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We went to The Labia (on Orange) in the afternoon when the wind was picking up and the dogs in De Waal Park were congregating for their evening lekgotlas. We went and saw Paris Je T’aime. Because of my fervent attention to detail, after reading the film’s blurb I was expecting a poetic documentary style film, but it was two hours of short drama films. I am not complaining, simply poking fun at myself.

We got home at about 18h15 and there was some interesting programming on South African television. I have to admit that I missed the first instalment of the new Top series, viz. Top Travel, but I did catch the last 15 minutes of the second episode. What stands out – after one half viewing – is that they use a rather dull voice over artist to comment through the show and the question is begged that if they are using the same presenters from Top Billing in Top Travel, why don’t they use the same voice over artists to voice this new series? Or at least find a more vibrant voice?

And then there was a curious show, erm I think it’s called Africa Couture. They featured a rising photographer from Athlone called Bevan something-or-other. There was some woman who enthusiastically said that Bevan was challenging stereotypes and that it was amazing that he was a photographer from Athlone doing fashion shoots, working for Cosmopolitan, and other things. From watching the insert it was impossible to see how this guy was challenging stereotypes: first of all he was dressed in a stereotypically trendy fashion photographer way – a studied casualness, and then secondly he was directing really skinny women at a decayed location and using their bodies as hangers for some items of clothing. I do have to agree with her, though, that it is amazing that a photographer from Athlone is doing fashion shoots in this day and age when it is still hard for black talent to break into many creative fields as professionals. This woman did not explain why Cosmopolitan and other decision makers in the fashion world had finally decided to acknowledge and allow a black man into the talented circle.

And then of course there was the only reason I turn on the tv on Saturday nights (since we have our valid tv licence): Nicky Greenwall’s Showbiz Report. There was Leon Schuster talking about how South Africans like to be able to laugh at others, but especially at themselves. As a South African, I have to publicly state my disagreement with Mr Schuster and make it clear that I prefer to laugh at others rather than at myself.

If it wasn’t for this very topical show, however, I would be completely uninformed. For example, S, was carelessly wondering which boy band had spawned Justin Timberlake and while he was thinking aloud and throwing about names like the Back Street Boys, I could knowledgably say, “N Sync,” because Nicky had mentioned this a few weeks ago on the Showbiz Report.

After Showbiz Report on Eee SABC 2 broadcast the Comedy Awards, which meant we got to see Leon Schuster again as he got his award for his contribution to South African comedy. And I’m really glad that we now have our valid tv licence and that we stayed home tonight and watched crappy tv because during the Comedy Awards I also discovered the very funny Trevor Noah. This means that as far as South African comedians go, I now know of two comedians I would pay to see, viz. Riaad Moosa and Trevor Noah.

August 2017
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