Monday, December 18, 2006

Birthdays ROCK! Drunk driving SUCKS!

My friend, Gail (the aunty in the middle of the pic), had her birthday at Bean Bag Bohemia last friday... What a jorl!!! The food was incredible: thai chicken wontons, YUM! And the people were great. My mom and I pretty much spent the evening shooting the breeze with Noodle (first from the left).
I was totally bummed that I was driving and couldn't really let my hair down, but it was a good thing I kept it tidy. On the way home, mom and I went through our first road block for the season. The Booze Bus was parked on the side of the road, next to the rows and rows of cars belonging to drivers who flunked the breathaliser test. Scary! I'm always really irritated when I go through these things. I go to all the trouble of staying sober, and the cops don't even ask to see my license! They just assume that, as a woman, I'm less likely to be driving home wasted, but let's face it... In this country I think the chicks take just as many chances with drunk driving as the men! Those of us who are single still want to have a good time, and we still need to get home somehow! Cops need to catch a fat wake-up! I know everyone keeps telling me that I'd be singing a different tune if the cops DID catch me for drunk driving. Make no mistake: You do NOT want to spend a night in jail in this country! But, I limit my drinks, pace myself and even if it means I've got to stop drinking and move around for a couple of hours to sober up, then that's what I do! People who get behind the wheel while they're still smashed should also take responsibility for what might happen to them if they get caught! (Boy. When I think about how young guys brag about getting home while trashed, I actually feel sick.)
I often get to work in an absolute STATE after having driven in front of / behind / near a reckless driver. It always frightens me that the reckless people are rarely hurt / killed in the accidents that they cause. They can see it coming, so they're "prepared" for the impact. It's the innocent guy/girl that gets hurt/killed. They're blissfully unaware that driving safely/defensively simply isn't enough. If some reckless a/hole is gonna take you out, they're gonna take you out and there's nothing you can do...
Boy that was a bleak blog.
It started out so good, and then it got wierd...
ANYWAY! The message is this: Be careful on the roads this festive season. I've lost far too many people lately, and I can't do any more funerals.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Lynette (1971-2006)

Christmas Day was always our day together. Every year, you'd come over in the afternoon and we'd laugh 'til 2am the next morning, over shooters and a bunch of dumb jokes. So, wherever you are, I know that you know I'm going to miss you very much. I don't want to be sad, but I'm already getting choked up whenever Christmas day pops into my head. This lump in my throat is going to suffocate me. I'm trying hard to do what you always did in tough times: put a radiant smile on my face and never let them see me down. But I can't do it like you did. The lump in my throat keeps squeezing big, giant tears out of my eyes. I'm going to miss your baking and the thoughtful gift. I know that your folks need us this festive season more than ever, but I can't look at them. I just can't. I wanted a change of scenery... maybe Christmas lunch at a nice restaurant somewhere. Anything to be able to stay away from the memories... But my parents need the comfort of their own home right now. As much as they don't want to think about you too, they want to be near the places they know you'd be happy.
I'm going Christmas shopping today. I'll be picking up something for Liam, Tatum and your folks. But I don't think any store out there has what we'd all really like this Christmas:
1. Lump-in-Throat Remover
2. ... and few more moments with you.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Is it Christmas time yet?

Oh well... bummer.
How 'bout now?

Monday, November 20, 2006

Life of Pi ********** says: Yann Martel's imaginative and unforgettable Life of Pi is a magical reading experience, an endless blue expanse of storytelling about adventure, survival, and ultimately, faith. The precocious son of a zookeeper, 16-year-old Pi Patel is raised in Pondicherry, India, where he tries on various faiths for size, attracting "religions the way a dog attracts fleas." Planning a move to Canada, his father packs up the family and their menagerie and they hitch a ride on an enormous freighter. After a harrowing shipwreck, Pi finds himself adrift in the Pacific Ocean, trapped on a 26-foot lifeboat with a wounded zebra, a spotted hyena, a seasick orangutan, and a 450-pound Bengal tiger named Richard Parker ("His head was the size and color of the lifebuoy, with teeth"). It sounds like a colorful setup, but these wild beasts don't burst into song as if co-starring in an anthropomorphized Disney feature. After much gore and infighting, Pi and Richard Parker remain the boat's sole passengers, drifting for 227 days through shark-infested waters while fighting hunger, the elements, and an overactive imagination. In rich, hallucinatory passages, Pi recounts the harrowing journey as the days blur together, elegantly cataloging the endless passage of time and his struggles to survive: "It is pointless to say that this or that night was the worst of my life. I have so many bad nights to choose from that I've made none the champion."
I say: After reading a book like this, I feel inadequate even trying to find the words to review it! Life of Pi will no doubt be in my Top 10 books of All Time... In fact, it might very well be in the Top 5. I'm one of those people who could NEVER read a book more than once, - unless it's for study purposes and I really really really I HAVE TO. I've always admired(?) people who can read a book over and over again. It's a special gift to be able to be "surprised" again and again by the same words on the same page. (It's different with movies, - they're no-brainers anyway...) I could enjoy reading a passage over and over again while I'm in the process of reading a book for the first (and only!) time, and I often do when I find something particularly poignant / meaningful / skillfully written. SO, for ME to say that I would go back to this book and re-read it, is a MAJOR thing. There's nothing particulary clever about Martel's vocabulary - I find Big Words incredibly boring anyway. But the storytelling is something else. Wow, what a story. I'm a big cat lover (as you know by now!) so there were times when I didn't know WHOSE side I was on, but what I do know is that it was physically painful at times to hold my breath until I knew everything was going to be okay. I think I was expecting a Disney Fairytale when I heard about it? Maybe it's the cover that misleads you, so the first 2 chapters kinda threw me. But once I got into it, I was hooked. I could taste/hear/see/feel/smell every change in the weather/water/sky/sun that Pi experienced in his 227 days on the water.
If there's one book you read this holiday, make it Life of Pi. The story is meant to be a sad one, but there is so much hope, strength, resilience and beauty in it, it has to be one of most uplifting books I've ever read! Ten out of five, Martel. Ten out of five!
(Thanks, Noodle, for lending me your copy. I think I just might buy one of my own soon!)

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Jorling LATE on a Saturday night...

So Brendan and I ditched the dumb concert and went off to Suncoast Casino. My mom wanted to try her hand at some gambling and we offered to give her a lift home after the concert. Little did we know that we'd leave the concert so early. But I'm really glad we did. Brendan, my mom and I ended up having the time of our lives!!
We started out by losing a bunch of cash on the slot machines. (When we lose, we lose with STYLE! Everytime the machine made a noise - any noise - we'd do a little dance, much to the amusement / confusion of the serious gamblers.) Then a drunk guy walked up to me and slurred a "Hello. I love you...", to which I responded, "Oh. Thanks, hey." Brendan laughed about that all night long. And nows he's starting a vicious rumour that the only reason I'm still single, is because I'm too picky. In his version of the story, the drunk guy was a perfectly presentable young man who cared about me very deeply. Hmff!
We ended the night off with a bottle of wine and a seafood dinner at the John Dory's, at the casino. It was wonderful! The food and service were great, even at that time of the night.
By the time Brendan drove mom and I home, we were pretty wasted and were falling apart in a fit of giggles everytime we thought about the drunk-guy-in-love...
All-in-all a great day/evening/night out!!

Jorling on a Saturday night...

Let's just say that my brother and I should have stayed at jorl number ONE (the BBB picnic).
We managed to score comps to the East Coast Radio Birthday Concert so even though we had no idea who was performing, we thought we'd go. (Everyone else was raving about the line up... So what the hell, right?)
The first sign that things weren't going to go so well was when we were still queueing to go in. Let's just say that there were far too many 16 year old girls in cropped jeans, knee high stilettos and poor-boy hats for my goddam liking. (GROSS! I'd like to bitch slap the person who invented the poor-boy hat. I think it might have been those losers from Oliver Twist. The Artful Dodger, my freakin' butt! He won't be able to dodge one of MY klaps!) And the REALLY worrying part was... most of these 16-year olds were with their parents! Sadly Brendan and I were clean that night, otherwise anykind of hard dwelms might have helped... a little!
So we eventually got in and decided to make the best of it... SOBER! They were only selling soft drinks and beer - neither of which we drink. (Groan.)
And then the music started...
Followed by the rain.
By the time Bananarama started (yes... BANANARAMA!!) Brendan and I had had ENOUGH! I was really looking forward to yelling "Sing, little leprechaun man, SING!!!" to Ronan Keating, but alas, he was coming on far too late and we were ready for the next jorl!
So we got in the car in the poring rain and drove off to jorl number three... or "jorling LATE on a Saturday night"!

Jorling on a Saturday afternoon...

So I managed to crack the nod to the Bean Bag Bohemia picnic this year, thanks to my friend Gail. The theme was Black and Bling, so I pretty much wore all black and every piece of jewelery that I own... Oh! And I made sure that I had the biggest hair there! The girls and I got there on time (ie. TOO EARLY) and ended up getting completely wasted in vodka and red bull (FREE!) before the food even got there... Nice. The food was really awesome, though. It always is at BBB. Lovely sushi, pizza, chicken/beef rolls... and the dolmades were to die for!
I think it would have been a really late night for me if the NEXT party for the evening wasn't waiting for me! So off I went to party number two, or "jorling on a Saturday night".

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Like Water for Chocolate *** (for STYLE not CONTENT)

Here's what the reviewers say: Like Water For Chocolate is a deceptively simple book - a love story set in Mexico, interspersed with recipes, related in unadorned, uncomplicated language. Yet when the ingredients are combined and simmer, subtle and unusual flavors emerge. On one level, this is the story of Tita, youngest daughter of the formidable matriarch Mama Elena who forbids Tita to marry her true love Pedro because tradition says that the youngest daughter must care for her mother until her death. When Pedro marries Tita's oldest sister in order to be near Tita, it begins a life-long conflict filled with passion, deception, anger, and pure love. Interwoven throughout the narrative are the recipes, which, like an ancient Greek chorus, provide an ongoing metaphorical commentary on the characters and their culture. Finally, there is the food itself that Tita creates as head cook on the family ranch, food so vibrant and sensual, so imbued with her feelings of longing, frustration, rebellion, or love, that it affects everyone who eats it. The combination of all these elements, with a good measure of the supernatural thrown in, makes for an earthy, quirky book, sad and funny, passionate, and direct, told by Tita's grand-niece who follows in her footsteps, using her cookbook and continuing a tradition quite different from the one her great-grandmother tried to impose. (From 500 Great Books by Women; review by Erica Bauermeister)
Here's what I say: GIMME A GODDAM BREAK!! How any woman can love a man who marries and makes babies with her SISTER just to get close to HER is beyond me! Laura gets 3 stars for style. (I like the way she paints a picture, and the recipes are a nice touch even though it's highly HIGHLY unlikely that all of them work. I do a lot of baking and cooking, and some of those recipes looked VERY strange to me.) But she gets a big fat ZERO for content. I have no patience for people who feel they have to be stuck in a shitty situation forever, just because that's their lot in life. Bollocks. I found the protagonist irritating and furstrating... And as for the love of her life??!! He's lucky he died when he did. I wanted to kill him myself! All I can say is, THANK GOODNESS it wasn't a long read. i don't know if I could put up with the whining for another 50 pages!!!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

The sun is shining!

I wish I could send you a pic of how beautiful it is today. The sun is shining; the sky is the bluest it's ever been; and I'm working outside on the deck, with the sunshine sparkling off the pool... WHAT A DAY!
That's one of the great things about being a free agent. While all the other boring, old stiffs are working indoors in the sterile air-conditioning, I get to work with the sun on my shoulders, while I sip on something cool. It's nice.
It's not going to last very long... But it's still nice while I can enjoy it.
There are so many things going on in my life right now, but I'm not gonna zap them with bad mojo by talking about them before they come to fruition, Just bear with me, but DON'T STRESS! I'm doing well.
Even though my cousin Lyn isn't going to be with us and I'm going to miss her very VERY much, I think this is going to be one of the most amazing summers for me... EVER!
So... back to your dumb desk you go!
I'm going to take the laptop into the shade, poor myself another fruit juice, and watch the trees swaying in the afternoon breeze. Ah! What bliss.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Man. What a crazy world we live in...

If you scroll down this page, you'll see some pics of my cousin Lynette and me on the "Wow! I'm getting really nifty with the ol' flat irons" blog from a few weeks back.
Well... Lynette died in a car crash a week ago and I'm devastated. She was 35, married and on her way to work.
I wish I could say more, but it's too hard to get anything out.
I'm angry.
I'm sad.

I'm just over bad news and funerals.

I'll be posting some nice pics of the two of us growing up together, just as soon as I can bring myself to look for/at them.

Anyway. Peace.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Here's to new beginnings!

Hey friends!

What a crazy couple of weeks this has been...

I've quit my job and I'm officially on The Adventure Of A Lifetime.
I'm sorry that I haven't updated my blog over the past couple of weeks, but let's just say... I've been MORE than a little distracted.
I can't give you all the details about my new venture just yet, seeing as I'm still fine-tuning the details, but it is going to be SO cool when it all comes together! (Why did that sound like something out of the A-Team?)

Please bear with me while I sort out my internet at home.
I'll be able to blog more often once that's done... Promise!

You can mail me on:

Later! xox

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Monday, September 04, 2006

Ponies are cool.

Here's my brother, Brendan, with my little cousing Tatum at the birthday party. They were keeping the ponies company while I was attacking the trifle at the buffet table. Trifle is even cooler than ponies. It's a close one? But the trifle wins.

Barney is the devil.

Can somebody please explain the Barney phenomenon to me?
I guess kids dig him, so that's all that counts. He does make me really nervous though. It's like I gotta wonder about the freak INSIDE the costumer. And those songs... Crikey.
These are some pics from my cousin's kid's (Kelcey) first birthday party a couple of weeks ago. There is Barney stuff EVERYWHERE and the kids went completely ape.
There were no major casualties so I guess all's well that ends well.
Except... well... I'm still seeing purple wherever I look.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Ranting Bruino - “Lies”

You know what really grinds my beans?
Boy, the thing that really gets me is, the that lie itself (that one little moment of untrue stuff that’s said/done) is not the beginning and the end of the lie. Oh no! There’s all the sniveling, spinelessness, cowering, ducking and diving, fake smiling, alibi-ing, whispering, cowering, pretending, … the amoeba-ing that goes on before and after the lie.
Lies! LIES! It’s all lies, I tell you.
And for somebody who really tries every freakin’ day to keep it real? The lies stink.
Why waste all that brain space on remembering The Lie and all the padding that comes with it? - who to talk to, who not to talk to, what did I say to whom and when, what to say to say-and-so and who to leave out completely.
Just be honest and you don’t have to take up all those brain cells remembering a whole lot of kak.
Maybe some people get off on lying?
Maybe it’s an illness?
Maybe some people can’t tell the difference between fact and fiction.
Maybe it’s pure laziness to do the right thing?
Maybe some people don’t give a rat’s hiney about anyone but themselves and lying is the only way they can feed their own selfishness while saving face at the same time?
… But I think that most lies are born out of cowardice. It takes a lot to face yourself and tell the truth – especially if you know that you’ve done something really un-cool. Trust me! I know. I’m Catholic and there’s no bigger fear than going into confession and telling someone face-to-face with a total scumbag you’ve been. And whatever you may feel about Catholics / Catholicism / confession, it’s GREAT practice for Real Life… Examining your conscience, seeing where you’re wrong, apologizing and asking for forgiveness. (Shiver!) And the biggest thing about confession is that you can NEVER do that bad thing again… Ever. (Double shiver!)
Man! You think you know people, but don’t. You actually really don’t.
So cover your back and safe-guard your heart.
You never know when some sucker might come along, lull you into a false sense of security and then whip the rug out from under your feet with a few well-chosen half-truths.

Phew! That felt nice.
Enjoyed it? Well then look out for the next installment of The Ranting Bruino, where nobody is safe.
Are you the taxi driver who tried to push me off the road this morning? Look out! The next episode might just be about you and the state of our South African roads! Argh!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Lifestyles of the not-so-rich and moderately-famous (in Durban)

Hey bloggers!
If you've already had a gatvol of popping into Carmen's World to see what I'm up to, and all you get greeted with (AGAIN!) is a picture of me with my silky hair, I DO APOLOGISE!
I've been in Cape Town for a week on a tv shoot. And I'll be going back for another week on the edit.
So this is really just a little "Howzit!" to let you know that I haven't forgotten you. I've thought about you all everyday. And I'll be using up all my weekend-minutes calling you this weekend to see how you're doing.
Watch this space for pics of the shoot and my recording with... wait for it... SOUTH AFRICA'S TOP ROCK BAND, PRIME CIRCLE!
How friggin' cool is that?
I flew up to Johannesburg last week to sit in on the recording of their latest track, and the next thing I know, I'm getting dragged into the recording booth to sing back-up vocals!! "No way!" I hear you shout... Well! YES way!
Those of you who have heard me sing will know that I don't exactly have a "hard rock" type of voice. James Hetfield's job is not in Kak Straat if you know what I mean? So it sounded a lot like "Marry Poppins does Prime Circle". (Hey! Wait a minute. That sounded well porno! Anyway.) But after the band stopped laughing so hard that they were CRYING (:-() they ASSURED me that I'd be "in there somewhere"... Poison!
I was also doing some crazy-mad flirting with Marco (the bass guitarist). He nearly signed my boobs, but I chickened out... Argh!
Next time, I suppose.
I might be seeing them again sometime soon, but I'm not holding my breath. Who knows where I'll be jet-setting off to tomorrow, hey? Sigh.
Anyway! Be cool, Durban. And don't break anything while I'm gone!

Monday, August 07, 2006

Wow. I'm getting quite nifty with the ol' flat irons, hey?

Here I am on Saturday with my shiny straight hair, sitting next to my fave cousin, Lynette at her niece's 1st birthday party. What did we ever do without flat irons, hey girls?
I tell you what I'd be doing... I'd be sitting there on that sofa with a fuzzy hairline and more hair gel than N'Sync went through in the early years... or later years, for that matter.
GHD for president!!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Sorry for ignoring all THREE of you, my dedicated followers...

... But things have been a little wierd in my world over the past few days? Weeks? Months?
I dunno.
Know how people say they're having a kak day?
Well I'm having a kak life!
And so to put it all in words, I've decided to create a little blog alter ego, - an Eminem to my Marshal Mathers, if you will.
And I'd like to call her The Ranting Bruino.
Those of you who watch the cartoon network as religiously as I do would know that on Sheep In The Big City there's a character called The Ranting Swede, who basically takes a spot on a stage and mouths off on the totally unrelated, arb sh1t that hacks him off. See him in the pic? Cute, hey?
I wrote my first Ranting Bruino "rant" a few days ago, but I haven't published it. I'm one of those people who's always thinking about the consequences of my actions... The ramifications! The ripple effect! I gotta consider my conscience. Will I be able to sleep at night? Will I be able to look myself in the mirror tomorrow? Or will I have to avoid all reflective surfaces until I get distracted and I forget?
Typical libran, I guess. (Scales of Justice, Do unto others, etc etc etc.)
Not everyone is made that way, I guess. And those are the people who are giving me all the ammo I need to hop on my ranting soap box and give it hell, lately.
I'm not going to publish the first one that I've written just yet. I might write a bunch, jumble them up and print them randomly, - purely to protect the identity of the so-called "innocent". (Snort!)
And here comes the best part! To all my fabulous design types out there... I'm looking for a cute cartoon illustration for my Ranting Bruino! It's gotta have elements of me in it, and preferably in a ranting pose, like that of the Swede herewith. I'd like to post the cartoon along with my rants everytime I have one. So GET DESIGNING when you can (*giggle*). Best one wins a bottle of cheap wine, but all will be published for all the world to see!

Friday, July 14, 2006

Ain't it great to be a lady?!

I've just spent some time checking out the new Gucci, Oscar de la Renta, Chanel, Dior and Zac Posen collections on Do take a look if you're into fashion. The Oscar de le Renta collection is just so feminine and elegant. I love it!
Here's a taste...


The chinese really will eat just about everything!
After living in Taiwan for a year, I can honestly testify to the fact...

I blinked! AAARGH!!

... Which means I not only look a little "chunky" in this shot, but totally drunk too!
This is Carla, Tracey, Helen and myself at The July. It was fairly early on, and I was absolutely sober at this point, which is why you can imagine how upset I am at looking totally wasted.
I give up.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time ***** says: Mark Haddon's bitterly funny debut novel, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, is a murder mystery of sorts. Fifteen-year-old Christopher John Francis Boone is mathematically gifted and socially hopeless (diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome), raised in a working-class home by parents who can barely cope with their child's quirks. He takes everything that he sees (or is told) at face value, and is unable to sort out the strange behavior of his elders and peers.
Late one night, Christopher comes across his neighbor's poodle, Wellington, impaled on a garden fork. Wellington's owner finds him cradling her dead dog in his arms, and has him arrested. After spending a night in jail, Christopher resolves--against the objection of his father and neighbors--to discover just who has murdered Wellington. He is encouraged by Siobhan, a social worker at his school, to write a book about his investigations, and the result--quirkily illustrated, with each chapter given its own prime number--is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.
Haddon's novel is a startling performance. This is the sort of book that could turn condescending, or exploitative, or overly sentimental, or grossly tasteless very easily, but Haddon navigates those dangers with a sureness of touch that is extremely rare among first-time novelists. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is original, clever, and genuinely moving: this one is a must-read. --Jack Illingworth, --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
I say: If there’s one book you read this year, make it this one! I found it strange to get into at first, almost like you’re reading a doctor’s report on someone, but once I understood it, I couldn’t help but lose myself in the story. The Curious Incident shows us how weird it is to be us, “normal”, when you look at our behavior through the eyes of someone who everyone else would consider to be “weird”.

My horse finally won!

Three cheers for number 9, “Eye of the Tiger”, the winning horse in the 2006 Vodacom Durban July! I couldn’t believe it! I never have any luck with gambling, so when I placed my bets on number 9 (because that’s my lucky number and my cat, Beena is part tiger) I never thought I’d see any money from it. In fact, my horse from the year before might still be running the 2005 race as I write this! I put about R30 on him and made R164... YAY!
A great big THANK YOU goes out to my mom for getting us the outstanding tickets to the SABC tent. And thanks, SABC, for getting me totally trashed on Johnnie Walker, stuffing me full of chocolate mousse, and playing the most ROCKING tunes around. I felt no guilt scoffing all that chow and knocking back the Johnnies when all I did was dance, dance, dance! What a great workout.
On the down side, The July was so packed (±50 000 people!) that I couldn’t get to my friends scattered all over the place. I stepped out of the tent at one point to move around and check out the fashion, and couldn’t get back in for almost half an hour! People were pushing and shoving. Argh! I hate crowds.
My dress was a success. No wardrobe malfunctions, thank goodness. And I even managed to get the odd glance from a couple of hotties in the tent – BONUS!
Mom and I were pretty wasted by the time we got home. All in all, a wonderful time at a wonderful event.

Friday, June 30, 2006

It's that time again

... Time for the Vodacom Durban July, the biggest annual horseracing event in the country, and one of the most elegant, over-the-top events on the South African calendar. Every fashionista and glamour-girl will be there to strut their stuff in their very finest creations, the champagne will flow pretty much all day long… Oh yes, and there’s also the really amazing horse race to crown it all. (Note: I’m not really into horse racing. I’m still not sure about the whole ethical thing. But I do think that horses are just beautiful and this is a great opportunity to see some of the finest horses in the world!)
This year’s theme is “Baubles, bangles and beads”, and this is the “poem” that Vodacom posted on the race website ( to invite people to dress up according to the theme. The copy made be vomit ever-so-slightly – I don’t think I’ve ever read something so badly written! – but at least you know that the theme is all about. Here it is:

It’s baubles, bangles and beads,
Sequins, crystal, diamonds and pearls.
It could be bling! Show that ring!
Hey! Hey! Hey! Diamante.

Raid the loft – something soft.
Styles meet – marcasite!
Beau-ti-fy, tit-i-vate.
Pret-ti-fy, dec-o-rate.

Do not worry about the cut or cloth,
No panic about the seam or stitch.
Don’t tell that it’s Chanel or Shopwell,
Just take your “fave” and make it rave.

Adorn, enhance,
Catch the judges’ eye.
Dress it up,
At the Vodacom Durban July.

GAG!!! “Pret-ti-fy”?!?!?!?!?!? Anyway… This year I’ll be going as my mom’s date, and we’ll be in the SABC tent, which promises to be very nice. (I’ll also be sneaking off on occasion to my best friend Gail’s tent – The Hardy Boys – where I’m sure the party is gonna be rocking from first thing in the morning! Heh heh heh! Gail, keep some shooters warm for me, babe?)
Last night was “dress-rehersal-night” for my dress, hair and makeup, and much to my delight, everything looked really beautiful. It fits! That’s all I wanted! I’m going very African this year, in a skirt and top in a similar style to the red dress in the pic. But, I’m going with earth tones – greens, browns, rusts, mustards, reds, etc – and I’m pulling it all together with wooden African beads and bangles. Should be nice, hey?
Look out for an update on Monday, on how it all went down.
Wish me luck… No wardrobe malfunctions! Crossed fingers!

Fashion designed by Sfiso Mthethewa.
Pic and event logo taken from

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Virgen del Carmen

So there I was just messing around on the net and I discover… this! It’s the Virgen del Carmen. How cool is that?! I just love icons and religious art stuff so I was blown away to find something with my name attached. Read on to find out more about her… To understand why the Virgen del Carmen should be held so dear […] we need to go back to the Old Testament. Downshifting in his old age, the prophet Elias retreated to a cave in Mount Carmelo near Haife (Israel). Many centuries later, hermits following in Elijah's footsteps asked for the protection of the Virgin Mary of Mount Carmelo - the Virgin of Carmen. Stella Maris, as she was also known, was soon adopted by mariners and fishermen everywhere as their patron.

In Peru: Four hours from Cuzco, in the town of Paucartambo, thousands of devotees hold festivals in honor of the Virgen del Carmen, known locally as Mamacha Carmen, patron saint of the mestizo population (Webster's dictionary defines mestizo as "a person of mixed blood; a person of mixed Spanish and Amerindian blood."). The gathering, that raises the curtain on these days of celebrations is held in the main square, where troupes of musicians play their instruments while richly dressed choirs sing in Quechua. The setting gives way to a series of ingenious choreographies that portray events in Peruvian history. For five days, dance companies in various costumes (Doctorcitos, Waca Waca, Sarjas) take to the streets to accompany the Mamacha throughout the entire procession through the main square, the church and the city streets. On the main day, the virgin is borne aloft in a procession to bless those present and scare away demons. The dancers take to the housetops, performing daring gymnastics, showing off their colorful Inca and colonial garb. At the end of the procession, war is waged on the demons, from which the faithful emerge in triumph. Finally, the gathering ends up in the cemetery to render homage to the souls of the dead.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

My Hluhluwe Getaway - Day 4

I don’t normally sleep in the car if we’re going long distances, but this time I was officially pooped. Mom, dad and I got out of bed, packed, got all our stuff into the boot of our car and sauntered down to the dining room for our last breakfast at the Hluhluwe Hotel. Everyone was tired and cheerful but kind of sad to say goodbye… So we didn’t. We sorted out our bill, which is always a mission, and hit the road, stopping at a fabulous arts and crafts place with an African art gallery called, Ilala Weavers. I got a really nice pair of bead earrings there. (That reminds me! Why haven’t I worn those yet?!) It was my gran’s birthday, so I called from the car to wish her, promising to make a batch of crumpets for her and her mates later on in the week, and after an hour or so we made our final stop, an awesome arts and crafts place on the side of the freeway. From the road, you could never have guessed how huge the place was, so when we eventually walked around, what should have been just a quick stop, turned into an hour! This pic really doesn’t do it any justice. I managed to pick up some beautiful beads and a stunning bracelet for The July (the theme is “Beads, Bangles and Baubles” – or something like that) and we were on our way.
I had decided to wear one of my new African skirts that I bought in Hluhluwe on Day 3, and the compliments kept rolling in. So I’ve decided that’s definitely the one I’ll be wearing in 2 weeks to South Africa’s biggest and most elegant annual horseracing event. I might just jazz it up with some other elegant stuff I’ve been hiding in my cupboard.
I must’ve been out-for-the-count for at least 2 hours, because when I opened my eyes we were pulling into my neighbourhood.
It was nice to be home and to see my brothers and Beena. Looks like she really missed me too. She slept in my bed for two nights after we got back, - something virtually unheard of, seeing as I’m a kicker and she prefers to sleep in the boys beds where she won’t get the boot.
It took me two whole days to recover. I basically walked around in my pajamas for two days, unpacking on day one and catching up on some tv on day two.
And that’s my holiday in a huge nutshell.
Would I do Hluhluwe again? Most definitely! Although just driving through St Lucia on the way to our boat ride, I think that would be more to my taste… On the water. Quant little restaurants, shops and pubs. A really laid back vibe. Yeah! I’m looking into St Lucia for the next round...

My Hluhluwe Getaway - Day 3

Day three started off with a full breakfast – AGAIN! (Aside: The only good thing about a dinner-bed-and-breakfast arrangement is that you skip having a heavy lunch.) We missioned around Hluhluwe for a bit, where I managed to find something ethnic to wear to the Durban July, and then we relaxed around the pool. I seemed to be the only one longing for some down time with my book, so I skipped the book and joined the gang, nibbling on Aunty Maureen’s mince pies and making sure Tatum doesn’t do a swan dive into the pool. I also managed to wander around for a bit with my camera, pretending to take some arty pics. Here’s one of them. I call it, “Blue sky through really big tree”. Heh!
Our last planned activity for the holiday was our visit to the cheetah project. Those for you who know ANYTHING about me will know that I love cats, so to stand less than a meter away from a wild cheetah while she waits for her dinner was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I’ll never forget it! The thing that got me the most is how much my own little Sabrina (Beena) has in common with them. Big cat, or little domestic cat – the feline instincts are there. At one point, the female cheetah grew tired of waiting for her meat while the game ranger told us about the project, so she stopped jumping around and sat with her back to the game ranger, pretending that she didn’t care about the huge chunk of meat sitting just three meters away from her. When Beena’s tired of begging, she does the same thing! They both peep over their “shoulders” now and again to see if you’re giving in or not and then pretend to ignore you again. I loved every minute of it!
The dinner wasn’t all that nice this time, with the hotel forgetting to keep a table for us, and the food not being up to scratch. But we didn’t let it put a damper on our weekend. On the whole, it was a great experience. I believe that this was the first time the hotel had ever advertised this promotion, and I really don’t think that they were prepared for the number people that descended on them. However, they did their very best to make us comfortable, and to be honest, I think they did very well in the face of possible disaster. I’m sure that the next time the put a good deal on the internet (and a couple of flyers in the mailbox) they’ll be better prepared for the hungry, demanding guests that attack the place.

My Hluhluwe Getaway - Day 2

Day Two started with a 3 hour game drive around the Hluhluwe Game Reserve. We all got together in the parking lot at 6:30am with our jackets and a few blankets (included in the tour vehicle) but NOTHING could have prepared us for the cold. Mid-winter, misty air, whipping past your head and neck at 6:30am in an OPEN game-viewing vehicle is no joke. Please bear in mind that I was still on day 2 or 3 of my flu antibiotics, so I was sure that this cold was going to be the death of me. El then bundled me up in one of his jackets and rolled me up in a blanket, and by the time the sun decided to come out for sure, I was toasty and LOVING it.
Wow! What an experience. I’ve never been on a game drive before so it was all a great adventure to me. We saw three of the Big Five (elephant, rhino and buffalo) plus loads of little duiker, birds, giraffe etc. We sadly didn’t get to see any lion and leopard – that would have been the best! – but any self-respecting cat would NEVER have been moving around in that cold morning mist anyway. Trust me. I know these things. The highlight of it all, for me, was getting to see the hyena. I could never, in my wildest dreams, have imagined how big and ferocious they are. They came right up to the vehicle, one with a kudu leg in its mouth, and gave us the hairy eyeball. Shiver!
Then we had breakfast and a quick game of football on the lawn at the hotel and in no time at all we were off to the St Lucia estuary for our 2hour boat ride. I had to keep reminding myself that we were just three hours from my hometown. St Lucia is a world heritage site with good reason. There aren’t too many places on this planet where could you see a 5day old baby hippo playing in the water, while you sip on a glass of white wine and listen to the gentle waves lapping at the side of the boat. The pic you see is of the sun setting over St Lucia. Breathtaking.
A sumptuous dinner of fresh, steamed salmon and grilled wild boar made it a day to remember.

My Hluhluwe Getaway - Day 1

Mom, dad and I only had to check in at 2pm at the Hluhluwe Hotel, so we decided to run few errands in the morning and then leave home at 11am-ish to be there by about 3pm-ish. We were driving so we made sure that we had enough padkos (mince pies, chicken breadrolls and whisky) and a bunch of cds to keep us going. Three-four hours is a LONG time on the road.
We had a short pit stop just outside Matubatuba, where dad was flabbergasted that he had to pay a buck to use the loo, and a minor detour around to the back entrance of the hotel (the front is under construction), and suddenly we were there at the front desk checking in. Yay!
The Hluhluwe Hotel was every bit as nice as we thought it would be and the rooms were very comfortable. I thought that the bathrooms could’ve used a bit of work, but the rooms themselves were nice. And the dining area, curio shop, lounge, pool area and bar were really nicely done in an African theme – of course.
We popped down to the Boxer supermarket across the street for some junk food for the room and then settled in to wait for the rest of my family to get there.
The rest of that evening is kind of a blur… Heh heh heh.
The rest of the gang consisted of – my dad’s sister, Maureen and her husband Clem, their two kids Shaun and Lyn and their partners (Debbie and El). Shaun and his wife Debbie have two little ones, Liam (5) and Tatum (11months).
Well! One whisky turned into ten whiskies, turned into some wine, turned into a couple of shooters… Groan!
Dad got so wasted he took over the band. It was their first night there and I doubt they’ll take a weekend booking there ever again. Being the musician that he is, dad couldn’t STAND having someone else there on stage hogging the spotlight, so he kept running up, song after song, grabbing the mic (AND a guitar at one stage!) and taking over! The people loved it, but mom and I were mortified. The more shooters the audience sent his way, the more raucous he got, until eventually mom and I packed him off to bed.
The next morning at breakfast, everyone treated him like a celebrity and wanted to know if there’d be a repeat performance later that night. With a filthy glance in dad’s direction, mom and I assured them that there wouldn’t be.

Rich Man Poor Man *****

I think I must be one of the few dorks on this planet who hadn’t read this book yet. And if you are one of those dorks too, do yourself a favour and get your hands on a copy of Rich Man Poor Man by Irwin Shaw. Whenever you mention this book to my folks, their eyes always glaze over with nostalgia and they simply lose it, raving about the tv series way-back-when. I was too little to pat attention when it was on, but I’ve always kind of known somewhere in the back of my mind that this was a really cool thing. So when I found a second hand copy of the book at a book sale for like five bucks, I bought it and put all 600plus pages away on my bookshelf for a day when I really be in the mood. Having nothing but a bunch of suicide novels to read from bookclub this month (don’t ask!) I finally picked it up, and didn’t put it down until I had finished it.
What a book!
No wonder it sold millions of copies and was made into a “major television series”. And if the tv series was half as good as the book, no wonder my parents rank it in their Top 10 All Time Best Ever Tv Experiences.
The plot is a lot like Jeffery Archer’s Kane and Abel. The story follows Rudolf, Gretchen and Thomas Jordache as they grow up and make their place in the world - all their triumphs and sorrows, success and failure. Rudy is the polished businessman, Gretchen the beauty who wants make it big in Hollywood and Tom is the aggressive black sheep who gets thrown out of the family and is left to survive on the strength of his fists in the boxing ring.
Oh man! I say again… What a book!
And what an ending?
I never saw it coming and it left me devastated.
I’ll say no more. Just get your hands on a copy and enjoy all five stars of it.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Now THAT'S what I call 'roughing it'...

I know you probably think that the novelty has worn off...
I can hear you from WAY over here, thinking, “Ja! She’s forgotten all about the blog she started so lovingly, not too long ago.” But I can assure you, you would be absolutely WRONG in assuming such things! I could NEVER forget about you, my dear blog visitors. All three of you will always have a special place in my heart.
The reason that I haven’t been blogging lately, is that I simply haven’t had all that much to say. We’ve been snowed under at work. (One person was on baby leave, one got married and one was never really there to begin with. You know who you are!) So I was left to stress about a lot of stuff. The guys really pulled it altogether, but somebody has to lie awake at night and stare at the ceiling, and as next-in-foodchain, that honored person was lil’ ol’ me.
Those were excuses numbers one through six.
I also had the flu… nay HAVE the flu.
Etc etc and so on and so forth!
Onto the better news…
This weekend I’ll be going away with my folks and my cousins to the Hluhluwe Hotel for four days (and three nights) of African Safari bliss! It’s gonna be very interesting, seeing as (many of you will know) my idea of “roughing it” is having only 6 dstv channels. Eek! Many of you will remember that my motto in life is “Life’s too short to wear ugly shoes”. The second part of that motto pertains to the many invitations that I get to join people on their many adventures. That line goes: “If I can’t wear my stilettos, I really don’t want to go!”
SO! You can imagine my “apprehension” when I discovered that the holiday comes with a free 3hour game drive. (Double EEK!) I LOVE animals, don’t get me wrong! But other than cats, I generally love my animals medium-rare on a bed of sweet potato chips… Heh heh heh! (Cats are safe, ‘cos they’re GORGEOUS!) I don’t do bugs. And I don’t do snakes. Or lizards. Or mud. Or hiking trails. (Cringe!) I walk several kilometers a week – on a treadmill. And my idea of braving “The Wild” is trying to find an organic lettuce in the fresh produce aisle that doesn’t have any worms in! (CRINGE!)
But I really couldn’t have been happier when I checked out the pics of the place on the ol’ inter-web! (Also don’t do computers. Or science. Or math.) It’s beautiful. Just check out the poolside pics… Stunning, hey? So (antibiotics or not!) I will be sipping on cocktails, lounging by the pool (in -10 winter weather!), wearing my beaded Indian wrap skirt, my tan stilettos and my green, safari-inspired jacket.
I hope they have a salon. I might get my hair blow-waved before I go down to Sunday breakfast…

Monday, June 05, 2006

Memoirs (The Movie) ***1/2

Okay... So I've changed my mind!
Go and see "Memoirs of a Geisha" the movie. It IS worth the price of the movie ticket. I thought that the casting was pretty good, except for Sayuri (THE MAIN CHARACTER!), but other than that, the rest of the cast was well suited to the roles. If you're an art director / creative / design type that gets a great big woody when you see a pretty picture, then you should DEFINATELY go and see Memoirs. Each and every shot was so beautifully crafted/directed, they all could quite easily qualify as works of art. For the readers in the house, I have to say that they stayed pretty true to the book. There were a few changes at the very begining and WAY at the end, but nothing that made me go, "Argh!". Memoirs the movie gets three and a half stars from me, even though I was determined to give it a -10.
So there.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Doomed from Day One...

I really enjoyed one of Noodle’s recent posts where she showed off the Playboy cover from the month and year she was born. So I thought I’d try to find mine. “Might be good for a laugh”, I thought.
It’s a big giant butt.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Running with Scissors * or ***** (Can’t decide!) says: The #1 bestseller, Running with Scissors is the true story of a boy whose mother (a poet with delusions of Anne Sexton) gave him away to be raised by her unorthodox psychiatrist who bore a striking resemblance to Santa Claus. So at the age of twelve, Burroughs found himself amidst Victorian squalor living with the doctor's bizarre family, and befriending a pedophile who resided in the backyard shed. The story of an outlaw childhood where rules were unheard of, and the Christmas tree stayed up all year - round, where Valium was consumed like candy, and if things got dull, an electroshock-therapy machine could provide entertainment. The funny, harrowing and bestselling account of an ordinary boy's survival under the most extraordinary circumstances.
Running with Scissors spent over 70 consecutive weeks on The New York Times bestseller list. To date, it has been published in over fifteen countries. A film based on the book is currently in production.
I say: Shag a brick?!?! Could this story be real?? I HATED this book so much. I just wanted to climb into the pages and save this little boy and give him the home and love that he needed so desperately. It is one of the best books I’ve ever read. I couldn’t put it down. Check out to learn more about him. After this book, I’m really struggling to find something else to read. What could possibly follow a story like this?

Smacked **** says: For six years Melinda Ferguson was driven by one motivating force - the next hit. For this, she would abandon her promising film-making career, lose her comfortable suburban home, her husband, her two children and, in a grueling finale to six years of remorseless self-destruction, herself. Rescued from the maw of Hillbrow's drug and prostitution underworld, Melinda not only survived, but recovered to tell this harrowing tale of how an intelligent, middle-class girl from Joburg hits rock bottom, face first, and claws her way back to redemption.
I say: Maybe it’s because I know people who’ve battled with dwelms (and lost?), maybe I know what it is to be around alcoholics, maybe it’s because I know there’s a very VERY fine line between being “a party girl” and a sad slave to chemicals… I don’t know what it was. But this book really spoke to me. I don’t think she’s an awesome writer. I don’t think she’s trying to be particularly clever with words or language, but my GOODNESS, what a story! It will make you think twice about trying that harmless little first pull on a joint…

Memoirs of a Geisha ****

Memoirs of a Geisha is coming out on circuit soon, so I’m sure that many will skip the book and go straight to the popcorn, technicolour version. But that would be sad! Maybe it’s because I lived in the Far East for a while (a shout out to my little peeps in Taiwan – NEE HOW MA!?) or maybe it’s because I seem to gravitate towards cool stuff from that part of the world, but whatever it is, the story just felt real and believable to me. I know a little about the culture, so I could see how this could have happened to girls in Japan, back in the day. I enjoyed letting the few Japanese words in the book roll around in my mouth – feels nice – and the landscapes, characters and wardrobe were simply stunning. (Boy, those geishas sure know how to throw on a kimono or two, hey?) Anyway. Don’t make Ster Kinekor / NuMetro rich this month. Read a book instead. Your brain will thank you for it someday.

The Bonesetter's Daughter ***1/2 stars

Okay... So I've dished the dirt on book club, ie. I've told you about all the drunken debauchery and virgin sacrifices, but I've only alluded to the "literary discussions and sh1t" that goes on. So to prove to you that I have in fact read a couple of books this past year, I've decided to do the odd book review on the ones I've enjoyed so far.
(Please note! I have read more than just the couple of books I’ll be raving about every so often. It’s just that I thought I’d review the ones that really meant something to me. So there!)
The first, The Bonesetter’s Daughter, is the kind of “standard favourite” you would expect to find at any decent book club. It’s the book equivalent of a “chick flick”, but I gotta say, I really enjoyed it. In the first third of Bonesetter, I thought that maybe Amy Tan had lost her mojo, and was trying to bore me to death, or at least lull me into a coma so I’d never be able to tell anyone how bad the book was… until! Kah-boom! She whacks you with a story so rich, sad and incredible, you really can’t put the book down until you know it’s all gonna be okay. I think that maybe I didn’t enjoy the first part because I really couldn’t identify with the character of Ruth, an Asian-American who finds her old, eccentric Chinese mother to be an embarrassment to her in the ultra-slick, super-western world of America. The mom is very secretive about her past (wanting to protect Ruth from her sad story) so you could say that maybe Ruth doesn’t understand her mother and that’s why she pushes her away. But when her mother writes her story down for Ruth to read, Ruth is too busy (or lazy?) to have it translated and the mother’s story lies at the bottom of a desk drawer until she eventually starts to get sick, and Ruth (“I might lose my precious mom – WOE IS ME!”) finally decides to learn what her mother is about. (Lazy cow.) Anyway! If it were in dvd format, I would skip the Ruth bits and stick to the mom’s story, which is just… just… Trust me! Really REALLY amazing. So read it!

Mother culture.

Instead of hanging around the house all Sunday and getting wasted (the way we normally do!) we decided to do something special – especially since it was Mother’s Day, etc. So we packed a picnic basket and bundled my gran into the car and drove off to the Botanic Gardens. The Mr Price Music at the Lake concert was on, with the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra playing. Despite the park hotting up to what felt like 40degreesC (and one too many waltzes!) we had a really great time. The place was packed! We were lucky to get a nice spot near the stage, even though there was no shade. I’d do it again, for sure. My mom had a blast and my gran was beaming. That’s what it’s all about hey? - happy moms and grans on Mother’s Day.

Take me drunk. I'm home!

What a great Friday night!
It was my best mate, Noodle's birthday, and man! What a jorl.
I got home from work thinking that I'll just have a couple of glasses of wine at the birthday dinner. I had just enough time for a shower and a brief session in hair and make-up before I had to leave the house, but as I walked in the door my folks cracked open a bottle of scotch, and it pretty much went horribly wrong (or so-very right? - I'm not sure...) from there. I had 2 (double?) shots while getting dressed. (Even though I knew I was going to KILL my diet at Cafe 99 and had been starving myself the entire day, I made sure I had something to eat with the scotch, or else it would have been way, WAY worse I'm sure.) I was fine on the drive over to Silverton Road, but as I swerved into my parking bay, something funny happened. I instantly got horribly, badly, insanely, crikey-what's-going-on-herey WASTED! I hobbled up to the restaurant carrying all the gifts and took my place with Noodle and Maria. We ordered a bottle of wine and the night got off to a boozy start! Eventually everyone rolled in and soon there was no more place at the table. (What can I say? Noodle's popular.) I think it was the great company? It might have been the loud/fun atmosphere? Or the small portions I kept ordering? Or the fact that we destroyed 2 bottles of wine at the table (one of them was Noodle's birthday pressie, a 1.5LITRE RED!!)? I'm not sure what finally did it, but eventually I had to give in to the fact that I was completely cross-eyed and there wasn't a damned thing I could do about it. A case of tee many martooni's if ever there was one.
Happy birthday Noodle Pops! You're the best.
I love this picture of you, even though it's kind of grainy and fuzzy. Come to think of it, everything I remember about Friday night is grainy and fuzzy. So I guess this picture captures it all really well!

Monday, May 15, 2006

Mama needs a new pair of shoes!

So, do you think I'll get anything from Whiskas for this product endorsement-type-of-pic starring my precious Sabrina? it wasn't too hard to get her to sit next to the box, 'cos trust me, she sees that purple packaging and loses it everytime! I can barely get the little sachets open and pour them into the bowl without spilling it all over the place - Beena gets so excited waiting for her chow, that she manages to knock everything over in her path. This can be particulary tricky at 3am, after stumbling out of bed, eyes still closed, trying not to wake the family up, and trying not to step on her tail...
Are there any Whiskas brand managers in the house? I think it's time Beena gets a job.
Oh well...

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

We had a big meeting at work yesterday...

Nobody at the meeting looked like this.
I think that's quite sad.

Behavioral Issues

This is a picture of my child sitting behind the dstv decoder, mnet decoder and hi-fi thing at home. There are loads of wires back there, so you can imagine my concern. She seems to do this when we have people over (at HER house - how DARE they?!), or she wants to get my attention, or it's cold, OR she's in a not-so-nice mood. There used to be a time when she was a little "slimmer" that it bothered me, but not too much. Now that she's... erm... well... a little more "voluptuous", I am very concerned! 'Cos every time she wants to jump down again, she drags half the equipment with her! It's a good thing I've been there to catch the stuff before it hits the ground, - still my mom (the REAL owner of the house) is not amused, with good reason, I think you will agree. I've tried The Stern Talk and The Look of Utter Disappointment, but neither have worked.
My brother, Brendan, has tried to perform an exorcism, but I think maybe that was a step backwards. (I'm not sure we had the right equipment?) I had a friend whose kitty was chewing on her tail (anxiety attacks) and had to see a kitty shrink here in Durban. I don't think it's reached that stage yet, but I might be getting there slowly. I wonder what the kitty shrink will prescribe. I don't like anti-depressants. I was miserable trying to get off them the last time.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Well done, Kim!

Book Club was hosted by my friend, Kim, last Thursday, and it was AMAZING! In fact, it's right up there with my very first time - at BOOK CLUB that is! Candice was the host, and for dinner we had her dad's pumpkin/butternut lasagne. It was the creamiest, yummiest, most crave-worthy dish I'd enjoyed for a long, LONG while. And then came Kim, with a bottle of red wine so big, it could sink a fairly large cruise ship! And boy did I get sunk! By the middle of the evening I was slurring and by the end I was cursing and guffawing like a common fish wife. Not at all attractive. Especially when you consider that my book club actually READS books. We really do talk abut actual books that we've read. Granted that roughly one hour of the actual ±4hours we're together is really spent on books, we still do READ and ANALIZE literary sh1t. So you can imagine. (I hope Kim won't be getting thrown out of her building any time soon.) The chinese stir fry was GREAT, even though I didn't quit my yapping long enough to put away as much as I normally can, but it was the sweets that really did it. Shortbread, kissed with a layer of caramel and smothered in chocolate. Well all lady-like reserve went out the window. I had TWO there and had her wrap up another 2 for the road. Giggle!

"Spoiling" is my favourite thing...

My cousin Lynette has just come back from a holiday in Cape Town, and while she was there she picked up this beautiful bracelet for me. Cute, hey? It was a totally unexpected, man.
PLUS my prison b****, Gail, bought me the most stunning bellydance costume, EVER! I didn't take a pick of that one yet... Watch this space. It's stil a little "snug" right now, but it's the perfect colour for my skin. Thanks, Gail!
I love spoiling. If there's anyone out there, take note: Feel free to spoil me ANYTIME!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Oh, sweet heavens above!

How is a woman supposed to concentrate when this kind of blatant teasing is going on?!? Looks like my Joaquin is going the right way for a good spanking. And what kind of girlfriend would I be if I didn't oblige?

Friday, April 28, 2006

The Space Ship Has Landed

... next door to me!
When I left home yesterday morning to visit my cousins in HIllcrest, my street was peaceful, calm, quiet... Yes, one could go so far as to call it the very picture of tranquility. As I got into the car I got the faint scent of Indian incense in the air, but didn't think much of it. Must be the neighbours blessing the new day with a manthra or two.
Drive to my cousin's. Eat. Drink. Laugh. Drink. Eat. Drink. Drive home.
And there it is. The Mother Ship, parked right next door to me.
Turns out my neighbour, Praveen, is getting married... again. The first wife couldn't put up with him being such a mommy's boy, so she left a couple of times. And then eventually she just stopped coming back. In no more than a few months he had hooked up with a new girlfriend and the wedding talk started. Wife Number Two is just out of high school and he's pushing forty. There's something like 18 years between them. It's all very interesting... But hey! I say to each thier own. In fact, to quote Ron Burgundy I say, "When in Rome!"
I do start to get a little twitchy however, when I come home to find their entire house covered in lights and my bedroom is directly next to their house. I am approximately 8m from the big, red flashing Om sign.
You know. Sometimes I just feel so, so tired.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

And the Oscar goes to…

(Drum roll please!)
... Eric Gabriel (my dad), for being a guitarist in the musical "Forever Home", and (later that same night) the Publicity Award for selling the most tickets to the show.
But let me begin at the beginning, a very good place to start. It was a dark and stormy night. Father Danka (I think that's how you spell it?) and Father Merlin (like the wizard… I KNOW!) were talking about writing a modern musical about The Prodigal Son, or one of them had SEEN a modern musical about The Prodigal Son, or one of them had lost a script for a modern musical about The Prodigal Son that had been sent to him by a friend from overseas… Something like that. The story gets fuzzier everytime they tell it. Anyway. Father Merlin goes off and writes his own version of the play, complete with his own musical score.
(Aside: Personally, I thought that the script was a little too loose and I don’t think this priest should be writing music ever again. But I TOTALLY love the reasons that he did it, and the effect that it had on the young people involved. The point of it all was for the St Annes’ youth to put on a play during Lent, reminding people – and themselves – that it’s never too late to turn back to God, even if you may think that you’ve gone too far with gangs, drugs etc. It kept these teenagers off the street and gave a few young people a couple of moments in the spotlight. There were these two young rappers in particular, that were just so talented and I can only imagine what those moments in the spotlight have meant to them. Growing up in Sydenham and witnessing the rough stuff that’s going on around them, this taste of celebrity might be the push they need to try to pull themselves out of it all and go for something bigger and better. So, yeah. There were times when I found myself hissing an impatient sigh, but I had to be encouraging since I knew The Big Picture. Dad has been in other productions that were more “polished” but not any less important that this one.)
The play ran for a few weeks leading up to Easter at the Maris Stella school hall (all proceeds going to charity) and last Saturday (22 April 2006) Father Merlin hosted a little thank you / “Oscars” party for the cast, crew and their families at the St Theresa’s hall. On the table, waiting for us, were some yummy finger foods and some polystyrene plates/cups that had mom and I in a fit of giggles. She knows I can be a real snob sometimes, so she and dad smuggled some real glasses in with our bottle of scotch. I’m notoriously bad when it comes to cutlery and crockery. At traditional Indian weddings, it’s still an “in-thing” to eat without cutlery. I’ve been known to carry my sterilized fork in a plastic bag with my serviettes – all neatly rolled up in my beaded evening bag. Sorry! I just can’t master eating with my fingers! And I generally hold on to a clean plastic cup for them to serve my dessert into. (Normally, dessert is slopped onto your plate right after you’ve finished your breyani and dhall, so you end up getting dhall mixed into your sweets… Yuck! Hence my extra clean plastic cup for dessert.) Don’t get me wrong! It’s all part of the eating-off-a-banana-leaf tradition that makes Indian weddings so cool. I just happen to know how I like things arranged on my plate, and in what order I’m going to devour them. (I’m getting quite set in my ways lately. Must be the lack of […]. You fill in the gaps – fun/sleep/male “companionship”… Whatever.)
Aaaaaaaaaanyhoo. The evening kicked off with some entertainment in the form of a gumboot dance performed by a group of boys from the St Theresa’s Home, and an OUTRAGEOUS dreakdance routine done by three boys calling themselves “Naughty Tsotsti” – I think they were also from the home. Then there was a jazz piano performance by, I-think-his-name-is, Melvin Peters. He’s supposed to be this famous pianist guy, who’s won a bunch of scholarships and traveled the world etc. He was good, but his speech was so long, he had me trying to slit my wrists with the plastic fork on the table. Yawn. And then they gave Father Merlin the mic and he called everyone up - individually! – to receive their awards. It took a while, but the kids deserved the special attentions, and dad lapped it up!
Here are a couple of pics… The infamous polystyrene cups. One of dad’s awards and part of the crowd.
I got pretty wasted on the scotch we were swilling under the table. And we eventually went home, finding out a couple of meters down the street that we had driven off with the boot wide open. (Note to self: Stop getting wasted at church jorls. No wonder you can’t find yourself good Catholic husband!)

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Separated at Birth

Am I wrong?
I don't think so!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


Hey gang!
Sorry about the Joaquin post coming up ten BILLION times!
I was having technical issues the day that I posted it - the TBWA system, need I say more? - so when I evetually checked the next day, it had been posted like THREE TIMES instead of ONE, like any sane person would do things. I've also removed them in my "edit posts" section, but for some reason they're still on the actual site... GROAN!
So apologies!
I hope you like Joaquin too, otherwise seeing his mug this many times might be a tad frustrating... heh heh heh!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

So in love right now...

Okay. So there I was minding my own beeswax on a Monday morning, when my cousin Lynette smses me to ask if she's gonna see me at the Robbie Williams concert later that evening. Little did I know that my life was about to change... FOREVER!
I knew that he'd be coming around that week. I'd forgotten that it was that very Monday. And for some weird reason, (forgive me Robbie!), I just wasn't amped to go... I KNOW! What was I thinking, right? So I called my mom up at work to ask if she was still able to hook us up with the comps that some friends in the ad industry were threatening to send our way for MONTHS. A couple of calls later... I WAS GOING TO SEE ROBBIE... LIVE!!
Got home. Got dressed. Prayed that the rain would stop. Packed our rain stuff just in case and drove (break-neck speed) to the stadium. We got there just in time to catch Freshly Ground, who were so freakin' awesome I can't actually get it down in words, and then we waited... And waited. Everyone else got rained out, but mom and I were prepared. We were comfortable, but my heart was beating faster and faster as the hour dragged on. Finally, with a crash-boom-bang-KAHPOW, Robbie was there and time stood still!
If I never get to see another concert for the rest of my days, believe me when I say - I'll be just fine thank you very much! Every wink, every naughty smile, everytime he turned around so I could see his bum... EVERYTHING was all just for me!
I've been having a Joaquin Phoenix thing for a while now... But I gotta say... OHMIGOD! I've got to be forgiven for perving Robbie BAD! He's divine...
(The stage shot is from my kak camera phone, and the Robbie closeup is courtesy of my mate, Annelie Strydom.)