Sunday, 30 September 2007

Overheard in Camden

Interesting Conversation
On my way to Sainsbury's yesterday, I turned off the High Street, taking a short cut to get to the Supermarket. About 100 yards in front of me, at the top of the side street i've turned onto, there is a couple - the woman sitting on the edge of the pavement and the man crouching beside her. Both are clutching beer cans. Both seem to be drunk and/or slightly spaced out. Both are black. The following conversation ensues.

Woman: People always treat me as if i'm ---- (i missed the last bit)
Man: It's because you're white, because you're white, because you're white.....

At this point, i had walked past them. But being the nosey so and so that i am, i had to do a double take, just to be sure my eyes hadn't deceived me.

They hadn't. She was black.

Marrakech trip update
I don't know why, but i can't seem to make myself blog about my trip. Perhaps i'm selfishly hanging on to the memories, savouring them for as long as i possibly can before sharing them with the world. Or maybe i'm just lazy. Your guess is as good as mine...

Friday, 28 September 2007

Outrage on the Southeastern Railway

I was on the train this afternoon, on the way to see my Mother. Nothing too untoward happened apart from the rain. I board the train and sit down and take out my magazine. The train pulls out of the station and we are on our way.

About half way through the journey, the man sitting across the aisle from me's umbrella, which he has propped against the seat, gets dislodged by the motion of the train, and it falls across the aisle, hits my thigh and lands at my feet, within my side of the carriage.

The man grabs a hold of the end of the umbrella and pulls it towards himself. He picks it up and stows it on his other side, thus securing it, and he returns to reading his newspaper.

I look at him and he pretends not to see me. "Excuse me", i say.

Man: ( with raised eyebrows): Yes?
Me:Your umbrella hit me when it fell.
Man (sarcastically): Injured, are you?
Me (with an equal amount of sarcasm): Of course not. But it's only polite to say sorry when something like that happens.
Man (in a subdued voice): Well, i'm sorry then.
"Whatever", i think to myself.

What is wrong with people? According to the British, it's Americans who are not supposed to understand irony, not black people (sorry to any Americans who might read this). What did he expect? That i would be so intimidated by his sarcasm, i'd have no response? Even if he hadn't realised the umbrella hit me, it had clearly landed in my space and he hadn't had the courtesy or gumption to say sorry. And when i point this out to him, he resorts to sarcasm. Blooming cheek!!!

I'm not really bothered actually, cos i'm happy with the response i gave, but i just felt like getting this off my chest...

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Morocco was a dream!

Pinch me.....

Hi people. I got back yesterday evening. I had the time of my life! I'll be blogging very soon about what i got up to, the people i met, the sounds, the sights, the smells (not all pleasant!) etc etc.

Morocco is an amazing country. So far removed from what you can imagine if you havent been there. I would whole heartedly recommend it.

The highlight of my trip was hiking in the High Atlas mountains. Words to describe the experience fail me.....!!! But it's still great to be home

Here are some pictures....


Friday, 14 September 2007

Save the Cheerleader, save the world

Can i just say, before i begin, that the title of this post has no bearing whatsoever on the content thereof. I am, however, a serious Heroes nut and believe this to be like the coolest catchphrase ever, like.

So, anyway as you have probably deduced from my last post and this one too, i have nothing to blog about! I gat naathin' *in bad italian accent*. I'm on the brink of :

So it's just as well i leave for my holiday in Morocco next week!

Yes, God be praised!!!!

I know i'll come back revived....

Yee hah!!!

...and probably go into blogging overdrive

But here's a little story to tide you all over till then.

Depending on your sex, you'll either laugh your head off

... or cross your legs and go "OUCH" or even "YEEPA"


Football fight ends in near castration
TEXAS-OKLAHOMA | Fan wore wrong T-shirt in bar

September 12, 2007
OKLAHOMA CITY -- To some Oklahoma football fans, there are things that just aren't done in the heart of Sooner Nation, and one of them is to walk into a bar wearing a Texas Longhorns T-shirt.
That's exactly what touched off a bloody skirmish that left a Texas-shirt-wearing fan nearly castrated and an Oklahoma fan facing aggravated assault charges.

The shocking case has set off a raging debate in this football-crazed region about the extreme passions behind a bitter rivalry.

''I've actually heard callers on talk radio say that this guy deserved what he got for wearing a Texas T-shirt into a bar in the middle of Sooner country,'' said Irven Box, an attorney.

According to police, 32-year-old Texas fan Brian Christopher Thomas walked into Henry Hudson's Pub on June 17 wearing a Longhorns T-shirt and quickly became the focus of football ''trash talk'' from another regular, 53-year-old Oklahoma fan Allen Michael Beckett.

Thomas told police that when he went to the bar to pay his tab, Beckett grabbed him in the crotch, pulled him to the ground and wouldn't let go, even as bar patrons tried to break it up.

When the two men were separated, Thomas looked down and realized the extent of his injuries.

''He could see both of his testicles hanging on the outside of his body,'' said Thomas' attorney, Carl Hughes. ''He was wearing a pair of white shorts, which made it that much worse.''

It took more than 60 stitches to close the wound.

Beckett's attorney, Billy Bock, said it was just good-natured ribbing and that his client apologized to Thomas. Later, Bock said Thomas approached his client and threatened him.

''My guy was defending himself and just took control of the situation," the lawyer said.

On both Texas and Oklahoma fan Web sites, boosters trade tales of having their tires slashed or windshields smashed for sporting the opposing team's sticker in enemy territory.

Assistant District Attorney Scott Rowland said the rivalry will have no bearing on the way the case is prosecuted.


Monday, 10 September 2007

Girls are like apples on trees

Girls are like
apples on trees. The best
ones are at the top of the tree.
The boys don't want to reach for
the good ones because they are afraid
of falling and getting hurt. Instead, they
just get the rotten apples from the ground
that aren't as good, but easy. So the apples
at the top think something is wrong with
them, when in reality, they're amazing.
They just have to wait for the right
boy to come along, the one
who's brave enough
to climb
all the way
to the top
of the tree.

borrowed from megan (whom i'm guessing is very young. Young, but profoundly wise :oD ).

Alright boys and girls, what say you?

Saturday, 1 September 2007

Of itchy feet, bacteria, and hair

Went to get my hair done today and i was just thinking, on the list of my worst things in the world to do EVER, getting my hair done ranks very high. Unfortunately, it's one of those things that have to be done because (1) bad hair days suck like a vacuum, and (2) i have to keep perpetuating the myth amongst my non-black work colleagues, that i do indeed have naturally long and luscious locks growing out of my head....the suckers!!!

So, i take myself off to the salon because i failed to make an appointment with my favourite home-based underground economy-enjoying, hairdresser. As i step in , i'm greeted by a cacophony of chatter in an African language which i can't quite place. However, within seconds, they have me pegged as a Nigerian. They even manage to pinpoint my tribe (or ethnic group, if one is to be PC) as i pick out the word 'Yoruba' from one woman's otherwise unintelligible sentence after she looks me up and down. This prompts more up and down looks from the others as they check me out as if to confirm or refute their colleague's claim. Me, i'm like, yeah whatever, just come and plait my hair so i can get out of here and do some more exciting things with the rest of my Saturday.

Out of curiosity, I ask one of the ladies what language they're speaking. 'Igala', she says, 'from Congo'. Not very much else happens really. The 10 minute wait i was promised stretches out into half an hour, so i pull out my copy of Atonement by Ian McEwan and get stuck in. I must finish it before the film adaptation of the book opens in cinemas across the nation, come next weekend.

They eventually begin my hair, and i subsequently lose track of the number of people who actually take part in the process. It's all good, sha. The sooner i can get out of there the better. Maybe not so good actually, as one of them has a cold and keeps sneezing. To her credit she turns away when she does it. However, i'm a bit obsessive compulsive about things like that (i.e. what i choose to call human emissions). I have therefore developed strategies e.g when a person sneezes/coughs near you without covering their mouths, do not under any circumstances hold your breath immediately. It takes a few seconds, you see, for the bacteria laden mist to travel to you, and as such, you are not in any immediate danger of inhaling. Instead of holding your breath, take a deep breath of the air while it is still clean, and then by the time the horrible snotty mist hits your air space seconds later, you can effectively hold your breath until it passes. Try it. It works.

But still on the issue of turning away versus covering the mouth with a hand, at least since she turned away, the worst case scenario is that my clothes, the fine hairs on the back of my neck and on my arms get coated in a fine mist of snot. The alternative would be that she sneezes into her hand (as good manners dictate), and then continues to plait my hair, thus leaving a permanent deposit on my person. I think i got the lesser of the two evils, don't you?

Anyway, that was that, sha. Hair finished, paid up the salon inflated price with great resentment. Note to self, next time you will contribute to the underground economy and you will like it too!

I'm already picturing the scene at work on Monday morning.

Colleagues - Aah UndaCova, you've changed your hairstyle again

UndaCova (with narrowed eyes and through gritted teeth) - It's called getting your hair done, not changing your hairstyle (in my mind, 'how many times to i have to repeat that'!!!!)

I don't know, but to me the whole concept of 'changing your hairstyle' on a frequent basis speaks of some airheaded Bimbo who's is unable to make up their mind about how to wear their hair. Totally different kettle of fish. We (most black women) have no choice!

Also, speaking of bacteria, my feet are getting severely itchy (in the metaphorical sense, mind you! Besides, a foot infection would be fungal, wouldn't it? Oh, never mind...). I'm starting to feel that it's time for me to move on after 12 years of living in the city of London. I'm beginning to crave a new challenge. You know, the initial buzz you get when you visit a new place, perhaps on holiday. Except i wouldn't return from this particular holiday. I think London is a lovely city, especially by night. However, i think i've exhausted its unlimited resources. Theatreland, museums and art galleries, concerts and festivals, Oxford Street, the Royal Parks, my local parks, restaurants, cafes, walks along the river. I've even done a few london walks mixing in with the tourists. Great fun and you discover aspects of the city you had no clue existed even though you pass right by them everyday. On the downside, you must wear comfortable shoes. Fashion faux pas extraordinaire!!

My feet are itchy. I need a new challenge, although it might just be that i haven't had a proper holiday in two years. Which is why i promptly cancelled my scheduled trip to Naija next month (cos that would just not be a break in the true sense of the word, you get me?) and booked myself a break to Marrakech, Morocco. My first ever solo holiday, because, did i mention, i love a good old challenge. I'm looking forward to it loads and what i do next depends on how i feel when i get back.

It's a great feeling to know that i have options! That i can just up and go, and build a life in a new city (New York is looking very good at the moment). I have an 'impressive' (don't mean to sound cocky) CV and work history that means that i can work almost anywhere in the world. And to think that at the time i was racking up that history and going through hell and highwater, being underpaid and over worked and countless times in my mind jacking it all in, i thought i was suffering. But now, several years later, here i stand with doors of opportunity open to me! All i can say to that is that persistence pays off in the end.

Well, that was my Saturday for you. I'm also quite annoyed with myself because i failed to save the second draft of another post i've been working on and now have to start all over. Anyhoo, watch this space.

Over and out.