Monday, June 27, 2011

The Travelling Liners.

I survived a five-hour car trip with The Parental Unit for which I surely deserve some compensation for emotional damages. While I am exceptionally fond of my parents, I am convinced that travelling long distances with the people who created you should be banned. I arrived at Precious Jo'burg Friend's house dangerously close to a nervous breakdown.

It began at the unacceptable hour of 4 a-effing-m, with a temperature so chilly I was exhaling solids. (It must be noted that I am not - especially on my first day of leave - wont to rise before the sun on a Saturday morning and so was in a mood not dissimilar to one with a fevered hangover.)

But I climbed directly into car and lay my head on pillow next to The Daughter who, like her mother, enjoys icy early mornings as much as constipation. But, as with all long distance trips, The Father's boredom with repetitive scenery becomes apparent when he takes it upon himself to single-handedly provide the vocal soundtrack to the trip.

Well, that's not strictly true. He often requires my, or The Daughter's input in terms of providing the descant.

The Father: (sings)Holy Mary, Mother of God. (Speaks) Now, Pant, when I get to the (sings) pray for us sinners (speaks) part, I want you to descant with (sings) pray for us pray for us. (Speaks) K, let's try it.

I don't know why I don't just say no, but I don't, and inevitably I get it wrong.

The Father: Okay, ready?

The Pant: Yup.

TF: One, two, three (sings) Holy Mary-

TP: (cat's choirish) pray for us pray for us, yeaaaaaaaaaah (Mariah Carey style).

TF: (abrupt) What was that?

TP: Descant improvisation.

TF: Descant what? I told you to sing (sings) pray for us pray for us.

TP: And I workshopped in (sings) yeaaaaaaaaaah (Mariah Carey-style).

TF: You what?

TP: I thought we could try something new.

TF: The descant is new. You can't be extra new with Holy Mary.

TP: Why?

TF: Because this is my edition of Holy Mary, not yours. Right, let's take it from the top.

TP: K.

TF: (sings) Holy Mary-

TP: (sings) Mother of mother of-

TF: (anger, audible). What was that?

TP: I was descanting.

TF: The wrong words. I told you it was (sings) pray for us pray for us.

TP: Sorry.

TF: Fine. Let's try it again.

I never quite got The Father's descant right. Eventually he ordered me to sing the hymn and he'd provide the descant.

TF: K go.

TP: (sings) Pray for us pray for us.

TF: Bloody hell, Pant. What is wrong with you this morning?

(I couldn't tell him that my idea of fun did not include the singing of hymns in a new-aged descant-style.)

TP: What?

TF: You're supposed to be singing the (sings) Holy Mary, Mother of God (speaks) part. The descant is mine.

TP: Right. Okay go.

TF: You're supposed to start.

TP: What?

TF: What do you mean 'what'?

TP: What am I supposed to start?

TF: (very close to emitting steam from ears.). The hymn.

TP: (taking a huge chance). Which hymn?

TF: Don't make me swear.

TP: About?

TF: Just leave it, Pant. I'll do it on my own.

And he did. A number of songs and hymns. Including:

a) the entire sound track to The Sound of Music including the yodelling bits,

b) the soundtrack to Jesus Christ Superstar,

c) every Beatles song he knows,

d) the songs he used to sing to The Daughter when she was a small baby and,

e) his old school song (majority of words forgotten and improvised with 'aaaaas' and 'uuuuuus')

There's a reason for flying. This trip, a case in point.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Master Zing.

Dear Friends,

The most amazing thing has just happened to me.  So amazing, in fact, that I fear it may cause this blog to cease to exist.  You'll know that my blog, if you're an avid reader, basically is a rambling on the following topics:

1). Shoddy love life,

2). Large bum and thighs,

3). Unbelievably small boobs,

4). Job dissatisfaction,

5). Court cases (imagined, of course)

6). Stolen cars,

7). The Daughter,

8). Vitamin B injections (owing to depleted energy levels)

9). Small penises

and, 10). All over body pains.

(Okay, so the last two aren't really discussed by me, but if they were...)

Yup, I discuss the insecurities that plague me.  And by 'plague me' I mean 'are'.  I had kind of resolved to simply take life as it comes.  Deal with the blows.  Delight in the joys.

That is, until I went to collect my post this afternoon.  I'm not usually a rush-off-to-collect-the-post-kind-of-person.  Nope, I prefer to collect my bills when they're covered in gecko poo and other insect excretion that I'd rather not think about.  But at the mo, I'm awaiting correspondence from suitably posh private school in the hopes that The Daughter will embark on a similar education I experienced: one that will aid her in flower arranging and beautiful gift wrapping.  (I shit you not.  I'm wasted on this career-and-not-settling-down bullshit.)

And there, between acceptance letter and excessively overpriced electricity bill was a little pamphlet the contents of which I'm certain will straighten out my life.  Yup, the stars are all aligned in support of The Pant; given what marvels Master Zing can perform.

First and foremost, he sells a cream (free delivery) that purports to do incredible things.  Like reduce/increase breasts (100% guaranteed - same cream???).  And gain or lose weight.  And (and this is one of my favourites) gain hips/bum.  This self-same cream also fixes "tired no Energy" which will prevent the by mistake steek.  And 'Strong Penis Erection/Libido Herbal/Enlargement in all Sizes".  Which will be great, if I go see Master Zing (strictly by appointment).

By appointment (and I can simply type "Durban Central" or "Morning Side Windere" into my GPS and I'll be delivered directly to Master Zing's offices), there are a number of things I can solve.  Like, I could Wanda back, under the "Bring back stolen items e.g. money, cars etc.)  That would be nice.  I miss Wanda in all her bashed up oldness.

Plus I could fix a variety of heartbreak hotel problems.  I can "Bring back lost lover & make him/her to be yours."  That would be nice.  If I chose, of course, to bring back any of my lost lovers.  I could choose to (and this is indeed might be desirable for some), "touch girls and follow you". 

Master Zing, it appears, is a master of all life areas.  I could get (according to point 11) "enemies against you", while simultaneously fixing (I assume) "court cases".  "All body pains" could be easily fixed, and I could get some good luck.

And don't forget folks, "free delivery".

Monday, June 20, 2011

Tipping The Scales of Sanity.

There are certain things I just don't know about myself.  How tall I am is one.  When asked this question, I respond in one of two ways: I either place my hand on top of my head and declare, "This tall," or I say, "Somewhere between The Daughter and The BF." Neither of these answers is untrue, mind you.  But I've received a lot of eyerolling in response to my totally unmathematical knowledge of self.

The other thing I do not know about myself is how much I weigh.  I know, for example, that I weighed in at 73.5 on the day The Daughter was born.  I puked a little in my mouth when this information was revealed to me.  (As it happens, I was in the process of dilating when The Charlatan Nurse forced me to stand on the scale.  Evidently, I raced through labour apace in an attempt to lose a few kilos.)

I pointedly do not own a scale.  I fear owning one would tip my scales of sanity because I imagine I'd weigh myself in various stages of dressedness and eatedness.  All. The. Time.  I'd weigh myself before and after each cup of tea, before and after each toilet visit.  Naked and again when dressed for work.  Or for a night out (the difference between these two weights would, no doubt, be fairly significant.)  I'd weigh myself all the forking time.  It'd become tiring.  And I'd probably end up making the following phonecall to The Father:

The Pant:  Dad, my scale is lying.  Definitely a manufacturing malfunction.

The Father:  Oh dear...

TP:  Can we sue them?

TF:  What for?

TP:  Well, for depression.

TF:  Whose?

TP:  Mine!  Yesterday I weighed x, and today it tells me I weigh x+1.  And I've hardly eaten a thing since then.

TF:  Well, what's 'hardly a thing'?

TP:  My normal.  Muesli and yoghurt for breakfast. Two cupcakes, four samoosas and a slice of chocolate cake for tea.  And two cups of tea.  Two oranges, an apple, a bean roti, two slices of toast with bovril, cheese and cherry tomatoes.  A chocolate.  A coke.  A little bit of last night's leftover lasagna and duck l'orange for dinner.

TF:  I don't think we'd have a very good case.

TP:  But, Dad!  I'm sad now.  Seriously.  I've just had to uncork a bottle of wine and dish up a bowl of ice-cream to deal with the severe depression I'm feeling.

TF:  What's that noise in the background?

TP:  Oh, that's just Single Girls.  We're having some wine and snacks and talking dirty.

TF:  Oh, lovely.  You having a good time?

TP:  Yes, a glorious time, thanks, Daddy Darling.

TF:  Then you're not depressed.

TP:  I feel desperately down, though.

TF:  Cut out the cake, Pant.  And maybe glasses 3 - 8 of the wine and you'll see that your scale might start telling the truth.

TP:  And if it doesn't?  Can we sue them then?

TF:  We'll talk then.

TP:  Thanks, Dad.  You're the best (he really is).

Scales are, indeed, lying, cheating swines.  I know this because whenever I'm in the vacinity of a scale, I cannot suppress the urge to stand thereon.  And the numbers that mock me are always different.
Take this weekend's run-ins with scales for example.  The first was at Thursday afternoon drinks at book club.

After guzzling approximately seven thousand units of wine, the integrity of my skinny jeans was seriously compromised as my bladder protuded in manner not dissimlar to that of 40 and a half week pregnant Dear Friend's stomach.  I attempted to rush to the toilet but was unable to do so due to a) lack of balance owing to wine consumption and b) severe cramp and inability to stand upright owing to excessively full bladder.

When I reached the bathroom, there in the corner of the room was a shiny white scale, inviting me to stand on top.  So I did, pre- and post-massive-wee.  And the difference in weights?  Nil.  Zilch.  Zero.  Niks.  How can that be possible.

So I went to my homestead, because I know that there, the scale always lies.  And in a good way.  For the past 6 years of my life, including the pregnancy, I have always weighed 50.  The Daughter also weighs 50.  As does Enormous Son of Maid.  As does The Husband.

It's a great scale.  It tips the scales of sanity in the right direction.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Younger Boys...

I made a pact with myself at the beginning of the year that I'd try my hardest to steer clear of grumpy older men with ex-wife baggage. Instead, I swore I'd focus on the younger steed. And, by crumpets, have I tried. But I've come to realise that, sadly, they interest me as much as brown corduroy.

Take Green Shirt Boy for example. He was twenty and his slim years and svelte chassis had me weak at the knees. But then we tried to converse. And the boredom I felt was not dissimilar to the boredom I have felt standing in long bureaucratic lines.

The Pant (while dancing): So, Green Shirt Boy, what do you do?

Green Shirt Boy: (blocking my one ear so I could hear him over the drone) I'm a student. But I spend more time drinking.

TP: (bop. Ass shake.) Oh okay. But what are you studying?

GSB: (draping a sweaty arm around me, armpit actually ensconcing ball of shoulder) Social Sciences. More of the social than the sciences. What you do?

TP: Um (raising voice to be heard) It's 'what DO you do'.

GSB: (practically screaming) I told you. What you do?

TP: No, no, lovie. You left out the verb. It's 'what DO you do'.

(By now, he was shouting frantically in my ear so that I felt I may incur an injury that would leave me with a life-long case of tinitis.)

GSB: I told you. More drinking than studying.

At which point I excused myself to go to the bathroom. He offered to walk me there AND hold my handbag while I went about my business. I declined, of course. And went to the door. And hailed a cab.

I don't know why, but the ability to speak in full sentences is kind of a prerequisite for me.

Then there was Rugby Boy. This one was slightly older, like my age, had a real job and an insatiable interest in me. The fact that he'd actually just played a rugby match and had what I thought looked like a tampon in his nostril put me off slightly. But he was firm. And, after sufficient facebook stalking, I discovered that without a blue string dangling from inside his nose, he was all kinds of hot.

I ignored his advances, of course. I live in Durban and have a reputation to uphold. He lives in Jo'burg. And while, if I'm entirely honest with myself, I have a very soft spot for Jo'burg, I really don't think it wise embarking on a long distance relationship with someone with whom I'm not overly charmed.

But, I'm getting ahead of myself here. Let me offer, first, the interchange we've had since meeting some two months ago.

Rugby Boy (via facebook! What happened to, I don't know, talking? I suppose, one has to actually give one's telephone to person should one wish to receive telephone call.). You said you were thinking of moving to Jo'burg. When are you moving in?

The Pant: Woah tiger. One step at a time. Like, we haven't even had our first kiss. And my job is in Durban. As is The Daughter's school.

Two week silence.

Rugby Boy: I'm coming to Durban this weekend.

The Pant: Super. I'll ring The Daily Mail, shall I? Oh, and please take lots of photos. Because I'm down the coast this weekend.

Another two week silence.

RB: I don't get you.

TP: I'm sorry about that.

RB: Tell me something about yourself. But a secret that you've never told anyone.

Really? Is this honestly the kind of shit I have to put up with?

Crikey effing moses.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

City Lawyer Chunders After Tornado.

In light of the fact that my world had been rocked off its axis - and not in a good way - at the malicious thievery of Wanda, The Incubator felt The Daughter and I needed a little cheering up. This after she'd spent the day hyperventilating at my imminent poverty.

The Incubator: Car repayments?!? Have you thought about that?

The Pant: You know I didn't choose to have my car stolen, Mom?

TI: I wonder. You're just going to have to shave off all areas of your budget.

TP: I guess that means less clothes shopping.

TI: Damn bloody right. Less clothes shopping. Less food shopping. Less everything shopping.

TP: Less food shopping? How so? You know I only cook for two weeks of the month.

TI: Well. Less lunch then.

TP: Are you suggesting I give up the midday meal?

TI: It's a start.

TP: I'm not giving up lunch, Mom.

TI: Well, enough of this fancy cooking then.

TP: Fancy cooking? Like spaghetti bolog-

TI: Stews. With chuck. Each meal under twenty.

TP: (incredulous) Chuck?

TI: And enough of this "I only drink fresh full cream milk in my tea" bullshit.

TP: I do only drink full cream mi-

TI: It's powdered milk for you, girlie.

I knew better than to argue. The Incubator and I have, as far as my personal relationships go, shared a pretty damn long one. As a result of this, I know her fairly well. And it is thus that I knew that a mood of this nature only has a life-span of exactly one day.

So, by the Saturday, the suggestion was that we'd do a family outing at The Royal Show. For those of you who've had the misfortune of growing up in Pietermaritzburg, you'll know that the city's annual calendar has one highlight (and one highlight only): The Royal Show.

The Daughter, The Father, The Incubator and I hopped in her Silver Bullet - scarved and gloved and Ugg booted up - and made our way to this gaudy festival of lights and poorly amplified (but super effing loud) doef-doef music. Our destination: The Fun Fair.

The Daughter is a bit of a daredevil. Likes speed. Wants to go on the biggest, flashiest, scariest rides. While I'm more of a carousel person, she's all about The Breakdancer, The Tornado and The Free Faller. Incidentally, it was The Tornado that she insisted on riding first.

Picture, if you will, a round cage. Its "riders" stand therein, with their backs against the cage wall. The cage then spins so fast that the riders are pushed outwards, against the cage wall by some kind of centrifugal force. And then the cage tilts, while spinning, at 45 degrees.

"Don't worry, I'll take her," I told The Parental Unit as I ushered The Daughter onto The Cotch Vessel. "I don't think you guys would enjoy this bad dog."

They're in the habit of waiting until a ride is at bursting capacity before starting it, are those ride operators. We were chained in, chatting in eager excitement when The Father bounded up the ride steps to take his place beside us.

The Father: Chain me in, Pant. The catch on this one is broken.

The Daughter: Oooooo Crannpa! Yipeeeee!

(The man is certainly not renowned for his stomach of steely constitution.)

The Pant: Dad, I'm not sure this is such a great idea.

The Father: Stop being such a killjoy, Pant. Your old dad used to be somewhat of an adrenalin junkie in his day. This ride? Piece of old cake.

TP: Um. With respect, Dad, I daresay that today, as in this very day, is no longer your day.

TF: Watch yourself, Pant. I may have grey hair in a Richard Geere distinguished kind of way, but I'm not too old to go on a silly little fairground ride with my granddaughter.

TP: But, Dad, it's not even my day anymore. It's a bit more The Daughter's day than it is anyone else's.

TF: I'm going on this ride, okay? No 'ifs', no 'buts'. Believe it. Because it's true.

I found said ride bloody fucking awful. The spinning and the nausea was worse than any post-jol one-leg-on-the-floor-and-a-hand-on-the-wall experience I can remember.

Apparently, The Father's adrenalin days are over too. As the ride ended:

TF: Get me (mock charge) out of this fucking ride immediately!

I left The Daughter chained up while I tried to free The Father (I wasn't having her spew-drenched - least of all in that icy weather). He was a time bomb of chunder, and every attempt to unchain him was met with a mock charge. I envisaged myself being soaked in second hand lunch.

After finally undoing the chain, and setting the old boy loose, he was held up by children - dawdling with excited discussions regarding their flight of fantasy. He responded to their slow movements with, "Hurry the fuck up you little shit faced pizza heads. Before I let (mock charge) rip on all of you."

The youths parted like the proverbial red sea with such alacrity that their movements caused a vacuum that whooshed The Father to the safety of a wheelie bin. Upon which he leant and performed a classy act of counter-peristalsis.

I'm waiting for the newspaper headline: City Lawyer Chunders After Tornado.

Hey, Dad. How does that saying go? Is it 'I told you so'?


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Pant: Wandaring Around Wandaless.

I'm sorry for my absence in the blogosphere.  I've been having one of those days.  For about a week now.

And it all started on a thick black morning - last Friday, to be exact.  I arose before the birds, you see, since I am in the throes of complying with the mighty angry gods of labour.  It's exam time.  I'm an English teacher.  I get to drink less wine, sleep less zeds and be a whole bunch less nice as I plough through an unfairly large amount of "English' drivel.

And so there I was, showered, dressed and seated at my desk - at 3.45 A-EFFING-M.  (Yes I am sure some of you have just puked a little in your mouths.). I could hear the faint groans of drunkards returning from Phuza Thursday and my heart yearned to be one of them.  But I'm responsible, right? And so instead focussed on the scripts at hand.

And I learned some things too:

1) "The poet was referring to the gushing valva" (supposed to be 'valves')

2). Romeo was in Juliet's womb to bring her food - she'd been asleep for 48 hours, right?  Must have had a ravenous uterus.

3). Hitler kept the Jews in "skwatta camps".

4) 'becausing' is an actual word.

5). "You can tell that Grandma Anderson is puzzled because her eyebrows are crouching.". Have you not heard of the infamous small budget film, 'Crouching Eyebrows, Hidden Eyeballs'?

and, my personal favourite:

6). "By the end of the play, Macbeth was rock hard." Ah, to have spent one night in Lady Macbeth's nightgown.

My job is an education all on its own.  But, I digress.

On that fateful Friday morning, after marking, I continued as normal.  I screamed at The Daughter for her tardiness (she was busy putting a nappie on The Cat) while I was eager to get to work and twak violently with my mates.  The maid (aka The Armpit) arrived during the, "Daughter!!!! Hurry the sam hell up!" / "I'm cooooooooming, just come and help me put this thing on Cat" exchange.

She, in an attempt to warm to the payer of her salary, chose to assist in the Getting Of The Pant and The Daughter to The Car.  She, like I normally am, was laden - in a state of bag lady - with my boxes of marking and The Daughter's school bags and lunch boxes and errant fruits.

She led the way, naturally - as I was too busy running back to fetch a) sunglasses and b) another jacket.

When I rounded the corner, I saw The Armpit - whiter than a disprin.  She was standing in my garage.

The Armpit:  Aaaaiiieeee.

The Pant:  What's wrong?

TA:  Hawu!  Jeeeeeezuussss.

TP:  What's happening?

And that's when I saw it.  The void - large and echoing - in my garage.

Wanda had been kidnapped.

The Armpit started wailing as though the wine had run out.

TA:  Medeemmmmmm.... Muphi umoto wakho?

TP:  Alright, Armpit.  Sit down on this here crate of empty quart bottles, put your head between your kness and breath steadily.

TA:  You're going to be late for work.

TP:  Yes, very late.  About three days late, in fact.

After I'd ushered The Armpit into the house, lain her out on the couch with cucumber patches over her eyes and a sweet cup of tea at hand to calm her nerves, it dawned on me:  My faithful Wanda is gone.  She's being forced to do disgusting unbecoming things of a lady with criminals.  Her dignity has been stripped of her.

The world is, indeed, a much duller place without Wanda.

I felt, at least, that My Future Ex-Husband Who Has Less Than No Desire To Actually Caress My Inner Thigh needed to know about the car trafficking of our girl.  But I didn't have the guts to tell him over the phone - his pain would have been all too audible and would have, no doubt, unearthed the desperation I surely felt.

And so I texted himL:

The Pant:  Wanda.  (breath breath)  Is gone.  Thieved.

My Future Ex-Husband Who Has Less Than No Desire To Actually Caress My Inner Thigh:  WHAT????  WANDA???? STOLEN???

TP:  I'm afraid so darling.  The world is a little less bright today.

MFEHWHLTNDTACMIT:  Wanda was a faithful old girl who will forever remain in our hearts.  But I hope she bursts into flames and incinerates the c**ts who stole her.

And I echo his sentiments.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Bumping The Ex's Uglies.

I bumped into my ex the other day.  Well, to be honest, it was difficult not to.  The man has grown.  Sideways.  A lot.  So, I suppose given that we were in the same shopping centre, bouncing off his vast flabby flanks was unavoidable.

The Ex: (with a displaced look of satisfaction) Ah, Pant.  How are you?  (You know when they ask it, when they emphasise the 'you' and cock their heads a little to the side?  Yup, like that.)

The Pant:  Thin.  And, well, I know the answer to 'how are you' but I'll ask it anyway - How are you, Mr Ex?

Ex:  I'm well-

TP:  Rounded?

Ex:  Pardon?

TP:  Nothing.  Carry on.  No wait, can I just take off my heels?  I need to get comfy for what I anticipate is a four hour long narcissitic rant that I know I won't enjoy and that you'll enjoy so much you won't even notice I'm nodding off or searching for blunt blades to end my life.

Ex:  Yes, well I've met someone-

TP:  And eaten her?

Ex:  We're getting married-

TP:  Poor woman.

Ex:  Lovely girl-

TP:  Ah, I see.  You haven't lost your condescending quality.

Ex:  Really supportive of me and my work-

TP:  You have a job?

Ex:  Got a new job-

TP:  You mean 'first job'.

Ex:  Really cutting edge stuff.

TP:  Spare me.

Ex:  It's got to do with...

And that's when I left.  Not physically, mind you.  My mind wandered off.  I was in a most filthy state of heightened arousal with Jake Gyllenhall; I was ecstatic.  Until I unblurred my eyes and saw the lump of lard carrying on before me.

Ex:  You know what you've always been good at?

TP:  Everything?

Ex:  You're a really good listener.

TP:  Ahem?

Ex:  We must get together soon.  I'd love you to meet my fiance.  Sounds so weird when I say that.

TP:  I'm busy-

Ex:  How about a braai at our place?  Say next weekend.

TP:  For the next million years.

Ex:  Call me.  We'll organise.

TP:  Yup.  Consider it done.