Saturday, July 30, 2011

Just because... (1)

My biological reaction to anything traumatic is to instantly recall all the times I’ve been there before either physically or emotionally. Sometimes things happen so fast that your brain struggles to keep up and goes into play-back mode, replaying every scene in your head in an attempt to comprehend what you’ve witnessed.

It occurred two weeks ago when a car had accidentally knocked a motorcyclist into oblivion. Even though he was wearing a helmet, he was hurt and immediately everyone in the vicinity stopped, pulled off in their vehicles and ran to his aid. I instantly recalled when I’d felt like this before... kneeling on the side of the road watching Mother administer CPR to the little boy who was unconscious while his Dad was sitting on the floor, covered in his own blood and his little sister cried on my own sister’s shoulder. I was in my early teens then.

And then there were other times when Mother was a hero, saving lives... to the detriment of my Adrenal Cortex and Hippocampus.

But something clicked while I watched the Motorcyclist laying unconscious on the tar road with hoards of people trying to help him. I thought to myself this is human nature in its purest, most natural form. As human beings, we are naturally wired to want to help others. The people helping the Motorcyclist didn’t care if he was White or Black or Asian; they didn’t care about where he came from or what he believed in... in much the same way that Mother didn’t care if the little boy she resuscitated was Muslim or not... the same way most of the World didn’t care about race, ethnicity and religion when natural disasters struck in Banda Aceh, Haiti, Japan and New Orleans etc.

All that matters in those moments are that the people receive the help that they need and most people are willing to give whatever they can to help. It’s primal human instinct to want to preserve life, not take it. How many times aren’t people moved to tears just watching someone else in pain? Nelson Mandela was absolutely right in saying that we weren’t born to hate and discriminate. That’s learned behaviour. And if people can learn to hate, then surely they can learn to love too.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Coz this is Mother's kind of funny...

Y'know that awkward moment when you're watching a perfectly normal movie that suddenly seems to turn into a porno when one of your parent's walk in? I get that alot. And it's not limited to parents only and generally includes little cousins, aunts, uncles and everyone else in the entire world that can, and will make you feel uncomfortable in such situations.

And forget trying to change the channel because in that moment you'll find that the remote plays dead. In fact you'll wonder if it ever worked, even if it's a brand new TV. If it's a DVD that you're watching, never ever press the fast-forward button. Trust me. Because it just magnifies whatever's on the screen and it looks at least a hundred times more graphic than it really is. The best thing you can do is to get up and walk away. You’re suddenly very thirsty and need to get a drink from the fridge.

South African's by nature are much more conservative than other more liberal Christian countries; however this is slowly changing with the times. I've noticed that there are things that younger generations can get away with that were unfathomable to us. For instance, like telling graphic jokes in front of their parents. While I'm not old (well 29 is old to some but fuck them) I would rather dig out my own cochleas and donate them to some underprivileged deaf kids than be in that group. It makes me uncomfortable.

I grew up with something called boundaries y'know. And in a world where boundaries are increasingly irrelevant or cease to exist, there is a new level of disrespect unfounded in previous generations. Even cavemen drew the line somewhere. The social consequences of respect and the lack thereof can never be underestimated. People want answers to the degradation of morals, values, ethics in society and that conscientiousness that is essential to maintain the world’s sanity, I say look no further.

But sometimes the jokes are so funny. In such instances, I hide my face and snigger contentedly. I find that as I get older, my parents are less inhibited with me. Maybe they’ve accepted me as an adult and therefore treat me as such or maybe they’ve always been un-inhibited and just hid it very well.

In any case, it would seem that tact diminishes with age and maybe that’s why Mother has no problem telling my sister’s friend that she looks like her dog (meaning that her dog resembles her the way most dogs and their owners begin to resemble each other after years together) and my father can tell me that he was fucked in the arse (meaning his partner figuratively screwed him over in a business deal). I can literally laugh at my parents for days on end – but they can become very embarrassing. And that is why I’ll always think thrice about introducing either of them to a potential partner. That’s life I suppose.

Here’s a “chin-up” email I received from Mother. Laugh she says, because if you worry you’ll die. And if you don’t worry, you’ll still die. So why worry :)


Thursday, July 21, 2011

Coz this is a late-night rant that I'll probably regret in the morning...

So it occurred to me that I'm surrounded by really nice people. Like really really nice, genuinely good people. Like my friend Lenah. She's a real angel, and I'm not saying that because her wispy blonde tresses have a tendency to blow in the wind like some kind of Scarlett O' Hara shit going on. She's genuinely one of the best people I know with a heart of gold. 

There's so many things I admire about Lenah. Her aura is amazing. She's one of those people that's so pleasant to be around, that just being with her makes me a better person. She doesn't have a malicious bone in her body. She never gossips about anyone. Everything that she says is always lovely and amazing and funny. 

I love that no matter what or where we are, she always makes time to go to church and pray - and that she makes it comfortable for me to go to the mosque and pray too, or pray in the room next to her while she turns down the volume of the TV. I love that nothing phases her. Nothing. She has such faith in God and such a strength about her that anything can happen - she can have a fight with the neighbour or she can lose her purse and it all just rolls off her back. She accepts things so easily, even when she doesn't like them - she accepts it with such grace and humility. 

I always look at her and wonder why can't I be more like her. Why is it so easy for her to just let it go and accept things and people for who they are. Why is it that she can speak so politely and earnestly to the sales lady even after she'd been rude, dismissive and disrespectful to her - while I'm thinking of ways to set the bitch on fire and make it look like an accident.   

Why do I always have to be the evil bitch? Why do I always have to be the one up in arms? Why do my eggs of life always have to be scrambled while hers are poached to perfection, ready to be photographed for Martha Steward's next publication.

There's a guy at work who is one of  a trio that head the company. And for some reason, every single time this guy has a bad day or he's peeved off at something or someone, he likes to take it out on me. The first time it happened, he was having an argument with his loser son over the telephone in the boardroom - loud enough for most of us to hear. I didn't even listen to the conversation, just went about my business, doing my work. 

A few minutes later, he stormed into my office and went off about how incompetent "we" are (referring to me and something I didn't do - and quite obviously projecting his feelings towards his son onto me). I just kept quiet, even though I really wanted to take a carving knife and peel the top layer of his skin off like a banana and rub a mixture of salt and lemon juice into his raw flesh, then tell him to fuck off with his shit-for-brains spawn. But knowing that he was upset, I didn't want to blow it out of proportion.

But, thing is, I have a one time policy. Which means that the first time an offence is committed, I let it go. After that, it's On like Donkey Kong biatch. I'm one of the few people in the world that is NOT afraid of confrontation which makes me the wrong bitch to mess with on any given day. 

The second time came about a few months ago when he asked me to do something specific for him - it was for one of our meetings - and wanting it to be accurate I asked him a few additional questions about the project. And of course, on this day he was in one of his horrific condescending, insulting moods and thinking he can just shit all over me, he proceeded to shout out incomprehensible instructions to me in front of the entire office... including the other two bosses. 

At this point I thought to myself... "you had to take it there"... time to unleash the dragon. And so I proceeded to explain to him in front of everyone, that it's not my problem if he cannot communicate in basic English, and that it's not my problem that he doesn't know what it means to be professional, and that it's not my problem that he's an incompetent bastard and that he carries on like a fucking child. Needless to say, my reaction shocked the shit out of him and he stormed off like the immature rat that he is, and the office was dead silent for a week. See, most people can't handle confrontation.

But it wasn't enough to get him to back off for good. Yesterday, he storms into the office, once again upset with something or someone. I had my earphones on, not wanting to be a part of the office politics and whatnot, and he asked me to have a look at his computer (concerning a technical problem that isn't a part of my job description and of which I have absolutely no knowledge of) - but I didn't hear him. 

When I did take the earphones off, he said rather loudly "when I call you, you leave whatever you're doing and you come over immediately"... 

I HATE being talked down to, insulted and yelled at like a dog. In fact, it makes me homicidal. And so I replied by saying "Ok, firstly, I didn't hear you"... Sensing the aggressive tone in my don't-fuck-with-me-today-old-man voice, he then said (and I love this part) "look it's not you, it's just that I'm having a bad day"... implying that it's not my fault that he's in a bad mood but that he's still going to drag me over the coals anyway... and so I replied, practically screaming in his face, "Oh really? Well I'm having a SHIT day!"

And once again my response took him by surprise and he then said that he'll "back off". I took one look at his computer and dismissively said I couldn't help him. The ENTIRE office. Deathly silent. The other two bosses don't even want to ask me for anything and usually send in their secretaries to do their bidding. 

And again, I sat there wondering why... why do I always have to be the bad one... because now everyone looks at me like I'm the crazy one! Like I'm the one that's an olive short of a martini. Like I'm the one going around, screaming like a fucking banshee in incomprehensible English. Like I'm the one that's rude and arrogant and condescending. 

And once again, I find myself wondering why can't I be more like Lenah, and just let it roll off my back and not bother me. Why can't I just keep my mouth shut and live in denial like all the other two-faced bitches in the place. Why can't I just play nice? And why do I always attract the fuckers who think they can just talk to me the way they want to and that I'll just sit there and smile. Do you think I like being rude to a man in his 60's? I wasn't brought up like that, I take no pleasure in it. But it's like they want to test me.

I'm not a good person. One of the worst actually.

I pointed this out to Lenah many times. And she always tells me that she wishes she could be more like me. And that people usually tramp all over her because she hates confrontation and that it's easier for her to ignore things because she doesn't want to deal with it. 

We are different people like that. I'm an emotionally deep person. I can be fearless at the best of times. I love and hate with a passion. I'm an expressive person... my words are the steam rising from the volcano... and shutting up will only make that volcano erupt.

But Lenah isn't someone who expresses her emotions. Maybe it's a German thing. She rarely ever talks about them and the one time she cried in my presence, I felt awkward even though I wrapped my arms around her, because she felt awkward over the fact that she couldn't control how she felt in that moment. 

She's still an angel though. And one of my best friends. 

Today I was sitting at my desk at work and I thought about how I've come to resent the corporate world. On days like these I wish I was a Marine Biologist or something like that. Today I realised that every single moment I sit behind that desk, in that office, I'm wasting my life - it's like a little part of me dies every day. I'm wasting time not doing something that feeds my soul. I'm very good at business... and once I thought that was what I wanted. Now, I can't even imagine what the fuck I'm going to do with an MBA because I'm just. not. interested. anymore. I spoke to my Professor and she concurred that even if I did stay in the corporate world, South Africa is just not the place for me to work the way I want to because most of the companies here still follow an antiquated autocratic hierarchy system.

When I love what I do, I'm a workaholic. I've been working since I was a kid - during school holidays and weekends. My parents haven't supported me financially since I was 19. I even paid for my own tuition at University while I worked and studied full-time (don't ask me how I pulled that off).

But when I hate my job, I spend most of my time procrastinating and having fantasies that involve Arson and Industrial Sabotage. Unhappy workers are VERY dangerous people.

I can't live like this anymore. I need to change my career. Now, where to start...

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Coz here's my 67 minutes...

So yesterday was Nelson Mandela's 93rd birthday and was officially declared "Mandela Day" worldwide by the United Nations General Assembley. To commemorate this day, we have all been asked by his foundation to devote 67 minutes of our time in the service of others... whether it's making a new friend, or helping out an old one... many South African's were out and about over the past weekend engaging in community projects and giving their 67 minutes to help mankind.

Now, as a young democracy, we have our fair share of issues in this country. But in the midst of all the chaos and gripes, arguments and disagreements, there is one thing that this entire nation (well 99% of people, there are still some people who's main course every night is Racism with a side of Hate) will agree on and it's that Nelson Mandela is the Father of our nation. And that is why we, South Africans, call him "Tata" (pronounced Taa-ta) which means "Father" in his native Xhosa language.

"Mandela rightly occupies an untouched place in the South African imagination. He's the national liberator, the saviour, its Washington and Lincoln rolled into one" ~ Newsweek Magazine

And he is. He is our Gandhi, Malcolm X, Mother Teresa and Martin Luther King too. Last year when he was ill and the state of his health was unconfirmed, it was as if everything stopped. I imagined fingers clutching pots and pans intended to pound on each other's heads stopping abruptly in mid-air, and everyone dropping their culinary artillery in anxiety and anticipation, wondering if he was OK. The man is clearly loved by all... and why wouldn't he be? He spent 67 years of his life fighting for human rights - our human rights. Twenty-seven of those years were spent incarcerated as a criminal on charges of treason and terrorism and 18 of them were served on Robben Island.

However, what makes Madiba so beloved to all of us is not only what he has done for us, but his impeccable character too...

I stand here before you not as a prophet but as a humble servant of you, the people. Your tireless and heroic sacrifices have made it possible for me to be here today. I therefore place the remaining years of my life in your hands.

In 1961 at age 42, Nelson Mandela was a political activist and heavyweight boxer with a law degree from the University of Witwatersrand. In 1964 he was convicted of sabotage and treason and sentenced to life in prison.

We are not anti-white, we are against white supremacy … we have condemned racialism no matter by whom it is professed.

Mandela pictured burning his "identity pass". Every non-white citizen was required to have an ID that stated which part of South Africa they resided in, regulated where they could and couldn't go and imposed curfews on them.

I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.

At Robben Island, 1966.

We might have our differences, but we are one people with a common destiny in our rich variety of culture, race and tradition.

Meanwhile, in the streets the struggled continued. Body of 13 year old Hector Pieterson who was shot by police on the 16th of June 1976 during ongoing protests and riots. The day is now a public holiday, known as Youth Day.
No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.

There were many people who fought in the struggle that were not Black. Amongst the Indian / Asian communities, people like Ahmed Kathrada were imprisoned with Mandela on Robben Island. Female activists like Fatima Meer and Zainub Asvat were instrumental to the cause.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

There were whites who fought the regime too. People like Albie Sachs, Helen Suzman, David Goldblatt, Dr. Beyers Naude, Bram Fischer and many many others. David Webster (right) with musician Chris McGregor in Johannesburg in 1987. Webster was assassinated by apartheid goons in 1989.

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.

Amongst the activists, there were hoardes of Muslims, Hindus, Jews and Christians. The fight for freedom had united an opposition and they would often hide, protect and feed the families of Mandela, Sisulu, Jacob Zuma and others... hiding them in their homes when Apartheid Police came looking for them.

I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one's head pointed toward the sun, one's feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair.

Whites sit on a bus stop bench with blacks two weeks after the city of Johannesburg in South Africa allowed blacks to travel on 'whites-only' buses in February, 1990.

That was one of the things that worried me — to be raised to the position of a demi-god — because then you are no longer a human being. I wanted to be known as Mandela, a man with weaknesses, some of which are fundamental, and a man who is committed, but, nevertheless, sometimes fails to live up to expectations.

On 2 February 1990, President F. W. de Klerk reversed the ban on the ANC and other anti-apartheid organisations. When Mandela was released, the two worked hand-in-hand to ensure a smooth transition into democracy, their efforts earning them both the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993.


I have never cared very much for personal prizes. A man does not become a freedom fighter in the hope of winning awards, but when I was notified that I had won the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize jointly with Mr de Klerk, I was deeply moved. The Nobel Peace Prize had a special meaning to me because of its involvement with South African history.... The award was a tribute to all South Africans and especially to those who fought in the struggle; I would accept it on their behalf.



It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.

As a leader...I have always endeavored to listen to what each and every person in a discussion had to say before venturing my own opinion. Oftentimes, my own opinion will simply represent a consensus of what I heard in the discussion. I always remember the axiom: a leader...is like a shepherd. He stays behind the flock, letting the most nimble go out ahead, whereupon the others follow, not realizing that all along they are being directed from behind.



As I have said, the first thing is to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself... Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility.


It was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man's freedom is a prisoner of hatred, he is locked behind the bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else's freedom, just as surely as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity.


I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom comes responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk has not ended.

Happy Birthday Tata, you will always have a special place in our hearts.

All photos found on the internet.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Coz even Kylie concurs...

Dear Usually-Cold-Wet-Miserable-Winter-in-Cape Town

Johannesburg requests that you return their warm balmy 23°C winter days that you've hijacked a few days ago. Please note that hijacking is a felony and punishable by Tsunami.

Sincerely,

El NiƱo

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Coz we need cyber equality...

Ok, so according to this social media “guide” I must be the worst blogger in the world because: I cover too many topics; I’m inconsistent; I write for myself and not for my audience; most of the time I make it all about me; there are copious amounts of formatting, spelling and grammatical errors; I don’t give my blog posts the attention they deserve because I’m not promoting it 24/7 blah blah blah...

The article or social media "guide" may refer or apply to businesses in particular, but this is not the first time I’ve come across websites that detail specific ways that we SHOULD be blogging. I find it interesting that there are suddenly all these rules we have to follow to be considered average or good or "worthy" bloggers. And I’ve heard several comments from many people in the past noting how certain blog content isn’t viewed as “blog worthy”. I’m sure I've mentioned this before... somewhere... I can't remember where though, see I'm an absolute shite blogger.

Now before I continue, let me just clarify: I’m not bashing anyone here, these are just my observations and the subject of social media etiquette has made its way into several other blogs and discussions in the past few weeks. If anyone chooses to take it personally, well then those are your sleepless nights innit... and if the shoe fits...

The first reputable bloggers were all about getting personal. Blogs like The Misanthropic Bitch are noted for being amongst the first of their kind in Cyberspace, offering personal takes on just about everything from Mother Theresa to McDonalds.

Some bloggers have even turned their daily rambles into money making machines... just ask Heather B. Armstrong, whose rants about her personal life on her blog Dooce became a cash cow of sorts. Initially, she just bitched and moaned about her colleagues into the empty space called Cyber, then she got fired because of those rants and it unleashed a blessing in disguise. Ten years later and she still merrily yacks off about her husband and children, and reportedly generates over USD$40 000 a month in advertising revenue for the privilege.

And here's the clincher, she’s not a journalist.

I want to know WHO exactly decided that every blogger has to be some kind of journalist or social and political analyst in order to share their views and opinions?!? Because as it seems (and especially here in pompous pretentious SA) that is exactly what everyone expects from someone who blogs regularly. Who decides what is blog worthy and what isn’t?

And again, I have to point out that blogs began as a platform for people to share and discuss the events and activities in their daily lives. So essentially, they are online journals and diaries for the average person and the entire point really was to get personal. That was before businesses began adopting blogs in their respective arena’s to promote themselves and interact with their clientele.

I’ve seen similar trends on Twitter. People who use twitter socially are often slated or criticised by their more anally retentive counter-parts for their “content”. Ironic because it's a SOCIAL NETWORKING SITE. Granted though, some people just tweet a whole lot of shit the entire day and somewhere in the recesses of the general public's mind everyone wants to tell them to shut up. But again, one has to ask, who decides what is tweet-worthy and what isn’t? Not everyone wants to be a journalist or professional commentator. And that’s why we have the unfollow button innit.

Then there are those who take to Twitter, but aren’t happy or feel guilty about existing on two social networks at the same time, so they feel compelled to drag their once beloved Facebook through the mud. Newsflash: this is not your Ex. It’s perfectly OK to like them both, you won’t betray anyone in the process. I’ve read many comments on Twitter stating that it’s "so much better than Facebook" and that "Facebook is so much more egocentric than Twitter".

Hello. Wake up call. If you follow Kim Kardashian and JeannieD and the likes of them on Twitter, you’ll see that ALL they ever talk about is how wonderful they are and how fantastic their lives are and how everyone should want to be like them. It's the epitome of egocentricity and narcissism to a degree I haven't seen on any other social networking platform.

But let's leave the celebs alone. Vanity is part of their job description. However, not so for those (much) lesser known individuals who are all competing for this years’ title of Attention Whore of the Decade. FYI, continual self-promotion and self-flattery i.e. tweeting about how lovely you are and re-tweeting how lovely everyone else thinks you are screams of unresolved psychological and abandonment issues. We get it ok, and we sympathise with the fact that your parents never loved you and now you’re trying to win the approval of anyone who spares an ounce of attention in your direction. But you look like an asshole.

Twitter has given people a platform for middle management syndrome... y'know where people think they are more important than they really are. I've always said that South Africans in general are desperate for fame and approval; nasty by-product of post-apartheid racial and cultural low self esteem issues I’d assume; hence all the applause and pats on the back and "please look at me, look at me's"... these are just some of my personal gripes when it comes to social networking sites.

I do like Twitter on most days though... I get to stalk and chat to all my favourite people. How else am I going to chat to Nia Vardalos and where else am I going to hear that Ian Somerhalder is in JHB before most of the media gets wind of it?? But for the most part Twitter is nothing but a Glorified Chat Room for most people (some just don’t know it yet). Sure some people take it more seriously than others. However, personally I simply cannot – information overload see.

When I want the news, I’ll happily trollop over like a Billy Goat to one of the many news sites like BBC or Al-Jazeera. I really don’t need or want to know all the useless information churned on a per second basis. But that's not to say that there's something wrong if that's what someone else prefers to do with their time. To each his own.

I do love to chat though. Nothing like an old fashioned chat room – remember those? Back in 2000 I spent hours and days connecting and re-connecting to my time consuming dial-up modem so that I could chat to the whole world and their grannies. It’s nice to see that Twitter has revolutionised what I thought I’d lost forever.

For the record, I have nothing against journalists or analysts or commentators, like I said to each his own. But I do have a problem with, and resent those who criticize others for not complying with some non-existent unspoken rule that we should all graduate from some imaginary mandatory school of Journalism to warrant our places in Cyberspace. We all can't or don't want to produce literary masterpieces and we shouldn't be judged based on our preferences. As of February 2011, there are 156 million blogs in existence on the Internet. And we all can't be Journo's now can we.

As for me, I'm happy with my little corner in cyberspace. I thoroughly enjoy meeting and connecting with people from all over the world. If I had it my way, I'd be doing it personally especially because I LOVE long-haul flights. And I love flags... they're so pretty. But I don't have any aspirations to become a famous blogger spewing forth my 2 cents worth on everything for a dime or a dollar. Not that there's anything wrong with those kind of aspirations. But for me, it would be too much responsibility and not enough authenticity. I've always maintained that this blog is mine and I write for me. I write so that in 10 or 20 years time, I can laugh at the stupid ass I once was, or marvel at how I've grown or changed over the years. And frankly how or what you write is your business. 

I do believe that people should be entitled to blog about whatever they want to... however genius or moronic that may be. We don’t have to like it. And we certainly do not have to read it or be a part of it. But we should respect it and their place in Cyberspace.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Coz these are taxing times...

It’s been a horrible horrible horrible past week. For one, I’m sick. AGAIN. This time it’s an inner ear infection that has me permanently drunk and incapacitated and feeling like I just swallowed 17 000 razor blades for breakfast. I am so over this miserable germ-infested winter. I want to go to a warm tropical island somewhere, go to bed for like a year and wake up in September 2012.

Then there are other reasons for the horrendous week that was, but they’re too numerous to moan about here. Besides, I don’t like to whine... it’s not my nature and it irritates me. I irritate myself.

Instead I like to look for the light at the end of the shit-hole and this past week got me thinking about the simple joys in life. One of the things I absolutely loved in my teens was watching the Animaniacs. I'm sure there are many people who remember the trio; brothers Wakko and Yakko and their sister Dot. And Slappy the Squirrel... as well as the infamous and notorious Pinky and The Brain.

Far from being a regular cartoon, I was always convinced that the material drenched in wit, humour and sarcasm was more for teens and adults than pre-pubescent kids and a lot of what I’d seen on the show has stayed with me well into adulthood.

For instance, this has to be one of my favourite songs ever:


And here are a few of my favourite quotes:

Yakko Warner: We protest you calling us "little kids". We prefer to be called "vertically-impaired pre-adults".

Yakko: Wait. You're forgetting something.
Umlatt: What?
Yakko: Well, being an evil villain, you are contractually required to explain your plan before you get rid of us.

Yakko: Wait a minute. You expect us poor, innocent children to climb up dangerous scaffolding and paint naked people all over a church?
Wakko, Yakko, Dot: We'll do it!
Yakko: But we're not doing it for art. We're not doing it for the sake of money. No! We're doing it because we love painting naked people.

Wakko: Don't worry, siblings. We'll sell that nice man a box of cookies, or die trying. Or try dying. Or do some tie-dyeing.

Yakko: We'd love to stay here and count our brain cells as they die one-by-one.
Dot: But we can't.

Dot: All we know is that we like you. We have no taste, but we like you.

Yakko: You'll never live to regret it.

Yakko: It's that time again!
Dot: To make fun of the Disney channel?
Yakko: No.
Wakko: To make the Fox censors cry?
Yakko: No. And the moral of today's story is: If you can't say anything nice, you're probably at the Ice Capades.

Yakko: And the moral of today's story is: If at first you don’t succeed, blame your parents.

Yakko: And the moral of today's story is: Early to rise and early to bed; makes a man healthy, but socially dead.

Yakko: And the moral of today's story is: You're only worth the number of pennies in your couch.

Yakko: And the moral of today's story is: You can teach an old dog new tricks, but you can't teach Madonna how to act.

Yakko: And the moral of today's story is: People who live in glass houses should dress in the dark.

Miles: Be gone, pests, and give me the bird [actual bird].
Yakko: We'd love to, really, but the Fox censors won't allow it.
Wakko: I think we deserve a spanking, right on our fanny.

Brain: It must be inordinately taxing to be such a boob. Promise me something, Pinky. Never breed.

Brain: Are you thinking what I'm thinking, Pinky?
Pinky: Um, I think so, Brainie, but why would anyone want to pierce Brosnan?

Brain: Pinky! Are you pondering what I'm pondering?
Pinky: I think so Brain but how will we get the Spice Girls into the paella?

Slappy the Squirrel: The pleasure's been all yours, I'm sure.

Slappy: Look, have I ever lied to you before?
Skippy: You said keno is legal in Burbank.
Woman: Well. I never.
Slappy: Well, you should, it's fun.

Slappy: Pavlov would love this kid. Look Skippy, in most cases, revenge is not a good thing. In other cases, it's the only thing.

Slappy: If I were a better person, I'd ignore her and go on with my life. But I'm not.

Owner: I want a pet who'll come when I call and cuddle me when I've had a bad day.
Slappy: Have a kid, lady.

Girth Plotz: We meet again, Princess.
Dot: That's Princess Angelina Contessa Louisa Francesca Banana Fanna Lay Onna Pile Of Origami the Third. But you can call me Dot. Call me Dotty and you'll be taking your Tang intravenously!

Yakko: [upon entering the underworld] All is strange and vague...
Dot: Are we dead?
Yakko: Or is this Ohio...
Satan: Beyond these doors is an agony worse than all others. You will remain in here for eternity listening to...
Wakko: Oooh, I know! Whiny protest songs from the Sixties?
Satan: Little fools! I am Beelzebub! Lucifer! The Reaper of Souls! The Really Angry One! I AM SATAN! MUAHAHAHAHAHA!!!
Dot: So that's nothing! [rasping, sinister voice] I'm Princess Angelina Contessa Louisa Francesca Banana Fanna Bobesca the Third! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! [normal voice] Just a little thing I do.
Satan: You blundering dolts! Don't you realize you've entered the fiery realm of Hades?!
Wakko: Hades? [Dashes back up to the surface, brings back a snowball, sets it down, and watches as it quicky melts] Boy, they were right! It didn't have a chance!
Satan: SILENCE! And now, prepare to suffer indescribable torment!
Yakko: Another Bob Hope special?
Satan: Worse! Cerberus my pet, toss these fools into the Lake of Fire. But slowly. I want to watch them wiggle in agony.
Yakko: How about if we just wiggle here?
Warners: Wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle wiggle!

[Yakko's just sung a song listing eight of the nine planets of the solar system]
Yakko Warner: There you go, that's our solar system.
Wakko Warner: You forgot Uranus.
Yakko Warner: [blowing a kiss to the audience] Good NIGHT, everybody.

Dots Poetry Corner:
Dot: Requiem for a Lamb: Mary had a little lamb / With mint jelly. Thank you.

Dot: Roses are red, violets are blue / That's what they say, but it just isn't true / Roses are red, and apples are, too / But violets are violet, violets aren't blue / An orange is orange, but Greenland's not green / A pinky's not pink, so what does it mean? / To call something blue when it's not, we defile it / But what the heck, it's hard to rhyme violet.

Dot: Little Miss Muffet. Little Miss Muffet sat on her tuffet / And boy what a big tuffet she had! If you're feeling insecure, just sit next to her / And then you won't feel quite so bad. Thank you.

Dot: I'm a little teapot, short and stout! This is my handle, (pulls out a note from behind her) and here is a note from my shrink! He says I'm getting better! Last week I thought I was a toaster. Thank You.

The Godfather: [to henchmen] Show these kids the door!
Yakko: That's OK, we can see it from here. Ooh, nice door.
Wakko: Faboo!
Dot: Great hinges.

The Godfather: You're gonna be sleeping with the fishies tonight!
Yakko: Can we all go?
Wakko: Is Jimmy Hoffa there?
Dot: Will he read to us?

Yakko: How's it going, Scratchy?
Dr. Scratchensniff: I take umbrage at that.
Yakko: Oh, sure! Take all the umbrage. Don't leave any for us.

Saddam Husein: Do you know who I am?
Yakko: Why? Did you forget?

Miss Flamiel: Yakko, can you conjugate?
Yakko: Who? Me? I've never even kissed a girl!
Miss Flamiel: No, it's very simple. I'll conjugate with you.
Yakko: Good night, everybody!

Flamiel: Wakko, what is the meaning of the word, "procrastination"? 
Wakko: I'll tell you tomorrow.

Yakko: You know, you'd make a fortune renting your head out as a balloon.

Judge: What is this? 
Yakko: That's a finger, you have five of them on each hand. Unless you're in the circus, then its negotiable.

Harp: Oh but it's very special! This goose lays golden eggs! 
Yakko: A little fiber in its diet and it wont do that anymore. Doesnt anyone ever get cash in fairy tales??

Dr. Scratchansniff: Yakko, it's time to take the inkblot-test. Now, tell me... [shows an inkblot] ...what does this remind you of?
Yakko: Girls.
Dr. Scratchansniff: [shows another inkblot] What does this remind you of?
Yakko: Girls.
Dr. Scratchansniff: [annoyed, shows him one more inkblot] What does this remind you of?
Yakko: [analyzes the inkblot] Uhhhhhhhhhhhh, girls.
Dr. Scratchansniff: Grrr! You are obsessed with GIRLS!
Yakko: Hey, you're the one showing me all the sexy pictures.

Dr. Scratchansniff: What are you drawing?
Wakko: It's a cow eating grass. [holds up a blank paper]
Dr. Scratchansniff: But where's the grass?
Wakko: The cow ate it.
Dr. Scratchansniff: But where is the cow?
Wakko: Well, he's not going to stick around if there isn't any more grass to eat.

Dot: That makes me feel all kind of warm and squishy. Either that or I need to wear diapers.