How To Live Like A Hero

Rigozo

Holla,

I don’t know why I feel like I should be doing something.

It’s about 4:00 PM. I’m staring out the window and thinking of what to do to pass the time.

So, earlier this morning, I had planned to complete two tasks and I did them with lots of time to spare. I have since taken a nap, checked my social media, replied to my messages, moisturized my hair, ate, made a purchase, and watched two YouTube videos. The first was on how to make travel videos for beginners – Pascal Basel. The second one was on how to shoot smartphone b-roll for beginners – Learn Online Videos. If you are looking to make videos or B-roll your cup of tea, then you should check them out.

I have mentioned before how much I love to explore creativity in various ways. Videography and cinematography are both interesting topics that involve creativity and imagination, and I absolutely love them. Plus, they are in the same family as photography. They are all one big happy family. Lol.

Okay, back to talking about why I feel like I should be doing something.

What Does A Hero do?

In the movies, a hero fights villains non-stop, or else bad things will happen (in summary). Or a hero is someone who is trying to get something but there are obstacles in her way that she has to remove overcome.

And let me say that this is exactly what life is all about. A daily struggle to be happy as individuals and in our relationships, to find purpose, make money, and try to stop bad things from happening to us and the people we love, to the best of our abilities. In other words, an emotional roller-coaster.

And so the hero is constantly trying to do something. There’s always a goal to achieve, a fight to win, or a choice to make.

Is life only about trying to get rid of all the villains

I recently watched Spider-man: No Way Home and it was gut-wrenching. My emotions were all over the place. Heroes don’t get it easy at all. It’s hard being a hero.

I can tell you now that last week was a tough one for me. When I was discussing it with my friend U’, he said that most times we are the ones that put ourselves in positions that leave us overwhelmed. And when we start to feel overwhelmed we end up not doing the things that are the most important to us. The things that we should prioritize first. You can check out James Clear’s newsletter from the same week which expanded on this.

I have to do this, and I have to do that – me all day, every day.

As you can recall, I’m sitting down by the window. My feet are resting on top of the sewing machine, and I’m the picture of relaxation. I have ‘free time,’ to chill and do absolutely nothing, but all I can think of is that I should be working instead. Is it not insane? I mean is that all there is about life? Work till you drop from exhaustion, or till you see the heavenly gates?

Even when I don’t want to do it, my brain keeps chanting all the number of things I should do. Like I could write a journal entry (I did say that I would do more journaling this month to practice more storytelling.)

My inner annoying critic: clears throat.

Me: Save it…

My inner annoying critic: You have not been journaling.

Me: sighs. I haven’t been journaling…as much as I should.

My inner annoying critic: You said that this one would be different.

Me: I say a lot of things. Besides, this is different…

My inner annoying critic: Is it?

Me: inserts earplugs

Who is a hero?

Everybody is a hero in their story.

Earlier I talked about how heroes in movies are constantly battling to stop bad things from happening. Well, in real life, some of the villains we fight are anxiety, fear, loneliness, self-doubt, depression, bills, more bills, sickness, and so on. We fight to find the kind of love we deserve, build a life for ourselves, have good health, prove our worth, and get up in a world that keeps pushing us down.

As heroes, we fight to survive and protect the ones we love. And I know that the reason I can’t shut down my Spidey-senses is that it lets me know to do a flying monkey leap, whenever danger is near. But what my experience last week taught me was that fighting too many battles at the same time may cost me to lose everything.

While some people have the superpower to do a whole lot of things at the same time under tremendous pressure, and still come out on top of it like the badass that they are, others like me can’t. It is not my superpower to juggle everything without ruining something.

There’s No Such Thing As A Perfect Hero

In Everything Everywhere All At Once – EEAAO, Evelyn Wang (played by Michelle Yeoh) is a middle-aged woman that has to save the multiverse while trying to reconnect with the people she loves – her husband (Ke Huy Quan) and daughter (Stephanie Tsu). The duo directors/writers, Daniels, are the ones that take credit for what is being celebrated as a masterpiece – if the internet is to be believed. This movie delivers a confusion that grows on you like English ivy – wraps you up so fast and so tight that you are left wondering, ‘what the heck just happened.’ I have only watched the trailer, various clips, and about a ton of interviews with the cast and directors/writers, read comments, and it promises to be mind-blowing.

It’s only showing in the theatres and this homebody (that’s me) will go out of the house (how shocking!) to watch it. I figured it should be worth sitting down in a dark room surrounded by strangers. Isn’t it just the perfect place to hide a body? You’ve never thought of it? Of course, we can all agree that I live for the drama.

Somedays I feel like Evelyn, a-hero-that-has-no-idea-what-she-is-doing. And sometimes I feel like Peter Parker in Spider-man: No Way Home, a-hero-that-think-he-knows-what-he-is-doing-but-gets-it-wrong-almost-everytime.

I’m willing to take the risk to see Everything Everywhere All At Once. I feel like I can relate to the chaos that it brings to the table. As well as the story which captivates the complexities of human relationships and how we all just want to win this race called life. And to have somebody in our corner, rooting for us; loving and watching over us. We are either fighting for something or for someone.

One Villain At A time

The good news is, that no matter what level you are at right now, there’s room for improvement. It will surely come in time if you have the mindset and work towards it. I’ve started to schedule two tasks that I have to complete in a day. That’s fighting two villains a day. Whatever comes after is not planned. And the last couple of days have seen me less anxious and more productive.

Having priorities is not a common practice for me. I’m more of an in-the-moment-kinda-gal. It means that when my Spidey senses start to tingle, I jump off the building with the bare bones of a contingency plan. I could be jumping into a fire or shark infested-waters. I’ve been considering that it’s either an adrenaline rush or neurosis.

Last week I felt like exploding. I had a thousand things I wanted to do, all at once. And my Spidey senses were tingling just so. This is not jumping off one building. It’s different versions of myself jumping off thousands of buildings.

I may have exaggerated a bit, but really it was a tough time for me. And do you know the craziest thing? It made it so hard for me to focus on one thing.

Imagine that you schedule all the villains you want to fight in a day. And in that same day, you put all of the villains you’ve started but have not finished off. If you are like me, at this point, you’re having a panic attack. Before, I would be out of my mind with worry. But today I just scheduled two tasks and I’m done with them. So, even though I’m sitting by the window doing nothing, I know now that it’s okay to be here. Now I see it as recovering, even if my brain keeps nagging me. Even heroes in the movies need time to recover from their fights.

You Are A Hero

I hope you are also able to identify your superpower (strength) and use it for the greater good – for yourself and for those around you. Allow the people that love you – and you love right back – to take care of you just like you’d want to take care of them too (I’m still learning to do this). Because we are all heroes, and there are infinite possibilities in this universe, and in all the multiverse. Life is not perfect, but as the hero of your story, I hope that you kick ass.

Day #9 of My Journal Series

The Story of How I Met Mo-Isu

Rigozo

I would like to remind y’all that I have dedicated this period to sharing snippets of my daily life as a journal series. And this is why I’ll be telling the story of how I met this very interesting guy called Mo Isu.

How it all started…

It was a busy Thursday morning at the Imisi3D lab. Some students from a secondary school in Lagos had come to know more about XR, VR, and AR, and so the place was crowded. When I walked into the lab, everybody was talking at the same time, and most of the students were wearing VR headsets. It looked like an alien invasion.

Google Cardboard

All hands (staff and interns) were busy with the students, and I had to get out of their way. I found a free spot at the corner – directly under an AC unit – and it proved to be disastrous.

Story of my life – I have a low tolerance for cold and in less than two hours, everything from my head, hands, butt, and feet was frozen. I had to put off the AC or risk becoming frozen food. I wrapped my head with a shirt (it wasn’t mine) to help defrost my brain and faced my laptop.

I was still trying to ignore my frozen extremities and concentrate on my work when I heard a commotion by the door. From where I was seated, I couldn’t see what the fuss was all about, so I paid no attention.

Corner Seat at Imisi3D

I knew the students had left, so when I heard a voice say hello close to my ears (Uhm excuse me, haven’t you heard about social distancing?) I assumed it was one of the people that worked in the lab.

Without looking back, I replied to the person. It was when the person asked, ‘Who are you?’ that it occurred to me that an unknown entity was hovering right behind me.

I didn’t scream. But it was a close call.

I turned to see the apparition; lo and behold, I had to crane my neck up to see a face that was almost close to the ceiling. The face in question was a mystery behind a facemask and glasses just like Simon in Alvin and the Chipmunks.

The apparition introduced himself as Mo.

The relationship between Imisi3D and Mo-Isu

Imisi3D is an Extended Reality creation lab based in Lagos, Nigeria, that seeks to promote the presence of emerging technologies – Extended reality (XR), Virtual Reality (VR), and Augmented Reality (AR) – in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. It was founded by Judith Okonkwo and she is a true evangelist of technology and how it can be used in education.

Imisi3D Extended Reality Lab

Mo is an audio producer and podcaster and he recently worked with Imisi3D as a researcher on the first Africa-focused XR report. It was a research that covered the activities of the XR community in Africa, and the future of the XR space on the continent.

After verifying that Mo was not a flesh-eating alien (he took off the face mask), we had a tête-à-tête.

It took me a few minutes to realize that I have met Mo before. In typical fashion, I said in surprise, ‘I know you!”

The first time I met Mo

I met Mo for the first time two weeks ago through his work. I had the opportunity to edit some of the interview transcripts for the XR report. As the researcher in charge of the XR report, Mo was the person that conducted the interviews. Because my house is close to the Imisi3D lab at Montgomery, Yaba, I was allowed to come work there.

In the interviews, Mo did a fantastic job of leading the people he was interviewing to expand more on stories and their work in the XR space. He directed them back to relevant points that they had made earlier, and so the interview flowed naturally. For me, it was easy to get absorbed in the stories. I’ll be sure to share the link here when the report is published.

While I edited the transcript, it roused my curiosity. Soon I was searching about VR, AR, and XR. I found out how expensive it was to get the hardware here in Africa. I also learned about Google Cardboard, Samsung Gear VR, Oculus Rift, the Metaverse, and so many more techy-stuff.

Sidebar: I am one of the non-technology savvy people. I know some tech guys and believe me that they all think that I am a lost cause.

Library at Imisi3D

So, it clicked that Mo was the same as Mo from the transcripts, and it no longer felt like I was meeting a stranger. That sense of newness was still there but it was muted by my familiarity with his work. When we both started talking about books we’ve read, our background, work, blogs, and so on, Mo felt like an old buddy from way back. You can get to know more about him from his blog and podcast – Inside a Bubble.

With each meeting, we keep finding things we have in common, and it’s a little bit disconcerting – we attended the same primary school, and we do yoga.

Because of Mo from the transcript and his cool interview style, I became interested in knowing more about XR, VR, and AR. I can see some of my friends choking in disbelief. Hah! Exciting times are ahead, wish me luck.

#Day 8 of My Journal Series

Photo credit: Rigozo

Saturdays Are For Weddings

My weekend was wild and let me confess that it is not a regular occurrence.

What nobody tells you before you become an adult is that life as an adult is a series of actions that have consequences. No matter how little you think it is, there will be consequences.

Let’s say as a teenager you were an active gamer. You could go without sleep for a long period of time because you were trying to beat a previous high score or something. If as an adult you are not a professional gamer, or your job doesn’t involve the gaming industry whatsoever, you can’t go about losing sleep because of a game. You’ve so many other things to lose sleep over, so you better choose what is worth it and what isn’t.

So a wild weekend for me was actually working as an assistant photographer at a wedding last Saturday. If you’ve never attended a Nigerian wedding, that’s too bad. Nigerian weddings and their pomp and ceremony will be a topic for another day but I’ll give you an idea.

A Nigerian wedding is like a play in a mini carnival (especially big weddings). There’s the director (event planner), and the production crew (makeup artists, hairstylists, photographers, videographers, decorators, caterers, DJ, band, ushers, etc.). Sometimes it’s the family members at the helm of affairs. There will be rehearsals, glamorous outfits (costumes), lots of food and drink, souvenirs, and so on. The couples are of course the main characters but trust that several of the guests will compete with them for attention.

Note: It is an unspoken rule that Saturdays are for weddings in Nigeria. A sacred tradition that has been passed down from generation to generation. It’s almost guaranteed that people will show up, even those that were not invited.

As a photographer, I’m behind the scene, in fact, peoples’ eyes glaze when they settle on me. Anyway, my job allows me to be privy to all the back-breaking work that goes into putting on a great show. It kinda takes away the magic of the day, no? Not really.

At most weddings, I’m a little bit stunned, especially when they have the funds to do something extra. Sometimes it’s the bride’s outfits, her makeover, the wedding squad, the location, the fireworks, the food…you’ll find something extra.

It was the first wedding I was shooting this year and my nerves were all over the place. Remember what I said about how every action you take as an adult has consequences, well the same can be said about my work as a photographer. The consequences of shooting a wedding are a lot.

Of course, you get paid for the job but there are a lot more things involved. I was working with three other photographers on Saturday but it was still draining.

Here’s what it takes to cover a wedding.

There’s a time for everything

I woke up by 3am. It was not normal. I guess I was just hyped for the day. Still, it is not unusual to wake up early to prepare for a wedding. Because a lot of things happen that same day, the schedule is tight and you don’t want to be the person slacking off. Sometimes I catch some more sleep in the car as we drive to the hotel where the couples are staying. There’s a lot at stake, I mean it’s the couple’s big day and they must have spent a lot of money, and the memories will last for a lifetime. So I’m up early with the rest of the crew to begin a very long day. Everybody is supposed to bring their A-Game.

Stay focused and be ready

Starting early does not guarantee that things will go smoothly. No sir! If you are going into photography and you are about to shoot your first event, expect the unexpected. Anything can happen. The bride might fall into hysterics, or the groom might take off with his groomsmen for some alone time. Not that it has happened like that before, but you get what I mean. There could be a natural disaster and you are still expected to take pictures.

Also, there is so much going on at the same time, the last thing you want to happen is that you lose focus. As a photographer, you don’t want to miss the important moments. Like when they exchange rings or their first dance. But a lot can happen in those moments too so be on your guard. You have to keep a close eye on your gear while you are working. Omo! camera gears are mad expensive and you really don’t want to be replacing them after every event you shoot.

Food is a luxury; fight for your right

One of my biggest concerns with covering a wedding is the access to food. Yes, most people forget to take care of the media personnel. And yes, some do it intentionally, even when you insist that they cater the food. Their excuse is that they have paid for your services or that they need to feed the guest first.

It’s more alarming when you’ve been working since the crack of dawn on an empty stomach. Food is important but you are too busy to take care of your needs. Luckily, the wedding on Saturday was good with the food and drinks. It was the power-up I needed to keep moving even in my exhausted state. Next time I’ll print a t-shirt that says, ‘Feed me or I’ll delete your pictures.’ I’m not joking 😏😏

It’s a sure way to stay fit

This is so true. I was on my feet for the most part of the day. My flats were a little bit tight, so my feet were killing me before the event was over. I had been dragging lights around and chasing people around with my camera, that was a lot of arm work out. And always I am thinking of my next move. What creative way can I document this moment? What settings should I change to brighten up this scene? Yeah, it’s a physical and mental workout. No dull moments. And by the end of the day, I just wanted to fall on my face.


Nothing worth doing well is easy. You put in the work and you get desired results or not. Wedding photography is not for the faint-hearted, and it involves different types of photography like portraits, fashion, art, documentary, etc. It’s a lot to do in just a day or two or three. Believe me, it is. Last week Saturday we did both their traditional and civil wedding. It was great. The couples were superb to work with, and the food was top tier. My shout-out goes to @wisevisuals, @adigunphotography, and @fdomingofilms, they were wonderful to work with. And well consequences or no consequences, I love being a photographer (and a writer).

Okay. That’s all folks. Bye-bye!

#Day 7 of My Journal Series.

  • Left Behind
    The abandoned church stood like a man awaiting trial.
  • How To Live Like A Hero
    And the pressure keeps growing and growing and growing until you feel like you are moments away from exploding.
  • The Story of How I Met Mo-Isu
    The apparition introduced himself as Mo.
  • Saturdays Are For Weddings
    It is an unspoken rule that Saturdays are for weddings in Nigeria.
  • On How To Tell Stories Of Hope
    I didn’t think it was possible after all the time I spent wandering and searching for anybody who could understand me, or even see me.

On How To Tell Stories Of Hope

Rigozo

“Please!” I said dryly, “Today will be the same as yesterday. You don’t believe me? Look up. I have been walking for miles and that cloud over there, yes, that one. That cloud has not moved from its position. You don’t believe me? There’s nothing wrong with my eyes.”

I was talking to myself.

Again.

I was walking in the midst of thousands of people, but not one of them noticed me. How long ago was it when I first opened my eyes in this world? I had lost count of the days.

“Comot for road,” a voice said roughly behind me.

I barely managed to move out of the way before a woman brushed past me. I said that I was sorry, but I wasn’t sure who it was meant for – me or the woman.

Wait!

She saw me?

She touched me?

I didn’t think it was possible after all the time I spent wandering and searching for anybody who could understand me, or even see me.

The embers of hope in my lifeless chest bloomed into warmth as I craned my neck to see which direction she went, but the crowd had swallowed her up. I didn’t despair. What I thought was impossible had happened and I believed that anything was possible.

With renewed vigor I plunged into the crowed in search of the woman who could tell me who I was and why I was here.


Holla,

I wrote this story because it represented how I felt all day. I got something that I’ve wanted for a long time, but I may not be able to keep it. Just like the person in the story, I felt numb and helpless.

Which was why wrote the ending the way I did. I hope that I’ll be able to find a way to overcome my situation. I want nothing more than for the main character in the story to find that woman and find the answers to all of her questions. I was more than happy to keep hope alive.

Enough of the doom and gloom!

What’s important to me is that nothing is set in stone. I know that the story can change and that’s why I won’t let the situation of today cloud the hope for tomorrow.

And the same goes for you.

Just remember that you can always choose how you interpret the story, no matter the situation. You can choose to see the situation from a different perspective, hope that things get better, fight to stay positive in a world full of negativity and brace yourself for whatever the outcome may be.

#Day 6 My Journal Series.

No Finicky Business

Rigozo

Holla!

Storytime…

So I have been chatting with this man for some time now and it’s like he’s playing hard to get.

I didn’t care that he said he doesn’t talk to strangers at the beginning. I had already introduced myself, which changed my status from stranger to acquaintance.

Since then, I’ve been greeting this man good morning and good night every single day. Can’t he see that I have swallowed my pride?

I have been waiting for him to get with the program and start to make moves, but the man is slow.

We are still in the talking stage, on God. I’m thinking that maybe I should hit him on the head with a love memo. Look, I’m not getting any younger.

Anyway, I sent him a picture today because I was looking like a babe and more, and tensioning is the name of the game.

It looked like it worked because the man texted me immediately, “WHO’S YOUR DADDY?”

Ah! Is it really happening like this? Am I dreaming?

Finally, all of my hard work has paid off.

I can never let an opportunity pass me by, so I sharply answered, “You’re my daddy.”

*I giggled like a hybrid monkey*

Hah! It was his turn to make the next move.

I was so excited, until I saw, “Hahaha! Very funny. But that’s biologically incorrect.”

Wait! What? Excuse me!

This man is not serious, abi?

What’s all this finicky business?

I was looking at my phone like I forgot the password of my Kuda bank app, because…

Is romance dead? Asking for a friend.

#Day 5 of My Journal Series

Getting People’s Attention: What It Means

Rigozo

I am taking a course on Content Marketing, and I was thinking about how attention is one of the approaches a content marketer has to employ to build their community, tribe, village, or whatever they wish to call their audience or customers. This is an age where building relationships is key to unlocking success, right?

So let’s say you finally get people’s attention, and your name is on everybody’s lips. Your phone can’t stop ringing because they all want to work with you or be associated with you. The way forward is to keep churning out content that holds their attention.

As simple as that right?

Satya Nadella said, “We are moving from a world where computing power was scarce to a place where it now is almost limitless, and where the true scarce commodity is increasingly human attention.”

Not so simple after all. Whether you like it or not, if you wish to make sales, you have to do all you can to keep your customer’s attention. That’s the entire idea behind content marketing. You must ensure that your content is constantly sating their needs, and be available for them, or else they will go somewhere else (loyalty is not up for debate).

The upside of getting people’s attention

Just because it’s tough doesn’t mean that it cannot be done. You want to get attention by ensuring that your content is relatable and solves your customer’s problems. The results have been replicated over and over again, which shows that having people’s attention is necessary to grow both a business and a personal brand. The benefits of attention are:

  • Increased organic search for your website.
  • Because your message is authentic it will be shared.
  • It helps to generate more ideas and better leads
  • You’ll be seen as an authority in your industry.

The downside of getting people’s attention

There are different ways to look at attention and it’s important to also consider the downside of it. I don’t think people talk about it enough, and this is based on my own reflections.

I haven’t had the tribe I hope to build but my work sometimes gets attention. And after the initial rush, I can’t shake the dread that it is all temporary. It’s sad that my thoughts move to the negative as soon as I’m in the presence of glowing recommendations. Sometimes all I can think of is, ‘What if a day comes when I can no longer command their attention?’ That I would have to keep working extra hard to keep putting out my best work.

I am my competition.

To be Undesirable. Unwanted. Unworthy. Nobody wants that.

Your client for sure wouldn’t want that. This is why you have to put out content that is relevant. I think that’s the most important reason why you have to do your research. And particularly, understand your audience.

It should always be about building relationships

Do your palms grow sweaty when a person earnestly appreciates your work because you are wondering if you can replicate the result? Or is there a constant weight on your chest as you move from one strategy to another trying to figure out what content to employ in your next campaign?

Even if it starts out as building an audience, it should always be about building relevant relationships. That’s the only way I can see this playing out. I have seen content creators take a bow and years after they have left the scene, people still clamor for their content because they were touching lives one way or another.

Even when people or brands make mistakes, or do something unbecoming, they will be able to get real feedback from their audience. Because there is a bond that goes beyond buying and selling. There’s an appreciation for the good work that you do. So people will be willing to give you another chance to fix things.

The takeaway

I have kept my relationship with people very civil at best and those that really matter to me, I hold close. Many opportunities have come my way because of these relationships, and I really appreciate it. I owe a lot to the people in my life for where I am now. And now as I build my career as a content marketer, I will not just focus on how to keep people’s attention, I’ll also take care to build relationships.

#Day 4 of My Journal Series

Photo Credit: Rigozo

Night Out In Lagos with Virgin Mojito and Virgin Pinacolada

Rigozo

I was at a lounge called O’shey Bar & Chips, located in Sabo, Yaba. It was my first official night out this year. That should give you an idea of how introverted I am.😪

With my three pals, T.B, Steph, and Freddie, I had enlightening conversations, danced, and had many laughs. Before the night was over, I got acquainted with Virgin Mojito and Virgin Pinacolada.

Photo credit: Rigozo

How it all started…

Well, I went out to the studio earlier in the day to edit pictures from yesterday’s event – the official office launch of a startup called, Your Study Path.

The founders and team of Your Study Path are young and highly talented individuals. Their objective is to create the largest digital educational ecosystem in Africa.

‘School in your pocket,’ is what they aspire to build, by making learning fun again with the help of technology.

It’s amazing what they’ve set out to achieve, and how much it will help people, especially young people, here in Nigeria. They also have a parent company that manufactures glasses, called GrokBrand.

So, I had a good time yesterday shooting, and today, editing the pictures. I shot with a Canon EOS6D (full-frame DSLR camera). I also used 30mm and 50mm lenses and a Yonguo560 IV Speedlite. I did the editing in Lightroom and it was fun stuff.

Meanwhile, T.B, Steph, and Freddie were hanging out in the studio while I was editing (imagine that😒).

T.B is the CEO and creative director of the photography outfit I work with, Wise Visuals Media. He’s an awesome photographer and a good friend.

He asked if I would like to visit Nike Art Gallery later, and I was like, “Heck yeah!” And he thumped me on the head for not being subtle or something.

After editing, we set out for the gallery.

I was excited to visit the place because I’ve heard so much about it. Unfortunately, we found out that the gallery was closed. (Closing time was 6pm).

The time was almost 7 pm.

I was devastated because I was looking forward to having a swell time.

The night was still young I guess…

Since we had set already, we decided to find a place to sit, drink, and chill. Of course, I couldn’t offer any suggestions because I don’t know the night terrain in Lagos.

One thing led to another, and I started up a conversation with Freddie (He was our designated driver).

Freddie is a pretty interesting guy. He is an expert on cryptocurrency and his company Digital Connect, has a community of over 7,500 people that are all crypto enthusiasts.

I switched into interviewer mode and asked a lot of questions about his work and life. Freddie was glad to answer them all.

Soon, I was sitting in the lounge with my pals, listening to music, and sipping my drink. Trust me I knew I shouldn’t be using my phone, but the conversation was on hold because of the music blasting from the speakers.

By the way, this DJ was good, and the aesthetic was cool. But what do I know? I’m a homebody.

We ordered drinks…

I didn’t choose my drink. T.B picked one for me off the menu. It was called Blow Job. Now that was just crazy.

The waiter returned to tell us that the drink – Blow Job – was unavailable, so J.B quickly changed the order to Virgin Mojito. In retrospect, I shouldn’t have let him choose my drink.

1st drink: Virgin Mojito – Mint leaves, lemon wedges brown sugar, and top with soda water garnished with a lemon wedge.

Photo credit: Rigozo

Virgin Mojito was an epic fail. It tasted watery and bland. I would have preferred it if it had more lemon juice than soda. I made funny faces at everybody.

I swapped drinks…

Steph was gracious enough to offer me her drink. I declined, but she insisted. It was a Virgin Pinacolada.

Wait! So Mojito has a sister? 😰

At that point, I was wary of virgins.

2nd drink: Virgin Pinacolada – Coconut liqueur, coconut cream, and fresh pineapple, garnished with pineapple wedge.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture.

Virgin Pinacolada was a frothy coconut drink with coconut shavings at the bottom. It was better than the sister, Mojito, and went down well with the food.

All in all, it was a good night

At first, it was very noisy, and the bass from the speakers was rattling my chest. But soon I settled back, and we all had a good time.

Moral lesson: When in doubt, choose water.

Photo credit: Rigozo
  • Left Behind
    The abandoned church stood like a man awaiting trial.
  • How To Live Like A Hero
    And the pressure keeps growing and growing and growing until you feel like you are moments away from exploding.
  • The Story of How I Met Mo-Isu
    The apparition introduced himself as Mo.
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Natural Beauty And People Of The World

Rigozo

What does it mean to be naturally beautiful?

All over the world, society dictates the beauty standard for both men and women. This means that whatever you consider as beautiful is influenced by the era you live in. It is why we have periodic looks and fashion.

Lately, the trend has been for people to embrace their natural beauty. When Bruno Mars sang, “When I see your face, there’s not a thing that I would change, cause you’re amazing, just the way you are.” All over the world, people swooned. And today, everywhere you go, the campaign is, ‘You are beautiful, just the way you are.’

When Noch was keeping me company while I was editing some pictures yesterday, he suddenly said that he would like to know why I choose to stay ‘natural’ (I don’t wear makeup you see).

I told him, “I’m too lazy to make an effort to learn how to do makeup.”

He quickly added that he doesn’t mean that I’m not a natural beauty, but he feels like I could do more to enhance it with makeup. Lucky for me, this is the era that supports natural beauty, so I’m not an outcast. It is also an era that has seen a rise in-camera filters and photo editing. So it’s neither here nor there. If I can afford a stylist and makeup artist on call everyday, that’ll be fantastic. But since I can’t afford it, I also can’t stress over doing my own makeup, I have to be thankful for having a pleasant face.

Side note: I wonder if I’m the only one that has noticed that people have a lot to say about another person’s appearance. Like they really be all up in your business. Sheesh!

When I got home I started to think about how natural beauty is perceived by people all over the world and looked it up. Yay Google!

You can be naturally beautiful with no makeup

Some people define natural beauty as barefaced, with no makeup. It is looking good without any artificial element. Well, you have heard that beautiful people naturally don’t need to wear makeup. They don’t need Snapchat or IG filters to look good.

Some consider naturally beautiful people as God’s favorite children because he took extra time to create their bone structure and flawless skin. All they have to do is maintain it.

Photo by Rigozo

I have met several people that believe that wearing makeup or using filters is deceptive. So for them, a natural beauty is anybody that their beauty stands out without any embellishments.

You can be naturally beautiful with makeup

Indeed, some people cannot leave their homes without wearing a smidge of makeup. For them, they use makeup, not to hide their flaws, but to enhance their beauty. No one is running a scam here. Even though the saying goes that beauty goes skin deep, many people are only excited by what they see on the outside.

Noch said to me, “I have said it several times today that you’re beautiful. I won’t even be trying to get close to you if you were ugly. Even the Bible said that when God created the world, it was beautiful. And he put man on earth and commanded him to work it.”

“I know that you look beautiful naturally, but I just want you to use light makeup to compliment what you already have. There’s still room for improvement.”

Yeah, so you can be naturally beautiful with makeup apparently. And he’s not the only one with that opinion. As long as you wear your make-up in a way that looks natural, then you are good.

Natural products; 100% organic

Is it still natural if you are using skin care products to maintain your skin? Well apparently it is. Some in the beauty industry believe that natural beauty is using products that have ingredients that are not harmful to the skin to achieve face enhancement.

If it reads, “100% organic, or eco-friendly ” people’ll swoon. They’re the new buzzwords. You can even see it as a status symbol of the era of the enlightened. It shows that you care about what you consume and how it affects not just your health, but also the planet.😅😅

This is where you’ll also find the natural hair community. To show that you’re truly a part of the tribe, you must embrace the use of avocados, eggs, yogurt, coconut oils, and essential oils. As far as skincare goes, slather honey and goat milk, and you’ll dazzle even the sun, stay healthy and protect the planet.

Side note: Have you seen the price of organic products in the market?😪

Using augmentation to define your beauty

For some people, another way to achieve natural beauty is to augment it. Fake it until you make it?

Cosmetic/Plastic surgery is a game-changer for the beauty industry. Despite its many many risks, a lot of people around the world have adpoted this method of beautification. Why settle for an average morning look when you can wake up with perfect eyebrows and the cutest pout? Why go around looking like you were sandpapered when you can run on the beach with your cleavage threatening to spill?

After all, the slope of your nose has always been naturally graceful from birth, all it needed was a likkle bit o’tweak. You can insist that natural beauty is whatever you choose to call it even if it’s all plastic.

In Conclusion

With all the opinions about what should be considered natural beauty, I’m left to wonder which one is right or wrong.

Beauty has always factored tremendously in our society. And I’ve read all kinds of stories about how it affects people. I don’t wear makeup as a personal choice because I say that my face works for me. I would like to think that if I need to enhance my natural beauty with makeup, I’ll do it. I also think that my physical beauty does not necessarily define who I am. I give credit to my inner beauty the most, but I know that the world gravitates towards attractive people.

Let me know what your definition of natural beauty is or beauty in general?

#Day 2 of My Journal Series.

Photo credit: Pexels

My Mum Is In The Hospital: April Fools Day

As usual, I woke up today not knowing it was a new month until my brother casually said, “Happy New Month.”

I was still rubbing sleep from my eyes and mumbled, “Same to you.”

It didn’t register in my head that it was April 1st.

April fool’s day!

One should pay attention to these things you know.

But, I wasn’t prepared, so I let my guard down.

When my friend, Agei, called me at 7 am-ish today, I thought maybe he just rolled out of bed. Turns out it was the network that was bad so I couldn’t hear him.

Finally he said, “I’ll call you back….brsssssh brsshh…my mom…brsssh brsshh….okay?

I said okay and the call ended. I summarized it as, he had to pick up a call from his mum.

******

I was doing crunches and regretting every decision I made to eat double portions of breakfast. In my defense, I was hungry.

I moved to leg raises and just when my abdominal muscles couldn’t stand my assault on them any longer, my phone rang. Agie called back.

“Some of us are trying to stay fit,” I panted into the phone. I was still trying to catch my breath.

“Did you hear what I said?” Angie asked.

“What did you say?” I quipped.

“I told you I’d call you back. Mum was rushed to the hospital this morning.” His voice was low as he informed me.

If I had remembered that it was April fools day, I would have been prepared for a prank. Angie can be as immature as me when it comes to things like that.

Because I wasn’t expecting a prank, I believed him.

Can you imagine?

I stopped abusing my body in the name of exercising and focused on comforting my friend.

As it turned out, not remembering that it was April fool’s day was what saved my friendship this morning.

I didn’t say something stupid like, “You’re lying.”

His mom was in the hospital. It wasn’t a prank. Agei couldn’t be with her because he had to go to work.

He needed somebody to talk to. And I’m glad I didn’t dismiss him because it was April fools day.


My first entry for April’s writing challenge. As I said, it will be journaling, and I’mexcited that I get to start this journey.

#Day 1 of My Journal Series.