Black Boy Review

HOW TO LIVE AN AFRICAN LIFE by Chimee Adioha.

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.

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African people have special potentials which are actually concealed sometimes when the same Africans begin to think that civilization needs a definite Western life. Being black doesn’t always make you represent Africa but gives you an optional African identity. Below are ten tips on how to help you rock that African life that people won’t have any other option than to call you Africana.

Your Name
You deserve an African name, and not an American name. American people don’t have African names as their native names. You need a name that represents your origin. A name like Chika or Amina or Ayodele or Nyong’o gives you an example of what you would make your name. Your name means your identity. Being African without an African name is not allowed. Let your full name have no English name. If your middle name used to be English, it is time for you to send it to the grave. That oyibo name shall join your great grand mothers and fathers in no distant time.

Your Hair
It is your own hair, so you have every right to do whatever you want to do to it. Your hair needs you to try something new with it. Don’t just go to fix weavon or leave your hair glistening with jerry coils or sporting waves or some wine or gold tint. The tint could partially be accepted but not the rest. An African female needs longer locks and braids, and an African male needs short dreadlocks. Don’t call it ‘dada’; calling it dada could give you the morale to leave it struggling with dirt. Everything should be in black. Yes, black. You represent black. Black means Africa and Africa is black. This black doesn’t mean darkness, it means your hair.

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What You Wear
You are addressed as you are dressed. Yes, we know. No problem. You need every bit of Ankara on your shirts and blouses and trousers and skirts. If it is not Ankara, let it be tie-dye, if it is not tie-dye, let it be batik. The African print is easy to be noticed. If you call yourself an African, no one needs to tell you how an African design looks like. Your clothes should bear the mark of Africanness on them. If you can’t meet up with these, it’s alright. Your necklaces and anklets and bangles won’t break into two if they are made of wooden beads or plastered with African designs. An African design has no definition; your eyes will not hesitate to observe it.
Again; love cocoa butter.  And if you are a lady; love head ties.

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Your Bedroom
It is your bedroom that is even responsible for the way you are addressed. Your bedroom is not an ordinary space in your house you call a room, it is your freedom gap. It is where you sleep and wake, therefore all your inspiration would definitely come from your bedroom. Your curtains and bed sheets and probably your wall designs need a pattern that stands for Africa. Try a leopard or zebra print, a brick or forest design, images of wild animals and trees. Framed paintings should hang on your wall. It could be a painting of African musical instruments or rural African setting demonstrating the rural life of African people. Let your room glitter in African decorations. It is your own room.

What You Eat
Learn how to eat a lot of meat, but if you live near the river, feed on fish alone. Yes, fish. Your feeding should focus more on fruits and vegetables. The vegetables are fresh and are gotten from your own garden. Africa being known for green and not for black can’t be a taboo. Your freshness comes from those vegetables. Keep a date with them every day. Spend your time eating your native meals and waste your time eating in fast food restaurants. Eat a lot of oil bean and eat no shawarma.

Love Cowries
Cowries are wonderful. Cowries are shells of sea snails with the shape of an egg. They make the best jewelries in Africa. The white cowries are better than the colored ones. Cowry shells are the things you need. Cowries used to be money, but that was then, not now. So, use them for your necklaces and bracelets. Fasten them in between your locks or your braids. Join them in your shoes or sandals and let your tailors stitch them to some of your clothes. Cowries need exposure. They want to get that from you.

Dance Better
Dancing is an Africana’s passion. Tweak if you want, dance in the air. Shake your body. Twist it. Rock it like it was your birthday. Follow the rhythm of the drum and jingle your system till you drown in tiredness. The best dancers are made in Africa. Dancers whose body communication breaks record come from Africa or have their descendants from Africa. You have no other gift than dancing. Dancers do not get old, they keep dancing.

You Need Exercise
Dancing can never be enough, fitness would come in. An African princess needs that princess-like figure to walk around the palace with her pride still hanging within her. An African prince needs a body and not a bone. His biceps are important.

Love Art Works
Spend your money buying frames and frames of artworks to hang on your wall. It is not just artworks, but artworks that portray Africa. Buy more artworks and don’t buy any movie or waste your money buying framed pictures of beautiful faces. Even if you need a face, it must be a the face of an African woman with braids that rendered white cowries or the face of an African man with beads around his neck and a princely made locks that sat on his head. This is okay for the picture of a face. 

Enjoy Palm wine
If you are an African and you don’t like palm wine, please forget it. Bear in mind that palm wine is the only natural thing that can come out from your place. If not palm wine? What else? Nothing.  So therefore, make palm wine your friend. Abandon that whiskey and come back to your senses; dump that juice and come to dilute palm wine with water. An African man who leaves palm wine for gin should be dis-origined from the African soil. Palm wine is your own, enjoy it.

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CHIMEE ADIOHA WAS BORN IN NIGERIA IN THE EARLY NINETIES. HE IS THE CO-AUTHOR OF “FAMILY ECHOES”.  HE WORKS WITH THE BLACKBOY REVIEW TEAM.

BlackBoyReview… In the land of telling and showing…

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2 Responses

  1. How to Live an African Life? Seriously?

    Besides No 1 and No 2, your name and your hair, everyother thing here is irrelevant and a bit of a childish fantasy. This Romantic notion of Africa as the land of Chaka Zulu and Tanzan, Ankara and Coweries with a gourd of palmwine to water it down is a little bit too old, and downright counterproductive.
    You ought to love Ankara wears, you have to eat meat and fish and grow vegetables in your compound, you have to learn a dance, drink lots of palm wine and go about exercising. . .please, this is the 21st century, Africa is getting modernized, we are not a bush people. Some of us don't drink, some are vegetarians, some just don't have enough time to exercise or enjoy art, while some just love corporate wears. That does not make them any less African. I believe being and repping Africa is a mind thing. And can show in your name, your hairstyle, your skin colour, the way you reason and discuss local and foreign affairs, what you patronise, how you act, talk and relate. . .not your ankara wears, palm wine drinks or dreadlocks. . .though I agree that those are not a bad place to start.

    -Ezeamalukwuo

  2. How to Live an African Life? Seriously?
    Besides No 1 and No 2, your name and your hair, everyother thing here is irrelevant and a bit of a childish fantasy. This Romantic notion of Africa as the land of Chaka Zulu and Tanzan, Ankara and Coweries with a gourd of palmwine to water it down is a little bit too old, and downright counterproductive.
    You ought to love Ankara wears, you have to eat meat and fish and grow vegetables in your compound, you have to learn a dance, drink lots of palm wine and go about exercising. . .please, this is the 21st century, Africa is getting modernized, we are not a bush people. Some of us don't drink, some are vegetarians, some just don't have enough time to exercise or enjoy art, while some just love corporate wears. That does not make them any less African. I believe being and repping Africa is a mind thing. And can show in your name, your hairstyle, your skin colour, the way you reason and discuss local and foreign affairs, what you patronise, how you act, talk and relate. . .not your ankara wears, palm wine drinks or dreadlocks. . .though I agree that those are not a bad place to start.

    -Ezeamalukwuo

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