it’s all greek to me!

wow!!! what an eventful few months!

ironically, just as i got my fingers back on the keyboard, life conspired to get me busy doing the other thing i do really well, actually, the thing i do best. acting.

i booked a role in a german movie which was shooting in cape town and from one week to the next, i had to organize a house/dog-sitter and haul ass down to the sea.

flashback 30 or so years:

i meet Wolfgang who becomes my first boyfriend, then i meet my terrible twin, sylvia – both germans. soon we are all hanging out ALL the time and they’re speaking ze cherman around me and almost by osmosis i’m beginning to understand a lot of it. so i decide to do german intensive during my third year at uct. i didn’t do spectacularly, but having been exposed to two native speakers, my german accent is really not bad and i lied, it’s not entirely greek to me.

over the years that smattering of german has stood me in really good stead. well, not that often, but it was there when i needed it. like in moscow circa 1991, seeing that i basically understood “spasiba”, “dobra utra”, “dasvadanya” and as most russians  spoke no english back then in the ice-age ;), for any kind of communication, we had to fall back on our common second-language: german! next came budapest in 1997 and once again my little knowledge of german helped to get me around the city and in the general direction of where i needed to be.

a few years later: i’m cast in another german movie and once the lead actress hears me speaking german, that’s it. she insists that i act in german and that they not dub me. (a little aside here: on these movies the german actors all do their dialogue in german and the local cast speaks either english or afrikaans and are then dubbed, at great expense, back in germany. apparently german voice-over artists are some of the highest-paid performers in the country! it’s a peculiar thing, this acting in different languages – invariably, language which to the other person is as incomprehensible as the gibberish spoken between baby twins in those viral you-tube videos. it really takes some doing.

flash forward to mid-november: i get cast in this latest movie and i (overconfidently) tell the director and producer that i will attempt the dialogue in german. this before i read the script. before i realize  just how big the part is and how many monologues i will have to master! suffice to say that it was one of the most challenging things i’ve had to do in a long time. normally, i do my prep for a day’s shoot, but i never really learn the words till i finally get to run the dialogue with the other actors. that way the performance stays fresh and much more believable. it feels that way for me, at least. well, this time around, unless i put in endless-nights-in-my-hotel-room-worth of prep-time, there was no way i would be able to get through the scenes. my brain did gymnastics. my tongue twisted. all while i was slathered in layers of fake-tan, make-up, a lace-front wig and stilettos to die for (and good as they looked, i sure felt like i was dying after each day’s shoot – of back-pain )!

it was scary and exhilirating and mind-expanding and it’s making me explore going to the goethe institute here in johannesburg this year and taking some more lessons so i can finally master this infernal language, instead of being it’s sub.


we were fooling around on set and in that outfit i just had to do a kim k impersonation! 🙂

so, that was some of my experience with the germans. lots more transpired these last few months, but i’ve been so verbose,  it’ll have to wait till next time.

oh, and happy new year!!! 🙂

soweto 10k update + free music

with anne and teresa post-race

ok, i think i’m giving up on giving up! ran the soweto 10k yesterday in 1h05 (4 minutes better than the spar 10k) and as soon as i got home, went online looking to see if there was another 10k in my area this coming weekend. i’m happy to report, there isn’t. 😉

the start was so disorganized that we crossed the start line a good six minutes after the starting gun went off. hordes of people and a crazy bottle-neck. i stood in line for 12 minutes to use one of the 3 porta-potties available, by which time the starting gun sounded, which meant i finally got to use the bathroom a good 2 hours later when i finally got back home. 

and yet, despite the fact that i had pulled a calf muscle from filming in high heels and doing all kinds of crazy spins for a promo for the station my show is on and had to strap my leg, despite the fact that the sun was already up and merciless at 7a.m., despite running over piles of trash, old carpets, road-kill, etc, it was a great race. there were an insane amount of people and i was so busy getting around walkers and runners of every conceivable shape and size (people running in slippers and flimsy slip-on shoes) that i couldn’t believe it when we i looked up and we had already reached the 3km mark. 

my journo friend, teresa and i finally got to run together and it really makes a great difference, having someone to talk to and share the race. we eventually parted around the 4k mark when i wanted to go a little faster. i normally don’t run without my ipod, but those first 4k’s were just fine when i had someone to talk to. when i was running on my own, though, i put in my ear-phones. there’s a song by  juno reactor called “conga fury” and it always drives me a little faster whenever i put it on. i decided to put it on a loop, and just kept listening to it over and over. it really kept me amped. the orange mega-carb boosters they were handing out at the water-stations also seemed to keep me going. i had taken a gu about 15 minutes before the race and had one on hand for the 5k mark, but the orange stuff they were handing out seemed to do the trick. 

all in all, i really enjoyed it! ok, even i can’t believe i’m saying that! so, i’m going to stop talking about hanging up my running shoes and if it happens, fine, but don’t be surprised if i start talking about the next big race. doing it with a friend makes all the difference. (hey patty, come on over!)

for those of you looking for some (free) music downloads to keep you going:

  • my friend dj kramer has fantastic free hour long downloads of his mixes.
  • over at podrunner dj steveboy has mixes specifically for running – you can find mixes at specific bpm’s to suit your pace.
  • dj steveboy also does groovelectric 
  • electric theatre also has some fantastic mixes 
  • some fantastic mixes here too. i love anything by dj cush.

i have a running mix in my ipod: SONG/ARTIST/ALBUM/TIME

  • Yeah Toxic (Blades Blend Remix/Britney Spears Ft. Usher and/Yeah Toxic (Blades Blend Remix/3:45
  • Poor Leno [Silikon Soul Rmx] / There Is A Light That Never Goes Out [Acapella]/Röyksopp Remixed By Silikon Soul / Erlend Øye/DJ Kicks: Erlend Oye/5:53
  • City Life/Brothers Of Peace/The D Project: Life ‘Iskorokoro/6:09
  • New York City Girl/Bodyrockers/Bodyrockers/4:14
  • Conga Fury/Juno Reactor/Bible of Dreams/8:08
  • Spaced Invader/Hatiras Feat. Slarta John/Best Of Club Hits Volume 4/4:15
  • Gramma Jams/Bassnectar/Beatfreak Bohemia/2:42
  • The Need To Be Naked/Amber/Best Of Club Hits Volume 4/4:59
  • September/The Joker (Shinichi Osawa Remix)/Fatboy Slim & Wind & Fire Earth/Babel Original Soundtrack/6:29
  • Who Are You?/Bassnectar/Beatfreak Bohemia/4:55
  • Burn For You/Kreo’/Best Of Club Hits Volume 4/5:02
  • I Like The Way/Bodyrockers/Bodyrockers/3:20

mind over matter

i am SO  over running. no, seriously. really. after sunday’s soweto 10k, i am absolutely hanging up my running shoes.

i went to the track yesterday for the first time since the spar 10k. in fact i should have gone monday, but my schedule is such that i’m at work at the crack and back after dark. i have so little desire to do this that i decided not to set my alarm for yesterday, but to see if i woke up in time to go to the track before work.

in the morning i opened my eyes and rolled over to look at the clock. 05H58. urgh. did a quick bathroom run, then jumped back in bed. 06H20 and i was lying staring at the curtain.  i finally admitted defeat, got up and into my running gear and headed for the track.

07h00 – the track lay melting under a seeming-midday-sun. by the time i got to 5k’s, i was having to give myself a good talking to in order to keep going.

matter: damn, it’s hot, i’m not enjoying this. knee hurts. i can feel where i got that  blister last time. i know i can get through the race on sunday. i can just stop now.

mind: what?! what are you talking about? if you stop now, you’re a quitter! you’re not a quitter, come on! just finish this lap.

matter: ok, that’s 13 laps, i can stop now.

mind: no, don’t stop now! come on, just one more. and one more. and one more….

it’s all mind over matter. and i mind. i really do. i think i’m going back to dancing, cos i know some people feel like running is absolute zen. it’s where they find their bliss. not me. i start a run knowing that i’m going to have to have to do this for the next 45/50/60 minutes. and i do it even when it feels like more modern day torture.

for me the best part about running is once i’m done. and i don’t think that’a a good enough reason to do it.

though i am going to do it.  the soweto 10k, sunday november 2, 2008, 06h15. yup, that would be this sunday! wish me luck!

just done it!


really! i swear i did – and there are photos somewhere out there to prove it.


i finally ran that 10k race! 


i have 10 000 reasons to look that smug!

i have 10 000 reasons to look that smug!


ok, so did thousands of other women (and men – in drag, it being the spar ladies race. one guy ran with a micro-mini riding up to reveal his thong underneath! one in a wig and handbag, many in fish-tights!) 

so after a few false starts (figuratively speaking), i followed nike’s advice and just did it. starting on march 23rd by walking half a lap and running half, it took me till end september to get to 10k’s. then followed  a major hiccup in which i did virtually no running since then. this morning, i eventually crossed the finish line of my self-inflicted non-new-year’s-resolution resolution to run a 10k race this year.

and did i mention i don’t even like running? 

i suppose it was appropriate that arnold geerdts was the mc for the event, seeing that he’s the one who figuratively gave me a shove onto the internet to find that couch to 10k program. he can take the blame, i’ll take the credit! 🙂

i said i’d do it. i did it. 1h 9 minutes. and i have the blistered toes to prove it. 

now if i NEVER run again in my life, it will be too soon.

just done it!

just done it!

if i can only dodge the friend pestering me to do the carnival city 10k next weekend! 

and the original purpose of this blog, to help me stick to my goal and take me across the finish line, is served! now whatever will i write about?! ha!

the bottom line

so, the whole weight thing…….

i hate to admit that i’ve gained back all the weight that i lost when i was at the height of my 10k training. in order to protect my skin recovering from the laser peel disaster, i have to be extremely careful about exposure to the sun, so i cannot run on the track except really early mornings and  then due to the upper respiratory infections i have to be careful of smog, dust and pollen levels for my sometimes asthmatic lungs and highly finicky sinuses. do i need any further excuses?! aargghhh!

i have been feeling exceedingly tired, demoralized and unmotivated lately when it comes to exercise. i can’t believe that 6 weeks ago, i was ready to run a 10k! it seems so far beyond me now, even though  i know that once i start, i’ll soon be hooked again. getting started is the major issue though. i’ve done the odd tae-bo class here in my living room, but i need consistency!

i feel like i’ve been a spectator to my steadily climbing scale and dropping fitness levels. watching it like the proverbial train wreck you can’t take your eyes off, yet can do nothing about. but the truth is i can do something about this – i’ve just once again had to hit bottom. ha, there it is again, the endless puns – i’m getting so far behind i’m in front of myself, “big bottom gals”, scraping bottom, backing things up, ifs and butts, i’m so bummed, “she’s a brick..”, “i like big …” – ok, i think you get the picture. amazing how many songs there are celebrating big booties!

celebrations in song notwithstanding, i am recalibrating. the aim now is to run the spar ladies race, 12 october.

so here goes. bottom line is, i’ll be running my butt off… 😉

flu-ing off the handle

one of my favorite directors at work has a stream of invective he let’s loose like a mantra whenever something goes wrong, like when you bash your knee against a chair, or stub your toe, etc.

right now, i could, profoundly profanely, top that.

last night i suddenly realize that i have a sore throat starting to develop, so i gargle with salt water, i take echinacea, i swallow vitamin c, corenza c, drink more hot water and lemon, etc., all in an effort to stave off a full-blown infection. when i wake this morning, my throat feels thick and swollen and sore and my head is completely gunked up. damn!

at work i discover at least 2 more people with the same symptoms. my head is woozy and i have trouble concentrating. a trip to the work doctor later and i’m diagnosed with flu. piss, crap, poes, etc, etc…

i thought i was immune, seeing that i had a flu shot earlier this season, but the prescribing nurse tells me that  it simply means that i might not get as severe a case as someone else. urgh. i walk out with a bag full of meds which make me even woozier. so much for my 10k this weekend. everyone keeps telling me that i’m insane to even consider it and refer to scary tales of inflamed heart muscles. so yeah, once again the goal posts shift as i sit with stabbing pains in my ears. at least i’ve lined up another 10k for sunday 17th, but i’d really like to get this DONE! 

however, i just found the following on a friend’s blog, so maybe i need to just chill – for now.

There are only three answers to our prayers 

1: “Yes” 

2: “Not Yet” 

3: “I thought of something better for you” 

oh, shit, cunt, poes, piel…  uhmn, okay.


so today, a much more pedestrian post, one involving pi-pedal motion. the totalsports ladies race is coming up this saturday,  and my week is hectic, so i won’t have any time to run later in the week. yesterday was the only time i could get to the track, so i went and managed to get in 20 laps/8ks.

i’ve managed to lose about 3kg in the past few weeks since i was complaining about my weight (thanks to stress and replacing a lot of my drinks during the day with  hot water and lemon) and i have to say, yesterday’s run felt remarkably different. so much easier. i felt more stream-lined, like i’d thrown off a whole pile of baggage. it was the fastest time i’ve managed yet: 5k’s – 31:45, 16 laps – 41:30, 8k’s – 52:19. and i actually managed to speed up during the last lap and a half!

i was very sore and exhausted afterwards, but at least i’m confident that i can do it! i must say, i can’t wait for saturday to be able to tick off this particular goal and say done! at least i know my will-power can allow me to achieve whatever i set my mind to. and i have staying power.

though that’s not always such a good thing. but that’s a story for another day.