A Tweety Update

Got a call from the insurance adjuster today. According to the initial assessment fixing Tweety will cost R7000 more than we paid for her and R5000 more than the currently insured value, so a write-off appears to be in our future. They’re still looking at alternative quotations, but having found out for myself what the actual parts cost I’m not optimistic (the boot door alone is almost half the car’s total value, unless one can be salvaged from a scrap yard).

As there’s no way we’ll get another car with aircon, CD player and power steering, with Tweety’s mileage and in Tweety’s condition (sans recent damage) for the price we paid for her two years ago, never mind the amount we can expect to be paid out, I’m now hoping the company of the guy who caused the accident will be willing to settle the matter privately as I have no desire to go through the drama of buying back the car form the insurance company and then trying to re-insure a “salvaged” vehicle. Except that all the people at said company are always out of the office when I call and apparently don’t know how to return messages.

I’ll keep you updated.

Technology killing off vital skills – Part 1

According to The Daily Mail Online twenty vital skills are apparently dying out in our “world of technology and convenience”. Naturally I found myself checking how I measured up against the list. Do I have what it takes to survive in a world without tech? If Google goes offline and the world wide web unravels, will I be able to keep the threads of my life together?

Continue reading “Technology killing off vital skills – Part 1”

Tweety tawt he taw a puddytat…

…but in fact it was a big-ass pickup truck with an even bigger ass inside of it who thought he could still make it through the traffic circle before the oncoming traffic. What makes him an ass is the fact that he did not include the car in front of him, the driver of which had already decided to yield to oncoming traffic, as both the law prescribed and a healthy sense of self-preservation dictated, in his calculations. Yellow Ford Ka after accidentOne would think a canary yellow car is easy to spot in traffic. Apparently it is invisible right until the moment you plough into it.

The wife, thankfully, is okay, though she spent most of the morning in tears from the shock and whiplash combined with scoliosis doesn’t help much.

I’ve already submitted a claim to the insurance, and I’m desperately hoping they don’t write it off (a strong possibility as the car is already ten years old and there’s damage to the actual body as well behind the cosmetic damage here) as we simply can’t afford to replace it, what with me still being unemployed and all. If you’re at all into praying, please pray that the insurance pays to fix it. Or the other guy’s company (as it was a company vehicle and apparently they don’t have insurance on their vehicles; I’m still waiting to hear back from them).

Yeah. I’ll stop now, as the rest of what I want to say isn’t suitable for publication…

Something Wicked over in Jordan

I know, I know! I’ve been neglecting this blog something awful. I do mean to get things back on track again, but you know…

As a peace offering, might I offer you a tale of a grown woman hiding behind her couch from the neighbour kids while her husband does uncannily realistic dog impressions? Sounds like something you’d read?

Then have at it. Head on over to Dead Sea Diaries and have a guffaw at Something Wicked This Way Comes and while there, be a sport and leave Liese a comment. I know for a fact she loves getting them (but, then, don’t we all?)

Rock on, Christopher Lee

Rock on, Christopher Lee

I just saw the news that Sir Christopher Lee passed away on Sunday, at the venerable age of ninety-three. This is all the more impressive if you consider that he still kicked ass in the final Hobbit film that was released last year.

Christopher Lee
Image by Manfred Werner
Source: Wikimedia Commons

If I had to describe Lee in one word it would be bad-ass, both on screen and off. On screen he excelled as a villain. We all know him as Saruman from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, and Count Dooku in the Star Wars prequels. But he also played the big three movie monsters of the fifties, namely Frankenstein’s monster, Count Dracula (several times), and The Mummy. Then he was the Bond villain, Scaramanga (The Man With The Golden Gun), Rasputin, Count Rochefort from Dumas’s The Three Musketeers and Willy Wonka’s demented dentist dad in Tim Burton’s adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. And as a voice actor he brought to life, among others, Terry Pratchett’s Death, and Lewis Carrol’s Jabberwocky in the Tim Burton adaptation of Alice in Wonderland.

But off screen he was just as incredible. I mentioned him playing Rasputin above. Would you believe that as a child he had met the men who’d killed the real Rasputin and was later told by Rasputin’s daughter that he actually looked a bit like her father? Or that he’d witnessed the last public guillotine execution in France and was friends with the ‘Last Hangman’ of England? How about that in the Second World War he was a pilot in the RAF (he did his flight training in South Africa) and involved in special operations with the SAS (though never revealed exactly what he did) and knows how to handle a sword? And how many members of the LOTR cast and crew can claim that they had actually known J.R.R. Tolkien? (Edit: None, apparently.) He was a descendant of Charlemagne and was engaged to a Swedish noblewoman, an engagement to which the king of Sweden himself gave consent. But they later called off  the wedding and he married a Danish model instead.

But the thing that blew me away when I first learned about it was that he was also the world’s oldest metalhead, starting his career in his late eighties, and the oldest living person ever to make it onto the Billboard Hot 100 charts at ninety-one and a half years old. He had an incredible voice and released several heavy metal albums, the last one, a Christmas album of all things, a mere six months ago. One of his albums, Charlemagne: By the Sword and the Cross even received the Spirit of Metal award at the Metal Hammer Golden Gods ceremony in 2010. You can watch the one music video produced from that album below (be warned, it’s a little…surreal).

No one can dispute that Sir Christopher Lee has had an exceptional life. He was a living legend. Living he is not anymore, but he’ll always remain legendary.