Saturday, 23 February 2013

The Thin Yellow Line


Have you ever had one of those days where you feel as though you have spent the entire day in your car? That was me yesterday! And it always seems to be that whenever you need to get somewhere on time, there is crazy traffic and no parking... hang on, I live in Cape Town – there is NEVER any parking! After a manic morning of appointments and negotiating taxis/cars/pedestrians/pigeons, I return to the office and, after circling the block a few times, finally find a gap between a huge 4x4 and a yellow line. So there I am, minding my own business, slowly reversing so as to ensure that I am definitely NOT on the yellow line – I refuse to get a parking ticket, especially at the end of the month – when all of a sudden I look in my rear-view mirror and find myself slamming on brakes!

A car guard, who was nowhere to be seen when I began parking, had leapt (and I mean leapt) behind my car and was holding out his hands and waving them crazily. I don’t know whether it’s his latest party-trick to crouch on the floor and then jump up at the last second to scare the living daylights out of his customers, but it really worked and I found myself saying out-loud, “Woah buddy, what the eff!?” I honestly thought that I had hit him the way he was carrying on, and a law-suit would cost a hell of a lot more than a parking ticket.

When my heart and finally slowed to its normal rate and I realised that I was not going to have to call my lawyer sister to defend me in court, I carried on reversing into my parking – yes, after all of this, I STILL hadn’t parked! And I know that he was trying to help, but I find it incredibly distracting when you have a yellow/orange vested man waving his arms manically behind you using gestures that could mean a whole range of things when you are attempting to avoid hitting the bumper of a 4x4. When I had eventually parked and got out of my car, I turned to my new ‘parking-coordinator’ and said, “You really shouldn’t jump behind people’s cars while they’re trying to park!” To which he responded, “I thought you were going to park on the yellow line.”

At least the poor chap had my best interests at heart, even if it did mean giving me heart-failure in the process. All of this drama because of one thin yellow line.

Friday, 15 February 2013

Dark Days


Originally I had planned on writing some quirky, funny post about Valentine's Day, but after yesterday's events I just can't seem to summon up the strength.   For those of you who spent Valentine's Day wrapped in a cocoon of blinding love, this is what was going on in the outside world.   South African paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius was arrested for shooting his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp (South African model and celebrity) at 4am yesterday morning.   The initial report stated that Oscar mistook Reeva for a burglar, but as the day progressed and more information was released, the media began to speculate that this was not actually the case.   If the rumour mill is to be believed, Reeva was found dead in the bathroom after being shot four times (twice in the arm and twice in the head).   Neighbours say that they heard shouting and apparently this is not the first time that Oscar has been prone to violence.

When I first heard this story, I felt such sympathy for Oscar.   Imagine having to live with the guilt of accidentally killing someone you love.   But then I found out that this "accident" may have actually been pre-meditated and I felt such anger - not only at Oscar, but also at myself for my naivety.   They (whoever "they" are) say that we should always look for the good in people, but I am finding this incredibly difficult when I am surrounded by stories of so much bad on a daily basis.

Today has been dubbed "Black Friday" and people throughout Cape Town are wearing black in an attempt to make a stand against women abuse and rape worldwide.   Naturally the girls at Cosmopolitan SA all dressed in support of this cause, but as I stood with my co-workers posing for this photograph, I didn't feel pride.   Instead I found myself overwhelmed with incredible sadness that this is what our world has come to.   One of my New Year's Resolutions was to look at the positive before immediately jumping to the negative, but I think I'd find this easier if people weren't being so damn negative to begin with.     

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Hos before Bros

As of tomorrow I have been interning at Cosmo for a month, and a lot of what I have been doing is looking through stock libraries to try and find images for our features articles.   Today I had to look for pictures of happy female friends between the ages of 25-35, and this particular search made me aware of a very sad fact.   When I typed in "female friends", I either got pictures of 12 year old girls eating ice-cream and skipping, or images of "older" women with boyfriends.   It's like society believes that once you get past a certain age, you stop needing friends and instead replace them with the inevitable chunk of man who you can't possibly live without.

This, in my opinion, is utter crap.    Now I'm not saying this because I am single and bitter and twisted and hate couples ... well not in this post in any case!   I'm saying this because I firmly believe that no matter how old you are or how many men you have clinging to your arm, your life will never be complete without your friends.   They are the ones who don't make fun of you when you're hungover, the people who you can confess your embarrassing secrets to, and who don't judge you when you just need to vent.   They can be closer than your family and more loving than your spouse.   They are the people who you simply cannot imagine living without.

Since I am now nearing my mid-20s (eek), I have noticed a craze that seems to have hit my peers, sweeping many of them up in its wake.   Oh yes, it is the season to be ... engaged!   It was at about this time last year that I became aware of this phenomenon, and as the months have passed, it seems that more and more people have been picking up on it.   I have nothing against marriage, and am a great supporter of a hulking big sparkly ring, but I just don't understand the rush.   Did I miss something?   Is the world coming to an end (again) and everybody is rushing into matrimony before it's too late?   Personally I think that everybody is getting their panties in a twist for no apparent reason and are missing sight of what's really important: your friends.     

So before you decide to focus all of your energy on your future hubby-to-be, why not spend some time enjoying those important people in your life?  Society is wrong!   You are never to old to have friends!   And this really is the time to enjoy them.