Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Thursday, 29 June 2006

Count down to our Holiday!

We are going on holiday for 10 days from tomorrow. I can't wait!

While Quinn has flown several times with me, the last being when I was pregnant with Griffin, and also went on a brief trip to Durban with Richard last year. Griff has not yet had a chance to fly (besides that time while he was inside me), and with all my traveling in the past 2 years (30 plus flights YIKES) I thought it was high time we took them somewhere for a proper family holiday.


We are flying with
Kulula.com - cheap and cheerful! With no free food or drink. Still I got return flight for the 4 of us for R2900 which is not bad. (Note to self: remember to get snacks and drinks for the flight!)

So we are going to
Durban to visit our aging in-laws and other friends and family in and around Durban. Then will drive to Newcastle (the one in South Africa not in the UK!) via The Midlands and Drakensberg ,to visit with my sister's family. I especially can't wait to see her little munchkin Alastair, who just turned 1 year old. I was with her this time last year when he was born. What a wonderful experience that was. :)

We are planning to do the usual Durban touristy things like go to:

-
uShaka Marine World
-
The Bird Park
- Mini Town

- The Beach etc.
Quinn went to Mini Town last year

I am also on a mission to finally try a Bunny Chow. I have never tried this particular eating experience, and I reckon there's no better way to do it, than directly from their place of origin.

On the way to Newcastle we will travel the Midlands Meander and while in Newcastle I hope we can visit the Lion farm near Memel. We went there last year, the day before Alastair was born. While the park is breeding Lions in captivity and no doubt the fate of many of them is bound to be commercial hunting trophies, it is still wonderful to get a chance to experience and interact with one of the most impressive creatures on earth. The just-weaned cubs 3-6 months old are kept in an accessible enclosure. You are allowed to go inside and can even handle the cubs, although this is done at your peril as even at this young age they are surprisingly strong and boisterous, especially if they get playful! I am sure the boys will enjoy seeign them.

It will be great to be away from the computer and the stresses and strains of everyday life* and routine. YAY. The kid's bags are packed and I have started getting my stuff together. The countdown begins.

* Of course the tenant in my rental property has decided to move out tomorrow, and I don't have a new tenant yet, but I guess that will have to be next month's problem now.

Wednesday, 28 June 2006

Wet Dreams?

Ok, this is totally not about what you are probably thinking!

This past week-end a friend (who is a volunteer at the Aquarium in Cape Town) invited us to join her at a special sleep-over event. Apparently once a year the voluteers are allowed to invite friends and family to join them for a sleep-over, and this year we were the lucky friends.

On saturday evening the boys and I packed up a picnic dinner, drinks, sleeping bags, and other paraphernalia and off we went to the Two Oceans Aquarium. It would normally have cost about R130 for the 3 of us to go in.

We met up with our friend, her 3 daughters and another child at about 6pm and started getting settled in. We laid our sleeping bags out in front of the kelp forest display. The shark tank would have been most exciting but since the 100 or so other people are there, we decided to chose a quieter spot.
Posing in front of the Clown Fish (Nemo) Tank
After a quick look around, we snacked on dinner and the kids roamed around. At 7:30pm we were told about the various rules and regulations and told that movies would be showing all night. The kids were thrilled to hear this *groan*.
5 of the 6 kids on the Ship (Quinn missing)
At 8pm we settled into the Eco-theatre with sleeping bags, chocolate and Amarula to watch 'Robots'. Several of the kids fell asleep during this, and afterwards we attempted to cary them back to our sleeping area. They of course woke up and claimed not to be tired at all, and so we all went down to the downstairs theatreto watch 'Ice Age'. This finished after 11pm, with me almost asleep, but every one of the children looking like nag apies (bush babies) they were so wide-eyed and awake. I got them all into their sleeping bags, and then they asked if they couldn't watch another movie. I decided they could go back to the upstairs eco-theatre which was close to our sleeping spot. I thought they would go to sleep there, and that would be fine. Hoever 10 minutes later they all came back and wanted to explore. by this point I was tired and didn't care, so went to sleep, while the kids went on adventures around the aquarium on their own. I can only hope they behaved themselves! According to my firend they came back and went to sleep at about 12:30am! - Note that these are 4 and 6 years olds!
I woke several times during the night from the glow of the tanks, and the noise of another gang who had decided to party through the night and not sleep, and of course sleepng on the floor is never the most comfortable thing.

We were woken at 6:30am the next morning, as the Aquarium opens at 8:30 and we had to be out before 8am to allow for cleaning etc. The kids were of course dead to the world and even though we left them as long as possible, we had to wake them from the dead, and they were not in the best moods. HA, now they know what it's like ;)
Kids dead to the world at 7:30 on Sunday morning.
My 2 ended up having 2 naps during the day on Sunday while we were driving.

All in all it was a fun, interesting and different experience, which we will remember for a long time.

Thursday, 22 June 2006

WWJD

So I have a slight moral dilemma on my hands... What to do?

As everyone knows I kind of like Amarula a little bit :P

When I was in town for a meeting on a Friday afternoon a month or so ago, I walked past a bottle store on the way back to my car. I decided to pop in and get a bottle on the way past, since I was in a good mood and it was a Friday and all.

I had just purchased a can of coke at a corner store, so as I walked into the bottle store I lifted it to show the lady in the bottle store that I had it. She looked rather morbid and unimpressed with life in general, and as I showed her my can, she snapped, ' We sell those here', to which I politely replied, ' I know, that's why I am showing it to you'.

I mean if you are about to buy alcohol= expensive+, who cares if you have a R4 can of coke purchased elsewhere? I mean did she not want me in the shop with someone else's can of coke?? Whatever...

So I browse around and select my bottle of Amarula, priced at R78.00. I proceed to the paypoint where she is sitting idly. She sullenly rang it up and when I handed over my credit card she actually sighed. I was thinking she was pretty rude, but gave her the benefit of the doubt, thinking hey it's late on Friday afternoon, she could be tired, or have had a bad day or whatever. So she rings it up and half heartedly handed me the slip to sign, and I noticed it was very dark, and illegible, but signed and handed it back anyway. My credit card account is linked to an SMS service so I get an SMS whenever money moves in or out of the account, and the familiar SMS tone sounded to signal the sale was processed as she rang off the sale. I greeted her, she ignored me, and we parted ways. I am hardly going to become a regular there so who cares.

Later than night as I was going through my SMS's I noticed an odd one. There was an amount reserved for R0.78. I realised what had happened, checked my dark carbony credit card slip and sure enough the amount listed was R0,78. The silly woman in her disgruntledness had forgotten the 00, and had rung up R0.78 instead of R78.00. I figured when the final payment was processed (as opposed to the reserve amount) it would be rectified. I then more or less forgot about it.

Until now, when my bank statement arrived, showing a final payment of R0.78 to the bottlestore.

What Will Jane Do?

Do I go back, and show them the error and pay the proper price, or write it off as bad karma on her part for being sullen and bitchy with me? I can't decide.

Worse than moving home!

I have spent basically the ENTIRE day trying to transfer from my old laptop to the new one which I will be working with from now on. It's more work and way worse than moving home in my opinion.

What a painful exercise!

I had an IBM Thinkpad T42p - it's a pretty nice machine. I was hoping to buy it over so I could keep using it, and keep an Ubuntu partition and keep contributing to the community in my spare (what's that?) time. However I was told I would have to pay R11 100 for it!!! Which is just far more than it is worth, so I opted to give it back instead. (If had R11k lying around I would be on a plane to Thailand!).

So I now have a used HP Compaq nx9010 from the new company. It is not awful, but the screen res is SO low. Anyone who saw my T42p's screen would know that I love high res and would rather blind than sacrifice a sexy looking display resolution ;)

So I have gone from a slick and sexy 1600 x 1200 to a puny 1024 x 768. Web pages and graphics just don't look as good like this, everything is too big and not subtle or stylish, and you can hardly use multi-pane views at all. *sulk*.

The keyboard layout is completely different - but then I never really got the hang of the IBM layout anyway, so this can't be worse. It does seem very high off the desk though which feels pretty odd. RSI here I come...?

For the record IE and Outlook SUCK! Gah I can't believe I am using this crud again. I am hoping to download Firefox soonest. Tab browsing ROCKS, I may have to hold off on installing Evolution though as I am not sure how compatible it will be in an MS exchange environment, with meeting bookings and calendar synchronization etc.

So far Windows itself hasn't annoyed me too much, but it certainly isn't as nice as Ubuntu, and this comes through in many varied and subtle ways. I am sure it won't be long until I am cursing, as I hate the way Windows takes over and just does stuff without you wanting it to. **


One annoying thing about Evo though is that it allows you to *Import* Contacts, Mails and calendar items, but then doesn't let you export again. Well not that I can find anyway. Gee thanks, that's helpful!

I don't have IRC installed yet, will do that when I have more time. I did download Open Office 2 though, still to be installed. As without that I wouldn't be able to access half my files.

Today I transferred all my mail (very tediously) over IMAP. For want of a better method that would transfer between Evolution and Outlook. First I copied all my stored folders back into my Evolution Inbox on the IBM, so it all copied back onto the server. I then IMAPed in on the HP and hey-presto (more like several hours later!) all my mail - in readable format - appeared in Outlook. My methods are normally pretty unorthodox, but I generally get the result I want. Oh, the wonders of limited skill but iron will! ;)

Several more hours were spent in a complicated data transfer process between the IBM, wirelessly linked to one of Richard's machines and then LAN connected to the HP. We couldn't get the laptops to share a drive directly so I had to do a 2-part copy. I turns out I have 10524 photos stored. I know this because the ^%**&%^%$*&#!! copy kept stopping half-way through for no apparent reason, so I did countless file-counts to check what was there and where the missing files were...

I think I have pretty much everything off the IBM now, but not everything is working on this machine (the HP) yet, so I am a bit in limbo and feeling a bit unsettled. I am sure this will come right in the next few days.

Having to set up web bookmarks/favorites re-login to all your regular sites and services (blogger, flickr, banking, wikis etc) is a real pain, especially when you cant remember your login details because you are so used to it being automatic... so more time went into that.

Then I was given a ton of stuff to study up on today (Testing theory and methodologies) so several hours where spent going through that too. Hang on just how many hours are there in a day...? Right that's why it's now 12:13am, so I am going to bed. Good night.

I'm posting in brown tones today in commemoration of Ubuntu - I miss you my friend.

** If that paperclip dares to show up on this machine I will become violent... ;)

Update: I just installed Firefox. YAY \o/. It really is SO much better than Internet Explorer. If you have not yet done so, try it NOW. I also installed mIRC, and that pretty much blows compared to XChat.

Tuesday, 20 June 2006

My sweet boy

My sweet sweet boy Quinn - pictured here looking rather odd, as he seems to enjoy performance art related to facial contortions and manipulation...
....see he has been doing it for years! (The picture below is from December 2003)
Anyway I digress... my sweet boy had prepared the following Love Letter for me today. He ran out to greet me with it this afternoon when I came home from work, and told me I can keep it with me when I am away at work to remind me of him. *sniff*


Needless to say I love it and was very touched by the gesture.

So far the new job is going well. I am mainly undergoing training this week, and have a lot of theory and new templates to digest, and will also be handling the day-to-day management of a team of staff, so I need to study up on the company's HR policies too.

I have not had much time on-line as my 'new' laptop (actually a used HP hand-me-down) is not yet set-up and the training has been one-on-one training with a lady who has come down from JHB to help with my induction. Hopefully when I settled in I can spend more time on-line and communicating.

Monday, 19 June 2006

Busy Long Week-end

We had quite a busy and active, but over-all fun long week-end.

On Friday we got up late and went for a loooong drive. We ended up at Cape Point Nature Reserve at around lunch time. We had a yummy picnic lunch: fruit, a selection of sweet and savoury muffins, coffee and juice etc, before meeting up with some friends. We then walked up to the light house (the kids got a free funicular ride, which was part of a current holiday special) where the 2 oceans (the Atlantic and the Indian) can be seen meeting and mixing, it was a bit misty so the view was not as spectacular as it sometimes is, but it's always an impressive sight. Contrary to many people's beliefs this is NOT the Southern most tip of Africa (Cape Aghulas further to the East has that honour) but it is the most South Westerly tip.

After going back down, the kids got a free ice-cream (as part of the special). We then drove around the reserve, which is quite large and ended up at Cape of Good Hope (within the reserve), where we walked to the top of the peak and looked at the Dassies on the way. Both Quinn and Griffin managed the steep walk with ease, despite a strong and chilly wind buffeting us.

We had such a nice time there that I have decided to renew our wild cards so we can go in more often, and not have to pay the fairly hefty once-off entrance fee. The wild card will give us access to Silvermine, Langebaan, and The Cape Point reserves as well as Boulders Beach etc for a year.

We went home and had a quiet evening in front of the TV. Although half-way through the quiet evening I discovered that the couch was moving under my arm! It turned out that Griffin had left his rat on the couch in the morning and she had burrowed in under the covers and spent the rest of the day gnawing through the cushions. As per Queen Victoria 'we are not amused'.

On Saturday we had planned to summit Lion's Head with some friends, but they pulled out at the last minute, so Quinn and I decided to go anyway. It was a perfect South African winter's day, with clear skies and warm sunshine. Quinn managed the walk well, and within an hour we were at the top. Photos are here. We had a nice picnic and snapped photos of each other. Cape Town was looking absolutely stunning!

Quinn right at the top of Lion's Head
It was actually lovely that it was just the 2 of us, and we chatted and bonded nicely. After descending again we were hot and sweaty so I decided to take Quinn to Camps Bay, as it had looked so nice from the top. The water was pretty chilly so I chose to stay on the sand, watching a photo shoot in progress while Quinn had no qualms about leaping into the freezing Atlantic water. Brrrr!

After that we headed home where friends were meeting us for Rugby (SA vs Scotland - we won!) and a braai (BBQ). I took the 4 boys to the park to play rugby and run around, and then we went back to eat and relax. Thus ended another day.

Yesterday was of course Father's Day. Quinn made toast for Richard (Bovril with margarine on TOP *eeuuw*) and we had several cups of coffee in bed. We then met friends at the gym (The ones who were meant to climb Lion's Head). I hadn't seen her for a while and we had lots of news to catch up on so ended up spending enough time on the treadmill to do 8km before realising it - hence making the previously mentioned 800km mark. \o/

We finally packed it in and headed to the Mugg & Bean for 'breakfast', although it was already 13:00. We all had eggs and ham/bacon etc and far too much coffee and hot chocolate. YUM.

A walk was needed after that so we headed for the nearby Alphen Trail, part of the Constantia Greenbelt. It is very lush and green and has a swiftly flowing river alongside it, and many many dogs and horses out for walks. It's really beautiful. I'd like to go running there soon.
Richard, Griffin and Quinn on the Alphen Trail

We got home after 4pm, had tea and swiss rolls and then Richard and I had to get ready to go out to see 'The Best Man's Speech' by Louw Venter. Reviewed here.

Louw is Corne of Corne and Twakkie fame. He looks rather different without the moustache and he has a completely different persona in this show too. I actually thought he looked and acted a lot like Mark Shuttleworth, which may be why I was in stitches ;)

It was actually very funny and I giggled a lot.

"Louw Venter effortlessly takes the idea of the best man’s speech gone wrong and amplifies it by a cringe-worthy four thousand times. The show positions itself somewhere between ambush theatre, stand-up comedy and the good ‘ol South African wedding reception. Complete with cheap tuxedo’s, expensive flower arrangements and the compulsory wedding music CD compilation. So, apart from razor sharp comedy that explores the complexities of marriage, kids, parents, love, life and everything in between"

We were seated RIGHT at the very front next to the stage, so I was given the first glass of champagne he handed out at the beginning, and we were picked on as the 'Christian's' of the group. LOL. As the 'wedding' is between a jewish girl 'Sherryl' and a Christian boy 'Sean'.

I think he is brilliant and has extended comedy in the country by a long way. He is very clever, relaxed and is a natural actor and this concept works well. He also sings amazingly well.

Oh and we also caught the Brazil vs Australia world cup soccer match in Obs Cafe before the show, that was quite an exciting game and Fred's goal near the end was amazing. I also love the way Ronaldinho grins all the time and looks like he is really having fun. :)

So that was the long week-end, and now it is the start of a new week and my new job. I'll let you know how that's going when I have a chance....

Sunday, 18 June 2006

800km

I have been tracking my running (sometimes walking) distances as I do them since 25 Septemeber 2005.

I just added today's 9.5 kms and noticed that my total is now sitting at 800km. Not bad!

It's a nice motivation to keep doing it when you see the total clocking over.

Wednesday, 14 June 2006

World cup fever - keeping up the side

Since it is world cup fever and all, and I have now watched 2 matches... both without intending to. I kind of glanced at them and got drawn in... some how a world cup becomes magnetic/hypnotic or whatever...

Anyway the question I posed was: "So what's so special about this off-side rule that makes it impossible to explain or understand?"

Well either Richard is VERY good breaking things down into simple and understandable chunks or I am a genius or both. BUT it's really not that hard to understand. The dynamicness of it makes it tricky to spot, but the rule is pretty basic really!

A player is in an offside position if: he is nearer to his opponents’ goal line than both the ball and the second last opponent.

There are exceptions, and every time someone (or the ball) moves they could be changing whether someone is off side or not, but given a freeze frame I am pretty ceratin I could now spot off-side or not.

Yay me!

Edit: I just found this page which explains it pretty simply and understandably too. You can now too understand this 'OMG this is so hard you'll NEVER get it' rule.

So long and thanks for all the fish...

To all the speacial people of Canonical, Ubuntu, and Edubuntu.

Sadly the time has come and today is my last official day as a Canonical employee. The past 15+ months working with you all has been simply awesome!

Many thanks to each and every one of you for what has been an incredible opportunity and some wonderful memories. I will really miss you all.

Drink Amarula often, and think of me :)

I am hoping I will have time to remain part of the community and stay in touch, and I am always available if you need anything.

I will keep recommending Ubuntu and Edubuntu to everyone, and intend to keep using it myself too.

Here's hoping this is a case of 'until we meet again' and not good-bye.Who knows maybe I'll see you in the restaurant at the end of the universe.

Monday, 12 June 2006

Amarula Memories

I think the folk at Amarula need to start giving me commission. I have been pushing their product all over the globe... from Syndney, to London to Montreal, I take it where ever I go. It works as a handy bargaining tool too.

Hopefully I will be remembered at future Ubuntu gatherings by the copious consumption of Amarula!

You guys know what to do! :)

Lion's Head Super Heros

The weather was lovely yesterday despite a cold-front being predicted so the boys and I decided to take advantage of the unexpected sunny day by taking a walk up Lion's Head.

The boys decided that they would have to wear their Spiderman and Ninja Turtle (although Griffin calls it a 'Minger' Turtle LMAO) suits for such and escapade. And so after a brief shopping trip to stock up on school stationery and multitudinous snacks we set of towards town and Lion' s Head. The boys now call it 'Angelique's Mountain'. As it is where we planted Angelique (our first-born)'s memorial tree. We subsequently buried each of the boy's placentas beneath her tree to nourish it. Her tree is a White Stinkwood and is planted just beyond the paragliding take-off ramp.

"To the right of Table Mountain, Kloof Nek is linked to the aptly named Lion's Head. The spiral walk up Lion's Head passes through silver trees and spring flowers, and provides a 360º view of the Cape Peninsula as you go round the mountain. The walk is not terribly challenging, and is a popular family outing. At the top, you are rewarded with a breathtaking panoramic view, and birds scramble for the crumbs left behind by numerous picnic baskets.

Lion's Head in turn is connected by a lion's body to the rump known as Signal Hill. Signal Hill derives its name from the time when it was used as a semaphore post for communication with ships at sea. It is from here that the noon cannon is still fired every day. After dark, the hill is a popular scene for couples who enjoy the romantic sight of the sparkle of the city lights with the backdrop of a floodlit Table Mountain."

Griffin and I (yes he always has a reason to be grumpy!)

We attempted this walk for the first time with the boys about a year ago, and they did well albeit moaning throughout. We probably went about a third of the way that time before stopping for a quick picnic and then heading back down. Griffin at 4.5 years old is still a little small but I thought he'd manage a fair chunk this time.

We were all excited at the start and Griffin did well getting to the second 'vench' (bench) which overlooks the Table Mountain cable way before needing a rest. After a few sips of water he was ready to go on, and he managed to get beyond the paragliding ramp before I had to get creative with jelly babies for 'energy' ;)

Quinn and I half-way up Lion's Head

That seemed to do the trick, and whether is was psychosomatic or a real sugar rush I don't know, but he gathered enough momentum to march up the rocky steps and get all the way to the front of the mountain and the the last bench before the ladder climb. It is at least half way to the top, if not more. We decided to stop and have our picnic there.

There is a beautiful view of Sea Point, the Waterfront and Harbour, Table Bay and the Robben Island from there. I told the boys about Robben Island, and about how and why Nelson Mandela was imprisoned there, and about how stupid the whole thing was.

It was fun and relaxing. We also ended up being quite a tourist attraction ourselves, and all who passed us going up and down had a giggle about the superheros on the mountain, and several tourists asked if they could take photos of the boys. Which they didn't mind posing for. I wonder what they'll tell their friends back home? :)

Griffin: eating = happy :)

The boys with Lion's Head peak behind them, Sea Point, the ocean and Robben Island is in front.

Quinn striking a Spiderman pose, on the way down.

After our picnic and rest we headed back down, and both were full of energy and pretty much bounced all the way down. Weather permitting a friend and I are going to go again this Friday, which is a public holiday (Youth Day), with the 6 year olds, and see if we can get them right to the top ladder and chain climbs included!

Sunday, 11 June 2006

Rondebosch Lion

After insisting that Rugby is the best thing ever, we signed Quinn up for the 3 school challenge which was scheduled for Saturday morning. He was keen as anything - until he woke up on Saturday, and then decided he didn't think he wanted to do it anymore. I insisted he go as he had commited to it, and had been adamant about going for nearly 2 weeks, and had already been assigned to a team. With a bit of coaxing he finally got dressed, and we were on our way.

We arrived at the Wynberg Junior sports fields and they were abuzz with little boys ready for some rugby action. Each school; Rondebosch, Wynberg and Redham, were broken down into 3 teams. Quinn was assigned to the Rondebosch Lions team and had to wear a red jersey.

After a quick warm up, he started in the first game against Redham. I wasn't expecting much after the basic practice I had watched the day before..., but wow, I was impressed and it was SO exciting! There were 3 Rondebosch boys in particular who were really very talented and played full out. Running, dodging, passing and tackling like they have been doing it for years.

Quinn ran around following all the action, but never really getting right into it. he does seem concerned about committing completely physically - which I can relate to. But still I think it was fun for him and was exciting to be on the winning team. (I would love to be that driven and focused on a goal that you do whatever it takes to get there, but I too think to much and hold back out of fear.)

Redham really didn't stand a chance and even with the ref eventually starting play almost at the Redham try line, Rondebosch would immediately get possesion and run all the way to the other side and score. Even the Redham parents were impressed by the talent.

The second game was against Wynberg and they were bigger and tougher (one boy looked much older than the others too). So it was not as easy. One little Rondebosch boy is incredible. He is really little but runs like lightning and can duck and dive swiftly. But what impressed me most about him was how he dove into the biggest Wynberg boy when that boy had the ball and with all his strength managed to lift the Wynberg boy's feet of the ground. He is probably half the other boy's size!

The boys were also getting tired at this point. There were one or 2 accidental injuries, where just how young these boys are became evident as the boy would burst out crying and the coach would blow the whistle and call 'Mommy!?' and the mom would run to the rescue. *Shame*

Quinn was a bit more involved by the end of this game and pushed in a few scrums, and nearly got a chance to grab the ball, but just missed it.

They all shook hands in the end and got rewarded with ice-creams. There was much whooping and cheering from the Rondebosch Team, and posing for team photos.

All in all it was really fun and exciting. Pity the season is over until next term.

Here are some pictures of the event:
Quinn in full run
Quinn, Thulani and another friend
Quinn was refusing to let me take a photo and kept runing away, I asked Thulani to go tackle him so that I could get a photo. Thulani obliged, but Quinn still managed to avoid being snapped. He'd make a good celeb!

The ref blowing the whistle during the Wynberg game.
The Rondebosch Lions Team victorious.
Another shot of the Rondebosch Under 7 Lions

Friday, 9 June 2006

Rugby Practice

I went along to watch Quinn's rugby practice for the first time this week.Having been really sick all week, on Friday afternoon for the first time I felt well enough to get out and about so I agreed to meet Quinn and Richard at Quinn's rugby practice at the club 2km from our house at 5pm. I had decided to run there.

It turned out I was not yet completely well and the short run was not easy, at all. Hopefully I will get my fitness back quite quickly because being this weak and out of form sucks!

The practice was cute. Some of the kids are SO dedicated and keen, and some are already really talented. One little boy in particular, Thulani, shows a real flare for the game.

Quinn is very funny to watch, he is interested but not entirely dedicated - as he is thinking more about how he looks and not getting hurt than really getting involved. He can be found hovering behind the action and if a pile up (ruck?) occurs near him, he'll walk over and climb on top! LOL! :)

The 'coach' (one of the dads volunteering to help) passed Quinn a hospital ball (Richard had to tell me that that was the correct terminology) so that he would get a turn to do something. Quinn caught the ball with skill, but then just stood there with it, and we all had to yell at him to RUN.
It was fun to watch and Quinn enjoys being there. He even decided to sign up for the Rondebosh, Redham, Wynberg match series for Saturday morning. That should be exciting and fun!

Team America!

I managed to watch the movie Team America : World Police the other night and OMG how BRILLIANT was that!?

I realise that only people who *get* South Park and find it funny, will probably like Team America, but I thought the satire and parody was frikken excellent!

Basically it is a Thunderbirds style puppetry movie, loosely based on the plot of the movie Armageddon and with South Park whit, satire and irreverence. Much of the subject matter is very topical, and is dished out with a large helping of crude vulgarity. (I think it is important to realise that it is not the language or crassness which should cause offense, but the subject matter they are dealing with. I think it is an interesting comment on society when people are outraged by crude language - but are ok with their leaders chosing to blow up half the world without due cause... think about it!)

This is a very brief synopsis of the plot:
"Team America follows an international police force dedicated to maintaining global stability. Learning that power hungry dictator Kim Jong Il (Parker) is out to destroy the world, the team recuits Broadway star Gary Johnston (Parker) to go undercover. With the help of Team America (Stone, Miller, Masasa, Parker, and Norris), Gary manages to slip into an arms dealer's hideout to uncover the plan to destroy the world. Will Team America be able to save the world?"

and this is from a review:
"I'm sure plenty of parochial critics will berate this film for anti-American values during the current "war on terror"....BUT...the great thing about this film is that no one is spared being mocked. This bears the standard of a great film by expressing the ironies innate in every argument in this quasi-political tale; from socialist Michael Moore, fashionably charitable celebrities to the terrorists and the, ahem "world police." This couldn't be more accurately summed up than in one of the funniest ever analogies that is employed in this film; the "Dic*s, P*ssies, and a*s*holes, argument." This film also wonderfully parodies the standard conventions and cliché's of the action film genre to create an entertaining, and gleefully controversial film."

Memorable moments for me were:
- The sex scene - how over the top, cringe worth and hillarious was that?
- The vomiting scene that never ended. Hahaha. My saturday night ended a bit like that so I can relate...
- The 'black panters'. LMAO that was SO clever, I loved it when they savaged and ate the actors.
- The lyrics to the Pearl Harbour song "I need you like Ben Affleck needs acting school..."

Anyway I thought the movie was brilliant and I think Trey Parker is a genius. Did you know that he was in the same school at the same time as the kids that were responsible for the Collumbine Shootings? Clearly all those people are severely f**ked up. Luckilly he found a creative way to channel it.

There is some interesting and funny trivia about the movie here , and quotes are here, and there is a longer review here.

The songs in the soundtrack are also surprisingly funny and catchy... Although I can't get this out of my head today... "America f**k yeah! Coming again to save the mother f**king day yeah!"
headbang headbang headbang headbang headbang headbang
headbang headbang headbang headbang headbang headbang
It's hard core, in your face and offers no appologies to anyone.

Did you love it or hate it?

Wednesday, 7 June 2006

I'm sick... and the destroyers.

I am sick sick sick.

I hate being sick :( I hate being able to do nothing when I want to work, exercise, clean stuff, organise stuff, shop etc etc. I am not good at stopping unplanned and doing nothing - when there is stuff to be done. I hate it! *sulk* It doesn't help that it is suddenly unseasonably hot and dry here - over 20 degrees each day.

I had a cold a week or 2 ago. It was bearable, life went on and I was fine with it. Colds happen. Then Richard was struck by a flu and spent most of last week in bed. He looked ok, but was very phlegmy and siad he felt awful and had a lot of sinus pressure etc. He didn't get out of bed for several days. I was pleased that I had had the mild version...

The on Monday I felt less that great. I wrote it off to a lingering hang-over after my extreme excess on Saturday night (enough said), but by yesterday I was much worse, to the point where I couldn't take the kids to school and spent an extra 2 hours in bed before getting up and working - at half speed. I was sure that was the worse of it.

So I went to bed last night expecting to wake up fresh and early and take the boys to school and even fit in a quick run before starting a full and productive day of work... well that didn't happen! I woke up during the night wimpering from the extremely sore throat I had. This morning I didn't even wake up, managing to sleep through the alarm and school preparations. I only woke up fully and got out of bed at 10:30am.

I have the worst sinus pressure I think I have ever had. It's is NOT nice. I have a really sore throat, headache and lots of disgusting yellow-brown phlegm. Basically I feel like crap. You know when at first you are scared you are going to die? and then after a while you are scared you AREN'T? Kind of like that... :/

I am sitting at my desk now, but can't actually think straight, so I am not sure if I am going to be able to do anything. I may need to go lie down again. But with only a week left at this job, it is not the ideal time to be sick and having to take time off .

On another note my Dad owns a company which does engineering and instrumentation sales, installations and maintenance etc. One of their new lines of work is Hydrogen Electrolisers. He was down in the past week with my brother in law, doing a maintenace overhaul in Saldahna Bay. They job had some mishaps and things took longer than expected etc etc and in the end they had some left over stuff that they needed to stash at my house on the way to the airport. It is meant to be here for safe keeping. Hopefully I will get a proper box and be able to actually pack it away soon, but right now this is what is happening to the stuff...



Destroyers R us!

Tuesday, 6 June 2006

We're expecting the tooth mouse tonight!

Quinn lost his first baby tooth today. :)

We first noticed that it had started getting loose in the first week of May. He has been wiggling in on and off since then, and it was getting progessively looser, but still seemed pretty firmly attached. Yesterday Quinn took a bite of an apple and said it hurt. Follwing that the tooth was much looser.

Last night we all took guesses as to when it would come out. Little did we know it would be the very next day!
Quinn and his tooth.
(The Harry Potter lightning 'scar' on his forehead is from a party on the week-end - it doesn't come off!).

He arrived home from school with a toothless grin this afternoon, and the tooth in an envelope which the teacher had labeled appropriately 'Quinn's tooth', with a smiley face.

He has brushed the tooth, to make sure it is nice and clean, and is now busy writing a letter to the tooth mouse. His tooth mouse pillow (which he has had for about 18 months now) will finally be used tonight!
The envelope the tooth came home in...

The excitement!

Update: Here's the letter and tooth, as left for the tooth mouse... It reads:
Dear Tooth Mouse 6 June 2006
Here is my tooth. It came out today. I hope you can make something nice with it.
from Quinn

What's the going rate for teeth these days?