Posts Tagged ‘random’

BurgStrong: a campaign of love

June 7, 2014

Hi guys,

So it’s been a while since I’ve posted here, but with good reason.
The last 6-8 months have been the most insane time of my life.

I couldn’t possible explain what I’ve been through, but if you’ve been following details on my official writers page over on Facebook, you may have an idea.

The reason I’m back though, is because I need your help to tell the next chapter in my life, and help me find a way to the love of my life.

I’m working on getting to her permanently, but for now, I just need the chance to spend some time with her.

I’d like to share my story with you though, and ask if you believe in love to try make a small contribution to my below campaign. If not, please at least try spread the news to your friends, colleagues and fellow bloggers..

The story will break your heart, but also make you believe in love again, and if that’s not with sharing, then what is right?

Thanks everyone

Burg

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Meeting Bret “The Hitman” Hart – Part 2: Fate Steps In!

July 12, 2011

During Bret’s 13 years exodus from the WWE, there were many teases about his return in some capacity, but it never happened.

On Pay-Per-View nights, my friend Gordy and I had many conversations about THIS being the perfect angle for The Hitman to return…but he never did…time and time again we were left disappointed.

Then news started to filter about Hart dealing with the WWE again. Over the years DVDs and merchandise were released with Bret’s involvement…but still no on screen appearance.

In 2006, Bret got the much deserved call into the Hall of Fame…it was an epic night for the fans to see Bret get inducted, but Bret left straight afterwards and never made the traditional on stage performance at the following night’s WrestleMania.

Bret again disappeared.

Then…out of nowhere, an angle started up on RAW in December 2009…

WWE were running with a series of “Guest hosts” for RAW…from celebrities to former WWE stars. Vince McMahon teased that Bret Hart would be the one guy who would never guest host.

In a promo with Vince McMahon, Shawn Michaels spoke the prophetic words of – “If you bring Bret Hart back, – good things will happen.”

Then January 4th 2010, Bret The Hitman Hart returned to the WWE. When his signature music hit…and the Hitman walked out after 13 years…I was in tears.

Bret buried the hatchet with longtime enemy Shawn Michaels…I was in tears.

Bret got involved in several storylines leading up to a matchup at Wrestlemania XXVI where Bret was given retribution against Vince McMahon. A good feeling for life long fans. With Hart family members at ringside (and the member of those we lost)…I was in tears.

The WWE played out further storylines with Bret as GM of RAW and eventually being taken out by the Rising youngsters including South Africa’s own Justin Gabriel – NEXUS. Bret was written off tv.

Nobody knew if that was it for Bret’s triumphant return, for months it seemed like it could be.

Then Bret was brought back for Summerslam in 2010, but used minimally. There was a Hitman tribute show on RAW a few weeks later, but by the end of 2010, the Hitman stepped away with his short term contract seemingly done.

Internet reports suggested Bret was done with the WWE.

Earlier this year, I found out the WWE would be returning to South Africa for a series of shows…of course this would involve the current roster of Superstars.

It was officially announced.

Meanwhile, in May 2011, during a PPV match between Hall of Famer, and long time friend/rival Jerry The King Lawler and Michael Cole, the Hitman stunningly made another return to WWE TV, and also appeared the next night on RAW.

I heard mumblings that Bret would be joining the Smackdown tour to South Africa in July! Surely it was just another in the long list of rumours that I’d heard about Hitman in my life.

I went straight to the source and tweeted @BretHart asking if this was true…and he replied IT WAS!

After last seeing the Hitman 15 years ago, I was going to get another chance to see my idol live…Meeting Bret was always a bucket list item for me, and suddenly there was a tiny window of opportunity to achieve this.

My personal struggle with the world over the last decade has been well documented, but the one thing that always kept me going was that I was a dreamer. I believed in the impossible, in beating the odds. However being a 33 year old single guy who still has dreams, and heroes is a weird juxtaposition in this day and age.

For the last few months in particular I had lost faith in the world. I had convinced myself that nothing good exists anymore, and that dreaming only leads to disappointment.

A few months ago, I posted a question on Facebook asking which three people you would love to invite to dinner. Some people went with the usual dead celebs, rocks stars, Nelson Mandela etc. My answer was – Leona Lewis, Johnny Depp and Bret The Hitman Hart.

I was determined to do what it takes to meet The Hitman this time around. Heck, I NEEDED this!

I organized tickets through a good soul, and knew I would see the Hitman in some capacity at the show at least, but I needed that handshake with the Hitman, I needed one conversation with him.

Being in the industry I’m in any knowing the people I know, I had a lot of contacts. Many of them casually promised they’d organize me a meet and great, or back stage passes, etc etc. All those sort of things people randomly say. As the Johannesburg dates grew closer and the Superstars arrived, those promises amounted to nothing.

I knew time was running short and if this was going to happen I needed a) a bit of luck and b) to do it myself.

The promoters had not organized any signings, so that was out.
Then it dawned on me to simply check the wwe.com website for “superstar appearances”…I did and slowly read

Cape Town – Justin Gabriel and Sin Cara signing at a toy store.
Cool…but damn!
Durban – The Big Show signing at a toy store.
Cool….but damn!
Johannesburg……Bret The Hitman Hart signing at a toy store.
Cool…but damn!

…..wait a second…
BRET THE HITMAN HART WOULD BE SIGNING IN JOHANNESBURG!!!!!!!

Out of all the superstars that could possibly appear at the Johannesburg signing it was the one person I wanted…the Gods of Fate were either smiling upon me…or teasing the hell outta me.

This if course was no guarantee I would even get close to him , I had been to many wrestler signings in the past, and they were mostly disasters.

Marc Mero & Sable – 4 hours in the baking hot sun…no photographs allowed.
Mark Henry – no photos allowed
Rikishi – just say hi and walk on.
JBL and Ivory – this was actually decent, I spoke to JBL for a bit.
Rey Mysterio and Kidman – just walk past and bump knuckles. No autographs or pictures.

I found out about the signing on Friday morning, and it was on Saturday. For the next 24 hours I felt sick to my stomach about everything that could go wrong. I tried to find someone to come with me, but nobody was interested. Story of my life right there.

On Friday night I looked at all my Hitman merchandise and wondered what should I attempt to get signed? Then as I looked at his autobiography it make perfect sense to that that. It was his story, which formed part of my story.

On Saturday I woke up later than I would of liked, and raced through to the shopping centre he was scheduled to appear at. It was a far drive, far enough to allow my mind to get the better of me. Should I turn around and not risk this turning into a bad experience? I don’t think I could handle that. Is the dream better than the reality?

I arrived, got parking, headed to the men’s room to dispose of my energy drink. And made my way to find the “spot”.

With relative ease I found the queue and it looked fairly short…good start!

Then however I noticed everyone in the queue had a “wwe ticket”. I asked what these were for and got told you have to have one to meet The Hitman. However to get a ticket you had to spend R200 at the store sponsoring the signing!

This was not advertised anywhere, and I happen to be someone who NEVER carries money.

I was heartbroken (excuse the pun), and immediately felt defeated. Then…in my George McFly moment, I raised my head up and with great confidence I went to the store and explained some of my story to them. The manager either feeling sympathy or fearing my beard organized me two tickets to go stand in the queue.

As I stood in line I began to wonder what exact I would say to Bret if I did in fact get to speak to him.

Do I tell him about that Battle Royal with Bad News Brown that made me a fan?
Do I quote his line I use almost daily? “Settle Down Anvil, settle down”
Do I tell him how he helped me through tragedy?
Do I ask him how he’s enjoying SA?
Do I just say “sup hitman”?

I thought I’d distract myself by taking some photos….

Which would have been a good idea if my digital camera hadn’t suddenly and inexplicably stopped working!

Panic set in…what was I going to go? The cameras on my phones were fine for close ups, but they would never be good enough for a pic with The Hitman!

Oh great.

They then allowed to queue to move forward right up to the desk where Hitman would be signing. As I looked at the queue I saw a few die-hard fans who were educated about the Hitman, but the crowd was mostly youngsters who were probably born 15 years ago. I knew I was the biggest fan there and smiled to myself thinking this was all just for me and Bret.

I asked the couple in front of me if they could taken a pic of me and Bret if possible and send it to me. They said sure.

Then a dear friend of mine happened to be in the centre and came and joined me. Oh great, nothing like a beautiful woman to see you at your geekiest as you try and justify why you are there. But she was awesome, and even decided to join me to meet him! As we shuffled through the hundred camera phones we tried to find something that would be the best.

The lady on the PA system announced that Bret Hart had arrived, and told us a few rules. No ticket no sign – check
Only one item allowed to be signed – check
You can take photos but can’t go behind the table – awkward but check.

Then, they pumped up some random hard rock music and out came Bret “The Hitman” Hart!!!!

He was wearing the black leather jacket and the sunglasses!!!!!

He got a warm reception. And took his place at the table…

I began to shake from what can only be described as a hybrid of excited and utter fear.

The line moved quickly and before I knew it, it was our turn. I let my friend go first, and took a picture of them with her phone, I felt almost blind though, so I don’t even know how her pic came out!

I saw the couple who was in front of me walk off, so much for them taking a picure and sending it to me!

As I walked up to Bret, 25 years of memories came flashing into my brain, and as I handed over my book in my shaky voice I said to him “Hitman, after 25 years I’ve thought what I would say to you if I ever met you, *he looked up at me*, and all I can think of is….thank you.”

He half smiled and said, “Well thank you for buying my book I appreciate it”

He then asked my name and signed the book to me. I asked for a photo and he extended his hand and shook mine.

At that exact moment my friend got the digital camera working and took the perfect picture of us.

I said thank you and enjoy the rest of the tour.

I didn’t look back, and simply walked off and got onto cloud number 9.

There are so few perfect moments left in life (especially mine). But this was the single greatest day of my life, and it took a series of events to perfectly align for it to happen.

For Bret it was just another of his millions of fans he’s met over the decades, and he won’t think about it for another second.

For me it was everything I needed it to be to believe in dreams again, and remind myself that there is a destiny out there waiting for me.

A History Of Girlfriends – Part 1: The Primary School Years

April 19, 2011

My previous blog was what the kids on the street call an epic failure, which is a damn shame because I felt it was good and original. I guess what it comes down to is that its just not something people care to read.

So I’ve decided to go back to basics. People seem to like hearing about something they can relate to. And what’s easier to relate to, than relationships!

I’d like to share with you my complete history of girlfriends…don’t worry, you’ll be done reading in 5 minutes.

I’ve always (and by always, I mean since this blog idea popped into my head earlier today), compared my resume of girlfriends to the Mel Brooks movie History of the World Part 1.

Its awkwardly funny, filled with innuendos, factually incorrect and had about a 90min running time.

I’ve mentioned before that I have a superb memory, but there may be certain inaccuracies here and there, which are simply a result of “the facts as I remember them”.

Now enough waffling, let’s get to the good stuff!

In primary school I was quite the stud, well as much of a stud as a 6-11yr old could be.

I was always getting Valentines cards, being flirted with at Saturday night birthday parties, and basically liked by the opposite sex. Probably for my maturity…and my skills at king stingers.

My first girlfriend came into my life in Grade 1. Her name was Gillian…yes, I’m going to name em and shame em!

I had many crushes during my early years, not unlike today, girls like Paula, Natalie, Claire, Kim…but Gillian was the girl I was brave enough to let know!

She was cute as a button, and we got on amazingly. Our junior love was the stuff of legends. Even both our parents were fond of the kids significant other.

Our first date was around Valentines Day, and we went to the ice rink with her Parental supervision of course. I’ll never forget when they came to pick me up from my house, she gave me a Snoopy mug with the slogan “you’re always on my mind” on it. (I still have that mug…and use it daily).

We were an item for a long time. And I never really had an interest in pursuing any other girls…and believe me we had some hotties!…again, as hot as 6-11yr olds can be.

However… As people get older they are influenced by many other factors when it comes to love. At that age, seeds can be planted from friends, family, status or moments in life.

Come standard 4, my life was a mess. With the loss of my dad, and a year before I lost my older brother, my priorities in life changed, and Gillian and I grew apart.

During that year, we went in a school tour to Cape Town. I grew really keen on a girl named Robyn. She was an athlete, had an older sister who knew my brother, and we had a mutual liking for one another.

During the tour, we snuck off to a friends hotel room…and kissed alone in the dark for 5 minutes! The irony was, a year or 2 before, it was at Robyn”s birthday party a few years before that Gillian and I had our first French kiss behind the wall of her house…although that evening turned bad for me because everyone threw each other in the pool…and when I got home after the party I got a beating for getting my shoes wet, but I try and remember it for the kiss…

Anyways, back to the hotel room.
The next day, as kids do, they can’t keep a secret, and during one of the bus rides, someone told Gillian about the kiss, and she slapped me there on the bus. I deserved it, and always felt bad about doing that to her…I wonder if she even remembers.

That also pretty much ended things between Robyn and I. From hero to zero I guess.

A year after primary school ended, Robyn and I got into contact and we trying going out on a date. My mom took us to see The Mighty Ducks.

We never really saw each other after that…but we did have a telephone conversation a few years later which featured the memorable line of “hey I see there is a sequel to the Mighty Ducks coming out”…I don’t think I got the hint.

I’ll be back with the High School years a lil’ later…

A Dummy’s Guide To Burg: 100 Facts about Me (2011 edition)

April 1, 2011

There once was this girl I liked. I knew nothing about her really…except that she worked in an arms and ammo shop in the shopping center I first saw her. My attempts at flirting with her were initially sweet and charming, but I think the minute she realized I was serious, quickly changed her mind and said she knew nothing about me, and then suddenly she had a boyfriend.

Neither of which deterred me, and my solution to problem “A” was to write down a list of 100 facts about myself and then present it to her…Seeing as though I’m still single, it obviously didn’t make much of an impact.

I’d actually like to revisit that list now. A lot has changed. Some not so much. But maybe this will become a Dummy’s Guide To Burg.

1) I still live with my mom as I take care of her. People never understand why.
2) My dad died when I was 11.
3) My older brother killed himself a year after that.
4) I never had a childhood and missed out on so much socializing. I feel bitter about that sometimes.
5) I have a very very very high IQ…but for years have had to show patience when dealing with others.
6) I have the patience of a saint.
7) I sometimes pretend like I don’t know something in order for someone else to answer a question.
8 ) I hate warm/hot weather and prefer cold and rain.
9) I still eat with my baby fork.
10) I can’t sleep/nap unless my feet are covered.

11) I am straight edged. Don’t drink, smoke or swear…and never have once in my life.
12) I don’t believe in religion, but don’t believe anyone has the right to say their beliefs are the only correct beliefs. Wish more people would think that way.
13) I am an insomniac.
14) I worked in call centers doing technical support for 8yrs.
15) I am diabetic
16) I have been in 5 movies as an actor. 2 of them feature films. 1 has had a cinematic release.
17) I hosted a tv show once a week for 2yrs.
18) My favourite sport is tennis. I have a good knowledge of records and history.
19) Lord of the Rings is my favourite movies of all time.
20) I have a massive Johnny Cash music collection.

21) I have never been in a real relationship. Except for that one English period in high school.
22) I lost my virginity when I was 29.
23) That was my only time.
24) I am attracted to exotic woman. Namely indian and asian.
25) I don’t believe in marriage, but would reconsider it for the right person.
26) I hate the phone.
27) Even though I don’t drink, I collect shot glasses. I always ask someone to bring me back one if they traveling overseas.
28) I am a die hard WWE fan, and am undoubtedly the most knowledgeable person in South Africa on it.
29) I collect trading cards. And sometimes trade with colleague’s sons.
30) I love reading, and buy books to store in my library till I feel like reading them one day.

31) I almost never return calls.
32) I am a ridiculously good poker player, but I only learned how to play a few years ago.
33) I am a Liverpool supporter.
34) I love musicals, as long as they are movies and tv shows.
35) I’ve never been to the theatre.
36) I have unbelievably quick reflexes.
37) I see “things”…some may call them spirits.
38) I am a trekkie.
39) I am a brilliant ten pin bowler, and could have taken it more seriously.
40) I have 7 tattoos. Each has a very personal meaning.

41) I have a dog. He does not have a name.
42) I collect movie merchandise and action figures (which I never open)
43) My all time favourite band is Aerosmith.
44) I love Bollywood movies.
45) I know I am a phenomenal writer, but lose faith in myself quickly.
46) I believe everyone deserves a second chance. But 3 strikes and you’re out.
47) My favourite actor is Johnny Depp.
48) I’m very athletic, and despite my size and weight surprise people.
49) I used to write my own comic books as a kid.
50) I have a cat. His name is Rang’a because he is a ginger cat.

51) I strangely still trust my primary school friends, even though I haven’t seen some of them in almost 20yrs
52) I’m the best person to have in a crisis situation.
53) I had a cancer scare last year.
54) I don’t have a best friend.
55) I have a hatred for the country I live in. This upsets a lot of people who don’t understand why. They also don’t get it if I explain.
56) I enjoy reading autobiographies.
57) I am on twitter @theburg
58) I’m the guy everyone opens up to about their problems. I take this as a compliment, but at times its too heavy a burden.
59) I don’t own my own car.
60) I am a coffee connoisseur.

61) I’ve developed a fear of crowds.
62) My favourite food is seafood. Throw it into a pasta, and I’m yours.
63) I broken my arm and ankle in my life.
64) I have a passion for old TV shows, especially old cop shows from the 70s and 80s.
65) I loathe practical jokes and prank phone calls.
66) I collect PEZ dispensers.
67) The last time I had any sort of physical “contact” with a girl was almost 4 years ago.
68) I have a weird need to buy plush toys if they ask me to.
69) When I like a girl I don’t see her in terms of her age, race, or religion, this almost always works against me.
70) I like old skool Disney movies.

71) Pam Grier was my first “african crush”.
72) I listen to most all music…yet cannot tolerate dance music.
73) I wish I had someone to talk to about my “day”.
74) I’m not afraid of anything in life anymore….well except for heights.
75) My radio station of choice is Lotus FM.
76) I have a dvd collection of over 3000.
77) The crime I hate the most is theft.
78) I have vertigo.
79) I do my best thinking when I drive.
80) I enjoy having milkshakes with people, but that hardly ever happens.

81) I am fascinated by Egyptology. I’m not sure if that’s an actual term though.
82) My top 5 wrestlers of all time are: Kurt Angle, Bret Hart, Mr Perfect Curt Hennig, Randy “Macho Man” Savage and Hulk Hogan.
83) When I was a kid, I had an alter ego of “Pencil Man”, I made my own costume and had an entire backstory.
84) If I go to the cinema, I always go to the late show so that I’m alone.
85) My all time favourite comedy is the British “The Office”.
86) Big bugs or masses of insects freak me out.
87) I secretly love cooking shows
88) I’m a VERY good dancer, but hardly ever dance.
89) I am observant to the world.
90) I have had a work crush at all my jobs.

91) I am unbelievably lucky in competitions.
92) I am equally unlucky in life.
93) I find something attractive in most all women. With a few exceptions.
94) Wes Anderson is my favourite film maker.
95) Gays guys are often attracted to me. I take it as a compliment.
96) I believe if you like someone, you should tell them.
97) I hate people who comment in the forums of online stories/columns. They are for the most part mean idiots without a backbone.
98) I don’t think ill ever be a parent, but I’m open to the possibility.
99) I am a romantic, and believe in the “epic gesture”…just like hollywood showed me.
100) I will live in New York one day. In fact, I started growing my beard on the day I got hijacked (july 15th 2010) and won’t shave it off till the day I arrive in NYC. Its now 16cm long.

So that’s its…feel like you know me better? Or did you just suffer a case of TMI.

The Burgies: And the Winner is…(Part 3)

March 13, 2011

And we’re back for the final part of this year’s 1st annual Burg’s World Awards where the most prestigious awards of the year continue to shock and surprise us.

However, due to time constraints, last night we handed out several award for technical achievements, please join us in congratulation the following award winners –

I Don’t Have The Guts To Ask You Out On A DATE Date Award – Kayan Amira Leung

If I Was Just A Little Bit Younger Award – Farah Barry

I’d Do Pretty Much Anything For You, Even Though You Don’t Know I Exist Award – Kriya Gangiah

You Might Actually Know More Than Me Award – Brennan Babb

Why’d You Have to Go And Get Married Award – Paula Fehrsen

The Impact Award For Outstanding Contributions – Susanne Weber

Best International Friend Award – Gordon Brown

*ad break*

Ladies and Gentlemen, please welcome our next presenter – Angelina Jolie.

Angelina Jolie – “Hello. There are millions of starving children all around the world, and we are spending time handing out these awards? For every winner tonight, I will adopt and African child…Ok, let’s get this over with. The nominees for the I’m Not So Secretly Attracted To You, And This Freaks You Out Award are”

Ika van der Vyver – There are few people I admire as much as this lady. A true icon in Burg’s World, she continues to set the trend for self empowerment as well as self improvement. How can that not be attractive to a guy? She is pure class.

Loshanee Moodaley – Beauty, ambition, wit and legs that kills. Yup, those boxes are all ticked. Which ironically are the same four boxes that put her WAY outta my league. But a man can dream…and most every night its of her.

Paula Fehrsen – multiple nominee already tonight, I keep thinking to myself….time machine…

Thamashni Naidoo – Gorgeous, pop culture savvy and sexy as hell. Her milkshake truly brings all the boys to the yard…and those boys would all beat the cr@p outta me before they let me close enough to every stand a chance.

Special write in entry Lori Jones – despite history, I will always think she was THE one. End of story.

And, the winner is…Loshanee Moodaley!!!

*ad break*

Please welcome your next presenter…Mel Gibson

Mel Gibson – “This is perhaps the creepiest category known to man….and if anyone knows anything about creepy…it’s me. Hey sugar tits, slow the prompter down so I can keep up. Here are the nominees for the I Know We’ve Never Met, But I Really Like You…A Lot Award

Farah Barry – she is so innocent it blows my mind. In a world where there is so much wrong, she brings a smile to my fave with the way she enjoys the simple things in life. I hope her view on life doesn’t change as she gets older, because she is a breath of fresh air in life.

Romi Moondi – In my dream world…she fits perfectly as the missing piece of my puzzle of perfection. Realistically she is the one person I will never meet in life, which I suppose is for the best as if we did…the world might explode.

Shaheema Barodien – People have told me that the only person I would ever be happy with, is a female version of myself. And hopefully she doesn’t read this and go jump in front of a buss, but she is the closest thing to the female version of myself. I have the utmost respect for her work, and like to poke and prod to test her tolerance, which I think annoys her immensely…but its like when someone pulls your pigtails in nursery school…

Aletia Naidoo – a mystery unto herself. This is what perhaps makes her to so attractive to me. There is so much I will never be able to understand about her, but so much I want to know. I hope I will get the time in this life or the next. Her beauty on the outside is matched only by the beauty of her soul.

Sheetal Magan – I watch her from a distance. Not literally of course…(that’s a different award), but her passion is a flame which will never be extinguished. The relationship she has with the people in her life is pure and honest, as she seems to be.

And the winner is…Shaheema Barodien!!!

*ad break*

Ok folks, here to present the final award of the evening is the man himself…The Burg!

Wow…what an evening it’s been. Thank you to everyone who has endulged me this evening. I love and appreciate having you all in my life no matter how close we are. There are those that don’t even know the impact they have had on me. We may not talk, or hang out, or even see eye to eye. But I am who I am because you are who you are.

Now I’d like to present the final award of the evening. …

The Burg Lifetime Achievement Award

Paul & Angelique Elliott – this two people have seen me at my worst, at my best and at my burgest. They have never judged, always offered a hand and a heart when I never knew how to ask. I am so happy that they seem to be happy in life, and the only reason I don’t know this for sure is because of my own laziness. I will make the effort to be a better friend to both of you.

Simone Ka-Ling Ho – Wow, so much has been said already. I mean every word of it, and now double so. I have turned down many an invite, and you still continue to be such a good friend to me. A lesser person would of walked away a long time ago. Of all the clouds up there in the sky, you are my favourite one.

Natasha & Stephen Prior – From boss, to tennis opponent, to friend. Two of my favourite people in the world. Supportive even at the darkest of times, they always seemed to have faith in me. Through my craziest comments, to my brutal honesty, they never once saw me as anything other than a friend. I cannot wait for you to come home. I need that energy.

And, the winner of the first ever Lifetime Achievement award is….Natasha & Stephen Prior!!!

That’s a wrap folks, congrats to all the winners, and thanks to my celeb friends for helping make this ceremony a success….see you again next year! Or whenever it seems appropriate to do this again.

See you at the Afterparty!

What’s in a name? Well it depends how it’s spelt…

March 9, 2011

It’s safe to say I’m getting progressively crankier in my old age…I don’t deny this. There are a lot of day to day things that irritate me…some more than others, but there is one thing that never fails to get me seething just at the mere sight of it.

My name is Shaun Myburg. (Burg to my friends.)

I’ve always had a big problem with my name being spelt wrong. The most common mistake is Shaun being spelt wrong…or an extra “h” being thrown onto the end of my surname…when people assume I’m Afrikaans.

Sure it happens. It’s no big deal right?

Well, when your entire career (and future career) depends on the cachet of you name…it’s darn important.

Ever since I was a kid, I was lucky enough win competitions on a regular basis, which by proxy, meant my name appeared in magazines or newspapers for the whole country to see. I loved that feeling of seeing my name “in lights”…it always just felt right.

It was a naturally stepping stone for my name being on a byline or in film and TV credits. I was a star in the making…ok…ego aside, who doesn’t get a rush from seeing their name in print? After all, that’s why we all Google ourselves these days.

That being said…every time there was a misprint of my name in the paper, it was equally there for the world to see…

A double edged sword if any.

All through school, when certificates were handed out I loved seeing my name spelt in that almost-old-English-font for achievement in this or that. I cleaned house in primary school with certificates, but as High School came around and my personal life took a tumble, the certificates stopped coming.

In fact, through my 5 years of High School, there was only one certificate I ever got…however it was a big one.

You see, I had the pretty remarkable record of never missing a single day of school. EVER. Despite everything I went through, I always went to school.

So come the end on my 12 year schooling career, I was to be acknowledged for a PERFECT attendance record. Some may be impressed, and others may think it’s the nerdiest thing ever…well newsflash, there were only two of us who got that certificate, and neither of us were anywhere close to nerds.

At the awards evening, when my name was called, it was all slow motion as I walked up on stage to receive this mark of achievement. In my head there was a standing ovation, there were people chanting my name and there was a beautiful girl awaiting to hand me my award. Of course, none of those existed in reality, but there was that piece of paper that made it all worth it.

I collected it, flashed my million dollar smile to the paparazzi and made my way back to my seat.

Then it all came crashing down as I noticed not just my first name, but also my last name were spelt wrong on the certificate.

So my 12 years of schooling is perfectly captured in that incorrectly spelt certificate.

The years that followed had their moments of frustration.

Like this one time when I was working at a computer expo for my late cousin, and the name tag they had printed out for me read

Shawn Mabuna

Every person who came to my stand asked my about my strange surname (especially for a white guy living in South Africa…). Of course I spend the whole time explaining it was a major typo instead of actually getting any business for our company.

As I entered the corporate world, things became even more tense.

From computer login names to my email address, EVERY first day was met with an incorrect spelling of something or the other.

On the first day I starting working at one call centre, they had a digital display board that not just had the stats of how many calls were answered, holding and dropped, but also a welcome message for the new staff…which would have been cool if it didn’t read: “Welcome to new staff members Sahun Myburg”….I was called Sahun for the rest of that day.

When my film, TV and print career eventually took flight, I became even more pedantic about having my name spelt right. This was easier to manage as it’s an expected concern within these fields. And thank you lordy lord, my name is correctly spelt on IMDB!

In my current job, I’ve been here for 5 years, so there’s really no excuse for spelling my name wrong in emails.

It still happens though.
I hate it, and speak up about it, which probably makes people think “geez, relax guy its just a typo”…but after working with someone with 5 years, there’s really no excuse to spelling their name wrong in an email or document…right?

I’m very protective over my name…because one day I do believe it will be a brand. It may just be a pipe dream…but it’s really my most valued asset.

Burgsworld: The Essential Collection – Part 3: Surviving Love & Life

February 28, 2011

Welcome to the third and final partof The Essential Collection. This selection of blogs recollects the blogs that shocked so many people. From skeletons in my closet to details of the tragedies i have faced (and avoiding several of my own from suicide to being hijacked). These all took so much out of me, and opened myself up to a LOT of criticism. However, it also provided a lot of people with solace in their own lives. From dealing with abuse, or feelings of inadequacy, or even surviving a tragedy of their own, there were so many of you who contact me to thank me for being “brave” enough to write the words i did, and for that I will always continue to be honest in my words.

Part 3.1: Surviving Love

My 100th Blog post: XoXoXo – My Feelings on Hugs & Kisses
My 100th blog turned into something a bit heavier than I was planning on. My feelings on getting physical.

“Hey didn’t I see you out with a hot girl last night…?”
Yes you did. I still like her, but we haven’t seen each other since this day

The Dating Dilemma – An Anatomy of My Love Life
An expose into my current love life situation. It’s explosive…if somewhat embarrassing.

Back then we called it Charming. Today they call it Stalking
I’ve always been able to find out everyone about someone I knew nothing about…now it just seems a tad creepy.

I Fell in Like Last Week…
Pretty self explanatory right?

Burg’s Laws of Attraction – A Tale of Sex and Romance
Exactly what kind of girl gets my attention? Who am I most likely to pick out of a crowd? The answers may surprise you.

The Trouble With Love

Yeah, I’ve been in love. A few times in my life. This is one such time, and as usual…I was love’s beeyatch.

The Contenders – Take A little piece of my heart now baby…
I love the feeling of having a crush on someone…sometimes a few people at a time. This was a list of the 15 women I was crushing on a few months ago. As of today only 4 remain of that list (with a few new ones of course) The Columnist, The Newbie, The Girl and The Muse.

I Just Landed in NYC!!! A Look at Love, Sex, and Friendly Relations
Without a male influence in my life, my view on love and sex is somewhat…skewed.

The Guy with The Awesome Personality
OF course guys have body issues. I swim in a t-shirt for a reason. This is the blog guys don’t want you to read.

Dude, babe at 9 o’clock giving you the eye…
My original thoughts on signals girls give off…they clearly haven’t change much over the years.

The Little Green Guy (no not mini Hulk)
I’m a walking contradiction when it comes to love and friendships. This could be due to my bipolar disorder I’m sure….

Part 3.2: Surviving Life

You Wouldn’t Like Me When I’m Angry….

A terrible year in my life started off with a mugging…

Rich Burg, Poor Burg: A story about Money

The Riches to rags, to riches story of ….me.

How to leave a job – The Burg way…(Part 1) How To Leave A Job – The Burg Way (Part 2)
A classic two part blog covering almost 13 years of my life and the jobs I loved and left. A favourite amongst former colleagues.

What Would The Neighbors Think? (Part 1)

A deeply draining blog that reveals only a portion of the things that have happened in the house of Burg. I will come back to part 2 eventually.

High School Confidential: Part 1 – NEVER FAIL!
For the first time I revealed the pain and darkness I had to deal with while trying to survive school. Including the details behind my own brother’s suicide.

High School Confidential: Part 2 – When It Rains, It Pours
Part 2 of the hardest blog I ever had to write. The secrets continue to be revealed.

Hey, remember that time I tried to end it?
Yup. Another suicide story. This time I think we got the answers we wanted.

The One With All The Birthdays (Part 1) The One With All The Birthdays (Part 2)
Finally everyone understands why I hate my own birthday. A selection of the worst birthday’s I’ve had to endure.

A Normal Day in South Africa..
The day I got hijacked and lost the last remaining iota of love and respect I had for this country I’m stuck in. I have not been the same since.

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So that’s it…after 100 blogs, I’ve picked out the best of the best. Did I leave of anything you would of liked to have seen here? My book will expand on so many of these topics, and fill in a lot of blanks i have deliberately left out in some stories. I hope you will continue to support my work, because I really do believe these are the blog that helped me define who I am as a writer, and for the first time…I’m excited and confident that this is what I am meant to do with my life.

What Would The Neighbors Think? (Part 1)

November 23, 2010

I’ve never been one to give a hoot about what people think about me…which I suppose goes a long way in explaining the many experimental hairstyles and beards I’ve had (and continue to have), but the one thing I’ve often wondered about, is what the neighbors must think about us.

There has been so much drama in my house, even more so than Wysteria Lane. In fact, for the last 25 years, I’m pretty sure this house I live in has provided the inspiration behind everything from an E! True Hollywood Story, to an episode of The Last 48 hours on the Crime & Investigation channel to an episode of Takeshi’s Castle.

It’s hard for me to pick out a single good memory here, although I’m sure there is (right?), but I would like to share a few stories with you dramatic events that I’ve been through.

My Dad The Sharpshooter
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The rest of my family always knew about my dads problems, and I guess as a child it was hard not to look up to your dad as your idol. It was this juxtaposition that always left me confused as a kid. I knew my dad could get angry…really angry. Especially when he came home drunk, which he so often did. My mom always did her best to keep my brother and I out his line of fire, often taken the beatings and herself while my brother and I would be hiding under the bed in a locked room holding each other for dear life and blocking the arguing with our tiny hands covering our tiny ears.

One night was particularly bad, there was a bad fight between my mom and dad, and he threatened to take us all out of this world and proceeded to get his gun (ironically the same gun my brother would years later take his life with), my mom fearing for our lives locked my brother and I in the car and then locked the garage so that my dad couldn’t get to us.

My mom had managed to phone our aunt and uncle to come help and keep the peace, as they did on many occasion (a fact my cousin actually recently confirm to me, which made me feel slightly better that I didn’t imagine all of this.).

Clearly the situation got sorted…but I always wonder what the neighbors thought…

Master of The Universe
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Beatings were a regular occurrence at home, I guess it was my moms way of transferring the anger and lack of power she felt against my dad against us kids. I’ve already told you about one such beating in my High School confidential, but there was so many more that happened, and even more that I’ve probably forgotten about.

I was always a huge Masters of the Universe fan, and my love for collecting action figures and merchandise went back to those days already.

When the live action movie came out, I was a kid in love! He –Man was real! Along with the movie came a whole new range of action figures. The new range had some cool new characters, and I begged and begged my mom to get me one.

Which she did. As a kid we never really appreciate things like this, and I remember when I opened it I saw that it was a character named Gwildor (yes I’m sure the spelling may be wrong, but go with me on this). Now Gwildor was a dwarf life character whose action figure didn’t do all that much. Being disappointed, I ended up being ungrateful and mocked the toy saying “all he does is twirl his weapon” and I sarcastically twirled his accessory, my mom was so angry that she grabbed the toy out my hand and threw it out the car window.

Then when we got home she beat me with a belt. And told me that I need to pay her back for the toy immediately and for every hour I don’t have the money I will get another beating.

Of course I didn’t have money. I was what…10?

Like clockwork, every hour I got a beating. When my dad got home she told me I better get the money from him.

I told him about this toy I saw and begged him to give me the money for it…My dad always treated me like gold, and said sure, but he’d get me the money the next day.

Phew…probably solved right? Not exactly. My mom continued to beat me every hour until bedtime that night. She would come into my room beat me with the belt and tell me not to let my father hear.

Longest. Night. Ever. but I always wonder what the neighbors thought…

Dad Dies
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I remember the day of my dad’s death crystal clear. I guess I’m thankfully that the night before his early morning heart attack, I had in fact spent a loving night with my dad watching wrestling I had taped on the TV. Survivor Series 1989 to be exact. I, as a child does, ending up ruining the ending for him, but I’m so glad I had that moment with him.

In the early hours of the morning, I woke up to screaming by my mom, and as I wondered out of my room there was chaos…my mom running around, one of our neighbors was there, and I had no idea what was going on…until I looked to my left and saw my dad laying dead on the bathroom floor. Suddenly I felt as if I was floating away, but in reality it was our neighbor who picked me up and carried me to the lounge to be with my brother while all this madness was going on. There was an ambulance outside the house, and soon…the coroner.

The next few days, the cars that were parked outside came and went, from family to flower delivery guys, to people I hadn’t the foggiest who they were.

As time does, it moves on…but I always wonder what the neighbors thought…

Wow, this blog is so much more draining than I originally planned it to be.

I’m going to take a break, but I will post part 2 a bit later…so please come back for that – plenty more stories!

Alexander Graham Bell Ruined My Life

September 27, 2010

There is possibly no other inanimate object I hate more than the telephone. (Lindsay Lohan’s firecrotch doesn’t count)

I seriously hate everything about it. The device, the sound it makes, even the way it stares at you.

I may have mentioned in the past how I haven’t even had a ringtone on my cell phone (or mobile phone for you international readers) for over four years. It’s been on silent. This means I probably quite simply miss your call, or plain ignore it.

Don’t take it personally. I just try and avoid the phone at any cost.

And of course to go along with that, comes the new conundrum of sms and chat. I love that…I really do, but I need to use the actual phone to do that…damn that mother truckin’ Alexander Graham Bell. This is his fault you know.

Anways, I’ve always knew why I detested the device so much.

It’s two fold really.

Back when I was younger, the ringing of a phone brought only bad news….death. That kinda thing traumatizes one, you know. Answering that phone and being told that someone had just died is probably one of the worst things you can hear (the other being “you should of said I need five to make a million sorry we can’t make you a winner”)….

The irony of my kryptonite was that my job for the next 8 years after high school would be working in a call centre. It breaks a person apart. They say only certain people can work on a helpdesk…I always thought so too…but looking back now, I know those 8 years will forever have me in its power….freak you Bell.

I feel for peopleon helpdesks…its not easy….so take it easy on em folks…they are human beings….except for those @sses over at FNB Loans.

I don’t answer my phone if I can help it, and recently I went a good few weeks without it and realized I didn’t miss it one bit. In fact I think my voice mail is full…

I wonder if that is the reason I don’t date haha….maybe….if you’re a girl…and you’ve received a phone call from me….like ever, well then i really like you….seriously. If you’re a guy…well then my car has probably broken down and sms will take too long.

It’s one of the hardest things for me to do…I become like an ADD victim when I even attempt to dial.

I dial, cancel, dial, cancel, and so on…

It’s so painful you have no idea.

I’m trying to slowly build up my phoning ability….but its gonna take some time, so bare with me ok?

That my friends is my phobia, so don’t judge me….there are other things you can make fun of instead….like my love for Wizards of Waverly Place.

Teen sitcoms rule!

5 Reasons I hate South Africa & South Africans

December 2, 2009

I initially wrote a quick blog about the many irritations I deal with on a daily basis by simply being a South African living in my “home country”.

As I continued to add more and more content, I found the blog turning out to be something of a labour of love/hate.

I didn’t want to just spew out a few luda-WHAT statements about my annoyances that would garner a knee jerk reaction by those who are proudly South African, an oxymoron in itself I’m sure, but I actually wanted to give factual (if not totally opinionated) examples of day to day living.

This has led me to delay the posting of this blog until I was completely satisfied with it. As each day came and went I felt the need grow to make this blog post something special to me.

I am not a proud South African. I have given my blood sweat and tears to this country, and i have been rewarded with crime, loss, dehumanization and so many more factor which I will address.

Below are the top 5 factors that lead to my absolute hate of the country and its people. In each case, I have no doubt there will be exceptions to my thoughts, but I also don’t care, I’m far too judgmental to be bothered to separate people, so I’ll rather just lump everyone together under one banner and label you all.

So, if you are offended easily then a) stop reading right here b)grow a pair and accept that you are part of the problem c) help contribute to my NYC fund and help get rid of someone who is constantly negative about the country.

You will see many references to words such as “accountability” and “responsibility”, which is expected, since it’s the common thread in this post, and quite possible a reason on its own.

Still here? Ok…well then….let’s begin.

5) The non existence of service delivery

I’ve previously blogged about quality control on products in SA , but my hatred for this runs so much deeper than a simple typo on a DVD cover or incorrect packaging. There is a distinct lack of accountability on products and service & support in this country.

If you’ve ever gone to a customer service section of a chain store, such as a Game, or Pick n Pay or Hyperama, you will immediately have a distinct memory of a frustration (or in fact a belittling attitude) you have had to deal with.

Firstly getting acknowledged by the employee on the other side of the counter is an effort. A simple hello, or smile really does not cost a thing (much like J-lo’s love), and goes a long way to setting the tone for the rest of the complaint/query.

I’m the first one to understand that I am just one of hundreds of customers dealt with on a weekly basis, but quite honestly I don’t give a damn. If you are working in a customer services division, you have a job to do. Love it or Leave it. You should treat each and every customer with personal attention. It’s a simple code your store should live by.

As an English speaking person, I also expect all communications about me or regarding my query to be relayed in English. Side conversations to a supervisor or section manger in an African language I don’t speak are not only disrespectful to me as a client, but also result in a broken telephone translation of what I am actually asking assistance on. – This results in further frustration.

This apathy to doing a job starts at petrol pump attendant level and goes right to the top to government.

Have you ever called a customer service helpline? Has the person on the other end ever actually understood what you are asking?

Trust me, Ive been on the other side too, it takes a certain kind of person to offer support. I did it for 8 years, and I was damn good at it, even though I hated it.

In this day and age, how can so many people be so ungrateful that they have a job to the extent where they couldn’t be bothered if they do it properly?

The country has promised so much job creation to its people, I just never realized that they pick jobs out of hat for each person.

What ever happened to the right person for the right job approach?
What about municipal governments contribution? how many time have you not have water? electricity? not had your garbage collection? This is a weekly concern. I pay rates and taxes on time, and the exact amounts im billed for (well…there was that one time…for a few months)…I dont ask for much…just to be treated like a human being by my own government. we don’t get explanations as to why these things occur…if we lucky, someone catches them out on a lie, THEN we get some sort of explanation.

Next week I’m going to try being a doctor. Hey at least it’s a job….

4) The Youth

You’ve heard your parents say it in some variation or another “kids today!”…well I’m sorry to say …they are right.

The youth of today is nothing short of embarrassing. Perhaps this is more personal one since I lost my childhood through circumstance and never got to experience the “youth gone wild”…But even kids of my age where never this bad.

Now, I understand each generation has their catch phrases and habits…but have you ever had a conversation with anyone below the age of 16? I have… many times (bless those internet chat rooms….I joke I joke). It’s almost impossible to actually have an English conversation with them. Seriously, it’s like trying to decipher the Da Vinci code.

They can’t even be bothered to spell correctly anymore. They abbreviate the word “the”!!!!…these are habits that wont get broken. When students inevitably get to write exams via cellphones, I’m sure we will get the following:
Question: What brought on the downfall of Obama’s presidency?
Answer: Pd. Obama, s0ught 2 rule 2 much. Causing cuntries 2 ask “WYD”.

Ok ok, see I can’t do it LOL.

I’m sure this is something that a global problem, especially with things like the internet and mobile phones around to influence them, but my point is there is a distinct dumbing down of the youth, and what’s worse is there is an increase apathy about being a good decent person.

We see kids go to school and kill their schoolmate with knives, guns, samurai swords.
We see kids accused of rape.
We see kids torturing animals.
All on the increase. With no remorse.
And we see these things, because the youth are thoughtful enough to record it on their camera phones and send to us via Bluetooth.

Kids are more interested in going to a friends house when the parents are away and indulging in alcohol, smoking and irresponsible sex. Then of course tagging each other on Facebook.

Didn’t there used to be rules in society that protected families from these sort of influences?

I happen to have the TV on often, and can’t help but watch the train wreck that is Youth TV. South African kids presenters are a ridiculous showcase for the “cool and hip”
White guys try to be gangsta black
Black guys try to be American black.
Girls well…girls will be girls.

The South African youth has lost their identity. They follow US trends and try to duplicate them – to embarrassing proportions. Are you not diverse enough as it is? Can you not find some common ground to be something that is a true representation of South Africa?

We have an ANC “youth leader” that is nothing short of a moron. He is preaching idiotic ways and means that to an easily influenced youth will hold water. So where is the hope for our future? Probably passed out drunk.

Strange that I’m attracted to 17 yr old school girls then? Naaaa…as says…”that’s what I love about these schoolgirls man. I get older…they stay they same age”…”yes they do….”

3) LifeStyles of the Rich and The Famous

That little speech about kids presenters reminds me of a joke I once heard…

A former Miss South Africa, A cricket player, A radio DJ and a Soapie star walk into a room, the next day, a headline reads “The biggest celebrity of the Event”.

Hahaha LOVE that joke…ok sure I just made it up right now, and its not really a joke, it’s a way of thinking here.

You know, its sad that a celebrity starved culture such as South Africa is so eager for someone to put on a pedestal that we don’t acknowledge those hard working actors and musicians that slave away at gigs, auditions and small roles, but instead we will rather show heaps of praise onto our radio DJs, soapie stars, beauty queens and sports stars who just happen to attend the opening of an envelope.

They simply have a good agent who gets them invited to a movie premiere (which is generally attended by Joe Average too).

We try label them as SA’s Posh & Becks or SA’s JayZ & Beyonce…

Our papers, magazines, entertainment shows shove the same faces down our throat and try make us believe they are celebrities. What’s perhaps worse is these individuals try and ACT like celebs too.

Newsflash. You are NOTHING more than a personality who has a fun interesting job. (until you get fired for a) speaking your mind or b) getting too old)

Then as if that weren’t enough, we had a reality show host that ends up host every show on TV, MCing every corporate function in town and trying to release her own single.

Give me a breeeeeeaaaaak.

Then we have to two kinds of celebrity followers. Those who are friends with personalities and try parading their friendships across all means of communications, Twitter, Facebook etc….you can keep your conversations private…why must we all see that you are going out that night to a club? Is it a public announcement? Are we to be impressed? Oooh look they’ve got a pic with themselves with a celeb, man I wish I had the same pic 1 million other fans had.

I’ve worked for a celebrity gossip magazine, so I know how these things work.

Type number 2 is they pseudo celeb. He’s the guy who was featured in a segment on a TV show, or had her name or face in the paper. They of course also try shameless promotion to try convince the rest of us that they are famous. My friends, you have hit the big time!

Sad.
By the way, my big movie SlamBang comes out on DVD next week…Order yours now here.

You know what’s my favourite thing about SA celebs? When they “fall from grace”
Wow…someone did something wrong…but thankfully we are there to cover it 24/7.
You know what? I just banged your wife and we did coke of a small child’s back while watching illegal DVDs…

*cricket noises*…

mmm… no paparazzi….

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Top 2 reasons coming soon