The life and times of Solomon Grundy

Monday – Birth

Grundy was in the field when the news hit him like a stray bullet. He ran all the way home and into the room. He headed straight for the cradle and lying in it was little Grundy, asleep. Turning, he faced his wife Sarah, tears streaming down his cheeks and mumbled;

            ‘Finally, God has given us a child.’

Tuesday – Christening

The Grundys christened their son on a Tuesday, two weeks after his birth.

            ‘We want to make it the best ever,’ was the excuse.

They were true to their words; it was indeed the greatest ever. For never in the history of the kingdom had there been any event like that of the Grundy’s. Even the king could not help but marvel. A notable Knight was reported to have said;

‘It is a day of a thousand laughter…everyone got enough to eat and drink’

Everyone went home happy except for Greg, Grundy’s brother, who objected to the lavish spending. The child was nonetheless christened Solomon – Solomon Grundy.

 

Growing up, Solomon was denied nothing. His parents did all the thinking and left nothing beyond his reach. Solomon had no problem but for his Uncle Greg. Greg was the only opposition to the worship of Solomon. He was also a great preacher and would sit Solomon down for hours trying to force morals into him and slothfulness out. Solomon hated Greg but could do nothing about it.

Wednesday – Marriage

  Solomon became of age and was to take a bride. He grew up a handsome man with a terrible character. There was no stopping Solomon once he was set to go except for Julia. Julia the poor mild girl was the only antidote to his sickening character. She loved him so much and was determined to change him for good. Solomon equally loved her but still depended on his parent to make his decisions. So it wasn’t surprising when his parents announced he would be marrying the Princess even before telling him, and even  less surprising when they bent his will through the influence of his friends and the throne.

In the course of the preparations for Solomon’s wedding, Greg stormed in one day and challenged the Grundys.

            ‘You’ve lived his entire life and now you picked him a wife!’ Greg yelled.

            ‘Not your business.’ Solomon barked.

‘If you have ears and not flagella you would have known the sentence is a statement not a question, loose brat!’

And with those words still hanging in the air, Greg stormed out. Once again, the opposition lost. The wedding came to beat the long standing record of Solomon’s christening.

Thursday – ill

 Solomon’s breath taking wedding lasted just two weeks. They couldn’t just get along. Solomon was a drunk and also bad tempered. The princess was hyper-sensitive and as proud as a peacock. When she left, Solomon’s heart became more hardened to wine. One Thursday, Solomon collapsed outside a bar and was rushed home, all muddy. The doctor said he had liver cirrhosis and should stop drinking. Continue reading “The life and times of Solomon Grundy”

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God Loves D’banj (and his music)

It happened in church today. You are most likely familiar (especially if you attend a Yoruba dominated church where the talking drum is employed in worship) with that moment when singing halts and the talking-drummer is allowed to roll-out and display his drumming skills with everybody digging it down ‘kon kon be lo…’ Such was the dance moment today; the lead singer screamed ‘Kabiyesi O!’ the church chorused ‘Eshe O!’ and as expected, the talking-drum rolled out beautifully.

talking drum

Now we all know the talking-drums talks; many a times it rolls-out melodies, but often times than not, those melodies are interjected with occasional proverbs and adages. I heard something familiar. At first I thought I was hallucinating, and then I look across the auditorium and saw two deranged teenagers acting out what I thought the drum said. They were ‘dance-slapping’ themselves.

The lead singer called again, ‘Kabiyesi O!’ we replied, ‘Eshe O!’ the talking-drummer rolled the same tune again. This time, two uncles behind me (probably forced to church by their wives) chorused the tune of the drum. With grotesque voices that need a servicing, they said;

‘eni to ba ta fele-fele, eni to ba she rada-rada

                   eni to ba ta fele-fele, rada-rada, wanran-wanran

                    eyin boys! Egba oju e! eyin boys! Egba oju e!’

This roughly translates as;

‘anyone that misbehaves, anyone that mis-yans

                   anyone way show himself, anyone way do anyhow

                   Boys! Slap him! Boys! Slap him! (Interpretation mine) Continue reading “God Loves D’banj (and his music)”