Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Open letter to the ANC: MEC Malakoane must go before International AIDS Conference in July | Daily Maverick

Open letter to the ANC: MEC Malakoane must go before International AIDS Conference in July | Daily Maverick

Friday, 14 January 2011


Do you remember yesteryear?

I'm talking about the time ...sidlala undize emboneni...or the dark...or anywhere.
Etshatshalazeni down the road, kudlalwa oonopopi, umphekiso, Donkey, ugqabs and unjiqa kunye nobhayshoza i love you baby, urubeka,black toti, u puca ,building ujingi from a piece of rope tied to a tree, u ex webhola yetennis on the street or uduva in the backyard.

Remember when there was a season for everything, before playstations and cartoon network, computers...izilingi kuyodutyulwa iintaka etrainjini, I season yamapetyu, yono popi, nee moto zocingo(izigcawu).

The sound of the fruit & veg vendor in his van. I van ye ice cream siyileqe. Evenkileni syo thenga ama shwam shwam, I chappies, I fish bread , umgubo, I dolly licks. Siqhuba ii Rollerskates, BMX, go-carts (iinqwelo zama burys)..

Wait, can you still remember...Getting up at 3 in the morning on Christmas day ulinde ilanga li jaive. Let alone Xmas eve sibhalele u father Christmas-lento ka SANTA andiyazi ivelaphi?

When around the corner seemed far away and going into town seemed like going somewhere, and your ma made you "dress up"for the trip. Xa ukhutshwa ngabazali niya e Monti, okanye e Eastern Beach. (oh those were thee places)

Ngee big days xakuyiwa elwandle, omama bethu badibane bezitshomi/mbutho kuyiwe e Orient okanye eFulus okanye e Eastern Beach,Remember TV?

Cowboys, untouchables, rover, mind your language and many more. Even soaps-loving no santa Barbara. How about locally-abakwazidenge (bhuqa), velaphi mjongeni, linempoxo ke isiko (ufiks othanda u xola), iingcinga (uthobeka wase Bisho-indawo ecocekileyo) Bophelo kese mpekgo (NKUSHENG), Dynamite deep Kloof Dudes, Mhlongo, ngubanin ongalibala uSokhetye inkawu yelitye, u Pancho no Cisco, Iimpuku zasendle, Spectraman etc.

Being tired from playing... Remember that?-wish I could go back,udlale ugqaphu uthambise ivaseline uthuli luhlale emilenzeni,ilokhwe ngela xesha uyifake epeyntini emacaleni,kowu those were the days,im glad i lived them...

The worst embarrassment was being picked last for a team.

on the hottest days in summer kudlalwe u fire nitshizane ngamanzi.

I'm not finished just yet......

Can you still taste and smell... eating jelly suckers, Surfjoy, Itay-tay... -don't forget ii ice zetshoki kunye noobompy be oros (till u cough your lungs out)

I remember making oobompy in the empty yoghurt cups.

Marshmallow fish and mice. - iiwatchi,oojub jub
Remember when...
There were two types of takkies - North Star and the canvas ones
Captain plant, Zet, Brakenjan, Kideo, Pumpkin Patch , Kideo, Power Rangers, Ikaya labantwana, VR,
Beverly Hills90210 and Melrose place, u SGONONDO omkhulu ku Radio Xhosa.

It wasn't odd to have two or three "best"friends.and you knew everyone in the road, even the next.

Nobody owned a pedigree dog!- That's right

Umntu onenja igama layo either ngu Blackie, Chico , Spotty, Killer, Doggy , Charles, Boggy, Lassie, Fluffy, Brakenjan, Sheeba, Tiger, Teddy, Danger. Xa inebhula inja sisithi inxibe ijean.(lol)

50 cents was decent pocket money. At school uthenge I fish cake, igwinya, ifish bread,idrink o' opop or kool aid,I sherbet, lucky packet.Nisazikhumbula iibhuzays(lol)..

xa uchole nge 20 cents you felt lucky. - and made a cross on the spot, sogqiba uthufe phez kwala cross.LOL

Khumbula xa kugqitha amakrwala ephethe iminqayi kufuneka ukrwele umgca,aza kuma ngxi angagqithi de akhululwe...Ayakukhaba uthi saa awangoku.

Remember how we used to catch amasele emlanjeni(kwano Ice or kwa Greenika) okanye & not worry about the germs we might pick up?

Remember when it was an outing to go to KFC. (woooooooooowwwwwww)uwakhukhuze amathambo abe

(bi skop was only 50c if not free at times)
And trying the moves out when the movie was done!!!

Or when on the rare occasion at home you bought Kentucky or Sgudis Nice (chicken licken)?

Remember how we used to lie on the grass & eat (oomuncwana) neempundu zeembovane ezimnyama ezimuncu lol.
The reason why they tasted so sour was because dogs use to pee on them...(that was what we were told)

Remember you couldn't walk around bare-feeted because ameva ayegcwele and uzonyathela u rhaw rhaw.

Remember when any parent could discipline any kid, or feed him or use him to carry groceries and nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it

Basically, we were in fear for our lives but it wasn't because of muggings, drugs, gangs, etc..

Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat....and some of us are still afraid of them!!!

Didn't that feel good.....just to go back and say, Yeah, I remember that!

Remember when.... Decisions were made by going "ngubano suzileyo, nguno msuzwana, usuze ntoni? When you are guilty you would say kanye, kanye , kanye, kanye, kanye LO"

Having a weapon in school meant being caught with a BIC pen with a wet piece of paper and shoot the other kids or a "kettie".(birds were the only thing we managed to slaughter back then)

Taking drugs meant orange-flavoured chewable vitamin C, Milk of Magnesia or a spoonful of castor oil.

Older siblings were the worst tormentors, but also the fiercest protectors.

After school, kubiwe ama bhatata. Remember snowballs, amagungqu, where were you iinkukhu zishaya I brake dance? Ii funnyface, iiwilsons XXX Strong, amapantsula, I ORO CRUSH egalelelwe iswekile encinci, I bumpy. Emiguyweni(my favourate gathering) kuculwe,damn amagala could bloody sing, ISONKA SOMBHAKO NE GINGER BEER.

If you can remember most or all of these, then....


Wednesday, 22 December 2010

English 101

TOP 10 English words only black people know the proper meaning of
10. Groovy
Real meaning: Very pleasing
Black meaning: 340ml soft drink can
9. Cold drink (pronounced coldrink)
Real meaning: Opposite of hot drink
Black meaning: Any soft drink especially coke
8. Scuff tin
Real meaning: Scuff - Mark resulting from scraping, Tin - can
Black meaning: Lunch box
7. Ball pen (pronounced Bolpen)
Real meaning: Ball point pen
Black meaning: Any pen
6. I'm Sure (pronounced Amsho)
Real meaning: I'm certain
Black meaning: Maybe
5. Gym Dress (Pronounced Jimdress)
Real meaning: Gym - Gymnasium, Dress - Women's clothing
Black meaning: GirlsSchooldress/uniform
4. Double Up (pronounced Dablap)
Real meaning: Twice as much in size
Black meaning: Short cut
3. Straight Back
Real meaning: Extending continuously in a backwards direction without curving
Black meaning: Corn rows
2. Relax
Real meaning: Calm Down
Black meaning: Chemical Hair Straightening
Real meaning: Cause to move back by force or influence
Black meaning: Very Popular hairstyle where hair is combed away from face.
Life Time Award Winners:
Real Meaning - Process of Growing
Black Meaning - The natural hair when your hair hasn't been relaxed in a long time
Real meaning - Lacking sight
Black meaning - Very much (too much)
Background (pronounced Backround)
Real Meaning: Behind the scene
Black Meaning: A long Coat usualy worn by American Police
its great being UDAKI (black)

Thursday, 11 February 2010

Hek toe!!

Watching the news this morning reminded me of how much I have changed. Twenty years ago on this day - 11 February I was a very curious young person.

I was a student at the University of the Western Cape. At the time this was the best place for me to be - and I guess for many young South Africans. The University was one of the places you felt safe. A place where we learnt more than just what we needed to make grades. The environment was conducive for political and social debate.

At Bush, as we called the University, many of us discovered why the South African Police went crazy when the Red Flag flies high. We also discovered the meaning of glasnost perestroika. This is where the concept of 'comradeship' had meaning. Political tolerance is one of the things that were not an issue. There was unity even though people came from different political affiliations. When it came to common interests - people worked together.

Politics may have been the main feature of the university from an outsider, but that was not true. We had the Creative Arts Choir, the (often hilarious) gumboot dancers, poets and a few other cultural acts which entertained us during cultural events. From time to time there were cultural evenings where the University of Cape Town (UCT) and the Peninsula Technikon (Pentech) participated. This is the time when COSAW was also strong.

Soccer was also a feature in the University calendar. I remember the UWC World Cup season. This was huge and the competition was tough. There were so many teams and most were skilled. I stayed in Hector Peterson and we had two teams there and others belonged to other teams on campus. We had Korea and Nicaragua - it was a tough choice. The final was a spectacular event. This is one of the activities that brought this community together.

When I look at where we are today and remember how we were then - I realised how much I have changed. I have not been to a theatre in a while. I am lazy to go and sit in a stadium and watch a soccer game. Choral music has dropped to the bottom of my list. Most of all I am so lazy to read even though my shelves are piling up with all sorts of books.

Watching SABC 2 this morning I remembered a friend rushing to my room in a frenzy. This was on 11 February 1990. 'There is transport to the prison' she screamed. This was confusing because I was not sure what was going on. She kept saying 'they will leave us behind'. When we were young, you would go as you are - just grab a sweater. As I was looking for my keys she told me that Mandela is being released today and we are going to Victor Vester.

One thing about being at Bush. People knew what you are interested in - or rather what you should be interested in. Your reaction was also expected to be positive.

As we were running out of V Block - I discovered that this is not public knowledge (the transport). Other people were not aware - so we were to go before the pandemonium. At one point I regretted having to leave so early as we were standing in the hot February sun. We waited in the open for hours with no direction. People were tired and thirsty.

There was a grape farm on the one side of the road and the prison on the other. There were trailers along the side of the road - probably belonging to the farm. These helped for shade as we sometimes sat down next to or underneath them. Some people could not help themselves and started getting some grapes. At first people were screaming - 'No comrades' - later most people were munching the sweet vines.

Every now and again you would hear shouts when someone comes out of the prison. After what seemed to be eternity - the whole crowd went beserk. Cheers, Amandla!!! Ululating, and some broke into a song. We knew what was happening. We climbed on top of the trailer and we could see from a distance a small crowd walking towards the prison gates. People were shouting, singing, pointing, screaming and all. No binoculars or zoom lenses we were waiting for them to come a bit closer. As we saw Winnie, the figure next to her had to be him. The guy had his arm up - waving - I realised - Mandela is coming out of prison.

The excitement and the turmoil inside is difficult to share. So many people I wished were there. I had no camera and back then mobile phones were not heard of. As I looked around me - I realised that I was not alone. Many people were crying. Others hugging friends and others watching with glossy eyes.

By the time we got to the res, everyone was gone. After they heard that Mandela is out and will be addressing the people - they rushed to the Parade. We could only watch the old man make his first public speech in almost 3 decades from a television. Seeing Cape Town out there in the Parade in thousands - on top of trees, buildings, cars and everywhere and Bishop Tutu holding this man's arm and raise it to the air - and the response - I cried.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Zange ndihleke kangaka!

(Part of Grade 12 Xhosa paper 1 - Except from Ingwe emabalabala)
Ngenye injikalanga yangoMgqibelo kwathi ndisacambalele kamyoli phezu koqaqaqa ondindaniswe kakuhle, ndihlaziywa yintlengethwa yasemva kwemini kwafika umfana kaMpisekhaya sadl’amathol’eendaba. Kwathi ndisaphulaphule ezo ntshwaqane zakhe ndamva sel’esithi .

“Umlo wona ndandingawukhathalelanga nganto mna, meli. Ukuba indoda indicaphukisile ndandiqale ndiyiqhwabe ngempama ebusweni ukuze ijwaqeke ngumsindo. Kwakusithi isabibitheka njalo ndisuke ndiyidudle ngamanqindi. Kaloku mna ndandingeyonja edlala nemibundlwana. Kunjalonje ndandingakhathali nokuba indoda itsheva iindevu zayo ngekhuba likagandaganda kathathu ngemini; ukuba isile ndandiyibetha qha, ndiyiqushe noogxa bayo ngaphezulu.”

Ndaman’ukubobotheka yintsini ndizam’ukuzibamba phofu ndisoyisakala
ndisakumv’esitsho. Ndacinga umfo kaMayime. Ngentsasa yangoMvulo ndadlana indlebenaye malunga nala magwebelele eli yolisa.

“Akathembekanga tu loo Thembekile undixelela ngaye. Ngaloo maxesha ethu esikolweni, eFreemantle, mihla le sasilala kubuhlungu amathumbu kukuhleka ngenxa yoburharha bakhe,” watsho apha kum umfo kaMayime emva kokuba ndimchazele le ngcombolo.

Wayeligwala elinokuzifihla nasezilokhweni zabafazi. Kambe ke, mfundi omhle, namhla uThembekile sewemka apha eMthatha. Watshintshelwa eTsomo ngezomsebenzi. Kanye kwezo ntsuku zokumka kwakhe, ngentsasazana ethile, ndakha ndambuza urheme ukuba kwakutheni na ukuze abe sesi silima sabumini.

Wandiphendula ngomdla omkhulu umfo omkhulu, waza wandihlebela oku. Ngonyaka ka-1972 kwakha kwehla isihelegu mayana phaya kwisithili saseLady Frere. Kwakusweleke indoda ethile phaya kulaa lali yaseMachibini, ibulewe ngumhlaza.

Kwandululwa amadoda amathathu: uVabemphikisa, uChithibhunga noLawulintaba ndawonye nengqutsela yenkwenkwe ekuthiwa nguMhlangabezi. Aba bafo ke babesiya edolophini kuKomani ngeenjongo zokuthenga ibhokisi yomngcwabo. Babekhwele iveni, amadoda la omathathu ekhwele apha ngaphambili yaza inkwenkwe yona yathi ngcu apha ngasemva kwindawo yokubeka impahla.

Okunene besakufika edolophini bayithenga ibhokisi leyo, babuya nayo beyilayishe apha ngasemva. Yayinjani ke ukuna imvula ngelo xesha! Yayidyabhaza. Iindlelana zeenkomo nezeebhokhwe zazingathi yimilambo enamagama ngenxa yezantyalantyala zamanzi esikhukula, esihla engumdolomba.

Kambe ke ngelishwa iveni le yayingenasigqumathelo apha ngasemva; ngako oko ke
uMhlangabezi wayesesichengeni saloo Nogumbe kaNowa. Ukuzikhusela kule meko
unkabi wavula ibhokisi leyo, phofu engaqatshelwa mntu, wangena phakathi kuyo,
akugqiba wavala ngesiciko sayo, walala.

Ezi nqeberhu zikule veni ke kwathi ziselapho kolo hambo luphindela eMachibini zathana nqwakaqha namadoda amathandathu emi ecaleni kwendlela , emanzi okwamantshontsho enkukhu etshone emphandeni. La madoda omathandathu abetha ngobhontsi, esenza umqondiso wokumisa le veni. Esakuwabona umqhubi wamisa. Acela ukukhwela, kwathi kanti amanye asinga kwaseMachibini, amanye aya eLinge.

Esakuvunyelwa akhwela ke edomboza. Yathabathisa kwaseluhambeni iveni esakuba ezinzile ukuhlala ngasemva apha. Kwakungocolothi ke ngoku. Loo madoda athi esakubona ibhokisi leyo acinga ukuba makube loo veni yayilande isidumbu somfi kumzi okhenkcisayo wabangcwabi edolophini.

Bancokola ke abafo abakhulu, incoko yabo ichaphazela ithamsanqa labo lokukhweliswa kuloo veni. Kwathi kusenjalo kanye yee qabu imvula, lazola izulu. Kusakuba nje ke ngoku ayitshintsha incoko yawo la madoda, ancokola ngemo yezulu ngokubanzi.

“Bafondini, incedile yenze isiqabu le mvula.”
“Uchan’ucwethe, Ndlangisa; kunjalo kanye.”
“Ndiyaqala ukunethwa yimvula kangaka, madoda.”
“Nam, ntangam.”

Kwathi ke xa ilapho le ncoko amadoda akhwankqiswa kukubona isiciko sebhokisi
sivuleka , kwalandela ilizwi liphuma ebhokisini phakathi lisithi: “Ngxatsho ke! Eli zulu lide lazola ekugqibeleni?”

Hayi ke ukothuka kwaloo madoda! Kwaba ngudulubhentsu noqulukubhode, abo bafo
beshiyana ngotyefezo ukutsibela phantsi, kwaziincwina nezingqala ukugadleleka kwabo. Ngaye wonke ke lo gama iveni yona iginya amanani amakhulu isus’amaphepha. Izibilini zabo bahambi babekhwele ngasemva zazinyuke ngephanyazo zada zaphants’ukuphuma ngomlomo! Ayebhonga amadoda Nas’isithunzela ebhokisini! Isithunzela!!!

Umqhubi weveni esakuva loo mikhulungo, imikhwazo nezimbonono wakhangela
apha kwisipili esibonisa ngasemva waza wabona umbono omasikizi kunene, amadoda
elakatyula, ejakatyeka, wambi eziphosa nje phantsi engaqiqanga nokuqiqa. Kusakuba
njalo ke wamisa kwangoko umqhubi, waphuma neso sibini samadoda wayekhwele nawo ngaphambili.

Bazichola-chola ezo ndwayinge zingxwelerheke ngohlobo oluxhomis’amehlo. Loo madoda omathandathu abalekiselwa kwisibhedlele ekuthiwa yiFrontier edolophini kuKomani evikiveke imilenze neengalo, wambi ehluntsuke izihlunu zamathanga nezeziquluba, eqhawuke nemisipha ethile. Ngethamsanqa phofu akuzange
kubekho ngxwelerha iphulukana nobomi bayo.

Omnye waloo madoda asinda cebetshu ekufeni kuloo ngozi yaba nguThembekile lo,
ngokutsho kwakhe.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

Today I got wet

When I woke up this morning I felt revitalized. There was no rush because I woke up early and took some time just lying in bed thinking about yesterday. Yesterday the 44th president of the United States was inaugurated. This brought much interest not just to Americans or those interested in politics but to the world in general. Who would have thought that a guy called Hussein will be the president of the USA. For real – their foreign policy, attitudes and fears and tolerance have been tested. Kennedy died because of his beliefs so did King and many others who thought that human rights is something to fight for.

As I got out of bed I realised that I was too lazy to do my stretching routine on the floor – let alone the skipping rope. I put my mat on the floor and tried a few moves while watching Morning Live. Of cause there was nothing new but Obama and the world reactions. Even the weather guy was excited as he signed off ‘Sharp Sharp’ Mmmhhh I thought – this is big. On my way to work I thought of buying a newspaper to read the inaugural address. It was hardly 08h30 but the guy at the robot had no papers – it turned out he was actually sold out.

On Facebook there has been such a buzz about Obama. Today it was amazing to realise so many of my friends were glued to their televisions and some watched the inauguration online. Links to the speech and related info was just there for you to follow. On Skype friends are also talking about how the world is changing and possibilities for those in bondage.

I had a good day today – well – almost. Ideally I should leave the office at 16h30 but I left after 17h00. It was starting to rain when I got out of the undercover parking. As I drove into the main road I realised it was thundering and there was lightening every now and again. The robot was red and there were many cars in front. In no time there was a hail storm – a blinding one and the lights opened and closed. There is no option to pull over in that road and had to drive all the way home. This was the most scary drive I have had in Johannesburg ever.

As I was driving I kept thinking ‘what if someone skids into me and I am toast’. Visibility was bad and yet some people did not have their head lights on. By the time I got home I was in a state – it was pouring and thundering and the hail was still coming down.

Sitting in the car was not going to help so I eventually fished the umbrella I keep under my sit and got out. As I go to collect my bag from the boot I was astonished – there was almost a river running exactly where I am supposed to stand and open. By the time I got my bag out and was inside, my shoes and pants were wet right up to my knees. I had an umbrella but my head was wet so was my shirt. Now I am sitting here thinking - You can’t have it all.

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Visiting Uganda

In July and August I visited Uganda on business. This was the most interesting trip this year. I spent most of the days in a 4x4 vehicle. The distances between the places I was visiting are long and the terrain is rough in many parts.

In my trip I visited the North, west East and Central areas. I spent a day in Gulu in the North. Gulu is a commercial town. It is beautiful and the town is built up compared to other towns in the area. A number of people living there have been displaced during the fighting between the government troops and the Lord’s Resistance Army. We tried to take pictures and almost got our heads taken off. We later discovered that some people feel that their pictures could be used to identify if they participated in any anti government activities. There is a tension here and lack of trust of outsiders by some people. On the other hand I found some people very welcoming and open.

The next place I visited was Apac (pronounced Apache) also in the North. The countryside here is great and the environment is amazing. The people are amazing. The challenge here for me was food. You have to order you supper in advance as the place we were staying in does not cook dinner even though they serve a meagre breakfast (fatcake and tea). Most of the food you get from many places is always accompanied by meat, chicken, beans or fish.

One day after having lunch, pondering the idea of having supper elsewhere, we saw someone carrying a bowl of food. We asked where it had been purchased, we were shown the place. The fellow, Ali, told us that he makes pork, chicken and fish. I ordered chicken and chips and my colleagues ordered pork and chips. We advised him to deliver at the place we were staying in at 19h30. The time came and no Ali. We went looking for him and he was nowhere. We started getting worried as we had paid him deposit. He eventually showed up and we were so greatful and we dived into the food. As we were eating I noticed that the chips were very big and I commented that the potatoes must have been very big. We were in such a big hurry, as we were late for an appointment at the local radio station, that we did not see anything unusual. As I was pushing the chips into my mouth I noticed that they were dry. On the third one it dawned to me that something was not right.

I put the chip up to the light (the room was not well lit) and realised that the chip had a small thread. On a closer look I realised this was cassava. ‘Ali, I said, these are not chips’. Ali said these were the chips we ordered. The others started looking at the chips and we all had a good laugh. In the North you have to be specific: Irish potato chips or you will get something else. And when you want potatoes you also have to be clear because sweet potatoes are called potatoes and they are common that potatoes (Irish).

I eat bananas. In South Africa we have many of these and they are always available throughout the year. They are grown mostly in the coastal provinces especially the Wild Coast and KZN. They are also found in Mpumalanga. What I saw in Uganda is something else. Firstly there are different types of bananas– I saw at least six types. Everywhere you go in Uganda there are banana trees. People plant them to for subsistence and to sell. I have never seen so many bananas. They cook them, grill them, fry the and even make wine with them. This was all new to me.