Bad Bad Badu

If there’s one thing I can’t abide, it’s politicians. If there’s an even worse thing it’s dictatorial politicians.

If there’s a third thing that gets my bile rising, it’s idiots who actually abide despotic politicians.

And so we come to Erykah Badu, the American singer who sang recently for Swaziland’s tyrannical ruler King Mswati III, on his 46th birthday. She even gave the despicable “royal” fucker some presents.

King Tits & Tum at a Reed Dance

King Tits & Tum at a Reed Dance

I don’t really need to elaborate on why King Mswati III is such a douche-bag. He’s just that; an imperial bag of shit. I’m more irritated about why Badu would sing for His Royal Kleptocrat-ness. It’s not like she desperately needs the money.

Up until I heard about this incident, I quite liked Badu’s singing; well one or two songs at least. I don’t know if I could bring myself to listen to On & On ever again. It would make me think on and on about Mswati lording it over the poor sods unfortunate enough to make up his kingdom, and the15-and-counting wives.

To redeem herself, Erykah would have to take back her presents for starters, and write a song about the true nature of the African despot known as Mswati. Better still, writing a disparaging song about all of Africa’s many dictators would win me back for sure.

Hair today, mo’ tomorrow

Okay, this is getting bizarre… but I’m secretly liking it.

Two women, complete strangers, in two days straight have stopped and said that they like my hair. I don’t believe anyone has ever said that before. A lot of people think long hair on guys is weird, and other things besides.

I’ve always had long hair (well mostly), but ever since the streaks multitudinous daubs of grey started appearing, I’ve taken to wearing a variety of hats. I am pushing 50 you know, and my uncle once told me that hats give you that distinguished (or something to that effect) look. It also hides the grey, which for me is more practical.

Why long hair?

Well, I have this thing about conformity, and long hair has been my way of telling the world to fuck itself. It’s an expression of freedom… and yeah, it’s rock star-ish. And no, I don’t believe any of that Samson and Delilah bullshit.

A few weeks ago, a cousin applied some hair dye to it which as they say on commercial “washed that grey right outa my hair.” And since then I’ve been hat-free, my locks free to dance in the wind. It’s kinda liberating actually, to not have to wear a hat.

Here’s a photograph my lady friend whose on crutches because of an injury, took of me just yesterday. I don’t do selfies, so this will have to do. Thank goodness my hands are hiding my ugly mutt, but you can just make out the longish hair, I think.


I think I’m going to grow it longer. Off course the hair dye will be needed again in about 4 weeks or so. Maybe another picture then, in shadows off course.

Chasing Rabbits

I’m starting the weekend off early with some psychedelic rock…

Grace Slick of Jefferson Airplane has the most amazing voice which is shown off to great effect on White Rabbit and the band’s other great hit of the 60’s Somebody To Love.

Apart from Slick’s inspiration for this song drawn from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through The Looking Glass, there is a great deal of other trivia associated with it. It’s been covered at least 50 times by various artists from various genres, and they include George Benson, Patti Smith, The Damned and The Smashing Pumpkins.

It’s been featured either as an original or cover version in various films including Fear And Loathing in Las Vegas, The Game, Platoon, Stoned, Sucker Punch, Hideous Kinky, and in television series such as The Sopranos, American Dad, The Simpsons, Futurama, Supernatural, Warehouse 13, Blossom and The Osbournes.

As for the lyrics… well… if you’re sampling some of that shit this weekend, that’s your business.

One pill makes you larger
And one pill makes you small
And the ones that mother gives you
Don’t do anything at all
Go ask Alice
When she’s ten feet tall

And if you go chasing rabbits
And you know you’re going to fall
Tell ’em a hookah-smoking caterpillar
Has given you the call
Call Alice
When she was just small

When the men on the chessboard
Get up and tell you where to go
And you’ve just had some kind of mushroom
And your mind is moving low
Go ask Alice
I think she’ll know

When logic and proportion
Have fallen sloppy dead
And the White Knight is talking backwards
And the Red Queen’s off with her head
Remember what the dormouse said
Feed your head
Feed your head

An inconsequential contemplation of pain

Although I’ve experienced intense pain as I’m sure most people have, I’ve never really given much thought to the mechanics of it. However, as the title implies, this is not a scientific examination of pain, but neither is it meant to play it down.

I’ve often watched televised matches in disgust as professional soccer players writhe and wail on the pitch when brough down in a foul, (in apparent agony, or so I thought). In my experience rugby players don’t ever shriek and howl as much, so the natural inclination was to conclude that soccer players were a bunch of sissies just looking for attention and sympathy from the crowds… and the referee, while the former are made of sterner stuff.

Seems I may have been wrong.

This weekend I watched in an admittedly inebriated stupor as a close friend injured her knee quite dreadfully while playing soccer. Her teary eyes quite clearly attested to the pain she was in, and it was not until a day later when she got the hospital’s diagnosis, that we learnt of the full extent of the injury.



There was a complete disruption of the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) and significant damage to the Lateral Collateral Ligament (LCL), coupled with some muscle damage. Now I don’t really need to suffer a similar demolishing to know that it must have been severely painful, and still is after having just spoken to her. She will require reconstructive surgery and at least one source I have looked at, estimates a recuperation period that could extend up to six months. Ouch!

So where is this all leading to?

You’ve probably heard the expression that women are much better at tolerating pain than men, and thought it was bollocks. Well I can tell you that my lady friend handled it pretty darn well, and still is. She was back at work today, on crutches, walking up several flights of stairs, for crying out loud.The studies I’ve read here and here seem to indicate that women feel pain more intensely, while men have a higher pain threshold. While the studies look mainly at biological factors, it seems that social and psychological factors also play a part.

And my conclusion…

Even though the science may suggest that men can handle higher intensities of pain, I’m pretty convinced that women deal with it much better.


The desire to fly is an idea handed down to us by our ancestors who… looked enviously on the birds soaring freely through space… on the infinite highway of the air. – Wilbur Wright


Sitting on a plane this weekend, looking out over the port side wing during takeoff, I contemplated how often I had flown, but had never given much thought about mankind’s ability to fly. I had always taken it for granted that aeroplanes are there to take you from just about anywhere to anywhere else.

When we reached cruising altitude, I convinced myself that the aeroplane just has to be the greatest invention in the world, ever.

Up to this point I like many other people thought that the Internet or World Wide Web was mankind’s greatest invention, together with electronic communication and the computer. But there’s nothing quite like being face to face with someone, or witnessing a marvellous vista or object in person… on the other side of the world.

Flight has liberated us from the tedium of land and sea travel and saved a lot of valuable time in the process. It’s mostly convenient, if not a little expensive. But can a lifetime experience, or the ability to be practically anywhere at will, be measured against cost? And you can get alcohol on most flights.

Airports however are a necessary evil. I hate every corner of them, except the corner with a bar. Until such time as our brilliant scientists and engineers figure out how to make flying cars an everyday reality, I suppose we will have to live with airports.

RHCP as a torture weapon?

Apparently the CIA used Red Hot Chilli Peppers songs played on an endless loop, to torture prisoners in Guantanamo Bay and other secretive prison locations.

Like seriously?

Can’t see it happening. RHCP is like…well… music to my ears. I could jam to The Adventures Of Rain Dance Maggie all night long (No, not Lionel Richie).

What were you CIA guys thinking? If you really want to torture someone with music, there’s a plethora of mind-numbing House Music artists terrorists, or even Celine Dion. That shit is guaranteed to drive anyone crazy. I’d be like spilling my guts after just one song. A song like this would just not have the desired effect:

RHCP should be billing the US government for royalties just like Skinny Puppy did when they found out that their songs were also allegedly used to torture prisoners. Don’t know if they did, or will pay up. But what if we could subject the CIA to an endless loop of Adele songs? That would be payback for sure!

In a rich man’s world…

While money can’t buy happiness, it certainly lets you choose your own form of misery. – Groucho Marx

I’ve been listening to If I Were a Rich Man from the musical Fiddler on the Roof repeatedly since last week, and it just makes the smile on my face wider each time (if that’s possible).

But onto slightly more serious business…

Reading through the lyrics of the Abba hit Money, Money Money, one would think that we don’t live in a rich man’s world. But we do!

Only thing is, we will always be the outsiders looking in. I imagine that it must not be easy to make it onto the Forbes Billionaires List. They listed 1645 billionaires last month which I think must have grown since then. If you were on the list and moved down to mere Millionaire status, WTF is wrong with you? I can’t possibly see how you can not be constantly moving up the list because as they say “It takes money to make money.”

I look at this list of people with a certain amount of admiration because according to Forbes, about two-thirds made their own fortune while only 13% inherited it. And one can’t really look down on those who inherit wealth, because it’s really not their fault being born into a rich family. If they use inherited wealth wisely and grow it, I for one have no qualms about it.

The list however does exclude royal families and dictators, both different class of thieves. But I really only have a problem with the latter class because being born into royalty could be viewed the same as being born into a normal rich family. Unless off course they’re a royal pain in the ass and rule their kingdoms brutally like common dictators do.

Naturally, I do harbour a certain bit of envy because I know realistically that I will never make the Forbes Billionaire List, let alone the Millionaire List. And I’m not even going to try…

Facebook Skepticism

I’ve been tempted a few times to prune my Facebook friend tree, but haven’t done so because in between all the bullshit that’s posted on my feed by the uncritical, there’s  the odd gem.

Besides, I have only a little over 100 Facebook friends, a fair number of whom are related to me in some way or the other, and I don’t want to risk a family feud.

I’m not so much annoyed by a lot of the posts that smack of credulity, as puzzled and bemused that otherwise seemingly bright people don’t care to check facts etc. before sharing guff stuff on their timeline. Anyway, I found this brilliant piece yesterday which kinda sums up what I’m talking about:

SkepticGlassesNow I’m pretty sure that some a lot of my posts, especially those of a political or irreverent nature must annoy a lot of them, but I don’t attempt to pass them off as facts. I expect bright people to know the difference between opinion or commentary and verifiable truths.