Posts Tagged ‘irony

01
Jun
11

The Ivo Vegter Solution to Our Country’s drug problem

I was fresh out of varsity when I met Ivo Vegter in the infamous courtyard that was at the centre of ITWeb’s old offices in Rivonia and though I was at least 5 or 6 beers in, I remember it well.

Ivo was engaged in a passionate debate with someone (I forget who, but you can bet your ass they were probably losing) about how environmentalists are full of shit and I was listening with rapt attention.

See, Ivo is a fascinating person. He has an intellect that is so staggering that is it a truly epic experience listening to the man argue a point. Plus he has a powerful command of the English language and a vocabulary that is so brobdingnagian he is probably one of the few people who knows what that word even means.

 

 

Ivo currently writes for ITWeb, Brainstorm, Car Magazine and one of my favourite sources of news, The Daily Maverick which, in my opinion, is one of the few bastions of legitimate, quality journalism South Africa has left.

Ivo fearlessly bangs out a column for The Daily Maverick every Tuesday that covers such a broad variety of topics it’s hard to believe the pieces that get published all come from the same person.

I take great pleasure in reading Ivo’s work not only because he’s great at taking the most controversial and often least popular standpoints on sensitive subjects, but his writing is so damn well researched, backed up with legitimate facts and figures and unapologetically honest that it often leaves me grinning from ear to ear because holy shit, the man can argue a point.

 

 

His most recent column really caught my attention though because it deals with the controversial topic of the merits of legalising drugs and not just the softer variety, but EVERYTHING.

It’s an extreme viewpoint and one that, at the time of writing this, has already inspired a number of comments on his piece, many in favour of the legalisation of drugs.

On the surface, Ivo has a solid argument, but it fails to address some very important issues which is why, for once, I’m not sure I entirely agree with him.

Ivo argues that “the criminalisation of drugs is often the cause of drug-related crime, rather than it’s solution” and suggests that instead of threatening people with violence and prison for being involved in any way in the manufacturing, distribution or consumption of “illegal substances”, drugs should be fully legalised and more effort should rather be spent on educating people about the dangers of drugs to discourage first time use.

His argument is also based on the premise that if someone wants to do drugs, they will find a way to fulfil that need no matter how hard law enforcement tries to stop them. Prisons, as one of his commenters points out, are rife with drugs and ironically a lot of prisoners come out of prison more addicted to drugs than they were when they went in.

 

 

So fine, in theory his argument is sound – legalise drugs so that they can be better regulated, remove the social stigma associated with taking them and educate people as much as possible so that they know and understand the inherent risks involved in taking drugs.

If people do decide to go off the deep end, invest time and effort in rehabilitating them properly instead of casting them out of society and writing them off as junkies.

There’s one thing his argument fails to address though, and that’s teenage kids.

Presumably if you made drugs legal, you’d have to impose some kind of age restriction on them or you’d run the risk of having curious seven year olds getting loaded on blow. So let’s say, for argument’s sake, that drugs were illegal for kids under the age of 18, like alcohol is.

Ivo’s argument is that you’ll get the kids who are naturally curious or naughty and want to experiment and those who don’t, whether drugs are legal or not, and I agree.

 

 

BUT, if drugs are legal, it makes it that much easier for kids to experiment with substances that can instantly fuck them up for life than it would be otherwise.

I was curious as a kid, I wanted to experiment with stuff I wasn’t supposed to be experimenting with, so at 12 years old, me and a friend I got shit-faced on his dad’s supply of Two Dogs Alcoholic Lemonade whilst on holiday one night after the folks had gone to bed.

Had we been educated about the dangers of alcohol? Yes. Did we know what we were doing was dangerous to our health and could lead to addiction? Yes. Did we give a rat’s ass about any of that? Hell no.

Of course the next morning we woke up feeling like ass, our parents shat us out from a dizzy height and, our curiosity satisfied, we carried on with our teenage lives and are now gainfully employed, contributing members of society.

Let’s, for argument’s sake, replace the godawful sludge we drank that night with 2 grams of pure, uncut cocaine and think for a second about how that scenario might have played out.

Our risk of getting instantly hooked would have been a thousand times higher, our little binge would have most likely have cause lasting damage to our brains and I can almost guarantee you that from that moment on, we would have both spent the rest of our lives chasing that first immaculate high no matter what the cost.

 

 

Sure, maybe we are an example of those kids, the ones who would have experimented no matter what, but the frightening thing is that nearly everyone I know experimented with alcohol before the age of 16 in some form or other because it is so readily available, who’s to say they wouldn’t do the same with class A drugs?

The sad fact is that everyone I’ve ever met who experimented with class A drugs under the age of 16 end up developing such a hopeless addiction that by their mid-twenties all they live to do is get high and by their thirties, they are completely burned out and unable to function in any way that could vaguely be described as ‘normal’.

All the education in the world can’t stop teenage rebelliousness. As it stands, thanks to the criminalisation of drugs (as backward as it might be) far fewer young teenagers are experimenting with them than there would be if they were made 100% legal.

There’s definitely a middle ground that Ivo touches on in his argument when it comes to the policing and education behind drugs and drug use but to legalise them all outright would be to open up a can of worms that would eat through the fabric of society faster than an addict could vacuum an eight-ball.

-ST

14
Apr
11

Hipsters – why the fuck?

I’ll tell you straight up that I hate pretentious wankers about as much as I hate taking out the trash only to find out that a warm stream of garbage juice has dribbled down my jeans from a hole in the bottom of the bag.

There are a number of factors that lead to people becoming pretentious wankers, but right at the top of the list is definitely a chronic insecurity in themselves that manifests in them putting everyone else around them down to feel better about their shit lives.

They distance themselves from the mainstream because it makes them feel superior and unique. They disagree with everyone about basically everything because they think it makes them seem intelligent and they regard the rest of humanity with their noses upturned because the idea that we’re all basically the same terrifies them.

 

 

Which brings us to hipsters who, if you strip all the bullshit romanticism out of it, are really just a bunch of pretentious wankers and sadly Cape Town is like a petri dish for these ridiculous arseholes.

Here, in no particular order, are the top ten things hipsters love:

 

  • Silently judging everyone
  • Elaborate scarves
  • Cute little hats
  • Vinyl records
  • Irony (the snooty kind)
  • Wayfarers
  • Skinny jeans
  • Indie bands that are shit
  • Bragging about some rad little bistro they found down some obscure back alley that is actually shit
  • Stealing fashion trends from the opposite sex

 

Look, don’t get me wrong, I’m all for being weird and expressing yourself hell, just read this fucking site, but the thing that gets to me about a lot of these jerks is that they have absolutely no sense of humour.

People that don’t laugh about life, the universe and everything (especially themselves) really piss me off because c’mon! Open your fucking eyes! It’s all a joke man!

I say ‘a lot of these jerks’ because there is such a thing as a hipster with a sense of humour and those cats are alright by me.

Here are a couple of pics from Regretfulmorning.com to better illustrate what I’m talking about.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hipsters of the world, lighten up. Drop the pretence and come out of your little shells, life’s too short to spend it sitting by yourself in the corner of some pseudo-European coffee shop drinking espressos, smoking rolleys and reading Kafka.

Wonderboy, life’s just begun. Turn that sorrow into wonder Winking smile

-ST

23
Mar
10

Short Story: Smooth Baby

He couldn’t wait to go home. In all seven years of being alive, he couldn’t remember ever being so excited before.

His heart hammered relentlessly inside his tiny chest and his mouth felt cotton-dry as he fidgeted and squirmed in his chair, bursting for a pee and not paying one scrap of attention to anything going on around him.

In his mind, all there was, was THE TOY.

He’d first seen THE TOY in a flea market when his mom was shopping for some black dog to grill for supper. Amongst the chaos and the noise and the thick clouds of oily smoke that mingled and moved like dragons through the narrow, dirty alleyways, he’d spotted it.

At first he wasn’t quite sure he’d seen correctly. He adjusted his glasses, thick as coke bottle bottoms, on his practically non-existent nose and squinted across the alleyway at the adjacent stall.

There it was. THE TOY. The most incredible toy ever invented. The second he comprehended what he was looking at, the child’s mind came alive with possibilities.

How was it possible that such an amazing toy had come into being? He had to have it. He would do anything to get it, even crawl over his own dead mother.

He immediately started tugging frantically at his mother’s leather pants, squealing at the top of his lungs, much like a pig being skinned alive.

His mother had never seen her son so furiously locked in paroxysms of overwhelming desire. The way he twitched and screamed almost involuntarily frightened her and she struck him hard on the back of his head to try and knock some sense into him.

If only it had been that easy.

That night, her son refused to eat any of the succulent dog she had prepared for him. He sat in a slack-jawed kind of daze while a thick, translucent trail of drool crept steadily from the corner of his mouth to his shirt front.

He sat like that for days, wasting away. Eventually she began to fear for the child’s life as he halved in size before her very eyes and so, in a huff of desperation, she finally agreed to buy the child THE TOY for his next birthday in three weeks time.

The change in her son was instant. He leaped up from where he was sitting and began to hop around the room, singing irreverent songs of praise to no one in particular in a language only he understood.

The bell for the end of school sounded like a prison exoneration as the boy, after three torturous weeks of jittering constantly and wetting his pants in excitement, jumped nearly two feet in the air and bolted, legs pumping, to the parking lot outside where his mother sat on her motorbike with his present neatly wrapped in her hands.

He ran in slow motion, the sun shining down like a host of holy angels above him as tears of unrepentant joy streamed down his face.

This was finally it, the moment his brief life had been building towards, the reason he was sure he existed.

Finally, finally his wildest dreams had come true.

Finally, he could shave the baby.

 

11
Feb
10

Wonderboy Life’s Just Begun…

You gotta love The Kinks, because they’re fucking cool. If you don’t know who they are, please stop reading this blog immediately and go out and buy at least 5 of their albums. In this instance I don’t even mind if you buy the ‘Best Of’ collections, that’s ok, in this instance, because I just want you to get into them and that’s probably the best way.

 

 

They’re like The Beatles, only they never got as huge, which is really sad. Their music is way better than The Beatles in my over-inflated opinion, with the exception of The Beatles White Album – THAT fucking album is amazing. ‘Rocky Racoon’ all the way, that’s my favourite Beatles’ song of all time.

Anyway, once you’ve bought the compulsory 5 The Kinks albums I mentioned earlier, find the track ‘Wonderboy’ and play that fucker on repeat until you hear it in your dreams.

I heard it the first time back in varsity and it’s been there ever since, playing somewhere in the background of my life.

I appreciate irony, in fact, I thrive on it because it’s one of the most powerful forces that governs our world, and the song ‘Wonderboy’ is loaded to the gills with irony.

The lyrics are hilarious because Ray Davies (singer and frontman) sings them in this sing-song way that sounds a bit like a nursery rhyme, with this limp and lifeless vocal tone that sounds a lot like he’s just fucking given up with life and the combination of these two things, for me, makes me piss myself laughing.

Wonderboy life’s just begun / Turn that sorrow into wonder / Dream alone, don’t sigh, don’t groan / Life is only what you wonder

I arrived at work this morning and started playing random songs and “Wonderboy” came on and I couldn’t help but smile because over the course of the last day, my life really has turned to wonder.

As you may already know, I’m moving to Cape Town at the end of Feb because J-Rab was offered a killer job at Cheetah Outreach in Stellenbosch which came with free accommodation on Eikendal Wine Estate, very fucking cool.

 

 

The only snag of course was that I didn’t have anything lined up in Cape Town, which I think was contributing to the impending sense of doom that was creeping up on me a few weeks back.

Well, I’m fucking relieved to say I was offered a job yesterday at an awesome PR agency in Cape Town, which is going to be a great step forward in terms of my career and which means I got nothing to worry about except packing my life up and hitting the open road.

Sometimes in life you just gotta let go. Sometimes you’ve got to put a little trust in whatever Gods may be and have the courage to accept that things have this funny way of working out for the best if you just let them.

Cause really, in the end of the day everybody’s looking for the sun and yes, people strain their eyes to see, but I see you and you see me.

And ain’t that wonder? 😉

-ST

12
Dec
09

The Saturday post brought to you by: SlickTiger

Hello. And welcome. To the Saturday Post with me, your faithful scribe and host, SlickTiger.

Today saw a high incidence of waking up at around 10 o’clock and pottering around.

So said a recent study conducted by ST Enterprises. Action Jackson, or in field correspondent this morning, may or may not have said the following:

“The general vibe was chilled.  Coffee was drunk, media changed hands. Good times.”

After this co-reporter J-Rab and your host embarked on a Round The Zoo Lake boat ride, stacked with Windhoek Beer and froo-froo girly drinks.

The day was calm and sunny, with clouds hanging overhead. Ducks floated noiselessly around the lake, people walked their dogs.

 

 

But NOW excitement abounds as the Tiger heads to an INSANE housewarming.

Stay tuned…

-ST




A Word From The Kind Folks At Nokia

July 2019
M T W T F S S
« Jun    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  

Afrigator