Since July 2017, Adobe has been telling the world that they were pulling their Flash Player as at 31 December 2020.  SARS woke up to the problem too late and could only migrate half their input forms to the new method in time.  On 24 January 2021, they announced that they had created their own browser which could accept the plug-in to solve their self-created problem. This is a very dangerous approach given that they are dealing with highly sensitive and confidential information and given it takes an immense effort to ensure that any home-grown software is unhackable.  In addition, it does not run on the Apple operating system, iOS.  This led me to think whimsically about SARS creating its own operating system, tOS-SARS (Tax Operating System – SARS) or tOS for short.

Coincidently, one month prior to Adobe’s announcement, Mmamathe Makhekhe-Mokhuane was appointed Chief Officer – DIST (Digital Information Systems and Technology, I presume).  Who can ever forget that hilarious interview in October 2018 on SABC-TV conducted with her where she struggled to answer softball questions?  This led her to plead, “Ma’am, can you give me protection from yourself?”  In reply to a parliamentary question, Tito Mboweni provided the following information on her qualifications:

A due diligence was conducted on the following qualifications prior her appointment and were Verified:

(1) Diploma in Practical Accounting, Damelin, 1996

(2)  Diploma in Bookkeeping, Damelin, 1996

(3)  Diploma in Business Organization & Management, Damelin, 1997

(4)  Diploma in Personnel Training and Management, Damelin, 1997

(5)  Master of Business Administration, University of North West, 2004

A due diligence was not conducted on the following foreign qualifications prior her appointment:

(6)  General Certificate of Education. University of Cambridge, 1985

(7)  Diploma in Information Technology, Square one, Data processing College, 1987.”

The Needle and the Damage Done*

Moegeng Moegeng’s day job is to be the Chief Justice but his real passion seems  to be a ranting televangelist in the style of Pastor Mboro et al.  Rounding off a thanksgiving address with a prayer at Tembisa Hospital in December last year, he stomped around behind the podium railing against suspect vaccines: “I lock out any vaccine that is not of you. If there be any vaccine that is of the devil, meant to infuse 666 in the lives of people, meant to corrupt their DNA … Any such vaccine, Lord God almighty, may it be destroyed by fire, in the name of Jesus.”

While he might not have directly accused anyone of producing a vaccine that would corrupt DNA, the unsophisticated listener might have made the connection that they do exist otherwise why would a venerated person get so worked up about it.  With a worldwide rollout of vaccines gaining momentum, it’s worthwhile revisiting that topic.
* Song by Neil Young released in 1972

Size Matters or Does It?

Most countries, at some stage or another, have promoted large families.  It would seem that fecundity is a source of national pride if not a desire to outnumber their enemies in the long term.  Hitler avidly promoted this and Stalin created the medal, Mother Heroine, in 1944 for mothers who raised over 10 children.  This was awarded 430 000 times by 1991 when it was discontinued.  There were also other medals for woman who were not as fecund or who were perhaps more sensible.

Main picture: Soviet propaganda poster, 1944 & Soviet Mother Heroine Medal

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The Morning After: Confessions of an Internet News Junkie

On the morning of the 4th of November, I had a near death experience.  All the news feeds on the internet were showing that, instead of MAGA (Mega Arsehole Going Awry), Trump was doing a remarkable job of keeping his end up so to speak.  Given his age, he must be mainlining Viagra along with his daily cocktail of orange preservative with a twist of hydroxy-chloroquine.  No wonder Melania keeps giving him her icy slit-eyed Slavic stares and silent don’t you dares.  Although Slow Joe had been quick out of the blocks, it seemed improbable to me that he could flip all the states needed to reach 270 votes as Trump was ahead in most.  Being a straight up and down kind of guy, it further seemed unlikely that he would come from behind.  Instead, MAGA flipped him and the world the bird as well as a few hamburgers which he chowed down to give himself strength for his 2am press conference after the polls had closed.  Hoping to catch Slow Joe tucked up bed with a hot milk, he magnanimously claimed victory.

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Cenotaph: A Memorial to The Missing and The Dead

I’ve heard of the word cenotaph and was aware that one existed at the corner of Rink Street and Park Drive.  Apart from merely noting its presence whilst driving hither and thither to Varsity, I never pondered the meaning of the word.  The odd ph letter grouping gives the hint that it has a Greek origin but that was about as far my thinking went.  After all, there were far more important things to ponder as a young man.  The truth is more revealing or shocking or startling, depending on how you look at it.  

Main picture: Unveiling of the Cenotaph on the 10th November 1929

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Bridges over the Baakens River and its Mouth

This blog does not represent the story of these bridges. Rather it represents an attempt to link every photo of a bridge to the correct bridge mentioned by Margaret Harradine. This was more difficult that it seems as many bridges were destroyed multiple times. The original caption on a photo never identifies whether the bridge was in fact the second or even third bridge at that location.

Main picture: The bridge shown in this photo has now been identified

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