Thursday, July 10, 2008

Day 365

As I stood there with my arms full, my breath a disorganized series of deep inhalations and exhalations, I pondered the journey that had gotten me here.
If life was a series of journeyed paths, then I was standing at a junction which appeared to be the indirect intersection of various roads I had travelled in the last one year.
If my feet weren’t hurting and my arms so full I might actually have laughed out loud. It was funny when I thought about it; The tiny things that I had disregarded which had all joined together to bring me here. Somewhere on the sidelines they were standing with satisfied grins watching me sort out my dilemma. I wanted to reach out and throttle every single one of them.
From the recent entrees to the pixies that were there at the very beginning.
Off course, to do that, I had to be sure when exactly that was.

I think it all started on my birthday.
My last birthday to be exact.
Last year I celebrated my birthday.
As decisions go maybe it wasn’t a particularly wise one.
I was born on the 7th of July. A most unique date if the zodiac enthusiasts and experts are to be believed. My friends certainly believed them.
When my friends realized that my birthday would land on the magical number 07/07/07 they insisted that I simply had to celebrate my birthday.
A firm man would have pointed out that numbers were a pretty silly reason to throw a party.
A broke man would have insisted that a party was a silly reason to use up the numbers in his account
Seeing as I was firmly broke I didn’t fight hard enough and went ahead to convert my cash for birthday party pictures.

My birthday isn’t the issue.
What is, is what happened because of it.
Don’t get me wrong. The party
was memorable. I got kissed six times, once by a girl, but that again is not what I want I want to talk about.
What I am talking about is the fact that I danced.
I danced.

In years to come when questions are asked, I can always reply that the first time I danced was on my birthday. Prior to that I was convinced that dancing was a ridiculous expression of fun practiced by people who just weren’t cool enough not to dance. Dancing was for sissies I announced. That had been my mantra for most of my life ever since I realized that I was caused with the marionette-like dancing moves of the British. It probably might have lasted the rest of my life had I not decided to throw a party to celebrate another anniversary of said life of mine chugging along.

I’ll never know what exactly made me start dancing.
Maybe it was because I realized that after the party I would unofficially financially be dead. Maybe it was because of the sexy girl who had her arms around me with that incredibly impossibly lithe waist.
Maybe it was because I was drunk on vodka and juice.
Whatever the reason, I thrilled Zodiac enthusiasts by proving them right.
On 07/07/07 young drunk and visibly horny Carlang finally realized his destiny and saved the world from certain Septenary A
stral destruction by simply dancing.
Enter Triumph Music.

Granted, it begun in hardly the most classic of tales (a man’s accidental drunken redemption of Mankind is hardly the stuff of Homers Iliad.) but once it started it grew very quickly. All of a sudden I found myself dancing. True I was no Terpsichore, my waist refused to bend as lovely as the siren that teased me out of my cave, but with enough practice I could do the
Yahooze and a couple other interesting shuffles. I was growing. A late bloomer, I was determined to get the hang of it. One day, I was determined; I would become a good dancer.
Birthdays are accepted landmark occasions.
Like most people, I found myself making attendant resolutions whenever I approached another one. Last year was no different. I promised myself that I would start writing again. I hadn’t done anything serious for the last four years. Apart from two weak attempts at writing a short story, one of which was a detailed exploits of Jack and Jill’s walk up the Hill, I really didn’t have much to show where writing was concerned.
The morning following my birthday, I decided, midst a blinding headache from a hangover, that I would once again begin to write. Sitting down at the desk, as I stared at the blurred page in front of me I came to another decision. I would begin writing the next day. Hopefully by then I would be able to see more clearly and my fingers wouldn’t shake so much.
To help me fulfill my resolution I decided on doing something drastic and supporting. Something that people suggested would greatly help my writing.
I joined Blogville.
And so it was that last week I contemplated the anniversaries before me.
Alongside my birthday I would be celebrating a year of dancing.
A year of blogging. However irregular that
might have been.
And a year since I had gotten drunk.

Too be sure it was hardly the making of a triumphant list, the like of which you might have found in the diaries of ,say, Christopher Columbus--“Dear Diary, today I found America. God help us all.”—but that didn’t really bother me. What was important was the fact that I had actually kept some resolutions for a year despite the turbulence that had come my way.

Besides, if you were going to make an argument out of it, Christopher Columbus didn’t set out to find America. He stumbled on it by accident. I didn’t stumble on an Anniversary of Blogging. I actually worked for it. Keeping a journal was hard work. An electronic journal that is, not the silly little leather book Christopher had to show for 3 years in open seas.
Comparing me to Columbus was terribly unfair.
He had a ship didn’t he?

“What are you doing?” Jeff asked me walking into the room.
Jeff and I had a curious alliance. I was born on the 7th and he on the 8th. We came up with the theory that since our birthdays fell within a 24 hour radius we were kinda born on the same day.
The look on peoples faces whenever we announced our theories suggested that our way of thinking was technically flawed but we children of the 7½ natal day clan are never were one to consider the opinions of others.
“Making a list.” I announced. “It contains all my resolutions I’ve managed to keep in the last one year since my last birthday. My list of triumphs you could say.”
“Have you started on the list of failures.” Jeff asked.
“No.” I said guardedly. “My birthday’s coming up soon. I’d like to be depressed after and not before.”
Jeff laughed at me.
“Whatever happens,” He began walking away “Make sure you add the Spanish chick to your list of failures.”
“Failures?” I said in shock. “Why would you say that? I only met her 5 days ago.”
“You aint done nothing bout it hombre. That counts as a failure in my book!!” He repeated still laughing.
“I’m not failing you idiot. I’m thinking up a plan.”I said quietly.
“Right. Let me know how that goes in another year.” Jeff said still walking away. His head shook from side to side with laughter.
I yelled at his retreating form. “Christopher Columbus cheated. He had a ship”.

Spanish chick.
That was what Jeff had taken to calling our new friend, Andromeda.
In the end coming clean hadn’t been difficult.
Andromeda had laughed when I told her I wasn’t really a doctor but instead some physics graduate who had fallen for the physics behind her beauty despite her attempts to doctor them.

If relationships were anything like the play acts that most novels today portrayed them to be, then I was well past the introduction. We had gone by the first two chapters. The heady meeting of two single people. I was somewhere between chapter 3 and chapter 6. The sustenance of intrigue between said heady members.

I was supposed to see Spanish chick come the weekend.
A hang out she had called it. The way she saw it I owed her a lengthy debriefing of who I really was. I had seen her hospital file. She was demanding her pound of flesh and being very greedy about it. What she wanted was a date come Saturday. She left the decision of where to me.
I sensed that my choice would be the deciding factor of how this symphony of ours would end. A roaring finale of triumph or the sad ending of mistakes repatriation found.
Was the final chapter of our tale going to be one of Romeo and Juliet.
Or something more delightful, like my retold comedy of Jack and Jill.

As any man who has had the misfortune of impersonating a doctor would know, you really want to get the second meeting right. I was trying hard to think of some place terribly irregular to have a date and yet delightfully fun. I stared at my listed list of triumphs in frustration. Forget my anniversary of dancing where did one take a Nigerian girl who spoke English and Spanish and still had the delightful hips of a Nigerian?

The answer was quick as it was surprising.

“You’re crazy.” Spanish chick said laughing at me.

“I get that from time to time.” I replied with a silly smile on my face.

“ This is terrible.” She said giggling. “ I’m never going to be good at this.”

“We’ll see.” I said still with the same smile.

We stood together in the middle of the room, my hand gently rested on her firm hip. Her hand was on my shoulder. She was playing out some tune with her fingers.

At our side the dance instructor was yelling out instructions at us and the rest of the class.

“Salsa is all about rhythm. Tap. One two three. Tap. One two three.”
He did a demonstration. An incredible blur of motion with his feet that left all of us newbie dancers with jealousy and dread. Still dancing to the music, he grabbed a large lady who belied her size by moving easily across the room with him sensually swinging her hips as she did. “Rhythm.” The instructor yelled again.
Show off.
Beside me Andromeda punched me.
“You’re crazy you know. What in the world made you invite me for Salsa lessons? How did you know I would come?”
I shrugged.
“I didn’t. But I hoped you would. It would have been terrible if I had arrived alone. Everyone else has a partner. I would have had to dance with him.” I said pointing out the instructor.
She smiled at me. Her eyes said a million things. They all sounded good.
“Happy Birthday.” She said.
“Don’t jinx it. It’s not till Monday.” I pointed out.
“Again.” The instructor yelled from across the room. Asking us to resume the forward and back shuffles that we had been doing for the last one hour since we go there.

And so I stood there with my arms full, my breath a disorganized series of deep inhalations and exhalations, and pondered the journey that had gotten me here.
Last year I had started dancing.
This year I was beginning Salsa. The difference was slight but progress had been made.
Thinking of progress, I looked into the bewitching eyes of Andromeda and inhaled the soft musk of her perfume. She had her hair in tiny braids. Black laced with
touches of violet. It added a hint of mysticism to her. In my arms she looked even lovelier than I remembered.

Her eyes were filled with mischief and her lips looked even more beautiful when she laughed after stepping on my toes for the 134th time. As we murdered our first attempt at Salsa, I thought of all my triumphs thus far and wondered what I would be celebrating come the next birthday.

Life was an interesting tale. I stared at her lips. They were still trapped in her enchanting smile.
It was worth the read just to see what happened next.


UndaCovaSista said...

it's me! it's me!! it's me!!! I am the one!!!!!!!!!!!

bumight said...

I remember ur post about dancing, cant believe its already a year! u still didnt tell me if the bedwetting returned, lol!

Happy Birthday in arrears, was going to say it on fb (oops!) Happy birthday sha!, which prompts the next question: where is the cake?

UndaCovaSista said...

So you bit the bullet with Adromeda then? Good on ya! Fortune favours the brave...

Jaja said...

Mighty progress {even if its only in the mind} Salsa for someone who thought any kindof dance was sissy

.. happy bithday in arrears.. We are only days apart

You go come my party?

mizchif said...

So u finally hooked up with d babe! Good for u!
And salsa... you do have a very creative mind.
My sis told me she just started taking salsa classes sumwhere in VI, wish i had time to look for a class ard here.

Happy Birthday once again!

fantasy queen said...

you're joking, my birthday is 24 hrs before oyurs thus me and you were born on the same day, we could include jeff too if you insist, we'll call ourselves triplets.

happy belated birthday carl!

shalewa said...

happy u went on a date?thank god u didn't flop!
salsa-1st time i heard it,thot it was food.What is it with salsa?even my sister is taking classes.does it make u smarter?lol
nwayz,have fun.

shalewa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charizard said...

Happy Birthday dude...mehn...are u telling me u met this andromeda babe in 9ja?

Mehn I can like to find ur zones o...

Free-flowing Florida said...

happy birthday n arrears, love!!!! this ur date with dis spanish girl is looking promising o.

N.I.M.M.O said...

'Alongside my birthday I would be celebrating a year of dancing. A year of blogging. However irregular that might have been. And a year since I had gotten drunk.'
... So it was 365 days of everything. Happy birthday; Happy Blogday(?); happy Dance Day; Happy Drunk Day.. all in arrears. LOL.

Hmmmm seems this thing with Andromeda will be serious after all. Maybe next July we'll be saying Happy Andromeday or better still.... ...

... Happy Married Life!

Jaycee said...

At least you

Naapali said...

Happy Anniversaries. Work beckons so I have not digested this piece but I shall return.

Pray tell what the other kisses were?

" I got kissed six times, once by a girl, but that again is not what I want I want to talk about. "

Naapali said...

In my mind I hear Shakira boasting about how her hips don't lie as you and Andromeda (she had to be named after a galaxy didn't she?) sashay across the dance floor.

Somewhere in a dark and seedy bar, Stolich drains the last drops out of a bottle of Lithuanian Vodka and hurls her glass at the wall as she mourns the loss of Carlang. That guy she loved and teased for so long.

NigerianDramaQueen said...

I love the randomness of this piece. From a birthday to a blogville anniversary, to dancing, to tales of the spanish chick-you were able to weave unrelated, yet related subject matters.
*Happy Belated Birthday!*
UMMMM who were the other kisses from, if one was from a girl?! Do tell!

Shubby Doo said...

don't you mean 366 days...leap year in 2008.

lol@ salsa...good choice

Buttercup said...

happy belated birthday!

congrats on celebratin one year of dancin n bloggin..n gettin

hmmm choice!

Lighty 'neferet' Kopearl said...

happy belated luv. awww salsa's got ur looking @ her lips huh????

u see, progress already. thatz the spirit boy.

and like u said who knows wot u'lld be telling jeff come next year.

theicequeen said...

awwwwwh! Carlang danced!!! lol..and Salsa too?..i remember the salsa lessons i wasnt bad at all, but i spent most of the time trying not to laugh at the people doing Nazi style marching and callin it dancin..:P

good to know you had fun on your buffdai...AND that you asked Spanish chick out......

Carlang said...

How do you so it?

There has to be something i'm missing.
I couldnt even make it first on my blog...

The bedwetting...

Thanks for the birthday wishes.
I made a wish as i blew out the cake.
We need to meet for it to come true...

Fortune favours the brave who boldly bite the bullet?
There are old soilders and there are bold soldiers.
There are no old bold soldiers..

I suppose vex for you.
I don bring out my drinking license ready for serious party,
Wetin happen?
Scholastica throw surprise night party for 2?

@Fantasy Queen:
Stolich was also born a day after me.

If we;re triplets then doesnt it mean i cant have fantasies about you anymore?
It being incest and all?

If it helps..
Salsa is also the name of a meal.
So yo u werent totally wrong.
What is it with Salsa?
It's tricky.

One form gives Calories.
And the other burns it...

Wetin you no mean?
No be you dey lag?
Visit Shoprite.
Go Palms.
Stand for five minutes.
Pick one!

How did the wedding thingy go?
i'M really happy for you , although this means now i am never going to get married.
You were the ONe
Boo Hoo!!!

I danced..
At least..

Thanks bro.
Galaxy, greek heroine..I had to come up with something!
Howz work coming on.
With all this blogging i sometimes forget this isntwhat we do...

Dont you wish you knew...
Your wishes just made my birthday a little bit more special.
However belated the feelings are.
Wedding ke?
Wetin i do you now?

@Shubby doo:
366 days you say.
We children of the 7 and half clan do not give much attnetion to peoples opinons...

Might have been a good choice.
But it;s a hrd one.
No one mentioned Salsa is all about insane leg work and mucho hip swiinging!!!

Thank you.
So you think Salsa is sexy?
That's the second thing we have in common.

My dear Lighty,
Where have you been?
Hope all is well...

@ The icequeen:
You mean you;re not supposed to laugh?
Why didnt anyone tell me?????

Jaja said...

No vex... I just sent u a mail. My friends ceased the whole weekend from me. I didnt see the message early.

Scholarstica claimed her hours. that girl!

Ms Sula said...

Happy Belated Birthday Carlang!

And I can only hope to be reading you next year, when you announce us your decision to compete in a Ballroom Dancing Competition with Andromeda aka Spanish chick!


Btw, very clever idea, this salsa dance class!

wavemasta said...

Carlang, you fashied ur old friend abi? Anyways hope u saw the bday msg I dropped for you...

ablackjamesbond said...

Happy anniversaries! Glad u r proving Jeff wrong on Andromeda.

So where the party at?

Allied said...

Happy Belated Birthday.

Na wa oh, You and Andromeda.... i was saying the other day that Cupid should be fired but i see now that there are still arrows left in his quiver.

Buttercup said...

hmmm the 2nd thing we hav in common...n still countin...