Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I'm still going...?

Apparently, my body is a heck of a lot tougher that I ever thought! Last night, I was an extra for one of my cousin Duncan's films. He is studying to be a director and he was in dire need of extras for his picture, and so, scrapping the bottom of the barrel, I was picked. Just kidding, the film school doesn't like 'outsiders' being in their students films, so if you don't attend their institution, they don't want you. But, desprite times called for desprite measures and so David, my sister Gemma and I were called in.

We were supposed to be on call (at the set) from 5:00pm but I could only finish varsity then, so we got there at 6:00pm. We had such a blast! I love working on films! It's just so much fun! And you get to work with so many interesting, albeit crazy, people that there is never a dull moment!

The only down side, and hense the title of today's post, is that I finished up on set at 2:30am. So, I only got 4 hours of sleep last night. Yet, I'm still going! That, and the fact that I had a cup of coffee today, which I never do, left me somewhat amazed that I am still (at least I seem to be) functional. I readily admit that I did find many things over the course of the day very funny and I will probably think that they are so not funny tomorrow but at least I enjoyed my day, right?

If I ever get some of the photos from the film set, I'll post them. Well, I'm off to read up on schitzophrenia! Have a good one!

Random Fact Of The Day:

Bubble gum contains rubber

Human birth control pills work on gorillas

(Sorry, that first fact was too dull, I had to put in the second one...)

Sunday, March 25, 2007


I think I'm becoming depressed.

Today, we had a family friend over for tea. We didn't invite him, we never do. He just pitches up, which is one of those things that you just love about him! It's odd for some to understand but it's nice.

Up until now, he has been working in Pretoria at a bottlestore. He is a trained microbiologist and a proffesional photographer too but unfortunately circumstance lead him to his current situation. He really didn't enjoy his work there and has been wanting to return to Johannesburg for some time. Only recently, he managed to organise for someone to advertise him as a photographer here in Joburg. He had started to move his things back here with a friend.

One night, while moving all of his camera equipment and some other things, he and his friend were hijacked outside his friends house. The hijackers took the car and, as the equipment and everything was in the boot of the car, that too. So now, after recieving his first promising job prospect in a long time, he has been left with nothing but rage at God and at the world in general.

To make things worse, there appears to be something wrong with one of his kids. There is a very high chance that this guy is on drugs. But he is non-responsive and so, there is no way of knowing nor is there any way, at present, to help him!

This is why I feel depressed. They are really nice people, they have never done anything wrong nor hurt anyone. So why are they being dealt this card? Why them!? There is such injustice in this world and it saddens me. I sometimes feel like I really want to just leave here, go find a small island in the middle of the ocean and live there alone; leave the rest of humankind to fuck themselves up and destroy all that they have.

I think to myself, 'it's okay, God, kharma or universal justice will win out in the end. They will pay for what they have done someday', but it's hard to live each day watching people suffer and not seeing any justice come their way!

Maybe we are lost forever...

Random Fact For The Day:

Bruce Lee was so fast that they actually had to SLOW a film down so you could see his moves. That's the opposite of the norm!

Friday, March 23, 2007

The mysterious money mystery!

I've solved it! Actually, all it took was a trip to the campus bank branch and a hike up to the finance people on the 7th floor but I know where the mysterious money came from!

For those who are completely lost here, earlier this week, I received R11 000 from my university with no apparent explanation. I was alerted to this when I received a phone call from someone in the amazing (sarcasm) Wits admin world demanding that I return the R1000 that they had accidentally put into my account. As it turns out, that money is a prize that I won from the university for being one of the top TA's. The really stupid part is that they now want me to give them back their money so that I can then receive it from them as a cheque at the university award ceremony! How retarded is that! I think that at the ceremony, they should just give me little piece of paper with 'Oh, you lucky boy!' written on it and I'll act just as happy and surprised!

In other news, not really much has happened. I have been watching the news in the morning (I generally try to avoid watching the news, period) and have come to realise that cricket is certainly not the 'gentlemen's sport' as we were all lead to believe it was! I'm talking about the recent murder of the Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer. It's scary to think that people could be that serious about cricket! I mean, you can maybe understand it with one of those hooligan games, like soccer or rugby (I don't know much about Aussie Rules but I'm sure it could easily fit in here too) but cricket? What is this world coming to...

The week has been rather hectic but kinda slow at the same time. I have had lots of hastles with my 1st year students. They keep handing in work about a week late. It's really bad for them because, I work on a principal of 10% being deducted for each day that the work is late. It generally works to motivate people to hand stuff in on time, but for some reason, one student has consistently handed in really late. It got really bad with his last hand-in where I had to take off 70% of his mark! He would have gotten 80% for his work had it been in on time!

Well, I'm not sure how many of you remember my rise to fame as an 'Isidingo' extra? This Sunday is the week omnibus and I'll be on TV! Yay! I'm in two of the bar scenes; one where Maggie gets a job as a gossip columnist, and the other where Maggie gets into trouble for writing some of her stuff. You must all watch! Naturally, if you live in another country, I don't expect you to watch it...heh heh.

My cousin came over last night to work on some music for a movie he is doing as a project. He goes to AFDA, the South African film school, with a non-sensical acronym. He is studying to be a director (very exciting!) and he is currently directing his second movie. We made a track for one of his actors to sing to last night. It was so much fun! It is a kind of glam rock thing. It sounded so cool! If I can ever figure out how to post audio on this site, I'll do that.

Well peeps, that is all that I have for you for now!

Random Fact For The Day:

Leonardo Da Vinci invented scissors and it took him 10 years to paint Mona Lisa's lips

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Here is R11 000...

This is Amber, one of the Jo'burg Zoo Chimps

Today I was given a lot of money for no apparent reason! It was rather exciting! It all began when I had finished most of my marking for the 2nd years. They have just recently done a practical where they had to examine various bird skeletons/skins/skulls and study them. They had been writing the most ridiculous things as answers, not nearly as bad as last years group but they were pretty close.

One of the questions they had to answer was:

'What do owls feed on?'

A relatively simple question I would think...They answered with this:

'They feed on the lawn at night and occasionally in exotic trees'

Anyway, I was on a mission to find out the names of some bird feet (random, I know). I collected Helen along the way and we headed out. After we had gotten them, Helen said that she needed to go and find some flu medication stuff. So we went into what was once called 'Choices', one of the many cafe's on campus. After we had payed for all our stuff, I recieved a phonecall. I proceeded to have a whole conversation, which I couldn't really hear very well, with some woman from the finance office about how they had accidentally transferred some money into my bank account. I didn't understand much of what she said but I agreed with whatever it was that she was on about, as one does in these situations.

One of the things that I did pick up was that they had put money into my bank account that wasn't supposed to be there. She had also asked me to go check that the money was there. So, after I had finished on the phone with her, I went off in a state of minor confusion to see how my bank balance was doing.

After standing in the cue at the ATM, I checked my bank balance. I had R11 000! I was now torn between full blown confusion and joy. We then set out, through the sea of people that usually flock to the Matrix in search of sustainance, to find the mysterious caller from finance.

First we went on a minor fruitless adventure, trying to get info for Helen. Then it was off to the terrifying lifts of Senate house. I say terrifying because these lifts, as is the case with most lifts on campus, don't really work all that well. They have a nasty tendency to get stuck at random places. Luckily for me, I have yet to be jailed by the lift system but Helen has had the misfortune to have it happen to her. Perhaps she will recount her tale to us someday...

So we got to the 8th floor, which is Salaries and Pay, I think. I had been there many times before trying to do Wits's admin as they are completely incompetent and in order to get anything done, you must do it yourself. We walked through the familiar green corridors to the information desk where we were greeted by a very friendly man who sent us off to an office occupied by three friendly women.

I explained my situation and after some confusion and much interest in my second name (it's Zulu for 'miracle'), we were given plenty of smiles and directions to the person who I was looking for. We headed down to the office in question, once again taking the dodgy lifts which sounded an alarm just before we got in, as if we weren't nervous enough already.

Eventually, we found the correct office, after going to the wrong one. I was met outside the office by someone called Violet. She was apparently the person who had just phoned me. After introducing myself, she looked me up and down and said, 'I thought you were black...' (because of my zulu second name).

She explained that they had accidentally sent the money to the wrong person and that I would have to bring them the money back. I asked about how much they had sent me and she replied that it was only R1000. After this, I thanked her for explaining all to me and we left. The rest of the day was not worth writing about at all!

Now, the question is, where did all the other money come from, and whose is it?

Random Fact For The Day:

The numbers '172' can be found on the back of the U.S. $5 dollar bill in the bushes at the base of the Lincoln Memorial

Saturday, March 17, 2007

How to make things more interesting


I must start off by saying how impressed I am that I have readers that are not from Johannesburg! Hooray! I love you guys!

Secondly, I am concerned about the lack of interesting material for my blog. I seem to have been swept into the dull and boring. Few of my posts are as entertaining as I remember them being. Perhaps I should go out and do something silly to make my life a little more interesting.

Last night, after going to BioSoc for about two hours, I went home and got ready to go out with some of my friends. I was a little nervous about going home because I had been drinking and I was pretty sure that my family would notice. I certainly wasn't drunk or even tipsy but I was sure that they would do the whole, 'I'm very disappointed in you' thing. Apparently they didn't.

So I got ready and David came to fetch me. We then went off to his house and waited for all the girl friends of ours to get ready and come over. They took forever. And coming from me, that is a long time! I'm infamous for being late and taking forever to do things. My faffing ability is also legendary, although, Helen has been encroaching on my title of worlds greatest faffer of late.

Eventually, after much indecision on the part of our female companions, we left to go to 'Sutra'. We all piled into David's car and drove off to fetch a friend of Elena's who was also coming with. We arrived at Sutra to one of our biggest mistakes ever...

The club was practically empty. The music was horrid. There was absolutely no vibe whatsoever! But, we had payed R50 to get in and so we stayed. Things were made a little worse by the fact that two of the girls stood on the dance floor and texted people instead of dancing! I mean, what is the point of going to a dance club to send messages to people who are not there!?

Eventually, after trying to get David to hit on some woman who looked about 100, and a bit of dancing, we all decided we were too tired to do anything more and we left. I got home and crashed! I was so tired! I don't actually remember taking a shower last night before getting into bed but judging from the lack of stench surrounding me, I assume that I did.

As an aside, Facebook is SO cool! I'm finding all these old friends of mine who I have heard nothing from since high school! If you have not, you should join.

Random Fact Of The Day:

There are no words in the dictionary that rhyme with: orange, purple, and silver!

Monday, March 12, 2007


Hiking with students at eZemvelo Nature Reserve. The rock formations were amazing!

Hi guys!

Firstly, I would like to apologise for that rather profane post that I added earlier. I was very angry at said individual and I needed to vent. As you may have guessed, it was the kind of venting that cannot be done while family are around, so you were the unfortunate recipients of my rage. But enough of that!

On Friday, one of the honours students was TA'ing for the medic students, whom I rant about ever so much. It was part of their exercise to examine epithelial cells from their cheeks under a microscope. One of the male medics of said student called her, the TA, over to examine his cells as he noticed that there was an anomaly on one of them. The TA dutifully proceeded to examine the slide and saw what she thought to be fungus on this boy's cheek cells! Thinking little of it apart from some minor concern, she finished off with them and proceeded to seek out a friend of hers in Helen's lab.

This friend happens to be studying sperm competition and after showing the friend her presentation, the penny dropped. The friend, who had been TA'ing suddenly realised that what she had originally seen was definitely not fungus.

It certainly made our Friday!

Today has been rather odd. My supervisor asked me if I'm interested in reviewing another paper with him. I said I definitely wouldn't mind. I quite enjoy reviewing these papers. It's fun. I also had to watch the honours proposal talks which was entertaining. I TA'ed for 3 hours again, but it was the last plant lab! I'm thrilled that the plants are over! Hooray!

Random Fact For The Day:

There are no clocks in Las Vegas gambling casinos

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Short one

Hi gangsta's!

I'm REALLY tired at the moment and mildly dehydrated so this won't be a long post. I have returned from a fieldtrip with the second years this weekend. It was fun, but not nearly as exciting as last year where our head-of-school chased ostriches away from our camp with a large spade. We did a ton of hiking and I got completely sunburned and dehydrated...oh wait, I've mentioned that already.

I had to share a chalet with two of the staff members which was a little awkward, especially when I arrived at 11:30 pm and had to climb the stairs up to my bed in pitch darkness. It certainly didn't help that the stairs were constructed at an 80 degree angle and so they weren't quite stairs, nor were they a ladder. Also, I had to climb through a hole the size of an apple box and then narrowly dodge cracking my head on a low lying roof poll in order to get to my bed. Good times...;P

Well, I'm off to watch 'Psycho'. Have a good one!

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Birthdays, Blood and Movies! - Part 2

For those of you who are not familiar with my blog, this is a continuation of the story from 'Birthdays, Blood and Movies! - Part 1'.

I had been turned down and it left me feeling little crestfallen. This had been one of those major milestones in my life and I had failed. Given that I had been terrified to begin, the crestfallen-ness wasn't all that bad and I decided to move on with my life.

I go up from the nurses table and went over to chat to Helen while she had her bodily fluids drained. The nurses hadn't yet arrived to suck her dry, so we sat chatting to pass the time. Our chat was rather uneventful, apart from a RICKY-ALERT (Wee-ooo wee-ooo wee-ooo...). Eventually a rather nice male nurse came to hook Helen up to one of those cool-looking blood bags that you always get to see in the movies.

The procedure consisted of him strapping an elastic velcro thingy around her arm to get her veins to pop up, using a ton of sterilizing strips soaked in alcohol to clean the area and inserting the needle into the appropriate vein. He then held the needle in place with little strips of surgical tape. After taking three samples of blood in little vials, he allowed the blood to flow into the bag.

Shortly thereafter, a girl came and sat next-to Helen's bed thingy. She looked very nervous and so we started chatting to her. It turned out that this was her first time giving blood and she was very scared. So when it came time for her to get bled, she looked like she was going to die.

I felt sorry for her and so offered her my hand to hold as a comfort. She very politely checked that I was okay with this and then clasped my hand for dear life! While she tried to choke my fingers she said, 'Sing me a song!' Immediately all musical thoughts collected into a tiny mental meteor and plumetted from my mind. 'What should I sing?' I asked. 'Anything!' she replied. I desperately wracked my brain for something to hum, never mind sing. Just then, a song jumped into my head! It was...

Cry me a river by Justin Timberlake...

My musical bias aside, I realised that this wasn't going to work for two reasons:
a) All I could think of was a Justin Timberlake song (pleeug!)
b) The only line I knew from that song was, 'Cry me a river'

I voiced my concerns and Helen came to my aid. 'Sing the Kenya song!' I said that it was a stupid song and that I wouldn't sing it. I wasn't about to sing a song about lions and tigers in Kenya in a very large, crowded public place anyway! I decided that this little distraction conversation was in need of a subject shift, and so I asked the donor, whose name we actually never asked for now that I think about it... 'So what good movies have you seen lately?'

'I don't know! I have no idea!' she replied.

Helen pipped up, 'What kind of movies do you like?'

'I don't know! I can't remember anything right now!'

It was at this point that the nurse arrived and began to prepare the donor. He strapped the velcro thingy onto her arm and began to cut the surgical tape into short pieces.

She sounded kind of out of breath, 'Oh my God...here it comes! The needle...I'm gonna die!'

'Uh...not quite,' I said. 'It's only the surgical tape that he's prepping.'

'Oh God, oh God, oh God...' she muttered. I tried to distract her again while my fingers began to resemble tiny long egg plants. Just then, the nurse warned her about the needle. It was crunch time and Helen did the only thing left.

'Look away!'

It was in. The donor did little apart from a small flinch while the needle went in. She then looked down at her arm, almost admirably, and turned to me. 'Thanks, you can have your hand back'

I gratefully took back my distorted and rather purple hand and moved over to Helen to see how she was doing. Her bag was nearly full but she had not come even close to beating her previous bag filling record time. Apparently she once managed to fill a 500ml bag with blood in under 8 min! Soon one of the nurses arrived, stopped the flow, removed the needle and put a cotton ball over the oosing hole in Helen's arm. As the bleeding didn't stop immediately, he put another ball on and held it down with a plaster that had a little South African flag printed on it. I mentioned that I thought the plasters were cool and the nurse immediately gave me one!

Random Fact For The Day:

Upper and lower case letters are named 'upper' and 'lower', because in the time when all original print had to be set in individual letters, the 'upper case' letters were stored in the case on top of the case that stored the smaller, 'lower case' letters

To the fucking psycho bitch-snake!

There is a certain individual, whose name I shan't reveal onto the internut, who has made life for me rather unpleasent of late. I today found out that this unpleasentness was in order to cover this person's ass for their own shortfalls. Those who I have spoken to in the last few days may know who it is that I speak of. To this person...


Love me

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Birthdays, Blood and Movies! - Part 1

Today is a very special day. Not only is it my cousin, Duncan's, birthday, but it is the first birthday he has had all year! So a very happy birthday to him! Big up Dunx!

Yesterday I did all (or at least I thought it would be all) my admin for the week. I have accepted the fact that my Monday's seem to be turning into complete write-off days as far as achieving any work is concerned. I always seem to end up wasting my entire day to admin, TA'ing or simply lying in my chair at my desk thinking, 'I really should be working...perhaps I should go for lunch now, seeing as it is only 45 min to lunch. It practically IS lunchtime!'

However, this Monday was different to the usual. I was doing all my admin, as usual, and as everyone knows, doing admin alone is horrible, so I had dragged Helen along with me. I had almost done everything and I was walking into Senate House (practically the admin building of our campus) to post a severely overdue postcard to my friend Joe in England. As we arrived at the post office I had a minor moment of confusion as to whether airmail could be placed into the same postbox as local mail (I seem to remember that at some stage, this was considered a crime by anyone who worked in the post office; they are odd people...). It was then that both of us noticed the beds.

In the centre of the building, which is open so that the building is practically hollow, were numerous beds and tables. There were people all over the place and most were being tended to by nurses. Helen instantly recognised it as a blood donation drive. I instantly felt my stomach contract and every hair on my body stand at full attention.

After a little persuasion I managed to get Helen to leave. The problem is, you see, I can't handle giving blood. Just the thought of it totally freaks me out! I have a tendency to pass out when I lose blood in any way. Somehow I am fine with other peoples blood - that doesn't bother me in the least. But the second that I am seriously hurt or lose lots of blood, the lights trip. I'd love to give blood from a moral point of view and I applaude all those that do, but I am just too freaked out to try.

So while we continued on my admission (admin+mission=admission; I often make up new words, it's fun) Helen tried desperately to persuade me to just try donating blood. Eventually, I gave in and said that I would try, but if I freaked too much, I'd have to give up. She was okay with this and promised to hold my hand if I wanted. I said it wasn't necessary.

Come lunchtime, for this was the decided time for the donating, we both left to give blood. I was REALLY nervous and, quite frankly, terrified. As we walked, all I could think of was the time I had to give blood samples for a test once and passed out. Eventually we arrived after what felt a bit like a 3 day hike more than a half minute walk and we went to fill out our forms. The forms were laiden with stuff about how many sex partners I'd had and how I must NOT under any circumstances lie about this stuff, which I totally think is a good idea! After the forms were done, one of the nurses called me over for an iron level test. As I gave her my hand, Helen pipped up with, 'Don't look! This is the most painful part of the whole thing! It hurts like hell!', which naturally made me feel just dandy. But she really wasn't kidding!

That tiny little prick of the finger was BLOODY (excuse the pun) sore! I was amazed that it hurt as much as it did! While I was clasping at my severed finger, the nurse let a drop of my blood fall into a copper sulphate solution to see how much iron I have in my blood. As it turns out, tons! I was then sent off to the next nurse to have my blood pressure checked and to go over my questionaire. While there I was hit with the bad news that I couldn't give blood.

I like to tell people it is because of my promiscuity...

In truth, it was because I had been a little ill over the weekend and so I had to wait at least 48 hours before I could donate blood. And due to the fact that the blood people wouldn't be there in 48 hours time, I couldn't do it. To be entirely honest, I was disappointed. I had worked up every ounce of courage I had to do that and then I was turned away! Bummer...

Friday, March 02, 2007

A rather 'different' day...

The cat fell asleep on my sisters legs while she was on the phone...
Hey guys.

Today has been (damn! I can't think of an alternative word!) 'different'. It started of yesterday actually. I got into huge crapolla with my supervisor who sent me an e-mail. He sends out scary e-mails to us when he is really mad. They generally get rather bitchy...well actually bitchy isn't the term to use. They are just really scary!

It was because I have had lots of people come to visit me in my lab and we are apparently very noisey; it's been disturbing other members of staff. So now, I have been banned from having any visitors. I understand where he's coming from completely! It's just that I don't like getting crapped on by him. He is one of those people that I really respect and admire so to get into the shite with them is never nice. I always end up with a horrible sick feeling in my stomach when this kind of thing happens.

So I was dreading going in to Wits today because of that. None the less I went in and after checking my mail, I got stuck into marking the prac's of the medical students that I tutoured earlier this week (see this post). They continued to shine as examples of the true MORON in every man. Not one of them passed! (technically they did pass but as future doctors, they are expected to achieve 90% in order to not have to redo the exercise). While I was marking, someone (who shall remain anonymous) came to see me to chat. We ended up chatting about how much stress we were both under and that was when it happened. They burst into tears!

I felt terrible for them! I comforted them and they proceeded to tell me about everything that they had on their mind. I felt so helpless when I was talking to them. I really wanted to make them understand that life really isn't that bad and that they should not blame themselves for terrible things that have happened.

Anyway, after about an hour of chatting, they left and I resumed my marking. Overall, excluding the hour-chat, it took me about three hours to do all my marking! And it's not even as if that stuff deserved to be read! Luckily, everything has an ending and so I eventually finished! I then decided to go and do some admin.

It turns out that Wits admin is on par with the medical students with regard to their inability to function as a semi-inteligent human should. They announced a day or two ago that they have somehow misplaced ALL our banking information and so we now have to resubmit it to them. So I gathered some yellow forms together and was going to submit it when I heard that I needed a copy of my ID to go with it. So that will be done on Monday.

Then, this afternoon I had to tutour first years again which was so nice! They are WAY smarter than those idiotic medics, and they actually have a sense of humour! They also finished off early today which is always welcome!

From there I proceeded to go and check out BioSoc, which for some reason was full of dodgy freaks, and so I left. I then decided it was home-time. My drive home was okay appart from a conversation on the radio about fetishes and pubic hair, which was mildly disturbing. As I arrived home, I discovered that it had rained at home!

Now, it is important to know that here in South Africa, we are experiencing a bit of a rain shortage. Numerous crops have failed as a result and the heat is just about driving everyone mad. So to have rain was amazing! Except...

Because we have had so little rain, the roads, and in fact most surfaces, are extremely hot! So, any water that lands on them, turns to steam immediately. So now, not only is it hot, but it's humid too! I suppose I should be more grateful for the fact that it actually rained at all! Bad me...

Random Fact For The Day:

Both Hitler and Napoleon were missing one testicle