I made a post on Facebook asking if I could use crayfish in the pancakes I was about to make and a comment on the post reminded me of something that happened a long time ago.
So this thing happened almost exactly fourteen years ago (I can’t believe it’s been fourteen years sef, does this mean I’m old?). It was either late January or very early February 2006. I’m tilting towards January though because by Valentine’s Day of that year, all the proper occupants of the room had fully settled into the room.
It was in my first year at Uniben and I had just moved my things from my temporary accommodation in Block C of Hall One to my ‘permanent’ space in Block B. It was hard for me because we had already bonded very well in the temporary room and I was the first to leave because the owner of my bed space had come very early to claim it.
In the new room, the squatters were still in full control of the room but I easily bounced the one on my bed. The madam even wanted us to share the bed with me, she had such nonsense guts sha.
The young lady who was also temporarily on the lower bunk was in 200 level and she was a rather friendly and bubbly babe who kept promising to bring me Awake! Magazine but never did, she was a Jehovah’s Witness.
One evening, she came back from lectures with a black bag and she seemed very excited. She told me she was going to make pancakes that evening, she had been craving some and she was finally going to make them.
As she danced around the room and talked about her special pancakes, I got more and more suspicious. I have an uncle who would act as if his recipe is from heaven and his food was going to be eaten only by God.
“Adasco, when you eat this food you will not agree to eat anybody’s food again.” He would say as whistled and cooked his wonderful meals that turned out to be…
Please I don’t any goat to settle ndi Umunna Umunawiri.
Anyway, I wasn’t impressed by her and her drama because I don see am tire since I be small pikin. She brought out an onion and started chopping it and from my bed I felt real fear. Why was she cutting this onion, what did the innocent onion do to her?
She finished the onion and brought out ata rodo and began to chop it and I knew that there was a snake in the thatched roof. I asked her what she was going to do with the onion and pepper she had just put in a plate and she told me she was going to use them to make the pancakes.
If this happened in 2020 AD, I would have screamed “Mad oh!” but at the time, that perfect phrase was still blowing in the wind and waiting for Marlians to bring it to life.
So I sat on my bed and watched her mix her ingredients, the onion bits, pepper, crayfish, one satchet of cowbell, water and flour. She stirred the mixture and got her frying pan to start frying.
No eggs? I thought. Mad oh!
I asked her about eggs and she said she forgot. She asked me to please go and get an egg for her from the common room store and I told her I couldn’t climb down from my bed and go to the common room when she was already on the floor, (this was still at the time when saying no was so easy for me, I miss those times).
I didn’t go for two reasons. the first was; if she could remember to get an onion, peppers, crayfish etc for the pancakes, she could have also gotten some damn eggs as well.
The second was that I had noticed that beneath her niceness was a tendency to take advantage of people. I didn’t spend those years in boarding school for somebody to come and use my head in the university.
She scooped the batter into the hot oil and waited for the pancakes to form. That day she learned that eggs were an essential ingredient in the making of pancakes as what resulted in the frying pan can only be described as the abomination that causes desolation.
I learned an important lesson too that day though, don’t mess with the classic pancake recipe. It will not end in praise.