Brilliant but Low Tech Ideas

Whenever one hears of innovations, computers, cellphones, GPS and other high tech gadgets come to the fore. Whilst these inventions undoubtedly have made life convenient and more pleasurable, one must not only be captivated by technology. 

These photographs illustrate an array of low tech solutions to everyday problems that would also enhance our lives.

 Main picture: This holder for McDonald’s fries will resolve my problem when eating and driving. Naturally not eating while driving would be another solution but who wants to eat while parked at a McDonald’s

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Only in South Africa

None of these photos require a caption as they are all self-explanatory. Not all of them were taken in South Africa as some were taken north of our borders. Once one leaves the metropolises, the real Africa intrudes. The target audience of this blog is those who never leave the malls or their housing estates as these photos capture the essence of what is means to an African as we all are.

Perhaps this blog should have been entitled, “Getting to know one’s fellow Africans”, or maybe not.

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Should South Africa still drive on the Left Hand Side of the Road?

In the latest edition of the Heritage Portal, Peter Ball presents a concise, lucid and fascinating account of the history of why and how the various countries in the world elected to drive on which side of the road. 

With the majority of the countries driving on the right – 161 – versus 75 on the left, would or should there be standardisation to driving on the right. 

Main picture: Map of the world indicating which side every country drives on

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Celebration of the work of Laurent Schwebel

Laurent Schwebel was an internationally renowned nature photographer. At 8am on 8th February 2012, he was stabbed to death in Plaza San Martin, a main square in Buenos Aires while taking picture of a memorial statue. When a thug attempted to garb his camera, Laurent tackled the thief who stabbed him repeatedly.

Main picture: One of the many evocative photographs by Laurent Schwebel

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Amazing Historical Coincidences

I do not believe in luck, I certainly do not rely on providence and, contrary to some narratives, I place no significance on these highly improbable coincidences. Furthermore I scoff at and am extremely sceptical of accepting any correlation between these events. My only reaction is amazement. All of these events bear no significance other than the fact that of the millions of actions occurring throughout the world on a second by second basis, a minute percentage will bear the appearance of serendipity or coincidence.

 That is how these examples of coincidence must be viewed; amusing sometimes, interesting certainly but never prophetic.

Main picture: World War I began with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria. The license plate of the car in which he was riding at the time of his death was AIII 118. WWI officially ended on Armistice Day: 11/11/18.

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Superb Quotes on Marriage


David Bissonette: 

When a man steals your wife, there is no better revenge than to let him keep her.


Sacha Guitry 

After marriage, husband and wife become two sides of a coin; they just can’t face each other, but still they stay together.



By all means marry. If you get a good wife, you’ll be happy. If you get a bad one, you’ll become a philosopher.

Woman inspires us to great things, and prevents us from achieving them.

Sigmund Freud 

I had some words with my wife, and she had some paragraphs with me.



“Some people ask the secret of our long marriage. We take time to go to a restaurant two times a week. A little candlelight, dinner, soft music and dancing. She goes Tuesdays, I go Fridays.”


Sam Kinison 

“There’s a way of transferring funds that is even faster than electronic banking. It’s called marriage.”


James Holt McGavran 

“I’ve had bad luck with both my wives. The first one left me, and the second one didn’t.”


Patrick Murray 

Two secrets to keep your marriage brimming
1. Whenever you’re wrong, admit it,
2. Whenever you’re right, shut up.



The most effective way to remember your wife’s birthday is to forget it once…



You know what I did before I married? Anything I wanted to.


Henny Youngman 

My wife and I were happy for twenty years. Then we met.



Rodney Dangerfield 

A good wife always forgives her husband when she’s wrong.



A man inserted an ‘ad’ in the classifieds: “Wife wanted”. Next day he received a hundred letters. They all said the same thing: “You can have mine.”



First Guy (proudly): “My wife’s an angel!”
Second Guy: “You’re lucky, mine’s still alive.”


Who could imagine a Burka coming in handy?

The SAS did. Since their inception during WW2, the SAS has been involved in numerous audacious missions. After narrowly escaping closure at the end of the war, they established the relevance in the Iranian embassy siege and during the Falkland’s war. Currently they are deployed in Iraq, Syria and also in Libya.

Main picture: The SAS squad disguised themselves as ISIS commanders’ wives to infiltrate Raqqa

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Inimitable Repartee

Winston Churchill was renowned for this sharp wit and quick retorts. In fact I have even written a blog about Winston’s most famous come-back lines. Aside from Churchill, I also appreciated Ronald Reagan’s self-deprecating retorts when challenged by an opponent. All of these are well known. All share one characteristic. They will surely deflate the menacing tone of an opponent.

Main picture: Vintage Winston Churchill

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TV Resolution: What is the State of Play?

Most of us have only recently acquired HD TVs when a vastly improved new standard UHD – Ultra High Definition – was announced. This new standard offered double the resolution of HD – 3849 x 2160 pixels. The picture quality of these TVs is so stunning that even if one stands less than a metre from the screen, no pixilation can be seen. In fact I have stood less than a centimetre away and no pixels are visible. Just when I promised myself to indulge in one if I ever had to win the Lotto – the US’s version has a prize of $430 million this week – I read the following headline: Samsung vs LG: the battle of fake and true UHD TVs. What does that mean for us?

Main picture: A Samsung 105in curved UHD TV currently retailing for R 285 000

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