51. As a teenager, I would sit in church and dream up weird scenarios, like what if people burst through the doors and started shooting
52. On the 25th of July, 1993, that actually happened
53. I hate cellphones
54. I believe all people see things either in video or as snapshots
55. I see things as snapshots.
56. Some of the bands I've played in were called Pseudo Weirdo, Weit, Stonecrow
57. I struggle to fall asleep at night
58. I've supported Liverpool football club since I was a boy
59. The most beautiful sunset I've ever seen was on a train leaving Sydney. It was reflected off every glass building, car window and mirrored surface so that the whole world was consumed in fire
60. I find intimidating woman extremely attractive (no, I'm not going to tell you what I mean by 'intimidating')
61. I love the fact that my closest friends believe that if I ever split up with my wife, it would indicate the end of the world
62. It's my birthday on Tuesday
63. I unconsciously manipulate situations to my advantage
64. I don't support the death penalty
65. No-one close to me has been a victim of an extremely violent act
66. If that ever changed, I'd hope that I would still believe 64, no matter how hard
67. I used to be able to play every song on Siamese Dream note for note
68. I've never told the two people I believe I've wronged the most how sorry I am
69. I don't believe I'm as good a person as people seem to think I am
70. With a few exceptions, most of my close female friends are older than me
71. My wife is older than me
72. But only by a year
73. When I was 20, I accidentally hit and killed a cat in a fairly quiet suburban street late at night. I remember the creeping dread as I went from house to house, trying to find out who the owners were. The terrible scream at the fifth house told me I'd found them
74. Our next cat WILL be called Greebo
75. I've never met a Terry Pratchett fan I haven't liked 76. I understand supply-demand curves, exchange rates, commerical law, interest rates... 77. The fact that I understand the above scares me more than anything else
78. I used to have long hair
79. I don't have any tattoos
80. But I do plan on getting one (no.4, remember?)
81. I enjoy photographing nude abstracts
82. At a party you'll more than likely find me observing from the outskirts
83. I wish I was a vegetarian
84. I always borrow too many books from the library
85. They're always overdue
86. I've probably paid for at least a few shelves in overdue fines
87. I swear a lot more than you might think
88. I often think I should have been a teacher
89. I can spend 4 hours in a shopping mall with my wife and actually enjoy it
90. My favourite season is autumn and time of day is dusk
91. My parents don't know that I know my mother was married once before
92. This bothers me less than I thought it would
93. One of my favourite days was being stuck in heavy coastal traffic on a Sunday afternoon in the back of my friends bakkie. Every moment of that drive was perfect
94. If they figured out how to bottle nostalgia, I'd be addicted
95. I hate going to the beach, except at night
96. My late grandfather used to be the curator at the SA National Museum. He'd let my sister and I in after closing time and we'd walk beneath whale skeletons and Giant Turtle shells, our awed whispers echoing toward infinity. I loved to sit in the planetarium, just me beneath a million pinpricks of light.
97. I possess a fairly good wine knowledge and find descriptions like the following highly amusing: "Two fingers in the nostrils and a gentle tug, followed by a nuzzle at the nape of the neck and that short-lived tinnitus that seems like it’s going to be a major pain or perhaps the first symptom of a ghastly disease but is always gone by the time you remember it was there. Moonglow and snowfights, more tinnitus, a pronounced barnyard sing-along before everything goes to hell and you’re left with a big creamy mess like a priest mopping up after a wank. "
98. I may not be well travelled, but I've seen Cathedral Cove and Milford Sound
99. I passed the 2000 visitor mark yesterday
100. I hope to be a father soon (Update: Let me clarify before I get myself into everyone's badbooks. We are trying for a baby, but nothing as yet.)

100 things.....well, almost.....


After reading Nome's latest post, I've decided to follow suit. Because it's not something that I'd usually do, because it's difficult for me.
I might say that I'm only posting 50 of them today because it gives me a reason to post tomorrow, but the truth is more likely that I've bottomed out and need at least a night before I can come up with another 50.
1. When I was six, I had the most vivid dream of waking to find a strange creature at the foot of my bed. The clarity of that memory has haunted me ever since.
2. I've never broken a bone
3. I dream regularly of Armageddon. It's always different and never scary
4. I am the worlds greatest procrastinator
5. In high school, I was the only guy in a class 99.9% caucasian to take someone to my matric dance (prom) who isn't
6. I'd rather be blind than deaf
7. My eyes change colour between green and blue
8. After owning Soundgarden's Superunkown album for 10yrs, I only 'got' the song The Day I Tried To Live last week
9. I tend to read about three books at the same time
10. I fear I don't know who my sister is anymore
11. I used to man the sound desk at a church, so I had a set of keys. One night a bunch of us snuck into church and took photos of my stoned friend doing his impression of the minister behind the pulpit.
12. I had a major crush on the same minister's daughter
13. It came as a big shock when in the first year of High School I noticed that most of my friends suddenly left me out in the cold because of my very average sporting abilities
14. I never regret this, as I would never have met the fascinating people in high school I eventually became friends with
15. The only sport I ever excelled in was swimming/water polo
16. My nickname in high school was Giraffe. I have no idea why
17. I can't remember the last time I cried, not that I haven't been mentally and emotionally affected by something, but had actual tears roll down my face
18. I used to drink a lot, but I've never been completely rat-assed.
19.When I was 11, my sister and I used to perform fake concerts to my parents records. I used my dad's squash racket as a guitar
20. When I was 8, the teacher used to ask me to tell the other kids a story when she had to leave the classroom. I used to make everything up as I went along, and they loved every second.
21. I fear that was the peak of my creative potential
22. I went to an all boys school, bar when I was 10 and we lived in Johannesburg for a year and I went to a co-ed school
23. When we moved back to Cape Town the following year and I went back to the all boys school, I found it difficult to take anything any of my friends said about girls seriously.
24. I went to Cubs, but never Boy Scouts. Our Scout Hall was across the road from a really busy pub and I remember how many cars were parked outside and how it was such an alien and mysterious place.
25. Many years later I ended up running that same pub. The Scout hall is still there, but I think it's used for Yoga and aerobics now.
26. I want to see the Aurora Borealis before I die
27. There was a guy in high school who used to hang around me all the time, I never really liked him, but he seemed to think he was my best buddy. One day I crashed his motorbike and the only thing he seemed concerned with was whether I was injured. It was like the bike didn't exist. I felt so ashamed for every lousy thought I'd cast his way. I still don't like him, though.
28. My blossoming gymnastics career was cut short at the age of 9, when I accidentally broke a friends arm in a 'daring, high-risk maneuver'
29. I was on my high school general knowledge team for four years running and am addicted to quizzes and lateral thinking problems
30. I love conspiracy theories but believe very few of them
31. I used to play chess with a friend in the darkened corners of a local Goth club
32. New Zealand is the most beautiful place in the world I have ever been
33. Despite the fact that I clash heads with my father on a multitude of points, I still admire and respect him more than any other man alive
34. I have a deep-seated bitterness to the fact that my 'salvation' is more important to him than knowing who I am.
35. I realise that my perception of the above is skewed and the bitterness is seldom directed toward him.
36. I love driving
37. I met my wife in a Chinese restaurant
38. My favourite food is Oriental (Chinese, Thai, Japanese)
39. My best friend at school used to think I was gay
40. I'm not
41. He is
42. I do think he's the most intoxicating guy I've ever known
43. My favourite tv series as a kid was Robotech
44. When I was running the pub, I had more threats to my physical well being than I can remember
45. Yet I've never been punched and never thrown a punch. Since my mouth is usually what gets me into those situations, I figure it better be able to get me out
46. I've had a gallery exhibit some of my photo's and actually sold one
47. I've stood at the edge of Victoria Falls and wanted to throw myself in, not in an attempt at suicide but to be a part of something that magnificent
48. I'm not spontaneous and I overly analyse every situation before I commit to anything 49. I still don't know what I want to do when I grow up
50. I miss the Newton house. It became a place of myth among a select few, a huge, sprawling, unkept, bohemian friend's house where I spent most of my high school life. It was covered in vines and had the most fascinating smells and it was always alive. to be continued

Unfettered Notions


Just a short post today, as I'm fairly peeved at Amazon and rather depressed that the band is slowly disintegrating. Fuck that, I'm fucking pissed at Amazon. "Your order will arrive between the estimated dates of 11th April to 25th April 2005". What the hell is the point of that estimation if the package doesn't arrive then? Why not just say it'll arrive sometime after the 11th April? Am I being unreasonable? Is four weeks an acceptable waiting time? Aaaaaaaaarrrrrrgggggghhhhhh!!!!!! Oh well, at least Mysfit has posted at Story Crossing. Nicely done! And I really like the fact that people call the bounty hunters 'Blade Runners' after the actual movie. Sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy! That's a brilliant concept, popular culture feeding off of...well....popular culture! Hmmm....may have to blog about that later..... Lastly, saw The Interpreter over the weekend. Being an African, a pacifist and possessing a fairly good knowledge of what is happening in places like Zimbabwe, I found the movie thought-provoking, if a little too peripheral. There's so much more there, but it's Sydney Pollack's story to tell, not mine. It's a nobel idea, but the cynic in me fears that he affords the UN more efficacy than it has shown in the past.

Shawshank Redemption


"If I had been a cardinal and had the right to vote I would not have given my vote to the new pope," Tutu told journalists in Cape Town. He said before Tuesday's announcement he had expressed the hope that the new pope would be someone, if not from Africa, then certainly from the developing world. "I believed that it was likely that a candidate from those parts would have placed on the agenda of the world, of the church, issues that are burning issues in Africa, in Asia, in Latin America - issues such as poverty, in order to question seriously the skewed international economic order which disadvantage the poor," the archbishop said.
Those were the words of Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu yesterday, seemingly not convinced at the election of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger. But this is not a post about Pope Benedict XVI. This is an exploration of the reasons I feel like hiding under a rock every time I hear Desmond Tutu quoted. This is not a 27yr old man you see before you, rather a 17yr old boy, who is eager for the weekend to arrive. It's his first 'youth leadership' retreat, he's a recently appointed member of a team responsible for the teaching and guiding of 9 to 13yr old kids from his church. Finally, the weekend arrives and he's joking around with the others on the beach, only a few feet from the Reverend's holiday house (although quite how the Rev can afford a holiday house in Hermanus has not yet occurred to him). After the afternoon's 'freetime', the group settle in the lounge, comforted by the knowledge that many hours of discussion and teachings from scripture are about to commence. So the Youth Pastor decides to play them a tape of one of the other ministers in a radio interview with the Archbishop Tutu. The topic happens to be homosexuality, and they all laugh and murmur approval as their minister makes Tutu bob and weave under a barrage of questions and 'biblical' facts. Tutu, you see, has made the fatal error of wondering what the big deal is. Why sexual preference must be defended by us heteros to the death. Why the discrimination. Why the constant "you're damned to hell for your unnatural fornication' barrage. Big mistake. Their minister runs rings around Tutu, and the fact that Tutu remains at all times a patient, passive and conciliatory figure just makes going for the jugular that much easier. It's ten years later. And in those ten years I've seen Archbishop Tutu continue to perform 'heretical acts', as these two article excerpts will show.
1. Zimbabwe's ruling Zanu-PF called South African cleric Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu a "sellout" on Tuesday, for saying that Zimbabwe made a mockery of African democracy. 2.Archbishop emeritus Desmond Tutu has issued a stern warning that black economic empowerment is benefiting only a small elite while South Africa is "sitting on a powder keg" of poverty. He has also spoken out strongly against those who failed to openly debate and challenge President Thabo Mbeki's controversial views on HIV and Aids, arguing that South Africa is "a democracy and not a dictatorship".
I feel like a shower. I feel like washing the filth of those grossly delusional years off. I feel violated. I feel ashamed. But I also feel free. Free to be thankful that people like Archbishop Tutu exist. People who refuse to tow the line, people who put integrity before loyalty, people who understand that compassion is not owned by any dogma, creed or faith. People who call a spade a spade. "There's not a day goes by I don't feel regret. Not because I'm in here, or because you think I should. I look back on the way I was then, a young, stupid kid who committed that terrible crime. I want to talk to him. I want to try and talk some sense to him, tell him the way things are. But I can't. That kid's long gone and this old man is all that's left. I got to live with that. Rehabilitated? It's just a bullshit word. So you go on and stamp your form, sonny, and stop wasting my time. Because to tell you the truth, I don't give a shit." (You can read the article about Tutu's response to the new Pope here)

On Ash Tree Lane......


A friend sent me these two links. For some reason, I'm reminded of Mark Danielewski's House of Leaves. Let's leave it at that, shall we? Here and here



Quick update on the story crossing. Fence has made her indelible mark on it (and what an exquisite mark!)......and, as Anne so wonderfully put it, it's gone 'bicephalic' over at Gatsby's. Now I'm just wondering what's taking JP and Banzai so long...........(gentle nudge)

It's alive!


For those true die-hards who've been following the story crossing attempts of the last post, Anne has ushered her addition out into the world......and has left us all wondering what other gems she has concealed! And in other news, Livewire has uncovered a rather pleasing discovery! On page 200 of the novel she's currently reading, one of the characters makes a passing reference to "......forgotten machines..." This particular book also happens to be by one of my favourite authors, in fact, the title of this here blog is derived from a line in the same novel! The clincher? I've been using the pseudonym forgottenmachine for a good few years prior to the book's publishing...... I remember when I was still in high school, I was toying around with a title for a short story and finally settled on The Jupiter Drawing Room. About three years later, a new advertising agency was launched here called......you guessed it, The Jupiter Drawing Room! Anyone else share a similar experience? Oh, and what with the blog title/pseudonym co-incidence, I've decided that this blog was clearly meant to be......so you'll be putting up with me for a good while yet......

The crossing story continues......


As gracious a thanks as I can muster goes to Anne, who has taken on the role of resuscitator, and encouraged others to continue Lucretia's story. She must be doing something right, as Suzanna has already posted her contribution here. It also links back to Lucretia's original, should anyone be tempted to continue it from a different branch. This has been a week full of pleasant surprises, a good blogging week. Thanks to everyone who has lingered, loitered, commented, advised or even just recognised something true to their own lives. You are the reason this blog has come to mean a great deal more to me than I could have ever imagined. Who would have thought there are two words more powerful than goodbye..... Thank you.

apocalypse-joycekilmerave Jenn See posted this over on Followingmyfish and saw in it an apocalyptic quality. I couldn't agree more, but perhaps not apocalyptic as in 'end of the world'........ This was born of that thought. My affair is with silence, she does not ask from me a word I am unable to give. Goodbye. Such a simple word. Silken on the tongue, a soft word but is there any other that could dry up the seas shatter the sky, one filigreed sliver of blue at a time? If I do not love you then why is the word cadaverous, a taste of death and steel and lost at sea on my tongue Ah, but I do love you. A fierce, bright love an ember to spark the end of the world. It slips beyond desire's fickle grasp resonating outward and onward. I promised I would come, and we both wept at the image of my arrival an image so clear perhaps it had happened already. But it hasn't. Did I truly break that promise as easily as driftwood as glass as shadow? I fear I will never know if it is cowardice, or the bravest thing I have ever done. How does the thought of you not cripple me? Fear not I never could walk without you. Yet I am suprised at how quickly I have become accustomed to crawling. So I cast off every thought, I have glimpsed a moment and I know truer then anything I have known before that it will only come once. Don't ask me why I must seize it, I must My tongue is still a cold and distant stranger, but the thought speaks louder than my voice ever could. Goodbye. (file under fiction)


Hansy says she's feeling a little uninspired at present, she even went as far as to say that a particular piece of hers lacked creativity?!?! (I know, I know, it's even more serious then we thought....) Well Hansy, I hope this cheers you up, as promised. Professor Roy's Amazingly Bad Poetry Review. (check out Dec 30th's entry) For even more punishment, check out The Bad Poetry Page. Should I ever be that deluded as to my own abilities, promise to put me out of my misery....... (yes, it is pretty mean to make fun of other peoples efforts at expression, but I'm feeling mean today. And besides, if it's out there, it's fair game) (oh, and in other news, I have decided the infuriating colleague from a previous post does not qualify for the 'code', as she is in fact the spawn of Satan.)

I love the smell of napalm in the morning....


Johnny (to Brian, the security guard): Is that it now then? Are you through with the regulation pacing? All set to deploy the fatuous sarcasm? Well, I've beaten you to it. Brian: Would you like a mint? Johnny: What's this new policy? Ply the culprit with menthol? Brian: Waste not, want not. Johnny: An' other cliches. Brian: But a cliche is full of truth, otherwise it wouldn't be a cliche. Johnny: Which is in itself a cliche. Brian: Have you got nowhere to go, then? Johnny: I've got an infinite number of fuckin' places to go, the problem is where you stay. Johnny: And what is it what goes on in this particular postmodernist gas chamber? Brian: Nothing. It's empty. Johnny: So what is it you're guardin', then? Brian: Space. Johnny: You're guardin' space? That's stupid, isn't it? Because someone could break in there, eh, and steal all the fuckin' space and you wouldn't know it's gone, would you? Brian: Good point. Brian: ...That's my job. Johnny: Well, could they not train a tall chimpanzee to do that? Or, a small chimpanzee with a bigger gizmo? Brian: I suppose they could. Johnny: Well Brian, you've succeeded in convincing me you have the most tedious fuckin' job in England. Johnny: So you think you can make the present palatable by projecting into the future? You're living in the past, pal. It's the future that fucks you up, Brian, it's the maggot in the apple. See, you're all pissed off with the present, right? And there's nothing wrong with the present. The present's fine, the present's perfect, the present's peachy fuckin' creamy. The only thing wrong with the present is the bastard doesn't exist, because the present is the future and the future is the past, and it's all the same fuckin' bag of bones anyway. It's a constant process of coming into being and passing away, coming into being and passing away. The future is now. Brian: But the present does exist. We're in it now. Johnny: You were just then when you said it, but you're not in it now. You're not in it now. You're not in it now. You're forever being kicked up the ass by the future. You with me? Johnny: Has nobody not told you, Brian, that you've got this kind of gleeful preoccupation with the future? I wouldn't even mind, but you don't even have a fuckin' future, I don't have a future. Nobody has a future. The party's over. Take a look around you man, it's all breaking up. Are you not familiar with the book of Revelations of St. John, the final book of the Bible prophesying the apocalypse?... He forced everyone to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead so that no one shall be able to buy or sell unless he has the mark, which is the name of the beast, or the number of his name, and the number of the beast is 6-6-6. ...What can such a specific prophecy mean? What is the mark? Well the mark, Brian, is the barcode, the ubiquitous barcode that you'll find on every bog roll and packet of johnnies and every poxy pork pie, and every fuckin' barcode is divided into two parts by three markers, and those three markers are always represented by the number 6. 6-6-6. Now what does it say? No one shall be able to buy or sell without that mark. And now what they're planning to do in order to eradicate all credit card fraud and in order to precipitate a totally cashless society, what they're planning to do, what they've already tested on the American troops, they're going to subcutaneously laser tattoo that mark onto your right hand, or onto your forehead. They're going to replace plastic with flesh. Fact. In the same book of Revelations when the seven seals are broken open on the day of judgment and the seven angels blow the trumpets, when the third angel blows her bugle, wormwood will fall from the sky, wormwood will poison a third part of all the waters and a third part of all the land and many many many people will die. Now do you know what the Russian translation for wormwood is? ....Chernobyl. Fact. On August the 18th, 1999, the planets of our solar system are gonna line up into the shape of a cross... They're gonna line up in the signs of Aquarius, Leo, Taurus, and Scorpio, which just happen to correspond to the four beasts of the apocalypse, as mentioned in the book of Daniel, another fuckin' fact! Do you want me to go on? The end of the world is nigh, Brian, the game is up. Brian: I don't believe that. Life can't just come to a stop. Johnny: All right, I'm not saying that life will end or the world will end, or the universe will cease to exist. But man will cease to exist. Just like the dinosaurs passed into extinction, the same thing will happen to us. We're not fuckin' important! We're just a crap idea! Brian: I'm not going to cease to exist. I'm gonna be here in the future. Johnny: What is this fuckin' fixation with the future?! Listen pal, I've got chronic systolic palpitations and acute fuckin' neuralgia! Brian: Let me ask you a question. Johnny: What? Brian: Have you ever had the sense that you've lived in a time different from this one? Johnny: What you mean like in a past life? Brian: Could be, yeah. Johnny: Yeah well in my past life I was dead. Brian: But you see I wasn't. I know I was here in the past before I was born, so I know I'm going to be here in the future after I've died. Johnny: I see. And in this alternative existence did you still have the same noxious body odor? Brian: No need to be personal. It's what I believe. Johnny: Shall I tell you what I believe? Brian: You don't believe in anything. Johnny: Do you think the amoeba ever dreamed that it would evolve into the frog? Of course it didn't. And when that first frog shimmied out of the water and employed its vocal chords in order to attract a mate or to retard a predator, do you think that that frog ever imagined that that incipient croak would evolve into all the languages of the world, into all the literature of the world? Of course it fuckin' didn't. And just as that froggy could never have possibly conceived of Shakespeare, so we can never possibly imagine our destiny. Brian: I know what my destiny is. Johnny: Yeah but what you're experiencing, as far as I can gather, with all these manifestations of regression and precognition and transmigratory astral fuckin' chatterings is just the equivalent of that first primeval grunt. Because evolution isn't over. Man isn't the be-all and fuckin' end all. Look, if you take the whole of time represented by one year, we're only in the first few moments of the first of January. There's a long way to go. Only now we're not going to sprout extra limbs and wings and fins because evolution itself is evolving. And whereas you, through some process of extrasensory recall, might imagine that you were some, I don't know, some 17th-century little Dutch girl living in a windmill in old Amsterdam, one day you'll realize that you've had not just one or two past or future existences, but that you were and are everybody and everything that has ever been or will ever be. Brian: Hang on a minute, you've just contradicted yourself. Johnny: Oh, how'd you make that out? Brian: Downstairs you were predicting the end of the world, now you're talking about the future. How do you explain that, eh? Johnny: Easy. When it comes, the apocalypse itself will be part of the process of that leap of evolution. Brian: Well. Whatever happens, mankind will not cease to exist. Johnny: He must. By the very definition of apocalypse, mankind must cease to exist, at least in a material form. Brian: What do you mean in a material form? Johnny: Well he'll evolve. Brian: What into? Johnny: Into something that transcends matter. Into a species of pure thought. Are you with me? Brian: Yeah...like a ghost! Johnny: No, not like a fuckin' ghost you big girl's blouse, into something that's like well beyond our comprehension. Into a universal consciousness. Into God, who is by the same principle that time is. Brian: You don't believe in God. Johnny: Of course I believe in God. You see, the thing is Brian, that God is a hateful God. Must be. Because if God is good, then why is there evil in the world? Why is there pain and hate and greed and war? It doesn't make sense. But if God is a nasty bastard then you can say: why is there good in the world? Why is there love and hope and joy? Well let's face it, good exists in order to be fucked up by evil. The very existence of good enables evil to flourish, therefore, God is bad. And it doesn't matter how many past or future existences you have because they're all going to be riddled with grief and anguish and sickness and death. You see Brian, God doesn't love you. God despises you. So there's no hope. Mankind is just a component of the device by which the Devil creates itself. You with me? You see what I'm saying basically is, you can't make an omelet without cracking a few eggs, and humanity is just a cracked egg. And the omelet ....stinks. Brian: Yeah. (David Thewlis, 'Naked')

I feel like a quote out of context...


Background sketch: Five years ago, you would have found me attempting to fool both patrons and staff with my impersonation of a competent restaurant manager. I would scurry around, dispatching waiters hither and thither, passing by tables with my best "I'm in control" smile (which could not have been further from the truth). I remember in particular one young waiter, C, a scrubby young guy with a mischievous demeanor, but an incredibly personable and halcyon individual. It unfortunately did not take long for me to realise that he had a serious drug problem. He attempted rehabilitation twice in the period that he worked for me, but after a number of 'incidents of dishonesty' (hey everyone, look....I just coined my very first PC phrase!), I had to ask him to leave. We did part as friends, not because I'm some sort of ultramegaokay hyper-dimensional being who exudes coolness, but rather because I tried to show him some form of courtesy, and I think he could see that. Flashforward to present day: So fellow bandmate and I pull into a local fastfood franchise on Friday night, and I'm busy picking up our order when I hear someone call my name. It's C, impish grin still very much in place, but no sign of the heavy shadow that was always at his side those five years ago. My initial impression is right, as he starts to tell me of his last two years clean and his new found passion, teaching. He's two years away from completing his teaching diploma and already knows the school he wants to be involved with. And in a serendipitous twist of fate, he is now in a position to offer my band discounted studio time at a local recording studio. We exchange numbers and I stride back into the night. What a truly uplifting experience! I have always tried to adhere to a code of respect toward all acquaintances, so I'd be lying if I said I wasn't fairly self-satisfied, not because I was deluded enough to believe I'd had any role in his rehabilitation, but because his recollection of me was a positive one. And so this morning, I found myself designing intricate and nefarious diagrams to rid the earth of a certain work colleague, who also happens to be the bane of the rest of the office's existence. She was in top form this morning, achieving maximum irritation levels in less than a half-hour. But what use is my so-called 'code' if it can't be extended to her? It's so easy to tell all and sundry about the 'former junkie turned good', because I like him and see him as a friend, but someone I have come to loathe with 89% of the fibres in my body? There is a thousand mile gap between dislike in thought and dislike in action. When that moment finally arrives and the temptation to flick the release valve is a cacophony I can't ignore, what then? Shall I recommit myself to this 'code'? Except for Mugabe..... and Bush..... and Gareth Cliff..... (this has been an emergency test of the PGPAAMP system) (Pointless Gobbledygook Posing As A Meaningful Post)

"Children are the only form of immortality that we can be sure of."


A few phone calls in the wee hours of this morning, some rather dark circles (no, it's not eyeshadow, my wife had a fit the last time I borrowed hers) and the strangest sensation of joy later...... ......and I'm an uncle! So to little Joshua Francois Christian, I'm sure it's not quite how you expected it to look, but if you just give it a chance, you'll find that looks can be deceiving. "Grown-ups never understand anything for themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them." -Antoine de Saint-Exupery "A child of five would understand this. Send someone to fetch a child of five." - Groucho Marx "Children ask better questions than adults. "May I have a cookie?", "Why is the sky blue?" and "What does a cow say?" are far more likely to elicit a cheerful response than, "Where's your mauscript?", "Why haven't you called?" and "Who's your lawyer?"." - Fran Lebowitz "You may give them your love but not your thoughts, for they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, for their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams." - Kahlil Gibran Update 9/4/2005. Here he is in all his new born glory........ Joshua

I request a chorus of "Ahhhhhhhhh.......oooooohhhhh......."

Thank you.

Stumbled across this on The Egotism Blog, and since I figured I needed some random silliness this week........ Journey with me, back to high school, back to the days of Bill & Ted, Wayne & Garth, when you could say things like "Station!" a thousand times and laugh like an inebriated hyena every time. Or perhaps that was just me.....errrr.......I think I've said too much....... Take the first 20 songs that come up on your playlist on random, and add “in my pants” to the end of them. 1. Tom Waits - Sea of Love in my pants 2. Tweaker - Full Cup of Coffee in my pants 3. The Cure - To Wish Impossible Things in my pants 4. Thievery Corporation - Shaolin Satellite in my pants 5. Portishead - Cowboys in my pants 6. Lamb - Gorecki in my pants 7. Luscious Jackson - Nervous Breakthrough in my pants 8. Morrissey - The Lazy Sunbathers in my pants 9. Oceansize - Massive Bereavement in my pants 10. Skunk Anansie - Weak in my pants 11. Tori Amos - I Can't See New York in my pants 12. Foo Fighters - There Goes My Hero in my pants 13. Cocteau Twins - Cherry Coloured Funk in my pants 14. The Secret Machines - Sad And Lonely in my pants 15. Ben Folds Five - One Angry Dwarf And 200 Solemn Faces in my pants 16. Tom McRae - End Of The World in my pants 17. New Pornographers - The Laws Have Changed in my pants 18. White Zombie - Grease Paint And Monkey Brains in my pants 19. Iron and Wine - Southern Anthem in my pants 20. A Perfect Circle - Wake The Dead in my pants

I'm a little curious of you in crowded scenes...


In honour of President Mugabe's overwhelmingly free and fair election victory, Zanu Pictures presents: And the blockbuster smash hit (Just in case anyone was wondering, and so as not to give the wrong impression, I didn't create these. But if anyone does know the originator, please let me know and I will gladly credit him/her)

Inertia creeps, moving up slowly.....


Headline in an insert in one of our weekend papers: Beware the loner Goth. It's actually a book column, reviewing the release of a book entitled 'Hitler Book', but in her preamble the columnist expresses her non-surprise at reports that the perpetrator of the Minnesota school killings expressed admiration for Hitler. "Memo to school principles", she writes. "The kid with heavy metal on his I-pod, carving Swastikas into his desk. Watch him." My dear columnist. Beware the kid sitting at the back of the class, the one who can't wait for the period to be over so that he can get to football practice. The kid who will one day become a top sportstar, teaching others that the only yardstick is to win at all costs. Beware the beautiful blonde, the one dressed to kill. One day she'll be teaching her daughters that above all else, their looks will get them through life. They'll also be taught that Copenhagen is somewhere near Mexico. Beware the straight-A student. Ambition boils in his blood. One day he'll decide his employees future in the same way he trades stocks. Beware the nerd in the front row. One day he'll own everything. The loner Goth? He'll be the least of your problems. Beware stereotypes, you'll miss the sportstar who teaches kids to beat the odds, you'll miss the beautiful blonde who lives in Africa nursing Aids orphans, you'll miss the straight-A student who finances impoverished entrepreneurs, you'll miss the nerd who's open source software brings a realm of possibilities to anyone who can dream it. And the loner goth? Well, he may just forget what it is to be alone.


A thought on the passing of Pope John Paul II: Is there ever a time or situation where it is right that one man should receive such adoration, have such vast wealth at his disposal or wield such influence? What kind of person can actually conceive of being comfortable with such responsibility? I understand the role of the liberator, the pioneer, the ground-breaker, but I find myself wondering, is it really possible for a spokesperson of God to exercise humility? Do we really buy that presidential candidates choose the path to leadership because they wish to be a servant of the people? And even if such a rare commodity exists, how long until they become jaded, until the massive frustration of every good intention blocked by red tape becomes too much to bear? I'm not convinced that the thought has any relevance, or whether I even believe it, but it's the thought that popped up nevertheless, and I've come to value your (you all) judgement, so I share it.

For the two years or so that we have been living in our particular street, I have taken what I will freely admit to being a rather snobbish pride in it. I can always tell whenever my parents come to visit, that my mother has recently been wearing a look one part concern and one part disdain, as recently as the parking of the car, in fact. My street, and my neighbourhood for that matter, have coaxed from me a grudging affection, for it is a street that would never have existed ten years ago, it is a street that incorporates and embraces everything the New South Africa adheres to: complexity, tolerance and respect. I understand why my parents react in the way that they do; I fear that they are to old to ever be able to 'reconfigure' the way in which they were raised, and it is a source of great sadness to me, not because they are unable to welcome transformation, but rather because they can never change fundamentally. I know the short excerpt to follow may appear to be nothing of any great consequence, but it has raised some difficult questions for me. On Saturday night, one of the apartments opposite ours was having a party. Generally speaking, it is deemed considerate to 'dampen' the ambient party noise at around 12pm, but on this night the balcony doors were wide open and the music was definitely intrusive. But considering that this particular apartment do not often have loud parties, most of the street seemed to be willing to tolerate the evenings merriment. Around 1pm, someone from an apartment on the other side of the street decided that enough was enough. Because he had no doubt been simmering for the last hour, his approach was one of immediate anger, yelling up from the street for them to shut the hell up. Things got heated, and to my dismay, the racial slurs started, from both sides. Fortunately, a few clearer heads prevailed and all the drama petered out. The matter was never a racial one, so why the racist remarks? I found myself for most of Sunday being deeply fearful of just how wide-spread the facade of tolerance might be. Do these divisions really run so deeply, that while all may appear well on the surface, a sudden flash of anger brings it boiling to the surface? I have warily convinced myself that this trouble in paradise was more a gust than a hurricane, but I can't seem to rid myself of this nagging doubt. Please don't interpret this incorrectly. I have no illusions as to how much healing has taken place in the last ten years, but I also know how gravely short we are of where we need to be. I know that there are many incidents of true transformation and equally as many of poseurs and manipulators. I think the reason this has plagued me so, is that I had finally begun to think that one of these 'incidents of transformation' had occurred in the street I call home, and although I still retain more than a modicum of pride in it, there has never the less been a hammer blow, and that first hammer blow is often the worst.

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