Friday, July 29, 2011


There is something about Lagos, something you will never find anywhere else. Lagos is many things to different people and it is the reason many people love Lagos.

I personally do. There is a feeling about Lagos, something no where else gives me. I love the energy and the never-say-die attitude of Lagosians. Lagos has the most amazing and incredible people. Lagosians are never low-spirited and have a way of motivating themselves. There is no city like Lagos; I guess there will never be. It is almost like Lagos never sleeps, with people waking up as early as 4am you have workers, business people, hustlers, pick pockets, hoodlums, armed robbers and all categories of MOGs (Men of God) at the bus stop. There is a rhythm of noise and fun that lives in Lagos. I love Lagos for so many reasons.
Dreams come true on the streets of Lagos, you find people with energy and boundless optimism. It is a land for everybody and no matter whom you are, you can find your level here. I have to admit that Lagos is very noisy, that is the bad side, everything is loud, music vendors play music very loud and it can threaten insanity if you are new comers, people get used to it. Lagos is a place that people grow with experiences and with all these things, the love for Lagos have to be acquired (don’t you agree?). People from all tribes, religion have made Lagos their home because there is no other place to them. Lagos is fun, Lagos is energy, Lagos is style, Lagos is Lagos! Everything seems to be available here and you find strange things here. Lagos is the entertainment capital of the Nigeria, it no wonder M.I called it LASGIDI. Over the years, Lagos has been transformed and it only makes you love Lagos more. It is truly the centre of excellence.
The history of Lagos makes me love Lagos even more and right from the very beginning people have drawn to this city and people will always be coming.

Lagos is located in south western Nigeria on the Atlantic coast in the Gulf of Guinea, West of the River Niger Delta. Located on Longitude 3° 24̍̍E and Latitude 6 27̍̍N.

AWORI (Awo ti ri) : “The plate sank”
Originally inhabited by the Awori, a sub-group of Yoruba speaking people. They were ruled under the leadership of their Olofin. It is believed that the Olofin and his followers left the palace of the then emperor, Oduduwa in Ile-Ife and migrated southwards along the river. The emperor gave Olofin a mud plate which he put on the river and was told to follow till it sank. Anywhere it sank, would be where he would settle. The plate was said to have stopped several places. It was said to have stopped temporarily near Olokemeji near the present day Abeokuta in Ogun State but moved after 17 days to Oke-afa still in the present day Ogun State. Some of Olofin followers are said to have settled led by one man named Osho aro-bi-ologbo-egan. The plate stopped at Isheri where it stayed longer and some followers remained but after 289 days, the played moved towards Iddo, where it stopped briefly after 2 days and finally it moved to Idumota, where it sank to the bottom. Olofin was said to have told his group in excitement when he was asked about the plate. He said “Awo ti ri” meaning the plate has sunk. This is the origin of the name AWORI. Very interesting, I have to say.

In the 15th century, the Awori settlement was attacked by the Benin Empire following a quarrel and the name EKO meaning war camp was given to the place under the then Oba of Benin, Oba Orhogba. This is getting even interesting, I used to think Eko was Yoruba; it is a Benin Language after all.

The name Lagos was given to it by the Portuguese meaning lakes. A Portuguese explorer named Rui de Sequeira visited the area in 1472 naming the area around the city Lago De Curamo. (reminds me of Kuramo beach) It is believed that it was named after a maritime town in Portugal, the main centre of the Portuguese expedition down the African Coast, whose name is derived from the Latin word Lacobriga (Lakes).
Migrants from all over Nigeria and other neighbouring nations were returnee former slaves, some whom have been freed (known as Creoles) came from Freetown, Brazil and the West Indies to Lagos. These people contributed to the modernization of Lagos, having travelled far and advantage of western education, civilization, some used their knowledge of Portuguese architecture in development of Lagos and some of these building can be seen in Lagos Island. It is no wonder Lagos and Eko for short can not be like anywhere else. With that calibre of people coming into Lagos at that time, it makes it clear why Lagos is ahead of many cities in Nigeria and people will always be drawn to it. Lagos is such that after you have been “Lagosilized” (my description of Lagos civilization), you can hardly stay longer time in other places in Nigeria and sometimes, other countries of the world, you always want to come back, the other places seem too bored. I love Lagos!

Creoles or Saros
These are the freed slaves or former slaves who migrated to Nigeria early 1830s. They were known locally as Saros (those from Sierra Leone) or Amaros (migrants from Brazil and Cuba). Returnees from Brazil were known as Aguda (reminds me of Aguda in Surulere). Some have settled in Ghana, Sierra Leone, Brazil and Cuba. The interesting part is that many of these returnees chose to remain in Nigeria and particularly Lagos for cultural and economic reasons. Very interesting. Some also did for missionary purposes. The feeling is still on, we love Lagos and there is something about Lagos.

The history of Lagos is fascinating. It tells why Lagos is different. I love this city. It inspires me. The population of Lagos is growing constantly and the city is growing. The government of Lagos has a system that works better than many states and Lagos never gets boring. Lagos is one state with what I like to call a “flag”. The state has her motto. The last time I checked I cannot count how many states have that except in America where each state has a flag. I am beginning to think that Lagos is a country on its own inside Nigeria. Things are different here, people think differently in Lagos. The system and the workings are different. So much for Lagos, I guess.
I remember that Jayz’s song with Alicia Keys, Empire State of Mind where he talks of New York being a concrete jungle where dreams are made of; there is nothing you cannot do when you are in New York. Nice song! Lagos may not be as developed as New York but the song applies to Lagos and the people. Lagos is the land of hustling and here, people’s dreams happen. You see people’s lives change and here I tend to see that people cannot be intimidated. The man in the Hummer Jeep cannot oppress
the truck pusher; it is a thing of the mind after all.
Even after the recent flooding, people still want to stay. Many people have stayed here all their lives and they do not see how they can fit elsewhere, one of the reason why Lagos is Lagos.
Inside Lagos Traffic things happen, on the streets things have personalities, as you ride in the bus or in your car, what you see or hear is most times peculiar to Lagos.

Lagos inspires me and it builds my energy……love this city. There is always someplace to go, things to do. If you are the type that takes chances, you’ll enjoy Lagos. Lagos is the land of opportunities. Stories of grass to grace are common in Lagos because in Lagos you don’t have to know anyone to succeed. The lessons you learn from everyday interactions, situations build your character, sharpen your thinking and guide your choices. Not like you cannot do it anywhere else but in Lagos, your chances are better. This is Nigeria’s entertainment capital. As crazy, fast and loud as it is, I still love it. I have acquired that taste! I love Lagos. It is an interesting city. It may sound biased but I believe if you can survive here in Lagos, you can anywhere in the world.

Lagos is a great place to live. Lagos is Eko and Eko is Lagos!

Eko oni Baje o, O baje ti…..

Thursday, July 28, 2011


I bet we have heard of cocaine (coke), heroin, ecstasy, ketamine valium, benzodiazepines, vicodin, vanadium,, barbiturates, speed ball, cocktail and it goes on. Some people abuse even pain killers and sleeping pills. It is no longer news that people get hooked on dangerous substances and they always find their way to the rehab. With celebrities it becomes headlines and somehow I wonder why people even do drugs. We just get fascinated watching celebrities in Hollywood, go and come out of rehabs in turns like it is the real issue. Despite gruelling facts about the danger it can do and how much somebody’s life can be ruined, people will always find their way to get hooked on these things. Addiction is perhaps the most dangerous disease in the world because; it goes as far as the mind. The number of people on drugs worldwide would break your heart if we could get the true figure. Many people are quiet addicts and some just don’t seem to care if you knew. Addicts range from all ages, teenagers, older people, male and female and tribe. They are every where and they could be living inside your house. When it comes to Hollywood, rehabs and addicts make headlines.
Sordid details of Ms Amy final hours claim she bought cocktails of narcotics including cocaine, ecstasy and ketamine. Buying drugs from a dealer, late Friday. Some details claim she has been drinking heavily, dangerously with a lethal concoction of drugs and alcohol. Amy, who was said to have suffered from emphysema, a disease of the lungs that causes shortness of breath died at 27 years. She was a talented star with huge potentials but her life has been stolen and she died with dreams, we would never know about. These reports could have their disparity from what really happened but we all know, Amy battled with drugs and alcohol.

Like Amy, other celebrities have passed at 27, which I hear is called the 27club. On the list are Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain and Rolling Stones’ Brian Jones. What do you know? It is really sad what drugs can do and I wonder why people never keep off drugs. People make huge money from illegal drug sales on street corners, high class bars, joints and just anywhere both in the ghettos and the highbrow areas. Drugs like human trafficking are huge business and the sad thing is these traffickers forget that someone close to them could be the addict. In Hollywood, we have watched over the years how drugs have ended people’s lives, wrecked their careers and even here in Nigeria, it is no different. Many Nigerian celebrities have admitted to tasting coke and claim to be clean, while others still have not gotten over it. It is a way of life and in some quarters, it is classy. Some type of music, their lyrics can induce a young person who is lost to find solace in addiction to these substances.
Some people on the list of drug overdose or drug abuse or addiction will leave you wondering, how they even got themselves there but it is not to be judgemental but to open our eyes to how dangerous drugs can be. Some people get addicted for different reason. Some get hooked to fill the emptiness they experience at a point in their lives at a point, suppress their depression (they suppose so) or because their friends are doing it (peer pressure). The reasons vary but in the end it has no justification, it only ruins.
1.Anna Nicole Smith: Former playboy model, sex symbol, actress, TV personality, found dead with a lethal combination of chloral hydrate and various benzodiazepines in her system on Feb 8, 2007.

2.Sid Vicious: The bassist of the sex pistols and an inductee of the rock and roll hall of fame. Was found dead on Feb 1, 1979 in his post-bail party with an overdose of heroin.

3.Marilyn Monroe: It has been said to be probable suicide. She was found death with an overdose of barbiturates.
4.Corey Haim: Died March 20, 2010. it is believed that his system would have been weakened from previous drug addiction.
5.Brittany Murphy: said to have fainted in her shower.
6.Heath Ledger: Accidental overdose and was not proven to be addiction even though it was speculated.
7.John Belushi: Died 1982 after injecting herself with Speedball (a mixture of cocaine and heroin).

8.River Phoenix: Died of heroin overdose in the presence of his younger brother Joaquin.
9.Mary Anissa Jones: Details of her death were said that she was found dead with some drugs in her system at the time of her death; methaquaione and cocaine.
10.Judy Garland: Died in 1969 from an overdose of barbiturates.
11.Elvis Presley: Overdosing on prescription drugsdiv class="separator" style="clear: both; text-align: center;">
12.Nick Adams: Died in 1968 of possible overdose.
13.Montgomery Clift: Died in 1966 from a mixture of drugs and alcohol.
14.Brad Renfo: Died in 2008 of heroin overdose.
15.Dana Plato: Died in 1999, after overdose of vicodin and vanadium.
16.Robert Pastorelli: Died of Drug overdose in 2004.
17.WC Fields: He is said to have died of alcohol abuse.
18.Dorothy Dandridge: she overdosed on antidepressant.
19.Nick Cantor: Died after injecting shot of pure heroin in 1991.
20.Rodney Harvey: He died in 1998 of possible heroine overdose.

The list is endless and these are those we know and have heard of. Others who have tested to these drugs include: Ray Charles, Jonny Cash, DMX, Dennis Quaid, Whitney Houston, Robert Downey Jr, Jeff Conaway, Mary J. Blige, Mel Gibson, Charlie Sheen, and Ike Turner. This list goes on. While many went on to get cleaned, overcoming their addiction, a lot are still battling it and many still live in denial. Many do not want to admit they are hooked on it, they say they are just experimenting with it. The truth of the whole thing is that drugs can kill you, ruin your life. While rehabs could be helpful, it does not solve it. People get hooked on these substances and their lives begin to fade before their eyes. It drains their lives emotionally. Financially and blinds them to their responsibilities.

We ought to take responsibility for our lives and stop finding reasons to test on drugs. While life on the fast lane may be interesting, it can end even before it begins. This is not about being judgemental or righteous, the pain is, addicts are everywhere and why it is so easy to follow Lindsay Lohan or Britney Spears to rehab, someone right under your nose could be hooked on drugs just as some girls are prostitutes and those around them do not know. It is a sad thing when you look at all these things but it is a thing that will not go away any time soon. With how much money dealers make from it, I just see it that people should look after themselves. Be determined to resist that temptation to test it or succumb to pressure. There is nothing good about it and with how interesting it may seem you are only digging your own grave.

Thursday, July 21, 2011


It is so easy to miss it. seriously! you just think you already know and that you have heard it but trust me, you can miss it. I do not need a prophet to tell me that i should build a life writing because it is easy, it comes to me effortlessly and i enjoy it but like most people, i was thinking white collar job is the "best thing". while this is true for those who enjoy their jobs, how about the rest of us? How many people genuinely enjoy their jobs? How many people will stay in their jobs now, if they employer told them they would no longer pay them?
Do What you love, it is one way to cope in this country. The politics is full of intrigues and i do not see how that puts food on my table.....this country, man must survive. People are clamoring for wages but honestly why isn't FG responding? NLC will continually battle and politics will remain. People really have to stop waiting on the Government and get their lives started. The plight of people is understandable but the whole thing helps me to see only one thing, we need to build our lives around what we love, something we enjoy.
What am i saying?
Look at Genevieve Nnaji, it does not matter what happens with the minimum wage drama or the economy, as concerned as she she is, she still has her life going on. Nothing like strike affects her. She will always be doing movies and she cashes in on it. What about D'banj, Tu Face, Beyonce? these people are stars, they will be shows, people will pay for their services. The shoe cobbler down the road, will get customers to pay as long as he makes good shoes, we will continue to wear shoes and that restaurant owner, we will continue to eat food. How about that dude on that white collar job? with all his qualifications, he is sackable (if English permits), the employer just needs only one reason and the cash flow stops, the undergraduate running around town for the job may be ambitious but that other dude who is learning how to make clothes will fair better believe me. The point is doing what you enjoy makes you a possible brand and you walk with it inside of you, nobody takes that away from you. Fela Durotoye is a brand, just like Beyonce, Rhianna: these people will do what they are doing even if you take away whatever you want. Beyonce will sing and Fela will talk.
With the way things are going and all the grammar we hear about economics, i wonder what happens to the unemployed? it is understandable to keep faith and hope but it is to look within and do what you enjoy. Do it so well and people will eventually pay for it. The struggle for white collar jobs is very huge and the pressure to get one is overwhelming. If people can do the Maths on what they are paid per hour on that "gorgeous Job" we will start considering what we are worth. this is no longer news but we still do not believe in what we can do, we limit what we are capable of. Many people do not see how they can make a life doing what they love. The world around here has no place for delayed gratification. There are loads of talents wasting with people stuck behind the desk, limited as cubicle dwellers and just afraid to take the step. People running after qualifications to work for someone of lesser or no qualifications. The world over has people discovering this secret. Do what you love. People are dumping their huge paying jobs for a simpler easy lives, a chance to focus on the important things in their lives! Do not get too busy to enjoy the simple things in life, too important to reach out to others, to occupied to live a life.
People spend time doing things that frustrate them, running after a job that they cannot get fulfillment from; they chase vain things and later in life they discover they have been running another man's race, struggling all their lives on the wrong course. We fear failure so much that we do not want to try things out, we just let things die inside of us and just pretend it is okay. People just choose to live in denial and just find a reason to stay a little bit longer.

Don't get lost in the rat race!

Imagine how much you could achieve doing what you love, putting just half of the effort you put in those frustrating and unproductive things in things that comes effortlessly to us? it is amazing. it is not easy to start but consistency and branding is key. If you love what you do, it will not be like work. There are boundless opportunities in Nigeria but because we believe in having qualifications for the white collar jobs and we want cash in on things now, that is why it looks hard. we are chasing money, while money is chasing us, we never get past hand-to-mouth living. we just run after cars, big houses, living choice areas while slaving on the wrong direction.If one in every 5 unemployed graduate should just consider building a life doing what they love, beginning now, you will see things change.
Have you wondered what Genevieve would have become if she was working a white collar job with the qualification she has now or D'banj, Tu Face, Beyonce, Rhianna, Nicki Minaj, Jay Jay Okacha, Kanu Nwankwo,Beyonce Knowles, Wayne Carter (Lil Wayne) Lionel Messi,Mercy Johnson, Adebayor Manu, Usian Bolts? the list is endless. What if you could bring those crazy imaginations in your head to life? what if you could make it happen? and what if they gave up because of they difficulties they were facing? they are mega stars and right now someone's life is changing doing what he/she loves. While the rest of Nigerians are complaining about what Government did or did not do, about things we cannot do anything about, some people are making huge cash doing what they love, they are living a life and they are not under any pressure of being sacked, missing on the important things in their lives. They are busy building a life they will not be able to live with their dreams fading before their eyes. A life like an assembling plant, doing the same thing over and over, no creativity, no use of initiative allowed, no adventure, a boring life!

There is so much we can be, if we let ourselves be, if we give our dreams the chance to be, if we could just take that chance. you never know. while you are there criticizing those stars, they are making their cash and i mean serious cash. Do not get caught up in the rat race, go get a life. Stop waiting for that big Oil job. People do not want to start small, so they go for the money but when they start, they feel it is okay, half way into it, they discover that their lives are entangled in the rat race. They are in a fix, messed up unfulfilled..... you deserve better, tell yourself that and run with it.

Make sure, you don't die Miserable, You can be more. Enjoy