Saturday, March 30, 2024

4 years a movie extra

 Have i got an expose story for you. 

My therapist has told me to pen this all down to help with the voices in my head. So it's not at all meant to be funny but simply medicine for me. 

An eating props insight into life on a South African movie set. An expose of the movie industry as i experienced it.

 As a veteran of over 70 adverts, film shoots as a movie extra, and having the claim of being the highest paid extra for a day in august 2002, i feel i have some industry street cred to speak of.

For only the second time in my life, can i understand the concept of a pecking order, a feudal system, and dictatorial communist North Korean governments. 

You see, on most shoots as a movie extra, you are nothing more than an eating prop, a necessary nuisance - must be seen and not heard. You are basically a living meat prop. You have absolutely no rights. Your basic human rights and dignity is simply left at the set door. You accept and understand this reality upfront. 

The very immediate pecking order consists of a 21 yr old wrangler who has walked past a super expensive branded clothing vending cannon. Each item of hugely expensive clothing flung or rather shot onto their bodies at great speed. Creating a very desired effect of an expensive bush dragged backwards. when this no clear skin without a tattoo person tells you to jump, you simply jump. It doesn't matter that you're old, married, and have 2 kids. 

Doesnt help that your dressed in wardrobe that makes you look like a Donald Trumps straggly toupee hairpiece. 

I found the very big shoots the worst sets to be on. over 2000 movie extras bussed on set from far and wide. All excitedly meeting at 2am in the morning to be whisked away on one of 36 busses to a secret squirrel location. The battery chicken hocks we passed on our long trip to the set looked very interesting, almost inviting. We would spend up to 14 hours on set - cooking in the sun, asking the same holy grail question - "when we going to wrap?” does anyone know when we are wrapping?

An interesting anonomoly was when one of your extra buddies, a comrade in the trenches, gets promoted to being a featured extra. They can cross over to the dark side instantly. Some people can go from humble, normal movie extra to snooty fruity high and mighty featured extra at the drop of the following sentence. “hay!  you there , come stand next to Heinz Wrinkly ----- NOW !!!" 

And whilst they are languishing in palm frond bottled water heaven, you are left feeling like Cinderella waiting for your glass slipper to be found. Unfortunately, I was never a featured movie extra, although my big toe , pinky finger and left ear are splashed across TV screens from time to time. My kids bask in my featured appendage glory, and my pinky finger signs autographs at pick n pay. The little git actually feels like a celeb. 

Being a movie extra with absolutely no rights was a very humbling experience – which I hope never to ever repeat as long as I live.

The bigger movie sets with over 2000 extras left one debating whether using the green rank building site loo's was worse than actually waiting till your colon burst to rather go at home. (possibly in 2 weeks) 

Cattle and communist Russia surprisingly spring to mind at these very emotional debate moments. 

Meeting new people is always exciting in life, and the sets are a melting pot of every sort of person, creed, and appendage. 

I did enjoy sitting for hours chatting to whoever had the misfortune of sitting next to me. I met some fascinating, strange , interesting, genuine, lovely people. And, of course, the notorious liar guy. his modis operandi was to fabricate tragedies of Shakespearean proportions. spinning an intricate web of marriage, soap opera betrayal , divorce , crashing cars , spy thriller intrigue, some more marriage and loads more betrayal, all chucked gratuitously in the mix. I loved it, it was Barbara Cartland and it was the juice. 

It's strange that I didn't click at the time, but I went to school with the notorius liar guy, NLG, for short. The various villainous characters in his stories remarkably resembled a certain English / drama teacher. the beautiful maiden was the sweetest girl in the school who possibly rejected him in the tucshop line. 

Anyway, the NLGs game was up when on one set several of us over invested victims of his stories compared notes. we were actually arguing about the contradictory tragedies. We vehemently bickered about who's tragedy was more correct .(As you know, whatever version of anything you hear first is absolutely true) At one point, we all looked at the NLG to verify which Jackie Collins novel was the correct one that we where gossiping about. 

One fellow detective extra after hearing NLG going on about the absolute beauty of his betrayed betrothed. Asked him an obvious question, which none of us thought to ask. The previous wife was described  by NLG just short of a victoria secret model status. Bearing in mind, NLG was not at all Brad Clooney or even Loony Brad looking. Also, he had absolutely no money, he afterall was an extra like us all, so it wasn't riches or looks it seemed that combined the hapless NLG and Victoria. 

The question was, why did she marry you? At which we all looked away and pretended to watch the director shouting at some other hapless extra. We never did get the answer. 

it was very tragic for everyone there to suddenly realize that the NLG was just a normal bloke from the burbs, who had never ever even been married, eish, did we feel like suckers on top of being the lowest ranked element on set. 

Needless to say, I never saw the NLG  again. At least now he has a real tragedy to add to his list.( The poor bastard betrayed us all - i felt very defrauded of my invested emotions). Anyway, on the most part, every other extra I met on set was a worthy acting comrade. 

On every set, there should be an extras craft table with biscuits,  food and coffee. on an awesome set, this table is not policed and filled to the brim with treats ,sweets , food, and cooldrink. (extra heaven) on a miserly set, this table is heavily guarded by Attila the Huns personality clone , or cost effectively , does not even exist. a very obvious sign that Poll Pots on the set running the show. One absolutely must hide at all costs.

On one set, we were driven out to Atlantis dunes, squeezed into a black 3mm full piece wetsuit and unceremoniously escorted to the middle of the white sand desert , All 40 extras at 40 degrees. What awaited us was something out of a Ryder Haggard novel. A director sitting in an air-conditioned glass cubicle barking instructions with a mega phone to the wranglers for us to all prance, march, dance, and star jump in the 40 degree hot sun. After 6 hours of this little spectacle and feeling like Henri Charriere afloat on the Caribbean Sea. I was about to start the first ever South African extra revolt. 

The storming of the glass cubicle was being plotted and planned, i was caluding with a Julius lookalike, who could easily start an argument in an empty room. i was to run the storming flank. But because this involved toi toing in the extreme heat, I didn’t. 

I do know South African’s are remarkably tolerant and obedient people. When all of a sardine we were accused of collectively master minding a wetsuit hood heist. Where we would put these hoods, in a skintight 3mm wetsuit I don’t know. The theft would have been a hobbit miracle under the watchful glass eye of Sarumaan the white in the cubicle, on the hill. Anyway, we were herded back to the busses where for 2 hours we had to individually go fetch our personal belongings off the bus and parade it in front of the newly formed wrangler, director and gaffer crew inquisition. Which consisted of the full bush backward brigade and the full blue tatted assistant director. I did hear a few snickers from the dead pan inquisition when my sons Batman undies had some how landed amongst my early morning stuff as I stampeded out the house at 2 in the morning. It was eventually found that the hoods never left the Cape Town studio and just before the triggers where pulled and the nooses tightened, we where prodded back on set with no apology given, non-expected , for more of the same.  

incidentally, I can do a mean dry wetsuit star jump in 40 degree desert heat,  thick sand, and lots of rolled eye director shouting. 

Those were the days i think so fondly of. The funny thing is I don't ever use that international product I sweated for.  When I see it lurking behind me on a super market shelf I literally break out in a cold sweat and I automatically check all my pockets in case a wetsuit hood has found its way there. 

I suppose on most sets I enjoyed my experiences even the few power hungry set officials ranging from directors to wardrobe gestapo, to featured models and artists didn't overwhelm the genuine folk I worked with and for in this interesting field.  My toes still curl when I walk past a craft table or set toilet watching some old, some new faces being herded from one small space to the next. I can’t help musing that South African extras are remarkably tolerant and obedient prey for the capitalist giants advertising machine. Cattle prod branding and communist Russia surprisingly spring to mind at this very emotional moment. The perfect fusion of communism in its raw dirty little capitalist form.

My crowning acting glory came when i was a dead body in a movie. Infact i was Brian Browns dead body, (cocktail)  Peter Weller was also staring (robocop), and the guy who acted as the betraying king in braveheart Heavyweight hollywood.

My oscar worthy performance debut.  Brian Browns dead body double. He had got shot dead in the movie, and they required my highly tuned acting skills as his dead body. I was actually given the clothes brian wore and headed to set for my major role as his shot up dead body.  There is one small snag, brian is 6.6, and he has a shoe size of 13. 

If you look at me with the lights off and at a 30-degree angle to the westerly setting sun. I look like him for 3 tenths of a second just before the gamma rays fry the batteries. 

So the director says to me , "Who the hell are you?" I tell him im the dead body of brian browns character. He looked at me, disgusted, and realised the budget on his movie had just been cut.

He shoved me in an oil barrel with my legs sticking out. Where i acted my guts out for 4 solid hrs. I was the only actively farting dead body ever to make it on screen in an action movie with a braveheart celebrity. You can take my face off screen, but you can't take away my FREEDOM!

The director decided he was going to get his full fare of my superior acting.  He made me a stuntman on set. I did 2 stunts on this movie, diving out the way of a speeding ambulance just before it crashed through a huge glass structure.  

And i also drove a car into another, not as good as me, stuntman. After my 3rd take, the director said if i didn't get it right now, i would never work on another set in Cape Town again. I drove that dude plat. Still walks with a limp. 

I will send a still of the movie, just before brian was shot dead. He was also exploded abit. The now famous oil barrel i was acting in is to the side of the shot.

The chap with the green dot is brian. He is 6.6. So you can just imagine how i had to act to fill those Size 13 shoes.

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Arise the formula driven artist.

Perhaps thanks, in part, to all this reality talent TV driven shows, it seems we now have the rise of the formula driven artistic creative.

Had a very brief discussion with my second hand bookshop chap last week. (you know the chats, the discussions  between the many important things you've got to do, always to brief as you have to fly off to some structured meeting you never remember again ever anyway) .  he raised some very pertinent issues. coupled with my own acquired,  limited yes , understanding of life. A potjie kos of diatribe, him adding the potatoes, mmetrying to throw in some miff ol spice. 

I feel the above needs to simply be aired and artistic creatives should also explore the concept of breaking out of this tick box, paint by numbers, formula driven creative design approach to everything currently being attempted in the arts. its really killing the very essence of  artistic creative spontaneous combustion and the artistic designs never before seen creative ethos. 

A scientific mind is not always an artistic mind, when science dominates the arts you have science and not art. the 2 are linked on levels but to my mind the 2 are not really the same. "thank goodness for that." the greatest thing about a real artist is they can never technically create the same thing twice. that's art - science will perhaps try seek to keep cloning itself - art does not - and should never rreally. being technically correct is the objective of the engineering mind.

In the past - in the music industry for example,  it wasn't always the incredible voice that was  the reason why a musician was successful. now its all about the voice.  many 70's and 80,s artists would have been hoofed straight off these viscious little talent singing talent finding shows,  hoofed off by the appointed gestapo type talent finding expert panel, that themselves are not always gifted with a great set of pipes and vocals. however are now seen to be the absolute benchmark of were  "that particular creative industry" should be going. A few minds at the apex of the pyramid, leading the creatives pidepiper style into the morass sea of singular creative understanding. 

In the movie industry for example, it also seems that creativity is being stifled by remakes of old classic after old not so classic.  instead of trying to perhaps focus on new original "take a chance" content, the movie moguls would rather tweek existing scripts of previous movies done many times before.

what ever happened to the concept of,  i love music ive never heard of before or i love films im still as yet to see for the first time ever?? critics can be the killers of individualistic thought - because we read what they say and judge according to "these never made a film, self appointed guru's". why not just go see the movie yourself - have your own opinion rather. most times it wont be the same as the perhaps jaundiced eye movie critics.

it appears to my limited understanding of such things, that we have reached a creative ceiling in many of the creative arts. WHY you might ask limited ol me?  well it could be any number of reasons. it could be possible the blockage is the very creative schools and environments created to nurture such wonderful talent.  "a rose my friend, is always a rose, no matter the soil from whence it grows."  i find any expert in the field of arts is already not current when they have very strong opinions about the subject and refuse to budge on their established ideas.  my esteemed book man - the one who was party to the 10 minute exchange of thought, throwing in the potatoes. mentioned  punk rock was great - not because it was any good - or even nurtured incredible musical talent - in fact most of the artists where just screaming, no completely shouting really on a stage. but it lit a fire under peoples idea of what music was and could be. creative endeavor doesn't always have to be a Monet. it has to be a passionate knee jerk unique response to ones own unique environment - remember only you are traveling the road your on. so only you can truly interpret it in an artistic way. so why does it appear , everyone seems to want to just say the exact same thing. its sadly the herd creative mindset or the critic color in the lines, or you not going to sing in the next round Loss Vagas mentality. why are we pushing creative synchronization, when what is needed is artistic creative individuality.

remember a troll under the bridge will not ever let you past.  even though your vision can see the beautiful green grass on the other side of yhe Bridge. trolls will never  let you past. (why?) simply because they can and will try stop you, the reason is not complicated however for sensitive creatives its reason enough to completely give up. and sadly many do.  that is why it is really up to the creative,  to find a non violent way around those who profess to be the artistic and talent scout gurus of the day, the village, the country, the world - get back to your artistic PASSION before even attempting any creative endeavor. passion is the single most powerful reason for doing anything creative.

the REAL success of your work is simply measured on how much YOU enjoyed it, the creative process is therapeutic. Artistic success is not on sales or who validates you. original creative ideas and thoughts will always be met by extreme violent opposition from the expert gestapo type "experts in the creative field" panel. its how people without all the talent showcase they have talent by controlling those who actually have the creative ability. why put yourself in that nightmare firing line, to become the next formula driven creative puppet. To  kick out an album with absolutely no RAW soul.

A person  born with a talent isn't always more successful than the folk who work hard at improving their accumulated skills through passion. these creative sloggers have  chosen to add skills to the quiver along the way.  its the artists that see beyond the trolls on the bridge, that are the true future of original creativity and original artistic endeavor. sometimes  trolls are hiding in plane sight and simply are passion killers because of their own lack of creative esteem.

so if you are a creative, please stop throwing yourself at cold fowl feet for creative validation. you really dont need artistic degrees and pieces of academic paper to tell you your an artist. (scientists and engineers need these things) real artists really dont - your last work is your degree.  you just need a little bit of self belief to passionately follow what you love doing, = create a portfolio of artistic evidence - this out ways any artistic paper degree gathering dust on a shelf - the best creatives are those that have gone around the current established system, to showcase unique ability - the system will hate you for it - but so what - a few seconds and it just hisses past to hate someone else.

original work is forged from those that remember,  only they are experiencing the life they are living - therefore only they can interpret it and showcase what they are going through. each creative to ones own chosen artistic outlet medium.

this idea might just stop the rise of the formula driven creative and give rise to the Passion Driven Creative Spontaneous Artistic Combustionite. (yup i know - its not a word -  dont care,) 

you want to be an off grid artistic creative, you must be prepared to "off piste" make up stuff, unapologetically!!

Thursday, January 11, 2024

Deep Kalahari back in the day.

Desert environments distill time and allow for undiluted thought processes , its also a place one can test to see how tough one really is. absolutely no city static to interfere with ones thinking.

The Kalahari is a very special place and if you have the opportunity to go, the intensity of the place for me is absolute food for the soul. to my mind its as Africa wild as one can safely go now days.

Many, many years ago before all the rules started accompanying every trip to the hinterlands of Africa. And abit before things like game parks formally existed to contain the wild.  i went on an excursion with a Zambian copper miners son and an ex Rhodesian. i am a Capetonian or what is called a Kaapenaar, so the "bush" isnt an environment i am really comfortable in. put me on the sea and im home - put me in the bush and im suddenly very respectful of every single small noise i hear. what with lions and serious wild animals - the deep bush is not for the feint of heart. and its definitely not a place to venture in with 2 old timers who are scared of absolutely nothing the bush can throw at one. we did have Cliff Richards greatest hits keeping us company - need i say more.

We drove 300km deep into the "bush" the area we transgressed was to my mind over predatised and along the single dirt track we traveled was plenty of lion spore , the occasional cheetah spore and plenty of game tracks. cheetah spore is amazing as the claws do not retract - giving the cheetah sprinters spikes whilst chasing down springbok. so its easy enough to differentiate from other cat spore.

the reality with the lions within a desert environment - you see their tracks but you rarely see them - they are super stealthy and brilliant at keeping hidden.

for this excursion i brought along my little 2 man pap tent which was a miserable excuse for a tent really - made in a far off land for children to put up in the back yard. not for the bush at all, which really requires a proper canvas fabric tent - not the pathetic tent i brought into these can be unforgiving land.

So that night we found our spot to camp near a waterhole and had a lekker braai , a couple of whiskeys and enjoyed the night time sounds and green eye torch show that only Africa can dish up. the hyenas where fairly well behaved - however im not scared of these creatures of the night. its the lion that leaves me completely cold. it was full moon and i got to sleep around 9pm in the tent designed for keeping the mist from your face. anything other than mist and the tent is completely useless. in fact i was a little scared to even break wind in fear the tent would immediately be whisked away into the night.

it was then the car was started and the one African bush maestro headed out with the only vehicle for miles around,  to sleep under the stars far away from the paper thin tent and its 2 occupants. the Zambian wasn't perturbed and started snoring immediately - i was extremely  fortunate to get to sleep fairly easily and was out until 3am. i was suddenly woken by the urge to go to the loo. fortunately the minor of the 2 options. i was also awoken by lions making a sound that i couldn't attempt to even explain. a sound like many deep resonating instruments playing over each other.  it was a low rumbling type roar - it was an extremely deep growl that came out like a oooOOOOOOWAH  sound. deep ominous and completely and utterly frightening.  i lay awake for half an hour listening to the noise of the lions around the tent - im not sure how close they where as water tends to bounce sound over it. but it sounded like they where exactly right next to me. i lay their completely frozen - and it was then i realized something i never thought possible.  why exactly these cunning predatory creatures emit that exact sound. its a sound that the base of which comes up through the ground and hits you exactly in the stomach. and then because the sound is so completely frightening your stomach and its contents becomes a massive issue. now fear and bravery are strange things. your fear leads you to the point you desperately need the loo - whilst your bravery is linked to how urgently you need to go. so at a point in this cacophony of lion sound i charged off from the safety of the paper thin tent and  into the night,  to answer natures call. and no it wasnt the lions i was answering. how i did not get eaten is a mystery only Africa can explain. as the next day we saw lion spore all around the paper tent and a big young male lion  made his way into the veld close by our camp very early the next morning.

Africa in  its raw undiluted form is incredible - however from then on i didnt go further than 1m from the vehicle - the little metal cubicle of safety. now i am braver in the bush now days but i made 1 resolution - i would never ever go into the deep bush again in someone elses vehicle - i would only go into the bush if i was driving and only in my own transport.

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Full circle wildetect style

 Haven't really posted anything on this blog this year - not that i haven't been really super busy - its just Ive been busy saying it in other arenas of my life. introspective reflective is a thing,  i think, the thought of  the mouth whispering in the darkness and wondering if the ear is listening. i have seen many rather eccentric people speaking to themselves on the roads - whether i am present or not doesn't stop them from having intense conversations to the ghosts of their past. they don't need my or any one elses ear - they need to simply get whats in their head,  past their mouth,  to empty out the crowded space within. that's exactly like how i see my blog, for me really,  not for the odd person who might stumble on whats written.

to conceptualize a futuristic creative idea is the unicorn of thought to my mind - ones focus blurred as you look through the ether and the limited telescopic lens. is it so important to imagine a future artistic aesthetic - not like a sage looks into the future but from a,  "what will artistic expression be like  in the future or what will our building aesthetic move towards"  - i used to think this was very important and it surely is on some level,  however i see now being present in the moment,  is far more powerful.

Architecture is sculpture and to my mind the more dramatic the perceived movement in the sculpture,  the more visually appealing the static,  perceived kinetic architecture (wildetect PKA) this concept has long been an experimented wildetect ideal for me. to go full circle on any journey is always an interesting trip, sometimes it can be a very, very sad one.

A friend of mine, who used to capture hunting moments for men with very big guns and very small brains and even smaller unmentionables.  told me a very sad story once. the kind of African tale one hears far, far to often. Africa's highways and byways are full of ancient wisdom, some of this wisdom is sadly not learnt by the participants in the tales told.

many years back on his very last such filming contract,  he filmed a crew of foreign hunters who where trying to  hunt a magnificent bull elephant,  in a remote part of the African wilderness. the type of little men, who feed the complete lie that one takes on the spirit energy of what one kills. youve all seen the photos of them ghoulishly smirking over the lifeless remains of their latest bloody conquest. wanting so desparately for you to now believe they are a lion or a mighty elephant or a rare panther.

This bull elephant , a magnificent creature led them for several days through the deepest African terrain. always out witting, out smarting and out playing the  tiny single minded ambitions of the pursuing gaggle of less than men.  Then rather suddenly , at some point during the long exhausting chase , this magnificent creature, determined as it was,  just started heading to the exact spot that they first encountered him. he had led them full circle for many,many miles and days - this wise, now very tired of being chased, old african creature might have realized in this simple statement ,  that he was making,  that he had chosen to take a stand where he first encountered this determined threat. he realised he had no other option from this virulent cancer on his six. these minuscule minded, frothing merciless trophey hunters, sadly didn't feel a reprieve might have been in order for this intelligent gesture. they used their off shelf, mighty little weapons on a less than human endeavor and blasted the creature to kingdom come. as this incredible creature vacated all its systems due to absolute fear of earths immediate future,  from imbecilic man, who sadly it appears is now, it seems in full control. my friend silently put down his camera and walked away, this was not chivelry, bravery,  this was small minded blood lust. he decided to partake no longer in such a display of false unintelligent merciless bravado.

my point is that full circle is something nature is aware of and needs to be explored more by those amongst us who deeply care. and when one finds full circle moments within oneself - its a good thing at that point to stop and smell the roses. sadly for this magnificent elephant,  his magnificent journey ended in a very remote part of the world, but the shadow he cast and the lesson he gave,  can live on for those sensitive few amongst us - yes, you know who you are.

trying to catch a synaptic thought into the realm of architectural reality through sculptural inference is a challenge. sculptural architectural design taking into account perceived kinetic architectural ideals  - looking to build this architectural creation at some point. a part of the cresting wave moves back to take care of an incredible view of nature. but solitude and privacy within the space is also an important view - a view into oneself,  from which you can awaken, full circle.

so ear,  have you been listening to what my mouth just whispered?

haircut adventure

 Well do i have a story to tell.


So needing an urgent haircut monday, I do my usual pilgimage into the deep morass of morrocan, Albanian, Algerian and eastern block men's hairdressers that are now popping up all over Cape Town. 

These Arabic speaking Edward scissor hands can wield a blade with the expertise of a skywalker jedi ninja. They also have no problem squeezing, wiping, picking, dabbing anything on your person that looks remotely krappable, squeezable or pickable.

At first its a little surprising when the hairdresser suddenly without warning turns into pim pimple popper mode, then triumphantly wipes your extracted person on the back of his hand. With a stamp of the foot, clip of the heals and a sound , i can only describe as an,  "ole." The first time it happened to me,  I felt it was theft but I'm now immune to the scrutiny of these master buttlers in the arts of mens care. 

I can only imagine if they tried that stunt on a woman!!! It's no wonder certain cultures cover themselves from head to toe. These guys who are so passionate about there trade, must find it difficult to sit back when there's a ripe ol plumb at the end of a nose,  rich for the slaughter.

But even this last trip into Zekrappables lair, on main road muizenberg,  left me completely and utterly surprised. 

As I walk in, my assigned hair specialist is lounging on  to me, what  looked like a bazantyme couch. The music Is a soft eastern type vibe.  and the men's hair products are nothing I recognize or have ever seen before.   

I sit on what I can only describe as an old school barbers chair. And expertly dropped over me, a black silk type sheet with a very boho beatnik bohemian bearded decal on the front.

The feeling of Hippy safe creeps over me, in an eastern type setting. 

As I sat, I noticed the music, not unlike a snake Chalmers beat, changed ever so slightly. 

The haircutting dance had now started. I was ready to look good and to salsa.  

Even The entire earth smelling hand, held over my nose, to steady my head, was new. But that was tame for what was to come.

Because there was something on my person that had Been growing for 52 years without threat or fear. This was all about to dramatically change. 

The cutting was spectacular, like a bull fighter with a red flag, this gentlemen trained in the fine arts of hair cutting,  magically danced his dance.  I was impressed, I thought a R10 tip was now on offer. As high as i go on a R60 haircut. 

Then suddenly the music changed, the chair seemingly  transformed into something i can only describe as medieval sorcerory. I was tilted back and I fearfully thought he had just spotted hair on my teeth. 

My hair specialist, who was speaking to another hair specialist,  behind a curtain in a language I could not understand. Then Gently tilted my head back by my nose and wildly exclaimed in an authoritarian tone. "HEIR" , yes you read right, I thought I was about to inherit Sinbads gold treasure.

Well out of the corner of my eye, my specialist had darted off and was now doing a dance with an earbud. A steaming earbud that looked like it was candy floss and spider web encrusted over hot steaming brown lava. 

He ran back to my arched back body and manuevred that piping hot earbud so far up my left nostril, I thought my eye was about to pop out. He then wiggled the hot goo around where only a gentle finger had ever been before and pinched my nose and held it. Glaring at me like a mother hen about to pull rotten teeth from the village hobos mouth. 

I had absolutely no idea what the hell was going on, I was also to scared to protest. I had just seen my hair specialist slice a hair from my head , with a blade so sharp it made an origami elephant. 

We sat staring at each other, me blinking and him tut tutting consolingly as he held my nose with fingers as strong as anaconda steel. 

The music was reaching its crescendo, the zennith of the eastern songs Mozart cannons moment. 

At an exact prescribed point in the music, the specialst ripped out the bud with such force my head jolted forward like a car crash victim. My eyes streaming with tears of pain. He then shows me proudly, the "HEIR". He then shows it behind the curtain to an exclaimed voice, that sounded like Ahab had just seen the white whale and then he indignantly throws it all into the dust bin like salt bae. 

At this point he starts to pick my nose vigorously of all its remnants of wax, hair, brain and snot that had not gone with the bud. The tears are now streaming down my face. All i thought was , the voice, the voice dont sob you big little blimmen baby.

I was now starting to realise what every human knows as a simple real fact. 

Good mother of pearl , i have another bloody nostril to get molested.  😳

Well he had already run off for another steaming hot bud and a load me up full with the vile smelling steaming hot wax concoction. 

Fortunately the second time I was braced for the entire brutal manly man experience. 

In all fairness he did kindly show me my 52 years worth of nostril hair. He also dutifully showed the behind the curtain man and then he threw the harvest of hair indignantly into the bin Both times a peach. The second time, i shouted "ole" myself. Well not shouted, whimpered it somewhere in my head.  I was so mad with the bezerker fire of you can violate my nostril, but you can never take away my freedom, im not sure of the timeline. Did william wallace even have nose hair?

He then started waxing up my left ear with the steaming hot goop and by now I was as tame as a lamb. 

At this point if he told me to strip, I might just of listened. The yank off of the dried earwax reminded me of all the million plasters I so very carefully pulled off myself. Only this was how to do it , eastern Ferrari style. 

With the pain still swimming in my head, the humiliation of another man's brutal fingers right up my nose, I smilingly got up and went to the counter to pay.

He tells me R200 , which I immediately give him. I felt the R10 would be now excessive, considering the joy he derived from our time together.  I bid goodbye to him and the curtain voice man and I very scared shoulder toughly as you like,  strode out the shop into the glaring light. 

The guy who just walked in audibly said, don't worry about waxing today, Thank you. I immediately took solice in knowing he had the same treatment once before, so he knew how to side step the newby boy violation hot wax. 

I did manage to quip over my shoulder some incoherent mumble, then laughed manically and then ran like the blue blistering blazers. 

Facialy as naked as I've ever been. Chris Rea, singing, new born eyes only cry with pain , at the first look at the morning sun. Obviously Never had a hot wax earbud shoved up his nose unsolicted. That song would have been a whole lot differently penned during the creative writing if he had. 

Well I've joined hairless anonymous, I'm coping day by day now. The crying in the shower has stopped and I have gone to the loo without my emotional support teddybear for the first time since monday. 

Well the good news is I've got 52 years until my next dance with what i assume to be the hairless morrocco shocko. 

I've now firmly decided to samson out the next 52 years. I know, I will be talked about in eastern hairdressers across the globe. But I reckon the smell of earth filled finger nostrils has an entirely different synaptic link to me now. 😳

I still wonder if being hairless in the nose, is as cool as it grows?

Sunday, November 14, 2021


They say watching the ocean for 7 minutes will realign your mind – I’m not sure if that’s true, but my reasons this day for staring at the dark grey deep, was not really about re-aligning my mind. It was an extremely heavy water winter cape storm day – the stretch of coast I had frantically decided upon was wild and very rugged – the kind of remote coast that one could very easily be disappeared.

I was watching a particular area of reef that appeared to be a malevolent cauldron of raw open ocean swell, violently setting upon the shore, as if destroying every molecule of rock was its life’s only mission.

I was watching the ocean surge and gargle deeply as every new swell sucked the reef completely dry and then set upon the exposed rock with such ferocity once again the very ground, I was standing on would shudder.

I suddenly noticed a crab within this cauldron of complete mayhem – it was making its way into the very heart of the oceanic nuclear explosion. The exact point of detonation that would render all living things utterly vaporized. With every swell washing over the bare rock, I would wait until the wild water would pull back and I would frantically search for the brave little creature in the midst of this extreme danger. I almost felt guilty that i was witnessing this don coyote moment, where the windmill was really a force 7 mutant hurricane.

The little crab seemed to survive several phenomenally intense barrages of the open ocean sea. However, the last time I ever saw the little creature alive, was a second of time frozen within my cranium. The creature seemed to stop and through the extreme mayhem happening round it, looked back at me with a conscious moment of complete clarity. I was very much on the safety of dry land; the little crab was frozen in its reality intensity of the extreme moment. For that brief split second, we were both very much alive. A much larger than usual wave surge impacted that exposed reef and I immediately knew the little crab had been completely obliterated.

I imagined tiny pincers, a carapace, stalk eyes, nails and flesh completely eviscerated by an extremely angry grey ocean.

Many years after that exact moment, I was again reminded of that little out of its depth crab – the mind is an interesting maze of accumulated information. We pull from its mystery value only when we really need to rely on and understand its full circle of life meaning.

I had had an incredible meal – the steak I had ordered had come from the exact steak house I used to frequent many years previously. I acutely remember the after taste of the pepper sauce I so loved. If I closed my eyes, I could remember the minute detail of the roaring fireplace, The bar counter, even the route to the toilet through a maze of passages through the door next to the kitchen.

I found myself once again staring into what appeared to be, in this case a calm cruel ocean surface.  As I stared into its mirrored surface, I noticed what can only be described as very angry condemnatory eyes, angrily staring back at me.

The pristine mirror surface showed a metal cranium cap, and I could not move an inch. However, it was the nature of the eyes through the veil that caught my full attention and for a brief second in time, I identified with the little completely vulnerable crab, who found itself in the now fully understood nuclear zone.  As I was looking back at myself, looking at the crab, in that split 7 seconds before the complete mayhem would overtake all my senses.

Monday, July 5, 2021

the greatest heist in any planets history

This story is not about a place any where near to you, or even from a planet your vaguely familiar with, its a story about a mythical land of many islands. On perhaps a soon to be discovered world planet far, far away. 

Who will discover this planet of water filled with many islands, you might wonder?  well, to be honest, you will, of course. 

The scales might just fall off your fused eyes and you will suddenly for the very first time see this completely mythical secret land of islands in front of your vision. Perhaps through a telescope set up in your back yard. So your discovery would not be magically apparent like the kings new clothes, it will be more like the exact to the second moment 99% of Mr. Bernie's many wealthy clients, suddenly discovered the truth behind his incredible promise of immediate wealth story. 

This very far fetched mythical story I am about to tell goes like this. There once was an extremely vain ruler,  of a vastly wealthy,  mineral rich island, on this mythical planet far, far away. He didn't really get to power with any major skills or wit , he couldn't really even count, not even just a little bit.  However what counted in this rulers favor was he did posses large amounts of cunning,  so much cunning in fact,  he boasted to himself, that nobody could ever fool him. Because he was far to cunningly clever by half. He felt by half because a whole would be far to conceited. He did after all have important standards that he lived by.

Anyway the ruler looked across the vast waters surrounding his island and noticed the vast wealth of the other islands around him. These other islands had immense wealth. Not mineral wealth in the ground like his own island because their islands did not sit amongst the vastly rich mineral geological veins, like the cunning rulers land. These other islands had every single other thing paper money and zeros on a screen could buy - immeasurable wealth,  vast riches that only a fantastically vain ruler could use to elevate his immense vanity, beyond any planets simple measure. What they really touted above all the wealth,  was a ticker tape parade, where an approved cunning ruler would ride down the middle of each adjoining islands main capitol street. While everyone clapped and fawned and praised him and threw little bits of paper from very high buildings down on the passing entourage. 

For such an extremely vain cunning ruler , this was incredibly the most desirable thing to ever be imagined. 

His desire for these riches he beheld on the islands adjoining,  became a very deep obsession. To obtain this ticker tape fame and wealth from these other rich islands, the ruler would even sell off the birth rights of his future grandchildren for a bowl of fame like soup. All he had, to his knowledge was roughed out minerals, deep in the ground, gold , diamonds and rubies and valuable items, lying on the surface of the ground and his island had rich arable soil for farming. Oh and it was situated in an incredible rain fall area. His single island could feed the entire chain of other islands many times over, if it was farmed correctly.  What the ruler also had, was vast man power, enough man power to completely dominate the unknown planet of islands far, far away. 

So the ruler decided to see how he could extract some of this incredible wealth from the united islands around him. So he approached the very secret, Planets Wealth Control Board. (PWCB) a very secretive board of wealthy bankers, who where the sons of the sons of the men who first secretly met many hundreds of years previously. To create a wealth platform linked to art, money, a fort of gold and to bits of coin and zeros on a computer screen. They carefully listened to the cunning rulers plea - they looked at what the cunning ruler was willing to put on the table - and they secretly deliberated. 

They sat in their secretly held meetings and held a few public conferences, they then thought it best to hold another important trade meeting, in a meeting hall on an island on the other side of the cunning rulers land. They even stopped over at the dead of night, to taste the soil with pinched lips and noses to the sky. The cunning ruler was getting very anxious and his fat fingers and bulging eyes along with 4 rolls of fat at the back of his neck, quivered in complete expectation of the vast wealth and the all important ticker tape parade, he now could very much see himself participating in. 

In his vision, he was dressed in a colorful suit on the back of a limo, driving down a famous neighboring island street, while everyone waved and nodded their heads and clapped, while small bits of shiny paper fell all around him. He was smiling and waving and he was so very, very happy. The absolute complete respect all the faces showed him was palpable in his vision of the future. 

Eventually the PWCB got back to him - they said the taste of his soil and what he offered was not worth giving him the vast wealth they had and the very important ticker tape parade was immediately cancelled - his request was DENIED!!!

This infuriated the ruler that his eyes bulged and he immediately ate 21 plates of fatty red soup, so that he developed a 5th fat role on the back of his neck. This 5th roll popped out above the other 4 rolls , on the part of the head where there is not much skin. He was very proud of this 5th role of head fat and he learnt to look at himself in the mirror, so he could see roll number 5. He very proudly watched how the 5th fat roll glistened in the light of the far off planets sun.

He went back to the very secret PWCB and said,  my island has vast  manpower, that I can give you. The PWCB said they will consider the new terms,  but the manpower must be pushed from behind,  not pulled from the front. So the ruler set about creating ungovernable areas of his island, where he didn't like the people anyway, areas which where once peaceful but suddenly over night became war torn and lawless. This started the displacement pushing of the manpower across the vast waters and the PWCB where now most happy.

Yes, because vastly wealthy islands could not be concerned about the business of mundane manual work. Vastly wealthy islands sought to rather busy themselves with the very important things in life. Important things like watching TV and making sure it was all based on real life. Everyone watched reality TV because it was more real than the lives they led.

So the PWCB had additional secret meetings and a few seminars and one or 2 important emerging island embargoes. This time they invited the cunning ruler (CR) to sit outside the meeting hall, so they could deliberate some more. He was very chuffed and made sure he sat in the sun directly opposite the mirror and closest to the door so his magnificence would not be missed or lost when they exited.

But nobody entered or left , accept a very small man came out of a small secret side door of the meeting hall and beckoned the ruler around the corner. He whispered in hushed tones that they had agreed in secret that he could have his vast wealth of money. The little unassuming man asked the ruler if he had a computer linked to a bank account. The ruler did indeed have such a thing. The little man said the ruler must give him the number to his personal bank account. Which of course the cunning ruler immediately did. The little man further said the PWCB had no need for the money to be paid back in the same given cash transfer method and in paper money. However the PWCB would only accept return payment in the very dirty minerals that lay deep under the soil of the rulers island. The cunning ruler immediately agreed,  all the while rubbing his fat fingered hands together and looking at himself in the reflection of the window. He noticed a rising bulging 6th fat roll on his neck in the reflection. Oh how proud he was of his amazing cunning ability and the beauty of his swelling large face. 

Oh yes, how cunning he was - to have got all this paper wealth and zeros on a computer screen for just dirt - he signed all the documents and then asked when he could have his ticker tape parade? The little mans nose twitched and crinkled as he transferred the vast wealth into the computer account of the cunning ruler. The zeros where so many the first computer couldn't handle all the zeros and they had to get a million other computers to showcase all the remaining zeros.

The very cunning ruler went home with his vast wealth on his many new computers , now guarded heavily by his newly acquired PWCB police force. They started the digging process immediately on the cunning rulers island and made sure those who remained on the island , who hadn't yet swum over the sea, worked very hard for free by digging up all the minerals they could. The PWCB secretly over saw the entire operation and as the holes got deeper, nobody planted crops in the very rich soil, nobody farmed the rich island lands. Everybody just now dug holes and handed over minerals. If anyone complained, they where put under the soil that they had just been digging up. More and more people risked swimming over to all the other islands around. Risked sharks, risked trafficker's, risked death  to get away from the carefully crafted greed machine plundering the very depths of the cunning rulers island earth. 

The other islands said shame what a pitiful bunch are those from that island, the PWCB denied knowing who was responsible for digging up all the soil. Everyone just said shame, what a very sad potential island.  The cunning ruler got so fat his thirteenth fat roll burst on his head and he died of septicemia. The digging of the soil was given over to generation after generation, nobody even knew where the computers where. The computers with all the zeros on them. However what was visible was the holes that got much deeper , the man power fled in vast numbers and the islands around got upset because they where now becoming very crowded. 

Everyone on all the other islands just wanted the wealth of the paper money and all the zeros on the computer screen. Everyone it seemed wanted the ticker tape parade and the fame to be on real TV for 5 minutes. Biting, scratching and slurping fifteen minutes of fame, while walking around with beautiful bodies surgically enhanced to showcase the light of a thousand cameras. Hollywood smiles that didn't ever change, even when the fame hungry participants started to really cry. 

So the newly secretly elected PWCB built an invisible island far away from the rest of the other islands and then secretly released a viscous virus on the rest. One that would render a new world order and start a ground zero Adam and Eve scenario. With just selected genetics going forward because vast wealth paves the way for vast scientific advances. Carefully cherry picking the best brains, with the best physical attributes. 

Very fortunately for you , this is just a complete mythical story on a planet very far, far away 

Very fortunately the telescope your currently looking through,  from the vantage point of your back garden and the scales fused on your eyes,  tell you this story is completely impossible.

If your very small telescope could currently register that this story could possibly be much closer to home than one thinks. We all would be in a great deal of trouble, would you not think? 

Well not if your one of the few PWCB members secretly meeting in a trades embargo on a secretly developed island , with a very secret side door and a tiny little man to negotiate between the very greedy and the extremely cunning.