Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Red October.....

I promised a friend of mine that I would take pictures of autumn, unfortunately, as in all things I do, I left it to the last minute. Thus, the brilliant idea came up to do it all in one day, so I took my camera, my bicycle they are. My battery died, the weather turned shitty and although I kept thinking I would take more pictures, time did not wait and before long, there were no more leaves or colours. So for my friend, next year I will do better!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

My sweety, my sugar.....

By the way, anybody remember the name of this artist?

Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy weekend

It will be a cool weekend with Bob and wine......


Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Ogbunike (3)

Nneka heard the drumming before she reached her hut.Ogbunike was home, her heart melted as it always did when she thought of him. Ogbunike, her only son, her only love, her life. After her husband had died, she thought she would never find peace in her heart again, but Ogbunike had filled her heart, with his rhythms.She knew he was sad before she saw him, he was like her husband, their moods could be felt just by listening to their drums. Today, he was beating the obanfe rhythm, she had not heard it in a long time, her son was sad.

"My son, I met Ogechi today, Ikemefuna's mother at the market. She told me of your kindness, allowing Ikemefuna to join the rehearsals"

Ogbunike looked up at his mother, he had not heard her come in. She looked tired and old, he still remembered when she used to take him to the stream, to wash clothes and swim. That was before he became a man and had to wash himself at the other end of the stream with other men. How he missed those days! She used to sing a lot then and how he loved to play in the water while she washed the clothes and sang. His father told him that when she was younger, he and the other men used to sit at the other end of the stream listening to her voice. He quickly put his drum away to help his mother with the basket of yams she had on her head.

"yes, Onyinye thinks he will be better for the Nkombi dance"

"Nobody is better than you, my son"

She looked at her son, he was a man, a man in love. She knew he was in love with Onyinye, daughter of Chioma and Okafor. She had been waiting for the day when he would finally tell this to her, but days were becoming years and still Ogbunike had not said anything. She was worried, Onyinye was now a woman, her friends were getting spoken for, and Nneka was afraid Ogbunike might lose his chance if he waited any longer. This Nkombi dance was probably his last chance.

"I was surprised my son. You have always played the drums for the Nkombi dance....why Ikemefuna?"

"I told you. The girls think he will be better for them. Mama, I do not want to be the reason why Ifeoma and Ugonna are not spoken for again this year."

"Does the blackness of the night blame its colour on the sound of the crickets?"

"Mama, I do not understand"

"These days, you young ones have forgotton the tongues of the wise ones, I told your father, that it will be so with you. Proverbs are rich my son, try to understand them"

"But I do not understand mama, the colour of blackness....the sound of crickets.... what has that got to do with Ugonna and Ifeoma and the Nkombi dance?"

" Ifeoma and Ugonna have not been spoken for because they are ugly. Everybody in the village knows that. The rhythm of your hands, the Nkombi dance, the new yam festival, nothing can save them....except maybe Ogidikpo!"

Ogbunike laughed. His mother had a way of making everything seem so light and easy. Ogidikpo..... the humped bank palm wine tapper with the missing front tooth. He looked at his mother affectionately, he dreaded the day he would have to tell her had had fallen in love, he did not want to leave her yet.

"Come mama, let me help you with dinner, I already cooked the yams, let me pound it, and warm the left over soup from breakfast"

" A man does not pound yam, do not let your mates hear you"

" Don't worry mama, there is nobody here, here is water, it is cold, rest, the food will soon be ready"

Nneka looked at her son as he brought out the mortar and pestle. She was worried, she had to prepare him for the role of a husband. It was times like this that she missed her husband.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

A quoi ca sert l'amour (To what end does love serve?)

One of my favourite songs from Edith Piaf and this cartoon is soooooo cute!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Ogbunike, contd

Kpam Kpam kpam kpam kpam

The sound of the drum was coming from the market square. The sounds were familiar yet Ogbunike knew everything was wrong. The rhythm did not follow the akpati rhythm. The one taught from generation to generation as Ogbunike knew it. The one taught to his father by his grandfather. The drum was definitely the Ogidi, but who dared to play the Ogidi without the akpati rhythm?
In the village square was a scene that made the muscles of Ogbunike tighten at the nape of his neck. It was not the sight of Ikemefuna beating recklessly away at the Ogidi that did it but the sight of the person in the middle, dancing with careless abandonment.....Onyinye. The drums slowly calmed down and Ogbunike’s presence was soon rain after a hot day.

“Ogbunike, come brother, here is the Ogidi, humor us with the rhythm of your hands”

“Ah! Ikemefuna, I’m afraid it is too late for the Ogidi”

“Are you an old man now?”

This drew laughter from the crowd and it seemed to Ogbunike that Onyinye laughed louder and longer than everybody else.

“Old....we shall all reach that stage when our hands tremble at the simplest of okanka rythms. No, old I am not, but the ogidi is better played under the shadows of daylight”

Silence descended on the crowd, the words of Ogbunike had struck deep, it was a well known fact that the ogidi was only brought out during the day. That they had chosen to ignore that fact made them bow their heads with shame.

“Well perhaps it is time that the sound of the Ogidi is recognized under moonlight” and with that, Ikemefuna began his strange thumping, and the crowd went back to their dancing. Ogbunike went on his way but it was not long before his ears caught the sound of running feet behind him

“Ogbunike! Ogbunike!”, it was Onyinye, who seemed to be out of breath from trying to catch up with Ogbunike, whose feet was on their own rhythm this night, getting as far away from strange thumping of Ikemefuna's hands.

“Ogbunike! Will you not escort me home? What will your mother say, leaving your neighbor on a night like this?”

“I am sorry. I was not aware you would be going home so early. The night is still young”

“Yes, the night is young, but I thought perhaps, this would be a good time to continue the discussion we had some days ago”

“Ah the new yam festival! The dance rehearsals will start in two market days”

“Ehhhhhh, you see, Ogbunike, we were thinking……”

“You mean Ugonna and Ifeoma....”

“Yes, my peer mates, we were thinking that we’d like the Nkombi dance to be played by Ikemefuna....”

She looked down as she spoke


“Yes, Ikemefuna. His rhythm is different. Perhaps we can beat the village of Okete this year”

“Ikemefuna is not in the group. The rehearsals have already been planned”

“Yes, that is why I wanted to talk to you, you are the leader, you can put Ikemefuna in, and besides, you hate the Nkombi dance, you lament every year and every year, we have to fight you to include it. This year, you will not have to grit your teeth”.

“I do not grit my teeth”

“Yes you do, every time we practice the Nkombi dance”

“Perhaps it’s because the Nkombi dance is a stupid dance. A competition for you girls to become spiteful to each other”.

“Ogbunike, the Nkombi dance is for me and my peer mates, perhaps to you it is spiteful but don’t forget many girls are married every year because of the Nkombi”

“That is why it is stupid, choosing a wife because of the way her buttocks move... And you say I am old”

“I never said you were old, afterall,you are only five years ahead of me. I have known you since childhood, you taught me to break kennels....”

Her voice had softened and he could hear her heart beat in the stillness of the night.

“Onyinye, if you really want Ikemefuna to play the Nkombi, this year, then…, It is okay.....he can join us for rehearsals”

“Really ? Oh thank you Ogbunike! The girls were so sure you would say no, but I told them Ogbunike has a heart of gold! Just like your mother! Oh, I have to go and tell the girls, they will be so excited”

And with that, Onyinye started back towards the market square.

“But who will escort you home?” shouted Ogbunike at her retreating figure,

“Don’t worry, Ikemefuna will!” came the resounding reply.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Fever, hallucinations, Ogbunike, etc

Sorry oh my friends, na wah. Catwalq, Ogbunike will be up soon, composed with high fever and a state of lucidity. Yes Waffy has been down and out for almost a week now. Two nights ago, I was sweating and hearing Ogbunike pounding away on his drums. I could see him and the rest of my characters take shape in my head. I saw the whole story unfold before me, but alas, my head or hands could not do the task.... write. I could not write what I saw, the scenes swept past me and my feverish state would not allow my fingers to move. Woke up this morning, my head was clear, but the scenes, the characters, Ogbunike..... all washed away with my sweat and dreams. I am doing better,the fever is gone and in place of it, I am left with a bad cough and a dripping nose. Will be back soon with what is left of Ogbunike.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Tired Of Being Sorry

I don't normally like Enrique, but I am feeling this melody......die.......

When Death calls...

Ben sat in his living room, doing what he did every Wednesday night, erasing most of what he had written the night before. His eyes wandered over to the clock by the kitchen sink, the clock starred back obstinately ticking was four o'clock and a sharp ring echoed through the bare apartment. At first, he thought it was the clock, but then he knew it was the phone.... he slowly walked over to the phone, took a deep breath and picked it up.

Ben: Hello?
Voice: She is dead

Ben: Who?
Voice: You know who

Ben:She is dead.....
Voice: Yes

Voice:You have nothing to say...
Ben: No, there is nothing to say about death

Voice:She died at exactly 3'o'clock
Ben: How?

Voice:Nobody knows, she was alone
Ben: One less human being the world. Is that all you have to say?
Ben: About what?

Voice: About her death...
Ben: Who can say anything about death?

Voice:Plenty people....Preachers, philosophers, teachers....plenty people....
Ben:I have nothing to say

Voice: She left a letter for you
Ben: Death can not speak

Voice: I read it
Ben: Death can not speak

Voice: She says she loves you
Ben: Like many others have....

Voice: She says she is sorry
Ben: Like many others are...

Voice: She says good bye
Ben: Don't they all?

Voice: She wants you to take that trip...she says you know the one...
Ben: Death can not speak, she is dead

Voice: She gave everything away...except her typewriter....she wants you to have it.
Ben: She is dead....

Voice: Yes she is. Goodbye Ben, I will send the typewriter by post. Take care of yourself, I suppose you won't be at the funeral?
Ben: No, Good bye.

As Ben hung up the phone, he slowly lay down on the cold floor and closed his eyes..... an inhumane shriek echoed through his brain. It was a while before he realized the sound was coming from him,the darkness and wildness of the shriek scared him, it was nothing he had ever heard before but.... it was coming from him.

He slowly stood up and walked over to the calender, the only other thing that hung on his walls apart from the picture...the picture of Abbey. He crossed out a date, and underneath it, wrote "Abbey is dead". He took the picture of Abbey and placed it on top of the clothes in his open suitcase. He slowly picked up the phone and made the call he had been dreading for the last two years....

"Good afternoon, I need to know when I can get on the next possible flight to Havana, Cuba"

Thursday, November 1, 2007

This got to me.....I'll tell you why

I read this article in the guardian today, and it made me sad. The way people always see things with their "monetary" eyes, baffles me. Every single thing in that country has to be reduced to "money". It is no wonder that people do not bother with the arts anymore. When creativity is reduced to that,then you understand that we suck, big time. I have no idea how the national flag was created, I never knew who created it, and would never have known, were it not for this article. Just the fact, that I do not know and never bothered is a shame. So I went through 6 years of primary school and nobody thought to include it in any of our social studies books? Now, I think who ever came up with that flag, no matter its simplistic or drab nature should at least be written about. Money? I do not know, but as the writer remarked, if we can spend so much money honoring footballers with names of streets in our capital city, then, please!. Well, I did not really care much about the flag maker but the article is a good one. Read it if you have the time.