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Why I Still Fuss Over Your Cuss

“Wanna hear a joke?”

“Well sure, why not? Everyone loves a good joke”, you reply, as you listen intently, ready to be overcome by extreme hilarity. You hear the joke, and, well, if you agree with me, there’s no better feeling than laughing so hard that you feel your ribs about to crack and intestines about to spill over. “Oh my God! That was so funny.” “Wanna hear it again?” And the cycle repeats itself. The joke is told, you laugh out loud — and manage not to topple over. You’d probably leave feeling happy for the rest of the day.

But what if you had to hear that same old joke. Every. Single. Day?

You’d try to fake a laugh, maybe, just so you don’t hurt the other person’s feelings. But every single time the joke is repeated, a bit of the hilarity is stripped off, because a joke is at its funniest only the first few times it’s told (if not, then it must be a really, really good joke which I’d also want to hear). When overused, it just loses its essence.

A lot of things have evolved over the years, most of which have come to stay.

Technology. Ripped jeans. Fast food. Random swear words.

Of all the things that disturb me in this world, nothing disturbs my insides more than the last one. Well, maybe because I haven’t seen anyone walk virtually naked or eat anything disgusting in front of me before. Majority of the posts I find on social media are in one way or another bombarded with curse words. Then there’s a lot of music. Not to talk of the movies. It’s not as frequent for Ghanaians as it might be for those in the Western world, due to cultural differences. Nevertheless, it’s still quite frequent.

Throwing my mind back to my second year of secondary school, I can vaguely remember four of my dorm mates and I heading out of our house to the assembly hall for entertainment. It was a visiting Saturday as well, so we had to clean up after the messes that had been made before leaving. Upon getting to the entrance, we chanced upon a very aggravated form three girl, who, apparently was trying to mop up the floor, but couldn’t do so as quickly as she wanted to because everyone else kept stepping all over it on their way out. That’s when she decided she’d express her anger in words.

And my, what colourful vocabulary she used.

A couple of her friends who were around were laughing in surprise at her sudden outburst. But those I was walking with weren’t amused at all. The person I least expected to show displeasure was the one who spoke up. She said something that has stuck for a while now. If I can paraphrase correctly: “She should know her limit. The number of swear words you use in a sentence isn’t supposed to prove anything.”

Now, I’m not someone who can admit to never having sworn before. In fact, I do it most of the time, when I get pissed (and I can get pissed over the slightest things). Sure, I don’t make them as audible as most people would, but at that moment I truly understand that, “Out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks”. After I’m done, it leaves me feeling like I got a load off my chest. But despite the fact that I do occasionally swear, I can never get used to being comfortable hearing swear words. For some songs I listen to, I literally have to turn down the volume whenever it gets to some parts, and eventually, I stop listening to the song altogether.

Even as a medical student, I have become accustomed to openly talking about body parts freely, not excluding the private parts. But then hearing people refer to private parts in the form of swear words just seems to add some whole other weird meaning to it, making it uncomfortable to listen to altogether.

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My own artistic representation of different reactions to potty mouths.

 

I came across a quote just recently, which I do believe to an extent.

People who use swear words regularly tend to be stronger emotionally and more intelligent.

Taking into consideration what I said about me swearing to myself during my emotional outbursts, I look at this in the perspective that whoever runs their mouth without thinking twice has probably reached the point where nothing perturbs them anymore. That person has either been exposed to a whole lot of disappointments in the past, or well, just doesn’t care.

But everyone, as my friend from senior high school would say, should know their limit. People who go on diets might have what we call ‘cheat days’ — the days they get to (moderately) eat anything that’s not on their diet menu. But what’s the point of being on the diet if you get to eat the junk food whenever you feel like, and as much as you want to. All the junk feels good, but restraining yourself and going by your diet discipline will most likely leave your body feeling healthier.

Of course, not everyone will agree with me on this — not that I expect them to — but I think my previous analogy is pretty much applicable to my main point. Sure, you may not be able to stop yourself from using curse word altogether. But with a little time and effort, everyone has the ability to be able to exercise self-control. Regulate yourself. Cut down. Get a muzzle too, if you think that’ll help. 😂

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The kind of stuff that comes out of your mouth can go a long way to determine others’ perception about you. That may not seem to matter once you’re surrounded by your normal everyday people. But how easy is it going to be to keep your potty mouth to yourself when you’re somewhere that it really matters? Old habits, like trees, die hard.

Maybe put in a little bit of deeper thought before saying whatever it is you want to say. It counts if what you say uplifts a person’s spirits or brings them down. You never know what kind of impact the words you utter could make.

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Hair · Hair care · Natural hair

Making Your Curly Mane Your Main

Since my first year of being in the university — the same year my year group graduated from high school — I’ve watched as too many people I know suddenly switch from a natural thick afro to short, straight, and apparently, managable hair (at least relatively). Initially, I had no idea about the whole concept of natural hair, let alone keeping it. Right after graduating from so many years of constant mandatory haircuts, I got my hair blown, because I enjoyed the kind of curls that resulted after you put in a little (or a lot of) gel. It was after a cousin of mine asked me, “Why not keep your hair natural?”, that I got curious about what that could be, and eventually, I realized, I actually had more options than I was aware of.

But boy, it sure didn’t take too long for the frustration to set in.

The first day I took off my braids in school, I realized I had missed my own hair so much. Also, my plan of keeping it for a week or two wouldn’t do, because it was so short I couldn’t do anything to it — not that I even knew what to do with it. The next time I took my braids off, I decided it was time to embrace my afro — no matter how short it was. Of course, I couldn’t avoid being called “kyekyekule” though. I assumed that word was meant to refer to a relatively younger person. Combing in itself was hell, and right after stepping out, sadly, the hair would shrink right back.

It’s been almost three years now. I’m proud to say that I have hair long enough to tie down into a ponytail. Or probably a bunnytail, since it resembles a snowball.

Ignore the girl giving me the cold and almost murderous look in the background. Up till now I still hope and pray I’m safe from any danger 😐

A lot of people see me with my hair so manageable all of a sudden, and assume I gained the ability to tame my hair in just one day.

“This is why I relaxed my hair. My natural hair is way too hard. It’s too difficult. Yours is just so soft.”

Others just don’t seem to have the time.

“You really force for your natural hair oo. You have time to twist and do cornrows and stuff like that. I can’t do all that.”

The rest … They just want you to join the flat, straight side for no reason.😂

It’s probably true. I might have more control over my hair than others, because relatively, it is less dense than others’. In the initial stages, however, I had to suffer (more like toil) just like everybody else. There were a lot of things I discovered, a couple of which I tried, and eventually I realized, it was actually a piece of cake.

So, as I patiently waited for my hair to transition from a pathetic shrunken afro to a bunnytail I could boast about, there’s a couple of things I picked up along the way.

  • Dry hair is one major factor that adds up to it being difficult to maintain. Once in a while, I put in a little bit of leave-in conditioner, and shea butter to lock in the moisture. This makes the hair yield to combing or brushing a lot more easily.
  • Until recently, before I discovered the detangling brush, all I used were combs — afro and big-toothed. The detangling brush has actually helped me with reference to stretching out my hair and getting rid of the knots.
  • And, speaking about knots, it would be a lot better to sleep with a protective hairstyle on. Sleeping with your hair unprotected, at least with hair like mine, can leave it prone to forming knots the next morning. Plus, the sheets, if they’re made of cotton could end up absorbing all the moisture in your hair, so it’s best to keep it covered with a satin scarf. I’m usually able to settle with a couple of twists or two cornrows before I go to bed. Lots of people complain about how they don’t have the time, or how complicated it is. I think once you practise, it’ll come a lot more easily for you. And it’ll be worth it when you have to take them off and show off your hair. 😉
  • Once in a while, if you feel you have nowhere else going, you could thread your hair. It’s like blow-drying, just without the heat.

When it’s totally dry and you take off the thread, it’ll be as good as stretched.

Below is a hand-written method by which I systematically go about threading.

There’s also a couple of things I make sure I take note of when I have to step out with my natural hair:

  • Carry an umbrella with you as often as you can. I don’t know whether your weather is as unstable or unpredictable as the weather here, where it could be too sunny one minute, and the next, there’s rain forming puddles the size of swimming pools. If this catches you offguard and you’re without any protection for your hair, you could suffer some major shrinkage.

This was after my first attempt at shampooing myself. Let’s just say that it took me hours to get the knots out again. If you’re not experienced, do not, I repeat, DO NOT SHAMPOO YOUR OWN HAIR!

  • You might also want to carry a comb or a brush along with you. Any kind of hair a girl wears (most, if not all) attracts not only curious eyes, but curious hands as well. If your hair is anything like mine, it’ll start shrinking after the first two hands that touch it.

I’d also give credit to the products I use — We Naturals. You could use any of your choice, but I know for sure that their products have, in one way or another, contrubuted to the growth. Check out their website or Instagram page to view their products.

You should get to know your hair. Befriend it. Pamper it. Buy it treats. (But please don’t end up using all the time you have on it. Already, we gotta be more productive, don’t we?) It’s practically not as hostile as you think it is. It will yield, and you can enjoy watching it grow.

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Trying Things Differently

“Well, that’s awesome. Why don’t you continue?”

“I don’t know. Writing back in Senior High School was practically the most interesting thing there was for me to do at the time. Since I graduated, I haven’t had the time — or made the time — to think of how to end the last story I was working on. And being in university makes it way worse. Everyone here seems so serious. So focused on getting on with their lives and becoming dependent and successful adults. Not that it’s a bad thing, anyway. But I guess the seemingly childish atmosphere back in high school gave me more room to be comfortable indulging myself in the fantasies that inspired my stories.”

“Oh alright … I understand. But then … It’s still not too late. At least, if you can’t write those anymore, you could try something different.”

Silence. Wondering, how’s that ever gonna happen?

And that’s when it hit.
Okay, so here we have a book lover, an aspiring writer, a music addict, an art ( and meme ) enthusiast, and on some days, apart from anything related to FIFA, a person who shows some level of interest in video games, all cleverly mashed up into an introverted medical student, still trying to figure out how to put all she can do into good use. Sure, I do have a couple of ideas pop up from time to time, but bringing them to life is the actual problem.

I was pretty much surprised myself when I realized I had finally brought myself to create this blog after so much self-doubt … and procrastination. 😛

Truth be told, I know nothing about blogging, or what content blogs entail. After a couple of quick researches, I thought, if you think you can’t make those kind of updates because you don’t know how or cause you’re not on that level of interest/know-how, then why not just wing it like you do all the time?

As at now … my plan exactly.

So here, I guess most of what I post, generally, will be stuff I feel I’d want to share, interspersed with a little bit of my “writing abilities” ( which obviously need a lot of improvement ).

Oh, and … just to draw your attention to the fact that, the ‘anoMELy’ found in the username, is generally a summary of my dominant temperament and characteristic behaviour. A little something I coined up back in high school.

For lack of motivation to look into a dictionary, or to even open a different tab to Google, copy and paste, I’m going to quote Lecrae’s definition of the word ‘Anomaly’ from his album which bears the same name :

“A deviation from the common rule. Something … or somebody, that’s abnormal. And doesn’t fit in.”

I’ve also come to accept that my dominant temperament is Melancholy ( judging from the number of interests I have, and my emotional instability, because unfortunately I was born with a relatively low threshold ).

And there you have it. An anomalous melancholic. An anoMELy.

 

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I’m sure in a couple of years I’ll look back at this, see how far I’ve come, probably wonder what I was thinking to have written all this trash, but then be happy that I started in the first place. Until then, ladies and gentlemen, watch this space, and see weird but interesting things happen . 🙂