My Bro is a biweekly Zikoko series that interrogates and celebrates male friendships of different forms.
While there might be a little confusion over when Muyiwa and BFG met for the first time, their unique bond and friendship is as clear as day. Connecting over beer, Twitter jokes, career moves and heartbreak, these two, over the past decade, have successfully built their friendship on a foundation of honesty and humour.
In this episode of My Bro, they talk about why they’re the closest within their friend group, what people don’t understand about their friendship and why sometimes all you need after a bad breakup is your bro and a bottle of beer.
Our origin story
Muyiwa: My earliest recollection of meeting you was at LUTH. I remember you had a birthday party, and our mutual friend Sochima invited me to tag along. Do you remember the year? It couldn’t have been earlier than 2015.
BFG: Hmmm. I think it was 2012 or 2013.
Muyiwa: So it’s been like ten years? I think there was beer in your room or something that night, and everyone knows how I feel about beer. We just chilled, drank and had a good time that night.
BFG: I no even remember that night. I’m sure it happened because you remember it, but I have no memories of that birthday party. I thought we met later on at one of the Twitter Premier League (TPL) events. That’s my earliest memory of you.
Muyiwa: Na wa o. LOL.
When we became friends
BFG: It took a while before we hit it off. We met through mutuals, then we kept running into each other and over time, our vibe clicked. We also started interacting on Twitter and discovered that we had similar interests and shit like that. I don’t think I can pinpoint a moment where I said, “Yeah, he’s now my friend.” Most of my friendships are formed this way: we meet through someone else, link up in groups and over time after trading stories and experiences, they sort of become my guys. It’s the organic way I make friends.
Muyiwa: True. It’s just less stressful when there’s a mutual friend involved. Sochima and I grew up together. Since he was also friends with you, it was easier to get to know you over time. From “how far?” we started chilling and drinking beer together.
Muyiwa: I thought and still think you’re a very funny guy. Your primary thing is the way you make these stupid yet effortless analogies. We could all be talking about doing something, and from nowhere you’ll say shit like, “I’d rather eat boiled jeans”. Who says that? LOL. You also have the most hilarious responses on Twitter. Meeting someone with a lot of humour made me feel good and at ease.
BFG: We dey try. But do you know you tend to leave a bad impression on people most of the time? I don’t know how you do it, but a lot of people think you’re an asshole. I, however, didn’t have that experience with you. You had a chill vibe and even though we were in a group, it felt like I could talk to you for hours. I liked that. This doesn’t mean you’re not an asshole o, but you were never an asshole to me.
Muyiwa: God abeg.
What makes this friendship different from our other friendships
Muyiwa: Of all the guys in our friend group, you’re the funniest person, and I know you’re always going to do or say something that would make me laugh. LOL.
BFK: So I’m a joke to you? No wahala.
Muyiwa: LOL. But we also talk about a lot of serious things. I think because we mostly drink beer together and catch trips on Twitter, people assume that’s all we do. I’ve grown to understand that I can share my worries and thoughts about work and life with you. Like recently I’ve had to think about my career and whether or not I’m letting go of opportunities that serve me. We talked about it and you helped me understand that the least I could do was explore my options before making hasty career decisions.
BFK: Our relationship is far from shallow and anyone who thinks it is, is simply hating from outside of the club. LOL. We talk about yansh on the TL, but it doesn’t mean that’s all we do. Also, everybody loves yansh, so what’s the big deal? There’s a depth of our friendship that’s just for the both of us and no one else can see it because they’re not part of it. You’re one of the few people I can count on and know that I’ll be okay.
Muyiwa: Right back at you, bro. I mean, in the last couple of months, we’ve talked a lot about work as it relates to our future and where we see ourselves in the coming years.
BFK: Exactly! And that’s one of the many things I get from you, because if you leave me, I won’t think of these things on my own. I tend to just make do with where I am at the moment and it’s cost me a lot of opportunities, but you constantly push me to face these things. Even though it’s annoying, you’re gingering me to get my shit together. It’s nice having someone who wants me to be the best version of myself.
Muyiwa: I like when we talk about women too o. Like when I had relationship problems last year—
BFK: So, we’re going there?
Muyiwa: You’re a bastard. We spoke about what was going on at the time, and you reminded me that it wasn’t a do or die affair. I really needed that.
He came through for me.
Muyiwa: A lot of my needs these days are emotional, not physical or financial. I need to be able to share my dreams, successes and frustrations with the people around me. The more successful I become, the more people think I have my shit together, but me, I don’t have anything together. You come through for me in the simplest ways. I can tell you I applied for something and I’ll notice that you’re worrying with me, so whether or not I get it, I know you’re in my corner. Life is full of disappointment and knowing that there’s someone who has your back, I don’t even know how to explain it makes me feel.
There’s the physical aspect of just making out time for me. Sometimes we just go out and drink beer in silence. I remember going out for drinks with you the day my ex broke up with me, we didn’t say anything, but you being there was enough for me not to lose my shit.
BFK: Good times. LOL. We see each other as emotional backbones where if I have something on my mind, I know I can share it with you and you’d listen. I like knowing that I have this structure with you. I’m making a career change right now and it’s been back-to-back rejection emails, but I have you in my corner to prop me up and urge me to keep going. Our support leans towards a more emotional aspect and that’s what I need in my life.
Why our friendship is important
BFK: By virtue of us being men, we already have a lot in common. There are things that I go through that only another man can understand how it makes me feel. Even if I haven’t experienced something before, I can draw from how another man in my life handled said experience in the past. Shared experiences are what brings men together.
Muyiwa: I totally agree. Going through social media, I’ve noticed that the idea of what it means to be a man keeps shifting. I go online every day and see “men shouldn’t do this” or “a real man should do that”, and all of it feels jarring atimes. You remind me that I’m not a crazy person. When I think I’m the only guy out here crying, I talk to you and realise, “Oh shit, other guys cry too.” We’re all going through the same things, and it’s just easier when you have a community.
If I could change something about you.
BFK: Because you’re very blunt and you say how you feel in the moment, people think you’re an asshole. I don’t have a problem with it because I’ve grown to know you, but your honesty often rubs people the wrong way. You need to work on that filter man. Other than that, I think you’re a pretty solid guy.
Muyiwa: I’ll change how uncertain you are about life. I know we don’t have the same risk tolerance, but I’d like you to take more risks. Nobody loves uncertainty, but you have to jump and hope for the best.
BFK: LOL. It’s a bad habit to break out from. I have a pattern of safety. But, yes, I’m trying.
What holds our friendship together.
Muyiwa: You know me. That’s good enough for me. I don’t need the whole world to like me, that’s too much. But I have you, and though I’m a cracked egg, you treat me like a fairly good egg.
BFK: It always comes back to our vibe. I’ve known you for years and can talk to you without judgement. It feels good to know I have someone who has my best interest at heart.
What I want to tell you.
Muyiwa: You don’t give yourself enough credit. If you see yourself the way I see you, you’d be more willing to take risks and try new things. Sometimes, lean into the belief other people have of you. I don’t think people would come together to lie to you about what your strengths are.
BFG: I’ve said it earlier, but you’re a big motivation in my life. This whole thing about me not betting on myself, I feel like it wouldn’t be a problem if I had met you earlier. This career change is something I should’ve done a long time ago and now, I’m getting to make that move and a lot of it is based on your influence. You push me to improve myself and I really appreciate that. Come, don’t allow your head swell o.
Muyiwa: LOL. I appreciate you too my guy.
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