Stunting according to urban dictionary is basically posing to be something you’re not, in order to impress. Synonymous with fronting and in Nigeria it can be called demo or sometimes borrow pose .
If you haven’t heard the #visabae gist, then you’re late to the party, but I got you covered. So, according to all the outlets, there’s this top fashion blogger – when I say top, I mean all the hits. Likes, comments, followers, subscribers and the Instagram feed your girlfriend will envy.
So, she rocks all the top stuff on the gram and it comes like a shock to most when she releases a video soliciting money to fund her about to expire visa. Said she’s been in the UK since she was a tot and she’s about to be thrown out.
Typical social media comes at her hard. The questions are,
why you flaunt expensive stuff on the gram and can’t pay for a 2k pounds visa? Basically, what have you been doing with your huge following, collaborations and stuff? Many say she’s lazy and doesn’t want to work because saving a pound a day for 6 years will get her 2k pounds or more. Some say she’s blocking road for people who genuinely need help. So this has been trending for some days and it begs the question
Is it stunting or packaging?
Where do you draw the distinction?
In one of her defense lines, she said the bags she carries are friend’s and the clothes from designers and stuff for collaborations, that her life isn’t as clam as it looks, and people are mad angry. They see it more along the lines of, you’re living a make believe life on the gram, making it look like your life is all roses and people aren’t working hard enough.
But she says it’s just packaging.
In my opinion, I’ve been taught by my lecturer that in addressing a problem, there’s no straight answer, no right or wrong, you just have to prove your point and be reasonable. So, I’m just gonna say this real quick.
“ na person wey dem catch na im be tif “
A pidgin paraphrased version of the 11th commandment – do not be caught. So, while people on the gram and internetville are quick to point fingers at people who have been exposed, nobody bothers to remove the speck in their own eyes.
I’ll tell you what, this Instagram life is all smoke and mirrors, make believe and if you must fake it till you make it, the stage is yours.
It’s same as the woke up like this trend that was on a while ago. No, you didn’t wake up like that and you don’t always look like that. No one has that perfect contour at 6am, thank you! And thank you snapchat.
On the other hand, I believe that if people look up to you, its pertinent to separate the glam life from your real life. I mean, that’s what the credits in the captions are for, and I’ve seen a blogger mention that the dress she wore was from a friend’s closet and the shoes from her mom. I’m not saying you owe anyone an explanation but sometimes …
This reminds me of something I was reading on the gram yesterday. An Influencer posted a story about being bounced from a club because she didn’t have an iPhone. Trust Nigerian social media, they dug up a picture of where she said she took a picture of the street with her IPhone X some weeks back. They took her to the cleaners and back! More like, if you must lie, remember your lies.
There you have it, I am legit afraid of nigerian twitter and the instablog comment section.
This social media expects you to be a certain way and up to a certain standard, as in ‘package’ and I believe that while that is necessary, don’t ever lose yourself.
I remember people seeing me for the first time would tell me I look like a Lagos girl and when I’d say no, they’ll nod and be like, Abuja then.
I don’t really get that though, and I’m known to set people straight that I come from the ‘streets’ of warri and I get it a lot that I don’t have the accent or I’m not ‘like them’ and by that ,they mean razz, noisy, loud, with an obsession for breaking bottles.
I remember when I first moved to Port Harcourt, I used to not tell people about it, because there’s already this preconceived notion that living in an oil city means you’re chopping oil money. Please it’s not true. There are the slums too, for people like us. So it’s just what it is, a preconceived notion.
So, if you see someone and assume they’re from a place because of how they look or sound or because they dress real boogie, you assume they’re rich. Is it stunting, packaging or just your eye problem?
I remember something funny that happened when I was a child, my dad did all our shopping when he traveled and only then. So, on this good day, I had a new watch that I wore to school, I still remember it was pink because I hated the color pink. Someone asked me where I got it from. I said my dad got it. They asked where, and I mentioned the place. The person laughed and said he could get it from the mallam across the street, that I was just lying. I was 6 and I didn’t know I had to impress, I just thought some things were basic necessities that everyone had.
Same as, if people knew how cheap the clothes from Tesco, George, atmosphere and the like were , compared to brands like Givenchy and others, they wouldn’t bat a lid when someone says they got their clothes from ‘the abroad’. I mean, it’s not stunting if you can afford it and by afford it, 5 pounds is still money.
So, maybe #visabae did not get all her priorities right and didn’t properly utilize all her opportunities, but really, who are we to point fingers.