Life

Tainted Love

Why do my worse moments happen during our weekly Ad Agency briefing? I cannot BUT walk in looking dishevelled, grumpy and reeking of early morning road-rage. Unfortunately for me I walked right into a conversation about politics. Now, I backed off immediately because I am essentially apolitical about most things. However, lately my tolerance level for bullshit is surprisingly low and I listened in amazement as one of my colleagues extolled on the virtues of a certain female political figure (no, not Helen).

I quietly drank my extra large cup of coffee (I bring my own cup to meetings, ensuring maximum java in minimum time). Quietly getting agitated and annoyed. You see, there`s more to life than sitting around and getting philosophical about your lack of a relationship. Or your success at having secured a terrible relationship.

I mean, if I had my way I`d be sitting around and talking about shoes all day long. There`d be enough to say…. why shoes are so fabulous, flats vs sexy stiletto`s, are you a conservative or retro shoe addict, is it Ferragamo or nothing, and where to get the best deals on shoes. But I don`t (although I could). So, for one day only I`d like to blog about something else besides my eccentric mother, my adorable and utterly lovable doggies or my weird and wonderful extended urban family.

The provincial elections took place on 01 March. And apart from the fact that most South Africans are very pleased that they had a day off from grafting, little else was worth mentioning. 10 years ago South Africans of all creeds and colours could not wait to get to the voting booth. It was your democratic right dammit (!) and you could not wait to make your historic mark with a black felt tip BIC. But these days there`s nary a whisper about the elections from the disillusioned public. I cannot really escape the down and dirty reality of the elections. In fact, as apolitical as I am, I have personal friends who are politicians. One in particular was an electoral candidate. Fortunately for my jaded soul I happen to like and respect this candidate not only as a personal friend but also as a fantastic humanitarian. That`s right, not a politician a humanitarian. And this might or might not be his downfall or success in the future. Armand loves doing. And as much as he rails against human nature and is perceived by others as a bit of a hard touch, he cares too much about people. Any people…his uber-wealthy constituents or the prostitutes he personally yanks off the street every single week. In fact, the funniest stories I have EVER heard have come from Armand`s attempts to get the Ladies of Negotiable Affection off the streets. Street children all over the place? Armand works with the shelters and gets the naughty little buggers off the street. The homeless stinking up the entrance to your driveway… ‘Not a problem, M`am! Let`s organise that they are moved but let`s see if we can find them some kind of job as well….
And with all this running around and doing, he might find that he has less time to partake in the most important thing in politics… Power mongering and fraud.

You see, my rant is that there are too many politicians around and far too little humanitarians. I shake my head in wonder when I see the various posters of would-be candidates still up on the streetlights of my suburb. That these people passed an electoral college (or in the case of some candidates, a check of their criminal record) is a bloody wonder. And these days, more than ever, it`s about your fancy colours (orange? green and yellow?) or your wit or lack thereof (I heard of one Mayoral candidate who is totally unknown to the greater Cape Town, request that the two other Mayoral candidates step down from the electoral process. The one is a former mayor of Cape Town and the other a very successful former MEC for Education in the Western Cape, a Minister of Parliament and now current mayor. Once again, the gentleman making the request is a total unknown, who doesn`t seem to have the backbone to state his own view or opinion on ANYTHING).

When have we become so jaded and disillusioned that we forget to say, Humanitarianism first, Politics second?

And in case you`re wondering…I did not vote March. I have been named and shamed in private and now I name and shame myself here. Yes, that means I will not have a right to rant and rave to my local politician and I will not have a say in the goings on in my municipal ward district. But you know what…it`s my right and my privilege as a South African to vote and I have not found a fellow South African in my ward WORTHY of my vote. And I know that kind of thinking might not get me very far … But I`m a South African and we`re allowed to vote for apathetic idiots or have limited views with regards to politics.

Had I lived in the rarefied air in the affluent side of town where my friend Armand is now ward councillor, I might have supported him.

What the hell, let`s give humanitarianism a chance?

And all the shenanigans of modern-day politics in South Africa reminds me of the words of a song called Tainted Love. And I quote, Once I ran to you, Now I’ll run from you, This tainted love you’ve given, I give you all a boy could give you, Take my tears and that’s not nearly all, Oh…tainted love

Gettit?

Good.

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