Why support Fabrice Muamba and not real problems?

On Saturday night I was having a rather normal evening, a birthday braai, a few thousand pints of the delicious @mitchellsbrew and settling in to watch Spurs play Bolton in the FA Cup (not that I support either but you know how braai, football and beer go together.

You all no doubt know what happened from there . . .

As I watched the crying and anxious faces around White Heart Lane and the panicked commentating as the game was called off I go the most frightening feeling, like someone I knew had been struck down. Of course I don’t know him personally nor do I really support either side but when you watch as much football as we do you take for granted that there will be a game and a result and nothing more really will happen – to see someone die (granted he was resuscitated later) on the pitch is one of the most bizarre and frightening football experiences of my life.

As the discussion continued around the braai once the game was called off, one of the intelligent ones (that’s why he’s my co-STMer) brought up the very valid point – ‘why so much concern for him?’

At first I disagreed and couldn’t understand the question really (the fact that it was coupled with Weak Heart Lane didn’t help) but after thinking about it for the last few days and seeing the amount of tributes and support – which I think is absolutely awesome – I started to wonder the same.

In the last week alone we’ve seen gunmen in France mow down school children and teachers, violence erupt in Mali and the chaos in Syria continue. The amount of death and destruction following these is surely far more in need of support than one footballer in hospital? To make matters horrifically worse these are just three of the, literally, thousands of stories that caught the attention of the global news networks.

While I was certainly on the ‘Support Muamba’ campaign and think everyone deserves this kind of support I just cannot believe that we live in a world where atrocities have been going on in Africa and around the world for decades and yet we casually sweep them under the rug and write them off to barbaric regimes but yet the entire world comes out in support of one, relatively small, tragedy.

Somehow as frightening as it was to see a 23 year old lying life less on the football pitch I cant help but wonder where the global voice of support for the millions of men, women and children suffering through all kinds of tragic events is?

What would Jesus do (the religio-less version!)

I like creativity in advertising, I like it when marketers push the boundaries of what’s funny, what’s comfortable and whats interesting – let’s just say it makes me feel like they give a F$#@ about what they are selling.

So, when the uproar of the Red Bull & Jesus advert came up I thought it only fair to discuss it.

I don’t want to take on the argument from a ‘Christian vs the other world religions’ perspective because I don’t think that is actually the point here – I think it’s more about peoples sensitivity.

First I think if you haven’t seen the advert you should have a watch . . .


The question I start asking myself is, is it really necessary to get offended?

I mean the comments I’ve seen on blogs and sites is that it’s “disgraceful”, “blasphemous”, “disgusting” and the list goes on and on. Now I don’t blame the Christians for being over sensitive because I’m pretty sure if that had been any religious character there would have been a similar response (maybe the Muslims slightly more militant and the Jews slightly more understanding – we are used to the abuse) but the question still is why all the issue?

You see we have gotten to a point where everyone is so sensitive about everything that no one is sure of what’s funny and what’s “blasphemy”. Personally I think it’s sad and pathetic to get to the stage where we block out the word ‘God’ in movies but the word ‘cunt’ is fine to air – I think maybe kids should not hear the latter rather than the former (we might have one or two less shows of ’16 and pregnant’)!

In South Africa (for the foreign readers) I think most of us truly believe that the only reason we have managed to integrate our society, without full scale civil war, to the point that we have, is that we all can laugh at ourselves and the stereotypes which portray us. We have let our guards down and realized we can mock ourselves, mock each other and as long as we don’t attack and abuse it can help the process rather than hinder it!

Sometimes I think that if every religion wasn’t so sensitive about itself and could perhaps laugh a little more, we could learn a lot more from each other rather than being in the position now where we find ourselves waiting for something. Anything to upset us so we can attack back!

Now for you idiots who are going to cry at me and say that I’m encouraging abuse, firstly shut up! Secondly you can have tolerance without abuse. You can mock stereotypical behavior, laugh at it and move on – the only way though is to let our guards down, drop the baggage and enjoy when something is funny.

Having said all this I still think the Red Bull ad was SHIT! Not because of Jesus just because it wasn’t funny, so if you want to be angry about something be angry that they used your lord and savior in a commercial that really sucked!

The Future 2.0 . . .

I wrote a post a while ago about ‘The Future’ of integrated technology. Most of the post was overshadowed by my newspaper read on the flight home about Julius Malema’s new antics but fortunately we are passed that now and can focus on the important stuff!

These guys from Corning are looking at it from one view, which is glass, but they had done a pretty good job of showing us how our lives will start to change and how the way we use glass in our house will evolve.

Well now they have gone one better. I must say that watching this really give me the most excited feeling in the pit of my stomach. It makes me think of the times when I was a kid just discovering tech and pretending you could do pretty much anything with it, the times watching stupid TV shows like CSI and thinking that’s impossible (but I wish it wasn’t) and the endless times where I needed my hardware to do things my mind wanted them to but they just were light years behind.

So, I give you the future (at least I hope so!) . . .