How not to lose (or Backs attract knives but..)

Don’t go at it alone.

If you go at it alone, that is how you lose,
Just close your eyes, hold out your hand and trust that someone will take it,
When you are back to back, taking on the the world, both of you can make it
You just have to trust someone with your back and when you find a knife in it, remember that backs attract knives,
But going at it alone attracts failure in all lives.
Don’t go at it alone.

And don’t take it personally.

If you take it personally, that’s when you lose.
No one was born with the sole purpose of hurting you, don’t get confused,
People who take it personally end up with their back to the wall and protecting it ferociously,
If you try this, how you lose atrociously; because now you’re going at it alone,
which is something we shouldn’t do.
Backs attract knives, it’s just what they do;
Don’t take it personally, and when you fall, don’t back yourself into a wall
And never go at it alone.

Don’t have elaborate plans.

If you have elaborate plans, that’s when you lose.
Happiness and fulfillment are not destinations but decisions you choose
You will know your plans were convoluted when your back feels heavy,
Just take out the knives, lose desire for perfection and start again already,
Wanting no flaws attracts knives to your back and weary backs attract walls;
Yet walls cannot hug. They cannot comfort or console.
Walls cannot love; and those with their backs to the wall go at it alone,
And that is not something we should condone

How to win.

Instructions unclear.

But when you’re winning, you will know;
You’ll day-dream, and crave, and love, and you’ll be loved; your happiness will show;
You dance in the sunshine because it’s bright out,
You dance in the rain because it sounds like music on a night out;
When it no longer feels like you’re winning, and you feel a bit of pain
Just pull out the knives from your back and try again;
If you’re lucky, those who stuck them in there are long gone without their blade,
Luckier if they’re stand before you with a sincere promise and a band-aid
Remember, it’s not always “them”, we all can wield our own
You could find your own knife stuck in your back when you let yourself down;
But no matter which direction you’re thrown when knocked down,
The only guaranteed way to lose is to go at it alone.

 

Don’t go at it alone.

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A Message from a Bottle (after, and before, the last drop)

And from the dark clouds, icy rain on tempting faces,

In the dark clouds, trendy rap beats echo in empty spaces,

There, ones with lonely eyes surrounded by bright lights,

When it fails, hopeful wishers leave the fight for another night

Unsteady legs whisk away a drowning man,

A dying Sun sets on broken hearts in the end,

It’s hard to see clearly when eyes are heavy,

 

But it’s harder to think clearly when eyes are blurry,

A dying son sets on broken hearts in the end,

Un-sturdy legs are kicked from beneath a drowning man,

When it fails, hopeless wishers take flight in the dead of night,

The once longing eyes surrounded by bright lights

In the dark clouds, fading heartbeats in empty places,

From the dark clouds, icy pain lamenting faces

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The Princess and the Peasant Pt 1

Once upon a time lived a princess and her parents in a castle. She had grown up playing with a prince from a neighbouring kingdom and as they got older, it was expected the two would get married and unify the once warring kingdoms. As the princess and the prince grew older together, their feelings towards each other diverted. The prince was hopelessly in love but respectfully kept his distance and feelings in check. On the other hand, the princess felt that he was nothing more than a very close friend and trusted ally, although she understood it was her duty to facilitate the unification of the two kingdoms through matrimony.

The Princess often spent afternoons roaming through markets and public spaces in a rather poor disguise – although it was effective. One afternoon, she bumped into a peasant trader, Jerry. Jerry was just about the princess’ age and was the last born in a family of five brothers. He had a multitude of nephews and nieces and his parents were aged. Jerry’s family struggled to survive and some of his older brothers often resorted to theft, breaking into nearby lords’ fields and stealing food to feed their large family. On that fateful afternoon, the princess and the peasant felt a connection and they started meeting each other more frequently at the same market square in the afternoons.

One day, the princess can to the trader’s stall and it was empty. She was visibly disappointed however, she felt a hand tap on her shoulder. When she turned around, there stood Jerry. He said although his family needed the income, he felt so strongly about the princess and offered to take her to a quiet place by the river where he often spent time alone when he needed to get away from the stress. She was excited and followed him to the riverbank where they sat for hours until the sun began to set. Just before she said her goodbyes, she took off her disguise and revealed to Jerry that she was actually Princess Tamsin. Jerry pretended to be shocked and Tamsin laughed.

‘Was it that obvious?’ she asked.

Jerry said the disguise would fool anyone but after spending a few hours talking to and listening to Tamsin, it would be obvious that she was the princess.

‘You know I am expected to marry the prince right?’

Jerry nodded and felt a slight pang of sadness.

‘I have grown fond of you Jerry,’ she said, ‘and I know being with you will land us both in trouble but I don’t care. I want you.’

Jerry sat in silence and contemplated his words. He knew the princess was right but he could not pretend that he was not tempted to just run away with her. That night at their dinner table where a bland dinner was shared by just over a dozen of his family, he sat in silence. Two of his immediate unmarried older brothers noted how he looked distressed and later on, after the others had gone to bed, they summoned Jerry to the fireplace and asked what the matter was. Jerry revealed that he was seeing the princess in secret and both older brothers were shocked and laughed in bewilderment. They decided that the next day, Jerry would go back to his stall as usual and the brothers would lurk nearby and monitor all the customers that would visit his stall from a short distance away.

Surely enough, the next day Jerry set up his stall and in the middle of the morning, the princess came by the stall. She smiled and gave Jerry a warm hug and the older brothers looked on in disbelief.

‘I was moved by the story of your family yesterday, and I felt bad that you had to sacrifice your day to spend time with me,’ she said.

‘You have known me for who I am for so long and yet you have asked nothing of me except for my attention and I appreciate that’ said the princess as she took out a pouch of gold coins.

‘I am buying all your stock,’ said Tamsin. Jerry opened his mouth to protest but the princess held up her hand and said ‘Let me finish, you’re not getting a day off quite yet. I want you to stay here and I want you to continue working but this time, you will accept no money from the poorest of your customers and you shall tell them not why you will be giving them my stock for free.’

Jerry smiled and kissed the princess’ hand and she was off after promising to come back tomorrow. No sooner was she gone did Jerry’s brothers spring up to the stall and excitedly discussed with Jerry what had just happened. They agreed to let Jerry fulfil the princess’ wishes and they would discuss the matter later on in the evening. Today they would have a fine stew for everyone and Jerry’s nephews and nieces would be in for a surprise cake.

After a long day of pleasantly surprising his customers, Jerry returned home to a jolly family dinner, it was all smiles and no one went to bed early or hungry for that matter. For the first time in what seemed like ages, their home was filled with laughter and singing and dancing. Eventually, the young ones were put to bed and the elderly parents retired to sleep. Jerry, his four older brothers and the wives of the eldest two remained and it was revealed to the rest that Jerry was seeing the princess. The women were pleasantly surprised and full of advice on how a lady should be treated. One of the brothers brought out some wine which had been purchased earlier with some of the gold coins from the princess. They spoke about how nights like this would be a daily thing only if Jerry can keep the princess happy, but Jerry was sceptical. He knew that there was not much he could offer the princess except his undying love.

When the two oldest brothers and their wives went off to bed, Jerry and the other two of his brothers remained.

‘You know it won’t last right?’ Richard, the third eldest spoke up. John nodded in agreement.

‘She is just enjoying this adventure but she knows her duty is to marry that prince and give our kingdoms a real shot at lasting peace,’ John said, ‘enjoy it while you still can.’

‘She is not in love with him you know,’ started Jerry, ‘she told me she wants to run away with me.’

They all agreed that running away with a princess was a terrible idea and perhaps the moment should just be enjoyed while it lasts. The very next day, the princess came back to Jerry’s stall and she looked excited.

‘Last night I told my mother about you,’ she whispered, ‘and she said that this would not go down well with the king however, he is a father first and the king second and that if I was truly in love with you, then I would have to tell both my father and the prince about the choices I am making.’

The queen had suggested that over the coming week, she would find the right time to inform her husband and that that Jerry should be prepared to be invited to dinner at some point to be introduced to the royal family. Tamsin had siblings and an alliance could still be forged even if the prince was to be disappointed by her choices. As Jerry and Tamsin spoke, they did not notice two figures lurking in the shadows watching them. Jerry once again closed his stall early and took the princess to their secret spot by the riverbank. The two shadows did not follow them, instead, they went back straight to the queen and reported what they saw. The queen went and reported the developments to the king who immediately declared it a disaster and that something needed to be done. Perhaps they could arranged for the family to be shipped off to the neighbouring kingdom and paid handsomely to stay away – the alliance with the prince and his kingdom was crucial to a lasting peace and one little girl’s heart was not more important than risking a war which could end thousands of lives, result in poverty for many and create a multitude of orphans.

‘No,’ the king said, ‘this must not be allowed to happen.’

After dinner, Jerry once again sat with John and Richard. He revealed to his older brothers what the princess had told him earlier but none of them looked too excited.

‘The princess was followed,’ John said.

‘It’s true,’ Richard corroborated, ‘there were two shady men watching you and the princess but luckily they did not spot us. You are in too deep little brother, they are going to have you killed.’

Jerry was in shock and did not know what to say.

‘You have to end this and hope they will leave us alone’ said John.

‘And it’s not just you any more, you are putting this whole family in danger’ added Richard.

‘But I believe it when Tamsin says she loves me, she would never let anything happen to me.’ Jerry was confident in this statement.

‘That may be true, but maybe she won’t even know what is happening. John and I spoke and we have an idea, but we have to move fast because we do not know what they are planning to do. John will stand in for you at the stall tomorrow and when the princess comes, he will tell her that you took the day off.’

‘Right,’ John continued, ‘so I will tell her you went off to some secret place and I think she will come and look for you by the river.’

Jerry looked puzzled, ‘You knew this whole time that I go there?’

‘There are no secrets in this family little brother,’ said Richard with a smile, ‘I will be on the look out to check if the princess was once again followed and if she was, I will distract them and make sure she gets away and they can’t find her. That way you can explain these details to her and find out if she really loves you, maybe talk her into convincing her parents not to do something sinister.’

Jerry contemplated this and thought it was a reasonable idea. And so the next day, Jerry went straight to the spot on the riverbank. He waited there for what seemed like ages, perhaps the princess had not come. However, some time after midday, there was Tamsin. She looked flustered.

‘I think some people followed me from the castle,’ she said, ‘I am not sure who they are but I am afraid Jerry. I went round in circles before coming here because I wanted to make sure I lost them.’ She flung into his arms and Jerry assured her that they would be safe here for a while and that he would walk her back to the castle.

‘We have to stop meeting like this,’ Tamsin started, ‘if I am recognise, we could both end up in a lot of danger. Tonight, you are coming with me to the castle and I will be introducing you to my parents whether they are ready for it or not.’

Jerry was stunned but he agreed to the plan. They lay there in the sun, hand in hand but were soon interrupted by two masked goons.

‘Hey there boy!’ said a hoarse voice behind the man who held a knife, ‘surrender all your gold or the girl gets it.’ The second goon yanked Tamsin to her feet and as he did so, part of her disguise loosened and fell off.

‘Well, well, well, what do we have here?’ said the second goon in an even coarser voice, ‘if it isn’t the royal hiney!’

‘Just our luck,’ said the first goon wielding a knife, ‘quick, tie the princess and her boyfriend, we could ransom them for 5,000 gold coins.’

‘Please let her go!’ screamed Jerry, ‘just take me and I will give you whatever you want.’

‘Well, do you have even 100 gold coins, huh, do you?’ spat the second goon as he started to tie Jerry hands.

‘Judging by those rags, I’d be surprised if you even had 50,’ said the first one, still in a very coarse voice as he was subduing a struggling princess. But then, he chuckled and Jerry expression changed.

‘Wait a minute,’ Jerry said, ‘Richar….’ The second goon covered Jerry’s mouth and checked to see if the princess heard him. He ordered that the two be blindfolded and split up to be taken to a hidden holding place while the ransom was being negotiated. The princess was blindfolded and led away by the first goon and as she was led away, John took of his mask. When Richard and Tamsin were out of sight, Jerry yelled at John, ‘What do you think you’re doing?’

‘Relax, this is a good plan.’

‘Which part of this plan screams “good” to you!? We will be hanging in the town square in the morning!’

‘Jerry, listen, your way was not going to work,’ John said. ‘The princess thinks she was followed by some goons from the castle so you are in the clear. She doesn’t even know who we are so Richard and I are in the clear. We will simply get our 5,000 gold coins as ransom, that’s a thousand gold coins for each brother, one thousand gold coins Jerry, can you feel their weight in your pocket?’

Jerry remained silent in thought as John untied him. After he was loose, he punched John in the stomach, ‘That’s for not telling me your plan,’ he said. ‘But then again, if Tamsin was going to lose interest in me or if her parents were going to bump me off, I suppose we might as well take the money and disappear.’

‘No,’ John responded to a puzzled Jerry, ‘that’s the beauty of the plan you see, you don’t have to give up on your dream! We are going to demand 10, 000 gold coins to be delivered in two instalments otherwise the princess gets it. When they deliver the first batch, they won’t launch a manhunt yet because they know the princess is still in danger and they will still await instructions for the second drop-off. This is when we’re going to stage a heroic escape and you will deliver the princess to her anxious parents and you will be welcomed as a hero, maybe even rewarded!’

Jerry’s eyes lit up.

‘Hold on there, soldier,’ John continued, ‘they may still not let you marry her and I strongly suggest that you don’t go through with it even if they let you because one day you may blab and then we’re all dead, understood?’

Jerry looked down and slowly nodded his head. He did not see John’s fist coming right for his nose and when he lay there sprawled on the ground, all he could ask was why.

‘Hey, you’re a victim here not a tourist, do you want Tamsin to believe you fought or not?’

‘Good point.’

Jerry was tied up again and they headed to the shack in the woods where they were keeping Tamsin. It was dark outside by the time they reached the place. Jerry was thrown in and because his hands were bound behind his back, he crashed face first into the floor. Tamsin sobbing in a corner on the floor with her hands bound in front of her. She looked up and saw Jerry and smiled, ‘I thought something horrible had happened to you, oh gosh your nose!’ she exclaimed.

‘No, I’m fine,’ he said before turning to the doorway, ‘Hey! Can you at least untie her, she is a princess for crying out loud!’

Richard, masked, marched in and lifted Jerry by the collar and started dragging him out. ‘Maybe you ought to learn some manners,’ he barked in his ridiculously hoarse voice. As soon as they were outside and out of earshot, Richard explained that they had sent word of the kidnapping and the ransom demand to the castle. The king’s men were to drop 5,000 gold coins in a rubbish pile in a market square during the evening bustle and walk away. If there was a sign of surveillance then the princess would be killed, they were told. Further, they were to do the same thing tomorrow evening and Tamsin would be delivered to the castle unharmed on the morning of the third day. But of course, once the first delivery was completed, Jerry was to complete his daring escape later on that night.

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A gift of happiness (or Refiloe)

All you did was turn and face me and your eyes drew me in like a sailor

Enchanted by the voice of a siren and mesmerised by a halo

I’m drawn in by the slightest of tugs of yours on my heartstrings

As I follow you into the depths of the ocean while my eyes sting

 

I’m by no means innocent and I can’t play the victim

At best this was a fantasy, in the end it’s just a dream

It disappears at sunrise with the shadows that bring the best

Out of the moon and stars that colour you sky when we rest

 

Yet you shine like a solar flare, and every time I close my eyes

All I see is your brightness and how when I’m with you time flies

I’m surrounded by unescapable happiness though I try to go back

To my familiar darkness where the brightest colour is black

 

With a single touch I feel your warmth, it radiates through your lips

Coming from your heart flowing into me through your finger tips

Into a space I kept the shattered fragments of what once was a source

Of what I thought was love, when it skipped a beat, I let destiny run its course

 

Fill my lungs with your every breath and my mind with dreams that can’t be

I want to feel your skin on the spot I will lay my head and hear your heart beat

There, I will spend lazy Sunday mornings running my fingers through your hair

It’s just a fantasy because when the sun rises it will be like you were never there

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Of course the earth is flat

 

The one you can’t live without but they are clearly screwing you over

I’ve been wondering, possibly due to the recent surge in popularity of right-wing political stances across Europe, why we continue to identify ourselves as nations rather than just citizens of the world with free movement. (I promise if you let me stay in your country, I won’t break it.) If we dealt with global problems such as the scarcity of water, abuses of human rights and global warming as a single society, rather than nations in a zero-sum game with each other, perhaps we may have made more progress eliminating certain unfortunate realities faced by some communities today. May be we have inadequate governments,? (Hint: The answer is always ‘Yes’, unless a ‘No’ is required).

There is no doubt leadership is an important part of society. Almost every attempt to create a society without recognised leadership failed to make progress or fell into chaos and collapsed; or had to create some form of hierarchy to deal with problems raised by freeloaders and other adverse or non-contributing members of society. It is unfortunate that laziness is rampant, while we have only heard rumours of pure altruism or benevolence to be existing in small doses in societies. Hence there will always be murderers, thieves, rapist and arsonists as long as there is an opportunity to get away with killing, pillaging, raping and burning. I sincerely hope that some society can prove me wrong one day.

So as incompetent and inappropriate as they can be, we need governments as much as they need us. And as we accept the need to coexist with political leaders, so must we accept the mis-guidance, corruption, apathy, deception and bigotry that comes bundled therein. And because of the flaws listed above, it is not unusual for an influential leader to have a flawed idea. In fact, it is rather unusual to have an influential leader that only has good ideas. I need not go through a list of the Hitlers and the bin Ladens of this world. I am sure you, or one of your loved ones or neighbours, have recently misplaced your trust and/or vote with a dysfunctional pretender to some throne.

Deceptive Inception! Or the problem of accepting ideas that might have Dire-AIDS

Ideas can be cancerous and contagious and once one sets in and make a home in your head, it can be extremely difficult to change but that’s not the scary part. What is truly frightening is how easily susceptible we are, as a species, to people we idolise and the ideals they might carry. Our history is full of instances where a small minority of influential voices declared that a certain ethnicity, religion, or sexuality is unacceptable or inferior and hence enticed hate, violence and discrimination in society. Whether we want to accept it or not, some of the most destructive ideologies we have had as humans are based religious belief, most of them perpetuated by a recognised political figure. I’ve always wondered who was the first to look up to the sky and invent a deity. As time went on, religion became a very important political tool, but still an evolving idea nonetheless. I am certain anyone with access to this article is, at the very least, aware of the recent chaos that has directly been caused by actions motivated by belief in a deity. Yet nothing is new under the sun; certain instances of murder, pillaging, rape and arson have been and will continue to be based on religious belief.

Now, hopefully most of us were surprised to learn that the flat earth theory is making a new come back. Sure, back in the day we killed a bunch of visionaries who made reckless utterances about the earth being a globe or that it orbited the sun, when the state and church were very clear about how people should not visualise it as such. We now have images proving people like Galileo Galilei and Giordano Bruno were needlessly persecuted. For some of us lucky enough to have a spare $250, 000 lying around, you could actually go take a look at the view from space.So if we have a mountain of evidence suggesting otherwise, how are some people convinced that the earth is flat?

People have gathered along a street to witness jumpers leap over infants lying on a mattress in the middle of the street. Elsewhere, new-born babies have been tossed off from a 15 meter high tower towards the ground, where others wait below, spreading out a sheet to catch the baby. Maybe you know someone who has spent the last 8 or 15 months sharing a bedroom with a dead aunt’s corpse? Or ate their dead aunt’s corpse? Or perhaps a person who became dead themselves during a ‘voluntary’ (self)flagellation event? These are real practices that can get anyone to think twice before participating in them, yet a certain group of people voluntarily do these things. I suppose if you were to ask someone why a certain practice is their tradition, they will probably give you a version of ‘We found it like this, our parents gave it to us like this and we will leave it like this for our kids’. In most cases, it is most likely a good thing. Certain traditional value promote community order and good moral values.But other practices make you wonder just how on earth they got the idea to do that and yet people accept this.

The pain snippetpain2

It looks bizarre now but someone managed to convince a whole nation of this. Source: The Pain – When Will It End?

A gun might blow an idea out of your head, but I suspect that will create a bigger problem than it solves

I have left out some gory practices and many other (relatively) harmless ones, but depending on where you are from, maybe one of the above practices is perfectly normal. Some of these traditional behaviors have been going on for centuries. Some of them are clearly dangerous. Again, I have to wonder who sat down, looked to the stars one day, and decided ‘women in this tribe must express their emotional grief by cutting of a segment of their finger when they have lost a loved one‘? I, being of sound mind at the time of writing, would obviously not condone such musings yet the biggest alarm bells go off at how a whole tribe or followers of a belief say ‘Oh yes, let’s’. And throughout hundreds of years of some practice being passed down, no one stopped to say ‘Hang on, maybe shouldn’t be doing this; we should find a safer way to chase the devil away from babies’, or to ask ‘How certain are we that putting nana’s powdered bones in banana soup is going to help her soul get to heaven?”

Although the cultural or religious practices mentioned earlier are relatively uncommon on a global scale, there are certainly traditions closer to home than one might expect. Do you really need to have a christening ceremony for the baby? Most babies already have names by then, and you’re not doing it for the baby at all because they will not remember this. I know for a fact that at least 90% of people have excessively underwhelming (mostly over-budget) New Year’s Eve celebrations. I pulled this fact directly from thin air. Why do we even bother attempting to stay up all night anymore? Aren’t you really tired of this? There are dowry payments in some traditions, for example, African cultures, where there has to be an elaborate ritual that might not even make sense anymore. How about those that continue to use technically impractical units of measurement when there are clearly better way to measure things? I am looking at you America. Why use stones, pounds, ounces, inches, feet, yards.. Come to the metric side, we are all waiting for you. And when has yelling at the TV ever changed a football score, or a player arguing with the ref changed a decision to award a foul? Anyway, I digress.

The point is some behaviours, ideas and traditions can sneak into our lives and we continue to be influenced by them even when they are inappropriate or have adverse effects. Some of these ideas are benign – like believing the earth is flat. Some of them have financial or physical repercussions. I could go on about how certain beliefs encourage self-flagellation, self-sacrifice through suicide etc. I could talk of the financial machinery that is Church of Scientology, or a Pastor making a living from selling holy oranges. As long as the followers believe in the idea, their resultant actions will continue to harm them. How many times have you come across someone with a perpetually low self-esteem because they think they have a big forehead, or someone once called them fat (and now they eat to comfort themselves; or perhaps they were bullied as a kid and got an inferiority complex that followed them throughout a career. These are practically forms of self-sabotage because an idea settled in their head.

So we need a way to weed out the bad (or useless) ideas without performing a lobotomy. One way is to focus on self-reflection and continuous learning. We have  ask ourselves why we do certain things a certain way or believe certain things. It is a journey for the brave which requires to re-evaluate the importance of political correctness and moral relativity. How can the earth be spherical in some places yet flat in others? Opposing views cannot all be right, however they can both be wrong. The first question I feel like we must address though, is why we continue to let shows like Jerry Springer or the Kardashians on TV. Please help me with this question.

 

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TRIALS AND (RETRIBUTIONS) RECONCILIATIONS

Nelson Mandela was a brave man. After more than a century of oppression of his people and 27 years of personal imprisonment, he announced there would be no prosecution of the racially motivated crimes committed by colonialists who ran amok during Apartheid. He was not the first to preach reconciliation with a pre-independence regime. More than 10 years prior to his famous speech, one Comrade Mugabe made similar utterances in the capital of South Africa’s northern neighbours.

Meanwhile in Rwanda, right about the time when South Africa got its independence, there was an ethnicity based genocide which saw 1 million lives lost in a space of 100 days. This is a time when each Rwandan citizen had their ethnicity inscribed on their identification. Take a moment to calculate the gravity implied by the average lives lost per day during this period. When there finally was a change in regime and some semblance of peace and calm, justice eventually started taking its course. The justice system was not rebuilt, as whatever system that existed prior to that was not worthy of the title. Instead, it was built from the ground up and at the time, there simply was not enough capacity to handle the cases of the crimes that were committed during the days of madness. We are talking of hundreds of thousands, if not a million, perpetrators of violence, arson, destruction of property and the most heinous crimes of them all, rape and murder.

With an inadequate capacity in the official channels of justice, no doubt some people were tempted to turn to retribution, blood for blood. I am not certain any champion of peace and reconciliation like the Mandelas and the Gandhis of this world could have inspired a shared vision of reconciliation, this situation was simply beyond that. Instead, Rwanda came together as a nation, ethnicity aside, and sought the noble route of fair trials for the perpetrators through traditional courts that aimed to get the whole community to come together, identify and fairly punish the hate crimes that were committed against their countrymen. This path to restore peace and justice still has its benefits being reaped today. It is evident in the political stability they continue to enjoy this day.

22 years later, Britain has voted to leave the EU. That slogan, “Better together”, could have been, nay, should have been solely based on the economic benefits of being a member of the EU trading bloc. But, knowing how human psychology works and people tend to focus on Micro rather than Macroeconomics, it was likely motivated by fear of the unknown and the fear of being isolated as a nation. No doubt the citizens of Britain also had their minds on their loved ones in Europe and how the impending changes to visa requirements and possible restrictions in the current free movement of labour would affect their families and businesses.

Now, not all of us are degenerate gamblers but life is about gambling. We all have to make choices based on imperfect information and (hopefully) educated guesses. At least that is the ideal because in reality, humans are very emotional creatures and tend to rely on their feelings more than they technically should when making choices. So perhaps those who voted for Britain to exit the EU were brave (or other things I care not to discuss on this forum. Yes, I am looking at you xenophobes). Brave because they overrode the evidence that pointed to a likelihood of a worse of economy outside the EU, overrode that sense of belonging and a group mentality that was achievable from being part of the EU, and decided they better of facing the world and a possibly adverse Europe on their own. Perhaps, for some, it was just a temporary moment of madness as a sizeable number of people who voted out woke up to regret when the gravity of their choice sunk in. But the bet was already placed and the games have begun.

Meanwhile in the USA, there is a real possibility that Mr Trump could be the next American president. I personally want to see this happen. It is the age of clowns for president. We had Zuma, who compared taking a shower after sex to washing your hands to cut an onion. I am still struggling to reconcile the two concepts. A journalist responded to that comment by pointing out that HIV and AIDS are a serious problem in the country, a deadly one in fact. Of course Zuma would go on to respond that hygiene was just as big a problem. I have no words to comment on that either. The same way I have no words to express my reaction to some of Trump’s statements. I suppose he figured if you say one outrageous statement, it sticks out like a sore thumb. Instead, say a hundred outrageous statements and that way, people become desensitised to that kind of talk. To all Americans, it is time to place your bets!

As for Britain, the dice are cast and betting is closed. The game is still in play and, sure enough, an independent Britain could be better off; those Brexiteers may deservedly wear their favourite smug faces to work every day if it turns out to that the 23rd of June is worthy of being labelled ‘Britain’s independence day’. It’s ironic that a significant part of the world spent a century taking turns to be independent of British rule. Trump could even ‘make America great again’. That smug face will forever be imprinted on the world’s most popular currency. Now take a moment to imagine that Trump is voted into presidency and that, together with Brexit, bring the respective countries to ruin. You will be living next to the same neighbours who voted your country to ruin while your beer consumption is dwindling together with the economy. This actually applies to almost every country that was sold dreams by a promising politician. Let’s take it a step further and say each one must wear their vote on their sleeve. How would we treat our neighbours who ‘betrayed’ the country? Do we seek retribution (and restrict them to a vegan diet if they love meat or sentence them to badly made burgers if they were vegetarian), or should we all just reconcile and act like they didn’t vote for someone who said taking a shower can prevent contracting STIs? Jesus Christ.

Democracy, it’s a terrible system unless every voter is educated on the issues at hand and the consequences of their vote.

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You need me

Drifting at sea, awaiting a boat never made
Let me show you how much you need me, I had said
Like the time you held my hand on a night I was afraid
And when my legs were giving in, you carried me instead

Sing a song with me and laugh about the dreams we had

And hold me in your arms before you kiss my fore head

Can you feel the connection; is that denial that I sense?

Is it just imagination, is the lie that much intense?

 

Waiting at a station for a train that won’t arrive,

Let me show you how much you need me in this life

When I feel lonely, you are the first I always call

I know you’re always there to catch me if I fall

And when I find myself face down and alone on the floor,

I remind myself you need me, maybe you just don’t know

Everything that I am has all been broken before

So when I pick myself up there aren’t new scars to show

 

Awaiting at the altar for a dream that can’t be

Let me show you how much you need me, you’ll see

I can see clearly where you are sitting in the crowd

And when the music starts, all the heads turn around

Is that a tear that you wiped from the corner of your eye?

Is that your heart realizing my words were no lie?

Disappointment waits for all guests but one

When they realize through those doors, no bride will come

 

I am waiting for a moment as my eyes glance above,

Let me show you how much you need me my love

In the deafening silence, is there a voice inside

Telling you that now is the time you decide?

Is this a moment of truth, was I wrong all along?

I will close my eyes and stand here alone

But not for long because in a moment or two

You will know you need me as much as I need you.

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