Asi Mbonanga

…. is the title of a song by Le Zoulou Blanc, Johnny Clegg, who makes South African style music which was very challenging in apartheid days, but is now mainly nostalgic.
It means: I no longer see and recounts how leaders like Mandela & Biko were no longer seen (because they were imprisoned or assassinated)
Clegg did a concert in Auckland on Tuesday, attended by thousands of expatriate Africans, 94% white 4% brown. (The only black Africans were on stage!)
It was sad to see the people arrive, eagerly/anxiously scanning for acquaintances (I did it too). How endearing were the injections of common slang and mimicry of typical types.
The thing about emigration is that it is difficult to go back – maybe that is pride? It is still sadtough after 8 years, … I still wish I was on the passing planes winging away homewards..
I know too that I would not be completely welcomed. I rejected my heritage & left them all to survive the hard times & bleated our heartsore & longing.
Asi mbonanga iAfrica …. ek verlang aan my tuisland.

What ever happened to Kevin?

It is difficult to get the I out of me. But why should I? I think the thought that prompts this is that these blogs are essentially “I” ambles. Egoblography.
A shallow comment of mine was recently dissected quite clinically by a sharp thinker & left me feeling quite trivial. This led on to the thought that observations are often tainted by the “I” of the beholder. It presumably provides some uniqueness, but how original are a common person’s (oops! nearly slipped there)thoughts. My sister commented on the risk of exposure and maybe that’s what it is – webflashing!!
Kevin, by the way is a priest I saw, flashing his blog on the web. (Sounds obscene, don’t it). In an attempt to engage, probably rooted in my unquenched Catholic altar boy experieces (fear I would drop the wine) I invited him to be my friend. … nothing, no reply. How can this shepherd have ignored my bleat?
Mind you, he had a grey vest on, so is probably a Protestant. Never mind Father, I am sure He has a plan for you guys too, probably next to the Parsees.

Remember back then..?

I thought & have been thinking how sad strange it is that in one’s life you meet so many people who then disappear…completely. Some (most of the dogs & cats, I’m sure) have died.
I suppose it doesn’t help that I buzzed off to the antipodeean land of the long white cloud. I lived in many places but I am going to have a go at remembering the people there … (apologies to those I didn’t remember, you are not forgotten, just …)
I have marked* those I have had contact with in the last 10 years or so
Bremersdorp (1950’s): Jimmy Batchelor*, June Rose, Georgie Karagonis, Little Flower convent
Mbabane (late 50’s, early 60’s): Patrick(Pine) Pitcher; Peter Armstrong, Niel Rae*, Snarly Davies, Buster Culverwell*, John Horn, Nunkie Berry, Lindsay Rice, Monkey Slatem (RIP), the Marwicks, Martins, Lamzima, Samuel the cook, Samuel Matsebula (RIP); the Allardices (RIP?); Tsabetse, Bessie & Farouk, Cheeky Bums, Jess Robertson,Inky English, Miss Vos, Du’T, Kariba oval,George Gibbon & his dad (Akela); Roddy Smith*
Havelock Mine (60’s & 70’s)John & Peggy Critchley, the Nicholsons, Newcombes, Paige Greens, Jones, Collen Benson, Antoinete Britz, Golly Bowen, the Snooks*, Bob Sanderson, the Gordon Highlanders, Jess, Le Clus’, Ian Jenner (RIP); Titus; Vas aan die slaap, Christine Keeler (the cat) Twiggy, Jock
(*only 5/43)

This is too much – each name triggers off little cameo memories … this is supposed to be a philosophy column not an ego-blography.

Save to say that all these people have contributed to my life – thank you for your donations, gratefully (now) received!
Some have not worn socks, others have chewed them & others even washed them.
I am sure all of them would subscribe to the Silly Sock Philosophy (under construction), promoting quirks & whimsy, to make the world a better place.


The Struggle Continues! A slogan from the Mocambiquean war of independence – a ghastly little last gasp of imperialism.
However, I thought it could be borrowed for the equally protracted, if slightly less bloody global campaign against the necktie.
Is it necessary to dwell on the indignities and folly of the necktie convention? Is this frilly rag not an indication of the wearer’s willingness to subjugate him/herself to a mindless uniformity? Notwithstanding the utter illogicality of this idiotic apparel!
(Mind you, if a woman wears a tie, she must be slightly off the beaten track!)
I am sure the willingness of so many to decorate their chests with lightweight nooses is merely unthinking habit.
THINK ABOUT THE NECKTIE, YOU CORPORATE DRONES! Invite the Chairman to debate this piece of silliness, flood the company bulletin board with practical uses of the necktie competitions, wear real nooses round your necks….. VIVA INDIVIDUALISMA!!

On the subject of wars, tomorrow is Rememberance Sunday. I remember the old men’s tears and fears at the parades, Barry, Mickey, Mike, Roy, Bill and the fear and beer of the sad times, the living wounded, so sad, such a wrong road.

Futility beckons!

I have been trying to get a picture onto my blog this last hour & all I have done is build up a rant inclination.
Why do I feel almost threatened by my futile attempts? My ego fears a bruise because I can’t do what others can? I can’t play the piano or guitar either, so that may be some sort of equity!
Patience gives me a headache – I just want to …do it.
So stuff futility, I can do it, I can do it, I can do it, Yes, I can, Yes I can, Yes I can, YesIcan, YesIcan,YESICAN!!!!
Tomorrow is another day & fuck off futility!!

A Prayer for my Daughters

One of my beloveds is ill, stricken by a mystery bug and reduced to uncomfortable misery. I retreat inwardly with fear & re-read Yeats’ poem to see if he expresses what I feel.
It causes me to think of my other daughter, the well one, who is leaping out of school to sieze life & demand of it satisfaction. And then my son, and I read that Yeats’ poem too. It invokes Michael the Archangel, with his fiery sword – I have introduced him to them, so they know that he will stand up for them.
What do godless people do when they fear what the future hold? Who do they pray to? That is where God is at, no doubt – there to allay despair, even that of evil people. It must be so tempting, so frightening to them: Repent and I will embrace you
I am sure God would wear silly socks if he were’nt a sandal type. Just to show that he is not uniformly conventional, at least. Or maybe to sanctify quirks as acceptable. Lovely word – quirk!

Jaw Abcess

How quickly scenarios of the worst kind enter one’s mind. I mean cancer doesn’t arrive overnight …does it?
I thought it was just an old dodgy tooth!
Ah well – I might have to shave my beard off, Lawks!!
This is likely the penalty for wearing vaguely unsilly socks yesterday (Friday in Aotearoa) and mingling with some suited tie wearers. They were navy blue with Xmas trees and gold stars, – quite tasteful, I thought.
It was a meeting of HR professionals – really disturbing to see the range of attire – jeans and shaved heads to orange pink suits and hairspray. The profession really lacks backbone – perhaps I shall spread the good word of SSP (Silly Socks Philosophy). It is a sufficiently gentle revolutionary rationale which might appeal to the intellect and energise the need for an attack on stupid conventions.
Yeah, I will consider a way to sneak a link onto the society’s website!
Oooh, I’m such a risky devil!!

It’s still Friday in lots of the world

I suppose it is appropriate to update this column/blog on Fridays. I missed that day in New Zealand but half the world still has lots of Friday left, so I suppose that’s okay.
How easily we add rules to our life!
Well, having thought up the rule – I will now discard it.

That brings me to some awkward aspects of the Silly Socks on Friday (SSOF)institution/movement:
What do we call this type of collection of thoughts held by people? Institution suggests insanity, movement scatology and school may be juvenile. Do advise..!
This is about the 10th or 11th year that I have been part of the school / movement / institution and strangely enough, I am currently the only known member!
There have been other members but they appear to have fallen by the wayside or fallen into the trap of a lack of creativity and discipline. I recall one case of an aspirant follower who had to be denounced – he wore the same socks on 3 consecutive Fridays, for goodness sake! (Mind you, he was not all that bad, I believe he did wash them!)
I do hope that this type of thinking will attract some like minded simple philosophical thoughts.
Until next Friday … or whenever.

First Time Out

The institution of Silly Socks on Friday occurred in Africa in the early 90’s. It was intended to place some focus on the silly side of serious, or vice versa, the internal debate rages on. Ex Africa aliquid semper novus.
There is one rule for aspirant followers: On Fridays, wear silly socks.
It is a very simple but strict rule:
· no monotones, with one exception, different colours on each foot is acceptable.
· If one forgets, rectification must be immediate.
· If no silly socks are to hand, go sockless as the rule only applies if you wear socks on Fridays
· The same silly socks on successive Fridays is seen as counter revolutionary and unacceptable

We stand for quirks and whimsy, serious looks at silliness and silly looks at seriousness.

Our current campaign is a global war against that yoke of uniformity, the neck tie. There can be no logical explanation why people continue to tightly tie strips of cloth round their throats and then dangle them on their chests.