“CLEVER” WAY OF GETTING BREAKFAST! (NONFICTION)

Our people are really showing their “ingenuity” as Buharinomics* is hitting most people hard. Lol!

I wanted okpa* for breakfast and there was this sixtyish guy (artisan sort) before me at the stand. He announced he would have two hundred Naira (N200) worth. The lady seller put the hot wraps in a black cellophane bag but before she could tie it, he demanded that they be sliced. She complied.

The next stage in the transaction had been taken for granted. After giving specifications and collecting someone’s product, you pay for it, right? But this daddy* didn’t do anything close. Rather, he began to give the okpa woman what sounded to everyone around like an unnecessary and ill-timed geography lesson.

The man was describing a construction site or block moulding company or whatever (it wasn’t clear what) somewhere in the vicinity where the woman should come and get her money in the event he didn’t return shortly.

“What are you doing? She doesn’t know the place you’re pointing at. Why are you insisting on this useless description?” asked a man who felt he had decoded the daddy’s “game”. Others pitched in because that spot is where daily-paid workers wait to be hired.

“You didn’t tell her you had no money and you made her slice the okpa so she can’t take it back to sell,” another accused.

“Mind your business,” the old man scolded.

“There’s nothing we don’t see here,” the lady explained in response to my shocked expression.

She told the man to go and that is likely N200 gone as that daddy didn’t look like he planned to be found later. He will probably be congratulating himself on the “clever” way he got breakfast. Wonder what he’ll be planning for lunch.

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Or maybe I’m being uncharitable. He may have planned to come and pay once he got something from his day’s work but the window for selling okpa there is three hours tops and I’m guessing he knows that except he plans to pay any day he gets money. I imagine that the woman gives such a concession to the regulars there sometimes but for a total stranger to grab the privilege without prior discussion smacks of mischief.

Anyway, for his sake, I hope he doesn’t intend to make a career out of this ’cause in some other places, he may not be let off so easily.
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*Buharinomics refers to the economic policies of the present Nigerian government under President Muhammadu Buhari.

*Okpa is the Igbo name for a type of richly nutritious food made from Bambara nut (also called Jugo Beans) flour. It is popular in Nsukka and has been embraced in other parts of Igboland because of its relative cheapness and sustaining power.

*daddy – In our culture, we call older men daddy.
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I am a university lecturer. I teach Mass Communication, mostly writing courses like Feature and Interpretative Writing, Magazine Article Writing and News Writing, and let’s just say I’ve been doing this for a long time. As you have probably guessed, I am a born-again Christian.
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101 comments

  • Bolaji

    Hungry can cause people to behave anyhow these days. But if he tries that in lagos hummm mm. ………

  • OZURUMBAIHEANYICHUKWU GODWIN Ph.D

    nice one ma

  • Chukwuma Nkemjika

    Dats really funny and interesting.

  • Flawless ifeanyi

    Buharinomics*, funny. Well God help us in this state of hardship. I don’t blame the man because hunger is not anyone’s friend. Okpa is saving lives. Nice one!

  • Asadu ThankGod

    Lolxxxx
    I think I’ll try this out and direct her to your office ma… Hahahahahahahaha
    I know you won’t fail me

    • Edith Ohaja

      Try am! Na triple you go pay! Lols! Hope you’re working hard! God’s grace all the way!

  • Chikwado Ezeh

    Clever indeed. But what would he have done if it were to be any of his children?

    • Edith Ohaja

      You mean if his child were the seller? I guess he would eat for free, no question of payment. ?

  • Nnamani Frankline Chinedu

    The word BUHARINOMICS drew my interest for dis. And I think DAT should be enrolled into d English Dictionary. Datz a nice one indeed…

    • Edith Ohaja

      I’m surprised you’re not aware of it. It’s not original and has been in use since 2015.

  • I love learning about your country!
    I pray that dear woman gets paid twice for the trick she endured. Blessings and love to you!

    • Edith Ohaja

      Awwww, so glad you dropped by, Angela! I guess you finally sorted out the glitch that won’t let you comment here. I say “Amen” to your prayer in Jesus’ name. Have a wonderful weekend and stay forever blessed!

  • ogugua ugwu

    hunger now in this country is emminent all are suffering …..the common man in the street must survive..

  • Paradoxically funny and sad. A senior citizen resorting to this form of trickery for chow really reflects how bad things are now. God Will Help Us.

  • Enete Sandra

    A funny bt interesting story ma

  • Ahuekwe Chioma

    Hahaha …This is an example of a sharp guy but he can’t pull this off and go scot free in Lagos especially in the area I live in. Enjoyed the story ma

  • Chike Chiemela Elizabeth

    Lol! I can’t stop laughing but that’s really sad! Such a pity!
    Poverty is a really a cancer! A man of his age should be integrity conscious but he had to swallow his pride because he had no choice!
    It’s really sad!
    Besides, I like the new word ‘Buharinomics’ but I don’t want it to be our lifestyle…Tufiakwa. lol

  • Amos Janet

    Lol…sharp old man. He should try this in Onitsha and know if he won’t be dancing atilogwu with his ancestors before the end of the day. He would be lyched ASAP. LOL.

    • Edith Ohaja

      Not that I support what the man did, but is Onitsha really like that? I hope not.

  • Abasibiangake Essienubong

    Lol! ? Some people just enjoy making a habit of owing people.
    Okpa… saving lives since forever!

  • Ogechi

    It’s actually ridiculous! That’s how we as Christians sacrifice our bebefits sometimes to someone in need. I admire the fact that the lady didn’t waste much time in letting the man go, even though he didn’t deserve it.
    May God bless her hard work and help people learn to do things right!
    A funny and enlightening story it is. God bless you ma

    • Edith Ohaja

      Yes, I join that prayer for God to bless the woman’s trade in Jesus’ name. You are lifted, Ogechi!

  • Umeremadu ChetaGod

    ? what a clever way indeed to obtain breakfast. #lol# God help some Nigerians from dubious character.

  • Anyaka Osmond Ifeanyi

    Nice expression of humour – Buharinomics*
    That daddy was lucky .. Nice write up..
    But people should be careful with who they deal with.. If that woman was the ‘crazy’ type, daddy would have gotten the beating of his life and insults showered on him.. Lol

  • Okpe Nnedinso

    Hahaha…..the man is really lucky he met a nice woman….God wil bless her and her business.Amen

  • Erua Chiamaka

    That picture of okpa is already making me to salivate (a huge fan of that delicacy).
    “#wonder what he’ll be planning for lunch”…i guess he would do the same thing in a different location….lol, if everyone should be like that woman, i believe Nigeria would’ve been a better place.
    Nice one

    • Edith Ohaja

      Hello Chiamaka! I agree. We need to be our brother’s keeper, esp now that things are tight for many. Shalom!

  • Nedu Igbo

    Lol… Like seriously… he hasn’t met some kinda people that will grab his trousers in their bid to make sure he pays. beautiful

  • Amoke chinasa

    Lolz!!!,let him thank his stars.everyday is for the thief ,one day for the owner of the house.

    • Edith Ohaja

      That’s scary! But when people feel desperate and take chances, they don’t think that far.

  • Dats really funny. This z wat hunger can do to people. May God help us.

  • Ezeigwe Martin

    This is laughable. But that was a wicked act from the man. Since he knew he had no money, why demand four?
    I guess the people that were around the scene of the event were all soft-hearted. He got lucky though

    • Edith Ohaja

      I think most of our people are soft-hearted, really. See how they forgive corrupt politicians. While I don’t support wrongdoing, I am glad for the kindness that we witness in the midst of hardship.

  • ogugua Ugwu

    Hmmmmm…. Baba is back…. So no more hunger.. He came back with food stuffs…

  • victor chukwudi udeh

    ITS JUST THAT THE WOMAN IS A GOOD PERSON

  • UGWU AMARACHI CHINEMEREM

    Mummy, you know this our country is turning into something else, especially with the current economic situation, not only the young but the old play tricks too, they call it survival strategy

    • Edith Ohaja

      Personally, I believe that God is about to turn things around for us. I don’t know how or through whom but I am expectant in my spirit. I pray that it be so in Jesus’ name. Bless you, Amarachi!

  • amadifenwankwo Stanley C

    The fastest way of getting breakfast is no 1 God, hard work, intelligent coordination and wisdom

  • Chukwuma Nkemjika

    Dats really funny buh dat man shuld go and tnk his God cuz he actually met a nice person.

  • Maybe I will try this out one day with the ‘okpa di oku’ chanting woman, who usually passes through my lodge everyday.

    But on a more serious note, there is real hunger in the land o

  • Ugwu patience

    There is nothing hunger cannot do…but the picture of the “okpa” is making me to salivate right now

  • Florence onyekaozuru

    Very funny, it is indeed a very clever way but mischievous one, we all know that things are difficult in the country right now but then should your fellow human or citizen pay for that hardship? the woman selling okpa am sure has her own issue and is trying to make ends meet, then one man from nowhere who thinks he is smart or clever thinks he will get away with that bad act. well as u said ma, he may have gotten away with this one but he might really not be lucky next time he would put up that act. I pray so

    • Edith Ohaja

      Easy, girl! While I don’t support mischief, we need to bear with one another; we need to graciously put up with our fellow human beings’ failings from time to time.

  • DAVID DAVID ONYEKACHI

    The fact that one does not have the purchasing power to buy food when he is terribly hungry does not make him a bad person. The picture painted is not a picture of a clever act rather it is that of an act with cunning tendencies. Again, what if eating the okpa is the only key to the man’s survival at that time. Should the man be deprived of his fundamental human right which is the right to live just because he is not financially buoyant at that time…

    • Edith Ohaja

      Playing devil’s advocate, eh? Try that argument in a law court when someone is arraigned for stealing and see how far it will take you and him/her.

  • Vivian

    Buharinomics* or not, human beings can naturally be callous at times. I guess this is not the first time that man is trying such. Humans can at times be very selfish and thinking about themselves alone, OK as he has satisfied himself, he doesn’t think of the woman who probably fends for her family through her daily earnings and how much loss that money has cost her for the next purchase. We live in an unfair and unjust world, human beings do not live according to the dictates of the master anymore which says do unto others what u wish for them to do unto u. I know if it was that man he would fight to the finish. Anyway I really appreciate the woman’s sense of Understanding and calmness, we should try and emulate such but then imbibe the policy of “pay before service” if not some people will throw others out of business. This is a nice observational write up Ma, it enables us see how inhumane some people can be….. Good one.

    • Edith Ohaja

      Bless you, Vivian! I too admire the woman’s response. And you’re right. We should do unto others as we would have them do unto us.

  • Precious

    This is interestingly Amusing…I love you Ma’am…Excellent!!

  • Lol… Buharinomics.. This one got me…. Well, daddy Neva jam shaa

  • Muoka onyeka

    It bin a wyle av bin ere…how I wished everi okpa sellers wud av d hart of dat wuman lol!!! DAT man na xup dude oo #lwkmh#..BT it was a 9ce nd 1daful 4ny piece.. Kip up da gud job ma!!!

  • deuceemm

    Lol……Dat guy na scam!

  • I cannot fit laughter*……Oh my God! And President Buhari is back to the country. A frustrated friend on Facebook posted “A president that cannot die for his people, is that one a president?” I laughed my wits out!!!
    God makes a way for His people. And I am starting to understand when they say Nigerians are one of the strongest people in the world.

    Ma I love love love reading your blog. You are refreshing with every post. What got my attention the most is how you picked this story out from the mundane. True to your teachings, story ideas are everywhere. Thank you Aunty E.

    • Edith Ohaja

      And it’s always a delight to hear from you, Prince! God’s grace in all you do in Jesus’ name.

  • Chika Udemba

    Hahaha…. apart from the fact that this piece is hilarious it also teaches lessons…. I think the woman was trying to show some level of trust and love to daddy because it is written in the bible “love your neighbour as you love yourself” bUT people misuse this, not knowing that whatever one does on earth has a reward in Heaven … Nice one Aunty…

    • Edith Ohaja

      I love that quote. It’s the second greatest commandment, the first being to love the Lord our God with all our heart, mind and strength. Bless you!

  • Hephzibah

    I had a good time reading this. It’s really saddening seeing how things are in the economy, but there’s no justification for wrong doing. The woman is kind hearted, as I’m sure if it was someone else, that man would have been thoroughly abused and embarrassed.

  • ngozi Okoro

    I find dis very interesting and wot caught my attention is the okpa image ?….. Nice one mam

  • Okorafor Nneoma Confidence

    man adapts to his environment there is nothing people will not come up with to survive this “”buharinomics”.

  • odo chidera

    Many are used buying and giving excuses, not judging. I don’t know how they do their own thing. I dont know if that is how the man and the ogba seller carry out their own business. If they are on an agreement of paying after the day work.. Then understandable. Bt if there is not prior arrangement to that. Then the man did not try at all

  • Emekaobi Ijeoma rita

    Lol…I’m sure that man must have lived in Lagos to have learnt such gimmick’.by the way, I love okpa
    Mm

  • Charles Emmanuella

    This is a compelling piece

  • Oparaugo shalom

    Lol.. this is very funny, but on a serious note things are very hard these days

  • Nwafor God'sgift

    Ah this is really funny o. The man should be happy he got away with that plan. Because it might not work out next time

  • Lol. This is what hunger and poverty can do to someone. For the man’s mind now, he is a gayoo( sharp man). A nice work ma.

  • Nnamani Adanna Mary

    Chai! It’s a pity what hunger has reduced ppl to in this our beloved country oo. He should thank his stars he met a nice Okpa seller sha.

  • Uba Chiemerie Jane

    Lol, very funny. Maybe the man thought of other ways and concluded that the okpa woman can be easily cheated by his fake story. Nice one Ma

  • Don munez

    The man is a real guy man, he will now claim sharp guy. Very funny one. Hunger can drive people to do things.

  • Enete Sandra

    This is what the condition of this country has made people do. It’s well with us

  • OZULUMBA CHIAMAKA CYNTHIA

    lolzzz….hunger is the root of evil oooo

  • Nneka Orjiude

    Hilarious!! what a ‘clever’ way to get breakfast, very typical scenario for traders, people always coming to dupe or cheat in some way and if they ask for payment first It may turn into a problem.

  • Eze joshua

    This is indeed really funny but man must survive in times like this…… Don’t know whether to call it criminal act or means of survival; oh Lord help your people oooooooo

  • Irumekhai Mariam

    Oh, what a pity. We need God’s intervention in Nigeria. Poverty is really a disease. But i must say that daddy was lucky. He shouldn’t try that next time, else he won’t live to tell the story.

  • evans nwawuefe

    Okpa and Pepsi has been a “saviour” to some of us for some time now.

  • Chidinma Odigbo

    Lol, quite a funny one you got here aunty. That man was just lucky.

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