by Ugonna Ajoku
If you’ve got a job, and if you can grudgingly say it’s a good one- right, let’s try okay then…
If you have got a job and you can say it’s okay…
Okay means there’s no one screaming at you daily, you are sure a salary is coming in on a particular day, and you can actually plan for a few things.
If you are able to go out with the boys or the girls, go to the salon, go to the market to shop….
If you can afford to give your parents something every month and can pay your rent as at when due, even have a little something for the luxury of aseobis, you’re as middle class as they come, please, thank you very much.
If you can pay for DSTV, fuel your car and your generator, you’re actually upper class, Sister. By the time, you can add a trip or two in these times, wehdone Sir is my only greeting.
As you sit in that office tomorrow, as your husband/boyfriend/blesser/Pere- Sucre/Sugar Mommy/wife (tick as appropriate) hands you food/shopping money this month, remember that Ugonna has been looking for whom to buy her ‘ordinari’ perfume and new phone and hasn’t seen. If that doesn’t work, remember that some people are carrying the wahala for their families on their head and it could have been you.
So before you hiss that the money is not enough for the Brazilian and the Peruvian is too raggedly-ass for you or before you call that poor man stingy, honey sit down, let me tell you.
Let me tell you of the lady who cleans my compound whose husband sits at home for a year or perhaps more because he lost his job ( a post for another day, this one). She cleans and launders for the compound and for some of the tenants. She pays her children’s 35k school fees in pieces. She wants them to have more because although her best subject was biology, she had to stop her schooling at secondary school to get married, as there wasn’t any money.
My small loan for her to revolve is too much blessing. She thanks me like I dashed her the money. And when the repayment time reaches, she knocks on my door with her purse and I ask her to go trade for longer. This meagre sum which she had to break into 6 parts to plan a payment. I haven’t still collected a dime. Her dedication is impressive.
So when you treat your work like dirt and take your blessings for granted, remember that people are willing to take that job of yours, yes the one you look down on, for one-fourth of the amount, baby boy.
Have you checked the recent rate of unemployment in Nigeria? No? You think it is high? Then check out the rate of Underemployment.
I have graduates opening gates where I work. People like you and I who went to school for a better future, and they are even the lucky ones. Our mates are home, unable to provide for their family, in this country of ours that seems to thrive on being a dream killer.
As you sit at that crappy job you hate, your only way out is to work with excellence and then to dream. To dream that there is a better world, a better you and then to fight for that dream with all you’ve been given, ’cause in the end, that’s all that you need to get you there- Fight!
Work hard but fight even harder. Success is not Agidi!
Be an entrepreneur. Think of a solution. Do something different. Save. Invest. Plan. Delay the bloody gratification. No one ever died from doing that. Do not compare yourself with anyone. Improve on yourself. Let the hours’ no one is paying you for be the hours you use to invest in yourself. Turn off the TV. Switch off YouTube (note to self). Read. Write. Think.
Vow to yourself that you must live your dreams, taste them, walk in them, drive them…
And whether they like it or not, we must leave this country (I know, the pun!?) better than it was handed to us.
My children must know a better Nigeria! So help me God?.
Op–ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija