Office Romance

I know with the title to this post, you all would expect that this is about relationships in the office and lewd sexual escapades between colleagues or junior staff and their superiors, either just for the fun of it or for leveraging their easy climb to the top of the corporate ladder. But this is not about anything of the sorts; I’m not saying that my thoughts haven’t run through the idea of having late night carnal romps coupled with the thrill that comes with knowing you could be caught any moment and how matters would be complicated when one party starts to catch feelings. One major hindrance is that we all know it isn’t wise to shit where you eat.

If you spend long enough time with someone or a place feelings are bound to spring up from one place or the other. I wish I could have seen things through the eyes of my colleagues when I first started out here over a year ago; how did they perceive the newbie? Did the ladies think I was cute – a sight for sore eyes, or did my immediate colleagues in the same department wonder what a Petroleum Engineer was doing in the communications department and wondering if he would take their shine or slow them down? These are all questions that ran through my mind, but there is no way of finding out.

It still baffles me till tomorrow but the truth is that no matter how I ask them what they thought about me on face value, I’d never get a sincere enough reply; at least from everyone but one person, Susan. She is one brutally honest person you can count on for the bitter truth even when you can’t handle it. Apparently, I had a big head and looked scruffy and lost. I didn’t expect less considering I started work a week after my NYSC and we all know it’s never a beautiful experience especially when you’re out of your comfort zone and in a place like Warri.

Anyways a year and two months down the line, I seem to have settled in nicely. I now get to partake in the morning ritual of breakfast between Mr. Mike, Toun and the boss’s secretary Joyce. Oh! How the aroma from those meals made me long to be part of that caucus; I swallowed spittle for months. Susan, who is known not to entertain hugs, now gives me occasional hugs entirely by her own volition.

Then when it comes to tech matters, even the closely guarded admin password that gave the I.T support staff all the power they wielded is no longer a big deal, plus the internet firewall is down. Today I got reconnected to Susan’s printer via our Wi-Fi network and I no longer have to carry my laptop all the way to George’s printer, plug in the cable while I answer one too many questions, anytime I needed to print a documents. In fact as it is now, everyone in the office knows I’m the go-to-guy for any tech related stuff; even the COO and our OGA on TOP have come to recognize this, I only wish it could be translated to more money in my bank account.

Everything just takes a little getting us to, even the most hostile of people could eventually warm up to you.  The same thing applies to life in general. At first it looks like everything and everyone is out to get you or bring you down, but as you get used to the system, you eventually find a balance. Nothing is as hard as it seems to be at first. I used to be scared about starting out life and facing responsibilities, but suddenly all that which used to feel like an uphill task becomes a walk in the park.

Is Christianity Transactional?

I want to start this with a disclaimer stating firmly that I’m not in any way trying to condemn, refute or change your mindset, neither am I saying for a certainty that I am right and you are wrong, I just want to use this as a test to see just how truthful and sincere you are to yourself.

When you give or do good deeds as a Christian, do you expect to get something in return?

If you’re in the business of acting all self-righteous, you would be quick to say that you give just for the mere point of giving, or as my colleague Susan says ‘I give merely out of Thanksgiving for the things the Lord has blessed me with, and don’t expect anything in return’.

I hated to burst her bubble, by making her understand that I saw right through her overtly self-righteous claims but on the other hand, I want to bring to the notice of those of you with the same altruistic assertions that even the Lord expects us to anticipate something in return. When he speaks on giving 1/10th of your income, He tasks us to put Him to a test and see if the floodgates of heaven wouldn’t be opened to heap blessing upon us to the point it overflows and engulfs us. Also, He says that if a man’s ways pleases Him, he would make even our enemies to be at peace with us; that’s purely transactional, and if you look closely at Deut 28 He talks about setting you high above the nations on the earth if you obey and follow His commandments. I see it as an incentive even though we should love Him and do his bidding unconditionally. We should obey Him not just because we want to enjoy the benefits, but cos we want to be in a healthy relationship with the Holy Spirit. Queen Bea explains the trinity as God the father, the supreme being who care for all our needs – the one we have the covenant business-like relationship with; God the son is the one who died for our sins, He is the middle man who makes intersessions on our behalf to God the father, then God the Holy Spirit is our comforter, the presence of God as part of a person’s religious experience, the one we meet in worship.

Asides from all this, coming to the crux of this post, God’s breakthrough for people can only be possible through men. We are merely agents of his transforming love and miracles, so don’t refrain from letting Him use you to bless someone. The God who puts money in your pockets trusts that you would meet someone other than yourself at the point of their needs just as you trust that He would do the same for you through someone else; classic case of seed time and harvest.

Though, in church yesterday it came to my notice that there is a clause to the transactional inclinations of Christianity. 1 Corinthians 13:3 points out that even if I dole out everything I have to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may brag, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

It doesn’t get any clearer than that. So even if you expect to get something in return, do it out of love for others and without grumbling or a sense of obligation. Love is the greatest commandment we have been tasked with; simply put, if your motive is wrong and love isn’t your driving force, then it’s equal to nothing. If your life is all about you and you don’t care about the meeting the next man’s needs, then you amount to nothing even if you seemingly have everything.

Also, never use the position God has blessed you with to reduce anyone, instead use that power to empower. According to Pastor Sarah of FWC, helping someone at the point of their need is the greatest kind of orgasm; it lasts way more than 30mins and goes on for weeks, months and even years. Always thank God that you’re on the giving side and not on the receiving side; begging is a hard job, not to mention humiliating.

Midweek Fix: Of Death And Other Related Noise

Seun Odukoya

Know what loneliness is? Making other people happy; giving so much of yourself and not having a place to refill from.

It’s been all over the news – Robin Williams, ace actor, comedian, all-round talent and funnyman is dead. Lauren Bacall, another fantastic actress from generations ago died yesterday (12th). These are people who spent years on the screen, making people happy by giving a face to their most private thoughts.

But I won’t even talk about Bacall as much as I will Robin Williams. She died of a stroke, natural caused – and she was 89.

Robin, on the other hand was 63 and it was classified as an apparent suicide. I met Robin in Ms. Doubtfire, and even though I thought romance movie are somehow – I liked his performance. I thought it was brilliant; the way he went from husband to nanny without breaking a sweat. Then…

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they call it ‘See Finish’

A new toy to a kid, affection between new lovebirds (puppy love), gadget to a tech freak and the lot can be really overwhelming at first. For the first few days/weeks or even maybe months, thoughts of them are utmost in our minds and we’d give them just about everything plus our rapt attention.

The flip side to this is that humans could be fickle (Fickle: changing frequently, especially as regards one’s loyalties or affections). Ermm, I’d rather say human emotions are fickle; feelings could experience a steady rise for a relatively long time and take a nose dive the next minute. Maintaining a certain level of interest takes time and commitment.

Just like a candle lit needs oxygen in the air to sustain itself so does it apply to everything new? It is highly pertinent that you become innovative to keep your interest constantly piqued by that which used to have your attention.

New flames like new toys give us the thrills and we absolutely can’t wait to show them off. Most times we take to the social media splattering pictures and ‘selfies’ with them for the whole world to see, and not having a care in the world.

This isn’t just about people or things. Even a new job excites you; you’re quick to get up in the morning and eager to be counted as one of those gainfully employed, but over time you lose that passion cos you have gotten so used to it that it becomes a routine that you’re not eager to return to.

I remember when I first started at my job; I felt it was the best thing that happened to me and things couldn’t possibly get any better. Months down the line, I noticed I no longer prepped days in advance, shirts and matching pants for the week; waking up at 6:30am now felt like I was overzealous and a couple of more months down the line, I constantly thought to myself, ‘is this all there could be to me?’. My Interest started dwindling, and I hard to remind myself that I should be grateful; a host of other graduates walked the streets of major cities looking for jobs, with the soles of their shoes flattened out by wear & tear whilst frustration became their closest companion.

The major crux of the matter is that in whatever new thing that piques your interest, maintaining that feeling with the same intensity as it was in the beginning is very crucial (if you ever genuinely cared)

How do you sustain your interest when you become too familiar with a person or thing? For human beings, it is different; we evolve, we change as a result of the circumstances that hit us in our everyday lives. We lose, gain and acquire new interests and sometimes even return right back to those same things we thought we had done away with. Sigh!!! It is hard to stay the same way, change really is constant. It’s easier with things (gadgets, fashion trends and the likes) because with them and with time comes a distinct change in value; the things that were in vogue years ago have been overtaken by events and can’t spark any interests within us..

Basically, I think when dealing with people you should endeavour to look beyond the physical attributes and look at things for their true value to you cos loyalty is staying true; commitment is paramount. It involves putting in your time, displaying due diligence and having faith (uncanny belief) in that person even when it doesn’t seem remotely like it. This goes way beyond a feeling or attraction and truth be told, flames don’t burn forever.

We need to make a conscious effort to stay committed because frankly, we will always desire something new; it is part of our human nature, but we can’t treat our relationships with people as we’d do with gadgets, toys, or a new skill we learnt cos these would definitely be forgiving, maybe not even knowing they have been replaced, but it would sting and stick with an actual person.