Name : Michelle Ifechukwude Umunna
Location: Dallas, TX
Where did you grow up: I grew up here in Texas.
Can you speak your native language: I wish .. I can understand though.
What is your best food? : I love love love pounded yam with egusi soup!
What toys did you have as a child : I had a doll. It’s crazy, I don’t recall having her at the time, but looking back at photos of myself I had an African, American Girl doll. She had a headtie and everything.
What is your most memorable TV commercial? : I didn’t grow up in Nigeria, but my favorite commercial when I first visited was the Indomie commercial. The “Indomie good well well. INDOMIE!” one with a woman they call “Mama Do Good”.
Did you ever go to your village : Yes. Both my mother’s and my father’s. In our culture, your father’s village is the main one that “counts”. My dad is from Benin, but I favor my mother’s village, which is Abavo. I love it.
What did you hear your mom or dad say all the time : “Eziokwu” .. my brother and I were very cheeky kids. We still are.
Who did you look up to ( Entertainment wise) : P-Square, haha. Before my first visit home, my aunt sent me their dvd for Game Over, and I memorized every single song. I just thought it was neat when I later found out they crossed international borders with their music.
What did you do on summer vacations : Travel home. I don’t go as often now, but we used to go every two years after our first visit.
Have you ever been flogged? If so was it a memorable experience .. Of course! Corporal punishment is like the norm in an African household, isn’t it?
Did you ever go to any party? If so what was a memorable party (and name of the party if applicable) : Since I can remember, an association my parents are a part of, called the
Anioma Union DFW, Inc., they have Christmas parties every year. The most memorable one is like from 2008, I think. I danced my butt off, and that was the first time I was sprayed with money. Plus, I got to keep the money.
Who was your first crush : Peter Okoye of P-Square lol
When did you start dating : I’ve never dated up ‘til now.
For Africans that grew up outside Africa. (In Addition)
How many times did your name get messed up by a teacher : Every year as far back as I can remember. I either get “Umanna” or “You-mana”, and it would be incorrect in the system sometimes too.
Were you ever called an African booty scratcher : Never. Although, I feel for those that were. I can’t imagine how I would have reacted.
What stereotype do you hate hearing about Africa? : We swing from trees, live in huts, and have wild animals as pets.
Did your parents visit you at school? If yes, how did you feel about it? : Yeah, a few times. I never had an issue with it. My parents never really showed up in straight trad or anything like that.
Did you ever have your friends over at your house? What did they think about the food? : I’m an introvert haha, so I don’t just bring anybody over. The only friends that have come over have been African American, and they find it interesting. Most times, my parents will take us all out to eat if they sleep over.
Where you allowed to go to the movies with your friends? : Not until the 7th grade. I think I was 13 or 14 when I was allowed out of the house without my parents’ supervision.