What I have, and what I want!  

Posted by Smoke

They say, the difference between men and boys are the size and price of there toys. Well it is true, as happy as I am with the grown up life, I often wish I was still nine years old.

I love toys, all kinds of toys and I have a few, but I have also a list of toys that I want. So here follows the two lists:

1. a YOKOMO YR-4 M2 PRO r/c racing model with a 1965 Shelby Mustang GT 350 body shell, painted in gold with black Ford racing stripes. It runs a 23T racing motor of unnamed origin.
2. a TAMAYA midnight pumpkin of which I replaced the standard 540 motor with a TAMAYA 23T super stock RZ electric motor.
3. A have a GWS chopper, that I am still learning to fly, hence it is currently stored in various pieces, waiting for repairs.
4. I have a collection of about 40 lead-cast Marvel figurines. Containing, Spiderman, X-men, Fantastic 4, Avengers, and Marvel Knights caracters.
5. I am the proud owner of an OLYMPUS OM-1 MD 35mm SLR camara. With that I have an assortment of filters aswell as a 200mm lens.
6. I have a small collection of ZIPPO lighters and wish to grow that. I currently have 5 Zippos and unfortunately, none earlier than 2000.
7. Then I have a RIZLA + concept, that is the fancy name for a cigarette rolling machine. I often enjoy a self rolled smoke, and I blend my own tabacco with cherry or rum and maple.

1. a Digital SLR camara. Maybe a Canon 50D, but im not fussy. With that I want a decent zoom lens.
2. a Tattoo kit. The machines, autoclave and the works. Tattooing is a career I hope one day to follow.
3. a Scale train set. We use to have one hanging in the garage when I was a kid, and when it came down in the holidays, my friend and I would spend hours playing on it. It was about two meters by one meter, but had three tracks, a mountain, a tunnel and a lake. My father built it and it was grand. I truly hope to grant my children that same pleasure some day.
4. modeling and prototyping equipment. As in small scale CNC, and hand injection molder.
5. Lastly, the one, most out of reach is a full scale Shelby Mustang. This is the one big dream and I will save it for my mid life crisis one day.

You may have learnt something about me here or you may not have. I just felt like sharing.

Yes it is true people, but only in my opinion. And not for the reasons you are thinking of. No. The reason is...

To be 100% honest, of all the M.J songs I have heard in the last twenty odd years, Thriller was not one of them. In fact, I have heard the song for the first time, only in the past few years. Now I am not a big M.J fan, so it is understandable.

So now you must be wondering, "what is so bad about Thriller?" Well, the dance is. Sure, it looked great way back in the music video, I suppose, but the problem is, these days you cant fling a midget without hitting a group of people spontaneously bursting into zombies.

And the worst part of it is, Most of the freaks doing it, only heard of M.J as recently as his hearings. So please, for the love of all that is sane and good. If you have to burst out into spontaneous sincro dancing, try the Macarena, or one of the Highschool Musical numbers. Thats what they are there for. But please, I urge you. Don't befoul a legend. If you think it is cool, well, it is not, especially for the reason you are doing it. No matter how good you do it.


Posted by Smoke in , , ,

I’m not usually up to speed this early in the morning, especially not at work, but I got to bed early last night and the boss isn’t here today, or so I thought. “ Robert”, how he gets away with that accent, I just don’t know. “yes inspector! Thought you would be out for the day?” I chirp confidently. “youz would like that very much soz you can dig in my fings hey?” “Would never dream of it sir” because I did that two weeks into the job. “Was just wondering sir…” he cuts me off “I has a very important job for you today laaitie” no doubt the cleaner can do it. “youz know the room we put da riot gear in…” “We have riot gear?” “Ha ha, not yet, but as soon as you cleans the old toilets out, we will also have a place to put them, you are going to meet a whole new range of orgasm today.” “you probably mean organisms sir” “sis man, we can’t use words like that boy, the community will hear you.” What a wanker “yes sir, no sir, sorry sir.” “So get to it, and don’t take all day.” “No sir, may I use your nose as a broom sir?” “What did you say?” “The room sir, can I hose down the room?” to loud I think “yes man, but be fast.”

The inspector is a funny sort of person, he has been in the police for ever and the new rules never got through to him for some reason. He is a traditionalist Afrikaner and is quite set in his ways. He has a great moustache that gave me the impression, the first time I saw it, of a magician doing the nail in the nose trick, with a broom handle. He is a fair, though paranoid man and seeing that he hasn’t come to terms with modern day policing, is probably the best candidate to head up this small township police station seeing that we are only ten members.

I am Sergeant Robert Dan Anger or as I like to think of myself…


I feel no confidence in attempting my given challenge, as I’m sure ‘they’ will be watching. Yes, the rats. Or to drive it home… “THE RATScreepy music in the background included. You see, this is no place for policemen, or anyone not sufficiently armed. The three most dangerous things in this township are, in no particular order, rats, chickens and donkeys. The water comes in a close fourth. The rats here carry automatic rifles and move about like trained commandos. I once watched a rat run under the roof at full speed, bracing it self between the wall and roof beam, with nothing but a seven foot drop beneath it. I actually sprayed it with pepper spray, and you know what it did? It welcomed the fiery juice with a gapping mouth. The chickens are even worse. The other day I was patrolling, only to stop for the foul creature to, of all things, cross the road. And what did I see dangling from the bird’s mouth? One of Rambo’s rats. True story. The donkeys I can’t even think about. That is a whole other story.

So, being the brave and duty driven individual that I am, I check the room for rats and donkeys, give the all clear and slip the cleaning staff a twenty to finish the job. So before you can say “ where did he go?” I am out of there for a drive, a smoke and some free time. Hey, it’s a tough job, but someone else can always do it.

Tshamahanzi (where I found Patience)  

Posted by Smoke in ,

Before I start, a few words.

LOCATION: Black settlements outside towns introduced by the apartheid government. The name is still being used and is often referred to as 'kasi'

KGOSHI: the tribal king to the area, that is still used. They have a direct link to government.

INDUNA: the tribal chief to a village. He is the direct link to the Kgoshi.

SANGOMA: a traditional healer that find their roots in ancestral tradition.

INYANGA: very much the same as sangomas but are usually associated with magic.

SHABEEN: an illegal or unlicensed drinking place. The name is of an Irish origin.

K.B: this is the local name for traditional beer, brewed from Sorgum. I enquired from one of the locals what K.B stands for and he informed me it stands for "kaffir* beer"

TAXI: this is nothing like the New York or London variety. This is actually a mass transport system that makes use of mini busses.

SPAZA: these are small home based tuck shops that sells mostly bread cigarettes and sweets.

* KAFFIR: this is an apartheid era word of a derogatory nature, and you could actually land in jail for using it in its insulting form. It seems to be used as a joke among locals in some situations.

I work in deepest darkest Africa. In a village that is part of a location, outside a town in the Limpopo province, a mere 300km north of the bustling metropolis of Johannesburg, South Africa.

The location is called Mahwelereng. This is a rich, vibrant town, that plays home to a predominant black community. It is also the heart of the surrounding rural, tribal villages that are ruled over by the Kgoshi. Mahwelereng as a town is fairly urbanised and was at one time home to a then Glorious, now abandoned Hotel, which I could only imagine, played host to swinging 40's styled parties. But that is a whole different blog on its own.

Now Tshamahanzi on the other hand....

...Rich and vibrant are words you could use to describe it, but only if you are the kind of person who uses the word cheese to describe the moon and flat a word for the world. You see, Tshamahanzi was built on the side of hill in the middle of the bush, and as legend has it, it was done in quite a hurry. Apparently,and this is just rumoured, a few years ago ( between 30 and 60 years ago ) the people of Moshate village, home to the throne, went to the Kgoshi and complained about the Tsonga/Shangane people, who at that time lived there. The Moshate people was mostly BaSotho and BaPedi and they were not happy with the Shangane culture of traditional "magic" and there Sangomas and Inyangas. So to halt the threat of violence, the Kgoshi arranged for a place for the Shangane people, in the distant mountains. The place now known as Tshamahanzi.

Tshamahanzi as a village, is governed under three Indunas. The village has one clinic and six schools, both primary and secondary. Even though this is such a poor community, there are a generous amount of taverns and shabeens, as drinking seems to be a favourable past time. You can buy your pint of "K.B" at most of them.

Transportation consist mostly of taxis and donkey carts. There are, the employed and richer individuals, who own cars but not that many, as this is a largely unemployed community.

Infra structure are on the rise. As all homes have access to electricity even though electric cables are sometimes stolen for the sale of copper. Some houses now have direct water access though many households still depend on the good old wheelbarrow and water drums at the communal taps. The main road that runs around Tshamahanzi, has only recently been upgraded to tarmac. Gravel roads, often rocky, are still being used. The one thing this rural village still lacks is a working sewerage system. Outside Pit toilets are still being used even though it poses a health risk.

Tshamahanzi is home not only to the shangane, but to a few ethnic groups. Legal as well as illegal foreigners make there homes here, including Zimbabwean, Nigerian, Somalian and Indian nationals. The latter two groups mostly own or manage the few larger shops in Tshamahanzi, though you will find plenty of spazas owned by the locals. These shops are highly successful as the people don't always have the means to travel the twenty odd kilometres to civilisation. These shops stock everything, from everyday groceries to building supplies and equipment. Livestock is found in the form of donkeys, cattle and goats and it shouldn't be strange to find any of them moving freely on the streets. Often you find corn crops growing in back yards as Many of the locals are substance farmers. It is usually cheaper to grow your own then to buy maize meal.

I come to work everyday and sit in my little caravan to listen to the problems of these people. It is mostly serious but often there are the silly ones. Their issues are sometimes more important to them, than I would think. But I have learned to be patient with them even after communication has broken down, we still find a way to a solution.

The days the world stood still  

Posted by Smoke

When you think of September 11th, you usually think of New York, Washington, Pennsylvania, all major venues of events. Or, you think of air crashes, monumentious buildings being attacked, the Pentagon, deaths in large numbers, America under attack, emergency workers
and history changing events.

Well, so do I

I present to you, 9/11/

1297 – Battle of Stirling Bridge: Scots jointly-led by William Wallace and Andrew Moray defeat the English.

1609 – Henry Hudson discovers Manhattan Island and the indigenous people living there.

1773 – The Public Advertiser publishes a satirical essay titled Rules By Which A Great Empire May Be Reduced To A Small One written by Benjamin Franklin.

1776 – British-American peace conference on Staten Island fails to stop nascent American Revolution.

1777 – American Revolution: Battle of Brandywine – The British celebrate a major victory in Chester County, Pennsylvania.

1792 – The Hope Diamond is stolen along with other crown jewels when six men break into the house used to store them.

1813 – War of 1812: British troops arrive in Mount Vernon and prepare to march to and invade Washington D.C..

1814 – War of 1812: The climax of the Battle of Plattsburgh, a major United States victory in the war.

1847 – Stephen Foster's well-known song, Oh! Susanna, is first performed at a saloon in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

1857 – The Mountain Meadows Massacre: Mormon settlers and Paiutes massacre 120 pioneers at Mountain Meadows, Utah.

1906 – Mahatma Gandhi coins the term "Satyagraha" to characterize the Non-Violence movement in South Africa.

1915 – The Pennsylvania Railroad begins electrified commuter rail service between Paoli and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, using overhead AC trolley wires for power.

1916 – The Quebec Bridge's central span collapses, killing 11 men.

1940 – World War II: Buckingham Palace is damaged during a German air raid.

1941 – Ground is broken for the construction of The Pentagon.

1961 – Hurricane Carla strikes the Texas coast as a Category 4 hurricane, the strongest storm ever to hit the state.

1968 – Air France Flight 1611 crashes off Nice, France, killing 89 passengers and 6 crew.

1974 – Eastern Air Lines Flight 212 crashes in Charlotte, North Carolina, killing 69 passengers and two crew.

1981 – A small plane crashes into the Swing Auditorium in San Bernardino, California damaging it beyond repair.

1990 – U.S. President George H. W. Bush delivers a nationally televised speech in which he threatens the use of force to remove Iraqi soldiers from Kuwait, which Iraq had recently invaded.

1998 – Independent counsel Kenneth Starr sends a report to the U.S. Congress accusing President Bill Clinton of 11 possible impeachable offenses.

September 11 Proclaimed 9-1-1 Emergency Number Day by President Reagan on August 26 in 1987 and celebrated since then by some United States communities, particularly the local emergency services.

I don't want to sound unsympathetic on the events of 11 September 2001. As tragic as it was, there are many untold stories out there with similar, if not worse endings. The world cant forever stand still.

The spreading of the gospel