Nicolette Writes

Professional Freelance Writer and Stay-at-Home Mom

Archive for the month “March, 2012”

Having A Cold (or Sinusitis?) During Pregnancy

Sorry about being so quiet lately… I developed a cold. I actually think, or according to What to Expect When You’re Expecting, it is now a sinus infection. Thing is, if you develop a cold and you ARE NOT PREGNANT, there is some pretty powerful stuff you can use to feel better. BUT, seeing that I am pregnant (39 weeks!!), I have to make do with panados (whaa! It’s like sweets!!) and a mixture of salt, baking soda and water… gargle, gargle, sniff… not pleasant.


Angus Taylor’s Statue Destroyed – Stellenbosch

Hi, this is Nicolette’s husband speaking, again… and this time I’m extremely pissed-off. And it’s not about a recipe that turned out badly…

During the past week vandals destroyed artwork in Stellenbosch, again… some drunken animals felt it is funny to savage a statue that was donated by the artist to the town – utterly disgraceful.

My family has strong ties with Stellenbosch and its University. My great grandmother was one of the first three women to graduate from the University, the J.H. Neethling building is named after my great-great grandfather and my maternal grandfather studied here. As did my mother and wife.

But talking about my grandfather…

He did not only study at Stellenbosch University, but played for Maties (first team rugby and cricket).

Once in a disagreement with my grandfather, way back in the 1920’s, a snobby fellow student told this Natal dairy farmer’s son that he must remember that the cream of the country studies at Stellenbosch. My grandfather’s answer was simply that you must never forget that cream also has scum on it (“room het ook skuim op” in the original Afrikaans).

It seems that the times didn’t change much from those pre-Great Depression years and that in these Great Recession/Sovereign Debt Crises days cream still has (a lot of) scum on it.

Thanks to these idiots that destroy public art, I’m so glad I studied at the NMMU – we Uppies might not be seen as the cream of the country, but scum is less evident in milk than on cream.

About things such as the Nedine Blom ‘scandal’… and Jack Parow…

Jack Parow

Nedine Blom

One of the ‘current issues’ of discussion is the ‘scandal’ (this sounds very SON/ Huisgenoot-ish!) involving the well-known South African gospel singer, Nedine Blom, who has had an affair.

Well, I am most definitely not going to provide you with any juicy, gossipy details about the whole ordeal, as this is not what I am into…

What I am, however, very much into, is raising my voice for the ‘underdog’… (which is probably why I enjoyed Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood so much, it being a novel about what happens when the world of the ‘ideal citizen’ collides with the world of the ‘underdog’… die skollie, hehe)

Anyways, moving back to the Nedine Blom issue. I am not going to point any fingers, I am just as human as she is, and I can certainly not throw the first stone. What I DO want to say, or ask, however, is: Why are people SO quick to judge the seemingly ‘scaly’ characters in our society? The Jack Parows? Or Die Antwoord-type-characters?

I don’t know too much about either Jack Parow or Die Antwoord, except that I really like Jack Parow’s ‘Tussen Stasies’, which he did with ‘Die Heuwels Fantasties’, as well as some fun songs, such as Ricki Louw… 😉

I get so mad when parents say to their kids that these people are rubbish – just because they hear an obscene word or two coming out of a song. These songs are about so much more than those one or two words of frustration…

In ‘Tussen Stasies’ , Parow sings about ‘walking the road to his Dad’s big shoes’ (or does this hit too close to home for some parents?), he sings about praying for hours, but just praying one sentence… Well, maybe he isn’t praying the Holy Spirit into people (and as a Christian I say this with respect), but at least he is honest about trying, and saying he can’t get past that one sentence…

I value the fact that such an artist can be honest and raw with no pretending they have it all together. On the other hand, some people only see anyone who has ever appeared in the Finesse magazine as holy and wholesome role models.

I guess what I am trying to say, is that people should wake up and think a little before judging. Being a gospel role model, doesn’t necessarily make you more honest and sincere than the Jack Parows of this life. And I don’t want to be judging Nedine Blom or any other such figures, and I apologise if I am too blind to see that this is indeed what I am doing… I am just saying: don’t be so quick to judge those who do not fit into the mould of the ideal citizen.

Andrew Thompson Commits Suicide – and people STILL think Depression is made-up nonsense?

If you are not from South Africa, you will probably not be familiar with the name Andrew Thompson… in fact, neither was I… I always just thought of him as Fanie from the Afrikaans movie series Bakgat. Well, ‘Fanie’ committed suicide. ‘What?! How is this possible!?’ is probably what you are thinking, imagining ‘Fanie’, whom we have come to know as the extremely sweet, comical, funny and happy character on our television screens.

The first thing I thought when I heard that he committed suicide was: ‘And people STILL think depression is not a series illness?‘ There are still people who believe that depression is a made-up thing – an illness of the time, that everybody gets some time or another. That depression means merely feeling ‘down’ and that these people should ‘pull themselves together’ and look at all their blessings…

Will you tell someone with a broken hip to pull themselves together and go out for a walk? How can we be so insensitive to an illness that is so real? Just because you cannot show physical evidence for its existence, like an arm in a cast, or a bloody, stitched up toe, doesn’t mean it does not exist. It just makes us uncomfortable, doesn’t it? It especially makes those personality types uncomfortable that think of ‘sensitive souls’ as weak people.

May we move beyond our narrow-minded ideas when it comes to Depression: Depression is not a mood (as in ‘I am angry, frustrated, depressed’) – it is an illness with a capital ‘D’. It does not merely mean you are having a ‘down’ or ‘off’ day, and you cannot merely fix it by looking at the sunshine. Wake up, people, and reach out to those who suffer from Depression as if they are going through major surgery – you are treading on such sensitive ground when working with people who suffer from Depression.

Whether ‘Fanie’ or Andrew Thompson suffered from depression or not, this death has got to make you think… if someone who seems to have it all (fame, popularity, LOVED and adored by his country’s people) commits suicide – he was NOT just having an ‘off’ day.

Love, Nicolette
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