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3 days ago, one of the security men that man the gate of the estate where i live came to meet me to inform me that i was supposed to give him money. I was surprised and asked him for what? He quickly tried to remind me of a day he helped wash my sister’s car, she wasn’t around then. Of course, his money was paid without further questions.

Just today, i sat at my desk and tried to put some of my thoughts down, and my mind went to the rate at which entrepreneurship and the concept of small businesses is being promoted by a lot of people; even people in the corporate world long to be their own bosses or are planning their exit strategy. I wonder when i see retired people venture into new businesses, how in God’s name do they think it will work? All their
useful time and energy have been used up; their capacity to take risks and manage failure in business is extremely low at that age. There may be extremely few exceptions but i’m yet to find anyone with a huge business who started between 55 and 60. Anyway, that was kind of a digression.

This post is for all young people, whether employed or not. you can make money working with your hands. before i finished university, i had learnt beadmaking, dress making and a few other things. My parents were
clearly the richest around our neighbourhood, people wondered why they would subject us to such apprenticeship under semi-illiterates! I’m sure they know better now. Being choosy is what is killing most people.

You can go into a new field and redefine it, and before long, people will begin to rush in that direction. I know that the day the minimum qualification into the police force becomes HND, we’re in for a brand
new Police Force. I know someone who came out of the university with a first class who confidently says she can sell akara for a living, she believes she will do it with a difference. She’s about starting an apprenticeship on hairdressing. I believe attitude is vital in being successful ultimately.

Back to the aboki at my gate. He started by washing cars packed within the estate very early every morning, such that people got to their cars and they were ever squeaky clean, most people regularly tipped him,
maybe a few ‘stingy’ ones would put up an attitude of ‘who sent him?’. After a while, he started charging for his car washing services. He now charges #200 per car. Now, there are about 30cars in that compound, can you try and imagine how much he makes per day? He also supplies water to people whose pumping machines have faults and even sells recharge cards now! all from the proceeds of the car washing and some savings.

I said all that to say that there’re opportunities everywhere, we only need to see them and take them, be willing not to be choosy, to start small and grow; we will certainly be better for it. I once spoke with a
lady in her early twenties who was a school drop-out, who by reason of her way of life of keeping multiple partners and high standard of living, found it demeaning to manage a pay-phone business. She eventually ate her words when she saw someone who started the same business at about the same time and as at the last time i heard, had opened 3 centres.

Until graduates begin to redefine jobs and vocations that have over the years been termed to be for semi-illiterates and drop-outs, there will be a lot of untapped creativity and a limit to how much can be achieved and how far they can go. I’ve met a number of graduates who sew, do make up and their education and exposure gives their work an edge; they make a living from doing so.

The time to take all the risk is now, the casualties will be more bearable now than later. Let’s flee idleness and get engaged, let’s qualify for the job whose interviews we go for by reason of what we have been able to think of and do. There’s no excuse for lazying around. We are not qualified for rest until we have laboured. I once heard a man i respect so much say ‘the alternative to hardwork is hard life’. Dust yourself up and get cracking!

14 Responses to “IDLE OR LAZY?”

  1. Bola Oluyemi says:

    Great post. are you related to Deolu Akinyemi?Thought i wa on his site until I read your post.

  2. Niyioski says:

    Just to answer your question, YES she is related to Adeolu Akinyemi….extremely related……lol.
    That was a great post. Talk about dignity of labour. No task is substandard, the way and attitude with which it is done determines what class the job belongs to. Thanks for that. By the way your picture up on this page is…….(am short of words)…..stunningly beautiful….whao!!!
    Nice day.



  4. Tope says:

    @Bola, yes, i’m related to Deolu Akinyemi, i’m his missing rib 🙂


    @ Niyioski, thanks for bailing me out :-). True….no task is substandard, and attitude is key. Thanks for the compliment too…

    @Sir, thanks for dropping by and leaving your comment.

    @All: thanks….you encourage me to keep writing. God bless y’all.

  5. byola says:


    I have always said that the reason why some people are still jobless today is because they are looking for something in particular yet they claim to be desperately searching.

    I say start where you…with whatever you have. Everybody has something, some little skill talent or passion.

    This post is good, very inspiring, perfectly timed too. I know quite a number of people who may need to see this but may not have the wherewithal to visit this site. With your permission, i could make some prints with all due reference to it’s source of course.

    Sign: Akinyemi Abiola (

  6. tolu akinsanmi says:

    Hello Tope,
    Once again nice post and great food for thought.
    I beg to differ on paragraph one though. I think its a bit of a bias to put down people who are launching out late in life. I beleive it takes a lot of courage and guts to launch out late in life despite age, health problems amongst others….. I know of people who launched out late and God established their latter end much more than their beginning.
    Barbara Miller (amongst others) A grandmother past retirement age turned around a paper distribution company into a multibillion venture despite difficulties and setback.

    This is for the oldies who might just be reading this posts you never know..everyone has a chance to a second start in life. Its never to late to start .

    cheers everyone

  7. Kaygee says:

    This is an amazing post and also food for thot.

    It made me sit back and think too about attitude, perceptions of certain jobs that people have relegated to some certain class of people. One thing I do know is that there is dignity of labour no matter how substandard a job is perceived.

    That aboki is a very ‘correct man’, he was using his excess time which a lot of us these days dont have the luxury of, to relieve some of us of daily problems by washing cars (at least you dont have to take your car to the car wash when it can be done in the comfort of ur home and very well too!). i wont be surprised whatever else he comes up with.

    And to all of us youths, let’s quit running after some certain type of jobs and neglecting our skills, talents, gifting etc. It could be something you learnt way back in school, that you think is not useful, or you could look inside of you and apply that talent or skill to meeting needs and have a different attitude. Soon you will watch it grow and it will be fulfilling for you.

    Way to go and Keep writing ’em posts! You can be sure we’ll keep reading.

    Do I have a witness out there?

  8. Tope says:

    @byola: Thanks for dropping by and posting your comment, and pls feel free to print copies to give out.

    @tolu akinsanmi: thanks for your comment as well. I agree with you, but pls note that your examples are exceptions…i didn’t say it was impossible, i just said it’s a lot more demanding, physically, emotionally and otherwise; and the body system gradually shuts down with age. True, it’s better to start late than not to venture at all. One could even die of ‘woulda coulda shoulda’….lol

    @ Kaygee: i’m sure you have at least a witness 🙂

  9. Felix says:

    I love the stuff about the gate man… really opportunities are everywhere… but the ones who see them are the ones who are consciously looking.

  10. Great stuff! Well put together.

    I need to make reference to this post. Well Done!

  11. Cyril says:

    Great one.I think one of the problems with graduates nowadays is pride.
    God will help us.

  12. JesusFreak says:

    Opportunities lies abound…may God give us seeing eyes and workin hands to make good use of the opportunities..

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