Sunday, 21 December 2008

Kak funny

These two South African productions made me lag baie fokkin hard. Jislaaikit.

Seduction101 - the lesser of the two, because it isn't in Afrikaans, but still good.


Poena is Koning! KAK funny.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Croquet Anyone???

Thought these pic's were quite amusing. The concentration. The competitiveness. The planning and organisation. And of course the Whites....

Monday, 15 December 2008

So rad

This might be the coolest thing ever made for a Nintendo handheld (with the exception of Tetris and Mario, of course)... witness the Korg DS-10. It was being officially launched in Tokyo the day after i left (they had a launch party with like a whole orchestra of dudes playing these things into a huge soundsystem) but luckily its now available in Aus. This is so awesome it inspires me to use words like 'ill', and 'fuckin' dope'. Standby for my fist composition.
Check it :

Iraqi journalist throws shoe at Bush and calls him a dog

And this shows that he still needs a shoe to the head.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Gregs Top Music List for 2008

Please excuse the layour issues, i started this on a pc, and my mac is buggering it up to spite me.

Top Five Albums of the Year (in no particular order):
  • Cut Copy - In Ghost Colours

  • TV on the Radio - Dear Science

  • Santogold - Santogold

  • Portishead - Third (I know its just more of the same, but i reckon its still pretty good)
  • Bloc Party - Intimacy

Album that made me (for a fleeting moment) not hate hip hop for the uncreative, self-contratulatory wank-fest that it has become :

  • Viktor Vaughn - Vaudeville Villain (I know, its old, but it still sounds fresh)

Albums that got me all excited with the first few listens, but then aged like a Hypercolor t-shirt (badly) :

  • The Kills - Midnight Boom

  • Yeasayer - All hour cymbals

  • MGMT - Oracle Spectacular (apparently this was releasd last year actually)

Albums that dont deserve to have ever been distributed this year, perhaps ever (even on CD, and i hate CD's!)

  • The Fuck Buttons - Street Horrrsing or whatever stupid hipster name they gave it
  • Any song ever ruined by Mark Ronson (have you heard that guy speak? Ugh!)

Albums that i havent heard enough of to love yet, but will love in due course :

  • Hercules and Love Affair

Full 'best of' list coming soon...

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

My music lists

Okay, it has to be done, so I'll start.....

Here are the 20 tracks I've listened to the most in the past 12 months per Last.FM

1 Alaska In Winter – The Homeless and the Hummingbirds 16
2 Bon Iver – Skinny Love 14
3 Bon Iver – The Wolves (Act I and II) 13
4 Bon Iver – Blindsided 12
4 Tobacco – Dirt (featuring Aesop Rock) 12
6 Bon Iver – Team 11
6 Bon Iver – Lump Sum 11
6 Bon Iver – Creature Fear 11
6 Bat For Lashes – I'm on Fire 11
6 Tokyo Police Club – Tessellate (Remix By Tom Campesinos!) 11
11 Bon Iver – For Emma 10
11 Bon Iver – Flume 10
11 Yeasayer – 2080 10
14 Thurston Moore – Honest James 9
14 M. Ward – Post-War 9
14 Okkervil River – Our Life is Not a Movie or Maybe 9
14 M. Ward – Chinese Translation 9
14 The Arcade Fire – Neighborhood #2 9
14 LCD Soundsystem – North American Scum 9
20 Dr. Dog – The Ark

And albums:

1 Bon Iver – For Emma, Forever Ago 100
2 Tobacco – Fucked Up Friends 74
3 Eagles of Death Metal – Peace Love Death Metal 70
4 Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Show Your Bones 66
5 Tinariwen – Aman Iman: Water Is Life 65
6 TV on the Radio – Dear Science 63
7 Spoon – Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga 54
7 The Raconteurs – Consolers Of The Lonely 54
9 Yeasayer – All Hour Cymbals 53
10 The Dø – A Mouthful 51

But that's not quite an accurate reflection, as they don't show what I've been listeneing to on CD. My favorites this year:

1. Nick Cave - Dig Lazarus Dig!!
2. Bon Iver - From Emma, for ever ago
3. Tobacco - Fucked up friends
4. The Kills - Midnight Boom
5. TVOTR - Dear Science
6. Stax Records - 50th Anniversary Compilation
7. The Hold Steady - Stay Positive
8. Mojo's New sound of blues and soul (just a cheap freebie with a mag, but damn it's good)
9. Calexico - Carried to Dust
10. Joan as a policewoman - Honor my wishes

These are 2007 records which I only discovered this year and have been sufficiently overplaying:
Thurston Moore - Trees outside the acadamy
Bill Callahan - Woke on a whaleheart
Tinarawen - Aman Iman

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Nippon Ichi Ban

Konichiwa homeys! 

I've been meaning to write this blog post for a while, but between travelling (for business and pleasure) and writing up lists of things to do in Sydney for Phil to ignore, I've been pretty busy. Anyways, i was only in Tokyo for a week, and worked a lot of that week, and didn't take many pictures the rest of the time, so this is going to be a short post. 

As some of you know, I've always been fascinated with Japan, so i was amped to go there for a week, even if it was for work... After an overnight flight i ignored m bulging inbox, and headed out to check out some shops in Shibuya, which is the hipster district of Tokyo (this is a bit misleading because all of Tokyo is pretty hip).  It was at Shinagawa station, down the road from my hotel, where i had my first experience with the Tokyo public transport system, and i was blown away... I could write a whole blog post about how great the Tokyo metro is, but it still wouldn't do it justice. Tube be damned! The Japanese got it right. You have to be pretty mercenary though. If you get a seat, you don't give it up for anyone, 'specially not the aged who shouldn't be sitting anyway when there is work to be done somewhere. Shinagawa at night:

From Nippon

Anyway, witness Shibuya crossing below, apparently one of the largest in the world. Even if the Japanese had it in them to jaywalk, you wouldn't want to do it here...
From Nippon

I found some awesome record stores, and ate some super fresh soba noodles, and then headed back to the hotel to sit at the desk in my room looking busy when my manager Matt arrived. We then met our prehistoric agent Sawa-san who was a pretty cool old dude, but took us to a really bad restaurant for appetisers (only bad one we found the whole trip) and then apologised profusely, spitting as he explained that the owners were 'probably Chinese'. He then took us to a tempura restaurant that was pretty much the best meal of fried goodies I've ever had. During the meal, Sawa taught me that if you hold your chopsticks further back, then 'you don't have to put such a big piece in your mouth'. Jeebus, I was hungry!

Anyway, the next few days were a blur of meetings and trains (I almost got the white glove treatment in the morning rush hour) at huge Japanese corporations where all the identically dressed engineers stared meaningfully at my business card and exclaimed AH-SO! when i said i was from the Austerarian office - AH-SO Kangaroo? Interestingly, all the lead engineers looked like they were 15, but I'm guessing from their identical suits, they all loved school girls just the same. Between some meetings in Yokohama, we passed by Iron Chef Chinese, the Sichuan Sage, Chen Kenichis restaurant (for the Iron Chef fans out there) but sadly we didn't have time to go inside and sample his mapo-tofu:

From Nippon

Matts rad friend Steve - (who made this awesome website from a cycling trip he did from LONDON to TOKYO) took us out for two great meals, the last of which was at this great kind of Japanese pub/bistro kind of place (he said it was a yakitori restaurant i think) between tons of these pay-per-hour 'love hotels'. The menu was written all over the wall in Japanese, so thanks gott Steve and Sawa ordered for us. Sawa pointed out that this fine specimen was not on the menu :
From Nippon

Luckily this one was :
From Nippon

Those bright signboards are love hotels...

From Nippon

Anyway, i had Saturday to look around, so i headed over to the royal palace in the middle 0f the city. 

It was pretty peaceful, if a little boring, so i headed over to Akihabara, which is nicknamed 'electrictown' because of all the electronics shops. There are a fortune of electronics shops, selling everything from vintage synths, to classic Atari games, to strange electrical components, and everything in between (including a generous serving of Japanese soft porn - they love their big boobies, those Japanese!). 

From Nippon

Like the rest of Tokyo, there were vending machines EVERYWHERE, selling everything. Did you know that Tommy Lee Jones is the BOSS even though he sports some pretty gay colours? (yeah, that's Suntory from Lost in Translation, if you were wondering).

From Nippon

After that it was back to Shibuya to check out this famous comic book store (unbelievable, but pretty much nothing in Engrish) which also stocks lots of costumes for 'cosplay' which means dressing up like a comic book character and living out your fantasies on the forgiving streets of Tokyo. I've tried, but cant imagine someone getting away with this in a western city, you'd be wedgied to death within seconds of leaving the store. Anyway, this post is getting long and boring, so I'll skip my jeans buying experience (Edwins are the business) and just post some random pics from the trip.

Cambodia fisheye pics coming soon.

Aregato gazaimas!


Monday, 8 December 2008

lists and more lists

As I said last year, year end lists rock.
So once again here's Time's list of best albums. They really are not a mag who I would expect to come up with good music recommendations, but I think that makes me more interested in their choices. Lil Wayne takes top spot (is this album really that good and why haven't i heard it?) beating TVOTR (taken me a while but I'm loving the new album). Strange inclusions from Metallica (wtf!?) and Girl Talk (it's just 2manydjs using american frat party music). Portishead is in their as well, but i still don't get the attraction of the latest album.

Also this article under the most underreported stories is amusing, and there are some great inclusions in teh best photos of the year.

For a more credible and extensive list on the music side, the amazon's editors top 100 is pretty good, although obviously very american.

On a completely different note, here's a random story that I think may interest some of you on how the consumer downturn in america has affected the price of recyclables just as it has done other commodities.

Friday, 5 December 2008

Aimlessly blogging

Woo-hoo, I just let out my third report yesterday (Bell equipment: value but high risk, hold recommendation but investors with an appetite for risk could consider buying the stock) and have finished calling the insto's (institutions) to give them my 2min summary of the 35pg report because I know that none of them will read anything more than the exec summary anyways.

So now I have a chance to blog, and as always share some random articles that I've come across.

Some of you may have heard that in a couple of years you're gonna need a set top box (basically a decoder) to watch any tv (even SABC) in South Africa. This is because in line with the direction the rest of the world is taking, we're moving to a complete digital format. There are many reasons including greater language coverage, freeing up of spectrum for telecoms services and developing the electronic manufacturing sector. There's also a lot of critisism for the project. Basically it's an ambitious project that will affect most people in SA, so if you're interested read more here

In the global financial world there are more and more people predicting that the US is gonna have to take on too much debt to fund all these rescue packages, and ultimately the economy will falter. See here.

Following on Phil's article on Pitchfork, I was reading this review for Esau Mwamwaya and Radioclit. Sounds interesting, there's a BLK JKS collaboration, and the album is a free download.

When I get home I expect these albums to be waiting for me in the post:


And finally a shameless plug. For those living in Jozi my sister has just opened a gift store with some rad xmas gifts. See the article in the times. It's in the Park centre on Jan Smuts in Parkwood. Park cafe next to them also serves great coffee.

The Findi's up but the Alsi's down. The world is not coming to an end, only the mining sector and a couple of hedge funds.

Have a great weekend y'all

M.IA.'s Paper Planes up for best record!

You prolly saw on Pitchfork already, but this year's Grammy nominees are actually worth taking an interest in...

Like the article says: "Yes, Lil Wayne and Radiohead are competing for Album of the Year. Please dear god, let those two pair up for one of those collaborative medley things that the Grammys always do. Please!".

Thursday, 4 December 2008

LoFi doin' it for me at the moment

In electronic and garage-rock form. The Chromatics....

...and Crystal Stilts.

Both pretty rad. Both been around a while, but I only discovered them recently. Maybe you already know them. Maybe you don't. Chromatics's latest album is their first on Italians Do It Better, which means it's good (the label's After Dark compilation is also hawt).

I can't get onto MySpace at work to link you to their pages. So go do it yourself.

The Doctor.

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Water water water

The story gets more intriguing by the day: What Turton’s gagging has brought to surface for SA . The author is very experienced in the issues.

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

You know why i love Thailand?

Ja, i mean besides the awesome food and the ping pong shows, I love the fact that when their government is fucked, they don't wait for the next election to boot out the ruling party, they stand up and do something about it now. Peacefully (for the moment, anyway)! Part of me is in awe of this anti-Thaksin (by proxy), anti-govermnet protest, and the rest of me is thanking my lucky stars that i fly back to Sydney through Singapore!

You know what i love about the UK? In winter? Not much really, but the imported beer is pretty good. This is the third time i've been here this year, and i still cant work out why the food in this place is so bad and so expensive. The supermarkets are world class, and really good produce isnt that expensive, but good god, eating in restaurants is paralysingly expensive, and the food is SHIT. Don't get me wrong, i dont actually pay for my own food (chortle, chortle), but i actually cook every meal i can at home because the food here is so awful. Anyway, enough whinging, i have some home renovation shows to watch...

'This is ridiculous and inconsistent'


I'm having a sick day today, so spent quite a bit of time reading articles on the internet...... just like i would do on a work day.... anyways amongst my reads I came across this article quoting Jeremy on the state of telecoms so thought it was worth a post. Now I wonder if Mrs MacDonald frequents this site often enough to see the post....?

So you think you are on the ball....

Hi All

So you think you are on the ball?
You think you can count accurately?
That you are aware of what is happening around you?
That you always see the bigger picture....


If this link doesn't work as this is the first time I'm trying to post a video - just google: Awareness video on you tube.

It is all about CHANGE.
You need to be aware of everything that is happening around you.
It means looking at life from a different angle in order to expand your horizons.

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

errrrr..... this is quite big!

From business day this morning:

An inconvenient truth
WHEN Water Affairs and Forestry Minister Lindiwe Hendricks said in Parliament this year that SA was not facing a water crisis, we believed her. We had to. The electricity crisis had brought the country to the brink of economic disaster, and no one was in the mood for any more doom and gloom.

But now a hard-hitting paper outlining just how critical SA’s water situation is has been banned from being delivered, and its author, Anthony Turton, an internationally respected political scientist at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), has been suspended and charged with insubordination.

Read the rest of the article here

Although more drastic than previous reports, this is not new. The report below was published in Sept in Engineering News:

Gauteng may face 2013 water crunch, top official admits

Accelerated infrastructural planning is under way by the Departmentof Water Affairs and Forestry (Dwaf) to supplement water supply to the Vaal dam, and failure to do so will result in a water shortage in Gauteng by 2013.

Dwaf director-general Pam Yako says, “Unless we do something about the current growth trends and needs, we are going to have a water shortage by 2013.”

This is disconcerting, given that the Vaal dam supplies water not only to Gauteng and the mines in Mpumalanga and the North West province, but also supplies the bulk of Eskom’s power stations.

The necessary planning is taking place and feasibility studies are being finalised for possible projects. The department is also considering upgrading a phase of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, or sourcing water from the Tugela river, in KwaZulu-Natal.

“We are looking at this issue very seriously. “But, even with the fastest implementation, these [projects] will only be ready by 2019. We need to do something for the next six years,” says Yako.

She says that, unlike electricity, there is no national grid for water, but rather a dependence on regional schemes.
Currently, there are 6,9-million people without access to adequate water in the country. “What do we do to make sure that community needs are balanced with economic needs?”

One of the challenges in South Africa is unlawful irrigation. In the Vaal area alone, illegal water abstraction accounts for losses equivalent to 100 ℓ/m for every household.

“We urgently need to [plug] the leak in this system,” says Yako, adding that the department has not been strong on compliance, monitoring and enforcement, but that it will “step up” efforts to deal with these challenges.

“It will take a long time to get new infrastructure of the magnitude and scale that we are talking about, and conservation and demand management are critical going forward, together with reviewing irrigation technology practices.”

While the majority of South Africans are supplied with safe drinking water in the larger towns and cities, a lack of technical expertise and inadequate treatment infrastructure has resulted in poor drinking water quality challenges, inadequate investment in operation and maintenance infrastructure and sustainability of current infrastructure.

Meanwhile, 94% of municipalities are monitoring water quality and also reporting this to Dwaf; municipalities continue to be challenged by a lack of investment in maintenance and rehabilitation of water services.

Dwaf technical regulation deputy director Leonardo Manus says that all available indicators show that the vast majority of South Africans are enjoying safe tap water, but failure, though not exclusively, occurs in smaller towns and rural areas.

“These challenges are being addressed by constantly applying regulatory pressure on municipalities to rectify and improve where and when required,” he says.

Dwaf and the Department of Provincial and Local Government are investigating the possibility of placing water services functions under their administration.

“This is a controversial issue. Municipalities have a constitutional responsibility, and we have a responsibility to monitor and regulate, and we will be playing this regulatory role more [rigorously]. The process of intervention is not as easy as it should be, because one has to deal with an independent sphere of government. There is a process to follow, and I think the debate on how we deal with the new dispensation, roles and functions between municipalities and national government is one of the issues to look at, especially where there is seriously no capacity,” she says.

As a result, Dwaf will be “beefing up” its regional offices to improve its support for municipalities. Yako suggests that the National Treasury should look at the possibility of incentivising municipal asset management.

The Cape Town, eThekwini, Buffalo City and Nelson Mandela municipalities have been identified as key cities requiring urgent water conservation and demand management attention.

“There are enough water resources, but there is a big need to address some of the challenges, such as pollution, illegal water abstraction and contamination. We need to institute water conservation and demand management in many parts of the country, where the demand is more urgent,” says Yako.

Dwaf national water resources deputy director-general Dr Cor-nelius Ruiters says that the general state of wastewater infrastructure is a cause for concern, with the general status of water treatment infrastructure varying from world class to extremely neglected.

Edited by: Martin Zhuwakinyu

Sunday, 16 November 2008

Dear Reader

I'm sure most of you know of Harris Tweed, and some of you know them personally. Their 1st album did nothing for me really. Phil mentioned a while back that one of the dude's from menomena had come out and was producing their new album. Well they've changed their name to Dear Reader and are now touring Europe, opening for Lambchop and Andrew Bird. Some of the tracks from the upcoming album are on their myspace page. Have a listen. You can hear the Menomena influence, and it really works!

Saturday, 15 November 2008

New ethics rules?

Um... It is just me, or is this a little strange? Private funding for government functions? I don't get it.

Obama Transition Team Adopts Ethics Rules

Published: November 11, 2008

WASHINGTON -- A top adviser to President-elect Barack Obama said Tuesday that the transition team would raise about $7 million to cover its costs, supplementing $5 million in government funds, but would reject donations from lobbyists or corporations and rely instead on the same pool of small donors who helped propel the Democrat to victory.

“We’ll raise all that money from individuals,” said John D. Podesta, who is a co-chairman of Mr. Obama’s transition team. “There’s a $5,000 limit on those contributions.”

In his remarks to a packed briefing room in the temporary transition offices here, Mr. Podesta, a former of chief of staff to President Bill Clinton, seemed intent on striking a tone of brisk efficiency and in advertising what he insisted would be historically high standards.

Under the rules announced by Mr. Podesta, federal lobbyists will not be allowed to raise money for the transition, nor continue lobbying while working in the transition. In addition, he said that someone who became a lobbyist after being involved in the transition would be prohibited from lobbying the administration on related matters for 12 months.

“These are the strictest ethics rules ever applied,” he said.

Mr. Podesta also vowed that the new administration would move “very aggressively and very rapidly” to address the country’s energy challenges, shifting American factories and consumers toward cleaner sources of power while creating more jobs.

Mr. Obama’s first priority was “to stabilize the economy and put America back to work,” he said.

Reiterating what Mr. Obama said at a news conference last week, Mr. Podesta said that if Congress did not pass an economic stimulus package in a lame-duck session next week that was announced on Tuesday, it would be “the first item of business after he is inaugurated.”

He confirmed reports that the transition team was reviewing options for closing the detention camp at Guantánamo Bay, but provided no details.

Mr. Podesta also said that Mr. Obama had no plans to meet with any of the world leaders coming to Washington this weekend to take part in a financial summit meeting — “either here or in Chicago,” where Mr. Obama is spending most of his time for now.

He described a brisk pace for some transition actions, noting, for example, that fact-finding teams would review more than 100 agencies and commissions starting next week to aid in decisions on budget, personnel and policy.

He said that Mr. Obama wanted to expand on the practice of some presidents of selecting one cabinet member from the opposition party, but that whoever was chosen, it was rare for any cabinet members to be named before December.

“At a moment when we face the most serious challenges of a lifetime,” said Mr. Podesta, referring to the ailing economy. “President-elect Obama wants to assure that we hit the ground running on Jan. 20, because we don’t have a moment to lose.”

While new administrations almost always promise to hew to strict ethical standards, Mr. Podesta’s language was particularly strong as he promised “the strictest, most far-reaching ethics rules of any transition team in history.”

He said about 450 people would be hired to undertake the work of preparing for the new administration, promising a transition “that is efficient, that is organized, that is bipartisan, and more open and transparent than others before.”

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Keeping the Obamayomamamisms coming

Office of the President-Elect?

Is it me or is a bit weird? He isn't in government yet. Howcome he gets to use a .gov address?

Monday, 10 November 2008

We will miss you, Mama Africa

Miriam Makeba died last night in Italy after performing a concert. So sad. She was 76 years old.

I love these old B&W videos with her, she was simply amazing.

Americans may have elected Obama but they still suck

Not all of them, obviously. Just the crazies, who have gone out and bought tons of guns in expectation that the incoming administration will tighten gun control; and the hypocrites in Congress and big business who've begun open, shameless pleading with the Bush administration for lots of taxpayer pork to bail out General Motors, which is seemingly about to file for bankruptcy. GM will probably get it too. They make crap cars let them FAIL!

Friday, 7 November 2008

Battleship boardgame for ten dollars!

The crisis has its up-sides.

"Indeed, the situation for retailers is so dire that it is creating opportunity for any consumers in a mood to spend money. Seven weeks before Christmas, stores are offering eye-catching bargains as they struggle to move merchandise.

“This is the year the consumer has been given a holiday gift beyond belief,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst for NPD Group. “You can get anything, anywhere, at any price.”

Malls are papered with sale signs, some seven feet tall and obscuring storefronts. New merchandise is being marked down before it even hits the sales floor. Stores are extending their hours and offering the kinds of deals — “doorbusters” — that are usually reserved for the day after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday.

Kohl’s will stay open until midnight this Friday and offer an array of doorbusters, such as $250 diamond earrings for $77.99. Kmart is offering “early Black Friday” deals on Sundays, such as a Sylvania 32-inch LCD television for $439.99, instead of the usual $549.99.

Even Wal-Mart, whose sales at stores open at least a year were up 2.4 percent in October, began a big discount program on Thursday, lowering prices on thousands of food and gift items. It is cutting the price of a Magnavox Blu-ray player to $198 from $229, and of the Battleship board game to $10 from $14.38"

From the NYT.

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

Wednesday, 29 October 2008

Guess how much... costs to register a car in New South Wales for 1 year?

$680. Yes, thats R4500. For 1 year.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Tough-to-beat logic

Ms King chimes in: “You can’t be two things at once. You can’t be a Christian and a Muslim.” In fact, Mr Obama hasn’t tried to pull off such a feat. He’s just a Christian. But Ms King continues with concerns over his family life, explaining that while Cindy McCain is always with her husband, she never sees Mr Obama with Michelle and their children. “If they don’t support him, how can we?”

As the Economist clearly demonstrates, Florida housewives are why McCain still has a chance.


Monday, 27 October 2008

Dumbest spam header I've ever seen

"Sell your house privately for less - Private Property South Africa"

Who would want to? Yes yes I know what they mean, but do the millions of morons out there also know what they mean?

Friday, 24 October 2008

Damn... I love these things!

Seems that white rabbit sweets aren't that good for you.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

The Washlet

Isa toiret wida speray. Sankyou.

Thursday, 16 October 2008

So jealous of those intrepid explorers making it to AfrikaBurn (note the crazy name change) this weekend! Wish I was there with you! Instead I am going to learn more about Freud and jung... actually maybe there will be something about my weekend that has an AB connection ;)

Tuesday, 14 October 2008


Hello my esteemed, very informed and intelligent sounding fellow joumasebloggers. I have missed you but I know it is all my own doing
I wish I had some informed, interesting current affairs bit to share, but really this is just about the little 10km run we did over a week ago (I incite the 27th amendment: thou need not function in turbulent times) as my excuse for the delay...

Anyway, Paula and I joined forces with my family's rather eclectic running group and headed out to arniston last weekend to take part in Die Voet van Afrika in Bredasdorp. Arniston is gorgeous and the run was, can you believe it, fun. So here are some of the pics. Needless to say, I was slow, everyone else did pretty well but we all finished and felt good afterwards and the next day - my criteria satisfied :)

Paula, Rebecca and me - enjoying the tablespoon of coca cola after our run through the mountain farms in bredasdorpArniston fishing cottages in the village

Our house :) Whales in the bay all day, all weekend! (That is Seboko on the balcony)

The cave (Grot) - amazing!
OK, that is all I have today... Only two months to go before school is out for summer!! Crazy and busy. Looking forward to seeing everyone at the wedding!


Monday, 13 October 2008

I'm also enjoying this


Has anyone in Melbourne seen this?


It's why artists should be allowed to live, even when their name is Axel Peemoeller.

The Doctor.

Friday, 10 October 2008

Can someone please explain...

why my holiday is now going to cost me 50% more than it did a week ago. The Aussie dollar was almost at parity with the US dollar (overvalued, fine, but still, not 50% overvalued) and now it has drawn a deep breath, held its nose with one hand, and taken a huge bomb-drop into the pool of shitty exchange rates.

See, as i understand it, the banks here do fine (Westpac is run by a Soufefriken woman, so why wouldn't it do fine?), and they don't lend money as easily as the States, so surely the AUD should be doing better than most? MC K-Rudd and DJ Swanney keep rapping to us about how the Aussie economy is doing better than most, but we seem to be doing KAK in relation to pretty much every other currency (most importantly for me, the Yen and the USD). I'm just a simple engineer, but it escapes me why the American dollar would be doing better than the Aussie dollar if their shitty banking system and under regulated finance sector was the one that fucked up in the first place? We have an analyst, an economist, some lawyers and an MBA grad (almost!) among us, can someone please explain? No words longer than 8 letters allowed, and nothing that could be classed as 'finance jargon'.

Shabbat shalom,


'Aw fack Bruce! Look at it! The fackin' dollar just died in the arse again! There goes Gregs holiday down the fackin' tubes! 'Strewth!'

Thursday, 9 October 2008


Another grappie.

The devil made me do it, says lone viewer of Hansie movie

BLOEMFONTEIN. The only person known to have paid money to see Hansie: The Movie says he was tricked by Satan. Hempies Smit, 28, of Brakpan, says he had no intention seeing the film about former cricket captain Hansie Cronje, but was overcome by demonic forces at the box office. Smit is believed to have seen the entire film and is currently in a critical but stable condition.

Speaking to journalists from his bed at the Gé Korsten Memorial Hospital in Bloemfontein where he is being treated for severe nausea and diarrhea brought on by prolonged exposure to the film, Smit said that he had gone to the cinema intending to watch something else, but that "dark forces" had made him buy a ticket to Hansie.

"The lady behind the counter went a bit pale, which was hectic because she was Sesotho, and she asked me if I was sure because nobody else in the country has paid their own money to see it," recalled Smit.

Describing the film as "diabolical" he confirmed that its tagline – "How do you start over once you've betrayed a nation's trust?" – was in fact a reference to Cronje's deception and not, as widely believed, a reference to the film's scriptwriter and director.

Smit said that he was still somewhat disoriented by the experience, but remembered being simultaneously overwhelmed by "intense boredom and an urgent need to run away". However, he said, he had remained in his seat "because by that stage Beelzebub was calling the shots".

However Smit said he was trying to remain positive about the ordeal.

"Look, it's a solid film, for a movie made to exonerate a deceased icon by his brother targeting a straight-to-DVD market in rural South Africa," said Smit. "To be fair there were only a handful of weak aspects."

He said that these had included the script, the directing, the camera work, the acting, and lighting and the editing.

"But for the rest it was fine," he said.

He had special praise for Sarah Thompson, the American actress who plays Cronje's Afrikaans wife Bertha, saying that Thompson had brought "genuine nuance to the role with her American German Cockney impression of Keira Knightley sitting on a carrot".

He said the film's other actresses had not had a chance to shine as their roles were limited to walking into the kitchen to prepare food for the men, or walking out of the kitchen having prepared food for the men.

Meanwhile the film's distributors have confirmed that Grey College in Bloemfontein has bought a print and will be showing it non-stop to its pupils for the next 300 years to remind them that nothing is wrong as long as you're forgiven by adolescent boys at your old high school.

A Claude Glass

Tonight I'm going off to this...

... to see pretty pictures like this....

...and funny pictures like this...

Incidently the drunk guy is Zander Bloem who is well known for making this....

... which sorta looks like my i-net screen for the past few days. Which in turn is sorta why I'm avoiding work to put up very random posts like this one.

Bye now

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Cramp your style

OK, so i haven't ripped and posted anything for a while, but that's mostly because i couldn't rip any records without a weird buzzing sound in the background. I figured it was the shitty sound card in my turntable, but i bought a new (though admittedly cheap and nasty) interface this weekend and it does the same thing sometimes. Anyway, this time it didn't, so in all its analogue (scratchy with poor 7" quality - authentic!) glory, please share in the joy of one of me favourite 7"s. Its a track by Breakestra which borrows the drums and horns from the old Marva Whitney record 'Unwind yourself' (produced by his Majesty, the late JB R.I.P.) at the beginning, though you may recognise them from 'Let me clear my throat' by DJ Kool. I saw Breakestra live at a festival a few years back and some clown threw something at the lead singer (A kid named Miles, i believe) and he went bananas and tried to jump off stage and bash the guy. He should have too.

And before Phil gets excited, yes,i did reactivate my Facekak account, but its for a good cause (a fundraising thing, i'll explain when it gets sorted) and it only TEMPORARY. Facebook is after all a social crutch for people with nothing better to do with their time. HOLLAH!

God bless you all,


Having a bad day?

Watch this Haitian weather report on repeat :

Care of the Estoy con estupido blog.

Monday, 6 October 2008

More Palin Bashing

This is supposed to be real, but even if it's not, it's great.

Saturday, 4 October 2008

Thursday, 2 October 2008

I'm backtracking

Obama will win. Palin is a lump of coal (who can see Russia!). She'll guarantee McCain's loss. What a daft choice. Who knew she was so clueless on everything?

She's debating Biden tonight. Wish I could stay up that late to watch. Will be fine entertainment.

The Doctor.

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Shana Tova for the Jew Year

Happy new year furry little jewish friends!

Love from Borat.

Monday, 29 September 2008

Vote for your choice of American president!

The Economist is running a global electoral college for the US Presidential election. Go here to check how the world is voting. Cast your vote if you have access to the Economist site. So far literally everyone except Belarus and Slovakia seem to want Obama. No surprise really.

This is pretty cool.

Sunday, 28 September 2008

The Alternative

Jeezus! If these clips don't make you scared shitless (right after you have laughed your ass off) then you weren't paying attention. If the good Doctor McKrekin is right, and I believe he is (mostly because he is not the only person saying it) and Obama does lose, then may the good lord help us all. The western world is gonna get served! SON!
Care of

Watch CBS Videos Online

Watch CBS Videos Online

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Hold onto your saddlebags

The resignation of 11 ministers and 3 deputies today, including the top two at the National Treasury, follows the resignation of their boss, Thabo Mbeki, two days ago. They say that they will formally vacate their posts on Thursday, when Thabo formally vacates his. Apparently this is no more than protocol - when the President resigns his cabinet is 'duty-bound' to tender their resignations too. The incoming President then has the right to refuse those resignations. So only those resignations that are accepted would actually come into force. The head of SARS wrote a memo to his staff telling them this was the case with Trevor (it's on the Business Day website).

Fine. But then why have only 11 ministers tendered their resignations? Surely, if it is just protocol, the whole cabinet should do so at the same time?

All 11 have said they will be available to help with a smooth transition to the new administration, and serve in it if asked to do so. Methinks Kgalema will ask them to do so. But if he doesn't the ANC needs to find replacements. There's no way in hell the ANC has candidates ready to go in each position, least of all minister and deputy minister of Finance.

The announcement came at around 12.30pm today. Check what happened to the JSE (top) and the rand-dollar exchange rate (bottom) right afterwards...!

Ya ok the JSE tracked back once people heard they would be available to work under the new President. But that whole 'it's just procedural' argument isn't 100% clear to me. And if it isn't quite true, the JSE might be ignoring what a half-empty cabinet under a new acting president really means for the next six or seven months.

Thanks be to Allah that the rest of the world has worse stuff to worry about right now than our political shenanigans. Let's hope it remains as such until we sort it all out.

Friday, 19 September 2008

Telling comments

From Simon Barber, reviled SA journalist cum SA-championer in the US. Not sure why so many hate him. He looks a bit like Tony Leon and is super pompous. But he's pretty smart too... And I think he's right about the US election. Obama ain't gonna win...

"Some Democrats have been shocked to discover McCain is serious about winning. They assumed he understood this was a Democratic year and would go honourably through the motions like Senator Bob Dole in 1996. Wrong.

"McCain did not have to wait for pointy-heads at Yale and Duke to tell him how far he and Palin could push the envelope veracity-wise. They are knife fighters who will stab with populist one-liners, against which honest paragraphs will be no match in Pennsylvania’s Deer Hunter country, where the race may well be won or lost."

Thursday, 18 September 2008

Joumaseblog's home

Is in Mountain View, Californi-hay. If you zoom in it seems we're hosted in the parking lot.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Do you have to update your website when you file for bankruptcy?

I only ask because apparently you can still pursue a career at Lehman Brothers!

Admittedly they have put a little blurb on their front page: "As Previously Announced, Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. Filed Chapter 11; No Other U.S. Subsidiary or Affiliate, Including Its Broker-Dealer and Investment Management Subsidiaries, Was Included in the Filing."

Right next to: "Lehman Brothers, an innovator in global finance, serves the financial needs of corporations, governments and municipalities, institutional clients, and high net worth individuals worldwide. We maintain leadership positions in equity and fixed income sales, trading and research, investment banking and investment management."


It really is great/scary/amazing how quickly things go south. According to their "Who We Are" page, in 2007 Lehman's was ranked "#1 'Most Admired Securities Firm' by Fortune. Achieved record net revenues, net income and earnings per common share (diluted) for the fourth consecutive year based on record results in all three business segments." They also achieved "record net revenues, net income and earnings per share for the third consecutive year based on record results across all business segments and regions" in 2006.

They even created, in 2007, "the Lehman Brothers Center for Global Finance and Economic Development at Spelman College, the #1 ranked institution among historically black colleges and universities by U.S. News & World Report ...... and the Council on Climate Change to bring together leaders from industry, policy and academia to facilitate constructive dialogue regarding climate change policy formulation and its impact on business."

Shame. It's all gone poof now.

Merrill Lynch was also bought by BoA yesterday for 50 billion - all stock deal. I have two questions. Where does BoA get 50 billion from in this environment? And why the hell do it all in stocks? If Merill needed a buyer quick quick, surely safe money says their stock is going to keep drowning in all that bad debt they bought (along with Bear Stearns, Lehman, Fannie and Freddie, Northern Rock, and countless other banks that were supposedly too big to fail).

They say financial markets are imperfect. They are. Because they involve people. And people are morons.

Friday, 12 September 2008

Staying the course

Brassy follow up to last Sunday's Sunday Times cartoon. This one in the M&G - editors watching each others' backs.

For those not living here you have no idea the sort of stink this has caused. Beginning to understand why high school history teachers kept banging on about political cartoons. They can be fairly important it seems.

Oh by the way, Zuma just won his case. Zuma saga is OVER. Zuma is the next president.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Look rich for less


Sorry bit of a slow day at work.

How is this not shut down? As far as I can tell the site's hosted in the US, even if it looks like Russians wrote the text.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

O_ama Bi___den

Obama Biden or Osama bin Laden?

Chill Fran! Its a joke.

Obama fever has hit here too. Anyone that has been to Sydney knows that Campos makes the best coffee in the world, but i dont drink so much anymore 'cos i'm living sensible in the run up to 30. Jokes, i'm just sick of having the shakes before 8am. Anyway, i went there the other day to get my fortnightly cup of excellence, and saw they have an Obama blend! Check it. The write up is pretty funny too.

Anyway, so i know he is the saviour of the modern world and everything, and could beat Chuck Norris in an arm wrestle and helps old ladies across the road, etc. but like, isn't he a politician? I guess he is way better than the alternative, but he's still human, and a member of one of the most crooked fraternities on earth. Ja, ja, you could argue the 'change politics from the inside' story, but thats kak, everyone has an agenda. I guess I'm just worried by the hysteria, because NOBODY can live up to the hype.

Anyway, as you were...

Canadians have a good attitude

I make this judgement based on video evidence of a Canadian (I assume) pushing Noel Gallagher off stage at a recent show in Toronto. Rock on.