My Grouse: Like Lawyers, Like Doctors; Contemptuous Imitation


As a child, I was very sickly. I visited the hospital to the extent that I knew the names of the doctors and nurses in the hospital. A particular one became friends with my parents. His name is Dr. Oguonu. I hated the man so much then for obvious reasons. One day, my mum had taken me for my injection and afterwards, we were standing in front of the hospital waiting for a cab home. Dr. Oguonu  drove past in his Mercedes 230 and stopped the moment he saw us. He beckoned on my mum and that was how he gave us lift to town. All through the journey, I had my eyes rummaging every aspect of his life as they are captured in the car; his mouth, his head, his car stereo and of course that thing that he places on my chest which was always cold and very painful. Oh you didn’t know that stethoscope used to be painful when I was small? Stay there! It was a painful something please. Don’t argue!

That was the first time I saw a Doctor hung stethoscope on his car. Doctors traditionally hang stethoscope on the rear view mirror of their cars. Please this happens in Nigeria alone. I was told they do this as a way to indicate that they are Doctors on duty to avoid unnecessary delays from the likes of FRSC, Police, LASTMA of Lagos and so on. I don’t know whether that is true o, but the explanation works for me at the moment.

How some brothers in the legal profession have now decided that just like Doctors, they would also be tying their bibs on the rear view mirror of their cars has left me with one more anger. I recall when I used to beef one of my uncles like that who would always pack his wig and gown in a conspicuous corner of his car such that once you come close to  his car, the wig and gown would give this intimidating presence that makes you want to greet him with a bow. How do I handle these individuals who have now decided to tie their bibs looking like the kind of stripe cloth you see at the entrance to a native doctor’s coven (I watch Nollywood a lot please).

I ran into one brother the other day and my vent-full head decided that it was time to begin to settle these scores with these people. So I approached him and I said, “excuse me sir, that bib you have tied to the rear view mirror of your car is not meant to be tied there and its very dirty too, it doesn’t portray you as a decent lawyer and I think you should take it out! No I demand that you take it out! I used the same approach I use on Policemen and LASTMA when clients call to say they have arrested them. It is an approach that works like magic wand. You can contact me to get tips. It doesn’t work on FRSC though! So he managed to say, “em, I am going to get it washed over the weekend.” I responded “No, you would get it washed and get it back into your court bag. That is where it belongs. I turned to go, brother found his voice and said, “em, it is all these police and co that makes one put the bib there o”. Iwo de lomo o!

Whatever your reason is, tying your bib like babalawo rope on your rear view mirror is a no no. I cannot begin to call on NBA or any of such to warn those that are in this habit; they never finish the one wey concern them na this kind matter them want talk? And for those of you that would always be quick to ask whether this should be a concern, let me just remind you; na from clap dance dey take start. You complain about how things have gone from bad to worse and it does not occur to your tiny brain that it is these little things that add up to make the big ones bigger. Resist the urge to always ask how this is part of the problem. If it is not part of the problem and it is also not part of the solution, then do not do it.

I am by this vent calling on all lawyers to ensure that you harass anybody you see hanging nay tying his bib on his rear mirror. It brings so much disrepute to our “gentlemanness” biko abi, we no be gentlemen again?. You have the NBA sticker, the square and the rectangle. That one no do you. Your wig and gown occupy one of the seat  perpetually in your car, that one still no do you. You carry those takaai stickers with funny lawyer jokes like: “I be lawyer, trouble na my work”, e still no do  you, na to carry your bib tie for front of car like babalawo.

Untie that nonsense joor and receive sense biko!

Being a lawyer goes beyond display of wig, gown, bib, etc.

Don’t take this to heart.


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