The Difference Between Paying For Shit And Paying To Shit
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WARNING: This article talks about shit a lot. Do not read if you do not like shitty stories…I mean stories about shit.
Anyone that knows me knows that I do not eat anything the morning before a presentation or speech. I just don’t. The reason is because I am nervous and somehow that nervousness creates chemicals in my stomach that transforms any trace of food in there to shit. Thus giving me the crazy urge to want to shit while presenting…
But several years ago, I broke that rule. I was hungry, so hungry I ate a little and proceeded down Badagry road. My destination..Corona Secondary School to give a presentation at former school. I knew something was wrong because the first thing I asked for when I got to school was for the toilet. I sat at the toilet but nothing came out…no shit. Weird…I was nervous, and I had food in my stomach but still no shit.
Little did I know that the chemical process going on in my stomach had been delayed slightly. Anyway I proceeded to give my presentation and I guess the adrenalin in my body had somehow suppressed the urge to shit, so I rocked the presentation (needs to be verified).
Students were crying, teachers were laughing, it was beautiful (I just don’t have picture evidence). I greeted my former teachers, the students and the laboratory animals that were about to be dissected and jumped into the car. As soon as I entered, I felt a sudden urge to shit. But I felt I could hold it, and so I did, but then after about 20 minutes or so on the road, it hit me…I had to shit or else I will shit all over myself. I felt like my behind was about to explode. The closest place we could stop at was one Secondary School along Badagary express way that I will not mention their name although it rhymes with E jar knicking.
So we got there, and I told the security guards that I had to shit or else I would die … which they obviously did not want, so they pointed me to the closest toilet. I ran inside what seemed to be like an uncompleted building and looked for the toilet, but all I saw was a black void and bucket of water. I put my behind over the black void but nothing came out … I tried again but nothing …it was as if the shit had disappeared. But i personally think my shit was running away from the toilet! The shit in my stomach must have been like “I know I am shit but there is no way you are pooping me into that black nasty toilet void.” Even my shit knew how dirty the toilet was!
I went back into the car (this is a true story o) and I had no urge to shit again. The toilet had scared my shit shitless.
Roll forward to a few years later, and I am doing a book reading at Patabah Bookstore in Surulere for my book How Stupidity Saved My Life. Remember my shitting problem? Well it hits me again … I have to shit but not as intense as the Badagry story. I
walk jog run hop to the toilet. For a quick background, I am in the Surulere mall so I am headed to the public toilets in the mall. As I am about to enter the toilet I see what appears to be a security stand and receipt book. I double back mentally but the shit keeps moving forward.
I start to walk past them when I hear “Oga it is N20.00” I am like 20 what? then I hear it again “N20 to use the toilet.” I am like what! Am I dreaming. I never knew you had to pay to shit in Nigeria. But I am in no position to argue. I pull out a N500 bill and tell them I will collect my change after as I rush into the toilet.
And when I enter, it is like paradise….clean…fresh…like Sheraton Hotel but in the 80s. The toilet rolls were full and soft and the whole atmosphere…nice. Not like a Dubai seven star hotel nice, but gosh-this-is-good-for-a-mall nice. I proceeded to have one of my best shits I had ever had in
my life a public place. And that is the difference between paying for shit and paying to shit.
For years Nigerians have been paying for shit, shitty roads, shitty electricity, shitty phone service (remember NITEL) and shitty toilets. Things barely worked in that system because it was run by the government.
But now things have slowly started changing, we are no longer paying for shit we are paying to shit. Here’s what I mean…
If you want to make a phone call in Nigeria today you typically have to load a recharge card before you can call. If you want to drive down the quite in my opinion awesome lekki-ikoyi toll bridge with working CCTVs and security you have to pay a toll. If you want to enjoy the fine amenities at the MMA2 airport in Lagos, you have to pay an additional fee hidden in the ticket price. In all three cases, it is no longer the government running things, the private firms have come and are now charging … but things are better.
And because of that Nigerians are paying. But like me at the Surulere Mall toilet we are at first reluctant … hesitant. But once we see the value in the services provided we would pay and because we pay the toilets/services are better. And this causes a demand and supply cycle. And that cycle is the secret to Economic growth … paying to shit and getting cleaner and better toilets in return.
Written By Okechukwu Ofili of ofilispeaks.com
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