The Importance and Danger of Madness

After a few weeks in Lagos, you will realise that things won’t go your way unless you become mad. Mad when you’re in the bus and the conductor decides to be petulant about your change, mad when you’re driving and a danfo driver continues to cut into your lane like he was sent to circumcise your new car, mad at the attendants in your favourite store who refuse to sell to you because some folks just walked in waving phones that can pay your school fees at them and speaking in imported accents.

You will, however, also discover that you cannot stay perpetually mad without risking damage to your soul. You will become irritable, impatient, ready to snap at the slightest offence like a caged cobra. This is not good for your spirit. It is how that old nag on your street became who he is. He was really amiable when he stepped out of the bus from his village, until Lagos happened to him.

You will understand why the rich outsource their madness: drivers for the roads, maids for the errands. When all else fails, they can always invoke “Do you know who I am.” Learn that sentence. It is the passcode to unlocking many knotty Lagos scenarios.

As for you, who cannot afford to outsource your madness, remember to take deep breaths. In, out, repeat. Once in a while, permit the world to see you as a mumu, or mugu, or suegbe. Teach yourself how to let go. Take a break from the madness, your soul will thank you for it.


Featured image by Satanoid via Flickr


3 Replies to “The Importance and Danger of Madness”

  1. This is quite interesting. There has to be something about the Lagos madness that may reduce one’s lifespan. And sociologists need to study it.

  2. You write so well!
    And yes Lagos madness is living and breathing thing that sucks out your essense.
    I’ll hound you for that Lagos book, you really should start writing it soon.


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