Staunching

Very few people know I’m a gourmet — even fewer know I’m a gourmand.

I made some wonderful stew three days ago — well, as wonderful as ‘wonderful’ can be if you use vegetable oil instead of palm or groundnut oil and a rice cooker instead of a pot.

I took some to my friends — Fatou and Chemika — and gave some to my suite-mate and his friend.

“Wow!” my suite-mate’s friend exclaimed. “Have you got any single Nigerian girls on campus?”

“Why?” I mean, what have single girls got to do with the rice I just gave you?

“Wouldn’t be a bad idea to date one of them so I can get this all the time.”

Wahala…

Two days ago, I got a knock on my door just as I plugged in my rice cooker. It was my Pakistani programmer friend, looking for somewhere to recharge his phone. He uses a Sanyo and I use a Nokia so there was no luck. All the while I was praying he’d leave.

He must have seen the rice [and pretended not to] because he installed himself on my bed and started making funny gist. I gave him some crackers and juice, all the while praying, “hurry up and go — this rice won’t be enough for two of us” — I have a very huge appetite and I hadn’t eaten all day.

I decided to take a shower, hoping to shake him off. He said he’d wait — I mean, he had nothing doing in my room! When I returned, I microwaved some stew and put some rice into bowls to take to Fatou.

“I’m taking this to Fatou,” I informed him. “I might be quite a while in her room.”

“Let’s go together,” he said. I almost lost it. Together we went up the stairs and Fatou wasn’t in so we came back down.

“K– I’ve got some rice,” I announced ‘officially.’ “Would you like to try some?”

“Sure,” he replied quickly, rolling up his sleeves. My face fell slightly. People who don’t know me say I’m always angry because I rarely smile. People who know me a little say I’m never angry because my face has the same expression all the time. People who have known me for a long time say I get angry easily, despite all appearances. This was one of such times, although my friend was too busy rolling up his sleeves and washing his hands to notice.

I got him some stew, and together we fell to. I had three boiled eggs. He picked one and I picked another while I put on Jet Li’s Fist of Legend. He kept praising my cooking prowess as he wolfed down the food.

Usually, I eat in two stages — the first an appetizer, and the second my main meal. My main meal was still in the pot. I’m a very fast eater — I don’t chew — but this guy shamed me by eating all he had when I wasn’t even halfway done.

“K– there’s some more rice in the pot…” I didn’t even finish the sentence and BANG he went off and emptied it. I was thinking I’d still got one egg left when I noticed he had an egg sitting atop his rice when he returned.

We talked for a while and then he left.

Last night I had made some rice again [Azuka don’t you ever learn!] and was working on the i55 website, trying to meet the deadline. A plate of rice was in front of my screen and I took a mouthful every now and then.

Just then my phone rang. I hardly ever have callers because I’m not a very outgoing guy. I picked it up without looking at the screen.

“Hello Arrzuka!” it was K– (notice the emphasis on the ‘r’s). “Are you sleeping?”

‘Hello K–, how’re you doing?” I said. “Errr… I’m working.”

“Good!” he said. “I’m at your door. Can you let me in?”

Damn — I was still on the appetizer! I wished I’d told him he just woke me up or refused to answer.

I let him in and he came again with absolutely no gist.

“K–,” I said softly, hoping he wouldn’t hear. “I’ve got some rice.”

He kept talking and I breathed a sigh of relief. Suddenly he rolled up his sleeves and I had a sense of foreboding.

“I see you’ve got some rice and curry,” he smiled. “May I have some?”

BANG, he was off in the direction of the pot, and I had to chase him with a plate and spoon — was he going to eat out of it with his bare hands?

Soon, he’d done justice to my main meal and after a while, he left.

Now, in secondary school, we had a set of people we called ‘staunches’ — they can smell food from afar. There’s this guy we called Obumele — he could run in from his dorm almost two hundred metres away and exclaim,”I boom chop!” 99% of the time, he was right — he always got into the right room. My ordeal with friend K– reminded me of the staunches of Fedacad.

As I type this, it’s morning and I’m eating the last of my stew in front of my screen. I’ve given out more than three quarters, lost an eighth to a staunch — I’ll be damned if I don’t enjoy what I can.

Here’s to Uzo, who apparently has a workplace staunch!

I’d like to thank someone (something tells me it’s a blogger) who sent me a book on my Amazon Wishlist for my birthday. Thank you very much!

I’ve got a class now — and gee, it’s snowing!

Comments

  1. uzo says:

    You too? LOL. Too funny. What is wrong with these people? No courtesy! Ofun

  2. Daddy's Girl says:

    Azuka, this is hilarious – love the bit about the guy ‘rolling up his sleeves’. Na wa o. Your food must be sweet sha. LOL

  3. Keshi says:

    Ur food’s got to be as tasty as u r sweetie 🙂

    Keshi.

  4. thats a crazy story man, almost too good to be true…… yet fact is stranger than fiction…

  5. Nkem says:

    Cracking stuff! It is precisely for this reason that I don’t offer Nigerians food (even though this guy wasn’t Nigerian), cos I know they’ll accept!

  6. Dessylicious says:

    This got me rolling on the floor…No, literally! Poor Azuka! Hey, you’re not really 18 are you? Just that Calabargal wished you a happy 18th birthday and I thought you write so well to be only a teenager!

  7. Uzo,
    Indeed — we need to send ’em all to ‘Manners School’ to learn a little bit of courtesy. Why didn’t you kickbox your staunch? Don’t tell me all those lessons are going to waste?

    Daddy’s Girl, Keshi
    I do make kick-ass food, but if making tasty food means not enjoying it, I daresay I’ll stop cooking altogether.

    Nikita
    Tell me about life — cook up any story that doesn’t conform to fictional norms, and it’s likely to have happened somewhere already.

    Nkem
    Exactly! I mean, can’t I enjoy my own food?

    Desola
    I’ve met people younger than I am who write better. Age is just a number — and yes I’m 18. I’m a lot more eloquent when writing than I am in real life.

  8. Keshi says:

    who cares if others dun enjoy…as long as u enjoy ur food, u go girl!

    Keshi.

  9. Keshi says:

    Im so sorry Azuka :):)

    Keshi.

  10. Naijabloke says:

    These kind of ppl r called “Awoof Ninja”.I bet if u start calling him that he wont know the meaning.

    Happy Thanksgiving …make I go chase my Turkey before the thing escape

  11. [email protected] for the guy to leave.. azuka.. your friend is terribe.. but as the food sweet reach.. can you blame him?!?!lmao @the guy rolling his sleeve.. this one na really eating job!!! lol.. heya.. i’m so used to this that i don’t even complain.. my problem is i usually cook way more than i can eat now that i live by mself cos i’m used to cookin for my sis, mom and myself.. so i usually invite my housies to eat(cos i hate having food for a long time).. but i can see how it’d be annoyin if uninvited(at least not with your heart).. lmao… you’re too funny azuka!

  12. 1982 says:

    LOLL All you people who never learn that when you have good food in your plate or about to hit your plate, you don’t answer your door or pick up your phone, you sit and enjoy it, and only then do you return those calls! Isn’t the most annoying thing in the world when you’re looking forward to enjoying a meal and you have to share! I have a friend who will say she doesn’t want food when you offer it to her, and then when you bring your plate, she will ask for ‘just a bit’ … that is my number one food pet peeve!

    How come all you blogger guys are good cooks when the guys I know really aren’t? I think you and naijabloke should have a cook off … I’ll be the judge!

  13. Keshi
    It’s okay. Even in chat rooms I still get guys hitting on me all the time :D.

    Naijabloke
    Awoof Ninja? Now that’s interesing! Where’s my turkey?

    Overwhelmed
    Thanks…

    1982
    I spent a lot of my childhood years in the kitchen with my Mom. Sometimes my Dad had to spirit me away to do more ‘manly’ stuff. If you’re willing to buy the ingredients, I’m good to go.

  14. Calabar Gal says:

    Azuka,
    Its the aroma of ur food that draws him nigh. I can tell that the aroma has been wafting theough ur hall of residence and the guy knows just what time to land and knowck on the door. Him own don pass Natty in ‘New Masquerade’ AKA Zebrudaya.
    I would do the same over and over again if I were him. beats eating from the corner shop and saves him alot of money albeit at ur own expense. LOL

    One trick to get him to stop crashing ur meals would be to spice the meals heavily. What do u think? (smile)

  15. belle says:

    dude! dude! dude!!!!!!!!! you had me cracking up!! LOLOLOL. Nothing worse than people eating your food…even if you DID offer it. heheheheheh.

    Thanks… i needed the laught 🙂

  16. mari says:

    buahhahaha…poor you dearie. Hope you’ve learnt a very good lesson. This reminded me of my days in Uni. Whenever my door bell would ring, I’d quickly put the pot in the oven. Later my friends realised where the food was so I had to hide the food in my closet. Mehn, the ish pissed me off more than anything else. Why did it always have to be my house.

    I thought Nigerian friends were the only ones who did this. Never had this problem with the other friends.

  17. Azuka says:

    Calabar Gal
    Now that’s a thought! Unfortunately, I couldn’t use too much pepper for the stew because I was taking it to an African-American friend of mine — she still said it was ‘spicy.’ And, hey the guy’s Pakistani… he’ll definitely be able to stand it if I can.

    Belle
    Hmmm, it’s official — Azuka is no longer dry. I’ll begin to try my charms on (clears throat)…

    Mari
    Friends can be so annoying. The other day I cooked too much and had to stuff myself with rice all night long. K– didn’t show up. Shortly after, I cooked very little. He did!

  18. candy says:

    hey, ur ordeal reminds mi of someone i needed to see shes not in dorm before i cooked. if u recall her(chinweoke archi),like osimele, she was always on tym to see me offloadin ma stuff from d cooker, nd i could tel her we lyk 4 on d food.not tha she believed me though,butthat was wen chinweoke always decided she gotta read in ma room. funny enuff, she always succeded in eatin wid us.and azuka, dipo(obumele) must hear of tha ref to him.silly u.”fedacad staunchers” they were hell, nd remember they even used to staunch “PG too. rah tah dah

  19. Azuka says:

    Candy
    So you had your own staunchers in the girls’ dorm?

    Na wa oh! And how did you know Dipo was the Obumele? Do you know I actually sent this post to him to read?

  20. notole says:

    I guess I am not the only Fedacadian snoopin up on zuksy’s blog, and pitying the people being “finished with”. Let’s face it, we all used to staunch!

  21. dante says:

    na wah for u n food

  1. […] going to clean up and hope no staunchers show up. Salivate in […]

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