First of all, I want to say a big thank you to everyone who volunteered to read my novel. You guys are far too kind. Even though I gave two weeks window for feedback, I already have two in already. At a point, I had to stop sending out the novels because I had already sent to 12 people, without counting. I might still send out to more people, if I don't get the feedback I require from others. Thank you. You pipu are just three mush, lol.
I was hanging out with my friends yesterday evening when something happened to inspire this blog post.
My friends (a guy and a lady) are engaged to be married this year.
Guy has been my friend for 14 years, since 2002. At a point, we were very close because we were in the same class and fellowship in university.
Girl has been my friend for about a year. We have ended up becoming extremely close friends. We work in the same department in church, with the teens.
Both are on fire for God. Girl is Yoruba, guy is Igbo, and they really love each other.
Again, they are getting married in a few months. Since it was Mother's Day, guy decides to call girl's mother to wish her happy Mother's Day.
So guy calls girl's mother and they start gisting and laughing. Girl's mother complains about something and next thing guy says "eeya, pele" obviously trying to commiserate in Yoruba.
Girl and I turned to look at each other and then look at guy. We shake our heads and say "see this one, he doesn't know what blunder he just committed." Guy is oblivious and keeps on shining teeth with girl's mother.
Immediately he dropped, we didn't hesitate to school him about Yoruba and the culture of respect. In Yoruba culture, to talk to elders, you have to put 'e' in front. You can't just say "pele"
Thank God girl is from a sane family. In many Yoruba families, that single blunder is strong enough to get a marriage cancelled, that is if they ever allowed intertribal marriage in the first place.
We told guy that it would have even been worse if girl was the one who was Igbo and guy was Yoruba. Imagine girl going to her Yoruba in laws and telling her mother in law "pele". Heaven would fall after they've called family meeting on her head.
So people how do you do it? How do you respect people of another culture when you don't even know what parameter of the language is considered polite, and what is rude? Or should we just stick to our own tribe and not bother intermarrying? If you choose to intermarry, how does one avoid getting blamed for a blunder one doesn't even know exists?
What is your take?