Wednesday, April 29, 2009


God help me if I can explain how I am feeling right now. I am about to stop believing in miracle. I am about to stop believing in healing or that there must be a reason bad things happen to good people. I am so confused and on unhappy now. In October 2008 I made a post about the untimely death of Evangelist Taye Ajiboye who had a hole discovered on his heart too late. He passed away in July 2008.

He must have prayed alongside with his twin brother Pastor Kehinde Ajiboye. They must have believed God will heal them as they healed others but he died too. He passed away 3 days ago and this was the first news I received before I made it out of the house this morning! Pastor Kehinde Ajiboye passed away 9 Months after the death of his twin brother.

I am sad beyond words. Did he missed his brother too much he couldn't bear to stay alive? Did he have a hole in his heart too like his identical brother? He passed away at 41. They spent 40 years of closeness, oneness and trust in God together.... here I am mourning as I say REST IN PEACE TWIN BROTHERS!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Democratic Leadership Training Workshop: A program of ALF

  • Are you a Female Doctor?
  • Do you want to develop your leadership skills?
  • Are you interested in exploring networking opportunities?
The Africa Leadership Forum in collaboration with the Royal Norwegian Embassy, Nigeria, has been organizing since 2007, a series of training workshops for young Nigerians in both private, public and not-forprofit sectors: women’s group, professionals, youth organizations, media, labour organizations, NGOs, community leaders, etc. This particular training is targeted towards FEMALE MEDICAL DOCTORS. As in the past, the primary objectives of these workshops among others are to:
  • Enhance and sharpen participant’s leadership skills in participatory democracy and governance
  • Provide opportunity for inter-political networks and linkages towards positivecollaboration at both lateral and vertical levels
Method of Application
A two-page resume giving full description of yourself, place of residence, profession, your local government and state of origin. Also, applicant should state previous leadership position(s) and experience(s) with a statement of her understanding of leadership and what she intends to gain from the workshop. Applications should be forwarded in Ms-word format as an attachment by e-mail. (See email address below)

Condition for Participation
Selected participants will be required to pay a non-refundable commitment fee of N2, 000 upon arrival at the workshop and cover their own travel expenses to & from the workshop venue. The Africa Leadership Forum will be responsible for participant’s accommodation and feeding only. Past alumni of the DLTW should not apply.

Workshop Date: May 25 – 29, 2009
Application Deadline: May 4, 2009
Venue: ALF International Conference Center 1 The Bells Drive, Idiroko Road Ota – Ogun State

For further Enquires: Contact Workshop Coordinator, Imoleayo Owofadeju
Tel: 08055061535,08067530237 FAX: 039 600043
You may visit for more details.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Interview Thursday: "A just world is a world where God exists..."

She is 100% of God and Zero Percent of herself. She emerged the winner of Naija Blogger Awards as the most Inspiring Blogger I was nominated along side her and I wondered who nominated me in this category that has a clear winner? She is the first of five kids. The God's lover grew up in Nigeria but now studies in the United States of America. I have the privilege of intervewing our one and only Ms. Jaycees!

Congrats on your Naija Blogger Awards, how does it feel to be a winner?
It is so encouraging to know that what we do or write about can change many lives all over the world. Before I even talk about winning the awards, when I saw that the Light Her Lamp blog was a nominee, I was ecstatic! And then, when I won two categories I was really happy. In my (fake) red carpet speech, I mentioned something that is very important to me: the entire blog is all God's doing, sometimes when I look back and see what people are being inspired by, I know that it could not have been me doing anything. It's just that God has decided to use that medium to bless as many lives as He can right now. To show people that He is real, and that He listens and cares about the smallest things about our lives.

Your posts are truly inspiring, how are you able to keep at it?
I never plan to write any of those posts. I just go about my daily activities and all of a sudden I observe something or someone, maybe on the bus, train, or as I'm driving...maybe something in nature or someone's characteristic or desire, and then a topic comes to mind and as soon as I get home I start typing. Another thing is that I am learning how to read the Word of God every single day (either in the morning, or at night before I sleep), so sometimes if I see something I've never seen before (or read a verse in a different way than I've read before), I get hyper and all of a sudden I want to share my findings with the rest of the world. Let me tell you a secret I learned from a great teacher: when you're reading the bible, don't read it like a typical boring bible reading. Instead, act like you're actually there as a witness, participating in all the activities they are describing. In other words, feel the emotions of the writer. Transport yourself to that time. This way, you will understand that the writers of the bible also had diverse emotions like we all do in today's world, and that there's more to the Word than what meets the eye.

Is there any distinctive difference between being religious and having a personal relationship with God?
Yes, there is definitely a difference. Religion is just a bunch of rules and regulations. But when you have a relationship with God, you begin to do things naturally because God becomes a part of you. If you see evil, you turn in the opposite direction. No one tells you that it is bad, but your own spirit just gets irritated. In other words, you become transformed into somebody else when you understand who God really is.

Who is Jaycee?
Actually, I'm very bad in describing people, including myself! When I'm describing someone I usually stop at something like, "Ms. A is tall, light skinned, and has freckles on her face." Come on, how many people fit into that description? LOL. I am a student working on completing my graduate degree, and I am someone for whom WRITING has become a passion that I can no longer do without. I am 5'6 (maybe a little taller, I'd like to think), I like natural hair styles (I joined the natural haired ladies like two years ago), and I love anything ROMANTIC (woohoo). Oh, I love eating THAI FOOD...and I really want to learn how to make different types of Thai food...not that I'm abandoning Nigerian food or anything sha...

Does Jaycee have emotions like anger, fear or disappointment? How do you handle these emotions?
Yes, I do. I get angry when people act in the opposite way than the way I think they should be acting. I get angry when I think people understood me, but it turns out that they don't. I get afraid when I wonder how my career is going to turn out. I get disappointed when something does not go the way I planned it to go. How do I handle these emotions? God helps me figure all these things out.
- On my anger, God tells me: do not let the sun go down on your anger. And then I realize that the only person who's affected by my anger is ME, so I will be wasting my time if I don't move on. Also I have learned that people are imperfect, and so they will always be annoying sometimes, just like I also annoy other people sometimes too. 50/50 no cheating...he he.

-On fear, God has said in his word that "fear is not of God." Fear is crippling, it makes a person resistant to take the first step. So, due to experience, I've learned that when God gives me a dream for my future I should not be afraid to take a giant leap towards that path.

-On disappointment, I believe in the proverb that says "every disappointment is a blessing."

What is a just world to you?
Actually, I don't believe we live in a just world right now. A lot of bad things happen to innocent people. The reason is that this world has a prince ("the prince of this world" i.e the devil) and he's not exactly a just being. A just world is a world where God exists, and He does exist among those who believe in Him. He will not give us a stone when we ask for bread.

Is a just world possible?
Only in God.

What are the steps we need to take as individuals to have a just world?
1) Believe in God
2) Believe that whatever God says is true, because He does not lie.
3) Believe that there's something much more than this world...and that death is not the end of eternity.

What do you admire in blogsville?
I like blogsville because of the amount of good knowledge one can accumulate just by reading about the experiences and thought processes of other people.

Any admired blogger(s)? Who are they?
I like specific bloggers for different reasons. Every one is unique in their own way. But I will try to construe a list...

1) Kafo: she's just brilliant. I like reading about what she thinks about life, the human struggle, and mostly about God's word. She's very real. She says it just exactly as she thinks. It's like she transports her honest thoughts of the world onto paper (or onto her computer, lol).

2) Naapali: I like the way he writes, although his blog is no longer accessible. I liked the fact that he is a medical doctor who puts his family first.

3) Solomonsydelle: It seems like everyone loves what she does on blogsville, but I loved her FIRST (lol...just kidding). I always tell her that I want to be just like her when I grow up, and I also want my children to be a little mischievious so I can tell stories about them just like she does...LOL. I love reading about her kids and I think she's a wonderful mother and wife. I don't want to leave out the fact that she's also very sensitive to Nigeria's needs. I know that the change Nigeria needs lies in the hands of this current generation, and she's a role model that we can be part of this change. Check out her Nigerian Curiosity Blog.

4) Jaja: although, I don't know if I have anything in common with Jaja. I just know that if he writes a book, I'll be one of the first to buy it. He inspires me to want to write in such a way that people will marvel. I like his selection of words and also the way in which he transports his reader to his own it when he lived in Port-HarCourt, when he took some random trip to an island after his NYSC (if I remember clearly), or now that he has travelled overseas to the United Kingdom. He really has good knowledge of the English language, and I learn from writers such as himself. I think he should keep it up and possibly write a book soon.

5) Reverence: she's a true gem and a great friend to have outside blogsville. I admire her because she keeps it real. If she falls, she will say that she fell...but she's always willing to become a better person. Even when she's doing great, she aspires to become greater. She's dedicated to God, and I love that.

6) Believer: She's exactly what her name is, and she's an intercessor. She prays for crazy things that no one else will ever think about praying for. Her blog really inspires me to want to be a better believer.

7) Remi: I admire her for her "dedication" to TEACH. She is a great teacher...she usually writes about several topics, but the way she breaks it down is phenomenal. I think she is probably a great speaker too.

8) Vera: I will never forget the day she talked about flushing her pet fish down the toilet. She's just hilarious, and she deserved her "Best Everyday Read" NBA award. LOL.

9) Simeone: I think he's just a great person, and it shows in his blog.

10) Chichi: another very real person. She tells people about her true life experiences and encourages them to learn from those experiences.

There are so many other bloggers I like, but I'm sure you guys will break my head if I continue. I like Shubby doo, Mimi (she's just a darling),Rita, Seye, Danny Bagucci, and many others who are not coming to me right now.

Thanks for sharing with us.
Thanks so much.

Monday, April 20, 2009

How young people that feel powerless today can realize they are in the majority and enthrone a democratic order that works for the majority?

Powerlessness is a mindset that was born out of maltreatment, losing confidence and hope in the face of adversities beyond one’s imaginations, feeling of hopelessness because one has being disappointed too many times before especially by our leaders.

I will like to borrow this saying which goes thus… “When a goat has being chased to a corner where she sees no escape, she turns back and attacks her chaser”. No matter how powerless one feels at first there is always a time of awakening where “I can’t take this anymore” will be the only genuine thought that echoes in one’s mind.

The young people of today in our Nation, a group where I so belong, have a lot of advantages at their disposal to enthrone a democratic order that works for the majority because:

  • our past experiences which is more of “ what has not worked in Nigeria” will be a good weapon to make an informed decision about changing the fate of our Nation
  • we are in the majority because majority of the people are in the same shoes of powerlessness and hopelessness and we have to take charge
  • we have great mentors such as Pat Utomi, Dora Akunyili that have influenced our world and our perceptions about how things should be
  • Our potentials must not go to waste
  • the feeling of powerlessness at a time, gives you insight to a lot of issues needed to be addressed, how to make positive use of those darker moments in our lives
What will further help the young people of our great nation to bring about democratic order that works are our common interest, our passion for change, directing our anger and powerlessness to a good course and the encouragement of those in the majority that are trying to make a change via their voices and relentless effort in seeing a better Nigeria

P:S: This short essay was submitted to Pat Utomi's facebook group sometime last year. As a result of contributing this essay, I was supposed to have a lunch date with Pat Utomi with other winners but the lunch is yet to happen.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Interview Thursday:" Health workers need to realise they are professional" Sting

The brain behind Naija Blogger Awards 2009 is here life and direct sharing and interacting with us on Interview Thursday! Welcome Lady Sting!
Sting is a typical Introverted-extrovert.She is quiet around people she is not close to and can’t shut around her close friends. She loves reading and writing (hence the blog). She thinks people are very interesting and one of her favorite past-times is people watching.
Sting has a Bachelors of Science in Psychology and currently work as a Mental Health Assistant in a Psychiatric hospital, and also as a Research Technician in an Obesity research lab. She is very passionate about women’s issues and she hopes to become more active in that regard in the nearest future.

Is Sting a doctor?
No, I just go accepted into medical school and I get to start in August. I’m very excited about that because I’ve wanted to be a doctor for so long. One of the things which inspired to become a doctor was watching doctors come to the Northern part of Nigeria offer free surgeries to girls with Vesico vaginal fistula (VVF). Having this surgery gave these girls a second chance at living a normal life and I hope I’m able to do that for someone someday.

What does your Job entail as a Mental Health Assistant?
I work in a psychiatric hospital. Basically, as a mental health assistant I am supposed to build a therapeutic relationship with the patients. Assist them with day to day activities. We have to do Q15 checks which means we have to check on each patient every 15 minutes and note what they are doing on their flow sheet. On any given day you can get between 14 – 28 patients. Since I usually work the night shift at the hospital, I get the whole unit by myself, so on average I have between 24-28 patients. We also have to check the vital signs of patients at assigned times, take them to the cafeteria (for those allowed to go) and hold groups. The groups MHA’s facilitate are Community and Goals group, Wrap up group and Psyc groups.

Is there a part of the Job you would rather not do?
Sometimes, depending on how much assistance a patient needs, we might have to assist them in taking a bath. In the 7 months I’ve worked there, I’ve only had to do that once. It wasn’t that bad, but I did not enjoy scrubbing a grown person’s bum. Also, being assigned to the highest security unit (which has the most unstable patients) can be scary at times. It all depends on the group of patients on the unit. They feed off each other so when someone starts getting out of control, the chances that the whole unit will start acting out increases, so it’s a little stressful. Besides, you always have to be very alert because you can’t predict those patients.

From personal experience and the ones I gathered from others, so many health workers in Nigeria have become so rude, indifferent and unconcerned about their patients and they the way they attend to patients, what do you think can be done to correct this?
In my opinion, it all boils down to accountability. When there are no checks or punitive measures to deter health workers from treating patients anyway they want, then a system in which the patient’s needs are put last develops. In order to correct this problem, I think the health care workers need to be made to realize that they are professionals whose duties are to serve the patients and provide the best care possible. Hospitals need to set a standard and hold their workers accountable if they do not meet those standards with regards to patient care.

Will Sting practice in Nigeria?
One of my goals after I become a doctor is to work with Doctors without borders or any other similar organization. I will definitely be spending lots of summers in Nigeria doing pro bono work, and giving back to my community as best as I can. Luckily about 5 of my close secondary school friends just graduated from medical last year in Nigeria. I have talked to a couple of them about doing something together in the future and they are up for it. As for practicing full time in Nigeria, I don’t see that happening any time soon. Going to medical school in the U.S. is very expensive (~ $200,000), so I’ll be stuck here for a good while paying off those student loans.

You are the brain behind Naija Bloggers Award 2009, what sparked your interest?
I’ve been blogging since January 2007 and in that time, I seen a lot of bloggers come and go. Regardless, there always seemed to be a sense of community and belonging amongst the Nigerian bloggers. Lately, it seemed like a lot more bloggers were becoming dissatisfied with being a part of blogsville. More people were leaving or going private. There were indirect warning about wolves in sheep’s clothing and people creating blogs just to wreck havoc and all that type of stuff. I felt we needed something to bring us closer together and re-spark peoples interest in being a part of this community. I also wanted to give people a chance to find new Nigerian blog(gers) and I think that part was successful.

Can you summarized how you felt during and after the awards?
Putting on this award was a great learning experience for me. I didn’t anticipate how difficult it would be to keep the ideas flowing and keep people interested in what was going on. There were also challenges with regards to working with other bloggers that I did not anticipate. However, during the awards I was very surprised at how excited people were about the awards. I didn’t think we would get the amount of participation or support that we got and that was very encouraging. I’m glad that people are already looking forward to next years award and I know it will be bigger and better than this year’s. After the awards, I was glad the work was over but I’m happy I can no longer complain there are no new blogs for me to read because I discovered a ton of blogs, so that’s a good thing.

Is there any reason why any of the organizers weren’t nominated?
Not really. The people who were nominated were people who got the highest number of votes.

What is Sting’s Philosophy?
My philosophy is “live and let live”. I believe we are all entitled to our opinions, beliefs, way of life or whatever. I don’t like when people try to force their beliefs on other people. Do you (as they say), and let other people live their lives the way they chose to.

Any last words?
I would like to thank you, Standtall. I admire what you do and your interest in gender inequality in Nigeria. Not a lot of women are proud to be feminists and I think we all should be. Special thanks to Toluwa, Naijagirl and Geisha who helped with the Naija Bloggers Award in one way or another. There’s no way I would have been able to do it by myself. Thanks for taking time out to interview me. Much love!

Thank you and you are very welcome my lady!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Laws and us; my thinking.

I often imagine how life would have being without having some certain laws to govern us. I do wonder too if human beings would not be violent or ruthless if there are no laws guiding us. I am talking about secular laws at this point. Would there having being more ruthlessness, violence, lack of respect for others and their spaces if we don't have these laws? Or are the laws the beginning of our doom?

I have watched kids severally even though I don't have any human kids of my own but feline ones whom have personalities that amaze me, the bossy and sweet, the faithful and calm, the aggressive and confused and the tender and restless. That sums up some of the personality traits of my cats.

If my cats can have personalities that amaze me, you can imagine what I have picked from the kids. I just wonder how a-less-than-a-year kid knows how to inflict pains on other kids, or how a-less-than-a-year knows how to scream and make mummy and daddy shudder to get what he/she wants or how a less than 2 year old kid knows what it means to be bad or good. This gives me a sense of thinking perhaps some of us are born with evils in us or some of us with goodness though our evironment can help shape us or make us worse but we are sure born with some traits.

If my assessements were true, then we need laws, we need laws to remind us that we cannot be irresponsible, that we cannot feel like we want to kill and that it's the right thing to do, we cannot think that we can just do like we like without thinking and knowing there are consequences. Laws in themselves are not bad, they are made to help us understand the 2 sides of life. The good side that will not get you into trouble and the bad side that may get you to have confrontation with the laws...

I think the world would have being worse without laws, or are the innocents being punished by the laws too? What do you think?

Sunday, April 12, 2009


Here is to my partner, lover, friend, companion and husband, wishing you a wonderful moment as you celebrate your birthday.

May all your dream come through, may you live long in good health and abundant happiness. Success, peace, joy, riches are all yours.


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Interview Thursday: " Whoever thinks that skin color difference matters is a total and absolute idiot..."

I met this amazing individual in India during the Info-Activism Camp within 3 days, I noticed he wore only white clothes in different styles, designs and textures and he was extremely busy most time shooting videos, attending sessions or hanging out with friends which happened to include me at the end of the day.

This amazing individual is Marcin Gajewski ( Mr. White) born in Warsaw, Poland in 1981 and migrated to Amsterdam, the Netherlands where he grew up when he was 5. Marcin has MA in Arts from London where he now lives. Traditionally, Marcin is an exhibiting artist and filmmaker and he is now an information activist since Bangalore Indian.
This picture was taking from Marcin's website
What is your driving passion in your profession?
Being an artist and independent filmmaker is a driving passion in my life. So my live is the driving inspiration in my art and filmmaking.

What is the world like through visuals?
Moving image has the potential to depict a reality that does not exist. It can explain complex concepts in a simple and accessible way. It can be poetic, magic, informative and it can inspire to take action. Unfortunately, it is also very easy to manipulate audiences with moving image and to use it for propaganda. Like any tool, it is used for both bad and good. Being a moving image maker for me means I see a big part of my life through the lens of a camera, which sometimes lessens my experience of the moment unfolding.
This picture was taking from Marcin's website
Is there hope for activists in using video to document or tell their stories?
I think video is a very potent tool, especially for activists, as it has become more widely available and cheaper to produce and publish over the past decade. The great thing about video is that it can be implemented into a very wide scope of projects and aspects of a campaign, from funding applications to actual on the ground action. Video can serve as a particularly effective educational tool. A big problem with video is it needs equipment and electricity, both scarce commodities in certain areas where video usage might really help.
While at IAC 09 in Bangalore, I noticed you were always in white attires, what inspire this and how long have you dressed in white?
Ha ha! I’ve been wearing solely white clothes for the last eight years or so, give or take a month.
Will you at any point change your style?
This is a question my dad finally stopped asking after years of insistently making fun of me. He had serious adjustment issues to my almost religious approach to what I wear color wise, but gave up the fight eventually. Lets just say I haven’t found a good reason to stop yet.
Do you think your dressing style distinguishes you?
One of the reasons that I only wear white is because it does tend to stick out a bit. But remember, its not a part of who I am, its just a part of what I choose to wear. As far as clothing goes, I don’t believe in following fashion, I do believe in having a style.
What is your favorite color?
My favorite color is and always has been red! I tend to shift between a full blood red and a more kind of orangy red between the years. I must confess though, I have been totally reevaluating the concept of colors during and after my recent visit to India. What an amazing relationship between people and incredibly vibrant and oversaturated colors! In the barren deserts of Rajasthan everything is bleak and sandy, and then out of nowhere a woman walks by in the most pink and purple clothing you have ever seen! The intensity of the colors is blinding, not to even mention the amazing festival of colors called Holi.
What will you like to change in the world?
So much, there aren’t enough pages on this blog to describe them all in detail! The ideological thing I would want to change is human nature. I believe greed causes many of the problems we face today, in every level of society across the whole world. Another thing would be perception of the climate crisis and how it will influence a large part of the world population in a negative way. Global economic policies and issues surrounding fresh drinking water are two other areas which need serious change.
Have you ever being to Africa?
Sadly, not yet.
What is your perception of Africa and its people?
Never having been in Africa makes me doubt my own perceptions of the African continent. Also, there are so many differences between Africans I think there is no one perception that is true or realistic. The only thing I really know is that I want to visit, and that it saddens me to see all the perpetual violence going on in multiple countries.
Is racism about people or about their orientation, can you give your perception on this issue?
I think, like many other ails in the world, racism is a question of education and upbringing. Why else would there be blind people that are racists? It comes forth and perpetuates itself from a nasty mix of fear, history and greed. The way to fight racism is through education. Whoever thinks that skin color difference matters is a total and absolute idiot, period.
How can we end all the wrong issues like hunger, racism, killings, war in the world, do you think it’s possible?
The first step would be to understand why these problems exist in the first place, so back in the lap of education and unconditional access to information. Wars for instance are practically always fought about resources yet nationalism and or religion are the two main political tools to motivate and get consent for them. Believing in one world, one people, stands in exact opposition to the concept of nationalism and all the problems that flow from it. If we start accepting each other, and realizing we are all in it together, I believe things would slowly change for the better. Being a pragmatic pessimist though, well, lets just say we have to keep trying until we succeed.

Thanks for your time Marcin.
You are welcome.

For more on Marcin's work visit

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cats On Tuesday: Molly Has Disappeared Again!

CATS ON TUESDAY is a group of cat lovers
who share pictures and/or stories about their cats once a week,
hosted by Gattina.

How does one deal with a feminist cat that does nothing but disappear all the time? Molly is getting on my nerves right now. Her siblings and son will be out playing and entering the house when they are tired or startled but not Molly!
I once thought she disappeared the first time because she didn't get along with Standtall Husband. But they are now best of friends and she is neutered. She disappeared 3 days ago right in my presence! Well, I found her the first night but she would not let me near her. She ran away! Scofield tried to be a good brother by running after her. Smallville tried to be a good son to no avail. I am really not happy with Molly's attitude. I really am not!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Dating 101: The Best Relationship Advice I Ever Got- By Sara Anderson for Redbook

Found this on Yahoo Page and sharing it was only thing that came to mind. Hope you will all find it useful.

Nine women spill the secret words of wisdom that keep their relationship blissful.
#1. Polite Fight
"On my wedding-invitation RSVP cards, I left space for guests to write their favorite wedding wisdom. The tidbit that rings truest after almost nine months of marriage is: 'Attack the issue, not each other.' How it works: If my husband and I disagree about something, we stay focused on the issue and skip the personal put-downs." -- Melissa Gitter Schilowitz, 31, Metuchen, NJ

#2. Fit to a Tee
"My grandmother insisted that I learn how to play golf. 'If your husband loves to play, you can go along and spend hours together,' she said. So I took lessons, and now my husband and I hit the links once a month. We both love the game and are thrilled to share a hobby, even when we spend half an hour looking for my out-of-bounds balls!" -- Aimee Borders, 27, Houston, TX

#3. Tabletop Trick
"My aunt told me that if I'm running late when it's my turn to make dinner, just set the table. That way my husband thinks he'll be eating any minute, so he doesn't start complaining, which buys me some time. It's a silly trick that sounds straight out of the 1950s, but I have to admit that I've tried it a few times in the three years I've been married -- and it works!" -- Dawn Clayton, 34, Holdrege, NE

#4. Boob-Tube Brilliance
"Because my husband is such a remote-control freak, my mom suggested that we have 'my turn' TV nights. That means three nights a week I get to hold the remote and watch whatever I want, and on the other nights it's his turn to hold the remote and watch whatever he wants. Now when he starts flipping through the channels, it doesn't get on my nerves like it used to." -- Angela Clayton, 27, Odenton, MD

#5. Pop the Question
"My sister-in-law passed this helpful hint on to me, and it has served me well for our five years of wedded bliss: 'Marriage is not mind reading, so ask your spouse what he/she wants and believe what he/she says.'" -- Clare Graca, 27, Dallas

#6. Nix the Nit-Picking
"Before I said 'I do,' my mom (who's been married to my dad for 55 years) told me to take out a piece of paper and write down the top three things that bugged me about my husband-to-be. Then she told me to forget the things on that list and forgive him for not being flawless. Once you make a commitment this big, she explained, you can't let petty things get in the way. In our eight years of marriage, my husband and I have had two kids, tackled cross-country moves and started two businesses -- and so far, so great."-- Rebecca Hart Blaudow, 31, Jacksonville, FL

#7. Space Smarts
"Always have separate closets, my best friend told me. It may seem silly, but I listened to her and made sure to find a one-bedroom apartment with two closets (mine being the larger, of course). Now my husband and I each have our own private space, and we respect that: If he wants to keep his shoes in one huge heap or leave his dirty clothes in a pile on the floor, the mess doesn't bother me a bit!" -- Patricia Bontekoe, 26, Lake Hiawatha, NJ

#8. Agree to Disagree
"Before we got married, my minister told my husband and me, 'You are two imperfect people making an imperfect union, and that's wonderful.' This advice made me ditch my belief that in a happy marriage, the couple always agrees. My husband and I have learned to appreciate our differences (yes, even differences of opinion!); in fact, we encourage them because we realize now that those differences are what makes each of us unique and special." -- Beth Swanson, 28, Chicago

#9. Comic Relief
"Before I headed down the aisle, my stepfather told me to always laugh and never take myself too seriously. After four years of marriage, I know that this trick works. My husband and I often play practical jokes on each other and always try to crack each other up, even in the middle of an argument. Hey, if one person laughs, a fight tends to fizzle, doesn't it?" -- Lisa Giassa, 31, Bogota, NJ
Anti-Pop Advice From the Experts
You've probably heard a few of these pieces of marital pop wisdom before. If so, these marriage experts say to promptly forget 'em.

Love means never having to say you're sorry. "Oh, please! In marriage, love sometimes means having to say you're sorry even if you don't know what you did or you didn't mean to do it." -- Trisha Taylor, psychotherapist, Houston, T

Always be totally honest. "What are you going to do, tell him that he's just too short and you can't stand his mother? Sometimes you need to temper the truth." -- Tara Fields, Ph.D., marriage, family and child therapist, Marin County, CA
Children come first. "This is bad advice if it means your husband always comes second. Of course you should love and care for your kids, but you should never lose sight of your couple-ness. The best thing a child can have is happy, fulfilled parents who are deeply in love." -- Mary Pender Greene, chief of social work services, Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services, New York
Always keep the peace. "No, no, no. If you don't face a hot issue head-on, you'll stockpile negative feelings. And before you know it, 20 years go by and you're still fighting over the same thing because you never resolved it in the first place." -- Rebecca S. Ward, M.S.W., psychotherapist, Little Rock, A

Never go to bed angry. "Forget it. Often a couple needs time to calm down before they can rationally wrap up an argument. And that may take a few days, so in the meantime, get some sleep!" -- Gilda Carle, Ph.D., psychotherapist, New York

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Interview Thursday: "I’m particularly saddened about the state of women right issues in Nigeria" - Parakeet

She is single, she is smart, she lives in London and works as a Compliance Consultant with a degree in Media and Advertising. A lady that grew up in multiple cities in Nigeria namely Benin, Ijebu-ode and Ibadan. She is 26 and from a family of 4 with a deceased father, most wonderful mother and loveliest brother. My lady enjoys surfing the net, writing meaningless nothings and going dancing. And the first time I was on her blog I was like waoh this lady sounds so true... Welcome on Interview Thursday my lady PARAKEET!

I always respect your stand on issues especially when it has to do with the rights of women. Can you share with us your experience with women's human rights issues?
Aww…thanks. I actually never saw myself as a great defender of women’s right but I certainly know that I hate injustice. I don’t see why a man can do something but a woman is prohibited from doing that same thing. I understand that perhaps due to our anatomy it may be wise for women not to do certain things, but where a woman has expressed interest in such things then she should be accommodated and helped to achieve her dreams. I’m particularly saddened about the state of women right issues in Nigeria where women’s growth and independence are continually been stifled by men who feel they are not intelligent, strong or qualified enough. Even in this country I see many of my colleagues who has had to forfeit a promotion or take a pay cut just because they had taken time out to have babies. Even in my former place, I had to take a lesser pay increase than my colleague who happened to be a man. This was someone that joined the company at least 6 months after me and I trained him to do his job. But when it came to the end of the year management somehow felt he deserved a huge pay rise than I did and I knew for sure that the quality of his work wasn’t better than mine. The human right issues that women face are of course not limited to the above, they are enormous and need urgent tackling.

Have you had to advocate for rights issues when it comes to women and what was it all about?
I have actually never been involved directly in any advocacy well other than the odd petitions here and there to No 10. Sometimes you get this circular a going round asking you to sign a petition to grant women longer paid maternity leave. I’m glad one of such ones that was emailed to me and I signed was actually ratified into law last October in the UK.

What does feminism mean to you?
Hmm this is a tough one. For me feminism is broad and it involves those everyday little things that you do as a woman. For instance when it comes to the issue of equality with men, I feel sometimes people maybe misled into believing it is the same thing as rights. All human beings are equal, but we’re all different social animals and whether we like it or not our social roles are different. The family unit is a very important part of any society and when it comes to this women must accept their husbands' leadership. Things just work better when one person captains the ship instead of having two authorities at loggerheads. Accepting your husband's leadership does not make you less equal or less intelligent, as a matter of fact "uneasy lies the head that wears the crown" and from experience having a leader at home is always advisable. However when we take this outside of the home it’s is a different ball game. Feminism to me is the ability for me to decide not to shave my legs and I’m taken as me rather than being judged on the basis of my unshaved legs.

Have you had to be viewed in a negative light because you are a feminist?
I guess one of the major draw backs for me when it comes to holding down a relationship is the fact that men are quick to call me a feminist or they say I’m too independent and therefore they find me intimidating. Which is total bollocks if you ask me. I will never challenge your authority but I will challenge your views and opinion while ensuring that I don’t impress mine upon you. I’ll just state my case and leave the rest and if you cant deal with it tough!

Mention 5 reasons you will not marry for.
I will not get married for the sake of getting married, to please anyone, for money, to do what my peers are doing or to feel fulfilled in life.

Mention 5 reasons you will marry for .
I will marry for love most importantly. I will marry if I am convinced the man is good for me and will add value to my life and for procreation. I think those are the only reasons I will get married. I am not going to get married if I don’t love the man or if he’s not good for me. Making do is not my thing as I don’t know anywhere in the bible where it says I MUST marry as a Christian. If I think of anymore reasons I’ll let you know (laughs)

What do sacrifice and compromise mean to you?
Hmm… I think it’s all about filling in the gaps here and there to make sure everyone is happy. Well everyone cant be happy all of the time but you must get to the point where you feel satisfied with the effort you’ve made. You may like tall and slim guys but meat a short guy who ticks most of the other boxes then compromise will work perfectly here because you could never find anyone who ticks all the boxes. You may want to get married next year but your man may want to get a masters to increase his earnings and channel his finances to that first. That is sacrifice. It all makes it worth it in the end if you’re dealing with someone with a good head on their shoulders and with the fear of God in them.

Are these 2 ingredients needed to make a relationship or marriage work?
Oh yea massively important and in other aspects of one’s life too when dealing with family, friends and colleagues. I mean we can't always have things we want when and how we want them so compromise and sacrifice is what is going to see you through at those crucial times.

Does it have to be the woman that makes all the sacrifices like giving up her career or any other thing that matters?
If you are involved with a man who expects you to make all the sacrifices and compromises all of the time run for your dear life! You relationship/marriage is a partnership, just because you come together to plan your life with someone doesn’t mean you have to forfeit your own personal goals and desires. You may tailor them to size and to sync with the other person, but the moment you give them up totally then you do not have a life anymore. Now that’s a rather sad place to be in life and I don’t wish it for my enemy let alone any woman.

Where can we expect to find Parakeet in the next 5 years?
Parakeet doesn’t plan that far ahead. I work with short term goals and what I call loose long term plans. In 5 years I’d say I’d like to have been in the career of my choice, be happy in a relationship or marriage with a gorgeous man, maybe have the pitter patter of feet around the house, have my extended family more united and be an ambassador for God’s kingdom. But these are all loose long term plans which may or may not happen because my experiences before then may have altered the course of my goals and desires.

Thanks for your time and these wonderful Insights into Parakeet's thoughts and life.
You are welcome

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

Label Cloud

Gender (72) Feminism (46) Interview Thursday (46) Gender Equality (38) Gender and Development (29) Cat lover (24) Poem (24) Cat Tuesday (22) Women's Human Rights (19) Cats World (16) 16 Days of Activism (11) Africa (11) Violence Against Women (8) Information Sharing (7) Music (7) Nigeria Development (7) Women and Leadership (7) Children Rights (6) Exprience (6) Leadership (6) Rest in Peace (6) Change and Development (5) Corruption (5) Day to Day Exprience (5) Events (5) Governance (5) MDGs (5) Peace and Security Fellowship for African Women (5) Relationship (5) Security and Development (5) Women (5) Call for Application (4) Change Maker (4) Dairy (4) Mistake (4) Navy abuse of Uzoma Okere (4) Nigeria in Focus (4) Relationship and Marriage (4) The Feminist Cats (4) BlogHer (3) Chicago July Trip (3) Children (3) Discrimination Against Women (3) Domestic Violence (3) Injustice (3) King;s College Fellowship (3) Lessons (3) Niger Delta Crisis (3) Online Community (3) Religion Matters (3) Travelling (3) Wedding (3) Women Activists (3) Women Empowerment (3) Women in Governance (3) Youth (3) democracy in Nigeria (3) 2009 Edition (2) A girl-Soldier (2) Activism (2) Annivesary (2) BlogHer Conference Scholarship (2) Bloggers for life (2) Democracy and its Struggle (2) Female writers (2) Forced Marriage (2) IAC09 (2) ICT4D (2) International Wome's Rights Day 2008 (2) Journey to London (2) LGBTI (2) Lack of respect for other people's perspectives. (2) Life from Cape Town in South Africa (2) Lovely Cats (2) Male Child Preference (2) Male Child and Domestic Chores (2) Memories (2) My Boss (2) My life in London (2) Nigerian Youth and Development (2) Nigerianstalk (2) No to VAW (2) Rape (2) Sexual Violence and GBV (2) Taking Peace and Security (2) Technology Camp for Girls (2) The Admired Female Bloggers (2) The Changemakers (2) The Future of Nigerian children (2) The Late Kudirat Abiola's Remembrance (2) The Martyr of Democracy (2) The girl child and her chanllenges (2) Untimely death (2) Uzoma Okere court hearing (2) V-Monologues (2) Violation of Human Rights (2) Women making a difference (2) 10 years remembrance for the O.A.U 5. (1) 1in 9 Campaign (1) 2010 self-surfacing resolutions (1) A Ride with my Father (1) A just world with God (1) ALF Program (1) AWID Forum 2008 (1) Activism Scholarship (1) Adaeze Experience (1) African Sexualities (1) Aspiring Filmmaker (1) Bad Leaders (1) Beating by a mad man (1) Becoming my Cats (1) CSDG (1) Career (1) Child Marriage (1) Children without education (1) Children without future (1) Climate Change (1) Conflicts (1) Corrpution and Hooliganism (1) Court System (1) DLTW for Young Female Doctors (1) Democracy Day (1) Divorce and Marriage (1) Dupe In Kenya (1) ECOSAP (1) Evangelist Taye Ajiboye (1) Extreme poverty (1) Female Circumcision (1) Female Film-Makers (1) Girls in Technology (1) Global Warming (1) Government (1) Hafsat Abiola and KIND (1) Human Behaviour and attitudes (1) I didn't do it for you by Michela Wrong (1) ICT and Women (1) Images from Mali (1) Incest (1) Indecent Dressing Bill (1) Info -Activism (1) Internattional Bloggers Community Award (1) Job Search (1) Journey across Africa (1) June 8 and Abacha’s death (1) Kenya July Trip (1) Knowing our continent (1) Lagos State Government (1) MOBILIZATION (1) Mali (1) Marriage (1) Michela Wrong book on Eritrea (1) Mother 6th Remembrance (1) Movement Building. AWID Forum 2008 (1) My first post from London (1) My health (1) NDQ Interview (1) Naija Blogger Awards 2009 (1) Natural Hair (1) Negative quotation on women (1) Newspaper review (1) Nigeria Media (1) Nigerian Sporting Activities (1) Nigerians and Abacha’s death (1) No light (1) No to FGM (1) Obama Prank (1) Outsanding Ore (1) PHCN and Nigeria Government (1) Passing though Ghana (1) Passing through Burkina Security and Development (1) Pastor Kehinde Ajiboye (1) Peace and Secuirty issues in the Horn (1) Police Force (1) Polygamist (1) Pregnancy and child bearing in marriage (1) Punishment of an elderly woman in Saudi (1) Rape Victim (1) Road and Bus Evangelism (1) Road trip to Mali (1) SOLIDARITY WTH WOMEN WHO SPEAK OUT (1) Self Defence for Women (1) Senseless killing by armed robbers (1) Serious Issues (1) Standtall Adevnture (1) Suicide bombing (1) Summit (1) Tactical Tech (1) Take Back the Tech (1) Tell Magazine (1) Terrorist Attack (1) The Uncoventional Clergy woman (1) The Bauchi Killings (1) The EU Summit Report (1) The Eritrea history (1) The July 10 Martyr (1) The Liberian Women peace building effort (1) The O.A.U 5 (1) The PM Tabloid (1) The danger of a single story (1) The late social Crusader (1) The meeting with London Bloggers (1) The rescued kitten (1) This Violence must stop (1) Tips to having a Happy Relationship (1) Traditional Role (1) Transforming Nigeria (1) Travelling through Africa by Road (1) Tribute to Chief Gani Fawehinmi (1) Tyranny (1) Umar Mutallab (1) Understanding Security (1) Uzoma's Justice (1) Verastically Vera (1) WORLD AIDS DAY (1) We need peace in our land (1) Women E-Campaigners` Training (1) Women In Technology. ICT4D (1) Wrong Culture and Belief (1) Yar'adua (1) Youth as agents of Change (1) meeting US bloggers (1) my love (1)