This is what I got. Laurika Rauch’s 19 Treffers van 21 jaar. I love it, I love it, I love it! I got it last night at Musica. Was listening intermittently while watching The West Wing, which is my current obsession.
It brings back fond memories of the early nineties, when I would watch television and Wielie Walie or Liewe Heksie would be punctuated with ad breaks featuring Ms. Rauch’s music. My all-time favourite song? Mmmkay. It’s Stuur groete aan Mannetjies Roux. I’m not quite sure what makes this song so special. Back then I didn’t even realise how sad it is. I only liked the cadence.
But now I listen to the CD with a more mature ear and I marvel at her wonderful words. It’s lovely. I think I’ll buy an Afrikaans CD every couple of months or so. God, it’s fabulous.
Some weeks ago, I met one of Susan’s friends. We had a great day, starting off with coffee at one of my favourite haunts. I took one sneer-filled look at this girl, and immediately dismissed her as a ditz. Come on! She was wearing labels, labels, and yet more labels. Sunglasses, jeans, top, everything. Well, almost. The only thing that wasn’t a label was the bag from Woolworths. But even that looked very supermodelly. No matter that she bought it for R100 at the sale.
So immediately I thought of her as an inferior label whore, whereas I am a label snob. (It probably means I can’t afford labels, so I look down on those who can). Whatever. And when she opened her mouth, it was only about her boyfriend and about money. I later understood that she supports her family on her tiny salary, so I felt bad for thinking so little of her.
But what made me think hard was when she asked me where Scandinavia is. I did my best to appear “educated” and “snobby”, and gave her a run-down of Scandinavian countries. I thought to myself: “OMG, how can anyone be so stupid?” I knew where Scandinavia is when I was in primary school, why doesn’t she know this at 26/27?
Fast-forward a couple of weeks, and everywhere I go, everyone who talks to me, I am bombarded with phrases such as South-Eastern Asia, Eurasia, Eastern Asia and Western Asia. I felt flummoxed. What’s happening here? Am I supposed to know the difference? I thought Asia was just that: Asia? Was I wrong? OMG, I’m stupid.
I can’t blame my school education. Really, I can’t. I can’t even blame it on the fact that I only studied Geography until Standard 7. That’ll be Grade 9 for those of you who do not know the old Standard system.
I blame it on my ignorance.
Although I do believe that my old History teacher should be replaced with a younger, more liberal teacher. Something I remember happened in our final year. Or it might have happen during the previous year, I can’t remember which.
We were discussing the year’s curriculum. She had this cute habit of sitting on one of the school desks and talking to us, with her short little legs swinging around. She was adorable, probably still is. She had a tiny little voice and was pushing 60. So, she sat there with the book on her lap, staring at the class and told us what we’ll cover. “South African history, tick. The UN, tick. African history, tick. No, hold that thought, people. African history is mostly about war and genocide and you won’t even be able to pronounce the people’s names, never mind even spelling it. So I think we won’t be covering African history.”
So, please do not test me on African history? At one stage, I would have been able to identify every single country on the African map. But I’m only recently starting to appreciate that every country’s history is about war, and to a lesser extent, genocide. It’s not just particular to the African situation. Read Levi’s If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller and The Unbearable Lightness of Being and you’ll see what I mean. Or don’t. I’m such a typical lover of fiction, that I tend to refer to fiction and not non-fiction.
So yeah. I shall buy some biographies next week. I shall use Wikipedia right now to learn some more about Mr Idi Amin Dada who expelled Uganda’s Indians. OMG.
I don’t think I can do “dating” again. I’ve been on so many dates, most of which were awful. A big number of them turned out to be non-dates.
Take Young Jewish Guy for example. We met on JDate. Yeah, I’m a wanna be Jew. He made it quite clear that he’s a student. I was fine with that. I made it quite clear that I’m not exactly white, and that I’m not exactly Kosher. He was fine with that.
I didn’t, however, realise that Cape Town is a fucking fishing village, and that he’d probably know Toby. Fuck number one. Half an hour before our coffee date, I spoke to Toby (this was in 2006, btw) and told him I’m going to meet Young Jewish Guy. Toby snickered and told me Young Jewish Guy is a prick.
I didn’t believe him. Young Jewish Guy phoned me ten minutes before we were supposed to meet, telling me some of his friends had decided to see a movie, and would I like to join them? I was really keen to meet him, so said “Yeah, sure” and skipped to the movie house. It was around the corner from where I was waiting. Working, sorry.
I got there and saw that Young Jewish Guy is balding, short and fat. I can do two of the three; I can’t do a menage a trois. In fact, I have done two of the three before, and it didn’t bother me too much. But all three? Eeeew.
Determined to be pleasant, I sauntered up to the little group, noticed that he’s drinking white wine out of a plastic (or foam, I can’t really remember which) cup, and introduced myself to him. Oh, I forget, Glen was with me. He spotted Young Jewish Guy in the crowd. Glen decided he’s not going to waste a lovely Friday night protecting me from whatever imaginary evils are lurking there, so he left. I stood next to Young Jewish Guy and his friends, we chatted for a bit until Young Jewish Guy casually asked me if I would mind paying my own ticket.
I gritted my teeth, gave him my best voice-dripping-with-sarcasm, opened my wallet, and darted to the booth to pay for my ticket when I realised I shouldn’t have to pay for anything on the first date.
He shouldn’t fucking expect me to 1) pay anything, 2) have to mingle with his dorky friends, 3) watch him drink wine out of a plastic (or foam, I can’t remember which) cup and 4) date a short, fat, bald guy.
So I told him that actually, I have a slight headache and could I take a rain cheque, please? He looked absolutely dejected. I nearly felt bad, but another look at the plastic (or foam) cup, and I steeled myself. I bid them a pleasant evening, and ran to catch up with Glen, who was already way ahead of me.
I’m sure there are great men out there. But they’re married. Or gay. Or emotionally unavailable. Or all three. So for now, I’ll just remain as comfortably numb as I am and worry about where I’ll sleep tonight.
There are some stuff happening right now that’s a bit much for me to handle. I can feel things may slide back into a maelstrom if I don’t stop it …
But do I want to stop it?
I saw two good friends today. Uri and my darling Glen. It’s the first time in months that I saw Glen again (fucking dodgy grammar, please find it in your heart to forgive me). And I was able to vent to Glen about some of the kak that is hitting my fan at the mo. Uri, well, I kept mum. It’s not as though he won’t understand, but he’s so good at pinpointing what’s wrong, it makes me want to cry. Argh. And I hate crying when I’m wearing mascara.
So I bought myself some pwetty things to make my heart sparkle again. I got new skanky red shoes yesterday already. They’re my new fuck me shoes. Every girl should have a pair of FMSs. Today I got new jeans. From Edgars, nogals. But they’re no-name jeans; I don’t do labels. I’m a label snob. It makes me look thin and pwetty! I’m so very thrilled with myself.
And then I got some new red wine glasses at Clicks. I’m far too easy to please. I don’t have to spend a lot of money; I spent R200 on the jeans and the shoes. Only!
Yes, I know I shouldn’t use shopping as therapy. Yes, I should tackle my problems instead of dodging them. But what if I just can’t? What if I’m having nightmares from them? What if my paranoia is so bad I refuse to believe what people tell me? Who can help me?
It’s Saturday 16 February, 9 days before pay day and I woke up at 5:30am. Well, I didn’t wake up this early because I’m excited that pay day is one day closer, no, sir. I normally wake up this early on a Saturday because of butterflies in my tummy: I’m gonna see my darling.
Today is different. I thought I heard someone outside the flat. I’m paranoid like that. But I became like this for a reason. I suffered 3 break ins in 2006/07.
The first time was rather funny. I got home one Sunday afternoon and noticed the DVD player is gone. I call Toby. “Hey. The DVD Player is gone. Did you take it?” I ask him. “No, why would I do that? We’ve got a DVD Player.” he says.
Now I’m perplexed. If one stays on the 6th storey, you feel rather immune to the ravages of the outside world, and this includes being burgled. Who would honestly want to scale up your building, only to take a single item? But it happened, so it has to be someone.
The second time it happened, wasn’t funny. I got home at 2am to find out that my laptop, tv set, DVD player were gone. I didn’t hesitate calling my then flatmate. “Jou ma se ****!” I shouted at him. Over and over again, I insulted him. It could not have been anyone else who took the stuff. I locked the damn security gate and there was no fucking sign of forced entry.
The third time was fucking scary. I was living with Asanda and was alone in the flat that morning when I woke up at about 4am. I still thought to myself: “Cool, now I can finish Half of a Yellow Sun!” Alas, that didn’t quite happen that morning. I didn’t wake up by myself; I actually awoke from some rather strange noises in the flat.
I was thinking to myself what to do and worried they’ll come into the bedroom. Well, I didn’t have to worry they’ll do it; they had already been inside the bedroom by that stage. The bastards took all my stuff, which were in the corner, and they threw about half of it in the lounge. They didn’t touch Asanda’s stuff. They took fuckall of hers, only my stuff. I lost memories that day. I lost my funky Swarovski earrings, which I treasured immensely. They were one of a fucking kind, those earrings. Very similar to my skanky red shoes, these earrings were so very unique, I’d be complemented about them on a daily basis. No one else had them. Or rather, no one else had ever seen earrings like those. My heart was broken. Is broken.
My not so intelligent friend, Beatrice, reckons Asanda asked some of her friends to do it. I mean, why would they not steal any of her stuff? Why only mine?
So. What did I learn from all these incidents?
- Insurance companies are stupid. I claimed for much more than just a DVD player.
- Insurance companies are stupid. I claimed for much more than just a DVD player, tv set and a laptop. Do not trust people who are substance abusers (my now ex flatmate). Just don’t.
- Insurance companies are clever. I claimed for too much and lost my insurance cover. Don’t crash at a friend/frenemy’s place too long.
In late 2006 I had dinner with a friend at one of our favourite restaurants in Kloof Street. We were having a lovely time and all and all; I wasn’t worried about my Virgin Card being declined and we had a lot of catching up to do. I regaled her with my latest dating horror stories and she amused me with anecdotes about her well-endowed boyfriend.
Eventually, we asked for the bill. Our waitress stomped to our table, looked a little sheepish, and handed me a business card. I thought that perhaps it’s a talent scout who noticed my fantastic cleavage, and who wants to cast me in his latest block-buster. Alas, it was an old, old man. He was enarmoured of my dewy eyes, good skin, but most importantly, my ample cleavage.
I emailed Anton the following day: “…So why did you send your business card; why didn’t you buy us a drink instead?”
He acts surprised by my question. As if. We were supposed to meet for drinks the following week, but I just couldn’t let myself go: he’s old, fat and fucking ugly! This happened a couple of times and then finally I relented. He took me to The Codfather in Camps Bay – fuck, now it’s forever tainted with his memory, and then proceeded to give me R200 for food when I got out of his krok later that evening. I didn’t want it; he insisted. Fuck.
Men were always trying to save me back then. But as soon as they find out just how much saving I really need, they fuck off.
We went out once or twice after that, but nothing ever came of it. I told him I’m only interested in friendship, nothing else. He wasn’t pleased with that and tried to get me to reconsider. I didn’t, but still kept in touch once a month or so.
Fast forward a couple of months and I’m once again without a job and on the verge of being evicted. I phoned Anton, asked him if his offer to put me up should anything ever happen to me, is still standing. I didn’t even bother asking about his offer to sponsor my University Fees… He hesitates for a bit, then tells me that yes, it’s still standing. I tell him “…good, I’ll see you tomorrow.”
Some random Gumtree guy had given me enough money – R800 – to afford a moving company’s services just two days prior to that phone call to Anton. So I thought I was sorted.
Ha! I moved in on that particular day and exactly one and a half weeks later he kicks me out. He cited my messiness as reason. I reckon that one and a half weeks I stayed with him were some of the most fucking soul destroying days I ever experienced: I was far away from my familiar haunts; I was out of job; my money was fast running out and I had very little motivation to find a new job. The deal was that I could stay there for as long as I needed, yes, even if I wanted to study. Oh well.
I’m glad he kicked me out. Really, I am. I still find it difficult to believe that I thought he would treat me with respect. I wasn’t even allowed to watch videos on my iPod, and he played music throughout the night. He had a maid but he expected me to clean up his mess, especially the fucking carpet. Whenever I go anywhere I had to explain myself. He even once made me sleep on the kitchen floor when he had a girl over… But please don’t think we shared a bed. No, we didn’t. I moved in with my bed, bookcase and everything else bar my white items.
Perhaps I’m casting myself in a very favourable light; perhaps I gave him too much grief. It was, after all, a bachelor flat. But. I was desperate. Anywhere would have been better than on the street. I didn’t really want to become a larnie bergie. Even though that fictional experience would have given me much material for my forthcoming best-sellers.
I don’t know why I’m sharing this. Perhaps I want to get it out of my system. Perhaps I want to warn myself not to ever trust anyone again. Perhaps I want to tell myself … oh fuck it.
How to survive – Apetown style
Many, many of my friends and acquaintances have told me over the years they admire me; I can hustle when I’m really pushed into a corner. At some stage I thought of hosting a monthly class, aka Carrie from SATC, but on how to get men to fund your admittedly-not-so-lavish-lifestyle.
What I have learnt over the years (really only since 2006, if I have to be honest) is that men will give anything for a really good blowjob. Even more if you swallow their stuff. Don’t get me wrong: I love swallowing the right guy’s stuff. And that’ll be Victor, as I did on Saturday. It wasn’t bad, actually… Anyway. Anyone else, well, it’s kinda eeew. But I’ll do it if the money/reward/spank is good enough.
So how did I survive being fired three times in 2006-7? Oh, it was easy.
I pilfered a lot last year. For some strange reason, I pilfered a ton of books! That didn’t really help me to keep my tummy full; it was an attempt to distract me from my poor surroundings. Sometimes I would return the pilfered item to a different store and receive a refund. Depending on which store it is I could then buy something else with that money/credit note. That is how I managed to buy a kettle early last year.
On another occasion, I pilfered a really cute clock. The price: R199. I’m not entirely sure what I did with the credit I received from the store. I think I bought another towel; I was gatvol of Toby using my damn towels. On another occasion, I pilfered some really fancy perfume. I managed it with a horde of sales assistants crowding around me.
The men in my life also helped me a lot. I think I’ve already written about Muhannad and how he used to give me money. R2000 here, R3000 there, it doesn’t matter; he’s got more money than Allah. Uri also helped me a bit. I once placed an ad – I placed many, many ads – on Gumtree, to which many guys responded. One of them contacted me and made the mistake of constantly calling me. Once, he called me a couple of minutes after Muhannad cancelled on me. So I was teary and not in a good mood. I then told him I’m upset because I’m getting evicted from my flat. Well, it was true!
The very next day, he drove from wherever he was staying and gave me R800 to help me. Yes, he wanted to shag me, but it didn’t happen. Remember I said I don’t do coloured guys? I never heard from him again.
So when I didn’t receive money from random Gumtree men, I would receive it from Uri or Toby or even from Anton.
Anton’s a character and a third. He started out very nice, and then turned progressively bad, then good, then bad. Anton is a character for another blog post on another day after I had had two or more glasses of red wine and I’m listening to angry chick music.
Another survival tactic was my Virgin Credit Card. Wow. What an amazing contraption. I don’t know if I’ll ever pay what I owe to Mr Branson, I think I’ll just worship his card thrice daily. It kept me from starving at the end of 2006. Unfortunately, when I thought I needed it most, Mr Price picked up that it is a Hot Card and alerted Virgin Money. At that stage I was already 7k over my limit of only 5k. Well, it was my fault: I asked them to lower the limit, thinking I won’t really need a 7k credit card limit. So silly of me, I know.
So I knew what it feels like when I wanted you to imagine you’re at the till and you want the card to go through and not be declined.
Oh. I also did a tiny bit of freelancing. Not much. Not enough. But I did it, and it somehow got me a job at my present company. God knows what will happen if they find my blog.
So, kids. Do not think I’m nice. I’m not. I know how to take care of myself. I might never become the bergie with Swarovski earrings, but I will always have street smarts. If Uri decides my blowjobs are kak, I’ll find some other sugar daddy in a beat. Trust Craigslist/Gumtree/(insert random, dodgy bar’s name here) for that.
Hmmm. Methinks I may need to ingest something not liquid. So, cheers vir eers! – Ant Stienie van Agter Elke Man. (The trippy writing style I attribute to my boobs being as big as they are today and also to a rather nice 2007 Robertson Winery Sauvignon Blanc. It looks cheap, and it is – only R24 at Pick n Pay – but it’s damn nice!
Christ. I finally got out of bed… I can’t stop myself from reminiscing today. About all the men I’ve met who were just so very wrong for me. There’s one in particular that I will always wonder about … I’ve got, or rather, I had a thing for internet dating and posted an ad early December 2006 for a man to take care of me. Yes, that’s correct.
He responded by calling me and we spent half an hour on the telephone. That evening, I slept over at Toby’s place, shagged him and felt pretty damn sorry for myself. Muhannad tried to call me, but I blocked his calls. He called me the following day and we arranged to meet somewhere in Long Street for a cup of coffee. The coffee turned into lunch, which turned into dinner.
I saw him the following day again. And the day after. We had a hectic couple of days together, during which he bought me a cute little ring for R11 475. He spent well over 20k on me over a two-week period.
While I certainly liked him, I got caught up in his money. Yes, we did, strangely enough, have a lot to talk about. We both liked reading, so this was great. He wrote a paper on The Epic of Gilgamesh when he was in college!
Alas, it was not be be. He was too jealous, too short (in my opinion, though I desperately wanted to act as though I don’t mind), too different – he’s a practicing Muslim, he wanted me to change how I dress, he didn’t approve of my gay BFF.
Things came to an abrupt halt when he wanted to have sex with me without a condom. I told him no! I don’t know where he’s been, he doesn’t know where I’ve been, right? He then packed my stuff, and took me to my apartment the very next day, which was 1 January 2007. It was the worst new year’s day of my entire life. I had very little money to my name, I was without a job (I had been fired from my last job just a couple of weeks before), I couldn’t face my family, I felt as though I had absolutely no friends.
Muhannad is a very lonely man. He’s richer than god herself, but he’s sad and lonely. Now, I’m sad and lonely as I sit and type this, but that’s for entirely different reasons. I’m sad because I miss Victor and I’m lonely because I’m becoming a hermit and don’t go out anymore. Muhannad, however, has many, many, many friends. Many more than I could want to be friends with. Yet he’s still lonely. They’re all much younger and can’t relate to him at all.
At least my friends are my age and are in similar circumstances so they can relate. Oy, that sounds bad, hey?
Anyway. So I wonder if I’m just reminiscing now, or if I really do miss him. And what do I miss most about him? Is it the money? Especially now, as I’m wondering how exactly I will endure January 2008? Or do I miss the silly conversations we had, the many laughs, him cooking for me?
I’m sure I just miss the money. It was lovely not having to worry about money. It was lovely to receive R1000 to spend on my hair and my nails. ha!
oh well. That’s all gone now. We no longer speak, and I wouldn’t want to speak to him anyway. I may not have morals, but I will most certainly not put my life at risk just for some bling.
I have such fond memories from singing this song back in the early nineties with my girlfriends! Now, this is the first time I see the music video. Jam Alley would probably not have played this, or would they have? Perhaps. Those were the days, my friend!
Those were also the days before we got to realise just how unreliable men truly are. Gone is our innocence. Back then, we mouthed the lyrics, not knowing what it meant. Back then, I thought it was a mommy singing the words to her baby daughter. Ha! I was so silly, so naive, so .. What does it say of me at 25? Why do I allow myself to feel this bitter?
Should we stop listening to such soppy love songs? It feels so good to listen to music like this, though. Should I instead listen to music created by angry white men? I think I’ll watch this youtube video a couple more times, and then relegate it to the back of my mind, to the same place where I keep my hopes of ever meeting a guy who is reliable, honest and sexy, all at the same time.