Interview With… is a Zikoko weekly series that explores the weird and interesting lives of inanimate objects and non-human entities.

How do you treat your Dunlop Slippers? Do you accord it respect or do you only remember it when it’s time to wear it to the bathroom, the market or to walk in the rain?

If your answer to any of this is yes, Dunlop Slippers has had enough of your rubbish. Today on Interview With, the underappreciated and overworked footwear shares its grievances with Zikoko.

*Dunlop Slippers flies into the room and everyone dodges*

Zikoko: Ahan. Zikoko writers, are you afraid the slippers will land on your back?

Dunlop Slippers: [Lets out an evil laugh] At the sight of me, everybody must adjust, and every back shall confess that Dunlop Slippers carries power.

Is that why you entered our office like Hurricane Katrina? Please let us know when you are ready oh.

[Dunlop Slippers finally settles into the Interview Couch] Good morning, interviewer.

Same to you, Dunlop Slippers. Are you good? 

No. Do I look good to you? 

There is no need to be aggressive. I’m just making small talk.

You started the aggression, please. Why will I greet you good morning and you will reply “same to you”? I don’t know what you are going through, but I am not the cause of your misfortune.

I shall not experience misfortune in the mighty name of Jesus. Are you sick?

You are the one interviewing a pair of Dunlop Slippers. I believe it should be obvious to you by now, who the sick one is among us.

Oho, so this is how I am being repaid for my niceness? Nice one.

Which niceness? After everything I go through in the hands of your species, you open your mouth to say you are nice? Please, the day is still young, interviewer. Don’t get me angry. 

Me I don’t understand the reason for this aggressive behaviour sha. And what have you gone through in the hands of my… species?

What have I not gone through? Nigerian mothers throw me at their kids when they misbehave, secondary school students use me to beat their juniors, all of you wear me during the rainy season when you know that I don’t have a very strong grip. You relegate me into the bathroom permanently and change my name to bathroom slippers. Even when I give up work and cut, some of you will still sew me and continue to wear me. You won’t let me rest, you still won’t let me die. What exactly is the problem? And now you sit there asking me why I am aggressive. Why won’t I be aggressive? Don’t ask me why I am aggressive. Ask Nigerians why they are wicked.

All right… I am sensing that you feel unappreciated. Is that correct?

[Looks around the Zikoko office]

What are you looking for?

Your psychology degree. Because this one you have suddenly become a therapist, I don’t understand it. 

But yes, I don’t feel appreciated enough. Just yesterday I came through for an aunty that wore high heels to the beach. She wore me at that beach and was very happy.I won’t even lie, I was not happy with the way she kept using me to walk over hot sand. But did I complain? No. Even when she went close to the water and the waves almost removed me from her leg, I held on for dear life and kept my mouth shut, all in a bid to make her happy and give her the comfort she wants. And guess what she did once we left the beach?

Tell me.

Dustbin. She dumped me in the dustbin

Oh, I’m sor—

Why are you interrupting me? Let me talk. What is wrong with your species?

I’m not one of them.

Your species even have a name for me: bathroom slippers. Like you are ashamed to be seen in public with me. Before all those crocs and slides and palm slippers came, I saved your lives. You people deserve everything my colleagues have been doing to you. 

Colleagues? Is there an association of Dunlop Slippers that I don’t know about?

Ogbeni, you are even wearing crocs right now. I am the oga of the footwear association. I put the holes in crocs, I’m the reason your slides expand, the reason the soles of Birkenstocks break fast, the reason everything is expensive. 

Sorry oh, inflation. 

I am the reason tyres are no longer durable. And if you people don’t rethink how you treat me and my people, we will make sure there are no more latex left to make condoms.

Okay, you are scaring me. Please calm down. 

Oh, so you can ask me to calm down now, abi? You people don’t appreciate anything until it dies, then you’ll go on Twitter and be tweeting remember when. Your followers too will join you with their retweets and false sympathy, and you all will think you are good people.

Ahan, all this rant because of what?

Because I have been quiet for too long thinking you will change your ways, but nothing seems to be changing!

Sorry dear, we will wear bathroom slippers outside. 

You and who is bathroom slippers? My name is Dunlop. Dunlop Slippers. Is that too hard for you to pronounce?

I even tried to be fancy. I stopped being multi-coloured, I added ribbons and beads and cowries to myself, but you people refused to give me the special treatment you give to your fancy shoes. But no. I was not enough for you. You simply decided I was fit for dirty markets and loud supermarkets. And me too, I decided to show you how much value I have. If you will not appreciate me, then I will not let you enjoy me. That is why I always go missing. You must have noticed it, haven’t you? 

You wear me for a while and then one day, one leg is missing. 


Yes nau, man dem wicked but me wickeda than them. You people don’t know that I am well-travelled. I have been to every country, and Nigerians abroad respect me more. 

We are sorry. We will do better.

If you like, don’t do better. I will keep on disappearing. 

Hmm, maybe this is why they don’t like wearing you…

Say it with your chest, which one is “they”? You mean you. You think I don’t know your own story? I know all of you. Do you know how many times I have saved your life when a nail was trying to injure you? I let it in and it doesn’t harm you, you don’t even find it until two years later. 

Why did you let the nail enter in the first place?

To show that I have power. 


Ehen? What about it? 

Nothing. We appreciate all you do for us. 

That one is your business. I need to go now. My current oga wants to go to work but doesn’t want to wear his suede shoes in the rain. Come and show me that your psychology degree fast fast before I leave.

Check back every Friday by 9AM for new Interview With episodes. To read previous stories, click here.

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