Regales Of A Lagos Bobo: Episode 2 - Uncle Teacher .1


Most times we make plans for the future without room for contingencies because we are so sure things would go as planned, but life just stays somewhere staring at you with a smirk that spells mischief, and just when you think you have it all figured out- Bang! Life does you in.

When I went for the teaching vacancy interview, I knew I would have serious problems when the headmistress said "I have see your applicashun letter, but you do no have teashing hexperience..." I swallowed hard, not because the experience issue was mentioned but the fact that a school headmistress was talking like she was a cross between Frank Donga & Falz, I mean a whole school headmistress? Anyway that wasn't why I was there. To impress her, I spoke articulately, and she kept on nodding her head in approval even though I was certain she didn't understand a lot of the things I said, suddenly she stood up and asked me to follow her, I was beaming with smiles as I followed her 'cause I felt she was probably taking me to their accountant to add me to their payroll even though we hadn't discussed my salary. I almost wet my pants when rather than enter an office, we entered a classroom instead and she told me to teach the pupils for two minutes. I had never been more confused in my life, I suddenly felt weak, my legs felt like cooked spaghetti, I was pespiring profusely, but as a Lagos bobo I just couldn't mess my rep up, so meticulously I began to take my suit off, then rolled the sleeves of my shirt up and looked around me, all in a bid to stall and think up a new tactic, then I saw a chart on the wall, it was a chart about famous inventors and that was my cue to a way out. I asked them to each tell me what they wanted to become in future, with each answer, I told them a brief description of the profession and everything was going on well till a child said he wanted to become an anthropologist. I had heard the word a couple of times but I had never checked the meaning, I just responded with "wooow, clap for him, next", I was about to breathe a sigh of relief when the next pupil asked "Uncle what is anpawpawlogis?" The  color drained from my face, to further add to my predicament, an N.Y.S.C. teacher suggested "Uncle why don't you spell the word out on the board for them to learn the spelling" Good idea right?  I made to write on the board and realised I wasn't sure if there was an "H" in the spelling or not, I threw caution to the wind and spelled "A-N-T-R-O-W-P-O-L-O-G-I-S-T" on the board, again the N.Y.S.C. teacher said "Uncle you omitted an H after T and there's no W" You would expect me to have just made the corrections, thanked her and moved on, but no! a Lagos bobo is too proud to accept his mistake without a fight, so he looks for an excuse to validate his mistake. "Hmmm I intended to add the H, but I wasn't sure whether the school uses British English or American English" I said as I added the "H", the teacher smiled and shook her head as she went away.

We discussed my salary and when I was asked how much I was expecting, the Headmistress laughed and said it was almost ten times her own, I didn't think two hundred thousand naira was too much to pay a teacher at a big primary school, so I asked how much she intended to pay and she goes "If say you have teasher training now, we pay you 45k, but as you dino' have teasher training, we will paid 35k" I just sat there wondering if that was really the Headmistress or a semi-literate janitor pretending while the boss was away "let me go and think about it" I said as I got up to leave, knowing within me I had nothing to think about and I was not taking the job. As I stood up, my old and battered phone I had been managing dropped and the screen shattered, my heart shattered with it and I just stood there staring at it on the floor 'cause fixing it would cost a fortune and I was unFORTUNately broke, then someone came in with some envelopes "Headmistress, these are seven application letters". I just turned to the headmistress "Madam I'll take the job".

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