Monday, September 19, 2005

Getting the Janded guy

The much anticipated :-) Sequel to "Understanding the Janded Guy".

All previous disclaimers still apply especially the one about using any of this stuff as a serious guide. Alaye Scoro will not accept responsibility for such stupidity.

So ladies you've decided that you want to successfully snag yourself a Janded guy rather than "settle" for a non Naija one. You want to emerge successful from this ultra competitive social environment safe in the knowledge that the guy you've ended up with is the RESULT you envisaged when you first watched "Sound of Music" and wondered what your Captain Von Trapp would look like. You want to find someone that will remain loyal and make you happy. He must also meet with the approval of your parents, receive the blessing of your pastor and ensure the eternal jealousy of your ex-classmates. So how do you do this? Well I'll BE DAMNED IF I HAVE A CLUE but that's not going to stop me from having a go. My motivation for doing this is to ensure that my guy friends end up as "happy" (read as miserable) as all the hooked up guys I know. At the very least I reckon it will be worth a few giggles and confuse a lot of people.

In this simple guide I shall attempt to analyse what currently passes as a comprehensive strategy for getting the janded guy and offer some insight into what us guys are really thinking whilst babes are trying to get us to jump through several hoops like performing circus monkeys. For now I shall focus exclusively on the serial quasi monogamistic dating approach whilst ignoring its inherent flaws when compared to the far more efficient pseudo polyandric dating model (perhaps this will be explored in a future edition

Broadly speaking there are 3 main stages in the approach a babe appears to take to Dating: Due Diligence, Acquisition and Retention. Taking things chronologically, we'll start with Due Diligence..

Due Diligence: Due Diligence (or Pre-selection) refers to the painstaking and thorough research process that the babe applies to assessing her suitor. In truth this ability has its roots in the "assessment" instinct that all women apply when in a social setting. When a babe walks into a room, she assesses the female and male talent. She looks at what the other girls are wearing, mentally measures this against what she is wearing, and makes a snap decision along the lines of "I look -
a) underdressed
b) as good as anyone else here
c) hands down better than anyone else here.

Based on how confident the girl is, she adjusts her attitude accordingly. It is this same instinct that is active during the Due Diligence stage of being with a guy.

Due Diligence is carried out in two main forms. The first involves obtaining his social CV from the rather robust and incestuous Naija network for references. I've been informed that the reason for this is that as far as a babe is concerned every guy must have "context"; a babe apparently can't just deal with any random guy of the street. They must have at least three acquaintances in common. Apparently, she wants to talk to people who know his good side, for encouragement; his bad side, so she'll have a heads up; and his family, so she'll know if she can marry him.
Basically, she needs the low down. As all guys are prone to exaggeration, she needs to know if he can back up his claims. If she's really good, she'll also penetrate his circle of friends and win them over. The theory behind this is that as a result of the bonds formed he can't treat her badly because his people are now her people. However in practice those people do their utmost to avoid getting involved in the "drama" stages of the relationship and the whole process is a waste of time. Unless of course it is these "friends" that are the cause of the drama.

The second method consists of screening the guy through a mental survey to ensure that he fits the bill. This constituent bits of the questionnaire look something like the following

1. Is he Unemployed? Yes/No
2. Is he a distant relative? Yes/No
3. Has he dated anyone I consider a friend rather than an acquaintance? Yes/No
4. Does he speak with an H-factor? Yes/No
5. Is he Yoruba? (Asked by Ibo girl) Yes/No
6. Is he Ibo? (Asked by Yoruba girl) Yes/No
7. Is he staunch Muslim? (Asked by Born Again girl) Yes/No
8. Is his genotype AS? (Asked by AS girl)? Yes/No
9. Is he resident in the UK Illegally? Yes/No
10. Does he have long nails? Yes/No
11. Does he have a girlfriend? Yes/No
12. If yes to the question 11, is he happy? (asked by home wrecker girl) Yes/No

If homeboy qualifies as a YES to any of the above questions then "nothing for him". The best the dude can hope for is to be considered a platonic friend. If he is lucky (or unlucky depending on your point of view) the babe will not inform him of his disqualification until after the date. After all she might as well get a free movie/dinner out of him.

Obviously the length of the questionnaire varies from one girl to another, but there is a direct correlation between the conservative nature of a girl's upbringing and the number of questions to be asked. If she's a puritan (e.g. a 34 year old born again virgin who's never had a boyfriend and explains most of her principles with "Pastor says…") then the questions to be answered will probably equate to a year of constant phone drilling suitably disguised as light banter. Though some might argue that she should take any guy brave (read as stupid) enough to venture near her.

There are some other questions which whilst not deal breakers can be seen to considerably advance (or hinder) the guys case. Take the following two for example:

Does he have a red Pali? Given that this is a rather blatant question, the more astute babe will try and obtain the answer to this question by trying to ascertain if the guy was born in Jand before January 1st 1983.

Does he have a car? Admittedly Jand being the great leveller that it is, the non- driving babe is comfortable with the Bus/Tube network incompetently provided by the good people of London Transport and Ken Livingstone. That said, she is loath to the thought of deciding between spending £30 on a mini-cab or catching a night bus home from Trafalgar square in her high heels after a night out at 10 Room. Even when she has her own car, she would rather have the guy do the chivalrous thing of catering for her transportation needs rather than attempt to navigate her way around the narrow streets of Central London and spend close to an hour trying to find a parking space that won't lead to a parking ticket or worse still her tyre being adorned with "yellow alloys".

What guys hate about Due Diligence?

Basically it's annoying and far too much stress. No one likes questionnaires and when a guy is being interrogated he it is definitely aware of this. Obviously he has a goal (as previously explained in "Understanding Janded guys")in mind and he will do damn near anything to reach it including suffer through a modern day Spanish inquisition whilst still projecting the ideal image that he knows the babe wants to see. He maintains this image by spewing forth tremendous amounts of drivel (otherwise known as "yanning dust)". Obviously the girl eventually discovers the drivel for what it is but by this point the dude has hopefully gotten what the drivel was intended for and moved on. The questionnaire process is so ingrained in the babes' approach that guys don't even get annoyed anymore by the thought of having to surmount it.

Due diligence is also a rather wasteful process. When so much time and energy has been spent assessing the guy prior to enjoying the pleasure of his company, any possible fun that might actually have been had on the date is reduced drastically as there's little pleasant stuff left to discover about him. I mean we all know that in general Naija guys aren't very interesting. So why does a girl wreck the little fun she'll derive from the dating experience by finding everything out in advance? Plus, whatever prior information she might have gleamed from the guy's social CV will only lead to her conjuring up delusions of grandeur that he will overwhelmingly eliminate over the course of their association.

Ironically, the biggest problem with the due diligence approach is that it seems to affect babes more than guys. Simply put it severely limits the babes options . A babe who refuses to be courageous enough to interact with guys who aren't within her social pool or who insists on having a number of mutual acquaintances , invariably ends up dating exclusively within her social circle. Understandably it's now near impossible for a babe to find a likeable guy within her janded circle whose "cousin" isn't married to her "cousin", hasn't dated one of her friends, and is as we say in Engineering parlance "fit for purpose".

Is there a better way?

Indeed. Ultimately there is only one question a babe should ask her self when she meets a new "possibility". WHY IS THIS GUY SINGLE?" If the answer to that question has nothing to do with an HIV test result, a prior conviction, dodgy immigration status or anything that would cause her to join a convent, then perhaps he's worth taking a chance on.

And then there's the "first mover advantage". Not only does this allow the babe to set the pace of things but also a bit more proactiveness on her part would be a comforting change. That whole babe posing for guy thing so as to retain her honour is so antiquated its ridiculous. It's honestly dumbfounding how many girls would rather be mounted by rabid dogs than approach a guy they like. Contrary to how most babes were raised and what they may think, a guy actually admires a bit of forwardness on a babe's part. Samantha Jones isn't our favourite "Sex and the City" character solely because of her sexual progressiveness (though that is obviously a major reason) The fact that she bears no resemblance to Camilla, Princess of Cornwall, yet often approaches guys is another significant reason for our genuine affection for her. There is a place for being reserved and its for after you've met the guy and are trying to gauge the level of his affection for you (and when "Match of the Day" is on obviously). When a nice enough looking babe steps to a guy, it shows that she's confident (yeah we like that too), and tremendously flattering to our fragile male egos. It gets us thinking that if she's brave enough to approach us in public then if we play our cards right she just might shag us (even if we have to marry her first).

So ladies here's some advice; the next time you're at a naija party - assess the male talent on show as you would normally do, find the guy you fancy the most and step to him. Even if you have to consume a few bottles of wine to pluck up the courage first, don't worry. As long as you keep your attentions to that one guy all night your honour is safe. And if you're still sober when you approach him but the alcohol on your breath is perceptible to him then all the better for you. Obviously you don't have to blatantly throw yourself at the guy because if this guy is worth the price of his admission into whatever establishment you're both in, he'll recognise the tell tale signs of a damsel in heat (distress I mean) and carry on the conversation for you. If he doesn't then you've sadly picked the mu-mu that the law of averages dictates you always stood the risk of picking.. Chalk it all up to experience and tell all your girls so that this idiot is treated like the leper he should be and ostracised from janded society.

Alternatively if the "Shock and Awe" method above seems a bit to hardcore for the novices amongst you, simply walk up to him just before you exit the club, hand him your number on a small card and say discretely "You're the cutest guy in the room, call me". Then simply await a phone call from the most excited man you will ever have the pleasure of speaking with. If he hasn't called you by the following night then he's either dead, been deported, or he thinks you look like Camilla. If its either one of the first two reasons, then your honour in Jand is secure and you can try again when next a guy catches your eye. If you look like Camilla, well hey look at the bright side, you're destined to marry a prince.

In our next edition we will look at the next stage in "Getting a Janded guy" - Acquisition.

Words by Alaye Scoro

Friday, September 16, 2005

The rise and rise of the Janded babe (First published in July 2005)

16/05/05 - A report published by the World Economic Forum, entitled “Women’s Empowerment: Measuring the Global Gender Gap” ranks the UK 8th out of 58 countries with the smallest differences between the economic equality of both sexes. -


By Janded babe (or babe for short), I am referring to that breed of Naija female that doesn’t need to rely solely on men as her source of security (financial or otherwise). My strict definition excludes the following:

·those Naija babes who arrived in Jand (or continental Europe) by boat rather than by plane,

·those who purposely failed to complete their secondary school education (they’ll be included in our article exploring the virtues of house girls),

·those who go to church religiously in search of a suitable husband rather than a deeper understanding of God’s love for man,

·those who view marriage as an “Exit Strategy” ,

·those resident in the UK illegally.

In addition, I would like to point out that the author is definitely not a male chauvinist pig, and has exaggerated (slightly) in this article for the purpose of emphasis and humour. As Kahlil Gibrain once said “An exaggeration is a truth that has lost its temper”. So consider this article as the perspective of an angry yet ambitious Janded guy desperate for the success which constantly eludes him but would appear to be so readily available to his female contemporary.

Finally, in discussing the various business enterprises at which Nigerians have applied themselves to, I have refused to consider successful yet illegal antics like plastic surgery (i.e. credit card fraud), benefit fraud or anything involving sexual favours of any kind.

Of the many words used to describe Naija society I doubt egalitarian is one of them. The best jobs in Nigeria still go to the men even though women can now be found in small numbers at all levels of management, in all respected professions and a few not so respected ones for that matter. In Jand however things couldn’t be more different.

Whenever I meet a Naija babe in London and enquire who she works for it’s amazing how the often the same names keep on coming up: Accenture, Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank, Barclays Capital, UBS, Citigroup and most annoyingly of all Goldman Sachs (GS for short) and also known as the "McDonalds of Investment banking". Off the top of my head I can think of at least ten Janded babes who are either GS alumni, currently working for GS or are set to jet off for training in New York with GS in the summer. And how many guys do I know? THREE, and one of them I’m sure works in the mail room. I found this apparent disparity at GS to be most peculiar until an enlightened friend said to me “Alaye what do you expect? Of course you’ll always find a lot of babes wherever you see the words “Gold” and “Man”. Duh.

The sour grapes chomping Janded guy would say that things really aren’t that bad and at least these babes are being confined to purely back and middle office operations. WRONG. Think again. They're in the front handling things like M&A, Fixed Income, Commodities, or serious client engagement type stuff. And you best believe they’re being well compensated regardless of which part of the office they are sitting in.

The rise is not just confined to the business world either. I know of several babes working as doctors for the NHS, many of whom are based in London (which is apparently the most competitive place in the UK to get a position), Of all the guys I know only two are doctors and one of them had to go all the way to bucolic England to get his posting even though the academic institutions he’s attended would impress Tony Blair. I would offer his name were it not for the fact that our Janded community is rather small and I can’t afford to lose this guy’s friendship, generous as he is with all the so called NHS funding that ends up in his bank account.

I know five babes working for magic circle (i.e. the most prestigious) law firms, about 11 working for the big four accountancy firms and so on and so bloody forth. And then there are all the girls working for other blue chip organisations like IBM, BBC, LogicaCMG, BP, Unilever, Shell, P&G, and a whole host of other top notch firms. And I’ve not mentioned all the architects, pharmacists, and PhDs out there. This is not to say that there aren’t guys working for some of these firms, cos there are, but they seriously outnumber the guys. Even when you allow for the fact that there are more girls than guys in Jand (as I alluded to in an earlier article) I am convinced that there are disproportionately more doing well professionally than guys. I think the only thing they are content to see us guys outnumber them in is IT, club promos or deejaying.

And its getting worse.

Have you been to any of the Universities recently? From Oxbridge to Durham, the several in between and especially any of the London Unis (yes even South Bank). These notorious feeder institutions for all the companies mentioned are being overrun by Nigerians and an ever increasing number are babes. Imperial College is an interesting example. Historically dominated by Naija guys, given its exclusive focus on engineering and the sciences, you will now find Naija babes in substantial numbers in the medical school and various engineering departments. Another example is The London School of Economics (LSE). All the people I know who attended LSE have one thing in common. You guessed it. All babes. I’m not even messing with you. One works for GS (typical), another is a corporate lawyer, another’s an investment banker, another’s with the UN, yet another is a Barrister defending some of London’s dumbest petty criminals (I’m too scared to ask how many are Naija guys) and so on and so bloody forth. This is indeed ominous cos LSE, it may surprise some to know, has produced around thirty-three past and present heads of state or heads of government (Yep, I’ve done the research). A fertile breeding ground for future leaders, we would agree, and like everywhere else it would seem, is being over run by Naija babes. YAWA.

Even outside of the professional environment, Naija babes are representing. They’re demonstrating tremendous entrepreneurial flair whilst us guys are still struggling to spell entrepreneurial (thank God for MS Words Autocorrect function). I know some who, complete with their university degrees, have decided to start up their own fashion houses (JustNibi, Zingara, UrbanKnit), interior decorating companies (Inu Designs) and derive a living from such. Others are making money from catering, hairdressing (up to £80 pounds a pop - TAX BLOODY FREE!!), and wedding and event planning. Adding insult to injury, most of them have got the jobs that many of us Naija guys would sell our souls to the devil to get work for, decided they didn’t fancy it and quit to do their own thing. Like all entrepreneurs I’m sure that doing their own thing isn’t easy but hey they’re sticking at it and I admire and applaud them for that.

Another curious observation is how they are making wonderful use of the “Trickle down” and “Network” effects, spreading the wealth amongst themselves and leaving us guys high and dry. They’ll braid each other’s hair, organise each other’s weddings, and annoyingly insist that we, their unsuspecting boyfriends, buy them fashion items produced by their fellow babe (or we ain’t getting any for three months). Across the whole spectrum of UK PLC, Naija babes are recognising that the game is theirs to be had and they are going about conquering it mercilessly. And what are they leaving for us guys? Yep you guessed it: IT, club promo’s and Deejaying.

So what factors have contributed to the success of the Naija babe in UK PLC? I propose the following as the main contributing factors (though others no doubt exist)

1)Breasts – Say what you like about it but I’m convinced the fact that the possession of breasts definitely plays a part in the rise of the babe. In my somewhat limited professional career I’ve interviewed job applicants and I can easily state that the ones with breasts automatically stood a better chance of getting the job.

2)The “2 birds with 1 stone” factor – Basically affirmative action/ diversity/ whatever you want to call it is a bitch. They have more to offer than us guys. Being black AND female, they are more employable because of the effect they have on a company’s diversity stats. We’ve all seen the literature “Our Company is composed of X% Ethnic minorities, Y% women, etc”. It’s all good. Don’t worry, in my next life I’m coming back as a disabled, homosexual, black, and female. Then I’ll get any job I want or it’s straight to my nearest employment Tribunal screaming “DISCRIMINATION”.

3)F*** Me Boots – a variation on the breasts theme but essentially the same point. In the boring professional work environment, nothing cheers up what could be an otherwise dull and dreary day than a nice mini skirt and jacket ensemble (think Ally McBeal) suitably accentuated by a nice pair of knee length boots (or F*** Me Boots - FMBs). Another reason to separate this out from the first reason is to acknowledge the fact that the Naija babes who look hot in FMBs aren’t necessarily the ones with the most remarkable breasts (apparently).

4)The Chameleon effect – Put simply the educated babe would appear to be better at being a chameleon in the work place than the educated guy. Put another way, you can take the guy out of Naija but you sure as hell can’t take the Naija out of the guy, and his attitude just doesn’t go down as well with the powers that be in UK PLC. For a further explanation of the chameleon effect please see the “chameleon” article by my esteemed colleague on

5)Breasts – For the sake of emphasis.

6)Discipline – In my humble opinion and for reasons that I fail to grasp the typical Naija babe is just more disciplined and organised than the typical Naija guy. They’ve already proven that they are skilled multi-taskers which for the record we guys are just plain rubbish at. Not only are they great at this, they can also tell very easily when someone else is failing miserably when trying to do the same. I am yet to simultaneously yan with a babe on the phone whilst playing my PS2 without her figuring it out (My girlfriend’s record, by the way, is 3 seconds- scary).

So finally what does the unending rise of the Janded babe mean for the struggling Janded guy?

OK guys, I’ll be frank, in my analysis, the future is bleak for the guy. The babe has proven that she is more than equal to us. She has shown a relentless and ruthless desire for excellence that is being nurtured by UK PLC and which can only be momentarily halted whilst she worries about two things: who the hell is going to marry her over achieving ass and her period that’s 4 weeks late (LOL, sorry I couldn’t resist).

Allow me to illustrate what the future might hold by providing the following anecdotes.

SCRUB A lost his job during the 2001 dot.gone fiasco. He had a babe flying high in her job with an Investment bank. She basically supported his broke ass. Now SCRUB A was no slouch but clearly some cosmic powers had conspired against him such that even with his impressive 1st class degree he suffered through numerous fruitless interviews, assessment centres, numeracy and psychometric tests whilst she sorted out a mortgage and bought a car (even though she couldn’t drive at this point).

SCRUB B, who was also a victim of the dot.gone plague, used his prolonged jobless phase to hook up with a rather cool babe who would pick him up in her brand new car, pay for dinner and drop him off at his aunt’s house where he’d moved into in order to save on the rent he clearly couldn’t afford.

SCRUB C would actually feel rather secure in his IT job if it weren’t for the fact that he has to bus it to work whilst his girlfriend is able to pay cash for her spanking new BMW (which, by virtue of her demanding city job, she only really drives at the weekend)

SCRUB D was actually feeling pretty good about his situation until the bloody February bonus round in the city. His girlfriend not only got a bonus that he would willingly suck another guy’s one eyed snake for, but she also got a pay rise that quite frankly allows her salary to dwarf his the same way, er, well the same way her breasts dwarf his. SCRUB D has this to say in his defence “Men my guy its not easy oh, I’ve dropped subtle hints for my oga at work to give me the pay increase that my promotion at the beginning of the year commands but the guy is messing me around, so in the meantime whenever my babe spends the night at my place I’m waking up earlier than her just to make sure she doesn’t wear my trousers before I do.”

And then there’s SCRUB E. Now this guy I really feel for. He was forced to vacate his rent free accommodation due to essential maintenance whilst still searching for a new job since his last employer informed him that he was “surplus to requirements”. SCRUB E was left with no option but to acquiesce to his babe’s two year old request to move in with her as they embarked on that journey towards marriage. He now does most of the housework in between attending job interviews and protecting the little manhood he has left. When I called him the other day to ask how he was holding up he said “This guy, I’ve suffered, can u believe what Sade just asked me to do?” I said “what?” fearing she was about to kick his broke ass out. He replied “She’s asked me to start making packed lunches for her to take to work!” Deep down, I’m sure the guy would have preferred she just tossed him out.

I will say this though; all these guys took their humbling like men and were able to appreciate the humour of their respective situations. More commendably, their girlfriends stood by their men through thick and thicker. Babes are good like that. They can destroy the competition brutally and still manage to appear very caring and affectionate. I’m sure that these guys would grudgingly admit that they’re proud of their babes, and will continue to support them wholeheartedly. That I think is the most sensible approach. Guys, lets support our babes completely, after all their success is our success (yeah right) and so what if we now have to pay for the sins of our forefathers? We can stay at home, play the PS2 that our babes bought for us, and begin to think about careers as home makers.

Guys, if you’re not man enough to take the high road then you can take drastic action. Pack your bags, and head back to Naija where things are still somewhat stacked in our favour and the babes are probably more willing to massage our egos the way we like (although that apparently is changing too). Or damn the consequences and get her pregnant (assuming she allows your broke ass anywhere near her desirables).

To the babes I say this, thank you. Thank you for giving me the motivation to wake up in the morning rather than toss my phone across the room when the alarm goes off. Thanks for teaching us to cook óbé the way you like it, Thanks for using your job as a recruitment consultant in the city to get our broke ass a temp job that helped us stem the financial bleeding, and most of all thanks for sticking by us rather than trading us in for some Oyinbo guy who is probably more on your level.

Words by Alaye Scoro

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Understanding the Janded Guy (First published in June 2005)

I've heard it all. I really have. Being a Nigerian guy in Jand for the past decade or so has meant that I have been privy to a lot of talk by the fairer sex about how useless we guys can be for a whole catalogue of reasons … and it hurts, I tell you, it really does hurt. Because the gals just don't get it. I have so many single janded babe friends and they’re forever complaining about the slim pickings as far as a suitable partner is concerned. When attempting to understand us guys they complicate and over analyse until they end up with the classic "paralysis by analysis".Come to think of it, I think the janded guy, like all other men, is simply misunderstood. So I've decided to use this forum as a cathartic tool to give a typical janded Nigerian guy’s perspective and offer a solution. Obviously I could tackle the issue from a number of different angles, but I think given the audience, I'll start with the curious dynamic that exists between the janded versions of the Naija guy and Naija girl. Ladies, please think of this as your guide to better understanding the typical janded guy.

First though, a rather lengthy disclaimer:

To begin with, this article is a witty attempt and light hearted analysis of a rather interesting dinner party topic. It is not meant in anyway as a definitive study of Nigerian men. It is a grossly simplified and generalised approach to the topic. As William Blake said "To generalise is to be an idiot". So consider this an idiot’s musing on the issue. Secondly, the author cannot be held responsible for any mishap that befalls any person stupid enough to use any of the ideas mentioned in this article as a guide for how to snag that elusive solid janded guy with the City job, red pali, a flat in St. Johns Wood, and/or a 3 bedroom house in VGC, a dead mother (so no mother-in-law stress), a car still under manufacturer’s warranty, etc.

Furthermore, whilst this article, in keeping with its title, will seek to explore what is wrong with the janded guy, it will not investigate their inability to think outside the box, their obsession with material possessions, keeping up with the Joneses, their penchant for fraud, and the herd mentality they portray in their thinking and fashion sense. After all, these things afflict the typical janded babe too. Also, by typical janded guy this article refers to the middle class Nigerian male sent to Jand by caring and concerned parents to further his post-secondary school education, and who still keeps in regular contact with all matters Nigerian. In addition, in our rather strict definition of janded guys, we have excluded those guys who have pot bellies, live in the un-gentrified parts of Peckham, roll with brethren they ostensibly refer to as “blad”, have South Bank University on their CV, attends KICC regularly, have been to Moonlighting Night club more than twice in any calendar month, haven’t been back to Nigeria since they left, studied GNVQs rather than A Levels or IBs, and who are residing in the UK illegally (as sweeping an exclusionary point as that might be). Finally, for the sake of clarity I would like to stress that the theory espoused in this article is based on anecdotal evidence and research and is by no means conclusive.

So, just how many people make up our composite of the typical janded guy? Conservative estimates put the number of people of Nigerian heritage currently residing in the UK at between 1 and 2 million. Sadly the Home Office (whom I have indeed contacted during the course of my informal research) has for some strange reason chosen to withhold its estimate of the number of Nigerians in the UK. They'll happily tell you how many Americans, Australians, even how many Japanese are legally resident here, but when it comes to Nigerians, apparently that information has been deemed too sensitive for the public domain. Go figure.

So we're talking about a maximum of a million men (assuming a 50-50 gender split, which for reasons that will be made clear later is completely inappropriate) And of these million men, I often hear complaints that the dateable pool is about a hundred, and of these only about 10 of the guys will have the gumption to do something original and romantic (notice the mutual exclusivity here) over the course of a relationship. So what’s wrong with these 999,900 men considered un-dateable by most Naija babes?

Firstly, contrary to what academics would have you believe, the attitude of man (as opposed to woman) hasn’t developed much further than that of the typical hunter-gatherer that roamed the earth during the Neolithic revolution somewhere between 8000 and 7000 BC. Man has always been ruled by his two primal instincts; fighting/hunting/killing (modern day equivalent is sports) and sexual reproduction (modern day equivalent is sex). We’re ruled by sex and sports. And some of us have been ingenious enough to make sex a sport. So the simple truth is that like all men out there, Naija men are, for want of a better word BASTARDS. We're simpletons at best ruled by the pursuit of sex and all matters pursuant to sex. We'd sleep with our sisters if it weren't considered distasteful (read as sinful) to do so. When we approach a babe, we’re only really thing about sex, when we’re dating a babe, we’re only really thinking about sex, and when we’re having sex with a babe we’re only really thinking about having sex with more babes. And lest I be accused of providing an incomplete analysis, when we haven’t previously had sex, we’re really not doing much thinking at all.

The many shortcomings inherent in our XY chromosomal make up are further augmented by the fact that the Naija man hails from a land where society has not only always undervalued the sizeable contribution made by women, but has actually subjugated the fairer sex. Colonialism, Western education and modern religion have done their bits to correct some of this injustice but let’s not kid ourselves. Naija society does very little to espouse an egalitarian view of the sexes, and as long as that is the prevailing sentiment, there is no impetus for change. Having been raised to all extent and purposes by a single mother, I for one appreciate how tough it can be for a woman within Nigerian society and secretly long for the day when women will be treated as equals in the full sense of the word and respected for what they do. That said, I’m a guy and the status quo suits me just fine (insert devilish laugh here).

Whenever I ask a Naija babe what sort of guy she’s looking for, the same adjectives keep popping up: godly, intelligent, confident, funny, (but not in a “to look at” sort of way), handsome, and most ridiculous of all, LOYAL. I mean give me a frigging break. Asking for a loyal Naija guy is like asking for an Englishman that doesn’t drink. Sure you can find one, if you search hard and long enough, but you don’t want to spend your life with him because it would be a truly boring enterprise. It’s not that Naija guys can’t be loyal, of course we can. I know Naija guys who’ve supported Arsenal for well over a decade without wavering in their commitment despite having to suffer through the managerial shite of Bruce Rioch, the abysmal disciplinary record (not that they care about such) and the team’s shocking inability to perform in Europe after 8 years of trying. Seriously though, do you honestly think that a Naija guy, who is indeed godly, intelligent, confident and funny, doesn’t realise that he’s all these things. And given that he does, why would he agree to add loyalty to his list of traits given the opportunity that exists for him in the, er, marketplace? This brings me nicely on to my next point – Market Forces.

Hopefully most of us are no doubt familiar with the laws of supply and demand, the different sorts of market they give rise to and the consequential effects on pricing. To briefly illustrate, the main reason BA and Virgin Atlantic are able to sodomise us financially when it comes to purchasing tickets to Nigeria at Xmas is because they realise that the demand for tickets to Nigeria during the Xmas period is crazily high and that they can charge us the largest amount possible. Above this price (Xmas 2005 return is circa £950) most of us would seriously consider embarking on the 6600km swim via the shark infested waters of the Atlantic. Point is, it’s a Sellers market and us poor unsuspecting peeps who just long to taste Mama Iyabo’s pounded yam at Xmas are getting the rough end of the deal.

The same is true of the Naija dating scene in Jand. The babes are getting the rough end of the deal.In a normal dating model, the women are the passive receptors (unless they’re called Samantha Jones) and the men are the active aggressors. We men compete openly for the affection of women, whilst the women compete clandestinely (in fashion/posing terms) for the attention of men who must then approach said attractive woman, and table as compelling an offer as they can so that they can get laid. This model works fine provided the number of men is greater than the number of women as this allows for an efficient marketplace where all the suitable men end up paired with a woman (the issue of her suitability need not arise), and the undesirable men (the excess if you will) get weeded out of the gene pool. However in the Naija-Jand scene, that is not the case.

For some strange reason, Naija babes seriously outnumber Naija guys. Go to Heathrow Terminals 3 and 4, Otto Lounge, Zen, Zeta Bar, Jesus House, or whatever other momentarily trendy setting Naija peeps congregate to, and chances are that the babes will outnumber the guys. My extensive research as to why this is the case is as yet inconclusive but I do know there are myriad reasons like the feminine friendly pricing policies of these erstwhile institutions, the fact that Naija guys are more likely to join a cult and die or commit a crime and go to jail therefore not making it out of Naija in the first place, that babes are able to spend more of their disposable income on themselves, and the simple fact that the good people at the British High Commission are probably more amenable to approving the visa requests tabled by babes rather than guys. Anyway I digress; the point is that for whatever reason there appears to be more babes than guys, which automatically makes it a Guys market. The figures are even more skewed in a guy’s favour if the girl goes for the tick box approach and looks for criteria like a top 20 UK university education, serious godliness (as opposed to the trendy kind), and a solid career. In such an exclusive environment I’d postulate that the babes outnumber the guys sixteen to one.

So you have this huge disparity in the numbers and you’re asking a guy to be loyal to you and neglect his huge (some may say greater) duty to society to ensure that every Naija babe is blessed with the chance for some Naija guy loving. Personally I’m all for monogamy but that model only works if we’re dealing with a perfect 1 to 1 ratio. Sadly this isn’t the case in Jand. The market is geared towards enabling (nay requiring) guys to cheat.

One other thing about the marketplace is the wrong approach of babes to it. Most babes use the same sort of approach to dating guys that their counterparts in Naija would use, thinking that the market here is exactly the same. BIG MISTAKE! The market in Jand is ahelluva lot more competitive. In Nigeria, boy meets girl, girl poses for boy, boy chases girl (cos he has no option), girl agrees for boy small (if he’s lucky) and boy must date girl (who by the way still lives in her parent’s house) for several months before he receives any form of coital pleasure, Nigeria being the more morally upstanding environment, at least relative to Jand. Now, remember what I said earlier about guys being ruled by sex? Surely such tactics are doomed to fail in the sexually charged atmosphere of the western world.

And if that wasn’t tough enough, lets add one more variable (which in mathematical terms is actually approaching a constant), the ENLIGHTENED Oyinbo chick. The Oyinbo chick (or “Black mans Kryptonite” to borrow a phrase) makes it bloody impossible for Naija babes to approach the market as they once did. Especially when the Naija guy has demonstrated the willingness to venture as far afield as Hull (5 hour drive from London) and Newcastle (6 hour drive ) in search of said Oyinbo chick and the, er, gratification (for want of a better word) that she is only too willing to provide. As an (ahem) innocent observer on a few such trips, I can only say that naija chicks have their work cut out for them if they’re going to attempt to match the antics of some of these suitably inebriated young ladies who have willingly led some of my less disciplined mates astray.

This is not to say that we’re not blessed with our own female freaks among Naija society. Oh trust me we are. It’s just that these babes are few and very far between, and a critical mass of such is sadly decades away. A female friend of mine who can only be described as enlightened and progressive takes this view on Naija guys and their infidelity; “I lay a third of the blame of infidelity at the feet of most women, who will take a guy back after he cheats, another third for the guy, since human nature is to get away with what you can, and the remaining third at the feet of the complicit other woman (if she was unaware, then 50-50 with the other two). Most guys will not tolerate their babe cheating and that is a major reason why girls don't cheat. But nowadays, girls are sad and desperate. Shame, that.” That, oddly enough is I think a fairer apportionment of the blame for man’s infidelity than even I had been willing to acknowledge. But notice how if you take my friends approach, women account for 66% of the blame whilst men account for a paltry 33%.

So what then is a Naija babe to do? I mean surely finding a suitable partner shouldn’t be this difficult and it is completely unnecessary to put up with such scandalous behaviour on the part of guys. To which I can only say ‘hell yeah!’, I am not at all excusing Naija guys’ behaviour and I do believe that if a guy cheats on you and you find out then you should indeed show him hell, for he has disrespected you (by allowing you to find out) and made a mockery of the affection (ok, love) that you have willingly showered upon him.

Personally, I think its time women strike back by collectively dumping the Naija guys who continually fail to treat them like princesses that they are. Naija babes should seriously consider venturing further afield in search of solid African ( i.e. Non-Nigerian) or even Oyinbo guys who have clearly demonstrated a less wayward pattern in matters of love. That said, these other guys do come with their own caveats: Kenyans drink too much, English guys aren’t as well endowed (or so urban legend has it), Australian men will eventually require you to follow them back home to the outback, Indian guys won’t give you the time of day, etc. Globalisation is happening for a reason and I believe that Naija babes must act to widen their pool of available men by considering races and ethnicities that they have hitherto not considered. When I met my current girlfriend (who for the record I have no intention of cheating on, though I’d be lying if I said I had never thought about it), she was dating a continental European guy and I have to say I was somewhat sobered by the realisation that it was time to step up to the plate and represent. I found her willingness to go for any guy (regardless of race) that would make her happy refreshing and sought to rise to the challenge.

There are a lot of solid guys out there and babes should do their utmost to snag a guy that’ll make them happy and won’t cause them too much drama. Once that’s done and you’ve found your cool non-Naija guy who doesn’t cause you too much drama, you can now dedicate all your drama-fighting energy to dealing with other issues like convincing your objectionable mother/family (and believe me they will object), arranging for your family of 200 to attend your wedding in Scarborough, naming your child Paddy /Mensah /Jaswinder, learning the language/culture of your husbands nation etc. If you can live with such then go for it.

On the other hand if you feel that your future happiness lies with the janded guy, then more power to you. I for one will happily provide a set of guidelines for understanding and getting the best out of this wonderfully flawed creature in a future edition of my musing.

Words by Alaye Scoro