Embarrassing Moments: [Ep. 2]: Most Embarrassing Moment As A Kid

 Warning: The story you're about to read is rated RY [Respect Yourself]. It is not advisable for people still under the afflictions of childhood traumas, emotional traumas that emanated from childhood, people who can't take what they inhale and can't take inhale what they take, people who have been deceived by motivational speakers that it's "okay to cry" [Please don't read, because you'll actually cry].


Again, I want to echo a very stern warning to people who went through mentally challenging phases while growing up: please and please, Skip.

Coconut-headed human, I know you think you had a great childhood experience because you were normally on the 7th square meal of the day by 3 p.m. and because no one had "put hand on breast" and sweared that you wouldn't amount to anything, but please, I plead with you, specifically if you attended all these schools with a 2500 per term school fee, where you still had to be sent out of school eight times before your parents or guardians would come and plead with the headmaster or mistress to allow you to write exams, with the promise that your school fee will be paid one week after the closure of the term. Please, I plead with you, Skip.

From 2008-2011, I used to be a pupil of a so-called school per se, whose name I'll most sincerely want to keep anonymous, because wisdom, as they say, is profitable to direct.

P.S. Of course, after watching that video of Chioma Okoli, the hot-taker, who gave her "as e dey hot" review about Eris tomatoes, shedding hot tears on Arise TV while pleading for Mercy, and after reading through the law suit filed against the persons who seemed to have an idea of the room number of the hotel Mercy and Chinwo and Nathaniel Bassey lodged to commit the adultery that produced Charis [Mercy Chinwo's son], I now know that even though there is freedom of speech, going Scott free after each speech is directly proportional to how freely you spoke. So please forgive my cowardice, but I won't be mentioning the name of this school. But by my description, anyone familiar with this place should know!


This school, as at the time I attended, was located near a riverine area, close to a forest, opposite a swamp, and adjacent to a dustbin. Located in an entirely disgusting environment that is unfit for even wild animals.  Let me not even talk about the outlook of the building structure of the school, because if at least the standard of teachers and teaching compensated for the thatched, uncompleted building, there would be no need for this post. But that, brethren, was the actual wonderful wonder.

The kind of teachers we were cursed with were the lowest of the NCE teaching practice students, probably struggling with a CGPA of less than 1.7

Teachers who spoke more vernacular than actual English. Teachers who, in a sane country, would themselves be demoted to Nursery 3.

The kind of teachers that our school management could afford, because those ones were seeking the cheapest alternative to a high-quality, standard education.

Well, in the end, if we were to be just and fair, the huge chunk of blame should be on our 'Ojukokoro' parents, who were seeking to secure a very bright future for their children on a 'Dark Friday, abi black Friday discount price. 1,650 per term. How possible!


Unfortunately, after the three elephants [i.e., our selfish, wicked, and illiterate teachers, our funds hoarding school management, and our at 'a cheap rate' parents] were done fighting for their respective interests, it was us who suffered the perspective consequence.


It was us that would be chalked in two straight lines  to dance choreography when our class chalk would finish. It was us that would be INSTA-lled with GRAMS of egusi to peel, while our classroom teacher would be on Instagram. 

For one other class that I knew, their class room teacher made sure to give them one hour of high-quality, half-baked early morning lessons, and they, in turn, would use the remainder of school hours to assist her in baking the cake and doughnuts that the teacher's young sister would sell the next day.


This particular teacher literally had cooking gas and a frying pan in one section of the class. And of course, how would the school management know when they are never around and don't care at all?

Brethren, these and more are the features of the primary school I attended. Actually, the exceptional, beautiful, and advertiseable features of my school. Our first and second term school calendar schedules.


The third term was a different ballgame! That particular term was specially, fundamentally, crafted and designed for extra-cirriculum activities.


The only 'education-like' kind of thing we did during 3rd terms was class attendance rooster. Before anything, our class teachers would take the attendance of the pupils that came each day. After this, future leaders of tomorrow would be asked to match to the assembly ground, where we would be shared into various orders of stupidity.


Each person according to the style of stupidity he or she is most passionate about: choreography, dance, drama, recitation, debate, and cultural dance groups, all in preparation for our end-of-session speech and prize-giving day. That's all we did throughout the term.


In this particular session [2010/2011], unlike other sessions where I would usually join the Igbo cultural dance group where I tie a wrapper and hold a handkerchief, I decided to raise my hand to the chief of all the varieties; debate. So I joined my school's debate group, intentionally and free-spiritedly. Nobody forced me. I joined brethren even when I knew that my brain was like the battery voltage of a 1968 Mercedes Benz, which has to be religiously warmed three times a day [morning, afternoon, and night] for optimal function.

Even when I knew that, just like the engine of a 1995 grinding machine , the kind of brain I had was one that, once it got knocked, either eighteen gallons of engine oil were poured into it or the entire carburetor would be changed.

I still joined the debate/cramming group. And I was accepted!


The title of the debate that year, as usual, was some archaic, useless, 'non-profiting to the 21st century' topic, "Teachers are more important to society than doctors," and I was on the opposing side. Now the horrible part was that it was us, the debaters, 8–10-year-old kids with no smartphones, that were asked to research and develop the topic, then submit it to the debate director, Miss Patience, for editing and approval.

I developed mine, submitted it, and it got approved one time. Of course, why not? When I had traveled the length and breadth of my then-street, seeking input from the intelligent uncles and aunties I knew, all those who said that they were at the top of their class while growing up said that the only reason they didn't go far in life was because their families didn't have enough money to sponsor furthering their education.

I met all of them one by one, went shop to shop, house to house, and had all of them pour in their most "bragged about" wealth of knowledge. In fact, it was our then pastor's wife who assisted me with that finishing line. "With these few points of mine, I hope I have been able to convince and not confuse you."

So, of course, it wasn't surprising that while my other fellow debaters rewrote their own debate speech script several times, mine had once-and-a-time approval.

Normally, dem no born our debate director well to disapprove wetting dey beyond her own scope of knowledge; what over ten good heads contributed in writing".

Approval done, now it was time to sanproof everything I have read into my brain and pour in that wealth of knowledge into the wells of my brain.


I almost ran mad, brethren. Sugar-coating apart, I actually went mad, because what else would you call someone who was reciting and reciting everywhere: at school, at home, in the market, when I wake up at night to urinate, when I'm taking my bath, in the middle of a meal, in the middle of a conversation, everywhere, every time?

Any errand or chore anyone was assigning me during that period should definitely not contain the "Do am now, now" instruction, because it averagely took me about 16 hours to be done with a "Five plates, five cups, and six spoons" washing project.

It was like one hour for each utensil—actually, one minute for the utensil—and then the remaining fifty-nine minutes for my recitation and cramming. My mom would quarrel, quarrel, and sometimes even beat. Tchwee! I no send am. I knew what I was up against. I knew that if I eased my brain for too long and a word as simple as "is" eased its way out, my whole brain, recitation, and cramming would freeze.

So I was not taking chances, nor was I giving my brain any chance. Steady cramming! Steady recitation in front of a mirror


July 31st, 2011, was our speech and prize-giving day, the day my mom had anticipated would be fast-forwarded, the day I was going to outstalled every cramming I had installed in my brain.

That morning, I woke up the earliest I have ever done in my entire life. I stood in front of my mirror and recited from that time until my dad called everybody up for morning devotions. Of course, I devoted the morning devotion period to "moaning' and humming the crammings in my head, and even while having breakfast that morning, I took intermittent breaks to quickly run through.


Getting to school that morning, contrary to the 8 o'clock the occasion was slated to start, by 8:17 when I came, the MC of the occasion was yet to arrive, and from the look of things, the DJ was probably still getting early morning BJ from his partner.

In fact, the whole ceremony was in disarray and chaos as our money-hoarding headmaster was loudly and aggressively arguing why the cost of renting ordinary canopies would be as expensive. Well, I took that privilege again to find a nearby cool-headed space and, for the last time, tried to master everything I crammed.


Our speech and prize-giving occasion finally started around 10. Of course, it was when, from where I was cramming, I heard one clown saying, "Testing the microphone, one, two, three," that I knew that the ceremony was about to commence. So I rushed to the scene, and gratefully, everything had been set and settled.


Surprisingly, for a school with such a low rate of fear of God and superheaded by a Headmaster whose lips are full of lies and deceit, the occasion shockingly started with opening prayers, which was followed next by a speech by the Chairman of the occasion, an extremely boring speech, whose comparison in recent times has been with that of Nigeria's immediate past president on Independence and Democracy Days. Then another speech by one of the head teachers, and again another speech by the outgoing school headboy and head girl.


Brethren, Speech upon speech by heads of several departments and parastatals, and little by little, the things I had crammed were slowly evaporating from my head.


You would think that after all the lengthy and boring speeches, these people would go to the next form of speech [debate], which is the chronological order it should have followed. Of course, except in countries like North Korea and South Sudan, I'm not sure there is any other place in the world where the number 10 comes immediately after 1, nor is there any right-thinking DJ that would go from a Seyi Vibez Jam to a Johnny Drille's Lubaby. I expected a sequence, but no. These guys went from the speeches to cultural dance, choreography dance, then drama, and memory verse recitation. 

P.S. While all these were going on, my brain's sperm count kept going low, but I had no idea because I was thoroughly enjoying everything that was going on. I had no idea, at this point, that the remainder of what I had crammed was less than 0.5 grams.


But even with that 0.5-gram remnant, if at least we had been called up then, I would have found a way to rejuvenate and do some sort of "welcome back" for my brain. Even if nah just  "Good day, ladies and gentlemen, Panel of Judges, Accurate Time Keeper," I  accurately remember. But again, my ever-plentiful in wickeness village people said no!


People of God, for y'all to see how relatively evil the demons in my village are, it was just when the MC wanted to call us up [the Debate Group] that my headmaster sent one of the head teachers to whisper something to our MC's ears.


And after that, WHISPHER, that WAS IT FA! These people skipped us and dived into prize giving [i.e., presenting gifts to the top three best performing pupils in each class], and brethren, an ordinary prize giving that started a few minutes past two ended quarter after six. Of course, why not? When gor ordinary prize collection for the 2nd position, the mother, father, siblings, pastor, and family doctor of the recipient would tag along to collect the prize, and over eighteen photo shots would be taken just for the collection of a stainless plate or plastic hand fan.


It was around that quarter past six [I hand a rubber wristwatch on, though] when three-quarters of what I had crammed had gone to the gutters, when I had made peace with myself that the debate had been scrapped off. In fact, food and refreshments were now being passed, and the DJ was now playing 'End of Occasion" jams. The MC came on the mic and announced, "Please,  we are sorry for the previous oversight; we skipped one of the programs on the event list. Please, can the debate crew come forward for their presentation?".


Mehnnnn! I swear, my heart sank. It was as if my chest had been thrown away in a tank. Was this a prank?


With the rate of surface tension my heart's ventricle was thrown into, I had no idea when I, a foodie, gave away the takeaway rice I was eating to some guy who was wearing a Manchester United away jersey. Children of God, the soft drink I had just gulped while the announcement came became like a hard brick in my throat.


I knew I was finished because, omg, all I had crammed done clear finish.


I twisted my head to the North, West, South, and East Poles, and all that my brain was signaling was "Emergency.".


I shouldn't have gone up for that debate! I should have mixed up in the crowd. It should have been that my co-debators and our debate director would search and search for me till they didn't find me, and then decide to either cancel the debate entirely or run it on a deficit of one person. That would have saved me that humongous embarrassment. But my village people were so determined to finish the 'good work' they had started in my life.


Till date, I can't exactly name the specie of faith that made me match up to the debating stage with a blank head, but what I'm sure of is that this is the type of faith that led great men to their early graves.


What was even going through my mind?


Maybe I felt that, miraculously, I would retrieve the file my brain had thrown into its recycle bin.

Maybe in my mind, I thought that before the debators finished spitting their own points, I would remember my own.

I was the second speaker on my debate team, though, so in the order of speech, the first speaker on the proposing side would speak first, then the first speaker on my team [the opposing side] would speak next. In the same order, the second speaker from the proposing side would follow, and then it would be my turn, ladies and gentlemen.


The aforementioned speakers spoke, brethren. Perfectly, excellently, and with no errors at all. My people, it got to my turn! Brain still blank. Still as blank and free as a farmland that was cleared by erosion. Empty! I couldn't say anything, not even my name.  5 seconds, 10 seconds, 30 seconds, and I was still standing, still struck like a fresh corpse that died by electrocution.


Oh brother! You should see how the eyes of over 7,764 humans were on me. Even people who weren't so interested in the ongoing debate before—those who were probably even eating—were keenly interested to see how terribly I would fumble, and, oh yes, their expectations were not cut short. I fumbled. I couldn't remember anything I had crammed! I couldn't say anything.


And if not for the MC who came to my rescue, who took the microphone from me and gave it to the next speaker, I would have probably fainted while peeing on myself or peed on myself while fainting!

God abeg. I'll never cram in my life!



Popular posts from this blog

High Cost Of Rent In Lagos: A Tale Of 225K Against 2.5M Naira

My Near-Death Experience With Four Scary Lagos Area Boys!

Who Is Winning BBNaija All-Stars? (Early Predictions)