Along the corridor of the football field, a small pebble rolled towards me and hit my leg; but not very hard. I traced the direction and ran after the boy who had stoned me. The canvass I was wearing helped me run well enough and in no time, I got him. Unlike my friend who would have given him a dirty slap, I asked him rhetorically

“What’s your problem?”

He said, ” I was joking”

“Joking, do I know you from somewhere?”

He said, ” I am sorry”

As a matter of fact, I love to say sorry(s)… I say that everyday.

I just had to let him go, after all, I was fine.
He said, ” You are a good person” and I hissed off.

Egyptians are bold, he still had the guts to speak to me. He said, ” hey good man! What is your name? I replied “Ibraheem.”

Then he walked beside me as I walked;

“How old are you?”, I told him my age, even most people in my country don’t say that easily. Maybe they see it as a taboo or something strictly personal or something else, i don’t know. As a matter of fact, they will frankly tell you, it’s none of your business.

He asked me after that, “Where are you from?” With a radiant smile, I said “Green Nigeria”. He exclaimed! Wow… Ahsan Nas. (Meaning Good People).

Do you know Daniel Omokaci, Kano Wako, he meant -Kanu Nwanko-… Rasheed Yaqeen.. ?What a Muslim he was.

I said I know them all, though I don’t know much about football.

I would love the conversation more if he had kept it all about discoveries but he made it personal.

Our conversation was all in Arabic, as we got nearer to the gate of Metro Sport’s field. He said, do you remember Egypt won Nigeria some months ago?, instead of saying Yes or No, I said, “I have an uncle in Ghana and Ghana won Egypt three years ago, on a festival day, 6 to 1.”

No matter what, I am an ambassador of Nigeria, I can’t say I am from Ghana. The question is, why bring Ghana into this?
There I got him, the look on his face suddenly changed. It was like a blow to him and I meant that actually, coz I had said it on purpose.

He said, “I was only joking”, Then I replied.. “Do I look like I am serious?”
The chitchat continued as we went through the main gate, it became a friendly, lively and lovely conversation. Then I stopped him; “you have been doing the questioning, lemme ask you questions too.

What’s you name?” he said “Ibraheem.” “Are u kidding me?” He swore he’s Ibraheem. At that point I gave him a big smile, hugges him and we departed shortly after that.
Loving a name could make you love the person. No matter how unpleasant your relationship begins, you still will find an excuse to love that person.

When you hear your name called, you’ll love to answer even if you are not the one called.

If your name is good, and loved, you might go Scott free even if you commit a crime maybe in school. Some teachers could be biased at times, they forgive the whole students because they don’t want to punish one student. They let go of their ego, pride, some even take back their words.
While I was in school, coz -he- was kind of troublesome, my teacher didn’t really like me. Maybe that attitude is not deep in her, because she was always ignoring my crimes and won’t punish me for any. Friends were like, “are you related with her somehow?” Not until a day I knew the secret to her leaving me be.
It was on a friday, I was already in the public bus going to school, there came these two lovely looking guys, in the same cultural attire, they looked like couples, I wasn’t paying attention to them, but the perfume they wore elegantly caught my attention and I looked up. It was my teacher.

“Good morning ma”, I greeted her, she said, ” how are you dear ?”. I was like, didn’t this lady see me. Me… Dear… Wetin I take bath.

The conductor was collecting money and she said … Don’t pay .. Ibraheem.

I said thank you ma. I knew she’ll pay, that’s Nigeria for you.

Then the man looked at me and said “are you Ibraheem?”. I said “Yes sir.”

Then he shook my hand and said..

How are u my name sake.

Then my teacher stared at me and said “troublesome namesakes.” Since my teacher was sitting in between us, the man had to bend forward his neck to say, “be a good boy”. So I nodded my head. (Sebi na him pay my money).
The man alighted along the road, so I remained next to my teacher…

We got to the school’s bus stop, helped with her bag and walked by her side. I felt like, lemme talk to this lady, lemme look for trouble, I started by saying “thank you ma” for paying my Tfare. She said” Kotope”.

Like we were not enemies, I said “ma.. Is that your husband?.

“Ibraheem, Y do you want to know.”

I said “coz he is my namesake.”

She said “I don’t bully Ibraheems.”

And I said “thank God I am your husband.”

You won’t believe she smiled, sighed, stopped then Stretched out her right index finger and tapped on my nose.

I like that coz only mum does that. Since that day, I was fond of her.

Just the name made us friends.
When you are a namesake with someone with Good history or a hero, you will be loved especially if you are good too. I am a namesake to the Hero of my teacher’s life. Meanwhile, no matter how good you are, if your name matches that of a criminal, you’ve got a stain, you would wish you were not named.
These days, many change their names, and go for the ones they love… According to history, prophet Muhammad changed many names, since they didn’t have good meanings. Why would someone bear AGONY, EVIL and names that sound demonic. He changed them to the opposite having good meanings and at times changes them entirely to something else.
Whatever your name is, your demeanor matters most, your behavior defines, represents and celebrates your name. Many good people are named after behaviours and characters some times. They call them by their attitudes, morals, discipline, recognitions and standards. What do you stand for?.

Streets, Churches, Mosques, Schools, Foundations even currencies are at times named after good people and that’s how their names became known and celebrated. I wish I was Muritala Muhammed, in just six months, history was made. Who would spend a currency carrying Madueke’s picture?. I am just asking.
If you are sound academically or are named after a hero but fond of bad dealings and pugnacious behavior, then you are a shame to your name. Don’t soil the image of good names out of your own foolishness and egoism. Your name could take you as far as you don’t expect positively or negatively.

Either names or nicknames, go for a better one and support it with good manners. What’s the good of a beautiful name with an ugly behaviour. What’s the use of a disrespectful one with first grade certificate. Satan was a genius but was cursed out of his disobedience and disrespectful act.

Attitude and not aptitude determines your altitude.

Ask yourself!

What do you want to be called?

What is your name?.


©Ibraheem Olanrewaju.

Broken Pen