By: Quadri Yahya
Hello, verifiers at the Guinness Book of Records.
I write to alert you of an attempt by industrious and trailblazing citizens of my country who are extremely eager to fill the pages of your remarkable global record.
Nigerians have launched Operation Fill the Book of Records to make sure all the blank pages are flooded with their names even if their -a-thon is nonsensical. Not that my people have bad intentions, though. But they are just covetous folks who leave tètè to kill lapalapa.
The fact that you would need a translator to understand the above co-mixed Yoruba proverb means there is no better person to explain the nature of Nigerians to you than a Nigerian.
My people are pacesetters both locally and internationally. They are ubiquitous. They have their footprints in science and technology, economy, and literature. They have residences and stores on Mars and Jupiter.
But the new-age Nigerians seek to etch their names on your record, which would soon be filled up anyway.
Recently, one of us opened the door to your old book by cooking nonstop for four days. Then, a coup to dominate your records was plotted and launched.
Even our prominent president reportedly set the pace in sign-a-thon. Apparently, to prove a point, Mr President hit the ground running by signing four bills in two weeks! The president deserves an accolade and a certificate of excellence as, perhaps, the first number one citizen to achieve this feat. Though a critic ridiculed the achievement by saying the bills are low-hanging fruits, I think it is deserving of a medal from no less than the GWR headquarters.
To whom much is given, GWR Verifiers, much is as well expected. Give the damn award to my President!
I also learnt that a prayer warrior desires to embark on a vain prayer session — so his/her name would feature in your records. Glory to God.
That is the spirit in us. The spirit of competitiveness. The showy spirit. The spirit of setting a pace and then abusing it.
But GWR, let prominence paint the pages of your book, henceforth.
Give pre-kudos to Nigerian writers who want to contribute to literacy by writing relentlessly for days. One of them categorically said he would end the drill on a Friday to allow him to go for the Muslim jum’at prayer.
Another, an admirable female, said her energy would be exerted into writing children’s books.
We need more of them!
I am curious, though, to know what contribution the drill by a chef and a prayerful person to the GWR has to society beyond ostentatiously forcing their names into the record.
On the other hand, the world needs writers because they can shape our perspectives about ourselves and the environment. Prominence should be given to everything! While food is delicious, books are more delicious. While cooking could be a passion, the basic fact remains that the world needs writers more than chefs.
My kontiri people, too, should make noise for feats by idiosyncratic record holders such as a Nigerian artist who, in a bid to create a platform to help young artists explore their creativities, organised the longest recording marathon event on 25 June 2022. But no; for such a feat, the fanfare fades before it shines.
As a concerned Nigerian, I write to alert verifiers at GWR of an attempt by industrious and trailblazing citizens of my country who are extremely eager to fill the pages of your remarkable global record.
And I leave you to decide whether to allow the GWR book to be abused and make it infamous for frivolity.
Current record holder for the longest alert-a-thon.
Quadri Yahya writes satire whenever he is tired of the miscalculations in society.