May 26, 2018

If he is cheating, do you want to know? – Peju Akande

If he is cheating, do you want to know? – Peju Akande

Human nature is complex. What is food for one, is poison to another and yet for another, it might be a means of clothing.

Take pomo for instance, animal skin, abi? We Nigerians celebrate it; shred it into egusi or efo riro and its finger licking good, yet in other parts of the world, its for accessories…you get, like shoes or belts.

Now that the tone is set for today’s discourse, please understand we aren’t discussing pomo in any ramification, just talking about human nature.

I understand that issues of life are not always in black and white, there are too many shades of grey, too many monotones, too many in-betweeners so when I say, I wouldn’t want to know who’s cheating on me, there are shades to this position.

I was at my friend’s home one day when the programme Cheaters came on. You all know Cheaters, abi? That guy Greco and his crew running around spying on people and confronting their partners with evidence of their duplicity. It sucks because nobody is happy at the end of the day; the cheater and the cheated, everyone is robbed of something.

I’ve often ask myself, given the opportunity, would I want to know if I’m being cheated on?

Ahh, e no go better for you

The answer is no.

And here are my reasons:

What will knowing do for me? At some point, I just might find out, but I won’t nose for it. I won’t be searching bags, and pockets and phones and receipts for it, no I won’t. Of course, whenever I find out because many times, find out you must with issues like these, it would hurt like hell but it won’t hold me back.

When I made my opinion known to my friend she was so upset that we ended up quarreling over it. A few weeks later, we met up for lunch at one of those nice eateries along Isaac John GRA Ikeja. I was to pick up the bill, so I pushed our tray of food to the girl at the till.

She punched in some numbers and told me my bill. I didn’t contest it but unfortunately for her, my friend came by and asked that the bill be delayed, she wanted to add one more item to her tray. Then I looked at the receipt while waiting for her and my blood began to boil.

Oti, o!

When did I buy two pieces of goat meat when all I had was fish on my plate? Thankfully it hadn’t been consumed yet.

When did my friend order two portions of Egusi, when just one was spooned into our plates? Haba!

Fada! I was being cheated! In these days of dollar going upandan, this one is still scheming to cheat me? I immediately called for a review of the receipt. The girl at the till promptly apologized, said her mind wasn’t in what she was doing. She whispered her apologies, begging that I don’t call the Manager’s attention.

“I need this job, ma,” she said.

I was snorting like a bull when I eventually made it to our table. My friend had respectfull kept quiet while I ranted. But she wouldn’t let me swallow food and drink water.

“So do you still prefer not to know who’s cheating you, abi?”

Money matter is different, I said between mouthfuls, intending to disgust her with the food in my mouth. Come to think of it, how many of us really check the receipts we get from these super stores? We always assume they punched in the right figures and so we pay but I have since found out many of these stores add one or two items you didn’t purchase. Particularly the fast food joints, they are most guilty of this.

“Somebody is cheating you and you bury your head in the sand,” she continued.

“Always works for me!” I answered.

“That’s stupid, don’t you think?”

She’s my friend, so I let the insult pass.

“Some people really deserve the yeye coming to them,” she said spitefully.

“Awww, you’ve got to be like that?”

Lunch was done for that day. No need for the insults, she was in one of those moods and I was beginning to feel bloated after that meal of poundo yam and egusi. I wanted to get away fast but not fast enough as we were met at the car park by a mutual friend who insisted we wait for her while she quickly got her lunch. We all ended up in the car, ac on as she told us a very peculiar story.

The long and short of it is this- A man dies, unexpectedly, of course. At the burial site weeks later, another woman shows up with same number of kids as the “legal” wife. Three boys and one girl, for both women!

Legal wife almost passes out. Turns out her husband’s family are quite acquainted with the “outside” wife. She was also dressed in the same mourning material as “legal” wife.

Oro pesi je!

I was dumb founded! Which kind wahala bi dis?”

“So if na you, what would you do?’ My friends asked me.

“I won’t mourn the blighter again. He should have told me, haba, given me some warning!”

“But you say you wouldn’t want to know who’s cheating on you.”

“No bi like dis, I beg. Dis na betrayal!”

And so is every form of cheating. It’s a betrayal!

I was sober. I felt sorry for the “legal wife”. I even felt bad too for the “outside wife.” Both women have been cheated in my opinion.

The blighter is gone, leaving them to fight over his will and his estate, and I hear he left quite some property.



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