Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cheated

Two former top-of-the-class students
Now aspiring entrepreneurs
Sit in rickety crap in a snaking traffic downtown
In the distance the arresting siren
A leader being escorted in tax-funded convoy
Soon the show comes into view
Seconds of sharpened focus later
The unmistakable image of their former classmate
The bottom-of-the-class chump
Now a minister of state
The theatre of the absurd on a taunting display

I Fought Back!

Whether unscrewed, unfused or confused
I cannot fathom
But there he stood
Right in the middle of the corner road
His face and motive unreadably hidden
At my hooting
He turned
Gave me the middle finger
And a sadistic grimace
And so I rolled
Down
The window
And flashed him
A soothing smile
The wonder-working kind
It must have worked
For when I returned an hour later
The theatre had long closed

Monday, August 17, 2009

Beyond The Pale

Behaviour scientists, I now believe, are not the only bunch who are fully persuaded that the supreme interests of men primarily revolve around three issues: chicks, cars and booze.
Even a sect of the much respected domain of biology now postulates that mother nature is also a believer in this far-fetched psychology of men. They point to the fact that the population of the female specie is increasingly outpacing that of the male and they ascribe this phenomenon to the redeeming work of mother nature. According to them, mother nature, being the good economist that she is, is trying really hard to meet the insatiable demand of men for sex by supplying more chicks! They call that demand and supply. Don't they?
So yes, obviously mother nature like most mothers love her boys. And how do you show your love for your boys? By providing in abundance what makes them happy. . .Chicks! Lol.
I don't believe for a second that men are necessarily helpless in self-control in the matters of chicks. For goodness sake, we are not all obsessed with sex. Or are we?
I have got a beautiful, delightsome and responsive wife. Once in a while I may inadvertently steal a glance at a beautiful chick walking past, but I know how to control myself.

Another group of 'weirdos' who are not only believers but practitioners of this codswallop are marketers and advertisers. We are bombarded ad nauseam with flicking ads of men apparently enjoying the best that life has to offer, gulping down tonnes of beer and other forms of booze. Those who don't drink, are made to feel like a lost generation, a hopeless lot unaware of what they are missing.
I refuse to fall for their mind games. The last time I checked water was still better than anything with a percentage above 5%. After all the last time somebody gave me a certain beverage to drink, I felt totally drowsy after only five sips. When I finally brought myself to read what was written on the bottle I realised to my horror of horrors that the 'non-alcoholic beverage' was in fact 5%.

Then, oh yes, C.A.R.S. Geez. I love cars. I love the smell of new leather seats. I love the feel of pedals under my feet. The purr of a smooth engine responding to my every command is almost irresistible. But again nothing can make me go and spend tonnes of money on a new ride just because someone decides to play a sublime trick on my mind by showing an ad of a dude gliding down the road in a latest German car.

The question is what is so difficult about staying true to oneself?
What drives these middle-age, married men to not only cheat on their wives but also pat each other on the back whenever they gather around the booze alter to chat about their latest wild escapades with chicks and of course fantasize about the latest cars.
Is that all there is to the world of men? Is that what respected family men are expected to do?
Or perhaps is it true after all that the modern man is not all that evolved as we want to believe that we are? Probable today's men are still cavemen in every sense of the word.
Next time I meet with my friends I will introduce something pretty decent. We shall talk about, erm, . . . architecture, the architecture of love.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Applied Hysterics

Today, I invite you to come with me to indulge.
This one concerns one heck of a journey.
The incredible journey of laughter.
So here we go.

"A little boy opened the large old family Bible,
and he looked with fascination at the ancient pages as he turned them one by one.
He was still in Genesis when something fell out of the Bible.
He picked it up and looked at it closely.
It was a very large old tree leaf that had been pressed between the pages of the Bible long ago.
"Momma, look what I found!" the boy called out.
"What do you have there?" his mother asked.
With astonishment in his voice, the young boy answered,
"I think it's Adam's underwear!"

Laughter can be healthy, non-demeaning, non-ridiculing and incredibly liberating.
That is why laughter, they say, is the best medicine.
It has the capacity to unleash physiological, psychological and spiritual benefits that most people, particularly those accustomed to the conservative lifestyle of sacred seriousness, are blissfully unaware of.
Laughter is so therapeutic. It is the perfect antidote of boredom, moodiness, stress, anxiety, anguish, depression and paranoia-- major sources of many debilitating diseases and disorders .
I am now one of those people who believe that each of us is born with the gift of laughter.
Come to think of it, apart from crying, the most universally important language of every baby is laughter.
Laughter has become a serious business all of a sudden in the ├╝ber stressful, almost neurotic environment we live in. That is why comedians are laughing all the way to the bank, making brisk businesses at our expense!
My suggestion for those thinking of reinventing themselves, rejuvenating and bringing back joy and lightness into their lives is to begin by first learning to laugh, and live, all over again.
It is as simple as that.
So go on.
Dose yourself on a daily cocktail of punchlines to send yourself into the orbit of redeeming stitches.
Here is another. Enjoy!
Punishment for Missing Church
A country preacher decided to skip services one Sunday to spend the day hiking in the wilderness.
Rounding a sharp bend in the trail, he collided with a bear and was sent tumbling down a steep grade.
He landed on a rock and broke both legs.
With the ferocious bear charging at him from a distance, the preacher prayed,
"O Lord, I'm so sorry for skipping services today.
Please forgive me and grant me just one wish--make a Christian out of that bear that's coming at me!"
At that very instant, the bear skidded to a halt, fell to his knees, clasped his paws together, and began to pray aloud at the preacher's feet:
"Dear God, please bless this food I am about to receive."

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

They stole my Blogoversary!

Yesterday was the first anniversary of this blog.
My first post 'the portrait of Disappointment' was published on August 11, 2008.
Yesterday, I had planned to write a celebratory post- something sweet and positive.
Alas my plans came crashing down because of one very unpleasant event.
Yesterday afternoon, a few minutes past 1pm , I received a call from my wife that our home had been broken into. Yap! The thieving gang had visited again in our absence.
I had to leave the office driving like crazy to go and check on the what the gang had wrought!
Thank God they only managed to break two glass windows of the guest bedroom. They could not lay their cursed hands on anything in the house.
A lady staying in the neighbouring house saw the two-man team hard at work and shouted at them from across the wall and phoned the police. The police responded pretty fast. At least three police cars were there within five minutes of being contacted.
The security buzzer/alarm went off and the security company, ADT, was also on the property almost at the same time.
By the time I reached home the place was swarming with police officers and security guards.
The gang though had long bolted into thin air.
So that is how two sons of belial stole my first blogoversary.
I am pissed off like you won't believe.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Let Your Woman Blossom Right By Your Side

It comes as no surprise that the fearless women of South Africa were the ones who on August 9, 1956 took the bold initiative to march peacefully to Parliament to protest against the pass laws of the apartheid regime.
Under the apartheid regime, any action of similar nature by the men folk would have provoked a bloodbath by the police and security forces.
In commemoration of that historic step by the women folk, August 9 is Women’s Day in South Africa.
This year’s fell on a Sunday (yesterday), so today, Monday, is a national holiday. Having had the moment to reflect, today really feels like an opportunity to give honour to whom honour is due - the beautiful daughters of Africa.
So here goes a tribute to all women everywhere.

W.O.M.A.N
Beautiful
Colourful
Loving
Caring
Selfless
Ageless
Sacrificial
Special
Devoted
Spirited
Courageous
Mysterious . . .

Love and cherish a woman and she will sparkle as a gem, blossom as a flower, beam with affection so pure and enrich your world like no other creature on God’s earth.
Empower and stand by a woman today to unleash her potential and tomorrow you will be blown away by her entrepreneurial, explosive, passionate and raring fortitude.

Welcome to the marvellous world of the faceless warriors
by whose succour streams of nations continue to be fed, by whose enterprise the fires of countless families keep burning, by whose devotion sanity prevails in many a man’s heart, by whose sacrifice rolls of incredible achievements have been attained, by whose wisdom thousands of wars have been stopped, by whose love effortless smiles adorn the faces of countless generations.
All around me, I see wonderful women doing great exploits by themselves for themselves, their friends and families.
There are only a few moments in a man’s that are as satisfying as watching, from behind the scenes, the woman he loves thriving in the world of work, fulfilling her passion.

Let us, as husbands, lovers, fathers, brothers or sons, remember to honour our women with showers of unconditional love and while at it, encourage and support them to find their own ways, discover their unique strengths and pursue their own precious dreams.

Let us celebrate our women: our wives, our mothers, our sisters, our daughters, our beautiful treasures.

Happy woman’s Day to you all, our beautiful flowers!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Blessings!

Today I want to blog about God's goodness.
At church last week Sunday, the Pastor taught about the need to learn to truly trust God during all seasons of life. We were encouraged to write down the names of the seven people that first pop into our mind right there and then and pray for them for the entire week. After the service, we had a pleasant time of fellowship together. Then, one by one, individuals and families left for their homes.

As at today, I have received calls and SMS from more than ten people informing me about different blessings that they have received as a result of the spiritual exercise.
I thought of sharing this to encourage somebody to give God a chance in his/her life.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Malcolm Gladwell's BLINK is a Superb Read

I am in book mode like you won't believe it!
I love books, good books. But sometimes it becomes almost impossible to get quality time to indulge.
So early this week, I decided to make time and go on a date with two of the reads I was given some time ago. At present I am almost done reading ‘blink: the power of thinking without thinking’.
The author, Malcolm Gladwell, who wrote also ‘The Tipping Point’-a phenomenal bestseller.
Born in London to a black Jamaican ( Denise's compatriot) mother and an English maths teacher, he grew up in Canada. ‘Blink’ is an fabulously good read. It is a book that helps to develop one’s intuitive capabilities and teaches how to trust one's gut especially in moments when one needs to make a decision on the spur.
If you see this book, get it like you would a bullion of gold. If there are any good reads you care to recommend, please, do so.
Got to go. The books are calling.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Irresponsibility: The Bane Of The Land

I had always thought that the suburb where I stay was endurably safe for my family. Such a conclusion is probable still true, in spite of the fact that our house was burgled in broad daylight the same week we moved in. In addition to the raid on our property, our weekly community newspaper regularly comes out with reports of enormously hideous crimes in the area.
We are eternally grateful to God that we were not at home when those brutes decided to come for what did not belong to them; all the electronic gadgets in the house.

A few nights ago, around midnight, I was brutally awakened out of my precious sleep by what appeared to be loud bangs. Then it dawned on me. What I was hearing was in fact a rapid barrage of gunshots and a car-chase on a nearby street only a few metres from our house. On and on it went down the street in the quiet of the night until the fading sounds of the bullets could no longer be heard.

I could not go back to sleep anymore that night. But that was not the only bad thing that happened to me that night.
The proximity of that chilling episode got me greatly worried about the security of my family. Even though our house has been armed with a good security alarm system, we have primed ourselves to be extra careful twenty-four seven since then.
We cannot afford to take anything for granted anymore.
Many thoughts and scenarios have criss-crossed my mind over and over again ever since that drama took place.

Why is crime so pervasive in our part of the world? Why it is that crime in our society is not only prevalent, but also so gratuitous.
The criminals do not hesitate to rape, torture and kill their victims. It is only in our society where criminals spend hours in the homes of victims indulging in sadism, such as pouring boiling water on their victims, raping the women as they force the men to watch and repeatedly burning the bodies of their victims with hot irons while mocking them.
Our shopping malls, roads, homes, schools, hospitals and even churches have all been turned into war zones.
No where is save any more when the residence of the deputy president of the Republic can be brazenly burgled without people being overly shocked.

The question is how did it get so awfully bad?
How could the entire country, every corner of it, be held hostage by thugs and hardened criminals?
Where is the hiding place of this monster?
It is as if our communities have become massive crime labs and factories where criminal minds are being churned out in huge numbers.
It is evidently clear that something is terrible wrong with the society, with our value systems and with us as families and individuals.
As when an auto-immune disease starts to devastate the body, the elements waging this relentless war against the body are not external but from within the body itself.
Ours is a mutating infestation. A debilitating plaque. An apoptotic disorder of a systemic nature.
Here is what I think.
As much as we all would like to point fingers at others and apportion blame on some mysterious monster somewhere, we will be lying to ourselves if we allow the obvious truth about crime to escape us.
Crime in our society has everything to do with the culture of irresponsibility and impunity.
Until we as individuals, as families and as communities begin to embrace an attitude of responsibility, we will forever remain oblivious to our own role in nurturing this invasive culture of crime.
Let the charity of responsibility begin at your own home.
Cheers!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Guy Words vs Gal Words

I have finally come to terms with the fact, and painfully so, that my social skills need a little bit of polishing. Ouch!
I dreadfully suspect that I am one of those individuals who are nondescriptly labelled social late-bloomers, aka nerds; the socially-deviant species with an extremely high affinity for technical facts & figures and other technocratic bragging rights and appear to possess an unbearable 'book-long' knowledge about everything but absolutely nothing about street-wise social skills. Certain facts and obvious social issues which are common knowledge to almost everybody who has lived on planet earth in the last hundred years are only now creeping in on me. Lol
Come to think of it, my nerdy self has been busy trying to master the so-called ‘critical’ skills, but has, until now, been totally oblivious to the fact that social skills are the fundamental tools needed to function effectively in every facet of society.
Excellence in, for example, computational mathematics and other high-end technical skills without the relevant social skills will only lead to intellectual frustration.
One of the ‘discoveries’ I have recently made, concerns the different baskets of common vocabulary of men and women. I have all along assumed that guys and gals mean the same thing when they use the same words.
The truth is that the intentions behind the use of many words are gender-specific. Which means that, guys and gals ‘comprehend’ words differently and therefore may use similar words to convey entirely different meanings.
I am told that many managers, these days, take their time to make sure that their speeches and presentations are packed with gender-neutral terms to really get across the gender divide.
Makes me wonder if I did really 'understood' any of the conversations I ever had with any member of the opposite sex and in the same way whether they understood me the way I intended.
I really believe that the number one reason why there are so many break-ups in relationships is the way the two sexes (mis)communicate to each another.
I really hope one day someone will make a gender-specific dictionary so that guys like me can somehow understand the meaning of some of the gal-words that I hear around me.


Just this week, two ladies were heard making similar remarks about two male colleagues around the office.
They called those fine gentlemen … erhm, j.e.r.k.s!
Then it hit me that I have never heard a guy use that word before to describe a woman or another man.
I suspect that ‘jerk’ is a gal-word. One of the killer words in the female vocabulary toolbox which, in my mind, girls use to convey an idea of a low life, the lowest form of the male specie. A disgusting piece of work to the female species.
However to my male soul, that word, jerk, whatever it means, does not convey an idea of utter disgust at all. In fact I have to admit that when a woman calls a man a jerk, the picture I get is a really fine gentleman who is completely misunderstood by women. Period!
Seriously, when a gal calls a guy a jerk my mind ‘sees’ a guy that finds it difficult to understand the female psychology, but otherwise a perfectly normal chap. In my mind, any decent man can be called a jerk simply because he has not mastered the fine art of dealing with the opposite sex.
It appears to me that most of the women who resort to that term do so because of an ugly experience with a man or men.
I guess women in general have certain inherent expectations of manliness in terms of attitudes, conducts, ambitions and how men are supposed to treat a woman.
The guy who scores anything below that imaginary baseline in the head of the fairer sex is unfortunately called a jerk.


Guys on the other hand use terms like bimbo to describe some women.A bimbo is perhaps the female equivalent of a jerk. Don’t get me wrong I am only guessing. Besides, I said perhaps!When a guy calls a woman a bimbo, what goes through his mind is a sort of hare-brained creature crawling all over the place seeking for some guy to grind her good.
A materialistic woman without any values whatsoever ; a woman solely given to creature comforts without any aspirations beyond the mundane issues of life.
A bimbo is that non-wife material that hangs around the corner in different seductive poses.I really doubt that a woman understands that term in the same way as a guy does.

So guys and gals share with me the guy-words and gal-words you often use.
As a guy, I really would like the ladies to paint clearly to me, beyond the dictionary-speak, the following:
(a) what sort of guy would you call a ‘jerk’?

(b) do you always call every man who breaks up with you a ‘jerk’?

(c) what goes through your mind and body when you use that term to describe a guy?

I am so keen to learn this sort of rocket science for the purpose of self-education as well as being a mentor to others in my corner.
Please help a late bloomer!

Monday, August 3, 2009

They Don't Make Them Like That Anymore

During my school years many moons ago, the wheels of boyish testosterone were driven primarily towards two overarching objects of affection: books and to a lesser extent beautiful girls. There was no joy greater than being the top in the class.
Boys, at least those in my circle , had a healthy ritual and an idealist composure when it came to showing love for a girl. My attraction to girls was first and foremost a romantic exploration driven by a boyish curiosity of the beautiful plumage of the maturing female body.
I, for one, was fascinated by the assemblage of fine parts and curves. Big time. But somehow my books always came first, probably because boys were schooled at home to have dreams and put a premium on education above all else.
No wonder, almost all my girl-friendships begun as study mates and blossomed into something a little bit more. We studied hard together and while at it did a bit of 'assets analyses'.
Boys and girls had big dreams. We were full of courage, strength and old-fashioned gutsiness.

Today's students are behaving like sex maniacs, romping all over the place like there is no tomorrow. Some as young as 12 years are going the full hog without any regard for books and their future. Students in high schools are sidestepping the essential years of sexual fascination and experimentation. Now they jump straight into the deeper end and many will end up sexually frustrated later on in life.
Cheap sex has triumphed over education in our schools and the fire of academic and intellectual pursuits has all but died. That may explain the recent phenomenon of 'sakawa' - a pursuit of cheap money, cheap sex and sadly cheap life.
Something, in the way children are raised these days, has gone awry and my thought is that the ambitions of the teenagers of the late eighties and nineties have been replaced with something much more instinctual, something libidinal, something cheap.
Somehow, they don't make them like that any more.
Are my own children going to play any different?
How I wish I knew the answer to that question!