Thursday, January 29, 2009

Interview Thursday: " I fight with my head and not my fists or mouth" - Poeticallytinted

To me, she is young and successful, she is smart, intelligent, incredibly strong, full of experiences that have shaped her views, values and life positively. Our e-mail conversations left me in no doubt that I am dealing with an awesome individual and when I might her, I just love this lady! She is a balanced woman, a CAT-LOVER, she is here to rock her world positively and to make an invaluable impact. Poeticallytinted is in da HOUSE!

Is there anything to our cultural values in Nigeria?
Whoa! You choose to start with this JAMB question, na wa oh, and I thought you were my friend! (lol). Cultural values... honestly, sometimes I want to indentify with them, sometimes, I don't. I've lived abroad and I've lived in Nigeria and have witnessed firsthand, the difference in our cultural values/beliefs and thiers. My thoughts are these: The foundation of our cultural values are built on a very rigid model. This model encourages narrow-mindedness, we do things without asking questions just because that's how it's always been done. If you make the mistake of challenging any of these things, you are automatically persona-non-grata. Societal influence is stronger than ever because there is a major to be accepted and since there are very few types of people as opposed to more advanced countries where there are all sorts, you are either "good" or "bad", so chose one.

"Good" is boring and restricted, "good" never asks questions, "good" does not challenge anything, "good' desperately wants to be accepted, "good" takes you nowhere. "Good" gets married and has children because it's time to do so not because he/she really wants to. "Good" studies what his/her parents want hin/her to study in school, no questions asked... I am certain you get my drift now. So, I gues I am bad... I guess.

However, our cultural values are not that bad. In fact, the rigid structure brainwashes us into automatically reaching out to one another. We are designed to move in packs, no silos. I think because of this, there are less suicides and distrubingly-disturbed-but- looking-okay-people in our society. That is a good thing. We look out for each other. You will not go through a divorce alone. You will get good and bad advice from everyone like it or not! But most importantly, you will not be alone

Do you think there are things to be expunged from our culture in Nigeria?
Yes of course. A little broad mindedness and respect for people's individuality wil help. People are beginning to change things but the fundamentals are still there. For instacne, a policeman stopping me a few days ago and instead of simply asking to see my driver's lincense said to me with a knowing smile " I hope you didn't forget your license at home" because in his mind... women always forget thier license at home. Women also need to get out of the mould that have been created for them and begin to be true to themselves. Well, in a nutshell, mindless stereotpying and narrow - mindedness are two things we could start thinking about changing. You see, focusing on petty things keep us from achieving the great things. We, as a nation, have the potentials to achieve

What are your opinions about "gender inequality" that plague our existence in Nigeria and how can this be changed?
Gender inequality... you know how I feel about this now. Well, there is real and perceived gender inequlaity which stems from our deeply engraved cultural values/beliefs and our origin all voer the world. Like my mother stopping me from playing soccer with the guys because she wanted me to help her cook in the kitchen...etc. I did not have the freedom to choose to do what interested me at the time. So you grow up intrinsically knowing your place.

However. I think the primary responsibility for change lies with women. If you want something to give, you may have to nudge it a bit. If women keep acting like dumb people who will follow any course charted for them by men then they will never be taking seriously. Women in our society have been terribly brainwashed and behave like people under some form of lifetime hypnosis. I am impressed by women like you, Standtall, who are making a difference. I think women need to change from the inside before any impact can be made on the outside. You think it first and then you can become it. If you believe you are equal and are not afraid to act like it, then may be someone will treat you like his equal.

Feminism is often misinterpreted by some people, what is your interpretation of feminism?
For me, feminism is being pro-female. Recoginizing that women seem to have a battle on their hands, a battle they did not ask for but have to fight. I have fought this battle I know. Some women have decided to dedicate thier lives to battling stereotypes against women for themselves and for others. These are feminists. They are not man-hating; they are just on a cuse like the Mahatma Ghandi's and the Mandela's of this world. However, I never address myself as a feminist, people have various pre-conceived notions surrounding that word. I hate to be pre-judged. I am an individual before I am female or male or professional or anything and would like to be treated that way.

What changes would you like to make as a feminist?
Err..... Change the way we think. I know feminism means to you what it means to you (telling Standtall) so it's okay to say I am one of you oh. I want a world where people exercise all those rights that begin with the word "freedom" regardless of gender, race, religious beliefs etc. So I guess my cause is a bit wider than feminism.

What is your opinion about helping other women/girls grow?
I intend to set up an NGO really soon where young women are constructively set on the right path of life. I think knowledge is power and gives us options, I also believe people need to be shown the way to go because some of them may never find it on their own.The point is a person should be able to do what he/she loves to do and not what she/he is forced to do. A person's potentials are greatly utilized when the decision is hers.

Most women don't know this and are afraid to identify what makes them thick because they may be labeled as "bad". Anyway, the point is to create a forum where minds are set free and negative stereotypes are shattered to encourage thinking outside the box and ultimately making the most of God-giving capabilities.

Who is Poeticallytinted and why do you change your blog name from Adorable to Poeticallytinted?
I am still on the way to fully discovering myself. Everyday, I discover new things. Strengths and weaknesses. I am strong. I mean I've got quite an astonishing amount of inner strength. I've been through hell and most forms of abuse but I am still standing. Still positive and still trying to make the most of my life, Standtall. This I know for sure, I am strong. I think I also care perhaps a tad too much. I want to change the world. I don't to die like I never lived or live like I'll never die. I changed my name from Adorable for three reasons. Sorry, I can't tell you this first, but the second is, it suited my writing better, i post poetry and prose. My prose are of the things that grip me enough to give some thought to but then, I think in poetry but not just a poet, I am a lot of things. So, Poeticallytinted sounded right. Third reason is, it sounded so lyrical - I couldn't resist

Have you ever exprienced any gender discrimination in your line of work as a successful career woman?
Yes, Standtall, I don't deceive myself with false humility, I am not only female but I am also too young for the position I occupy. As in, my peers are all older than me by an average of 4years. I have had to fight all forms of discrimination. I have had to fight with my head and not my fists or my mouth even. I've got smart and I am not afraid to use them. I've found that you must prove your mettle every time to be listened to and you can't change anything if no one isn't listening to you. I've learnt valuable lessons, every inch has been a battle but guess what, I LOVE IT

Thanks for taking time out to share with us, my industrious, smart, awesome
friend.
I am really humbled that you have chosen to interview me. I have always marveled at the responses you get to your really insightful questions. I'd always wondered how you know just what to ask everyone. Your brilliance can't be hidden you know. I hope I haven't thoroughly disgrace myself in front of blogsville.

A gifted person like you is a blessing and not a disgrace, so you have got nothing
to fear (lol)

24 comments:

LG said...

1st'

Onyeka said...

Nice interview, I really liked this one. She's got a great head on her shoulders!

aloted said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
aloted said...

first of all..it is my honour to hand over my title to Poeticallytinted as the new celeb of blogville. lol..

Second- omo i think my questions were easy compare to this o..kai..na serious serious jamb questions be this...but i no go lie my own hard small o

thirdly- i love these answers..i actually read Poeticallytinted's blog but i dont think i have commented there before.

fourthly- Standtall! E ku ise! Well done!!! But who will interview u now...hmm..

Geebee said...

I loved the ‘woman with an inner strength’ bit. We sure need that inner strength to survive ordeals we go through everyday and for a woman, this is a priceless asset. Great interview. Poetically inclined, you try jare!

SOLOMONSYDELLE said...

Ah that was an excellent interview. Very deep questions and equally well thought out answers.

I am definitely in agreement with Ms. Tinted's attitude towards culture. Some of it is very good, some of it needs to be scrapped for our own good.

And as for feminism - that was a nice and simple definition. Far too often we are confused by the negative stereotypes associated with feminists, but they are just stereotypes and do not encapsulate the entire concept. Anyway, thanks for this interview, I truly liked it.

Wonderful getting to know more about you Ms. Tinted. And knock 'em all dead at the job!

Robyn said...

lost my laptop,its a hustle doin blog-nastics on a pda,yes you did tag me my dear.anyways Poeticallytinted is a fav of mine,i love her style.How are you?

Funms-the rebirth said...

great interview, i so can identify on being young and only female in a job....... we have to fight and show smart

doug said...

It must be hard being a career woman in this country. I feel her pain.

Fanny said...

Hmmm, those questions... Its amazing how the candidates come up with the right answers...

Well done you two. Great job!

Temite said...

wow. Standy, how are you? You know I like this poet person. I like her a lot. hmmmmmmmmmm. I am going to go and contemplate some of her answers...
Temite walks out deeply in thought.
Err I owe you an email. So sorry I had French oral exams yesterday so I was busy....I am going to go send it write now.
Temite walks out in deep thought and in a hurry.

Grahamn Kracker said...

Good interview. Your blogging friends never fail to amaze me.

Black Cat said...

I love that lady poet! She gives great answers to your insightful questions. How do you think up those questions? You are very intelligent (wish I was, lol!) and I believe you can make a difference by spreading the word like you do!!!

Luvzya :) xxx

Adejoh Momoh said...

Really nice interview... Read all of it... Really is insightful....

In my head and around me said...

Very interesting. I especially liked the answer about discrimination.

Afrobabe said...

Disgraced yourself???

babe, I had to read carefully to follow all your seriousness....

well done girl...

THE SECRET DIARY (TheSecretDiary) - THE SECRET DIARY said...

i like your blog. you are fabuloussssssssss.

Lindah said...

Nice posts.

FFF said...

@ poeticallytinted: i know abt being young! most of my life, first amongst friends, then school & finally work! it gets better as i get older.

poeticallytinted said...

@ everyone: thanks y'all. I still have to punch Standtall for putting me on the spot like that! lol. Afro, ahn ahn now, i gosta represent! LG, na only 1st you come talk? aloted, no issues I will pass the baton to the next victim... sorry, interviewee :)

StandTall-The Activist said...

The lady with a beautiful and intellgient views wants to punch Standy. What for? I am inoccent (lol)

Woomie O! said...

All this questions behind my back????!!!! Ahh!
Standtall, when will you do my own interview??? eh??
I'm jealous, reaaalllyyy....
i'm loving this Interview series...more personal questions please.lol.

StandTall-The Activist said...

Woomie O: Berra get ready!

Buttercup said...

she sounds really cool..cant believe i havent been to her blog..gonna check her out!

My Passion, my focus, the change that I want to see in the world - is my propellent factor.

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