Or, Tomboxe and the horrible, terrible, utterly ain’t shit year.
I’m not editing this, so if it seems rambling or unwieldy, I apologise in advance. I think.
If you’d asked me last year if I’d ever have a year worse than 2015, I’d have said no way. I mean, last year I couldn’t even write a proper review. I had to get all allegorical and shit because some amazing woman broke my achy breaky little heart. What a sappy moron. Anyway, I was so sure it couldn’t get worse. People tell you time and time again not to tempt fate, but what did Olumide go ahead and do?
You guessed it.
I entered 2016 trepidatious but not without hope for a decent year. How delightfully naïve. I was gonna do this, that, and the other. And then another couple of things.
2016 served up consistent reminders that life ain’t shit but the moment it takes for a cut of beef to turn from a tender steak to a charred husk. I spent most of it not really paying attention, and here I am.
On Stories, lamenting again at the end of yet another annus horribilis.
Ok, it wasn’t all bad. I put out a collaborative EP with my man @ojimadedabeat. I was asked to help out on a fashion label my friend is working on. I started running semi-regularly. I met a great group of people, and connected with someone I’d sorta reconciled myself to never connecting with – and it’s been glorious.
Enough about my little bright spots.
I learnt two major lessons this year.
One: I can. Two simple words but it’s incredible how much time I’ve spent in self doubt and fear in my life. No seriously, what the fuck man? Oh people might not like it, or I might not sell one copy. I might never finish it. I might this, people may that. Ansofokinwot? How will I know if I don’t try? Hehe. I learnt this when Oji and I put out our EP. We could have given up several times, but we didn’t, and we persevered and put it out, and the response we got, while not as wide as we would have liked, was overwhelmingly positive.
Two: Eniyan le ku at any fucking time. We hear people say this all the time, but this year it hit me again and again. Deaths, rumours of death, occurrences that I would have been willing to bet would never come to pass, and more deaths. Each time, the man in the mirror would point at me and ask, “So what have you done with your life?” It’s not even about achievement. It’s about living a full life. A life of adventure and fun and taking risks knowing that you might die trying but foggossakes try first. I’m resolved to live more proactively for me. I write. I sing. I dabble in design. I’m taking all of these more seriously than I ever have because mo le lo ku just like that and do I really want all this epicness to follow me to the grave? Nope. So now every day is go day. If it’s one line, or one rhyme, I must create every day. And I’ve started doing it, by force if need be.
So how was 2016 for me? A horrible, terrible, utterly ain’t shit year – but a year in which I realised I am more than I often see myself as. I’m the only one who can show myself and the world that I am pretty fucking amazing (if I do say so myself). And by Jove I will. You’ll see.
Lastly, I’ve not been grateful for a lot this year, but I am grateful for a group of twenty people (give or take a few) who have been consistently great company, a think tank, and a constant source of encouragement. I’m grateful for Oji, Ezekiel, Teni, Uche, Ruth… Haha. Why am I name dropping? The people I’m grateful for are plenty all of a sudden. Ugh.
Roll on 2017. We will meet you. We will take you. And we go dey alright last last.