It’s too hard

Wilson Orhiunu

First Gentleman with Wilson Orhiunu

Email: Twitter: @Babawilly

I found myself sitting in front of a gentleman with the kind of belly you imagine could accommodate all of Bill Gate’s gold coins. You know the type. The guys who stand in front of the urinal at the cinema and feels for the zip for they walk by faith and not by sight. The abdomen that prevents clear views of the shoes can lead one up the road to mischief.

We both looked at the mountainous Chicken Graveyard in front of us and sighed.

“It has to go,” he said.

Silence followed.

“But it is too hard,” he said. “Losing weight is too hard.”

What really is easy or hard? If one is born into a situation, we say it comes naturally and easy.

If one has to work at something meaningful some will say it is hard.

It just depends on which way the wind is blowing. I recall a certain individual who travelled from Kaduna to London; a journey that took years (don’t ask), who said it was too hard to drive from London to Birmingham.

It appears that the things we want to do get done and the things we do not want to do are labelled too hard or impossible.

Reading is one area where you hear all types of comments from “it’s too long” to “I find it difficult to read”. Some people swell with pride when they let you know about what they find difficult to do.

I wonder why they bother because it shows. They should learn from those who don’t take their baths. They don’t go around saying “showers are too hard”. Like Nike says they just do it or perhaps in this case just don’t do it.

From their smells, you shall know them.

Another one is “I cannot just exercise. It is too hard”.

What’s the point saying that when the body has spoken already.

One does not hear Dangote walking around saying “I cannot do poverty. It’s too hard”.

Sometimes we mix things that have a low probability of happening with being difficult or hard. Time and chance happen to all men.

A person who has a chance meeting with an influential leader and goes on to great things just had an opportunity. Favourable opportunities are neither easy nor hard.

“Hard to come by” as a phrase describes statistical probability of occurrence rather than the effort required for accomplishing.

Rare things happen to a select number of people and the lazy among us like to point to these rare individuals as examples that “it’s written in the stars. Those who will make it will make it”. The deduction from this kind of thinking is that it is futile to eat the bread of sorrow and work, hustle and “kill yourself” from morning to night as the outcome remains the same.

Traditionally, a few things are deemed hard such as pregnancy, being a man, climbing a mountain, running a marathon, becoming a brain surgeon, mastering rocket science and making real money (whatever that means).

These endeavours have a high dropout rate due to multiple factors. Grit and determination plays a role as does personal talent and preparation in achieving what most people run away from. Then there is courage. I am not sure if courage is hard or easy.

If an invading army approaches and all the young men enlist to join the army, are they really being courageous? The choice is to stay at home and await the enemy to do them and their family harm or to go out and confront the invaders. There is a high chance of death either way but dying in battle produces heroes.

The world watches when difficulties arise. If you step up to the eye of the storm they call you brave, and if you back down they call you a coward. Many have acted seemingly courageously propelled by the fear of what people would say. People really do get propelled to greatness.

Now greatness is a rare achievement. Not all hard workers become universally recognised as great. There are only so many Oscars, Grammy awards, presidencies, World Cups titles and Nobel Prizes to go round. The scarcity maintains the mystique and only the chosen few get these accolades in a lifetime.

Does that make these things hard?

No one who gives up wins any prize. That attitude of not giving up is so crucial in life and young people especially need to be taught not to give up. Tasks started need to be completed, from meals to brushing the teeth. Good education means children learn to complete their homework. Irrespective of the quality of work or marks scored, those who always complete develop arriving at the finish line as a lifestyle and it serves them well in whatever endeavour they choose to pursue.

I was particularly saddened by some young lads who ran the Lagos City Marathon with me on the 10th of February 2018. At about 26 Km into the race they began to discuss among themselves of giving up. There were BRT buses on the bus lane which ferried people to the finish line. Apparently they had decided to run about half the distance and hop on the bus to the finish line and grab a medal for “completing” the marathon. That kind of thinking that makes young people give up at the first sight of hitting the wall and still expect to be rewarded with a medal bothered me. I bet they would say they gave up because it was too hard but still feel justified to collect a medal.

Perhaps they learnt this philosophy from leaders who love impressive CVs but the reading is “too hard” so they forge their qualifications.

Now over to Bongos Ikwue to sign us out

Yes I have been searching for

For true love

Gat to keep right on searching till I find

Nothing good comes easy

This I know

Gat to keep right on searching till I find.