Thursday, January 30, 2014

Starting a company!

I have finally started my own Photography & Graphic Design company. It starts small, but should, with time, grow into something wonderful. I am actually quite tempted to say that it is most probably the most exciting project I've ever had. Though the hours are tough, any time after work and on my days off, sometimes only getting to sleep after midnight, I am enjoying the challenge of creating and administering to different clients, all with different styles and ideas.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Oscar goes to...

I've reading a lot about the Oscar Pistorius case with some interest; almost like a heroin addict, I need to read one more article, constantly inhaling the new information with vigour. It is the most bizarre murder mystery. Was it premeditated, or by accident? What on earth possessed him to pull the trigger?

There is no doubt that he is guilty of shooting Reeva, whether intentionally or unintentionally, to say otherwise would be an exercise in futility. Driving with one of my friends, I was asked why they had removed the advertising, a large billboard, for the Oscars on M-Net, with a picture of Oscar Pistorius. I brazenly replied "They would have had to add the slogan: Shooting for the Stars".

Do not get me wrong. I am shocked and appalled. However, it does not surprise me too much in a country where everyone has a gun (except, it seems, me). Criminals own guns to frighten and threaten you. Your average citizens own a gun for protection. Somewhere between all of that, someone is going to get shot.

A story retold on many different occasions. It is not the first time that we hear of an accidental shooting, if Oscar's side is to be believed, and it is not the first time we hear of an angry spouse shooting through jealous rage, if we are to believe the policemen. What about the world? Well, the world is shocked by our blasé attitude towards firearms.

Pistorius' case is unfortunate. A scandal that has rocked this country (again). I feel sorry for the presiding judge, as it is a tough case. Not only because it is mired in sloppy police work, but also because the media has over sensationalised it.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Ooh... my Blog has been too quiet of late!

Since this is meant to be a repository of my thoughts, and have not posted anything in a while, I thought I'd try to recapitalise on all the free time I have at the moment and try to update this sorely lacking Blog.

So, stay tuned for updates and more.

Friday, January 27, 2012

A little small talk does wonders...

Looking back on all the odd things that I have had to put up with last year (far too many things happening all at once), I'm quite happy that this is a new year. Even though it's a silly concept; since time has not dramatically shifted and refreshed, I still find that it's quite entertaining to think you can start afresh.

I am quite excited about starting the year with a new job; even though I still sometimes give art classes to older retired people. I now work at a school that teaches French, I do admin and work at the reception. I think the best part of doing such a job is actually talking to different people. At first, they come in looking slightly sallow, maybe even tired, but then, they get to talking, I listen, and their faces light up. Nothing cures the blues like having someone to talk to and forget what was troubling you.

This is probably one of the main reasons why I sometimes find it troubling that you often find someone working with the public, who has no actual people skills. If you are just going to grunt or sit there, then rather take an office job; one where you can be locked away behind closed doors and whispered about, as if you were some kind of mythological beast that lurks in a cave.

Thursday, December 30, 2010


Like the jet-setter that I am, I find myself in Jordan. Enjoying the sites and sounds of a middle-eastern country that is slowly becoming the hub of modernisation in this part of the world. Like any modern country, the shackles of intolerance are slowly slipping. While there is still a lot that needs to be done, Jordan is fast becoming a 'Mecca' for tourists and businesses.

Petra is spectacular, one of those barely mentioned gems of the ancient world. Definitely a place that should be placed firmly on the map for anyone interested in antiquities. There is a little bit of everything for everyone. Fine, you may not enjoy looking at historical artefacts and monuments. What about cars? The late King Hussein has a spectacular car museum, which was recently updated with some truly rare vehicles. The night life in Jordan may be slightly sparse, especially outside of Amman, but can be quite good, if you know where to go, that is. Food in Jordan is top-notch, or should I say top nosh? Having an amazing choice of middle-eastern, eastern and western cuisine; ranging from the ultra dazzling six star kitchens of internationally acclaimed chefs, to the more reasonably priced local eateries.

Jordan is well worth a visit if you want to try an exotic trip to the the Middle-East without having to worry about some of the oppressive customs that are sometimes found in predominantly Muslim countries.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

RICA, Media Tribunals, and More?

What is RICA? RICA is the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-Related Information Act. The customer registration section of the RICA, as set out by the South African Government requires everyone who has an active cellphone number or purchases a new Prepaid Starter Pack, to register their SIM cards from 1 July 2009.” Vodacom (and yes, that’s all the information you are given by Vodacom)

Now that I have your attention on what seems like useless information in actuality, I will try and dissimulate it. I find it interesting that they (and I am not talking about a proverbial ‘they’, but one that can be noted as being our ever so “reliable” government) have not worded the true nature of RICA. 

What is RICA exactly? Well, that’s easy. Have you ever watched Big Brother? If so, then you know a little about the concepts brought about in the novel ‘1984’, in which citizens are constantly monitored. Though the intentions of RICA may be less dubious, and probably has good reasons for its inception, one is left with a bit of an odd feeling of being watched, or more accurately, listened to, from the privacy of what has now become the new standard of telecommunications.

What I have found most troubling is the way that RICA has been handled. It seems terribly shady, every mentioning of RICA seems to be laced with bureaucratic jargon that the average citizen is left baffled with, and never once have I seen any documentation that seems to outline in nice friendly language what RICA is actually for. Everyone seems to speculate that it is for national security reasons, or maybe for anti-terrorism (a term that seems to have become clichéd in modern society).  

The CellC website states and I quote: “The aim of this legislation is to help law enforcement agencies to identify cellphone users and track criminals using cellphones for illegal activities”, the MTN website more or less states the same. Again, this is oddly unhelpful, the information is too sparse. Who regulates what, who, where and why? The MTN website states that “RICA is one of government’s key crime prevention initiatives towards making South Africa a safer place to live and work”. Interesting! Especially, when it comes down to crime and corruption within our government. Oh, but let’s not rush to any conclusions, since the information about RICA has been so forthcoming and insightful.

I totally abhor it when citizens of any country are left out of the loop of goings-on within their governments. Now that I have gone on my tangent of conspiracy theories, I am still left with some hope that it is not some plot to stifle all vestiges of free speech in the country, especially with the new Media bill that is slowly making its way into parliament that seems to stem from the current governments distaste for freedom of press (but let us not forget that this very same government had fought for this very right in the past). 

The Media Tribunal Legislation is another one of my pet hates. Again, any Conspiracy Theorist would be having a field day about how the government is trying to slowly monitor everything that a person does, and that one day there might no longer be any privacy, or maybe a camera in every room of every house, looking at your every move. Sounds comforting, in a slightly perverse Orwellian kind of way. (“Hey look, house 543.”... “Oh yeah! Take it off! Take it off!”... “Pass the tissues!”)

It is sad that a party such as the ANC has now fallen into such disrepute, especially when one takes a look at its past. In many parts of South Africa, people are afraid of voting for another party, some even under the illusion (or possibility) of certain death if ever they were to vote for another into government. Many speculate that this is due to lack of education, and they are probably right. 

Now you are probably wondering how I got so completely sidetracked and off topic. Well, I have not... yet. It all ties into the whole problem I have with RICA. How am I, as a citizen, supposed to trust a government that so far has not shown that it is looking after the best interests of its citizens?

It could be just me, but I’m going to go and make a foil hat. All this being watched by unknown government agencies seems too much like a bad made-for-television movie. The horror!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The oddity about truth (Stream of consciousness)

I always find it fascinating to find people who are unwilling to learn new ideas and ways of thinking. Especially when these individuals seem to be unable to open a book, a website, a newspaper, or any other form of media, and find that what they know might be wrong. It may take a bit of time to accept the fact that there are no certainties in life, but it does make things more interesting.

I enjoy reading about new scientific discoveries, I love reading about different modes of thinking, and I am bedazzled by the human ability to completely disregard all facts when they are presented to them. It says much about human ego and arrogance. We have brains, so it should be our prerogative to actually take the time to find out about the world, but this is not always the case. If you don't like an idea, then try and see how it is wrong, and formulate new ones, do not just accept everything you are told or read. Take the time to make your own discoveries!

I find biology to be very interesting, and have been reading about the 'Human Genome Project'. I found it fascinating to find out about genetic behaviour, and how it applies to all forms of life. This does make one pose the question of 'nurture vs. nature', and shows just how much we are influenced by our genetic memories. This does not mean that our genes are the only factors, and I would have to say that I find that both nature and nurture play equal parts in human mental/socio development. It is just interesting to see how one might have to delineate between the two. What has influenced a psychopath to kill, while another person with the same killer 'instincts' (or genes) might have total control over their psychotic impulses.

The more we discover, the more answers we are given, the more questions we ask. Some would view this as a bad thing, but I only see the beauty in it. Our natural curiosity has allowed us to adapt and evolve to such a point where we can adapt our very surroundings. The more we ask, the more answers we are able to get, and the more we are able to build on our vast collective knowledge of the world around us. Like the Pre-Socratic philosophers, we ask questions on how our world came to be, how the universe was formed, and we are slowly finding clues every day. Scientists are painting a beautifully complex perspective on the universe, and I am glad I am here to see it all unravel before my very eyes.
“Uncertainty is the only certainty there is, and knowing how to live with insecurity is the only security.” - John Allan Paulos
Just imagine what we will discover, and how these discoveries will change the very foundations of our world. We might not know everything, but at least we are trying to, and that is the important part. In the next century they will probably all be laughing at what we know today, they will be reading about our societies in history books, looking at our beliefs as myths, and find us as ridiculous as we find the people of the ancient word. The only truth is that, what we know now is only transient knowledge, and we will never be completely sure of anything.