Of Clamped

You park your car; pay for your parking space for the next hour and then; this happens, what do you do?

harare parking

Coming back to my vehicular transportation and and and finding its been clamped.

A clamped tyre

A distinctively yellow hideous excuse of a handcuff hugging one of the wheels tightly, like a crazy lover who won’t let you go; forever…..

“What’s this?” I ask the Parking Marshall, kicking at the offending yellowness with the toe-end of my shoe.

It’s been clamped Sir” replies the Marshall; fiddling around with their mobile parking receipt machine.

Parking Marshall

Slowly I count to ten and exhale.

I can see that it’s been clamped” I speak with a calmness that belies the fury by which I punctuate each word with a kick to the clamped tyre.
Why has it been clamped? I paid my dollar for the hour and I still have time on clock too

You have an outstanding unpaid parking bill of $2” replies the Parking Marshall.

May I know when I incurred this parking bill and why you did not inform me of this earlier when I paid for parking? Why did you wait until I had gone to clamp my car, like a thief in the night except its daylight robbery.” I speak gesturing at the midday sun.

Unfortunately Sir, my system doesn’t show unpaid___”

I interrupt before the marshall can finish that ridiculous sentence;
Then pray tell, how did you divine that I had a parking bill

My supervisor from Control called to notify me of the outstanding amount and advised I clamp your vehicle. The system there has access to that information. I can call Control and you can speak to them if you wish” the parking attendant tries to explain.

No!” I quickly respond tersely. After a few second of silence I proceed to raise my points of concerns.

…….And how would I know that the person I am speaking to is from your parking company and not someone you are in cahoots with to swindle me of an easy buck. I am not refusing to pay, I simply want to know first of all when these supposed parking violations occurred and secondly I want to see it on something official. I will simply not just take you or your supervisor’s word alone.

The Parking Marshall then makes a phone call and speaks briefly, I do not catch the conversation but she attempts to hand me phone mouthing the word “my Supervisor“. I refuse I flat out, shaking my head of locks, like a ghost from Macbeth.

I don’t want to talk to that person if that’s your Supervisor, tell them what I told you.

The Marshall converses on the phone and must have come to some sort of understanding with the person on the other end.

My supervisor says he can send you an email statement,” the Marshall relays.

I hand over my business card with an email address at the back and the Parking Marshall passes on the information.

If it’s OK with you I will wait in the car” I say as I unlock the car and sit inside.

It’s a good thing I can check emails from my phone; so I wait and wait, I wait forever boredom begins to set in. I start the car, for fun. The Marshall looks at me in alarm, as if I might be crazy enough to drive off.

Fortunately before I can test the theory of how crazy I can get, the phone beeps an alert, new email notification. Opening the email I scroll through the itemised bill I scroll and scroll till I find the two entries.

parking

October 2017 according to their records the vehicle parked and did not pay; how can anyone verify something from 8 months ago; who was even driving? What if they just randomly pick dates from long ago and claim unpaid parking fees; I mean the car has a steady history of paid parking;  why did they not pick up on the amount due earlier if they have a computerised system but of course arguing with the Parking Marshall is pointless because The System does not negotiate, especially once your car is clamped, The System wants money.

I pay the $2 and the car gets unshackled…. It’s a good thing I have no other appointments or I would have been two hours late………

Where are the City Fathers and what kinda of Mickey Mouse operation is the prepaid parking company running?????

~B

 

 

 

 

 

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Of Coffee With Lerato: Wandering Through Africa

 

Of coffee with Lerato: Wandering Through Africa On Faith

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that I am honoured to have a well-travelled guest with quite the wanderlust; Lerato Mogoatlhe here with us.

Lerato M

~B: Hi Lerato we can call you Lerato right or you have an alias you best known as?

L: I’m so happy about our coffee. There is nothing I love more than conversations with like-minded people, you know, we who are passionate to the point of being obsessed with Africa. My friend Astou Fall nicknamed me Vagabond…and @MadamAfrika, which is my name on Twitter and Instagram. I love them both but MadamAfrika has our continent in there so call me Madam Afrika, please.

~B: Alrighty then. Hello Madam Afrika; first thing’s first because in my world, there’s only two kinds of people: Tea or Coffee?

L: Coffee, buna, kahawa. Sorry tea – I’m not a morning person and you are not known to up an upper!!!

Lipton tea bag

Walk to the grocery store instead of taking a car

~B: How many countries have you been to and where did you have your most memorable cuppa?

L: 21. This question is a trick. You are trying to pick a favourite child among many. None the less, Sudan, Khartoum. I stayed in Al Amarat while there. A short walk from my hotel was an old woman who with a simple coffee stall on the street. Very basic: a small table, a couple of kettles to boil her water, drinking glasses and jars with coffee, ginger, sugar  and cardamom. I’d sit quietly with her and we would communicate with our smiles. It was such a tender and loving way to start my mornings.

Al Amarat

Al Amarat

Coffee spot

Coffee Spot in Al Amarat

~B: I am in awe though, did you just wake up one day and decide “Right; I want to travel!” and upped and left just like. *finger snap*

L: Have you met me? I do not do snaps. It looks like it but trust me, my obsessive mind would never. let me. The moment is always a snap of the finger but the destiny was signed a long time ago. I was around 8 when we were taught about ancient Egypt at school. I still remember the awe, staring at a poster of the Sphinx. I still catch some of the teacher’s words: the great Pyramid, Seven wonders of the ancient world.

This made me realise that the world is far bigger than anything I can imagine, and that history goes waaaaay back to a time that I will only ever know through words and whatever is leftover from its time. I also told myself that I’m going to see the pyramids. I read Things Fall Apart at 13 going to 14 and my mind went to work again: these markets, the traditional wrestling, cowrie shells, palm wine…I wanted to see and taste them and that means going where they are. Around this age I also read a book that introduced me to Jollof rice – and drumroll, there goes my mind. I was blown away to discover that there are other ways to enjoy rice other than plain and boiled. In between there is more African literature and music and it all made me curious.

The backdrop of it is being raised on a steady diet of Black Pride and at some stage my uncle’s Pan Africanism. We are extremists, my uncle and I, so every idea and aspiration was measured against Africa, down to the littlest details and the conclusion I made by the time I hit my early twenties; that the world is great, but Africa is affirming. Listen, I wanted to learn French for the longest time and when I told my uncle he called me out. ”Only an inferiority complex makes you shed yourself” he said, and there is nothing lost than an African who buys into the propaganda of our inferiority…why learn French when I could not speak IsiXhosa, he argued. 

So my life has always Africa first, middle and last.

Then I worked as a journalist and became increasingly unhappy with Africa being written as doom and gloom. I am a doer, so I left to rewrite the narrative.  Africa is my destiny and fits into every component of my life and interests, if you get want I mean. Every time I question and explore my identity, the answer is always Africa.

Jebel Barkal

Now to get to leaving. I went to Accra on a media trip in 2006 for four days, that introduced me to blackness as I will never experience it in South Africa for as long as apartheid is not fully dismantled: pride, glory, power…man…do you know what it feels like to see yourself as a servant all your life when you do not consider yourself one?  So even being in a supermarket in Accra and seeing that everyone from owner and manager to the packer was black was affirming. I made the decision to quit my life in SA while in Accra. I kept it quiet (silence is golden) until November 2007 when I start telling friends that I’m leaving in 2008. The only thing “snap” was going with the 23rd of June. I may not know the moment when it will happen, but the destiny has been sealed.

~B: What was your plan did you have a travelling companions besides of course FAITH.

L: By myself. I roll solo. It is faster. It has focus. I consider myself quiet the Philosoblah, and have always believed that how we come into this life tells you have everything you need to know – even people who share a womb come out of it and into life alone. Company is great but some things can only be done alone. The biggest dream of my life had to be MY moment, not our moment. Gosh. I even broke up with a fling after the mention joining me in Accra – ALL THAT MIGHTY WEST AFRICAN ASS AND YOU WANT ME TO CARRY FOOD FOR THE ROAD. *Claps once*

~B: Where is the weirdest place you spent the night?

L: On a dune in the Sahara. You know how they say the desert is either very hot or very cold. Understatement. After a wild night of lots of vodka (also known as the devil’s juice) I became convinced that I am going to die from the cold so I stayed up to keep an eye on my soul so I could tell it not leave my body – true damn story. I ended up hanging out on a dune….so that I may catch my soul when the cold tricks it into leaving my body.

~B: Lerato has a book coming out in September. Tell us about your book (was it part of the plan too or it kinda just happened along the way)

vagabond by lerato Mogoathle

Vagabond Wandering through Africa on Faith

L: Vagabond was always going to happen. The difference now, I guess is that I am whiling the economic dynamics of being a full time writer than trying to balance it with a full time job that comes with nice cash and managing people.

~B: Briefly; tell us, which was the high point in your travels; what was the one thing you thought if I live through this I will never do; anything this crazy again?

L: High point: meeting and befriending Habib Koite. His album Afriki is how I pray and worship. This journey brought me to my knees many times.  I kept running out of money that wasn’t coming into my account fast enough even though I was earning. The way SA media treats freelancers is DISGUSTING AND DEHUMANIZING. So I wanted to give up and take a break.

 I went back to my place in Abidjan and started packing. I was listening to Afriki, to a song called Nteri, and in this moment I felt Allah saying to me that this bullshite will never end, but He has my back and indeed, for I never lacked even when I didn’t have money to move between Ghana and Ivory Coast, I still made it and it happened without a fuss. I literally showed up at Werewere Liking’s doorstep at Village Kiyi to say I need a place to stay and don’t have money. You know what her son Ben said,? Pity I arrived a day after a troupe they were hosting had left.  I did what needed to be done, the answer was start over. I decide to start over in Mali because Habib, my greatest artists of all time, was headlining the festival of the desert.

I meet him in the Sahara – how fantastical is Africa though? Only here do you get to say things like “we met in the Sahara”.

Mt Sinai

Mt Sinai

Starting over changed my life: I learnt French, I assimilated, I joined a family of vagabonds who had drifted to house number 227, Para Djikoroni in  Bamako. I lost my morbid obesity, among other things. I don’t have anything that I would not do.

LIONS

Hanging out with Lions; Victoria Falls

If it doesn’t kill you it makes a killer story. Crazy: I put a knife on a taxi driver’s neck and threatened to kill him if he didn’t stop driving like he had a death wish. This was in Eastern Ethiopia.

Harar

Feeding Hyenas Mouth to Mouth in Harar; Eastern Ethiopia

 

L:  I thought I had time all along but the reality of thinking I could have a 9 – 5 and still write sunk in. Now I am an author first, journalist and editorial expert second. This is the only way I can possibly write more books, which I want to. I burn a herb called imphepho. It’s an important part of our spirituality in South Africa . Our being black and ancestral. It calms me. I want to be a diva. Nadine Gordimer used to tell people do not bother her with meaningless social calls. It sounds bitchy but it is true, certainly for me, I work best under a rock, with zero distractions so all my energy and thoughts are focused on the task at hand.

~B: If you could pick any Fictional Characters from TV or literary creations to travel with you whom would you pick and why?

L: Tin Tin has been everywhere. He is a trust fund baby and they are very generous with mom and dad’s money. I want to travel with him and let me assure you, I would consider burning through his bank account the least I can do to get back at King Leopold. I take my justice wherever I can create it 🙂

~B: I don’t know how anyone can travel without music, I can’t live without it; what was the soundtrack of your sojourn.

L:  The sound track is the Best of Lucky Dube. This continent loves that man. He was a hero. He showed up amid wars and chaos. He was one with the people. It was such a revelation for me to hear people tell me about how his music saved them or keeps them together still.

~B: Are you done travelling or………

L: Never. When I have been to every country in Africa; I will start over because nothing stays the same anyway.

~B: Would you do it again?

L:  A million times. The five years of living on the road are the most important years of my life.

~B: Any people you would like to give a special mention to for their support in getting your book done and your nomadic life; wave at them like you are doing for TV

L: ***twerk, twerk, twerk, TWERK BOO!!!*** Let’s enjoy the most magnificent continent on earth, our Africa – the one that gives wings to our dreams.

Lerato Madam Afrika

~B: Thank you Lerato; it was a pleasure having you tell us some profound parting words.

L: Never believe news headline and the narrative of doom and gloom. That’s just a business decision because if it bleeds, it leads, as they say in journalism school. Take time to dig into Africa – books, music, food, culture, tech, art…everything, and you will truly see just how magnificent Africa is.

madam afrika

Bio: South African author  and journalist who considers herself a Pan African first and makes life choices from that precious and powerful space.

Insta and Twitter: @MadamAfrika

Facebook: Lerato Amandla Mogoatlhe

Of Free Fair and Credible Elections

voting
Free Fair and Credible Elections
This is a phrase that has been, and will be repeated especially now that the President of Zimbabwe Emmerson Mnangagwa has finally announced the date of the 2018 harmonised elections. On the 30th of July 2018 Zimbabwe will decide, and for the first time since our independence 18 April 1980, Robert Mugabe will not be at the helm of the ruling party but of course the same party ZANU PF will be contesting/defending its claim under the interim incumbent President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

What does it mean: Free, fair and Credible elections?
First of all, most people seem not to be aware that the elections are not an event but a process of varied elements throughout the electoral cycle and in the case of Zimbabwe this cycle is 5 years.

electoral cycle

Electoral Cycle

Free
Free is defined as unrestricted, without coercion; having freedom to vote for preferred candidate without fear
absence voter intimidation/ political violence

Fair
Fair is defined as balanced or without favour or prejudice; having equal right to register; contest or vote for preferred candidate
when everyone is given a chance to vote/ register, without discrimination; provisions for those who might experience difficulties in voting, equal coverage of contesting candidates on state media

Credible
Credible is a word which means something that can be trusted and believed; credible elections are defined as being transparent and accountable
sufficient Civic education on voter registration and voting, monitoring, inspection of voters roll, Election Observers
Its unfortunate the role Observers is misunderstood and a lot of expectations is heaped up on them when their role is mainly to observe comprehensively through established methodologies, to document; the good, highlight shortcomings and offer recommendations they are not legislative bodies.

This is not the full scope of what consists free fair and credible elections its simply a tentative attempt to familiarise myself with this phrase used and abused.  One won’t need to have a degree or anything sophisticated to see that at a glance one could easily pick out red flags that could affect the degree to which the elections are free, fair and credible……

There has been issues with civic education, especially after implementing a new biometric voter registration, citizens where unfamiliar with; reports have cropped up of challenges with checking voters role, the coverage on state media is skewed in favour of the ruling party leaving the majority of contenders to rely on social media and external broadcasting houses, there’s been violence, both intra-party and inter-party….. should we even talk about how an election date is finally announced today with 2 months to go just barely within the minimum range set by constitution,

Clearly these elections wont quite be free fair or credible but they might be far much better than the previous ones where posting an article like this on my blog would have been to invite scrutiny…..

All I hope for is whatever happens at the very least let it all resolve peacefully………..

zim decides
~B

PhotoCredit: Electoral Cycle Chat: ResearchGate

Of My Office The Road

There is a Shona proverb “chitsva chiri murutsoka” which translates to; “to experience something new, travel” So when the opportunity to accompany someone on a roadtrip presented itself; I said why not. I travelled. The last long journey I had was between Harare and Masvingo and I have travelled that route many times, going to my roots so at any point I know, where I will be and how far left to go……. Now for some reason the responsible Authority on roads doesn’t seem to see it necessary to fix/replace distance markers/signposts at fixed intervals. It’s unnerving to travel blind, when you don’t how far you have gone or how far you have to go. You will only know you have arrived when the signpost welcomes you. At least you can figure out how far you have gone based on your speed and if your vehicle has a working odometer. The return trip won’t be such a blind run. Also there was a time when all bridges on the highway had a sign post with the river name on it,

Lundi river

now most bridges don’t have labels and everytime I cross one I would be wondering what river or river tributery that was or if I should look it up on GPS, if it even appears on Google Maps. It’s hard to believe police officers used to mount roadblocks at what felt like every few kilometers and they would act as if every vehicle was somehow in violation of some traffic act and they just needed to find it. You could get fined a ticket for not having a spare wheel or fire extinguisher or even if they decide your ca’s too dirty.

Zrp traffic police

We once got fined $20 because the little light which illuminates the rear number plate had blown and nearly got car impounded On this current trip we traveled a total of 700+ kilometers and not once did a police road block stop us, if there’s been any benefit the new dispensation has brought, it’s stopping police officers from abusing their stations. Gosh and the number of haulage trucks on the road, make driving a nightmare. I am guessing it’s because our railway network got itself derailed and I don’t know if we still have an operational train service but the haulage business seems to be booming. Well good for them but bad for us, the roads getting worn out, potholed and badly patched you’ll spend a small fortune fixing your vehicle’s suspension system.

Overtaking truck

Overtaking those trucks requires some video game skills especially if there’s more than one in front of you, they like travelling in packs you see. If I was president or someone in a position of power I’d decree that haulage trucks be at least 500m apart so there’s space to overtake nicely. I wish they would hurry up and complete road dualisation of major highways since these projects have been going on for so many years But the progress only of a few clicks every year at this rate probably my grandchild will witness these new roads.

When you are on the road avoid fluids but if you must then bananas are your friends you won’t need to make frequent bathroom breaks. When the road is your office

Inyanga where you so high you can reach up on the tips of your toes and touch the sky kumakomoyo

And then the are the tollgates, I have always wondered what happens to the money collected here.

Because of the cash crisis these tollgates will delay your travel time as it takes longer for people to make swipe payments from their bank cards and sometimes the system can go offline for no reason at all and there’s nothing to do but wait and ask yourself why you didn’t pick up a hitchhiker or two maybe they might have paid cash………..

And people who throw trash out the window of moving vehicles in particular and litter bugs in general who hurt you and why do you wanna hurt the earth in return what did it do to you? Maybe I have an Obsessive Complex Disorder which I think should be spelt CDO with all the words in perfect alphabetical order 😂 I keep my litter until I find a bin if I don’t find one I’ll take my litter home with because home definitely has a bin and a formula on how to dispose of trash except for teabags you can read my teabag dilemma here.

I always chuckle when I see those farewell upon leaving an area, you know the kind, those that tell you are leaving this territory, thank you please call again.

And I think how do I call you there’s no phone number on the sign post 😂 😂 😂 and I laugh and laugh and can’t understand how you don’t see this as funny

Thank you for visiting this blog please call again

~B

PS what’s a roadtrip without music if you are going to take me anywhere tell me there will be music and I won’t care even if we are in handbasket on a one way trip to somewhere where one ought to abandon all hope not sing along to Vanessa Carlton’s thousand miles

Making my way downtown

Walking fast

Faces pass

And I’m home-bound

Of coffee and WordPress at 15

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that WordPress turns 15 today initial release date 27 May 2003. How about that!

WordPress 15th anniversary

The Harare WordPress community celebrated it by having a social meet-up and because who needs a reason to have cake and balloons and swag

WordPress 15 ballon

WordPress 15 cake

Here are a few fun facts about WordPress. WordPress started as a blogging platform b2/cafelog and evolved into the open source Content Management System (CMS) we now know. As of April 2018 30.9% of the internet is powered by WordPress.

WordPress statistics

Stats from w3techs.com

WordPress.org allows you to build, design and customize your own self-hosted website without needing you to be Tech-savvy (especially with their famous 5 minute installation) it’s almost as easy as creating a blog even the dashboards are same like similar to the ones on WordPress.com but you would then have to worry more about finding a hosting company and managing your plugins and search engine optimization (SEO)

WordPress.org vs WordPress.com tricky question each has its own merits and limitations but I prefer WordPress.com especially if you upgrade to the premium packages you get almost the same merits as self-hosting such as installing plugins and and Google Analytics, monetizing through GoogleAdsense and WordAdsWordAds

Did you know the founders of WordPress are huge jazz fans and all the main version releases are named after jazz musicians and when you install WordPress a pre-installed  plugin does nothing other than displays lyrics from Louis Armstrong’s Hello Dolly.

hello Dolly

hello dolly text

The default avatar which appears when someone without a profile picture comments on WordPress article is called the Mystery Man.

Mystery Man

Mystery Man

wordpress logo

And the font the font used in W logo WordPress has a name it’s called Mrs Eaves (named after Sarah Eaves, who was the live-in housekeeper for John Baskerville a printer and typeface designer from the 1700s, eventually becoming his wife, after the death of her first husband, Mr. Eaves.)

Did you know the catchphrase for WordPress.org is code is poetry well
I am no coder, code looks like gibberish to me but I appreciate the poetry in art well-crafted, one man’s poetry is another man’s gibberish think Lewis Carrol’s nonsense verse Beware The Jabberwock

beware the jabberwock

“We are much better at writing code than haiku.”

—Matt Mullenweg, founder of Automattic

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you these little nuggets of information I know them now because we had a WordPress quiz and at the time I couldn’t answer a single question but now well I feel like a walking encyclopedia. Did you know the first WordCamp happened in 2006 San Francisco but since then over 507 WordCamps have been held in over 207 cities in 48 different countries around the world (Zimbabwe included)

Check this out Harare will be having it’s 3rd WordCamp this year whoop whoop. If you don’t know what a WordCamp is check out this link WordCamp harare 2017
I was a speaker at the last wordcamp and this year who knows……..

If you were having coffee I would say cheers to WordPress empowering hitherto unheard voices

Happy Anniversary WordPress

~B

photoCredit Hello Darling Plugin wpbeginner.com

Of Coffee and the 2018 UNESCO Global Report

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell I attended the launch of 2018 Global Report of the 2005 UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expression

2018 Global report

Re| Shaping Cultural Policies

cultural diversity

The Global report gives feedback on the impact of policies on the cultural sector pointing out strategies that would best work given the strengths and challenges faced in the creation, production and dissemination of cultural products.

Global report hand over

UNESCO Regional Cultural Advisor, Damir Dijakovic hands over the first copy of the #2018GlobalReport to Dr. Samwanda Director in the Ministry of Youth Sports, Arts and Recreation

If you were having coffee with me, I would attempt to give you a lightning quick review on the 2018 Global Report and share a few observations from the Harare launch.

The 4 goals of the convention on cultural diversity:

Goals of Cultural Diversity

Goal 1 Support sustainable systems of governance for culture

Goal 2  achieve balanced flow of cultural goods and services and increase the mobility of artists and cultural professionals

Goal 3 Integrate culture in sustainable development frameworks

Goal 4 promote human rights and fundamental freedoms

** implementing the 2005 convention has a direct impact on the attainment of the Sustainable Goals

SDG

The 2018 Global Report gives a Report Card summary of each of the four goals stating successes challenges and recommendations…..

The report shows how a collaborative system is needed between various multi-stakeholders from Government, Public Sector; private sector to Civil Societies to best empower communities especially in the new age of diverse digital multimedia content.

Some of the challenges noted in the report are on how most development plans do not have plans containing creativity specific outcomes, and the inequalities in distribution and access to resources and the neglect of environmental impact by cultural product creations.

Also of note is how its low key unacknowledged that women are highly marginalised having a low number in key creative roles or decision making positions or have less access to funding and generally earn less than male counterparts in the cultural field.

“Culture is key to building a new country. A community that reads, knows its origins, has cultural spaces to enjoy and supports artists, is a society that is proud of its cultural diversity and is equipped with more tools to build peace”

-Marianna Garces Cordoba

The Report is available online; 2018 Global Report: ReShaping Cultural Policies

If you were having coffee with me I would tell that how much as frameworks like this assist and support; often times the information hardly ever trickles its way to the person who needs it the most; you will be told how there is open access to the information but never quite where you actually get, like its information for some secret society only those in the know who pick and choose what to share with the rest of the world….

Case in point are you only reading about this 2005 Convention on Cultural Diversity now? Is it a surprise only 4 Zimabwean submissions have been beneficiaries of  fund grant.

A panel of experts discussed the future of Cultural and Creative Industries (CCI) in Africa and I loved how Mr Charles Vallebrand a consultant on cultural policies before he begun his presentation asked for someone to sing him a song, “If you sing I will dance” and he danced to mbira music played by Chris Timbe.
Mbira player
He remarked how gatherings such as this must not forget why or for whom they do conventions such as these…….

Mr Albert Chimedza founding chair of Zimbabwe Chamber of Creative Industries made an observation of how the artists who have made it; are self-made artists who relied on their own talents for their success citing Thomas Mapfumo, Oliver Mtukudzi, Dominic Benhura……

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that what resonated with me the most was a question from the floor on how writers are the forgotten artist, maybe writing is a forgotten art because when people talk art; they usually never mention writers, they will speak of musicians, poets, sculptors, painters. And writers, well those seem to be considered more of a hobby than anything serious, not until a published book that goes no less than bestseller, then suddenly people crawl out of the woodwork to heap accolades.

Yet writers are the new custodians of culture, in the past our history was preserved by word of mouth, passed down in folktales; now it might be written down in the pages of a book or digitalized on a website on the internet………………………

~B

 

PhotoCredits: Unesco Southern Africa

: Heather Madombwe for Chris Timbe pic

 

Of Music From TV (Soundtracks)

My all-time favourite music playlists have songs that come from TV as sound tracks or theme songs to movies and TV Shows.

movie credits

Yes, I am one of those who pauses the end movie credits  to find the OSTs: Official SoundTracks (and also to check if what I just watched is based on a book then I hunt down … that’s if I liked it of course, otherwise it’s to make sure I stay away from future works by said production company)

Sometimes I find tracks the hard way, by trying to remember a few key words from the lyrics then Google, other times I just Google the OST to a movie and find my song but its never as easy that, since you still wont know the particular song you are looking for. Then sometimes I remember Shazam; an app which listens and identifies songs for you. (too bad you cant hum a song to it but it works even for songs playing on the radio, you those radio DJs who dont tell you what songs they are playing)

Shazam listening

Now here’s a list of about fifty of my favourite songs and the movies or TV Shows I discovered (or rediscovered) them from.

  • Lion King: The Lion Sleeps Tonight, Circle of Life; Can you Feel The Love Tonight
  • Aladdin: A Whole New World
  • The Prince Of Egypt: When You Believe – Mariah Carey & Whitney Houston
  • Space Jam: For You I Will – Monica; hit’em High – Busta, Coolio, LL Cool J
  • Rocky: Eye of the Tiger
  • lethal Weapon 2: Knocking on heaven’s door
  • Set It Off: Dont Let Go – En Vogue, Missing You – Gladys knight, Set it Off – Queen Latifah
  • The BodyGuard: I’ll always love you – Whitney Houston
  • Batman Forever: Kiss from A Rose – Seal
  • Romeo Must Die: Try Again Aaliyah; Rose In A Concrete World – Joe
  • Armageddon: I dont Wanna Close My Eyes – Aerosmith
  • Sorcerer’s Apprentice: Secrets – One Republic
  • Spectre: Writings on the wall – Sam Smith
  • SkyFall: SkyFall – Adele
  • Quantum of Solace: Another Way to die – Alicia Keys
  • DeadPool: Careless Whisper – George Michael
  • Trolls: True Colours – Phil Collins
  • Home: Music of the Sun, Dancing in the Dark
  • Enemy: Best Day Atmosphere
  • Hunger Games: Yellow Flicker Beat
  • Moana: You are welcome, How Far I’llGo
  • Keanu: Father Figure, one more try, gotta have faith – GeorgeMichael,
  • Death Note: I dont want to lose you – Chicago
  • Bright: Darkside Ty Dolla $ign & Future
  • Den of Thieves: Our Demons – Pair Of arrows remix; Legendary Welshly Adams

 

  • Salem: Cupid carries a gun
  • Banshee: Madonna, God Country and Grave
  • Stranger Things: should I stay or should I go – The Clash, Soldiers Kyle dixon
  • Shannara Chronicles: Until we go down – Ruelle
  • Grey’s Anatomy: The Scientist – ColdPlay
  • Scandal ETV: Tell me you love me – Lilly Million, Shatterproof – Kirsten-Claire

 

They are in no particular order how’s that for a Friday #FlashBack playlist. Whats your tracks from TV Land

~B

 

My Recommended Blog of the Day

To find yourself Quoted and Recommended.
Even I would want to read me after that, The Damascus Steel of Verbal Sword play!

Bitchin’ in the Kitchen

Carrying on my with my Blog of the day – which is actually my twice a week award, I’d like to introduce you to today’s recipient. This recognition is not something that requires the recipient to do anything.

Its an acknowledgement from me to you that’s a heartfelt and sincere appreciation of the entertainment, enlightenment and empathy I’ve come to expect.

It’s an introduction to others of a Blogger I hold in high esteem.

If anyone wants to reblog please feel free. My intention is to shout from the rooftops how much I love my recommendations!!

Today’s Blogger is a thought provoking and engaging storyteller/philosopher/lyricist. Lyricist may be a smidge of poetic licence on my part but when the words you read flow like a song – you’ll understand.

An intriguing raconteur I’m sure already be familiar with, Beaton of Becoming the Muse

My favourite quote from Beatons’s blog is…

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Of Coffee, Mothering Sundays, Blogging Awards and Fans

If you were having coffee with I would greet you and ask if for a second you thought it was Mother’s day and you were wondering if your calendar is broken? Well it’s not Mother’s day its Mothering Sunday (falls on the fourth Sunday of Lent) Its celebrated almost exactly like mother’s day except that its origins are steeped in religion. On this day a very long time ago folk used to return to their mother church; the church where they got baptised and later it become the day people let their housekeepers go to church and then eventually turned into a day celebrating motherhood … Happy Mothering Day to all the mothers, you are forces of nature!!!

If you were having coffee I would tell I attended an Influencer’s Cocktail event which was also an awards ceremony for Zimbabwean  content creators Zim blogging awards. The event and the awards were created to bring recognition to bloggers and also try to engage brands and corporates to make use of the services of bloggers and their online influence in a mutually beneficial relationship.

zim blog awards

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that awards are always tricky things especially inaugural awards. I felt they put too much value on the influence aspect and more a popularity contest than properly doing tribute to online content creators; with a flawed voting system allowing people to vote unlimited times, I was tempted to also vote for myself multiple times. But hey we gotta start somewhere; call it a learning curve and hopefully next time they will be bigger and better……..

If you were having coffee with me; I would tell you that the best part of the day was meeting people who would recognise you from your blog; to meet real people not your family and friends who actually read your blog and love your blog, the feeling is priceless, for a second you feel like you famous. The highlight of the day was when I met someone who had also been at the International Women day event I wrote about HERE in my previous post, telling me how they appreciate and I quote “men who love women” and thanked me for the support…. Little things like that, that’s what keep me going. If you are out there reading this Thank YOU.

If you were having coffee with me I would tell that suddenly I’m feeling festive Lets Do The March Blog Party whoop whoop: I’ll share some of my favourite posts from my favourite female bloggers because #PressForProgress go show them some love and in the comments below share a link to a post of yours you want read don’t forget to read posts from others and when you comment on a post you found from my blog sign off by saying With Compliments From The Muse so one can tell from whence they found your blog post. That’s pretty neat right? I promise to try to read every post you guys share…

Be Humble Not Timid – Tapiwanashe

The introvert’s holiday survival guide – Quarter wife

Untitled 27/2 – Beauty’s daughter

IWD – life with Dimples

Why are women more tolerant than men – Faith

God Bless The Woman – Joseyphina

learning to love myself – Mable

Embarking on a journey of self love – Makaitah Rouge

Writing Recipe – Floating

on behaving beautifully – The Britchy One

~B

Of Coffee, Women And Progress

If you were having coffee with me; I would greet you as a stranger who suddenly realises that amongst other strangers we are kindred spirits you and I. How alike yet totally unalike we are; which is probably why I enjoy our little visits. Please do feel at home, grab a cup of coffee or juice or whatever rocks your boat (……water, that’s what rocks boats)

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that its March, but of course you know this. I don’t know if its International Woman’s Month but I do know International Woman’s Day is on the 8th of March and in the USA, UK and Australia they  celebrate women’ s history month in march and Canada observes it in October. This March it might as well as be Women’s Month on over here; as I will be using this space to celebrate womanhood.

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you how I shall endeavour to bring the female narrative to my blog, featuring guest articles from ordinary women and the extraordinary things they do disguised as ordinary; book reviews, author interviews and other things I’ll just make up as I go along. Maybe I shall write a story from the female perspective I don’t think I have ever tried that…..

If you were having coffee with me I would tell I #PressForProgress

Press for progress

I will #PressForProgressTo kick start my March Goals, if you were having coffee with me I would tell you I had the privilege of attending Batsirai Chigama’s Gather The Children Book launch at  Alliance Français Harare.

gather the children book launch

gather the children Batsirai Chigama

Gather The Children is a self-published poetry anthology drawing inspiration mostly from her experiences and the prevailing socio-political climate.  During a live onstage interview she revealed delaying the book launch in October last year, fearing what could happen, how her book would be received but after a while you run out of metaphors to hide your anger behind, to break the silence…….

“……Silence was taught to our mothers

We rejected it at birth”

–excerpt from Daughters of Fire a poem from Gather The Children

Batsirai Chigama is a spoken word artist with years of stage experience and you can feel the vibe in her poetry. The poems in her book are meant to be spoken out aloud.

A selected few of the poems were performed during the launch alongside backing vocals and sound effects from Mangoma Percussion group. It was breathtaking; I wish you had been there, I wish I had a camera but then again maybe not; I was so busy being in the moment I would have probably forgot to press record….

 

The stage set was simply art; a bowl with candles burning, a vanity case full of old bearer cheque notes, a table hanging from the ceiling and a basket with a bow on the handle full of her books. Ah yes and there was a soul warming performance by Hope Masike.

 

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you if you know what separates animals from angels? Its Art!!

~B

 

PS even Johnnie Walker is celebrating women this month cheers:

Jane Walker

 

Photo Credit: Batsirai Chigama 

Hope Masike

Johnnie Walker

Becoming the muse #PressForProgress