When did “retro” become the 90s? Man, when I was a kid it was the 70s and all of the sudden last night on the radio they started playing “retro” music from the 90s!! Oh man!
About six weeks back I took Clinton to apply for his South African ID Book. Last Thursday he got the text message from Home Affairs saying that his ID Book was ready for collection. He was pumped. I picked him up from school on Friday and we went straight to Home Affairs. Sure enough, after not too long of a wait, Clinton was the proud holder of an official South African Identification Document Book! We decided to go to Steers for some celebratory lunch.
For those of you who don’t know, Steers is really no big deal. I mean, it’s just a fast food restaurant, though I realize it is a tad bit more expensive than McDonalds. But our reasons for going there were not special, and mostly just a matter of convenience because that particular Steers was on our way home. But yeah, I mean, fast food or not, I guess Steers is still a luxury in a country where the masses live in poverty. But still, really no big deal.
So, we pulled up to Steers and got out of the car. On the way in three little boys approached us with outstretched hands asking for “Fufty cents for some bread.” I smiled at the spokesperson of the group, “Sorry buddy. Not today,” and Clinton and I went on in to order our meal. It came to just over a hundred rand (about 13$ U.S.). Wow! Steers is more expensive than McDonalds! We got the food, sat down at a table, and began to eat. Both Clinton and I immediately got sucked in to the television that hung high above our heads. MTV Cribs was on and they were touring T-Pain’s house, “Yeah, yeah! And this right here, this is studio A. I got three studios: A, B and C.” Three studios?!?! I mean, what on earth does T-Pain need three studios for?! Would one not be enough?
Throughout the Cribs tour, Clinton and I continuously shook our heads in disbelief, looked at each other with the “can you believe that junk?!” face, and then rolled our eyes as we turned our heads back to the screen, as T-Pain showed us his cars, his kitchen (that is bigger than my whole flat), his three studios, his game room, his pool, his bedroom, his club (yes, in his house), and so on and so forth. We could not believe this guy, and the likes of him! I mean, wasting all that money on all that stuff!! I mean, the whole of Khayelitsha could live in T-Pain’s bedroom! The nerve! “How can someone live like that knowing there are people living in absolute poverty?!” I complained.
And then something happened. In between the rolling of eyes, sounds of exasperation, and comments of how ridiculous T-Pain’s spending habits are, I looked out the large Steers windows and made eye contact with the three little boys who were still standing just outside, the ones who had asked for only “fufty cents”. They were watching Clinton and I scarf down a hundred-rand-meal with the exact same reaction as Clinton and I had to T-Pain’s overindulgent estate and lifestyle. To them, our spending was just as ridiculous as T-Pain’s was to us. As Clinton and I sat, eating and judging T-Pain with our good-Lord-why-do-you-need-a-flat-screen-TV-in-your-shower’s, the three little boys outside were looking in on us wondering why we could afford to eat such an “expensive meal” without even being able to spare them fifty cents. Maybe thinking, “Don’t they know a chip roll is less than ten rand?!”
And I realized, I may not have six cars, two pools, three studios and a lounge the size of the small town I come from, but my lifestyle, as humble as it may seem to me, can look just as luxurious to others who have less, as T-Pain’s does to me. I don’t have to feel guilty or sorry for it. Maybe just aware. And I have to take the responsibility that comes with the level of lifestyle I live. The whole, “the more you have the more is expected of you” kind of thing. And not judging others is probably a good lesson to learn to. We’re no better than T-Pain, though for a minute, Clinton and I had convinced ourselves we were.
Don’t hang carrots over people’s heads! They might just snatch it out of your hand and stab you with it. And you would deserve it.
Ok, so after all the wonderful suggestions of names I decided to go with Porter. I watched, one of my favorite movies, Payback last night and it all just seemed right. So, yeah Porter it is.
My friend Lindsay has a car named Nessie. That name suits the car perfectly because, well, Nessie looks like a bit of a sea monster. Lindsay was trying to convince me that my new car needs a name. Hmmmm?
I don’t know if I am really into naming inanimate objects. It’s not that I’m not into it! I’m just not into it. Anyways, I did have a car at one point named Talula. People of my generation might immediately hear a Jamaican accent say, “Dat’s my mudda’s nayum!” when they hear that name. Or maybe not. And now that I have a new car, after not having one for so long, I kind of feel like I should give it a name. I say “it” because I have not decided on its gender. It is probably female, but maybe even a mixture; a motor Hermaphrodite if you will. I just don’t know how comfortable I feel about driving a 100% male car around.
So, I am still pondering a name, and a gender for that matter, and I am open to suggestions. It’s a light gold (others might call that champagne) 2006 Toyota Tazz, with quite a sporty edge to it. I hope we are together for a long, long time. It’s only fair I give it a name! And a good one at that! So far people have suggested: Timmy (if cross), Suzie (if female), Pat (after the popular SNL character, suggested by two people), Ralton, Karl Heinz, Toad, Mimi, Sipho, Sally, and Castor Semenya. Any other name suggestions? You can post them here or on my Facebook status.
So, I’m going to a five-year-old’s birthday party today, and his dad is a juggler. I’m wondering, if having a dad as a juggler is a kid’s “norm”, what on earth can the birthday party entertainment be? And I know it’s not fire breathing because, Mike Fire is just a family friend and a normal party goer like me; I’m giving him a lift. For real.