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Nigerianisms

In case you didn’t know I’m (mostly) Nigerian, and I write like I speak, so often my posts will be peppered with words and phrases that I like to call “Nigerianisms”. Here are a few that I use a lot, and some other favourites…

  1. Abeg – “Please” in pidgin English, but contextually more the equivalent of “puh-lease”
    e.g. “abeg, I’m tired”
  2. Before nko? – Duh
    e.g. “Did Serena win the match?”, “Before, nko”
  3. Gingered – Excited/hyped
    e.g. “I’m so gingered for Friday”
  4. How far? – How are you/How’s it going?
    e.g. “Mehn, how far?”, “I’m fine oh”
  5. I can’t come and kill myself/I can’t come and die – When something is more effort than it’s worth or cba
    e.g. “I’ve been trying to do this for hours, abeg I can’t come and die”
  6. Mehn – Mate
    e.g. “Mehn, it’s hot today oh”
  7. My money never reach – I’m not balling like that/I don’t have that kind of money
    “My macbook is broken and the dude said I should buy a new one, abeg, my money never reach”
  8. Nko – Essentially means “what about” or “how about”
    e.g. “How are you doing? Your family nko?”
  9. Oh – Added at the end of a phrase sentence, doesn’t really mean anything
    e.g. “It’s late oh”
  10. Orobo – “fuller-figured” lol
    e.g. “I’m such an orobo”
  11. See me see wahala – I’m in trouble
    e.g. “…then I dropped her phone, see me see wahala”
  12. Wahala – Trouble
    e.g. “Her wahala is too much”
  13. Which kind thing? – Wtf?
    e.g. “…and then they had me on hold for 40 mins, which kind thing?!”
  14. Who sent me? (or him/her/you) – Why did I do something that clearly wasn’t a good idea?
    e.g. “I went to a crazy spin class and now my legs are on fire, who sent me?”

To my fellow Nigerians, let me know if any of your favourites are not on this list!

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