LOBOLA

Deep House Cat Show on Mixcloud adds a much needed groovy and uplifting mood to this thought provoking, ‘tongue-in-cheek’ and somewhat humorously bitchy blog. Funnily enough the mix is called ‘ Bitcoin Mix’. You can draw the connection…. 🤣🤣!

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BITCOIN MIX

An interesting chat about an homogeneous African traditional perspective coupled to religiosity has my little brain jumping through hoops. The informative discussion explained how one of the interesting things about Africans claiming heritage rights regarding Church explains some interesting religious practices that shockingly disrupt media timorously and may reflect some light onto our ZA government. Apparently if a person holds a prestigious position in Church and dies, the expected handing over of the position is to go to a family heir/ess. In other words whether the person inheriting the position is qualified, willing and or interested or not pressures to keep the ‘family business’ within the family is a must. It sheds light, well for me anyway, why Doom spritzing Pastors, or R25000 dinner seats can create such exploitative distortions in religious practices. Not that this is exclusive to Africa mind you. Catholicism in years gone by sold Purgatory to the uneducated populace.

The point is that any form of nepotistic practice can force people into positions that they may not want to be in; much like arranged marriages and the practice of LOBOLA. Marriage or relationships, in my opinion have less to do with money (although essential in today’s age) as they should be about a willingness to learn about another and practicing loving them authentically. Just saying!

In the same conversation I was teased saying that my LOBOLA price/ bride wealth would be 2 avocados, a naartjie and pawpaw from Limpopo. We cackled at idea of seeing the ‘AmaGogo’s’ walking for miles with the basket on the head and offering the payment to the family. Can you imagine the reaction? My informant had an interesting take on LOBOLA. That both parties should pay each family and to meet eachother halfway regarding the various prices. This was proposed as a possible deterrent to couples walking out of commitments so easily when rough terrain hits.

In ‘Anthropology of Southern Africa’, pages 257-266 written by Julia Pauli and Rijk van Dijk, interesting points are posed, “Bridewealth or lobola remains important and is supplemented by a plethora of new rituals and expenditures.” Hylton White also states, “It is generally agreed that rates of marriage are declining in Southern Africa. It is also clear that for people who are wealthy enough to marry, the long-standing constitution of marriage as process is increasingly replaced by a making of marriage as event.”

Just a thought?

Now how does my brain assimilate this to our corrupt government? Well if it considered shameful in a family that a heritage is passed over to a deserving other, in or out of a family, perhaps the desperate attempts to grapple for power, theft of funds, and plausible leaders negated for tradition may be explained.

Zooming out to the AIDS scandal both in Mbeki and Zumas Presidency a flicker of insight of the superstitious nature of more traditional cultural practices might reflect some onto the nature of voters voting for a party whether disastrous or not. Mbeki negated anti-retroviral medication for patients claiming fruit and vegetables could cure this supposedly foreign created disease and Zuma suggested a shower.

My Venda guest blamed HIV increasing on foreign black African men. He stated, “Because GWM prefer non-South African black men, these foreigners are making money out of sex and spreading the disease.” Although there is some truth in this statement, a lot of black prostitutes in ZA are foreign, I think the envy of racial counterparts has clouded an otherwise, perhaps, jealous based perspective. This answer came out of a question I ask a lot of skin tones different to me, “Why do GBM not like GWM?” The other prevalent answer is that a lot of young GBM feel used as sex objects and feel in-considered as potential relationship material.

What this is all pointing to regarding our racist government and it’s marginalized view of other race groups is this…

If a superstition based culture keeps one from negating authentic leadership in favour of defunct traditional perspectives that sooner hold onto ill-informed versions of responsibility to a country; how the fuck can that country emerge honorably where authentic efforts are not applauded over nepotistic guidelines? How in the name of ‘reaching-for-your-dreams’ can one not become despondent when an idiotic over-weight nephew who cannot even get out of a mega-expensive sport car even be given it , if perhaps a sport car racing-Driver dream may be overlooked because misappropriated funds are fucked by inappropriate people in governance?

And as the ANC continues to avoid accounting for mega billions spent on miscellaneous events, another thought for them to consider might be……

WILL THE REAL LEADERS STAND UP! AND NO ZA IS NOT GOING TO PAY YOUR LOBOLA…. WE ARE BROKE AND TOO BUSY USING OUR FRUITS TO CURE STUFF!

(Although I write this blog, the point of view is a question to ponder more than a decisive conclusion)

CHOOSE ❤️

Stay your amazing self!

#❤️🇿🇦🌈

✌🏽

•AJB•

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FASHIONING

In years gone by, fashioning crafted swords out of blooms of steel, tin and alloy, was a prized skill of the metalsmith. Today although crafted swords are still being manufactured, a lesser weapon in comparison to the nuclear weapons of the modern age. I always ask myself whether this makes us less civilized than we think we are. What do you think? Surely a more civilized society is a more enlightened one? Comparably, the single combat non-contact sport might arguably be a more civilized fight. That’s if the only resolution is combat. And yes I do think that sometimes defense is a necessary evil when innocent lives are being threatened. Gangsterism is in my opinion the most cowardly method of violent resolution.

But what am I rambling on about?

Recently I have been going through an incredibly tough time. The level of stress is taking its toll. The exacting discipline to overcome the difficult circumstances has been exhausting to say the least. It has not been easy to fight my way back from my recent experience but today everything has begun changing.

In an incredible turn of events I was gifted with 2 extraordinary gifts of kindness today. A friend gave a R1000 tip and another that I had borrowed from that was stolen by my scam artist has agreed to do a service exchange for monies owed. As I write this blog the tears just weep uncontrollably. Sometimes, just sometimes goodness comes back to us in the most unexpected ways. But, and there is a but, we need to stay in the fight.

So often in this world we tend to crumble at the signs of difficulty. Although I have been plagued with lower back pain in my attempt to cope with my demands and stress related flu has hit hard, get up and go I have had to do. Agreed I needed time off for a few days to regain the will to fight but done it I have. Not pretty but done. What are you facing that is fashioning you towards greatness? As most entrepreneurs know the hurdles one crosses to achieve ones visions is not a road paved with party lights and decorations. It is tough. But the self-appreciation of goals accomplished is unlike being employed could ever give one. I think this is attributed to the fact that live or die entrepreneurs are their business. The deciding factor, however, is are you the kind of metalsmith that hardens a sword or weakens it? What I mean by this is…. are we the kinds of people that use our gifts to enhance the world, in love, or do we destroy lives by enhancing only our own?

One of the flaws of our consciousness is when we think with small-mindedness.

Part of the responsibility of our particular gifting/s is to share with others as is their responsibility to share with us. No one man has the exclusive right of being uninvolved in life. We are all equally here, right here, right now. Thus the responsibility of being a citizen of the planet that ambassadors the champion cause of making the world a more free and equal place than we inherited it is a must.

Recently a quick read on LinkedIn caught my eye.

It struck me that Africa is starting to ask some valid questions and it makes me proud to witness it. I wrote about this very topic, in a loose manner, in a blog called ‘FAIRY-DUST’.

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FAIRY-DUST

It is time that Africa rises from its spell of thinking the rest of the world is better. Enough global news has clearly indicated that the world is taking strain under egotistical power mongers. It is time for the citizens of this one planet, Earth, to stand and fight for its rightful place to equality. We are Africa and we are amongst the richest continents, if not the richest. It is time for us to put aside our ‘in-house’ fighting and take our brothers by the hand and be united with the cause of raising the failing status of our magnificent continent.

But I am not the only one saying or thinking it!

Zooming back to ZA, Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane is up’ing the reign on corruption by stepping up anti-corruption units, sending police on training camps for a year to provide better efficiency and service delivery. In a time where the baddie won the match for a while, opposition alliance parties to the ZUPTA ANC are banding together to fight for the Madiba Africa that saw us shine beacons of gold-glazed hope onto the world at large.

The nobility of this non-contact combat against oppression and elitist supremacy is the highest order for which our mutual gain will create more eager to participate integrated societies and willing to share than our current system that enslaves people to capitalist greed. I am not saying that ambition is a bad thing, not at all. However, when ambition is applied to a universal mindset we quickly see that a greater good will yield a standard that gives way to speedier growth and hope. Think about it!

As we head into the holiday season in ZA, I hope that enlightened consciousness fills each of us up. I hope and pray that universality draws us to a brighter better future for all. Let’s make 2018 the breakout year that yields awesomeness and a restored faith in humanity and its dream of a better future. Nothing matters more than treating others as we want to be treated. I am fighting myself, daily, to be a good, kind and productive human. Are you?

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LIVING LOVE LIFE

CHOOSE ❤️

Stay your amazing self!

✌🏽

•AJB•

#standforsomething

IT IS NO SECRET, I STAND FOR AUTHENTIC LOVE ABOVE ALL ELSE.

My favorite international DJ, DJ Stevie B on Mixcloud has dealt another loin-grinding body-shaking mix. I bust a move, alone, in my living room. I simply adore this man’s transitions and vocal choices.

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DJ STEVIE B

#❤️🌍🌈

My empatheticheart has been tossed like a sailing boat against volatile seas this week, rudderless and torn sails lost to the battle of violent and invasive onslaughts. From being lectured by a complete stranger as to whom, when and how I may be entitled to use terms of endearment, my Mayoral hero Herman Mashaba facing a vote of no confidence by a revolting ANC ZUPTA corrupt gang, our Miss SA/ Miss Universe’s reputation being called out by racist attackers, my personal favorite Miss SA contestant finally being crowned Miss SA and not to mention the Libyan Slave/Torture trade fillingthe news. Never mind the continuous harassment of my own scammers repeatedlytrying to get more money out of me, which I don’thave, with some or other cockamamie story. I am fighting the urge to just give up on life. I don’t want to live in a world like this.

Thankfullythe failed votes of no confidence will dig a deep guttural hole into the failing and corrupt ANC grip.

Thankfully Naomi Campbell is organizing a march in the UK to march to the Libyan Consulate to prostest this disgusting practice. THE WHOLE WIRLD MUST DO THE SAME!!!!

I woke up this morning in my little but beautiful home in Sandown, Johannesburg, ZA and had a deep sense of spiritual connection to my HIGHER POWER. The message to myself , and all of humanity is a stark reminder that nothing under the sun is a secret.

Recently I started an online dating profile. I eventually deleted it because I found myself meeting people who were either judgmental,dabbling in things I don’t want to be part of, or looking to make a quick buck. Being scammed once this year and my heart shattered with little regard is enough thank you. I guess I am just an old-fashioned guy that does not fit into this modern world. A world of opportunists that seem to be riddled by narcissism and nepotistic instincts; mostly.

It’s true….. I do struggle to know authentic from self-serving manipulation.

Look life is better for me than most. As I listened to the emblazoned speeches of Mayor Mashaba and Presidential hopeful Mmusi Maimane I couldn’t help but weep. Our world system as it stands isso unjust. It favoursthe few at the expense of the many.

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MMUSI MAIMANE SPEECH

When will enough be enough?

Yesterday at the Democratic Alliance March seeing the mothers with kids in tow, whom had traveled from afar made me want to quit my life. I was so close to writing a letter to the Mayor asking if I could be sponsored a small wage and work the rest of my life for free to help with the JHB regeneration project. I still might, so torn and conflicted I am.

With increasing measure I cannot reconcile myself to a world where the name of the game is money. The stirring in my soul is for more than minuscule glory. Something that aligns itself to the purpose of using my life to count for the benefit of lives so vandalized by racism, elitism, sexism and classism. I mean what the $@&* is wrong with us?

Slavery still?

So as I grapple with my own disturbances of purpose versus indulgence I leave you, us and myself with this question, “Are we really going to continue to turn a blind eye to the desperation of the world around us, for a bit more stuff we cannot take to the grave?”

CHOOSE ❤️

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SWEET DREAMS

Stay your amazing self!

✌🏽 •AJB•

Salted Butter and Apricots

Rough!

‘Halftribe’, Mixcloud brings such soothing relief to a the last month of nail-biting angst.

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SOLAR TERM

Rough is hardly the word to describe this recent moment in time. Day 3 of no water in my home in Sandown, Johannesburg, sacrifices being made to play catch up on my finances, dealing with an injured heart, a new venue to operate my rent-a-chair out of, remaining honorable, meeting expectations and getting on with it has been raw to the bone. Let’s just say that my faith has been stretched that much further. Also, running into my ex a while ago finally brought some closure to open unanswered questions that I have labored for 15 months. Gladly, yesterday, a shift in tempo saw me able to buy some food for my home. Look I haven’t starved but I certainly have had to cut out every ounce of niceties, except chocolate, to meet the responsibilities I have. It’s done and some semblance of normality is emerging. With re-payment plans in place and beginning to be met I munch on my comfort food of peanut butter toast laden with salted butter and a side of apricots. Gosh have I missed the luxury of eating fruit.

Honoring my clients and friends who extended the hand of favour towards me in the midsts of the recent scam I fell privy to was ever so fabulous to do.

The bottom line is that obstacles, unforeseen events, self-inflicted struggles and curve balls will inevitably punch us a bloody nose. That is ok. The question is whether each of us will roll up our bloodied sleeves and do what must be done, honorably, to deal with them.

In the salon yesterday I was referred to a new client. She had been observing my work from the corner of her eye and was taken by the results. We chatted about her desired result and her valid gripe about her dissatisfaction with the results her current stylist was delivering in comparison to her achievable desire. The opened door granted me the chance to educate whilst understanding. As a stylist I do my best to never bad-mouth another’s work as ‘hair history’ is a large subject that influences outcomes loftily. What struck me as an all too familiar yet strange result after the quotation, with saving options and alternatives given, was the reluctance to pay the price. It is a funny phenomenon that each of us wants what we want, whether good or bad, but somehow don’t want to make the necessary investment to achieve it.

Erik of BetterMan put out an email yesterday that I asked if I could quote. It is the direction of today’s blog. (Apologies for the screenshot, but ‘copy&paste’ was malfunctioning today….🤣)

An interesting read from a corporate perspective regarding the changing landscape of how people approach business in a technology accessible world shed some interesting focus.

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SUSTAINABLE

Too often you and I are taken by the fashion fad of the season and forget the big picture. Taking a more reasonable and sustainable outlook towards mutually beneficial outcomes, long term,may open our eyes to behavioral changes we need to make. A sustainable and beneficial world is what we would like to leave generations to come after-all?

My recent experience of being in a situation that required serious sacrifice taught me a valuable lesson. I was so busy focusing on being a good guy in a turbulent world that spews so much hate that I forgot my own needs. What I mean is this: I poured my heart into trying to save and prove to another that I was worth a go in love that the thing that sustained my life bore the brunt of shifted focus. Although romance, sex & love etc are not bad things, contrary, when it takes over it can blind us to dangerous outcomes. So pay the price I have and am for neglecting the fact that my own needs are as equally important to those of everyone else. Oh well, I guess this is the inevitable battle of an empath/nurturer/giver. 🤣🤣🤣🤣

Take heart!

As each experience unfolds, if we willingly participate in the rhythm of life, we grow, change and learn.CHOOSE ❤️

Stay your amazing self!

✌🏽

•AJB•

Holes in the ceilings

For many years the Zimbabweans suffered at the hands of an egomaniacal dictator who served himself. Let it be a massive warning to all the world, again, as to what happens when democracy that serves the whole is nullified for the objectives of the minority. It is a nepotistic practice that breaks the prosperity of talent, skill and sincerity. In short when we deploy favour for the select few we in turn tell the mass that they do not count other than to serve the self-proclaimed elite. The other consequence is that the narrowing view of the ‘in gang’ is easily fed misconceptions vs mutually beneficial outcomes. As Mr Maimane states in the above screenshot tweet, the work for the Zimbabweans has just begun.

I congratulate the efforts of the brave men and women who have endured and overcome the revolting practices of a cruel Mugabe dictatorship.

Zooming back home, another Maimane tweet sheds some more light onto a fragile ZA psyche.

Over and above fighting the depths, breadths and heights of the corruption and fraudulent practices of our own Zupta crises, Major Herman Mashaba works steadfastly to turn the rotting Johannesburg CBD into a more lucrative and plausible housing situation for its citizens. It is a wonderful feather in the caps of civilized society when the right to choose is exercised well to carry the sentiments of the majority.

Fight on goodwill!

Fight on humanity!

Fight on justice!

Over the last 14/5 months since I started blogging so much has happened. It has been heartbreaking to be judged for being vulnerable and open with the aim of reaching out to others through my personal journey, struggles and experiences. Oh hell yeah, there have been times where I wanted to bury my head in shame. My flawed humanity, like all of ours, gets in the way and our shiny new-shoe clad foot oft trips us up on loosely tied laces. I wish more often than not that I was mainstream, alas not. But learning I am.

Yesterday, with the no water scenario in Sandton had me feeling grim from the inside out and put a depressing spell on the victorious Zimbabwean moment. Heading to the local garage to buy bottled water to bathe and drink and have my cherished morning coffee. The row of screeching peeps from Zimbabweans filling up with fuel, flags raised and song lit brought tears to my eyes.

VICTORY IS SO SWEET WHEN IT IS MET WITH HONEST EFFORT.

I have been waiting, patiently for my Landlord to fix the light in my living room that fell out one night. The relevance to today’s blog is startling.

Every ceiling has a way through.

As an award-winning stylist I have had to crash through many personal ceilings to find the bricks to start building a life for myself that is authentic and solid. Oh gosh, many times in my life I was in pimped up mud huts, only to have them fall to the ground with the first blast of the big bad wolf. Just yesterday I was chatting to someone who was encouraging me to endure my personal financial loss. When compared to their 12 million rand devastating loss mine is small change. And although relative to each of our lives, hectic nonetheless, the lesson is that ceilings/ floors are man-made configurations.

The main topic of discussion centered around business expansion. The relevance to the current ZA psyche is this, and I quote: ” The issue is not about South Africans being entrepreneurial, the question is changing the belief that our small enterprise is the best we deserve.”

For the agnostic and atheist this next section is not for you.

DEAR HIGHER POWER

(In my case that’s God)

We thank you for the miracle of life. As we grow out of our old way of thinking that binds us to small-mindedness help us to dream bigger. Help us to find and use those opportunities presented in an honorable way to not only grow ourselves, but our communities at large. We continue to pray that you will help us to love, forgive and reach out the way you do to each of us. Shut down the works of a devious enemy and help us to clearly see and act upon the truth. Help us be a generation of heroic people that serve the ends of justice creating a fair community where all people have the tools to prosper.

Mia Amare dishes up a cutesy and happy set on Mixcloud.

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HAPPY

CHOOSE ❤️!

Stay your amazing self!

✌🏽

•AJB•

Cold Pizza

Salvo Migliorini serves up a tranquil and uplifting offering on Mixcloud.

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RELAX

Taking stock, the maths is slowly getting an order. Going back to the drawing board is a necessary discipline to overcome the whack of rather disappointing love affair. Not to mention the disruptive vanishing with sums of money that left a mountain to climb. But alas, climb one must. Breath Arion, breath.

I have never been one for ‘the next day pizza’. Somehow the titbit doesn’t rev my motor as the night before. In the same breathe the idea of a Mugabe titbit landing and being housed by ZA is an unsavory notion. I mean how dumb must one be and still breathe. The wife assaults a ZA woman and flees, hubby brought a country to its ankles and ZA is contemplating putting up with this trash. No thanks, we have enough of our own thank you very much. I mean I am here huuuuuney, sweeetie, daaaaarlin’, angelcakes, bokkie. 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

It is so weird. I drew up my ‘Black Friday’ promo yesterday and felt all kinds of discomfort about the name of said international promo day. Although I understand the promo to be a getting rid of seasonal stock, a symbol of giving back, a potential for new repeat business and a sense of being part of a global community, the term ‘Black Friday’ still conjures up pictures of mass mourners. I guess that is just my creative thinking. 😜

So often when things go on sale, one discovers the reason why particular items didn’t sell. So to counteract the argument and to offer a valid and valuable offer to peeps at large I banged out a really great offer. An offer that will yield some great experiences and awesome win-win scenarios for both the client and myself.

A stranger fed me some cold pizza yesterday in the form of an online enquiry. I was startled to say the least that her desire was drawn from the trashy Jordy Shore gang. I mean seriously. As, supposedly, entertaining as that bunch are they are not exactly style icons by any stretch of the imagination. To be honest, although I haven’t watched any television in over a year, the random running commentary of that bunch leaves one wondering why the heck they even are on television at all. Sadly, it is a reflection on us as a society. Yup, the television mongering dictators feed us what we are drawn to. Give me a period piece biography any day over the flimsy, to say the least, reality ‘yawn, gulp, aaargh’ TV any day.

ARE WE REALLY

Look I am no prude. I have done more than my fair share of ‘ poorly-chosen-behaviours’ and I still smoke ciggies and devour gallons of chocolate. But are we really a society that indulges corruption, greed, trashy behaviour, settle for comfort rather than truth, get into bed with destructive dictators, hate based on superficial judgements, claim rights when it suits our personal agendas and negate the sincere self-improvement of the honest worker?

Something to think about….

Look, recently I fell for a lie too. I ignored the red flags, warnings and negative behavior and got scammed. I think we all want the best to turn out so. The lesson I have learned is that:

Hoping for a good result does not mean turning a blind-eye to questionable behaviors. A good result comes from joint efforts for mutual gain in honest process.

The rest is just cold pizza!

CHOOSE ❤️!

Stay your amazing self!

✌🏽

•AJB•

Deciphering

Having the privilege, for 2 days, to work with ‘How do I look’ SA live in Sandton City has been a wonderful experience. It is always fun for me to step into my forte, a Makeover Specialist. It got me thinking. What is the importance of change? Funny enough yesterday I wrote a blog titled, ‘Shake it off’, which dealt with the idea of what comes after the end of the next moment? So often as a seasoned professional I see the tug-of-war, in clients, between needing approval and being authentic. Yes, hair is a superficial vanity, but a significant part of people’s expression of self. The idea of changing ones expression, as charming as it sounds, more often hits trepidation and insecurity. Why is this? I think the residing argument is most likely that most of us have no real sense of whom we actually are. We all are well aware that the most consistent thing in life is change. Breathe, don’t breath remains a fundamental choice!

Over the years of getting into people’s heads, well the bits they are willing to reveal, has fed me much scoop about the human psyche. In hairdressing we have a bit of banter about the world at large, ” I want something different as long as I look like everyone else’s different and I look like myself.” This is an all too honest and familiar outcome with clients in our chair.

Recently I had a referral who wanted to take her near-waist length hair from darkest brown to Silver platinum blonde. After thoroughly consulting, quoting and explaining the timeframe and maintenance, her expectations were dashed. She wanted the end result in 3 weeks for a year end function. This was an impossibility as she had colour on her hair. With these criteria, a more realistic expectation would have been 6 months and a mini-remortgage on her house. Think 4-5 hours per session, 1x a month over a period of 6 months, home care, in-salon treatments and mega liters of product to achieve the look. That is not even to say that we would have got there if the hair couldn’t handle the procedure.

Which brings me, neatly, to my point.

What can changing our look teach us about change?

1) Accepting that things will not stay the same opens the door to adventure.

2) Change requires effort, dedication and investment.

3) What happens after the change is determined by our embracing the outcome

4) See the opportunities that change provides as a vehicle for deeper understanding of ourselves.

CHOOSE ❤️

Stay your amazing self!

#❤️🇿🇦🌈

✌🏽

•AJB•

Ps: BOOK YOUR SLIPTOVER MAKOVER