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Showing posts from 2017

Doctors and Dr. Phil Patients

It’s hard being a medical doctor these days.Doctors’ occupational hazard used to include lawsuits from prescribing wrong drugs, leaving scissors inside patients during surgery, sexual accusations from female patients or plagiarism accusations by other doctors.

That seems to be a walk in the park now compared to patients who think they are Dr.Phil.They visit every blog, YouTube video, Google ads, and pharmaceutical videos once they feel a tiny pang in their right arm.Then they call the doctor for an appointment.
This drives staff up the wall because they recycle everything they got from the internet over the phone.They don’t have time for that because the switchboard is blinking like Time Square.All they want from callers is the straight script. ‘My name is Genius Hashtag.May I have an appointment with Dr. Gigabyte on May 19 please?’

Genius finally meets Dr. Gigabyte and tells him what is troubling his wonderful self.The doctor listens patiently as Genius outlines possible medication and …

2018 Lions and Bed Bugs

The new year 2018 is waiting in the wings, watching with glee another round of happy new year wishes which will never come to fruition because human beings do not have the stoicism, intellect, tenacity, and sting of lions and bed bugs.

They believe in instant gratification, the now-now.That is why they have Nespresso coffee makers, T.V. dinners, plastic knives, forks and glasses, pre-approved credit, disposable Christmas trees and online love.Lions and bed bugs are more realistic.They are patient. They still believe that good things come to those who wait.
It might seem ridiculous to equate the two but they have the same survival strategy.Master planners.They observe the prey: its mating, family, favourite food, watering hole and its residential address.  Careless tourists with cameras are a plus. Prey surveillance is much easier for bed bugs because what’s wrong with not making my bed for a month, let alone regularly washing bedsheets and comforters and hanging them in the sun?Coin laun…

Ten Reasons Why I Write

1.I write because I don’t know the total number of rays in the sun.
2.I write because some toddlers look at me and smile.
3.I write because I’m grateful I woke up today.
4.I write because I feel blessed when I see blind people.
5.I write because I have embraced  mama's habits I didn't like.
6.I write because my heart bleeds when I see a drunk woman beaten black and blue.
7.I write because they shot a tiger that wandered into the village for food.
8.I write because of kids that forage in garbage dumps for things to sell.
9.I write because of rich women who feel poor but stay in painful marriages for German cars and invitation to Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s wedding.
10.I write because an ex-soldier in the U.S. massacred people in a church. By:Nonqaba waka Msimang.

Christmas Gifts No Return Policy

Shops should have a policy that Christmas gifts can only be exchanged by people who bought them.It’s their money or credit cards after all.

That is the only way we can know that family and friends did not like them.Exchanging Christmas gifts is a vote of no confidence on people who bought them, which is unfortunate because, deciding what to buy is a harrowing experience.Givers don’t want to be accused of being cheap.Money cannot buy love, said a song but it is wrong.We measure love on the price tag. Most stores have hidden cameras.They should invite us for a private screening so that we can see some of the agony shoppers experience as they pick up items, lift them up for a better look, sigh and put them back on the rack.They drag themselves to accessories and do the same thing.

Therefore, it hurts a lot when your gift choice is rejected. It also makes a mockery of the season of goodwill, and exposes Christmas for what it is, buying the love of family and friends.

What happened to, it’s th…

The U.S and Us

The U.S. and us, is quite wide, like the horizon.

The ‘us’ could be Canada, which has the fortune or misfortune of sharing borders with the U.S.The ‘us’ could be countries like Philippines forced to tolerate U.S. troops because of World War 11 agreements. The ‘us’ could be Germany, that was punished by allies for Hitler and the war. The ‘us’ could be personal decisions to go to the U.S. because of the belief that it is the ideal destination for academic, economic and cultural advancement. Anyone who has lived in Commonwealth countries, or South America is familiar with long lines snaking U.S. embassies as travellers looking for visas, wait patiently for gates to open for business.

Security is very tight in U.S. embassies because of foreigners’ love hate relationship with America, long before President Trump. The U.S. might be the embodiment of everything they detest, but that doesn’t stop them from wanting to go there.

Some go to America for the wrong reasons, like 9/11 (September 11, 20…

Restaurant Christmas Dinner

Christmas dinner at a restaurant needs a budget just like the home Christmas dinner.The budget depends on the type of restaurant, be it a hotel buffet with other families lining up to spoon the squid salad or a designer menu for the family concerned.The budget will also depend on the number of people at the table, and drinks of course.

Families have Christmas dinner in restaurants for valid reasons.Women might be tired of slaving over the hot stove for a whole week before Christmas, only to have the whole family glued to their cellphones and not talking to Grandpa Bellamy or their cousins from abroad. Washing up could be a contentious issue.The family home might not be big enough to accommodate out of town visitors.
Restaurants take care of all the above problems, at a price.That is why budget logistics must be ironed out before December 25, before entering the restaurant. Will there be a single tab for pre-dinner drinks?Bear it in mind that some family members are O.K. with bottled wate…

Christmas Carols Re-Named

Christmas carols are now called happy holiday carols.Just kidding. 

The word Christmas is avoided in many things now as a gesture of reconciliation, a gesture of acknowledgement that there are other faiths besides Christianity and a gesture of acceptance that there are other cultures that don’t put gifts under a tree to express love.
Christmas carols though are just that, and cannot be called year-end carols, holiday season carols or festive season carols. Carols are supposed to be religious for people of the Christian persuasion, aren’t they?It is all blurred because shops use them as early as November, to prep city dwellers for the December buying binge. Maybe physical and online shopping outlets are not the only culprits.Hollywood is also a contributing factor.Take the song, Jingle Bells.Is it a church song or a Hollywood song?Santa Claus Is Coming toTown, is that a church song or scripted by Hollywood?

American musicians also go to the studio, mix them up a bit, but the result is Chri…

Office Parties and Sexual Harassment

The Guinness World Records will record 2017 as the year when a high number of sexual harassment allegations against men who had some sort of power over women, surfaced.Most of them happened more than 15 years ago.

Therefore, this year’s office party needs caution.There is no handbook of phrases that can be misconstrued as sexual come-ons, or demeaning to women because it is personal.It is how the woman receives what is being said and how she is being touched, that constitutes sexual impropriety or sexism. “Be a good girl and get me some quiche dear.”

This is inappropriate at an office party whether it is the CEO or maintenance guy giving the command.That is how a woman will perceive it.A command.Women can provide more examples. Some men find it confusing because women can say, that’s a nice tie, but a man would be stepping on a minefield if he commented on a woman’s blouse or skirt.Some office parties spill over to bars and other entertainment centres.There might be some dancing.How clos…

Ten Year-Old Chefs Lesson 2

If little boys are old enough to have favourite dishes, then they are old enough to cook them. Little C:Mama, I feel like roast chicken tonight.

Mama:Good.Go over that meat section and pick-up a 6-pack of chicken thighs. Little C:Yes mama.

AT HOME Mama:Let me pre-heat the oven first.Did you wash your hands?

Little C:Yes mama.You told me to do that before handling food. Mama:Just checking baby, just checking.This is tin foil.See here.It has this sharp line you use to tear it.I’ll do it today.You will do it next time.
Little C:Yes mama.

Mama:Go to the pot drawer and take out the roasting pan I use a lot.The round one. Little C:This one mama?

Mama:Yes baby.Put the tin foil on the roasting pan. Little C:Yes mama.

Mama:Give me that teaspoon.We’ll use half a teaspoon of this herb spice.Sprinkle it on the foil. Little C:Yes mama.

Mama:Place the chicken legs on the spice.Turn them around so that you spice both sides. Little C:Yes mama.
Mama:Now fold the foil like an envelope.We don’t want any juice escaping.

L…

Wedding Vows And Disability

Tyler Perry’s Diary of a Mad Black Woman flashes through my mental screen when I see someone pushing someone in a wheelchair.

They could be man and wife, sister and brother or health care worker and patient.They are man and wife in the 2005 film.Charles, a big shot lawyer in love with himself, did his wife Helen wrong, threw her out like a pile of old magazines, but she took him back when he survived gun shot wounds from a dissatisfied client.

Helen nursed him back to health because of wedding vows.Some couples write their own vows.It would be interesting to have a peak and see if disability is spelt out in black and white.Tyler Perry captured on film, what happens in real life all over the world.
There are many examples.A second younger wife dumped a famous singer at the first wife’s doorstep, just before he died from HIV/AIDS.A family was torn apart when a man who left four kids under the age of ten, came back when they were grown up, highly educated and owned their own businesses. ‘He …

Drinking in Zulu

December is don’t drink and drive month.Drink responsibly.That message is everywhere.Some Canadian cities have free public transport on New Year’s Eve.People who don’t drink, also don’t mind being designated drivers for the evening.

Drinking is phuza in Zulu.Cattle also drink water but it a funny way, using their broad tongue.I don’t know how lions drink from the river and I have no intention of finding out, any time soon.Proximity to the king of the jungle is not my idea of adventure.
Some fool will go to Botswana on what is known as an African safari and try to take a selfie with a lion in the background.Rest in peace (RIP) is all we can say. Ancestors also drink.It is called libation.You pour African beer on the ground for ancestors before you drink it.This is to acknowledge that they also get thirsty and they will bless you in your future endeavours.

Nowadays, Africans and some African Americans pour on the ground a drop of wine, spirits or whatever they are drinking, to observe liba…

Smokers Metric System

Smokers are arguably the only group of people not affected by the cellphone mono-culture.They still talk to each other, as they inhale and puff outside buildings because they are not welcome in most Canadian and American buildings.

You are reading this blog and not talking to the person next to you in the car, at home, road construction site, conference or drugstore.Not smokers.They discuss the road to extinction, which is obvious in many ways.
Enemy #1 is the government. They don’t look forward to annual budgets from provincial governments because they know cigarettes will be taxed.It is called a ‘sin tax.’ Enemy #2 is the health system that is pro-lungs, saying smoking is bad news for lungs.Enemy #3 is the imminent danger staring them in the face: keep off signs, which could be in the metric system or imperial system (meters or feet).

That is why most smokers carry industrial measuring tape in their smoking kits to measure how far away from the building they should smoke. There is no u…

Undetected Mental Illness

Professionals have their own definition of mental illness.Ordinary folks do not.They just see me acting weird or crazy.What is nice about pointing a finger at someone is that the thumb points back at you.

Familiarity.We label people crazy because of certain behaviour observed over a period of the time: the woman who wears the same clothes and pushes a grocery cart full of clothes; the man who carries a sign THE END IS NEAR; the woman who cries when she asks for quarters; the man who has been sitting at Assiniboine Park with his luggage for the past three years and the man who talks to himself at a major bus stop but never catches a bus. We call it mental illness because such behaviour happens in public.Yours happens in private, behind closed doors, but you also display some mental illness to people who see you regularly at Starbucks, on the street, bus or any other public place.They have questions about how you dress or act and why you are at a certain place at a certain time.

Two women …

Oppression in Zulu

To oppress or press something hard is cindezela in Zulu.We will deal with the verb today because the noun incidezelo, will injure your tongue.

Oppression, which can be blatant or latent, is part of life.Apartheid, slavery and religion are quite blatant.Wife abuse is latent until women have swollen eyes or die at the hands of their husbands.Some mothers tell daughters to grin and bear because they tolerated it, so did their grandmothers and great grandmothers.
Oppression can also come from grown up kids who regularly extort money from ageing parents or force them to sell the family home, pocket the money and send them to old age institutions. Born to shop is oppression, self oppression that is. Ci-nde-ze-la.The first part is pronounced as the expression Ci! Ci! Ci! The second part is pronounced as in endemic, the third part as is zebra and the last one as in lucky.

ZULU ENGLISH U-ya-ngi-cindezela u-Boris. Boris is oppressing me. U-ya-ngi-cindezela u-Greta. Greta is oppressing me. O-basi ba-cind…

Office Parties No Cellphones Allowed

No cellphones at weddings.It is now common for the bride and groom to ask guests not to take photos because they don’t know where they’ll end up.

The same thing should apply to office parties.No picture taking thanks very much.Come to think of it, cellphones should be checked in at the door with parkas, in Canada and Russia that is.Logistics would be the problem though.Coats have hangers, not cellphones.Switching them off is a good idea.
Why?Because all workers have friends and enemies.Year-end parties are about letting your hair down, time to forget about falling sales, unfair promotions and customers from hell.Unfortunately, booze forces other things to go down, like running mascara.Make-up is not as smooth as it was at the beginning of the party.Enemies might grab that chance to take lousy photos and post them online. The tongue also runs loose after a few drinks.It might reveal how you feel about your boss, like how you love and want to marry her.Don’t do it.Your enemy might send the…

Black Friday Injury Insurance

Black Friday insurance for shoppers might not help because insurance in general, is notorious for finding some loophole not to pay up when floods, fire or any calamity, descend upon us.

Insurance is a by product of capitalism.You own something but you take insurance in case something goes wrong.You buy a house which was built on sick land and one day it disappears, sucked by hidden chemicals.Insurance might show you some fine print that it insured the structure, not the land, and since the house disappeared, they are not paying.

Black Friday is no exception.Intelligent shoppers have already taken insurance against the stampede, which begins as soon as doors open.Then the games begin, two shoppers pull a sweater left and right because they both claim they saw it first.One shopper strangles another one, over that last microwave, which is 80% off the original price.A shopper might knock you dead with a drill, rather than let you have it.

Black Friday is a contact sport therefore, your shopp…

Book Review The Precious One

Re-arranging the furniture a bit and giving Wilson a voice, would have enabled me to finish The Precious One, a novel by Marisa Los Santos, much earlier.Wilson left his wife and two kids, Marcus and Taisy for Caroline, a young sculptress.Willow, their daughter, is one of the story tellers.

Wilson’s hatred for his father seems to be the book’s foundation.Maybe hate is an understatement because in his youth, he quietly made plans for boarding school, got accepted, left home never to return and changed his name to Cleary, so readers know him as Wilson Cleary.
He ‘emancipated himself’, as the author put it, through Barbara, his sister, who was devastated when he severed all ties with the family.However, the conveyor belt for The Precious One is Taisy, and Willow. There is no second guessing about the precious one.Willow is. The two voices are a stumbling block at times because they have their own concerns, which might not be a priority for anxious readers that have migraines because of unans…