Wednesday, 5 December 2007

I got hit by a golf ball

OK! The title does not fit – I just felt quirky.

Everyone knows Nigerians have a propensity for titles, probably because we are a nation of flash gits: we have the old ones of Dr; Dr. (Mrs); Chief; Alhaji and Alhaja; at which time the problem was getting so bad that Ibru, publisher of The (Nigerian) Guardian, when it first came out a couple of decades ago, decided he would only call men and women of quality like Obafemi Awolowo (Chief) and Nnamdi Azikiwe (Dr) by their titles (- this has since changed).

In the last 20 years or so, people now moved to Barrister; Lawyer; Engr. (I used to know a twit here who drives mini cabs [kabu kabu] and refers to himself as Engr. because he had done a couple of Microsoft exams); Balogun; Asiwaju; Aré; even a couple of my acquaintances are on the Otunba bandwagon. What happened to plain old Mr & Mrs?

I admire my late father for not joining the title race and praise Babatunde Fashola, Lagos State governor, for resisting it so far. I will forgive him for the totally inadequate (alright, let’s be honest – atrocious) roads, I am even willing to give him time to sort out the armed robbery and consider getting a separate power grid for Lagos, I will ignore the area boys and lack of ‘town planning’, but his stature will diminish in my eyes when he titles up.

What really irks me is the propensity for Nigerians now to be referred to as ‘Sir’. As far as I know, ‘Sir’ is an honorary knighthood bestowed by Charles’ mum which can be used by UK citizens but not by non-UK ones on the rare occasions they’re honoured. I remember Sirs Adetokunbo Ademola, Adesoji Aderemi, Tafawa Balewa, etc. The Rivers State governor (Amaechi) is called ‘Sir’ and now Sir Mike Okiro???? The Police IG was referred to as ‘Sir’ in some newspaper adverts congratulating him for his substantive appointment as IG. For some reason, these new ‘Sirs’ mostly seem to emerge from the non-nothern parts of the country and I cannot figure out the trend.

I feel better now

22 comments:

Omosewa said...

LOL!!!

Lemme go change my blog name to "Lady Omosewa" :D

My mom is a medical doctor, if anyone mistakenly calls her "Mrs" she never hesitates to correct them, she's like Medical school wasnt a joke...i'm like...ookayy, i guess the non-doctors should commit suicide now..lol.

Lmao@the taxi driver Engineer...whats that thing about iya afin saying yes when shes called Iya oyinbo?:LOL!!

I can see Fashola adding "chief" to his name in a few years...

Sha said...

hhahahahahahahahaahha

me sef na lady.. nuttin do me jor. :-D

Sha said...

Abi chief Mrs sef.. cnt decide on which one to use.. so yall can call me Lady chief Mrs..

heheehe

Allied said...

Lol, Nigerians and Titles sha, You forgot "Master". I once saw that on a cup. Master Adedeji Banjoko is 1 today.

Please tell me who his slaves are?

SOLOMONSYDELLE said...

Nigerians and their titles. It is sad, really.

As per Fashola, he apparently is doing good work - roads are getting fixed (albeit all of them at the same time - causing serious congestion problems0 and he is setting up a bond program to build affordable housing (extremely necessary in Lagos). I think that he will do a good job and that might help him shed the negative image he has amongst certain Lagosians. As for him adding a title, they already use (SAN) behind his name all the time. Does that qualify for you?

Thank goodness you updated...

laspapi said...

Architect Jinta

Pharmacist Isi

Surveyor Catwa'q

All the titles above are real here. 'Deceased' is a title as well and Plumbers call themselves Engineers in my country. Nigeria has some things too ridiculous to fathom.

Okada Laspapi- Would that mean I have become an Okada, I ride one or I am an authority on motor bike affairs? The time is coming soon.

Onome said...

hehehehehehehe i guess dey're wannabes(lol)

For the love of me said...

Lol,when I worked at the call centre, most susbscribers introduced themselves as Engineer,doctor, or barrister something and during the course of the conversation ,they forget and admit that they are students perhaps of engineering, medecine and law.Guess they were just getting ready for the future. There is flip side though, even when you dont want these titles,people force them on you,particularly my dear Yoruba folks, aunty this, mummy this,daddy that.How do you make your 60 yr old cleaner stop calling you mummy?

Jinta said...

@ omosewa - Lady O, na salute I dey o.
@ sha - Lady, Chief, Mrs, Undecided (how's that for a new title?). I dash you Engr. as well, just don't drive taxis.
@ allied - I guess it's the rest of us? I forgot all about that one.
@ solomon - I can live with SAN, I think it's a mark of achievement, though in the old days, he'd have had to be 20 years older to receive that accolade
@ laspapi – Barrister, how can you limit me to Architect (another one I forgot about)? How about Engr. courtesy of my MCSE? I think I will take Honourable too in view of the (Hons) attached to my 1st degree
@ onome – everyone wants to big up
@ for the love – call him daddy?
@ isi – where are you?

Isi said...

jinta dear, i have missed you! you owe me an apology, u know that right?

@laspapi: LMAO!! me pharmacist? i hated sciences o; and i dont like drugs! when i was little, if i walked into a pharmacy, i always felt the urge to puke.
in my teen years, i noticed most pharmacists (esp the women) were stern looking, and i'd wonder if they had any love-life! hehehe

truth is, our third world, dead-beaten image has left us a little...um...inferior. so we seek 'substance' from the silliest of things.
i remember how one 'Chief' refused the invitation to the high-table (another problem in niaja...all this high-table nonsense. even for funerals nigerians dey seek high-table!)during my wedding.
we didnt get it at first, until he sent a message to the MC demanding he be introduced with his 'correct' title.
can u beat that?!

Jinta said...

@ isi - finally! Yep, I agree, so soooorrry. You know as e be. Will update soon.
I heard about a similar event like what happened at your wedding. Ha! Just remembered 'Excellency'.

Jaycee said...

Lolll...I'm already used to Nigerians and their titles...

The funniest story is abt that cab driver that called himself engr just because he took microsoft exams...LOLLL...

pamelastitch said...

LOL

CATWALQ a.k.a LAGBA-JESS said...

Laspapi, what have I done to earn a demotion to surveyor? A whole me,
Architect Catwalq, AIA, NIA, ASID...
why? After five years, you want me to become a surveyor?
Haba! Ta ni mo se?
Eyi o da o

Uncle Jinta: Me I cannot explain why Nigerians feel they have to be associated with one clique of the other, one title or the other or one award or the other. The funny thing is that, in my opinion, those worthy of titles do not broadcast themselves or demand respect. Their actions speak loudly enough. Imagine if Oprah was Yoruba, would she be called Iyalode Iya-ni-Television Iya-ni-charity Madam Winfrey?
That's when you can tell who has some class and who has not.
Either way, I am an architect, not a surveyor. You can call me Catwalq

Nyemoni said...

Hahahahaha! You are such a trip I tell you! I think the Sir and Lady thing is given in Catholic churches these days as a result of knighthood...

It's a Nigerian thing I feel and people feel they can distinguish themselves from other folks with whatever title they choose to attach to theor names...There are no such titles as Architect, Engineer, barrister, but people no dey hear word!

30+ said...

Well they wanted to give me chieftancy was to be inaugrated as a chief in the village (suburbs) that I used to reside because mumsie in refusing casually said the only titles she is interested in now are for her children.

Since then Baale has declared that the title is mine (being akobi) and referes to me as such.

So technically I am a chief (lol)

P.S
Thanks for referring me to Rodeo drive to go and collect the coronary attack that you dodged (chief 30+ storms off from jinta's blog).

Jinta said...

@ jay - our very own Engr; Cabbie; Chief
@ pammy - I'm with you there
@ architect catwalq: B.L.O.G., CNN - I like your Oprah analogy. Were she Nigerian, we'd probably need an A3 sized paper, typed single spaced on number 10 font, to write out all her titles.
@ nyemoni - thanks for the catholic church insight. Makes a lot of sense. I wonder if more people will be converting to catholiticm in order to get these titles?
@ chief 30+ - have a fun trip

Florida of Free Spirit said...

Wot do u mean????? Abeg, i be food scientist Florida. I go school get am, no be for road i pick am. who no like am, na dem sabi

Afrobabe said...

It's even more annoying in the work place...Imagine calling someone a step higher Sir and ma...its just bulshit...

Jinta said...

@ florida - scientist florida? i bet will will have that within a few years.
@ afro - i feel the rebel in you. Have you tried 'oga' instead of 'sir'?

Kiibaati said...

On the "Sir" bit,the new bearers are knights of their churches. Its kind of funky, I really wont mind one of that!

Abbie said...

I feel like an idiot...
You mean Otunba is not a first name???