I really had no intention of posting this story but I was going through my “archive” on my laptop this morning and guess what I found – voila!
It certainly isn’t the most unique of names, could be as common as any other Yoruba name like Jide or Deji. In fact, I’ve known more than a handful men called Wole, I could even do a top ten Wole chat on my BBM like I occasionally do top five hottest dudes (Don’t I have fun doing that!) But what is it about that name Wole, whether Adewole, Olawole or Oluwole, that gets my attention so? Or could it be something besides the name?
Once, my sister needed to get something on my phone so she asked for my password. When I told her ‘Wole’, she looked at me puzzled but not surprised and asked, “Now which Wole is this oh?” Of course, she had to ask. She didn’t actually know any of the Woles I knew but she had heard me speak of at least two or three quite often so she wasn’t surprised but wanted to know which I was referring to.
It wasn’t until she asked that I realized I didn’t actually know which. I knew three Woles that I could call friends (I use the past tense because I don’t know that I’m still friends with any of them). Oh, and I must add, all three of them I have had crushes on at some point. Yeah, I know. That bad, huh? Oh please, before you label me the confused, mad woman you need to know the whole story.
I met the first Wole in my first year as an undergraduate, in fact, during my first lecture days. I remember vividly because I saw him for the first time (Actually, I could bet my life on the fact that I had seen him before. I just couldn’t figure out where no matter how hard I tried. Guess it was a deja vu) while looking out the window of LLT. We were having one of our GNS courses and I was getting rather restless but in no mood to draw or scribble notes in my note book, so I stared out the window. And there he was, waiting to be found. Besides the fact that he was breathtakingly handsome, he looked extremely neat, young and innocent. Cute, in fact, like a puppy I could cuddle. He wore a clean white shirt, with its long sleeves folded up almost to his elbow, tucked into a pair of neatly ironed black trousers. He had a sling bag across his arm and both his hands were placed in his trouser pockets as he walked in a calm, unhurried manner. He was just so cool! Everything about him was just that – cool! Let’s just say he looked a lot like Will Smith (Don’t even get me started on that one) and Yes! he had similar huge ears, which, btw, I also thought really cute. After that, I didn’t just stare out the window because I was restless but to watch out for him. I often got disappointed but there were a few times I got quite lucky. He’d stroll across just when I was beginning to give up on seeing him. This happened week after week, and week after week, after week.…… Ugh, you have no idea!
It was one mighty crush I wished I could do something about, yet I had absolutely no idea what his name was. There seemed to be no hope of speaking with him, I could only stare each time I saw him then as if a lucky fairy was on my side, I realized we had a mutual friend. I finally had the opportunity to speak with him. Once, I was so close to him, I felt like reaching out to touch his skin. He had such great skin, plus beautiful hands, feet and nails. Yeees! I noticed that much. Crushes can totally do that to you! Thought I’d never get over it but I did, finally, when I was in my second or third year. (Whew! Yes, that long).
The second Wole, I met in 2011 at a press conference I attended. Nothing about him struck me – well, not at first -except of course, his noticeably full and bushy hair. Then he spoke. OMG! I had heard nothing like it. He had a deep, strong, commanding voice and he spoke so well with a great command of English. Although, we talked (I talked cos I did most of the talking. He answered. Seemed so shy, with his head bent the most time) almost the whole session and someone even teased if I would like to follow him to his house. I was still not in the least bit attracted to him. I thought of him as someone who spoke well and as the ‘tushest’ journalist I ever met. I don’t know how I suddenly got under the “crush” spell for him but I did and started watching out for him at events since we covered the same beat. Then, one day, I saw him after God knows how long and all I did was grin wide from ear to ear. It became obvious that I wasn’t getting over that crush in a hurry. But like the first, I did get over it and moved on with my life.
Almost as soon as I was getting out of that one, I met another Wole. What did you ever do to deserve it, you ask? Well, I didn’t ask. I just considered myself blessed to meet with this one. Did I think the previous Wole spoke well? You should hear this one speak. Eish! If it’s possible to drool at someone’s voice, you would drool at this one. I really can’t begin to explain it but I got goose bumps each time he spoke and wanted him to keep speaking. I could count the number of times we actually saw, not too often, if you ask me. But if you heard him speak, you’d be crushing too. I actually saw him for the very first time at a show he was moderating. I couldn’t help but notice his white teeth against his extremely dark skin (who wouldn’t? except of course, you’re a blind bat) but didn’t see his dimples (don’t know how that got past me) or think anything of his laughter. Then, I met him again at another event. It was a book event of some sort. It was then I noticed everything else I hadn’t noticed the first time. When he read, I thought I had never heard anyone sound so pleasant. Then he laughed! Oh, what deep, hearty, sonorous sound! Loved it. And did I mention that he smelt quite nice? I’d love to say I got over him like the previous two but I can’t…..just kidding! I did. That’s why they’re called crushes, you’ll some day get over them even if it seems to take forever.
Now you ask, “What is it about that name?”