There’s good and bad

Now and again, people accuse me of doing the whole ostrich thing. Not the having huge eggs that a grown man can stand on, but the burying one’s head in the sand thing. I know that it’s a popular misconception that ostriches actually do this, but I’m willing to go along with it, at least for the purposes of this post.
I do dispute that I do the whole ostrich thing, though. Being a positive or optimistic person is only any use if you have a over-riding accompaniment of realism on a sideplate. Blind optimism is as foolish as pessimism – it achieves nothing and gets you nowhere.

As an example – the new Koeberg flyover. I had high hopes for this ending the misery of the constant queues around the N1/M5 junction. This is healthy optimism. And they opened the first of the new flyovers (the southbound one, in case you’re interested) this week. And it does seem to have had some effects. Just not all good ones.  In their wisdom and in an effort to remove the queues, they have – as a side-effect – channeled all the M5 traffic through one lane. In short, it doesn’t work.
This is realism. Blind optimism would ignore this heinous deficiency and wax lyrical about the speed of the flyover.
I’m not into that.

Furthermore, I was unimpressed by Cape Town Airport’s efforts to welcome international visitors to the World Cup. My main criticism is that there was actually no effort whatsoever. No flags, no posters, no noise, no fuss. And there needs to be fuss. This is the World Cup, for heavens sake. Even the “World Cup Welcome” desks were empty – and that’s shocking. Perhaps as shocking as my vocalising this annoyance may come to some readers of this site. But there’s no value in ignoring the deficiencies of this country or any other. How are things supposed to improve then?

But I do want to finish on a positive note. And that’s my prerogative.

I think that if there is one symbol that will become synonymous with this World Cup tournament, it is the vuvuzela. And I was lucky enough to win one, which was delivered to me today.

Just check out that beadwork in Proudly South African colours. Absolutely stunning.

And that’s what realistic optimism is all about. Enjoying the positives while not ignoring the negatives.

Tomorrow is the big day. Opening ceremony, Bafana Bafana v Mexico, France v Uruguay.
We’ve been waiting six years.

Ke nako.

  • Bloubergman

    Best part is you can’t take it to the stadium as its branded…. Shakira shakira..

  • altus

    I dont use the N1/M5, but people from work (on the foreshore) who live in Bellville, say that the improvements have made a huge difference for them coming into the city and going home. Is there a chance that the fuck-up you describe will be improved once the other flyovers are finished?

  • Having posted my post tonight, I then read yours. We appear to have used very very similar wording… oops!

    Must just say that I love, love LOVE your vuvuzela!! Definitely deserves pride of place somewhere. I know you’re terribly excited about the footie, and I hope CT Airport gets its act together overnight!! Enjoy it all – would love to have been joining the party myself! 🙂

  • Stan

    One neat trumpet.

  • Reflex

    I had trememndously high hopes for the damned flyover too.
    Until the day before it opened I drove past and noticed they had put a kerb up that channeled the 2 lanes into one.
    The tailbacks have now been moved off the N1 and onto the bridge so commute time has pretty much stayed the same.

    Today it all happens though, after all the doubts and plans B and C it is here.

  • Kirsten

    Rich to slag off 2OV and then very proudly display the SYMANTEC vuvuzela you “won”. Something about pot calling kettle black…

  • Bloubergman > Like I would risk it at the game. Too pretty. And so is the vuvuzela.

    Altus > No clue if a remedy will be forthcoming when stuff is finished, but I don’t have high hopes.

    HH > On my way to check right now!

    Stan > Isn’t it?

    Reflex > My issue isn’t actually the flyover bit, it’s the M5 between Koeberg Interchange and Berkley Road. Too much of narrow.

    Kirsten > Lost your sense of humour, pet?
    All legal and above board – I promise.
    Competition here: http://www.2010netthreat.com/netthreats/post/2010/05/06/Twitter-vuvuzela-competition.aspx
    Results here: http://www.2010netthreat.com/netthreats/post/2010/06/01/World-Cup-Vuvuzela-winners!.aspx

    You should have entered.

  • Reflex

    That bit is still in the pipeline to get upgraded AFAIK.
    Once the Black River bridge is widened and all that sort of good stuff.

    The other thing I have noticed about the flyover is that traffic seems to start queueing up just after the bend and I am pretty sure there are going to be some accidents there.
    People overcooking it around the corner, checking the traffic and either rear-ending the car in front or turning into the barrier on the left or car on the right.

    I was left feeling a bit meh about it all really.

  • Reflex > As long as they keep it on the flyover, that’s fine.