#CelebrateYourSpouse: Ten years on, and for HER, my heart still does a flip – Mr. Tunde Ayeni


A friend of mine once told me that the better you know yourself, the easier it is to make better choices, because choices are all about responding to circumstances in the most advantageous ways possible.

No one ever told me what the color of my eyes are before, no one ever bothered to notice, sounds kind of crazy to hinge a whole life decision on that sort of thing (after all it’s only ever done in movies) but there’s a way some things, no matter how insignificant, just hit you .

It looked like a half moon that night, I had learnt to tell, and fairly accurately too, exactly how many days old the moon was, just by one glance, this one I’d say was about 14 days old, shone brightly in the sky, and brought to my mind all the controversies tied up to full moons.

But tonight was different; I can see half her face lit up by the moon light streaming through the glass door, she’s staring at my face like she’s never seen it before and she tells me my eyes are beautiful brown. Ok! What was I supposed to do, pretend it wasn’t romantic, or my oversensitive senses were not pricked, I don’t care how many black belts you have in how many oriental martial arts. Those kind of statements in those kind of circumstances just turn your heart into a mass of unrecognizable jelly. Especially if they are uttered by a girl you’re trying so hard not to fall in love with.

I muster courage, try not to stagger or blush and with as much dignity as I can attain, I reply, “what!!” or at least I hoped it sounded like “what!!”. She repeats it, not blinking nor turning away, “you eyes are beautiful brown”.
She keeps telling me it’s not a big deal she noticed the color of my eyes. That week I start a new theme.

I guess I should explain what my themes are first. Well I usually start a new week by picking a topic to ponder over, analyze and reach a conclusion before the week is over, sometimes if the subject proves to be a very extensive one, and more pondering is needed I stretch a theme over the next week. There are no rules to my themes, I am allowed to pick any topic, any subject as long as it stimulates my thinking, and quite a lot of things do. I have had crazy themes over the years, ranging from “why women with large breast can be so aggressive” to “what’s the best way to get a white guy born again”.

So I begin a new theme, that week, “eye color”, I realized that I never bother to look into black people’s eyes. Because I always expect it to be brown, so I don’t bother. But I always look at white people’s eyes. I can tell you the color of the eyes of all my white friends, because I always bother to look.
Also, black people’s eyes are quite boring, no offense to my black brothers and sisters out there, but it’s true. Our eyes are just BROWN, no big deal. When I take a white girl out, the color of her eyes are one of the recordable parts of her anatomy I store in my head for future reference when I need to recall to memory for any ..ahem….reason. For a black girl, it’s errr……. Well… other parts of her I store in my head, since God has been blessed our female counterparts with certain anatomical parts slightly more exaggerated than our white folks.

That week I am really fascinated by eyes, so much of it everywhere. Some have really scary ones, others ordinary, and some are quite extra ordinary. My conclusion is: for anyone to bother too look and notice the color of a black man’s eyes, especially if it’s a black girl. Then the girl is different, very different from your normal African chic. Trust me on that one, I’ve had girls who loved me plenty, they never noticed the color of my eyes. So why did she notice, after extensive pondering and deliberations. I conclude that she noticed because her constitution is quite different from your average fine black woman, she thinks differently, very differently. Her approach is quite intriguing and sometimes alarming. Yet in the same breadth she exhibits the same pride and self awareness all black girls have, not forgetting the attitude they seem to flaunt with the unerring ease.

What I mean to say is, while most girls her color and age were growing up thinking of makeup and boys she was probably growing up asking herself some very different questions. Some she found answers to, others she probably still hasn’t giving up finding answers to.
But that doesn’t mean I should go fall hopelessly in love with her, after all what’s the big deal if she grew up weird. Lot of people did, just look at Michael Jackson.

So I do fall hopelessly in love with her, ten years, two beautiful brown eyed kids later, all she has to do is utter the terms beautiful brown and my heart still does a flip.



*************************************************************The original piece above is an entry for Viva Naija’s #CelebrateYourSpouse Valentine feature. You can also send a story to celebrate your spouse to us at features@viva-naija.com, and we will get it published for free, while you also stand a chance to win a special VIVA NAIJA prize for yourself and your spouse. 

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