PREJUDICE (SHORT STORY)

“She prayed earnestly as she drove the eight kilometres to the chambers in Kubwa. She had prepared what she considered an excellent brief for the moot court session that should form the principal part of today’s interview. Now the matter was out of her hands and left for God to decide. But the peace that she had unsuccessfully groped for on this job issue still eluded her and she wondered why.”

Intro:
This short story is about a girl who has an unwelcome experience on a job-hunting mission. She should be feeling very distressed but …. Read and be blessed!

PREJUDICE

Chikwado appraised herself in the mirror. She had worn a silver-coloured camisole showing the barest hint of cleavage underneath a black skirt suit for her impending interview. But she decided to fasten on a brooch to fully cover her bosom.

Her close-cropped African hair was telling lies already. Although she had combed it after shampooing while bathing, now that it was dry, it was claiming it hadn’t seen a comb in ages, so she oiled it and ran one through it again. Then she balanced herself on an older three-and-half-inch black wedge for its height advantage, rather than her new black pumps.

Before she left the room, she squeezed some cucumber-melon fragrance behind her ears and on her wrists to complement the apple-scented vaporiser she had sprayed all over herself before dressing. Never one to spend too long on grooming, she used her forefingers to smoothen her eyebrows and glossed her lips. She picked up a pair of gold-plaited hoop earrings to wear on her way to the car. Studs would have been better, she thought, as she tightened her grip on her portfolio, but she had no time to search for anything.

She was nervous about the interview she was headed for, not because she wasn’t qualified for the junior counsel position at the law firm, but because she had detected chauvinistic tendencies in some of the senior male partners there during the preliminary interview. They seemed to infer that the firm had traditionally been an all-male establishment except for support staff. She, therefore, had to give a flawless performance if she was to floor the preferred male candidates.

And besides being the only woman who applied for the sole vacancy, she was the only one with a height deficiency standing at a little below 5ft. She wished this interview had come up when she had a full head of hair but she had developed a strong aversion to chemical treatments and weave-ons in the last year and cherished the sense of freedom wearing her natural hair gave her.

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From the sniggering when she met the panel last time, it was obvious they felt that leaving a matter in the hands of this dimunitive female would be as good as losing it. One of them also joked that her natural hair made her to look inelegant, like a househelp, rather than a learned “fellow”. He made a point of emphasizing the word, “fellow”.

image

She prayed earnestly as she drove the eight kilometres to the chambers in Kubwa. She had prepared what she considered an excellent brief for the moot court session that should form the principal part of today’s interview. Now the matter was out of her hands and left for God to decide. But the peace that she had unsuccessfully groped for on this job issue still eluded her and she wondered why.

She didn’t have to wait long to find out why. The lobby was empty when she arrived the firm at 10:48 a.m. She approached the female receptionist who gave her a fleeting sympathetic look before recollecting herself and asking what she could do for her. Chikwado sought to know if she was the first to arrive fot the job interview slated for 11 a.m. The lady consulted a sheaf of papers in front of her and, with a deadpan expression, informed her that a junior counsel had been chosen through an interview which commenced at 9 a.m.

She then handed Chikwado a sealed envelop and curtly added, “You’ll see the formal communication from the firm in there. Would there be anything else?”

“No, thank you.”

Chikwado’s mind was in a turmoil as she drove away from the premises. She had worked extremely hard to get this job and felt cheated, even humiliated, by the way she lost it. She had received no notice of rescheduling and wondered if she was right to have left without a fight.

But on further reflection, she thanked God for shutting that door in her face. She had been too eager to get employment that she had failed to acknowledge the persistent unease she felt about working in that firm. She needed to be where she would be appreciated and treated fairly, not struggling under such a weight of prejudice. The right job would come and when it did, she would have the peace of God in her heart to confirm it. Meanwhile, she would continue to assist her mum in her business.

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She reached over to the glove compartment and brought out a Frank Edwards CD. For the past two weeks, she had been wishing she were taller, bigger and so on. She needed to hear an affirmation that she was fearfully and wonderfully made and how better to do that than by listening to her favourite song. As Frank Edwards belted out,

Do you really know how beautiful you are?
The Spirit of the Lord lives and dwells in you
All over the world no one looks like you
You can put a smile on your face
You’re beautiful, you’re beautuful … ,

Chikwado let out her covenant shout and began to sing along.

-The end-
Ⓒ Edith Ugochi Ohaja 2016

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Are you searching for a job? How have you handled the instances when your hopes of securing one were dashed?
Or perhaps you have faced discrimination of some sort. How did you react?

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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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75 thoughts on “PREJUDICE (SHORT STORY)

  1. I’m impressed, I have to admit. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s both equally educative and interesting, and without a doubt, you’ve hit the nail on the head. The problem is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy that I came across this during my hunt for something concerning this.|

    • Prejudice and gender inequality are major menace in which the society is battling with. Well qualified people are denied of job opportunities because of segregation instead of meritocracy. Chikwado, a well qualified Barr. at law is denied on the job opportunities of working as a junior counsel in the law firm of kubwa on the basis of prejudice.Prejudice according to sociological perspective is a form of discriminating attitude. But no matter what, what is yours is yours just believe in God.

  2. WOW. WHAT A PAINFUL DISAPPOINTMENT BUT I BELIEVE GOD HAS A REASON FOR EVERYTHING THAT IS HAPPENING. HOPE SHE LATER FOUND A WELL PLEASING AND BETTER JOB. NICE STORY BUT I REALLY NEED TO SEE ITS CONTINUATION

      • This story is quite exceptional because it strongly hints on appreciating God’s natural presentation of yourself. And two,holding your head high despite all dissapionment , also believing that God will always make a way where there is no way.

  3. waow nice story ma. This is an eyeopener for us to be proud of the way we were made because we were all made in the image and likeness of God. And also, we should stay away from people that always make us have low-self esteem

  4. For one to secure job after graduation seems to be hard and the appointment associated with it makes one to feels his own case is worst but even in the face of all these let’s know that God knows our need

  5. Its as though there was bias for her not to get such job, but I believe deperation kills and may lead to what’s not rightfully yours, its advisable to wait for the right time

  6. i really relate to this story. i am not exactly the tall leggy blonde and several times it has been a huge disadvantage but God is faithful and he has always rewarded my efforts. i believe the right opportunities will find us regardless of unfavorable situations.this could be God sending her away form doom.

  7. How i feel about the description? wonderful. it created real imagery like i am physically seeing Chikwado. In all that we do, we should always be contented and grateful. In the right time God will bless us more.

  8. Wow, I really felt for this girl. How could they discriminate her so unjustly. I understand the christian thing to do is to walk away and let God fight for you. But I don’t think if I was in her shoes I would have left without a fight! Its unfair. Well in times like this, the words of Frank Edward song speak deep into the soul; “You’re beautiful…. “

  9. Talking about the description, i would say it is superb. Ma you were able to paint the image very well that from my room i could feel i was with Chikwado all through the story
    Also, we should learn to be contented and grateful to God for He is the source of all we are and have. Nice one ma!.

  10. That’s right mam. We should never wish yo be anyone else. We are complete in our own way . beautifully and wonderfully made.

  11. Eyaa i can imagine how she felt hearing that the interview was rescheduled from the receptionist. She should take heart maybe the job wasn’t for her and i believe God will open better doors for her.

  12. Shebi the lord made us in his image and likeness, why will i want to be someone else, nobody can be me the way i am me, we should all learn that we are ok being us, it is the you in you that makes you the you you are, God has a reason for making us the way we are

  13. Well, sometimes, God want something better for us to do, I was in need of a job before but not anymore, I was so devastated I mean when all hope is gone, there is nothing to do.

  14. Learn to cherish what you have. what you are seeking might not be what God want for us. Maybe God has a bigger plan for Chikwado. nice one there ma.

  15. I am proud of how God made me. For i know i was created in the likeness and image of God. Chikwado should be proud of herself because what God has installed for her might be bigger than what she thinks.

  16. Chiwado has nothing to be afraid of. Nothing happens in this life without a reason. The right things come to the right people eventually. Glad the job thing didn’t dampen her spirits. Carry on girl!

  17. Chikwado’s decision not to go back to the firm and ask them the reason they rescheduled the interview without giving her prior notice was a good one. If God had wanted her for the job, she would have gotten it no matter how impossible it may seem. The world we live in is filled with gender discrimination. A female might not get a particular kind of job based on her gender even if she has higher qualifications that her male counterparts. The best thing to do here is to leave it all in God’s hands. He knows what is best for us and provides it at the appointed time.

  18. Disappointment is inevitable. Chikwado took her disappointment in stride and decided to leave everything in God’s hands. Sometimes people get discriminated against based on their gender, race, social status or even religion. In a situation like this, we should seek the face of God and leave everything in his hands.

  19. Dissappointments comes in life and we should learn to accept it and move on. God always has a plan for us so we shouldnt see it as failure. But as a link to other opportunities.

  20. Desperation sometimes makes us forget how to think properly. It would have been hell for her in there. Good thing she didn’t get the job. I’m sure a better one awaits her because God’s time is the best.

  21. Ok this is sad to hear after all the time waisted , anyway God’s time is the best ,I believe every disappointment is a blessing ,I will say she should wait on the Lord because there must be a reason for her not to get the job.

  22. Chikwado did all she can but God knows the best, looking for job in our society today is like looking for niddle in an ocean

  23. Amazing Story. The most important thing is that chikwado had the wisdom of God to know that the job wasn’t for her and a better one will come through for her with ease and bring her comfortability. A key thing i took from this story is the lesson that when ever you feel down or situations raise themselves against you, you should seek God’s word because in it there is what you need to stay strengthened, chikwado did so just that hers was in Frank Edward’s song which has God’s word in it. It gave her a mirror different from the one back in the office to look at. It was God’s own mirror for her that showed who she truly is.

  24. Every disappointment is a blessing. In pursuit of life be it job or anything else ,we should not let others reduce our self esteem.

  25. God has a reason for allowing us to take certain decisions in our lives, it may not be negative at that instant but only He sees the future. He knows why he prevented Chikwado from questioning the firm about the change in the time of the interview. Something similar happened to me but in place of a job, it was a prefect post. Someone else was chosen not because of her academic or physical quality but because of the connection she has. In moments like this is it always best to remember that God has a better and greater plan for you.

  26. What an interesting story from an epitome of beauty, mummy Edith!! I had a similar experience last year. I was so desperate to enter school so after my JAMB in 2017,I scored 230,I was so happy because I strongly believed that my name will come out on the merit lists. When the merit list later came out,I couldn’t find my name, I became so depressed and was worried. What did I do? I took it to God in prayers and act as if the problem doesn’t exist, so when the final lists came out, lo and behold, my name appeared on that very list. I believe the patient dog,eats the fattest bone.

  27. Life as they say is not a bed of roses, there are so many people out there who are passing or had passed through such in life. But developing a positive attitude towards everything is the way forward. Big ups to you ma, and that Frank Edward’s song happens to be one of my favorite song so far.

  28. Sincerely if i was the one, i would have started crying. I would have been highly disappointed but then, it has been said many times, that every disappointment is a blessing in disguise so I’ll give thanks to God and move on eventually. Her ability to handle that situation is indeed amazing though. Thanks for this amazing post ma. God bless you.

    • I love this, no matter what, God is always there and don’t allow people change who you are.
      Thank you ma

  29. Prejudice is one of the reason why people grow to hate who there are forgetting that they created in the image and likeness of God, so if you feel your too short, your indirectly telling God he didn’t do a nice job while creating you. The truth is that we just need to love ourselves just the way we are, cause they is someone out there dying to be who we are.

    • Moments like this are when we question God why, Paul in the Bible was talking about the peace of God which surpasses all understanding and it should guard our hearts and minds. Peace is what we need in such situation.

  30. Interesting! At some point in ourlives, we all have to accept whatever comes our way because you don’t know where destiny will swing is to. Chikwado even at the point when she felt humiliated and cheated and by the way she lost the job, had to be grateful to God knowing that he knows the best and also we don’t have to poison our future with the pain of the past she hoped for the future and believes that it will be better than the past knowing that tomorrow contains more joy than any yesterday she can recall she just had to thank God for shutting the door to her face.

  31. oh it Is a pity I believe God will surely give you a good job better than that one, just be steadfast in the one who created you, and people should not be proud of themselves because they are in better position today because no one knows tomorrow. Am happy she did not let her problem way her down.

  32. You will always be too tall,too short, too skinny, too fat, too fair, too dark or even too beautiful to someone. So, the best thing you can do for yourself is to love you the way you are!
    Avoid persons or situation which constantly criticize you and focuses only on your faults.
    She will get a better job in a place where she is appreciated.

  33. The spirit of man is the candle of the Lord…Romans 8:16, We should learn to listen to our spirit,it might just be God showing us the way.

  34. It is annoying to experience things like these. They could have at least let her know that the interview had been rescheduled. I feel there is an injustice in what happened but what can she do? The best thing is to wait on God for another because her, not getting the job means it was not meant for her. God is never too late in helping his children. She should keep praying for at the appointed time, God will do it.

  35. The fantastic aspect of this story to me , was how chikwado reacted after loosing the job opportunity .Her ability to calm herself down and look up to God was wonderful .

  36. As a human, knowing that you are wonderfully and fearfully made by God isn’t just enough. Working according to it makes you different. Whether dark or fair, tall or short, fat or skinny, you beautiful just the way you are.
    God bless you MA.

  37. Very educative! I have learnt that when I need something badly. I should still watch and see if God is in it.

  38. She has strength of character
    She just left the building without causing any fight or scene. That takes a lot of will power. Most people would have raved on and on but she didn’t. It earns her respect to me. Now, I wonder how any job in this 21st century would be so chauvinistic. It’s so bad to think lowly of someone just cus she a lady when she could have even done better than most, If not all 5hses guys she applied with. Everyone should be given equal chanceso to show what they applied really capable of. If we do that, we will be surprised at the outcome.

  39. Chikwado’s condition can lead one to depression.

    She’s indeed smart and hardworking but the firm she applied for are so blind that they couldn’t see her worth. The fault is not hers but theirs.

    Just like she rightly thought after her encounter, she needs to work in a firm where she’ll be appreciated and treated fairly. Not some workplace with chauvinistic tendencies that would never acknowledge her efforts.

    And she didn’t cry? Wow! She’s such a superwoman.

    May God never allow us enter where we’d not be appreciated.

  40. This story is didactic and educative. The story actually captures the nature of employment in this present dispensation. Some are disqualified base on prejudice, instead of going for the best. However, we shouldn’t be weigh down by people negative action towards us. As a child of God washed by the blood of the lamb, we should always realise that we are wonderfully made.

  41. Height, gender,body size? smh, since when did they become elements for making a good lawyer? some people just know how to frustrate others, and these are the people who will later become judges, Thank God she was not even given the job, she would have been spending her entire time trying to please people already biased.

  42. A woman who knows her self value would go a long way for her. Am glad she was able to later see herself value at the end of the story and recognise that she was beautifully made.

  43. Being desperate for things never helps, this life just needs to be taken gently. And what is yours will surely be yours.

  44. Appreciating oneself,not looking down on oneself and understanding Gods plan for ones live and giving him thanks in every situation we find ourselves.

  45. For me every disappointment is a blessing in disguise,a better job will locate her….
    God will surely make a way for her.
    Tnks for this story ma.

  46. Every disappointment is a blessing… The ways of man are not the ways of God, He will always give us what belongs to us in due time.

  47. Every disappointment is a blessing in disguise and if one door closes another opens. It may be what we want but not what God wants. She will get another one so she should stand firm.

  48. It is good that we appreciate what we have. Though desperation can make us do and say something but what matters the most is that we realise that God has perfect plan for us our disappointment might be a blessing in disguise. Am happy that Chikwado took this with a strong faith and she will get employment from a firm that will know and appreciate her worth.

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