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The Man Who Lived A Million Years

Oh Yes! I drink alcohol and I have been drinking it since I was a child. Oh yes! You’re not surprised because I’m not, my beautiful Iya Toyin had a brother (Uncle Ojo aka Olori Awo) who loves Ódéku and I’ve been kissing his glass of the dark pint since I was sitting in his laps. My mum had a restaurant and Beer was naturally a part of the plan for customers. I remember going the whole yard to buy crates of Beer to service my area uncles like Uncle Taiwo, Uncle Adedayo the wonderful husband of my Eunice aka Baba Iyanu (God Bless his beautiful soul, I miss him every day), Baba Gbemisola who can’t stop quoting Habakkuk to justify his drinking and promiscuous lifestyle and many more uncle’s that taught me life and showed me love beyond a bottle of the dark ale.

I can never forget Uncle Paul Aqua (I still miss him) and I’m still looking everywhere for his son Kodjo… he practically took his own life with addiction and recklessness when his wife “Auntie Toyin” died and I still can’t forgive him for loving us less than he loved her; (me, Kodjo, TBoy, Kemi, Doctor, Yemisi, Arewa) because he loved his wife too much. “I miss you uncle Paul and I love you eternally but you could have lived longer and see me become a man.” I got my Ghanaian identity from Uncle Paul, not his drinking habit and I still buy Donkunu, Banku and Kenke on the roadside anytime I’m anywhere it is sold. Palmwine was natural and alcohol was just a thing so I lived with it and drank. It was like Beer in a German’s blood stream. I was never a drunkard but I drink when it’s okay to drink a pint atleast.

I remember my beautiful Iya Toyin whacking her own Oluwatoyin silly for hanging out with LogoPee and getting drunk on Star (the small bottles of those years) for no sensible reason because alcohol wasn’t the trouble, getting drunk was it and I stayed away from getting drunk until I was about 21yrs old successfully. I got drunk in 2007 for the time and I’ll be in my 33rd Year on earth by 17th of April. I was already running solo by 21 so my mama never got to know about it. My life has been on my terms for a long time and only God can judge me.

This is not about getting drunk, it’s about surviving 4 ghastly motor accident and I wasn’t even a mile near alcohol when it all happened and people still blamed alcohol for it. I was driving just one out of four times so you can imagine alcohols fault in the equation.

On 10/03/2009, I had an accident that got my mouth and my right leg and I wasn’t even the driver so there was no way no man can blame alcohol for the events that led to it. Sometimes in 2010, I was riding a bicycle in Hadejia, Jigawa State and a car came in hard from behind, knocking out a lone walker on the street beside me and the world around was asking ” who is your God because we want to know Him/Her” and I couldn’t explain. I was actually on my way to NCCF fellowship at St. James Anglican Church on Emir Road when it happened, all I did was ride away from the scene, thanking God all the way. Then it was 29/12/2015 and armed robbers chased until a trailer came crushing with 16tyres (maybe more) and still I rose from the ruins and alcohol was not in question because there was fuel scarcity and I was fuel hunting to make it to my duty post the next morning as early as 6:00am. And then it was sometimes early this year 2017 and I had two bottles of the dark ale as at 6:00pm at a colleague’s dad burial, I drove my colleague attended with me back home from the event and by 12:00am; more than 6hours later, another trailer took the lanes from me in Maryland, Lagos and everybody felt/assumed alcohol was responsible for the accident that took my mouth and consciousness away? I got my smile and consciousness back just hours after but I said a whole lot of shit between, majorly protecting the ones I love from my woes. I was told I kept telling them not to call Oluseyi Asurf because he was sick and I was screaming Samson and Abiodun’s name (Abiodun boy and girl). I hate how much I love these guys but I love them still.

Guys Abeg! Make we stop the joke! Alcohol is a bastard but that nigga is not responsible for my bad broken mouth and scared face. Let’s. Thank Eledunmare adaniwaye that preserved me for keeping it simple first and not blame the blameless alcohol for what happened. Even if it was alcohol, I wasn’t force-fed, alcohol is innocent. My accidents were human errors and I was only driving one out of the four times it happened. People are quick to hold the intangible responsible for mishaps, quick to blame the victim for his predicament and ready to point fingers when things go wrong instead of taking responsibility and helping to solve a problem or save a life.

I’m grateful for being alive and alcohol is not responsible for my actions or reactions dead or alive. Grace or Mercy or whichever is applicable kept me and I’m grateful. I’ve got sons and daughters in my loins and I’m looking forward to holding them with those who love my broken jaw, scarred face and beautiful smile. My lips are still 100% for kisses and a thousand % for love.

People have been asking, “how did you come out of this alive” but the answer is simple, I am alive, I came out and how I did it is none of my business.

This piece is one out of the many to come before my birthday.

I’m Abidemi Babaolowo Oderinlo