Skip to main content

The year anniversary of the World Cup

I find it extremely hard to believe it was actually an entire year ago that me and my friends embarked on an epic whirlwind tour around South Africa.  Now one of those friends is married, fergawdsake!  Pierre de Vos looks back:
It is exactly one year ago that I bought my first Vuvuzela at my local Spar and discovered what a beautiful racket I could make with that piece of plastic, donned my Bafana Bafana shirt and joined friends in the city to watch our team take on Mexico in the opening game of the Soccer World Cup. That was the day Simphiwe Tshabalala scored the glorious opening goal of the World Cup and South Africa suddenly turned into the country we all wished we had lived in all our lives.

Almost all the professional whiners – of which our nation seems to have more than its fair share – fell silent while almost all of us marveled at our ability to put on the show of our lives. Reports of corruption and nepotism disappeared from the front pages of our newspapers, politicians mostly refrained from making embarrassing statements and many white people who had been hiding behind the high walls of their security complexes took public transport for the first time in their lives and discovered that most of their fellow South Africans of all races are actually pretty decent people just trying to live lives of dignity and respect.
The rest is about the South African constitution, and well worth a read.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Why Did Reality Winner Leak to the Intercept?

So Reality Winner, former NSA contractor, is in federal prison for leaking classified information — for five years and three months, the longest sentence of any whistleblower in history. She gave documents on how Russia had attempted to hack vendors of election machinery and software to The Intercept , which completely bungled basic security procedures (according to a recent New York Times piece from Ben Smith, the main fault lay with Matthew Cole and Richard Esposito ), leading to her capture within hours. Winner recently contracted COVID-19 in prison, and is reportedly suffering some lingering aftereffects. Glenn Greenwald has been furiously denying that he had anything at all to do with the Winner clusterfuck, and I recently got in an argument with him about it on Twitter. I read a New York story about Winner, which clearly implies that she was listening to the Intercepted podcast of March 22, 2017 , where Greenwald and Jeremy Scahill expressed skepticism about Russia actually b

Varanus albigularis albigularis

That is the Latin name for the white-throated monitor lizard , a large reptile native to southern Africa that can grow up to two meters long (see pictures of one at the Oakland Zoo here ). In Setswana, it's called a "gopane." I saw one of these in my village yesterday on the way back from my run. Some kids from school found it in the riverbed and tortured it to death, stabbing out its eyes, cutting off its tail, and gutting it which finally killed it. It seemed to be a female as there were a bunch of round white things I can only imagine were eggs amongst the guts. I only arrived after it was already dead, but they described what had happened with much hilarity and re-enactment. When I asked why they killed it, they said it was because it would eat their chickens and eggs, which is probably true, and because it sucks blood from people, which is completely ridiculous. It might bite a person, but not unless threatened. It seems roughly the same as killing wolves tha

The Conversational Downsides of Twitter's Structure

Over the past couple years, as I've had a steady writing job and ascended from "utter nobody" to "D-list pundit," I find it harder and harder to have discussions online. Twitter is the only social network I like and where I talk to people the most, but as your number of followers increases, the user experience becomes steadily more hostile to conversation. Here's my theory as to why this happens. First is Twitter's powerful tendency to create cliques and groupthink. Back in forum and blog comment section days, people would more often hang out in places where a certain interest or baseline understanding could be assumed. (Now, there were often epic fights, cliques, and gratuitous cruelty on forums too, particularly the joke or insult variety, but in my experience it was also much easier to just have a reasonable conversation.) On Twitter, people rather naturally form those same communities of like interest, but are trapped in the same space with differe