Friday, 6 July 2012

Pop politics: Some thoughts

if dude doesn't remove his right hand from my crotch, I'll marry him and make him buy me a yellow lambo, then I'll take him for all he has- YOLO BITCHES!!!!!

*****This post was originally written on, uhm, somewhere in October 2011 I suppose. Didn’t re-read so it’s as pure as on the day it was conceived*****

One of those days when the birds seem to be chirping a bit louder, the rent statement comes and the amount due is 0.05 bucks, even babies are smiling at you in the street and white girls seem to find your crass and very vulgar ‘I need head’ t-shirt (which is more stupid than funny) amusing as they do the smile-and-pass (it’s an actual technique, used by dudes in clubs everywhere). David Kibuka calls these ‘hot days’ which is both true and false since it’s not really about how hot you look but how hot you feel. ‘Nother post for another day.
I would firstly like to say that, although I try my all to be, I am by no means an exception to the sh*t I’m about to spew right now. I usually ponder a little when I spend my hard-earned cash (not ‘hard-earned’ by me of course- don’t you just loathe useless people?) to fuel the machinery that is pop culture.

1. Are we really okay with the fact that pop culture’s sole responsibility is providing entertainment, despite the amount of money we pump (directly or indirectly) into it?
2. Should freedom of expression really be a valid foot on which this pseudo-culture can rest?
3. Why the f*ck is Kenny Kunene famous?

This is an extract of Tom Matlack’s post “Pop culture is killing us” on the good men project on October the 17th, 2011 (by the way the content is more important than the form- on gameless)

“Pop art is a way to critique reality. It’s a way of seeing a deeper truth in the mundane as well as the most famous, but it was never intended to stand in for the thing itself”

I have to admit that I never thought of pop culture as more that what it is today. A celebrity building machine. I’ve never thought of it as having or needing to have any other purpose since it was as Tom says “not meant to stand in for the thing itself”. In other words I saw it as mimicking reality and I did not really anticipate it surpassing it in our minds. I come bearing bad news though, it has.
Tom goes on to say;

“America of 2011 is a world where fantasy and reality have traded places. Where popular culture has become our center point of gravity, our common language, a replacement for the grave problems of our time that are too ominous to take seriously. We get our news from John Stewart and Chelsea Handler, while the New York Times and Walter Cronkite’s old CBS have become a joke. The feminist movement of the 60’s and 70’s have culminated in The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills delivering 2.2 million viewers after the show induced the husband to one of the stars to commit suicide.”

South Africa’s problems are a bit different of course (but not completely opposite, with the government trying to gag the media and all). We have government officials splurging like it’s the end of days and not even hiding it from the millions of unemployed youth who in turn live vicariously through those Sunday paper images while on some level ignoring their state of affairs. When reality finally smacks them in the face they then see crime as their only way out since in their minds it’s too late to go to school.

Those who were lucky enough to go to school and then on to college see this celebrity lifestyle their “role-models” lead young as they are and decide that being corrupt is the only way to get that far, that fast, which is true in a sense and the cycle of hypocritical debauchery continues (that was a mouthful).

Here’s the thing, in a country like South Africa especially (where celebrity and public representative are this conflated) pop culture should shoulder a lot more responsibility since, well, it is funded by our taxes. Celebrities must be role models since uhm, we don’t want to die (see the unemployment reference above), seriously, there are still so many asses to plough and shitty blogs to write.

Thirdly, (what happened to firstly and secondly?) Kenny Kunene being famous, real simple- he’s interesting. Let me elaborate, he is interesting and extremely rich. If every guy on earth were to make a list of what they wanted to be, I guarantee that twelve times out of ten one of those two things would be in the top three. To sum up, he’s rich because he’s rich, and he’s famous because he’s interesting.

Gameless on politics, a lot more to come. I’ve reached my quota of 600 words now, and probably overshot by about 50 (give or take 50) I’m out... (doesn't this just sound like some shit R Kelly would have said in '93?)

Monday, 14 November 2011

What Man(cini)ty's victory means to world football

Aloha to women with no ties to men that I know well that way there’ll be no lies (or they’ll just be comparatively fewer). We were all watching (except me since I was watching the Proteas trying to level the ODI series against the Aussies- which we did, in style, SUCK IT MATILDA!) on that ‘dreadful’ day when world football was turned on its head and the ‘minnows’ of Manchester chewed the asses off their much more favoured big brothers of United. Shock? Maybe. Undeserved? F*ck NO!

Vidic’s absence, Evans’ red, Mancini’s somewhat fortuitous De Jong/Toure swap which in turn gave rise to City’s fluidity in ball movement (all of which contributed to the score being as huge as it is, as opposed to the victory itself which was never really in much doubt) yadi yadi yada is not what this is about. I’ll leave that to the ‘experts’. What I’m more concerned with is what this victory means to world football. At the risk of sounding exactly like I said I wouldn’t, here goes I. In the context of the attainment of victory, what is the link between coaching tactics and talent on the field? Before I answer this question I feel it necessary to clarify that I’m in no way trying to imply, insinuate or suggest that the amount of talent at Roberto Mancini’s disposal on the field exceeds that which Sir Alex has. I AM SAYING IT OUTRIGHT, IT DOES.

Sir Alex has always had the ability to find the perfect combination of skill at playing a certain position and money to buy the particular player symmetry with the rest of the squad. Now this is not really a substitute for pure talent and general ballplaying skills, but he’s always been able to make it work bar a few exceptions. It can also be argued that the likelihood of victory is exponentially increased if the ‘team’ plays as a ‘team’ as opposed to being a conglomerate of really good players who cannot gel.

Having said that, I will say this, MONEY CAN BUY YOU HAPPINESS (or at least success, plus, not having money also won’t buy you happiness). With FIFA’s financial fair play rules being the joke that they are and all the financial muscle at Man City’s disposal as well last season’s performance at the business end of their league campaign which saw them qualifying for the Champion’s league, this is really not much of a surprise seeing as their biggest obstacle in attracting big players was their absence in the Champion’s league.

Tactics can only go so far, the rest is up to the players. That’s when it becomes really important to have a Sergio Aguero in the opposition box than a Wellbeck for example. Apart from the obvious gap in experience in the top level, ball playing skills and pace Aguero would probably be a good bet in producing the goods due to pure footballing (not a word by the way) ability.

Which begs the question, where is football headed? What with football clubs allowed a lot of leeway under the ‘you can only spend as much as you make’ guise (which I must admit is kind of fair) and all the paradigm/power shift(s). The answer- I’ve got absolutely no idea, but as a gunner (an Arsenal fan to the football challenged) I am inclined to say it’s going to be intriguing either way.

For now though, I do not really think that the shift in the balance of power is big enough to be considered a significant paradigm shift. As a side note, I really do believe that Liverpool will get back to the ‘top four’ and Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and Aston Villa will go back to being considered ‘threats to the top four’. Time will tell.

*This post was written by gameless after the game but never posted*

Friday, 4 November 2011

Rejection: the big red button

It's 5h16 on a Saturday spring morning. Birds are chirping, guns are blazing (in some part of the cape flats), owls are doing their thing and Sbu's ''everything happens for a reason'' is banging on the radio while the rugby has gone to half time. I know the latter not by choice but because two slightly deaf people are playing the radio so loud Rihanna's probably drinking to that (see what I did there? By the by according to injustice facts, the weekend this single was released alcohol consumption in the US went up 8%, yep, 8,not judging).

Don't get me wrong, I like loud music as much as the next guy, but at 5 in the morning, it's just wrong. Not even the good kind like cheating with someone hotter wrong, noooo, this is like getting a girl to dump her fiance and then telling her you don't want anything serious wrong, or shagging Bobby Brown wrong, UNFORGIVABLE basically. Don't you just hate it when people put sh*t in bold letters for effect but it turns out, IT HAS NONE.

Speaking about sh*t you/I hate- I DESPISE the SABC. Rugby world cup started, guess what, they decide to broadcast the cheaper matches (i.e New Zealand Tonga, Scotland Romania, France Japan yadi yada), but don't bother to show shit we really wanna see (i.e Australia Ireland, New Zealand France, England France...) the nerve of these corrupt fuckers!

International cricket season begins next week, match begins at 18h00 they're starting their broadcast at 20h00. In the words of Paris Hilton What the fuzz? This is all a bunch o' bs (I never actually heard her say this or anything for that matter but it sounds like somethin' she would say).

Aah, guys and girls. Just saw a friend of mine's post on facebook and for the sake of expediency the gist of it was ''some dudes just can't handle rejection''. I think she was talking about a situation where she was walking, dude tried to holler, she hit player with the beatbox coupled with the not-even-if-you-were-the-last-low-pants-wearing-chicco-styled-motherf*cker-on-the-planet look. Dude got chuffed and called her the B word and confirmed his utter lack of smoothness and general inability to speak to the boobed ones.

Now, I don't completely disagree with her assertion that some dudes can't handle rejection, that much is obvious (see OJ, Breezy, the Columbine killers, Beenie Siegel and the crazy lady who cut his husband's johnson off-sidenote, WOMEN.ARE.CRAZY-kinda like those New Zealanders at the rugby world cup that you see before the match starts dressed in straw skirts and Plascon talmbout WHOOOOA!, motherf*cker what? Gimme that stick and sit yo ass down!

Now where was I? Oh yeah some dudes and rejection. Here's the thing, I think that at some level most of us can't handle it. Let me rephrase that, ALL of us cannot handle rejection. Nobody likes to be told their not good enough, AT ANYTHING. Especially if you allowed yourself to think you are. See some people just choose to bury their heads in the sand and not make waves at anything since they suspect they're not good enough and for them, rejection would really confirm that, whether this is objectively true or not does not really matter since subjectively, it's as clear as daylight.

Why then does it seem that some people can handle rejection more than others? Simple- weight, no not that weight. The amount of importance we attach to some things at times at the expense of others, that weight. It's not going to be hard for brothergameless to accept rejection from a woman, a 10 for instance, since in the greater scheme of things, considering my priorities, past success vs failure ratio, realistic expectations (or what I perceive to be realistic), timing, her weave, it is not really that urgent to get that particular woman in that particular space to want to bone me.

It would not be that rejection does not bother gameless, just that in that context it would not be a rejection of me, but of what I represent to that particular woman at that particular time depending on the approach. By the way just on the approach, probably one of the most difficult skills to master. Now if gameless was rejected by a football team, or not even shortlisted at 16 consecutive job interviews, that would go directly to what I think has come to define me- an athlete and a person who is good at what they do. It would really hurt because in my mind that would not be a rejection of me and what I am about but also what I think I'm about. Anyway friends of gameless, any other opinions on this, any anecdotes, anyone get shot for rejecting rakgadi's sister's brother? Hit me up in the comments, gameless, out.