Tag Archive: top deck

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# i like to drink Top Deck chocolate from the bag – second best option is breaking chunks into smaller pieces and microwaving, but a far higher and i honestly believe tastier method is to leave the slab on the dashboard of your car in the sun or on a window sill til it melts and then make a hole in one end and drink to your heart’s content – INCREDIBLE!

# i like to bend the english language to my will as i posted about here. i spell some words differently on purpose like ‘thankx’ and ‘thort’ and use a minimum of capitalisation and promote some nouns into adjectives which i promote to verbs which i promote to nouns and so on. i think i came up with the saying ‘vibing a vibe.’

# as a hobby i occasionally put together short video clips for a made up you tube show titled ‘Dangerous Things You Can Least Expect’ – while the majority of people who watch them seem to think they’re pretty funny, they have not come close to going viral yet and sit more hesitantly at a spot i would assume they call ‘virus’ rather. my favourite one at the moment is probably the latest one i did on sax and violins but i guess other people didn’t think so as much cos at the time of going to press it has only had around 218 views.

# i have a yellow and white stuffed dolphin called ‘No_bob’ [i was going to call him ‘Bob’ but he doesn’t] – in many places around South Africa he is more famous than me – i used to feature quite prominently on the local Christian speaking circuit for youth groups and on two occasions i was introduced and about ten people clapped and as i started speaking i introduced No_bob and when i took him out of my pocket a good third of the room [few hundred people] started cheering. people try to convince me that No_bob used to be blue but he wasn’t. people will probably swear he was but i have pictures from the time when i won him on the pier a Brighton. a Cape Town Christian punk band called Serving Suggestion performed ‘the No_bob song’ and it became one of their most popular songs…

# i hate raisins with a passion – no i mean REALLY, not just like you pretend not to like them but you will eat them only by themselves, or only in things. i mean i started the ‘i hate raisins’ group on facebook, i once went with a friend to a park at night and burnt a bag of them just to do the world a favour. i have recorded two songs so far titled ‘the Squishy Fruit Conspiracy’ and ‘Sultanas’ which was a parody of the old Snow ‘Informer’ song…

# the word is traffic circle. if you enter at one point and leave before doing a full 360 degrees then what you have taken part in is called a traffic semi-circle or a half-moon or something. if you are going to insist on calling it a ‘traffic circle’ then like me you must go THE WHOLE WAY ROUND and usually not just once cos you have to make sure… three or four times is fun with first timers while the record with a full combi and trailer at the big Free State circle is i think 13 times with petrol attendants standing cheering at the side of the road and overall it is the 53 we did in Stellenbosch after cell group one nite. like a record playing, right round round round.

honourable mentions must go to biting people [which i used to do the first time i met people as a sign of affection, but the older it gets the creepier it gets so i’ve largely stopped] and cycling the 109km Argus cycle tour in either pink tights or fish net stockings [best way to keep yourself cycling when going up Suikerbossie – no ways i’m getting off in front of those crowds wearing pink tights!]

just a regular normal guy, really.

so as tbV and i are nearing the end of our time here at the Simple Way in Philadelphia, Americaland, we have had to focus a lot on looking forwards at the exciting times and opportunities that lie ahead, but i also want to be mindful of taking some time to look back – there is a lot to be grateful for…

Thank You Fish

there is a saying that ‘God owns the cattle on a thousand hills’ but i would go one further and add that for the most part He seems to have placed that cattle in other peoples possession and without a bunch of generous people coming on board, we would have really struggled to make it here as relatively easy as we did.

december 2010: having alerted the church where i worked almost a year previously as to my intentions, i resigned after 6 years at the Stellenbosch Vineyard church and Val and i were obedient to what i had strongly felt God telling us in terms of waiting on Him for the next move… for Val is was a huger step of faith in a sense as she had not heard from God but had to trust that i had. So we started 2011 with not too much money and relatively no income.

waiting on God for the next steps can be a daunting thing, especially when you have no income and it is not as if expenses have dried up – we still were renting an apartment and paying for petrol [that’s gas for you Americaners] and trying to eat on occasion. Val was finishing her Masters thesis and apart from some tiny TheatreSports show income [altho to be honest, petrol to the show usually exceeded money from the show so that was never likely to send us overseas] and then later some dictation work we did, there was not a lot coming in. i was salaried for January and then nothing.

and when you start writing lists of people to thank, you will always leave out some key people, but there are some names i do want to mention that stand out and trust that if you did not get a mention it is just because it is early morning as i type this and for a minute you slipped my mind – we are completely grateful for anyone and everyone who helped in various ways.

Tim van de Venter is one who comes to mind who ‘randomly’ during one of the months we didn’t have salary, called us up and told us God had told him to pay a month of our rent. That was the only time that happened in a couple of months of not having rent and it turned out it was the one time e really needed it. i do remember a specific time [and think there were more] of needing to pay something on the Friday and knowing we didn’t have enough in the bank and going online when i got home to find someone had mysteriously deposited just what we needed in our account.

my friend and ex youth guy Steve Legendwood and his wife Anne totally blew us away with a gift from London that far exceeded ‘hey, here’s a nice little gift’ proportions, at a time when we really needed to buy air tickets to get over to Americaland.

one of the faceless [to me, i’m pretty sure he has a face] recipients of the weekly ‘Thort for the Week’ messages i used to send out weekly, a man named William Bates,  suddenly appeared out of nowhere and decided to start blessing Val and i with R500 in our bank account every month for a year [and i am pretty sure that year ended a while back, while the support didn’t]

shortly after we got here, an old family friend who i had not seen for probably ten years or so, Lisa Pieterse and her husband Jacques, started sponsoring Val and myself a generous amount per month to be used specifically for date night money, which was an incredible way to give us a gift [as we were able to use it solely for that without feeling guilty or as if we should be spending it elsewhere] and so it was really great when we got to host them between midnight and i think 4am one night as they had a Philly stopover on the airport and catch up and meet them for the first time.

my buddy Duncan and his wife Megs and young son Connor ‘What’s that?’ Houston [of the clan Houston] who invited me and Val into their home for the last week or ten days before we left South Africa [despite my housesitting reputation of setting off pretty much every single alarm in any house i have ever housesat and, sure enough, at something like 1am the one morning…] and have just been crazy generous in a lot of other ways as recently as lending the money [that we have coming in from tax back home but don’t have yet] to be able to buy a ticket so i can fly home and once again daring to have us stay with them once more.

our friend Naomi Brooks from Scotland but really Stellenbosch and now Scotland again, who has been uberly generous in all kinds of ways and manners since we have known her, but particularly for opening her flat to us before we left and then keeping us supplied with cards and letters and chocolate stash and gifts while we have been here – there are still not many things that beat receiving fun mail in the post that you can hold [and eat!]

and then those who i lovingly refer to as ‘My Top Deck crew’ and my, there are a lot of you… a few years ago i was awakened to the horrors of ‘Americaland chocolate’ in the form of something called Hershey’s [which is not chocolate – i hate to use the word ‘vomit’ so i cannot tell you what i honestly think of it, but it is bad] and while there are some saving graces in products like Dove and Ghirardelli [and the free ball they give you every time you visit a Lindt shop!] that do exist over here, nothing Tops the Deck and at times the generous donations from friends and family back home have really lifted me emotionally and given me strength to face another day, moment or challenge. after years of research back home it was shown that melted Top Deck, accompanied on occasion by melted Smartie Eggs, is at the top of the chocolate food chain. for some reason ‘left in the sun’ [and drunk from the bag] beats out ‘nuked in nukrowave’ in quality of taste and experience, but both are great. so THANK YOU – you know who yous are.

as i said, there were more people and occasions than i can possibly remember – i just felt it important to highlight a few [and special mention must go to Dreadlocked Mike and formerly Emo Kev who took hours out to start off my dreadlocks a day or two before we flew over here, and my beautiful wife for setting that up] in terms of letting you all know how grateful and thankful we are for the provision of God’s cattle, whether directly from Him [and we had the sense of those times] or indirectly through people in many ways, shapes and forms – we literally, figuratively and metaphorically could not have done it without you.

we have met so many generous and loving people here as well and give much thankx to the friendships and encounters and experiences and hospitality God has placed in our paths and a special mention must go to our friend Jon Butcher, who within a week or so of knowing me had offered to buy me a new laptop in place of my ailing one and who introduced us to some really cool friends and had some great hanging out times.

we love and appreciate and thank God for you all and for the hundreds or maybe even thousands of you who have stayed in touch and been praying and taken time to find out how we are doing and those who have visited or skyped or written… thank you, thank you, thank YOU! we have felt extremely loved. and supported.


i don’t understand chocolate – i know something about cocoa beans but that’s about it – possibly a glass and a half of milk in certain brands and a handful of raiSINs in other overly disobedient and retarded versions – and a bunch about it liking to stick around and be an accessory to your body long after the eating date (friends with unbenefits?) and also that when it goes white it is old (if it starts out white it is probably not as nice as any other form and so you’re in trouble already) um, and that the best possible melting mix in my travels is the following:

[serves two]

one slab of top deck (or more or bigger depending on how many people)

one or two bags of smartie eggs

a microwave, a microwave-friendly plate and two teaspoons (or more if more)

break the Top Deck into individual pieces and then break those in half – microwave for between 30 and 70 seconds (depending on your microwaver) – open, stir, microwave some more until the hint of meltage – the add smartie eggs – the microwave another 30 to 70 seconds then open stir and continue until melted

eat with teaspoons (while watching Survivor or in extreme cases, Amazing Race)

amazing! the chocolate, not the race although it is highly entertaining, especially when chocolate is involved in the challenges as it was that one time.

but give me a bag of cocoa beans, a great big…. tract of land, a shovel and a glass and a half of milk and i will have no clue – throw in a conveyor belt and a packaging machine and will i not still be useless?

[the answer is yes, yes i will]

so i don’t understand chocolate – i ‘get’ some of the concept behind it, i know how it affects me and adds to my life – but i completely love it (well maybe not ‘completely’ – definitely not more than the beautiful Valerie and probably only equal to a good gravy-covered pea-and-sausage-accompanied mash potato portion) and make the most of it (and occasionally embrace it when no-one is looking)

i love chocolate.

so what are you saying, brett fish?

well, i think it’s completely obvious what i am getting at but let me lead you there on the off chance that your mind is not as lateral thinking as mine own.

i love God!

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