WHEN it comes to drama, the ideal dramatist does not settle the matter, he agitates it, with the memory of it still lingering in the mind, and for which reason the Holy Scriptures say: “It is better to go to the house of mourning than to attend wedding at event centre”.
At the house of mourning, you are agitated. For instance, my father died at a time Babangida/Abacha proscribed the PUNCH, leaving most of us workers with little or nothing in the pocket. It was however, a blessing in disguise for me because I was within me, morally satisfied that I cared for him while he was alive.
But his death at that period placed me agitated, that it was during a tough period we were struggling with dictatorship. He must be happy in heaven that his boy was still in the struggle. If he had died when I was swimming in money, probably I could have been another celebrity and chief mourner right in the centre of the “Aso-ebi” bandwagon, and could probably have felt satisfied within me (false self-righteousness) that after all, I have given him the most befitting burial and consequently have no need putting the memory of him lingering in the mind.
What am I driving at?
Our “Aso-ebi” instinct almost on everything, (from inauguration to naming ceremony; graduation to house fellowshipping; from valediction to chieftaincy and marriage and funeral ceremonies) account for why very few people are able to stand out in the crowd.
The culture of anonymity has so much stolen into the psyche of the average Nigerian that he is almost construing having a mind of his own as an unforgivable crime.
•Olalere Fagbola, veteran journalist and Ex-Bureau Chief of the PUNCH.