50 Word Exercise – Silence

I say pass the salt so much, this post was spot on for me. Could it be that passing the salt is less stressful than being vulnerable?

Unleashing Me

Her husband chewed thoughtfully as he pored over the evening paper.

She wanted to tell him that she was lonely. That she was overwhelmed. She wanted to tell him that she missed being in love.

His eyes met hers briefly across the table.

She said, “Can you pass the salt?”

For the Weekly Writing Challenge.

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Wangechi Mutu – Defining The Weird

At my not so recently concluded Farafina Creative Trust workshop, in what was arguably my most challenging class (and I think I speak for many of the participants too), Binyavanga Wainaina asked us to look at a painting by Wangechi Mutu, titled the The Partician, and write what we saw. Here is the painting:

The Partician by Wangechi Mutu

The Partician by Wangechi Mutu

I wrote down two things Binyavanga said when he gave us this classwork: “It is the anomalies in things that signify what you are looking for” and ” Grotesque is judgement without evidence.” With these thoughts in mind, here’s what I saw:

Some say you can tell where a person is from by looking at their feet.
If they looked down, they’ll know where I’m from. Poverty.
They’ll know then that I’m a fraud.
So I distract them with all the glitz, all the glamour he gave me.

I’m a fraud and he’s the only one who knows it.
He made me this way and this way it would stay
As long as I give him what he wants, the attention he seeks.
If I get hurt, it is worth it.

“Bow to me”, he told me.
“See the others, I made them who they are.
Look what I gave them. I can give you more.”
Gliding towards me, wearing all his wealth, bleeding hand outstretched, he said, “Pledge your allegiance.”

I had no choice. I was defenseless.
I betrayed the gods of my father; the ones I clung to in a claw hold.
Bowing my head as lips met back of palm, I sealed my fate with a kiss.

What did you see?

p.s: Maryam had the bestest, most memorable depiction of the painting. Let’s hope she posts it on her blog.
p.p.s: We dubbed this ‘the Ojuju painting’ in class.
p.p.p.s: I still have no idea what Wangechi was thinking when she painted this :s Check out other interesting Wangechi art here and here.

Happy Birthday Chimamanda Adichie

Birthdays are for celebrating and famzing beautiful people, like the world renowned, award winning Nigerian author of Half of A Yellow Sun that one was in the same room with for 10 days straight, soaking up as much creative juices as one could.

To this special lady who taught me to be unapologetic for my sometimes brazen writing voice, and that showing is so much better than telling in creative writing, I wish you much more than you could possibly wish yourself as a new year begins for you.

Happy birthday Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.

From a grateful student,
In solidarity, bra burning and all.

Famzing Amanda

Famzing Amanda

xx

*phew* I made it just in time.

My 2013 Started In August

You know how a new year usually starts in January? Well, mine started seven months after. As far as I’m concerned, everything else before August was prep for my real new year – ThePseudoGeek Shōten year (don’t ask).

I have also narrowed down three things I want to do/be known for and I have somehow tied them into one huge snowball effect. I should write them here so I have something to hold me to my promise but I don’t want to share just yet.

Of the many things I am grateful for, I am thrilled that just before my new year, I was shortlisted as one of the lucky 22 for the Farafina Trust Creative Writing Workshop and for 10 days in August, I met the most amazing participants and the awesomest of facilitators. Even now, almost a month after it ended, I still have that euphoric yet surreal feeling (more on that later). Good thing I have pictures to prove it all happened. You can see some here. *shameless self promotion*

As a fall out from my writing workshop, I want to obviously write more. And being someone who isn’t lacking in opinions about everything, especially stuff I have no business having an opinion on, that shouldn’t be so difficult (if I can only find the time). Maybe I’ll post some of the things I wrote at the workshop. Hmmm…we’ll see.

Happy New Year lovelies.

Peace, Love and Militant Feminism.

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Technology Meets Health: My First Hackathon

I’ve often wondered what it would be like to be part of a hackathon. The closest thing I had to relate it with was meetings. I don’t like meetings much. I think they are a huge scam. But that’s a post for another day.

Back to hackathons. A little while back, Oo asked if I’d be interested in something awesome (cos face it, few things are as great as the convergence of technology and health). I was still contemplating till he said there would be pizza and beer. Who told him my Achilles’ heel?

Our mission is simple: In one weekend, gather a couple of people and build an app that makes it easy to donate blood in Nigeria. (See what I meant by awesome?)

LifeBank Hackathon Day2

LifeBank Hackathon Day2

Starting on World Blood Donor Day 2013 (June 14), we locked ourselves up in a top secret chamber in Lagos, Nigeria. We’ll be there till Sunday (June 16) when we would have figured out how to make LifeBank work; just in time for the launch that same Sunday at 4pm.

Ever wondered how to save a life? We’re building an app for that. You should try it when we are done 😉

Read, Talk, Drink (coffee): Introducing LitCaf

Any one who knows me will know that I love to read (and I’ve also been looking for a makeshift office since Salamander won’t come to Lagos). So, after one white house amala trip, my friend, Rayo, remembered that she was to check out some place in E-Center. Being the good friend that I am, I went along. Not a bad choice too cos I found my new awesome place to hang out, LitCaf.

As the name kinda implies, LitCaf is a Literary Cafe, the first of it’s kind (to my knowledge) in Nigeria and minus the chairs, it is any bookworm/writer/reader/needer of work space in a relatively serene environment/coffee addict/collaborator’s dream place.

Litcaf4

I don’t have all the details about how the place works yet, but we’ll find out soon because they are set to open to the public at 1pm tomorrow (Saturday, 2nd March, 2013). LitCaf is located on the first floor of E-Center, Yaba, Lagos and their mission is to promote the reading culture and nurture literary talents by giving us them the opportunity to work out of or gather in a conducive space surrounded with lots of coffee and books. (Someone say Amen!).

For the opening, Victor Ehikhamenor and Emmanuel Iduma will be reading from their books, Jodie (of Kuchi Kuchi fame) and soul singer, Bemyoda, will be performing and  there will be a spoken word performance by Obii, winner of the first Naija Poetry Slam.

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Litcaf Litcaf2

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Yes, I’ll be there. I hope to see you too.

I was on a panel (Woot Woot!) #SMWLagos #SMWMobilize

I don’t think I have mentioned on here, but sometime in December 2012, I met with some amazing ladies who are directly or indirectly involved in technology. The outcome of the meeting was the birthing of Ladies in Tech.

About two months after our first meet-up, Damilola Sobowale, the head orchestrator, sent an email inviting interested parties to sign up to be on a panel hosted by Girl Effect to discuss how social media has helped us as females, personally or professionally. I of course indicated my interest and on Tuesday, 19th February, 2013, we had an amazing session to discuss how social media could be used for social change.

So, this post was just to show off some pictures. I’ll get into details when I can take a tiny breather to type a more comprehensive post. There is so much to tell. Without further ado, enjoy 😀

Panel Prep Session Let the show begin And we can all go home