Archive for December, 2008

2008

Posted in Random Randoms with tags , , , , , , , on December 31, 2008 by starstripe

December 31st has always been a day when I begin to make false promises to myself and God, usually involving my dedication to never eating again and attempts at slimming down to being the smallest person in the world. Hope springing from the realization that I will be able to walk into a shop and buy what ever clothing I want and be involved with (what I deem) the ‘hottest’ boys, I enter the next year with the excitement that ‘this time next year, my life will be perfect’.

I daresay that 2008 was the year I grew up.

2008 started with unemployment (I left my previous company on the 5th of January), ill-fitting clothes due to major weight gain at the end of 2007 and a very, VERY messy love life.

The middle of 2008 saw me reaching a bodyweight I had never imagined possible, not even in my fiercest nightmares, reaching 4 years of abstinence from drugs and alcohol, an emotional breakdown due to stopping my anti depressants and the emotional rock bottom which followed, accompanied by a horrendous break up and ill performance at a job I had excelled at since starting in late January.

The end of 2008 brought an 18 kilo weight loss with no boyfriend in sight, saw me re unite with my father, focus on bettering myself in a healthy way such as becoming career motivated instead of my desperate appeals at aesthetic success and the death of my beloved cat Lily, who has been my soul mate since I was 8.

All in all, my paradigms seem to have shifted somewhat. My interests previously involved marriage, children and being thin. These were all things that I thought would make me happy (mainly because they made other people happy which made me happy). People would ask me “what do you want from life?” All I could answer was “to be content” and “to get married and have kids”. I see things a little differently now.

After a rocky year of being dumped three times and gaining a lot of weight in January to June, I began to wonder how exactly does one love themselves? The wife of a good friend of mine once told me “self-love starts with clipping your toe nails”. Now I know this statement sounds insane, but to me it makes perfect sense.

I began doing things that were good for me, and nice to myself. Even though I didn’t love myself at all, I tried acting like I did. I started to eat healthily, not disorderly and did not deny myself things, but didn’t gorge on them either (well, often). I joined the gym and began working out four times a week. I went into therapy again, and went on a new anti depressant. I looked at my life and for the first time since I took my first screeching breath, I had a slight vision of what I wanted for the future and felt ambition. I began to want a career, my own flat and to live for me and no one else. I began to want to live for me, not anyone else. And with these realizations I began to get a feeling of hope for the future that was a feeling more powerful and far more important to me than the hope of getting into a size 6 (and with a height of 173cm and hips that are meant to give birth, a size 6 is a bit of an unreachable goal, and that is ok.)

But I say goodbye to 2008, the year in which I experienced major hardships but major growth with great sadness that my little soul mate will not be joining me in 2009. My cat Lily came into my life when I was 8 and she brightened it ever since. Even when I left home to go to university, whenever I came home for holidays, she would sneak into my room to sleep there, follow me around as she always used to and mew outside my door when I had gone back to Cape Town. She knew when I was sad and would come and sit on me or next to me. When I am upset, I can’t stand people talking to me to try and make me feel better. I prefer silent company, and she knew exactly what I needed: a kitty-head-butt and some purring and not to leave my side. What a treasure she was.

She is a cat who travelled the world, living in Holland (where she was born and ran straight to me out of a litter of kittens we were choosing two of which to take home and I named her on the spot), the UK and Durban, where the endless bushes and creatures of interest kept her roaming for days and had the family so worried we couldn’t eat.

My mother (“the one with the food”), my dad (Lily’s hero for whom her adoration never waned, even thought he was married) and I cried many tears this morning for this little creature who in her 17 years in our lives had made us laugh and feel happy for every day she was with us. My sisters could not be there but they cried a lot too. I don’t like sentimentality, but in this case, every sickly word is sincere. I miss her so much and will remember her with absolute love and happiness for the rest of my life.

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Help my sister find her kitten Mieke!!!

Posted in Uncategorized on December 15, 2008 by starstripe

I haven’t written a blog post in a while because I have been busy and not really had a spare moment to think.
But right now I have a bit of a quest so here I am.

My sister who lives in Durban has lost her kitten Mieke. She is beside herself. I am so devastated for her and her husband so I figured that because I am sitting in an office in gardens in Cape Town and can’t do anything, I will try and do what I can using my friend the internet.

Mieke went missing at 8am on Saturday the 13th December in Redwood Crescent in Glen Anil in Durban (Glen Anil is just North of Durban North).

She is a 4 month old tortoiseshell and has a distinctive straight line down her forehead and nose. She is mostly black and ginger with a ginger blob on her white belly. She has little white socks on her paws, and she has a little black smudge on her nose.

These photos were taken just over a month ago so she has grown since then.
This is what little Mieke looks like:

mieke

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Please, if you know ANYONE in Durban, or anyone who knows anyone in Durban, especially in Glen Anil or Durban North, send them the URL to this blog and ask them to keep a look out for her.

If you see or hear of anything, please call my sister or her husband on:

ALEX 083 7880689

PAUL 083 5587026

OR 031 562 9253

You can even leave a response under the blog or email me at starstripe999@gmail.com.

Help my sister get her baby back!!!

Your Standard Wank – Simpler, Better, Faster

Posted in Random Randoms with tags , , , , , , , on December 3, 2008 by starstripe

Uninspiring, Unmotivating and UninvolvedFrom now on, I have decided to call Standard Bank – “Standard Wank”, just like the Laugh it Off tshirt that got banned in 2003 (I think?). No wonder Standard Wank wanted the tshirt banned – it pretty much summed up what they must get up to in  their 9 till 3.30 working day: Absolutely FUCK ALL.

My peril started when I realised my bank card was missing yesterday. I know myself pretty well and I have a memory like a sieve so the chances of remembering where I lost it are slim to none, so I cancelled the card straight away with no problem.

Like any normal person, I then decided to transfer all of my funds across to my credit card for the month so I would have a card to use whilst I waited the 7 working days it was going to take for my new card to arrive (it has to get sent down from Johannesburg and then I have to go and pick it up from my branch).

Then I went onto Standard Wank internet banking to be told “There is a problem with the card number you have entered. It is either illegal or has expired.”

In other words: “FUCK YOU, you dumbass client!!! You wanna lose your card? Well we are gonna make your life a living HELL. Even more of a living hell than banking with us!!! Aha! AHAHAHAH!!! MUWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!”

I phoned the call centre straight away, asking why I can’t get into my internet banking after I had cancelled my card. It took a while to get the message across to the operator that I had not cancelled my ACCOUNT but my CARD.

When we had established that I had only cancelled my card, the gentleman on the other side of the line told me “you can’t use your internet banking until you have the new card or you have to go  into a branch.”

So basically, if you lose your card, you can’t use your internet banking for transactions etc for seven days. Screw paying rent. Screw paying bills. You just have to sit with no card and no internet banking and get into sheit with your creditors. Or go into the bank, wait in a queue for an hour, come back to work late and get into more shit. Could the woman who cancelled my card not have warned me about this teensy little detail?!!! I pay R170 a MONTH for my account! That is R2040 a YEAR!!!

Nice.

Now, the entire reason I have internet banking is so that I don’t have to go and stand in bank branches for my entire lunch hour, squeezed in between dunbious people, most of whom need a good scrubbing or at least some deodorant. If the banks could stay open later than 3.30pm or have their employees roll out of bed just a bit earlier to open up at 8am, this would be a different story.

But banks in South Africa don’t really seem to be able to grasp the concept that in order for their clients to be able to bank with them, they have to be EMPLOYED. That means they have to have JOBS. And jobs usually START BEFORE 9am and END AFTER 3.30pm. But why should Standard Wank and other banks get up a bit earlier and work a bit later to suit their clients? Puhleaaaaaase, I shouldn’t be so self centered should I?

Plus the bastards are going to charge me R75 for a card replacement.

I think every single person, and I mean every single individual I know has had problems with their banks. One friend was charged for a petrol card which she didn’t apply for. One other friend applied for a credit card which was then sent to the wrong branch. Because banks cannot send cards between branches, the card had to be cancelled and she had to reapply for it. They failed to include the origional application specifics, such as a budget facility so when she discovered that her origional requests were not valid on her new card, she was told she would have to wait for six months to change it or pay off the entire amount owed on the card.

But this is stuff that happens every day, all day! It is such a regular thing in this country – literally millions and millions of these fuck ups happen a year! That is a couple for every single person in the country every year.

And the problem is not just with banks. The council repeatedly forgets to send me my water bill, or sends it to the wrong address, then charges me interest when I don’t pay it (because I have not been sent a bill). ADT has taken double my monthly installment out of my account on numerous occasions and when I complained, I was told that they could not pay me back the money. Even though they had literally charged me double my fee more than once. It was only when I wrote an incredibly snotty and vicious email to the regional ADT manager in August that the problem was noted. I was paid the money back A WEEK AGO (it is December now, they decided to pay me via a cheque so I had to wait seven days for the money, even though they have my account details and could have done a direct transfer).

The scary part of all of this is that when you complain, the reply “I’m sorry, there is nothing we can dooooo” is the regular lifesaver for all incompetent service providers, thriving off their monopolised power. Now, I’m sorry, but that reply is just not good enough anymore.  Actually, it never has been good enough or acceptable, but as a country that is pretty much devoid of any skilled labour, appalling has become so accepted that these bastard companies just get away with shitty, inconvenient and costly service (to the consumers) time and time again.

I think it is time to move to another country, because South Africa is not moving forward in any way. Yes, nice football stadiums and statues of freedom fighters are nice and pretty, but couldn’t we spend the money on education instead or feeding kids that are so starving that their brains are being chewed up?

Bleh, that is my angry rant for the day.