Month: May 2009

Tales of a has-been

Well, I think you have to have been something significant before you can be called a has-been, but I think you can safely refer to my acting career as a has-been career… a rather insignificant one by most standards, but a stand-out time in my life nonetheless.

You see, there were days, at the beginning of this millennium, when I used to be considered ‘recognisable’. I was regularly on TV for a year (every night in fact) and was part of a small weekly chat show/info-mercial/cheesy commercial thing that, to some, made me worth staring at in the streets and pointing at in bars. It was nothing special, but fabulously well paid.

To some, it made me cool enough to invite to their functions, and to some, I was suddenly considered good enough to introduce to their friends. I’m not going to share details about what I was in, but let’s just say, um, I’ve lost a lot of weight since then.

Yep, I was that fat guy on TV. In fact, I was showing FJ (I think) the videos recently and couldn’t believe how huge my jowls were. In fact, it looked like my cheeks were stuffed with little children. Really fat little children. In reality, I’ve only lost about 5 kilos since my TV days, but I think that four of them were on my cheeks.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaannnyyywaaaaaaaaaayyyyy…

Since those days, I (along with my acting career) have faded into obscurity. For many years I was involved in the film industry (behind the scenes though) and became the person who made other people famous and actually really enjoyed that more than being stopped in the street by some person wanting to announce that they recognised me.

Gradually I went from being greeted, to being asked if I used to be on TV, to the stage that I sometimes still get… “I’m sure I know you from somewhere”. And no matter how much I assure the person that I have never met them, they are convinced that they have met me before. That’s starting to lessen now though. Especially since my cheeks decided to move to my stomach and join the fat residence there.

So, I’m certainly not used to the spotlight… anymore.

Recently I moved back into magazines (which I used to work on before my TV stint) and as a result get invited to many, many launches where I get fabulous goodie bags and show the shoes off in the hope that I give a client editorial. At these events I see everyone else being stopped to have their photo taken, and I stand smiling, hoping that I too will be picked and also have a really bad picture of me after a glass too many on the back of some newspaper being read on the loo.

Alas, it never seems to happen. Even when I’m wearing the shoes.!!!

I thought it may happen when I sat next to an ex-Miss South Africa’s boob (those things should have a licence) but I was cropped out and only my shoulder made the grade.

But now… It’s finally happened.

I’ve graced the pages of a local mag and don’t actually look that bad (I had just arrived so hadn’t drunk myself pretty or confident yet).

I’m finally a socialite. On the social pages.

Me.

Soon I’ll be friends with Edith Venter and also wear curtain fabric dresses to fancy soirees that Gwen Gill writes about.

It’s hell being famous…

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The News

I hate the news… mostly because I feel out of control. And I hate feeling out of control. I hate things happening that I can’t keep a lid on…

Like upgrading to a blackberry phone… which I’m in the process of doing. Should be simple! I order the phone, do all the necessary paperwork… go through all the steps (feeling completely in control) to be told they’re out of stock and I’ll have to wait a few weeks to get the phone.

Out of control. This was the third conversation we’d had mister Italk man. You could have told me this at the beginning, instead of telling me I would have the phone in 3 days.

I’m usually pretty patient about these things. Years ago I would have cancelled the contract and gone to another service provider who did have stock, but I’ve realised now that I can’t control everything… much to my disdain. And I’ve realised that getting angry when speaking to call centre people is useless. They hate their job more than I hate their bad service. And I don’t blame them. I worked in a corporate company recently, and it was more than I can handle. It was me or the beige walls – one of us had to go. I had my own little cubicle that felt like a cage. And I had to mail the entire company when I stepped away from my desk… “Hi all, just going to poo. See you later.”

Degrading stuff. For all you corporate types, I take my hate off to you.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaannnyyywaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyy….

So I will wait for my blackberry… because it’s pretty, and black… and will allow me to feed my blogging and facebook addiction at no extra charge. (It has free BIS – which I liked when I read up on the phone – only because it contained the word free. I’m not sure what BIS is, but it’s free and makes surfing free, so I love it). So it will help me keep my bill in control.

I do love the word free. It can pretty much get me to buy anything… the one offer was this crappy little Samsung that was so inefficient you had to practically be standing next to the person before you could have a conversation, but they offered a free Playstation 3 with the contract, and boy oh boy, was I tempted. A PS3 would look lovely with my big, pretty, black TV.

But I resisted… because I am in control… and ordered my blackberry bold. With free BIS.

But back to the news, which was the real point of my post…

I read on News 24 about a Senegalese man who’s body was exhumed from a Muslim cemetary because the man was believed to be gay. I felt my blood boil and that out of control feeling came back. I suppose it’s the ultimate denial of your humanity – that you aren’t able to rot in a piece of ground because of a sexuality you had no control in choosing. I don’t understand how a man’s sexuality can be that offensive that he can not be buried somewhere – how does his sexuality or where he decomposes really affect anyone?

It’s a sad world when lesbians are raped in an attempt to convert them by showing them what they’re missing… and where I receive mails asking to assist people in hiding because of witch hunts for homosexuals in Uganda.

Why are the Church not preaching love your neighbour as you love yourself in these instances? Jesus never said love your neighbour (but only if he or she is like you) as you love yourself… I think we as Christ followers, need to look more at the teachings of Christ. I’ll say something controversial now – but I think being a Chirst follower means focussing on his teachings as the main thrust of our beliefs – as opposed to being a Paul follower, who was a man and wrote in the context of his times for a Church that was in it’s infancy.

I think Jesus would expect us to be a lot more vocal about acceptance – because he saw humanity and not ‘type’ – than some churches are today. The church preaching acceptance would draw more people to it.

I hope we get to a point in our humanity where we stand up for the rights of others, even if their lifestyles don’t fit our mould. Where we sit at the table with those who are ostracised by communities because we appreciate the humanity in them. And when people will not be judged because of their gender, race and sexuality – three things that humans have no control over.

I wish I knew what to do to help this man’s family. All I can think off is speaking about it on this platform…

Okay, off to a happier place – going to watch the door to see if I get my blackberry…