven’t started charging motivational speaking fees just yet. In case you know Fela Durotoye and Steve Harris, tell them they can relax. Their spin doctor cheques are still safe. For now.
So here goes. And this time I’m not even trying to be funny. This is serious business. Who knows? If this civil service doesn’t pan out, I may be coming for Fela and Steve last last.
This is serious Douglas:
As you know we are at war in Nigeria. In Nigeria, we are at war. Doesn’t it feel on some days like the remaining 169,999,999 Nigerians (including family) are against you? Traffic, Police, V.I.O., your boo, PHCN, Buhari, Dino Melaye, that Big Brother Nigeria Lumapil advert, everybody and everything is just trying you.
In every war, you need allies. People who will make your life smoother and easier on the days that threaten to be the roughest and the worst. Here’s a couple of people you should always have in your corner:
P.H.C.N. officials should run for President because they’re really the only ones who can guarantee you light. Did you know you can pay a Power Holding Company of Nigeria official to connect power back to your home illegally? It’s their own side hustle. They will tell you the money you will have to pay legally – on the books – is more expensive than lining their own pockets to connect it unofficially. So should you be in the patriotic, exemplary habit of not paying your bills, you really need to make friends with any of the servicemen who are in charge of electricity in your neighourhood.
A High-Ranking Official in Uniform – Police, Good. Soldier, Even Better
“Do you know who I am?” Everybody deserves to ask this question at least once if you live in Nigeria. Especially when you have been stopped by the Police, F.R.S.C., LASTMA, V.I.O, or whatever agency is on bribery duty for the day. Of course, you dare not utter these words, unless you have powers that can help you provide a strong answer. So say you’ve been stopped, accused of something silly like running a red light. You’re not in the mood. It gets rough. You whip out your phone and make that call. Hand the phone to your oppressor. “My Oga Wan Follow You Talk.”
CAUTION: Works with mixed results.
Bank Teller Personnel (for public holiday transactions)
OK, so you left all your transactions till the very last day before a three-day weekend. You are Nigerian, don’t beat yourself up. Doing things in a rush is one of the skills you were born with. To be able to, though, you need to make very good friends with one of the tellers at your bank. The strategy is simple. On rare days, when you actually see to your transactions in a timely fashion, kickstart the relationship.
Watch out for those who always greet and maybe ask how you’re doing. Respond in kind. Whenever you’re in the bank, make sure you always go to them. Make eye contact.
When making withdrawals, always leave a little something – nothing less than N500 and not above N2, 000 – for the weekend, no matter what day you are in the bank, even Monday. Collect their phone number. A time will come when you will need returns on your N1500 per transaction investment
You never know when you need a state, federal government or ministry stamp for something, or when you need someone to be ‘on seat.’
With these few words of mine, I hope I have able to ‘advice’ and ‘inspire’ you. I will leave my booking information in my next article.
In the meantime, you can catch me on Twitter…check bio below.
Do Better Today!
Photo Credit: Dreamstime