Month: June 2013

Kruger Park To Become Las Vegas of South Africa

The Kruger National Park will soon be adding hotel accommodation to its list of attractions. SANParks says the hotels will bring more people to the park and increase revenue to pay for biodiversity projects. However, critics say the hotels will destroy the natural character of a park that has been in existence for over a hundred years.

Boksburg resident Bokkie-Bok van der Bok said he had been coming to the Kruger Park since he was ‘knee-high to a demijohn of Paarl Perlé’.

‘Hotels in the Kruger Park? Are they out of their fukken minds? Look, I have nothing against change. It’s a good thing. But this is what happens when the communists take over.’

Brümhilde Sukscok, a visiting medical student from Schönau im Schwarzwald currently doing her internship with the eminently charming cardiologist, Dr Wouter Basson, said she would stop going to the Kruger Park if hotels were built.

‘How do you think I would feel sleeping on a broken bed in a hot, overpriced rat-infested rondhovel decorated like an East German prison cell while knowing there is a luxury hotel on my doorstep that I can’t afford? Either everybody suffers in the existing accommodation or nobody suffers and we all stay in the hotels. For free.’

Other critics felt it was the wildlife that would suffer most during construction of the hotels.

SANParks chief executive David Mabunda disagrees. ‘Suffering is very 1980s. Who doesn’t love a nice hotel? Maybe the giraffe. But who are we to say? Let’s not be giraffist.’

Pretoria property developer Varkie de Vetket said he supported SANParks ‘one thousand million per cent’.

‘This Mabunda oke sounds alright for a darkie but maybe what we need is a big fat Sol Kerzner thing happening here.’ De Vetket said he would like to see more of the Kruger Park being developed.

‘It’s open space. Wasted. You think the animals appreciate it? Please. Have you ever seen a happy buffalo? This place needs golf courses. Race tracks. It needs casinos. Who wants to go to a game reserve and not stand a chance of walking away with a million bucks? And I don’t mean springbucks either.’

A spokesman for the Sandton Triads said if hotels were going to be built, he saw no reason why processing factories shouldn’t also be built. ‘With factoly we take lhino and erefant horns one time chop chop.’

One regular visitor to the Kruger Park said he would like to see ‘at least five or six shopping malls’ scattered around the reserve.

‘Have you ever tried to buy stuff at a shop in Kruger? Jissus. It’s like shopping in Zimbabwe. The wood is wet. The beer is warm. The frozen meat has been in the fridge since the Ice Age. It’s a helluva thing.’

Mabunda said he had taken the opinions of the public into account and then discarded those that didn’t agree with him.

‘The entire process took – what was it – three minutes? Let’s be honest. People are like sheep. They say they don’t want something, so you give it to them anyway, and then they want to kill you when you try to take it away. Maybe I’m thinking of lions.’

Mabunda gave the assurance that the animals would not be affected by the new development.

‘If they cooperate and hang around the hotels in large numbers, a few lucky ones will be rewarded with a free night. Maybe not a suite, but certainly one of our ground floor rooms.’

He denied rumours that SANParks would start offering drive-by shooting packages for overseas hunters.

‘If anyone is going to kill animals in the Kruger Park, it’s going to be us. Conservation is a dangerous business. There is a huge problem with wildebeest gangs. I can’t confirm or deny anything, but don’t be surprised if there is another one of our “controlled” burns very soon.’

Mabunda said speed traps would continue to operate through the park.

‘Nobody will be exempt. Not even cheetahs. We will also be using tazers to encourage slow-moving animals to pick up the pace. With the new hotels, there will be a lot more people wanting to see some action. Obviously we can’t have game standing in one spot browsing for six hours. And this sleeping during the day will also have to come to an end. A lot of our animals seem to think they are in Mexico.’

Mabunda said SANParks had conducted an extensive visitor survey with a couple from Madrid, and found considerable support for the construction of amphitheatres in which kills could be staged. ‘People come to the Kruger Park for three reasons. To have sex, get motherless drunk and see an animal get killed. In an amphitheatre, we can give them everything. Cheap beer served by topless Ndebele girls, a herd of drugged gemsbok and three or four hungry lionesses. It will be like ancient Rome, without that whole awkward Christian thing.’

Plans to build flyovers to prevent congestion at waterholes are in the pipeline.

A flashback to January 20, 2009

My house looks like the goddamn American embassy. Okay, so I might not have the triple-locking steel doors, bombproof windows, surveillance cameras, evacuation plan, leery staff and heavily patrolled parking area – but I do have the Stars and Stripes flying from the roof and Barack Obama’s seraphic face plastered across every surface.

Under normal circumstances the flag alone would have made us a prime target for the local al-Qaeda cell, but I see their curtains are drawn and the BMW X5 is not in the drive. They must still be away. I recall Mrs Abdul-Majeed telling Brenda they were going to Plett for the holidays.

Brenda and my increasingly eccentric loinfruit, Clive, are in love with Obama, hopefully for different reasons. Brenda says it is because of his moral fibre, but I suspect it’s because he thinks like a white man and is hung like a Maasai warrior.

Obama is Clive’s hero because, in the words of the brat, “he is a shining beacon of hope in a world full of despair”. I picked him up by his ear and demanded to know who taught him to speak dirty like that, but he refused to reveal his sources. Probably got it from a left-wing pornolitical rag like Newsweek.

“If it’s because Obama is black,” I shouted, “let me remind you that Idi Amin was also black.” I tossed out a few more names of darkies who were once shining beacons of hope. Mugabe. Mobutu. Mengistu. Mswati. Moi. “And those are just the ems,” I said.

The madness started last Sunday night with a concert at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC. It was quite a spectacle. Denzel Washington reminded everyone of how far America had strayed from the path of righteousness, while Samuel L Jackson, wearing the latest in 5th Avenue rebel chic, mixed up some 23rd Psalm with a little Ezekiel 25:17 before taking out a pearl-handled 9mm Star pistol and opening fire on the crowd.

When Josh Groban took the stage, I covered my ears and said: “Where’s that damn lone wolf assassin when we need him?” Brenda threw an empty beer bottle at me. I deflected it and it bounced off Clive’s head. He barely noticed, so enraptured was he by the shameless display of naked patriotism going on in Washington.

Some lard-assed redneck by the name of Garth Brooks almost sparked the biggest line dance in history by yeehawing on about them good ol’ boys drinking whiskey and rye. Obama stopped singing along when Brooks reached the line, “This’ll be the day that I die.”

After all, most of America’s good ol’ boys were at that very moment not only hitting the whiskey and rye, but were also oiling their rifles and wondering how to get a fertiliser bomb to the capital without it going off in the back of the pick-up.

For me, the highlight came when the announcer said, “Ladies and gentlemen, the Bald Eagle.” I expected Obama to stand up. Ronald Reagan’s Secret Service code name was Rawhide. George W Bush’s was Idiot. But Obama wasn’t Bald Eagle. It wasn’t even code. Instead, a lumberjack appeared with America’s national emblem lashed to his wrist.

I was the only one who fell about laughing when the eagle tried to take off and then flapped about helplessly like a trussed-up Transkei chicken.

Obama said a few words, causing Brenda to blush and whimper softly. Clive fell to his knees and clutched his heart. I thought he might be having a cardiac arrest so I pushed him over and pummeled his chest until he wept with gratitude.

The crowd went wild when Obama said, “Anything is possible in America.” They cheered even louder when he added: “Anything, that is, apart from giving Ben Trovato a green card. That’s not possible.”

Fine. I didn’t want one, anyway.

The dramatic denouement came when 135-year-old Pete Seeger, propped up by Bruce Springsteen, shuffled on with a banjo in his hand and a sock on his head. He began singing a 1944 Woody Guthrie song and my eyes filled with tears. Tears of laughter.

Then came Inauguration Day. Beyond Super Tuesday. This was Sublime Tuesday. Radiant Tuesday. Hark-the-herald-angels-sing Tuesday.

I woke early, around lunchtime, and switched to CNN. They were showing live pictures of a city at dawn. “Hurry up,” I shouted to Brenda. “They’re going to start bombing any moment now.”

But this was no war. In terms of sheer magnitude, this was an event second only to the confirmed sighting of Elvis and Jesus walking arm in arm down the ChampsElysées.

Out on the National Mall, a million people dressed as Eskimos were in the grip of some kind of neo-religious fervor. Their eyes were rolled back in their heads, their hands shook and they babbled in tongues. Maybe that was just the cold. And their accents.

It was America’s biggest-ever concentration of black people outside of the country’s prisons and yet there wasn’t a single mugging. So much for the propaganda.

“At midday, a black man will become the most powerful man on the face of the earth,” said a US congressman, causing white supremacists everywhere to soil their trousers and reach for the whiskey and rye.

At some point, the Obamas stopped off at the White House to deliver an eviction notice to the Bushes. Laura looked like a pink popsicle on Prozac while George was smiling as if he knew something the rest of us didn’t, which, as we all know, he doesn’t.

Bush’s trigger-happy factotum, Dick Cheney, refused to go quietly and Secret Service agents were forced to break his legs and take him out in a wheelchair. See ya, bubba.

Apart from Obama fluffing his lines, the inauguration went off without a hitch. One fawning supplicant stopped hyperventilating long enough to describe the occasion as, “Mind-blowing … a secular version of a miracle.”

I went into the garden to make room for more beer and while I was throwing up, Brenda shouted: “You’re missing Yo-Yo Ma!” I rushed inside expecting to see a gold-toothed gangsta from the Bloods rapping about payback time but instead found a middle-aged Chinese nerd strumming his cello.

“Yo-Yo Ma se poes,” I said, going back outside to finish emptying my stomach.

After the inauguration, George W Bush was escorted to a waiting helicopter. I was deeply disappointed. He should have been stripped naked and made to crawl out of Washington on his hands and knees. Mothers who had lost their sons in Iraq and Afghanistan could have taken turns riding on his back, whipping his flabby white buttocks all the way to Texas.

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The Final Countdown to Total Onslaught

I was out the other evening and happened to ask a passing waiter to bring me a fresh beer. He told me he wasn’t a waiter. He said he was a civil engineer from Joburg, visiting Durban on business, and that I could fetch my own goddamn beer. Then he said something in Xhosa and that’s when I knew it was starting.

The uprising. The vengeance. The annihilation of the last white tribe of Africa.

I raced home and phoned United Nations headquarters but they said I couldn’t speak to the secretary general. Have these people learnt nothing from Rwanda? I turned to the interweb to see if anyone out there had an emergency plan of action. A lot of people did – mainly involving shaven Asian babes – but then I found the Suidlanders.

Patriots to a man, they have already given advice to white people on what to do when Mandela dies and the pressure cooker pops its lid. Thing is, their website is entirely in Afrikaans. When I was a child, my mother threatened to wash my mouth out with drain cleaner if I so much as uttered an Afrikaans word.

Now look what’s happened. A whole infoportal giving us instructions on what to do and where to go when anarchy engulfs this country and I can’t understand a word of it.

Maybe it’s deliberate. Maybe the Suidlanders don’t want their places of safety overrun with snooty soutpiele whinnying and braying at cocktail hour and organising games of polo with the war horses.

So, for those who wish to avoid being scalped and roasted over an open fire, but are unsure of what to do when the apocalypse is upon us, here are some handy pointers. This is aimed largely at English-speakers, but black Boers are welcome provided they sit quietly at the back and don’t keep asking other people for cigarettes.

Unfortunately, the catchy name “Suidlanders” is taken and I don’t know what to call ourselves. Send me your suggestions. The best one wins a box of matches.

We also need some kind of divine justification for our actions. The Suidlanders are backed by everyone from Isaiah to Ezekiel and when the Habbakuk hits the fan, I want to know we have solid backing from someone  with real power.

Hugh Hefner once said: “The major civilizing force in the world is not religion; it is sex.” Until we come up with something better, I think that provides a worthy endorsement of our cause.

The Suidlander’s motto is taken from the fourth stanza of the national anthem. I didn’t even know our anthem had stanzas. In fact, the entire affair is the musical equivalent of an Israeli rocket attack on a children’s hospital and should be hauled off to answer charges of violating the integrity of anthems everywhere.

Right. Let’s get down to business.

First rule: Be prepared. You cannot afford to get caught with your pants down. Look what happened to Eugene Terreblanche. You need to be ready to withdraw to a place of safety. Please do not come to my house. It is a place of many things, but safety is not one of them.

It is no secret that black people operate on a complicated system of coded signals. These messages are often transmitted via email, registered post, funny handshakes or simply by shouting from one side of the valley to the other. Bearing in mind that 45 million people need to be alerted, you will have roughly four years to implement your evacuation plan. This may seem like a long time, but once you have gathered the children, found the car keys and convinced your wife that those pants don’t make her bum look fat, your neighbourhood could be in flames.

Do not jump the gun. Many whites emigrate, only to read in the Sydney Herald that it was not the final onslaught after all, but merely a group of striking garbage collectors. Nor should you take fright at the increasing number of people gathered at traffic lights. They are not mobilising. They are merely unemployed. Act as you normally do. Wind up your window and ignore them.

When the moment arrives, and you will know when it does, you need to move quickly to your nearest rallying point where trained personnel will be waiting to escort you to safe locations. I cannot identitfy the rallying points because the darkies would simply go straight there and tear us to pieces. Or worse, make us drink skokiaan and insist on discussing local soccer.

I recommend that you purchase a shovel, a welding torch, a toilet brush and a bag of marijuana. That’s the only down side of the safe locations – there won’t be any darkies around to score weed from. It’s a small price to pay.

You will also need to stockpile food. If you forget to pick up the groceries, you will need to know how to forage for food. We are fortunate to live in a country full of edible and smokable flora. Know your nuts and brush up on your mushrooms. If you eat the Amanita phalloides, you will need a liver transplant. If you are truly one of us, you are likely in need of a new liver anyway. Stick with the Agaricus campestri, or, even better, anything from the psilocybin family.The crucial thing is not to leave your evacuation too late. If you wake up on a Sunday morning to find 50 000 Zulus at your front gate, do not assume they are looking for gardening work and go back to sleep.

On judgement day, it is important that you get moving early. There is little point in beating the mob only to get caught in traffic. Taxi drivers will be the cavalry in this war and they will be doing whatever they can to kill you. In that respect, nothing will have changed.

Hey! Look at that. I pressed a button and translated the Suidlanders’ website into English. “The National Board of Suidelanders want all fans to moon to guard against any illegal action as it not only yourself and your family influence, but also a large community of supporters across the country already in the Suidlander structures are included.”

I am not convinced that mooning is an appropriate response to genocide, but I suppose it’s worth a shot.

Noddy sought on Golly abuse charges

To celebrate Noddy’s 60th birthday, Enid Blyton’s granddaughter has added a new book to the series – the first in 46 years. But Sophie Smallwood has cut the black golliwogs out of the story, saying the characters would be too controversial – news report

I was slumped in the pub the other day when a peculiar-looking fellow came in and pulled up a stool next to me. He asked for a scotch on the rocks and sat there, quietly fraying at the edges. For the sake of good race relations, I introduced myself. He put out his hand. It was soft and furry.

“Golly,” he said. Odd thing to say.

“Golly what?”

He gave a hollow laugh and downed his scotch. “Golliwog,” he said, “although for obvious reasons I don’t use my full name any more.”

Then it dawned on me. “You’re Noddy’s friend, aren’t you?” He snorted. “Don’t talk to me about Noddy. Middle-class snob bastard.” I was shocked.

“But you two always seemed to have so much fun in Toyland!” Golly signaled the barman.

“Sure we did,” said Golly sourly. “But after I closed up the garage, Noddy went off to his posh house and I went back to my shack in Golly Town. The brothers weren’t allowed to live in Toytown. That was for the special ones.”

“You mean ..?”

“Yeah,” said Golly, sniffing his drink suspiciously. “For the whiteys. For imbeciles like Big Ears and the local filth, Mr Plod. He arrested my cousin once. Accused him of stealing Noddy’s stupid taxi. Just imagine.”

Golly slammed his furry fist onto the bar counter. “Noddy wasn’t so perfect, you know.”

“What do you mean?” I said.

“Where do you think he got his name from?”

“From nodding his head to make his little bell ring?”

“Yeah, right. He kept nodding off on account of his heroin habit. The goblins were his suppliers. Not many people know that.”

Golly told me Tessie Bear was a transvestite. We didn’t speak for a while after that. Eventually I plucked up the courage. “Noddy and Big Ears. Is it true they were ..?” He barked harshly.

“They had sleepovers, for Christ’s sake. Noddy lived in a house-for-one. There was no spare room. Use your imagination.”

I ordered a couple of tequilas and changed the subject. “So what do you think of the new Noddy book?”
“Bound to be a bestseller,” he said bitterly, “now that us golliwogs are out of the picture.” It did seem a bit unfair. “Is it because I’m black?” asked Golly angrily.

He downed his tequila and asked for a Jägermeister. “I turned 60 today,” he said.

“To your health,” I said, raising my glass. Golly coughed up a little blood and lit a cigarette. “Doc says my liver’s ruined. Says I’ve got two, maybe three years left.”

I didn’t know what to say. It all seemed so terribly sad. A police siren wailed in the distance. The barman called for last orders. I slipped a twenty into Golly’s tattered pocket and said goodbye.

“See you around,” said Golly, not bothering to look up.

I stopped at the door. “By the way,” I said. “Whatever happened to Bumpy Dog?”

Golly smiled for the first time. “Noddy reversed over him back in ‘62.”

Application for the post of Principle Planner – SA National Parks

Dear Sir,

It is about time you advertised for someone to come up with a plan for Table Mountain National Park. The place is going to seed. It is covered from head to toe in unsightly fynbos. Deadly snakes and unattractive animals like tortoises and dassies carry on as if it’s their home. Nobody I have spoken to has ever been there.

Let me tell you that this pitiful excuse for a park would be a lot more popular if it didn’t have that dirty great mountain blocking everyone’s view.

Once I have the job, the first thing I will do is appoint a task team to look at relocating Table Mountain to the Cape Flats. The area could do with a bit of topographical excitement.

I am closely connected with people in the brewing industry and am confident that we will be able to secure a sponsorship whereby we get unemployed people from Athlone, Mitchell’s Plain, Khayelitsha and so on to move the mountain rock by rock and pay them in heavily discounted brandy past its expiry date.

With that horrible pile of stones out of the way, I will have enough space to begin planning the Apartheid Theme Park I have always dreamed of creating.

I envisage attractions like the Amazing Water Torture Ride where visitors are strapped into roller coasters with their hands lashed behind their backs and wet pillowcases placed over their heads.

We will also have the Accidental Fall of Death Ride in which tourists are blindfolded and left to wander about on a 100m-high platform scattered with bars of soap.

Liar, Liar Balls on Fire won’t be a ride, but rather a quiz show in which white male contestants are hooked up to polygraph machines with electrodes taped to their genitals. They are then interrogated about their part in propping up the former racist regime. Fun, fun, fun for the whole family.

I will also convert Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens into a parking lot for staff and faculty of the nearby university. As you are doubtlessly aware, the only people who bother visiting this absurd jungle are little old ladies and Nigerian muggers. And they can find somewhere else to practice their flower-sniffing, purse-snatching ways.

You want a park? Alright, then. Park right here, madam, for just R200 a day. We will be rich in no time at all.

You will be pleased to know that my vision extends all the way down the peninsula to Cape Point. If you ever go to this desolate region, you will find nothing there but tour buses full of relentless Germans and snap-happy Japanese.

Let me remind you that views do not make money. Casinos make money. Open-cast kaolin mines make money. Strip malls make money. Either give me the job and let me do what I do best or, for the love of god, rename this place Cape Pointless.

I expect to hear from you soon.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Ben Trovato (PhD Peri-Peri Rural Planning)

Application to Transnet Freight Rail for the position of Apprentice Welder

Dear Meneer,

I have been looking for work but nobody wants to hire me. I think the problem, apart from being white, is that I am setting my sights too high. But who wants to be a brain surgeon, anyway? Pompous old pederasts poncing about in white coats. They should grow up. Welding cracked railway tracks is far more fun than welding ganglions in some loser’s cracked brain.

Your advert says applicants must have matric maths and science. I expect that all your train drivers have degrees from Yale. I am a Harvard man, myself. We have certainly come a long way since the days when working for the railways was first choice for anyone who had been dropped on their heads as a baby.

Your ad says I will have to manage equipment and fix battered rail ends. No problem. But you also say I will have to ‘repair skid marks’. I need clarity on this. Are you referring to train lines or my supervisor’s underwear? I agree there are times when only an oxyacetylene torch can get rid of the most stubborn stains, but then I would want some sort of danger pay factored into my salary.

You mention that I would be required to assemble ‘flashbutt joints’. I suppose, after a lunchtime spent deconstructing Descartes’ dictums with the wheel tappers, your welders would need to unwind. But joints – flashbutt or otherwise – are a little gay in my opinion. When I come for the interview, I will bring my Hong Kong bong along and show you how the workers can relax without wasting half their break looking for the Rizlas.

You also say that visual acuity and psychomotor abilities are essential. I don’t mean to be rude, but you risk confusing applicants who might still be working towards their doctorates in developmental neurobiology. What you really mean is that you are looking for someone who doesn’t need the help of a Labrador in finding his way to the bathroom and back, and who can follow a conversation while simultaneously lowering the tinted visor of his welding helmet.

Other requirements are physical fitness, balance and agility. Are you looking for a trapeze artist or a welder? I may have to reconsider if the job involves working on top of fast-moving trains and then leaping onto other trains speeding in the opposite direction. Similarly, the prospect of racing to finish a job before the 8.45 from Kapteinsklip slices me in half leaves me less than enchanted.

If I am unsuitable for the position, please consider me for the post of trainee shed assistant. I would love to work long and irregular hours for a transport company that openly admits it cannot provide transport for its staff.

Yours sincerely,

Dr Ben Trovato (PhD Welding)

PS. I would like to be based in Kroonstad among the cream of Transnet’s intelligentsia.

To the Chief Executive Officer – Potchefstroom Hospital

Dear Comrade Doctor Sir,

I am applying for several positions at your hospital, largely because of the spectacular salaries, the great working hours and the gorgeous nurses who will doubtlessly be assigned to assist me in the performance of my duties, which, I imagine, would include opening people up, taking rotten stuff out and putting good stuff in, sewing them up, pumping them full of drugs and then taking the sisters out for drinks and whatever happy events may transpire thereafter.

I have several degrees in medicine from the highly respected Luanda Cyber University, which only accepts 500 000 new students each month. The paying of one’s fees up front constitutes 80% of the final mark and for geniuses such as myself, an MBChB with all the bells and whistles can be obtained in less than three weeks. I am unable to send you my certificates at the moment as they with the laminators.

You will be pleased to hear that I have specialised in all the fields mentioned in your advertisement.

Although damnably difficult to spell, especially after a few drinks, ophthalmology is really my forté. There is something profoundly magical about looking into a new patient’s eyes and knowing that it won’t be long before you are holding them in your hands. Naturally I will wear surgical gloves. I would never place myself at risk of infection by handling other people’s disgusting body parts without protection.

I believe eyes are the windows to the soul. This is why I have invented a device that plugs the eye sockets once the balls have been removed. I have seen far too many hospitals where souls have been allowed to escape because the windows were carelessly left open during surgery. I don’t need to tell you that there is nothing worse than being inside a ward full of troubled souls flitting about, switching the medication and tickling the patients who are in straitjackets.

You will also be interested to know that I have developed a technique in which the patient is able to leave his or her eyeballs with me and then come back for them in a week or two when I have finished scraping, painting and polishing them.

Paediatrics is another of my specialities. I love children. Even the sick ones. Actually, I am not all that fond of the sick ones. They never stop crying and complaining and, unlike my grown-up patients, I cannot take the horsewhip to them.

My ideal paediatrical patient is a 10-year-old who pretends to be sick in order to miss school. With a little whispered collaboration and the dispensing of certain substances that shall remain nameless, it often ends up that the child manages to miss two or three years of school. I expect some of them will want to reward me handsomely later on in life once they are in a position to throw a couple of juicy tenders my way.

I understand one of the requirements of this position is a willingness to train junior doctors. What an excellent idea. Given the nature of the field, it makes perfect sense. An eight-year-old girl with a sore throat or crushed vertebrae would feel far more comfortable in the hands of a doctor her own age.

I showed a tremendous amount of interest in playing doctors and nurses at a very young age and can testify that by the time I was seven, I could identify and name every part of the female anatomy. Blindfolded. After I got married, I began removing the blindfold at bedtime but it wasn’t strictly necessary since I still knew my around and nothing much had changed.

I see you also have a post in orthopaedics. Be sure to count me in. If there is one thing I know, it is bones. I have five dogs. Don’t talk to me about bones. From where I sit, I can see dozens of them strewn across the floor. My house looks like Hannibal Lecter has moved in.

You will be thrilled to hear that I have invented a procedure whereby people are able to remove the bones from their arms before they sleep. I won’t go into detail because you will steal my idea and win the Nobel Prize, but be honest, who wouldn’t welcome the end of awkward nocturnal arm syndrome? Just imagine, no more waking up in a blind panic thinking you are having a heart attack when it’s only paraesthesia, or, as we know it in the medical fraternity, pins and needles.

However, I still get the odd patient who wakes up and forgets to put his bones back in and then finds he can’t pick up his cup of coffee or beat his kids, but generally the ORA (overnight rubber arm) procedure works remarkably well.

As for the positions available in the intensive care unit, say no more. I simply adore the ICU. My absolute favourite is the machine that goes ‘ping’. Are you familiar with it?

I also find that patients in the ICU are the best-behaved of all. No idle chatter about the rugby or whining about the food. Lovely people, they are. Tolerant, respectful and, above all, dead quiet. And also you’re not wallowing about knee-deep in misery, blood and gore. The nurses are sexy, full of jokes and they keep the place spotless. I should have married an ICU nurse.

The hospital will also be able to utilise my skills as an anaesthesialologist. I have first-hand knowledge of everything that makes you pass out. Growing up, my father would come home and play games with me. One of the games was called chlorocatch. We would chase each other around the house and whoever got caught would have to sniff a dishcloth soaked in chloroform. I never managed to catch my dad, but every time I woke up after the game, my mother would be pregnant.

The part of anaestheololology I love the most is when you get to have a little fun with the patients while they are unconscious. I have yet to meet a doctor who can resist drawing a happy face on someone’s grumpy penis or taking cellphone pictures of a particularly pretty vagina. After all, isn’t that why it is called theatre?

One last thing. I see one of my duties would be to ensure adherence to something called Batho Pele principles. Is that the South African version of the Hippocratic Oath? I hope not. Have you seen the Hippocratic Oath? It says things like: “In every house where I come I will enter only for the good of my patients, keeping myself far from all intentional ill-doing and all seduction and especially from the pleasures of love with women or with men, be they free or slaves.”

I am sure you will agree that the whole point of being a doctor is that you get to have sex with vulnerable patients. Well, that and the money, obviously.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Yours truly,

Dr Ben Trovato (MBChB; FNB; ACDP; MWeb)

An Open Letter To Nelson Mandela

Dear Madiba,

You probably won’t get this because the mail doesn’t always get through to the intensive care unit at the Pretoria Medi-Clinic Heart Hospital, but I thought I’d write to you anyway.

I have a feeling that nobody tells you anything these days, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. You wouldn’t want to be on Facebook or have a Twitter account. It would make you angrier than Winnie ever did.

You are causing quite a commotion, I can tell you. I don’t recall ever seeing every major television network in the world running this many lead stories about an old man lying in a hospital bed. You’d laugh. I’m sure you would.

Dozens of them are out there right now, sleeping rough on the cold streets of Jozi, waiting for you to kick the bucket. Some people are calling them vultures. They aren’t, really. They just want to be there when you do decide to shuffle off this mortal coil.  Knowing Jacob Zuma’s impish sense of humour, he will hold a press conference in Pretoria when he gets the call. What fun it would be to see all those outside broadcast vans scrambling for the N1. I think the Americans will get there first. As you know, they can be pretty pushy when it comes to getting what they want. After all, it was George Herbert Walker Bush who got you out of jail, not FW de Klerk. Am I right?

It’s costing the international media tens of thousands of dollars a day to maintain a presence outside your hospital. Live feeds don’t come cheap these days. They are not bad people. But you are costing them money. And there are other stories to be covered. They are hungry, thirsty, dirty and tired. Most of them, dare I say, would appreciate it tremendously if you popped off sooner rather than later.

I would like to see you make enough of a recovery to flirt with a nurse, shout at a doctor, condemn the ANC for tolerating incompetence and fostering corruption, and send the journalists sloping back to their lairs thinking it’s another false alarm. Then, quite unexpectedly, you go off to heaven to organise an armed uprising against the tyranny of God.

A reporter for the Sophiatown Sun, lost and drunk, staggers past the hospital and lands the scoop of the century. That’s the kind of poetry this country needs right now.

I’m not sure if you know this, but you do have your critics. In medieval times, they would have been burnt at the stake. However, few of us can afford steak these days. I’m sorry. This is no time for jokes.

Your critics, most of whom have good jobs and live in the suburbs, say that you were too soft on the white people. That instead of national reconciliation, there should have been a policy of national retribution. I don’t always know if they’re proposing a pound of flesh or a pound of Sterling.

Looking back, you might perhaps have done more to encourage the rich to give to the poor. Thabo Mbeki confused the rich with his sophisticated pipe-smoking ways and post-prandial, neo-Marxist, watch-out-for-the-tokoloshe talk. Then Jacob Zuma came along and scared the rich right out of the country.

I see some of your family has come to visit you. That’s lovely. Did you see Zaziwe Dlamini-Manaway and Swati Dlamini? Security probably blocked them because they had a bigger television crew than CNN. Imagine trying to get into the hospital by claiming that you have your own TV show called Being Mandela, but your ID says Dlamini-whatwhat.

Most of your judgment calls were spot on. Becoming a lawyer, for instance. That was a brilliant idea. The Boers would never have dared arrest a lawyer. Oh, wait.

But having been acquitted at Rivonia, you should have gone to ground. What the hell were you doing on the R103? You should have been on the N2. It’s quicker and the filth only put up roadblocks over Easter.

You know what else you should have done? You should have started a fitness class. Did you ever watch one of Jane Fonda’s workout videos? That would have been in 1982, the same year you were transferred from Robben Island to Pollsmoor Prison.

If you had come out of jail and launched a health and lifestyle video, you would be a rich man today. Oh, right. You are a rich man. Well, you were until your lawyers, family, friends and enemies started tearing each other apart to get a slice of that big ol’ Madiba pie.

All I’m saying is that you’re still alive at 94, whereas a lot of people who didn’t spend 20 years on an island aren’t. Sure, it wasn’t exactly Humming Bird Cay in the Bahamas, but you got lots of fresh air, a fair bit of exercise in the limestone quarry, early nights, no alcohol and no women. I think I would rather die young. But that’s just me.

I won’t tell you about the things that are going on in the name of the liberation struggle because you’d probably have a heart attack and then my letter to you would be redundant. I would have wasted a couple of hours and you’d feel that you would have wasted your entire life.

Your slapping PW Botha’s hand aside in 1985 and saying, “With all due respect, Meneer Botha, if you want to free me, you have to free all of us, or you can go fuck yourself” resonated with the nation. It taught us the principle of all for one and one for all. Now it’s just a free for all. But that’s not your problem. Nor is it your fault. The white pigs emigrated and left the trough wide open for the black pigs. We are human animals. It’s our nature.

I don’t believe you stopped a genocidal bloodbath. But if you did, thank you for that. What you did do, though, was lift the name South Africa out of the rotten stinking fetid swamp that the National Party had dragged it into. You gave our country a name that we – oppressed and oppressors – could at last be proud of.

So it’s midnight on June 13th, 2013. I raise my glass to you, Madiba.

Hamba kahle.

Application for the position of Director of Rugby at St John’s College, Johannesburg

Dear Arch-Vicar,

Congratulations on having the courage and wisdom to create a position like this.

People think there is something wrong with me when I tell them that the reason education is in crisis is because schools are not focusing enough on rugby. Sure, a lot of them have a team or two that plays on the odd weekend, but that is nowhere near what it should be.

Without a director of rugby, a school is little more than a place in which young people congregate to have their heads filled with rubbish like science and history. Would you believe that they are even being taught mind-rotting filth like evolution theory? No wonder our lunatic asylums and prisons are overflowing.

I am very pleased to see that a Christian school has taken the lead in showing the government where its priorities should lie insofar as teaching the next generation something of real value is concerned.

As Paul said in his first letter to the Corinthians: “Neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor male prostitutes, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor slanderers, nor extortioners, nor those who play not rugby shall inherit the Kingdom of God.”

Far too many schools in this country treat rugby as if it were just another homosexual activity like cricket or hockey. Tennis, needless to say, is an abomination in the eyes of the Lord and yet it is still played openly, often in front of children and the elderly. May their rotten souls burn in the hellfires of eternal damnation.

Watching the Sharks or the Blue Bulls, even the casual observer can quickly tell which player is the product of a worthy God-fearing school such as yours, and which is the product of an evil system propped up by the antichrist.

When I have the job at St John’s, I will make it a rule that any player who scores a try, drop goal or conversion and then turns to wave at his mother, or wiggle his hips for the cameras, will be forcibly removed from the field and locked in the Sin Bin, a one-metre-square steel box I have built, where he will remain until he is able to recite the Ten Commandments in their original Aramaic.

Players like Bryan Habana set an outstanding example by giving credit to God whenever they score, make a pass, kick the ball into touch or even tie up their shoelaces correctly. There is nothing that gladdens my heart more than seeing a player fall to one knee and point to the sky. He is letting us know that God is guiding him – that he is simply a tool. A big, hairy tool.

Having said that, I do find the tactic of bowing heads and kneeling in silence to be marginally less intimidating than that disturbing pagan dance the New Zealanders do.

With your permission, I will get the lads to perform something out of the Crusades. I expect the swords will be provided by St John’s. This should work particularly well when we play against the Muslim, Jewish and old Prussian schools.

I will also be changing the outfits. Although you are Anglican – what the infidels call Catholic Lite – and would probably rather stick to tradition, my research has shown that the best way to get people to watch the game is to put the boys in tight shorts and shirts.

Rest assured that under my firm hand the team will return to the ancient practice of allowing forward passes, using a sheep’s bladder for a ball and stoning the unmarried mothers whose first-born play in the losing team.

There will be none of this drinking the blood and eating the body of Christ at half-time. Quite frankly, I think it is an appalling practice and sets a terrible example for the boys. Instead, we will share vials of amyl nitrate, a biblical balm which, as Moses discovered, goes a long way towards boosting team morale.

Unfortunately, this energising ambrosia has over time been misappropriated by sexual deviants for purposes which rarely have anything to do with rugby.

By the way, sources not far removed from a certain archangel by the name of Gabriel have informed me that the Springbok coach is planning on using me as his secret weapon in the match against Scotland this weekend. Please keep this to yourself. It wouldn’t do to have those haggis-snorting brutes get wind of the plan.

I shall let you know when it’s convenient for me to start work.

Yours in Christ and Rugby,

Ben “Tighthead” Trovato

Application for the position of Chief Executive Officer of the National Gambling Board

Dear Sir,

I take it you are a sir and not a madam because it has been my experience that, apart from the moment when they stand at the altar and say, “I do”, women are not gamblers by nature. I have always felt this to be rather a pity. Although their sixth sense clearly doesn’t cover the selection of a fit and proper husband, there is no reason to think it wouldn’t work when it comes time to decide whether to hit or stick, see or raise, or just plain have another tug on the old fruit machine.

I assume the position of CEO does not require much of an education. I do have one, though, but it is currently not in use. What I do have is an overwhelming love of gambling. I bet that you will not find anyone else whose passion for this sport of kings surpasses mine. I bet you R500. By reading this, you have automatically accepted the terms and conditions of the bet. Best you get your wallet out.

As the country’s gambler-in-chief, I will obviously be introducing a number of changes. My first act will be to install slot machines in every bar, restaurant, cinema, theatre, museum, supermarket and rehabilitation centre in the country. I don’t know who had this job before me, but he clearly dropped the ball on this one. Nobody should go out at night and not be within two minutes of a slot machine. It is simply unforgivable that this situation has been allowed to develop.

My second act will be install roulette wheels in schools. This wonderful educational tool will teach children about centrifugal force, the law of averages and the difference between red and black.

It must be remembered that the children of today are a new breed. When we were at school, we were never given pocket money. Our parents were in the church or the army or police force and never earned very much, although you would think that anyone who worked that hard to keep the blacks out of government would have been paid handsomely.

When our mothers packed us off to school, we were given a punch in the face and a piece of bark to chew on. Today’s kids are spoilt rotten. Not only are they given food, but the little darlings get money for the tuck shop, too.

That’s another thing. In our day we couldn’t get crystal meth and ecstasy from the tuck shop. We could only buy rubbish like cream donuts and fizzy stuff full of sugar and caffeine that would drive us demented and force our teachers to beat us mercilessly until we were hollow-eyed shells barely capable of absorbing even the most basic facts surrounding the Great Trek.

But I digress.

My point is that these children have access to disposable income which should be put to better use. Just because they are shorter than most adults doesn’t mean that their rights should be trampled upon. Smack them about, by all means, but don’t deny them the right to gamble.

A child who doubles or even trebles his money between classes is a happy, motivated child. I am nothing if not a responsible gambler, so it must be said that a child who loses all his money will suffer self-esteem problems and may try to commit suicide.

Seriously, though, who wouldn’t want their son or daughter to learn from a young age that one doesn’t necessarily have to work hard to become rich? I made this discovery relatively late in life – I think I was 32 – and that was only by a fortunate coincidence involving my uncle, two Indian fellows and a Chinaman with a rabbit down his trousers.

As CEO of the Gambling Board, I will also strive to ensure that every suburb has at least two casinos. With religion dying out, it should be a simple matter of buying up the churches and converting them into bright, shiny pleasure palaces.

I want to put the sex back into bingo. I want poker machines in public toilets and blackjack in the hospitals. I want horse racing in the mornings, dog fights in the afternoons and naked mud wrestling at night. I want heads or tails to decide political disputes and playing the Lotto to be made compulsory. The only game I want banned is craps. Americans are big on craps and, quite frankly, I think it is a revolting habit.

I can start immediately. But maybe I am just saying that. Maybe I can only start in a month’s time. Want to put something on it?

Yours truly,

Ben “The One-Armed Bandit” Trovato