Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Nature= Awesome.

I watched some National Geographic special this weekend about Great White sharks. They are totally the most excellent example of how fantastic and interesting nature stuff is. Nature shows are always either mind-numbingly torpid ("the swallow-tailed buckberry dances his slow dance, warbling, as the female chirrups in reply. He offers her a twig, and should she accept this twig, he will then be expected to provide all twigs, leaves and worms in exchange for mating. That is, until he moves on to a younger, more nubile female, who will want bigger, more flashy twigs and not be very good at chirruping, but will have a much fluffier tail."*), or an exhilarating thrill-ride of facts and hunting and blood. And teeth. And conjecture.

I also like dissections.

Did you know that sharks can vomit out their entire stomach? It's called... um... stomach inversion**, and they use it to clean out the collected detritus (whale fat, tyres, corrupted hard drives, the occasional Starbucks) that collects therein. And all this without ripping their stomach linings open on the rows of razor-shark teeth. How cool is that! I kind of wish I could do that. Not that I like vomiting all hat much.. but I like the idea of a clean stomach. Sometimes I dwell on the pounds of rotting flesh that's supposed to be collecting in my intestines***, undigested, unexpelled. It vexes me. Also, the black pepper, although I don't it eat that much.

Sharks are pretty cool, especially when they're out there in the sea and I'm not. And they're totally less harmful than bees. Now, bees I'm shit-scared of. I've been stung by bees, had bees in my mouth, and been attacked by a brown beetle that I thought was a bee. I've never even been called a bad name by a shark! they totally get a bad rap.

Also cool are ligers- you know, where they cross-breed a lion and a tiger and get this big fuck-off cat that's twice the size of either, hugely strong but pretty much useless out in the wild and apparently not very bright****. Ligers are pretty sweet. They're bred for their skills in magic, you know*****.

**I think. I wasn't exactly taking notes. Learning is only fun if you don't actually have to pay attention, or write a test.
*** I realise not technically my stomach but it's my segueway on my blog.
**** totally just made that up. But it looks like a big lunk. And what, we're administering IQ tests to animals now? Trust me, it's a ligimbo┬╣
*****Napolon Dynamite reference. Watch the damn movie, people!



Monday, October 29, 2007

The Keeper of Secrets.

On Friday, you'll be glad to know, I finally dragged my sorry arse into the traffic department and made the appointment for my Learner's License test. Because having hit the big three-oh, I'm getting tired of people giving me the weird-eye when they hear I can't drive*. And I'm sure they're tired of my jaded response; "eat poop from a trowel, dingbat" followed by a swift kick to the throat.**

Part of what's taken so long is... oh, man. That ol' Traffic Department. At Gallows Hill. Closes at 3pm, interminable queues, unhelpful eye-rolling staff, bureaucracy and angst. All wrapped up in that institutional, grey, soul-crushing Calvinist 60's architecture that the Apartheid government seemed to think was a good idea***. And, my day went like this:

Approach counter 2 (learner's license test counter), "hi, can I make an appointment for a learner's test?"
Heinous cow rolls eyes, sullenly."counter 7, get a form".
Go stand in queue for counter 7. Realise after a while that it is in fact the wrong queue and that there is in fact another queue. Curse badly marked-out queues. Join queue for counter 7. Curse stupid system that makes you queue for hours for forms instead of having them freely available. Muse aloud about bureaucratic inefficiency and mistrust of civilians to use the precious forms responsibly. Gentleman in queue #1 whispers that if I want a form, I should speak to the security guard.

With ears seemingly of a bat with quite good hearing, security dude appears suddenly. "you need a form? Don't stand in the queue, you'll waste your time!I don't know why they make people stand in the queues.".
Proceed to get most informed, helpful, efficient, knowledgeable service I have ever received in a government institution in oh, say, 30 years. begin to formulate idea that security dude should train all government employees from now on. failing that, municipal and governmental departments should all be run by security dudes.

Also, there should be free filter coffee and ginger biscuits. I mean, why is it de rigeur to have these sorts of places be so depressing and soul-crushing? Can't getting an ID book or driver's license be a happy thing?

* listen people, It's not like I could afford car payments anyway so it is kind of a moot issue.
** or some variation thereof.
*** no better proof exists that they were not, in fact, the "superior race", and we would all have been better off with Ndebele people being in charge of all government-building decoration. People would be all cheerful and also have warm blankets in winter. Man, I should be president.


Friday, October 26, 2007

You ,scare kitty, I made you a cookie.

(and finally, the poll-post winning blog entry. it's.. stream of consciousness)

Kitty. Little Kitty kat. You're like a bunny, only with different eyes and ears and face. But cute. Your stumpy tail, it beguiles me. Are you a Japanese short-tailed cate? Neko neko neko! I was told, while I was there, that Japanese cats say "nya nya" instead of meow. It must be the Japanese accent that does it.

In any case, Neko-chan, you're pretty hot. Your head is gigantic though! I bet you probably can't stand up bcause your big chibi manga head is too heavy for those little weeny legs to support. That's okay, I'll take care of you. You don't have to do anything but sit there and look cute. and make meeping noises. Gahd, I love the meeping noises, the teensy ones that are barely audible, tremulous but rightly assured of speciesal superiority. But you're still so little and don't know how to be imperious yet, so you do that "scared helpless baby kitty out alone in the world" act.

I made you a special treat, and I used catnip. You'll like it. Catnip and anchovy chunk cookies. Num num. Much better than those nasty food pellets. Also, I soaked it in milk, because your little teeth are too small to be bitey and crunching yet. And Milk is good for you. And you get little beads of milk on your whiskers and a milk moustache. And maybe go meep.

I blame that new Whiskas adverts- it's kitten porn! It's designed to make you go buy a kitten so that you have to go out and buy whiskas! Evil.


Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Can Somebody Please Explain....

1) ...why; when everybody hates that badly- designed, superannoying and completely- unrelated- to- the- product Meerkat; Vodacom has come up with yet another lame and tacky advert for summer, involving Bob Sinclair, a yacht, and pop-culture references from the 1990's*. Who exactly is the target market here? I literally haven't met anyone yet in the last year I've been home that not only doesn't enjoy them but has homicidal urges towards that pointy bloody rodent. The advert where the meerkat gets eaten by a giant ninja cellphone and blood spurts out Kill Bill- style: that's the one I want to see.

2) ...what is up with facial- cleansing wipes? All of them seem to be available only in packs of 25. Considering that they tend to be a one- a- day sort of item (unless you often need to clean makeup off twice a day- in which case this is a moot issue for you), surely most women would prefer to only have to buy them once a month? To me, a pack of 30 would be more logical...or even 35, you know, so you have a couple of spare for facial emergencies. I'd really rather pay slightly more for the convenience of only having to schlep to Clicks once a month instead of every three weeks which throws my schedule off no end!

3) ...why mosquitos exist? Seriously, what role do they play in the natural order? Spider food? Does their tiny poopage fertilise fields, or somesuch? As far as I can see they have only one purpose: providing existential angst at 2am. Waiting for the axe to fall, and listening for that dive-bomb buzz; that high-pitched siren of misery to come; I start to question my very existence. Personally, I think the mosquito whine is overkill: they'd probably be more efficient killers if they came in for a silent approach. But then, they'd miss out on all that juicy schadenfreude.

4) ... what, exactly, would be so bad about drinking the occasional beer at work? I'm not talking about getting blitzed- rolling around the office with a lampshade on my head and giggling like a three-year-old in a sailor suit- just a nice beer after lunch to celebrate a fine half-day's work, and to help oneself over the 3pm hump**. Considering I have no fresh air or daylight or space in here, I kind of feel I deserve it.

poll-winner post coming Friday, look out for it! Then, buy me toys and figurines!

*Titanic is over, advertising people... let it go.
** 2.59: brain working... 3.oo brain shuts DOWN!***
***mom, I will gladly eat a low GI diet if you buy me the food ;P

Monday, October 22, 2007


Call me Scrooge, but I just can't workup all that much enthusiasm for our World Cup Rugby win. I mean, it's nice and all, and our players did us proud, they certainly are skilled, and they have a nice selection of bums and chests. But all this hoopla and whooping and bouncing around orgasming in public just leaves me cold.

It doesn't help that I'm not one of those sporty girls. All I really know about rugby is scrums, locks, and hookers. Anything deeper than that and you've lost me*. Some people love sport and see in it all the drama of an episode of Lost, or Heroes or 24. Of course, some people watch Noot Vir Noot every week. There's no accounting for taste. What I'm trying to say is I can see, objectively, why it's dramatic and great and fantastic that we won! We're champions! We have gigantic steel balls! We made expats sulk**!

And, yes, I get why the world cup is more important than other rugby games, although, to be snarky, does that make it harder? Shouldn't we be just as proud about every victory? And why does it take something like this to unite our country, to make us feel all warm and fuzzy and hopeful about each other? To me that makes it kind of shallow and..dare I say it... less meaningful.

In any case, I'm saving my vuvuzela-blowing, yelling, car-horn-tooting drunken hysteria for when the unemployment rate drops below ten percent, or AIDS gets cured, or a politician makes the news for being incorruptible and unprejudiced.

I'm just cynical and horrible, aren't I? If you feel great about the win, don't let me stop you. I just can't join in.

*the offside rule is football, right?
** "that was the worst decision ever made by a referee in the history of sport!" right, so no sour grapes then for you, eh?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

One of those days for which the word languid was invented.

Hot, dry, almost windless. Suddenly, the weather has taken one of it's acute turns, from frigid dampness, to searing desert heat. The sky is a widly improbable blue and the scent of laundry detergent and cut grass broiling in plastic bin-bags floats on the wisp of a breeze. People nap on corners and on the grass, and others, who have places to go and things to do, or they'd also be napping, move slowly, as the heat and sunshine renders us all a little less intelligent, like trolls in a Pratchett novel, brains liquefying like a Cornetto. A Timbaland song plays on repeat in my head.

The grass by the pond is coated with a blanket of shed feathers, but the seagulls aren't bothered: they're dipping in the water. Fat pigeons waddle and goo and plonk themselves on the heads of statues. A toddler girl with cheeks like chocolate cupcakes dances and sings to a tune of her own invention while her mother gossips at a security guard. I'm thinking of everything, but nothing in particular. Fresh, creamy-yellow waterlilies waggle their fingers at me. I've never eaten artichokes, I realise.

The smells, the unrelenting heat, the breeze, the tourists trying to find their way into the Art Gallery... signs and signals, saying "sumer... summer... summer". And for an hour, at least, all is right with the world.

**keep voting on the poll... will blog the winner next week.**

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Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Poll: Which is this month's weirdest search term?

Man. There are some fruitycakes out there, non? I'm always interested in the search terms that lead people to my blog. Vote below and choose thee weirdest, and I swear to all that is covered in chocolate I'll write a fantastical blog post about it. Yeah, Beyotches, it's on!!!!

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I've compiled a list...

...of things that exist in my head that, make me happy to think about. Because I've been bitching all day long...

1) a cupcake with a yellow duckling on the top in icing.
2) a round-neck white cotton t-shirt with Ian Curtis*' face on it.
3) a handwritten letter from a friend with stickers and photos enclosed
4) a kitten wearing a tyrolean sweater and knitted bobble hat.
5) painting my nails with lavender-blue nail varnish, with tiny silver dots.
6) talking only in the present tense. "I am sleeping well, last night. I am having dreams. Let's shopping in Dubai"**.
7) a free ticket to any country that has Starbucks.
8) Marc Jacobs designing a shoe based on my wonderfulness, and Philip Treacy doing a matching hat.
9) sleeping late every day for the rest of my life.
10) papering my apartment walls with pale robin's-egg blue and eggshell-white lace.
11) breaking into exclusive books and stealing all the new books I can carry in a black bag, so many that my entire apartment smells of fresh paper and ink for a week.

Also, I would like my colleague to remove Toto's "Africa" as her cellphone ring. It's been a stressful day and that's just not helping.

* This is why google was invented.
** much like english is spoken in Japan.

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Monday, October 01, 2007

"Well, it's Definitely not Sukkot!!!"

So, for the third week in a row I'm working only two-and-a-half days, with the rest of the week off. This is because it's been very holiday-ey, Judaism-wise. it's not always like this, being as it runs on it's own calendar (hands up all Jewish people who can keep track of the holidays without a calendar... alright Rabbi, you made your point, you can put your hand down now). In any case, all this free time has inspired much jealousy*, and the inevitable question: "so what holiday is it, anyway?".

Well, Rosh Hashanah was easy. Jewish New Year. Simple. Sukkot was a little harder to explain. The festival of... Lemons? harvesty....something? shaking palm fronds and lemons at the compass points? I asked around the office, and nobody had paid attention in jewish studies that day. See, the thing is... some of the festivals are a little... obscure for most of us. We have a sort of a vague, fuzzy idea of what they do. Mostly, give a day off, and if you're a good jew**, and not agnostic, you go to shul extra.

This next one coming up, though.. Shemini Atzeret. Nobody had even the foggiest. Wikipedia clarified that it is not Sukkot, but you can still sit in the Sukkah***. As far as I can tell it's a holiday that "the Creator" gave to Jewish people as a special bonus day off****. Seriously. No fasting, no feasting, and you can tear toilet paper*****. Generic Holiday, then.

*although it's the one perk of my job, which is stressful (you've read my blog before, right?), sometimes direly boring and not very well-paid. So stop whining.
** ie you don't eat pork chops, lovely pork chops with a lil' bit 'o paprika and lemon juice and 'taters. Mmmm.
*** Oh, just google it.
**** Because btw, you guys are totally meant to be getting Sukkot too. It says. On the interweb. I mean, I don't know!
Shabbat. long story.

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A Very Brave Girl.

Yesterday was my first beach day of the season, and a very exciting one it was. You see, I had resolved that ennough was enough, no more would I suffer the tyranny and shame of the two white triangles of dead-looking white flesh! No more would I have to photoshop self-portraits to even out skin tone on my chestal region! Yes, people, I this is the year...for toplessness!


I'm not one for exposing myself in public. But, honestly, it's practically become de rigeur these days to go about like a three-year-old*. And for a while I've been gazing jealously at the bronzed noombies of the beach girls**, who have no top-half tan lines, and can ear low-cut tops, and don't look weird naked. Well, unless they just look weird naked naturally, but that's another topic for another time.

So, I decided to gird my loins and stop being such a big baby. It wasn't easy though. I got to the beach, ready for my quest. I scanned the few people on the beach: nice, not too few for me to stand out, not so many that it would be intimidating. Mostly girl, and families with naked children. Good, nakedness of children helps my cause. There were some fully-dressed beach-watchers, which was totally creeping me out, because I just knew they were dirty perverts waiting for my boobies. Beaches= beachwear, it's a dress code, and people who don't respect that... perverts!

Anyway, finally the time came, and I whipped of my top and lay down like a little person trying to be unobtrusive. Nobody jeered, pointed or giggled. In fact, very few noticed, possibly. As I've mentioned, my ta-tas*** are not that big. So, I passed my first tan time without event, enjoying the cool breeze on my skin. and I think it'll be a little easier next time.

I feel very brave, and accomplished, like I climbed a mountain or something. Only without the physical exertion part, which would suck. Score one for the half-naked lady!

*but with boobs.
** well, until they noticed and then suddenly it got all weird.
*** starting to run out of synonyms for breasticles.

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