Sunday, 19 March 2017

Diary of a Lagosian : When You Get Intimidated By BIG GIRLS,FAKE ACCENTS & "I JUST CAME FROM ABROAD" STORY TELLERS

I feel like people are under serious pressure and constant competition between themselves.
Pressure to make their friends envious,to appear "richer", more "sophisticated","bigger" or "fancier" and,fam, it really turns out to be ridiculous at times.

"Packaging" is that how you guys call it?

Well,"packaging" comes in all different shapes,shades and forms,and I could not help it but to make a list of most common ones , I CAN BET,you are already familiar with:

Do you have an idea how many times I have heard ladies and gentlemen mocking people that don't sound "British" or "American" enough?You guys! Common! Is it by force? "OMG ,is it only me or she sounds so local?" . "What a bush girl,no class". (*rolling eyes *)
Talking of myself,do you know how many people told me I should "work on my accent" ("Why don't you try and speak "AMERICAN"(whatever that suppose to mean) it would suit you better"). 
"The way you talk doesn't match your physics".
"Fine girl like you hmmm"


I am even proud that I can communicate in English. It's not my language by any means.
I am not British,nor American and I never lived in English speaking country before. And let's be real: Nether are you. And that's just fine. 
God gave me a beautiful gift,I pick languages really fast and if I really wanted to change my accent I would,but I don't really wish to. Why would I?
Be you. Embrace your own. Why do you think someone else's is better?
Truth to be told,some people naturally "absorb" accent after living abroad (even if it's for a short period of time) and that's absolutely normal and ok,but it's very wrong to look down at people for sounding "local" (as you say).
There is a heritage behind that "African" sounding accent ,you know?

Also,it's a shame that so many people forget where we live and that not everyone was able to afford to go to school and learn "proper English". It's really not a mocking matter.

There is also nothing wrong with slangs and broken English.
I know people,especially ladies,who constantly act like they can't speak or understand pidgin,thinking that they will appear "posh" that way.
I find it silly.
You don't see all these foreigners falling in love with it and embracing it even though they never lived in Nigeria for a day?
I find it super charming and cute. 
And most importantly, it's authentically yours.
Who english epp? :)

So we met at the party. Casual conversation. 
-So where you from ? (referring to a state of origin)
-I am from Washington DC.(proudly,with exaggerated  American accent)
Bruh. For real???
We met in LasGidi. Naija bruh. And you are telling me you are from Washington. Big boy ,what a way to let me know that you are NOT one of them "local" boys,abi?

I get secretly annoyed when I feel like people are ashamed of something I believe they should be super proud of. 
You have a privilege to be familiar with where you are coming from,your tradition,native language. Culture.You know where your grate grand father village is. You know yourself.

Honestly,I think average American wish he had all that. Don't take it for granted. Embrace your heritage.
If I hear Yankee again!
Which Washington Ugochuckwu? 

No,you don't. I saw you at Balogun market last week. Hehe
But for real. Stop.
Buy Made in Nigeria,it's  way more cool to support your own! ;-)
I mean ,I understand you like to shop in that massive Dubai mall and yes,malls abroad offer some things we can't find in Nigeria, but "I ONLY SHOP ABROAD" is not an achievement for you to be mentioning it out loud everywhere you go.

First time I came to Nigeria (it was really long time ago) I was invited to attend a big wedding and I needed an outfit badly. However,I wasn't familiar with Lagos at that time so I was thinking it's better to ask someone where can I find nice dresses. So,there was this "big girl" sitting with us so I approached her ,asking where would she direct me to. You guys! Wish you saw girl's face expression. She was openly and very clearly disgusted. "Honey,girls like us don't shop in Nigeria. Ever. We shop strictly abroad " (need I mention strong British accent?lol). I didn't understand what was the whole thing about,I was kind of confused.
However guys. Don't get it twisted,where you "shop"is not a matter of wealth or status.
I know very rich and successful folks who shop in local markets and some of them are very proud of it.
Honestly and very personally,I really enjoy Lagos markets,it feels like an adventure for me. I understand,some people find it extremely stressful,that's ok but there is no need to act and sound  snobbish. Trust me,it's not bringing your value any higher. NAH!

Wait a minute.
So dark skin doesn't look "clean"? 
I get angry when I hear such comments. Not everything "lightskin" means "beautiful,clean and fresh". Beauty comes in all different shades.
Again,don't think I'm throwing shades on women that bleach their skin,I can never do such because as a female  that I am I am pretty much aware that there is a thing every woman on planet earth (whether she is black,white,asian,mixed etc) has in common, which is : we all want what we don't have,especially when it comes to physical appearance. And we are never satisfied.White girls want to tan,black girls bleach,girls with curly hair want straight hair and girls like me by all means try to get their hair curled...etc... That's just the way we all are.There is nothing personal about it.
However,it's upsetting me that it became a norm to refer to lighter skin as "fresher" or "more beautiful" which,in my opinion,really isn't the case. 

I still don't get why so many people refer to LOCAL as if it's something bad or something we should be ashamed of.
Like "local" is opposite of expensive or fancy. Or maybe LOCAL should be for less privileged?
I don't get.
I don't want my son and my future children to grow up thinking that their very own "local" is something they should not be proud of.
Because every single "local" thing about Nigeria is amazing.

Priceless.Think about it.

Now don't get me wrong.
There is also nothing wrong with learning from other cultures and adopting different ways that might not be familiar to our own.
I  am a product of different cultures I came across for my life time so far and I think we grow when we  "open" ourselves to differences and unknown instead rejecting it before we even give ourselves a chance to get to know it.

I did not point at this things to mock anyone. Y'all know, that is not my style.

I did it to try and set some of you free of that ridiculous pressure this crazy society puts us through and to remind you that the way you speak English or where you shop is not what defines you,your skills,talents and abilities and that your true beauty and power comes out when you embrace yourself  for who you truly are instead of trying to be something or someone you are not,because what you embrace can never be used against you.

Don't let your "role models" make you feel intimidated because you are not "all that".
You are way more then "all that".

Trust your girl.



  1. The realest shit ever. U made me laugh

    1. Laugh or cry? Lol it's a sad reality she pointed at in a hilarious way

  2. Haha so trueeeeee i swear u are a real lagos babe u know it all

  3. Thank you Sonia. Im sure this write up will mean a lot to so many young girls and help them understand some things better. I love you . Thank u for being a woman of substance that you are. You are a blessing

  4. Love me Love me not19 March 2017 at 08:54

    You are two 1) wise 2) humble. U are using ur platform and voice in the right way. God will bless you for us

  5. diz iz epiccc

  6. Tnx 4 replaying me ur advice helped a lot . I just want to let u know that I appreciate the person you are. God will bless u n urs richly

  7. This is funny,sad and true . Our reality. write up on point

  8. u are a very real person and i like that so much abt u

  9. I love how u embrace our culture ,u make world see us in betta light

  10. wow jus wow. str8 2 d target. some pipo go vex bt u said nuttin but d truth

  11. City of Lagos... e no easy...

  12. We look up to so called big girls n big boys and it makes an average african girl or even a boy feel bad about themselves without knowing that most of these people are not what we think they are. They fake so many things ,they lie about their backgrounds ,accents and lifestyle. We should not envy anyone for that matter.

    1. hmmm...When they dont form we end up calling them local or village .. I dont think u got the point of this write up.

  13. hahahahah nice 1 .

  14. we should be proud of who we are. u are very right. we are westernized to the point we start seeing everything that is part of our original heritage as primitive or less valuable . english was not meant to be our language at the first place. hissss

  15. this babe shaa u get sense

  16. I don't need to know you to know that you are humble.Nice one

  17. All these celebrities bombarding us with scandals ,controversy and actions moved by very twisted systems of values .. And then here u come. Just wen i tot we are completely finished as society, I got to discover your blog. You are just correct. That's the word. Everything about you is correct. You are literally a breath of fresh air. U don't pretend. U don't don't promote wrong values. Ur humility is amazing. Ur husband is really lucky to have you

  18. Your such a nice and humble soul. let the wise listen to this words.embrace your uniquiness it belong to you and its our differences that makes life amazing. Thanks Mrs Sonia for these words,you are a God sent and beautiful inside out. love u plenty

  19. Way too REAL!!!! Love this! U are a very good influence!

  20. You will go places. Extraordinary woman. Your simplicity and humility makes you even more beautiful but your brain and wisdom makes you unstoppable. JAH bless

  21. Choi! Dis go make sum of our so calld gals vex lol I'm waiting

  22. Nice write up really wish some girls I know would see this

    1. Then Tag them or share

  23. Gosh Sonia u are the realest of them all

  24. I have met this lady once at KFC restaurant,Lekki 1. Friend and I came to ask her for a picture since we follow both her n her hubby on Instagram. She is really so humble and kind,she even invited us over to her table. She spoke to us like we were old time friends and i was really wowed. She is real and she really practice what she preaches. Thanks for showing us that simplicity and kindness matters more then fake life most of our celebrities promote. God bless you and keep you for us

  25. My greatest gift to my friends expecially my girlfriends is to share this blog with them, its refreshing and makes you feel that you are still on the right track and you are not alone..... God bless you for me...

  26. Pls if I want to read the older posts, how do I get it.. Cuz am only seeing the recent posts