Tag Archive: english


i like the english language. i like it to do my bidding!

and so for years now i have played around with it, removing most capital letters [except for words associated with God like Love, Grace and Justice when i mean them in a God-related way way], changing nouns into verbs [see “vibe” and “vibing”] and other parts of speech, spelling words in my own unique, often phonetical way [thort for the week] or sometimes just adding in letters that don’t make a lot of sense just because they feel like they make sense in my mind [thankx] and more.

turns out i’m not the only one:

Calvin manipulates the word

we like me some Calvin and Hobbes…

i also very much like the three dots, and i know they have an official name, but i don’t like that so much [but please do remind me what it is again] so i will stick with ‘the three little dots’ thank you very much… i end way too many sentences with them.

but not that one…

it’s a life to the full thing i think. you do only live less than twice so you might as well have fun with it. is it silly? absolutely. but it’s my quirk [well one of them]. some people wear make-up. i don’t generally wear make up so think of this as the make-up of my speech or at least my written speech. the three dots are my mascara.

what about you? any words you deliberately change or misspell? any conventions you like to cut corners on? do you too like ending sentences a preposition with? cos rumours are you can’t!

however, i am still a bit of a ‘there’ ‘they’re’ ‘their’ stickler so please keep those in Hors d’oeuvre!

that is all…

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apartheid

 

 

 

a short while ago two South Africans sparked an international discussion about racism, guilt and responsibility when they printed and distributed forty t-shirts with the slogan ‘I benefited from apartheid’ written on them:

 

 

 

 

 

zapiro

 

 

well-known political satirist Jonathan Shapiro [aka Zapiro] came up with this minimalistic but powerful cartoon which expressed his take on the matter:

 

 

 

are they right? yes, for sure, i definitely had [and still have] benefits from apartheid – they were not as a result of my choosing, or even my parents choosing, but they are real.

so in a nutshell i have to feel guilty for being white.

i also have to feel guilty for being male. women have been oppressed in this country and around the world for who knows how many decades, centuries even. have i benefited from that? surely i have. i may not have chosen my penis but it has served me well, just by being there.

what else is there?

english-speaking? because surely as one of the dominant languages that worldwide communication and media have been presented in, this has forced some kind of pain and trauma on those who have been forced to speak it?

christian? while i prefer the term ‘Christ-follower personally’ i know that being grouped in this group racks up the score column for guilt and shame [no-one expected the Spanish Inquisition…]

how about heterosexual? [because heaven knows we’ve treated the gays badly]

i imagine there are probably more, but it seems as if there is enough data to suggest that i am part of the most privileged demographic imaginable – white male heterosexual english-speaking christian… and therefore the most guilty.

i think i get it. to a large extent. having benefited from apartheid etc etc i need to own that and take responsibility and be involved in reconciliation and reparation where possible as well as doing what i can do to address the various imbalances that now exist as a result of the past.

at the same time, is there a time when it ends? when i can stop feeling the need to feel guilty because i am white, because i am a man, because i…

because, to be very honest, i did not have a lot of say in the whiteness of my white, i wasn’t all that involved in the maleness of my maleity, i was born into english, i am attracted to women [and one very beautiful one in particular]

the only thing on my list that i can see that i had any part in choosing to be a part of is the christian one and even there i have chosen to align myself to a Christ-following which i hope looks a LOT different from the majority of wrongs and perversions that the typical historical christian [those who profess one thing but live another] has gotten horribly wrong.

in terms of the apartheid debris in South Africa, i will continue to do what i can to make amends and take responsibility for the past i largely inherited, but will there be a time when i am allowed to ask questions of the post-apartheid government who continue to be a hive of corruption, mismanagement, greed and nepotism and spend/waste/party this country into the ground?

because, to be honest, it’s been 18 years now. you’re practically legal new democracy. Mandela showed you the way you could choose to live – with grace, forgiveness, honour, invitation, integrity… and it is up to you at some stage to embrace that.

to be honest, i don’t actively carry any guilt for any of who i am, no matter how much the pressure is exerted to do so. i know that i’m far from perfect and i try to live better, day to day, than how i lived the day before. i try to take responsibility when i mess up and make things right with the people i have hurt or wronged. and i believe this is something that needs to be embraced by every one of us, so that we can really turn this country around and make it the incredible place it should be.

so when do we stop blaming apartheid? when do we start taking responsibility together?

unity.

ubuntu.

you and me. let’s do this.

once upon a time i developed a bad pseudo afrikaans accent and an idea for a show that would warn people about the inherent dangers lurking behind innocent-seeming things [like paper, ice-cream and screaming “Lego” when someone who is dangling you over a cliff asks what you will give them if they pull you up to safety] and a few people started really enjoying these videos and some people even started sharing them with their friends via the various social networks… there are now 9 of these official videos [and 2 or 3 non official ones that i recorded for english classes, youth groups or new friends because they had a special request – should start charging for these and making T-shirts!] and so in reverse order, here are the Dangerous Things You Can Least Expect videos from the latest one which was:

Episode 10 of DTYCLE speaks about the dangers of procrastination which lurk closeby, especially when you are meant to be doing somethi…


A slightly somewhat longer episode of DTYCLE looking at a few of the aspects related to ART as a Dangerous Thing You Can Least Expect

An episode of Sometimedly Dangerous Things You Can Least Expect covering things that sometimes can be safe and other times can be dangerful.

this two parter episode, which is one for the english classrooms i’m sure, on the Clitchy or as they say in France, the Cliche’

and ‘The Clitchy: part Deux’ or ‘Revenge of the Clitchy’ – first time we have attempted a part too.

episode six, another request, and this time on the unseen hazards linked to Wool

episode five, which has for some reason, known only to South African English teachers, actually been used as an educational tool in a number of schools [mostly in Pretoria] and specifically their English classes was on the topic of Punctuation

episode four saw the first request which was ironically ‘Requests’ seen as to be quite full of danger

episode three was all about sarcasm, or more correctly sar-chasm!

episode two warns about the dangers of Ice-cream

and finally, the one that started it all – episode one – Paper

this thing grows by people liking and commenting on You Tube and liking and sharing on Facebook and tweeting and retweeting on Twitter [and Flickering on Flicka? not sure i’m even sure what that one is] and so thank you to everyone who has done one or more of those or is about to right now…

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