Will I See You Tonight?

‘It was at times a long, difficult road. But I’m glad it was long and difficult, because if I hadn’t gone through hell to get there, the lesson might not have been as clear. You see, kids, right from the moment I met your mom, I knew I have to love this woman as much as I can for as long as I can, and I can never stop loving her, not even for a second. I carried that lesson with me through every stupid fight we ever had, every 5:00 a.m. Christmas morning, every sleepy Sunday afternoon, through every speed bump. Every pang of jealousy or boredom or uncertainty that came our way, I carried that lesson with me. And I carried it with me when she got sick. Even then, in what can only be called the worst of times, all I could do was look at her and thank God, thank every god there is, or ever was, or will be, and the whole universe, and anyone else I can possibly thank that I saw that beautiful girl on that train platform, and that I had the guts to stand up, walk over to her, tap her on the shoulder, open my mouth, and speak.’

Those are the words of the voice of Ted Mosby in the most poignant scene of the final episode of How I Met Your Mother. Come on, you know I loved that show a lot. I guess it’s odd that for something that ended almost six months ago to this day, now is the time that I’m kind of doing a recap or review here, if you will. Anyway he says those words as a prelude to the exact instance of meeting the mother, thus the show finally fulfils its promise. Much has been said about its ending and what an injustice it was by the producers to have the mother, Tracy McConnell die after barely getting into the set, and finally being capped off by Ted re-living the first episode of season one, standing outside Robin Scherbatsky’s window, raising the blue French horn. Many ardent fans of the show weren’t amused, but that’s neither here nor there. I thought it was a good ending, Ted and Robin.

On the words at the very beginning of this pointless post, I don’t know if better stuff has been spoken at anything I’ve ever watched. Did I shed a tear watching it the first time? I won’t comment on speculation. It’s one of those rare moments that a script as fictional as it is suddenly somehow becomes as close to reality as you’d never have imagined. And my word it was a long and difficult road. At times you felt sad and sorry for the guy Ted. It’s just a television story but in many ways reminiscent of the kind of path we tread on our way to finding love or some semblance to it. He says he knew he had to love that woman for as long as he could and that he could never stop loving her. There. That was just golden. How many people do you hear saying that?

What gripped me the most and really, throughout the series was the impeccable choice of background music for every major scene. When we see glimpses of Ted and Tracy’s life together on pictures at the time he affirms his love for her, a song which rather inadvertently made me do resolve to do this piece plays. It captures the whole moment perfectly. The piano begins, Ted does his talk and I listen intently, eyes firmly fixed.

I know your window and I know it’s late
I know your stairs and your doorway
I walk down your street and past your gate
I stand by the light at the four-way
You watch them as they fall, they all have heart attacks
They stay at the carnival, but they’ll never win you back

Will I see you tonight on a downtown train
Where every night, it’s just the same,
you leave me lonely
Will I see you tonight on a downtown train
All of my tears just fall like rain, all upon the downtown train

It helps a great deal that the actual meeting of the mother took place at a train station and those lyrics above are from Everything But The Girl’s Downtown Train, or doesn’t it, eh? Nice one, Carter (Bays) and Craig (Thomas). Will I see you tonight? I bet that might have gone through the mind of Ted as the old lady at the station’s waiting bay pestered him on his love life. Or maybe not. Maybe he was just too eager to move to Chicago and move away as far as possible from the sight of his soulmate’s(?) wedding to Barney Stinson. I don’t know. But what I know is that many are the times the question ‘will I see you tonight’ has run back and forth in my head. And each time the answer as the song goes has been ‘every night is just the same, you leave me lonely.’ Thankfully for Ted, that night wouldn’t be the same. His loneliness would end. He would meet Tracy. Good for him.

Maybe HIMYM shouldn’t have ended as it did. Maybe Ted and Tracy should have gone through the proverbial happily ever after thing. Then again, life doesn’t turn out as you think it should. And most certainly, not when it pertains to matters of the heart. That was not our story, but Carter’s and Craig’s. Maybe Robin shouldn’t have ended up with Ted. But then again, it’s Robin! I mean, it’s Robin! Who could be better? I’ll still watch and rewatch Last Forever (episode title) many more times over.

At the moment I can only look forward to those 5a.m. Christmas mornings (though to be honest, I don’t get why I’d be up that early), those lazy Sunday afternoons (aha aha), those speed bumps, fits of jealousy, boredom and uncertainty that I’ll get to experience with her. Damn it, it happened for Ted, surely it has to, for me too. Lol.

Oh and more thing, you wave your hand and they scatter like crows. They have nothing that can capture your heart. They’re just thorns without the rose. Be careful of them in the dark. Question remains, will I see you tonight?

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What Gives?

Valentines’ week. Probably the most anticipated week in the world or in equal measure, the most dreaded week, depending on which side of the gender divide you fall. And no, don’t dare say I’m stereotyping anyone, that’s just the way it is. I don’t make the rules. So as the clock ticks away to Friday, February the 14th, commonly referred to as St. Valentine’s Day, for the indifferent folk like me, it’s a time to, I don’t know, toss our nets out there and see what it brings forth? What am I even saying? Well, let’s see.

I’ve never really celebrated this day, again, cue my legendary indifference. Actually, I almost did, a few years ago. I’m avoiding being exact as it might make the details all too obvious, much to the chagrin and consternation of some of whom will be reading this. The female in my life then (girlfriend, I mean), probably had sensed that I wouldn’t be bothered by the magnitude of said day enough to be moved to go out of my way to plan some romantic gesture for the two of us. I often blamed this habit of mine to be passed up by such events squarely on my laziness, to which she would react with a smile which seemed to say ‘Yeah, right. Like I’m supposed to believe that?’

So, said girl (name redacted, thanks for the term, Ryan Giggs) took it upon herself to get me to go hand in hand with her to some scenic place we loved frequenting to relax, appreciating nature and all that, where we’d spend some quality time on Valentine’s evening. It so happened that I’d been working on some football blog which I hoped to post in time to coincide with the return of the Champions League that very night. By the look of things, nothing would veer me off that route towards getting it done. So when she came up to me with the romantic plan, I was literally like ‘I’ve got to get this stuff posted, or don’t you know that?’ She insisted that I shelve my football indulgence just for that evening, but I wouldn’t budge.  She walked away, not impressed even a bit, while I felt that things had worked out for me just perfect. I did post it in time, and later enjoyed myself as my Arsenal beat the then best team in the world. Oh, that night was heavenly.

Subsequently, it didn’t work out between me and the girl and really, my actions on that February 14 had a lot of bearing in our drifting apart. It’s funny, you know. Right now I look back and I can’t believe what a jerk I was. In my defense (and don’t I always defend myself?) I was just being honest, being me. At the time, to me, Valentine’s Day was just a day like any other with no special or significant connotations, romantic or more. I mean, all special days are marked in red on calendars, right? I certainly have never seen any calendar with February 14 marked in red. At least, that was my default way of thinking then. That said, even though I probably severed all shreds of romantic ties with Name Redacted, I’d want to make it up to her. I’d want to take her to that place, enjoy the breeze, listen to the chirp of the birds, feed those goldfish…you know, just so she can see I can also do this, when my mind is set right.

It is easy to make the same mistake or do I call it aberration (aberration. Great word) that I made then. Often we take the people we love for granted. Ideally, it isn’t only on Valentine’s Day that you should show the one you love just how much or why you love her. That ought to be an everyday duty, but then again, with the pressures of life, it is inconceivable to manage all that 365 days a year. So my guess is that they created this specific day, whose theme ought to be nothing short of ‘the one I love’. I don’t know what exactly you should do on Valentine’s Day to ensure the he or she goes to bed feeling you outdid yourself in making their day, but whatever it is, go on, do it.

Love is caring about someone beyond all rationality and wanting them to have everything they want, no matter how much it destroys you. When you love someone, you just don’t stop, ever. Even when people roll their eyes or call you crazy, especially then. You just don’t give up…because if you could give up, if you could just take the whole world’s advice and move on and find someone else, that wouldn’t be love. That would be some other disposable thing that is not worth fighting for.

The above paragraph is taken from the words of Ted Mosby as he speaks about Robin to his crazy ex, Jeanette in the seventeenth episode of the ninth season of How I Met Your Mother. I quote him a lot, yes, but just mull over the words. Isn’t love worth fighting for? Every day is an opportunity to fight for your love, the climax of which is this Friday. It is the grandest stage, if I may, of this never ending fight. Even if I’ve moved on, a part of me will always feel I should have fought for Name Redacted, that I should have just for a day ignored the call of the Champions League anthem and made her red-themed day the best she could ever have. When Friday is gone, don’t be left like me wondering what the hell you did (or didn’t do). Make it count, make them happy and valued, ‘cause you never know; that might just be the difference between you getting that ‘good night, my love’ text and you only getting your phone’s pesky service provider’s promotional texts every other night.

Love is still a beautiful thing, as they say. Love can change the weather, as I do believe. And as I read so many times many years ago on the wall of the Musgrave Wing of my beloved high school’s library, Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Have yourselves a fulfilling St. Valentine’s Day, will you?

The One

A month ago I finally saw the Mother. Whose mother? You may ask and furthermore, even notice that the letter ‘m’ of ‘mother’ is in caps. Well, I’m talking about the famous (ghost) mother in the How I Met Your Mother comedy series. Yes, they finally brought us a face (and hot body) to join to this mother person that had even begun to sound like a mystical myth. In the scene, the character, played by Cristin Milioti, saunters off in brown boots and knee-length dress to the counter at the train station and says ‘hi, one ticket to Farhampton please?’ And the voice really goes a long way in justifying why it has been delayed for all these years. ‘Music to the ears’ has never been more appropriate for a description to a voice.

Going back to five or so years ago, and a bunch of boys huddled together in front of the desktop screen at my high school’s SCAN Room. We often did that to get away from the pressures of having to peruse through and internalize massive pages all in the name of preparing for the final exams. So there we were, as Martin can attest, watching and taking in the flow of this new show that had been talked about in what can be best said as glowing terms; How I Met Your Mother. I think the first thing about it that struck us from the very beginning was that this was actually a narration of things that happened in the past, quite unlike what we had become accustomed to. Of course it is the story of how Ted Mosby met his kids’ mother and his and his friends’ escapades (and sexcapades, if you like) before he got to do that.

For me personally, following Ted’s story has somehow caught my imagination than it needs to. I’ve actually come to the stark (or false) realization that I have been living his story. Basically, Ted’s is a story which can alternatively be themed, just like this post is, The One. Right from when his best friend Marshall and Lily get engaged, and suddenly it strikes Ted that he’s now going to be the proverbial third wheel. It then sets him in motion to find that companion. Then there’s Robin Scherbatsky. And good Lord! From the moment she and Ted meet, I think everyone of us was in love with her. Needless to say, even Ted himself ‘screws things up’ and confesses his love for her on their first night together. Anyway at the risk of boring you to death with the whole story in excruciating detail, it would turn out Robin wasn’t the one (much to my disappointment). Ted would go on to date, have drunken what-the-fuck-happened one night stands, awesome mind-numbing two-minute dates, be left at the altar on his wedding day…and eight seasons later, here we are.

Just like Ted, I am (and you probably are too) obsessed with finding ‘the one.’ And it’s perfectly normal or incredibly stupid, depending on which half of a glass person you are. I believe that there’s someone for me and that my (often lame) attempts at initiating and fostering relationships (with the opposite sex, of course) is a means to an end. And maybe that’s why I’ve watched and re-watched Ted’s drama and melodrama incessantly. You know, been through the love at first sight experience. Where from the moment I saw her, I instantly made her the one. Fail! Then there’s the one where, she liked most of the stuff that I liked even to the extent of being a sworn dog-person (please, don’t misconstrue this) like I am. She wasn’t the one. In fact she dumped me. Maybe what I haven’t done is stretching it to the extreme like Mosby who went to an online dating site, Love Solutions in the most desperate love act in the history of both love and desperation. The scene still has me in stitches. I mean, from al the millions of women in New York City, the ‘computer’ was able to crunch the figures and come up with a maximum number of eight women of whom one would be his ultimate match. Of course that woman was already engaged, but still, what are the odds?!

In that final episode of Season 8 when the background tune of The Shins’ (great name) Simple Song plays with the following words: ‘Remember walking a mile to your house, a glow in the dark. I made a fumblin’ play for your heart and the act struck a spark. You wore a charm in a chain that I stole especially for you. Love’s such a delicate thing that we do, with nothing to prove, Which I never knew’ and the brown boots clinking along the station’s hallway, suddenly there was renewed hope in me, like a fresh breath of life had been breathed in me. Ted’s ‘the one’ had appeared. I looked back at his countless moments of exasperation, filling in Lily on how much even after all those years; he would still do anything just to make Robin smile. I remembered how he had been clinging to that magical moment at McLaren’s Pub when he saw her across the room and the world seemed to stop. Then again I remembered that I had been through similar instances. He and I had been clinging on to the right dream, but not with the right person. And now suddenly he was directly in line to crossing the paths (in a so not negative warring way) with the one. I think I let out a teardrop or two.

Definitely I understand that How I Met Your Mother is all a sequence of scripted events and hence not real. I understand that maybe I’ve just been trying to cling on to something to act as a pillar of strength for me through my failures, almosts, close-shaves, let downs and delusions. But maybe that’s all I needed; to see her in that dress, to hear her order for that train ticket with that beautiful voice. I think I want to believe again that love is true and it triumphs. Like Max Erhmann said, ‘neither be cynical about love. For in the face of all aridity and disenchantment, it is as perennial as the grass.’ It’s not just an obsession this, with ‘the one’. It is a dream. A dream that one day will be replaced with the sentence, ‘It is a reality.’

Ummmh, and no, I don’t think I’ve met her, but maybe I know her already or maybe not, I don’t know. Whenever OneRepublic’s All This Time plays it reminds me of her. I hope for you too, you believe even just slightly that there’s someone out there for you. Anyway, to end this reverie (been sleeping a lot mentally of late), to you my ‘the one’ if you read this, remember…all this time we were waiting for each other, all this time I was waiting for you. We got all this love, can’t waste them on another. So I’m straight in a straight line, running back to you.

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To My Son

Dear Son,

I didn’t even know what to write in this letter. I just had this burning conviction to write it anyway. That you’re reading this letter means that you’re alive and that it reached you. Thank God. Of course I might as well inform you that this piece was written years before you were born. Heck! I hadn’t even met your mother. I know, this is a bit unconventional and all, but then again I’ve always had the knack for the contrary to the norm. By the way I hope you’re fine and in rude health.

There are so many things I’ve wanted to tell you, that I doubt if this letter would be enough to contain even half of them. I’ll try not to beat about the bush as much as I can. First of all son, your mother is the best person I’ve ever known. Sometimes I even think that I don’t deserve her. She’s beautiful, kind, homely, humorous and generally a wonderful person – a gift from God himself. Funny thing, and you’re gonna laugh, I haven’t met her yet. Yes, that’s the truth. I’m just assuming that whoever will be your mother will be like I’ve described. How sure can I be of that? Well, I’ve put a lot of work in it so I know that when I’ll be looking for her, I’ll hit the jackpot. Oh, and at this point, take a look at your mummy. Yes, do it. Think about her and your time with her. Doesn’t she fit the bill? Hell yeah! So, you see, your old man did quite a good job to land her. Hypothetical fist bump, maybe? Nice! Honor her. Obey her. Love her. Be nice to her, always. Do as she says. Don’t argue with her. A mother’s love is the greatest. Never take this for granted. Many children like you have no one to call ‘mum’. You do. Be grateful.

According to how I planned it, you would get hold of this letter on the eve of your 18th birthday. Am I right? I bet I am. Even if that’s not the case…ah, you know what, all factors constant; you’re becoming an adult tomorrow, as far as I’m concerned. You know there’s a God, right? Let me paraphrase that thus: you know there is God, the creator of all things, right? Of course you do, otherwise all those early Sunday morning masses your mother and I have taken you to over the years have been in vain and that wouldn’t go down well with me. I know at school you’ve probably learnt of the Theory of Evolution by one Charles Darwin. Stop shaking your head; you guys did History at school so wipe that smirk off your face. Yes, so anyway that theory has always been there and we’re not going to dwell on its veracity…or the lack of. Look, God exists and there’s plenty of evidence for that. Take a look at the sun, the moon, the oceans, seas and their waves, the birds of the air, the myriad animals of the jungles. Don’t you think there are somebody responsible for these and many more? I think so and so does your mother. Honor, love and serve the Lord God at every instance. I can’t elucidate any more on this than I have. There’s a Bible and a prayer book in this house where you lay your head. Once in a while, take a look at them and read something. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge (or something like that). Yes, that’s a line from the good book, proof that I also read it. Be at peace with God, it is paramount.

I hope you are happy with your life so far. Sure, not all times will you be thrilled with it, but I believe it is important you try to be cheerful. After all, life is all about the pursuit of happiness. You know, from the time when you as a sperm outswim all the other millions to get to the egg, to when you get out of your mother into the waiting hands of the doctor, to when you cry for the first time, to when you make your first steps on your feet…I mean, all these situations of progress in life represent happiness of some kind. Son, as much as possible do what makes you happy, what makes your heart race, well, as long as you’re not destroying anything or risking your life.

How is school by the way? Ok, rather vague, sorry. How do you see school, or what are your views of it? I’ll tell you what I thought about my school in my time. Boring, tedious and honestly, pointless. Granted, I made plenty of friends. Thirteen, to be precise. Whenever school has come up for discussion between your mum and I , it has been a delicate balancing act mainly because we’ve always fronted divergent views. What we agreed on is that you’d have to attend it, all the pros and cons aside. Therefore, it really doesn’t matter what your thoughts are of it – I don’t even want to hear them. I would say just do what you’re required of, try to get the grades and just be like any other kid. What is important to me and what I hold dear is that you pursue as a career what you’re interested in and what you derive the most satisfaction from. Never mind how strangely sophisticated or ridiculously stupid or trivial it may sound. If you nail this you will live a not necessarily ‘good’ life, but an amazingly fulfilling one. Trust me on this; I have learned the hard way. You are my son, and I want the best for you.

Like it or not, there will be pressure from various quarters on the need for you to have or to even just be seen regularly with a member of the opposite sex. I mean girls. So, what’s the plan? Here’s the bomb. I don’t know. Yes, you heard right. I mean, what am I supposed to tell you? I guess there’s no harm in going with the classic ‘just be yourself’ line. It worked just perfectly fine for me. Doubting? Ask your mum. No, I did not drug her, come on. Anyway, stick (it) to girls and girls only. I think that is as self-explanatory as they come. You will get your heart ‘ripped apart’ countless times, possibly. Don’t give up. You may not know it but love is a beautiful thing. Keep trying. Like I read somewhere, do not feign affection and neither be cynical about love. For in the face of all aridity and disenchantment, it is as perennial as the grass.

Hey, happy birthday. I should have started with that, but then again, order isn’t always respected, you should know that by now. I have some small token for you by the way. In between the book in which I inserted this letter, is a tiny memory card. Insert it into whichever device you deem fit. You will find the following: a poem, ‘If’ by Rudyard Kipling, the ‘Desiderata’ by Max Ehrmann and ‘Invictus’ by William Ernest Henley. Read them whenever you can. That’s your pot of wisdom now. They’ve served me well all these years. Also, you will find the ‘Bro Code’ and ‘The Playbook’. Honestly, I don’t know why I included those latter two, but hey, take it as a father’s gift to his son. Oh, and don’t mention this to your mum, ok?

Remember, your mother and I love your more than anything else in this world. We adore you and would do anything for you. We wish you a fulfilling and happy life. Now you have to start doing things and living on your own, but we’ll be here for you when you’re stuck. You’ll be a man, my son.

I love you.

Daddy.

Loyalty Stakes

Lately I’ve come under fire from my friends and peers (and enemies too) over what has been perceived to be disloyalty. Nobody enjoys being accused of anything, falsely or otherwise and I’m no different. It has really got my head spinning. Well, what is this about, you may wonder. As depicted on my twitter bio, I happen to be an avid supporter of Arsenal (14 years to be precise). Apparently lately I’ve been spotted warming up to Manchester United and waxing their lyricals, in public. Is this true? Well, in typical Wenger-speak, I refuse to comment on speculation. What am I driving at? One word; loyalty.

Accordingly I checked up the meaning of the word ‘loyalty’ from the Encarta Dictionary (yes, right on my computer’s taskbar) and this is what I got: a feeling of devotion, duty, or attachment to somebody or something. So yes, it is a feeling (maybe that’s why people have caught feelings about it…maybe). What acts constitute loyalty (and disloyalty)? It might seem trivial, but when your loyalty to a cause you’ve been very much a part for two-thirds of your life is called into question, it becomes as pertinent as it can get. I thought, well, I might as well highlight a few situations, bring them to your consideration and let you decide where, how and why loyalty stakes play out.

Where best to start other than football? And once again I’ll draw my examples from Arsenal and United. Cesc Fabregas is born in Catalunya, and grows up supporting his home club, FC Barcelona, whose academy, La Masia he joins. We assume his allegiance lies with Barca, right? At 16, Arsenal spot his talent and sign him. He then goes on to mature, make strides and become a man at this London club, even becoming Captain. He is loved and adored by all the Arsenal faithful. At this juncture I must point out that he is my hero. His loyalty now lies with Arsenal, right? He’s supposed to stay till he retires, aye? Well, 8 years later, his boyhood club, Barcelona come calling and they will stop at nothing to get their son back. He obliges and leaves Arsenal fans in distraught. He was supposed to be loyal, they say. He betrayed us.

Next, one Robin Van Persie is signed by Arsenal as a young precocious raw talent aged 21. It’s obvious this Dutch boy is gifted tremendously. Sadly his Arsenal career is blighted by injuries thus limiting his progress for the first 7 years. After that he comes of age, a master of the sublime art of scoring goals. Robin too, becomes Arsenal Captain. The manager praises him, the fans adore him, the players are in awe of him and the neutrals simply won’t stop going on and on about him. He reiterates that he loves the club. What next? He leaves for, wait for it…Manchester United. Yes, he was supposed to be loyal, but has decided to wine and dine at the table of the enemy…the Devil! Anyway, are these exemplary footballers too thick to the extent of disregarding the meaning of loyalty and what it entails? Or is loyalty not that big a deal, you know, just like changing clothes?

Let’s head closer home. I’ve never been a fan of cooking and always believed that it was strictly a preserve for the female folk. As time would elapse, it would be a question as to whether I would stick to that notion or my loyalty to somebody superior would trump that. That somebody of course is my mother. So one day she leaves for work and instructs that I prepare supper that it’s about time I did so. I’m obviously not amused, but by God I swear I made supper that night. What happened to staying loyal to the principle the ‘cooking is for girls’? Still on matters kitchen, when I began cooking for myself at school, I would insist on the Chipsy brand of cooking fat, much to the chagrin of my female friends who would often push for other brands. Why so? The brand I use is the very same one mum uses at home, and since I’m loyal to her, nothing or nobody is always ever going to alter that.

A story is told of a young man who often tries to find love but always misses out and if not, he doesn’t get what he really wants. Then he finds this (in his words) awesome chic and can’t help but fall madly head over heels for her. All is falling into place, except that the awesome chic swings the other way and prefers those of her sex. Admittedly, she likes this guy too, but you know…preferences. The young man wonders whether he should stay loyal to his Christian values which would otherwise dictate he doesn’t associate with the girl, or whether he ought to listen to and heed the voice of his heart, and love this girl regardless. By the way, what do you think? Either way, he will be loyal to something, right?

What about this other guy who loves this girl, but is oblivious of the fact that his best friend in the world is also attracted to said girl. The girl maintains that they are nothing more than just friends with the best friend. So the guy figures, the coast is indeed clear, right? After all, in his thinking, he has managed a delicate balancing act of staying loyal to both his best friend and to his heart too. The best friend, as it would turn out is not impressed by this turn of events and considers it a betrayal. The guy in question thus is faced with a big decision; love, or best-friendship? Suffice to say, that fledgling relationship ends. Loyalty to the best friend (and bro) has won. Sadly, I may add.

Those are just a few of the examples that I had in mind for you to chew on and digest. There’s the classic loyalty or commitment of sorts to your religion, where you’ve gone out for a meal with friends who are of different denominations to yours. The waiter brings the served food and before partaking it, you wonder whether you should say that grace before meals with the sign of the cross to boot and make others uncomfortable, or you should just desist for the sake of all else’s comfort. Do you stay loyal to your religion or to your friends?

I felt particularly bad when I was brandished ‘disloyal’ when on the inside I knew I was not. Castigating your team (harshly) while at the same time lavishing praises of epic proportions on your mortal enemies is not being disloyal and if it is, then I wonder where the rain started beating me. I think, nay, I’m convinced loyalty is absolutely overrated. Nothing is constant, and this includes tastes and preferences. The only constant here is change…and loyalty is subject to change. When you stop being loyal to something or somebody, it doesn’t necessarily imply you are being disloyal. I tend to think it means you are just being loyal to something else which gives you the satisfaction that you’re after. So before we call someone ‘disloyal’ let us pause and think for a while. Just to be clear, be loyal to your God…and to your family…and to your motherland. The rest? Well, that’s totally up to your discretion.

Nothing

Finally I got to do it. No, not that thing that you think, and to be honest, I won’t comment on it either. All along I’ve been known to write about only football at The Dug Out , so to try something different is quite refreshingly awesome.  I mean, I’m so many things, but certainly not a one trick pony. This being my first post here, I’ve spent many hours, days even, in meditation trying to figure out what subject to write on. Funny enough, I failed to pick on any. So in essence this is going to be as all inclusive and no-holds-barred as they come.

‘They say bad things happen for a reason’. That’s a line from Breakeven by The Script, one of my favorite rock bands. Sorry, I always wasn’t going to quote stuff from a Riddim, for both obvious and strange reasons. So back to the line above, and I always wonder, does it hold true? If it does, then what’s the reason? At this juncture I’ve got to point out that this post is inspired by something bad that happened to me, so yes, maybe the bad things actually do happen for a reason. Perhaps you’re wondering what this bad thing that happened is. Well, be patient. We’re getting there alright.

If you check my favorites on twitter you’ll see two articles (not mine) that sort of highlight what those who wield the ‘Y’ chromosome go through at the hands of the opposite sex. It is well documented; I don’t need to dissect the two literary pieces further here. When I first read them, I always thought that it was just fiction, you know, generated in the mind of the writers. I was always like ‘come on, this can’t happen. At least not to me’. Well, I came to realize it really does happen or to put it bluntly, shit gets real. At the moment I’m reeling from being betrayed, heartbroken even, by a girl (of course). Yes, I know, you’re probably tired of reading about this, and you have every right to be. So am I. That’s why I’m hoping against hope that this will be the last such article written and read.

I only turned 21 last month and I hear this is the age that one becomes a fully matured adult, after three years of experience in adulthood. So, you know, I always thought I would be able to see things clearer and be able to make the right choices. To me, this was the opportunity to finally try out stuff that I hadn’t had gathered enough courage to hack. Alternatively, it heralded a chance for me to right some wrongs in stuff that I failed at before, mainly relationships. So I managed to get into one just prior to my 21st birthday, and in my mind this was the perfect way to prepare to blow my twenty-first candle. I’ve always been old fashioned, I think, in most of my beliefs and undertakings. I usually think that my next relationship is always going to be my last, not in the sense that I’ll never try again, but more of I’ll never need to. This one was no different.

She has always been special, from the very first time we met. Of course, they all are, you may argue. You know, the kind of person that you always think the best of no matter what you heard of them to contrary. The kind of person that you find you’ve known for so long, as a friend without anything more or less coming in between. Then one day you see a spark that you’d never seen before, maybe only ever imagined. At first you discredit it and play it down, but one day she sees too and points it out. That’s when you realize there’s more to the word ‘chemistry’ than what you knew it to be at high school. It dawns on you that you’re actually sharing it with someone. You’re over the moon. Really. You both don’t know what to do about it, to the extent that almost two years pass without either of you touching on the issue. In fact, in that duration both of you explore other options and duly move on. True to the old African adage that says ‘the eagle may fly far, but will always come back to its nest’, circumstances draw you back to each other and this time it’s like you’re both reading and adhering to the same script which says ‘ah, what the hell, let’s fall in love’. And you both do…seemingly. That’s my story.

Though it’s not the end of it. I mean it was like a dream come true. Every night when going to sleep, I’d reflect on it, look at how far we had come, smile and thank God. The feeling bordered surreal at times. This was it. It was meant to be, or was it? 45 days later it was over. Just like that. My love cheque has bounced. It returned with ‘sufficient funds’ stamped on it. Why? It’s a question I asked at the time and still ask now. She wouldn’t tell me, but instead resorted to the good old ‘it’s not you, I just can’t do this anymore. That’s all I can say’. Really? Makes me wonder whether everybody has the same meaning of ‘love’ or there’s a revised meaning of which I’m not updated about. How do you just wake up one day and someone you claimed to have loved becomes plague to you? How does even replying that ‘hi honey’ text in the morning become a problem? Or is this pretty normal and I’m just oblivious? Did women have some meeting where they ratified this? If so, why didn’t I (and all other men) get a memo?

Sometimes you wonder why you try some things. Or why you’re drawn to some people. I mean, for me life has always been simple. Wake up, think football, tweet football, watch football, play with my sisters, have supper with the family, tweet more football and go to sleep. Then some friends decide that I should actually ‘get a life’. So I try doing what suffices as getting a life, then I get taken for a ride and get thrown under the bus. I’ll probably never understand how love works. The fact that my parents are still happy together is enough for me. I wonder how they manage, but probably I shouldn’t, lest I jinx it for them. I hear another of the The Script’s songs being belted out by my computer’s speaker as I type away this. This time it is the song is ‘Nothing’ and this line is stuck in my head ‘she said nothing, I wanted words but all I heard was nothing’. And how true it is. Maybe everything, even this, is just for nothing. I think that’s enough for now.