Many years ago, in the late 80s to 90s Festac Town, when kids still played outdoors in the many confined playgrounds, carparks, backyards and actually had fractured bones and wounds that squirt blood. Those years when every boy child got an elbow to the spine courtesy of their favourite bully.The early part of those years I earned the title anywhere bele face. It meant same direction the belly faces.
You see, I’m not a soccer fan today but as a kid, boy did I play! I got that name ‘anywhere bele face’ because my role in our soccer team was to run like hell with the ball at the slightest opportunity and to shoot with all my strength when I could. I was no Pius Ikedia but I could run. Sometimes I scored remarkable goals but I was also really good at escorting the ball out of play. If i could maneuver my way to face the goal I could fire shot and everyone would go wow! but if I couldn’t it was a YouTube worthy sight everytime. I didn’t know how to kick the ball using the sides of my foot, just my toes, especially my big toe. My toes were my pride and I was sometimes called Tobi by that crazy bully in block nine. If i ever find that guy today I’d show him.
If you wanted the ball in the other half fast what you had to do was pass the ball to me. But you also needed to have somebody there waiting to take the ball off my feet before I ran out the playing field and into a concrete wall.
With secondary school came my upgrade. I learned not only to use the insides and out of both feet but I could curve the ball pretty well too. I could then curve the ball from the side of the field just before running out the field and meeting the concrete wall. I became one of the finest free kick takers. My corner kicks were cool too.
Here’s where I’m headed. A friend of mine asked for some relationship advice and I didn’t know where to start. I knew the kinda guy he was.
I gave him the name ‘anywhere bele face’. As he talked the name crept in my head, so did that story. I recanted to him the above story hoping he’d get what I was trying to say. Why? Well I learned the ropes. I still hit concrete walls but I’m pretty good with the crosses and curves.
He then thought I should write about it…so here.
In every relationship patience and understanding is key. I’m no expert but I’ve been in a lot of matches and I know what works. Not so much to do:
Shut TF up and be kind.
Sit TF down and talk.
Walk TF out and clear your head.
I remembered these because of the number of troubled marriages. Husbands going all Mohammed Ali on their wives. And wives wanting to reenact ‘Mr & Mrs Smith’ at the slightest provocation.
Like me, my speed and toes, alot of men have just one way of handling their wives/girlfriends; force. No pats, no warnings, no discussions.
And like me, they fall out of the field every time. It would be nice to see more men learn to curve the ball.
And somebody please let these ladies know to never ever bottle their worries up. Talking is a beautiful thing. You bottle it all up and you just might blow up one day. And for goodness sakes tell them never to use social media sites when pissed. You won’t believe the amount of private information that end up on social media that has further damaged strained relationships that could’ve worked.
Well, I just decided to share with you what I shared with him. I’m really no expert.
I am DAYO OLUGBEMI…scribbling for GLOWVILLE.
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