Tag Archive: monty python


If the phrases, “Bereft of Life”, “Bleeding Demised”, “Shuffled off its mortal coil” and “Run down the curtain and joined the bleedin’ choir invisible” don’t mean a whole lot to you, then you’ve come to the right place…

Dead Parrot Monty Python

They all, of course, are uttered in one of Monty Python’s most famous sketches of all time, ‘The Dead Parrot Sketch’ and if you still don’t know what i’m talking about, then you should watch this [or if you do and just can’t help yourself again] right away: Continue reading

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How to Catch a Python

cleese

So by now most of you are familiar with the Hashtag Game i host to provide a bit of light relief and silliment [it’s a word!] in between trying to educate white people on privilege, figure out how to be an ally to my friends of colour and see and become significant transformation in the lives of the poor and more.

Last week 43 941 tweets were produced with the #YouHadMeAt game we played [although Tom Cruise and Rene Zellwegger were surprisingly absent] and this week we are hoping to go one better. Continue reading

moneymouth

The Bible says, ‘The love of money is the root of all kinds of evil.’

i have noticed, however, that for most people, talking about money seems to be the evilest of evil. Or close to.

Why is it that people do not like to talk about money? As if it is this hallowed ‘That-Which-shall-Not-Be-Named’ mystical creature upon whose mentioning chaos and damnation occurs?

You don’t believe me? Try asking someone sitting with a group of friends how much they earn.

noentry

And it goes a little something like that.

Well, i’ve been thinking about it a bit lately – tbV and i did a preach on kingdom economics on the West Coast and it feels like time to get some conversation going on about it here.

People react uber strongly any time i dare question the exorbitant prices football stars get paid in transfer fees.

When i called it evil that the “U.S. will spend $350 million on ‪#‎Halloween‬ costumes for our PETS which is 32 x’s more than Liberia’s healthcare budget” there were a bunch of people jumping in to justify or explain to me why it was not really that bad.

And more.

So this is just an intro piece, but what would YOU like to hear on the topic?

And how free would you be, in a group of relative strangers, to say what you earned? Deal or no big deal?

[To look at Giving that Costs, click here]

[For a piece looking at how we spend our TIME, MONEY and ENERGY, click here]

[For an excellent piece on ‘Storing her Money in the Stomachs of the Needy, click here]

 

silencewisesouls

this is something i’ve been contemplating for a while and i’d love to hear your thoughts on it.

as i’ve been collecting stories for the two popular series i am running on my blog at the moment, namely, ‘Marriage through the Years’ [stories, struggles and advice from a variety of people who have been married for a differing number of years] and ‘What my Single Friends would like their Married Friends to know’, one thing keeps standing out to me: People sure have a habit of saying stupid things.

now, even at my most cynical [which i don’t think is a lot] i don’t think it is ever the case of a married person thinking to themselves, ‘Hey let’s make our single friend feel like crap.’

and we get it as well [which i discuss in my post, ‘Can’t i just enjoy this big thing first?’ where if you’re single people are constantly asking, ‘When are you going to get a girlfriend?’, then the moment you do it moves to, ‘When are you going to get engaged/married?’ and then when you get to that point, ON THE WEDDING DAY people start with little hints and suppositions tending towards, ‘So when are you going to have a baby?’

i was watching the last day of the test cricket, South Africa vs Australia [which in Americaland starts streaming at like half past midnight so it was crazy early in the morning] and as we took their 7th wicket i made my Facebook status ‘And then there were three…’ Bad move Brett Fish Anderson as within seconds there were people making baby comments. honest mistake? maybe. although if you know Val and myself and have spent any kind of time with us you are likely to know that we don’t particularly want children and so just chill people, relax.

sometimes they are stupid things, but more often they are simply ‘not-fully-thought-through things’ or ‘unkind things’ and i think i have discovered a scientific formula for why these statements come about:

People Panic.

one of my favourite Monty Python moments takes place with a conversation between two old woman [played by Monty Python men of course] where the one asks the other:
Old lady 1: Well, what’s on the television?

Old lady 2: Looks like a penguin.

[On the tv set there is indeed a penguin. It sits contentedly looking at them in a stuffed kind of way. There is nothing on the screen.]

Old lady 1: No, No, No. I didn’t mean what’s on the television set. What programme?

Old lady 2: Oh

[and a little bit later in the conversation]

Old lady 1: Perhaps it comes from next door.

Old lady 2: Penguins don’t come from next door, they come from the Antarctic.

Old lady 1: Burma.

Old lady 2: Why’d you say Burma?

Old lady 1: I panicked.

Stop Panicking People: Envoke The Silence

i really believe that a lot of the time people say stupid/hurtful/unkind/unthinking things it is simply because they panic. there is a pause in the conversation and the beginning of silence and for some unknown reason we humans fear the silence and so MUST. FILL. IT. WITH. WORDS. AND ANY WORDS WILL DO AND SO “Hey, when you going to have a baby”

“You’re putting on weight, hey?”

“Ooh, here come the grey hairs.”

“So when are you going to find yourself a girlfriend and settle down?”

“Will we be hearing wedding bells any time soon, you two?”

“There’s this guy I know who would be great for you.”

“Hi [new person I’ve just met], so what do you do?”

and so on, ad finitum… panic, panic, panic…

Why are we so scared of silence? I think because we’ve been trained that way… it is the only thing we’ve known.

…and the good news is we can train ourselves to not be so afraid of it.

With the recent ‘Free: Spending your Time and Money on what matters most’ book study we did, one of the homework assignments was to put aside 10 to 20 minutes a day to step away from the busyness of life and rush of your day and to just be still. To be aware of the silence [or our silence at least as we take in city sounds and animals noises and neighborhood conversations and so on] And it was one of the highlights of the book study for me. I would take my lunch and sit outside on the steps of our apartment or in the back courtyard behind our place and just be still and listen and observe and be. i really want to be able to do more of that.

I have learnt to embrace and encourage silence in prayer meetings where we tend to rush to fill the void with our words and not give God a lot of space to answer. I have found that by inviting His involvement and then leaving space for Him to do so, that He generally does take us up on that.

And then something i am working on [cos it IS hard] is introducing it into conversations:

Two great pieces of advice there. 

And possibly another great piece of advice is to substitute questions for statements. As we’ve heard what single people are wanting married people to know, some things come up which seem completely confusing. “You don’t invite me to occasions with other couples because you are scared that I will feel like a third or fifth wheel.” What that shows is that there has been thought by the married person. I think that by inviting you to an occasion that only has married couples attending, you might feel out. And so the action or response is one of love. But what might be better suited and more helpful [because not all singles experience things the same, as not all marrieds experience things the same] might be a question: We’re having a dinner next week and we have two married couples and were thinking of inviting you, but didn’t want you to feel out – would that be something you’d be interested in attending?

Which is what i am trying to do with that series – get conversation happening. And at some point i am hoping to invite some married people to respond to some of the posts of my single friends and hear some of their thoughts and feelings and pain on the matter as well.

What do you think? Is more silence something that might help? Is there something as a married person that stops you asking your single friend questions to try and understand them better? Do you as a single friend to a married person feel the freedom to ask questions or share feelings in order to strengthen your friendships or at least try and figure them out?

i would LOVE to hear your thoughts on this…

a bunch of different people [and by ‘a bunch’ i mean Don Miller, Rachel Heard Evans and iafrica.com] do a kind of best things we watched/saw/read on the internetweb this week kind of thing on their blogs… so here is one more… and i would love to know which one you enjoyed the most, so leave an A, B, or C in the comments section below if you will:

[A] There are no words that can suitably describe this video – somewhere between fun and creepy and random and weird and hilarious, but see for yourself – Teddy has an operation [Ze Frank]

 

[B] They didn’t show documentaries like this when i was at school. Ze Frank who made the Teddy Operation above has a whole series of ‘True Facts about…’ videos which i think due to his voice have become a new favourite thing for me – here is ‘True facts about the dung beetle’

 

[C] This one was acomplete gem that i somehow found and you have to appreciate Monty Python to get it – Margaret Thatcher does the Dead Parrot sketch

 

So which one was your favourite: Vote with A, B or C…

This is no doubt [in. my. mind.] the greatest ad of all time… especially for a random Olympic event…

Anything that references the black knight from Monty Python and the Holy Grail… and connects it with legendary pirate Jack Sparrow [“There should be a captain in there somewhere.”]…

alongside Neo from the Matrix, Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader from Star Wars and Inigo Montoya from “You kill my father… prepare to die” The Princess Bride fame…

while tossing in Puss in Boots, Arnie, the Highlander and more…

I’m not sure it gets any better than this – hope the entire team that came up with this got a raise.

And knighted. [but not by the Black Knight cos he will bite you to death… okay, he’ll call it a tie!]

…maybe the only thing missing is Bruce Willis, so he should probably make a sword movie soon…

so the other day i am on one of the bizarrest [so bizarre in fact, english grammar policers, that it took ‘most bizarre’ to another level] phone conversations at work that i have ever been on, which basically ends with this old couple [him speaking, her in the background] letting me know emphatically that the appropriate number of times for one to have read the bible through from beginning to end is somewhere >30 [“I lost count at 30” being the background ladys enthusiastic response to my rather feeble, “um, i don’t know, 5 or 6 maybe?”]

felt a little like something along the lines of “No-one expects the Spanish Inquisition… amongst out weaponry are such diverse elements as fear, surprise, a ruthless efficiency and an almost fanatical devotion to the thirty fold reading of the word, i’ll come in again…” [especially when my office mate passed me a piece of paper with the title of that sketch on it]

but the finale moment was a classic as the old man commented on the fact that i must be from somewhere else because of my accent:

OLD MAN: I notice you have a different accent. You from England?
Me: South Africa.
OLD MAN: [excitedly] REALLY? What country?
Me: [holding back a year’s supply of sarcasm] South Africa.

i would love to hear your similar ‘the country of Africa’ stories…

[For the answer to the ‘Where are all the African Americans hiding?” question, click here]

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