Coles Corner

This, from Richard Hawley, just seems appropriate this morning.

Hold back the night from us
Cherish the light for us
Don’t let the shadows hold back the dawn

Cold city lights glowing
The traffic of life is flowing
Out over the rivers and on into dark

I’m going downtown where there’s music
I’m going where voices fill the air
Maybe there’s someone waiting for me
With a smile and a flower in her hair

Show Me How To Live

Sad news this morning that rock musician Chris Cornell has died, aged 52. Cornell was lead singer of Soundgarden (think Black Hole Sun) and Audioslave (think Cochise).

Look, I’m not pretending that I was a die-hard fan, but I liked his stuff, I appreciated his talent, and I enjoyed his (somewhat restrained) set at My CokeFest in 2008.

But his – their – best work for me? This one:

Unapologetically heavy, unapologetically non-conformist, unapologetically unapologetic.
Even for destroying that beautiful Dodge Challenger.

Wendy play-off defeat

Late last night, in a godforsaken corner of the Steel City, and after a season of blood, sweat, toil and tears, Sheffield Wednesday’s play-off dreams were ended in exceptionally cruel fashion as they were beaten on penalties in the pouring rain, right in front of their own Kop.

True Wednesday fans will know that I have been in their position and that I know exactly what it feels like. The pain, the distress, the the heartbreaking effect of suddenly broken dreams.
They’ll also be aware that I’m unable to feel any sympathy for them, both contractually and because I actually find it quite funny. And I’d expect nothing less from them should the situation be reversed.

Experts told us that it was never meant to be this way.

and…

But it turns out that the experts were wrong.

The sun is shining, the birds are singing.
What a wonderful day it is today.

It isn’t, are you?

Left-leaning UK Facebook is knee deep in election propaganda at the moment. A lot of it centres around the assertion that Theresa May “is evil”: a convenient strawman argument, distracting us neatly from the fact that in the real world, Jeremy Corbyn’s policies are laughably pie-in-the-sky, laughably costed and seemingly aimed at making the UK a complete no-go zone for business.

But how do we not know this already? We read the papers, don’t we? Why haven’t they told us about Theresa’s nastiness?

Well, as further posts tell us “The Media Is Biased!”. The fact that people need telling this sort of thing is rather worrying, but still…
I’m not denying that the The Media Is Biased!. Of course it is. But that Media Bias! swings both ways – something that all the The Media Is Biased! posts seem to forget to tell us.

So, now that we’re a global community, and you might find yourself reading a UK newspaper website from overseas, let me just quickly fill you in on what to look out for with a quick guide to the usual suspects.

The Sun: Owned by Rupert Murdoch, right-of-centre.
The Mirror: Left-of-centre tabloid.
The Times: Another Murdoch paper, ex-broadsheet.
The Telegraph: aka The Torygraph. Pro-Conservative broadsheet.
Daily Mail, Daily Express: Right of right, gentile fascism. Horrendous.
The Guardian: Left-wing, liberal, ‘intellectual’ paper.

But then there’s one more, quite popular newspaper called The Independent. It used to be a part of the Dead Tree Press, before going online only from last year. And, because of its name, and its infamous motto:

…you can probably already guess at its lack of political affiliation.

But be careful, because this, as the quote goes, is “the biggest misnomer since Pussy Galore”. With each of those other papers, you get to make your own mind up, there’s no hint of which way they’re going to try and sway you. And of course, you should never believe everything you read anyway.
But please, when it comes to The Independent, don’t let your critical standards slip, just because of the title.

Cape Town Water Restrictions to be extended?

I’m not going to go into the whole “there’s a drought” thing, because I have done that already. Several times. If you’re down here in this corner of SA, you’ll know that we’re already on Level 3b Water Restrictions. But with winter now just around the corner and still no sign of any meaningful rain (those prayers are really helping us out, hey?), the City looks likely to move to Level 4 restrictions real soon now.

Level 4 means no using potable water outside at all. For anything. At all. Ever.
And any water you do use (indoors) will cost more too.

But this got me thinking. Level 1, 2, 3a and 3b restrictions have had only a very limited effect on the dam levels, so what if Level 4 fails too? Just how high can we go?

I went down to the basement of the monolithic Municipal Building in Cape Town CBD and did some rudimentary research.
Here is some of what I discovered…

Level 5 water restrictions allow for water shedding. That is, times of the day – perhaps 2 or 3 hour periods – when the water supply to different areas of the city will be cut. You know the drill, because we’ve done this before with electricity.

Level 6 water restrictions mean that there will be very limited times when water is readily available to residential customers. If you want water, you will likely have to go to a local standpipe or bowser to get it.

And from there… well… it gets really severe. Here are a few examples:

Level 7 means you won’t be allowed to use your borehole anymore.

Level 9 allows for teams of city workers using giant vacuum cleaners to suck the morning dew from parks and lawns.

If we get as far as Level 11, it will be mandatory to surrender the contents of your swimming pool to the Sheriff of the Court. Including any toys therein. And your Kreepy Krauly.

When we get to Level 12, each household will have to donate 5 litres of their weekly allowance to mayor Patricia de Lille so that she can keep the fountain in her back garden going.

Part of the Level 14 restrictions require anyone participating in a local Parkrun to wear a plastic overall so that their perspiration can be collected in a big barrel at the finish line, from which fresh water will then be extracted.

The Level 17 restrictions involve at least one member of each residential household being press-ganged into joining a massive convoy from Cape Town to Johannesburg and stealing the Hartebeespoort Dam (in many, many small amounts).

Level 19 will make it illegal to cry without collecting your tears in a tupperware container (the container used for this purpose must be pre-registered with the city using Form L19-6b, available from the Water & Sanitation Department offices) for recycling.

Level 23 means that the City can legally harvest and press Fynbos from the local Table Mountain National Park and collect the juices, from which water will be extracted. The pulp will then be donated to the hippie communities in Noordhoek and Kommetjie where it is routinely used instead of soap. And deodorant. And paint. And food.

At Level 26, residents will only be allowed to drink grey water.

At Level 27, residents will only be allowed to drink black water.

At Level 28, residents will only be allowed to inhale fog.

At Level 29, residents will only be allowed to drink sand.

 

Level 30 makes it illegal to live in Cape Town.

Of course, all this unpleasantness could easily be avoided in Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille would only take on board (or even acknowledge) my brilliant plan to solve the water crisis for the next 25,000 years. Just like the UAE have.