Truck Tailboard Messages: A Reflection Of Nigerian Wit And Wisdom

Feature Article Truck Tailboard Messages: A Reflection Of Nigerian Wit And Wisdom

In the bustling streets of Nigeria, amidst the cacophony of honking horns and the vibrant hustle of daily life, one can find a unique canvas of expression: the tailboards of trucks. These moving billboards carry more than just goods; they bear inscriptions that offer a glimpse into the collective psyche of the nation.

The messages, no doubt, reflect the art of communication on wheels. For instance, the messages inscribed on these vehicles range from humorous quips to philosophical musings, serving as a form of social commentary and a reflection of the driver's thoughts and beliefs. They are a testament to the creativity and resilience of Nigerians, who find ways to express themselves and communicate with others, even in the most mundane aspects of life.

Without a doubt, the messages are typically more than just words. These tailboard inscriptions often make sense of the world in ways that are profound yet accessible. They can be a source of amusement, a momentary distraction from the stress of traffic jams, or even a prompt for introspection. For instance, a truck might cheekily advise, "No Food for Lazy Man," reminding onlookers of the value of hard work in a country where nothing comes easy.

In fact, the messages in different literary sense serve as mirror to the Society. This is as they also serve as avenue upon which the issues that people face daily are reflected upon. They touch on themes of governance, corruption, love, and the high cost of living topics that resonate deeply with the Nigerian populace. In a country where the freedom of expression can be a contentious issue, these inscriptions are a subtle yet powerful means of voicing opinions and concerns.

The inscriptions on Nigeria's trucks are more than just idle scribbles; they are a form of art and communication that captures the spirit of the nation. They remind us that wisdom can be found in the most unexpected places and that every Nigerian has a voice, even if it is on the tailboard of a truck.

Without a doubt, the messages on the back of trucks are meaningful, offering a window into the soul of Nigeria, one tailboard at a time.

Truck inscriptions in Nigeria are often a mix of humor, wisdom, and social commentary. Examples can be found in some memorable ones that reflect the spirit of Nigerian society. They cut across “No Food for Lazy Man”, which a common is saying that emphasizes the importance of hard work, “God dey", which is a phrase expressing faith that God is in control, despite the circumstances.

In the same vein, other inscription worth recalling here cut across “I Still Dey Kampe", meaning "I am still strong" or "I am still standing," showcasing resilience, “Na God" a short form of saying “It is by God's grace," acknowledging divine help in success and “Hustle Must Pay", an encouragement that hard work will eventually lead to success.

At this juncture, permit me to opine that the inscriptions that inspired me to express this view were stumbled on a friend’s Facebook post which say, “Paddle Your Own Canoe”, and another one that says, “Our Leaders Are All Goats”. Both sayings which were inscribed on the tailboard of a lorry respectively speak to the fact that people should mind their businesses and that we are suffering from the poverty of leadership.

These inscriptions are not just for decoration; they convey messages that resonate with many Nigerians' experiences and aspirations. They serve as a medium for drivers to express their identity, emotions, and opinions about their society. Whether it is through witty sayings or reflective adages, these messages on wheels are a cherished part of Nigeria's cultural landscape.

Without a doubt, inscriptions on the tailboards of vehicles are indeed a form of mass communication. They serve as a mobile medium to convey messages to a large audience without the need for technological devices like the internet or mobile phones. These messages can range from personal beliefs, philosophical statements, humorous quips, to social and political commentary.

The effectiveness of this form of communication lies in its visibility and mobility. As vehicles travel through different areas, the inscriptions are seen by a diverse group of people, making it a potent tool for spreading messages widely. This is particularly impactful in places with high vehicular traffic and where literacy rates allow for the written word to be a common means of communication.

Moreover, these inscriptions often reflect the cultural, social, and individual identities of the vehicle owners or operators. They can express common sentiments, shared experiences, or collective aspirations, thus creating a unique speech community or social network with shared values and norms¹. In this way, vehicle inscriptions become a canvas for public expression and dialogue, contributing to the cultural tapestry of a society.

In fact, vehicle inscriptions are a cost-effective, accessible, and dynamic form of mass communication that captures the attention of the public and facilitates the exchange of ideas and information.