Language · Music · Relationships

BEWARE OF THE DOUCHEBAG

by Akumbu Uche

 

The word ‘douchebag’ is one of those Americanisms that I never really understood.

At best, I thought it was a descriptive noun only applicable to a certain type of American high school/college male student – a cross between ‘jock’ and ‘frat boy’.

But recently, I’ve realized that we have our own fair share of douchebags too, and quelle horreur, I keep bumping into them. So far, the ones I have encountered have all been male, totally consumed with themselves and annoying.

So what/who exactly is a douchebag?

A douchebag is:

 

  • The married man who knows that you know that he is off the market yet thinks nothing of telling you, “I can’t help myself but I like you and I want to date you.”
  • The guy who decides that the best time to ask you out is when both of you are in the company of other people.
  • The guy who equates almost knocking you down with his shiny sports car with sweeping a lady off her feet.
  • The guy who gets angry when you act on your right to not give him your phone number.
  • The guy who thinks he’s paying you a compliment when in fact he’s being very rude, e.g. “I preferred you when you were bulky.”
  • The guy who floods your phone with chauvinistic text messages, and then when you confront him about his inappropriate behaviour, acts like anyone who doesn’t share his phallic sense of humour belongs in a mental asylum.
  • The guy you meet in the cinema who thinks an Angeleno-Cockney-Texan accent will impress you; too bad that when you bump into him 2 weeks later….
  • The guy whose idea of making first-time conversation is to spill out all the details of his recent breakup, then caps it off by giving you a lecherous look and adding, “That doesn’t mean I’m not a good lover, you know.”
  • The guy who thinks that by laughing derisively at everything you say, he’s displaying a high level of intellect.
  • The guy who decides to punish you for not picking up his call by consistently not picking up your calls and not replying to your text messages.
  • The guy who assumes that your life revolves around money. He loves nothing better than to send you monthly texts, ‘I just came back from London and I got you some things. Call me.”
  • The guy who calls you up just to say, “Where are you? What are you doing? I’m bored. Come over to my house.” Wait; is that what the Americans refer to as a ‘booty call’?
  • The guy who because you’ve spurned his advances, goes around maliciously telling people, “If not for me….”
  • The ex boyfriend who has nothing better to do than to keep tabs on your love life. “So, are you dating anyone?”

Like I said before, Beware of the Douchebag.

 

 

 

Music · Science & Tech · Sports & Fitness

MY NEW GROOVIN’ WORKOUT PLAYLIST

by Akumbu Uche

NoddyMix.com is a new user-friendly website that plays exclusively Nigerian music tunes.

Updated daily, it pretty much plays on almost every platform out there (iOS, Android 2.3+, Blackberry OS 7+ and PlayBook) and it is a good idea to have it running in the background while you check your mail, browse and download e-books.

Although the blog section of the site is yet to be activated, I like that, users are encouraged to request for not-yet-featured songs and register for personalized playlists.

The brain behind it all is none other than founder of Ploggin.com and (fortunately) friend of the blog, Nnoduka Eruchalu.

I asked him to design for me an up-tempo, beat-filled playlist groovy enough to make even the most chronic dawdler enjoy a challenging workout routine.

He kindly obliged and in the spirit of ‘pay-it-forward’, I would like to share it with you all:

Gets you fired up, right? Just don’t play it too loud ; )

Music · Reviews

NNEKA – CONSCIENCE OF A NATION

By Akumbu Uche

Singer/Songwriter Nneka

MOBO award-winning Nigerian singer/song writer Nneka likes to describe her music as “simple, complicated and dynamic”.  Her third studio album, Soul is Heavy (2011) certainly lives up to that account.

Laden with themes of heartbreak, political agitation, spirituality and self-awareness, the album is a continuation of the singer’s obsession with Nigeria’s fate, history and future.

Despite the title and serious inclination, the songs in Soul Is Heavy are not the pounding, warrior-cries that made Heartbeat, from the 2008 album No Longer At Ease, a breakthrough performance.

Instead, you have an hour-long expertly produced melange of reggae, afrobeat, hiphop and even flamenco accentuating the singer’s seemingly fragile vibrato.

Do You Love Me Now, an intimate, introspective four-minute duet with her throbbing guitar, reminds the listener that Nneka’s acoustics can stand without the support of sound engineering.

She is often compared to Lauryn Hill, partly due to her girl-with-the-guitar image, but she has more in common with Nelly Furtado. Both have pale skin, high cheekbones, naturally curly hair, high pitch and heterogeneous appeal.

The similarities do not just end there. Like Furtado, Nneka can pull off edgy rhymes as well as a tune.

In Camouflage, she launches into combat mode with lines such as “The thing wey you dey plan, e dey destined to fail/you know say our battle na spiritual one”. Just when you expect to hear explosive sounds of warfare, the songbird returns to her trademark canary sweetness.

Her confident rapping provides a backbone for the tracks Sleep, Don’t Even Think, Stay and God Knows Why.

Unfortunately, a guest appearance from Black Thought, of The Roots fame, cannot save the latter from awkwardness and want of pace.

Although her choice of subject matter often means that her music is the least likely to be associated with the nightclub and party circuit, some of the songs such as My Home are cheerily up tempo and danceable. She even shows off a relaxed and romantic side with the tracks Shining Star, Restless, and Valley.

Her pièce de resistance comes in the title track, in which she powerfully invokes the revolutionary spirits of Ken Saro Wiwa, Isaac Boro and King Jaja of Opobo.

It comes as no surprise then that the current face of Reebok France is in solidarity with the Occupy Nigeria Movement. The refrain “Vagabond in Power” from the song V.I.P might as well be adopted as a rallying cry.

DEMONSTRATION; 40,000 today in Ojota [in Lagos], yes we are making history…first time in my life time that Nigerians of different tribes come together in pain to fight the corrupt system….the struggle continues…fight till we kpeme

So reads her January 11 Facebook update accompanied by photographs of a massive crowd and herself, right hand clenched in a manner evocative of a Black Power fist.

Whether or not the 15-track compilation will attract a cult like following, it is a vibrant and intricate yet humble lyrical demonstration that the protester can be passionate but the act peaceful.