Jy blaai in die argief vir 2010 Junie.

39 boys dead so far this year because of circumsisions during initiation-rituals

Junie 30, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

A rather grim topic, yes I know, but something needs to be done. According to Ms Precious Matsoso, newly appointed director-general of the Dept of Health, 39 boys and young men died so far this winter in the Eastern Cape alone.

Many others are in hospital, and some of them will have to have their penisses amputated to save their lives.

Now, I am all for rituals and traditions, but I must agree with Ms Matsoso, who said that her department “finds the situation unacceptable.”

She further said that, while people’s rights are accepted to practice traditions and rituals, “it must be done in the context of acceptable health norms and health practices.”

Matsoso and her department are not alone in their pleads that these practices must stop. Traditional healers have in the past pleaded with government to stop inexperienced people to carry out the circumsisions, but to no avail. How many more boys must die before somebody call this murder?

A template of “I love you too”? What’s next?

Junie 30, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

I got an upgrade on my cellphone more than a year ago. As my old phone was still functioning and because I hate to get to know the intimate details of a new phone, I carried on using the trusted old mobile.

Last week trusted old mobile gave up on life, and took with it a great many phone numbers I needed, as well as some pics and many SMS’s with important information. But even that wasn’t such a drama as getting to know the new phone. (A Nokia something. My old one was a Samsung. And before that one I had many a Nokia)

So, what’s the big deal, you ask? The big deal is that I press the space button when I want to change to capital letters, and vice versa. And that I have sent many a blank sms when I press the reply button to hard. It seems the Nokia is ubersensitive when it comes to touching it’s digits. Or maybe I am just getting old, and an acute case of techological impairment is setting in.

While trying to figure things out, I browsed through the phone.

Under instant messages,  those that you send back while in a meeting/driving/having sex (not that I’m speaking from experience on the latter, as I will need a manual for that too), I find several handy messages that can be conveyed by moving your fingers once or twice or maybe four times.

And what do I find there, nogal last on the list? “I love you too”!

What have we come to? An era where even the most meaningfull of phrases is stored on a phone under template?

I’d rather end up an old spinster with seven cats and a swearing parrot than receive templates from my love.

Why I am so scarce

Junie 29, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Quite a few reasons, actually.

Firstly, went to the Kamdeboo where there was no 3G-signal.

Got home last week to one book to review within 2 days from getting home.

One more to review for next week.

Eight books to read and judge for the ATKVeertjies (annual awards for the best books published in Afrikaans). They want my opinion by the last week in July.

Normal magazine articles to write. Four needs to be in by next week (about 2 000 words each). Interviews for said articles also takes up a bit of time.

Media consulting for two companies that pay my monthly bread and butter.

School holidays, and no, I’m not complaining, as I absolutely LOVE spending time with my kids. The problem is that I often spend to much time with them…

Oh, and a book that I am writing. Copy must be in by end of August. And it’s non-fiction, so I can’t suck any of it out of my thumb.

And I did two interviews for my other non-fiction book that must be with the publishers by the end of July next year. (It’s a coffee table book, and also entails a lot of research.)


I promise to post something interesting at least once a day from today onwards. Okay??

Tannemys is back!

Junie 28, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

My friend Lodewikus (you’ll notice his comments on my blogs) and his wife Jackie gave me a kind-of-a-talking-to on Saturday as he was braaiing for us. About what, you may wonder.

It turns out they are slightly ticked off that I haven’t blogged since coming back from the Karoo last week.

So, here I am blogging, good friend that I am!

Not much to report, except maybe the fact that I am now an official book reviewer (yep, I get paid to read books!) and that I was asked to be the studio guest in Loslip, the Afrikaans talk show on RSG. So, tune in your radios on Wednesday to listen to moi! (Between 14h00 and 14h45)

Now I must run for a meeting!

My day so far

Junie 15, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

The view from my car in the Lootsbergpas (which was closed at times today).

Not a sign you normally see surrounded by snow!

The road surface. I ALMOST got stuck after taking this pic.

Kids making snow-angels after we passed through the pass safely. Of course they were soaking wet!


Junie 14, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

sit en bibber in Phillipolis.

My drome van ‘n huisie in die Karoo is geshatter! As dit is hoe koud dit hier raak, wil ek nie eers ‘n plaas hier persent he nie! Tensy dit natuurlik kom met ‘n butler wat heeldag die kaggel kan stook…

What the Sowetan wrote about orphan Paul and the prez

Junie 10, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Still battling to load pics, but too tired after a hard day’s work to even try anymore.

Leaving you with this extract from today’s Sowetan.

Boy gives Zuma R10 – to give to the poor
By Theo Nkonki
9 June 2010


Paul Jarvis, an orphan, gave President Zuma a donation of R10, to help another needy child. PHOTO: BAFANA MAHLANGU, Sowetan

Jacob Zuma was hailed at the special needs school in Haddon, south of Johannesburg. PHOTO: BAFANA MAHLANGU, Sowetan

He is an orphan himself

He is aware that there is a child out there who is in need. I said I will find the child and add a bit of my money to his – Zuma

President Jacob Zuma was deeply moved during a visit to a school in Johannesburg on Wednesday when a 11-year-old boy gave him R10 and asked him to give it to a poor child.

“Paul [Jarvis] took out some coins of up to R10 from his pocket. He gave it to me and said ’give it to a poor child’,” Zuma told pupils at the the Frances Vorwerg special needs school in Haddon, south of Johannesburg.

He visited the school to mark the end of the term, as schools close for the World Cup.

Jarvis, an orphan, had a dream of bringing Zuma to the school for the disabled, and gave his teacher a hard time demanding this happen.

“He is aware that there is a child out there who is in need. I said I will find the child and add a bit of my money to his,” Zuma said.

Zuma arrived to song, dance and the sound of vuvuzelas as staff sang his praises.

The school hall walls were decorated with soccer balls, the national flag and a welcome message for the president.

Zuma held a short meeting with the school principal Rooi van Wyk, Paul Jarvis and the school governing body to hear about the school’s problems.

Some of the difficulties included funding electrical wheelchairs and learning programmes suitable for the children’s special needs.

The school has 360 pupils of which 48 were housed at a school hostel.

“I am happy I came to this school, but I have been told that there are numbers of kids with special needs who are sitting at home,” Zuma said.

“I’ll be meeting with the minister of education and the minister of social development and other departments to discuss how to work together to solve these problems,” Zuma said.

His visit to the school was an eye-opener and while many South Africans were celebrating the World Cup, many disabled people had no access to education, he said.

Passionate about education, Zuma promised to devise a strategy to address the problems faced by the school.

“Since Paul is an assertive guy, maybe he can organise that I come here,” he said.

Zuma’s visit to the school had a more profound meaning to the parents and the community.

“His coming here shows that he has the heart for the community,” said teacher Rista Roux.

The memory of Zuma’s visit, Roux said was the first in history and it would remain a special moment for the pupils even when they were older.

“This will be kept in a special chamber of the children’s heart,” Van Wyk remarked.

Parent Johan Mends said Zuma was the only reason his child, Janus, came to school on Wednesday. “We did not believe that the president could come here,” he said.

Zuma, who was subject to an interview by 11-year-old Jarvis, thanked the school for hosting him.

Clearly tired from “diski dancing” and singing the World Cup anthem Waka Waka, Zuma ended his visit by saying: “Thank you to the principal for allowing Paul to dream, for allowing his dream to come true”.


The prez and the orphan from the Frances Vorwerg School for the Disabled

Junie 10, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Here are the pics I couldn’t post last night. (See my previous post on Pres Zuma’s visit to a school for disabled children and his meeting with a young lad called Paul who made such a HUGE impression on all of us, be it hardened politician or tough journalist).

As mentioned before, Paul was absolutely starstruck with all the people and the bodyguards and everyboy staring at him on stage. He hardly blinked an eye.

The prez and the orphan

Junie 9, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

Realised today again why I like the prez. (Although I don’t always agree with him.) Mr Zuma visited Frances Vorwerg School for Disabled Children today, and as I am involved with fundraising for the school, I was invited too.

The reason why JZ visited, was Paul Jarvis, a 10-year old disabled orphan who can’t read or write at all. But Paul made the loveliest sketch of the president, and phoned the presidency FOUR times to ask when the president can fetch it. And then he did, today!

I will never forget today. Seeing the children’s faces, hearing the laughter, watching the excitement levels rise as we waited for him. (He flew from Durban just after 8h00, landed at Waterkloof, was brought the 70km to the school in the south of Joburg where he spent a very jolly hour with them. After that he went to meet Bafana, inspect the official SABC-facilities for overseas journalists and a lot of other official WC-stuff.)

Little Paul stole everybody’s hearts. He sat on the stage, riveted, not moving. His foster mother said he couldn’t sleep last night. Zuma spoke a lot about the need for communities to acknowledge their disabled children, and said he was shocked about the lack of involvement from government when it comes to the funding of school’s like Frances Vorwerg. (He was briefly briefed by some officials.)

Paul also stole the prez’s heart when he handed him R10 worth of coins with the request to “please give it a to a really poor child”. Man, what a day!


The child with the bow and arrow…

Junie 7, 2010 in Sonder kategorie

… has since my previous post discovered the fridge door. While I was cooking dinner he taught his 11-year old sister the finer points of bow and suckie arrow shooting. “Jislaaik,” he said, “you must see how they stick to the TV!!” (Which is where I draw the line, by the way.)

Earlier, when we fetched his sister from ballet, he experimented with where the arrows can stick in my car. He stuck the 5 arrows to the windscreen succesfully. (NOT that I am the kind of mother who allow my kids to do anything they want, but a car is just something to get me from A to B and as long as he cleans the windows himself, it’s fine by me). Then he tried to let them stick to the dashboard. No dice.

When the first one plopped loose, he gave a dramatic little yelp: “Oh, little Johnie, watch out!”

It turns out wacky son considers the arrows his children, and calls them names like Ellie, Peaches, Eddie, Madison, Little Johnie. Or no, since he watched Ice Age 3 most of the day, I hear Madison and Johnie is no more.

They are now called Crash and Syd. 

Pray for me, piepil…