Thursday, December 6, 2012

oral hell...


I went to the oral hygienist this week. My God, what a brutal business.  I always think it’s not going to be as bad as the last time but it always is.

As I sat down in the chair my body was already responding; heart beating in my throat, hands shaking and armpits sweaty. I could feel the adrenaline surging before she’d even begun.  Perhaps the oral hygienist felt the same when she saw my teeth.  There’s always the inevitable awkwardness when she asks if I’m flossing regularly and I lie, unconvincingly. The truth is so very obvious.

As she started to scritch-scritch-scratch I immediately thought  - as I always do – who in Gaaads name would want to do this job? This thought is quickly followed by, thank heavens she IS willing to do this job because I don’t want to do it.

As she hits one of the back molars I feel a sharp pain.

“Ooh,” I say “rat huns a hit henhitive (this is open-mouth speak for - “Ooh, that one’s a bit sensitive.)

Most folk would interpret this message as “touch that bloody tooth again and I’ll stab you in the leg with your scratchy tool”. But no, she didn’t get the hint and I couldn’t help but think that a safe-word should be mandatory with all dentistry. “Puuuuuuuck” would do the trick.

As she continued to scritch-scritch-scratch along all the bottom teeth, I started fantasizing about all the ways that I might get even with her, when all of a sudden she stops and says “you can take a rinse now”.

Hurrah, I think to myself. We’re halfway there.

As I rinse out my mouth and see chunky, bloody stuff in the basin.  This can’t be blinking right, I think to myself, she’s gouging away at my gums for Pete’s sake. I notice that she’s cunningly tinted the rinse water a pinkish colour so as to disguise the high levels of blood. Sneaky, but I’m on to her.

She then starts on the upper teeth which for some reason are always much worse than the bottom ones. Is it the confounded angle that she has to go in at?

She continues to scratch and pick and draw blood on the upper jaw and such is my discomfort, that I finally decide I’ve had enough. Bracing myself with my hands on the arms of the chair, I lift my legs high into the air and behind my head in a kung fu kind of way. Gripping tightly, I grab her head with my feet and then lift her by her head out of her chair and fling her out the window.  It was like a Tarantino movie scene. 

OK, you know what, that last part didn’t really happen. It only happened in my mind. But just the fantasy of it gave me enough momentary satisfaction to see me through the top jaw.
She finishes up on the top, says that I should take a rinse (again, it’s as gory as a battle scene from Braveheart) and then - why oh why for the love of God - she starts working on the bottom teeth again.  WT flying F are you doing??? I think. I thought we were done there?

But no, she isn’t done with torture for today and keeps drawing more blood, and gouging and piercing me with her sharp thingy.  It’s not my imagination, I see the evil glint in her eye.

I’ve always wondered which is worse, a glycolic peel or a session at the hygienist. In the end I think I’d have to say that the oral hygienist wins hands down, simply because she appears to take so much pleasure in her craft. Sigh. The next session is only 365 days away.

Monday, November 19, 2012

fallen ankle...


I wiped out in gym class today.  It was bloody spectacular, if I don’t mind saying so myself. I went 'over on my ankle'.  What a weird saying.  Sounds very much like - but at the same time no way similar to - I went 'over on a boat'. Anyway, if I had a nickel for every time I’ve gone 'over on my ankle' I’d have, lets see, three whole nickels.

My first nickel was earned in my second last year of high school.  The netball teacher had asked Exotica and me to demonstrate a 'move'.  Considering that to this day, I have no idea how many people are even on a netball team, I really have to question the wisdom of her choice.  The move involved me (as a defender) trying to get the ball away from Exotica (not a defender, the other thing). There was jumping involved. And landing. And wrong kinds of landing.

I heard a loud crack. Maybe it wasn’t that loud, maybe it was just loud in my head.  As I landed, a fierce pain shot from my foot, up my leg and into my brain. No, I don’t remember fainting. No, I don’t remember hitting the ground. No, I don’t remember convulsing*. No, I don’t remember peeing in my pants.  (* A little running note here: on a previous occasion, another poor girl in our grade had a full blown fit on a school outing and the kids mistook her convulsing for break-dancing. This was the 80’s remember.)

What I do remember is coming around to my team mates faces hovering over me in a kind of sports huddle, wide eyed and somewhat bemused. The coach, a mixture of horror and panic on her face, was looking at me in an overwhelmed way.  None of us had discovered the peed-in-pants part yet (though maybe they had and were just being polite).

At times like these I find the best thing to do is cry.  Sometimes, if you do it well enough, people want to join in. It was all very humbling, not least of all because I was blubbering in the company of 'Mean Cindy', a girl on the team that everyone was fiercely frightened of and in front of whom one definitely didn’t cry.

After a while, Exotica appeared with a Coke. She’d gone rummaging around in one of the teachers houses to find “something sugary” to bring me around from the break-dancing that my mum would have called 'a funny turn'. (Again, another weird saying, because it was hardly funny at all.)

As I sipped slowly on the sickly sweet black nectar (a forbidden beverage in a milk-drinking house such as ours) I slowly became aware of the ‘wet patch’. And then, as my cerebral capacity continued to return, I became aware of the very large field of chaps, alongside our netball field, busy with rugby practice.  I realised then that I was in for a long afternoon.  There’s simply no cool way that anyone with pee-pants can confidently saunter past an army of lads, let alone at the self-conscious age of 16. At one point I considered doing “the worm” to get off the field, but on my back you understand, so that the wet patch would remain hidden from view.

Turns out I’d cracked the bone in my foot and had to hobble around very un-sexily on crutches for a few weeks.

I earned my second nickel in a less dramatic way.  TFTF** was a toddler and we were holding hands whilst walking down the stairs together.  To this day, I wonder why the bloody hell I put the short person in front - it just doesn’t make any sense. To make matters worse, he was descending faster than me whilst sort of dragging me behind. And although I was practically bent over double, my body wasn’t quite low enough to make me the same size as an 18month toddler. 

Fortunately I didn’t pass out, convulse or pee in my pants this time.  It was a minor sprain with major grumpiness.

Today, of course, I earned my third nickel.  It was quite the movie moment.  Time slowed down as the entire class saw me go crashing down, like a slain mythical beast in a sci-fi movie. They all moved together as one, to my rescue.

No cracked bones and no sprains this time round, just a punctured pride.

** TFTF = TooFastTooFurious for those who aren't in the know.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

having a vuluva time...


I have two words for you this week: knitted vulva.

So there I was, innocently mooching around Twitter when I decided to click on a link that someone had posted.  Imagine my surprise when I found that it was a knitting pattern for a (drumroll) ..... yoni! 

Whenever I hear the word yoni it reminds me of a friend I had at school whose name was Jon (still is, I’m sure) but you pronounced it ‘Yon’. His nickname was Joni, but you pronounced it ‘Yoni’.  I can’t imagine that he feels fantastic about being nicknamed after female nether parts. Or, in retrospect, perhaps he quite likes it.

Then someone told me the other day that you actually pronounce it ‘yoany’ as in ‘Joni Mitchell’. Either way, yoni has always sounded more like a yoga pose or a strong spice to me.  Truth be told, I’m not even sure if yoni refers to the ‘whole kaboodle’ or if it only refers to specific parts of the, er, yoni.

Anyhow, back to the knitted vulva.  The blog started off with:
‘It is nearly impossible to find a good pattern for a knitted yoni and I see lots of people in different craft communities asking for one.’

Who knew?

I imagine that men crafters – carpenters, iron-workers, ice-sculptors and the such – come up against exactly the same problem when they are looking to craft a lingam. Where are good lingam blueprints to be found when you need ‘em?

Far be it from me to scoff at anyone’s creative endeavors - I’m quite a fan of yarn bombing but be that as it may, I really have to ask: why? Why do they want a knitted yoni? What are they going to do with it?

For those who read one of my earliest blogs, we have touched on the joy of ‘wild knitting’ ("Hot Fuzz" Wed, 1 December 2010). It included questions around the likes of knitted garden displays, knitted fruit and even knitted cigarettes.

But truly, for the life of me I simply cannot imagine what one does with a knitted vulva. Granted, the blogger did use a very nice ‘velvet touch’ wool which looks awfully nice to stroke. Even so, is this knitted yoni for display - like a scatter cushion? Or perhaps it’s more a cuddle toy that you take with you to bed? Or maybe it’s the modern equivalent of a handkerchief and you give it to your lover as a keepsake – tailor made, so to speak.

Upon further investigation I found other sites that offer patterns for knitted body parts.  Namely, the cute, cuddly, uterus dolly. In one image, the bubblegum pink knitted uterus is hanging from a tree, in another it’s perched on a piano.

A TREE I say! What on earth is a uterus doing up in a tree? And while we’re at it, what is the connection with uterus’s and pianos? What exactly does my uterus get up to when I’m not looking?  Clandestine concerto composing?   Late night treetop trysts? I tell you, we’re but a hop, skip and a jump away from making a whole television series based on the secret life of the female reproductive system. (Joan Rivers would do a smashing job as the voice-over for the labia, what with all the excessive cosmetic surgery she’s had done on her lips.)

Funnily enough, it appears these uterus's do get around. If you Google “knitted uterus” you will see that a very proactive person sent a knitted uterus to a congressman to lobby for giving women better access to birth control.  I’m pretty sure he revised his policy just to get the thing off his desk.  Oh, to be a fly on the wall when he opened the package!

As I scanned the yoni pattern, the blogger went on to say that ‘Gauge is unimportant as this is totally up to you how big or small you want it to be!’

So there you go, size only matters if size matters to you.

And let me tell you, the blogger had a lot (yes, a lot) of very enthusiastic responses from readers who were going to “knit one immediately” or were going to “try it out in blue”. It seems cyberspace is teaming with women who want to knit a yoni. What’s wrong with me? Why don’t I want one?

The final instruction left off with ‘Continue this pattern of increasing every second and every second … until you get your desired width’. It was at that point that I had to leave the site. As intrigued as I was, I had to draw the line somewhere.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

ink me up scotty...


A long time ago, my niece Dormouse and I made a pact to go and have a tattoo together and last weekend was D-day. I suppose that I should start by telling you how old she is because people give me horrified looks when I say that I took her to such-and-such pub, or that we both have a crush on Paolo Nutini. So, just to make quite clear that all pub-going, crushing and tattooing is above board, she’s 23 years old, not 9.

We stayed with Dormouse in Buenos Aires and were supposed to ‘get inked’ one afternoon but ended up getting horribly drunk instead. I blame it on Evita. Or Evita’s grave, at least. We were totally creeped out at the thought of milling around mausoleums and decided that a beer or two might take the edge off. It was worth it. Beer totally beats graves in the beer-graves-scissors game.

Besides, Dormouse and I figured that it was just as well we didn’t have a tattoo done in a country where we didn’t speak the language. I imagine that there could be a whole TV series based on tattoos that have gone wrong due to a glitch in translation. It could be called “Inked-Up Abroad”.

I digress. Saturday morning arrived and I found myself on babysitting duty for both our kids as well as a friend’s two kids. The mom part of the family (lets call her Blondie for now) was away and their dad was squeezing in a bike ride with Best Kisser. Best Kisser had given me such late notice that I had no choice but to take the kids along. All four of them. To the tattoo parlour.

The people in the tattoo parlour looked like they were going to burst into tears when we walked in. Three adults and four kids aged between 4 and 11.  They didn’t quite know what to do. I could tell that they were worried that this mix of people might lower the coolness-quotient* of the establishment.  I’m not sure that they should have worried because there was already a young fellow in there that looked nothing older than 12, wearing a studded collar and with a piercing in his eyebrow.  Mr. PP asked me, ‘Isn’t that chap a bit too young to have that sort of thing?’ I said that possibly he was or that maybe he was a Waldorf student.

I imagine that people who have never had a tattoo think that tattoo parlours are in real life exactly like they’re portrayed in the movies. Dark and dingy, wedged between a laundromat and a strip joint with at least one firearm and a lot of biker types hanging around.  In reality, this couldn’t be further from the truth.  The artists are positively anal about hygiene and the workspace is brightly lit. Fluorescently so. Which is a good thing really, because I want them to be absolutely sure that they can see exactly what they’re doing.

Truth be told, tattoo artists seem to be quite anal on the whole. And, they are as much artiste as the next artiste. This is also a good thing because an anal-artiste is exactly the person I want drawing something permanent on my body.

The visit started out great. Some chap was having a huge tattoo done on his belly and the kids were engrossed. The four year old in our group insisted that he wanted a tattoo immediately. Eventually the artist who was working told us - in not so many words - to sod off because we were cramping his style so I got the kids looking at some tattoo books** instead. 

Most of the images were really cool until we got to the dragons and stuff. The kids asked why people would want ‘funny animals’ on their bodies. I said I had no idea but that possibly they were good-luck-dragons. They were pretty impressed with the sculls though (Bless you, Jack Sparrow).

After a while the shorties got all fidgety so the parlour owner put on some heavy metal to chase us out. The lyrics were ‘Don’t tell me f*$@#ing what to do’ and I didn’t want the kids to get fancy ideas so I marched them down the road and bought them an ice cream at the dodgy corner cafe***.

When Blondie came back she says to me ‘I believe you took my kids to a tattoo parlour?’

‘Yes,’ I say, feeling slightly sweaty, but trying to keep my voice casual.

‘I couldn’t change the booking and the lads were out riding….Um, I didn’t feed them any colourants though’, I add.

‘Well’, she says, ‘at first I was a bit… erm… you know...but then I thought, oh well, it probably isn’t a bad thing that they got to see what tattoos are all about because now they’ll never want one.’

Truly, I didn’t have the heart to say ‘That’s what you think, lady.’

*This phrase is per kind favour of a friend. He said it better.

** Not the tattoo books that show real ink on private parts and everything. Just the tattoo books with drawings. Honestly.

***Cafe in SA is pronounced “keffie” and, disappointingly, is nothing like a cafe in, say, France. ‘Keffi’s’ normally smell strongly of incense, which I suspect is in an effort to disguise the smell of old cooking oil.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

academics, in theory...

Bless me blog, for I haven’t sinned. It's been many weeks since my last confession. 

It occurred to me this week that there are nuns out there living more exciting lives than me at the moment. Possibly even bottles of bleach.  That’s what studying will do to you.

I’ve been reluctant to tell anyone that I’ve started studying. There are reasons for keeping this studying business a secret. Only the inner-most members of my posse are privy to this and only because I had to fess up as to why I could no longer be found at coffee bars and, well, bars in general.

The first reason for il segreto is that I’m petrified of failing (note to self: stop using Italian terms to sugar things up). I know, right - it’s hardly a novel fear. I figure that if I don’t tell anyone I’m studying, then if I fail I can just pretend that the whole thing never happened. I have a feeling that’s the reason why some people elope.

On the other hand, if I do tell everyone I’m studying and then fail, I’ll actually have to announce that I’ve failed (as if the empty whiskey bottles out back won’t be enough of a clue). This ‘failure-anxiety’ is only made worse when people say things like this to me:

‘Oh, you’re gonna cream it’, or ‘mature students find studying such a breeze’.

Somehow I’ve given off the impression that I’m the type of person who can ‘cream’ exams. I have no idea how I have accomplished this considering I have never ‘creamed’ anything in my life.

Studying is funny. Academia is funny.  The academics talk funny and they want you to study funny stuff. Like Eduardo Kac for instance.  He’s an artist who collaborated with scientists to create a rabbit that has been infused with the lumo stuff that comes in jellyfish. He said it was to make ‘us’ (‘us’ what? Peasants? Non-scientiest types? Philistines of art?) aware of the responsibility that comes along with cocking around with genetically modified things. I just think he wanted a lumo bunny. Who doesn’t?

Studying is wordy in my very worst wordy kind of way. It’s verbose and uses all manner of highfalutin language. Thank fark I’m not studying law. Law-talk is the uber-ness of word wanking. All this word wanking  goes against the natural order of language, which, I’m pretty sure, was invented to make communication easier. Ehem. I’ll say that again. To make communication easier. And oh the irony, the course I’m doing is in Communication Science (screams with laughter).

In ‘real life’, if you want to hold someone’s attention, you’d better communicate quickly and succinctly and you’d better be pretty bloody engaging.  Not so with studying. It would seem that you don’t have to be engaging at all.

Academics have complicated ways of explaining uncomplicated things and use things like theories, perspectives, approaches and models to explain things that are sometimes just common sense.  Even worse, they slow down your common sense so much that you become confused by your own common sense. Bastards. I liken it to when someone asks you to slow down a dance move and then you no longer know how to do it  and it no longer looks like a dance move anymore.

Also, in the land of academia you’re not allowed to use slang or colloquialisms. This is a tragedy. I think it is enough of a tragedy that we’re not able to use hand movements to explain something.  (The exception to this, of course, is using the “inverted comma” hand movement, which should be globally forbidden.)

Still, word-waking aside, possibly the worst thing is that they insist on something called “source referencing”.  Apparently, it’s not good enough to say ‘oh, I heard it somewhere’. Or, you know, I just know it because I know it. Pa-farking-nickerty I tell you.  I suck at referencing and it is annoying and boring and then boring some more.

Seth Rogan tweeted last week that “People buy things they don’t need, with money they don’t have, to impress people they don’t like”.  I hope that isn’t what’s happening here with my studying thingy. Bummer, man.*

*Bummer: See how fun it is to write bummer and what it pity it is that you’re not allowed to use it in papers and stuff [insert that type of Italian hand movement where you scratch under your chin].

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

broken hearts and shattered dreams ...

I’m going to launch straight into it. I haven’t bothered blogging because a) I have been glued to the Olympics and b) the rest of the world has been glued to the Olympics and thus are not reading blogs. Of course, the best part of the past two weeks has been the Olympics, but (sob) the worst part is that Ryk Neethling cut out my heart with a rusty Olympic ring and left it on the side of the aquatic centre pool in London.

How did he break my heart? He told me (OK, he didn’t so much tell 'me' as tweeted it) that ‘Jakabos in lane 2 is probably the best-looking girl in the pool. Wow’.  My shredded heart is devastated even more by the fact that it's bad enough that he's no idea that I exist but, now, so do his 26 296 followers. (Still, at least I’m not in crush with Le Clos. Looking at all his retweets that poor lad is getting inundated with all kinds of unreasonable requests of love from every far-flung corner of the globe).

Obviously, I had to go and Google (a.k.a. stalk) this Jakabos destroyer-of-dreams-crusher-of-crushes. I found out that she is Hungarian and that her name is Zsuzsanna. (Exhibit A)

I know right? Super cool name with, like, TWO Z’s in it. Nothing could have prepared me for the magnificence of this girl.  Firstly, she must be bionic or something because she has one of the most incredible bodies I have ever seen (*makes plans to take up swimming again, IMMEDIATELY*). 

Secondly, she has a gorgeous face.  I’m pretty sure that it’s not within the natural order of things to be blessed with talent, tenacity AND good looks.  It just seems a bit greedy to me.  However, the alarming thing that these games have revealed is that Jakabos is just one of MANY of these good-looking-talented-tenacious types.

Take her fellow countryman, Daniel Gyurta for instance. (Exhibit B)

Do they breed these fabulous genes in a Petri dish? I actually watched the race where Daniel won Gold for 200m breaststroke (I try to not get carried away at the thought of the word ‘breast-stroke’.) He’s a machine. A good looking, well oiled, machine.

Watching these beautiful, hard-working, talented people made me realise that sadly, the list of events that I could potentially take part in one day, is diminishing with every passing four years. 

Firstly, I had to eliminate all the events that require small, tight outfits.  This was very disappointing because mostly, those are the events that I'd really like to do. Swimming’s out because the new swimsuits (though well covered enough in the well-covered area) would surely force my third and forth boobs to be revealed. The same goes for the diving and synchronized swimming suits. Way too high cut below and way to low cut above. In short, all aquatic related suits are certainly NOT made with any bust whatsoever in mind. 

Gymnastics is also a no-go. Although I’m implying that the leotards (they’re shiny now, did you notice that?) are the only issue, truthfully, it’s more than that. I have a clear image in my mind of me trying to mount the beam: I look something like a small, chubby puppy trying to climb a rather large step. 

Athletics is definitely out. The athletics’ hot-slash-boykini pants on me would cause people to weep.  The thought of running in such small attire causes me immediate and irreversible panic – I could think of nothing more horrific (other than running naked, that is.)

For reasons best kept to myself, I've also had to eliminate all sports that involve balls and other kids of equipment (paddles, hammers, discuses, javelins etc. Clue: extreme awkwardness of navigating anything other than my own body in space.)

Here’s the list of events I could possibly entertain working towards:

Archery :       Good outfits but I’m battling as it is with permanent lines on my face, that ‘archery-sneer’ will only make things worse.

Basque pelota:        This sounds good. I have no idea what it is but it sounds very French and sophisticated.  I expect it involves skills like how to ash your cigarette in a sexy way and that it could even involve something like a lunch break. Yes, I think I could manage this one. (Exhibit C)

Equestrian:          Although I’d love to try and pull off the whole hat and crop look (who wouldn’t?) since my run-in with BA (Bad Attitude) in Argentina I think I’ll give anything involving horses a wide berth.

Fencing :          Now this I could get into.  I’d not only be fully clothed, but my face would be covered so that if I make a fool of myself nobody will know who I am. Also, white’s my colour. Yes. Tick for fencing.

Jeu de paume :      This sounds fiercely fun. Is it perhaps some kind of endurance cheerleading? (paume is French for pompom, right?)

Shooting:         Actually no. Just no.

Judo and Taekwondo: Truthfully, I'd just want to do these for the bowing at the beginning and the end. I’ve been working on the right facial expression and everything.

Softball:  To match my soft arse?  Think I’ll give it a miss.

Roque:  Again, no idea what this is but it sounds like it might involve tying rope into different kinds of dangerous knots.

Croquet: Yes. But only if we get to mill around, speak posh, wear pretty frocks and have loads of pink gins.

Now that I look at it, I’m not sure that Wikipedia's 'list of Olympic Events' is to be believed because I'm quite certain that I didn’t see coverage of any croquet or all those French named sports. (Another Olympic Mystery? No matter what time of day there was always weightlifting on?)

Anyhow, I’m off to buy my very first pack of cigarettes (ever) so that I can get working on that old Basque pelota before Rio 2014.  See you on the Olympic flipside.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

moved and slightly touched...

A couple of weeks ago my friend Yoda sent me a link to say thank you for the thank you gift I bought her.  Of course, her real name isn’t Yoda but she IS the Jedi-Master-of-General-Knowledge-and-Networking. I shit you not, she’s living proof of the Six Degrees of Separation. I’m beginning to think that she might actually BE Johnny Depp but without all the Tim Burtonesque make-up.

Anyhow, back to the link. I get sent lots of links all the time. Some things make me laugh, some things creep me out and some things move me. The one she sent touched me so deeply that, for a while, I kept a journal.

Day 1
I received Yoda’s email this morning but missed the link she was forwarding because it was hidden at the bottom of the page. I only opened it later on. I wish I’d opened it earlier. My day might have gone a whole lot different. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

Day 2
I didn’t finish watching the clip entirely yesterday because I was in the middle of cooking dinner and it took ages to buffer (darn you, poor bandwidth). I thought it better to re-watch again today. Properly. All in one go. The message is so sweet and innocent. I love the cinematography. The whole ‘hand-held camera’ effect is really authentic. Musically speaking, I think they made the right choice. I know I feel uplifted by the melody.

Day 3
Woke up extra early to get online before anyone else does so that the bandwidth doesn’t jam.  I think I missed something in the clip yesterday and it would be careless of me not to double-check it. The part I had to specifically re-watch is at 20seconds. I’m sure they’ve used special effects of some kind. Professionally speaking, it would be negligent if I didn’t research the entire campaign concept. After all, it IS a real campaign. Wow, such a refreshing way to re-enforce brand identity. I showed it to Soapsud, my 19year old niece. She was so touched that she insisted that I watch it two more times with her.

Day 4
I shared the link on Facebook today.  Everyone who watched it was SO moved that they couldn’t even comment.  Quite a few people phoned me during the day to discuss it though. On further investigation I see that it was shot in three different locations; New York, Paris and London. I went back four times to see if the same people were cast in all three locations. I think that each city has it’s own cast. The view of Notre Dame at 45seconds is spectacular.

Day 5
Today I read on Twitter about the concept that all the people on YouTube videos can see you just as much as you can see them. Of course, I know that’s a load of bollocks but just incase, I applied some makeup and did my hair before watching “the clip”. I’ve just noticed the person right on the left at 1min30 and can’t help wonder how he got like that? And where are they standing? I love hydrangeas all the more right now. Are they even hydrangeas? I’ve had to limit myself to only five views per day because all this watching is seriously starting to take a big chunk out of my life.

Day 6
I’ve spent an unreasonable time at my computer today watching “Le Clip”. Best kisser keeps popping in to see if it’s actually work that I’m doing.  I told him I’m busy with research. Where IS that fountain at 2min11 and is that trick photography at 1min 44?  I went outdoors briefly to restock with milk and bread. Someone had to shake me back to life in the supermarket queue because I was staring off into the middle distance and humming the theme tune to the video. Total submersion in a project, that’s what I call it.

Day 7
I haven’t eaten in two days. My makeup is still on from day 5 and I haven’t bathed either. I can’t move. I’ve become obsessed with this clip. A cast member in London holds up a sign at 1min58 that says ‘Calm Down and Call Me Maybe’ but of course, it’s impossible to calm down.  And, as someone quite rightly pointed out, I can’t call either because they DIDN’T LEAVE ANY NUMBERS.

Day 8
I no longer bother going on to Twitter. It simply takes too much time away from ‘La charmante vidéo’. I don’t need Facebook anymore either. This video has changed my life and will be the compass by which I steer my ship.

Day 9
OK, I have no fucking idea exactly what they’re selling but I don’t give I tinkers fart.  I just want to watch and watch and be left alone to watch.

Day 14
I’m a wreck. I’ve had to delete my browsing history and pull myself together. My kids can’t keep living on dry two minute noodles and I can no longer fool Best-kisser that ‘this is work’.

Being of such pivotal importance, I was sure that you’d want me to share the clip, so here goes… (copy and paste the link)

Monday, June 25, 2012

meet me...

I bumped into Lewis Pugh last week. Yup, he was practically on my doorstep.  I’d gone for a walk, which is something you do instead of running when you are incredibly crap at running.  He was surfacing from one of the subways that leads up from the tidal pool at Kalk Bay.  Just, you know, walking his dog and not wearing his Speedo.

It was bad timing for me as he caught me mid rapper-move. I was busy doing the one where you pretend to swat away the snout of an invisible dog that’s at your crotch. Gold-digger was playing loudly on my iPod and I don’t know why but I can’t listen to Gold digger without doing rapper moves, especially when it gets to the We want prenup, we want prenup, yeah! part.  I know it doesn’t really suit a white chick like me to get all gangsta but I can’t help it. It’s like hearing country music and not busting out a box-step.

Even worse than being caught mid rapper-move was that I didn’t have time to suck in my gut.  This is something that’s almost become a knee-jerk reaction when I’m in the company of athletic, sporty people.  I learned a long time ago, however, not to pinch in my butt.  For someone with a round, sticky-outy bum like me it just makes it worse.  So, I normally smile a shitload, hold my breath and keep the conversation short so that I don’t hyperventilate.  Sometimes, if I’ve already had my morning Joe, I speak really quickly, like that bloke on Trainspotting who dropped some Speed before his interview.  I find it rather effective as it takes the focus off everything visual and the exchange will only be recalled as an auditory one.

Of course, this isn’t the first time I’ve seen a celebrity.  I don’t like to brag or anything but I’ve totally met Ryk Neethling, like, two whole times - though strangely he’s never mentioned it in interviews. The first meeting was at his book signing and I had to stand in line twice. Once to get a book signed for me, and once to get a book signed for ‘my friend’. He and I were both very nervous and we had sweaty armpits, which made us feel slightly shy. Also, I’d been a bit heavy handed with the lip-gloss and my hair was uncomfortably glued to my lips.

The second time we met, it went a whole lot better. Hoo-farking-ray for us being on the same flight from Joburg to Cape Town as I got to stand next to him on the bus that takes you to the aeroplane.  His hand was resting on the handle of his wheelie-case and as his wheelie-case was on the floor and my foot was touching his weelie-case, we were practically holding hands. It was so romantic.

Anyway, I was really excited about seeing Lewis and was even considering concocting an elaborate story for the blog, like the one I did about Cirque de Soleil (sorry about the lie, but it was wicked fun.) But then it dawned on me that if I did talk to Lewis Pugh (even if only in my imagination) the conversation would be horribly short because other than the fact that we both have a body, head and some appendages, we have absolutely nothing in common.

Let’s see, for starters he’s trained SAS.  The most stupid thing about the SAS is that it’s SECRET.  What a waste. If I was to put myself through all that hoo-ha the first thing I’d want to do is tell everyone all about it. I’d go so far as to develop SAS swagger and cunningly drop SAS jargon into every conversation.

Secondly, he swims in arctic waters. Arctic waters I say! They call him The Human Polar Bear. The only time I’ve been mistaken for a polar bear was the time I fell asleep under a flokati rug at a party. I can’t see the point of swimming in cold water if you can swim in warm water.  It’s just not reasonable.

Thirdly, he’s one of those non-quitter types. I have a deep envy for people like that which boarders on obscene-mistrust. How people can stick with something, even when they hate it, just because they told themselves they’d see it through is beyond me. Well it’s not really beyond me, it just makes me feel like I need a stint in a South Korean self-denial camp.

Initially I was upset that I hadn’t tried to catch up with him but in retrospect I’m bloody relieved.  It would have been an awful encounter and he’d be blogging about how awkward it was instead of me blogging about how awkward it wasn’t. Besides, it might have made Ryk jealous.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

tweet it, tweet it, tweet it, tweet it .. no-one wants to be defeated...

A little while ago I signed up with Twitter.  Beeeg farking mistake. For someone as flighty as me, Tweeting is a horrible idea. Dangerous even.

One of the problems with Twitter is that it doesn’t come with a manual or a ‘Rules of the Game’ or even a ‘Tweet Etiquette for Dummies Guide.’ There seems to be an online help section where it covers all that stuff but I don’t want to read it, I just want someone to tell me about it in 140 characters or less.

Anyway, I signed up for this blasted thing having no idea how to use it, no idea who to follow or how I get people to follow me. It ‘helps’ you by suggesting you narrow down whom you’d like to follow by searching through categories. Even bigger farking mistake.

I thought that if I followed people like copywriters, we’d have something in common.  We don’t.  I’ve even reconsidered my line of work so as not to be associated with them.  Tossing hipsters, the whole bloody lot of them.

Even worse, I chose to follow people in the ‘digital’ field but quickly realised that this would only serve as a cruel daily reminder of my digital ineptness.  Those digi-geeks are .

What I understand about Twitter (after a bout on Wikipedia) is that it’s used on different levels for different things.  For some people it’s a self-promotion tool whereby you can:

1)    Show how smart, accomplished, funny, witty, sexy etc. you are
2)    Show off your depth of knowledge or how well read you are (here’s where you get all the links to interesting and not so interesting stuff)
3)    Show off how aware you are – of news, of politics, of sports, of issues and more issues of issues

By far the biggest slice of the Twitter pie chart however, goes to pointless babble and conversational content at 40% and 38% respectively. Well wadya know.

‘Course, that just tells you what Twitter is used for, it doesn’t tell you how Twitter feels. So here’s my analogy. 

Imagine that the Twitter platform is a really, really big cocktail party.  Imagine that a large portion of the people there are hipsters. Imagine that it’s bloody noisy because everyone is talking over everyone else in a very hipster kind of way.  Imagine that you don’t know why everyone is there and that you don’t even know why you yourself are there.

Imagine that it’s compulsory for everybody to take part in a cocktail-party-game of verbal one-upmsanship where you have to try to sound smarter and wittier and sexier and funnier than the person next to you. Also, many of the hipsters there have an avatar, so you think you’re talking to Jenny, a writer from Sussex, but it’s actually Clive, a serial killer from Calgary.

Now imagine yourself easing through the crowd. You approach maybe ten people and comment on the conversation that they’re not having with anyone in particular. Yup, they’re just standing there shouting up into the space above their heads. Occasionally, someone that knows them on the other side of the room picks up one of their messages. This person then acknowledges the other person and affirms how fabulous they are.  You don’t know that they know each other and you’re not allowed to butt in on the VERY LOUD conversation they’re having with one another or you will appear extremely uncool.

If you agree with what someone says, you’re not allowed to say things like: ‘right on’, ‘haha, classic’, ‘good one’, or ‘very funny.’ You just have to repeat what they have said and say ‘@cleverpants said this’. This part of the party game is called retweeting. Some people might really like what you have to say and will award you a gold star. This is called favouriting. If you get enough tweets favourited you get something but I don’t know what it is.  Possibly a big fluffy blue bird or a trophy of sorts.

Imagine that two out of ten people at the party ignore you, two out of ten reply to you, three out of ten listen to you but don’t reply and the rest either listen to you and roll their eyes or listen to you and simply can’t be sodded. Then imagine that some of those that reply to you, will volley-respond twice, after which time they just abandon the conversation mid sentence and move on to another next person.

Finally, imagine that you start feeling a crushing pressure to come up with equally witty, funny, sexy, smart things to say (which of course you can’t, because you’re just you). Imagine this pressure building up so much inside you that the only solution is to find a quiet corner where you can rock to and fro in the foetal position whilst sipping on *witblits.

That is how Twitter feels.

*Moonshine; 190-proof-could-kill-you-type-alcohol

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

short, dark and frisky...

My mamma always said that air travel is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get.  The best you can hope for is someone clean-smelling, not too big in the shoulder area and friendly enough so that if you accidentally nod off on them they won’t shove you away.

This brings me to my NBF and slightly-good-looking-from-a-profile-angle traveling companion on the journey between Rome and Dubai.
I’m pretty sure he didn’t mean to be funny but he spoke funny and chose funny things to talk about. Perhaps the non-verbal cues of when to politely bow out of a conversation got lost in translation, which is why I listened on for five whole hours. Also, I simply couldn’t cut him off because when an Italian speaks English, you get a little swoony from the lyrical inflection.  Besides, he was wearing a big diamond earring and it was the first time I’d ever met a man with such outstanding bling.

‘So,’ I say after hellos have been exchanged, ‘What do you make of this case involving the Vatican and the remains of a girl found buried near Piazza Navona?’

(Note to reader: there’s no way I’m going be able to keep up the whole Italian accent thing throughout so  you please-a to-a imagin-a all-a da time-a, huh?)

‘Those priest. They strange. They pay all kind of people to bring them all kind of people to do all kind of thing they not supposed to do and then they find the trouble. Why they make such a stupid a promise to no have – scusi for the rude - sex?’

‘Umm, no idea,’ I say, trying to look unfazed. (Fact: Sometimes when you show people that you’re shocked it just encourages them. You know, if they’re that kind of a person.)

‘They no even supposed to – scusi for the rude - wank’ he says. ‘But they wank. Why people lie about the wank?’

 I couldn’t decide whether I should play it prudish and say ‘What is this wank of which you speak?’, or if I should act all casual and reply, ‘Me. I never lie about wanking.’

Instead, I blurt out in a strained voice ‘I don’t know. I don’t know why they lie,’ all the while shaking my head slowly and wondering how I’m going to re-divert this conversation.

Despite my discomfort (and I confess, amusement) an academic sounding wank chat ensues involving phrases like ‘perfectly normal’ and ‘nothing to be ashamed of’ to which he adds, ‘I no time to wank. My wife, she Thai. She like the – scusi for the rude – blow job.’

My eyeballs battle to say anchored in their sockets but I blink hard and swallow. I then try to un-swallow, just incase it gave him fancy ideas.

‘Is too much,’ he proclaims and then adds (so as not to seem un-manly I assume) ‘is nice this, but sometime I just tired. Then I don’t want, but my wife, she spoil me’.

‘Mmm,’ I nod sagely, working hard on the image of a man saying to his wife ‘No really honey, no more BJ’s today.’

After we’d resolved what constitutes a reasonable amount of sexy-time with your spouse, both oral and otherwise, we moved onto clothes. I won’t lie, I was kind of relieved.

‘So,’ I say, ‘What’s up with the diamond earring?’

‘Is too much?’ he says.

‘No, no,’ I lie.

‘I do for my stepdaughter,’ he explains.

‘She scared to have hole in her ear so I say OK, I do first.’‘But,’ he clarifies, ‘earring in a right ear mean you gay and earring in both ear also mean you gay, but earring in left ear is OK.’

I can’t face getting into a discussion about how I’d be perfectly fine with him even if he was gay. I don’t want to find myself in any more uncomfortable conversations.

‘Cool necklace’ I say. It looks a bit surfer-ish and I want to talk about surfing now, even though I know nothing about it. Anything other than all this other skanky business. ‘What’s the G for?’

And then, thinking to be-a funny-a myself-a, I add ‘Giuseppe? Guido? Geraldo?’

He looks over at me slyly and says ‘Is for Gucci but aaah, you know this boys?’ 

‘No. No!’ I exclaim, mortified that he thinks I’ve been doing the hokey-pokey while away in Italy.  ‘No, no. I’m married. One man is just fine for me. I’m good with one.’ And then the penny drops.

‘Why?’ I ask, ‘do you hanky-panky on the side???’ to which he doesn’t so much as answer as makes a series of pained noises. At one point I think he may either cry or burst into song.

I found his revelation a little un-nerving because if Mr.-Bling-on-his-ear is getting jiggy outside the marital bed despite receiving – scusi for the rude - a daily BJ then what hope do the rest of our marriages have where we errr, maybe not-a spoil-a so much our spouse-a? (Moment of truth: he actually, he said he gets it more than once a day but I couldn’t bring myself to say it before now.)

It was a bizarrely surreal exchange. I felt like I was watching a cinema nouveau movie instead of having a real conversation with a real person.

Next time I fly I’m hooking up my iPod before I board the plane and not taking it off till I land. Still, he did make me laugh.