Monday, November 28, 2011

Grumpy old lady with shotgun

At least, I wish I had had a shotgun yesterday morning. To blow up the speakers blaring loud music at 6AM for some damn race.

I live in a gated suburb that is very popular with runners. We have the Old Parktonian Sports Club next door, running clubs during the week, regular races etc. It's nice because the neighbourhood feels alive. The organisers of the races leave us notices of when races will happen (generally early on Sunday mornings) and apologising for traffic disruption. We don't mind, as races are not noisy events. The occasional soccer leagues at Old Parks are noisier (and even then you barely register them).

So yesterday morning, I fell out of bed with fright, at 6AM, when this horrible techno music started blaring out of nowhere! And it didn't stop. The DJ had great fun playing certain songs over and over again. And then shouting in the microphone because clearly the loudspeakers were not loud enough. When I escaped to my folks at 11AM the music was still blaring. So much for a Sunday morning lie in.

Apparently a colleague of mine who stays next to Delta Park, a few kilometres away from me, could hear the noise.

Now, I'm not quite sure what the noise by-laws say, but I'm quite sure one is not allowed to disturb the Sunday peace, especially not in a residential suburb. And not at that level of dB. I spoke to some runners who complained that it was unpleasant running past where the speakers were. I don't know what the organisers were thinking, but they seriously lack any consideration to residents that's for sure!

And how does one go about submitting a complaint about public nuissance?

I feel like a grumpy old lady complaining about kids making noise, but can you blame me? Grumble Grumble Grumble....

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


I had a letter published in the Women24 Weekly newsletter :-) On a day where so much shit has hit the fan I am glad to have a silver lining

Monday, November 21, 2011

Chocolate cake: 1 vs. Me: 0

Oh ye gods, seriously?! What is it with my mood these last 3 days? It’s not that time of the month so I have no excuse to feeling blue like this. It does not warrant eating a whole chocolate cake in 2 days. Yes. I ate a WHOLE cake this weekend. I just needed it. And I want more.

I’m feeling blue and cranky. I curled up the whole of Saturday between a book and watching loads of nonsensical TV. I barely had the energy on Sunday to grub around in my garden. Even Sissi realised something was up with me and she spent the weekend glued to me and being an utter darling.

Now I know I was tired on Saturday. Friday we had a work breakaway session. We went down to Parys and in the evening we partied like there was no tomorrow. I managed to avoid the hangover, but wow was I tired. I haven’t partied hard like that since varsity days. 7 years out of practice. I had a great time.

The person who invented Jager-Bombs should be shot. It’s vile! Because I’ve just joined the team I couldn’t actually say no. Sometimes we have to do things we don’t like in order to not be alienated by one’s team. It sucks and I wish it wasn’t necessary. I tried to get out of drinking the ghastly stuff by asking if I couldn’t have Sourz instead but it fell on deaf ears. So one JB followed by a bottle of water it was. And I didn’t keep track of how many JB’s went around. Shudder.

I digress.

I suspect that the blue feeling may be a mix of things. Being tired for one. I’m always more emotionally sensitive when tired.

Then my parents told me that they are going down to the Kruger from 18 December until sometime in January. Christmas is a special time of the year for me and spending it alone will be very hard. I am trying to organise a Christmas Eve supper to at least spend one of the days with close friends. It’s a tricky one though, as the majority of my closest and dearest friends will be doing their own family celebrations. And this is where being single hurts. If you’re in a relationship with someone special you can spend the holidays with them.

One of the guys at work asked me where I was going for the holidays. I told him I’m staying home. I got a strange look from him, as if I was some kind of freak to not get out of town for the holidays. First of all, I only have the few days between Christmas and the New Year and where would I go? Plus, holidaying solo sucks. It’s an extra nail in the coffin. Sure I could get friends and go somewhere with them. But wait, the majority are in relationships and I would be the third wheel. No, I’d rather hibernate in Joburg.

And to top it off I keep getting dodgy messages on dating-buzz, or else if I contact someone whom I think could be interesting to get to know all they want is friends with benefits. Seriously guys, is all you think about getting an easy fuck? Do you have absolutely no self-respect? No man will get access to that part of me without showing that he actually truly loves and values me. I realise there are decent guys out there, my cousin met her hubby via a dating website after all, but this crap is seriously making me want to cancel my profile.

I feel that there is also too much of a sensory overload at work today. One colleague is having constant telephonic kaffee klatsches, then there is drama unfolding on other projects, there’s constant blablablah, people talking on top of each other and I can’t even hide in my ipod as I can’t handle the music right now. I need to be somewhere quiet to work. I want to crawl right out of my skin like some moulting insect or amphibian.

ARGH! I want out! Now hand me that cake!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Artist of the Week: YOAV

Sunday I discovered the most amazing artist: YOAV. He opened Tori Amos' concert.

He is a singer-songwriter of Israeli-Romanian descent and raised in South Africa. His music is based solely on his vocals and an acoustic guitar and uses a loop-station. He has the most insane talent. My jaw just dropped listening to him. Without realising I had heard one of his remixed songs on the radio We all are dancing. Well, let me tell you, the un-mixed version will blow your socks off. It's just superb.

He also did a re-interpretation of the Pixies' Where is my mind that is just haunting. It featured in the movie Sucker Punch's soundtrack.

So whatever you do, please please please find his songs and listen to them. I promise you will not regret it.

Bad things come in three

Seriously. The story of my life. But this week is an impressive one.

  1. Sunday I loose my cheque card at Emperor's Palace. I guess I forgot to take the card back after I paid for the Yoav CD at the Tori Amos concert. Of course I only notice this when I'm halfway to Bloemfontein for a site visit on Monday. So quick call to Nedbank to cancel the card. Luckily it's chipped so no money stolen from it. The good side. I just picked up my shiny new card from the bank. I am so happy how fast they got the new card. Thank you Nedbank.

  2. During last night, my phone, for some unknown reason, switched itself off. So my 4:00AM alarm did not go off and I missed my flight to Sishen. Wonderful! Project leader not impressed. I'm so mad at myself for not having a back-up plan. And I've NEVER EVER missed a flight. Anyone who knows me knows I'm a stickler for punctuality. I still haven't gotten over the missed flight.

  3. I was driving dad's car until my insurance kicked in. Yesterday I pick up my little Ferrari (I wish!) and transfer all my stuff from dad's car to mine. Most stuff got dumped into a big bag which I took out the car when I got home. This morning, as I get to work, I realised my access tag is still in the bag in my bedroom. Well done! And there are no visitors tags available today for some reason. Quite a nuisance as every time I need to go to the loo I have to wait by the doors till someone walks past to let me out.

On the fun side, I got an email from ABSA saying I need to update my log-in details. Funny, as I don't bank with ABSA. But I'm waiting for my Nigerian relatives to die so I can inherit some money and possibly also to win the UK lottery.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What's God got to do with it?

Dear Michael Schermer,

Thank you once again for a great article. And for your great argument as to why the motto "In God We Trust" is outdated and defunct.

If you want freedom and security you need the following:
The rule of law; property rights; a secure and trustworthy banking and monetary system; economic stability; a reliable infrastructure and the freedom to move about the country; freedom of the press; freedom of association; education for the masses; protection of civil liberties; a clean and safe environment; a robust military for protection of our liberties from attacks by other states; a potent police force for protection of our freedoms from attacks by people within the state; a viable legislative system for establishing fair and just laws; and an effective judicial system for the equitable enforcement of those fair and just laws.
Nuff said really.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

My Garden Is Bonkers!

Dear Garden,

You are beautiful, lush, green and FLOWERING AT THE WRONG TIME OF THE YEAR. Well, the "Wild Dagga" (Leonotis leonurus) is. It's an autumn / winter flowering plant. Not summer! Silly. Put still stunningly pretty with all those orange flowers. The sunbirds are going crazy.


Yours truly

Friday, November 11, 2011

Bustle Rustle!

I got my bustled skirt from Arwen and wore it for the fisrt time to the CCHQ Halloween Party (The party was a dirge. Dark Noise need to reconsider their DJ's).


And yes, the corset is also one of Arwen's creations.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Respect Mine Body!

Now for all those religious zealots and Pro-Life morons to catch a wake-up call.

I'm Pro-Choice. It is up to a me, and me alone, to decide what I wants to do with what's going on in my body. If I want to go on ahead with a pregnancy, if I wants to abort, whatever my choice is, it is not up to others to judge me. If I want to use contraception it is not up to some crusty old man in a white gown and a weird hat to tell me that it's a sin to do so.

It's about respect after all. Respect my choices and my decisions. I'll respect yours, even though I may disagree with them.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The 2012 Bucket List

I am feeling so much better than yesterday. Had my crisis and am ready to face the world again, though I could do with a big jar of Nutella, you know, because it tastes so good.

In the spirit of making sure I haven't done anything with my life, I have decided to create a Bucket List for next year. I have no intention of pegging anytime soon, but I don't know what else to call it. A To Do List sounds like it should includes grocery shopping, paying bills and washing up.

So here are some of the things I'd like to do next year (once the oh so ghastly credit card and other debts are paid off. I've been waiting 10 weeks now for part of my retirement annuity to be paid out so that I can pay off the stupid debt. Sigh!):

1. Canopy Tours. Magaliesburg and then maybe Magoebaskloof and Tsitssikama.

2. Hot air balloon ride.

3. Visit the Irene Country Market.

4. Visit the Pretoria Botanical Gardens, and other parks in and around Gauteng. Possibly picnic linked with friends. That would be really nice.

5. Going to the Pretoria Zoo. I haven't been there since I was a kid.

6. Visit Erica and Hendri in the UK in September. Advice as to places to visit in 2 weeks?

7. Regular attendance to the Bioscope.

8. Taking up ballroom dancing.

9. Explore and discover the hidden gems in Joburg.

10. Teach myself photography through an online course. Spudson to provide me with the details.

11. Going to HQ for 60 day matured sirloin steak.

12. Visit art galleries and markets.

I think that should keep me busy enough....

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Giant pot of Nutella anyone?

It’s incredible how a movie about a dog’s unfading loyalty to his master can make me have a wobbly, bringing out the vulnerable and lonely side of me.

I’m coping pretty well these days. I’m learning more about myself, my habits and patterns. But I still have the bad habit (or is self-preservation?) of ignoring the needy inner me and pushing it right back into the cupboard and locking the door on it. And every now and again, the loneliness comes seeping out again and catches me unawares.

I am not the type of person who will ask others for help. The last think I want is to be that clingy friend who always needs a shoulder to lean on. I don’t wish to put such a burden on my friends and end up alienating them. So I put up a mask to prevent friends and family from worrying about me.

I won’t lie that I often feel like a third wheel around many of my friends. It’s hard seeing them so happy and complemented in their relationships, and her I am with a string of failed relationships behind me.

I really would like to meet a man who will appreciate me for who I am and who will make an effort to show me that he appreciates me. I would like to connect with someone on a much deeper level and not solely based on lust. And I don’t want to be 80 when it happens.

I want someone who will accept that I have my inner weak child and that every now and again will be my rock, someone who understands that I need to feel valued. I don’t want to be taken for granted, to be someone’s booty call. I know I have a rather stringent list of requirements, but it’s mainly a list of what I do NOT want in a guy. I’m a pretty awesome person (if I wasn’t I wouldn’t have the amazing friends I have) and I do deserve a pretty awesome guy.

I don’t know if it has been my lack of judgement when it comes to the guys I’ve dates or if it’s a symptom of my generation, but guys don’t seem to want to invest in relationships. Of course there are exceptions and the exceptions already in relationships. The old motto “Guys are like public toilets: Occupied or full of shit” seems to pop up at this time.

I guess that what scares me; is that it will take so long to meet the right guy.

And then I smack myself for being such a morose cynic. I find it hard to forgive myself for being weak. I can't find it in me to hug myself and say it's OK, everyone goes through this. We're not machines. Only human.

I’m also scared of looking back and realising that I have done nothing with my life. I don’t want to spend my weekends indoors watching TV. I want to be out doing stuff, not necessarily stuff that costs money, but just to be out and about. Be it a picnic in the park, or going for a walk, or discovering new places around town. And I would like to do that with someone special.

So yeah, today I need a huge hug and a large pot of Nutella.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Movie Review: Contagion

This Sunday I went with a group of friends to Pretoria for a Medieval Fayre that didn't materialise. Either the venue was changed or the event cancelled, in any case there was no mention of this anywhere on the web. So we decided to head off to Menlyn (what a horrible shopping centre) and watch a movie. We chose Contagion.

Nothing spreads like fear.
Having seen many mediocre dread disease movies, I was unsure of this one, especially since I had not heard of it,. But seeing it had an exquisite cast and Soderbergh generally makes good movies, I decided to give it a chance. And it exceeded my expectations.

Spoiler Alert!

"Soon after her return from a business trip to Hong Kong, Beth Emhoff dies from what is a flu or some other type of infection. Her young son dies a few days later. Her husband Mitch however seems immune. Thus begins the spread of a deadly infection. For doctors and administrators at the U.S. Center for Disease Control, several days pass before anyone realizes the extent or gravity of this new infection. They must first identify the type of virus in question and then find a means of combating it, a process that will likely take several months. As the contagion spreads to millions of people worldwide, societal order begins to break down as people panic."

The acting is excellent, the cinematography very clever and the plot, well, it was realistic. It showed how people react in the face of fear, the decisions they make: kidnapping, punting products that have no proven cure benefit, selflessness, looting, rioting. There is no clear black and white, just shades of grey. We really are after saving our own skins at the expense of others. It's a cynic view but deep down we know that humans are not the nicest animals out there.

And the scary part: Something like that could happen at any time, we know how fast the Spanish Flu and the Avian Flu spread.

I give it 8/10.

Wisdom of the Week

Not only was Betty White the sausiest of the Golden Girls, but she had a wicked sense of humour too.