Thursday, December 22, 2011

Here's To 2012

                                                   Sabreen doing what she does best.

What an awesome year it's been!
Any year that affords you the opportunity to strike items off your Bucket List and has more highlights than lowlights, is worthy of being called an awesome year. This year certainly was all of that!

There are some great things in the pipelines for 2012.
It's going to be amazeballs!

Have a super festive season, and I look forward to reading your comments in the year ahead.

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Last Supper

No year would be complete without a list of the Top 10 (_______) fill in the blank.

I decided to do a combination of my Top 10 Most Beautiful Women and Top 10 Women I'd Like At My Last Supper.

The list is in random order, and I'm willing to bet my left toe that there isn't a guy on this planet who will have the exact same list as I do. How do I know this?
Year's of discussing women with the guys in school, during college, and every year thereafter proved to me that I have a slightly different taste in women compared to most men.
I don't go for the slutty pin-ups or bimbos. I'm not sure how I would describe my choice in women. I just know they're different.

Without further ado.... here's my Top 10 list.










Well, there you have it folks. The list may change next year. Also, if I had to choose just one of these beautiful women to be at my dinner table, it would have to be Ashley Judd without doubt :)


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Fear : The New Weapon Of Mass Destruction

Oh  boy... where do I start?
Maybe you should check out this video of Jon Stewarts 'The Daily Show' before I continue any further. The video is at the bottom of the link.

There was a time, which lasted for maybe 6 minutes back in early 2010, when I was extremely vocal and opinionated on bigotry and disrespect toward others beliefs, religious or otherwise.
Then it dawned on me that this was akin to arguing about what to do with the pink elephant in the room. By engaging in this argument, I would first have to acknowledge the worthiness of the topic, thus accepting that my IQ was on par with that of a swamp donkey.

Back to this video.
The fact that David Cretin, executive dye-rectum of the Florida Family Association (isn't this the same State that sold George 'Dubya' Bush the 2000 Presidential Election?) has taken issue with a show called All American Muslim based entirely on the lack of fundamentalism and jihadist ideology portrayed in the series, makes one wonder if he would have preferred a show depicting American Muslims as merciless terrorists. THIS is the guy heading up a 'family' association? Seriously?

So let me get this straight.
Produce a show which depicts your average American Muslim as peace-loving and uninterested in violence, and it causes an uproar for lack of violence & senseless killing.
Produce a show which depicts your average American Muslim as a bloodthirsty fundamental terrorist, and conservative Americans are deliriously happy, chanting "See! We told you so!"

I place the blame squarely at the feet of Reality TV.

Before this scourge on society came along, I was blissfully and ignorantly happy knowing that Christians were bible-thumpers who all lived for Christ and did no wrong, Mormons all drove horse-buggys and dressed like a black-and-white version of That 70's Show, Hindus only bathed in the Ganges and the men never wore shoes or shirts, Jews were... well they produce most shows so I'm forced to believe they are all funny and look like supermodels and are never portrayed as the bad guys, and lastly that all Muslims were packing bombs. Even those who invited you over for Sunday biryani and sent you home with a plate of samoosas.

Reality TV as it's sole purpose is to captivate an audience by sheer shock-value. The more ridiculous the show, the higher the ratings. Along comes a show with a tinge of normalcy and void of the four core ingredients to a hit-cake, S (Sex), N (Nudity), V (Violence) & L (Language), and suddenly we cry foul. Well when I say 'We' what I really mean is 'Conservative America' or as they're more commonly known, The Republicans.

One of their clan members, in trying to justify David Cretin's call for a boycott of the show, asked this poignant and well thought out question :"What would happen if conservative Christians decided to produce shows promoting our religion on national TV?"
Really?
No less than 17 Christian channels being aired 24 hours non-stop nationally, with close to 100 radio channels dedicated to preachings from the pulpit, and you're scared of 1 american muslim show? Not even a channel?

Yes folks.
This new weapon of mass destruction will undoubtedly wreak havoc unless we do something about it.
Unless we confront this evil known as FEAR, with something even more powerful.
Something so potent and indestructible, it has survived hundreds of years or persecution.
Something I like to call Common Sense.

How about we give that a try?

Monday, December 12, 2011

Listening To The Silence


A Dream Within A Dream by Edgar Allan Poe.

Take this kiss upon the brow!
And, in parting from you now,
Thus much let me avow-
You are not wrong, who deem
That my days have been a dream;
Yet if hope has flown away
In a night, or in a day,
In a vision, or in none,
Is it therefore the less gone?
All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream.

I stand amid the roar
Of a surf-tormented shore,
And I hold within my hand
Grains of the golden sand-
How few! yet how they creep
Through my fingers to the deep,
While I weep- while I weep!
O God! can I not grasp
Them with a tighter clasp?
O God! can I not save
One from the pitiless wave?
Is all that we see or seem
But a dream within a dream?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

When Good Kiddies Books Go Bad


I laughed so hard when I first saw this video, I had to stop it halfway through!

I especially love how she keeps reading and doesn't stop until the end.

Thank you to Goatville for this link.

Friday, December 9, 2011

10 Questions


Once a year, a dear friend of mine and I have this conversation where we ask each other 10 random questions, and we expect 10 completely honest answers. We've been doing this for so long now, it's become impossible to even try and sneak as much as a white lie into the conversation.

The questions range from family and life in general to the hypothetical and sometimes even bizarre. Did I say bizarre? I meant bazaar. Well both really.

So yesterday I asked her if she'd come to my funeral if I died, and what would she say at my eulogy.
You thought I was kidding when I said bizarre, didn't you?

She said "Kaloo, everything I've ever wanted to tell you, I've told you while you are alive. Why would I leave anything for when you're no longer around?"

How awesome is that?
Also, how often do we leave the really important stuff for when it's quite frankly too late?

How often have we heard a eulogy which includes the following phrase :
"If (insert deceaseds name here           ) were with us today, I'd like to tell him/ her how much I love/ trust/ adore/ admire him/ her."

Tell them while they're still alive, before it's too late.
Taking flowers to a grave only makes the lumpy soil look beautiful.
Taking flowers to a friend makes the both of you look beautiful.

Monday, December 5, 2011

In Search Of A Pyramid Scheme


As a South African, I find myself living in this cocoon where I keep thinking that all the changes and revolutions our brothers up north are experiencing won't affect my fragile utopia. This is a foolish thought admittedly, but even more foolish would be imagining that my utopia is anything but fragile.

One of the bloggers whom I follow, an Egyptian who's writings are nothing short of inspiring, has presented such insight into the revolution that it made me wonder why South Africans have not been more radical in our demands for change. Dalia Ziada is my blogging hero, and some day when that revolution arrives, and it will arrive, I shall read back on her words and be thankful that I heeded them.

The Egyptians may not have given us much that affects our lives on a daily basis, unless you smoke hubbly-bubbly or eat sheesh-kebabs as often as I do.
Sure there were the pyramids, but let's be honest those haven't really improved our quality of life.
Then there were the ancient scrolls and the mummies, but again neither are historical marvels that make me sleep better at night nor lower my cholesterol. If anything, those mummies give me erratic sleep patterns.




Along comes the Egyptian Revolution, and suddenly I'm sitting upright and taking notice.
Boy those guys know how to throw one heck of a revolution, right?!
The crowds in Tahrir Square numbered millions, and they stayed with steadfast determination for days!
Maybe they were on rotation, and came and went in shifts. I don't know. I mean I highly doubt Tahrir Square was designed with a revolution in mind. I'm thinking toilet and shower facilities, sleeping quarters, the food and beverage logistics. I just can't see it. So yeah maybe they had some sort of rotation system going on, but even that was impressive.
Add to that the fact that the planning was done after the Internet and mobile services were shut down!

So I couldn't help but wonder how such a revolution would go down in South Africa. Firstly I assume it would have to start and have it's base in Sandton. This is after all the financial capital of the country, and the essence of the revolution has got to do with change and how the bankers and politicians haven't been giving us any. Well that's not entirely true I suppose. They've been keeping the notes, and we've been getting the change.
So when this revolution eventually begins in Sandton, I assume again it will start at Nelson Mandela Square. The irony won't be lost on anybody. The fact that the country starts a revolution against corruption and corporate greed right underneath the bronze sculpture of the man who brought us freedom to begin with. A revolution the country and it's people will be fighting, against the very party once started by the great Nelson Mandela himself.

It sure as heck won't start in Cape Town, where Aunty Helen has a firm grip on things. She'll offer prizes to people who don't take part in the revolution, much like she did to those taking voluntary AID's tests.
Know Your Status. Win R50 000.
Don't Join The Revolution. Win A Grocery Hamper.


ANC supporters will laugh at this, until they realize that the revolution is actually against their leaders.
DA supporters will be fuming, because we all know they believe Aunty Helen is the Messiah, and as such she can do no wrong.
Me personally, I don't care very much for either side. If the truth be told, there isn't a political party I trust in this country. They have more hidden agendas than a pack of lawyers at a Human Rights convention.

I'll support the revolution with my heart and soul. What happens after that is anyones guess. I would hope that somewhere in this beautiful country of 50 million people (if those Census people are to be believed) we can find another handful of political hero's and champions of social causes. People like Chris Hani and Walter Sisulu and Nelson Mandela and Helen Suzman and Oliver Tambo.
Surely we can find these young lions ready to take this country onward and upward. Surely their voices are waiting to be heard. Maybe we need a revolution to stifle the corrupt and finally listen out for those voices.
The alternative is a rather scary option.


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Walking Away Because You Care


When I first started this blog, it was never intended to tackle or address any serious issues. It was always meant to be light-hearted and an escape from reality.
I've come to realize that there has been a slow and steady metamorphosis, and while I hope I haven't completely lost the humour aspect, I do realize that it's taken on a much more serious note.

Tonight's post is a point in case.

I have a very dear friend whom I've known for about 10 years now. I say 'have' but the reality is that 'had' would be more accurate.

In the 10 year's that I know her, I've watched her slowly but surely lose her self-confidence and pride as it was methodically chipped away by her husband. He has a drinking problem. This was an issue for her which they were managing within their marriage. I say 'managing' but she will be the first to admit that it was more a case of accepting that he would not acknowledge having a problem, and she was forced to hide it.


Last year things took a turn for the worse.
He got caught cheating on her, with a family member. Her brother's wife.
Now one would imagine that a successful guy, a professional in his field of IT, would have a little bit of common sense and a slightly higher IQ than most, and acknowledge that he screwed up and try his level best to make amends.
Not our intrepid loser.
He decided in a moment of brilliance that his best defence would be to start accusing her of having had an affair too, with everybody and anybody under the sun. He tried to play the Victim card.
At one point, even I got accused. Unfortunately for him, I'm one of those men who doesn't play games and smells a rat before it even knows its a rat. I let him know that I'm onto his ploy, and that it wasn't going to work.

He'd go on drinking binges, emotionally abuse her, accuse her, their two kids would be traumatized, she'd end up crying, he'd be too drunk to care, and then they'd wake up in the morning to have him apologise and swear he'd never do it again.
Until the next night.
And the next.
And the next.


Through all of this, she'd speak to me and ask for advice and look for support. I did the best I could but knew that she needed professional help. He refused to go. She went alone. She ended up in hospital from a near nervous breakdown.
He didn't change.

Finally she decided that she had enough, and left on Monday intending to spend two weeks at a retreat for abused women.
She's back home tonight.
She was away for a total of 1 night.
Apparently he called saying he's sorry.
He didn't eat all day.
She says she needed to go back home. Her family needs her.
I wonder how much help she'd be to her family if, God forbid, she collapsed tomorrow from a nervous breakdown or  heart-attack? I wonder if her husband will starve because nobody made him a sandwich?

I told her I needed to close the door on our friendship.
If she's not willing to help herself, I cannot help her, try as I might.

Am I a bad friend, or am I just someone who cares enough to walk away in the hope that she opens her eyes before it's too late?

Monday, November 28, 2011

Phombo, Or "Damn This Site Is Awesome!"

I literally stumbled upon a photo-collection site this evening during another one of my random Googlings.
See, how it works (the random Googlings, I mean) is quite simple. I think of a word, which isn't actually a word, but one which sounds like it could possibly be a word in another language... and then I Google it.
You'll be surprised by what you can find out there in Google-land simply by typing in random odd sounding words.

Like Phombo.
Check out Phombos site here

Here's why I like the idea of random Googlings.
Remember that craze a few years back where everybody and their donkey was buying a copy of "The Book Of Answers", which incidentally is now available in a really cool online version here ?
Well this kind of works the same way. Some days you just want to read or browse something completely random. Oddly I find that when I do a random Googling, it opens up a page which is precisely what I need at that point in time. Like a soul-food drive-through. Quick and fulfilling.

Like tonight for example. I felt like browsing some Chinese art, since I'm going through an artsy flourish where I'm in the process of decorating my home in all things creative and beautiful.



This would look amazing next to the Japanese frames I have with random words written on them. Apparently the three frames which I have are supposed to have Luck, Prosperity & Health inscribed on them. I have no idea if this is true though. They could just as easily read Stupid, Indian & Guy.


During my trip to Hong Kong, I went to a museum with some amazing artworks. At least I thought they were amazing. The locals seemed more impressed with Hentai and Hello Kitty sketches. It's interesting to note how desensitized we have become to the beauty that surrounds us. I guess that's why travel will never cease. People will continuously be amazed by other cultures and lands, while those lands and their people will take for granted the beauty they possess.


I guess the same can be said for us as a people.
In our friendships, in our relationships, in our everyday lives.
We are surrounded by beauty everywhere. Our spouses, our partners, our family and friends, in the work we do and the words we speak and the things we create. Yet we never take the time out to step back, look upon the blessings we have, and go "Wow! Beautiful!"

Instead we travel thousands of miles to foreign lands only to speak those same words to complete strangers.

What an odd species we are.



Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Price Of Perfection

Well I learned a rather important lesson today. More important than the usual lessons I learn on any other day, and I am always humbled by how much there is to learn out there.

Having worked in the field of commercial property maintenance and renovations for a few years now, I've come to accept a certain required standard from my clients, and they have come to accept the same if not a higher standard from me.
So I'm always surprised when a client based overseas and who is notorious for being unreachable during the best of times, questions my decision during a rather big project to improve on an aspect of the job which clearly needed it. Protocol usually requires confirmation from client, but when you've been given Carte Blanche to make time-sensitive decisions if a client is unreachable, you would think your judgement will be respected.

The project looks great. The cost implication was an added 10%. In light of the bigger picture, it's a small price to pay.
Maybe it's easier to say this since I'm not the one paying the additional 10%.
Maybe it's my ego and pride at stake because I demand a certain level of expertise from myself. I could have done the project without undertaking the additional aspect, but that would have annoyed me to no end. I would never have put it in my portfolio. It would have been a blemish on my record, even if the client thought otherwise.

I guess therein lies the answer.
Sometimes client's are just morons and don't know whats best for them.
Maybe I'm the moron and this is the price I pay for perfection.

Here endeth the rant.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

How To Ruin A New Brand 101

It's been a while since I've last had to rant about either a product or customer service.
My avid readers to the blog are in for a treat, for today I get to do both, and coincidentally it's about a product from the same brand.

About a month ago, I walked into my local Spar and did what I do almost every day for the past few years. I purchased a large bottle of Ice Tea. Considering that I spend my entire day driving around between different sites, this has become my staple refreshment. On this particular day, I noticed that there was a new brand perched enticingly next to my usual Lipton Rooibos.
Amila Ice Tea Peach.

Now I'm willing to try anything once, so I figured this was worth a shot.
Luckily I decided to open the bottle and take a much needed swig before climbing into my vehicle, or I may have needed to send my car in for a full valet!
Ice Tea was never meant to be a fizzy drink. Neither was it supposed to taste like a cheap wine fermented in a backyard shack in Kimberley!
This drink managed to achieve both.

Since there was no contact number on the offending bottle, I Googled the company, sent them an e-mail, and recieved an immediate response.
0 points for product.
10 points for Customer Service at this point.


Apparently the problem was due to fermenting of a batch of Ice Tea's which were being bottled by a new sub-contractor. Fair enough. A valid excuse which I was impressed that they were honest enough to share with me, instead of the usual "We have no idea what went wrong" drivel.
I was promised feedback and told I would recieve a replacement within a few days.
It's been a month and I have recieved neither.
Well that's not completely accurate. I did recieve 3 emails apologising for the delay/oversight/and/and/and.
0 points for product.
0 points for Customer Service.

My final verdict : A brand whose ice-tea should be flat and handling of customer service fizzy. Unfortunately they have it the wrong way around.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Scents And Sensibility


When the Monday morning post starts off with a pic of toilet roll, you just know the week has gone to shit before it even started.
Not just any toilet roll.
This is that premium variety of 3-ply scented toilet roll.
Seriously, who's using scented toilet-roll? I get the 3-ply thing, but scented? Why? What for?
You're wiping your butt with it, not wrapping wedding gifts in it, for crying out loud!
How stupid and naive must you be to believe that toilet roll which is Fruit Basket scented is going to make your butt smell like an orchard or an aisle in Fruit & Veg City?

Which brings me to my next rant.
Opinions.
We all know that everybody has them. We all know that everybody has the right to exercise them.
How about if we all respected each others right to voice them? Honestly people, it's gotten to the point where we believe the only opinion which one is allowed to have and voice, is our own. If anybody disagrees with what we have to say, we declare war and want to see blood.
What total crap! What kind of sick society must we live in when someone is too afraid to voice an opposing viewpoint for fear of being lambasted? Yet we want to call ourselves educated and western, living in a democracy? How foolish have we become to silence debate simply because we don't accept someone else's point of view?

This happened to me twice this weekend.
The first time was when a friend near beheaded me for having voiced a sporting opinion which he disagreed with. Out went the right to respectfully disagree, in came the battering ram & armour. Of course he was rather silent when my point was proven less than 24 hours later.

The next occasion was earlier this morning.
I watched a show on SABC2 titled "Muslim Identity".
I thought the content was thought provoking and inspiring. I found the guests to be objective and progressive in their thinking. With religion being such a complex and diverse topic, it would be near impossible to showcase every single viewpoint. The Bible has more than one version. The Holy Quraan has just one. Yet the Muslim world knows and understands that in the final days, there will be 73 different sects or variations of this one simple religion. How then could the producers cater for every single possible variation of just one Holy Book, taking into consideration that each group believed themselves to be the chosen ones?

Having said that, I found it interesting that for such an inspiring program, there were groups within the community who completely lost sight of the bigger picture and focused solely on their egos. Religious leaders and elders have done much in our communities to foster brotherhood and a sense of belonging, but they must be the first to admit that this brotherhood and belonging was the exclusive domain of their own people. There's a reason why non-Indians who came into the fold of Islam felt ostracized by the Indian community at large. Saying that this is not true is as insulting as telling a black person that they misunderstood Apartheid. You cannot assume to understand what others have had to endure, if you yourself have never been in that position.
So it was with a saddened heart that I watched our religious leaders & elders chastise the efforts of a few scholars simply because they felt that sufficient credit hadn't been bestowed their way.
What say them of humility and pride? What say the good book of those very same virtues?

Instead of seizing upon the opportunity to begin earnest dialogue to address the obvious social problems highlighted in the documentary, these men of cloth and their merry band of zealots chose to become that which they preach to be despised by God himself.
If I decided to feed the poor by offering them cake instead of bread, would you honestly criticize me for my actions instead of assisting by offering bread as well?
I would rather you roll up your sleeves and join me, then stand on the side and bark ridicule at my efforts.

I think the problem is partly due to the fact that religious leaders, and this is true of every religion, hate being questioned or having their authority challenged. With the advent of the internet, it has made it rather difficult for them to be the bastions of scripture, Quraanic verse and 'hadith' as we call it in Arabic.
Assuming our religious leaders are never wrong is as dangerous as likening them to faultless beings. You know what became of faultless beings back in the day, right? They were idolized and ultimately worshipped for their lack of faults. Imagine if people today had this view of some of our .... Oh wait!

Anyways, I guess what I'm saying is that we have our holy book and teachings as guides to help us become better human beings. How about we start applying the practical aspects to being better human beings before we decide to dissect the scripture, Quraanic verse and hadith looking for faults within others?
"Let him who has not sinned cast the first stone."

I wait with baited breath for bigots and zealots to berate and castigate me for having quoted from the Bible instead of the Quraan.

Oh woe is me....


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Food For Thought


This post was almost titled "The Theory Of Pie".
I say 'almost' because as soon as I thought of Pie, I took a break from blogging, headed for the kitchen, and the rest was a foregone conclusion.

Recently I've noticed that the common thread in blogs I follow and even amongst friends on Twitter, has been the issue of weight. More so than usual, as I'm well aware that no self-respecting men's or ladies magazine would dare publish an issue without a section dedicated to weight-loss.
I've been planning an exercise regiment for some time now. I'm generally fit as my job description doesn't allow for me to be a slacker by any stretch of the imagination, but I do know that I could do without the extra 10kilos courtesy of MacDonalds.

This brings me to the meat of this post; the crust of the matter if you must.
The lengths people would go to in order to achieve weight loss is simply astounding! I stumbled across a post on Health24 regarding some crazy diets. How's this for The 10 Most Crazy Diets Ever ?

Believe it or not, people are still using that Tapeworm Diet. I've heard of a few others. The Coffee Diet, which is pretty self-explanatory. Then there's this new fad where you drink a grain or soya smoothie every morning and every night for 10 days, and nothing else. Supposedly the crazy folk on this diet say that you spend the buk of your time seated on the loo for these 10 days, but looking into the pan convinces them that their insides and excess fat are being unceremoniously evacuated. Not a pleasant thought. I don't look into the pan on a good day, why would I look into it while on this crazy diet?

You would think that all these pharmaceutical companies would have already figured out a diet that requires no effort but has the desired results. We can send a man to the moon, but we can't make a magic pill that makes you lose weight. Don't get me wrong. I love my body just the way it is, and I love a woman's body that has some meat on it. Bones are for dogs. But for those who so desire, for those who want to shed a few kilos, and there are times when I do too, I'd like to know that I can just pop a pill and watch the fat disappear.

I'll leave you with this site about The 5 Most Disgusting Foods Ever

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

And Then She Was 5


We attended my nephews 5th birthday party over the weekend.
I think I'm at that age where my head think's my body is a teenager, and my body think's my head needs to calm down and read the Sunday paper and drink some tea.

Sabreen still think's I'm at the prime of my youth, and I guess that's all that really matters :)


I've come to realize that Sabreen has a more active social life at her age then I ever had in my entire life. That's no exagerration. She's pretty much booked up for parties and events until the middle of December. I don't even have a clue what I'll be doing this coming weekend!

The missus and I spend an average of 3 hours a night each on our laptops, and Sabreen has become quite adapt at using either. Shakera and I tossed around the idea of getting her started on her own, since there's no definitive answer on the question "When is too soon?"
Finally we decided on getting her an iPad.
It completely amazes me how tech-savvy kids are these days. She's able to use the laptop and iPad with the ease and comfort of a seasoned gamer.

In a way I suppose it's all good, getting them started this early. I do worry though that kids nowadays have lost touch with the essence of growing up and what it really means to enjoy their youth. As parents we're caught in this quagmire of wanting to hold them back and be children as we remember children to be, or letting them learn and excel and not get left behind as the rest of the world steams ahead in technology.

I don't know what the answer is. I wish I did.
Maybe tonight I'll get Sabreen to Google the answer.




Thursday, November 10, 2011

Parrot-Troopers


I have a sneaky suspicion that this post may ruffle a few feathers.
I certainly hope it does, or else the entire purpose of this blog has been futile.

I was at a friends place this weekend, and he had all these little prayers stuck on his walls and doors and windows and plastered all over his kids room. Little prayers (or 'duas' as we call them in Arabic) for almost anything and everything... before eating, after eating, while washing hands, before going into the loo, on leaving the loo, on entering the house, on leaving the house, before sleeping, on waking up, while doing nothing. You name it and there was a corresponding prayer to go with it.

I thought this was great. I'm all for closeness to God and teaching kids about religion.
His boy is 6 and his little girl is 8.
Needless to say, they knew every single one of these prayers by heart, in Arabic. It rolled off their tongues as easily as you and I might sing a Michael Jackson song. Maybe even easier.

As a Dad he must have been so proud. I think he was actually. I was too busy being impressed to be anything else.
The little boy bonded with me like I was Santa Clause bearing candy. Finally at 9pm he asked if I'd put him to bed. His mom nodded her approval and off I went with this kid in tow. I tucked him in and before I could ask if he wanted me to read him a story, he started on his prayer before going to bed. The Arabic words bouncing off his tongue like the sweet sounds of a nightingale. When he was done, I asked him what it all meant. Of course I knew what it meant, since I was taught in very much the same way but for one exception: We were told to recite the English translation as well. I noticed that neither of these kids did that when reciting their prayers.

He looked at me incredulously and completely perplexed. It's always fascinating when a kid looks at you in words they cannot even spell, let alone understand.
So I asked him again if he could tell me what the prayer he had just read in Arabic, actually meant.
Finally, with a look of exasperation, he shrugged his shoulders and said simply "No, I don't."
It's at this point that I stopped being so impressed with his memory skills, or that of his sister for that matter.

Like I said earlier, I'm all for religion and closeness to God.
But if kids are being brought up like parrots, taught to recite prayers in the language of the Holy Book without fully understanding what it is that they are reciting, or made to understand why they should be reciting a prayer for each of those instances, then I am afraid we are doing them and the religion a disservice.

I was taught the Lords Prayer at an early age, but I was first taught the reason why the Lords Prayer is recited. Made to understand it's purpose. At age 6 I started attending Islamic School or Madressah as we call it. At night I was grilled on what we had learned, and here's where these teachings between Islam and Christianity began to take on a beauty of their own. My evenings would be spent in discussion about the similarities between the religions, and I was forced to expand my thinking and understanding of the things I had been taught. Yes, I was forced to hone and polish that scarcely used human attribute that was so prevalent in years gone by: I was forced to use common sense.

This post is not and should not only be relevant to religion. It should be relevant to everyday life, and in everything we do. If we just applied some common sense and removed the blinkers society and our upbringing has placed on us, we would need less governance from elders and teachers and ultimately, governments.

If somebody sat down with those nutters from Al-Qaeda and the Talibaan and Al-Shabaab and The Lords Resistance Army and Hitler and half the Spanish and English Kings and the Israelis and every terrorist from every faction fighting whatever cause they believe is worthy of an innocents death... if somebody just got them to start using common sense in their ideologies, I promise this world would be a better place.
I watched a show last night wherein a guy was talking about how we've lost our ability to think, and how we've left it up to a higher authority to do our thinking for us.
Here's the example he gave : 20 years ago, if you were walking down the road and saw an open manhole, you'd use your brain and walk around it. Why? Because your common sense would have told you to.
Today, people see an open manhole, ask themselves "I wonder what would happen if I jumped into it?" then proceed to jump into said manhole. Next thing you know, they're sueing the government or municipality for not having put up signs saying "Don't be a moron and jump into this manhole!"

I shudder at the thought of how little of our intellect and common sense we will exercise 20 years from now. Will we need a higher authority to give us permission to get out of bed in the morning and take a pee? What happens if that order only comes around lunchtime? Will we be a nation of bedwetters because nobody told us to use common sense?

It's when we as parents start bringing up robots with no idea of how to challenge their minds and further their intellect that we do ourselves, our kids and society at large a huge disservice.

If there's one thing I hope to instill in Sabreen at the tender age of 5, it would be the confidence to question. To continuosly ask "Why?". To question everything, not in the pursuit of being pedantic, but rather to gain an understanding of why we do the things we do.
I watched with interest in my early years as our religious teachers and even those at school heaped on us kids a barrage of Do's and Dont's. We were always told never to question, just to accept. The very first time I did question, I was ridiculed. It was 30 years ago, but I remember it like it was yesterday.
A teacher at Islamic School (or Moulana at Madressah as we would refer to it) said that God had a reason for every single thing that he did and everything that he had created.
I never doubted that, but that didn't stop me from being curious. So I asked said Moulana "Why do men have nipples?"
I was 6 at the time. Firstly, I wasn't supposed to know what nipples were, let alone use them in a sentence.
I got taken to the Principles office for being rude, and he was quite obstinate that my question was a sign of rudeness.

When my parents were called in, they defended me by saying "How is anyone supposed to learn without asking questions?"
I've never stopped asking questions since.
It's also the reason why I'm not afraid to push the envelope and test the barriers, as can be seen on this very blog or if you follow me on Twitter.

I'm expecting some of my more ardent religious readers and fans to begin lambasting me for my views.
I don't mean to offend. I'm simply voicing an opinion and letting the world know that I for one am taking a slightly different approach.
Less dogmatic, more pragmatic.

Health, Wealth, & Happiness

Sometimes, things are not what they seem.
Sometimes, we take things too literally. If we just allowed ourselves to look a little deeper, think a little more lateral and a little less literal, we may see more and learn more.

Like health, wealth, and happiness.

Is it really all about being healthy enough to make money and live happily after?
Or could it possibly be that the wealth bit has absolutely nothing to do with money?

I had an amazing day today. Well in fairness I have regular amazing days, but I've come to realize that my happiness is directly related to my emotional wealth, and since I'm happy and feel wealthy by virtue of the fact that I'm surrounded by some amazing people, naturally I feel healthy too.

Now before you think I've smoked too much weed or spent the afternoon with a Jehova's Witness or a Tik addict, let me elaborate.

I've blogged before about my views on friendship, and especially my views on 'Best Friends'... but there are people in our lives who fall into a category so special, that neither of these tags could do the bond or relationship justice.
I'm blessed to have such people in my inner circle. Sure I can count them on one hand, but that's a very special hand if I may say so myself.

This post is dedicated to those special people.
You know who you are :)

"All our young lives we search for someone to love, someone who makes us complete. We choose partners and change partners. We dance to a song of heartbreak and hope, all the while wondering if somewhere and somehow there is someone searching for us."
-The Wonder Years

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Medium Rare or Well Done?



An interesting question got posed to me after one of my random tweets earlier today.

This was my Tweet : "I'm not a big believer in the concept of Heaven And Hell, but I do believe people who forward religious chainmail are knobs."

You can see why this would stir religious debate, right?
Right?
You can't?
OK. Let's dissect it since nothing could be more fun. Well OK there are countless things that would be more fun, but none would give me the opportunity to poke my finger in the eye of zealots and bigots as much as this would.

Now for those of you who know my views on religion, you will know the kind of liberal upbringing I was blessed to have. For those who don't, you might want to visit this post for a better understanding of me as regards religion.

Anyways, back to this Heaven and Hell business.

Do I believe in it? , that was the question posed to me.
My simple answer is NO.
I don't.

Well at least not the brand of Heaven and Hell that is preached to us by the masters of religion. Not the version that includes demons and dragons and snakes if you've been a bad ass on earth, and certainly not the version of milk and honey and nubile waifs if you've been saving your bad deeds for when you finally meet said waifs.

I think these depictions of Heaven and Hell as we've become accustomed to in scripture and folklore are purely metaphorical, and not meant to be taken literally.

Right about now there's a religious zealot jumping up and down screaming for my head as punishment for questioning what the good books have told us all along.
Well Boo Hoo!
I'm more of a spiritualist than a religious believer.
I believe in the goodness of man and the essence of goodness begetting goodness.
Speak to me of burning souls and demons and snakes and you've lost me as a listener, or a believer in your brand of religion.

Religious leaders have for years realized that the easiest tool to rule the masses by is the tool of Fear.
Give them something to fear, and by default you've given them something to believe in.
The two go hand in hand like Priests and alter-boys.
You know what also goes hand in hand? Religion and Money.
The Church of England and the Vatican. Two of the wealthiest organizations on the planet, and neither pays tax. You don't believe me? Google it.

I like the IDEA of there being a Heaven and a Hell, but let's be honest here... with humanity as we know it, how long do you honestly believe a Heaven or Hell can exist before someone comes along and tries to divide the place into Believers & Non-Believers, Blacks and Whites, Straights & Homosexuals, Regular Folk & Midgets, Democrats & Republicans (in the case of Hell).... and so on and so forth?
So for me to even begin to imagine myself kicking back with my shoes off, watching the sunset surrounded by nubile young flesh and milk and honey flowing all around me like a burst sewer in a Thai flood, just doesn't sound that appealing if I know some other retard made it into Heaven too and has plans to divide the place.

Besides, my neighbours kid is generally good. A bit of a nerd who's forever in his room, probably doing nothing worse than masturbating to Madonna videos. He couldn't harm a fly. His track record indicates he has a pretty good chance of making it into Heaven though.
Do I really want to spend eternity hanging out with him, or would I rather be where all the naughty girls are hanging out?
Seriously!

Now every religion believes that they are the answer to every question ever posed.
Honestly, I believe mine is too. I believe my religion has the answers. But that's a personal belief. Not something I'll be going around trying to ram down everyone's throat and calling them 'Infidels' if they don't believe, or having crusades against them if their views differ from mine, or starting concentration camps to round up those who believe otherwise.

You want to know what religions have really achieved in all the years they've been around?
Read this 

In conclusion, I'm always wary of anyone from any religion who spews vitriol about who's going to heaven and who's going to Hell, as though God made them His sidekick just in case He had an off day. This isn't the Karate Kid. Theres no Mr Miyagi and Daniel San.
There's just God (for those who believe in him).
For those who don't, well, I guess they get a choice between Mr Miyagi and Daniel San.

Lastly, if anyone deserves to go to Hell, it's those bottom-feeders who are daft enough to believe that sending out an email which ends with "If you don't send this to 10 people in the next 5 minutes, God will punish you and you will go to hell and your ovaries/ nutsack will fall off in a cancerous heap at your feet."
Seriously?
You honestly believe this was God's design?
Forwarding daft emails? THAT's going to get you to Heaven?
Then Heaven must be jam-packed with some real dumb-ass retards who quite frankly I'm better off not knowing.

I have a very simple rule.
Forward me a religious chainmail by email or bbm or sms, and I promise that I will block you forever.
Not because I want to, but because that's what God said I should do.
No seriously, he did.

Here endeth the rant.



Monday, October 31, 2011

The Bucket List

Well I wasn't really planning on doing the Bucket List this soon, but my dear friend Angie poked and prodded me in the general direction and the rest, as they say, is history.
If you ever decide to get off the bottom rung and start reading quality blogs with insightful perspectives on pretty much everything, might I suggest you start with Angies Blog

I'm going to pretend that I wrote this Bucket List 2 years ago, because that's when I really started ticking items off my list of Top 10 things to achieve before I kick the proverbial bucket.
As I accomplish each item, I shall simply revert to this post and mark them as 'DONE'.
Easy enough.

So without further ado... herewith my Bucket List.

#1 Play Golf With The Pro's
DONE
I played the Vodacom ProAm which was part of the Sunshine Tour last year.I blogged about it here

#2 Go On An Ocean Cruise
DONE
I've always wanted to go on an Ocean Cruise, and finally did last year. I blogged about it here and here and a few other places if you searched for the words "cruise" or "ocean" on the blog.

#3 Do Stand-Up Comedy
DONE
This is one of the few items that was suggested to me by others more than it was an idea I sprung up all on my own. When the opportunity finally presented itself, I grabbed it with both hands and feet!
I blogged about the actual event here and the run-up to the event here and here.

#4 Travel To Vietnam
I've travelled to many places, some common and some strange and wonderful. I've swam in Lake Geneva and lived in Dubai during the boom and watched puppies being grilled for an outdoor dinner and seen the infamous sex-shows in Bangkok and donated electronic gadgets to the needy folk on the London Underground, but I'll only be truly satisfied once I've visited Vietnam. Soon. Very soon.

5# Have My Own Radio Show
Yeah, I know... who want's to do Radio when TV is where it's all at, right?
But there's something about radio that appeals to me. Even if it's late-night graveyard shift radio. I'd still like to do it. I reckon I may even be half-decent at it. So if there's anyone in Radioland out there and you're looking for a guy who talks more than he plays music, holler at me.

6# Finish My Book
It's taking a while, but I'll get there. Right  now I can't decide between 50 pages or 500 pages.
I have much to say, but I may just end up publishing it as a colouring-in book ;)

7# Live Near The Ocean
I'm a Joburg boy.
That means I'm all about the rat-race, and fast paced lifestyle and busy busy busy all the time.
Yet I always have this dream, no goal, that someday I'll kick off my shoes, flick my nose at the rat-race and watch the sunset with a Kola-Tonic in my hand as I relax on my verandah looking out over the ocean.

8# Do The Otter Trail
A legendary hike through some of the most beautiful trails in the world. If you've never heard of the Otter Trail, do yourself a favour and check it out here

9# Attend An F1 Grand Prix
If I had a choice, preferrably the Malaysian or the Singapore Grand Prix.
Loudest sport on earth and I would love every minute of it!

10# Watch Manchester United Play A Cup Final At Old Trafford
Doesnt matter what final.

Could be the FA Cup, Carling Cup, maybe even a European Cup.
I would die a happy man. Completely and utterly.


So there you have it.
My official Bucket List. Thak you Angie, I quite enjoyed that :)


Now your turn!

The Vodacom ProAm Challenge

Last year I was selected to take part in the annual Vodacom ProAm Challenge, where amateur golfers from around the country get chosen to play against professionals in a tournament which signals the start of the Sunshine Tour.

There are 6 amateurs chosen from a field of over 6000 entrants, so you can imagine my surprise when I got the call. The pic above shows myself and Chanelle who was another of the entrants chosen.
I'm the one on the left, in case you were wondering.

In order for us amateurs to be given a taste of exactly the kind of pressure seasoned professionals are put under each time they play in these tournaments, we were treated exactly as the Pro's would get treated.
From the reserved VIP Parking bays as we entered to the sponsored gear awaiting us upon arrival and everything else in between that finally led to the awards ceremony with the Blue Bulls rugby team as guests of honour.


The final scores were tallied, and for those of you unfamiliar with reading a golfing scoreboard, let's just say it was a pretty close game.
For those of you who are familiar with golfing scoreboards, I suggest you move right along. There's nothing to see here.

In order for us to be playing on a somewhat even keel against the Pro's, we were each assigned a pro caddy. Not that it made much difference to my game on the day.

The pic above was taken during the Supersport interview which was aired on The Golf Bag two weeks later.


This was the Pro I played against, Jean Hugo.
An absolute gentleman and master of the game. He's already won the Sunshine Tour previously. I learned more from him in one afternoon than I did in an entire 3 month course of Golf lessons.

So this was certainly one item I would be knocking off my Bucket List!
To play in a tournament against seasoned professionals, now there's something an amateur golfer doesn't do every day :)

Sunday, October 30, 2011

My Superhero Name : Captain Content

It's been an amazing two weeks, but then in all honesty I do say that at least once every two weeks.
It really has though.

You've probably read my previous post about having finally ticked off an item on my bucket list : Do Stand-Up Comedy.
If you haven't, it can be found here . I've been wanting to do stand-up for some time now, and mentioned it in this post , but never realized that the opportunity would present itself so soon.

So I had a re-look at my Bucket List this weekend, and everything that seemed to border on highly improbable, practically impossible, or ridiculously unachievable suddenly seemed totally within reach.
It's like somebody gave me a shot of Kryptonite and a can of Spinach.

Onward and upward.
Time to work on the next item on said Bucket List, which list I intend posting on the blog soon.

I started on a book about 3 years back, and I've been writing at such a slow pace I expect I should have it completed in time to have it published as my biography. A centenary celebration of sorts.

I reckon it's time I kick the writing into high gear.
The other item from the Bucket List which needs to be kicked into high gear is the trip to Vietnam.
The missus leaves on her annual girly holiday with Sabeen, a friend of ours from Dubai, in a weeks time. With our planned family vacation to Cape Town in December, we've decided to plan for Vietnam in the year ahead.

Watch this space for the official Bucket List.

Monday, October 24, 2011

The Day After

So last night was probably the most exciting night after my wedding night and the night my daughter was born. Clearly it ranked very high up there on the list of important moments in my life.

It was my first stand-up gig, and what an awesome event it was.
The line-up included Joey Rasdien, Conrad Koch, Deep Fried Man , Simmi Areff , Aasia Fredericks  (who for some reason thought I was a coloured dude from Cape Town ;) ) , Omer , Laz Gola who writes for Late Nite News on eTV and is also Loyiso Gola's brother, 2Dogs and finally myself.

With just over 1000 people, Deep Fried Man kept asking me why I looked so calm especially since this was going to be my debut performance. I guess I didn't get the memo on being nervous, but that guy is so cool and makes you feel so comfortable, all credit to him for making it as easy as it was.

The guys backstage were a really fun group, and it was nothing like I had imagined.
I expected everyone in their corners working on last-minute material changes and rehearsing their gigs.
Instead what I found was the most chilled group of comedians sipping on beverages and eating pies and samoosa's while chewing the fat about everything and anything.
I was the only guy who kept referring back to my cribs. I guess it just goes to show how professional these guys really are. They have entire sets just waiting to burst onto stage all memorized in their heads. WOW!

I was the warm-up act for Joey, and since he was the headline act and was coming on last, that meant I would be on just before him.
The moment of truth finally arrived.
The backstage door swung open....
The first thing that hit me were the lights...
Then my eyes gained focus and all I saw were faces... everywhere... starring at me!!
10 seconds later I had them laughing, and the rest as they say, is history!!

Pics to follow.

I had an amazing time, and I'll definitely be doing it again.
I'll be at Parkers Comedy Club in Monte Casino this coming Tuesday. Strike while the iron is hot, as the saying goes ;)

Lastly, huge shout out and thanks to Minhaj Jeena and Zakiyya Khan from Bright Sparks Learning Academy for the awesome opportunity. You guys rock!!

Here's hoping the Make Me Maaf Comedy Show is just the beginning of many good laughs to come.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Free Porn & Samoosa Recipes


Look, if that's the kind of headline it's going to take to get you to buy tickets, then I'll be the shameless bastard who posts it on his blog!

With less than a week to go, and ticket sales going out the door faster than tenders out the ANCYL offices, may I humbly and kindly suggest that you SHAKE THAT ASS AND CALL SOMEONE FOR TICKETS!

I wish I was getting paid for this. I'd come around to each of your houses and beat the crap out of you with a rolling pin in one hand and a Credit Card machine in the other.
Come to think of it, I may just come around your house and give you a free ass whipping.
You may just enjoy it too!

Now I've sent a personal message to everybody who follows me on Facebook and Twitter.
I expect to see every one of you at the venue on Saturday night.
I'll be signing autographs and taking a register at the door.

The only excuse for not making it to the show is a Death Certificate.

Call Minhaj on 072 456 7260 NOW for tickets.
First 10 callers get a free hand-job in the parking lot before the show. You don't want to miss that!
I've seen his hands. Trust me! Fully manicured.
If you do block bookings, he may even throw in some spit.


GET DIALLING!!
WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?


*alternatively you can email, FB or leave me a message on the blog and I'll forward it to Minhaj.
Unfortunately I'm not offering hand-jobs, but I'll spit on you for free. *

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Make Me Maaf Comedy Show



You asked the question.
Now here's the answer.

"When are you doing a Stand Up comedy show?"

Saturday, 22 October 2011 at the Wits Great Hall.

For more details, go here

It's going to be my first time on stage doing a comedy gig, which means all it's going to cost to see me fall flat on my ass for a laugh is R150.
Sure I'd fall flat on my ass for free, but this is for a good cause.

Besides, some day soon when I'm really famous and wiping that same ass with Egyptian Cotton toilet roll imported from China, you'll be able to tell your kids "I saw him live at his first show!"

Call the number on the poster or the link.
Operators are standing by to take your calls.
They especially love it when you call after 1am. No seriously. They even have mystery prizes at 3am!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

To Fast, Not To Furious

To Fast, Not To Furious - by Fareed Kaloo

by Fareed Kaloo on Sunday, August 31, 2008 at 6:53pm

(My friend Shameema Dharsey reminded me about this nostalgic post I had written over 3 years ago! Wow! Where does the time go while we're running around trying to chase dreams?)
This note was intended to be titled "Gone In 60 Seconds", which would be a fair description of the iftaar table after the first fast.

Its been an awesome week in preparation of the beginning of Ramadhaan.
I always spend the last week before the fasting month begins doing all those things I intend to refrain from during Ramadhaan.
Nothing bad really, not like im purging on vices or anything. Nothing which could be considered hypocritical of the spiritual journey im about to embark on.
Merely an opportunity to play an extra round of golf, or go dancing and shake what my momma gave me, or have a lazy Sunday brunch that drags itself on into late afternoon.

This particular Sunday brunch was certainly spectacular.
Bobotie, pootjie with dumplings and lamb chops, mielie brood, ceasar salad straight out of my favourite couples organic garden, baked potato ... a seven course meal that will have me yearning for the next lazy Sunday lunch for a month to come!

I've spent Ramadhaan in a few countries, but must admit that as South Africans, we have our own unique take on this month.
I recall fondly growing up in what was still regarded as a township back in the early 80's without incurring visions of squatter camps and squallor, in the old town, a part of Lenz where the pioneers of the area still yarn tales of how your closest neighbour was so far away, you could only tell exactly where they lived by looking for the smoke from the winter chimney. A township so sparcely populated, it didnt have any roads or formal structure, just one massive sea of red sand, hence the nickname "The Dustbowl".
Where every Sunday Mr Naidoo's truck would chug its way toward your council home to offload your weekly delivery of coal.
Of course by the time I made my presence known, things had improved to the extent that there were tarred roads, and our immediate neighbour was a shout away.

I grew up with my Gran, who passed on earlier this year, bless her soul.
It seems like just yesterday when she'd have me help her fill platters with the most delicious savouries; potato and mince samoosa's with pistachio chutney; koeksisters dripping with syrup and coconut; chilli bites and kebabs; juicy dates and pastries filled with mince and veggies...
These I would take door-to-door to all our immediate neighbours, and the scene was always the same...
Just before sunset, all the nieghbourhood kids zig-zagging across the road doing the platter round, all racing to beat the clock and make it back to the iftaar table before the muazzin announced the end of the days fast... and the beginning of the nights feast.
Of course as adults we now know better than to look at the month simply as one for gorging on milkshakes and savouries, but through the innocence of a childs eye's, the world takes on a different meaning when Ramadhaan comes around.

It always remains my favourite month, filled with the most endearing of memories. Of a time long gone but never forgotten.
As a parent I imagine myself relaying the same tales of long ago, and how I wish I could have my daughter live through a single day of my innocent youth.
How I wish she could see what was meant by that single word "community".
To be able to spend the day in the company of friends or neighbours who we knew by first name, right down to their entire extended family.
To have comfort in the knowledge that they were safe playing kierrie or hopscotch until sunset somewhere between the 15 odd homes immediately around ours; and all it would take to get her back in under 5 minutes was the simple calling out of her name. Oh how amazing and effectual that township-telegraph was!
A time when every neighbour and every person your parents knew, took on the role of guardian, protector, and reprimander in the absence of your folks.
A time when you would get your behind spanked by your mom just for complaining about Aunty Fati next door scolding you.
A time when you could have a 7-course meal simply by popping in to your friends homes at supper time, and having a bite to eat at each ones house.

Alas, its a different time we live in now.
Though the month of Ramadhaan hasnt changed in 1400 years, what it means to each one of us and how we experience it, certainly has.
In 20 years from now, I expect our kids will be telling their kids how wonderful these times were, and how much things have changed since they were young.
I suspect they will recall our present times as the best memories they ever had, just as our parents reminded us about how great things were when they were young.

Its for this reason, and this reason alone, that I endeavour to make each day another notch on my little girls post of fond memories.
I hope she remembers the best of times, and takes with her in her treasure chest of tales only the most amazing experiences; the same she'll pass on to her kids.
In the same vein, I hope my friends and family take only the most amazing experiences from this blessed month; and when you remember me in your duas, remember me for the best of times we may have spent together.

Ramadaan Kareem to one and all, and may the Almighty in his infinite wisdom lead us once more to a place of childhood innocence and unforgettable community spirit, where friends, family and loved ones filled our homes with laughter and chatter without needing an occassion or a special month to do so.

Ameen.

Not The Learning Channel

So my friend Azra chose me to partake in the 7 Links project by Tripbase and dare I say it got me thinking about the contents of my blog, the things I say, the reason why people have been visiting since I first started blogging, and mostly it got me thinking about what appeal my random thoughts and ramblings could possibly have.

Sure I realized early on that there are a small group or sect of people that my writing appeals to, but in any society there will always be the fringe groups. That's my niche market. Most 'normal' people who stumble upon this page are merely collateral damage.
So if you're reading this right now, you're either a nutjob looking for a home, or you haven't set your internet surfing filters or 'NetNanny' software quite high enough.

So how does the 7 Links project work? In the words of it's author, quite simply :
The idea is simple: bloggers publish 7 links from their blog to share lessons learned and create a bank of long but not forgotten blog posts that deserve to see the light of day again. Without further ado, herewith my 7 Links as best as I can recall.

1) My Most Beautiful Post
A Tale Of Two Friends
Still one of the most heartfelt and honest posts I have ever written. Strangely it required no drafts, not that my posts usually do. But I find that I write a piece and then tweak it and buff it up a bit before hitting "Publish".
Not so with this post. It came from the heart, and I still find myself reading it every so often.

2) My Most Popular Post
Beauty Is Only Mullet Deep

I'm not entirely sure why this is the most popular post on my blog, but it is.
I know I have a large number of visitors from America. I'm guessing that's the reason; but it's purely a guess and yours is as good as mine.

3) My Most Controversial Post
The Silence Of The Ham

I'd have to say my take on the whole halaal issue, and my opinion that all these certifying bodies dictating to us gullible South Africans is nothing more than a money-making scheme was the most controversial post I had written. Not ever. But certainly in a long while.
My all-time most controversial writing would probably be the open-letter I wrote to my school principle back when open-letters were unheard of. I still have the scars of his response :)

4) My Most Helpful Post

My Open Letter To Nestle'

This was my first attempt at an open-letter from the blog. Interestingly it got me a huge response from people who have had their fair share of consumer-related issues, and most found my idea of an open-letter rather refreshing. Well, maybe it was the letter itself that they found refreshing. I even had people mail me and ask if I would write letters to companies on their behalf!
I'm guessing there's a business idea there somewhere.
Read it and let me know what you think :)

5) A Post Whose Success Surprised Me
Passion.... That's The Secret

Sometimes all you really need to be inspired or achieve or get the job done is a good dose of Passion.
Imagine how amazing it would be if there was this massive central database were people could simply log into and swop jobs with someone who didn't really have the love for what they were doing.
For example, a Dentist who really wanted to be a Tour Guide could simply look for that position on the database, and be that which he loves and become a Tour Guide, and likewise a Circus Clown who really had a passion to be a dentist could simply..... wait, on second thought I can see where this could get ugly.

6) A Post I Feel Didn't Get The Attention It Deserved
For The Love Of Writing

There's always that one post that's bound to get lost when you've written just under 400 blog posts in just over a year. Well technically that's not correct, because I copied many of my old posts from my previous blog and had them reposted here... but yes, one is always bound to get lost amongst the noise.
I think this is that post.

7) The Post That I Am Most Proud Of
In The Name Of Religion

Only because this post pretty much sums up my writing style.
I'll push those barriers. I'll test peoples thinking. I'll challenge an idea or opinion I don't agree with.
Most importantly, I'll do all of this and still be able to sit across visitors to my blog and share a cup of coffee and some milk-tart.

Ok, so now I get to choose fellow bloggers to do their own versions of 7 Links and join in the project.
 In no particular order, these are the bloggers who's posts and answers I'm most looking forward to:


Akona Ndungane at Mosaic

Paige Nick at
A Million Miles From Normal

Saaleha at Afrocentric Muslimah
Che at
IndieBerries
Amith at
The Bucket


I could think of a few more blogger's who should be nominated, but I realize that blogging is hard work and not everybody can do it with enough consistency to captivate an audience. That's a compliment to the amazing blogger's I've listed above who seem to be able to write with such ease on a weekly basis.


Anyways, compiling this list was no easy task and choosing from so many of my past posts made the challenge daunting. As with most things, once you get started it really tends to flow with ease until before you realize it, you're done and still have so much left to say.

This is where I stop writing, and look forward to your responses.







Tuesday, September 27, 2011

The Follicles Of Fareed

What a week it's been!
Yes yes I know I haven't blogged in dayyyzzz (BOOM!) but it's been a rather eventful few days and since I know how you guys love sleazy stories by the bucketful, I thought I'd save all those fun tales for this post.

So without further ado...

The missus has started a new diet in preparation for the December holidays, and her annual girly-holiday in November. This year she goes with her girlfriend to Seychelles. Then it's off to Cape Town for a few weeks in December with us commoners, also referred to as 'The Family". I quite like the idea that she takes time off once a year to just hang with her girlfriends, or most often just our very dear friend Sabeen from Dubai.


Anyways back to this diet she's on. As I said earlier, she goes on some or other crazy weight-loss program around September each year, and this usually coincides with my sudden period of weight-gain.
I finally figured out why that is.
When she does the weekly grocery shopping, she gets tempted by all these amazingly fattening treats like chocolate and dessert and pastry's and ice-cream which her diet obviously does not permit. So the next logical thing to do is buy these products and watch me consume them on her behalf. Somehow, this satisfies her craving. I'm pretty sure you can see the problem from my side though....



I used to weigh around 75kg when we first got married, and ever since I've become rather healthier as the years went by. So healthy in fact that I've went up a pants size at least once every three years. Now normally this would be cause for concern, but what I can't understand is how my weight has remained at 75kg's!
I kid you not!
It's almost like I'm magically getting rounder each year, without actually putting on any weight!
I have noticed that my pants keep getting longer though. I'm not sure if the two are related.



Now I've never been one for diets. Personally, and this is really just a personal opinion, I think that all diets are hoax's. Unless you're into a serious exercise routine combined with healthy eating, any other variation of popping pills while sitting on your sofa watching TV and eating pizza cannot be called a diet. I've come across some amazing diets in my time. The thing that made them truly amazing was the fact that people were actually trying these diets out!
Think And Get Thin!
Really?
That's the title of an actual diet book, in case you were wondering.
I wonder if there's a Think And Get Fat book too?


I used to be a pretty fat kid when I was young. It never really bothered me. I kind of grew into my body. I also developed a sharp tongue and some serious sarcasm growing up. So when I lost the weight and kept the sharp tongue and sarcasm, it was like I had won the lottery. Suddenly I was the popular guy to be around. Of course there were those who weren't as lucky. They developed the wit and sarcasm and kept the fat. That's like hitting the Lotto and the Powerball and being told that it's against your religion to gamble.
Sure it sucks, but let's be honest.... plumpy kids are the most fun to be around, even when they grow into adults.
I'm allowed to say these things without offending anybody, because I was born thin, became a plumpy kid, lost it in my teenage years, and grew it all back on after marriage. There isn't a weight stage I haven't been through.


Last year I was chatting to a friend of mine who was on a Lemonade Diet.
You can Google it.
All she drank was lemonade every single morning for breakfast, then a light snack for lunch, and lemonade again for dinner.
She was such a sour bitch.
True story.



I think the worst must be when you go from being totally obese to extremely skinny. In your head you must still think of yourself as an obese person, but in reality you're actually an Ethiopian. Like when somebody needs a door barged open. You think you're hefty enough to get the job done in one plumpy push, except the door smacks you right back like Woody Allen in the ring with Mike Tyson.
I've seen people who were obese suddenly become thin in a matter of weeks and months. They don't look comfortable in their bodies at all. It's like they've lost a part of themselves. Well they have, but you know what I mean. Oversize people just seem happier. They're so much more comfortable with their bodies. I guess that's what makes them so happy all the time.



This must be the most politically incorrect post I've ever written.
But I'm just saying it as I see it. Besides, some of the thinnest people I know are also the craziest bitches alive, and I don't use that word often or lightly. They just are though. It's like they're always miserable and hungry and miserable. Did I mention miserable?
I'm almost tempted to take a doughnut and shut their pie-holes when I hear them mumbling and grumbling about life in general. That's the other thing. They don't even need a reason to be grumpy. Thin people grumble at almost anything. Fat people moan about something and move on. Thin people get stuck in the moan-zone and they become like Tata Indica's stuck in a puddle of water. You almost have to get in there and kickstart them out of it. Usually with a swift wallop on the head with a celery stick.


So to all my friends reading this blog (and there may not be many by the end of it) all I'd like to say is, I wouldn't change anything about myself, and all the friends I have and know are perfect just the way they are too. No need to change anything about yourselves either.
Ok cupcakes?
You're special and that's exactly how I love you.
Yes you and you and you. (Oprah moment...)

Dammit. I had an ending in my head and now it's gone... eaten like a doughnut in a police station!

Oh yes... this blog was inspired by my good friend Azra