An Okada Man with a Means of Transport, a Medical Opinion and a Belief
An okada is approaching; it’s my best shot. I’ll be facing my fears of motorbikes today. People do things they know could kill them. It doesn’t mean they want to die, I thought and injected some confidence into my shaken, devastated self.
“Ah Bossu, why you no dey use helmet?”, I leant over and whispered with a shrill voice. He didn’t hear, or maybe didn’t want to answer. I repeated adding a pat on his back.
Oh, his response?
His response is that same medium of growth we have all cultured our lives all these years. His response is one of the basic tenets of life; the everyday beliefs and deceptions that floats our boats.
He explains that wearing a helmet compresses the human head, and that a regular use has caused him a chronic headache. He had for many years seen many doctors and spiritual men without success until he stopped using helmets. So, yeah… helmets could send him down the grave. And it isn’t his idea of being a generous man by putting his passengers through such a catastrophe. Those were his words.
I felt my already dried sweat returning in profusion. This must be a cynical reason for risking your life on a dilapidated bike. How did he come by such a belief that is nothing but a push of a self-destruct button?
So I asked him, “You prefer dieing through a road traffic accident to a helmet pushing down on your brain?”. But I asked myself, “what if he’s right and my medical opinion is rather wrong?” Who determines what is factual, real or existent and what is not? No one!
People do things they know could kill them. It doesn’t mean they want to die. They just want to trust their beliefs and instincts and the things that somewhat appear irrational.
We rely on superstitions because we’re smart to know we don’t know all the answers. And that kind of life works in mysterious ways. If it brings completeness to his life, let him by all means dwell on it. Just because you hear hoofbeats don’t assume zebras.
Regardless of science, reason or logic, we all have a belief or fear of that which is unknown. It is what works for mankind. The last thing you ever want to do is to offend the gods.
So when another Okada man shares with you a seeming unfounded opinion, don’t ditch it. And don’t forget to take a selfie.