8 Types of People You Will See in a Face-Me-I-Face – You Apartment


face me i face you picture

The tenement house, popularly called ‘face me I face you’ ruled Lagos accommodation system from time immemorial. No one can say precisely where and when it originated. Now, though this accommodation type is gradually phasing out due to enhanced standards of living, health concerns and quest for privacy.

The face me I face you  type of accommodation is characterized by one general kitchen, one or two toilet/bathroom and a general lobby popularly called ‘passage’ The face me I slap you sobriquet of tenement houses arose out of the constant wrangling and conflicts that occurs among the tenants. This housing system is popular among the middle and low income earners of major cities of Nigeria, with Lagos accounting for a vast majority for obvious reasons.

The Face Me I Face You apartments afford different kinds of people. Some of these include the following, feel free to add your own and let the conversation continue

  1. The Nosy:  Aptly put, these are the Radio Tatafo of the house. They have various alias- Amebo, Solo Makinde, Aproko, etc. They are the tail bearers of the ‘Yard’. With a good Nosy neighbor, you will not miss any news on who just got a new job or lost one. You are sure of being updated on the happenings in the house. Their proficiency in news hounding will make even Channels TV a learner. But believe all their tales at your peril.

2. The Educated: This is the ‘Alakowe’. He is so fluent in Queen’s English or highly proficient in its adulteration. If you cannot flow on same frequency with him or his children, you are kept at arm’s length. The Alakowe is the oracle sought after by other residents in Petition letter to NEPA, The Landlord or Caretaker.

Master Ola

3. The Trouble Maker: Touch his or her water or kitchen utensils and all hell will be let loose. The Margaret Thatcher is feared by all. Like a roaring lion, you are sure to hear his/her wailing once a while.

Chinyere the Fighter

4. The Prayer Champion: You can hear the shrilling voice as demons and its agents are cast and bound. Here is the prayer champion on duty and could be any time of the day or night.

Sister Deborah

5. The Chief Tenant: This is the tenant who has the longest occupancy in the house. He knows the history of the house, oftentimes, more than the landlord. He will not fail to let you know that he has been in the house for a long time and of his famed closeness to the landlord. He determines the fate of many to stay or leave the house.

The Loner: This one is always on his or her own. He does not mingle with other tenants. He always carries this sadistic face and minds his own business squarely. He or she acts as if living in a duplex or flat. Oftentimes, he is the subject of discussions by nosy housewives and idle men of the yard.

The loney bear

The Advocate: Call him the Union Leader, you would not be wrong. He stands up for the rights of other tenants. He is the no nonsense fighter. He has to be convinced on every subject before he agrees to it.

The Akagum: He or she comes in different shades, but similar mindset-enjoy all amenities to the fullest, but avoid payments as much as possible. If there is a NEPA or Water cut out, it is mostly caused by the refusal of Mr. Miser to pay up his bill.

There are some many other characters in the face me I face you apartments. Some characters share one or two of these attributes per time. They all converge to arrive and contrast in an endless bustle of restlessness.

If you have lived in a face me I face you apartment, kindly share you experience or tell us other categories of personalities not touched here.

Let the conversation continue…

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