“From the left, quick march! Left-right! Left-right! Left-right!”
The legs of the students in the rectangular lineup went up and down like pistons as they marked time to Senior Olumide’s hollered commands.
“Left-right! Left-right! Left-raaaaiiiight!”
In unison, the feet crunched down on the ground, lifted and thudded down again. Senior Olumide weaved his way through the well-spaced lines, yelling as he moved, his eyes zipping about as he looked searchingly at the students under his command.
“Left-right! Left-right! Left-raaaaiiiight!” (more…)
Posted by Walt Shakes on March 3, 2014
When every year is winding down to its end, and you have life and all or most of the provisions that furnish it, and your dreams have either become reality or are on the fast track to getting there, and the people you love are abundantly in your life, then this ending begs for the acknowledgement of all those who made memorable your journey through life thus far. Because, whether you believe it or not, indeed, no man is an island unto himself.
I recently read and got inspired by two write-ups of appreciation penned by two men I admire – Tobe Osigwe and Isaac Ola. And I got to thinking about how in many ways, innumerable acquaintances – old and new – have contributed to making the different facets of my 2013 a success story of sorts. And with respect to this platform – My Mind Snaps – there’s a number of people I would like to say my thanks to. (more…)
Posted by Walt Shakes on December 30, 2013
This is a story (fiction or fact, you’ll never know 😀 ) dedicated to a good friend and fellow SARTian, Chinazaekpere Sallie Enwere. A sort of belated birthday wish to her. Enjoy 🙂
“Walter.” The call was a faint echo, as though resonating from a distance.
“Walter.” The voice was clearer now. “Na pikin you dey born inside there?” Even the mocking irritation was ripe and apparent as I blinked my eyes and looked around.
I was in a convenience room. Toilet cum bathroom. The countertop was a gleaming granite, atop which was arranged shampoo bottles, a cup stacked with toothbrushes and a tube of toothpaste and a pile of shaving sticks. The ceramic of the bathtub and toilet bowl had the freshly-scrubbed look of attentive housekeeping hands, and there was a wicker laundry basket tucked away in a corner.
Somebody rapped on the door, and the female whocalled my name before said, “Bia, enyi a, born quick. I’m about to serve desserts.” There was a rustle of clothing from the other side of the door and the slap of slippers on the floor as she walked away.
I looked around again, my bewilderment deepening. I was in somebody’s bathroom. A woman’s. I’d obviously just made use of the toilet, because my belt was unbuckled and I didn’t feel any pressing sensation in my groin. And that was where my understanding of the situation ended. Questions careened through my mind with the mad rush reminiscent of zebras fleeing the hungry wrath of a lion. Who was this woman? What was I doing here? What was the connection between us? Were we longtime friends or was this the morning after of a one-night stand?
Only one way to find out. (more…)
Posted by Walt Shakes on December 24, 2013
Our first result as undergraduates had just been tacked on the board; my friend George got a grade he didn’t like (far from an F, thank goodness) and I got the grade every sane student likes! We walked silently back to the hostel, matching our thoughts to the rhythm of our steps in the sand. University had begun.
I told George not to worry about the grade. It was only the beginning. Too early to despair.
He looked at me (or did he squint? because this was a year before the glasses came to his face) and said, “Kelechi, you won’t understand.”
I didn’t say another word until we parted to our respective hostels. My head under the sun that day was in no state to remember how, in SS2, I was ranked 20th in a class of 30 persons, with an average that rolled in the dust; how I had pushed at the notice board to see that result and wished I hadn’t seen it when I did; how I studied with a choking anger the following term… (more…)
Posted by Walt Shakes on September 26, 2013