14 March 2006

Blogging (perhaps) in my mother tongue

In case you haven’t noticed I am a real native chick, and I love it! After observing me for a period of time, MMY came to the conclusion that I must dream in Yoruba, my other friends who had been having problems reconciling my ‘grammer speaking’ ‘ajebota’ (One used to butter; rich spoilt kid) side with my ‘owe’ (proverb) speaking ‘paki/ajepako’ (Literally means -one used to eating wood i.e. uses a wooden chewing stick as toothbrush) side, readily propagated his findings. It’s funny although MMY ‘published’ his paper some 4 years ago, I haven’t really paid much attention to what language my dreams are in! I know for sure that I don’t think in Yoruba. Princess says it’s a good thing I don’t, it makes learning in English difficult (she should know, she started out formal schooling thinking in Yoruba). What brings about this post anyway? Looking around today on Jeremy’s blog I came across the link to Omo Obokun,a blog all in Yoruba!

I haven’t has this much activity in my chest since I discovered
Yoruba Google!

I remember the first time I used Yoruba Google, I saw the link in the bottom of an email I got from a friend and rushed right over in my browser. Of course I immediately IM’ed PC (my 'Partner' in 'Criminal') and we had a lengthy discussion about the site and its usefulness. Once the initial wow effect wore off, it became obvious that Yoruba Google for now would be a bit limited in the help it could render to anyone wishing to do more than search for common Yoruba words on the Internet. For one there really isn’t a body of wholly Yoruba works in electronic format or any format for that matter. I have searched for Fagunwa's novel 'Ogboju Ode ninu Igbo Irunmale', but can't seem to find any to buy. Princess has a copy but after playing 'who can sneeze the most' in our very very dusty store, I think I will pass on finding Princesses copy and hope I can find one with the used books people on the Marina. I do have a Yoruba copy of the Bible which I read (slowly) along side my English one. I am not sure local languages are being taught in schools these days. I recall while in secondary school, Nigerian Languages were compulsory ( I read Efunsetan Aniwura then). I missed not offering Yoruba in my SSCE exams because I moved from a Unity school to a private school. Even if there were tomes of Yoruba literature on the Internet, those people who can read it have no access to the Internet and those who have can hardly speak it not to talk of reading or writing it!

I hope 'Omo Obokun' gets updated regularly, I look forward to reading it.

Definitions from Babawilly's Dictionary of Pidgin English Words and Phrases


jof_views said...

It will be good if you can blog in Yoruba. But of what benefit will it be for people that can't read Yoruba.

Am a "proper" Yoruba boy, but i do find it difficult reading in Yoruba without re-reading the last word(s) to get the proper meaning.

I will love to see more sites geared toward reading in Yoruba henceforth.

Debo said...

A minor point of correction, Funke. "Ajepaki" and it's truncation " 'paki" translates to a cassava eater, "Paki" being the Yoruba name for the cassava tuber, from whence Garium Suphate is derived (that's "Gari" to the less scientifically inclined). Balance is restored to the universe, anti-matter negates matter and the Ajebota complements the Ajepaki just as the country bumpkin does the city slicker

temitayo said...

I once woke up from a terrible dream thinking that nobody could speak yoruba again and I was like an outcast in a world of so many languages. Reading the yoruba language would have been more interesting if it had been written without those gobbledygook signs on top,at least yoruba google does not have to add signs on top and we can still read it.I think its time the yoruba does away with this gibberish signs and take the meaning of words from its context, this will bring in a lot of creativity into the writing of the language.

Sisi Gbeborun said...

This is very apt and encouraging but let me introduce to you Nigeria's first Yoruba gossip blog - www.sisigbeborun.blogspot.com. It's all in Yoruba, peeps.