Very often you hear something that either makes you jump to your own defence or just plain raving mad. And once it becomes clear that the person who said that "something" misjudged you or was, to state it clearly, totally wrong, s/he quickly says "I was just joking with you" or "I was kidding" "I was pulling your leg"... "you take things too serious" Yeah right! Tell me when to laugh.
More often than not, if you had failed to defend yourself, it would have become the truth and used as reference in future mentions. Preceded by, "when he was told that day, if it was a lie would he not have said so?" So now you know that Silence is not the best answer for a fool. The joke is on you. Ignore those subtle attack on your integrity at your own peril. No one can defend you better than you can, unless of course you are guilty as charged.
Let me just give you an example that triggered this piece. Met a guy I had not seen in nearly 10 years, at Okumagba's funeral ceremonies. And I picked up our jists from where we left off in 2001. So I asked after his girlfriend at the time and added hope you married her. And as a statement of fact, he said, "AFTER YOU DON DATE AM FINISH NA ME GO COME MARRY YOUR TOKUNBO?"
It was not one of those things I felt like blessing with the "silence is the best answer for a fool" nonsense. Going by how we meet, it may just be another 10 years again. Can't let him go around spreading such tales for that long. Surprisingly, he had some converts who believed it was true. Because one of them said 'na true o'. If I had any belief in silence being golden, it evaporated. Silence could be diamond for all I cared.
Me? Date Ese? You drink goat piss? Ese? Abi no be that lepa? ThankGod, Ese's older sister was sitting not too far, so I called her. And put the question to her... "I friend Ese before? Somebody say me and her DEY run things". She smiled and asked "who dish that op (off point)? So I pointed at Ufuoma.
She regarded him with a puzzled look, gave me a look as if to confirm if it was him and then turned to him, 'You this legbere ( slow guy) you no go "mashure abi? No be you ans me before for Ese present, when I tell you say na me DEY comb Atunyota ( that's me)? You don see am (that's me again) with bonga bonga (that's a lepa) before? Atunyota ( she turned to me) you get time sef to dey argue with am. I no tell you say this fake guy wey you dey beg make Ese follow that time, say na short one? Abeg no call me for any opata again o.'
That was when Ufuoma said what in my days back in Warri would have resulted in a serious case of 2 fighting. He said, "I just DEY play with you, you just turn am to quarrel. I bow to you"
Yeah right! ( To be honest, i said that in waffi slangs... NOT TO ONLY!)