December 8, 2013
we lost a great man in Nelson Mandela. Our generation did not live in Gandhi nor Martin Luther King, Jr.’s time – Tata Madiba was our example of peaceful resistance. That we lost him is sad – what saddens me more is that there is not enough like him.
Rolihlahla is the name his father gave him and is isiXhosa and colloquially means “troublemaker.” Until 2008, he was even branded a terrorist. Maybe he caused headaches to the Apartheid establishment but because you have always done something does not make it right. Forget tradition, he had right on his side. I think Australia was right to lead the boycott – they had witnessed first-hand the adverse effects on the Indigenous people.
He was given the English name of Nelson by his teacher – for reasons were not certain of. It reminds me of how in my “old” country you used to not be able to be baptized unless you had a “Christian” given name or how the Spanish had “forced” us to adapt last names that sounded like theirs. Why are people so afraid of the “other”?
My favourite quote of his is:
“I am not a saint, unless you think of a saint as a sinner who keeps on trying.”
I think we should all endeavour to be the best that we can be.
December 3, 2013
i’m not the biggest fan of carols. Don’t get me wrong – I’m no Grinch. I just find most of tem too commercial (sounds like a jingle – pardon the pun) or some of them boring (not my cup of tea). The only album I’m able to stand is Jazz to the World – maybe because it doesn’t sound so Christmassy (if that’s a word at all).
I’m partial to One Small Child (maybe because we sang it in high school) and Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer ( maybe because I find it funny). I’m a fan of Do They Know It’s Christmas and Come All Ye Faithful - proving I don’t like most of them but there are a few Christmas songs I can endure. I like songs not as a class but individually – why should it be different for a particular season?
December 2, 2013
i’ve been waiting on further revisions to the ethics application for my research project. It’s been a few weeks since I’ve resubmitted it. It’s like I’m in limbo of sorts. I’m hoping to get a lot done before the festive season begins.
November 30, 2013
my wife came back with our new car. We were happy with the “old” one but, alas, it was showing its age and it became expensive to maintain. Plus, the manufacturer would cease its production. Although parts and service would still be available for more than a decade, we thought it was prudent to replace it and move on. It’s not an excuse to have another road trip.
November 12, 2013
psychologists say that the act of smiling can change your mood. As anyone that knows me can attest, I’m naturally grumpy – so much so that my son calls me a Grinch even if I’m not anti-Christmas (I’m not a big fan of carols though.) I’ve always believed that one needs to be true to one’s self but trying a “forced” smile is worth it to experience some happiness.
November 10, 2013
i had trouble walking in Marion today – I was a bit unsteady. I’m not sure if my physio is paying dividend and I’m unconsciously trying to break my old and bad habits. In any case, I should be vigilant as to the underlying cause.
November 9, 2013
a severe typhoon hit the centre of the Philippines and they’re still recovering from a major earthquake. Thankfully no one I knew was physically hurt – unfortunately, there was some property damage.