Archive for the ‘stupid people’ Category

Cut From The Heart: Episode 4 – The Too Much Makeup Girl

November 16, 2013

As we continue this build up to my book, I’ve been making the very difficult decision as to which stories to cut from the final version. As I share them here with you all, I find myself wondering what the actual criteria for removing them is.

I guess ultimately, its about finding a balance. Fine tuning the flow of my life. All of these stories I share here are by no means less important, and the girls I mention in these stories will always form an important part of who I am. (Good or bad).

Back during my IT days, I working for a little company called Microsoft. Now in my book there are some major stories that come out of these days, but there were also lesser known stories that very few people knew of. I’d like to share on of those with you now.

Bonus Story #4: The Too Much Makeup Girl

By 2002 I had resigned myself to the fact that I may die working in a call centre. The only positives about being in IT for the last 5 years was that I had made some close friends, and I was making some decent money. But, I was not happy, this was never what I was meant to be doing with my life.

Career wise, MS was not the highlight of my life. For the most part however, I was well liked. From my quirky dress sense to my humour, it was easy to get along with everyone, from every department. From the strictest of bosses to the bitchiest of bitches, I was sorta the one guy who managed to be friends with everyone…well until the day I got fired, but that epic story is covered in my book.

There were several departments within the company and we as the helpdesk didn’t have much interaction with the other employees. There was however one girl in particular that used to come through our offices occasionally to visit a friend.

She was a petite indian girl, who was sexy as hell. None of the guys ever spoke to her, maybe out of intimidation, or maybe just assuming she would never be interested in us plebs.

The guys would always say how she wore too much makeup, as if justifying their reason why they never approached her. Perhaps she did, but I felt she wore that much makeup as compensation for low self confidence.

We changed office buildings several times during my stay at the company, and by the final move during my time there, her and I had actually started talking. She would greet me everytime she saw me and we’d have a random conversation, till eventually we started emailing each other.

Some of the guys were like “you’re the man Burg!”, but for me, it was just about getting to know someone.

Surprisingly, she happened to be single at the time, however, it was a recent thing as she had confided she had split from an abusive boyfriend.

I wondered if all that make up had actually been a cover up for something more heartbreaking.

I took my time with her, and helped build her confidence back up, she deserved better, and I promised her nothing left.

Eventually I had the courage to ask her out to coffee one Saturday, making it clear it was a date, and she actually said yes!

As the day approached, in part paranoia and part previous experience, I grew doubtful this was actually going to happen. So on the Friday night I confirmed she was still on for the next day, she replied of course! And I went to bed almost as excited as a kid on Christmas Eve.

The next morning I shaved, got dressed up, and in my excitement headed out an hour early to our agreed coffee shop at the East Rand Mall, which was halfway for both of us.

As I say, I got there early, so I had to kill and hour walking around.

Eventually at 2pm, I made my way to the coffee shop and got a table. I texted her and said I was there. She replied with “on my way, might be a bit late”.

She was 5 min late.
Then 15 min late.
Then 30 min late.
Then an hour late.

So I texted her again, asking if everything was ok.
She didn’t reply.

Foolishly, I waited another hour. And I could tell the waiters had noticed I had been stood up. So I casually asked for the bill and made my way home, not before having the world longest pee because of all the coffee I consumed in 3 hours.

As I got home, I got a message from her. She apologized and said she just couldn’t do it.

I was confused, hurting, but never once showed any anger towards her. Instead I said I understand, and hoped we could reschedule. It was one of the few times I actually cried tears of disappointment.

When Monday came, our emails were suddenly awkward. She never came down and visited anymore.

In fact, our communication came to a sudden and bizarre end.

A few months later, she was pregnant.
Then I heard she and her boyfriend were back together.
Then I heard the boyfriend killed himself.

A short while after that my time there came to an end.

The whole experience was very confusing and painful. And as of today, I don’t know whatever became of her.

But I do think back to that time often, and wonder what might have been different if she showed up that day for coffee.

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Cut From The Heart: Episode 1 – The Pharmacy Girl

November 13, 2013

So unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you probably have seen one of my hundreds of postings on social media announcing that I am finally releasing a book.

It’s been a lifelong work, and has sorta, although not completely, changed direction over the last few months.

While it is still autobiographical, the book combines the stories of my life, with the stories of my loves.

The book recalls 50 stories of love, romance and heartbreak taking place throughout my life while looking back at certain key moments that were going on at the time.

Amazingly, when putting the list of 50 stories together, I ended up with well over 50 stories. I’m not sure if that’s awesome or just plain depressing!

As a result, I was forced to cut certain stories from the book, and rather let those go to waste, I’d rather share them here on my blogs with you awesome readers. Each was cut for a different reason, but ultimately, they all have been important memories for me.

If you are on Facebook, I’d like to encourage you to go support my page at http://www.facebook.com/ShaunMyburgWrites as we build up to the release of my book.

So with that…I bring you:

Bonus story #1: The Pharmacy Girl

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There was a time when I used to receive so much mail that I was actually one of those people who required a PO Box in order to get all my mail…well, a hefty share of it at least. In about 2002/2003 mail theft was a massive problem and I lost so much that eventually certain vendors asked me to stop ordering from them as they couldn’t keep replacing my orders. Some times I used to receive empty envelopes in the postal box with the goods removed. Which was rather nice of the thieves as they could of just tossed the envelopes in the trash.

Anyways, the point of all that is, when I had to collect a registered or “too big for the box” item, I needed to go into the post office which shared a premises with the local chemist..or pharmacy …or drug store…depending on where in the world you live.

I was a ridiculously regular customer, so I was well known by the staff of both the pharmacy and the post office.

Since the post office section was at the back of the pharmacy, I always had to walk past one of the counters where a beautiful girl worked.

For months we would exchange smiles, with an occasional hello. In fact, if I had two parcels to collect, I would deliberately only fetch one so that I could go back the next day to see her.

Eventually I struck up a conversation with her pretending I needed something from the actual pharmacy. A pair of tweezers. Yup, after months of trying to think of a great opening line, I asked her where I could find a decent pair of tweezers.

This was about 10 years ago. And I kid you not, I still have that pair of tweezers, unopened in its packaging.

Lame or not, the ice had finally been broken. The raven haired beauty and I were becoming actual friends. So of course, the logical next step, was to order even more items online so that I could go to the post office even more often.

Then, I was given the chance to travel to the UK for the first time in my life, to visit my cousin and see some friends. Me being me, immediately thought, hey, I should ask pharmacy girl if she wants to come with. I checked with my cousin and he said since he would be working during the days I was there, that I should bring her so I have company. Fantastic!

The next time I saw her, I casually brought up my trip saying just the right things so that she would say “aw! That’s so cool, I wish I could go!”

And me…again, being me, said “so come with”…

Then of course came the double blow of “I’d need to clear it with my boyfriend first though.” Followed swiftly by, “I can’t believe you’re willing to pay for everything, that’s amazing!”

And YET AGAIN, me being me said, “sure don’t worry about anything”.

So while she cleared it with her boyfriend, and her family I raced to a travel agent and began doing enquiries about costs.

The next week, I had to go meet her parents, and boyfriend, so that they could see I was a genuine guy. What an awkward evening that was. Ironically the parents were pretty excited about it, I think looking back at it now, they saw me as this successful guy who could provide much better for their daughter than her mechanic boyfriend.

Then came the worst part! After her parents approved, (the boyfriend didn’t for the record), she said yes. And I said well, I’ll sort out everything.

Then I realized, after all this, I didn’t even know her last name! I made up a story about how I needed a copy of her ID to book the ticket, so at least was able to see her surname.

A few weeks of awkward planning followed, till about a month before we were supposed to leave. When I got the best worst news.

She had broken up with her boyfriend! I’d like to think it wasn’t over this, but hey, let’s be honest it most likely was.

I thought this could actually be an amazing time. Nothing bonds people like traveling! Right?

Of course, as is the theme of my life. 2 weeks before we were going to fly, she changed her mind. Citing she didn’t know me well enough, and just wasn’t comfortable doing this.

8 grand. That’s how much the ticket cost me. And here I was smiling back at her saying how sorry I was to hear she couldn’t make it anymore, but I could literally hear pieces of my heart falling to the floor.

Thankfully, i was able to get a portion of my money back, which eased the finances, but did nothing for how much my heart was hurting.

I went on a life changing trip to the UK in October of 2003, and when I returned a month later, I found out she had left her job at the pharmacy.

I closed down my PO Box…and never bought a tweezer again.

State of The Burg Nation Address – Permanent Heartbreak & Zombies

October 10, 2012

A year ago I was sitting at home, unemployed, broke and no clue of what the future held for me. I was essentially happy. I knew I had a decent payout coming, a new job would find me, and I had high expectations that “next year would be different”.
So here we are….1 year later. What has changed?
The more I think about it, the more I get overwhelmed with a great sense of depression. It’s probably not the best time to analyse my life either, because I always get hugely depressed this time of year because of my birthday. And in two days time, when the day arrives, I’ll be forced to pretend I’m happy it’s my birthday, instead of having to explain to new friends and co-workers that I don’t celebrate it. So when questions and comments arise such as “what have you got planned” or “I hope you get spoilt” I will try and force a smile and come up with answers that don’t depress me even more.
Know me well enough, and know how I feel about the day.
I’ve been under tremendous stress lately, and really feel like it’s taking its toll. Health wise and mentally, its just overwhelmed me to the point where I feel my legs can’t even hold me up anymore.
The easy solution is I just need to take a holiday or go out with friends…

 

I’ve tried to avoid writing how woe is me, but I just don’t think there is any possible way to avoid it, and believe me, I don’t want to be THAT version of myself again.
A lot has changed over the last year, I know this to be true, and because I can see the difference I’ve made in my life, but the problem is, as I get older, I’m getting increasingly frustrated with the things that simply won’t change.
I gave the whole positive attitude thing a massive try. I made the effort with people, a big effort, but every disappointment I’ve had has resulted in a crushing punch to the ovaries. Which could possibly explain why I’m battling to even stand these days.
A friend and I chatted recently, and I call him a friend because of all the bullshiz we have gone through (and given each other), we still remain close. We spoke about the disappointment in people, and he pointed out that you literally can count the number of friends you really have one hand; the rest will always let you down.
What defines a genuine friendship though? We assign so much to that pedestal of friendship, that it becomes dangerous. Yes. Friendships are dangerous. I think this is why I try and avoid them.
However, over the last few weeks I seem to have fallen off the wagon and tried to believe in the romance of friendships…to my own detriment.
I’ve been accused of taking things too personally…which I do. Because friendship is the most personal thing there is. And if you can’t rely on the very basics of things like effort, commitment and honesty you, such as myself, will be in a permanent state of heartbreak.
And that’s exactly what’s wrong with me. I am in a permanent state of heartbreak. Probably for the last 30 years.
I recently reached out to a bunch of people I considered friends. I wanted to spend time with them, because I like them, and really needed to be around them to feel good about myself.
Scenario A, was friend I had messaged for years saying lets catchup, let’s get together, etc etc.. and she agreed that we absolutely would! She had recently returned from overseas and asked for me number saying we can finally meet up again. I let myself get excited about this prospect, and eagerly sent my details saying she must send me hers. About a month after that she finally did. Then we proceeded to organize a date and time. A Friday, lunch time.
As it got closer, I got more nervous, because people ALWAYS cancel on me…and normally just before the time. So about an hour before she messaged me saying she was running late but would be there about an hour after our original time.
That time arrived and she messaged me again could we do it in the evening rather.
I replied sure.
Then another message saying can we rather do it over the weekend, or the week after.
I replied sure…whenever you can fit me into your schedule.
She replied “Thanks! I’ll message you next week!”
That was three weeks ago. Nothing since.
The second scenario, just days afterwards, was another friend I had managed to track down who I hadn’t seen in over a year. We agreed on a dinner date for Wednesday last week.
On the Tuesday night I messaged her asking if we were all good for dinner the night after, she replied saying she was so sorry, she forgot and said we would have to move it to later in the week, but she would get hold of me to confirm. I still haven’t heard from her.
There are others… new friends, who I’ve tried opening up with, letting them into my life, becoming their confident, showing them that there is a better way of life in terms of happiness and love, only of course till they seem to get bored of me, and my romantic notion of how life should be, then going back to the crud that they think is happiness. I just don’t get it, and then people tell me that I will make someone very happy, or any girl would be lucky to have me…prove it.
These are not random events. This is how it ALWAYS is. Always. It’s impossible not to get heartbroken over these moments. They seem to shrug it off so easily, and to me it feels like I have no right to complain over petty little cancellations.

 

(I know there are those that will immediately say I never take them up on the offers to do something, or never asked them out etc, but lets be honest here, if I enjoyed your company THAT much, we would of already done something, so get over it, and get back to reading.)
I’m a good guy, I’m good company. I surely deserve better? I deserve chances…And screw all that “well if you think it’s going to go bad, it will go bad”…That is such a cop out answer, because what about when you think good? and you still get burned…
Sorry, that was a bit of a vent wasn’t it? Well…I feel better that its out, but my heart doesn’t.
Ah the heart…tell me, why do I even have this useless item in my body? And yes, I know it provides the basic function of living. But then…what if you are not living? I certainly don’t feel alive.
In fact, the only time I felt alive recently was that one week I spent it Cape Town. Because I actually felt like my heart did have a function. It’s possible I left it there though.
You know that girl I fell for? Well. What do I even say about that? I thought at least all the distractions and distance would help me not think about her as much. But the more we don’t chat, the more I fall for her. The more I don’t see her, the clearer I can see her. As I told someone yesterday…there is nobody else for me to push away while I focus on her…there are no dates…there is nothing physical…there is nothing…except what we both know. That there is “something” there and it hurts so much knowing we are not allowed to even try.

So every year, as my birthday approaches, I cannot think of anything other than how I’m getting older, lonelier and despite my best efforts, I may not get that chance at happiness and love. Despite everyone’s cliched pieces of advice, these are the facts. This is the reality.

I sit here in life’s limbo. Exhausted. Heartbroken. Functioning purely on some sort of Zombie instinct. The punches keep on coming, and the Universe is constantly beating the cr@p out of me, but I’m not staying down…and we all know, there is only one true way to kill zombie.

“Every Office Has One” – 14 Clichéd Colleagues

May 10, 2012

If you’ve ever worked in an office, you’ve probably used a variation of the line, “It would be so perfect if it weren’t for just one person there…”

I’ve worked in at least 10 different office environments, in different industries, in my time and each and every place has had at least that one person who ruins your entire working experiences at that job because of their annoying habits.

I’d like to now pay tribute to those clichéd colleagues who we affectionately think back on as and say “Every office at least one…”

Of course, those of us who just have plain ol’bad luck can sometimes be subjected to individuals who have a rare combination of the below traits, but I guarantee you will come across someone you recognize here, no matter where you work.

With that, I’d like to present to you my Top 14 Countdown of clichéd colleagues.

14. The Name Dropper

I’m not even talking about a celebrity name dropper here…that would still be understandable to a point in an office environment. This type of name dropper is a far deadlier species…they are the kinds of person you will tell you all about Roger’s argument he had with the checkout employee at the local supermarket this weekend. Or about Betty’s decision to put her mom in a home during the Easter holidays. Who are Roger and Betty you may ask? Exactly. Name Droppers are presumptuous enough to tell us stories involving their friends who you don’t know from a bar of soap as if they were the cast of a well known tv sitcom, who we all should know.

13. The “Grey’s Anatomy” Chick

“OMG! Did you catch Grey’s last night! McDreamy was such a b@stard!”… A variation of this evening salvo is becoming a common problem in the work place these days. Before Peg from accounting has even put her handbag down in the morning, she is still fuming from last night’s drama, which no real drama can ever compare to. The Grey’s Anatomy Chick, may also be known as The Survivor Chick, and now also as The MasterChef Chick.

12. The Not As Funny As He Thinks He Is Guy

For every likeable prankster in the office, there is always his evil office twin, the douche bag comedian. His jokes are normally predetermined well in advance in case the moment ever arrives where he can use his “witty one liner” or bad pun. However, there is NEVER a right moment. In desperation, this comedian can often resort to a funny voices, and fart jokes to get a laugh out of people. His bag of material is paper thin, so expect him to recycle many of his jokes. WARNING: DO NOT ENCOURAGE HIM with sympathy laughter.

11. The Pervert

There is sexual innuendo in everything for this guy. You could be making copies of the monthly financial report, and The Pervert would be like “So…you like …multiplying…don’t you?” The Pervert is also unable to stay focused on work for long periods of time, so if you need something done, get it done quick, before you suddenly have to “check the ass out on that one…If I just had 5 minutes alone with her!” And yes, The Pervert is often immune to any sort of office discipline (you like to be disciplined…don’t you), however, this should not stop you from lodging a complaint…the only draw back is that he will think you are playing hard to get. The Female version does exist, however they are rare, and often disguised as plus sized women.

10. The Mail Forwarder

Motivationals, K-Mart shoppers, Daily Horoscopes and the old favourite – “send this back to me…and 5 friends, and see your luck change” forwards are a clear indication you are on a mailing list you will never get off for the rest of your time at that particular job. The Mail Forwarder is smart, and strikes early, normally within you first week in your job. It will be too awkward to ask them not to include you and 2 years later, you will have no hope left. A typical South African forwarded will also include secret crime syndicate warnings that the police aren’t even aware of, Road Block warnings, and potential mass strike emails that are “inside information”.

9. Miss TMI

“You know, since I had my hysterectomy, my bladder seems to get infected at the drop of a hat.”. That’s right, Miss TMI (Too Much Information) has no boundaries. Her medical conditions are everyone’s business, and her desk drawers normally contain more prescription drugs than your local pharmacy. Her sex life will also be open for discussion whether you like it or not. As it will be discussed in great detail, never, ever, under any circumstances ask Miss TMI how she is doing…because she will tell you.

8. The Car Guy

Yes, The Fast & The Furious was an pretty awesome movie, but The Car Guy will also try and convince you that 2 Fast 2 Furious was just as epic. He spends his life upgrading and modifying his car, and never actually finishes it, but thankfully he keeps you updated throughout the entire process. The Car Guy, often has a flawless knowledge of sound systems, and knows a guy who knows a guy who can get you a good deal. The CG can often be found at illegal races, but would never actually compete in them, despite what he may tell you about blowing a gasket during his practice run the weekend before. The Car Guy, is also fond of using the F-Bomb in every sentence, especially when talking about police and authority figures.

7. The Story Repeater (also known as The Joke Stealer)

Ever had a colleague tell you an interesting story? And then a few days later tell you a story that sounds familiar? And then 2 weeks later tell you the same effing story for the 8th time! These people are sick and need our help. If they begin to tell you a repeat story, stop them immediately, you sanity may depend on it! These are the same people that repeat a joke or wise crack seconds after you say it as if it were their own!!

6. The Religious Nut

Jesus saves!…but Messi scores on the rebound. Seemingly, those darn Christians never find that funny. Every work place has at least one openly religious person you tells you that everything is the Lord’s will. If there is a tragedy, it’s God’s Will. If you are going through troubles, they will pray for you. If the vending machine takes your money…someone needed it more that you did. It is of course naturally assumed that you too are religious and believe in the same thing they do, so expect daily prayers and blessings, straight to you inbox.

5. The Know It All

The colleague who always feels the need to be involved in all conversations no matter the topic, and don’t let the fact that they know nothing about said topic stop them. They will give you incorrect movie titles, unfounded opinions on sports teams and their performances, or they will simply steal an opinion from someone they heard on the radio, or read on the internet, if it happens to be a topical issue that everyone is talking about, in an attempt to be relevant. The Know-It-All will also blatantly argue with incorrect facts even if you are an expert in a certain field.

4. The Personal Caller

There are two kinds of Personal Callers. The loud and proud version who openly spends her days on personal calls, letting the entire office know about her breakup, faulty purchases and doctors appointments. This kind of PC is not self aware and maybe need to be bought into the loop that she spends 4 hours a day on the phone. The second kind of PC is, the whisperer. They will only ever be seen listening to phone calls, with the receiver affixed to their ear. These are hard to report unless you are monitoring them with advanced military equipment…or have access to their phone bills. In rare cases you can come across a hybrid of these two types…a Super Caller if you will.

3. The “Have You Seen” Picture Lady

Not to be confused with The Name Dropper, this is the lady in the office that will show you every baby picture, wedding album and “wahoo”party picture relating to her, her family, her friends and anyone else who might of captured her awesomeness in a photo. She often doesn’t care about your opinion , just as long as you agree with her that it’s the most beautiful wedding ever, the cutest baby ever and the most awesome part ever….till the next one at least.

2. The “How Did They Get That Job?” Colleague

Their only job skill is endurance. How else would you explain how that moron got the position of Team Leader, Supervisor or Manager? They have zero problem solving skills, no backbone, and speak only in clichés. However, these are the same people that often own the nicest cars, and scarily, often have wives and kids.

1. The Cat Lady

Oh you know the type! Cat lady is the most famous of all the stereotypes, and she deserves no mercy. She can sometimes be a combination of the mail forwarder, sending you daily pics of cats in HIGHlarious scenarious….such as falling asleep on the keyboard kitty, surprised face kitty, and grumpy “this explains how I feel about work” kitty. If you happen to miss these emails, don’t worry, Cat Lady has all of them printed out and stuck around her cubicle for quick reference. She often also has a kitty as her Facebook profile pic.

So that’s my list…recognize yourself? If so, then take the shame!
I know for a fact there are tons of other clichés out there, so feel free to comment below and add your choices…

The Zen of Burg: 10 Steps to a Happier Me (Part 1)

April 19, 2012


The path to happiness is different for everyone. There is no hard and fast rule on how to get there, and of course, one person’s idea of happiness may leave another scratching their head. So each to their own I guess.
Now that all the clichés are out the way, I can get down to this blog’s real purpose.

It’s been a tough few months obviously, those who follow me have seen the drama first hand, as I’ve never held back sharing anything I’ve been through. Lately however, I’ve been feeling a permanent state of contentment, and seemingly happiness. It’s not happiness by definition though, there is still a lot of issues and drama I deal with on a daily basis, a lot of which would make most people give up on life, but for the first time I have found some balance in my life, and for a Libra, balance is VERY important.

As I sat back and thought about what exactly brought about this change in me during a very significant time in my life, I was (much to my surprise!) able to identify 10 specific reasons why I have this sense of calm over me lately.

1. Big Dreams, Smaller Steps

You all know about my obsessions. The New York deal, the being a writer deal etc etc, and I know most people are sick to death of me constantly talking about it. Well, have a think about it, and you’ll actually realize I’ve been very quiet about it for the last few months. Not because I’ve given up on it, but I’ve realized that every time I get close to it, someone moves the proverbial goal posts further away. My solution to this is to make smaller goals, but more of them.

To achieve my dreams, I need to slice up life into just a few more pieces, this helps to avoid such big disappointments. There will always be an end goal, but for now, I’m content to chase smaller dreams in the hope that they will all add up in the end.

2. New Job

Another thing that was well documented was my unhappiness in my old job, and the people I with whom worked. The simple solution was to walk away from everything I knew for the last 5 years and start again. A silly, not very well thought out decision, but one that had to be made. And now 8 months later I can honestly say I made the right decision.

I have a great job, in a great location, and work with some great people. People I get along with, can joke with, and more importantly, people who have given me a fair, clean slate. Instead of judging me on things I have gone through. It’s a wonderfully liberating feeling.

3. Traffic vs Train

One of the worst things about living in South Africa is the traffic. Well, not so much the traffic, but the idiots on the road who get away with the most shocking disregard to road rules you will ever see. On a daily basis this would anger me, fuelling so much rage inside that I would be tense and irritable all day long. It was bad… very bad. I would chase down taxis who cut me off, forced me off the road, drove in emergency lanes… it was making me a very angry and hateful person. Not in a racist way, as some people liked to blame it on black drivers in this country. I don’t care if you’re black, white, yellow or green. An idiot is an idiot. However I just didn’t like the person it forced me to be. Also, not having my own car was a downer.

Thankfully with the new job, and the recent implementation of the Gautrain (a public train system for my international readers), I was able to change my way of travelling, and I can honestly say, this was the best decision I’ve ever made. It’s changed my view on life in a big way. I feel more carefree, more relaxed and most importantly, it now gives me time to appreciate people more. I’m a big people watcher. I love seeing how people react to situations and such. It also fools me into thinking I’m living a New York or London lifestyle, which keeps me content for the time being.

4.More Time for Friends, new and old; Less time for People who Make Me Feel Bad.

This was a very important thing for me, and hopefully something a few of you have picked up on too. I’ve made a genuine effort to speak to my friends more, and in fact try and see them more. In the last 2 months, I have seen more old friends than I have in the last 5 years. I say yes a lot more when people ask me out, or ask if they can visit, and in fact I encourage it.

I still have promises to a lot of people I very much intend to keep. I still have a few issues with transport and such, but they will come right soon enough. I’ve also been open to making new friends, something I had forced myself to become too cautious with over the last few years. Thankfully, I have made friends with some wonderful new people which has made my circle that little bit bigger. As for those who have added no value to my life, I have taken the Scorched Earth approach to them and snuffed them out my life completely without compromise. It’s best for both parties. No longer do I beg people to be my friend, because the truth is they probably never will be, if I have to do that. I have learned appreciation for my friends old and new.

5. More Accepting of Help

Ok, this has clearly been the toughest one. Through all my struggle I have always tried to handle things alone…often with disastrous consequences. I always felt so guilty about accepting help from friends, as if I had failed or let everyone down (which in some cases I have), but now if someone offers to help, and I need it, I take it with a thankful heart, and a promise not to abuse that trust. I’ve learned my lessons the hard way in taking people up on their offers, but now I understand what goes into gestures like that. I am so thankful to #TeamBurg and I couldn’t even begin to thank everyone by name for fear of leaving someone out. I would not be here today if it wasn’t for you guys, and I always appreciate the kind words you have for me, and the encouragement you send my way, even if at times I come across as a cranky old b@st@rd.

Stay tuned for the part 2 of this blog later tonight…

33 Things I Regret…

January 9, 2012

There’s a saying that goes something along the lines of “Don’t regret the things you have done, but rather the things you haven’t done”…which while stupid, is somewhat meant to say that one has the chance to do something they haven’t done if they have the courage…but as for the things you have done…well, I guess they will stick with you the rest of your life.

I often say that if I had the chance to live my life again I wouldn’t do anything different…that’s true to a point, because it has in truth made me who I am today…plus given me a boat load of content for these blogs.

However, there are many moments I would choose to relive. Certain decisions I’d make differently. Perhaps even people I would chose not to let into my life…

So with that, I’d like to present to you 33 such moments in my life…and of course, these are as brutally honest as you’d expect.

They are in no particular order, but rather presented as they come to mind.

1. I should never have cancelled my trip to NYC in 2010 for the reasons I did.

2. I should never have left my job at Heat/FHM magazine.

3. I should never have sold my World Cup final tickets.

4. I would never have convinced my Grade 12 science teacher that she lost my project when in fact I never handed it in.

5. I should of tried harder to keep my friend Ray’s friendship even though she chose to stop being friends. I miss her tremendously.

6. I would of spoken to my friend Paula the day I saw her in the post office many many years ago, instead of thinking she probably didn’t wanna speak to me.

7. I would never bought an expensive birthday gift for a girl named Vicki.

8. I should never have believed people when they said they had big plans for me, and followed my own instinct instead.

9. I would never have made that 8k bet on Leeds United because I had nothing else to do with that money.

10. I would never have sold my Evil Dead 1&2 replica Book of the Dead dvd box sets.

11. I should of made it to Rory & Rox’s wedding despite my own family drama.

12. I should of gotten my health sorted out before my Medical Aid was cancelled.

13. I should of fought back against those two guys who hijacked me.

14. I should never have wished my brother lost a race…I never had to chance to say sorry.

15. I would have kissed Katherine that day behind the school building.

16. I would never have pursued a girl named Lori.

17. I would never have gone to THAT Christmas party.

18. I should have stuck it out and done that school play with Damien. I had zero self confidence and felt I let him down.

19. I should not have let that damn tattoo artist tattoo the Roman numeral “V” on my leg while he was sorting out his divorce over the phone.

20. I would have apologized to my friend Charis when I accidentally hit her in the face with my school bag instead of acting like “it wasn’t that bad, get over it”.

21. I wish I didn’t cry like a baby the night I was announce as Head Boy.

22. I would of never organized World Cup final tickets for the girl who used my trust as a stepping stone.

23. I should not have used my data bundle in December to download “albino porn”.

24. I should of made the effort to go to one of Simone’s reviews.

25. I should of asked Jamie Lee Curtis for a photo that day in New York.

26. I should never have shop lifted that marble from Clicks in 1989.

27. I should never have left my friend Len stranded while I sorted out my own drama.

28. I would have admitted I broke the bathroom tap at a family member’s house.

29. I should of joined a tennis club when I was younger.

30. I would never have let former colleagues get away with the way they spoke and/or treated me.

31. I should never have cut up my old wrestling magazine to get pictures for my scrapbook

32. I would never have ignored my cousin Michael while I tried to sort out my own problems, my word to him should of come first.

33. I should never have had that ham & jalapeno sandwich before I wrote this blog.

Well, that’s it, a regret for every year I’ve been alive…that’s some heavy baggage right there!

Goodbye 2011…I Hardly Knew Ya!

December 26, 2011

The old saying goes, “What a difference a day makes…” but I’m pretty certain you can just as easily substitute it with a year.

That’s pretty much how I look back on 2011.12.26

Last year this time things looked so bright…After the most eventful year of my life, I was celebrating what I considered to hopefully be my last Christmas in this country, because my future looked so bright.

My employer at the time had turned down my voluntary retrenchment with the promise that they had big plans for me for the upcoming year, which included time overseas.

I was pretty well set financially, and I was at peace with everything and ready to pursue my new life and ambition.
As the year proceeded, those false promises became frustratingly clear, and for the next 8 months I was toyed around with unfairly, to the point where I realized there was no future where I was.

The year itself had been tough, with financial problems and being a victim of crime hitting me unexpectedly again, as usual, and the funds quickly started deteriorating. This wouldn’t have been a problem if said employer had actually come through on their promises about a change in my pay scale.

Of course, my plans for New York took several knocks, to the point of where I was getting so angry that everyone else was “stealing my idea” and making their way over there. Every time someone posted news or photos, it hurt me more and more. That’s how much I love that place.

Things went south very quickly. And as previously blogged, I decided to walk out on everything I had been doing for the last 5 years, because I had wasted the last year of my life.

The calendar year itself provided VERY few highlights, and of course, the last 4 months I have spent at home licking my wounds.

It pretty easy to pick out the two highlights of my year.

The first is very easy to pick out, as it’s something I’ve been wanting to do for the last few years, and finally realized it since I had all this time to myself. In fact, I’m using it right now. I created myself, a man cave…or as I like to call it, the Burg Cave. It was fully completed this week, and I will post some pictures if I ever get a decent camera. It provides me with my own space to find inspiration again. It allows me to step away from my problems and sadness and find joy in the things that make me happy.

The crazy thing is, I haven’t had much human contact this year either, which is why the second highlight of my year is so important.

I finally saw an old friend of mine after 20years. We had a good dinner and watched a movie. One of the most simple things two people can do together, and it meant so much to me, because I don’t have THAT person in my life that I can do that with. She has always been one of my favourite people, and great company, so I’m glad I finally got the chance to see her again after all these years. The timing probably wasn’t great because it was a month before my pending unemployment, and of course the lack of income (and automobile), is a bit of snag, but I would like to take the time to thank Kim for being so patient and understanding in our new found old friendship. I can’t wait to see you again.

So that’s it. Two single highlights in a year that will be considered an utter disappointment, and a wasted year overall, some by my doing, but a most through the selfish actions of others.

I won’t even delve into the lowlights of my year, because that’s a story for another time.

It’s hardly surprising of course, 11 is my unlucky number, and for the last few years, I believed my untimely demise would arrive on 11/11/11.

It didn’t…and now I hope to make 2012 something special, and its starts with finding a new job, finding the confidence in myself and my talent again, putting in an effort with my friends, even if it means doing something I’m not used to doing. And hey, maybe I’ll even get some nookie next year.

The nookie, the what, the nookie, the what, it’s all about the nookie!

So good riddance 2011.

What I Did On My Summer Vacation…(Or WHERE THE EFF HAVE I BEEN??)

December 10, 2011

Now it’s been a while since I’ve done this, so please bear with me…

I’m sitting here covered in paint, and not the chocolate body paint I’ve often thought about either. Instead I’m covered in paint from painting my spare room as I continue to convert it into a proper man cave.
That’s part of what I’ve been doing the last three months.

That’s right, while everyone has been speculating about my suicidal tendancies, depressions and immigrating overseas, I’ve pretty much been taking it easy.

I removed myself from social networks, setup a new phone number, and paid off all my debts. It was a great cleansing feeling.

I would still be off the radar if it wasn’t for an overwhelming number of people trying to get hold of me to see if I was ok. Why wouldn’t I be? I stated on numerous times that I was disappearing and going off the social networks. That was fair enough wasn’t it? People for the most part resepected that and gave me the space I needed, and that I appreciate.
Some went overboard and tried to get hold of my home address and contacted my former employer to find out what was going on and if I was ok. Understandable to the point of intrusion.

Ah. My former employer.

I feel I should mention a bit about the circumstances behind me leaving.

As I sit here with no income and no car, I think to myself, did I do the wrong thing by leaving the job I had for the last 5 plus years?

It takes all of half a second to come up with a resounding NO!

One should always judge the impact you left at a company based on the manner of your exit.
When I left, I didn’t receive so much as a goodbye/good luck card from my colleagues. I has a poor turnout at my farewell snacks, and most of the senior managers didn’t even bother to come say goodbye (even an email of the day would of sufficed), but alas, none of that. My time there ended rather abruptly.

This pretty much summed up has I was viewed by the company I gave everything for over the last few years. I was simply never taken seriously.

This hurt tremedously, as one year before, my praises were being sung, I was promised the respect i deserved (ie. money), overseas opportunities – a major sore point as we all know this was my goal, heck I had managers coming up to me in the corridor saying “So I believe we sending you overseas for a bit”…then suddenly, silence. The myriad of false promises became all to clear. I had to beg for communication, the simply decencies of responses and explanations were just too much for those who were more about their own egos and accendency to follow through on their word.

After two years of fighting the good fight, I called it day. It was mutual for the most part, but the irony is, if I stuck around a month longer, I probaly would of been retrenched and given a package anyways. The joke was on me I guess, they got rid of me…cheap.

I knew about the retrenchments coming up, but just knew I couldnt force myself to pretend to smile and do the bidding of others for another month.

So I walked. I walked into the unknown. I waited months to wrap up “paperwork”, which was not unexpected, because that’s how they’ve always been.

Over the last 3 months, I’ve found the space to breathe. To remember what inspires me. What makes me happy.
During that time another birthday came and went. I don’t celebrate my birthday, and simply ignored the day, and all the messages I got. People got upset. Deal with it. I don’t celebrate my birthday.

I’ve started looking for work again, I’m sure I’ll find something. The funniest thing is when I go for interviews and they ask me how much I was earning before, the interviewer is always disgusted when I tell them how much I was getting for my role. That makes me smile in sad sorta way.

Writing and film will always be my first love, but the truth of the matter is, I’m still stuck in a country where that’s harder than almost anything to make a living at.

I’m open to anything right now, as long as the money is good (or rather respectable), I miss human contact more than I thought I would, I still desire some sort of affection, but I’ve learned to live without it.

My New York goal is no closer, but the desire hasn’t faded one bit. It’s THE goal.

I know I’ve upset people by ignoring them, but if they paid attention and respected my choice, there should be zero reason to be upset with me. That’s the truth. Deal with it how you will.

I’ve been watching from afar, how the girl I once loved got engaged and knocked up a second time, how friends completed their studies, got boyfriends, got married, got divorced or just got got. I just didn’t comment like I used to do.

Am I back to writing? In a way yes, but as long as I feel the need to say something.

I offer no apologies. I expect no forgiveness.
We live our lives the only way we know how, we bravely make the foolish decisions, and we judge others for not being the right kind of person we expect them to be.

Now, does anyone know how to get paint out hair?

The Truth Shall Set You Free

July 26, 2011

A few weeks ago I posted a picture of myself with my idol, Bret The Hitman Hart -one of the happiest moments of my life. However one person commented saying “you could’ve looked slightly more excited.” I was actually offended by the comment. I don’t really smile anymore, and I by no means have a big toothy Cheshire cat smile, however this was the happiest I’ve been in years. I don’t smile anymore. You won’t really find pictures of smiling.

I’ve mulled over that comment since it was said, and with the events of the last few weeks, the one question that I keep asking myself is, what makes me happy?

I’m not happy, I haven’t been for the longest time. I have fleeting moments where thing are tolerable. But nothing more than that.

My life has been a constant struggle and the truth of the matter is the sadness has engulfed me.

It’s very difficult to explain, and when I do try, I get copious amounts of advice about how things can’t be that bad, or how things will turn around, or that there’s something out there waiting for me. All words which people feel they should say to help “keep my chin up”.

Honesty has always been a very important part of my blog (and my life), and right now I’d life to address three aspects of my life namely Life, Love & Career.

Life

I’m tired…Of everything. I can’t do it anymore. Not the way I’m living it anyway. I get so many people making suggestions as to what to change in my life, but they don’t know the truth, and they don’t know the pressure I deal with while constantly having to keep my depression in check.

I can’t deal with the repetition. From coming home and having to hear the same stories about how the dog pee’d on the potplants or what the neighbours did, to hearing the same jokes from the same people.

I can’t deal with this country, the government, the strikes, the shortages, the service, the delivery, the lack of educated people.

I can’t travel on the roads anymore. I can’t deal with the complete arrogance and apathy towards the rules of the road. It’s bad. Real bad. It’s the wild wild west out there.

There are so many people that tell me that I must be thankful for what I’ve got, but the truth of the matter is I’m not. Their idea of happiness is a 9-5 job with an income, a house with 4 walls and a family. That’s not my idea of happiness. I believe there is more out there for me. Please don’t get me wrong, if this is what makes you happy, then good for you, you’ve found your element of happiness, but please don’t try and convince me your way is my way.

I can’t fake a smile, and laugh anymore. People have started to notice too. I fear I’m becoming bitter towards the world.

Love

I am so lonely. Unbelievably so. Being a 33yr old guy without a partner, lover, girlfriend is hard. (That’s what she said.). I’m so tired of people saying that “when the time is right”, “she’s out there”, “it’s better to be single” you know, all the clichéd comments. Most times they come from people who are trying to tell you they’re not interested in you so don’t even try, or they are somebody who is constantly moving from “The one” to “the next one”.

The truth is, there’s a very good chance I will be alone forever. It happens to people. You’re only trying to convince yourself when you keep telling me I’ll find someone. Stop.

There are people I’m interested in. They know it (some are probably trying their best to avoid it too). But I come with so much baggage that it’s over before it can go anywhere.

I’m not saying I’m looking for my soul mate, not by a long shot. I just wish I had someone to share my dreams and desires with. Someone I can spend time with, someone who makes me feel like a human being physically. Yes, I said it, I would like to knock boots with someone. I need to feel something in my life. And feeling wanted and desired is a massive hole (that’s what she said) in my life.

I’m so tired of serving my time in this world alone. There are so few people who truly understand how lonely and alone I am. I wish someone would show interest in me, realistically. I can’t be anything other than what I am.

It’s just that i think fighting this battle and chasing the dream would be that much easier and more believable with someone by my side.

Career

I’ve been working non stop since the month left High School in 1996. My movement from one vocation to the next has been well documented. I’d never spent more than a year and a half at a particular job, and constantly found myself wanting to move on to the next challenge. It’s those facts that make my 5 year term at my current job such an anomaly. I love what I do, always have, but the time has come to move on. I won’t go into detail for obvious reasons.

I’ve been dealt a hand that has forced me to play the role of husband, home owner, and provider. This saddens me every day that my life is slipping away without ever having the opportunity to make selfish decisions.

Being the sole bread winner taking care of a parent, a house, replace things that break, need to be fixed and debts that aren’t mine is a task I’ve been doing for the longest time. I just can’t do it anymore. When I tell people how much I earn, their first words are “how do you survive??”

Surviving is easy. I’ve done it my whole life. But I need to live.

I always felt my job would be my key to getting out. Out of this life, this country, this personal hell that saddens me a little more every day. I’ve given everything I have to it. The truth is, its not going to give back.

I get it. I’m just a spoke in the wheel. I will never be the wheel itself.

Sometimes I feel live I’ve given up on what make’s me ME. I’m a creative soul who needs to be inspired, and for a while now I feel like I’ve locked that part of me away.

These are the realities of my life. I know a lot of what I said above will anger people. There will be those who once again dispense advice and attempt to get me to stop feeling sorry for myself. They will say they understand. They will mean it.

All I know is I’m the loneliest and saddest I’ve ever been in my life. I’m making hard decisions every day of my life.

We all know what my dream is, but I fear I won’t survive long enough. So until then…the idea of finding a cabin in the woods to be alone in, you know to grow my beard and write my books, is a pretty decent second choice.

When Did The World Become So Mean?

June 29, 2011

Anyone who’s never met me before would be mistaken for thinking I’m cold and uncaring towards the world.

It’s easy to understand why too. I rant and I rave on this blog and my social networks. I speak the truth (as I see it), and tend to not let anything that irritates me slide.

However, that is pretty much as far from the truth as you can get. I happen to care a great deal, about everything.

Therein lay the problem. I continued to put my faith into the world and the people in it and time and time again it let’s me down which makes me sadder and sadder.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a whiner. I just don’t have a problem vocalizing my hurt and frustrations…which has gotten me into more trouble than I care to admit.

My question though, is when did the world become so mean?

Many weeks ago we had everyone stressing/mocking the event known as The Rapture. Whilst everyone had their own take on it, at the time I thought to myself – self…even though it’s complete and utter nonsense, I’d have actually be ok with the world ending (being cleansed).

I’m one of those guys who walk around looking at the world without blinkers on, which has major pitfalls of noticing the smallest of details.

Every day is filled with its share of disappointments sure, but was it always THIS bad? Perhaps. However, in my eyes I’ve noticed it getting worse and worse.

It’s the little things that hurt me the most.

People who making fleeting promises.
People who insult or bully others on a daily basis.
People who find it easier to swear or degrade others.
People who don’t admit their mistakes or take accountability for their actions.
People who lie, cheat, steal and laugh it off as a way of life.
People who immediately begin work on jokes and puns when someone dies.

I can tell when people are lying to me, and it hurts that they believe so much in their lies that they think they are convincing you.

There is so little honour left in the world. People’s word means nothing anymore. Yes, I was born in the wrong era, I’m well aware of that.

If you just sit back and watch the world around you, take note of how many acts of meanness you see. You’d be shocked. I know I am.

Anyways…this is just a random thought I’m having at the moment, but then again I think I might have tick bite fever again…I’ll come back to this blog when i have more coherent thoughts on the subject.