Hippie In A Suit

Episode 7: The Sum of All Our Parts

Hi Hippies, rather than share a Laraba story this week, we spied a chat between our two community contributors on our platform and couldn’t help but share it instead.

We’re also wondering warriz going on between these two 😉 Hope you enjoy getting to know them better! Have a great weekend!

Laraba: Hey Kobe, how’s it going? I saw your story last week on micro-aggressions and it was mad oh! It was so on point, that I had holla at the man behind the kitchen island 😊 Like I’ve had my fair share of office madness, but your story takes the cake, no offense… lol.

Kobe: LARAAABA!! My Nigerian sister with extra spice 😊, I’ve been reading your stories and I feel sorry for these guys you’ve been going on dates with oh! How you take dey pick dem? LOL! Don’t mind me, thank you for reaching out. As for that nincompoop, like I said in the post, it’s one of the many statements he’s made this past year.  Would you imagine I’m still dealing with the fallout with my old man? Apparently, the guy asked for me to be suspended without pay for insubordination. Tsk tsk.

Laraba: LMAO!! Your dad has no chill o! I still can’t believe that he didn’t stand up for you. I get that he has certain gender normative expectations of you, but even an idjit can tell that this Mr. X bloke ‘koja aye e’ (passed his boundary).  This actually reminds me of my final year internship, where I was made to feel like women are too weak to work in the investment banking and that I would not last in that industry. It was until my 4th year that I realized, I cannot continue to be spoken to with such thinly veiled misogyny. Wooo! I gave dem that Black Girl Magic. LOL!

Kobe: Lmao! I didn’t expect anything less. I haven’t met you yet and already, I can tell that you’re a force to be reckoned with. Abeg, give me small gist of what happened? What did they do to warrant the unleashing of the African Girl Magic, you know, Black Girl Magic with that extra bit of spice. Lol!

Laraba: Choi! My chest! Is my brand strong like this that you already think you have me all figured out? 😊 Hmm… It takes more than what you read online for you to feel the full Laraba effect o! We need to meet in person and trust me when I say, I’m truly unforgettable… 😉

Anyway, back to my small gist. So, I joined this investment firm, and was the only woman in my Trading and Structuring Department. It all started when one day I was passing by and my colleague JR, said, “Laraba, it’s 5pm. Shouldn’t you be at home now?” At first, I was touched by how thoughtful he was, so I said “No, I have a few things to do and I’ll probably head home by 9pm. More than enough time to still have a life”, I joked. Dude, can you imagine this guy snorted and said “Isn’t 9pm late for a woman? If you were married, I’m sure you wouldn’t be able to pull these long hours, right?”

It was like a bad movie that I was watching because I said to myself, “Laraba calm down, you’re probably overreacting”. My brother, I still think JR’s comments unleashed a Pandora’s Box of other misogynistic and condescending comments. One even said one day, when I volunteered to be part of a client’s auditing team “Are you sure you can handle this? This is the big boy’s league now and it can be intimidating. If at any point you feel it’s too much, just take a backseat. Best not to be overly emotional about these things”. In hindsight, I wish it did not take me too long to stand up for myself, but the thing about micro-aggression is that it is the biggest mind f**k. You begin to doubt that you’re hearing what you’re hearing.

Kobe: Ah! I tell you! The fear that if you speak up, you confirm whatever narratives being concocted such as: Angry Black Woman, Emotional Woman, Sissy Boy Can’t Take a Joke, Too Sensitive, etc.  This worst part of it is that these intolerances thrive under your denial and fear of speaking up. Even if you think you’re strong and you can handle it, if you don’t speak up it’ll happen to someone not as strong as you, who crumbles under the weight of the insults.

We owe it to ourselves and educate people on what crosses the line.  But I trust you nau, I can only imagine how you put them in their places. By the way, don’t think I didn’t notice when you suggested a meet up 😊 Girl, you think you’re smooth abi? Just admit that you want me to cook for you. Come to Ghana and I will pamper you! Lol!

Laraba: Ehn?! The same pamper you want to pamper Mr. X’s daughter, abi? Abegi! Besides, I wasn’t being smooth, I was just stating a fact, Kobe. When I’m smooth, boy, you wouldn’t see it coming. But when next we have a HIAS Community Event in Ghana, I’ll definitely come through and you can show me if your Jollof rice is better than mine 😊

Kobe: Hahahaha! You want to start the Battle of the Jollofs already? See Labs, this one is no longer about Ghana and Nigeria Jollof, this is about Kobe’s Jollof putting yours and whomever else to shame 😊 Check out the Jollof recipe that I’ll publish next week. When you taste it don’t even bother to compete, just come humbly to be treated to good food and good vibes only 😊

Laraba: No wahala nau, Kobs. I gatchu!! Let’s get these Hippie organizers to get something going for Hippie In A Suit Ghana peeps (maybe after this pandemic madness becomes manageable) and we can help with planning.  Me, I’m looking any for excuse to continue my African tour… lol.

Anyway, I’ve got to go, well done on the launch of the Kobe’s Kitchen on Hippie In A Suit. I can’t wait to read your next story and learn about another dish I can’t pronounce (i.e. Kamounia). Till then, let’s remember that we are greater than the sum of all our parts.

In other words, being ‘creatives’ is just one part of us in as much as the other parts of us (lawyer/banker) are equally part of us, and it’s when we fully embrace all of who we are, that our true awesomeness comes through. No amount of micro-aggression can kill that! It was great chatting with you, man, Have a lovely weekend!

Kobe: My heart!! A woman that can just hit me with some hard truths, whoa! Labs hurry and come to Accra quickly…lol. It really has been great chatting and getting to know you beyond your stories. Speak soon and have a great weekend too!

Spread the love