By Karen Eloke Young
It’s a crazy society we live in especially the “Lagos Society” – I should know, I am deeply entrenched in it. From the nightclub appearances to fashion shows, to appearing in the fashion pages of glossy magazines to extravagant elite weddings, beach hangouts at Ilashe – you see faces that soon become familiar faces and gradually become known and influential faces…well, sometimes.
In the bid to try to better your social status you will often be tagged a social climber (although it is an apt description, most people use it in derogatory ways and I find it quite vulgar), which really isn’t so bad a word if you look at the meaning —-“a person who accumulates social relationships, choosing to mix with ‘bigger or better’ people.
I am not one to judge; I understand the need for some people to better themselves by any means necessary. But if you were born into a certain family, had a prestigious education, live a certain lifestyle already set out for you, there isn’t too much a need to social climb. The only thing you might need to do, if you want to become a socialite is to be more “visible”. This could mean participating in certain events, which could extend your influence in the society.
So I will get to the dirty details, but I must warn you this as real as it gets.
Now is the time to take notes…
First, you need to learn to be FAKE.
Now before you go “what?!” think for a moment, if you come from an impoverished background and wish to rub shoulders with the Lagos cliques ( and I mean the ones that live in fancy neighborhoods like Ikoyi and Victoria Island and speak with most times a British accent) you have to talk the talk and walk the walk. So if this offends your sensibilities then you are not near ready to be a part of the “IT” crowd. You need to put some finesse to your accent, speak “phoney” (pronounced phon-air) like Nigerians will say, believe me when I say speaking with a local accent in this “circle” will only make you stick out like a sore thumb and most times make you the butt end of everyone’s jokes.
Also, learn to LIE about your achievements and how much money you have in the bank and stress how busy you are and how much you travel to exotic locations on vacation. But while doing this remember that liars should have good memories.
Secondly, attend fashion events, music concerts; comedy shows etc – the high profile ones of course.
Almost every weekend there’s always something happening at Eko Hotel, Oriental Hotel or Federal Palace Hotel – fashion shows, concerts, dinner events, magazine launches and much more – to become “seen on the scene” you must attend these events and look good.
Be sure to also have your picture taken and your name spelled right when they appear on Nigerian blogs and soft sell magazines.
How do you get tickets for this shows?
Why, you kiss-ass of course. Pally up with event organisers, put your pride to the side and beg for free tickets and be sure that they are VIP tickets, if not how else will you have your photo taken sitting beside the rich and the famous?
Thirdly, make friends with the COOL KIDS.
Who are the cool kids?
They are the ones with money to blow and the proverbial “daddy’s name” if you know what I mean – not that I’m against coming from a rich background, if you are lucky enough to have rich parents then by all means enjoy it.
So to become part of the crowd you need to find a way to constantly be around the cool kids, use every means necessary to incorporate yourself into their lives and gradually you will become a “friend” and a part of their elite circle thus your social status will be elevated.
And last of all, get some CASH and look the part.
Even if you will be mostly living under false pretenses of wealth it is necessary to have some cash to back it up, if not how do you expect to pay for the champagne you pop in the club, sort out bouncers, buy designer clothes, shoes and bags. And let’s not forget Brazilian hair for the ladies.
Wondering how to get this quick cash to burn?
For the ladies get a sugar daddy, or do the now alarmingly common “jazz”.
For the fellows, get a sugar mummy, or get involved in Internet fraud, political hooliganism or drug trafficking. It will be all fun and games until you are caught.
Now how do you look the part?
Quite easy — For the fellas get your tailor to sew you tons of white “native”, keep a beard if you can grow one and get a car. This is the look that the young men in the Lagos crème de la crème society favour.
For the ladies, expensive gadgets, Loubotins, Brazilian weave, designer dresses and purses will do.
Find all of this too much of a bother?
Then here’s a better option – Work hard, work smart and your success will propel you to your desired height.