It’s high time somebody developed an app that will allow people switch off their shadow when they want to because apparently, having a shadow is now a crime in Lagos. Some nights ago, my sister and I were rushing to catch a bus at new garage when she decided to stop by to price a pair of slippers. If you have spent ample time in Lagos markets, experience would teach you that you are not allowed to stand in front of someone’s “market” except you are buying something from them.
So, there I was standing next to the guy selling the slippers with my hands crossed across my chest when I heard, “Aunty, your shadow dey block my market.” Ehn? I turned and it was the guy selling okrika shoes on the right. I rolled my eyes and ignored him.
“Aunty, move now. Your shadow dey block my market.” At this point I was beginning to get pissed. I took a very good look at his “market” and just hissed. His wares had been spread on a very large sheet and I could barely see how my tiny shadow was deterring him from getting customers. It’s like this man was trying to give me a piece of his frustration. I turned my back to him. At this point, he started mumbling some words. I was tired of his drama.
“Oga, I no dey stand for the front of your market. Which one be my shadow dey block your market?”
“Move to the other side, your shadow dey block my market nao.” He was beginning to sound rude and then began to approach me. Does he want to beat me or what? I stood rooted like the tree planted by the rivers of water. I shall not be moved.
“I can stand wherever I want. I’m not in front of your market, so please stop harassing me.” He started speaking gibberish upon nonsense, raising his voice. Lagos people who don’t dull themselves had begun to tune their ears to the drama.
“Oga, no be here I go sleep. When we are done, I would leave. No dey talk to me anyhow.” The whole thing was so ridiculously funny because there was a whole lot of space in between the two displayed wears. Apparently, my shadow was standing in front of his market and that is also violation of market space. Lmao.
He then turned to the guy attending to my sister and started shouting at him. “You see wetin I dey talk now? I tell you say make you no arrange your market reach this place. Now, see as your customer shadow dey block my market.”
I was just laughing. Iru weyrey wo leleyi bayi? When I noticed he wanted to pick a fight with the other guy, I then switched to the other side to avoid unnecessary drama for the poor guy that had kept quiet all along. But that wasn’t enough to keep the shadow-hunter quiet. He kept shouting and popping neck veins. Other sellers had to plead with the slippers seller not to respond to him. I then signaled to my sister we should leave because we earlier witnessed two guys trying to stab themselves in another part of the market. I don’t have hypo to wash blood off my white top, biko.
See, people are just mad in this Lagos.