Friday, May 15, 2015

Still We Get It Wrong?

Let's say there's a sanitation problem in my city. Before I go making noise about it and complaining that whichever person or body is in charge of ensuring the city is kept clean, isn't doing their job well, wouldn't it make sense to first clean the gutter in front of my house, weed my front lawn, encourage my neighbours to do same, and other neighbourhoods as well, then, I mobilize them all, so we make noise about the general sanitation problem? Or?

It takes about an hour for me to drive from my house to work. I leave home at about 7am and (hopefully) get to work by 8am. By 7am, I'd say day broke about an hour and a half before and the sun's most likely out.
This morning, I set off from my house, drove through my neighbourhood, through quite a number of streets in Accra and I couldn't help but admire the bright lights. Oh no, not from the sun, but from the outside lights of some houses and some shops (which weren't even open). I encountered these bright lights all the way, through where I live to where I work. This happens every morning. The bright lights, I encounter in different areas depending on whether there is a dum or a sor in a particular area.

How about we get our house in order then we make noise? I won't deny that there's a problem in the country now and we (myself inclusive) are really suffering. But has anyone stopped to ask how we got here? Has anyone stopped to ask how they contributed to us getting here? Oh yeah, trust me, we all contributed. Yeah, there's a higher power we can lay all the blame on, but bottom line is, we all had a part to play.

So yeah, #dumsormuststop
Have you played your part to ensure #dumsormuststop?
And yeah, I love my Ghana, that's why I speak out (spare the rod...), but still, we get it wrong! And oh, I didn't even vote in the last elections or the one before. So, suffice to say I have no political inclinations?

Friday, April 17, 2015

How Do We Get It Right?

Certainly not by doing this...


or this...

or this...


or even this...

Driving through my neighbourhood on Sunday morning (heading to church). It's after 7am, it's raining, but day broke over an hour ago and the area is all lighted up by the outside lights of neighbours. Thing is their lights did nothing to illuminate the area (it was already illuminated by natural light).

The current power crisis we experiencing in Ghana has all of us hot (literally) and bothered. Yes, we (myself inclusive) want the government to solve this problem ASAP, but really leaving outside lights on at 7am won't help the situation. I get that we sometimes leave the light switch on, the lights go out, we forget about it and maybe leave home or sleep or something. But let's all do our little bit to help. Let's turn off all switches when leaving home. Makes no sense to have outside lights on for all the 12 hours we get to enjoy electricity (and then 24 hours no electricity) when there's daylight.

There are moments when we experience a problem. It isn't our duty to solve the problem, but we are suffering. How about not compounding the problem? If it's not your duty to solve it, and you cannot solve it even if you wanted to, how do you help by making things worse, especially when you are the one suffering, and the person supposed to fix the problem is not suffering as much as you are?

We get it right by not making it worse!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Smartest Man Alive

Roverman Productions in Partnership with Joy FM and National Theatre Presents: "The Smartest Man Alive".


A play written and directed by Uncle Ebo Whyte.

Venue: National Theatre
Date: 28th & 29th March, 4th & 5th April, 2015
Time: 1st show 4pm, 2nd show 8pm
Rate: GH¢60.00

Hell has no fury like a woman spurned. But hell has no gate stronger than a man gifted with words and wit. So what happens when a woman spurned confronts the smartest man alive?

The play explores the basis of love relationships in Ghana, and challenges us  to question if we are using our talents and skills to serve or take advantage of others.
Imagine you could not tell a lie anymore. Don't miss an opportunity to find out how the smartest man alive deals with this.

Tickets are available at all Airtel Shops; Shell Shops at Community 11, Achimota, Sakaman, Dansoman, Mallam and East Legon; Joy FM; Motorway Supermarket; Baatsona and Haatso Total; 37 Goil; Frankies, Osu and Jane-Ann Supermarket.

For ticket orders and enquiries, please call 026 109 4100.

Alternatively, tickets can be paid for via Airtel Money at a 10% discount.
1. In the Airtel Money menu select Make Payments
2. Select Pay Bill
3. Select Other
4. Type ROVERMAN
5. Enter Amount i.e. GH¢54.00 for one ticket
6. Enter your name as reference number (eg. Efua Dentaa)
7.Confirm payment details with your Airtel Money PIN
8. Present the confirmation text that will be sent to you at the gate for entry
*A charge of GH¢0.50 applies.

Friday, March 20, 2015

"Baby on Board." Princess! Really?

I always wonder what I'm to do when I drive behind a car with the sign, "Baby on Board". Finally, (after months of debating with myself), I decide it means I should drive extra careful behind that car and not get annoyed when that car goes too slow (are drivers supposed to be paying attention to babies while driving? just asking), honk unnecessarily etc. (meaning I can do the exact opposite behind a car without that sign). Wonder why they didn't teach me that in driving school (maybe these signs hadn't been invented then).

Sometime last week, I was driving behind a car with this sign:
Really?
First time I ever saw one so I took a picture, but forgot about it, until I saw the same car again this morning.
All I can say is REALLY??? (there wasn't even anyone in the car aside the driver, humph!) Totally getting/designing an "Amazing Diva/Superhero in Car" sign (not that I need one though).

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Adventures in a Foreign Land - International Money Transfer

The post office was just behind my office. The plan was to stop over there during my lunch break. I learnt I could access the international money transfer service there. Of course I was excited. I wasn't exactly broke, but I could do with the money.

It's lunch time, I head on over to the post office. I tell the guy at the counter that I want to use the international money transfer service. Then he asks if I'm sending or receiving. That question had me mighty confused. Simple enough question, but I didn't get why he was asking me that question. In Ghana, anytime I used the international money service, I just told whoever was in charge I wanted to use the service and then I was handed a form (receiving form) to fill out. No questions were asked. And then it hit me. I am in the developed world. Most of the moneys sent via international money transfers originate from the part of the world I was in, with their final destination being the part of the world Ghana is in. It would make sense to assume everyone using the service in Ghana was receiving. You can however not be too sure about everyone using the service in the developed world. After a whole 30 seconds of me with my blank look, I answer the guy (he was starting to look frustrated). I smile and tell him I'm receiving.

He then tells me if I want cash, I'll need to go down the road (more like take a bus) to the bigger post office, because he can only give me a cheque. Of course I wanted the cash but I had to do this during my lunch break, actually get lunch, and head on back to my office. So I tell him the cheque is just fine. It really wasn't, but my bank was right across the road from the post office, so I figured after getting the cheque, I'd dash on over there, deposit the cheque and hopefully get my money.

I pick up the cheque, head on to the bank, walk to one of the tellers (there wasn't a queue, nice) hand my cheque over to her, she takes a look at it, looks at me, smiles and says, "my dear, why don't you deposit it in the ATM. That way you'll have access to some of the money before the cheque is cleared. If you deposit it with me, it'll take you 3 days to get your money". Must have been a day of blank looks for me, because that's exactly what I gave her for 2 reasons.
1. Why does she think I need the money right away (but really I did)? My skin colour means I desperately need cash, really? Is she racist?
2. What does she mean? Who deposits cheques in an ATM? She's totally messing with me. Yeah, definitely racist!

She smiles at me again and says, "oh dear, you probably don't know how to do that (of course I didn't even know you could do that. totally racist). Come let me show you". She moves from behind the counter and heads on to the ATM machines outside the banking hall with me. Of course I'm grateful this kind lady was being so helpful, but my mind was made up. She was just racist.

She tells me what to do and shows me how to do it, and tells me I can withdraw up to a certain amount of the money before the cheque clears. Then I ask the obvious. "What stops someone from dropping in a blank sheet of paper and withdrawing the accessible amount"? She then tells me that actually does happen, not often, but it does and it's usually a minority group in the country that does that (oh yeah, she just confirmed, she is racist), but they do track some of  them down (yeah, the joys of living in a country where streets are named, houses are numbered, and your bank account indicates all of that, and it's easy to track at least your house down).

I deposit the cheque, withdraw the accessible amount and skip (actually, I just walked) on back to the office on an empty stomach. Lunch time was over. Doing the post office, the bank, time spent giving blank looks and the tutorial I got on depositing a cheque in an ATM machine, just took too much time.

Moral: the fact that something is always a certain way where you from doesn't mean it's that way everywhere. Be open to new ideas. The fact that machines where you are from don't perform a certain function doesn't mean they don't do that in another part of the world. Who knows, that function just might be available where you are from sometime, so learn (I hear there are ATMs of some banks in Ghana that have the cheque depositing function now).
The fact that you have heard of racism doesn't mean just because you are a certain colour, you should be looking for racism in your interaction with any and everyone of the group that are usually accused of racism. Come to think of it, I was probably being more prejudiced and racist than this person. She was just a nice sweet lady who wanted to help (I know no teller in any bank in Ghana if they could, would leave their desk to go help me out with anything). Don't go looking for something that isn't there just because you've heard it exists in the part of the world you in. Racism in no way looks like what I experienced that day.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

How Much? Your Life!

It should be GH¢1.50 ($0.44).
Not according to me, but according to one shop owner in Accra.

you must be one "special" kind of person to do this
A bottle of coca cola goes for GH¢1.50. To scrape the crown cork as pictured above rendering the expiry date just about invisible, so as to sell expired coca cola to unsuspecting consumers, really just means you place the value of a human life at the price of the product. Products (consumables) expire because? Expiry dates are quoted on consumables because?

At least with expired goods on sale at Shoprite, seems it's about negligence (someone forgot to remove the expired goods from the shelves because, no attempt is made to conceal the expiry date). But with this, I'd say wickedness (plain and simple).

But really, who's willing to bet that had the shop owner not attempted to be smart, just about no one would have noticed the coca cola was actually expired (quite a bit of attention was drawn to the crown cork by this action).

Regardless of how tedious it makes shopping, I won't purchase a consumable without checking the expiry date. If the date isn't visible, no way am I getting it. There are just too many negligent and "special" people around.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

The Answer!

In answering the question, most people I know (myself inclusive) had it wrong.
That's not necessarily such a bad thing. Matter of fact, it's a good thing.
Why?

Answer: She was hoping the guy would appear at the funeral again.

If you answered correctly, you think like a psychopath. This was a test by a famous American psychologist used to test if one has the same mentality as a killer. Many serial killers took part in the test and answered the question correctly.

If you didn't answer the question correctly, good for you, neither did I.

If you got the answer correct, kindly let me know and I'll take it from there.