“A friendly reminder to that sister who’s about to pick a call from a man who only calls her once in four weeks, to tell her how she means a lot to him, but never commits. It’s a lie, sis. He’s just checking if his backup plan is still in place.”
– Selema Enang.
I used to be one guy’s backup plans. It was in the year of our Lord, 2000-and-late, when I dinnor use to have sense. I let that bros take my head to River Niger, wash out my brains into the flowing water, and use my komkom skull to drink palmwine and tombo. But we thank Papa God, because ‘once foolish, twice wise’, abi? Ehen.
One time, we had a date by 4:00 p.m. He knew I had to travel to another town to do some stuff. I got back by 3:58 p.m. and called to let him I’d be a few minutes late.
He said, “What time was this date set for?”
“Four o’clock,” I replied.
“Then you better get back to where you’re coming from if you know you won’t make it here by four.”
Another time, I travelled home by road. This fellow called and asked who was seated beside me.
Innocent me, I said, “Two guys on either side.”
Do you know that this Bros kept me on the phone for the entire four-hour trip, because he didn’t trust me not to talk to those men.
Occasionally, while on the phone, he’d say, “Tell me you love me.”
“I love you,” I’d reply.
“You’re not saying it aloud. Is it because you’re hoping one of those men will toast you and you don’t want them to hear? Come on, tell me you love me. Say it louder.”
And the odonyo that I was, I’d raise my voice an octave and say, “Baby, I love you!”
Hay God! The hianity of my stupidity! 🤣🤣🤣
One day, he told me I’d become boring, not the girl he had dreams of dating. Ihi! Me? Eketi? Boring? Nothing wey Akpan no go hear for mortuary!
Me that was kuku tired, I sent him a text message saying, “I may not know what love, real love, is, but I know it’s not this thing we’re doing. I’m done, abeg.”
This bro didn’t respond. After ten days, he called and said, “I hope the madness that made you send me that useless text message has passed. How are you?”
Oh, Uncle. Awayu? Awai mi ke nkang.
When he realised I was serious, Bros began to act remorseful. He’d call every two weeks to check on me, ask after my well-being, be generally loving. Dude was so good, he had me thinking I’d made a rash decision to break up. Till a mutual friend told me he was seeing someone else.
“But baby, it’s you I love. You’re my woman. No one can take you from me.”
Oya break up with that girl nah? Wosai!
The day I received sense, I was like them that dream dreams. He called as usual (the cheapskate only did night calls—said it was the only way he could talk to me on the phone for long). While he was yapping on about how he’ll always be my man, I should wait for him, my eyes cleared. You’re seeing someone and me I should wait for you? I don’t even know where the lie came from.
“I think you should stop calling me. I’m seeing someone now,” I said.
“What?! Who is he? Who wants to take my baby from me?” he wailed.
Knowing his ego, I started describing the kind of man he wasn’t.
“His name is Tunde. 6”4, a software engineer. Went to Yale, used to live abroad but came home to start a tech security firm. You know these tech boys—they’ve got plenty of money. Fine guy sha and he’s a Christian. He spoils me silly.”
For a long minute, there was silence on the other side of the phone.
“Hello? Are you there?” I asked.
“You’re very stupid! Idiot! Money whore. Be there following sugar daddies. Seeing someone my foot!”
I went from shock to laughing real hard. See what happens when your mumu don do.
“Guy, why are you abusing me? Aren’t you in a relationship? So, you want to hoard me and be chopping on the other side? You try.”
“I said, you’re very stupid. Fool!” he yelled and hung up.
The next day, pictures of his surprise engagement were all over Facebook. She broke the engagement two weeks later. When I heard eh, I laughed like laughter was going out of fashion.