Thursday, September 18, 2014

Pure fact

If, like me, you have quite a busy life, you may not be interested in absorbing unnecessary information. I, for one, hate seeing some long winded joke appear in my mailbox, because it is just going to waste my time. The very least time it may waste, is the time it takes to the delete the bloody thing, but more than once, curiosity has got the better of me, and I've waded through some cobbled together narrative, only to be hit with the feeblest of punchlines. Yes, in the end the man discovers his wife was just his 12 year old son in a wig, and his real wife died two years ago. Fucking hilarious, but may I please continue with my pressing business? Thank you.

I get just as annoyed by chain letters, online petitions, urban legends, and lists of shorter (yet still unfunny) jokes. I don't want this unwelcome imposition on my consciousness, and I don't have the time to entertain other people's whimsy. If you want to tell someone joke, go and find the village idiot, and if you want to smell the flowers alongside the road of life, do it on your own time, and don't bother telling me about it, because I won't care a jot.

One thing I do delight in receiving, however, is factual information. My father once told me that a fact is like a lump of coal - solid, carbon based, and it burns brightly in the darkness. Compared to fact, whimsy and humour are like damp pinecones. Bloody useless. With a body of knowledge built on undisputed fact, a man may argue flawlessly, assured that he is more right than any callow dissenter. Armed with fact, wars can be won, and enemies crushed. A fact a day keeps the bible away, my grandfather used to say. He was a naval man, and did not gladly suffer a fool. He lived and died by the fact.

I've taken the liberty to go ahead and scour my email inbox, and pluck out the best facts I could find, for your perusal, and the embroadening of your mind. I have decided to do you this kindness, because today I am feeling benevolent. Don't hesitate to soak in what you can, because my mood won't last, and I'll probably beat you for trying to steal my thoughts.

Hier gaan ons (see what I did there?):

Boo hoo.

1. If you record a man's groan, and then play it backwards, the closest sound you will hear to it is the call of a barn owl.
This one is for my dead homies.

2. Up until the 1970s, rural Cambodians believed that it was bad luck to cross a street without offering up a prayer to their ancestors. This ritual prayer involved the wearing of a ceremonial blindfold, which was to be worn for at least 10 minutes, including the crossing of the street itself. This practice caused so many accidents, that the government erected over 10 000 foot bridges over the next decade.
For queen and country.

3. Earth worms can travel up to 5 kilometers in a night, but always return to their central burrow with an offering of high mineral soil for their queen.
This prick doesn't care what anyone thinks.

4. By abandoning the afterlife concept of purgatory, the Catholic church opened themselves to numerous law suits, including one from Donald McClucheon from Iowa, who is charging the church for effectively relegating his deceased mother to oblivion for all eternity. The suit asks for the official reinstatement of purgatory, and $50 million for damages to his mother's soul.

5. Prince Harry, of the British Royal Family, was born with an extra toe on his left foot, which was removed at birth. In medieval times, this would have marked him as a "witch prince" and he would have been burnt at the stake, or banished from the empire in secret. As a nod to this superstition, Harry has added the serpent to his own personal crest.
More nutritious than KFC.

6. In Spiderman issue #776, Spiderman eats an actual fly for the first time, and then remarks "Yuck. I like their powers, but I sure as Hell don't like their cuisine!".
Woolf celebrates another bestseller in her own inimitable style.

7. Famous author Virginia Woolf suffered from a mild allergy to sunlight, and would not leave home without her parasol. Often wrapped from head to toe in a coat and a scarf to protect her from the harmful rays, she admitted that her condition was the inspiration for her famous poem "Woman clothed in darkness shall flee every man".
Like and share if you know someone who recently lost the battle against gravity or who is still fighting gravity.

8. There are several locations on the equator, where geographical anomaly causes gravity to intermittently double in strength. This phenomenon has caused several ships to sink, and famously, the zeppelin, Queen Anne's Heart, to fall from the sky, during the 1925 international cross Atlantic aeronautical race.
Old habits die hard.

9. In ancient Egypt, farmers used to masturbate into a carved wooden bowl, called a "kamet", and then sprinkle the seed over their fields, to ward off evil spirits.
Barely legal pawn.

10. Chess is currently sitting at number 43 in a list of the world's most popular games, behind Football, Tennis, and Curling. It topped the list in 1942, after spending the first half of the century in the top 10.

11. During the second world war, the hospital of St Thomas, in Niece, housed an entire British squadron who were infected with leprosy. When the infection started spreading to the nearby town, angry locals burnt the hospital down, killing the soldiers, the entire staff, and 12 other patients.
Beautiful, but lethal.

12. A museum in Amsterdam houses the largest ever collection of human skin flakes, weighing in at a mighty 352kgs, housed in a glass silo, and only ever handled by trained staff in environment suits, due to the carcinogenic properties of the skin, if inhaled.
Worse than Hitler and Donald Trump combined.

13. Sting spent over $100 million on purchasing a crumbling Buddhist temple on a mountain side, which he then had restored, to serve as a private retreat for him, his wife, and a few friends. The temple now stands just as it has for the last 500 years, unaltered, apart from a single Dr Pepper dispensing machine, as this is Sting's favorite soda.
Burn the witch.

14. Velcro was an offshoot of a series of British army experiments trying to develop shoes that would allow soldiers to walk on walls and ceilings during combat.
Lose weight. Ask me how.

15. Between shooting Spiderman 2 and Spiderman 3, actor Toby Maguire put on a little weight, prompting director Sam Raimi to insist he start an exercise routine to shed the excess pounds. After 2 weeks of strict dieting and exercise, the star had actually gained weight, and consulted a doctor, who x-rayed his abdomen. Inside him, the doctor found a 12 meter tapeworm, which had to be surgically removed, and now sits above Maguire's pool table in a fishtank in a room in his New York home.
Ten points to Gryffindor.

16. Convicted murderer Ted Bundy successfully requested a stew made from children's hair for his last meal, because he was convinced the hair would imbue him with magical powers, and he could escape the hangman's rope.
X gonna give it to ya, unless ya use protection.

17. American rapper DMX donated a diamond encrusted gold soccer ball worth $11 million to an african AIDS charity, on the condition that he could use 15 AIDS orphans the music video for the song "Blood of my blood", to dance with a man in a grim reaper costume, highlighting the dangers of the disease.
Good night, sweet ponce.

18. More than 3 people every year die of Narcoasphasia, which is the little known condition of being caught between sleep and waking. This causes paralysis in the sufferers, which leads to their lungs collapsing, and suffocation, even though they are aware of what is happening the whole time.

19. There is enough sand in the Sahara desert to fill a container the size of the moon two thirds of the way. If all that sand were melted to glass, it would be enough for 1000000000000000 wine glasses. All the water in the earth's oceans would only fill half of those glasses.
Christ on a bike? Only if Christ was a lying, cheating sack of shit who ought to be in jail.

20. During the time it has taken you to read this list, at least three people on earth will have given birth to a child that they believe to be the messiah. Two of those children will go on to become substance abusing felons.

I think that is enough for a single day. By now your head must be fat with knowledge, and you will need time to file all these facts in your brainal system. Until we speak again, be vigilant, and live by the fact. It is so much more useful than all the other gumpf people would have you believe

Thursday, July 8, 2010

You know what I hate?

From June 2007, an old, yet appropriate Africans piece. I still hate all these things, in most cases even more than I did a few years ago.

I've been thinking that I should just give this title to everything I write, because no matter how hard I try, a little bit of complaining always seems to slip out. I can only equate this to farting while also suffering from anal seepage. You're just expecting gas, but there is always that little squirt that leaves you slightly uncomfortable, and everyone looks at you like you're a monster. I find I have a similar problem with toilet humour. No matter how heartfelt I am trying to be, I always default to smut. I guess it is just the part of my mind that lubricates the creative juices. I believe that most creatively inclined folk are also blessed with antisocial traits, which makes up part of their special characters. I believe that, because the alternative is to believe that I am a 31 year old man who laughs when anyone says "bum". Sad isn't it? But I hate you for judging me. I decided to just write about a few things that I really do hate, because God knows there is an endless stream of crap that we wade through on the road of life, and numerous saboteurs who constitute themselves into stumbling blocks that stand in the way of progress.

You know what I really hate? I'll start with something really obvious, so you can see that I am human, just like you. I fucking hate pedestrians that idly walk into moving traffic as though they are impervious to damage, or are under the impression that a speeding car can come to a complete stop in 5 feet. As much as these stupid cunts piss me off, I do not wish to have a person's death on my conscience. I don't want to see the crying kids, the grief stricken friends and relatives, and be haunted by the spectre of this senseless death for the rest of my life. I try to drive responsibly, but I am only human. I hate the part of myself that just wants to stamp down on the accelerator when I look into those bovine eyes, as some idiot student lazily strolls in front of me as the traffic light turns green. It's like a challenge - "I'm just gonna walk asshole, and what are you gonna do about it?". Of course we have a huge number of pedestrian casualties all year round, but then if these people were aware enough to take notice that, they would probably also be vaguely aware of how much damage a heavy metal automobile can do to a fragile human body, but they're not. They're morons. If I didn't feel guilt, I would never stop, and just chalk it down to natural selection.

You know what I also really hate? Taxis. Everyone who drives hates taxis. Even people who use taxis hate taxis. This is what happens when the lowest form of criminal scum see a gap in the market place, and exploit the working class, so that Mr X can make a fortune off his fleet of battered unroadworthy pieces of shit. And they have the audacity to make themselves to be honest businessmen as well. Crucifixion is too good for them.

You know what I also really hate? My job. This also seems pretty obvious, but there is more to it than that. Not only is it creatively stifling, and bogged down by a lot of bureaucratic garbage, the company I work for has a main client in United Kingdom, with a complex hierarchy, and the attitude that since they are dealing with South Africans, they are dealing with third world peasants who do not understand computers, the internet, and any kind of IT or design related matters. After a long time of corresponding by email with certain persons (during which time I deduced that they were disorganised, and had rather poor taste in design), I got to meet one of the main culprits in person. During my brief interaction, I learned that she was an idiot who couldn't make a decision without a committee, and had barely any computer skills. Having seen an example of her own design work, I believe she had the tastes and talents of a toddler. She is now heading research and development of a multi million dollar software development project, concerning the custom built software that I often used at work. It barely functions, but then that is what I have come to expect. I work alongside great people, but as far as environments go, this one is rather soul destroying.

You know what I also really hate? This is kind of connected to the previous thing. Macs. Macs used to the thing to have in design, and they used to be "cool". You know what else used to be cool? Wearing stupid fucking little plastic dummies round your neck. Given what macs cost in this country, there is no reason on earth to own one, unless you are handed it free of charge. Macs are computers for people who are afraid of using computers, but want to sit in a coffee shop with their laptop open in front of them so that others can see they are funky, and work in the "media", you know, in case the Fall Out Boy haircut made one think they were a student. And what happens when it fucks up? You're fucked basically, because nobody here can fix them. Try fiddling with OS, and you will come away in a deep frustrated rage that will last for days. I've reinstalled Windows on my pc countless times, and have fixed problems with USB, hard drives, and my internet access, by asking friends, and often just battling it out myself. If I had a Mac, I would probably be dead from a brain hemorrhage now. I include Ipods and Itunes under this Mac umbrella as well. As much as I love my Ipod, I hate the fact that the controls are made for idiots, and thus actually hamper functionality. Same goes for Itunes - worst media player, ever, in my opinion. Its only saving grace is that you will probably stop using it sooner or later, because it simply cannot play a large percentage of audio and video formats. Go Steve Job! You cunning cock sucking piece of shit.

You know what I also really hate? People who defend corrupt politicians by comparing them to past politicians. I know Apartheid was evil, and the people behind it were fucking monsters, and I am honestly glad it is well behind us. I was a child during Apartheid, and never fully understood the events at the time. Now that I am politically aware, I can recognise a cunt when I see one, and there are a shitload to choose from, believe me. Because I signal out perennial soft target Manto, doesn't mean I am a racist, or am conveniently forgetting the past. She is the health minister in my country, and as a voter, I am sickened. If she was white, I would be equally as disgusted by her arrogance and her ignorance, as I am now. Just as the wage difference between a policeman and an MP is unbelievable and sickening, the reliance on government privileges that secured ailing and aging Manto an "evil western medicinal procedure" in the form of a liver transplant is sickening, as she promotes the use of nutrition to fight terminal diseases because let's not let the poor put too much pressure on the health budget. One law for rich and another for the poor. I'm sure Apartheid politicians did this all the time, but then our government is supposed to be the leading light of Africa, so really, their conduct should be better than the bunch of embezzling self serving Nazi cunts we had in the past.

You know what I also really hate? Religion. I have said it so many times before, but I need to mention it again. When a person tries to force their will upon another due to the belief in some sort of invisible force that cannot be scientifically explained... can someone explain the difference between this and delusional schizophrenia? Just because a load of people all agree, doesn't make it right. A lot of people agreed on Adolf Hitler you know. Case closed.

You know what I also really hate? People who are in no way self aware. Ok, I don't hate them, but they irritate the shit out of me, because we all have to make special allowances for "x" because they are in a mood, and are acting like the biggest cunt on earth. Then after they've chewed you out over something stupid and trivial, they will graciously forgive you with time, while never admitting why they were actually angry in the first place, and thus the cycle continues. Example A - "X" has had a fight with their partner, and now they are blaming the traffic, the slow service at the pub, and the fact that you don't like their favorite band, for ruining their lives. I have been guilty of this myself, but now I am a bit better, thanks to venting my rage through columns like this one.

You know what I also really hate? My lack of self confidence. I see so many successful things around me, that I am sure I could do better, until the time comes to actually do it, then I freeze up like a deer in the headlights. I still feel like that when I play gigs with my band, even though deep down I can see what I value in the music I make above a lot of other music, I often left feeling extremely insecure when I see other bands playing, even if I would normally dismiss them altogether as derivative or dull. I am a little better than I was, because I can actually get my stuff (be it music, writing, art) out there to a few people, and I can speak to people without being washed over by a wave of anxiety and feeling like they are all staring at me wondering when this insignificant little shit will stop wasting their time. Often I feel like I just want to scream in their faces, but when the time comes, I am always afraid. It makes me absolutely crazy.

You know what I also really hate? Flavours or variants of products that are removed from the market shortly after I have settled on them as my favorite. This happens all the time. Flavours of softdrink, brands of chocolate bars, flavours of Woolworths instant soup, brands of beer.....even items on restaurants menus.... If I wasn't so taken up with the concepts of "the real world" and "being sane" I would swear there was some conspiracy to make my life slightly more irritating. If I ever find the person responsible for the withdrawal of the grapefruit flavour of Just Juice, I will have strong words. Then I'll kill them. Then I'll eat their face.

I'm stopping here, because this is long enough already. I could keep going indefinitely, forgoing sustenance and sleep in lieu of the hate that would nourish me. I don't think it would be that emotionally healthy, and I am sure you are pretty bored at this point, if you are still reading. I promise next week's update will be funny, and full of the usual wit and drollery you are accustomed to. For now, just try to be positive. I am trying it too. My nose is bleeding, but I'm pressing on. Smell the flowers, take a bite of that apple, whistle a jolly tune. There is a lot to live for.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Natural resources

Presented unedited from May 2007, an old "gem" from Africans.

God only knows how fragile our earth is, and how each year we trundle closer to the inevitable cataclysmic shitfest that will see our cursed species wiped from the face of the planet, as a wad of 2-ply dislodges a tenacious winnet. We have our rain forests turned into grazing land to provide substandard beef for obese fuckers in the first world, while we pump pollution into our atmosphere and our oceans. It's a crying shame, and while the world weeps, business men cluster together and laugh, like a bunch of bloated ticks. If serving one's self is the agenda of the human race, then we are doomed, doomed, doomed, unless we can find some new source of food, energy, and living space.

I have identified a hitherto untapped, yet bounteous resource, in the form of the human parasites that live alongside us. Stupid people. People who are barely self aware, yet consume just as much and produce just as much waste as a regular person. People who step out into the street in front of oncoming traffic, because yes, their life is that valuable to them. People whose lives are only separated from those of cattle by their television and the ugly clothes they wear. They eat our food. They breathe our air. They soil our planet, and yet we do nothing. If our complacency is to be our downfall, then let it be reflected that I called for these bipedal flesh sacks to be expunged post haste, and as painfully as possible, because frankly my dear, they make me want to puke.

Should I venture into my local Checkers (on Kloof st) I am greeted by a full compliment of the stupid. They share far more in common with B-movie zombies than they do with thinking human beings, and they slowly drift through pointless lives, acting only on biological urges, rather than anything even a mile removed from an informed opinion. Looking into their eyes, I could swear I've seen more humanity in the eyes of teddy bears and Barbie dolls, and to enter into conversation with them is a fruitless endeavour with a similar effect to swallowing ipecac. We rid ourselves of pests like rats and mice, so why not idiots? They eat far more than tiny animals, and they are basically the hardened clay-like shit clogging up the bowels of a constipated society. Where is our laxative? Are we going to walk around in this state until the earth explodes or something?

I very much doubt it will happen in my lifetime, but I'd like to see the issuing of human licenses, with annual intelligence testing, a bit like renewing a car license, or having regular roadworthy checks. Stupid people would then be declassified, and downgraded to higher mammals. Imagine the possibilities for testing medicines - they have exactly the same biology as we do, but they have minds of pigeons! They could also fill a gap in the crash test dummy industry, be invaluable in clearing dangerous landmines, and best of all, they could be compacted into fossil fuel, and provide us with the very energy they steal from us watching their sport on TV.

Breaking a circuit is not a crime. Stepping on an ant is not a crime. Mowing a lawn is not a crime. What makes stupid people so fucking special? I guess they are pretty well represented in government, because when confronted with the choice between stupid party A and stupid party B, an intelligent person might weep, go postal, or spoil their ballot, whereas a stupid person will smile, mark their vote, because those lies are just as convincing this time around as all those past elections. Were they to be harvested for their meat, their existence would be far more acceptable, but as it stands, the whole scenario is a headache for every person with a functional brain.

As a little addendum to this piece, I just witnessed a car accident from my office window, caused by stupid people. A taxi driver failed to stop at a red light, and ran into a speeding Audi, driven by 2 stupid employees of the nearby Audi garage. As the injured lay on the grass verge while a stupid policeman secured the area with a plastic ribbon. I was left with a feeling of regret that some of those hurt might be intelligent human beings, and the injustice of the whole debacle. How much hurt have stupid people caused? Isn't it time to say "enough is enough!" and say it emphatically. I would like my next pair of leather shoes to be made from stupid hyde, rather than that of a cow, because I believe deep down in my heart that it is the ethical choice.

I think the bottom line is - when does an animal become a person, and vice versa. We feed, clothe, and care for idiots, and all they give back is irresponsible living and mountains of excrement. Isn't it time to take back the planet? Warm yourselves by burning fools, not wood, and use their mushed organs as fertiliser for your garden. They owe us, and the time to collect has arrived.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

National exchange - Strippers for streetkids

Presented unchanged. for your enjoyment is one of my first Africans stories from May 2005.

With global trade booming like never before, and all sorts of trade links being established with countries that were considered our enemies less than 20 years ago, we should see some sort of benefit of all this for the inhabitants of Cape Town, and South Africa in general. Based on the student exchange program, I've been bouncing some ideas around with friends, and have arrived at the flawless plan of exchanging our homeless children for Russian strippers.

I know there are already many eastern European strippers working in South Africa, so just think how many we could bring over if we ran a government sponsored program! The way I see it, it's also a fantastic opportunity for our glue sniffing little ragamuffins to get out of the gutters, and see some of the world. There must be many Russian factories that could use thousands of tiny hands to service their antiquated machinery and whatnot, and there could be an incentive program for them to see their tasks through to completion, rewarding efficient work with potatoes, and laziness with near fatal thrashings. The factory dorms provided would also seem like a welcome change to sleeping huddled in a doorway, which would be quite impossible in Russia anyway, unless one was planning a one way trip to Deathbyexposureville. I can just imagine the sense of pride and identity a runaway boy might get from being a valued member of the workforce, rather than perpetually hungry substance abusing petty thief who would only draw scorn and general suspicion from the working populace.

It may be a tricky program to get off the ground, initially, as the children we would target for exporting may believe they'd prefer to stay, living wild and free on the sun drenched streets of Cape Town, rather than earning their keep in subzero temperatures, on the other side of the planet. I would think that a first batch may have to be coaxed into going, so we could let their positive feedback persuade others to enter the program, although I would certainly not want to hold any child against their will, and no burly thugs carrying sacks and clubs would be employed to round up children off the streets, or pay desperately poor parents for offspring they couldn't support, and I would under no circumstances whatsoever, even entertain the heinous idea of holding a fair for the underprivileged, giving them soda laced with sleeping pills, and bunging the unconscious into the hold of some ship bound for Russia, giving strict instructions to the Captain that any trouble makers be hurled overboard without question. All these things have never even crossed my mind, and at no point during the conception stages of this entire venture, was I sitting at an elaborate Victorian writing desk, stroking my powdered wig with hands clad in fingerless gloves, and cackling to myself. The whole mental image is quite preposterous.

Once the first batch has been posted, pardon my use of that word, but I come from a long line of people who liked to post things, supervisors would be on site, to mark the progress of our young pioneers, and take down any comments or suggestions they might make. For instance, if the first batch were set to work at a munitions factory, in an environment where accidental amputation of limbs is the norm, their request for styles of false leg, and the type of coffin (cardboard or Styrofoam) would be noted, and considered. The happiness of these children would amongst the fifty most important concerns of the program, and anything that would make their time abroad more enjoyable would certainly be taken down somewhere.

The impression one might get at this point, is that South African children might be exploited by such an initiative, but I must insist that there would be a myriad of opportunities for them, that they would never get, living on our streets. No child is going to learn a trade by panhandling, but there are any number of valuable skills one may learn from shoveling phosphorous, mining salt, burying plague victims, digging mass graves, carrying railway sleepers, or any of the other important professions our kids might undertake. I very much doubt that weeks on end sniffing glue and pick pocketing tourists would teach a youngster the correct way to knot a tourniquet to staunch heavy bloodflow, or to chip away the frostbitten section of a hand to prevent gangrene. When they return (after their 6, 9, or 12 year stint) they will have grown up, and will be able to enter our workforce with pride, and bringing with them the dedication and survival skills that they've learnt. I shouldn't wonder if many of them choose to remain in Russia after their tenure is up, having fallen in love with the place, made lifelong friends there, and of course being unable to afford return passage, but where there is a will, there is a way, and with Russia being one of Earth's developing economies, there is always an extra rubel to be made for that special wagon train ticket.

I've been quite focused on one side of the program, and allow me to put this right by talking a bit about the life I envision for the lucky exotic dancers who make it to our sunny shores. They would be granted work permits, and allowed to pursue their passion of dancing naked for the titillation of overweight, visually displeasing, middle aged men, in a climate where an uncovered nose today, means no nose tomorrow, against the backdrop of natural beauty. They would be welcomed with opened arms at our airports, and an agency could be established to place them in a string of government sponsored strip bars, that would replace the cities' unsightly homeless shelters. There would be multiple benefits, as such establishments would raise the class of an area, go some way to prevent the terrible spate of injuries caused by falling off step ladders whilst standing on tiptoe to catch a glimpse of the neighbour's wife in the shower, and of course provide employment for any remaining streetkids, who could carry trays of drinks, buff table tops, and feed the obligatory python that these sort of acts usually feature.

Should such an initiative be instituted by the state, we would see the results promptly, not only on the cleaner, safer streets, but in the many new and exciting night spots around town, where one might sip a glass of wine and watch a beautiful woman dance, happy in the knowledge that one of the less fortunate members of our society is working 16-20 hours a day to make sure she stays, and is been given a hand up and a bed of straw at the same time.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Guidelines for optimising a social event regarding fun, the having of.

I don't often host parties, and when I do, I am usually consumed with gnawing anxiety about my guests' experience. It cuts me deeply that I only live in a small house which can accommodate but a handful of the guests I would like to invite. However, I would like to make any party/event/shindig/hootenanny/wingding memorable and fun for all involved.

Most people would just say provide a buttload of booze and let everyone get hammered, but I have been to enough failed soirees to know that things don't always work out. In my opinion, a well supervised party will be a successful party – everyone will have a smashing time and leave with fond memories.

In an effort to facilitate such at time, and for future events, I have compiled a list of non-negotiable party rules. Enjoy! (That is not a request)

1. No longer than 5 minutes in the toilet at a time - remember that you are not the only guest and the facilities are here to be used by all.

2. Conversation shall be made only about fun, good times, and entertainment related topics. We're here to enjoy ourselves and not worry about poor people, catholics, pollution, or animal rights.

3. Avoid dwelling on the past. It is worth mentioning that dwelling exclusively on good times is expressly forbidden. This brings about the inevitable comparison between previous good times (tempered with nostalgia) and the current good time and inevitably the past wins ("Ooh ooh, at the last party I went to I wasn't beaten on the soles of my feet blah blah blah"). Another side effect of this nostalgia is the possible sudden realisation that compared to the idylls of youth, one's life is now a big bucket of shit, and this leads to sadness and bad times, so STOP IT.

4. The music has been carefully selected for the enjoyment of all guests, but it is possible that a tune or two may not please everybody. There are two courses of action open to you, if you find yourself in this position. Smile and pretend you like it, or start dancing until you grow to like it.

5. Don't hog the crisps - everyone is allocated 3 moderate handfuls, so any Greedy Gerties will be asked to leave.

6. No displays of sad/serious emotions - When people have fun, they don't want to hear about a terminally ill relative or how depressed you are. Smile, chuckle, and laugh as much as you want, but if you frown, I'll turn that frown upside down as I push your sad face into the toilet so you can flush away your tears.

7. Don't hover in the kitchen if the dancing area/lounge is empty. Nobody has fun in the kitchen unless it is impromptu intercourse on the kitchen table. If you insist on hanging around in the kitchen, I will leave a pile of dirty dishes in the sink, so you can keep yourself busy until you feel up to rejoining the revelry.

8. The limits of madness. It's great to have a little zaniness at a party, but things will go badly for everyone if anyone puts even a skin flake over the line I've drawn in my mind. An occasional yell of "Let's paaarty!" or donning a paper hat and blowing a party whistle are acceptable, but hiding my shoes as a prank is not. Too much craziness and I'll be forced to throw you out through the gate, so your body comes out in fat meaty slices on the other side like some old cartoon. How will you update your Facebook status when bergies devour your remains?

9. Don't leave too early or too late. Everyone hates it when some buzzkill leaves an hour after the second guest arrives, because they have to go home and floss their arse or tend to their bonsai or whatever it is boring people do with their time. Just hang loose, grab a brewski, and rhythmically sway to the sound coming out the hi-fi. If you are still in the house several days after the last guest departed, it is time to leave, unless you have signed a contract to serve as either my butler or bodyguard.

10. Just have fun! That's why we're all here, after all. Just make sure you don't smile too much, or smile insincerely, because that makes people ill at ease which will spoil the atmos. If you can't help yourself, please hide your face until the malady passes or you perish from starvation.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Be safe! Part three

More crimes and how to avoid being a victim! I'm too ill to write a witty intro…see part one and part two.

5. Riding the gravy train
If there is a single crime symptomatic of the disgusting moral decline of our society, it is the revolting youthful trend euphemistically dubbed riding the gravy train. Today's degenerate youngsters are not simply content with picking pockets, writing filthy slogans on walls, or scrumping for apples. They want to rot our society from the inside and laugh as we see our hard won values fall. Then they want to piss in our faces.

This trend involves boys and girls, sometimes as young as 4, seducing older men in respected positions of power in order to publicly humiliate them. How many amongst us know a trusted uncle, a kindly old teacher, or even a beloved parish priest, robbed of their dignity with a slickly acted charade? These children can turn their tears on like a tap, and they have no qualms about using their bodies like credit cards to arouse a naïve old chap, tease him, titillate him, and then pop the cork ride the gravy train! Then it's off to brag to their sick little gang about silly, red faced Father So-and-so, and how easily this lonely old man was bullied into unwilling buggery. For shame!

Even though this doesn't affect all of us, it is a good idea to make sure that old men in positions of authority are given our unwavering trust no matter what. It is the whittling of this trust, and ultimately the destruction of the pillars of our collective decency, that these youngsters want. If you know such a man who is accused of inappropriate behaviour by some deviant young person, we all know very well that the only crime they're probably guilty of is caring too much.

6. Identity theft
With the advent of passports, computers and credit cards, proving that we are who we claim has become very important indeed. In olden times when there were fewer names and people were generally of a better quality, any confusion over which of one the village's ten Florians owed you a goat could easily be settled over a flagon of cider and a nice chat. Where have those days gone?

Identity thieves are basically out there to steal your life, but unlike the common killer, they don't always leave you for dead. The methods vary, depending on the skill and criminal imagination of the thief. I heard of one trickster waylaying a man, tying him up, taking his jacket, and merely holding a photograph of the victim's face over his own. He then went to the victim's home and shouted to the family from outdoors that they were all to play hide and seek – they only saw him fleetingly through the front window and nothing seemed amiss. While they hid, the thief emptied the house. How's that for a fuck you dressed as a good afternoon kiss?

These cases unfortunately aren't always that innocent. I read about an incident in which a slim thief actually killed a rotund gentleman and wore his carcass as a suit to fool family and friends. He lived in the victim's house for a fortnight, until all the family's savings had been electronically transferred to an offshore account. He then fled, leaving nothing but a well dressed carcass rotting on the couch.

Identity protection is just not as easy as protecting a chest of gold or a flock of sheep. It takes brains as well as cutlasses or dogs. First thing is to get easily identifiable scars or tattoos – do this today! Then you should develop a series of code words to use with your family and closest friends. If someone wears your severed face over their own, you and your family could be fucked, until your wife realises you haven't said "…of course my own urine is far sweeter…" for more than five minutes. Bam! A twelve gauge pelvic massage for the great pretender and your family fortune remains untouched by criminal (and probably foreign) hands.

That's it for now folks. I'll be back next week with more ways to help you live longer in this fetid swamp of human evil we call home.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Be safe! Part two

My friends, my friends: please forgive me! I've been existing in a new-home inspired funk recently, and I've not had the time or energy to put fleshy digit to hard plastic and continue my safety tips I started in Be Safe! part one.

But enough about me and my problems. It's a fucking jungle out there – a concrete jungle full of law breaking animals who want to steal your shoes and violate your corpse. Want to survive? Read on – these crimes are real and could happen to anyone, hint hint.

3. Fishing scams

As if this country wasn't sick enough already, low life criminal scum have resorted to robbing fishermen of their haul, in many cases leaving them unable to feed their families.

The scam is simple – a group of bandits, either disguised as traveling jesters or fortune tellers, hail a hapless fisherman as he returns home with his catch. They pretend that their cart has a broken wheel, and implore the man to help them repair it. While the good natured fellow sweats away, trying to fix the problem, a member of the group steals his fish and replaces them with wrapped wads of human feces. Once the wheel is fixed, the group thanks the man, and he returns to his home. Only then does he discover his smelly cargo, and the miscreants are long gone!

In order to avoid being duped in this way, simply never stop to help gypsies, clowns, fortune tellers, jugglers, bear baiters, or anyone who looks like they work in a carnival. Since it's 2010, these people should stick out like a sore thumb, but you'd be surprised how many idiots fall for this sort of thing.

4. Driveway robberies

In my last update I wrote about smash and grab attacks that employed enormous primates to empty houses. This week the hot potato is driveway robberies, in which a largish group, or horde, if you will, of savage barbarians literally charge up the victim's driveway with a battering ram and smash down their garage door.

Once they have gained access to the main house, the horde will go on a rampage, stealing silver, slaves, and gold, until their lust for conquest has been sated and they give thanks to Odin, usually by way of animal sacrifice (or the youngest child in the house, if they don't have pets). They then return to their longships (often moored on the Liesbeek River) and head back to their frozen northern wasteland, where the slaves are set to work preparing lavish banquets and serving mead in cups made from animal horns and human skulls.

A fancy alarm system won't really help you if you're being charged down by some lunatic wearing animal furs and carrying a battle axe, so in this case, the best form of defense is definitely an offense. Dig pit traps in your garden and line them with spikes. Construct elaborate and impractical boobytraps that pulp invaders with a giant hammer, and always remember to keep a huge cauldron of oil simmering just above your driveway door. Owning a handgun might also help.

Until next time, keep a calm head on your shoulders, and keep 'em peeled – crime never sleeps and usually only holidays in Spring, to save money before peak season rates kick in.