Thursday, 24 March 2016

THERE IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR SOFT ANSWERS



On Saturday the 19th of March, I travelled to Uyo to anchor one of the best shows of my life- A night of classics by talented Patience Ekwere. I am doing a report on it.


This particular piece I am writing reinforces my belief that there is no substitute for soft answers. We saw that in the story of Eli and Hannah. Eli falsely accused Hannah of being drunk; instead of Hannah running her mouth like a lot of people would have done in her situation she explained why it appeared she was drunk and Eli blessed her.

Since I read that Hannah story, I have practised responding softly that I sometimes end up sounding ‘diplomatic.’

Answering softly when you should shout or ‘insult back’ is more rewarding.

On that Saturday when the Uyo flight was announced, I decided to ease myself before I enter the plane. Just as I stood by the doorway waiting for one of the toilets to be vacant, this young beautiful girl shot past me. She was saying, ‘they have announced my flight.’
The cleaner lashed out at her, ‘did you not see this madam?’

I laughed and said, ‘it appears we are going to Uyo. When she gets to the plane before me, she will tell them a passenger is still coming.’ Everyone including the cleaner laughed diffusing the tension. I also let her enter the first empty toilet while I entered the second one.

Coincidentally, we sat on the same row in the plane and we began to gist.

There was this man on the other side so besotted with her that he kept moving his head backwards and strained his ears to hear us. We laughed at the ‘poor’ man’s antics. Later she told me the man when we touched down, told her that he thought I was her mother.


Anyway she promised to come and see me in the hotel. She also promised to attend the show and she did. 


As soon as she got home and did not see her parents because they went for a wedding, she came over to my hotel and took me to a restaurant to eat the freshest Afang soup and Fisherman’s soup I have ever tasted in a long while. Despite my protestations, she picked the bill.


She has promised to bring Akwa Ibom fish for me when next she is in Abuja.

Imagine if I had been angry with her that time in the toilet and said things like; that is how Nigerians are. They will just be rushing as if something is pursuing them. All these young girls have no respect etc.

I have so many examples of where soft answers have earned me goodwill. Do you think you can practice it?

2 comments:

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