City of Gold

October 29, 2006

johannesburg_view.jpg The best thing about Johannesburg, South Africa, is leaving it. I had the misfortune to be born there, and the good sense to leave it as soon as I could. Unfortunately my father and sister still live there, despite my many enticements to leave.

There are beautiful things about Johannesburg: the perfect weather, endless blue skies and sunshine, the thousands of birds. At heart though, the city remains an overgrown mining town, inhabited by people chasing the dreams of gold. The empty ostentation of luxury cars and gated mansions is sharply contrasted by the many shanty towns that don’t even have sewerage or running water. The cultural life of most is lived in shopping malls.

Of course going there to be with my father who is in icu in a coma doesn’t help up the enjoyment stakes of being in Johannesburg – parents in a coma suck no matter where you are in the world.

The Gobbler

October 8, 2006

passionpitgobbler.jpg      I love Canada, and being Canadian – even though, or perhaps because I came to Canada later in life from free choice rather than by birth default.  I love being in a country that has a day dedicated to thanksgiving, even if that mostly translates into getting stuffed on turkey and collapsing on the couch in a triptophan haze.

So for your turkey-enhanced entertainment, I suggest an online tour of the 70’s retro homage to turkeyness, wittily presented by James Lileks – the Gobbler motel and supper club.

Sometimes we need all the thanksgiving we can get.

flu.jpg  Flu

After two intercontinental flights in less than a week, the shock of being back in polluted London, starting the second and final year of my MFA and working like a demon to get new work made and installed for our interim show which opens on Monday, my body is rebelling by having the flu.
Not just a few sniffles, but lung-wracking coughs and violent sneezes. Fuzzy head and aching bones as though I am in a submersible 1000 meters under the sea.  I thought I’d make a list of the 5 best home-remedies I’ve tried so far:

  1. Hot toddy made with fresh ginger, lemon juice, cayenne pepper and most important of all, a healthy slug of brandy
  2. Hot bath with 5 drops of Tea Tree essential oil
  3. Large quantities of freshly squeezed orange juice, as well as vitamin C and zinc
  4. Tasty teaspoon fulls of Nin Jiom cough syrup
  5. Foul and disgusting drops of oregano essential oil

Maybe I should just get some more sleep …. Any other remedies gratefully received.