Archive for May, 2005

the fly

This weekend I saw the U2: Go Home DVD. It took me back to a specific day in my childhood when I heard U2 for the very first time. It was one afternoon after school when I was probably about 12 years old. My older brother, Hannes, was watching a video recording of the Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert, which took place in Wembley Stadium. We couldn’t get enough of that video, especially the Metallica and Guns n’ Roses performances.

So anyway, on this particular afternoon, Hannes told me to watch the video with him, there was something cool he wanted to show me. Suddenly Cindy Crawford came on screen and announced that the transmission was going to cross over live via satellite to Las Vegas. I thought Cindy Crawford was pretty hot and thanked him for showing me this little snippet, but he said that was not what he wanted to show me. Cindy Crawford introduced the most mind blowing band in the world at that time. The band was U2 and they were in the middle of their ZOO TV world tour. The next thing, Bono was dancing around in his black leather fly suit and his black shades and cars were flying over the heads of U2 as they performed a song called “Until the End of the World”. It was a crazy performance, with bombs exploding on big screens and the Edge making the craziest guitar sounds I ever heard.

I probably watched that clip over a hundred times and I’ve been a die-hard U2 fans ever since. The performance was so cool, Bono made Cindy Crawford seem ordinary, and in the 90’s that was a pretty hard thing to do!

May 29th, 2005 6 Comments

desert island

Just finished watching High Fidelity for the eighth time with my friend David, and we were joking about Conan O’Brian’s top 5 worst TV shows ever.

Here is Herman and David’s top 5 worst TV shows between 1989 and 2005.

1. Walker Texas Ranger, Starring Chuck Norris (1989 – 2005 and still running strong)
2. Beverly Hills 90210, Starring Luke Perry and Jason Priestley
3. Star Trek. Starring William Shatner as Captain Hook (All 999 999 episodes, and 54 full length movies)
4. Noot vir Noot, Starring Johan “Travolta” Stemmet
5. Baywatch, Starring THE HOFF and much, much more.

Now tell us what is your Top 5 worst TV shows of all time, ever!

May 23rd, 2005 22 Comments

Revolution in the Valley – Andy Hertzfeld

Revolution in the Valley – Andy Hertzfeld

May 22nd, 2005 Comments Off

triple sundae

Me and a couple of friends recently went on a hiking trip in the Drakensberg Mountains. The key to enjoying any sort of outdoor hike definitely relies on some very important decisions you make before the hike, specifically regarding the choice of foods you plan to take along. The day before departing on our hike, my friend Chris and I went to the local food mart to shop for some “œlight-weight” yet “œheavy-in-taste” treats for the hike.

The next day, we were happily hiking along and enjoying the scenery. Secretly we were looking forward to our first evening in the wilderness and more specifically our feast of handpicked delicacies. Even a rainstorm straight out of hell could do little to dampen our spirits. We knew our 3-course meal was safely kept dry deep inside our backpacks, just waiting to be savoured in a few short hours.

Eventually evening came and we tenderly prepared our gourmet meal. It was nothing short of a taste sensation, as our first evening menu testifies!

Evening 1
Starter: Thick and creamy Mexican Chili and Tomato soup
Main Course: Tuna with fresh coriander and basil, smothered in a black mushroom sauce, served with Tagliatelle pasta
Desert: Mediterranean peaches in brandy, covered with fresh custard

Afterwards we topped it off with a steamy cappuccino, complete with warm milk and cinnamon.

The next morning we woke up, fresh spirited and ready to take on the new day with vigour and determination. The hike led us up to a height of 3 000m above sea level. By the time evening came we were thoroughly exhausted and eager to once again have a dinner fit for kings. We prepared our meal again, it was delicious, but afterwards I sensed a void in my stomach that somehow wasn’t filled by our meal. I couldn’™t quite put my finger on it…

Evening 2
Starter: Mexican Chili and Tomato soup
Main Course: Tuna with mushroom sauce, served with spaghetti
Desert: Peaches and custard

And off course no meal in the mountains would be complete without a warm cup of coffee to wash it all down.

Morning came on day three and a spectacular sight greeted us. A blanket of clouds covered the world and we were on top of it. We started our hike down the other side of the mountain, and no rain bothered us the whole day. Towards the evening we found a soft green hill with a beautiful view of the mountain to pitch our tents. Eventually we remembered we had to prepare our evening meal. We hastily fired up our stoves and cooked up another meal of dried out, single serving packets of “foil wrapped for extra freshness” 21st century outer-space food.

Evening 3
Starter: Tomato Quick Soup
Main Course: Tuna and 2-minute noodles
Desert: Peaches in a can

Afterwards I threw away my cup of black coffee and went straight to bed.

The next day we got up and all we could think about was food, normal food that didn’t come in a plastic wrapper! We quickly packed up and ran down the rest of the mountain to our cars. Everybody agreed to meet up at the nearest town for a quick bite to eat. We met up in the local steak house and studied the menu with concentrated interest, avoiding anything remotely related to tuna. Everybody had the same ideas.

“Waiter… Can I have a super duper steak burger, mega large coke and a double thick chocolate milkshake… oh and don’™t forget the triple sundae with cherries on top and a Grande Cappuccino with cream thank you very much!”

May 22nd, 2005 3 Comments

3000m

In 2000, after completing high school, me and a friend went to the United Kingdom with one goal in mind, to see as many live bands as possible. Apart from this goal we also drank loads of pints and fueled the British economy by joining the working class masses in embracing the crappiest jobs on earth!

As the year went on we got ourselves some tickets to go to the three day Reading Music Festival. Because our jobs were so crap, we figured we’d save some money and not buy a tent for the weekend. Instead we’ll pack light and sleep under the stars.

So on the first day of the festival, we jumped around to the sounds of Limp Bizkit (we were only 18), Rage Against The Machine (One of their last gigs ever), Foo Fighters and Blink 182. Round about 11pm we were sort of standing at the edge of the crowd enjoying Oasis. Next thing, a gentle, yet worrying drizzle started to materialize out of nowhere. I don’t know why we didn’t think of this possibility. I mean we were in the UK for crying out loud. It always rains there. We sort of panicked a bit, calmed down a bit, and then tried to do some super fast, emergency “socialising” with any girls in our immediate eye sight who might be kind enough to share their humble abodes with us for the evening. After failing dismally, we suddenly saw something very inspiring, a fully stocked camping store right in the middle of the festival grounds. We immediately forgot about our very shaky financial situations and spent a ridiculous amount of foreign currency on a two-man tent. After walking what felt like forever, we found the last bit of unoccupied grass left in the furthest corner of the festival grounds. We quickly pitched our tent and prepared ourselves for a comfortably dry evening of peaceful sleep. Our tent kept us dry for 3 nights, but because we packed “light”, we had no sleeping bags and we nearly froze to death for 3 nights. Every morning we hopped out of our tent at the crack of dawn and jumped up and down outside our tent in order to get ourselves heated up and ready to rock.

Eventually we had to return to South Africa and we brought our “Reading” tent with us. Through the years the tent got passed along between our friends, and saw many music festivals and camping weekends. In the mean time, I’ve moved on and bought another tent and forgot all about our “Reading” tent. That is, until a couple of weeks ago!

I found myself hiking in the Drakensberg mountains with some friends for 4 days. Upon reaching the summit, to my astonishment I came across one of my close friends hiking up the very same mountain. He was hiking with another party from the other side of the mountain. If this was not already a big enough coincidence, strapped to the bottom of his backpack was none other than the “Reading” tent! He borrowed it from my UK buddy and took it on the hike. He said the tent worked like a charm, that is assuming that it is not going to rain. The heavens opened up the previous night and apparently it rained harder inside the tent than outside. In the middle of the night he hastily had to find refuge in a fellow hikers tent to avoid sleeping in a lake.

So after traveling 10 000km and providing friends with a “home” for the night on many occasions, 5 years down the line I caught up with “Reading” tent on top of a 3 000m mountain, sadly not able to keep the rain out anymore!

If you have a memory of a time when the “Reading” tent was involved, feel free to add a comment!

May 17th, 2005 11 Comments

cut throat

This morning, at about 10am, me and 2 colleagues were strolling through the city centre of Pretoria on our way to see a client. A peaceful autumn breeze was in the air, sending golden leaves flying in all directions. The sun was shining, birds were chirping all around and people were happily going about their business. For a moment we were proud to be part of the human race, such an intelligent and peaceful life form, then we slipped back into reality. Suddenly we came upon a situation that was not entirely normal. In the distance, across the road, 4 guys were arguing very loudly! The funny thing however, was that one of them was our client, whom we were supposed to meet in about 10 minutes.

We quickly got over to the scene and were shocked to find a 5th guy, sitting on the pavement, covered in a stream of blood flowing from his neck! Our client, quickly managed to explain to us that he saw these two guys speed up to the sidewalk, jump out of their vehicle and run to a guy by the side of the road, we’™ll cal him Bob. They started arguing and one of the guys from the car, lets call them the “œvillains”, tried to punch Bob. However, Bob was a stocky guy with a huge black mustache, who’™s been living on a strict diet of “œmuscle fuel” for the past 5 years! He quickly dodged the punch and threw back a sucker punch, instantly knocking his opponent to the ground. The villain stumbled back to his feet in a daze, and actually tried to punch Bob again. As expected, he was instantly sent back to eat some more dirt. Now I don’t know if it’s just me, but if this happened to me, I would get up, apologise humbly, and get the hell out of there. Apparently some people don’t think like this, because the villain thought it would be a better idea to get up, pick up a beer bottle, break it on the sidewalk and stab Bob in the throat.

After inspecting their handiwork, the villains turned around and casually started walking back to their car. This is where our client came onto the scene. Having seen all this happen, he ran over and told the villains to wait right there while he called the police. Obviously they didn’t listen and continued towards their car. Suddenly another guy, we’™ll call him Arnold, jumped out from behind a tree. He also saw the whole thing and stepped in front of the 2 guys with a fully load pistol.

This was enough to make the villains stop in their tracks. Eventually the cops and an ambulance pitched up to alleviate Arnold from his duties. They arrested the “œbeer bottle warrior” and Bob was taken to the hospital. It turned out that this was a situation of road rage, which got a little bit out of hand.

Afterwards I was a amazed at the way humans could react to an every day occurrence like being cut off on a quiet city street at 10am in the morning. The bottom line is, if I cheese somebody off on the road, and they get out of their car to “talk” to me, I’™m gonna step on the gas and get the hell out of there.

May 6th, 2005 2 Comments

The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown

The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown

May 2nd, 2005 Comments Off