Invitation’s

Something magical happened tonight!

Besides Ella and I both dressing in stripes and dots, totally coincidentally, we walked out of the Pierneef Theatre stunned. 

A two man show starring Deandre Reiners and Vianney Henry Farmer who co-wrote PASS (ings) with director and designer Quintin Wils left us reeling in the fact that we had just witnessed a seriously brilliant moment in theatre. WE WERE CLOSE ENOUGH THAT I FELT EVERY PAINSTAKING ANGST OF THE PERFORMANCE RIP THROUGH ME AS IF ROLES WERE REVERSED. From the striking stark set, thought-provoking and heart-wrenching script through to the gripping acting made the trek to Pretoria worth every second. INVOLUNTARILY THE TEARS STREAMED DOWN MY FAN-FACE. 

YIP; IF YOU MISSED IT, YOU REALLY MISSED.

If you get the opportunity to see this production you MUST NOT pass it up!

Deandre Reiners is mesmerising as a deeply conflicted Liam with an intensity that was impossible to say goodbye to at the end. So much of both Liam’s and Jayden’s character echo the crises of many adults; conformity vs authenticity. Watching Jayden’s tears I could have died right there….the pain of identity and belonging. Breathtaking!!!!

Dinner at Parea on Corlett Drive Illovo was the perfect compliment to a great night with stunning traditional dancers providing delightful traditional  entertainment to the fab meals.

People I adore, increasingly, are beginning to show their vulnerability in response to my blog which openly chats about some struggles I and many others face. I am seeing that often the invitation to be a ‘CONFIDANT’ begins with extending the invitation to oneself by dropping the FAKE. My friend Ella is such a brilliant mirror for me to not discount myself on behalf of others. It’s hard for me to not want to ALWAYS be the good guy and I really try hard.

Tonight typified the magnificence of humanity in glorious realness. Life is too short to waste time on idle games that only generate more pain for ourselves and others. So often we are polite to “not hurt another’s feelings”, and I am hugely guilty of this, when the very game hurts so much more.

What I mean is this: 

Our feelings are nothing as they change moods more often than we possibly could change lingerie, daaaaarling . We ALL get vibes about others and as much as the other knows that something is up, so do we. From experience I have seen that when I play the game of people-pleaser, invariably, someone or both get put out; usually with a loss of mutual respect thrown in. NOW I AM NOT SAYING THAT ONE HAS TO BE A COMPLETE JERK AND BE BELITTLING TO OTHERS AND OURSELVES  BUT BEING HONEST, NICELY, IS PROBABLY THE MOST DIFFICULT  YET DECENT ROAD. (and I get it wrong a lot…..aaaargh)

Life in its raw form is delightfully beautiful and cruelly divine. It needs no LED’s to make its colours show. It certainly does not need our help to play itself out either. I learnt years ago that time will continue loooooooong after each of us has come and gone.

Life is as time is….. its own journey. At best we make with it what we can. The choice is…. do we willingly accept the invitation to learn to be our best humane selves or do we accept the invitation to learn to be our best self-serving selves. Either way we will have karma.

I don’t know what I did right to be privileged enough to experience a moment of Magic last night but bring it on….’please sir may I have some more?’

(such a fun memory….playing model model with security….I appreciate these guys so much who daily take strides with me as ordinary working people holding our heads up high trying to do the right thing in a country so torn apart by some extraordinary self-server’s; past and present.)

LIFE IS!

STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF!

❤ 

• AJB • 

Butta ‘n Toast

AGAIN!!!!

The shiver of a sweat being brushed by the Johannesburg winter air is exhilarating. Trying to write this blog is proving to be difficult as I jump up to jam 1 more movement to my favourite mix on Mixcloud. Years gone by my friends would struggle to separate me from the seduction of a DJ, mirror ball and hot steamy dance floor.  I would run and hide to just get 5 minutes extra dancing in. 

I DROVE THEM NUTS!!!

I DROVE MYSELF NUTS!!! 

I remember a time that I was as high as a kite and dancing. I, for lack of better wording, had left the galaxy. I was at the back of the dance floor and hallucinating something hectic. Naked Roman soldiers were dancing on the speakers, undercut hair was growing into vines on the ceiling, sweat drops grew into horns and right in the front was the flashing light of the finish line. I was in a race to beat the obstacles in front of me. The rule wasthat  if another competitor bumped me, they sucked my energy and I would have to  start at the back again. Visa versa. It was 5 hours later until I realised that it was the strobe light and the GAME was all in my head. Oh gosh I laughed at myself. But did I have a spectacular moment of dancing. I fought hard to win….lol.

Anyhoooooooow…..

Like some people can turn paint into art and instruments into unforgettable music; some people can turn the promise of an early morning booty call into a game of cat and mouse deliciousness and intrigue. Recently I have had a really, like REALLY, beautiful other playing this cyber seduction game with me. Often the cyber connection  of pleasure bores me to death but every now and then; and more then than now…lol; a person captures the imagination. Not so much because they are completely pervy to look at but because there is a vulnerability that is both sexy and invokes the passion in ones heart. THE GAME IS ON, SO LET’S SEE IF IT EVER EVOLVES FROM CYBER TO LIVE ENCOUNTER….LOL. (hope u can catch a hint…Mr ‘G’)

Through all the ups and downs in life there are just some things that remain FACT. The fact is things tend to work out not as bad as we think they might. The fact remains that sex is freely available. The fact remains that we like what we like. The fact remains that finding a connection that runs a bit deeper than a casual fling of disaster is not so easy to happen upon.

Little beats butter on toast, the laugh of forgiveness, the feeling of sleeping in one’s own bed, cooking lunch for people you adore or knowing that a GREATER LOVE is in action to help us be better humans 24/7/365 is deeply beautiful.

Whatever your situationship is right now, take it from a guy who should’ve been OVER more times than a ticking clock that you are more deeply loved than you could ever imagine. We just need to tune into the mix and let the natural rythm of life dance through us. 

Get sweaty on life and as the artwork, compliments of my incredible artist friend Ella, implies freedom is yours to be had….TAKE IT!

STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF!

❤ 

• AJB • 

The fearful step

Have you ever felt frightfully inadequate?

I remember the first time I ever went into a ‘fancy-schmancy’ restuarant. Things were so wierd. My imagination was vomiting inside of me. Snails…fungi….soil….rabbit….liver! How could people eat this stuff? So many forks, and what kind of knife is this? And bibs for grownups? 

As strange as this all was to a kid of 17 I learnt that what is in my head was not as powerful as the experiences of giving it a go. 

Function must follow Form or visa versa!

In other words an idea not tried is vapour. 

For years the disgust of pornography has bothered me. Like eating snails, I had to understand why people who watch it love it. In my inadequacies I believed that if others do so must I. I wanted to be everyone else but dorky me.  Although I have an understanding these days of snails and pornography neither are goto things for me. Both are yucky and boring. Give me an Oxtail stew and kissing any day and I am Lord Muck.

There are plenty of journeys I wish I had never taken but they at least taught me about who I don’t want to be.

This month has been a magnificent time of many 1st’s. Graciously accepting the hand of friendship and tonight joining a Hip Hop dance class to name a few. 

3 things remain true for me:

*keeping it real

*I love people 

*I know God is love

Most of my life has been done scared but I did it.

It has taken me 43 years to get a handle on my irrational fears and have some self-esteem that is allowing me to venture into the life I believe is meant for me. Not a schmaltzy, wannabe and pretentious life but a life filled with adventures to come. 

I am adjusting my point of view!

So remember that what we, falsely, believe about ourselves will always cloud our lives from being the KINGS AND QUEENS we actually are born to be. It is not easy fighting our shadow but it beats fitting in whilst dying inside.

Love is designed to win. Perhaps not exactly how we imagine and often we must go through it scared but the step must be actioned.

I have to find the most decent track and T to wear to dance class tonight. I don’t want to look like a complete eyesore….lol.

STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF! 

❤ 

• AJB • 

ICONIC

HAVE YOU EVER, LIKE ME, WONDERED WHAT YOU, ONLY ICONIC, WOULD REALLY BE?

I think I might just be. No, I don’t mean that arrogantly or even self-patronisingly….if that is even a word….it is now….lol. 

It’s Sunday 1:40 am. It’s freeeeeeeeezing in Johannesburg. Well freezing for us. I guess compared to the UK or Antarctica it is a summers night. With my favourite blankie, a cuppa and the damn too bright kitchen light blasting my ‘wanna-sleep-but-can’t’ eyeballs I toss this word ‘iconic’ into the mix.

What makes someone or something iconic? Is it the amount of likes they get on their social-media pages, or the good they do in the world that so easily is forgotten, or the amount of art/ records or sportmanship they leave behind to remember them by, or the fact that perhaps they are born that way. I don’t know. Perhaps it is all or none of it.

‘The No Kiss List’ on Netflix rocked me this morning. Obviously the tears are a given and the awakening of my spirit has gotten me trying to figure out, the albeit a fictional story, why I am so deeply moved.

With the remnants of my ok but delish supper stocked up in the kitchen sink and my debt repayment plan looking good but both staring at me calling for attention, I force myself to just be with me.

‘The No Kiss List’ reflects on change, acceptance and growing up. The world is often hard and childhood dreams are forced to change for clearer perspectives to grab hold of us as adults.

I work next to a ‘new age exercise’ gym. I don’t know what one calls a place that puts electrodes on you that tense the muscles as one does certain movements. I am a bit old school regarding this but highly intrigued.

Which brings me to my point.

I am trying new things. Not revolutionary new things but things that I simply have not given myself the gap to really try. Like forging friendships that are honestly good for me. Look I have been incredibly lucky in that many people have come into my life that I will always love, deeply care for and hope to become a true friend of oneday but I haven’t let people in close. I feel sorry for my ex. The time with me must have been tough. I loved him so much that I wanted every bit of my being to be dedicated and absorbed into the him & I scenario. Which perhaps is not really possible for anyone. I think this is because I haven’t really allowed myself the opportunity to grow platonic friendships to a level that I can call them besties; so I immerse myself in love. IT IS CHANGING! My friend Ella is proving herself quite the force to be reckoned with. It’s both daunting and stunning as my fears are being challenged and being put into perspective. If you ever get to meet her you will understand why she is an iconic human. I am only now, at 43, beginning to get a handle on who I really am, what I like, don’t like, believe or not, desire and don’t and want to change or let go of both in me and around me. Rather late than never I guess.

Perhaps I may be remembered as iconic for all the mistakes I have made. Perhaps I am starting to walk in the shoes of iconic and will yet discover what it is still to be. But the most essential thing is being iconic to myself.

It has been a week of intense but thought provoking conversation in the salon. Clients/friends have opened up about their lives and I have been moved, surprised and have fallen that bit more in love with each of them. Yup. I am one of THOSE stylists. I don’t want to do hair for people who are superficial. I want to go to work everyday excited to do what I do for people I treasure. And yes when I hurt them I want to care that I have. Come now let’s not pretend that we haven’t  hurt some people, directly or indirectly,  and actually it didn’t bother us too much. As a kid I tried hitting my dad with a broom to stop him beating up my mom. I was glad that the wooden handle left a red welt on his back…..happier that it forced his attention onto me and got him chasing me down the street and off my mom. So you see sometimes we hurt others, like I did, intentionally and I was thrilled with it. Look, I am not advocating violence. I hate violence and am scared of it but the argument is a blurred line of many factors necessary for context before judgement is effectively made.

This week I have finally, after 13 years of guilt, decided to no longer go to church. Not because I don’t want to be a Christian, I do. But the constant pointing out of my personal shortcomings keeps me focused on guilt and not on the love I have for a God that is both God and iconic to me. I mean how does one mimic a love that still loves when we destroy eachother everyday. For now, it may change, I am happy to let my spirituality become a more exclusive affair without the constant negative vomit that gets flung at me in the mask of following a bible-based teaching. I have a bible. I read it. I pray and everyday I hope to be a bit more iconic like this God that has rescued my butt from myself many times.

So too have I decided to dance….actually dance. For years the guilt of ‘boys don’t dance’ coupled to ‘drug-induced-dancing-for-days-as-a-means-of-belonging’ has had me in a noose for too long. The short and of long of this rope is….I love to dance. It frees me and I am in my ordinary way iconic at it.

PERHAPS THE WORD ICONIC IS MERELY A DESCRIPTION OF HOW WE SHOULD SEE OURSELVES, INSTINCTIVELY, RATHER THAN THE CRITICAL EYE WE JUDGE OURSELVES AND OTHERS BY.

PERHAPS IF WE WALK IN OUR ICONIC SHOES REALISING THAT WE ACTUALLY ARE ALL ICONIC,AS THERE IS ONLY 1 OF EACH OF US, WE MAY NOT NEED TO DESTROY OURSELVES, OTHERS,  OUR PLANET AND EVERYTHING AROUND US.

Perhaps as we let go of the childhood ideas of wanting what we want exclusively for ourselves we may as adults raise our thumb and allow the dancers to dance, the singers to sing, money makers to make money, runners to run and lovers to love as passionately for ourselves and others alike.

Perhaps then, ‘ love will cover a multitude of sins.’ Perhaps then we cut  the noose that strangles  the dreams of a world in despair. Perhaps then dreams can come true for the many and not only the ones whom opportunities are granted.

PERHAPS!!!!

STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF! 

❤ 

• AJB • 

Monday Mood

It’s warm and Dora is just not in the mood to blitz goddess-like. The mundane cleaning rituals are needless to say a thankless difficultly. So; instead he feeds the birds and lays prostrate soaking in some much desired vitamin D, whilst beyond the organza wall lay the aftermath of an incarcerated but necessary discipline. It’s warm……

The camouflaged wild birds dance, chat and groom between the perfectly haphazard leafless twigs. It’s been a while since I just watched the world go by. It’s a luxury that most, I think, miss as the ever increasing costs of trying to live are a taxing toll on our limited clocks.

The faded black Loerie gallops; blundering elegantly through the branches.

Balance? What is it and how does one actually achieve it? Theoretically I know the answer we all know. Practically I fear most of us stare intrigued but dismayed at the pie chart illustration. I do! Perhaps balance is more of a societal ideology….u work, they play, they save, they spend. Oh gosh I have tried the envelope budget idea too and well there just ain’t no envelop deep enough. My lists are strong. And I feel the onset of a dress up gay musical sing-a-long coming on. “I do too love dress up,” I mutter so British to myself.

Truthfully, as I was told sincerely, that my best bet is to completely have the bare minimum access to getting  my hands onto money. I am one of those that get so bewildered by a moment that all sensibilities fly much like the blundering Loerie galloping out the door. It does, however, make for exciting times requiring me to be on high alert thinking on points often. It will change.

Is there not an effective class that can teach one the necessary skills to undo a life of wanton mediocre success. Ironically,  at those elected entrepreneurial programs that are implemented at high school level I fared brilliantly. I never got to see it through. Sometimes, kids just have to do as they are told by a parent, particularly the big looming male.

It’s warm.

With a melted herb cheese, tomato, mustard and smoked chorizo sarta brioche well placed, the wicked inevitability of getting out the Domestic Goddess frock shrieks ‘it’s time’ to the ‘oh-god-oh-god-oh-god-please-no’ slamming of grinding brakes at a ‘saw-it-too-late’ red traffic light. 

Tranquil bliss effectively disturbed! 

Whatever it takes to carry through the surrendering of our wills to achieve the dreams that WILL make a difference, not only to ourselves but potentially the world around us……DO THAT! 

As a new potential friend said yesterday, ” DO REAL,” and a glancing read of a Richard Branson online article slogan quips, “SUPPORT DON’T PUNISH”

STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF! 

❤ 

• AJB • 

Pink Stiffed Velarium

It’s Sat 3 June 16:40…..

The winter chill is ever so present, but I can sit on the stoep comfortably sipping tea over peanut toast banting bread. The Orchids are slurping up their ‘for long life’ recommended ice-blocks. It’s been 6 weeks and they are flourishing resplendently. My ‘Peace in the Home’ ground cover, too, seems to have adjusted to its new Morningside patio residence. 

I watch the cars scurry along Rivonia road and sigh that it’s the end of a fabulous but gruelling week. It hasn’t been easy coping with a tired body unwilling to jump out of the cake until it is ready. So too, has it been tough putting into place boundaries that are necessary for positive healing to happen.

YES…I HAVE DONE WHAT IS NECESSARY AND IT’S FLIPPING EINA.

I have, just 4 months ago, begun to taste the freedom of being self-employed. It’s hard to hand over my bank card so as to limit my access to money. Until I have caught my mess up it is both wise and responsible. I don’t want people to think that I don’t sweat trying to be honourable even in my failings. In truth I have to turn a month of work into paying for 2 months expenses.

It’s both doable and still moderately easily. But it does mean I have to practice extreme vigilance and sacrifice. Both concepts of which do not come easily for a guy who feels that he has paid for every indiscretion many times over. Some people seem to float by getting away with much. Like buying a garment, wearing it for a night and then returning it the next day for a refund. I just can’t.  I am the sucker who will buy it and rather give it away than blatantly cheat a system. WHICH MEANS, THAT MANY TIMES I HAVE TAKEN BOTH SELF-INFLICTED AND NON ON THE CHIN.

I saw the pink balloon pressing a way out of the opalescent cover today and immediately related. 

I know right? Sometimes I just think the universe likes to poke fun at me; even metaphorically.

☆pink…favorite colour

☆ceiling…sense of being stuck/hurdle

☆opaque….can see further but struggling to reach beyond

☆balloon….potential to rise

Many conversations later filtering through my mind as the gold dusk filters the ambience of this afternoon, I can only acknowledge that being an adult is not for the faint-hearted. My payment plans are actioned. My self-contained freedom actioned. Getting back to basics actioned.

It’s easy to make mistakes but gosh is it a stretch to drag my inner brat towards the starting line to enter the race. A race I should’ve, could’ve and would’ve if I wasn’t such a stubborn brat who fell in love. A race I needed to start 5 years ago. A race that is about beating into submission the happy-go-lucky in me and creating a space for the achiever in me to create the platform to go lucky.

AS A STYLIST I HAVE LEARNT THAT IN ORDER TO BEND THE RULES EFFECTIVELY ONE FIRST NEEDS TO KNOW THE RULES.

so one day at a time…one client at a time and a bit of luck on my side I may just make it to fix the consequences of a luck that brings blessing at the end of its lesson.

Stay your amazing self!

❤ 

• AJB • 


JuMpStArT 

Profound words of enlightenment or inspiration, or maybe something is stirring. 

Stevie B on the mix and the lyrics…. “and my heart might kick in”…..and “love without a trace” taste like the tinny taste of tobacco and sweat soaking into my striped knit. I have been worshipping, alone, at the altar of dance this fantastic Monday. YES dear, alone, sober, and on the terracotta tiles of my second floor apartment in Sandown. At the speed, no pun intended, at which i like to dance, which I might add is enough to give most a coronary bypass and without an amphetamine fix is needless to say a flash in the pan moment of gyrating spiritual orgasmic movement. MY HEART PULSATES IN TEARS OF ECSTATIC RELIEF….EVEN IF IT’S JUST THE SOLITARY MONDAY MOMENT BLISS.
<♢ As soon as I can I will post a vid of my groove, if you like, although the traffic on Rivonia is getting a great Monday show. The issue is that my Samsung is both music player and video recorder and can’t be done simultaneously….working on it ♢>

With my mini ArT collection on the walls I just had to sweat it out in my home celebrating the moment. AND; I HOPE WITH EVERY VEIN IN MY BODY IT IS A PERMANENT ONE…..EVEN FOR A LONG WHILE WILL DO. It is darn hard getting pics exactly level and spaced evenly. Especially if, like myself, one is hardly a professional handyman. (and I just don’t know any willing straight friend who might hang the pics for me…..topless of course….I mean what are dreams for if not to be had!)

Loving DIY, somehow daaaaarling,  just doesn’t translate into getting it purrrrfect first time.  

I HATE UNNECCESARY HOLES IN WALLS.

With holes in my heart I have to go through the, albeit necessary, arduous interview at the psychologist today. Hopefully something will happen and love will find its trace and jumpstart my ghost town heart.
I know it seems that I may have a negative point of view; I don’t really. It’s a funny thing; I can spend time interviewing clients regarding their personal expression regarding their hair but I hate people digging into the recess of my mildly colourful mind.

THE WAY I ACTUALLY FEEL IS….I WONDER IF I HAD TO ARRIVE WITH MY BIRTHDAY SUITE ON AND MY PENCHANT FOR SHIBARI ROPE ART; BOUND UP; WHAT WOULD THEY SAY?

I might end up straight in ‘Groendakkies’. 

Look, don’t get hysterical love….my fascination with Shibari has more to do with the willingness to surrender than actually being tied up like a deboned stuffed duck parcel. So let’s not get all distracted by the imagery sweetie.

THE BOTTOM LINE IS SIMPLY THIS….

I have been zombie-like since 2012. God alone knows how I managed to get through a great relationship, win Hairstylist of the Year and start my fab little business. Nevermind hold onto some remnants of a client base all the while weathering the storm with the angst of unsettling political issues.

FOR THE RECORD…..AND I AM SERIOUS….ARE US FAIR SKINNED MORTALS REALLY THAT HATED AND WISHED OUT OF THIS SENSATIONAL LAND CALLED HOME?

On that note with my dollop of double whipped cream leaving a skin on my ice-cold coffee and profoundly appropriate timing Adele’s ‘Hello’ kicks in and my blog ends.

HELLO 

<♢a new interpretation….me gearing up for today’s analytics to run into me ♢>

Hello, it’s me
I was wondering if after all these years you’d like to meet
To go over everything
They say that time’s supposed to heal ya
But I ain’t done much healing

Hello, can you hear me?
I’m in California dreaming about who we used to be
When we were younger and free
I’ve forgotten how it felt before the world fell at our feet

There’s such a difference between us
And a million miles

Hello from the other side
I must have called a thousand times
To tell you I’m sorry for everything that I’ve done
But when I call you never seem to be home

Hello from the outside
At least I can say that I’ve tried
To tell you I’m sorry for breaking your heart
But it don’t matter it clearly doesn’t tear you apart anymore

●♤ BUT IT DOES ♤●

So as the tobacco trail dances past my silver Touch Lamp, I put to bed the dark complexity (till later) of MOI and stretch myself to get all DORA THE DOMESTIC GODDESS on myself. And, still pondering the irony of a stranger wanting  to be called DADDY whilst lecturing me on the ‘inappropriateness’ of guys wearing eyeliner.

BUT DAAAAARLING IT’S YVES SAINT LAURENT.

needless to say that the chance meeting of said stranger is wrecked and hidden below devouring  rocky seas.

AND THE ZARA TOBACCO COLLECTION IS AAAAAAALL IT SAYS IT IS…rich/warm/addictive….a must try!!!!

STAY YOUR AMAZING SELF!!

• AJB •