Thursday, March 10, 2011

Gratuitous use of the word dude

My four year old daughter asked me the other day if 'dude' was a swear word.
For a moment I was confused. My daughter is generally quite a sharp little girl and her grasp of language is relatively advanced. So why would she come to this conclusion I wondered?
Upon further questioning she informed me that I used the word a lot when I am angry, and she is quite right.

I am not a surfer. I never was. I do not use surfer jargon as a general rule. Using the word 'sick' as a totally awesome compliment is beyond me.
However the word dude, pronounced [dooo -ooohd], usually with varying degrees of frustration or disbelief has crept into my vocabulary. I have noticed that I use it a lot when driving. I drive a lot with small children. And so instead of loosing my temper and yelling "Use your f***ing indicator before you blatantly push in front of me in traffic you f***ing w**ker or I swear to G*d I'll come over there and f**k you up" I simply shake my head and say: "Du'de" with a disbelieving smirk on my face.

It would appear that the original message behind the word is not lost on my righteous little sick babe.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Bad Dad

Far be it from me to ever criticise another parent. Usually. I am more than aware of how challenging the demands of this labour of love can be. Normally. I have an acute sensitivity to how easily we fuck mess up and how hard we all try not to. Most of the time.
I also stay out of racist rhetoric. Generally. I am very alert to the colour of my skin and the perceived slant this would give any of my arguments. Customarily. I also just couldn't be arsed bothered with people who want to wallow in this smelly pond of bile, I prefer to give my attention both intellectually and emotionally to the many, many people in South Africa who are working so very hard to heal the trauma of our collective past in a tangible way. Most of the time.
I also need to avoid newspapers for my own sanity.
But then every now and again I run up against something that I just have to respond to.
Even so, it has taken months to get around to it.

A local 'news'paper recently published an opinion column titled Still on the apartheid treadmill. Which, I admit, is a rather witty heading given the content. And this is where, for me, the problem lies.
The author tells the story of how his 12 year old son has been traumatised by the 'racist behaviour' of staff at his local gym. From what I can gather his son is under-age for use of the machines at the franchise. And he has been repeatedly asked to get off of the equipment by attendants. According to daddy the white kids, also under age, using gym equipment have not been harassed in this manner. Not once mind you, but six times, has this father placed his son in a position where this was a highly likely outcome.
And he still complains that he is struggling to "convince" his son to go to gym with him!

Is it just me or is this guy trying to foster another Angry Black Man?
C'mon man, the 12 year old has figured it out - he is NOT ALLOWED ON THE EQUIPMENT! Why keep using him to convince yourself that all white people think less of black people? (Yes, I know some do. I am probably related to a few of them) Why not stop fighting for the cause just for one Saturday morning and take him hiking up skeleton gorge. Just the two of you, mano y mano.
Please. Before it's too late and your anger either drives him away, or worse yet, infuses his soul.
Peace, brother.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day

Gifts from the fairies on Valentines day.

Monday, January 31, 2011 a bad Penny

I dropped the ball a little last week. It was my first week back at school.
For the Grrrlz and me. Yip. Again.
I have registered at the Centre for Creative Education to complete my Kindergarten teacher qualification.
As much as part of me would like to stay at home growing vegetables, baking bread and knitting by the fireside, there is a growing acceptance that I need to be able to accept financial responsibility for myself.
And this is what I do best. And love doing. And I still get to knit!
I feel truly blessed to be in this class. Most of the women doing the course are from the townships around Cape Town. Some working at Waldorf schools, but mostly employed in Educares in the townships. It is wonderful to be surrounded by these strong and love filled women who have made it their mission to bring joy into the lives of children.
Now I just need to improve my isiXhosa by 100% and all will be well.

Today I rediscovered LibraryThing. What fun to be able to see what everyone is reading! Now if I could just figure out how to add the widget to my bog the whole world could at last see what I have been reading. I know you are all waiting with your faces turning blue for this valuable piece of information.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Introducing Adam

Here in Suburbia we are in the land of the lawn. And flower beds. Growing vegetables is taking off with the eco-chic, but not in our garden yet...
Which is why I behave like a guerrilla gardener in our home. Constantly sneaking useful plants into the garden, housed in pots usually. And then protecting them for the rest of their lives.  One of my favourites is Adam, yes, an adam fig.
He was a scraggly, half dead, sorry sight when I discovered him languishing in his grow-bag. I transplanted him, fed him some compost and worm tea and he has thrived. I just wish he would repay all my love and attention with a fig!

Pen&Ink... revived

It all started quite innocently with me peeling potatoes onto newsprint from the recycling cupboard. I had been thinking about my writing for a while by then and wondering how to get over eight years of writers' block. 
My biggest problem being that I am not Margaret Atwood. 
Cannot write like Margaret Atwood. 
And am never going to be her, or write Handmaid's Tale. 
So why write?
Glancing down my eye was caught by a piece of at least 800 words about some arb man's experience with a shoddy handyman and his two garden gates. I kid you not. And they actually pay people to write this stuff?  And publish it in a newspaper?
I took this as a sign. If this boring old fart writer could earn an income - then I should at least keep writing.
I may never live up to my expectations. But I love to write. And so I will.
But not about my gates.