Checker

I think about madness sometimes. The degree of it swirling in the functionality of my brain. The times I am giddy to slow music of cells jiggling to the percentages ingested through depths in bottles of wine poured carefully into glasses strutting out long stems. Shots of whiskey eliciting the kuchangamka effect to arouse the crowd of friends amongst strangers. The non-occasional, social puffing of the illegal non-illegal mali safi to maintain the chain, passed from the darkening pits of fingers.

High.

Don’t you envy the mad man? Or the woman. To align the gender equations and questions I myself would be asking, aren’t women mad too? I swear this is in no way influenced by the current buzz of Nearly All the Men in Lagos Are Mad reading as I haven’t flipped through it.

These men and women walk our streets doing whatever they please. We cannot freely enjoy the same because of the tags awaiting to be branded on us, we dismiss them, referring to ourselves as the better people: civilized. Following a set of rules put in place to guiding the very living disguised to us as consisting of free will. A big school run by the bigwigs. A huge stage featuring a mega puppet show.

Lately, I have been walking out of my house and a sense of euphoria overwhelms my being. There is a deep wanting and desire to laugh at the world. To laugh at myself. To guffaw at this phenomenon we call existence. Perhaps the realization of air filling my lungs, the freedom of being outside letting my skin breathe in the sun, my limbs working enthralls me.

Half our faces are uncovered once more for the world to take in the beautiful and not-so beautiful features making us us. The little pleasures we enjoyed of having conversations with selves, singing along to those up and beat matatu mixes and going about the day smiling because humans at times colour the world beautiful, have officially been stripped from us. Granted you could still wear your mask outside but then we would call you obnoxious. Like the fellow countrymen who were donning masks before it was a money-making scheme.

Don’t you envy children? Waking to begin their day with play, making a mess and having no caution whatsoever. No one judges a baby for out of the blues laughing, we stop our activities and encourage them to do it with and for us. We tickle them when they are too still for our liking to create bubbles to burst them in laughter. When they chuckle in their sleep, we smile and say they are talking to the angels.

But you a grown-up person with akili zako timamu doing it, are you deranged?

Living alone accords me the pleasantry of tapping into insanity and have me come out of it without feeling quite insane. Take yesterevening for instance, I am exercising the privileges of spending time with myself after a wanting sadness crowds in on me. This includes shutting off the world, blinking in hope that no one dares calls as you are not able to switch off your phone. You need the one and only effort of going off the grid to be not of only your devices and what they hold. The grid should take care of your body too.

I believe there is a defining minute where someone sees themselves go. In death, their life flashes before them and like a drowning man, they try to clutch at that straw to keep them alive. During accidents, there is a flash of bright lights in the still darkness, the eardrums bursting sound of screeching tyres, the endless beeping of the horn on impact. When the disorder of the mind happens, it hits like a knock. Once. It has no persistence of the knock knock jokes with the tired repetitions meant to inspire amusement.

I see the blow coming from a far. The blow is almost featherlight. Like a switch. If it were a drawing, it would be one of those images where superheroes are tiny figures but their arm stretches out to show the power.

I am aware there is a difference but unknowing of what has been flipped. Then it starts.

The laugh is loud and unrelenting. In the end, my stomach hurts from its belly deepness. The bits of me that have not transitioned into the state of craziness, ask me why I am laughing. Like any “normal” person would. Hands on my stomach and shifting to my ribs in attempts to control myself, the question only served to spark more laughter from me.

Mad.


I don’t have the luxury of throwing my head back in laughter when something pops into my head when I am alone. This is due to the restrictions I have put on myself to measure up to the standards put in place. The dictates of where, how and why to be a certain way to achieve the belonging status.

Even with people, they would want to know exactly why I am laughing. If possible, to include diagrams, graphs and visuals to make it sensible to them. Going through all this has you suffering the risk of being branded weird as your placing of humour isn’t a source of laughter to them.

It is unacceptable to laugh alone. That is a reserve for those flawed and bordering on mania.

Let’s sprinkle a little more madness into ourselves emulating children and those we consider nutcases.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. dvbliew says:

    Aii. This piece is so heart-wretchingly great; that I am inspired; challenged, and discouraged at the same time. The drawing board becons. Back to you in studio.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the comprehensive report on what’s happening on the ground W. In other news…

      Liked by 1 person

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