Q: I’ve been a fan of yours since the days of Whiz Kid to Crossworld Blues through to Super Skills and Playhouse (how come we only see the repeats now) whether you are presenting or producing I tend to find inspiration in programs you are connected to. I would like to know your views about sex. Though I’m young I love the idea of waiting till when I can be responsible for my actions but my friends (few of them are much older) tell me that holding back could cause headaches which could lead to migraine and result in brain damage (psycho is what they call it). Is this true? Tayo, 17
Your mail made me feel old and also made me laugh. Tracing my productions and even mentioning Crossworld Blues where I was a continuity person and later a line producer made me believe that you have been following up and that makes me proud of the positive impact I may have had on you. You probably have been watching repeats of Playhouse because I left Super Screen to enhance my skills so I can be of more benefit not just to young ones in Nigeria but all over the world. The laughter was not at you but at the folly of those who think they can make you look foolish. You are wiser and I don’t need to preach to you. Keep your pants up until you can stand up to face mum and dad to say “Yes, I’m responsible!” That way you won’t need me to plead on your behalf.
Q: My boyfriend promised to give me a special valentine gift and so I went ahead to get him a gift with half of my savings since the gift he promised is supposed to be thrice as much as what I gave. Now after taking my gift he is calling off the relationship. How can I get my gift back because I don’t want him keeping it. Remi, 20
Did you listen to yourself? You called it a gift and because you feel uneasy already you couldn’t even mention what the gift he promised is worth? How old is your friend and where does he work? If he does not work, how did you expect he would get a gift worth so much? Anyway, he did not steal the gift from you, you gave it to him and you guys had no contract to the fact that it was to be an exchange. Let go and grow smarter next time, you really don’t want to keep hanging around such a deceptive guy all in the name of collecting back your gift.
Q: Thanks for starting a study abroad column. I gained a lot from it. I got an admission abroad but was offered only part of the funds and my friends say schools abroad usually have a quota of international students they have to admit as such I should notify them that I can’t come without full funding that they will most likely offer me full funding. What do you think? Yele, 19
Eko e re! It’s not about what I think it’s about what is real, some do have a quota but the quota is not only for your village or family. Who says others without funding will not have their parents sell all they have to take it up. Do what I did, take it up and trust God enough to make a way for you when you get there. All the best.
Q: I live with my elder sister. My sister is married to this guy who beats her all the time. But, whenever we go to family functions they behave like the happiest couple in town. She doesn’t even discuss it with me when we are at home, yet most night I hear him decking her real bad. Sometime ago when our mum asked about her swollen eye, she lied. I hate to see her go through all that, what should I do? Chidi
You did not indicate your age so I don’t know if you are old enough to stand up to the guy. Even if he pays your school fees you can try this if you get an opportunity to watch television with him alone – give him a long look and ask “how would you feel if I married your sister and turned her into a punching bag?” Don’t wait for a response before leaving; it would become a big weight on his conscience. If you don’t want to end up speaking to a mortician then you need to speak to your dad or mum or uncle/aunt (not the timid one but the one who is so strict you can’t look him/her in the eyes, every family has one). Anyone in a position of authority should remind the boxer that his dowry is within reach and since the family wouldn’t want to buy a coffin they’d prefer to let him have it so he can use it to buy a punching bag to enable him face up to real men in real rings. What should you do? ACT – Accuse (him). Confess (to your parents). Tell (an uncle/aunt)!
Q: It started out as a game, each time uncle came around he’d ask us to play some games. Recently he started asking me to give him a kiss when he wins and he does the same when I win. But the last time uncle came up with a new one; he’d show me what he’s got (in his pants) when I win and I’d show him mine when he wins. I laughed when he said it and said no but since then I have found an excuse not to play games with him. Dunni, 13
Hmn, our elders say when a handshake has gone beyond the elbow we have to find a new name for it. Is this a light peck on the cheek or a mouth to mouth kiss? Does he do the same thing when mum or any other adult is around? I hate to conclude but if this uncle as much as voiced the idea of looking into each others pants then he is not very far from raping you. Go ahead and tell your mum. If they are so close and you doubt her believing you then you’d have to set him up. Tell mum you want her to be around for the next game or simply ask uncle to come over when mum is around. When you win ask him for your kiss and ask him to come for one when he wins. If mum questions you, simply say as innocently as possible “that’s uncles idea and he already said the next time I win he’ll let me look in his pants”. Well, that may affect their ties and put an end to uncle’s visit but it would be good riddance to bad rubbish.
Q: I’m very good with writing and I write great articles, a number of columnists have even asked to use my write-ups but I said no because they wanted it free. Now I have so many articles and though I approached them to use it even free but they are no longer interested. What do you think is wrong? Now I’m getting bored with writing. Yusuf, 15
I learnt to make berets and hats, I made some lovely ones and friends wanted to pay for them but I felt they were master pieces and should worth more. I offered to make theirs; to cut a long story short that was the beginning of the end of the talent. By letting columnists use your story you’d be doing each other a favor, you fill up the space in the paper and your stories get read. Not just that, the columnist will spend some time to edit your work and when you get to read it you’d have an idea of what to do better next time. Some columnists will even spend time to speak to you about what to consider when writing. When you lock up your story it ends up being read by you alone and if you are the only one saying your stories are great then they probably never will become truly great. Their attitude towards you now stems from your initial rejection, apparently while you said no they came across better writers who are excited by the idea of having their work in a newspaper and they have committed to that. Type the articles you have neatly and forward it to as many children pages or newsletters you know. For now enjoy the joy that comes with getting your work read while you develop the art of writing. Someday, you will be paid for the foundation you are laying if you don’t relent.