Month: October 2008

sitting in the office..

This week has been a busy one. The mag for the ANC Progressive Business Forum goes to bed tomorrow so we’re pushing through to get it done. I have a bit of a gap so thought I’d touch base with my blog.

I’d like to ask advice in this blog. If thats ok.

I have a friend (we’ll call him CJ), and no, this is not one of these things where you actually asking about yourself and pretendng the embarrassing situation is about a “friend”.

Wel, CJ has three sons. One is adopted – he adopted, um…lets call him runnerboy (RB) – when RB was about 10. RB’s parents had died tragically – the onne parent was murdered and the other committed suicide shortly thereafter. CJ has two boys of his own – Hero and Schleb. They’ve all got on pretty well as the years have gone on. In fact, RB was the one who asked to be adopted by them after two years of living with them. CJ and his wife were ecstatic because they adore him and it made life so much simpler legally.

RB is now 16 and in grade 11. He’s a great kid – does brilliantly in school and great on the sports field. He’s been very involved in his Church youth group and an all round great guy. He has two brothers who are significantly older than him (about 8 to 10 years) and these two really went off the rails after their parents died. Got into drugs, never finished their studies, arrested, that kind of thing. RB has been aware of this and always said he has different values and doesn’t want to grow up like his brothers. I suppose its CJ’s worst fear – that he can’t save his son from his past and that he’ll grow up like his brothers.

RB recently got a girlfriend, twiggy. She’s lovely. I think – she always blushes when she sees me and all I think she’s ever said to me is “fine thanks and you?” before walking away giggling coyly. RB met Twiggy at church and they’re both actively involved. CJ thinks she’s cool and didn’t discourage the relationship at all.

At the beginning of the year, Twiggy needed to stay over after an event they had at church. CJ agreed, after they had the sex talk and put down boundaries that RB was to stay in his room and Twiggy in hers and that they were needing to respect that. They agreed and life went on. She slept over sporadically and all seemed swell.

A few weeks ago, CJ heard noises coming from the youngest sons room (Schleb) and went to investigate. Twiggy was sleeping over in that room… and yes, you probably know where this is going, but Twiggy and RB were having a fabulous time under the covers. CJ walked in to discover them and promptly walked out gobsmacked.

Now at this stage, if I was RB, I would have phoned NASA and asked to be beamed up to some tiny planet where I could never be found, but RB confronted it and walked in to face the consequences.

This is where I need your advice because I’ve been drawn into to it to some extent. CJ is highly principled when it comes to sex before marriage and has grounded RB and said that he will never be able to see Twiggy on his own. Twiggy’s parents were called in and the situation was chatted about. RB’s response is that they made an adult decision (which a 16 year old thinks he is)and they know they want to get married some day. They used a condom each time so there was no issue for RB. CJ obviously feels differently.CJ made RB write an essay on the consequences of sex before marriage, and has made it very clear how his sin has embarrassed him and disappointed him.

RB is now rebelling to the extreme. I know he has been out drinking with his mates (to the point of passing out)- which seems pretty normal behaviour – but it was at school! And he’s incredibly angry and frustrated. He’s talking about getting tattoo’s (only because its going to make CJ angrier) and just being intolerable to live around. CJ is now considering sending RB to boarding school.

I was asked for my advice. My first response was – he’s 16, what did you expect? My next was to let the sex before marriage thing go now. He’s had sex before he’s married – its done and making him feeling guilty about it over an extended period is not going to work. The next is to deal with him like an adult – he made an adult choice and needs to deal with the consequences… if Twiggy fell pregnant, Rb would need to deal with it. He was caught bonking – he must deal with it. The consequence is that a trust relationship was broken. The agreement was that Twigs could sleep over on condition that they never had nookie. Basically. So that what needs to be punished now.

Its been two months since, and RB is still not able to see Twigs alone and use his mobile. I told CJ that morning that he couldn’t control his sons. He could suggest their values but leave them to make their own choices, and be there for them when they needed him.

And when RB starts his nonsense about getting tattoos and stuff just to get a response, to tell him to go – as soon as he matriculates.

I’m not sure if I’m helping. I’m not telling CJ what he wants to hear. He can’t control this teenager who’s lashing out…

So what does he do? How does he protect his son from a slippery slope of rebellion, maintain boundaries without controlling. He’s petrified that RB will turn out like his brothers. I told him he can’t stop it if he does – he’s just got to hope that what he’s instilled in RB’s life will win at the end of the day and trust he did the best he could do… I’m not a parent (as CJ kept reminding me), so do you have any words of wisdom I can pass onto him?

Okay, back to the mag…

Thanks for reading!

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rage

I don’t often get angry… but at the moment it’s all I feel… and the worst thing is I tend to take it out on people who don’t deserve it. You see, I’m generally a positive guy. I don’t often get angry and usually see the funny side… but right now I feel like I’ve lost the plot. And all because of Renault.

I’ve decided that Renault have every right to treat me like an idiot because they know I’m an idiot for choosing a Renault.

*sighs*

I’m not going to bore you with the details, but my pretty little car was left in the hands of the Renault muggles for three days and the experience left me a raging, screaming idiot. I know I shouldn’t sweat the small stuff. But its that whole you’re being treated badly (because they can) and there is absolutely nothing you can do.

So this rage has really helped my new found Gautenger aggression. A lady sat on my arse in traffic this morning and I swore like never before. She deserved it. Just because. And I felt awful and wish I could find her to explain my Renault story.

I will get over it, and myself… just as soon as I’ve vented to the world.

On a more positive note, I went to a launch lunch today and got the most fabulous goodie bag…

Its amazing how a goodie bag can brighten your day – all sorts of interesting things – wine opener, ice cream scoop (a nifty, trendy one), a body wash thingie that will make a great gift for someone who doesn’t read this blog (their fault!), R200 off sunglasses, a beady bracelet thing (another cool gift), and some other stuff I can’t remember…

good times, good times!

Let’s catch up…

I’m here… I’m here… My blog has been quiet, I know. Mostly due to the ANC. Seriously. We’re doing a new mag for the ANC and its proving to be massively interesting, but quite hectic at the same time. It seems our ministers are busy people – and especially now that they have colleagues resigning and heading off to a party-that-shall-not-be-named (although most journalists were alerted to the new party and its name before Lekota made the non-announcement).

Anyyyywwaaayyy… that’s my excuse.

I have loads to blog about, so I’m not really sure where to start.

One of the big things (for me, that is) is that I finally became a Gautenger. Last week I changed my lovely CA registration plates to GP ones… and now have no excuse for cutting across lanes when I have no idea where I am (which is often – I have zero sense of direction and survive on GPS alone). In addition, I now have to learn how to swear, so when I have a taxi swerving in front of me I can speak Vaalie and say “You f*&*ing idiot, open your f*&*ing eyes” while I pull a zap and hoot at the same time. It’s not easy I tell ya. All this rage is not easy to access. I’ve upped my coffee intake in the mornings, so that should help with accessing the aggression.

My deal old car is not pleased. It broke down the very next day – out of sheer rebellion I’m sure. Its used to being a pretty little Cape Town thing.

Then of course, there is the Mamma Mia show. I nearly pulled out about 1000 times. We had zero rehearsals (and I’m only good when I practice) and I was expected to be the dark haired chick… I’ve since found out her name was Frida. Serious.

Anyway, the show went really well! The audience (about 80 folk) had a great time and found our unrehearsed antics delightful. I think the fact that unlimited wine was included in the ticket price was a great help.

We sang almost 20 ABBA songs and had three costume changes. Started off in a tropical shirt and boardies (in true Mamma Mia – the movie style), then a seventies inspired glam top (that made me itch and sweat).

Then we made our grand finale in what must have been the tackiest Agnetha and Frida I’ve ever seen. The audience stood in rapturous applause. Did I mention the unlimited wine?

It turned out to be great fun and the restaurant have booked two more shows.

All I say is, thank goodness I have a day job.

Disco Inferno… pics at last

Ok, so here are some pics of the show I did… like I said before, it was great fun – a great cast and vibe, the songs we got to sing were fun and the audiences were cool (packed houses always help)….

So here’s a pic of us rehearsing. It was freezing in the venue (thats why we drank so much Old Brown Sherry, ahem)

And here’s where we get going… my leading lady and I singing our first song together “You to me are everything”…

I’m attacked by the girls, they writhe all over me while they sing “Hotstuff”… I really am in there…

And here’s me singing my favourite song in the show, Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now”

And in my gay leather gear – singing “YMCA” and a song we stole from Grease “Those Magic Changes”…


and our big finale… hehehe

I’ll see how the response goes to these and decide if I should post pics about Mamma Mia – the sing along dinner…

Mamma Mia

Many might think this strange, but I have to tell you this with all honesty… I hate ABBA. I’m not a big fan of their music. I can understand their appeal – pretty Swedish people singing about being dancing queens or yelling out to someone named Chiquitita. I remember seeing Priscilla Queen of the Desert and thinking it quite strange that the one guy was totally obsessed with the blonde chick. So much so that, after following her to the loo, he went in after she was done and fished out a left-behind remnant which he wore around his neck.

Seriously…

So this ABBA thing is weird.

That all said, I got a call from a friend the other day asking if I wanted to do a show with him. Now, that I’m a disco diva… ahem… I said sure, why not…

I really must learn to ask questions before saying yes.

So I’m doing Mamma Mia – the sing-along. Its fully booked and I’m apparently the dark haired chick.

Feel free to start mocking me now…

Friday night..

Well, its Friday night and I’m still cooped up at the office. The magazine has to be with the printers by midnight so I’m still churning away… its all quite exhausting but surprisingly worth it. I love that I’m in an industry where you create something… you see a finished product. A baby of sorts…

The problem is that I really feel like I have to give birth to the child. Something I’ll clearly never experience, but its a nice analogy…

So, thats why the blog’s been quiet. I have lots to tell you so I’ll be up and writing when I get the creative juices back. They’re rebelling at the moment..

Oh, and I need a haircut… I look like a barbarian… just so you know.