What is a diary, you may ask? Well, I will say it is a piece of book that keeps offences or events we don’t want to forget in a hurry, particularly those that leave bad tastes in the mouth. It is a treatise kept by angry men in trickles. It always begins like mustard seed and later becomes a deep-rooted tree upon which all offences perch.
Most of the time a diary comes in volumes of 365 0r 366 sheets. The more years we gather to live, the more volumes we garner.
If you do not agree with my initial definition of a diary or you think it is narrow-minded. That makes the two of us. You may actually be right. My definition is a bona fide product of my socialisation. I only described the kind of diary my late father kept. As you can see, my idea of a diary is a masculine affair. Thus I said earlier, ‘it is a treatise kept by angry men in trickles…’ This is my initial definition because it was my first contact with this diary of a thing.
Now, a diary is a private document, meant only for the eyes of the keeper. Even the spouse does not always have free access to it because his or her offences are part of those filed away in black and white in the diary. To carelessly keep your diary is to be flippant and indiscreet. And God help you that your diary is forgotten in the home of some of the people whose offences are recorded, and then you are on your way not only to losing vital friends but also making more enemies.
Something else about a diary is that its contents are a reflection of the mind of its keeper. Thus some diaries only keep records of memorable events that can help sharpen the destiny of families, corporations and nation. As a young lawyer, I was accustomed to reading the diary of my dearly beloved senior colleague, Adesina Ogunlana, the fiery editor of The Squib Magazine and now the leader of the Radical Agenda 2020. By the way, he has my vote as the next president of the Nigerian Bar Association. His diary in a poke-nosing manner chronicles memorable events in the Lagos Judiciary. My restless eyes have also pried into the diary of Benjamin Franklin, reeling out timeless nuggets that raise a dead mind to live forever.
This is my own diary, christened curiously, Vital Obiter. By its name, it suggest to you not to take yourself too seriously in dealing with personal and national issues sitting as pains on your neck. I am sure you are familiar with the word, ‘VITAL,’ the problem my non-lawyer readers may have is with the word, ‘OBITER,’ which full word is actually a phrase known as ‘OBITER DICTUM.’ Please let non-lawyers ask their lawyer friends. You see, you have been too far from your lawyer friends. It is my intention to foster a reunion between lawyers, their friends and even their spouses. You see, it is already working, I see some of you sending WhatsApp messages and calling your lawyer friends, asking, ‘what is this ‘OBITER’ he has christened his diary. Who knows? After helping you with the meaning of ‘OBITER,’ you may just reward him/her with a brief? And for married spouses, who knows? Things may return to being great again tonight as a reward for decoding, ‘OBITER.’ You remember ‘Make America Great Again…’? This time call it, ‘Make the Bedroom Great Again.’
I will endeavor to serve you; my dear lawyer and non-lawyer friends the content of my diary as weekly appetizer for your deserved weekend relaxation in a land where everything seems to be falling far and fast apart.
Don’t ask me what else it does contain. That will be a sheer exercise in anxiety because the contents of this diary will be unveiled every week from now on, forever and ever, amen!
All you need to know right now is that, it a diary of a Roving Public Lawyer of 21 years at the bar, who happens also to be doubly mischievous and possesses huge sense of humour. But one thing about him also is that he will never make the truth a victim in the cases reported in the diary.
I sincerely feel it is a diary you must read if you suffer from mental indigestion as it has all it takes to massage you back into full activities. To the wise men, I mean the wise learned men and their cronies and families; I present and recommend to you Vital Obiter, the Diary of a Roving Public Lawyer.
For my lawyer readers, you may just have to cite it as the authority in a case soon, so keep reading. You may also be the subject matter of the next edition, so if you don’t read, how would you promptly brief your Chambers to file an action in libel if you feel aggrieved by the contents of the Diary?
For security agents, I think you may also want to be here every week. Who knows when the contents of this diary will constitute hate speech, qualifying the writer for the pleasure of your gallows? Or have the National Assembly dropped the bill on Hate Speech?! Shalom!
Here is your dearly beloved Roving Public Lawyer, Taiwo AKINLAMI