Palm Wine Joint

THE BRILLIANT IDIOTS PODCAST SAVED MY LIFE

brilliant idiots

In the year 2013 when everybody and their mother dropped an album, I had enough time to listen to all. I listened to every single album more than ten times, even those by musical acts I didn’t like. Kanye West’s Yeezus was my jam but I still had time to listen to everything else. Yeezus was my favorite album out that year. It felt like teen spirit. Its angst and rebellious tone captured the “fuck the world” attitude I had that year. Music and only music mattered to me. One night I stayed up all night downloading Fela’s discography. I cancelled more than a few dates just to stay home alone and meditate on the drums.

My first sting in entertainment was in 2002. My teacher recommended me to a radio station to make me a regular on their kids show. I made frequent appearances on Garden City Radio, in Kumasi, to recite poetry. Up until then, I was all over the place with what I wanted to do with my life when I grew up. From the moment I spoke on radio for the first, I knew I found my thing. I started reading the newspaper religiously and bought entertainment papers with my pocket-money. My dad bought the sports and general interest papers.

When I completed Senior High School in 2008, I moved from Kumasi to Accra, away from family to follow my passion – writing and talking. It started with me preaching the Gospel on the streets of Adabraka, Accra with my friend, Erock, and quickly moved to writing for an entertainment newspaper called Hi and working on the Public Relations team of MUSIGA president, Obour.

Entertainment is all I know and all I have known. I mean, I knew a little about politics and current affairs because I read a lot but entertainment became more than a passion, it quickly became a way of life.

I hate washing, ironing and all that neaty stuff. My roommate, Come Get Frank, told me once, “The only way to get you to wash your things is to get Jay-Z to rap, ‘wash your things’” and he wasn’t far from right.

I’m no Miley Cyrus or Justin Bieber but I can say I’m somehow a child star. People knew me and liked me on air and were looking forward to meeting me in person someday. The feeling of being wanted soon became my obsession. I only cared about the thing that made people like me, and that was writing and performing. The rest of the world and the other spheres of my life didn’t matter to me.

From a reporter in 2010, I became a spoken word artist in 2013. Because I had experience as a kid and was passionate about what i was doing, I thought I was going to make it immediately. That didn’t happen.

ADULTING TIP 1: You can be great at what you are doing, put in all the hard work and still not make it.

I got very depressed. My career as a writer and performer wasn’t going as I envisioned it. 2016 was a rough year for me. I lost interest in show business and since show business was my life, that means I lost interest in life.

I have battled with suicidal thoughts most of my life but that year I started actively thinking about ways to end my life. That’s how I knew I needed help. Because I attempted suicide at 16, my parents got concerned when they saw the signs of my depression. My parents knew something was wrong with me, they kept asking me to speak to them about it, but I didn’t. By this time, I was listening to the Brilliant Idiots podcast, strictly for entertainment purposes.

The Brilliant Idiots podcast saved my life. The episode of the Brilliant Idiots podcast, Rape Thriver, spoke to me. Michelle Hope said something to the effect that, when a person was molested at a certain age, they stop growing at that age.

That episode made me realize I am not a failure, I am still a kid. I started using entertainment as an escape from my realities. I had an abusive childhood and the radio station I “worked” provided me with a safe space where I was appreciated and everything I said mattered. So it became my drug. That explains why I cared more about Kanye West than my father.

That episode of the Brilliant Idiots made me realize I had a problem and needed help. I started seeking help from everywhere I could. It took me a few months to finally go for therapy (therapy is not a common subject discussed in the African society so I have Andrew Schulz to thank for my decision to go for therapy).

After two weeks of therapy, I had an epiphany that I wanted to be a lawyer, which is a long-held dream too. Long story short, I applied and got admitted to Central University to read for a law degree.

I had a hard time adjusting to a life outside of showbiz but I am gradually getting there. This blog is me documenting my journey into adulthood. Initially I wanted to do a podcast, just like the one that saved my life but I also learnt from Charlamagne tha god that, “Fuck your dreams, especially if it is not your dream.” I realized I am a better writer than talker and a blog will suit me better.

I just completed my internship at a law firm and I’m about but to start the second of my three-year degree program. I’m FINALLY ADULTING. Stay tuned.

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