I heard that for you to qualify as a good African woman, you must know how to pound yam. If you don’t, your husband can parcel you back to your father the way you’ll return a fridge to the store where you bought it if it has a defect. I have never pounded yam in my life and I’m sure I won’t till I die. I can’t call myself a feminist and be pounding yam abeg. The Society of Feminism would revoke my membership card if they hear I’m doing such rubbish. Pounding yam ke? For what? But on the flip side of it, I am a feminist that likes to cook.
Once a friend told me not to refer to myself as a feminist because I told her I would cook for my husband if I were married. She didn’t understand how a so called feminist would be cooking for a man. She genuinely didn’t understand it. She claimed it was slavery to still be cooking for a man in this day and age. I was surprised at her surprise and wondered what cooking had to do with feminism.
Nigerian women can confuse someone. You won’t cook for him because you’re a feminist but you can tolerate his cheating. You won’t cook for him because you’re a feminist but you’re willing to let him talk down to you like you’re an infant. You won’t cook for him because you’re a feminist yet you cower in his presence. How do you define your own feminism and why must I fit into this little box you’ve set out for yourself?
Cooking for a man doesn’t make me his slave.
The thing is I like to cook. I like to cook and eat food. I cook because I like to cook not because anyone forces me to cook and not because it is my duty to cook. It is not my duty, I simply just like to cook.
Why women feel cooking for their boyfriends, partners or husbands would make them less of a feminist is beyond me. If you like to cook, cook. If you have the time to cook, cook. And if you don’t like to cook, don’t cook. Simple.
If I’m with someone, trust me I always get the better end of the deal because he has chores that make cooking look like child’s play. For example, I can’t have a man and still be putting on the generator myself. Hell no. Mr. Man, you better go and put on that thing and do the change-over too.
I advocate and support the rights and equality of women so I am without a doubt a feminist but when it comes to me and a man, I can be a little diva. I am a diva because there are things I will NOT do. Don’t get me wrong, I can do them, I just choose not to do them when I have a man. I will not change a tire when I have a man. That’s his job. I will not kill cockroaches when I have a man. That’s also his job. I refuse to have any discussion with the plumber, electrician etc. That is simply his job. If a bulb goes out, he has to change to it. I don’t have time for mundane issues like that.
The only household chores I like are cooking and controlling the tv remote. Any other thing has to be handled by either another human being or a machine. I hate ironing so he would have to do that. I won’t lift heavy things when I have a man neither will I take out the trash. Pray tell, what are you useful for again if I have to do all these things by myself?
I once had a boyfriend who told me he was coming to visit. He came, I cooked and he ate. He was a very slow eater so I finished eating before him. I had washed my dishes and settled back down to watch tv when this Oga piped up.
“I’m done eating. You can clear the plates now”
I looked at him, my eyebrows raised trying to figure out if he was joking. But he wasn’t. This man was actually expecting me to stand up, clear his plates and wash it.I pointed him to the kitchen. I don’t have the time or inclination to clean up and pick up after anybody. You are not my child and I’m too busy.
I’m too busy controlling the tv remote.
Now to the crux of the matter, to pound yam or not to pound yam?
Well, I guess it’s up to you. If you like to pound, pound away. If you don’t like to pound, do like me and use yam flour or get a yam pounder. The guy that wanted me to wash his dishes told me he could only eat pounded yam that had been pounded in a mortar with a pestle. Obviously that relationship didn’t stand the test of time because I will NOT pound yam for any soul.
Pounding yam is not part of cooking. That is self-inflicted punishment.
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