Friday, November 28, 2008

God, me and the number 34

As you guys know, this year has been a pretty tough one for the family. A lot of things have happened, some of which I can share and some of which I can`t. The one thing I can share with you guys and that I have done previously is that my company was liquidated in February. In fact, somebody told me that we were probably one of the first companies in South Africa to be affected by the Sub-Prime crisis in the States. Like I always say, if the USA sneezes the rest of the world catches a cold. In this case, our company got pneumonia and died.

Now, being out of a job is no fun place to be. I have always been pretty succesful in my career and things have come pretty easily. Blessed probably describes how lucky I have been. Promotions came pretty quickly and the money was good too.

Just to show you how lucky I was, consider this. The day after the company folded, I got a call from one of our main competitors and they offered me a job there and then. They promised me a whole lot of things and of course I took the job. Unfortunately it was a question of over-promise and under-deliver on their side. I stayed loyal to them for as long as I could but eventually I realised that it is not something that would be sustainable. The business plan was never gonna succeed. I ended up leaving.

So for the last few months I have been looking for work. That is not the best place to be in you`re a white South African male. You see, we have a thing here called BEE or Black Economic Empowerment. Companies have to employ black people to eradicate the inequalities of the past. What it comes down to is that white men are last on the pecking order when it comes to jobs. So, even though you might have the best credentials for a job, the fact that quotas have to be attained might mean that you lose out to a less qualified person. This is our society and I understand this completely.

This coupled with the bleak economic outlook worldwide has made the last few months a very tough time to be a jobseeker.

That brings me to my faith. I would be a liar if I said that my faith never waivered. I have had many a day, sometimes weeks at a time, where my faith ebbed away. Every prayer went unanswered, or so it seemed. Every time an opportunity came up, something happened and it was taken away. One example. I got a call from a previous company and they were getting ready to offer me a job, an awesome job at that. Something I would be really good at and that would have meant good things financially. Then, the day where they were to call me with the good news, the company`s Exco sat and made a decision that an immediate freeze was to be placed on all external appointments. I was devastated. I had prayed so hard and so long and basically begged for this job. God decided no. I could not understand it. So close but yet again an opportunity was taken away.

So on one of these days, where I was crying out for something, anything, I drove to Gordonsbay (which is about 10 minutes from here). I was on the way back when I noticed on my cars computer that the kilometers done on the tank of petrol was 341 and the distance I could still travel was 341. I thought that was quite a coincidence. I mean the distance left on the tank changes so much and so quickly, depending on the speed etc etc. Literally a minute later I drove past a little sign and I still don`t know what the purpose of this sign is but it just had 34 on it. A white 34 on a blue background. Was God talking to me?

Now I am a numbers guy. I am and have always been very good with numbers. So for me, I saw this as a bit of a sign. You do tend to hold onto the small things when you have nothing to hold onto anymore. So with Hillsong playing in the background, I had a feeling that God was using something I understand, numbers, to show me the way.

I raced home and immediately checked the Bible for clues. I checked for the 341st chapter of the Bible, page 341, every chapter 34:1 and so it went on. Nothing. Then I reckoned that I would get a call with good news at 3:40 or 3:41. Yet again a dead end. But the number 34 stuck in my head.

That was 2 months ago. A few opportunities have come and gone in that time. I have had good days and a lot of bad days. All the while I kept looking for 34 and the sign that I was so sure was around the corner.

That brings me to Monday, 24 November. I woke up and decided to read my Bible. I opened it up at Acts 13 and started reading. Then something caught my eye and I saw at the top of the next page, where it shows the last verse on the page, it said Acts 13:34. It said the following:

The fact that God raised him from the dead, never to decay, is stated in these words: "I will give you the holy and sure blessings promised to David"

Immediately I knew that God was talking to me. I was expecting a call that day with feedback on a possible interview. Suddenly I knew that the interview was going to be confirmed. This happened later that day. The person who gave me the lead for this job is another Christian who has walked the same path as me during this year. He was also affected by the liquidation, maybe more than anybody else. I phoned him to tell him that I got the interview and when I put the phone down I noticed that the call was made at 3:40 pm.

So on Tuesday morning I read my Bible and opened up at Matthew 21. I looked up at the top of the next page and what dit it say? Matthew 21:34. It read:

When the harvest time approached, he sent his servants to the tenants to collect his fruit.

I have been using my Mom`s Bible since she passed away and it is full of her notes and markings. It`s one of my favourite and most special things on this earth. She marked Matthew 21:22 and it read:

If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer

On Wednesday morning, I opened up the Bible to Matthew 6. Guess what was at the top of the next page? Matthew 6:34. It read:

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Wednesday night, Hayley and I were in bed and I opened up my Bible at Acts 10. At the top of the next page it said Acts 10:32. I was a bit disappointed as I was expecting another miracle cos I had been spoiled! I read the chapter and when I turned the page my heart nearly stopped. So guess which verse was marked, by my Mom in pencil? Acts 10:34 and it read:

34 Then Peter began to speak: "I now realise how true it is that God does not show favouritism 35 but accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.

So yesterday I flew to Johannesburg for the interview. Before I left I took a card out of my Bread of Life box, which has promises from the Bible in. Well, the one I picked was Matthew 21:22, the same verse my Mom had highlighted and which I read on Tuesday night.

If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer

As a final incident, while I was waiting for my rental car the tv caught my eye. It was some netball match (in which I have no interest whatsoever) but the one shot I saw the player wore the number 34.

Now I don`t know exactly what all this means. I am obviously on a journey with God and I really don`t know what He has planned for me. What I do know is that He is with me always and I do not need to worry or feel alone anymore. He has truly rejuvenated my faith.

I do not know if the interview I went to was THE one. I do however know that I don`t have to worry anymore. I can trust God cos He has made it clear to me that He is interested in my lfe and that He cares for me deeply.

What is your 34?

Ps. A Google search for 34 revealed Psalm 34, Praise for Deliverance from Trouble.

How much does our God rock?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Just a quick one today, I`m off to Johannesburg in an hour or so.

I just want to wish all my awesome American friends a very, very happy Thanksgiving. May the day be filled with fun, laughter, family, an incredible amount of food and a lot of thankfulness.

God bless!

Ps. A shout out to all the turkeys out there. Thanks for taking one for the team man, you guys are awesome.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Mo-vember is a great initiative in the fight against cancer and more specifically the various cancers that affect men.

I have done my little bit and in honour of this great cause, here is my Mo (which unfortunately has to go cos I have a BIG meeting in Johannesburg tomorrow and getting stopped by airport police for looking like one of the Village People is not on my To-Do list).

Murphy`s OTHER laws

  1. Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  2. A fine is a tax for doing wrong. A tax is a fine for doing well.

  3. He, who laughs last, thinks slowest.

  4. A day without sunshine is like. . . well, night.

  5. Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

  6. Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't.

  7. Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.

  8. The 50-50-90 rule: Anytime you have a 50-50 chance of getting something right, there's a 90% probability you'll get it wrong.

  9. It is said that if you line up all the cars in the world end-to-end, some taxi would be stupid enough to try to pass them.

  10. If the shoe fits, get another one just like it.

  11. The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who got there first.

  12. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will sit in a boat all day drinking beer.

  13. Flashlight: A case for holding dead batteries.

  14. The shin bone is a device for finding furniture in the dark.

  15. When you go into court, you are putting yourself in the hands of twelve people who weren't smart enough to get out of jury duty.

Ps. As you can see I have nothing today, I apologise in advance and expect to be abused by a few of you, most notably Kevin.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Lionel Richie

I seem to have been indulging myself a bit on this blog over the last few weeks. I have done quite a few posts on things that I absolutely adore. I suppose that`s what a blog is all about, hey? It`s my little view of the big world out there and sharing a bit of myself with my friends.

So, today is another one of those indulgent posts. I am a huge Lionel Richie fan. He is awesome and I love his music. My Ipod selection will prove this. I have about 8 of his albums on my Ipod and his songs grace all of my playlists. Even the ones named Jogging 1 and Jogging 2. Jogging 1 has a bit more upbeat tunes but I soon realised that I ran too fast and after nearly killing myself a few times I came up with Jogging 2, that has a lot more laidback music which makes for better running rhythm.

I digress. Hayley and I both grew up with Lionel`s music. Songs like Say you Say me, Three times a lady, hello were a big part of my younger years. I have held onto those songs and even today love listening to them. Stuck on you is one of my favourites. I remember when I commuted between Cape Town and Johannesburg last year, I spent many a flight listening to that song and either missing Hayley already or looking forward to seeing her in an hour or so. Just for you and My Destiny are also favourites.

A lot of Lionel`s songs form part of the soundtrack to our lives. I`m sure that`s not just true for me but for a lot of you out there.

Lionel is currently in South Africa and performed in Cape Town on Saturday night. Hayley and I unfortunately couldn`t go but by all accounts he was awesome. He gave an interview to one of our better investigative shows which was aired last night and that just made me an even bigger fan. He said something that really struck me. I actually had to rewind to listen to it again cos I really thought it was a very profound thing that was said. He spoke about his time as a student and his passion for tennis (which he was gonna make a career) and how the Commodores came about. Then he said the following:

"Failure is when your life does not go according to the path you had laid for yourself but then only does God`s plan come into play"

In other words, we see failure when our plans don`t become a reality but failure is only that, our plans did not come to fruition. For God and his ways, there are no failures.
I absolutely loved this. This brought to the fore Lionel`s religious beliefs, something which I had never thought of before.

Lionel gave such a heartfelt interview and it became obvious that he has no airs or graces about him. He is just a normal guy with an awesome gift for music.
I love it when people we look up to surprise us in a good way. I always knew he was a good man but I never knew just what an awesome human being he was. That was cool, now I`ll enjoy my Lionel music even more.

Friday, November 21, 2008

The name is Bond, James Bond

Ok, so I am a big James Bond fan. I grew up watching all the Bond movies at the local cinema. I remember that my Mom knew the lady who worked in the ticket office, so Monya and I would get free tickets to the 10am show every Saturday morning. That meant that the R 1, 00 could be used to buy popcorn, a coke and a chocolate! Those were cool days.
Unfortunately being a small town in Old Sould Africa, we were how can I say, ummm, not spoiled for choice with regards the movies we could see.

I saw Moonraker (with Roger Moore) 13 times over a period of 3 years at the local cinema. That`s right 13 times at the cinema. It seems that every time they didn`t get anything decent, they`d show Moonraker. I watched as Jaws (one of the villains in the movie played by Richard Kiel) chew through metal wire 13 times. Incredible that I never tried that at home cos it sure looked pretty easy. Another favourite was For your eyes only with the amphibious car, a Lotus if I remember correctly. That was waaayyy cool!

Oh yes, as an aside, the whole audience stood up and applauded at the end of Star Wars Return of the Jedi. Don`t ask me why, I do not have any answers. It was a small town with not a lot going on. We were obviously not exposed to the big world in any way, shape or form... I suppose the excitement just got to the Sasolburgers on that occasion.

I digress back to James Bond. Sean Connery was my first Bond and I loved him. He was followed by Roger Moore and he was pretty cool too. Timothy Dalton I didn`t like very much and that`s where I started to lose a bit of interest. Then Pierce Brosnan took over the Dry Martini and I was a fan again. I like old Pierce. He certainly has a bit of charisma to him. When he left and was replaced by Daniel Craig, I wasn`t happy. Daniel Craig didn`t fit the idea of what a James Bond should be.

But then I watched Casino Royale and I loved it. He brought an edge to Bond that no other actor had done before. I loved the fact that 007 had a bit of a dark side to him. That made the character a lot more interesting.

Ok, I don`t like everything about Daniel Craig. I mean who on this earth walks out of the ocean like he does? It`s not a walk, nor a swagger it`s more of a, ummm, ok there`s not even a name for it. The other thing is the way he always has a pout. I mean he even runs with a pout on his face!

But all in all, I think he`s a cool Bond and I`m looking forward to watching Quantum of Solace. I also like the fact that it follows up on Casino Royale as there were a few loose ends. The fact that he suffered personal loss in Casino Royale I reckon will make him even more of a loose cannon and that I`m looking forward to.

The other thing I love about Bond is that he mostly drives Aston Martins. I absolutely ADORE Aston Martins and as far as I`m concerned they are the coolest cars on this planet. Apparently they wrote off a few of these awesome cars during production. I shed a tear when I read about that.

So, are there any other Bond fans out there? I`d like to know your thoughts. Please share. Now.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A long overdue award

My blog finally won an award!! Yay! Ok, it was given to me by my wife. I suppose that`s like winning the MVP award at little league when your mom and dad are the adjudicators. But, all is fair in love and war and my blog just won an award, a long overdue award.

So I must pick 5 blogs that I really love and here they are, the winners of the Uber Amazing Blog Award are:






* The award just became legit cos I was nominated by Heather too, YAY! Thank you Heather!

Disclaimer: I am not in any way calling my wife illegitimate or in any way suggesting that her opinion holds less credibility.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Hillsong United - What an evening

It`s now Monday afternoon and a bit of a downer. The weekend that I had been looking forward to for so long has come and gone and it`s back to the daily grind. It`s always a bit of a reality check when something is over, albeit that you had a wonderful time. I just wish I could do that everyday

Ok, so let`s take a step back and let me tell you about Hillsong United and the best Friday night I have had in a very, very long time.

We left a bit early on Friday and decided to get a quick hamburger at the shopping centre adjacent to the venue. Well, let`s put it this way, we thought it was close but we weren`t 100% sure. So we had a quick burger and then went into a Christian shop to get directions. The whole shop was in party mood and it soon became clear why. Joel Houston and a few members of the band had decided to pop into the shop and say hi. The people in the shop were in a state of shock to tell you the truth. They took photos with Joel and these became prized possessions. We missed them by a few minutes and I was really disappointed but at least we were gonna be able to see them in a short while.

So Hayley and I got directions and headed to the venue, which was very close as it turned out. There were already a long line of people waiting to go in. What I find so amazing it how many young people there were. Everywhere you looked there were young couples, groups of friends and a Mom or Dad with kids. It really is awesome to see how the young people are turning to God. I also saw quite a few "Jesus Freak" t-shirts! Awesome!

We eventually got inside and by now there were thousands of people. The venue was packed with all shapes, colours and sizes. That to me was the beauty of the whole evening. Politicians in our country and in the world for that matter should`ve come to have a look. Jesus brings people together.

Then we saw Joel Houston, walking in the crowd saying hello to people and just being very anti-star. That was awesome to see. No superstar there, just a man of God walking around like one of us

The music started and the crowd went mad! The band came out and I saw Brooke Fraser!! Man that was cool cos as you know I heart Brooke Fraser. Then we started singing. We sang so loud, I nearly lost my voice. Shame, the poor people next to me must have had a rough time hearing angelic singing in one ear and my own personal howling in the other. Stereo isn`t always a good thing.

I must say, hearing thousands of people singing and worshipping like one was one of the most amazingly wonderful things I have ever experienced. God was there on Friday night, of that I have no doubt.

Pastor Brian Houston came onto stage and spoke a few words and he was followed by OUR Pastor Phil Dooley (sorry Aussies, Hayley and I have decided that we want him as our own) who gave another magnificent sermon. Pastor Phil is the most gifted speaker I have ever had the privilege of hearing. His message was so apt, so well delivered and so to the point that the whole congregation was completely taken by him. Not an easy job for an aussie in South Africa!

Then the worship continued and they sang my favourite current Hillsong tune, This is our God. That was awesome, just awesome. I felt so privileged to be able to experience that. Then, Brooke sang Hosanna and of course the crowd went absolutely mad. That song has made a massive impact on a lot of people. The crowd sang like I have never heard a crowd sing before. That was the highlight of the night. Such a personal song for Hayley and I and we could experience it with thousands of other believers.

The night came to an end and we headed home. It was one amazing evening filled with the wonderful love of Jesus and his followers. I am such a lucky man to have experienced an evening in the presence of Hillsong United. Like my friend David always says, those guys are really blessed.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Happy Birthday Mamma

Anybody who really knows me, knows that my Mom was the most important person in my life. I never had the best relationship with my Dad, due to a lot of things but mainly because of his struggle with depression (which might have been diagnosed as Bi-polar disorder today but back then it was just generalised as depression). I only recently got to grips with a lot of the issues that I had with my Dad. It`s taken a very long time and I`m still working at it.
My Mom took the part of both mom and dad and did a lot of things with me that was mostly the domain of the dad. She used to throw ball with me, watch sport with me, help me with homework, went to church with me and mostly just loved me. She was my best friend for a big part of my life.

She passed away on the 30th April 2003. I have missed her every single day since then. I have shed many tears and spent many an hour missing the person who laid every foundation of the man I am today.

I have never known anybody who gave more of herself to everybody around her. She would literally give her last cent to make sure that her kids were happy. She gave everything she had to make sure that we were ok. God was very kind when he picked my Mom to look after Monya and I. I thank Him for my Mom every day of my life.

A lot of people have sporting heroes or movie heroes. I do too, I mean you know how I feel about my sport. But, my one true hero is a lady called Maria Dorothea Malherbe. A lady who gave everything she had to make sure her kids grew up knowing that they were loved.

I know my Mom is with Jesus right now. Her rewards for being the person she was is better than any rewards this world had to offer. I know her birthday party is awesome and that her wonderfully warm nature is magnified 100 fold in heaven. But I miss her and I so wish I could spend even a minute with her, just to hold her and tell again how much I love her.

So Mamma, till we meet again, I miss you with all my heart and I love you so very much. Have an awesome birthday...

Friday, November 14, 2008

Hillsong United in T-Minus 5 hours...

As I`ve mentioned in a few posts, I`m a massive Hillsong fan. Not just a fan as in like them, a fan as in ADORE them.

We attend Hillsong Church Cape Town and it has certainly turned into our spiritual home. We have the most awesome pastor, an Aussie by the name of Phil Dooley. He is both funny, charming and an awesome man of God.

I own just about every Hillsong cd and dvd and live for each new one. I`m just a fanatic.It has always been one of my dreams to go to Hillsong Sydney and be a part of one of their worship nights. I have lived many a worship night with Hillsong by watching their dvd`s over and over again. I`m a fanatic.

So tonight is the realisation of one of my dreams. Hillsong United are in town and Hayley and I will be attending the worship night tonight. This is truly a momentous day for me. It`s one of those dreams that rank alongside going to Old Trafford or Fenway Park. It`s BIG. I am like a little kid checking the clock. Why doesn`t the time go quicker?

Sunday we have a service with Pastor Brian Houston (Head of Hillsong) at Ratanga Junction. This is gonna be awesome because Ratanga Junction is a theme park in Cape Town. How cool is that gonna be?
We will also see our friends tomorrow because it`s Graham`s wedding. For a change everybody is coming to Cape Town for a wedding! So, fair warning, there will not be updates until at least Sunday evening!

I am so excited, it`s gonna be an awesome, awesome weekend!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Caption Competition Winner

This was so much fun, if you discount the silent treatment I have received from Hayley for the last 2 days. Not sure what I have done to deserve that but in any case.

I`m sure you all agree that one caption certainly deserves the first prize, which includes a Free One Year Membership to the Running Golfer. This means ONE YEAR of logging in and commenting FOR FREE!!! (I can feel the buzz of excitement coming at me from all over the world)

So without further ado, I present you the winner of the Caption Competition.

"O'Gosh! That Yoplait yogurt just hit me...hard...excuse me for a minute!"

So congratulations Kevin Davis, your Free Membership is on it`s way, by Carrier Pigeon.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Soles 4 Souls

The 50,000 Pairs in 50 Days Challenge

My friend Kevin sent me this link and I am glad to oblige and spread the word. A very, very worthwile cause. Visit the site for more info.

Come on guys, let`s show what we`re made of.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Caption Competition

Let me start of by saying there is no prize, so you are doing it out of the goodness of your hearts.

This is a pic I took of Hayley on Sunday. As you can see, she is not to happy with her husband as I had been, how can I say... annoying her a bit.

Please send me a caption of what YOU think she is thinking.

So with that I give to you.... (drumroll)......

Hayley the annoyed wife

Saturday, November 8, 2008

The Best South African Sportsman of all time

This should be quite a difficult choice but in fact it`s pretty easy. There are many sportsman who have staked a claim. Graeme Pollock is rated as one of the 5 best cricketers of all time and has a test average (of players with 20 tests or more) second only to Donald Bradman. We have had some of the best rugby players ever to grace the game. Jody Scheckter became the F1 World Champion driving for Ferrari.

Yet, one man stands head and shoulders above all the others. This man is Gary Player. He has won 9 majors titles, which is 4th on the all time list, the South African Open (which is the oldest national championship in the world) a record 13 times. He has won 163 tournaments worldwide and was voted the South African Sportsman of the Century.

Looking at the stats it seems pretty impressive and rightly so. But, if you delve deeper it becomes blatantly clear that Gary would have won a lot more majors if he had an equal opportunity. Ok, I know that`s a big statement but I base it on the following.

Gary played golf when South Africa was ruled by the National Party and Apartheid was the order of the day. SA became the pariahs of the world and most of our sporting teams were banned. Golfers were not though and they could play throughout the world but at a price.

You see, golf is a gentlemans game but the fans haven`t always been gentlemen. Gary was abused for most of his career. There were instances where he was spat at by spectators. Other times spectators would shout on his backswing. There are many other examples of bad behaviour. This happened mostly in the States but also in other countries.

Through all of this, Gary kept his head down and kept working. He once famously replied to a reporter who asked him why he was such a good golfer; "The more I practice the luckier I get". That is the essence of the man. The more life threw curveballs at him, the harder he worked.

Jack Nicklaus won 18 majors. I have huge respect for Jack and him and Gary are best of friends. But, Jack played 3 of every four majors in front of partisan crowds at home. The only AWAY major was the British Open and crowds were never nasty towards Jack in the UK.

I am not saying Gary would`ve won more than Jack if the playing fields were level but I am saying that Gary would`ve won a lot more had he been treated fairly. Or even if he had played most of the Majors at home. Being blamed for the mistakes of the government, one in which he had no say, was very unfair.

Gary has made a lot of money from golf. He has one of the most renowned golf course design companies in the world. He has however ploughed a lot of that money back into SA. He built a school for underprivileged children on one of his farms and pays for everything the kids need to get through school. He hosted the Nelson Mandela Invitational which raised a lot of money for charities in SA.

The other thing that Gary has been very vocal about is his Christianity. He has never been afraid to openly chat about his love for God.

Another quote that comes to mind and which has left a major impact on me was when a fellow player once said to Gary while they were playing in wind and rain "What a horrible day". Gary turned to him and said "God has never made a horrible day" I always remember that and I have never complained about a horrible day ever.

We have a lot of good golfers. Ernie Els, Retief Goosen and more recently Trevor Immelman rates among the best in the world. They have had the benefit of friendly crowds and hospitality. Ernie was the heir to Gary`s throne and had all the potential in the world. He however never had Gary`s work ethic and that is why he has won only 3 majors. I mean Gary still does 300 sit ups every morning of his life!

Gary Player will go down as South Africa`s best sportsman of all time. Not just that, he will be remembered as a human who made it against the odds and who gave back as much as he won. Gary the person is as big an icon as Gary the champion golfer.

Friday, November 7, 2008

The Running Golfer 101

  1. English is in fact my 2nd language
  2. I never use spell check before posting
  3. I have been married to the love of my life for exactly 7 years, 6 months and 2 days
  4. I am 1.81 metres tall
  5. I was born in Sasolburg. The town was named after SASOL, the first company in the world to produce fuel from coal. SASOL was and still is the lifeblood of this small Freestate town
  6. Blue is my favourite colour
  7. I love sport
  8. I was Head Boy at school
  9. I love cars but know nothing about the mechanical side of things
  10. I have owned 15 different cars during the last 16 year
  11. I love music, movies and tv
  12. I have a sister, Monya, who lives in New Zealand with her 2 gorgeous kids and her husband who is one of my best friends
  13. My Mom and Dad are both with Jesus
  14. Golf is a passion of mine but I haven`t played a round of golf in more than a year
  15. I have completed 3 half marathons this year
  16. I took up running on the 31st March 2008
  17. My favourite drink is red wine
  18. Kids love me and I love kids
  19. Hopefully I`ll be a Dad in the not too distant future
  20. I once kicked a hole in the tv room door after WP, my favourite rugby team, lost in extra time to the Lions when the referee awarded a contentious penalty try.
  21. I was barefoot at the time
  22. It didn`t hurt
  23. Until a few minutes later
  24. I once asked my Mom to chop all my hair off after Manchester United lost the Championship on the last day of the season to Blackburn Rovers
  25. My favourite sportsmen of all time are Eric Cantona, Roger Federer, Tiger Woods, Ryan Giggs, Bob Skinstad and Andre Pretorius
  26. My favourite new band is Kings of Leon
  27. The best concerts I have ever been to was Live in 2000 and 2006. They were awesome.
  28. I hated Celine Dion until I saw her live in concert in 2008. Now I love her.
  29. I dream of one day going to Old Trafford to see Manchester United play
  30. I am completely in love with my dogs
  31. Ouma rusks and strong coffee is my ideal breakfast
  32. I make my own hamburger patties and they are AWESOME (you can ask Hayley)
  33. It is now 11:07 am and I haven`t eaten anything cos I think I`m getting fat again
  34. Most of my favourite movies of all time are foreign language films
  35. I adore the Boston Redsox
  36. Rugby is my favourite sport to watch
  37. One of the most awesome things I have ever done was visit Arlington National Cemetery and stand at the grave of JFK
  38. I love hot sauces and hot food
  39. My favorite dish is meatballs, potatoes and rice. My Mom`s special recipe and Hayley makes it just like her.
  40. I used to be a chips fan but now I love chocolate
  41. I take critisism very personal
  42. New York is my favourite city in the world
  43. I am very aware of how I look and always try to dress well
  44. I have a pretty good sense of fashion
  45. Leopards are my favourite wild animals
  46. I have blue eyes and I think it`s my best feature
  47. I once won a rugby match in the last minute of the game by slotting a 40 metre drop goal
  48. When I was 10 I jumped off my bed without looking and landed on my kitten who did not survive the incident. I cried for a week.
  49. Hillsong Church Cape Town is my favourite church ever
  50. I love the Kruger National Park
  51. I played flyhalf for most of my rugby career
  52. I crashed my Mom`s car when I was 20 and that was my one and only accident
  53. The Cape is one of my favourite places on earth
  54. I held the record for the best bowling figures at my high school when I took 8/19
  55. I took a hattrick in the first over of my first Action Cricket game in Johannesburg`s A1 league and was made to down 6 beers for my efforts. It was a loooong time ago.
  56. Sullivan Street by Counting Crows is one of my favourite songs
  57. I have gone to work without sleeping the previous night
  58. I eat most anything except tripe
  59. I am fascinated by all things American
  60. I sing very badly but I sing loud in church
  61. I love sharks
  62. I have the best In-Laws in the world
  63. I once threw a golf club (5 wood) after a bad shot and it got stuck in a tree. I threw a 3 iron to get it out and that too got stuck. So I had to climb into the tree to get my clubs. It was the day before I got married.
  64. I haven`t thrown a golf club since
  65. I miss my Mom every day
  66. Braaing (barbeque) is one of my favourite things to do
  67. I am a people person
  68. I love rain
  69. I cried when the Springboks won the world cup in 1995 AND 2007
  70. I love my wife with all my heart
  71. I haven`t seen a good scary movie in a long time
  72. My current favourite tv show is Dirty Sexy Money
  73. I absolutely love the blogs on my Blogroll and always check updates as soon as they happen
  74. I love surprising my wife
  75. I hate Liverpool
  76. I hate the Blue Bulls
  77. I used to be very scared of flying but I take it in my stride these days
  78. I haven`t had a swim in the sea in almost 10 years
  79. I once saw Lenny Kravitz in a shopping centre
  80. We have some of the funniest friends anywhere. They are hilarious.
  81. I mostly don`t enjoy running but I do it because it`s good for me
  82. Some runs are awesome though
  83. Most aren`t
  84. The last year has been one of the worst of my life
  85. I worry almost every day of my life
  86. I am the only one of my family left in SA.
  87. One of my biggest fears is that the extreme summer heat will kill my dogs when I`m not at home.
  88. I`m looking forward to moving back to Johannesburg so we can spend more time with Hayley`s family and our friends
  89. I watch more CNN than any local news channel
  90. I have played on 35 of the top 100 golf courses in South Africa
  91. I am continuing my studies in 2009
  92. I cannot wait for the December holidays when Hayley`s family will be here for a few weeks
  93. I have never owned a motor cycle
  94. I own a lot of gadgets and they include: Ipod, Playstation 2, Playstation 3, Nintendo Wii, PSP, PVR, Iphone, Blackberry etc etc
  95. I broke my wrist playing rugby
  96. I am a huge Adidas fan
  97. I got tennis balls as an extra gift for all my birthdays as a kid. I could not live without a ball nearby
  98. I have never had a hole in one but have been thisclose
  99. I am a loyal friend
  100. I`m not sure what the future holds
  101. I love God

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I`m using my 100th post to congratulate President Obama

* Acknowledges and bows to the applause heard all round.

Thank you everybody for helping me make my 100th post today. Without all my friends out there, I`d just be a lunatic chatting to himself on the internet.

I`d like to use this post to congratulate the USA for making Barack Obama your new president. As Hayley said in her earlier post it feels so out of place for us to have an opinion or a favourite for the US elections. I mean we are a very long way away.

Fact of the matter is that the result affects everybody in the world and I therefore feel like I can voice my opinion.

I have been an Obama supporter since he won the Democratic nomination from Hilary Clinton. Although I have been reticent to air my views on this site, I have aired it to everybody who cares to listen here at home. Obama ran a magnificent campaign. I feel the economic downturn did him a major favour because he certainly coped better with the stresses that it produced. I don`t think economic policy is John MnCain`s strong point and in the end it might have swayed voters Obama`s way.

Be that as it may, I am very happy that America made the right decision. You only have to look at the worldwide Oba"mania" to see that the USA now has somebody who will get people to work with rather than against them. The USA is the most important democracy in the world but they do need friends and I feel the election of President Obama will certainly help in that regard.

I must however take my hat of to John McCain. His speech was very gracious and I feel he did a wonderful job in trying to get the Republicans to accept the newly elected president. Is it just me or did we only get to see the real John McCain during his concession speech?

Which brings me to the acceptance speech of President Obama. How absolutely awesome was that? There is no doubt that the man has a wonderful gift when it comes to public speaking. I had goosebumps.

So once again, well done America. It was a big big moment, not only for you guys but for the world in general.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Vandalised or a lesson learned?

Halloween was really cool. All the kids from our Estate came Trick or Treating in their outfits and it was just adorable. We had cops, axe victims (with axe stuck in head), fairies, Buzz Lightyear and lots more. So, so cute.

However, somebody decided to take Halloween a bit too far. Our cars stay outside cos we have so much furniture and junk that we use the garages to store all the stuff. It`s ok though cos we live in a very safe estate that has 24 hour security and patrols.

On Saturday morning Hayley and I get ready to leave and as we head out the door, it immediately becomes clear that something is not right. There is sand all over my car. It`s a reasonably new estate with a lot of building going on, so there is building sand all over the place. This was however not just sand blown around by the wind. Well, on closer inspection it becomes clear that somebody had taken the time and effort to throw a whole lot of building sand through my sunroof and what didn`t go through the sunroof ended up on the outside. My whole car was full of sand on the inside. The fine building sand that you struggle to get out.

I have rarely been so angry. It`s a blessing that I did not catch the coward cos I would have left my Christian Beliefs behind and something really nasty would have ensued.

What I want to know is the following:
- Firstly, WHO would do such a thing? Could it be kids? There were footprints in the sand and it certainly belonged to an adult or at least a teenager.

- Secondly, WHY? Why go through the trouble of doing something like that? We pretty much keep to ourselves and have not had any trouble since we`ve been in the estate. We greet everybody and nobody has a reason to attack us in this way.

After being really upset for a while, I decided that the person was not going to ruin my day and Hayley and I had a pretty cool time. We drove around in her car during the morning and then we took my car to the car wash in the afternoon. It obviously cost quite a bit to get the car cleaned properly but it had to be done.
It`s incredible how personal we (I) take things like this. I mean the offender obviously does not know us, so it is anything but personal. It is not somebody who I would associate with in any case. Maybe it`s just a kid who took advantage of being out on Halloween. Maybe it was an adult who had one too many drinks? Maybe they just didn`t like my car.
What I do wonder about though is whether the person actually woke up the next day and felt bad about it? Are they being eaten up from the inside because they did something bad to another human being? Or did they get up, have a great laugh and thought of the next prank they could pull?

I don`t have the answers but what I do know is that in the greater scheme of things this was nothing really. I mean we were inconvenienced for a bit, that`s about it. No damage was done. It also just once again amplifies how the devil works. In the sermon yesterday, Jon spoke about the weakest link and how the devil uses the weakest link to get to us. My temper is definitely a weak link for me. I`m pretty mild mannered but some things really get me going. So something so small, in hindsight, got me so upset that I almost wasted a day by being upset. Thank goodness I came to my senses after a few minutes.

Thank you Lord for using something small and a sermon the next day to highlight one of my weak links. With your help, I can now concentrate on managing this weak link.

Ps. I will also NEVER leave my sunroof open again.