Tag Archives: society

The Label we forget

“Above all, she is a human being”

Bloggers, we sometimes do a weird thing. We refer to ourselves in the third person. Especially when we are writing an “about the author” section of a post or blog. It’s a style thing.

In that same breath, have you ever checked the bio section in twitter? Any Social Media really. There is this phenomenon. You can even see it in the C. V.’s sent to companies, when people apply for jobs. The entire person get’s condensed into a few words, which we commonly refer to as a label.

Just scroll down, and you will see my own third person account of myself. Check my Twitter bio.

twitter_bio

There’s one label I fell we so often leave out. It’s the label: human being.

I guess it’s a given, an obvious fact. It’s an overlooked fact. However much I may seem as a hero, however much I may seem like a failure I am still a human being.

human_quote

 

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This post links to a month’s long daily blogging challenge, during November. See who else has signed up to be a Little Pepper HERE. It’s called NANO POBLANO.

NanoPoblano 2017

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:


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Spotlight fever

The stage is dark. The curtains have just been raised. There we are. An echoing thump jolts our heart to full alertness. Standing there completely alone, you are not aware of me. I’m not aware of you. We are not aware of us. The blinding light seems to amplify our thumping chest. Sweat drips down our forehead. The sound of the plummeting moisture seems to be amplified. Our voice – there is no sound. An inaudible squeak. Suddenly, the light in the dark auditorium is switched on.
We can see the audience. But there is no one there. There is no we. I am alone. And no one cares that I’m afraid. No one saw the blunder. Witnessed only by the light, which passed me no judgment.

Social Media seems to have amplified, those who can see our mistakes. The other day a thought passed through my mind. What if that post goes viral? It certainly had all the makings of a viral post, and for a second my heart jolted into full alertness. And in that moment I knew. The post won’t go viral. Not only does my blog not have that kind of traction, but I’m not ready. Not my writing is not ready. I’m not. And I’m also not saying my writing is flawless, cause it is defiantly flawed, but it’s not horrid either. I took a deep breath and relaxed.

It never ceases to disgust me, what kind of poison goes virtually viral, these days – especially in these parts. Children being abused by their Nanny – caught on a Nanny cam. A drunk young woman … I’m not even going to finish that sentence. What’s even more disturbing is the reaction people have. The way we blame and shame. We judge as if we were flawless. Perhaps my content just does not have that shock factor. But if something did go viral, I know there’d be trolls that come knocking.

Painted_Face

The other day a white lady posted something on Facebook. I only mention her skin-color because it is pivotal to the story. I’ll call a spade a spade and not call her Caucasian. While she certainly is Caucasian, here we’d refer to her as a white lady. Apartheid was still within my lifetime. Some of my peers can still remember the UNO coming to their class declaring, “everyone is now equal”.

The white lady posted something on Facebook which caused a big up-stir. In a status update, she mentioned that she had just witnessed a black man taking a white person’s dog for a walk. i.e. She thought this dog to be stolen. She put on her number so that anybody who was missing this dog could ask for more information. I never saw this post myself, but it was big in our local headlines.

Obviously, the first question to ask would be, how does she know the dog belonged to a white person?

Here’s the thing – she never meant to hurt anybody or make such a racist remark. She was guilty of ignorance only and perhaps having experienced something traumatic.

What went viral, was not her Facebook post – it was the recorded call a woman made to her. The other woman who had a British type of accent, called the white lady to ask about the dog. Firstly the British accent woman asked the white woman, how she knew the dog belonged to a white person. When the latter responded that one could simply see it, in that the dog seemed well cared for. The British accent woman referred to the “missing” dog as a Bitch throughout the conversation and ended the call by calling the white woman a Bitch. Honestly, she was very mean and seemed only to want to ridicule the white woman. Goal achieved. Everyone was laughing. The white woman later needed to switch off her phone due to all the harassment she was receiving.

Online bullying at it’s best!

If you read the article in the newspaper, you’d  find out why the white woman made such an ignorant post. At one point, some of her pet dogs were stolen. They only found the paws of these animals – whom she assumed had been eaten. Still no sympathy?

Yes, I hear you. We should be sympathetic to the people who have not enough food and thus eat dogs and cats. Poverty, it is a huge problem. But can you spare no sympathy for this woman, who happens to be married to a colored man (that’s someone of mixed heritage)?

In the newspaper article, the white lady apologized for her blunder. I doubt anyone was listening or reading for that matter. The article, after all, did not go viral. Only the phone call was broadcast to everyone—thanks to WhatsApp.

lettingGoSilouette

Which brings me back to the spotlight fever. What are we shining the light on? Sometimes an issue is much larger than the one part we highlight.

In my example, there were many issues. I mentioned: poverty, racism, online bullying, ignorance and a lack of general empathy. Depending on our own life experiences, we may have focused on only one of these. We may have been enraged at the white woman’s audacity. How could she think, people of a dark skin tone can’t take good care of their pets? It served her right to be treated by the British accent lady like that. It served her right, to be harassed. She should be, belittled for her mistake.

Or perhaps like me, you saw the lack of empathy people have shown. And you hope to all that is good, the spotlight which accentuates all your flaws, never falls on you. Just be careful what you say.

I was so afraid to even use the terms “white lady” & “black man”, even though they fit the frame of this story. Obviously, I still live in a world with many racial divides. I tend to see the cultural differences as beautiful, something to be proud of. Treat everyone with respect, is the kind of value I try to model to my children. However, in this world, you need to be politically correct – always. Or rather just keep your mouth shut.

What gives you the right to speak? Except for the light. It demanded something more than an inaudible squeak.

*above images credit to pixabay

 This post links to a month’s long daily blogging challenge, during November. See who else has signed up to be a Little Pepper HERE. It’s called NANO POBLANO.

NanoPoblano 2017

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:


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How to overcome relationship disaster taught to us by bedtime stories

“I also want to marry a prince,” my five-year old said when I finished reading her a bedtime story. It does not really matter which one, Snow White, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty all have a common plot. In the end Prince Perfect shows up and rescues the damsel.

two porcelain frogs

Is it then really such a huge surprise that we create this expectation of a perfect partner in our growing children, even one called Prince? When I was growing up there were two such princes. One is called Prince Harry, the other Prince William. I’m of cause referring to Princess Diana’s two boys, one who will inherit the British royal throne. I clearly remember telling my father “that’s the one I’ll marry one day,” while watching the Telly. And realize I live half way across the globe, in the middle of nowhere Southern Africa.

It is a fairytale and at some point we realize that Prince Perfect does not exist. Or do we?

I had a discussion with an unmarried colleague the other day. There was a debate about whether one should be married or not.

“I guess I’ll never get married,” she said and paused. “I just always have this idea of the perfect man in my head and they always disappoint me.”

If this is you at nearly forty, then well I hate to break it to you. Yes, they are going to disappoint you. Why? Because, not even Prince William is perfect.

Such expectations in relationships are dangerous things. They set up the relationship to fail. And some of us take a very long time, if ever to find this truth.

So if you are still singing like Fairground Attraction (that’s a music group), that, “it’s got to be Perfect”, perhaps you need to change your tune.

Mister wrong is not necessarily wrong, because he is not perfect. He may be wrong, because you have an unrealistic expectation. You can’t change someone to meet your expectations.

Imagine someone has that expectation of you. My brother, poor guy, who grew up with two sisters used to say he’d only ever date the perfect woman. This lady, needed to always look pretty, never pass gas – of any kind, be polite. Did I mention she was not allowed to perform disgusting bodily functions such as pass gass? Oh yea. It’s right there. Basically he was describing a robot.

Here’s the thing. Mister right may not be perfect. Neither are you. But, maybe , just maybe you are perfect for each other.

*Frog image by: https://pixabay.com  –   Alexas_Fotos-686414

p.s. This post has been the eleventh day of ‘it does not need to be perfect’, a series I’m currently running on this here blog.

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:

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We can fix society, one story at a time

The screen is cracked. The screen of my cell phone, which I’m currently using to create this post, that is. Like a hideous spider web, it obscures my vision. Already used to the broken fragment, I swiped on.

With cell phones being so fragile, I’ve seen many a person walk 🚶 around with the same kind of blemish. Odd how quickly we adapt. We accept as normal. And I’m not just talking about the inconsequential cracked cellphone screen. Obvious. Maybe not.
After all, if everyone is doing it – then it is perfectly acceptable. I’m not just talking about drugs here. So if everyone comes to work late, it becomes perfectly acceptable to be late, each and every morning. Before your boss has whipped out his eyes, the company culture has changed.

child blowing bubble earth

What’s the big-y about culture?

Culture is something which governs our actions. What we find acceptable. What shocks us. How we react to things. This is why buzzwords such as ‘rape-culture’ are so big in our online discussions. What’s more, culture is formed by the collective experiences. I.e. What we believe, how we react to life is filtered by our past experiences. 

Did you know that storytelling creates experiences? Yes, and not just from a writer’s perspective. It only takes two different stories with a similar outcome to convince someone to rethink how they react towards that type of outcome. Two similar tales spun, and someone has gained a different experience. This in turn will not only determine his own perception, but changes the way others in the community think and act.

Think about that, for two tics.

Your stories, whether written or spoken can influence how someone else perceives the world. I’d like to hope all of us aren’t that impressionable. While stories may be used for the force of good, often they are used for the dark side.  How quickly your mind can change really depends on our point of reference. Your upbringing and your experiences.

Let’s say you are a woman. You hear from a friend about a guy whom you have never met, let’s call him Joe. Joe charmed your friend out of her socks, but got bored pretty quickly.
A few weeks later, another friend tells you she went on a date with Joe, but after a great night he never returned her calls. A random night out, you meet this Joe. Would you not approach Joe with caution? Perhaps avoid Joe altogether? What about if you met someone completely different who reminds you of Joe?
You get where I’m going here. Your friends shared experience, has become somewhat your own.

See how easy stories influence us?

If one guy gets away with a certain conduct, the next one will try a similar thing. Soon it becomes common.
Like my cracked cellphone screen, as a society we all too conveniently find some things acceptable.
I really don’t want to go into all the heartbreaking things this world has found acceptable. As mentioned, it’s sometimes the little things, such as coming to work late which rob us.

Sometimes, it takes some real strong-willed determination, not to do what everyone else finds perfectly acceptable.

The impact these stories of such strong-willed determination have on our society is sometimes the only thing that stands between us and degradation, impoverishment of the human condition.

Why? Because these uplifting stories give us a new point of reference.

While I’ve been terribly philosophical with this post, which certainly would have benefited in me being more specific, I hope it has at least given you some food for thought. Now, go forth and shine.

This post has been the tenth day of it does not need to be perfect a series I’m currently writing on this blog.

*child blowing bubble picture courtesy of pixabay.

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:


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Let’s talk about #Politics, you, me and dancing – baby. Let’s talk about . . .

In the one corner, we have that dude with the fake hair. You know whom I’m talking about it’s the guy who invented the word “fired”. It’s no other than Mister Donald Trump. The crowd cheers as he turns to wave, or are they booing him off? In the other corner, we have Miss former white house first lady, Hilary Clinton. Her wave is somewhat more composed, but the crowd seems to react in quite the same manner.

By DonkeyHotey (Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump - Caricatures) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By DonkeyHotey (Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump – Caricatures) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons
“Ding, Ding, Ding”

There goes the bell folks as we look at these two American white house nominees go head to head. Donald is about to throw the first punch, but wait . . . What’s happening in the crowd?

Someone wearing all blue has just dived onto someone wearing all red.  Here come the men in black, who are rumored to have blue blood. Sheesh! The crowd has become a mob. The MIB is pulling out the big guns. Time for a well-timed distraction. In walks, Helen Zille, wearing a light blue dress suit. That won’t calm down the crowd Misses Zille. What’s this? She is starting to sing and dance!

Yes, Darlings the official opposition to the ANC, in South Africa – the DA which was led by Miss Hellen Zille a white lady I may add, dances along on her political rally just like the rest of the comrades in politics in that country. The rest of us Africans look along in wonder. Only the South Africans dance when they are doing political speeches. They dance when they are “toyi-toying” (that’s slang for protesting, political rallying etc.). They dance when they are sad. They dance when they are angry. Oh yes, they do! Right before they burn stuff down, they dance. You will find the South African mob dancing through the street with the Knobkerrie in their hand.

What did you think this was going to be another post on the American political scene? Contrary to popular belief the U.S. of A. is not the entire world.

Y’all should stop watching the Kardashians and take a look at the South African parliament. Much more entertaining. For sure! Apart from the hilarious nose picking (right there) on International TV, there is always some kind of commotion going on.

If it’s not Julius Malema, booing of the President of the South Africa – Jacob Zuma during the state of the nation address, then it’s some other thing that would get the former ANC Youth leader forcefully escorted out of the building. And of cause, he sings and dances all the way out. Nevertheless, seriously, if the fact that one of the biggest South African online shops was selling toilet paper printed with the face of Julius Malema, isn’t an indication of that man’s personality, I don’t know what is.

Y’all think you have it bad with Trump? Let’s compare him to Zuma. Not only did Zuma very recently steal billions of Rands for his private homestead at Nkandla. No. The polygamist (which is traditional and legal here) was accused of raping a young woman. His other five wives must not have settled his,”em” appetite.

Yes, of cause all allegations from his political enemies.  He has been acquitted. It was consensual. (Big sarcasm). This is debatable. What is not debatable is that the woman is HIV positive. And what does this African leader tell his nation, which has one of the highest HIV rates in the world? Oh, no he did not wear a condom. Not to worry! He took a shower afterward. Because, people, hygiene is obviously more important than wearing a condom.

I could go on and on here. The entire region is tired of that man. Not because he treats women like property. No, we are tired because he single handily is ruining the economy of that country and the Southern African region with it.  The same basket of food a year ago would have cost me R50. Today it costs me R150. That in a region where most of the people are living in shacks, below the bread line!

With the huge gap between the rich and poor here, is it really such a surprise to see students burning down educational facilities? You know what the problem is? It is corruption. I’m all for Free education. #FeesMustFall ! Yo! However, fees cannot fall if corruption rules these lands. Don’t be fooled. While the South African and Zimbabwean corruption has been exposed on international media, other leaders in the region are just as cunning in their ways of obtaining fortune. And still, there are those who blame it all on Apartheid.

Nevertheless, I feel for you America. I worry for you. Cause let’s face it. Jacob Zuma can’t just flip a switch in his “Oval Office” and nuke the entire planet.

But take it from an African. Corruption has just as much destructive power has a bomb. It kills a society slowly. Brick for Brick. Layer for Layer.

There seems to be a wind blowing in the political air these days. If the Brexit is anything to go by, the world may soon wake up to one of the wealthiest economies lead by a cutthroat businessperson! Does this man care about his own interest or is he interested in the state of his nation?

Is it really, such a surprise, that Americans voted that man into a white house nominee seat? The United States of America is after all the nation that brought us this man:

Picture courteously of Facebook
Picture courteously of Facebook

That would be Pastor Steven Anderson from Arizona. In case you did not know this is the man who praised the Orlando shootings. What you may not know is that this “Pastor” was banned from entering South Africa recently. South Africa have enough of their own hate speech. They do not need to import y’alls. Although sadly this man did visit Botswana (was later deported).  As a region, we still have a long road to go, to do away with the anti-gay law. Long, Long, Long road.

Americans have woken up and smelled the coffee. There is defiantly something wrong with y’alls political system. The USA has become a trigger-happy country with a huge national debt. It is something to be worried about. Is Hilary really the person to save y’all? Your choices do really seem somewhat limited.

If I go to the voting booth here, I have no less than thirteen candidates to choose from. Not that most of those will make a dent in the ruling parties 70% majority, but still. People vote based on culture or because they have always voted a certain party. You will find some family members disowning their own if the kid, for example, he decides to vote for the opposition.

Still, I can see the appeal of three or four strong parties up for election. It is not always, about who wins but about who will be representing you in parliament. A voice of reason when two parties are darn out not agreeing, or when both have gone insane.

That, however, is not a realistic choice for Americans going to the polls soon. So instead of becoming hooligans on the on-line forums, perhaps y’all should take a leaf from the South African political book. Y’all should start to sing and dance when y’all are angry, when y’all are sad or when y’all just feel like pulling out each other’s hair.

So, let’s talk about politics baby. Let’s talk about you and me. Let’s talk about all the good things, all the bad things that may be. Let’s talk about politics.

 

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

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Does size matter?

“If you could have only one option: Do you like it thick or long?” Yes, I’m talking about sex here. Yes, I’m talking about the male anatomy. And yes, that is an actual question a dude asked me a very long while ago. A blog post by my friend Lizzi : Body shaming; a teenie-weenie-peenie paradox, reminded me of the conversation.

Lizzi points to an article where there is a contest for the smallest penis!!! *facepalm* My option: there is something wrong with the world today!

While body shaming is usually aimed at women, I think the contest organizers were trying to point this at men instead. Do you really think you can right some wrongs like that? Sadly, while the idea may have presented some heated debate I think people have still not figured out what is wrong with society.

So what did the 19-year-old I have to say to the dude who asked me whether I preferred it thick or long? “Neither, it’s about technique.”  I stand by that statement. However, it goes much deeper than that. Why has it become important in society today, whether your assets both male and female are a certain way, in this case – big? Is that really the merit upon which we choose our mates?

What makes a person attractive?

Here is my personal list:

  • Intelligence
  • Compassion
  • Sense of humor
  • And the big one, the really important one (okay it’s two), respect and acceptance.

Respect and acceptance. Isn’t that what we should all give each other? In a partner or friend, those are the most important attributes. Respect me, and accept me as I am. That means you accept my tiny bust and even find them attractive.  You accept my character flaws the way I accept yours. When we make love we do so respectfully. We think about the other’s comfort, satisfaction, and not just our own.

Muscular-male-from-back
The problem with the big peter

If Mother Nature bestowed a huge peter upon Peter, it tends to give Peter a big head. Society teaches him to assume that he is God’s gift to women. If this assumption is based purely on the size of his male member, he is grossly mistaken. He falsely assumes every woman should have sex with him just because. If she doesn’t, he starts screaming insults such as “prude”. But, seriously Peter, why would a woman even want to have sex with a guy that thinks only of his own satisfaction and does not even respect her? In case you have not guessed it, the answer is: She would not.

I was recently disgusted with my countries male politicians. While on state visit, an influential regional leader was showed pictures of the countries single ladies. Yea, just pick whomever you want like the dessert on a food menu. Of cause, that story never made it to the media outlets. I’m not naming anyone, because I have no proof of it. One of the lady’s in question declined, asking them if they thought her a whore. Still, the disrespect of it.  More disturbing is that some women will go along with that. They would be happy about being invited to the party with the “celebrity”.

When we as women laugh at some man’s smaller penis, we condone being treated like mere sexual objects. We tell Peter, that indeed he is correct in his assumption. We become part of the problem. We become part of “them” and “they” that make up the unit dubbed “society”.

There is nothing laughable about a small penis. If the man in question feels happy enough with his anatomy to display it to the world then applause to him.

Not every guy is like Peter

Thankfully, not all men are alike. Very many men do treat woman with respect and love. It is also probable that the good and kind men of this world have male members, which come in all types and sizes.

The desire to have bigger boobs or a larger penis may mean the person is unhappy about a part of himself or herself. There is nothing shameful about small assets. Neither is changing your anatomy by either surgery or pills. If such an act makes you as a person happier and does not financially paralyze you, then go for it. However, do it for the right reasons. Mister or Misses Right will not appear on your doorstep merely based on a body alteration. If he loves you because you have bigger breasts, then it is not love. Neither is it love if she seems irresistibly impressed by a big pecker.

We should choose our partners based on more than the size of their private body parts or other physical attributes. The value of a person lies in their heart. Their soul. Their shining spark. Sex between two consenting adults should be a respectful and mutually pleasurable act of connection.

Moreover, as adverse I am to admitting it, each and every one of us makes up a unit of the “them”. If there are enough of us that stop acting like the rest, we as a society, can move away from the materialistic thought pattern. We can learn to respect each other. Over a space of time the grotesque treatment of fellow human beings, would not be something to overlook, something normal, or something to laugh at. It would and should be considered unacceptable.

Namaste: The Divine light in me acknowledges the Divine light in you.

Salute.

About the Author

profile-pic-2Sarina often sat on the peaks of the dunes of Southern Africa watching the ocean tide drift in. A daydreamer, often dreaming up stories for lands somewhere over the rainbow. She is a mother, a wife, a blogger and an overall creative spirit. Above all, she is a human being.

Find her here:

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