Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Pursuit of Happiness
“Crush a bit, little bit, roll it up, take a hit
Feelin’ lit feelin’ light, 2 a.m. summer night
I don’t care, hand on the wheel, drivin’ drunk, I’m doin’ my thing…
People told me slow my roll I’m screaming out ‘fuck that’
Imma do just what I want looking ahead no turning back
If I fall if I die know I lived it till the fullest
If I fall if I die know I lived and missed some bullets
I’m on the pursuit of happiness…”
Kid CuDi, “Pursuit of happiness”
I grew up learning from observation that there were two major vices that had the tendency to make the youth lose their way. That was sex and drug abuse. Sex is something I’ll assume everyone have heard the implications (of unprotected sex) from different sources. Drugs are those stimulating substances that alter the functioning of the body, and I don’t mean for medicinal purpose. I’m talking about those ones that you ingest and when you are in the club every song played sounds like a hit song and every girl dancing could be the next Most Beautiful Girl in the World. I’m talking about those ones which for a moment you would find happiness and forget about your cheating girlfriend/boyfriend, your pitiful life (if you have one), or even the economic state of Nigeria. By definition, they include depressants, hallucinogen, stimulants, and psychedelics. Every parent knows this and the concerned ones make conscious effort to shield their children away from them. I know I grew up seeing everyone that held a cigarette a ‘bad guy’ even though I didn’t know the consequences or what it did to the body. A fact is no one can precisely say where they pick up certain habits or learn them at least. Eminem once rapped about kids learning about sex on the Discovery Channel and that reality shows how unpredictable the places we could learn certain habits parents shield us away from. I remember when I first heard the track “Something about Mary” by Wyclef, I had no idea the ‘Mary’ he was referring to, the “I wouldn’t mind a kiss from Mrs. Mary…” was actually Mary Jane or Marijuana ‘cause “…she’s home-grown and you can hold her in your back yard.” I thought he was singing about a chic in his neighbourhood growing up. As obvious as that song was with the mention of LSD (Lysergic acid diethylamide), ecstasy etc, I still had no idea it was about drugs. I learnt about drugs on the Oprah show, I learnt so many things I wasn’t suppose to from that family oriented talk show. I learnt about blow jobs, t- bagging, rainbow party, crystal meth… you name it. So Oprah I thank you for exposing me to what my parents wouldn’t talk about, sex and drugs. I remember the episode on crystal meth (professionally known as methylamphetamine and it also has a street name, Yaba). That episode showed me the consequences of substance abuse especially the relationship with these drugs and the brain. The human body has got neurotransmitters so these drugs either (in simple words) excite, dull, or make the brain see double. I couldn’t help to conclude that in Nigeria a ti e le (Yoruba for ‘we are not even hard’). The substance we abuse the most is alcohol. Alcohol is different from all other drugs and substances. Contrary to what I’ve heard a lot of people say, alcohol doesn’t make you high, let’s say it makes you dull because alcohol is classified as depressants (same category as tranquilisers). It slows down the way you reason consciously and that’s why you become poorly coordinated. What it might take you ten seconds to think about before you utter, alcohol might reduce it to one, giving you less time to think it through if it was the right thing to say. If you want high, try cocaine and allow all you dopamine neurotransmitter comes to life. Alcohol it is also cheap; second to sex it is a poor man’s source of entertainment. The best of all, you can get in anywhere and I know Catholics who don’t mind taking a sip in church. Upon all these Nigerians don’t even consume alcohol to be tagged ‘binge drinkers’. Sure some drink and beat their wives or forget their way home, but in Liverpool don’t be surprise when you see someone drinking cologne or using Vodka as eye drop just to get that instant distance from reality. Those are people in search of unrestricted pursuit of happiness.
Everyone deserves the right to pursue happiness and that’s why I understand when someone takes a bottle of alcohol, either shepe, Star, or Vodka. The best part for me was when someone crosses that line of ‘sanity’ to ‘insanity’, which was when their will power is at its lowest. I have seen a few people misbehave after getting drunk but nothing special. One I should have witness back in school (instead I was out chasing girls) was a chic who resided in the same building I stayed. She was stepping down weed with Kasapreko a.k.a Alomo bitters (or the other way round). It was a normal evening and guys were just chilling also in their pursuit of happiness. She made a statement that began an episode, she complained that someone’s TV was too loud and wanted her to reduce the volume but the thing was there was no light, no TV on. There was no doubt the hallucinogenic effect of the weed had taken effect. She moved to the next step, confession time. She talked about losing her virginity and about the guy, how she was seduced, “as the guy touch my breast the thing sweeeeeeeet me” she kept on blabbing and began talking about the guys she had slept with in that building. One thing I’ve come to understand is that, no matter how many bottles you’ve consumed, vodka, star, Gulder, or whatever, one hot slap would bring you back to reality and that was what happened.
My cherished wasted experience was with a guy I respect (no homo). Previously I’ve heard about this guy when he was wasted, one time he knelt in front of a female hostel confessing his undying love. I was in my friend’s room when there was a loud knock on the door. The door opened and this guy stepped in, wasted. Initially I had no idea but as he began to yarn I knew the guy don dey. This guy talked about his dick and how it was curved, how a girl ‘saba’ his balls and so on. Guys around decided to exploit that opportunity by asking him questions and he responded truthfully (after all we were bored). He was talking about a girl and how the girl held his ATM card, the next question was for him to say his PIN. Despite the alcohol the guy responded “X-X-X-X”. As a street boy, alcohol no dey work where money is involved. It was as if his eyes cleared, he kept on talking but the PIN to his ATM was one thing he wouldn’t say. One thing I learnt was there will power and pieces of information even alcohol can’t reveal but a lot of people don’t believe that and it’s of the benefit to those who can exploit that. I had a chic I told her a liked her but she didn’t believe and to be honest I only said it just to stir up something. After a few bottles (two and a half to be precise) I told her I loved her and she was the only one I thought of and all those sissy talk. This girl believed me, who says every drunk is honest; it’s just a pursuit of happiness and would say and do anything that would make us happy. Think about it.