When Nigerian Girls Are Like Ponmo

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Growing up in my beloved country Nigeria exposed me to the realization that a meal no matter how good looking or nutritious is never complete without a proteinous delicacy like meat, egg, fish, chicken, turkey, beef, goat meat, snails etc. I grew up eating most of the above listed but one that always escaped my reach was cow hide/skin popularly called ponmo. We didn’t eat it at home so from an early age wasn’t interested in it until sometime this year when I decided to experiment with it and there has been no turning back ever since. It’s simply delicious.

A Nigerians meal plate is never really complete without that sumptuous looking and tasting delicacy called ponmo but as eager as I was to eat ponmo, I was even more eager to find out its nutritional benefits. The findings birthed this article.

 

WARNING: If you are a lover of ponmo, you are advised by the writer to discontinue reading this article because the revelations below might dampen your appetite for ponmo.

 

Ponmo is processed from cow skin/hide, the same skin used as raw material in the production of goods like shoes, bags and belts. In a report titled “Nigeria Eats Its Show Leather” written by Sam Olukoya for BBC News, the writer quoted Dr. Samuel Achi as saying that “ponmo eaters have decided to walk on bare feet because they have decided to eat their own shoes in their pots”.

Another revelation about ponmo is that as beautiful as it looks and as delicious as it tastes, it has no nutritional benefits and I mean none at all.
The nutritional analysis of a 100g piece of ponmo is:
Calories (300g); Total fat (4g); Saturated fat (1g); Mono saturated fat (0g); Cholesterol (0g); Sodium (0mg); Potassium (0mg); Proteins (0 percent); Calcium (0 percent); Iron (0 percent).

The nutritional analysis of a 100g piece of beef is:
Calories (250g); Total fat (18g); Saturated fat (6g); Mono saturated fat (3g); Cholesterol (60g); Sodium (57mg); Potassium (228mg); Proteins (15g); Calcium (3 percent); Iron (9 percent).

The nutritional analysis of a 100g piece of chicken breast is:
Calories (110g); Total fat (5g); Saturated fat (3g); Mono saturated fat (2g); Cholesterol (0g); Sodium (63mg); Potassium (220mg); Proteins (20g); Calcium (3 percent); Iron (9 percent).
From the above findings, its evident that ponmo lacks any nutritional benefits at all (no protein, no calcium, no iron, no potassium). All ponmo does is look sumptuous and taste good without adding any benefits to the body. This is the same ideology that many girls bring into a relationship. Girls nowadays are more concerned with looking good than improving themselves. So you find a stunning looking girl who lacks moral standards and is virtually empty upstairs. A girl who is more preoccupied with what she will get from a man not what she will add to him.

Ladies, its time to add value, leave the ponmo league and play in the meat/chicken league. Make something of yourself. Let that man meat meet you busy, adding value and making an impact and he will appreciate you more. Don’t be a liability, be an asset.
Toast to the value adding chicks around, those studying to improve themselves, those making a name for themselves, working hard to make ends meet themselves, those opening their minds not their legs. Let’s drive these ponmo chicks outta town.

 

Note:
1. The article isn’t written to single out Nigerian women, even white girls could behave like ponmo but they don’t understand what ponmo means hence the writer’s insistence on using Nigerian girls as the title of the piece.
2. Men could also behave like ponmo but girls are more prone to such behaviors hence the concentration on them.
3. The writer also seeks to point out the detrimental effects of eating just ponmo as a source of protein because it contains no protein. Enjoy your ponmo but make sure to use it to compliment your meat/fish/snail not replace them.

 

References (Read Further):

Prevention is better than cure on PunchNG. Click to READ

Ponmo (Cow Skin): What you need to know on Dammybas.blogspot.com. Click to READ

Nutrients in Ponmo on MyFitnessPal. Click to READ

Nigeria eats its own leather on BBC. Click to READ

 

Understanding Football With Sex

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1. Going to your boyfriend’s house without being invited = OFFSIDE

2. Meeting a girl and having sex on the same day = FREE-KICK

3. Condom = GOALKEEPER

4. Condom breaks = PENALTY

5. Abortion = RED CARD

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6. A girl with lots of energy = CAPTAIN

7. Having sex without a condom = OWN GOAL

8. Taking a lot of time without coming = MAN OF THE MATCH

9. Sleeping with 3 friends = HAT-TRICK

10. Having so many female friends and sleeping with all = MVP

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11. Having sex with your ex = FRIENDLY MATCH

12. 8 years of sex without getting a child = ARSENAL

13. Requesting for more sex after going two rounds =EXTRA TIME

14. Taking it gently when having sex = FAIR PLAY

15. Biting her n!pples = SUAREZ

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16. When they won’t stop talking about your relationship: SPECTATORS

17. Asking her ‘how do you want it?’ = Taking instructions on the sideline.

18. A lady using pills after sex and later still got pregnant = DEFENSIVE ERROR

19. Girl being pregnant = GOAL

20. When your friend sleeps with your girlfriend = TRUE PASS

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21. Having sex with another girl and your girlfriend catches you = INJURY

22. You and your girl break up= GAME OVER

23. Girl tells you to stop= YELLOW CARD

24. A guy always under performing and making excuses: MOURINHO

25. Missionary position: 4-4-2 (standard) formation

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26. After claiming he’s good in bed, ends up being a flop: FALCAO

27. Been forced to stay in a relationship you don’t want to: DE GEA

28. When you and hubby take a break after round one: HALF TIME

29. When she’s tired of his lazy unproductive ass and hooks him up with her good for nothing friend: FREE TRANSFER

30. When he tells you to return everything he bought you because you ended the relationship: TRANSFER FEE.

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Adapted and improved from “Understanding Football with Sex” by Unknown Author.

The School Called Marriage

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Marriage is the only school where you get the certificate before you start. It’s also a school from where you will never graduate. It’s a school without a break or a free period. It’s a school where no one is allowed to drop out. It’s a school you will have to attend every day of your life.
It’s a school where there is no sick leave or strikes or even holidays.

It’s a school founded by God:
1. On the foundation of love.
2. The walls are made out of trust.
3. The door made out of acceptance.
4. The windows made out of understanding.
5. The furniture made out of blessings.
6. The roof made out of faith.
7. The school materials are made out of forgiveness.

Be reminded that you and your partner are the students. The Holy Spirit is the teacher, Jesus is the Vice Principal while God is the Principal.

Communication with your classmate (your spouse) and the Principal is paramount to a successful time in school. If you find out something in your classmate (spouse) that you do not appreciate, talking to him/her and God about it will help effect a change instead of asking people not in your school for help.

Remember your classmate is also just a student not a graduate, God is not finished with him/her yet. So take it as a challenge and work on it together.

Do not forget to study the Holy Book (the main textbook of this school).
Start each day with a sacred assembly and end it the same way. Sometimes you will feel like not attending classes, yet you have to.

The main objective of this school is to build teamwork therefore copying during tests/classworks/exams is allowed. The problem most people have is that instead of working on their exams with their spouse, they keep asking for help from students in other schools who have their own problems or don’t understand the curriculum in their school.

Even in times of storms, don’t be unwise and run outside. Keep in mind that, this school is the safest place to be. Never go to sleep before completing your assignments for the day.

When tempted to quit find courage and continue. Some tests and exams may be tough but remember the Principal knows how much you can bear and yet it’s a school better than any other. It’s one of the best schools on earth; joy, peace and happiness accompany each lesson of the day.

How hospitable, peaceful, joyful and loving your school depends on your relationship with your classmate and the Principal. Be wise.

 

Adapted from the article “The School Called Marriage” by Unknown Author posted on several platforms online.

10 Reasons To Remain A Virgin (For Girls)

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“I am almost 24 years old and still a virgin, I am seriously considering loosing it because it seems virginity is outdated and most guys don’t want to date a virgin”, she said. I thought to myself “how come I don’t have an article about virginity to share with her to keep her encouraged and focused on this right track she has chosen to embark on?”. After a few hours, the much awaited article has been birthed. An article dedicated to every virgin out there who has almost lost hope. The article also contains true life stories of girls I know and every story embedded in the fabric of this article is the truth and nothing but the truth. Read with an open mind and share with teenage girls and those battling with self esteem as a result of the sex perverted world of ours. Below are 10 reasons one should remain a virgin.

1. Sex is painful (mentally and physically): The physical pain of sex starts as soon as the penis is introduced into a girl’s “sealed” private part. The vagina is somewhat sealed when still a virgin with a flesh around the opening serving as kind of a receipt that authenticates the virginity of a girl.
As soon as a penis is introduced, the hymen is torn and blood flows from it. The pain as a result of this is excruciating and according to Aisha “the first time I had sex felt like I was going to die. It was the most painful thing I have ever experienced in my life”.
The mental torture of sex on the other hand comes in the form of heartbreak. As Grace put it, “I felt he was the one and I decided to give my virginity to him on his birthday only for him to start acting funny a few months down the line. I stand to believe that it was sex he wanted all along because our relationship didn’t last long after he had it”.

2. Pregnancy is no joke: Bimpe (not her real name) a friend of mine got pregnant as a teenager. According to her, she was ignorant of contraceptives and didn’t expect to get pregnant to her boyfriend after all he was the first and only guy she was having sex with. She discovered the pregnancy but was too scared to tell anyone and resolved in her mind to abort the baby. After consulting with her then boyfriend who himself was a little over 20 years both decided that abortion was the best option. One afternoon, she mounted a bike and headed to the abortion clinic she was advised to visit by a friend. She thought she was ready but she wasn’t. “How can I forgive myself for killing an innocent child?”,  “what if I die on this abortion table?” and “what if my womb is damaged for life?” were a few of the thoughts ravaging her young mind. She decided against aborting the baby. Fast forward to four years after, Bimpe’s baby daddy (then boyfriend) has absconded and left the baby in her care, her parents have accepted her and the baby, her child is in school and she is currently undertaking the compulsory one year youth service in Nigeria. In her words, she regrets getting pregnant but doesn’t regret not aborting the baby because David (her son) is the best thing to happen to her. Remain a virgin and pregnancy or abortion wouldn’t be a problem you will have to ever deal with.

3. STD’s suck (literally): Amaka asked her friend for my pin and was eager to discuss something “confidential” with me. She began “I am 18 and dating a guy who is 29 years old. We have been sexually active for about three years now and it was all going well until about two years ago when I started itching down there. After going for tests, I discovered that I had gonorrhae and I treated it. I have been faithful to him but since then it has been reoccurring but he claims to be faithful and doesn’t want us to use a condom…what do I do?”.  A question and problem only a sexually active girl would have in the first place.

4. No yardstick problems: To buttress this point, I’ll be using this example. Let’s imagine you have lived all your life in Nigeria and as fortune smiled, you left the shores of Nigeria to England to pursue your education further. Two years after, you return to Nigeria to face the harsh realities of no light, bad roads, insecurity and the likes. It is almost certain that your experience in UK will affect how you see Nigeria. Unconsciously, UK has set a mental benchmark that makes Nigeria look bad.
Ngozi confided in me of how her husband doesn’t satisfy her in bed like her ex’s did. Her ex boyfriend’s prowess in bed is the benchmark her husband can’t seem to attain and this is one of the many problems of having premarital sex. But a virgin on the other hand has no benchmarks. Her husband is the only and the best man she has had sex with.

5. Sin against God: Definitely the biggest issue with premarital sex is the sin against God. Apart from defiling one’s bed, premarital sex dampens one’s spiritual life, envelopes one with doubts and guilty conscience that makes it harder to approach God. There are numerous Scriptures in the bible that declare sex before marriage to be a sin (Acts 15:20; 1 Corinthians 5:1; 6:13, 18; 10:8; 2 Corinthians 12:21; Galatians 5:19; Ephesians 5:3; Colossians 3:5; 1 Thessalonians 4:3; Jude 7). Premarital sex doesn’t make God love you less, but it sure makes you feel like it does.

6. The marriage bed: There is something amazingly beautiful about the “pain” a woman endures during her first sexual intercourse with her husband on that wedding night. Its importance could be compared to the pain a woman feels when giving birth, the emergence of the baby somewhat erodes the pain she felt. Same with when a man dis-virgins his wife, the amount of pride on her husband’s face seeing that he is the first ever man to “know” his wife. Its an amazing feeling for any man and an amazing feeling for the woman. “I finally made it”, she might be tempted to think to herself.

7. Respect from your husband: Men are egoistic beings and nothing satisfies a man’s ego more than the realization that he is the first to sleep with his wife. He doesn’t have to deal with his wife’s ex boyfriends who were all amazing lovers. He doesn’t have to feel ashamed when his wife introduces him to her former lovers because he knows one thing for sure: they never slept with her.  Give your man this sense of pride and a man who doesn’t value you more is a douchbag.

8. Over population: Three years ago, a friend of mine called Chiamaka (not her real name) who was 24 years at that time told me she was a virgin but was very eager to lose the “virgin tag”. She talked about having sexually active friends who joked about her status and made her feel she was missing out from the “action” by remaining a virgin. She told me to help dis virgin her that she couldn’t take the stigma anymore. I wasn’t going to have any hand in this evil deed (in my mind…lol) and advised her to remain a virgin until her wedding day.
Fast forward to this year and we were discussing and she told me she was no longer a virgin. “How many guys have you had sex with?”, I asked. “I think five or six” she responded.  This is a girl that was a virgin for 24 years and in three years has had sex with 6 guys. Once the “gate” is opened, there is no control of crowd. I hope you get my point.

9. Right foundation: The biggest issue relationships are having is in the foundation of their love life. It so happened that Stephen met Angela at Shoprite. They seemed to have known each other for a long time the way they conversed. A week after, they had started dating not before they had had sex and in Angela’s words “the sex was damn good”. They met often and it seemed they couldn’t keep their hands off each other. Some months down the line, their love had turned sour and they suddenly couldn’t stand each other. Stephen blames the demise of the relationship on Angela’s lack of understanding while Angela claims they had too much time for sex and no time to bond. The cause of their breakup could be disputed but what’s for sure is that sex based relationships or those built on/around sex always have an expiration date.

10. Pride:
I. Parental: African parents have this often unfounded belief that their children are virgins especially the girls. When that belief moves from fiction to fact then expect an African parent to tell whoever cares to listen that “my daughter is getting married as a virgin”. Waywardness has absolutely nothing to do with virginity because some virgins are more wayward than non-virgins but trust African parents to bask in the euphoria of their daughter’s virginity with statements like “you have come for my daughter’s hand in marriage, I am sure you know she is a very good girl, in fact she is a virgin”. Remaining a virgin gives your parents the assurance that you are the Lord’s child. Keep it if not for yourself but for them.

II. Personal: A woman in her 50’s steps up to speak to a group of young girls about the beauty of remaining chaste. She tells them of how she remained a virgin till she got married and how her husband is the one and only man to ever have sex with her. The girls are in awe of her. “She’s a role model”, one of the girls said after the lecture. The other responded “I wish I could be like her”. Now let’s imagine on the other hand, a lady in her early 30s, unmarried and has slept with over 10 men. How in this World would she stand in front of a room filled with girls and advise them on remaining chaste and waiting till marriage? I’m sure she would get responses like “Aunty, how many men have you slept with?” or even “Aunty, if you have slept with this much amount of guys, why shouldn’t we follow your footsteps?”.
Remember, there is no pride in being the girl that sleeps with Tom, Dick, Harry and even the neighbors. Be the girl that is hard to get. Even if your friends call you “the virgin Mary”, smile and remember even the virgin Mary in the Bible was the mother of Jesus. What a honor.

 

Photo credit: https://missdaphne.wordpress.com/

Female Nudity is Becoming Fashionable

 

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In what seems to have become a habit among Western culture, married folks have shown no regard for their partner’s property (their body). From Kim Kardashian posing nude on the covers of different magazines with her husband Kanye West’s blessing to Chrissy Teigen posting “nudish” photos of her with the blessing of her husband John Legend. These “role models” have continued to set a bad example to our ladies and that’s what this article is setting out to address.

The body of a woman is her man’s biggest asset according to African tradition and must be protected from the public at all costs. So when one Nigeria nudist artist with the name Maheeda who claims to be married begins a public show of her body then something is definitely wrong somewhere.

In Africa, the respect a woman has for her man is directly proportional to the amount of flesh she displays to the public. A real African man in his right senses would frown at the sight of his wife displaying his property to everybody with eyes. I remember vividly the joke about a married woman who received a box filled with undies from her husband as her birthday gift. She was elated at the sight of the expensive lady briefs but her joy was short-lived when she realized that all twelve undies were of the same color and design. She screamed “but honey, these undies are the same color and design, people will think I am wearing the same pant everyday”. The shocked man replied “who are the people that notice the type of undies you wear?”. She was speechless.

My innocent eyes have been inundated/flabbergasted/besieged/overwhelmed with the sight of ladies in relationships and even married women displaying their assets like its no man’s business. Yes, its a man’s business: your man. Most “show flesh” without the knowledge of their spouses and to me, its disrespectful to a man to display his property like second grade clothes on the floor of a market. Even if your man isn’t “sane” enough to demand some privacy for his “commodities” then I’m sure you are aware that the Bible asked in 1 Corinthians 6:19 “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit”. The Quran also forbids people (especially women) from “showing flesh” because it is immodest and contrary to the principles of Islam. The Quran clearly admonishes Muslim women to dress modestly and cover their breasts and genitals and states in Al-Ahzab 33:59 “…Tell your wives and your daughters, and the believing women, to draw their cloaks (veils) over their bodies. That will be better that they should be known (as respectable woman).”

The Bible and the Quran clearly take a united stand on the issue of nudity so who are we to let Western culture erode our believes and make nudity fashionable?  God forbid.

As for the ladies in question, if you evaluate your importance and rate your beauty according to your body and you display flesh to be “sexy and beautiful”, then as I said earlier, something is wrong somewhere. Where have you seen important and highly valued personalities showing flesh irresponsibly? Does Oprah Winfrey or Hillary Clinton walk about with skirts that have slits closer to their undies than to the ground? What of Dr. Dora Akunyili of blessed memory, was she seen in micro mini skirts or tops that seem like her breasts want to pop out and say hello?
Let’s bring it closer to home, have you seen the wives of your Pastor dress like a club girl or displaying cleavage or seductive dresses on her display picture on BBM or on Instagram?
Comon ladies, remember a wise man values a woman with brains while a weak man gets attracted by flesh. Your body might be successful in getting a man but its what you have upstairs that will keep him for life. Work on empowering your self not exposing your body.

As my teacher in Primary school used to say, “the way you dress is the way you will be addressed”.

Let’s say NO to public nudity. Period.

*Drops mic pen and walks away to loud applause*

 

NOTE:

  1. If you happen to be reading this from Zulu land where ladies walk around topless, then nudity is your calling. Carry on.
  2. For those that will argue against the view of this writer on gender equality under the misguided notion that the writer should not focus his distaste for nudity on just women alone but also men. This writer wishes to assure you that any man seen dressing nude/nudish/showing flesh in public is not being fashionable but actually mad. Please report to the nearest police station or psychiatric ward near you. Thanks.
  3. For those that argue against this writer’s view on the premise that it is a woman’s body and she should do whatever she pleases with it should repent and give their life to Christ. He is coming soon.

10 Ways To Stay Positive During Job Search

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I had just returned from the UK after my sojourn in the Queen’s country for a Masters Degree and had hopes of getting a job immediately I got back into the country. Returning back not only exposed me to the harsh weather conditions (Oyinbo weather was very good to my skin..lol) but also to the light and security situation and to top it all of the dire job situation in my dear country. I came back with a few saved up Pound Sterling notes to fall back on as I waited to get a job. A month passed, two months followed and still no sign of a job coming forth and my saved up cushion funds were depleting on a daily basis.

I consider myself an active person but waking up everyday with no end in sight to the “job search” debacle was happiness deflating to say the least. There was nothing I didn’t try, from purchasing Guardian newspapers on Tuesday for their job advertorials to searching for companies in my industry online and blasting them with job application mails. All to no avail. Attended an interview during the period, got a job but the offer letter was late in coming and my mind was getting used to my daily wake-up-eat-read-watchTV-sleep routine. Then out of the blue, an interview/exam on my birthday, medicals and then a job offer about a month after. God win. This article is for those going through what I went through and are in need of a way out.

1. Stay positive: It wasn’t easy keeping my sanity during the seven months that I spent at home waiting for that dream job. What kept me going was my self belief. I knew I could get “the job” done anywhere but employers are not aware because my CV and I haven’t been granted an interview yet. All I needed was a chance to prove myself and I knew like I knew my name that I would get the job. Stay positive always. Never give up. Never.

2. Be prayerful: We never know how much we need God until we need something from Him. I was closer to God by default because I needed Him to prove Himself to me. I was in dire need of a testimony. It doesn’t have to take the desire for something to desire more of God but as human beings, that’s what we do on a regular basis. Remain prayerful and remember that all things work together for good for those that love God (Romans 8:28).

3. Be prepared: During my job search, I kept myself mentally prepared for any job interview or exam always. I went through my GMAT regularly and brushed up my interview skills so when the time came, I was more than prepared to take the bull I had waited so long for by the horn. Be prepared. Always.

4. Improve your selling point: I consider myself to have mastered the art of writing an attention grabbing CV but I can’t say the same of many others. I have seen CV’s that have made me cringe in my seat. CV’s with date of birth, Local Govt. Area, State of Origin should be abolished. Not only are CVs wrongly put together, job seekers are totally oblivious of the impact a cover letter on the other hand can have on their chances of getting that interview. To write and amend your CV personally read How To Write A Standard CV and Writing the Curriculum Vitae (PDF file). For professional help with your CV, I’ll recommend www.cvwizards.com.ng.

5. That interview: According to a report, the fear of speaking in front of a crowd ranks higher than the fear of death. Like it or not, most interview situations equate to speaking in front of a crowd with some interview rooms filled with up to 5 interviewers who seem to have the same mission in mind, “make sure she doesn’t get the job”. Mastering the act of remaining calm, knowing what to say, body language and answering the most important question of all “tell us about yourself” is the key to getting the job. I wrote an article titled “Answering The Hardest Interview Question“. Therein is how I talked myself into getting my current job. It should be of help to you too.

6. Work for FREE: A friend staying in Lagos was invited for an interview in Abuja. She attended the interview but was told she wasn’t getting the job. She told me about it and I encouraged her to work for free with the firm. My thinking was that instead of staying at home doing nothing, she could work with the firm, gain as much experience and knowledge thereby boosting her CV and employability skills. She reluctantly agreed and a few months after, her hardwork/smartwork was noticed by Management and she was given the job for real. Which she wouldn’t have gotten if she didn’t work for “free”. Graduates are too money conscious that they fail to realize that money will come but for now, polish your brain.

7. Get certified: I was conversing with a friend currently undertaking her youth service when I told her about the various incentives given to corpers including subsidized course fees for various courses. While looking for a job, why not attend seminars and educational programs. There are various free online courses as well (check out www.edx.org, www.pushcv.com and www.coursera.org) for vFREE courses to improve your employability skills and boost your CV. Stop the sleeping-pinging-eating-watchingTV routine. Add courses to it.

8. Read books: Out of boredom and to gain knowledge, I read over 20 books during the period of my job search. Not books based on job search per say but books on various topics including Romance, Autobiography of Sports stars, Motivation, Faith etc. Readers are leaders. Knowledge is power. Read.

 
9. Keep busy: Instead of idling away your time doing nothing and waiting for that job offer. Get busy doing something else to make some money. Your friend sells clothes/shoes/bags, advertise for her, make sales and get your commission. Get clothes and shoes and sell if you may. Attend catering school and start baking cakes for people. Attend decoration class and decorate for free and in no time, your work will be appreciated and paid for. Work with your father/mother to keep you busy. Stay busy and keep that mind active and working.

10. Keep your job search skills sharp: It’s no secret that “long leg” gets things done faster in Nigeria than what you know. Which means knowing someone in the right place can get you something faster than someone who doesn’t. We know you are good, but who else knows you are good. First step is subscribing to online job sites, secondly joining and maintaining a healthy profile on the business oriented social networking site called “LinkedIn”. Thirdly, avoid the “one CV” temptation. Learn to tailor your CV according to the job requirements. Don’t blast one CV for every job application. But more importantly, work on your contacts. You know someone that knows someone that knows someone in that company. Go all out, call Uncles and Aunts, communicate with family members until you get that interview. It worked for me, I’m sure it will work for you.

BONUS –> Create jobs: One of the biggest mistakes with job seekers is not realizing that they have job creating skills in them. Instead of striving to work for someone and enrich that person, why not turn your passion into a career and enrich yourself. Entrepreneurship is demanding, risky and tasking but remember no one becomes a Billionaire as an employee. Only employers of labor become strikingly rich.

Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life – Confucius

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So there you have it, the job might be late in coming but you will surely get it. Smile and be positive and don’t forget to share your testimony with us when it comes. All the best.

We Should Be More Like Ants

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While waiting for a friend who was running late, I started doing something I haven’t done in a very long time. Not since childhood, when we all enjoy leisure & patience.

Tired of waiting in the living room I decided to soak up the sun in my balcony.
As I sat down on the arm chair, my feet resting by the balcony railing, I noticed a file of ants marching on the wall. They were careful enough to avoid me, though at the time my intention was just to observe.

I started following the file. It originated from the area next to the kitchen sink that had recently received a pesticide treatment. This could’ve been the reason for their relocation. The file went over the washing machine, then to the window, then to the side of the railing and disappeared below the apartment wall.

With nothing better to do, I decided to disturb this carefully chosen route.

I blocked the washing machine route with an old newspaper. They soon corrected their course & started going over my juvenile obstruction.

I would have to be more creative, I thought.

So I decided to place multiple obstacles. It’s funny how memory works in all matters of mischief, I soon remembered an old friends advice (this one definitely from the school days);
“If you want the ants to change their course, rub their trail from a paper soaked with some water, works even better if you have lemonade. Ants release a tracer(some interesting chemical), while moving that the followers sense to stay on course. If you remove the tracer the ones behind won’t be able to follow.”

So I tried this, on both their routes – balcony railing & the washing machine.

It worked! The Ants were confused.

But my excitement was short lived. I soon realized what I assumed as confusion was just the ants strategizing their next move. They settled for an alternate route, across the window by the washing machine and then connecting back to the file on railing.

“They are really smart!”, I thought.

I tried to get more creative by bringing in my nephew’s plaster cast, washing powder, using a magnifying glass to focus sunlight on their route, even charming them to this trap with some sugar & flour.

Nothing worked. They always found an alternative route that led them to their final destination.

After trying several of my so called creative obstacles,  I accepted my defeat and started pondering over my effort of last half an hour.
I realized that I was no match for the Ants. They were more resourceful than me. I had put a dozen obstacles in their way, some creative ones like focusing light from the magnifying glass; but their tenacity & resourcefulness always won. They tackled all these problems head on, without fear. Did they feel desperate and powerless? Many times, I think. Did they overcome each of these obstacles – every time.

Did they finally achieve their objective?
Definitely.

Why?
Because they used their small head & never gave up.

But we do!
So many times, we feel lonely, desperate, powerless & fragile; mostly due to our self created obstacles – even though we consider ourselves smarter and more evolved than ants.

As my friend finally arrived, I left with the realization that we are not like ants & that’s very sad. I also decided that I must try to be more like them when facing obstacles in life.

The resourceful ants taught me that no matter how bad a situation seems, there is always a way out; we just need to use our small head & never give up.

NOTE – No ants were harmed during this little self realization experiment. The only thing that was harmed was my ego.

 

Writer from across the border: