Month: October 2014

Doggy just went out of style

My attention was snared by a story that Malaysia’s predominantly Islamic population had been rocked by a shocking event held in a park on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur. What depraved act had been committed in public now? Reluctantly, I read on.

The event was called, “I Want to Touch a Dog.” That’s wrong on so many levels. Who wants to be out shopping with the family and come across a bunch of degenerate savages down on their hands and knees doing unspeakable things to dogs? Not me, that’s for sure. And certainly not Nurul Islam Mohamed Yusof, a leader in the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party’s youth wing.

In a statement, he said: “Previously there was the organisation of ‘Topless Friday’, followed by ‘Oktoberfest’, then ‘I Want to Touch a Dog.’ We worry that there will next be a ‘Sex & Condom’ campaign with the rationale of ‘safe sex’ to ostensibly prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS.”

But I was wrong. This wasn’t an invitation for bestialists to inappropriately touch our furry friends. Far from it. Instead, it was an invitation ­– mainly for children – to familiarise themselves with dogs in a fear-free environment.

Dogs, apparently, are haram (forbidden) in Islam as they are thought to be dirty. Their mouths and noses are considered particularly impure and there is a special cleansing ritual one can follow should one inadvertently touch these appalling appendages. Sometimes, when my dogs are in the back of my car, I’ll turn around while reversing and the yellow one will lick me in my mouth. She doesn’t go unpunished, of course. Later, while she is asleep, I sneak up and sneeze in her face. She thinks it’s a game, but it isn’t. It’s my cleansing ritual and I take it very seriously.

Commenting on the dog-touching event, an official from the Department of Islamic Development Malaysia referred to a fatwa which was issued after an incident where a Muslim had posted a video of the family bathing their dogs.

Bathing! Off with their heads!

Syed Azmi Alhabshi, the man who organised “I Want to Touch a Dog”, went into hiding after a tsunami of death threats. I have received the odd death threat over the years, but I haven’t taken them as seriously as I might have done had I lived in, say, a country where you can have your legs chopped off if you accidentally trip and your willy falls into another man’s bottom.

In this case, the anti-doggists want him stoned. It seems a bit severe for encouraging people to pat their dogs.

Over a thousand people went to the event, which shows that quite a lot of Muslims are interested in getting to know dogs a little better. And why not? I mean, it’s not as if dogs are banned in Malaysia. Sure, most people own them for hunting or security purposes. But would it kill them to show their dogs a little physical affection? Apparently it might.

Siti Sakinah, an NGO worker, attended the event with her children so they could “overcome their fear and learn that dogs are also creatures created by Allah that need love and care”. Jesus, lady. Why not just go to Mecca and sell ham sandwiches?

Seven-year-old Nur Aliyah Mohammed Nasir said she was very happy. “I touched many dogs and carried some of them.” The Huskies were her favourite. They’re also a big favourite in Vietnam and Korea, mainly as carpaccio.

Some critics accused the organiser of being part of a Zionist plot.

The red dog just wandered into my study. I looked him sternly in the eye. “You’re haram,” I said. He wagged his tail and licked my leg. I bent down and gave him a hug. At this rate, Palestine will be overrun in no time at all.

Hey Oscar, how’s the reception in Cell C?

Howzit Oscar, Congratulations, boet. You’ve got to be the luckiest oke alive. Okay, maybe not the luckiest. But still. For the judge to have bought your ‘intruder’ story was a miracle on its own. And then to get what could amount to nothing more than ten months in the cushy hospital section is the cherry on top. How’s the food? Worse than Uncle Arnold’s, I bet. Although I must say, Arnold strikes me as someone who’d rather be making money than casseroles. Have you joined a gang yet? My advice is to avoid the 26s, even though they are known as the cleaners. White South Africans know very little about domestic matters and there’s no reason to think you’re any different. But I’d advise you to do it yourself rather than hire one of the 26s. These people are criminals and can’t be trusted. However, you may find that cleaning is something you have a natural talent for. In which case, you might want to sign up. A word of warning. The 26s don’t encourage their members to interfere with one another’s bottoms. I’m not saying it’s something you’d be interested in, but stranger things have happened to men behind bars. You may find that prison appeals to your aggressive nature. If you want to dabble in a spot of violence, you’ll have to upgrade to the 27s. They like nothing more than a bit of the old stick-a-shiv-in-your-throat. They, too, frown on bumming among the membership. Also, they are the most secretive of the gangs and are the ones who communicate between the 26s and 28s. You have a few secrets of your own, right? It must be said, though, that you fall down a bit when it comes to communication skills. For instance, most people would make an effort to communicate with their girlfriend, if, for example, she was in bed and they, say, had to get up to shoot an ‘intruder’. The 28s are really only an option if you find yourself attracted to another inmate. Isn’t Radovan Krecjir just a few doors down? I’ve always liked a big man, myself. I imagine he’s very good with his hands. They also work in the kitchens and never seem to go short of food. It might be worth it for the odd chop. On the other hand, there are bloodlines in the 28s and it starts getting a bit complicated with military wings and civil wings and who’s a ‘wyfie’, who’s a ‘soldier’ and so on. Also, an ambitious person like you will want to be promoted. This might entail having to stab a warden. Gun people are generally useless with knives and you’d probably do yourself a mischief. Since you’re in a section inhabited solely by the sick and disabled, you might want to consider starting your own gang. You could call yourself the G4K4s. That’s an old army reference, in case you didn’t know. What you need to do as quickly as possible is get the respect of the other prisoners. Most of them won’t be impressed that you can run 400m in under 45 seconds. They’ll only say, “Hey Orska, if you so fast how come you got caught?” Actually, if someone says that, whip off one of your legs and stab him in the face. You’re standing on a couple of deadly weapons and would be crazy not to use them, especially after your buddy on the bench made it clear that they weren’t to be taken away from you. I’m surprised you didn’t tell your lawyer to use the Nike defence. There they were, your sponsors, telling you to, “Just do it.” You were contractually obliged to act without thinking. If their slogan had been, “Check before you do it”, you might still be out there chatting up the chicks and shooting through someone’s sunroof. If you hear an intruder in the bathroom, at least this time you can be absolutely certain that it’s a murderer, rapist or housebreaker in there. Whatever you do, don’t scream like a woman. It would be like shouting, “Free wine!” at an AA meeting. However, it’s something you might want to look into as a means of making a bit of extra cash. You go to someone’s cell and scream like a woman for five bucks a shot. Use it, don’t use it. You could also be the main supplier of Rizla papers. Presumably you know that, on the street, they’re called blades. Then you could keep your name Blade Runner. How cool would that be? Say howzit to Eugene de Kock for me. Then skop him in the nuts. He has killed more people than you have, but he wears glasses and will never win a world record that doesn’t involve torture. You da captain now. Stay away from that Polish prick, Anus Walus, or whatever the hell his name is. Unless, of course, you want to get dronk in die tronk. He probably imports crates of filthy rotgut vodka from the home country. It’s funny to think that if your fans want to write to you, they need to send their letters to Pretoria Central Prison. It’s even funnier to think that you still have fans. Actually, it’s not funny at all. It’s just weird. You’ve got more fans than I have and I haven’t even killed anyone. Oops. Pretoria Central is the old apartheid name for your new home. What’s it called now? Kgosi Mampuru the Second or something. Who the hell is this Kgosi oke? I tried googling him but it didn’t help. Odd business, hey. They rename a prison after someone who was presumably a struggle hero, but nobody can find out who he was because your name keeps coming up. If the DA is stupid enough to want to rename a major boulevard after FW de Klerk, there’s no reason to think correctional services isn’t brazen enough to rename the prison after you. A lot of people would commit crimes just to be able to say they served in Oscar Pistorius Central. I wouldn’t mind having that on my CV. But I prefer women to guns. You liked both and now you can’t have either. I said to someone the other day that if private ownership of guns were banned as it is in countries like Britain, Australia and Japan, Reeva might be alive today. He called me an idiot and said that if Reeva had had a gun that night, things might have turned out very differently. Perhaps. But if everyone in the country had a weapon, you’d have to shout to be heard above the gunshots. It would sound like Dewali every night. Now that you can’t have a gun, you are going to have to rely on new skills to defend yourself when you get out. You could try talking, although I don’t know how effective that’s going to be when you bump into the likes of Mikey Schultz at the VIP Room on a Saturday night. Anyway, china. Hang in there. I mean it.  Literally.

A letter to the horn-happy hunters

Dear Dawie Groenewald and your gay brother, Janneman. Sorry, Janneman. Maybe you aren’t gay. But what the hell kind of name is Janneman? It’s fucked up, that’s what it is. You got the good name, Dawie, no doubt about it. A real South African name. The kind of name you want to have if you’re going to grow up and rip people off and kill rhinos and cause all sorts of shit. Janneman probably mixes the martinis while you’re out there hacking the horns off. I hope you don’t split the money. Although I must say it’s a helluva lot harder to mix the perfect martini than it is to shoot a drugged rhino from nine metres. So you hunt in Botswana, Tanzania, Zimbabwe and right here in South Africa. Your farm, Prachtig, is 60kms south of Musina in Limpopo Province. I’m just pointing this out for the benefit of hunters and not so that normal people can find out where you live and burn your house down. The US government has charged your ass with conspiracy to sell illegal rhino hunts to American hunters, money laundering and secretly trafficking in rhino horns. That’s some pretty badass shit, my bru. An 18-count indictment. Sounds heavy. Of course, that means shit out here. Get the right lawyer and the right judge and you’re home in time for sundowners. In America, I reckon it might mean something else. Americans aren’t big on mercy. They want to nail your ass. And if they can’t, they will grab someone else’s ass and find a way to call it yours. That’s where you went wrong. You were so focused on rhino horns that you forgot to lay a false trail for the Feds. It happens to the best of us. The only reason I heard about you was because I bought a local paper that had used an AFP story out of Washington and noticed the headline, “US charges SA duo over illegal rhino hunts.” It was a small piece buried on page seven, which means that, at most, nine people know about what you and your brother have been up to. You’re safe. Fourteen million people know what Jacob Zuma and his handlangers are up to, and we don’t really give a damn. I’m going to be frank, bru. You blew it. But you blew it right from the start. If you’re going to be helping Americans kill rhinos with the express intention of fucking them over (the Americans – the rhinos are already fucked), then you shouldn’t have called yourself Out of Africa Adventurous Safaris. It’s a ridiculous name. You obviously saw the movie with Robert Redford and Meryl whatshername. But if you’d read the book, which you wouldn’t have done because I would willingly have my left leg chopped off if it could be shown that you and Janneman had read anything more complicated than the K53 driver’s license manual … where was I? Anyway. I checked out your website. It’s like a wet dream for people like Oscar Pistorius, although not really because wildebeest will hardly ever break into your toilet. “Bring a bolt action or a double rifle (muzzleloaders are welcome). For Buffalo, Rhino and Elephant, a minimum calibre of 375 is required. All calibres bigger than this are welcome. For Lions, Leopard, Antelopes and other medium game a calibre of 300 or 30-06 will be sufficient. For dangerous game, 40 full metal-jacket cartridges as well as 40 soft-point cartridges are required. For medium game you will need at least 80 soft-point cartridges. Fit your rifle with a good quality scope with variable power; 1.5-6 x 42, 2.2-9 x 42 or the like. For transportation of your rifle between hunting areas, a soft case per gun is required.” You don’t regard lions and leopards as dangerous game? I suppose if they’re on anti-depressants, I guess they ain’t that dangerous. You’re asking $25 500 for a ten-day buffalo and sable hunt? That’s insane. I can go to a game auction and pay less for a buffalo and a flock of sable and put them in the back of my car. Take them home and scatter them about my yard. Your price for a three-day “rhino darting safari” starts at $10 000 per hunter. That’s, like, R100 000. It seems a bit fucking steep to play darts with a rhino. Still and all. You’re a high stakes, classy outfit, even offering “green” hunts that involve the more sensitive hunter firing a tranquiliser into the rhino and then letting him pose with the sedated animal for a tastefully lit photograph. After which you send him to the bar for a gin and tonic while a sweaty brute hacks the horn off and you ship it to Hanoi a day or two later. But to get back to your price list. To gun down a lechwe in Mpumalanga costs a mere $3 950. Lechwe, and I mean no disrespect to lechwe, are lazy. If there were traffic lights in the bush, lechwe would be the first to hang around waiting for a handout. Shooting them is probably doing them a favour. I only hope their families get some of the money. What else do you have on your menu? A baboon in Limpopo goes for $200. Really? I know baboons who will sell their young for a quarter of the price. And a bushpig for $600 is just silly. You can sit in your car with a beer between your legs and a carrot in your hand and a bushpig will walk right up to you. If he could talk, he would say, “Six hundred dollars? You’ve been had. I’m a pig who lives in the bush. I wouldn’t pay twenty dollars for me. Anyway. At least let me eat the carrot. Then you can blow my brains out.” I don’t know, Dawie, but $3 800 for a giraffe seems unreasonable. It sticks its head into your rondavel looking for an apple and you put your 9mm against its temple and pull the trigger. You don’t even have to get out of bed. I’m not saying it’s unsporting, but in terms of effort versus expenditure, there’s a bit of a gap. Your price of $350 for a porcupine strikes me as fair. These little fuckers walk about as if they own the place, but the moment you pick him up to put him on the barbecue he shoots a million quills into your face. Fuck him. Zebra seems a tad overpriced at $1800. They’re just gay horses, really. And they know it, too. It doesn’t matter how many times you tell them that stripes went out in the 80s, they just love to be stroked and admired. And when it comes time to kill them, they prefer it to be done at sunset with a crossbow. While Frank Sinatra plays in the background. You might have to explain to your zebra that the real Frank Sinatra wasn’t available. Don’t tell him that Frank is dead because he will probably kill himself, which will deprive everyone of an income. I was intrigued by your list of supplies that you recommend clients bring with them. Two pairs of hunting trousers? What the hell are hunting trousers? Two pairs I can understand, because one might soil the first pair should an impala spring unannounced from the bush. A pair of gloves I can understand. You are, after all, running a criminal enterprise and the last thing you want is the FBI lifting a clean set of prints off a warthog gunned down under suspicious circumstances. I am, I must say, mystified by your requirement of “1 razor with blades or batteries”. Is this to shave a dead animal? Kudu can be hairy, yes, but why would that offend you? And if not for the animals, do you prefer your hunters to be clean-shaven? Perhaps Janneman insists upon it. I know a lot of men who have had bad experiences with scratchy beards. Actually, that’s not true. I just don’t want Janneman to feel like he’s some sort of freak. The last thing we want is Janneman building a nuclear weapon, right, Dawie? LOL. So you pulled the wool over the South African police’s eyes for all these years. I expect it wasn’t that difficult. But now you’ve discovered that the US Fish and Wildlife Service are/is bit brighter than our boys and girls. America wants to extradite you. Nou is julle in die kak. Although not necessarily. It depends on who you know in the government. Do you know people in the government? Of course you do. You wouldn’t have got yourselves this deep in the shit if you didn’t. Can they get you out? Maybe. Your biggest mistake was ripping off the Yanks. They don’t care if other nationalities get fucked over, but don’t mess with a US citizen, even if he is a brain-damaged intra-bred redneck from, well, he could be from anywhere. “Good shot, Tex!” “So ya’ll gonna wrap up my horn or what?” “No can do, Tex. You aren’t allowed to take rhino horn out of the country. But you can take a picture of it!” Tex goes home and the horn goes to Vietnam. Everyone’s happy. Except the rhino. You found a loophole there, Dawie. But you forgot one thing. Never bullshit an American who carries a gun. He’s either gonna kill you, fuck you or take you to court. You fucked with the wrong people, Dawie. You can’t charge for the hunt and then sell the horns on the sly. If there’s one thing Americans hate, it’s double dipping. Alabama’s US Attorney, George Beck, said: “Not only did they break South African laws, but they laundered their ill-gotten gains through our banks here in Alabama. Jesus, bro. You could’ve gotten away with poaching rhino and ripping off Americans. You could’ve got away with almost anything. But did nobody ever tell you not to fuck with the banks of Alabama? Did you think you’d be alright because you’re white? Those days are over, my friend. Say howzit to Oscar.

Patently not inventors

Our government is worried that not enough people are applying for patents. In other words, South Africans are useless when it comes to coming up with stuff that nobody else has thought of.

And it’s not just democracy that has made us stupid. We were stupid long before then. Let us take a look at some of the things that South Africans have invented.

The CAT scan. Personally, I think this is a misprint. Either that, or something got lost in translation. What physicist Allan Cormack did in the 1960s was invent the cat scam. I am not going into detail because this has the potential to make buckets of money and I want it all for myself. Besides, there are only two people in this country capable of training cats to perform this scam and I am not about to give you their names.

The oil-from-coal refinery. Given the current hoo-ha about global warming, putting this on your boasting list is a bit like a German property developer from Camps Bay listing acceptance to the Hitler Youth as one of his achievements. Eventually we will all be byproducts of Sasol, anyway.

Heart transplant. Not strictly an invention, but we’ll take what we can get. Dr Chris Barnard was a philandering playboy who barely recognised his own kids. But he was good with a knife and he knew his way around the chest cavity. Just like most middle-ranking members of the 28s today.

Speed gun. Invented in 1992 by Henri Johnson, this could have been the final solution to crime. Just imagine. A gun that fired at the speed of light. A gun that shot bolts of pure white energy into the black hearts of the yellow-eyed varmints, instantly vapourising their bodies. A gun that fired by itself whenever it sensed the presence of evil. But, no. Henri’s invention measures the speed and angle of rubbish like cricket and tennis balls. You can see the results at the bottom of the screen when Morné Morkel bowls. 138km/h, says the speed gun. And nobody dies. I really can’t see the point.

Kreepy Krauly. Easily the most dangerous thing ever invented. I doubt I am the only person to have come close to cardiac arrest while running between the pump and the inlet, backwashing, circulating, pushing, shoving and shouting, “suck, motherfucker, suck!” Only someone who stumbled out of the Belgian Congo in 1951 could have come up with such a monstrosity. Colonel Kurtz was an aid worker compared to Ferdinand Chauvier.

APS therapy. The Action Potential Stimulation device was invented by Gervan Lubbe, whose name alone should have seen him incarcerated in a home for the criminally insane. At first glance the gizmo sounds like something really useful. Something that might enable women to take care of their own orgasms while giving men time to focus on their golf game, for example. But it’s not. The only thing it does is relieve arthritic pain, which counts for nothing if you don’t have arthritis. Anyway, all you have to do these days is wince in a doctor’s direction and he happily hands over a giant bag of super-addictive painkillers.

Pratley Putty. This ridiculous sounding substance held Apollo XI mission’s Eagle landing craft together, making it the first South African invention to go to the moon. Or, more likely, to a secret film studio in the Nevada desert. Hundreds of tons of the stuff are exported around the world each year. I have never used it because I have other ways of keeping my shit together.

Dolosse. Not only one of the most lyrical words in the English language, but also the best way to keep the ocean from crashing into the street and drowning you and your loved ones. Designed by Eric Merrifield, a man built like a large, oddly shaped concrete block, dolosse weigh up to 20 tons. Eric, slightly less. The Coega Project near Port Elizabeth recently made history with the casting of the biggest, ugliest dolosse the world has ever seen. Foreigners visiting PE often have trouble telling the dolosse from the locals.

Appletiser. Undrinkable when mixed with whisky, brandy, vodka or anything else. Completely pointless.

Fire. First used at Swartkrans cave 1.5 million years ago. Used mainly as a reason to file insurance claims and activate deadly carcinogens in boerewors. An increasingly viable alternative to Eskom.

Hippo drum water roller. This device makes it possible for rural girls as young as three to transport drinking water over vast distances. Many of them will go on to become world-class athletes in the hippo drum water roller event, only for their dreams to be shattered when it turns out that the water they drank as kids caused bunches of testicles to grow in their armpits.

Apartheid. A political system similar to democracy except that only white people get to vote. Many South Africans living in Perth, New Jersey, London and Wellington proudly claim apartheid as a uniquely South African invention. However, this is strongly disputed by the few remaining Australian aboriginals, North American Indians and Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independence Party.


Ways to leave your lover (without going to jail)

It is not uncommon for a man to find himself in a situation where he has to get rid of a wife or girlfriend at short notice. There are several ways of accomplishing this. Personally, however, I wouldn’t recommend the Pistorius or Dewani options. It’s just not worth the risk of having to listen to probation officer Annette Vergeer. A feral version of one-time pop star Limahl, she is the most effective deterrent against violent crime I have ever come across. Had the Enola Gay flown low over Hiroshima playing her voice through powerful speakers mounted on the undercarriage, the Japanese would have begged for the atomic bomb.

Maybe I’m just old-fashioned, but if you want to regain your bachelor status, you don’t always have to use a gun or hire a hit man. Here are a few helpful hints on how to break up without getting twenty years in jail. Or, if the right judge is on the bench, a month at home watching television and an afternoon sweeping a corridor in a government building.

The Face-to-Face Method

Old school. Practiced mainly by the aristocracy and younger men who have not lived long enough to grasp the dangers inherent in the situation. Women do not, as a matter of course, appreciate the direct approach as much as one might think. Taking her to the Wimpy and encouraging her to order the most expensive item on the menu (the 600g ribs & chips for R125) while intending to break her heart over the Schweet Cinnamon Donut™ is neither courageous nor honest. It’s just plain dumb. If you’re going to do it face-to-face, stay away from places that offer easy access to knives. Wear protective gear. But make it discreet. It you pick her up dressed like an ice hockey goalkeeper, she’s going to know something is up. This method works best if you retain the element of surprise. Lose that and you could lose your testicles.

The Electronic Method

No mess, no fuss. Popular among older men who have been slapped, headbutted, bitten and kneed in the groin more times than they care to remember. There is a school of thought that says it is unethical to break up with a woman via e-mail or SMS. Quite frankly, that’s ridiculous. Avoiding public humiliation and personal injury is paramount. The only inconvenience is having to change your number when she begins sending you death threats on the hour. When ending it via a text message, keep it short. “Sori bt cnt do ths enimor hve a gr8 lfe” will do just fine. There is no need to get poetic or melodramatic. This is an ending, not a beginning.

The Telephone Method

There is really only one thing to remember when you make that call. Never use the line, “It’s not you, it’s me.” This is like throwing a chunk of raw meat to a crocodile. She will pursue you with all the single-minded zeal of a sniffer dog pursuing a black man wearing a hemp suit. You might think your words will convince her that she’s the normal one and you are the sociopath but you would be wrong. At around midnight, she will be banging drunkenly on your door with a blunt instrument. When you let her in, she will smash the first thing she comes across and shout, “So what’s wrong with you what the hell’s wrong with you tell me tell me you bastard are you going to tell me what’s wrong with you?” Even if you could think fast enough to come up with a pack of remotely plausible lies, she wouldn’t believe you. Your best bet is to start crying while edging towards the front door. Then take off. Let her keep the apartment.

The Cut ‘n Run Method

Simple in execution. Come home from work and follow your normal routine. If you usually open a beer and lie on the couch, don’t suddenly change all the broken lightbulbs and offer to make her dinner. She will smell a rat and hide your car keys. At around 8pm, say you’re nipping out to buy a box of cigarettes. If you use this line but don’t actually smoke, you’re an idiot. Improvise. The important thing is that she thinks you’re only going to be gone for a few minutes. Drive to the airport and get on the last flight out of the country. The only problem with this method is that she will come looking for you. Next to revenge, women want closure most of all.


Men are quite happy to get closure by means of a last pangalang. But don’t be the one to suggest it. For most women, closure involves a combination of shouting, crying and hitting. Sometimes they laugh. That’s when they are at their most dangerous. The best thing you can do is stand there shaking your head sadly from side to side. Try to roll with the punches. Avoid eye contact. Do not say anything. Do not make any sudden movements. If you are very lucky, she will suggest a last pangalang. Be cool. This is not normal sex so forget the box of tricks and the Batman outfit. It is vital that you remain submissive. I find it helps to pretend that you are Dian Fossey and she is a silverback. You may wish to try something else.

The important thing to remember is that she is doing this so she never has to think of you ever again. At this point you will realise that nothing makes any sense whatsoever. Congratulations. You’re ready to go back out there and begin the whole harrowing cycle all over again.


Speed up or die

Happy International Day of the Older Person.

It’s not today. It was sometime earlier in the week. I forget when, exactly. Wednesday, I think. Not being able to remember stuff is one of the side effects of getting older. It’s also a side effect of appearing before the Marikana or Seriti commissions. And I expect there will be several cases of early-onset amnesia when the Nkandla imbroglio begins unraveling in court.

It wouldn’t be the United Nations if they didn’t couch it in such a diplomatic way. There’s nothing technically wrong with calling it the International Day of the Old Person. After all, the only people it might offend are the old. They would gather outside UN headquarters in New York, rattling their Zimmer frames and wheezing indignantly, “Who are you calling old, whippersnapper?”

By setting aside a day for the Older Person, everyone apart from newborn babies feels included. To a three-year-old, someone who’s just turned five is an older person. That’s the job of the UN – to keep everyone happy. Especially China and Russia.

We don’t always treat old people with the respect they deserve. What am I talking about? Old people don’t deserve respect simply because they’re old. If Hitler hadn’t shot himself, and watched what he ate, he would have been 125 today. If you saw him struggling to carry his basket in the Spar, would you say, “Here, Mr Hitler. Let me give you a hand with that” or would you push him over and say, “That’s for murdering six million Jews, you crazy old fuck.”

In other words, you don’t automatically respect someone because they are old. You might, begrudgingly, respect them for having survived the slings and arrows of outrageous misfortune, the murder and the mayhem, the drunk drivers, the psychotic spouses and the random ravages of deadly disease.

I am very impatient with the old. If your time on earth is almost at an end, why, in god’s name, wouldn’t you drive faster? I could go on, but that would be cruel. Actually, the reason I don’t go on is because, thanks to the UN’s mealy mouthed choice of phrase, it has occurred to me that I may well fall into their definition of Older Person.

I went to their home page and discovered the theme for this year’s commemoration was, “Leaving No One Behind: Promoting a Society for All.” The first part sounds like a slogan the US Marines might use. I think I’ve even heard it in movies like Black Hawk Down.

“Nobody gets left behind!”

“But sergeant, the skinnies done chopped the capn’s ass to bits a’ready!”

I do know that “Nobody Gets Left Behind” is a song by American heavy metal band Five Finger Death Punch. Ban-ki Moon looks like he might be a fan.

The second part of the theme, “Promoting a Society for All”, is just the kind of pompous, soporific piffle for which the UN is best known. If ever there was a theme by committee, this is it. It was clearly a two-member committee. A retired US army general on one side of the table and a Fijian lesbian folksinger on the other.

I don’t even know how the UN can look at itself in the mirror in the morning. You cannot, with a straight face, say you’re leaving no one behind when the richest 300 people on earth have more wealth than they poorest three billion put together. When there are 870 million people suffering from chronic undernourishment. When one in five people can’t read or write – most of them women.

You can’t go around saying Nobody Gets Left Behind when the world is made up almost entirely of people being left behind. It’s like saying Everybody Gets a Lollypop even after the lollypop factory has been turned into a toxic dump for nuclear waste. Or something.

I tried to find out what these three-piece peace-making leeches considered an Older Person. I wanted to know if I should throw myself a party or off a cliff. Nowhere on their website did it say how old you had to be.

Most days I wake up around 11am or so and feel like someone in their early thirties. By midnight most of my face has fallen off and I have 13/10 vision. The right eye is 10. It sounds like a perfect score, but it isn’t really. Sometimes I will tell this to the person standing next to me and he will snort and brag that he has 20/20 vision. The numbers come down a bit after my tequila glass has been surgically removed from his eye socket.

The website tells me that by 2030 there will be 1.4 billion people over 60. It’s the kind of statistic that leaves one feeling a little slack-jawed and droolish. That might be a consequence of aging, but it’s more likely a consequence of being faced with a set of numbers that mean absolutely nothing to anyone other than the mildly myopic Korean researcher in Room 101 who ferreted it out in the first place.

If you’re not shocked by this week’s news that the world has lost more than half its wildlife in the last 40 years, then you’re unlikely to feel anything more than mild unease at the news that there will be more old people than children in the world in 2047.

I find children and old people equally annoying.

The mention of 60 must be the UN’s subtle way of letting us know the age upon which one becomes an Older Person. This is splendid news. I have a long way to go. Long being a subjective and relative term.

One of the consequences of aging is that one’s sense of outrage dissipates faster than it used to. I clearly remember staying outraged at something or other for an entire day and well into the night, until eventually alcohol would grab me by the throat and hiss, “That’s enough outrage. Just relax or I’ll kill you.” That might not always have been the alcohol talking.

These days I can barely stay outraged long enough to write my column. Nothing anyone says or does makes the slightest bit of difference to the rapacious freebooters plundering the treasury like there’s no tomorrow. Which there won’t be, at this rate. We should be setting Dog the bounty hunter on Zuma’s ass.

Anyway. Old people. According to the website, these were some of the exciting things that happened this IDOP.

Norway put on a special do at Meloy frivilligsentral. At 12.30 there was something called Fysisk Aktivitet. Knowing the Scandinavians, it probably involved rolling around naked in the snow and beating each other with saplings. At 14.30 it was Middag, which is confusing. 17.00 was kaffe and at 17.30 all hell broke loose with Dans. An hour later it was Arrangementet avsluttes. I imagine this was when the sluts were brought in from Sweden.

Singapore celebrated IDOP for the first time this year after relaxing city laws that required citizens to have their body clocks stopped on their 59th birthday. Their theme was “effective communication”. This is a good one because old people never listen to what you’re saying. And even if they do, they deliberately misunderstand and try to set you on fire.

The International Labour Organisation in Geneva got into the spirit of the occasion by releasing a new policy paper. This is pretty wild for Switzerland.

In Bangkok the Global AgeWatch Index 2014 was launched. Being Bangkok, you might have thought they would at least have treated the codgers to a free lap dance and a squirt of amyl nitrate.

Index 2014 lets you look up your country to see how well your old bastards are being treated. South Africa shuffled home 80th out of 96 countries. Then again, we were second highest in the region. Then again, again, that’s not saying much.

And Britain held a seminar called The Age of No Retirement. It was probably one of David Cameron’s deeply caring schemes. Vote Conservative. The party that works you until you drop dead.

Inexplicably, I didn’t hear about any of the events that our benevolent government must surely have staged countrywide for our senior citizens last week.

Perhaps they didn’t get the memo.