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Funmi Iyanda
Lagos, Nigeria
Funmi Iyanda is a multi award-winning producer and broadcast journalist. She is the CEO of Ignite Media and Executive Director of Creation Television
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Monday, January 07, 2008


I know some of my many labels. Rabid, ball breaking, man hating bra burning feminist being one extreme and a sex and the cityish fashion obsessed, man eating, closet lesbian vixen the other. I find both extremely amusing and usually I understand the corresponding levels of fear, insecurity or plain ignorance that fuels such labels. First, I will never burn my bra, which is an unspeakably stupid thing to do. The bra is the garment of illusion, fantasy, support and succour. You can tell a woman's confidence level by the type of underwear she wears. I have a full-blown underwear fetish and after Apple, Agent Provocateur and Rigby and Peller are my next favourite global brands. I do not hate men, on the contrary, I like men, bless them, they are deliciously non complex and thus great fun to be around as well as invaluable resource when linear effective thinking is required, they also possess the phallus which is necessary for effective consensual adult heterosexual liaison which is my preference. They are for the same reasons perhaps a little less challenging. Guys, believe me, I know exactly how all that sounds. Touché huh ;-)?

Women on the other hand are a completely different proposition thus I do love women or should I say I love the possibilities of full blown woman ness.

Perhaps it is because I had no female influences whilst growing up that I find women so fascinating. I can totally understand men's attachment to the physicality of women. There is such power and beauty in the way women are designed whatever the shape, size, colour or age. Pity that media images and sleek marketing has eroded many a gorgeous woman's appreciation of her own unique beauty but that is another conversation.

What I find most compelling about woman is her exquisite contradictions. The ability to be simultaneously strong and weak, wise and silly, heroine and victim. The most outstanding women are those who have reached the pinnacle of womanhood, an ability to understand and work with those contradictions being fully aware of the importance and power of her own beliefs, opinions, desires and voice, the will to use that voice and the confidence to laugh at it all and herself. On the other end of the spectrum is long suffering, self-denying, door mating, women distrusting woman, they are an incredible drain of energy and robbers of joy.
Little girls and young women are beguiling. Their innocence and trust in the world to love and protect them is painful to see, these l constantly want to hug, protect and educate. Adult women are complex in their deep understanding of the things that matter but can be infuriating in the correspondingly deep delusion about their role in making these happen, they l often want to spank. Older women have seen it, done it, kissed, and probably kicked it silly so they are magnificent in their strength and wisdom and l am constantly knuckle chopping (high five) them. All these are of course lazy generalization for which l should be frog marched but it may help to think of age less in chronology but in mental and emotional maturity.
Using the default of age to represent emotional maturity, wisdom either due to common sense or formal learning and humour from a great attitude to life or experience, women who have these qualities are of great joy to me and from all examples l know endlessly attractive to men. Such women are a rock in friendship and incredibly effective in leadership.

Having given you this rather tedious background shall we therefore rendezvous here tomorrow for my own list of the most fascinating women of 2007 and the women to watch in 2008?


Olu said...

Wow, I just love the way you write and the words you use.
Can't wait for tomorrows list

Can't remember what I called myself... said...

What a delicious prelude to tomorrow's post. I watched the video with the theatre bloke, the Ghanaian bloke and the other where they talked about men, politics and most importantly women. I am still mesmerised at the Ghanaian bloke's outburst re. handing women power but that's not the topic for today/tomorrow or is it?

I am so powerful, so intelligent, it scares me, yet I can be most silly, most stupid, most dumb and it is the constant juggling of personalities and alter egos that keep my life sweet.

Eagerly awaiting your post.

CATWALQ a.k.a LAGBA-JESS said...

Hail osterogen!!!! Hail women!!!!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful piece, especially the definitions...........rabid, ball breaking bra burning....that is extremely funny.
I agree with the definitons of men and women, mean are straight thinkers with no pretences, while the creature known as woman is multi-faceted.......even fom an early age, the differences are clear

Sherri said...

there u go again!
don't get me started o(o sodun tuntun o)

very curious to see this ur list.

MissO said...

Really can't wait for the list, well you are on my list for most Admirable Women....

Iyaeto said...

i'm waiting for the list! "Egbe obirin rere" Good Women's Association

Anonymous said...

Funmi,you are definately a controversial lepa,a guy once remarked that he cant stand your opinions but is always fascinated by your kolo ideaologies(whatever that means)thats why he reads your blog daily and watch your new dawn programme all the time,You definately commands respect even from your avowed enemies.Keep it up mama shrimp

Anonymous said...

(Gleefully lip smacking, one palm rubbing furiously against the other with immense anticipation..) I say bring on that list!! And you better be on it!

O.E. said...

I am really, really looking forward to that list

Anonymous said...

"What I find most compelling about woman is her exquisite contradictions. The ability to be simultaneously strong and weak, wise and silly, heroine and victim..."

I'm kinda late, but yeah, I can so relate to this


Funmi Iyanda said...

@all, thought l'd yank your chains even more with a non commital list, all of a sudden people are calling me mentioned who they think is brilliant and bla bla. abeg! me l am contrary so l am going to do an about turn and write only about women who represents different aspects of my "kolo" ;-) definition of full blown woman ness. tits up gals!