#210 Bask in the glow of a successful World Cup only to avoid the pull of humdrum routine now that the party is over. And while some are still pondering the significance of those fantastic white elephants that sucked dry the pond at the closing ceremony I have been celebrating the fact that I finally got to wear the colours of a winning team (evidence below), packing up my array of supporters flags and scarves (Bafana Bafana, Ghana, Argentina, Portugal, Netherlands) and catching up on the good press South Africa has been getting while playing Knaan’s waving flag over and over again and sobbing quietly. Just read Boris Johnson’s Telegraph column and couldn’t say it better so here goes. Continue reading
#114. Laugh it Off. Last night we joined close on 4000 people for the Heavyweight Comedy jam at Emperor’s Palace. The mood was good, the audience all warmed up. The jokes kept coming. “We used to drive on the left side of the road, now we drive on what’s left of the road”, said Al Prodgers.
“The Gautrain will have 200 people in each carriage and go 160km an hour. Do you think taxi drivers are worried about that?” And then there were the jokes about South African politics – from Helen Zille and her concubines to David Kau’s riff on Julius Malema’s woodwork grade. Judging by the laughter just saying the name Julius Malema is a punchline in this town. Continue reading
#98. Look for the crazy signs. And they are everywhere. This town is plastered with election posters — On Barry Hertzog in Emmarentia a forked tongue hangs out of the mouth of a smiling Jacob Zuma. In Saxonwold his nose is bright green. I have seen him with an AIDS ribbon covering his mouth, two missing front teeth, a curly mustache and a showerhead or two. The ANC posters seemed like Greek to me until I realised they were actually written in Greek – I saw three on the top of Oxford Rd next to Temple Emmanuel, a reform synagogue. It’s understandable.
All Mediterannean nationalities look the same or at least cook similar dishes.
They should have carried an English subtitle saying: This is not a joke.
Then there was the Pan Africanist poster in the city – next to the Joburg Art Gallery that said: Cancell all student debt [sic]. I saw Bantu Holomisa wrapped around a large dustbin in Braamfontein with a message that read “Now is the time to clean South Africa” and Helen Zille’s shiny, puffed out face smiling down at me.
Cope tossed the poster idea after failing to work out which face to put on it — one leader or another — and instead wrapped up a building next to the Nelson Mandela bridge asking me to vote hope.
If these election bids are anything to go by – Right now my vote is my secret — so secret that it’s even hard for me to work out how I am going to use it.