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guys.jpgTen things I learnt/observed (not necessarily first hand) in a sports bar while watching South Africa beat Whales over the weekend. In no particular order…

    1. When your team plays rugby, do not invent a drinking game that is based on the number of points they score. 34 -12 is not necessarily a good score.
    2. There is nothing romantic about drunk dialing at 1:30 on a Sunday morning, especially not when your mates are yelling “he tried to pick up a hooker” in the background. Don’t ever say the words “I just wanted to know how you are.” Trust me, don’t. Not at 1:30 am.
    3. Cheap is just unforgivable. If you claim to have left your wallet at home when it is your turn to pay, then you are a cheapskate and you are stupid! I can handle stupid when I’m forced to. Cheap? No!!
    4. Life is often like a staged play. Masks and make-up and shadow puppets, and then some. Never buy a drink for a guy who says he went to school with older brother, and when probed about it ten minutes later, can’t remember your brother’s name.
    5. Factoid: A two at ten is a ten at two. When your mate says, “Hey, you want to meet a hot chick?”, do not try to convince him that she’s not. Let him wake up next to her the next morning and find out the hard truth for himself.
    6. There is no such thing as public indecency at 2 am on a Sunday morning. The cops may disagree, but they have to be around to catch you in the act.
    7. When a girl wears a green t-shirt that says “I’m a keeper”, it usually means that she is not, unless it refers to the fact that she can “keep” her liquor down better than you can.
    8. When your team scores a try, do not throw your hands in the air and jump up out of your chair at the same time. There is no dignity in falling backwards and landing on your arse. Not even when you are drunk.
    9. When a guy throws a shitfit about a decision the referee made, let him be. He is bigger than you are and will pound you into the ground with one swing of his giant fist. Nobody’s perfect. Accept it.
    10. It is indeed possible for your hair to hurt when you are hung-over. (I learnt this the next day.)

Ain’t life grand?

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Jack Bauer Henry VIII

He: Hey… The Tudors are starting on Mnet tonight in place of 24.
Me: So I’ve heard. Could be interesting to watch.
He: I dunno. Action vs drama. Jack Bauer tortured and killed at least 7 people per episode. Henry VIII only killed his 6 wives.
Me: That is actually not true. Of the six wives… 2 were divorced, 2 were beheaded, one died after childbirth and 1 survived. You could actually learn something from watching the series.
He (unfazed): I might. Seems a bit of a downer to me.
Me: The many intricacies of your 22 year old psyche intrigue me.
He: I miss Jack already.
Me: And so you would.

(That settles it. I’m taking him with me.)

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RWC World Cup FinalThe title and the picture has nothing to do with the content of the post, but I just could not help myself. So there! Bite me, Kev and Mr R Rabbit!
I was notified by the IT department this morning to clean up my e-mail account as I’ve exceeded my storage limit. Gah! (Wonder if this has anything to do with my resignation?)
I had a quick look at my inbox and found that I had 283 unread messages, mostly mail-forwards and funnies sent to me by colleagues and friends. I deleted them all and freed up a whopping 18% of the space allocated to my account.
Spurred on by my moderate success, I did the same on my cell phone. I cleared my entire inbox! It is not that I don’t care to receive the coy and flirtatious sms’s people send to me. Quite the contrary. I enjoy a good laugh. I like witty, flirtatious banter. If only they did not take up so much space and time.
Moving on. Text messages and emails have become pivotal in modern flirting and communication. The attractive thing about text messaging is that they are secretive. No one knows (or so we hope) but you and the person that you are flirting with. Embarrassment in front of others is almost nil. For many people, the electronic medium has opened up a whole new world of low risk flirting. Anyone can text. Even my mother is pretty nifty with a cell phone.
In most cases the art of flirting is trial and error. There is no class or seminar that can prepare an individual for flirting. Courtship behaviour is not a subject that can be taught.
Text messaging and emails have taken flirting to another level(?). Coy verbal phrases can now be exchanged while we are at a distance. If a message goes unanswered, it is repeated or the individual will ask,” Did you get my message?”
These days, if someone I’ve met or a girl I find interesting sends me a text or email that doesn’t grab my attention, I feel pretty apathetic about them.
For example, any text that starts, “God, I’m so pissed off at the moment,” or “You would not believe what just happened,” immediately makes me think, that perhaps I should pretend I left my phone at home rather than get into this.
The one thing that vexes me is e-mail that has been sent to my work addy or text messages that contain excessive insipid digital banter – such as 😉 lol !!!!!!!!, cu l8r, etc. I don’t mind the odd lol or smiley, but when used excessively, they make me feel like I’m nursing someone, rather than communicating with them. Do I make sense to you?
The bar of digital conversation has been raised considerably over the past few years. If you don’t start trying that little bit harder, pretty soon the only thing keeping you warm at night will be a string of emoticons.

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Springbok Rugby EmblemGreen and gold fever has reached fever-pitch in South Africa. Yep, RWC- Ebola has reached epidemic proportions and it is near impossible not to be assaulted by wave after wave of unrelenting mass hysteria. The RWC 2007 final is here and you can try and run, but you won’t be able to hide from it.
I drove past two of the neighbourhood schools this morning and every school kid was dressed in green and gold (t-shirts, face paint, SA flags… the whole shebang!) in support of the Springbok Rugby team. From what I can gather schools (and businesses) throughout South Africa are doing the same. IT IS FRIGGIN AWESOME!!
A lot of people are bandwagon fans of a sports team. Nothing wrong with that I suppose, other than that it can be a little annoying when a random stranger starts talking about rugby when it is clear they do not know the first thing about the sport.
To these people I say, become a bandwagon hater. We all despise the English rugby team right now, so just follow the trend and hate them too. I find myself taking jibes at Johnny Wilkinson for no reason at all, other than he kicked his team into the final.
I don’t know if bandwagon hating is just as bad as (or if it is even the same thing) bandwagoning itself, but it’s a lot easier to hate things for no reason than to like them and to have to draw on 20 hours of SuperSport programming to back up your reasoning.

SA rugby fan
(shamelessly borrowed from Del’s blog)

Update: Seems were aren’t the only ones that have gone completely bonkers over tomorrow’s final. Read this.

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Bros hanging outGrowing up, every guy out there has heard about or practiced The Bros before Hos rule. It is only the number 1 rule in The Guy Rulebook!
It actually sounds worse than it is. Especially the “Ho” part. Tee-hee!
The rule doesn’t advise spending every second with the guys without a thought for your girlfriend… it’s about maintaining balance.
However, as you grow older and settle into a relationship it gets harder to enforce this rule, especially when the opposition in many cases is the one who can and will withhold sex.
It is easy to push aside the guys who were there when you were single as you embark on a new and exciting relationship, but it is also wrong.
I am not talking of totally neglecting your girl in favour of your friends or asking her to play second fiddle to them. Who would want to? Especially since she plays the (your?) fiddle so well, if you know what I mean.
No, I am talking about becoming so consumed by your new flame (relationship) that all your time is spent with her (and her friends) and your calendar is booked weeks in advance with shared plans. When your personality and individuality wanes and you start referring to yourself in terms of “we”.
You have no time for your friends and when they make plans to hang out with you, it becomes a case of “Sorry dudes, I have to check with there gf if we have anything on the weekend” or “Dude, I know we’re supposed to watch the game tonight, but she really wants to go look at new wallpaper for the bathroom.” Gah!
Why am I bringing this up? Well as you know, we are in the midst of the Rugby World Cup. (I won’t even mention the Twenty20 Cricket World Cup).
In South Africa, being the rugby nation that it is, this means less time spent with [S] and more time spent in front of the telly or the local sport’s bar with the mates.
It puts an enormous strain on the relationship and I constantly find myself defending myself for not “spending enough time with her”. To avoid this fate, I try and ensure that I have enough one-on-one time with her. I re-arrange my schedule and make time for her when the teams I support are not playing. That way I am able to keep my appointments with bros and with [S].
It is a battle getting the extra time from your girl, but it’s worth it. It is not about attending all the crazy nights out. The real depth of friendship comes from a beer and game of pool or watching a game with the mates.
If you start canceling plans, you’ll quickly find that there’s never a good time to hang out. Sometimes a girl will want to monopolize all your time and attention. Other times, she’ll want to split the last bond to the single life… your bros. What gives, I say? If you made plans with the guys, you have to stick to them, reminding her that the two of you can do things together the next day or the day after.
Life with a girlfriend and no guys would be a sad existence. So would plenty of bros, but no woman. There’s room for both. Deep down, you should remember one truth: It’s more likely your bros will help you when she breaks your heart, than her helping you when all your friends take off.
And open and honest relationship can only exist when there is compromise and when people in it are allowed to retain some individuality and independence.
[Note: BIG game tonight. South Africa vs England. Time to make us some potpourri!]

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Rise of the Silver Surfer Did anyone notice I was gone? I guess not.
I have quite a bit of catching up to do, so I thought I’ll start out by doing good on the comment I made to Tripeak (3 weeks ago) about posting a Fantastic 4 review. So here goes.
I saw the movie on the weekend it premiered, so I am a bit late in posting. In my defense, I had the post saved to my drafts and meant to publish it before my week long absence, but never got around to doing it.
Nevertheless, I’ll be brief and do my best to remain objective and not come across as a comic book geek… which incidentally I am not. Well, I am not 15 anymore… although I know at least 4 people out there who would disagree.
There’s not much I want to say about Tim Story’s adaptation of the legendary Marvel Comic. If you are a die-hard Fantastic 4 fan you probably came out of the theatre underwhelmed and wondering at what might, and could, and should have been. Some may even call it a disaster, second only to X-men 3.
Though certainly not my favourite comic book, The Fantastic 4 always had a special place in my heart. And perhaps that is my downfall… I expected it to be more, and deep down I wanted it to be more. I am clearly self-indulged and have hedonistic tendencies.
If the first time you’ve heard of The Fantastic 4 was back in 2005, then you will regard The Rise of the Silver Surfer as highly entertaining. Some might even think of it as good. Enough to give the kid in you chills, thrills and marvels, it is better than Fantastic Four 1. There was plenty of action and the story moved at a good pace, despite the somewhat mediocre acting. Take your kids if you have any. They’ll love it.
From a purely male perspective, whose testosterone levels spike every time a beautiful women gets within a 50 meters of where I am, I would have liked to have seen a little more of Jessica Alba (The Invisible Women) than what was delivered. (Is there a contradiction hidden in that statement?)
The Silver Surfer was, I thought, supposed to be a main character in the film and yet his role was scaled down to increase time for the Richards (Mr Stretchy) & Storm drama. So much for something more focused on the Silver Surfers’ intent to destroy the Earth.
It really irked me that so much time was dedicated to Johnny Storm (aka The Human Torch). I have nothing against Chris Evans (He is hot, no pun intended, ladies), but why the focus on his character?
There are some funny moments in the first half of the movie and the jokes are non-stop between the characters, albeit somewhat sitcom-like. (I especially enjoyed the Arnold-like one liners delivered by Michael Chiklis)
However… The absolute tragedy/ mockery of Galactus must be a sore point for the Marvel fans out there. Galactus is one of the b-i-g-g-e-s-t villains in the Marvel universe. The movie does not do him justice. Depicting him as a white cloud is in my opinion one of the biggest flaws in the movie. What was Stan Lee smoking at the time? A heroin-laced reefer? And to have him taken out/defeated like that is an absolute insult!
I doubt I will want to see it again before it comes out on DVD, but don’t take my word for it. I am a sucker for special effects.

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Running on empty

Hitting the pavementIt has been 2 weeks since my thigh muscle injury. In an attempt to strengthen the muscle and despite the fact that winter is here, I decided that I needed to get my ass off the couch and do something that is physically challenging.
My first thought was to go to the gym and run on the treadmill, but there was no guarantee that one available at that hour and I was not in the mood for standing around.
I strapped my thigh up tightly and dressed in a warm tracksuit pants and jacket. Seeing as I have not run in a while, I decided a 10 k run around the neighbourhood would be a good start. This basically amounted to a suicidal schlep through toxic exhaust farts and barking dogs.
I’m not a great runner. I used to be, but not so much any more. Tired toes dragged across the pavement, shoulders hunched forward and my arms flailed about like a fresh salmon on a sushi shop counter. I’ll get better in time as I build up stamina and become stronger.
A young woman wrapped in tight, sweat-stained lycra sportswear bounced past. I just wanted to bite her. It spurred me on to no avail. If it wasn’t for my ego, I would have given up after the first 5 k.
On my way back I had to make a quick pit stop at the public facilities in the park a kilometre from where I live. Going behind a tree did not seem a good idea. A small voice in my head kept telling me, “Keep going until you reach home. You are going to end up on the early morning news”. I did however realise that I would not make it to my front door without peeing in my running shoes.
As expected they were in squalid condition. There was water everywhere (at least I hoped it was) and an odour that gave new meaning to the phrase Eau de Toilette. It must be an elaborate city council ploy. Leave it to rot, then when people complain they’ll be able to justify an increase in rates.
It was an interesting place, decorated by the local delinquents, presumably without adult approval. Concerned parents would be happy to know that their children are not all stuck indoors playing computer games and indulging in daytime orgies. Instead, they’re there armed with spray cans and permanent markers and marking their territory in a primal fashion by writing on toilet doors.
Someone had written, “I fucked your mama.” Another had replied, “Go home Dad, you’re drunk.”
So the jogging is entertaining and I think I may do it again tomorrow night. But just in case, I am changing my route and driving to the local school’s sports grounds and jogging around the rugby field instead.
Phew! All this positivity is downright exhausting.

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