Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Spring Fling Giveaway Hop - International

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Hey, and welcome to the Spring Fling hop hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and Eve's Fan Garden. I am an author of romance novels and I will be giving away to the lucky winner, a $10 Amazon Gift Card and an eBook of my first novel, A Heart to Mend. The synopsis of AHTM...

Gladys moves to live with an estranged aunt in Lagos and to continue her search for a job. Before long she lands the job of her dreams with the foremost oil company in the city and makes several new friends. She also gradually resolves the mystery of why her aunt previously cut all ties with their family. But the best part about her new life is meeting Edward Bestman.

Edward is good-looking, super rich but emotionally scarred. Gladys gets him to see that she loves him and that together they can surmount all their differences. However, when they return from a romantic trip abroad, they find that some unnamed people are about to take over his business empire. Edward's past has come back to haunt both of them.

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Solomon Akiyesi Apologizes, Tells His Own Side of the Story

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There is the saying that for every story, scandal, quarell, or disagreement, there is usually at least three sides, this side, that side, and the truth. I will say that in this Akiyesi sage, there may be up to 5 sides or more. Read here, here, and here.

For those following the story, the church spoke for Uloma, the foiled wife to be. Some have heard from Ezinne, the first wife, others from Lillian, the second wife, Now Solomon after some theatrics on Facebook, has granted a more comprehensive article to Sun News. He writes;

Over the last one week, hell has been let loose on me.

I’ve not only suffered verbal attacks, but also vituperations and near fisticuffs, all because of another futile attempt of mine at my journey towards achieving that which I honestly and passionately desire – a peaceful home and family. Social network sites and blogs have been awash with how I left Lilian, my “pregnant” wife, to marry Uloma, my Lagos “mistress” whom they also claimed was pregnant for me. Nothing can be farther from the truth.

Only a mad or cursed man would simply leave his pregnant wife and elope with another one. And lest I forget, I urge you, as you read this, to have an open mind to listen to that which is true instead of taking sides and jumping into wicked conclusions with its attendant wicked insults and uncouth commentaries about how Solomon is running his life and how he is not. I’m not asking for pity or trying to buy anybody’s love at this time.

This is my life. If at my age I don’t know what I want, then I may just remain the dumb ass that I’ve been called over and over again. I don’t think I need anyone to give me any lecturing on how I should exercise my privileges.

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Kim and Kanye Ask For Charity Donations Instead of Baby Gifts

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Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are expecting their first child this July and with speculations flying about the kinds of gifts the baby should expect, the couple have made the decision not to have a gift registry. They are telling friends not to buy them baby gifts. Instead, Kim and Kanye are reported to be requesting that any donations be made to the Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. The hospital has already corroborated this news and thanked the couple in a statement;

"Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago would like to extend its sincerest gratitude to Kim Kardashian and Kayne West for their thoughtfulness and support of the hospital. We wish them all the best in the upcoming arrival of their baby. Funds donated on behalf of Kardashian and West will be directed to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Fund which will help care for the most critically-ill babies and their families."

So to Kim's diehard fans - Berry, I see you :) - don't give or buy gifts for any baby registries bearing the Kimnye name, they are definitely fake.

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Dear Myne - How Can I Improve my Marital Sex Life?

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Dear Myne, it's about my husband, no he's not unfaithful but I fear he prefers other women to me.I don't hate my body, but I do have self image concerns that do affect our marriage bed and make it hard for me to really loosen up and let go, my husband has some issues that really hurt me. I bothers me that he loves TV shows with sex and nudity. I have addressed them to him, but he denies them and refuses to change.

It is hard for me to accept that he finds my baby-worn body and scarred face attractive and sexy when he has no problem watching the naked women in Game of Thrones and other such mainstream videos. He says he does find me attractive, but couple that with his rarely initiating sex in bed and even more rarely taking the time and effort to bring me to climax and I feel downright horrible.

I do most of the initiating. I do most of the work. I've never refused him, but I've been refused plenty. I have gone to elders in the church and nothing changes because mainstream movies aren't offically porn and thus it's not a sin issue, but a heart issue I have to wait on God to deal with.

In the meantime, I'm sick of over a decade of dealing with this and while I still will not refuse my husband, I really don't want to put the effort into our sex life anymore. I feel so horrible now, I have a hard time looking into my husband's eyes.

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So Physical Touch is not so Important?

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Last week I set up the poll asking what people's love language was, and it turns out physical touch was one of the bottom two, and very far from the top, 12 votes to quality time, which had 42 votes. I can say I am a bit surprised. Atala thinks maybe it's because majority of my readers and the poll respondents are women, and probably physical touch is not so important to women.

I'm not so sure about that. Personally, physical touch ranks third for what I want to receive, and second to what I want to give. I was quite surprised at how poorly it did in this poll, at a point, it was at the bottom of the poll with just two votes.

My dear readers, both men and women, do you think women discount physical touch so much? I am comparing this to the knowledge that for a lot of men, physical touch is either number one or two on their priority. Could this be a problem between couples? Or was there a problem with my poll?

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The Wife Diaries - Episode Five

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“You could start from the beginning.” I urged her quietly.

“You know us Nigerians, everything is black and white. You’re either bad or good, and we don’t allow room for anything else.” She looked up and wiped her face. “I guess I’m bad here, in my own little nollywood movie. I’m the bad girl, the harlot, the whore.”

She laughed a little, which quickly became a cry “I’m a mess girl, a big mess..I thought this was over, but it never was... I’ve been pretending this whole time.”

“Pretending?”

“Mm-hmm.” she nodded, “remember that time Uncle Sunny was staying at the house?”

I nodded, grimacing. “What about that devil?”

My hackles began to rise. This was someone that had hurt Nkem, and till this day I was ready to beat the lights out of him if I ever laid eyes on him. Unfortunately he died five years ago, still I would dig up his body and kill him again if I could.

“I tried blanking that memory out and telling myself it didn’t happen over these years but, it’s affecting me! It always affected me.” She held my hand tighter as she continued.

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Egg Noodles Pasta With Grilled Salmon

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Served with Cucumber
This is one of those meals you call a concoction. I had pasta, I had some cheese and some mushroom and I just threw them together. It tasted so wonderful I simply had to share. This post is just a menu idea, recipe coming soon :)
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Monday, April 29, 2013

Between Boston and Boko Haram

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I live in America, I am Nigerian. Chimamanda called it this thing around an immigrant/emigrant's neck, and it manifests in different ways. This blog has a focus on relationships, but I also try to keep updated on politics and current affairs, and I report some of them here. I wrote a several pieces on the Boston bombings here, it was scary, it was closer to home, and the news was full with it.

A few days later, I heard of the over hundred people killed north of Maiduguri and followed as the government and JTF bandied words like over-exaggerated around about the number of people the red cross and eye witnesses reported dead. But there was just a couple of articles on the Nigerian newspaper apps I have on my phone, and by the next day, other news has taken the front page. I also moved on.

This article on the Daily Beast got me thinking, though it is directed at American, I think maybe we Nigerians, and can I say those living in the country especially, have a lot to ponder on. Are Nigerians second class citizens in their own country where local papers give more column inches to American news than to home grown incidents? Food for thought.

Pity Boston, Ignore Nigeria: The Limits of Compassion by Janine di Giovanni

No one would ever argue that the bombing in Boston was not horrific. But there was something uncomfortable in the obsessive global news coverage, of the bottleneck of journalists flying into Logan Airport struggling to find the smallest remnant of some new detail to report. Was it the suggestion, subtly transmitted, that America is the center of the universe?

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10 Facts About Singles and Couples in America

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Via Women's Health

Whether you’re single, dating, or hitched, it’s normal to be curious about everyone else’s love lives. Are you having enough sex? Is your communication off? Are you being too picky? Luckily, Match.com released the latest findings from the third annual Singles In America study, and the results are fascinating! They surveyed over 5,000 singles and 1,000 married people on everything from orgasms to dating deal breakers. Some results are as follows;

Women Snoop…A Lot
If you already know your date’s education and work history before you get to the restaurant, you’re not alone. 48% of single women look someone up on Facebook before a first date. Hey, you have to make sure you’re not getting Catfish-ed, right?

Sex Doesn’t End After Marriage
Worried about your sex life plummeting after you tie the knot? Don’t worry, 41% of married couples had sex at least once a week last year. And better yet: Married women think about sex even more often than single women.

Money Troubles Ruin Your Mojo
A bad credit score can screw up more than just your financial future—it can mess with your love life. 65% of singles wouldn’t date someone who was over $5,000 in debt. Hopefully, that’s not something you’d reveal on a first date, anyway.

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Being Thankful While Waiting to be Parents

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Seeing the picture above recently reminded me of the fact that we have been waiting to be parents for a couple of years now, and while currently working actively towards getting a child into our life, we have been taking it step by step, not stressing over it, and thankful for what we do have and share.

Some months ago we determined to start the process of foster care and adoption and attended the relevant training we needed to put us in a frame of mind to have a child or children in our home.

Some say it is easier to do things when you're younger, like getting married or having children. I'm not talking about being physically able to do either, but about the mental state required to do these things. Now, it's not that doing those things are easier at that stage, just that when you're younger, you don't overthink these things. This could be a bad thing, as some people make mistakes, but it could also be good if you're wise and luck is on your side, or you keep educating yourself and growing together, with your husband and with your children.

When you're older, you're definitely wiser, and you may have learned from other people's experiences all that could go wrong. You analyse and weight each decision minutely before you go ahead. The training we had were packed with resources to educate and inform aspiring foster and adoptive parents, and develop our parenting skills.

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Is Omar Borkan Al Gala That Handsome?

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When I used to read Mills and Boon, a description of an Arab sheikh who looked like this would have got me swooning at the knees along with the usually blond and blue-eyed heroine. Now, I hear all the buzz, I look at the pictures, and I'm like, what? Who is with me?

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Sign Fireman Gets Married - Wedding Pictures

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Sign Fireman is like a friend of this blog though since my post on his style of publicity using hot girls in Lagos [see post] went viral, and his PR people left his rebuttal on this blog. Well, he got married over the weekend. I wish him and his wife all the best for their married life.

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Kim Wonder - How You Dey [Music Video Romance]

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Kim Wonder is a South Africa based Nigerian musician. She recently released the official video for her single “How You dey”. The video was shot in Johannesburg, and highlights the essence of humanity, love and kindness even to strangers. It's a lovely video and the set kind of reminds me of Jill Scott's A Long Walk.
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Sunday, April 28, 2013

Dear Myne - My Husband Flaunts His Unfaithfulness

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Myne, making the man who is unfaithful answerable only to his God and conscience could just be the only way for one to have peace and move on in life. But it can be so terrible when your hubby thinks you are the cheating partner and has decided to go all out to punish you by flaunting his escapades and denying you sex.

But all the same you still keep a straight face as if all is well.

Please, in this situation what should the woman do when in all fairness she has never ever defiled her matrimonial bed. Reactions from readers will be appreciated.

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Inspiring Quotes For You

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The Wife Diaries - Episode Four

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“Nkem, what’s going on? it’s 3 am in the morning. Is everything okay?” I got up from the bed and was now pacing the room.

“I’ll tell you when I get there, please. I..I can’t talk right now,” she hiccuped.

“Is Nick with you?”

“No..”

“Okay, I’ll tell them to open the gate for you.”

At this my husband sat up quickly from bed and looked at me with confusion written all over his face.

“She’s coming here?” He asked as soon as I hung up.

“Yeah. She was crying and Nick’s not with her.”

“Um…okay…so how long is she staying for?”

“I don’t know! I couldn’t ask her that, she was crying!” I snapped at him. I was a little taken back by his question, you’d think he would be more concerned about her welfare than how long she was staying with us.

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Saturday, April 27, 2013

Is the Other Woman Sometimes Needed?

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By Mgcini Nyoni

A friend of mine – a female friend, one day told a stunned group of colleagues that the ‘small house’ (a married man’s girlfriend), actually strengthens marriages, contrary to popular belief that ‘small houses’ are home wreckers. She gave three reasons for her conclusions:

One: If a good man cheats, he compensates for his bad deed by treating his wife extremely well; a descending wife will realise that this is the time to put in all the requests and they will all be fulfilled. A lot of people will question why I am saying, if a good man cheats when almost everyone is agreed that a man who cheats on his wife is a bad man: The definition of a good man goes beyond whether he cheats or not and in most cases whether he cheats or not does not even factor into his qualification of good or bad.

The cheating moments in a man’s life provides a stimulus that is needed to bring excitement and happiness to a marriage that had reached a boring patch. It is however important to note that the ‘cheating moment’ magic only works in the hands of ‘good men’; men who know that the wife always comes first and who make it clear to the small house that she will always be second best. Take a deep breath and read again; the theory is not as crazy as you think.

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Pregnancy and You - Where is the Man?

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I was ohhing and ahhing over a picture of Titi Oyinsan on the cover of Pregnancy and You Magazine and was doubly impressed when I realized in the full article that it was a photo shoot with her husband, fellow radio presenter, Gbemileke Oyinsan. They've had their twins now [see pictures], so the pictures are probably a few months old.

The magazine photo shoot and cover article reminded me of a discussion over on Ginger's blog on whether pregnancy was an excuse for men cheating on their wives. Of course it's not, but it was noted how sometimes women make it easier for such men by excluding them from the whole process of pregnancy, birth and parenting. I used the example of baby showers, which in my experience is female exclusive. For that reason, I really appreciated this magazine for giving Gbemi the opportunity to shine as well, even if they didn't put him on the cover.

See more pictures below...

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Movie Review - Place Beyond the Pines

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The Place Beyond the Pines is a mid-range indie movie in the sense that it had some good actors though limited cinema release. The movie was essentially three movies in one; the first part was about Luke (played by Ryan Gosling), a stunt performer at a travelling circus who finds that he has fathered a son. This discovery radically alters his life's trajectory, turning him from vagrant to criminal, and it ultimately sets him up for a dramatic encounter with Avery, a young police officer who tries to capture him when he tries to evade arrest after a robbery gone horribly wrong.

The second part of the movie centers around Avery, and how he deals with the fallout of the encounter with Luke, while the last part fast-forwards to fifteen years after the second part, and the focus this time is on the children of Luke and Avery, who start up an unbalanced friendship, not knowing anything about the history between their fathers.

Atala's Review - I had heard quite a few good things about this movie before it came out, so I was quite looking forward to watching. However, I wasn't sure whether it would be shown in the cinemas in our area, because it was billed as kind of 'indie', and we don't usually get those shown. But the Movie God must have been smiling on me, because it just so happened that it was showing at our local cinema.

I found the first part of the movie the most touching and engaging. Sure, Luke goes off the rails and embarks on a life of crime (not that there was far to go, since he already lived life on the margins). But at his heart, he is driven to do this by a desire to become more of a father to the son he didn't know he had; it's as though seeing his son has made him realise how important it is to be a father.

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Date Night at the Africa Movie Academy Awards AMAA

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Uche and Habiba Ogbu


The Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) took place at the Glory Hall Cultural Centre, Yenagoa, Bayelsa last weekend, and as usual some people decided to step out on the red carpet with their significant others, friends or colleagues.

Read Charles Novia's review of the event here.


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Friday, April 26, 2013

Dear Myne - I don't Know the Man I Married

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Dear Myne, This is the hardest thing I've ever had to do. I'm by nature a very private person especially when it comes to my relationship with my husband. But due to recent events and my ensuing confusion, I've decided to seek advice anonymously. I'm pouring it all out so please forgive the epistle.

I dated my husband for 5 years and got married less than 2 years ago. For about half the time we dated, we were in different states/countries, but the relationship endured. I have always had very intense feelings for my husband and I believed it was the same vice versa. He is very caring and concerned about my well-being. As far as I knew, we don't joke with our love for each other.

As at the time I started dating him, I knew he had a past with the ladies and had acquired a reputation as a womaniser but he somehow convinced me that the phase had passed. According to him, he had gotten the urges out of his system. I believed him. I was a virgin when we met and remained so till some months to our wedding.

I have always had a phobia for being in an unfaithful relationship due to past experiences with ex-boyfriends. Through our five year courtship, there were two incidents when I was sure he was cheating on me. On both occasions, he spun me such believable tales and I also somehow believed my paranoia was at work.

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Curiosity on Mars Draws Naughty Pictures

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Caption This

NASA recently published pictures from Curiosity's track patterns, and the Mars rover appears to have traced out a very penis-like design on the dusty surface of the alien planet, complete with balls, lol...

According to HuffPo, the "car-sized rover landed on Mars last August with a mandate to explore the planet and analyze whether or not Mars could have supported life forms. Curiosity is controlled by a team of NASA engineers, who send two sets of instructions to the exploratory craft each day."

If you ask me, I don't think Curiosity made that pattern by mistake, my guess is those engineers are being very naughty :)

So who can best caption the picture?

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Charles Novia Reviews The African Movie Academy Awards

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"Charles, you know you have to write a review about this year’s AMAA or you will be seen as biased, not after you have reviewed the AMVCA" a prominent Film Maker said to me as we arrived Yenogoa by road.

I had already made up my mind weeks before to do such, even if I was in a somewhat precarious position; my movie ‘Alan Poza’ was nominated in two categories . If we didn’t win anything ( and eventually we didn’t) some might misconstrue my review as ‘sour grapes’ rather than the honest and unbiased opinion I have chosen to write.

‘Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn’, says Clark Gable in the movie ‘Gone with the Wind’ and I align with his phrase.

With all sense of propriety, I will not in anyway compare the two awards. That is left for the viewers and readers to do but I will only make appropriate objective commentaries as witnessed by me.

The show started with a group of dancers who gave a good account of themselves in their choreography of the AMAA theme song. The dancers captured the essence of Africa in their dance and the theme song itself had a pulsating multi-African feel to the mix. This was followed by a brief reel of late Nollywood actors who passed on in the last year.

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Is This Love? Olivia Pope and Fitz

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Shonda Rhimes and her team of writers will not kill me over Olivia Pope and her love affair with the president. This their love nwantiti, I just can't! Hear it from the lovebirds themselves...

OLIVIA: I don't want to talk to you. I'm never gonna be ready to talk to you, so why don't you just --
FITZ: I love you.
OLIVIA: - stop saying that. You're having me followed, watched. There are cameras in my apartment. That's not love.
FITZ: You have to understand. Defiance changed everything for me. Everything...You don't fix me! You don't handle me! THAT is not love, that's control. I asked you to be a team. We should've been a team. It should've been me and you, but instead it was you and Verna and Cyrus and Hollis and Mellie. I am angry that you fixed the election, but I am even angrier that you thought you were fixing me.
OLIVIA: You're angry ... then why are you here?
FITZ: I'm here because I love you.

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Why I Watch Law and Order: SVU

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One of my favorite shows on TV is Law and Order SVU, and the biggest reason I respect them is the way they blend education, information and entertainment. Their last episode was titled Girl Dishonered and it shone the spotlight on rape in college campuses around the United States. As much as the episode was scripted, it was also real. No other show is able to do that.

Jezebel had a compilation of the plot points in last night's SVU episode and the corresponding real life events on which they were based.
SVU: Lindsay is gang-raped by three frat guys who later claim she's crying rape because she's embarrassed about her slutty behavior.

Real Life: Four University of Montana football players allegedly gang-raped a drunk female student; charges were dropped because it was unclear whether she was "just embarrassed" about what happened.

SVU: Lindsay Snapchats her rapist the next day, leading students and administrative officials to doubt that she was actually raped.

Real Life: Woman allegedly raped by Mizzou basketball player Michael Dixon Jr. texts him the next day, leading students, officials and cops to doubt that she was actually raped.

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Kate Middleton in Blue - Is it a Boy?

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Just joking. She looks good though. I know I shouldn't, but I can't help comparing her with Kim Kardashian who looks much bigger. See more pictures below :)

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Adventures of a Miss!! Episode 10

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Bolaji: “Please promise me you’ll listen before fighting me, Toke, please.” He looks sincere but this is not the time to be deceived because of looks. I want to hear what he has to say and I just hope he’s not getting ready to tell me a load of bull crap.

Me: “Bolaji I said I am listening” I emphasized the listening so he knows all I want to proceed from his mouth is an explanation for why he was kissing Zainab. “I promise I won’t fight you, I’ll only listen but you better be ready to answer any subsequent questions I may have”. I walk over the bar stools that lead into the kitchen and take a seat.

Bolaji: “Ok, Zainab and I met 8 years ago in London; it was during my final year in Uni. We met at a club you know, her friend was dating a good friend of mine at the time and it was his birthday. I bought her a couple of drinks and the short story is that we had sex that night and it continued for about 6 months until I moved back to Nigeria after graduation.

We weren’t dating, as a matter of fact I think she had someone she was talking to at the time, but with us it was strictly for the physical. I had no intention of dating her; as a matter of fact I had no intention of being with anyone at the time. Fast forward to 3 years ago when Muhammad found me on Facebook, we met up chatted about life and then he showed me a picture of his new bride of barely a month and it turns out to be Zainab. I didn’t tell him immediately that Zainab and I had a fling in the past because I didn’t want to destroy their home and I was not sure what stories Zainab might have told him.

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Thursday, April 25, 2013

No Condoms, No Sex

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One of the decisions any one who is sexually active has to make is what to use for protection against STIs and pregnancy. Condom is usually the simplest choice, though sometimes a few people allow either embarassment or shame prevent them from stocking up. The women think it's for the men to sort out, after all, they want sex more and will be the ones to use the condom. The men leave it for the women to take care of, after all they're the ones who'll get pregnant, right? At the end no one has a condom and it is time to do the do, what happens then?

Damiel Ademinokan has produced this wonderful short film titled No Jersey, No Match on this issue. One thing I appreciate is when a thematic movie uses very creative story telling to pass its message rather than have someone talking like they're on a pulpit. In that sense, this movie is one of the best didactic short films I've seen, perfectly scored, good acting, good writing, all the good stuff. Enjoy, and if you're sexually active, always have your condoms on stand-by :)

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Throw Back Thurday - Bringing the Sexy

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This was about 5 years ago. I was already living in the UK and traveled to Nigeria for vacation. Like someone said in the last tbt post, my youngest sister who had just entered university then said, Myne, you're always very serious and formal. I know you're older than me, bla...bla...bla... but come let me show you how to let your hair down."

I already had the dress, which I often wore as a top to tights or jeans, the shoes, accessory and the hair. But she provided the makeup and put it all together. At the photographer's studio, she provided moral support as the guy reeled out model instructions - "head to the side, strut it, flaunt it, head up, hands bent, etc."

I love you sis, and I can honestly say, this was the picture that got Atala across seven oceans and seas to come get me. #trueword. Since then, I know it's quite important to sometimes not be so grown up and serious. You can also either be young and carefree, or you can bring the sexy!
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Confused Girl… Are You Ready For Marriage?

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This is a response to Confused Girl's mail to Myne.

Are you ready for marriage?

Okay, brace yourself… NOPE! You not ready!!! Oh by the way, there is nothing wrong with that, marriage is an enormous step to take in life, so make sure you don’t feel bad at all!  And it appears it is a combined case of the normal pre-marriage hesitations, as well as you having two additional complications, your bisexuality AND his plans to move back to Nigeria so soon.

Some sweet but tough love.

Okay now you know when people typically say: He is my perfect companion, or She is my soul mate  or we were made for each other…Not true at all. Are you old enough to know the Whispers classic song: And the beat goes on? As the Chorus goes: “…just like fishes in the ocean, they'll  always be someone new…”

So if the relationship ends, eventually, you BOTH will and should certainly be able to move on to equally happy, rewarding and fulfilling relationships with somebody else. Why? Well I do not believe in the concept of a perfect match, meaning only ONE person out there that was meant for you. I do however believe in the perfect TYPE of person or group of people out there that would be the most ideal for you. Hence if you miss one person who appears to be the ideal match, there is most certainly another out there within your ideal group that will meet and possibly even beat what you feel is only available to you in your current fiancé. I have personally experienced this. And I am willing to bet there are others out there who did not marry that “ideal” one person, but today are in a great marriage with somebody else.

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15 Simple Romance Tips for Busy Couples

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By Seyi Obasi

Has your spouse complained recently that you haven’t been spending enough time together? Have they complained that you aren't as romantic and attentive as you used to be? Or have you felt some distance slowly building up between you two?

I completely understand. I have a full time job and my husband is a banker, so you can imagine how difficult it must be for us to spend time together. And it’s easy to become a bit complacent after a while and just get too busy for romance.

Personally, I used to spend time shopping for love cards for my husband, planning weekend getaways and dates nights back in the early days of our marriage. My husband was equally romantic and reciprocated with his own brand of romantic gestures. I really enjoyed being on the receiving end of all that romance and attention.

But that was a long time ago. After ten years of marriage, conflicting schedules and our many roles in life (especially as parents to three bubbly children), we have been experiencing some "dry patches" in our marriage lately. Lack of communication, not spending quality time together, busyness and fatigue have lulled us into a state of I-have-no-time-for-romance.

In a recent counseling session, I and my husband were told to do everything we could to break through our excuses and bring the romance back using a unique approach: Simple Romance.

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The Wife Diaries - Episode Three

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I shrieked, pulled the trench coat tightly over my breasts and took the stairs up, two or three at a time. I flung open our bedroom door and ran straight to the bed to hide under the sheets until the humming in my ears ceased. I was so embarrassed!

As I lay under the covers basking in my utter humiliation, feeling sorry for myself and wondering what my husband was thinking, I heard the door crack open slowly.

“Babe..?” My husband said quietly from the door. “You okay?”

I shook my head and brought it up to look at him. He was standing just inside the door, a worried expression with a slight hint of amusement sat on his face. He peered at me curiously and his lips shook as he tried to bite back a laugh.

I sank back under the covers and cringed.

I felt the bed sink low as he came to sit next to me and rub my side through the covers.

“So um…care to explain what just happened down there?”

“No…” I whined.

“well, Felix thinks you’re hot…”

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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Americanah in Nigeria

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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Americanah will be released in Lagos on April 27 at Terra Kulture, VI. The book itself is already on sale in major Nigerian bookstores. The poster shows the book tour schedule. I know some of you guys in Lagos will be all over this.
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Date Night Movie Review - Tyler Perry's Temptation

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Tyler Perry's Temptation follows the life of a newly married couple, Judith and Brice. Judith works at a matchmaking firm; Brice is a pharmacist. Things are just about OK with them, but one day Judith has to work with Harley, a very rich entrepreneur. Harley makes it clear that he is very interested in her, and she begins to wonder whether she's really getting all she wants from her relationship with Brice.

Myne's Review - I know this review is coming so late, but it's been very busy around these parts. I gave a quasi review in this post earlier about a particular sex scene in the movie. I wasn't a big fan of the movie, I have to confess, and preferred Good Deeds over it. But Temptation had its good sides. Kim Kardashian played a version of herself named Ava, and she was actually pretty good.

Vanessa Williams lit the room whenever she appeared on screen, and she had a funny French accent though she lost it quickly enough when circumstances called for it. The other actors were just OK, but they were all very good looking people, Lance Gross almost set the screen on fire in one of his bathroom scenes, black is beautiful o :)

Atala's review - When I saw the trailer for "Tyler Perry's Temptation", I was quite eager to watch the movie, because the theme of personal conflict appealed very much to me. Also, I quite liked Tyler Perry's "Good Deeds", so I thought I would enjoy this too.

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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Love and Immigration - Nigerian Woman in the UK Attempts Suicide to Avoid Deportation

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Micheal and May Brown

May Brown is a Nigerian woman who is currently in a coma after attempting suicide by drug overdose pending a deportation order by the UK immigration services. May moved to the UK from Nigeria three years ago and is a student of public affairs at Weymouth College.

She met her husband Michael Brown 12 months ago and they got married last December. However, her request was denied despite that she had a valid student visa and was married to a British National. Her husband, Mr Brown said the UK Border Agency officials believed their marriage to be a ‘sham’ with no ‘emotional attachment’.” He however insists, as does his mother, that their marriage is real.

Now the report wasn't clear on when May Brown applied for asylum in the UK, whether it was before or after her marriage. But after her application was rejected, she was due to be deported in a matter of days. May Brown was so distressed at the prospect of returning to Nigeria that she took a drug overdose and is currently in intensive care.

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Confused Girl… On Being Attracted to Women

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This is a response to Confused Girl's mail to Myne.

My dear lady, I read your dilemma with interest and find that rather than simply send you a one paragraph response, you require a well thought out and unbiased response to your dilemma. What I like to do is look at your situations from a variety of perspectives and then you get to decide what to do and how to move forward to deal with your situation.

And of course you actually have TWO unrelated problems rolled into one. I hope you realize that. Lets deal with one at a time. 

On your bisexuality

Let us start from the religious aspect. You are likely to get a number of responses from many Nigerians condemning your actions and behavior. This is not wrong, but is due to the fact that a large segment of Nigerians in and out of Nigeria remain strongly religious. As you have said this not an issue in your relationship, (but it could be, more on that possibility later). I suggest don’t take those critics too seriously, not that they are not to be heard, or might offer bad advice, but I believe to each his / her own. If you don’t hold / share those Christian perspectives and beliefs then you need not worry about them, or be held to them. And no, there is no demon or devil chasing you either! :) No one should not foster their beliefs on you, unless you are willing to freely embrace them.

Secondly, any true Christian will have only one line of advice for you. Go and find some solution or deliverance to your “problem” of bisexuality.  You can then of course freely and happily get married to your fiancé. However, if your fiancé is one who will intend to become more religious after marriage, (this tends to happen to many couples as they go on to have kids and realize they want their kids to have some religious structure in their lives). You might also want to consider that factor as you decide what to do next.

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Omotola Jalade at the Time 100 Gala [Video]

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Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde was named as an Icon on the Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World list for 2013. Her citation;

Actress, singer, philanthropist, 34
By Richard Corliss
The world’s most productive English-language film industry is not Hollywood but Nollywood. The teeming Nigerian cinema grinds out some 2,500 movies a year, mostly direct-to-DVD quickies mixing melodrama, music and an evangelical Christian spin. (Think Bollywood via Tyler Perry.) Employing a million Nigerians, Nollywood enthralls millions more who come for the thrills, the uplift and the artful agitations of Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde — the Queen of Nollywood.

Called OmoSexy by her fans, she has made 300 or so features, from the 1996 Mortal Inheritance to the 2010 superproduction Ijé, shot partly on location in Los Angeles. Married to an airline pilot she wed on a flight from Lagos to Benin, Jalade-Ekeinde brings a juggler’s grace to her roles as actress, singer, reality-show star, mother of four and philanthropist (the Omotola Youth Empowerment Programme).

Success hasn’t spoiled Africa’s most renowned leading lady. Rather than going Hollywood, Omotola wants to stay Nollywood.

Corliss is TIME’s movie critic

See her pictures and video at the Time 100 Gala in New York below...

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Some Celebrities and their Families

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Omoni Oboli and her sons 2012

We often see them on the big or small screen, or all dolled and suited up on the red carpet, alone or with their partners, however, some celebrities can be quite protective of their families. Once in a while though, they share some pictures of them at home or out with their kids and for those of us who admire some of them, it can be encouraging. Check out more pictures of Omotola, Joke Silva and Olu Jacobs, Van Vicker, Ramsey Nouah, Charlyboy, Eldee and David Oyelowo. Enjoy!

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Spinach Egusi Soup With Stockfish and Shrimp

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This is my usual egusi soup recipe, somehow like this first one, with spinach but with the egusi cooked in the soup. This time also, I had just been to the African store, and had a new supply of stockfish, aka okporoko or panla.


Ingredients

3 cups Ground Egusi
5 pounds of your choice of beef, cut
1 pack of cut-up dried cod (okporoko/panla)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 large tomato, diced in large pieces
2 tablespoons of ground crayfish
3 teaspoons of ground pepper
1 cup of palm oil
2 cubes of maggi
2 packs of frozen chopped spinach
1 Pack of frozen large tailed shrimp
Salt to taste

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Widow of Boston Bombing Suspect Speaks Out

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A few days after the one of the boston bombing suspects was killed, and the other taken into custody, it was revealed that the older brother was married to an American woman, Katherine Russell Tsarnaev. She had been brought up Christian and had converted to Islam after marrying Tamerlan Tsarnaev, and she also was quite devout and observed the muslim practice of covering her head with a scarf.

This had made a lot of Americans to come out hard against her, and also to other people who may be married to other religions and cultures, and assimilating into them. I don't think that is a fair call or judgement to make, this is just one case and should not be extended to every person marrying across cultures or into Islam, and also no one knows at this time the full details of what happened with Katherine Russell's husband, how he was radicalized, and if she knew what was going on.

Well, her lawyer, Amato DeLuca, released the following statement this afternoon.

Our Firm is representing Katherine Russell and she has asked us to make a short statement. As you know from news reports, Katie married her husband in June of 2010. Since then, she has been living in Cambridge, raising her child and working long hours, caring for people in their homes who are unable to care for themselves. Katie grew up in Rhode Island and has always remained close to her parents and sisters here, as well as her extended family. She is fortunate to have the support of her loving family now, as they struggle to come to terms with these events and the deep sorrow we all feel following the events of last week. Meanwhile, she is doing everything she can to assist with the investigation.

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Naming Nigeria - Flora Shaw and Sexism

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Flora Shaw and Lord Lugard

By Robert Ojediran

It is an unfortunate consequence of our innate sexism as a people that when we hear the name Flora Shaw as the lady who named Nigeria, we see not a person - with a life, with achievements and with faults - rather we see the mistress/ wife to be of Lord Frederick Lugard. Ask any Nigerian and this is probably the only fact they know about Miss Shaw.

Our culture is one where a woman’s legacy is not a factor of her character or her achievements but simply by who her husband is. So when we think of the woman who named our country we cannot think beyond an ordinary mistress whispering ideas to her man in bed because that is her domain of control and of course it the man who carries out the act of the naming because only men can do important things. This could not be further from the truth.

Nigeria was named by Flora Shaw but not as a consequence her relationship with Lord Lugard as most people believe. She wrote an article in the London Times of January 8, 1897 suggesting that the territory around the Niger, which was then controlled by the Royal Niger Company, should be called Nigeria.

At the time she was the colonial editor of the London times in the 1890s. She had a column titled the colony, it appeared weekly. She wrote many articles about the acquisition of territories in Africa in the 1900’s and was considered as an expert on the issue. Her achievement in becoming the colonial editor of the London times was quite extraordinary. The paper was the leading voice at the time and widely regarded as one of the best.

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

6 Ways to Know You're a Side Chick

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By Kiri Blakely

I've noticed a startling trend in the dating world: Something I'll call the "faux-girlfriend" phenomenon. That's when a guy treats you like a girlfriend in a lot of ways -- you spend holidays together, you've met his parents, you have your own clothes drawer at his place. In fact, things are so girlfriend-y that it seems the next logical step would be fiancee-y and then wife-y. But something insidious and underhanded is going on. There are men out there (and women too, I imagine) who treat you like a girlfriend -- but not really. That's usually because while he wants the regularity and companionship of a real girlfriend, he doesn't want the responsibility, the downsides, or the idea of cutting off his options.

How do you know if you might be the faux-girlfriend? Here's 6 bigtime clues.

Facebook status. Yes, no matter that you spend six nights out of seven together, and he calls you crying whenever he needs a pep talk, he still has not changed his status from "single" to "In a relationship." I know this sounds cliche, but it's a big one -- if you ask him to do it and he comes up with reasons why he can't. He might say he's a "private" person and doesn't want anyone knowing his personal life. What he really means is that he doesn't want the various cute women he's friended knowing his personal life.

You don't know where he lives. While this seems laughable, it's actually pretty easy to fall into a routine of meeting strictly at one person's place -- especially if that person is closer to where the action is. Maybe he constantly comes up with brilliant excuses as to why you can't see his place, like his roommate is messy or a psycho. The real reason? He wants to be able to safely retreat there if you break up and have you not know how to find him!

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Pregnant Kate Middleton and Old Wives Tales

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So the Duchess of Cambridge is fully showing these days and the buzz is about whether it's a boy or a girl. I tried to predict Kim Kardashian's belly using the old wives method that says round tummies are girls and longer tummies are boys. But it seems there are many old wives.

Word from the Frisky says, when one carries a low pregnancy tummy, like Kate Middleton, it is going to be a girl. Nowadays, it's easy enough to find out the sex of the baby but some women and couples choose to wait like Kate Middleton.

So who knows of other old wives pregnancy predictions? For those who have had children, did you find out by scanning? If not, did you play guessing games and how did it turn out?

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Dear Myne - I am Bisexual, Should I Get Married?

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Hi Myne, I know this is not the type of mails you usually receive, and I hope you and your readers will not judge me. I will be 25 years old later this year, and I’ve been engaged for almost a year now to my wonderful fiance and we live together and are sexually active. We live in the UK. We were both born Christians but not really overly religious or anything, so that’s not a factor. However, he does not know about my sexuality, that is, that I'm also attracted to women.

When he proposed to me, I accepted it without thinking too much about it. I"ve done a lot of growing up in the past one year, I graduated Uni, we moved in together six months ago, now I understand more what it means to make a lifetime commitment. Don't get me wrong, I love my fiance very much. He’s my best friend and knows me better than anyone else.  He would make an incredible husband as we get along very well and rarely fight.. But at the same time, I don’t feel I should go ahead and get married to him, especially if he doesn't know I'm bisexual.

How do I know I'm bisexual? I'm sure some people reading can guess. It is the usual, I went to an all girls boarding school in Nigeria and before I completed secondary school, I had two female lovers. The first was a senior who taught me all about it. I won't say she corrupted me because I was already sexually attracted to some other girls in my school before she made her move. The second was my classmate, we drifted together, or I toasted her, and we were together till we graduated. We lost contact when I moved to the UK.

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POLL - What is your Love Language?

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Dr. Gary Chapman wrote a book titled The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts and it became and still is, one of the go to books for counselling couples on how to keep their relationship fresh and nurtured. The love languages go both ways, the ones you like to receive and the ones you like to give.





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Adventures of a Miss!! Episode 9

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I’m all sorts of confused right now, ok let me run this through my head again. Ok, Bolaji saw Zainab and Kola kissing, asked her why she was kissing another man. Yes that happened; I rub my head while trying to remember exactly what I saw. Then Zainab started crying begging Bolaji but she was calling him baby. Then she asked Kola to leave, tried to kiss Bolaji but he resisted after the kiss had gone on for about 10 seconds.

He asked her gently to stop and said they would talk later because Muhammad was inside the house. I am not sure what to make of this scenario; there are two things that are baffling me. Why is Zainab calling my fiancée baby and why does she think she can kiss him? It means that they have definitely kissed before. My mind is painting me so many pictures of Bolaji and Zainab in every compromising situation and it just gets me more and more upset.

Ok, I’ll run through it one more time; Ok I was hiding trying to text Dele while watching Semi explain to him that I had a family emergency. Zainab walks in with Kola, I figured it won’t be long before she runs into Muhammad. I’m walking back towards the house when I hear Bolaji ask Zainab why she’s kissing Kola, then they end up kissing. This is what I have been doing in my head for the past hour while watching Bolaji and his interactions with Zainab.

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An Easy Way To Soften Naturally Kinky Hair

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By Chioma Iwunze-Ibiam

I wish I’d learned about the wonders of apple cider vinegar much earlier. All those years of groaning about hard it is to manage natural kinky hair would have been different. Last week, after I’d watched a How To Grow Beautiful, Softer and Shinier Hair video on Youtube, I decided to do something different.

First, I went to a department store. I bought 50cl of honey, 50cl of Aqua Rapha yogurt  and a bottle of Safari apple cider vinegar (and the ACV was so cheap. It cost less then N200 naira).  And I made my own conditioner.

First, I put a glop of yogurt in a cup. Then, I added a few spoons of honey, two tea spoons of apple cider vinegar, one table spoonful of mayonnaise (because it contains eggs and vegetable oils) and two spoonfuls of my Henna deep conditioner. I whisked these into a thick paste and proceeded to shampoo my hair. Again, I had put a few drops of the apple cider vinegar into my bucket of water.

Then, I parted my very think full head of hair and proceeded to wash and rinse. I wrapped a towel round my wet hair, just long enough to get excess water off my hair, before I brought in my homemade conditioner.

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