Saturday, December 27, 2008

"That thing just #$@! on me ... upside down" - Pi

Camps Bay at 8am in the morning and Cape Town is fast asleep. Those that are on the beach are treated to those chilled dolphins/porpoises just cruising up and down the bay. The wind has been pumping though so the water is cold. Still, the dolphins are close in and I expect to see people swimming out to them. Not a soul. The water must be really cold I imagine.
I am down on the beach to play some Sat morning touch rugby. We play hard for an hour and a half or so and then no matter how cold the water, I always just go for a quick dip. The game was good this morning and even though it is only 10am now, it is already hot. As I am heading to the waters edge I notice there are still no people in the water. I get closer and to my surprise it is not as cold as I anticipated. Now I notice the dolphins are still in the bay, moving from South to North. Normally they move deceptively fast and although I knew they were still moving quicker than it appears from the shore, I could still intercept them if they stuck to the course they were on I waded in the the water and swam out to sea. I was not far from shore, just 40m or so and I judged it well. Swimming with my head up every now and again, within about a minute I was right in amongst them. A friendly pod of about 8. They slowed up to see what the strange visitor was all about. Stopping the course they were on for a bit ... they came to play!
I was just an arms length away from the smooth shiny skins that were moving slowly just to my left. I saw a few shadows below me so I ducked under water. The playful little guys were swimming all around and under me. Swimming right at me and then teasingly darting away with fantastic speed and impressive grace. They stayed a few more seconds and then reverted on there slow cruise towards the rocks at the Glen. I was able to swim along with them for a short while. When they went out a little too far and fast I swam back in to shore. The many onlookers and excited dolphin admirers (never met someone who is not one) that were on the beach looked at me strangely as came stomping out of the fresh water, shivering like a dog to get the cold water off my skin. I was just as surprised that none of them had come to join me.

post script: I wonder how many people on the beach that day had dolphin tattoo's on their ankles, lower backs or belly buttons, but did not take the opportunity to swim out to the friendly beauties. About half of them I reckon! Ha ha.

post post script: The quote comes from another beautiful dolphin swim in Plett - about 15 years ago. I was swimming at lookout with some dolphins that were body surfing with us in some fun waves just off The Deck. I am sure there were a good few Hammerhead Sharks around as well. If you are swimming in Plett then there generally are. Well the dolphins were everywhere and it was another awesome experience ...until one swam under me and pooped. The first sign was a whole lot of bubbles - like a naughty boy letting one rip in the bath with his little sister. The bubbles were followed by ... well what farts are generally followed by - shit. Hilarious!

post post post script: Fart is normally followed by shit ...unless you were unfortunate enough to attend SACS where upon you will find you are full of fart, but no shit.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

"Geeez I love good quality Tequila" - Pi

This could work against me. Okay lets not joke it probably going to give me a good hiding. You see I was chatting about Tequila the other day with siblings. I happened to mention that I totally see the merits of good Tequila ... especially when compared to crap Tequila.

Well, as a Christmas gift, the youngest- 'little' Mike - decided to give me the opportunity to test out my brash statement made while safely behind at least a couple of closed doors, on the other side of a good few busy roads and generally not within arms reach of a good bottle of Tequila.
That is no longer the case as a world class bottle of the buzzingly tantalising Nemesis of so many sits patiently on my desk; the result of me ending up on the receiving end of a generous Christmas gift from Mike to me. I decided to place it in a bowl of some incredibly addictive red liquorice (all the way from Oz. Apparently they have better liquorice farms), now when ever I grab for it I have the option of the liquorice instead of Mexico's favourite export. The red stuff in disappearing fast though. I'll let you know how it goes. The last time I delved ... I ended up in boxing boots and an American stars and stripes speedo. Spicy.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

"Twas the night before Christmas when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse" - Henry Livingstone

The most incredible night of my year has consistently been that of Christmas Eve. The reason being I think a combination of the mysterious and exciting energy that abounds at that time; and the simple, honest and powerful way the experience of Christmas was introduced to my elder brother Greg and I in the late 70's and early 80's -mainly through the special book 'The Night Before Christmas'

To this day I feel a tickle and a laugh in my belly as the visions of sugar plums dance in my head. The memories are so strong from the book my parents used to read from, that I think they are not in fact memories at all, but rather experiences as I really do live them over all over again. No videos of Whoopi Golderg as Father Christmas or Jim Carey as the Grinch. No commercial Juggernaut steam rolling its way into your path as rudely as it can.

Just a book with such incredibly lively pictures to frame the wondrous words of the 19th century poem about Christmas. My Mom or Dad would bring it out only once a year and read it with careful pronunciation. I remember their eyes even having more a sparkle as the magic of the words and the book did their work. Of course at that age even though I would try and stay awake to get a glimpse of Father Christmas, it would be in vain as my eyes closed with the excitement still buzzing about the night. When I did wake up it was early and dark. The tell tale bulges of presents in my pillow case was nearly too much to bear.

Now I am a much bigger lad and able to stay up till all hours of the morning. Perhaps tonight I will get a glimpse of the jolly old St Nick.

"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night."

post script: The Richness of the red colours were a big part of what made the image of Father Christmas stand out. When I realised it was much to do with the Coke brand, it lost its power though ...the intenseness of the image of St Nicholas did not. Look how awesome the Rich green (my favourite colour for most things) sits just as comfortably.

Friday, December 19, 2008

"Mooo moo mooo moo moo moooo" - Gary Larson

I noted yesterday that there is now a new string of MAD COW DISEASE found in a dude from the UK that has been infected and will probably die from the disease.
It gets pretty complicated when looking at the causes and genetic probability of actually contracting the disease (as a human) that caused such a stir in the last 10 or 15 years. What is interesting to me is that purely by the name we have decided to give the disease, most people are of the opinion that its those damn crazy cows that are to blame.
As I mentioned its technical stuff when looking into the origins, characteristics and risk factors of the virus. Its crazy to read all the "we are not sure" and "its not quite known for certain" and "exactly what causes the such and such has not been medically ...". Then in the same articles they go on to mention how its been decided that feeding the cows feed, that has parts of their own species, as well as chickens and pigs has been stopped as this has been noted to cause a protein to turn bla bla bla ....
So basically by feeding cows huge amounts of proteins (uuummm I don't think you will find cows having a chomp at anything but grass, grass and more grass) and hitting them with everything we can imagine to make them produce more milk and grow faster and bigger, we have eventually started killing ourselves off when we too eat that cow that's eaten a cow. Those dodgy proteins that have gone through a totally unnatural change then pop into our systems and if we are carrying another dodgy lazy virus (contracted apparently from years before also from eating cows) then it sets off the horrid consequences in our good selves, giving us reason to turn around and point at the cow as the culprit as we fade away into dementia due to a painful attack on the nervous system, followed by death.

Of course when the perception is that the meat we eat comes from behind those long plastic strips that take the place of a door at the butchers and the extent of out attention is limited to the little attention grabbing price alert on whats on special, don't expect these types of diseases to go away anytime soon. In fact even MAD COW DISEASE has only killed a few people relative to the amount of publicity it has received. It is however another perfect warning to stop screwing around with the structure of living structures to try and make them serve us better. Another perfect warning for us to ignore as we are so good at doing.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

stolen ...presumed sold

Today is the first time I post without a quote. Its also the first time I am not posting from my laptop. That's because its not my laptop any longer. It is some other punks who will pay dearly for being a part of the sordid business of stealing other peoples stuff.
My laptop was taken from my room which is inside my house. Not a problem for dem thieves. Quick as a flash they must have been in and out. I did have a quote that related to this blog, but it was on the laptop so it too was stolen. Those poor bastards don't realise how much energy of mine was being stored in that laptop in the form of all the writings and all sorts that I had created over a few years. Shortly I shall let it (that stored energy waiting patiently in the form of word docs, jpg's and the odd Excel spreadsheet) loose to make sure it does as much destruction as possible to those that are now in possession of the laptop. I can only hope the vokkers that are involved are terminally afflicted when I do ... for I will strike down upon them with great vengeance and furious anger ...well at least I hope they trip and stub their toes stumble into the street and get hit by a Taxi, or choke on the tik that they probably swapped the merchandise for, stumble into the street and get hit by a Taxi.
The thing about my ex laptop though is that is has a tell tail sign that is quite unique. You see I bent one of the tiny little blades of the fan a few months back. So now when ever the fan is activated, it sounds like a big generator is starting up as the blades smash against the 'protective' encasement. So if you here a Diesel laptop while out doing your thing, let me know and I will deliver some pain in the caretakers direction.

post script: If you see a baddy stumbling in the streets from a stubbed toe or high on tik ... aim and accelerate.

Friday, December 12, 2008

"If we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel's heart beat, and we ...

"If we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel's heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence." - George Eliot

Can you sit quietly for any length of time? Can you let your senses help you feel what is happening outside of your body without consciously using them? We make use of so little of the potential that we actually have as humans. If you let yourself experience what is happening outside of the limited amount of sensory stimuli that you do receive you begin to notice the potential of what there actually is to know and experience on this planet. By sitting and stopping the active use of your eyes, ears, nose and muscles for a time and by getting effective at doing this, those tools of your physical body seem to reset themselves to a degree and now when you use them those many stimulus come alive to you in an incredibly more powerful way, so powerful that if we were able to tap into all that was going on, it would obliterate us. All is there to be experienced and silence can show us the way, however most are missing out by settling for the lazy manner in which we accept the strange concept we have created for ourselves as the-way-to-live.

Silence can help bring us back to realise how we should be. How we need to be. It is always there yet we constantly turn our backs on the benefits of silence. So far we have strayed from the beauty of it, that it now makes many feel uncomfortable. When it comes to help and comfort or teach us we shut it out automatically by finding a distraction from outside ourselves or even thinking a distracting thought. How strange the things we do the make sure we do not sink softly into the place where we get to meet and know ourselves. How bizarre the effort we put into keeping this vital and glorious opportunity, that is always there, at bay. How we strive to keep away silence.

Be careful though, don't try too hard. Silence will always be patiently watching you and ready to enter as soon as you stop, but you so seldom do. So weary are you and estranged from its use that it is ingrained in the subconscious to make sure you are always doing something to keep silence out, to make sure you only need deal with what is in front of you and not be reintroduced to what is real. You cannot win that battle though. Eventually your energy will run out and silence will enter as fresh as it is right now. You will wonder why you never embraced it before and marvel at your ignorance.

Monday, December 8, 2008

"It is not clear that intelligence has any long-term survival value." Stephen Hawking

This famous tub of oil sits off the coast of Cape Town each year around this time. A good place to come for Christmas after all. Perhaps he has a buddy in JoBurg that told him: "Listen my China, I know its full of Capetonians, but there is lekker graze, the beaches are packed with sexy cherries and I didn't buy that schweet sunbed for nothing hey!"

Well who ever tipped this punk off, he sneaks in unannouched and pretends to sleep all day. Then as it gets darkish the gunk starts to flow. That's right, from that big black chimney on the back of the friggit. Right through the night he dumps heavy fumes into the skies. The port authority have no clue what is being referred to when attempting to get the smog machine curtailed and it actually brings me to the point of this blog (normally I don't really have a point I know and whose to say this is in anyway, but just have a little read, its better than stuffing another Tempo into your head) which is Carbon emissions and the fact that you can trade them.

Who TF came up with and Who TF passed the ridiculous idea and now reality, that Carbon emissions were something that could be bought and sold as if they were a sack of rice or a lump of gold. I mean this is something that is only bad in every way and needs to be rectified.
So the restrictions are placed on business and corporations where by they are only allowed so much volume of carbon emissions - GOOD ... and then they get punished harshly if they do not comply - EXCELLENT. So that they will stop damaging the environment to the detriment of the whole planet that will collapse if they were to carry on ... makes sense to make them hold up a bit right? Of course it does. Then some fat cat decides that those that are not actually spewing out the amount that is considered dangerous, are able to sell the amount that is left over from what they have not used?!
Nooooooooo ....that's is not how it works fools.
When a guy comes into hospital with three stab wounds and the police are holding the purp in custody. The Doctor does not make a call to the police department to say:

"Look Copper I know you have Franky Four Fingers in jail for the crime. This vic is not going to die though, so send Frankie around with his weapon and I will give him a few more stabs. Don't worry I will make sure the guy does not die, but Frankie is already going in for attempted murder so lets just make sure he gets AS CLOSE TO MURDERING THE GUY as he can. Just be sure to tell Frankie he will owe us $500 for each slashing so make sure he has some loot ready to pay for his extra misdeeds"

We are here to serve our environment and not the other way around. It is a mistake we have made over the years of our existence and its very simple. If we do not realise this and act upon it, we will perish. There are no deals here ... no buying our way out of it by listing another stock on an exchange to trade with. This is real and does not fall snugly into any of the systems that we are trying to hang onto as they come crumbling down around us.
Its not difficult to get involved, buy a bike, take a walk and just do what feels right not what always what looks better on your balance sheet in your counting house.

Friday, December 5, 2008

"For the female of the species is more deadly than the male." - Rudyard Kipling

While reading Kipling I was surprised to come across the fact that the very man himself wrote the line: the female of the species is more deadly than the male. I've heard it many times and even enjoyed the song while studying at Stellenbosch.
I never knew it was from the a poem called 'The Female of the Species'. I looked it up and read the poem. You can too (below). Interesting I thought and remember it was written by a man in the early 1900's.

It's so different how people view the difference in genders today. In fact the word seems to be loosing its meaning with the lines of male and female becoming so incredibly blurred and perverted. This is one of the sure signs for me in the general downfall of man. Controversial! Yea well I am not asking for your opinion, just giving you some of my feelings on the subject of gender. I reckon most of those who have moved away from their gender at birth have done so out of laziness and as a need to change something in a world that does not make sense to them. Did you notice, through your rage and homophobic accusations you are sending my way, the way I said MOST? Thereby leaving myself covered in that I am not dissing a group of people in totality, rather a condition that I do not think is right nor necessary, but rather too much effort is put into it to create something for the wrong reasons - even if this is done subconsciously.

Well Kipling has some pretty curious insights to how things were in his head at the time.

The Female of the Species

When the Himalayan peasant meets the he-bear in his pride,
He shouts to scare the monster who will often turn aside.
But the she-bear thus accosted rends the peasant tooth and nail,
For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.

When Nag, the wayside cobra, hears the careless foot of man,
He will sometimes wriggle sideways and avoid it if he can,
But his mate makes no such motion where she camps beside the trail -
For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.

When the early Jesuit fathers preached to Hurons and Choctaws,
They prayed to be delivered from the vengeance of the squaws -
'Twas the women, not the warriors, turned those stark enthusiasts pale -
For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.

Man's timid heart is bursting with the things he must not say,
For the Woman that God gave him isn't his to give away;
But when hunter meets with husband, each confirms the others tale -
The female of the species is more deadly than the male.

Man, a bear in most relations, worm and savage otherwise,
Man propounds negotiations, Man accepts the compromise;
Very rarely will he squarely push the logic of a fact
To its ultimate conclusion in unmitigated act.

Fear, or foolishness, impels him, ere he lay the wicked low,
To concede some form of trial even to his fiercest foe.
Mirth obscene diverts his anger; Doubt and Pity oft perplex
Him in dealing with an issue - to the scandal of the Sex!

But the Woman that God gave him, every fibre of her frame
Proves her launched for one sole issue, armed and engined for the same,
And to serve that single issue, lest the generations fail,
The female of the species must be deadlier than the male.

She who faces Death by torture for each life beneath her breast
May not deal in doubt or pity - must not swerve for fact or jest.
These be purely male diversions - not in these her honor dwells -
She, the Other Law we live by, is that Law and nothing else!

She can bring no more to living than the powers that make her great
As the Mother of the Infant and the Mistress of the Mate;
And when Babe and Man are lacking and she strides unclaimed to claim
Her right as femme (and baron), her equipment is the same.

She is wedded to convictions - in default of grosser ties;
Her contentions are her children, Heaven help him, who denies!
He will meet no cool discussion, but the instant, white-hot wild
Wakened female of the species warring as for spouse and child.

Unprovoked and awful charges - even so the she-bear fights;
Speech that drips, corrodes and poisons - even so the cobra bites;
Scientific vivisection of one nerve till it is raw,
And the victim writhes with anguish - like the Jesuit with the squaw!

So it comes that Man, the coward, when he gathers to confer
With his fellow-braves in council, dare not leave a place for her
Where, at war with Life and Conscience, he uplifts his erring hands
To some God of abstract justice - which no woman understands.

And Man knows it! Knows, moreover, that the Woman that God gave him
Must command but may not govern; shall enthrall but not enslave him.
And She knows, because She warns him and Her instincts never fail,
That the female of Her species is more deadly than the male!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

“Corn me coke me … don’t provoke me.” Reece Myrdal

Next time you are at the movies try my old buddies order for Coke and Pop Corn. This one came one weekend in 1991 when we were allowed out of the boarding house to go and watch a movie. I think it was Pretty Women on the menue that night. Reece goes up to the disinterested individual at sweets stand, looks her in the eye and says very steadily and emphatically "corn me ... coke me ... don't provoke me".
I have no clue where it came from, but to this day I think of it every time I buy spring mielies at the movies.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

“The minority is sometimes right; the majority always wrong.” George Bernard Shaw

The quote is one I fully agree with - in this case. You see when I went to watch Quantum of Solace - the new James Bond - last week with my brother and his buddy Bo as guests of Bella Kitchens (for some reason I ended up representing a top notch architectural firm as a guest for these bathroom guys client entertainment at the movies) I noticed that the strange South African film of Mr Bones had a sequel out called ...wait for it people .... Mr Bones 2! Sweet Lord now that was certainly not expected. Such creativity such daring. I explained to my little brother that the original Mr Bones was the most successful movie ever to have played out on the bioscopes of the Republic. They looked at me with confusion, misunderstanding and a slight hint of curiosity etched comically on their faces, as if wondering if I had just overdosed on too many Maynards original wine gums (a scenario that was to play itself out over the weekend, but was not relevant at the time) and was talking Gibberish.

"I'm telling you bro; Scorsese, the Kohen brothers, Lucas ... none of those cats has anything on our boy Leon Schuster when it comes to entertaining South Africans on the big screen."

Still no comprehension from the youngsters. "You know Leon Schuster man, the guy who dresses up like a black dude and sings about the World Cup and shit?"

"Yea yea, we know who the fella is, but what the muff are you on about with this Mr Bones jargon?" they accused while staring at the movie poster representing the shocking movie.

I just laughed. They were just not going to buy the fact that Mr Bones had done better than the likes of Star Wars, Lord of the Rings or even movies like Batman , Rabobi and the Lion King. Then this morning while riding out on the streets of Cape Town, my rantings from the week before were confirmed. Actually that is not particularly accurate. My perceived rantings were now changed to be wise words of fact even though they sounded so wrong in every way at the time.
The head line read 'Bones Bounces Bond' Later in the day I read the article about how Mr Bones 2 ... although absolute crap (how could it not be) was kicking 007's ass all over South African cinema's.
It's rather amusing I must admit although another reminder about how the people I live and interact with daily, are really not the true majority of the country. Especially in Cape Town.

post script: The naming of this waste of time film is really so lazy, bland and uninpsirational in so many ways, but something else was getting to me that I could not put my piano playingesque finger on. Then I realised not only is it totally pathetic, however to add to the diabolicallity of the whole thing, it is totally wrong in every sense. You see when naming a sequel, although normally boring, it is correct (however not mandatory) to place the number of the current film in the title. This you will have seen with the likes of Rocky 2 through to 6, Die Hard 2 & 3 and so on and so forth ... not Die Hard Fourth ...that too would be incorrect.
It would also have been correct of the Mr Bones clowns to have done just what they have by naming their 2nd pathetic movie Mr Bones 2, if their movie was a sequel. Its not. Its a frikkin prequel. That is the whole movie takes place befoooooore Mr Bones the original. So how can they call the prequel Mr Bones 2?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Anything in any way beautiful derives its beauty from itself and asks nothing beyond itself. Praise is no part of it, for nothing is made worse or

Anything in any way beautiful derives its beauty from itself and asks nothing beyond itself. Praise is no part of it, for nothing is made worse or better by praise. Marcus Aurelius

Of all the many living creatures and things on this planet, we are the only ones that feel better when receiving the affirmation we are seeking with regards to how we feel about ourselves. It is seldom that we find someone that is absolutely care free in this regard, but when you do meet one you will notice the lack of burden upon their shoulders.

Take a bride on her big day of stress ... I mean celebration ... imagine a vision of her standing alone but for her beautiful white dress with special trimmings and decadent material, her bouquet of white roses and perhaps some sentimental jewelery in the form of a great grandparents pearls reset to earrings guarding her delicate neckline and a carefully placed wisp of hair resting lightly on the strategic place on her brow to complete the image of a carefree pure and ecstatic new bride.
The roses, dress, pearls, alluring neckline and hair cannot ask for and do not expect comments and praise, however remain as they are - beautiful. Is the bride content with her own beauty or wondering how the photos will turn out and what people will think. You can only be what you are and nothing more or less beautiful. The effort to feel beautiful is well worth it, but is negated if too attached to the outcome. Put in the effort, but try and forget about the result and the results will follow.
I wonder how my wife to be knows that when we get married my buddy Klaus will be asked to take a dozen pictures and then a ban will be placed on camera's for the rest of the celebration.

post script: I wonder if my wife to me knows me?

Monday, November 24, 2008

“If you want to have a healthy brain and body … eat Eskimo’s!” – Patrick Holford

I am not a huge fan of most books on nutrition and diets and things. There's always a new thing right? Always some one trying to force something down your throat. Or in this case perhaps try keep you from forcing things down your throat.
There is an incredibly well worthwhile book by Patrick Holford that my brother Mike bought me for Christmas a few years back. I nearly took it straight back to Exclusive Books to exchange it for Tin Tin hard covers, but I decided to keep it and just over a year later actually gave it a chance and decided to see what the fella had to say.
Outstanding stuff really. The tone is extremely informative and matter of fact rather than preachy. I know the info is correct as well. It resonates so clearly and its brilliant to be able to be given some structure to what have been just general habits that I have had for many years. When I say structure I mean more details and the linking up of bits and pieces of information that I have always known through some very wise, and way before there time, habits that my parents presented to me over the years that I was under their wings.

Of course the authors market is mostly overweight (the Western World) so he does lean towards the fatties (ha haa ...see what I did there? With the Lean? As in fat and thin. Thin = lean ... far too sneaky for a Monday afternoon I agree) with the info that he supplies.
One of the main points on the fat which most people get wrong is that it is not the amount of fat you eat, but the type and the way you prepare it that is all important. In fact fat is good for you and some of them essential in our diets. One of the cool things about the food chain is that the form that these fats come in at their origin is not ideal for us and needs to be converted. This conversion is done inside all the creatures that take it on board before us and by the time we get it, it is in its best form (Omega 3 fats that we are so deficient in). These fats are so important in fact that without them oaks are dropping dead through heart disease and getting stupid due to lack of brain food. So if you see an Eskimo (correct term is actually Inuit) on the street, have a little nibble and see if you can taste the seal that he ate that ate the carnivorous fish that ate the little fishies that ate the plankton that naturally has the all important Omega 3 that we need so urgently, but lack so emphatically in our diets. Be careful of trying to supplement these. You can go as academic as you like when trying to justify supplements as good enough. You really are just kidding yourself though. There is only one way to do things properly in life and that is the real way. Get down to the fish monger and buy some fresh fish. Don't worry about the fools who tell you that there is too much mercury in the fish. You are not going to be eating enough to worry about that. If you are still worried about the mercury though, firstly take a trip to the dentist to get those old chunks of metal out of your face and secondly eat the smaller fish as they have way less metal in them. You need the Omega 3 and 6 though so go buy that fish - especially now that its summer down here (officially today I am told) and there are less Inuits on the streets to feed on.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"This system's gonna fall soon, to an angry young tune" - Rodriguez

I always enjoyed Rodriguez and his unique vibe. Incredibly to the point and simple yet undeniably powerful lyrics and chilled tunes. At the time I was most into his 'Cold Fact' album, the story about the dude was that he had shot himself on stage live at a concert. After singing the lyric: "Thanks for your time and you can thank me for mine ... kabllloooooiiieee!" I believed that for years. I never contemplated, just took it as truth when I heard it and probably used the same regurgitation a couple of times to show off around a braai or on a road trip as Rodriguez entertained.
The truth is this cat is still out there. The stranger truth to me which I only found out a few years ago is that he was only famous in South Africa! A little in NZ and Oz too, but basically his huge following of his anti establishment sentiments in the late 60's was only really entrenched in South Africa. Rodriguez never even played to a sub sub substantial concert in the USA. That could be in part because he once performed his whole set with his back to the audience and was generally a bit of a bad egg out there.
I must admit this does show how much the record labels, the radio stations and media have influence on what is a commercial success on the music world and what is not. Look at how incredible he was in South Africa and if you know his stuff you can clearly identify the class and talent of the man when he made 'Cold Fact'. Yet he was not even aware that he was a success and when a South African reporter eventually found him working on a construction site at the end of a search to what was then, the-mystery-of-Rodriguez and what had happened to him, the poet/songwriter/musician was not aware at all of his reverence in on the other side of the world. Of course he would have been aware of the royalties of the multi platinum selling album in this country - had he received any. But he did not and remained blissfully unaware for many years of his popularity. Kind of like Ian Flemming's James Bond, but that is one for another time.

Okay I will tell it now quickly: basically yea, Ian Flemming died before he knew his work was a success. A true Legend. There you have it now back to Rodriguez.

'Cold Fact' was released in 1970 which makes Rodriguez an old geeza and probably one of the reasons that he never got it right again once he tried a revival way too late, on the back of his, until then, oblivious fame. The music he has made is still all too powerful for those that have had the time and opportunity to take part in it. So often I have a lyric come to life as something unfolds in front of me.
Interestingly the lyrics tend to remain timeless. I say interesting as so many of them are written about the dark side of life that people think will be left behind at some stage and that is just a temporary. 'Cold Fact' is a good reminder that life is supposed to have a dark and difficult side although if accepted and not seen as something apart, they become more easily understood.
Take the useless piece of garbage women who took my car away yesterday evening on a funky truck with some nifty lifting gear. It was taken as part of the system of 'no parking on the road outside me house between 5pm and 6pm'. Well there is nowhere else to park and although the rule is setup to help the traffic flow more fluidly, there is in fact not a problem at all at any time even when its home time and all the locals are rushing home up our street and all our cars are sleeping in a lazy line on Buitenkant Street. So the car can be there and the traffic does flow. The two R500 fines and now another R500 fine and the theft of my car are part of a system that does not work. I was not home at the time so my younger brothers were left to hurl abuse that fat idiot as she evilly smiled at their rantings, happy to be a part of the crazy system that she could actually do something about if she was a worthwhile human, but sadly - for her you understand - she is a waste of energy and will find that out many times a day I am sure in her sad existence.

Now a small irony and something that I really did have to laugh about, was that I was actually going to use my car to take me to touch rugby on Camps Bay beach at that very time the evil fool was plying her trade. Already having driven to Camps Bay once that day, I had decided to use my own foot steps to decrease my carbon footprint. Si si that's right, I decided to run there and then back after the touch rugby. Not an easy run having to pop over Kloofnek both ways. Funny stuff actually, although I don't think my bank manager would agree at this stage.

post script: A platinum album means a million were sold. So this Rodriguez cat sold a few million 'Cold Fact' albums in South Africa and never knew for over 30 years!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

'Adventure before Dementia' - Limerick Banner

All the oldies out there (are there any that read Pi's blog? Does anyone read the blog?) will have seen these words before. It was a first for me and I enjoyed them.
Last night I was watching TV way past my bed time as the All Blacks took on Munster in Limerick in a cracker of a match that was typically incredibly tough for the visiting international side to win. The packed stadium of Munster supporters in there Red and Blue went mental, as Munster took the lead, and never stopped assisting their team in their huge efforts to beat the mighty All Blacks, as they had successfully done back in 1978.
You would think that for a nation that worships an all black liquid in a pint glass, there would be some who would show some compassion for the visitors, but the support was emphatic - and went only the way of the home team.

The was no lens on the TV camera wide enough to show any Kiwi supporters in the crowd. It was a tough night for the lads that hail from the Land-of-the-Long-White-Cloud, but in the end ... and I mean right at the end - as when a pigeon fly's into the sliding door, drops to the floor and with its upside down head now lodged somewhere around its deformed feet (if its a London pigeon) it sees the local skin and bones alley cat prancing up to take a closer look - that kind of end ... they eventually got that late try compliments of Josevata Rokocoko cococokocockoccocanIhaveandmarshmellowwithmycocococo much to the complete dismay of the Munster players and fans alike. Only once the crowd had thinned somewhat, singing their laments about the lonely fields of Athenrye as they filed out of what was so nearly their cauldron of celebrations, that the camera was able to pick up a pod of Old Timers in the stands. No wonder they could not be found before when the lens was panning the full house for NZ support. It seems that they had been given seats next to the security guards who check your ticket at the bottom of the stair well and who subsequently can't watch any of the game. In that intimidating atmosphere there was no arguing, so the loyal Kiwi's had probably just sat there and worked out the score from the extremes of the berserk cheering, to the deathly silence that transpired as the alternate teams put points on the board.
Now they were having their moment of triumph brought about by the adventure and the group of Kiwi grinner's was jumping around celebrating as much as is possible when the average age of the group is 88 years old, which basically meant they had just managed to unfurl and hold to waste height the banner they had got their grandchildren to make back home with the words 'Adventure before Dementia' splashed out on it in what looked suspiciously like sheep's blood, but lets not upset the readers and rather pretend it is something far less cruel. For the sake of keeping things pleasant, lets assume it was: well lets say some blood from the English they will play in a couple weeks time. Yes I know that is the future, but the All Blacks can do anything when it comes to rugby right? Wrong Richard Neville, they can't win the World Cup old chap!

Post Script: Some claim the All Blacks did win the WC in 1987, but I doubt you will find a REAL kiwi that will support that yarn. I mean how can you have a WC without the Springboks contesting the Webb Ellis jug? Nope just not possible.

Post post script: Carel du Plessis , Naas Botha, Danie Gerber, Frans Erasmus, Ray Mordt, Uli Schmidt ...come on!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Stubborness does have its helpful features. You always know what you are going to be thinking tomorrow. - Glen Beaman

What a fool. What a waste of energy. My little brother Mike took this in Montague gardens. This guy is just looking for trouble and clearly that is not necessary, trouble will find him from a long way off.
I used to live in a student house owned by the University when I was in Stellenbosch. A house full of incredibly diverse characters. I was by far the youngest and one of the older guys used to get so frustrated with everything I did. His name was Elvis compliments of a thick mop of Black hair. Often my buddies would be around when Elvis would get into fits of rage about my comments or stand point on things. He was defending his flag one day in 1994 (the old South African flag) and while pinning it up in the lounge, I told him he was a fool. He went into fits of rage and could not quite contain himself. I just kept antagonising him as I wanted him to hurt and I knew how much it got to him.
While still in a flat spin due to the flag incident Elvis and I got into a argument about who was the more ardent Manchester United supporter. He was claiming ownership to the disputed two way title due to his superior age. Yea what ever Elvis. Well the conversation lead back in a couple of hops, skips and the odd jump or two ... to Italy and some of the details of the Fifa World Cup 1990. When David Platt scored a cracker v Belgium for England. Well he was at odds as to who scored the goal and had a huge go at me for being so cheeky and "moerse haragat for a lytjie" for daring to disagree with him.
My buddies Barry, Mike and Phil who were there at the time were loving the show, but I had to put an end to it so I walked out on his ranting and headed to the 'Bib' (library in S'Bosch speak ..come on keep up will ya?) and down to the archives section where I knew they kept newspapers going way back. I travelled back in time by turning the yellowed old pages of the CAPE TIMES and found the sports reviews of the goal in question. I was correct about the goal of course, so I made a photo copy of the page and took it back to the house. I then borrowed hammer and nail and while Elvis was taking a nap, no doubt brought on by his ill tempered beserkedness, I nailed the photo copy to his door with a good thick 6 inch nail and noisy hammer.
Elvis never mentioned the incident and even took down his Old SA flag that he had wanted to place on the wall of the house living room.
These things still pop up from time to time. Normally at rugby matches in the Free State. Interesting country we live in. If you see this guys car anywhere along your travels, feel free to put a nail through it or at least get to work with a hammer to show your appreciation.

"Life is really simple, but we insist on making in complicated" Confucius

There really is merit in simplifying things. I think my first touch of the honesty and satisfaction in living basically and without clutter in the many forms it can present itself, was when I was in Boston. I had a few weeks to make use of before I was heading back to London job so I popped in to my good buddy Mike who was on a running scholarship at Boston University. A few times a week when I was not pretending to be a student and making use of all the local facilities (including a lovely 6FT German high jumper) I would wake up at sunrise and borrow his bike for a 10km ride out to the poshest golf club I have ever seen - The Charles River Country Club. Another buddy Maddy K had worked there as a Caddy and for the jol of it I had signed up too. It was the most incredible course with huge leafy trees and lush greenery in abundance. The pay was cash in hand and I would earn about $80 or so I think, for walking around the course chatting to the fat cat CEO's who would enjoy the exoticness of a dude from South Africa with an eloquent Capetonian accent and an opinion on everything they were yakking on about; from the Bruins poor keeper to the Curse of the Red Sox (pre world series title of a few years back); to whether the dome down town was real gold or not.
On the way home I would stop at the most awesome bakery. There was always a loaf still steaming from the oven to sample some honey with and I would sit down and eat a couple of slices. I certainly sampled more than I bought, but nobody was concerned about that.
All in all it was a long day of extreme simplicity and general goodness. I began appreciating that simple is not boring, but an extremely fulfilling and worthwhile concept to begin embracing in a lot more earnest.
One of the places that I have managed to really see the change over a few years is in my diet. I do not crave or need sauces or processed spices or 'stuff' to enjoy the taste of my food. Since leaving all that behind I can now actually taste such exquisite goodness in foods in their simplest form. See pic above for my current favourite breakfast of boiled eggs on rye with orange juice - self squeezed of course.

Monday, November 10, 2008

A politician is an arse upon which everyone has sat except a man. E.E.Cummings

Please don't tell me I must vote, and if you are going to ask me if I am voting ... please remember you have read this, it will help to lessen the shock and disgust I keep being exposed to when I answer that, "No I will not be voting. "
And please let the first comment from your scathing lips; that have just helped bungee your dropped jaw back from its crash to the floor; not be "but you have to ... and if you don't then you can't complain about everything anymore can you?"
Now first of all I will continue to complain, to all that will listen (that is you right now but shortly not likely to be once you get REALLY pissed at me), about how I can't grasp that South Africa; in all its Rainbow nation status and Madiba Power; having been clever enough to shrug of the mistakes of apartheid; are still not able to supply local supermarkets or even specialised delicatessens with Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream.Nope, not one t-spoon of Cherry Garcia or Phiiiish Food in a solitary fridge in the country!
And secondly; if someone is complaining about the state of the country, which I presume is what all the voting enthusiasts are automatically expect is the case and are referring to when telling me I will surely be giving up my complaining rights, then I find it pretty presumptuous to assume the answers lie in casting a vote for another from the choices provided on the piece of paper in the your local schools computer lab or scout hall come voting day.
I find the whole situation a media and hype driven machine and an effective one at that. I shudder to think at the calibre of the people or the state of mind that they are in to be taken in by the drivel and contrived crap that they are fed. Its not like its even a secret the amount of money, effort and time that is put into telling the voters just what they want to hear, how they want to hear it and perhaps with a cream bun or free t-shirt to take home from the political rally. What was that you say? You have never been to one of those rally's and how dare I just write you off as one of those brain washed individuals that just love the song and dance of it all.

Well I hear you, but now that you are on the subject of how you have gone about making your decision on the vote, pray tell how you have gone about making yours? In nearly every conversation that has lasted long enough for someone to actually not just dismiss me like a bad disease after I tell them I am not into voting, it has transpired that their decision has not been even loosely based on any particular merrits that their chosen candidate or party has impressed upon them. No, unfortunately the incentive to vote has its firm and hungry, and in my opinion twisted routes, in the totally counterproductive driving force called fear.

Fear my friends. Fear is the driving force to get your tick or cross or what ever it is next to your - until voting day - extremely unfamiliar candidate. Fear that your current comforts and way of life is going to be changed. Fear that things will be different and out of your control. A fear so incredibly selfish, but defended with mob mentality vigour. What is the percentage of voters that actually research what their party and politicians have actually done after their words have been spoken? How many of them could even mention one or two ideas and plans that their backings have presented to them? Not just tit bits that they can regurgitate from the snippets of extremely lopsided newspapers and TV pieces? There are a few I should think, but I doubt that amount escapes from between the 0% and the 1%.
I wonder even more curiously, how many voters have the relationship and trust in their leaders, that they would listen to them when they told them something uncomfortable that they did not actually want to hear. If the dude you are voting for told you that it would be a really good thing to not drive your car for the next week as it would really help in a profound study that they were having implemented to help you in years to come. Its not going to happen right. You will loose your fondness of the poor bastard who is all of a sudden not telling you all you want to hear (if you ARE one of the listeners) and wait to take action only when it was directly going to effect you negatively and you were not going to be put out doing something about it.
Even that cat Obama, who has broken more records than Michael Phelps this year, was hilarious to listen to while out on the campaign trail. Look, at least he can actually remember his words and not be totally dependant on a tele-prompter like that prick Georgie Porgy, but the extraordinarily simple dialogue coming out of his mouth so transparently compiled for every oooohhhh aaaaaah and hooorahhhh, was only made easier for me to watch to its conclusion by the unease with which he let it roll of his tongue. In my opinion (most likely in the gutter even if you are still reading this ..haha!) he was really not comfortable with the typical tax talk and all the USA ra ra ra and I felt all the better for it.
Uncle Obama also made one real good point which gave me hope for his future. Unfortunately I think it really just highlights the same problem in most of the world and its follow-the-leader-and-they-will-make-everything-fine-and-dandy syndrome. Barak Obama asked the people not to expect things to just turn Rosy overnight and that if things were to turn for the better that it would be them that would have to do the hard work and not just him and his government. The comments of all those yanks that were interviewed through their tears and flag waving were indications that they missed that part of his speech in ...where was it? Chicago I think ... no, they missed the part where he invited them in to share the win and the workload to come, and opted rather for the Messiah approach that they were very happy that there new president elect could do the job for them. That he would make everything right for them and they would not have to suffer in a system created by others that had been celebrated just as vociferously years decades and centuries before.
Here in lies the rub ... doing the job as a leader is seen as making sure all is right for those that are following said leader. How wrong is that?That the man in charge and his colleagues will sort it all out, because they got the most support from masses and the masses can just chill out because they have the power to choose a knew fella or missy should this one not work out too well. But so entrenched it is that the system of politics all around the world just perpetuates its own cycle of persistent failures.
Leaders should be those that have the knowledge and the saintly ability to help point the way. Their responsibility lies in helping and not doing. This implies those followers must still work to find the way. Not an attractive proposition right? So that leader ain't getting the marks next to his name, but the fool who says he will build the poor a house or his counterpart who says he will help make sure you can stay richer than the poor - comfortable - well they are the ones who get the votes one way or another.
So well done on registering this weekend. In all sincerity ... good on you for getting involved. I just wonder if its because its a talking point in the office and in the gym and at your kids school when you bump into other parents that you have not quite got much to talk about, but whom you respect because the wife Mom drives an X5 so they must know their shit. Seriously, well done if you have registered and between now and voting vibe in April sometime I think, you take some energy and time and check out the dudes you are going to back and see how you can get involved in your day to day thoughts and actions to make sure this huge and important issue that you are educating punks like me (non voters) on is all actually something you find extremely worth while. Sounds like way too much involvement?
Yea I thought so. You are scared you are, not actually interested in the condition of things, but just scared that things are not going to be laid out on a platter for you in the future and you will be pulled out of your comfort zone and made to live differently. If you were really concerned about things, just have a little look within your own house ... and if you are as unfortunate as me, and also have no Ben & Jerry's in the fridge then join me in holding out until Zuma or Zilla or Habama... I mean Habana or who ever it is you are voting for sorts it out and we have at least a the option of the 'Triple Thick Caramel Fudge with Oreos and Cookie Dough Double Extreme Super Duper Caramel Swirl'

Thursday, November 6, 2008

He believed the workings of the body to be an analogy for the workings of the universe. – Leonardo da Vinci

Do you ever get the feeling that things are very right? In general and for no apparent reason it just comes to you? If you have had this extraordinarily light feeling that almost forces a grin to your face, you will more than likely be in a place where you are able to interact significantly with the planet you live on. The view you are enjoying or the stars you are gazing at, will certainly form a part of that feeling, but I wonder if you give it enough credit.
I think those feelings come along when your rhythm and energy is in sync with those rhythms and energies of the universe that surrounds you. The cool thing is this is able to happen a lot more then you think. The fact that it is happening at all is basically just by chance, as the environment screams out at you via a majestic mountain range, or incredible stormy day on the coastline with waves and rocks playing out the oldest dance. Your body can't help but feel a part of that majesty so you get to see how things can be... almost as a bystander. The more you try and witness it or understand it, the more you will loose the feeling. It is not there to be processed. It is there to be experienced and with that realisation, hopefully spark some understanding which shows itself gloriously - no effort required. If you attempt to replicate the experience it will be good, but not like before. If you sit down sometime and try to intellectually make sense of things you have no chance. After all, realising that things are good is not just for people with brains that can reason and conceptualise effectively right? It is available to everyone - how could it ever not be.
If however, you make an effort to switch off your mind from time to time, and listen to the universe you will soon be aware that in fact you are not in it as mentioned before, rather that you are a part of it and it is a part of you. Then - as Leo mentions - your physical body and all its mysteries and misunderstandings can be understood through another energy that it too is a part off. At the moment you most likely see many things as separate, including your body and how external factors affect it, sending you into a flat panic and burrying you in layers of despair. Once you stop thinking about and analysing what to eat, how much or how to exercise, when to sleep, how to avoid disease, how to heal and how to remain healthy, why you feel so listless or how you can loose weight ... and begin to just let the universe indicate all of these pearls of wisdom it will be apparent that there are no external effects, but only interactions. It all sounds like quite a task and it is, but only because you make it one. There is no course to go on. No guru or psychoanlysistcologisttherapist necessary, no books to be memorised. You have all the tools you need. But you have to be quiet. It is a huge challenge. Most cannot even be physically quiet without having to have some form of stimulation or be involved in something that keeps them busy, never mind trying to stop yourself thinking too. If you start to do it though, everything works in your favour and in fact you will start to learn that to discover and understand yourself, means shutting down less than 1% of who you are to have the opportunity to begin to discover the much more significant and real part of you.
Then the workings of the body will be replicated all over the universe.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. That's relativit

Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour and it seems like a minute. That's relativity. - Albert Einstein

Alberto would be walking around Cape Town with his hands in bandages if he were around to take part in the seasonal model madness.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Ideas are like Babies. Once you’ve had a baby, you can’t put it back. – Andrea Age 6

I remembered what the idea was. I found it. So Andrea was right. The idea was there all along once it had come to be and it was just me that had to try and find where it had been placed.
What I originally wanted to mention was how early the Christmas decorations in the shops had been put up. It was the 28th October when I noticed the shop front that I was riding past had elves and tinsel gratuitously draped around there pine furniture in a vein attempt to make it more appealing by tagging Christmas spirit over the legs of the chair that looked as if it could well only last until Christmas day.
I know in the England the decorations were always out earlier than in South Africa, but I think we have now unfortunately caught up as commercialism drives to ever higher hopes.
I do really enjoy Christmas. For me it is a special time with a mystical and energised sparkle in the air. I think there is a part for retail to play in this, but they have over stepped that mark a long time ago. Now the likes of the large super markets and TV adds actually take away from Christmas as they USE IT to make more money instead of CONTRIBUTING towards the festive time. Unfortunately, as with many things in life, this is not a natural way of the world and there will be a counter active result to the whole process over time. The goodness and light celebratory intentions that are supposed to prevail will unravel, as the contrived and perverted occasion is fuelled by those with mistaken and ill gained motives to be a part of it all.

Yes of course course you have seen the negative effects already and Christmas has become a burden and a tough time for many. Its your own fault then fool. Simplify things. Go cut your own tree down and decorate it yourself (I chop mine from the pines along the road leading into Hout Bay), change the channel when you see a Christmas add on TV, don't expect any gifts and make sure if you are getting one it's not something you have chosen and know what it is already, don't feel guilty about charities playing on your conscience, read 'Twas the night before Christmas' to your children before they go to bed on Christmas Eve and not f$%^&g Barney in a Christmas hat, don't stress about any obligations over Christmas just enjoy the good parts, learn to make egg nog, . Seriously, there are no expectations for this fun time of the year and those that try to impose them upon you (normally your close family) are not doing anyone any good so just help them relax and ditch all those negative sides by not getting involved.
There is a lot of good over Christmas, no matter that we can't quite place our finger on what we are celebrating or the origins and reasons for it - no it is not the Birthday of Baby Jesus! So when Christmas comes around (still two months and no need to get dragged into the contrived hype) then just relax and enjoy... sounds like a good idea doesn't it? Good, now careful not to misplace it, make sure you dodge all the crap out there and have a jolly good time closer to the 25th December.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"Ideas are like Babies. Once you’ve had a baby, you can’t put it back." – Andrea Age 6

I was riding my bike at 6am this morning. Actually that is not quite accurate and for the purposes of this blog I better actually get more specific.
So I was riding my bike on the way to meet my buddy Blue at Giovanni's on Somerset Road - it was 5:55am, when the idea came to me about this quote that I had read and then the story that I would write about it when I got home a couple hours later; once the ride was done.
The ride was incredible and we talked most of the way out to the top of Chapman's Peak where we turn for home. The half way point some would say. By the time we got to Blues apartment it was just before 8am and by the time I got home 8:15am ... so all in all a good session. A ride we do at least twice in the working week unless it's raining. Now a few hours before I got home, and when the idea had first come to me about the blog, I had backed myself to remember the idea and was looking forward to bashing it out onto PlanetPi.
The thing is, when I turned on my Diesel (if you heard the noise my laptop makes when I punch the power up button you will know why I call it my Diesel) I could not recall the idea. I have taken the whole day to try and retrieve it, but now its 20:05pm and I still have no idea what the idea was. I thought that meant the blog opportunity had gone missing as well.

Then I had the epiphany of just starting the blog with the quote and the idea would present itself. Well it did not BUT I realised the irony in the whole situation in that whole subject of the blog was about ideas that can't be put back. Well I am not saying that I have put this mornings 5:55am idea back Miss Andrea, but I am certainly not sure where I misplayed it and I am not about to retrace my steps all the way back to the top of Chapmans Peak to see if I dropped it while heading that way so early this morning.

Andrea is so right though. The idea has not been put back (even though there is plenty of space where it came from), it has just been put somewhere else. I am still totally aware that it was conceived of, just not sure where it is now.
What does all this mean you ponder? Perhaps just that I am not quite ready for babies.

Post script: Come back next Thursday sometime as I will be riding the same route that day and perhaps I will find it while out there.

Monday, October 27, 2008

"We are clever, but we're clueless. We're just human." - Jack Johnson

This morning I heard something so absurd that I nearly choked on my boiled eggs on rye. It really is difficult to think that I am actually of the same species as so many screwed up individuals on this planet.
Sky News was reporting on the activities of their Health and Safety or Environmental bunch or whom ever it was that work for the government and were all hot under their collars about the latest goings on in the UK. These politician crack addicts were getting themselves mobilized to take on the perceived menaces of society who were creating all sorts of nuisance and skulduggery by ....wait for it ... by brazenly .... and with no regard for anyone else's feelings or safety... were ... you will scarcely believe it ... COLLECTING FALLEN BRANCHES FROM TREES IN THE FOREST FOR FIREWOOD!
Can you handle it? My shattered nerves! I can't quite get to grips with this one I must say. When taking a stroll in a forest and collecting fallen branches is seen by those that run your country as a danger to all concerned, you know that on a large scale things have headed in the wrong direction.
Now this pertained to all forests in the UK. Not just one forest where say there was perhaps a bunch of old trees that had dropped a couple of well placed branches on a few ramblers in the recent weeks. And it's not like the ideas of these fools were coming from any other perceived danger that the forests have lying in wait. I mean the most dangerous creature on the mud Island they call England is probably the odd spider that could leave you with an itchy bump. In fact you are probably more likely to get hit by Gordon Brown's lazy loose bottom jaw that he lets drop bizarrely before each sentence, than by any beasties of ye olde England. In the old days the dragons would have you in a second, but since about the time of Excalibur and the like, the dragons seem to have found some decent hiding places and now it's just those spiders.
I reckon by the end of the week, under the bemused gaze of Big Ben, there will be a gathering of protesters outside the house of Commons, dragging about branches of trees that they have hacked off the local parks old oaks to take part in a demonstration and have their voice heard. How absurd to even indulge in such a governing system. Bunch of clueless clowns.

post script: The ironic thing about the danger of those forests in that without doubt the only deadly animal that lurks behind a tree waiting for its pray is actually man himself.

Friday, October 24, 2008

I think a curse should rest on me — because I love this war. I know it's smashing and shattering the lives of thousands every moment — and yet — I can

I think a curse should rest on me — because I love this war. I know it's smashing and shattering the lives of thousands every moment — and yet — I can't help it — I enjoy every second of it. Winston Churchill

Interesting stuff from the old fella. This particular comment was written to a friend of his in a letter that he wrote in 1916 at the onset of WWI. In a nationwide TV poll in 2002 Churchill was voted 'The greatest Briton of all time'.

The extent to which we are ready to place our energy and backing behind another seems way too flimsy to me most of the time. I do wonder why people are always looking for leaders. I think it is a lack of understanding of our place in our existence and part of our solution in trying to find a way to feel we belong, pinning ourselves to anothers ideas that are presented well or seem to hold power, makes sense if we are too lazy to find out the solutions using our very own abilities.

At school I remember the popular kids that all the others wanted to be friends with were the one's with the harshest tongues and the most confidence to stick their necks out and take control. They were always quick and adept at pointing out any noticeable things about another child and putting a spin on it to make sure it was seen as a weakness and in so doing creating the illusion that they were better for not having the freckles, or big ears, or short legs, or big eyes.
Is it at this early stage that we decide we need leadership. Perhaps if that brash behaviour was not rewarded with attention and submission as youngsters, we would grow to be able to make our own decisions. To value our very own ability to know that we have the means to make our own existence worthwhile.
Laws, commandments, rules and regulations are necessary for those who are cut off from who they actually are. If you can see who you really are and not act outside of yourself all the time due to others influence, you would not need a leader that places these criterion in place and enforce them with violence and power. Leaders would still be valuable and necessary, but in a very different manner. Leaders would be those that provide an indication of how to help you be who you really are and not what you have become due to conditioning and separating of the body from reality. Religions do not do the job either. They are supposed to but they don't. They provide their very own laws, commandments, rules and regulations instead of providing just the help and guidance that man needs to realise what he is and make his life worthwhile. In fact originally religion was set-up to be just that - an indicator. Those days are long gone though. Man has perverted religion so successfully that it now acts negatively to those it claims to serve.
The cool thing is the individual does not need leadership to begin to understand. Just see what there is to see. It is all there for you and by just observing life yourself without it being tainted by those that are trying to influence you, you can come to an understanding that you have it within yourself to bring meaning to your life and are not dependant on others to tell you how things ought to be and how you should behave and act. You will find out very quickly that you are your best teacher and best leader.

Monday, October 20, 2008

"The cure of a part should not be attempted without treatment of the whole. No attempt should be made to cure the body without the soul, and if the...

"The cure of a part should not be attempted without treatment of the whole. No attempt should be made to cure the body without the soul, and if the head and body are to be healthy you must begin by curing the mind, for this is the greatest error of our day in the treatment of the human body, that physicians first separate the soul from the body." - Plato

Lets not kid about, Plato was seen as a brainy one when it comes to the species. Unfortunately for the rest of the species it seems physicians are still of the opinion that the physical can be split somehow from the whole and treated separately. In fact they are so good at convincing themselves that they have found ways of not only finding a temporary solution to a physical problem, but also managed to convince the unfortunate individual they are working on, to look at things over a very short term so that all seems well once they have patched up the ailment.

Of course over a longer period of time the subject falls apart again and the physician is back in business!

Thankfully the human knows intrinsically that it must heal from all sides and it will try and help itself out to some extent. However this will only happen to a point and most of those with illness, disease and injury are missing out on some vital knowledge in getting themselves back in good nick.

I have been fortunate enough to be brought up without as much of a separation of body and soul as most and have been interested in closing that gap even further so am now able to see things closer to the way they should be. So if you are leaking or broken or have too many mutations in your body causing discomfort and pain, perhaps you need to look at properly healing yourself and not just going for the superficial fix. It works for your bumper when you smash it, but unless you are as in tune with yourself as your bumper is with its body, how can you think that fixing yourself is that superficial?

Friday, October 17, 2008

"We would frequently be ashamed of our good deeds if people saw all of the motives that produced them." - Fran├žois, Duc De La Rochefoucauld

This morning I took my breakfast next to the pool. On the deck. The wind had stopped howling its way around the city bowl at 6:30am so it was a crystal blue sky and already must have been a decent temperature in the Centigrade scale... come to think of it on the Fahrenheit one too.

I was fortunate enough to be enjoying a good muesli and yoghurt with not too much going on in my brain so I was in a pretty dozy state. Not as switched off as the Bee I watched dive bomb himself into the pool, just a metre or so away from me. The little fella hit the water at speed, but if he was looking to make an impression he was way out. He never even broke the surface of the pool water, instead he lay on top, not yet moving as he was clearly still stunned. The water had been lying there waiting for the first bit of mornings action tough and as the Bee started to make a move to escape from the surface of the water, tiny tendrils of H 2 and O soaked his legs and wings a to make his cause hopeless. For every ounce of energy spent on escape he was imprisoning himself more effectively until the movement stopped and the Bee guy seemed destined to end up at the bottom of the pool with the odd leaf and twig that had also taken on too much water to float.

I realised I had not taken another mouthful of breakfast since watching the action and decided that I would provide the dude with some assistance although not really thinking he would be able to survive after taking on so much water. I had to be careful not to sink Bee though. I acted swiftly with the back end of my spoon. Without causing a splash that might sink Bee, I plopped the end of the spoon under him and then lifted him slowly enough to make sure he was properly on board before taking him to the pool deck and shuffling him off onto a spot in the sun.
The water was still so heavy on Bee and I was not sure if he was alive. The sun works quickly though and with in a few seconds, although much of his torso and legs were still pinned to the deck by the weight of the water, Bee had managed to get those soaked wings free from his body and was already hanging them out to dry. So he was alive, but surely the twisted segments of his body were beyond repair? I thought my curiosity in watching him fight against the water had lost him precious time and my actions to lift him out were too late.
If this little guy was going to die though he was going to go out with a huge effort to get flying again. First he dragged himself around in circles as two of his legs seemed to be working on one side and none on the other. I hope no Bees were watching his Bee dance that shows them where the flowers are as this oakie was all over the show and was more likely to send them to a hornets nest than some pollen laden flowers.
After some wobbly dancing though he got two legs on the other side working and things were looking up for Bee. Then I noticed his biggest problem so far. Although he managed to get those all important wings up and drying straight away, I now noticed that he the two back legs (one on either side) were heavily laden with his precious cargo of pollen. A sack on either side, filled to the brim and bulging with a bounty any Bee could be proud of at the end of the day, never mind at 7:45am in the morning. I wonder if that is why this ambitious worker Bee had dived into the pool so stupidly? Maybe it was just too much of a load for one Bee to carry.
Bee was in a spot of bother with this load of pollen, and even as the wings took on a more lively iridescent lustre as they reflected their metallic purple, yellow and green light from the now shiny lattice of wing fibres; I doubted how he would ever dry that pollen out. It seemed his work load would be his downfall. To his credit though, those sacks remained untouched. Its not like he was giving up his inherent task by unpacking his cargo to escape his ordeal. Nope, Bee was dragging those back legs around and getting more and more motion from the parts that had dried out. The wings were still just hanging out there to dry and I had yet to see Bee make an attempt to actually get back in the air.
I watched for another few minutes and just as I finished my muesli, I saw the wings give a little tester of a buzz. Not an attempt to fly, just a little tweaker, seeing if those precious body parts were still able to function after the crash.
Now I do not have fond memories of close encounters with Bee's. As a youngster I would swell up when stung: like a Bergies lip after the obligatory Friday night boozin and beating.
I was allergic, but I was curious. That is probably what got me stung most of the time anyway. So with the abandon of a 3 year old and throwing caution to the wind, I lurched forward to get a better look at the state of the fella. Wouldn't you know it as soon as I got too close Bee darts off into the sky. Result!
I checked my watch ... it was7:59am ... perhaps he had an 8 O' Clock meeting?

Post script: I am a big honey fan and can't help thinking I will see some of Bee's hard labours soon. At least I would have contributed slightly in the making of this Bee's particular pot.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

"And when things start to happen, don’t worry. Don’t stew. Just go right along. You’ll start happening too."

I sent this to a very special person just a few weeks back. I am not sure I can remember where I found it, but I enjoyed it through and through. A sublime piece of writing for the likes of PlanetPi. The brilliant thing though is that then it came back to me. Yesterday my younger brother - the Kitchen guy, sent it to me as he thought I would enjoy it. Totally from left field you see which was fantastical stuff indeed.
If you are going to read please promise yourself one thing though... read it right till the end. Read out loud or to a friend. Or to yourself but make sure you read the whole catoot.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go!
by the incomparable Dr. Seuss

Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.

You’ll look up and down streets. Look’em over with care. About some you will say, “I don’t choose to go there.” With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you’re too smart to go down a not-so-good street.

And you may not find any you’ll want to go down. In that case, of course, you’ll head straight out of town. It’s opener there in the wide open air.

Out there things can happen and frequently do to people as brainy and footsy as you.

And when things start to happen, don’t worry. Don’t stew. Just go right along. You’ll start happening too.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go!

You’ll be on your way up!
You’ll be seeing great sights!
You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.

You won’t lag behind, because you’ll have the speed. You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon take the lead. Wherever you fly, you’ll be best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.

Except when you don’t.
Because, sometimes, you won’t.

I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups and Hang-ups can happen to you.

You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch. And your gang will fly on. You’ll be left in a Lurch.

You’ll come down from the Lurch with an unpleasant bump. And the chances are, then, that you’ll be in a Slump.

And when you’re in a Slump, you’re not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.

You will come to a place where the streets are not marked. Some windows are lighted. But mostly they’re darked. A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin! Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in? How much can you lose? How much can you win?

And if you go in, should you turn left or right…or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite? Or go around back and sneak in from behind? Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find, for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.

You can get so confused that you’ll start in to race down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space, headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.

The Waiting Place…for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite or waiting around for Friday night or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil, or a Better Break or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants or a wig with curls, or Another Chance. Everyone is just waiting.

No! That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing. With banner flip-flapping, once more you’ll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you’re that kind of a guy!

Oh, the places you’ll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won. And the magical things you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all. Fame! You’ll be famous as famous can be, with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.

Except when they don’t. Because, sometimes, they won’t.

I’m afraid that some times you’ll play lonely games too. Games you can’t win ‘cause you’ll play against you.

All Alone!
Whether you like it or not, Alone will be something you’ll be quite a lot.

And when you’re alone, there’s a very good chance you’ll meet things that scare you right out of your pants. There are some, down the road between hither and yon, that can scare you so much you won’t want to go on.

But on you will go though the weather be foul. On you will go though your enemies prowl. On you will go though the Hakken-Kraks howl. Onward up many a frightening creek, though your arms may get sore and your sneakers may leak. On and on you will hike. And I know you’ll hike far and face up to your problems whatever they are.

You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know. You’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go. So be sure when you step. Step with care and great tact and remember that Life’s a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.

And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and ¾ percent guaranteed.)

Kid, you’ll move mountains!
So…be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ale Van Allen O’Shea, you’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So…get on your way!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Do you beleive in the Devil? You know a supreme evil being dedicated to the temptation,corruption and destruction of man?" "I'm not sure man needs hel

"Do you believe in the Devil? You know, a supreme evil being dedicated to the temptation, corruption and destruction of man?"
"I am not sure that man needs the help." Calvin & Hobbes

Once again that little critter Calvin and his imaginary Tiger have some fantastic comments on the state of what they see in front of them. I found the clever words relevant to the crumbling castle syndrome that seems to be on everyone's minds at the moment. An interesting point to me is the way people actually react to this chaos in the world financial markets, politics and lively weather that has created such uncertainty and fear for the future.
All the reports are looking at reasons for, and why, the banks and leaders have failed us and presented us with this mess to deal with. The realisation is starting to set in that perhaps the system is not as stable as we thought is was. People are stressing as the prospects of keeping their homes, jobs and comforts in their lives are looking ever more frail, and as they feel the control slipping away from their hapless grasp, that fear and panic turns outward to find the reasons. The blame is directed away from themselves. Why is this happening to us? Why are things so difficult and is it necessary that we are punished with such hardship?

Is it not clear and simple though that this is all self inflicted? All that is falling apart was created by ourselves. Not with very much good intention either mind you. The act of growing larger and larger just for the sake of growth itself should not be seen as good intention. Is it not clear that we have neglected our inner selves and what is supposed to be happening on this planet with regards to interacting in a positive way with our natural environment and not trying to squeeze every ounce of what we think is worthwhile from it in a one way relationship? That we are concentrating just on what is outside of us and how it can serve us?

Obviously this is not clear to the majority of people. All the hustling to get things right seem to result in solutions outside of ourselves. Reasons for the upheaval are pinned on instability here and evil leadership there; natural disasters and climate change wreaking havoc upon our innocent selves, or diseases that are ravaging the worlds population so ruthlessly.

We find ourselves victims ... when we would do well to realise, we just need to find ourselves.