I want to be a male fruit fly in my next life…

There are some animal species in which the male gender have got it totally right. Not so much in the “spiders” category. There the guys are a lot smaller than the ridiculously dominant female and, after he finally gets his leg (or a few) over, she is inclined to have him for afters. As in eat him. Not nice. A bit on the extreme side, if you ask me. Well, as a red-blooded alpha-male type, this would not be a lifestyle I would necessarily recommend to myself.

In fact, if you ask me (and you’re not but I’ll just pretend you are and bomb forth anyway), the inter-gender pendulum has swung way too far the other way since my admirably rugged Neanderthal forefathers used to get back from a strenuous day of hunting / gathering, lob an antelope on the kitchen table and gruffly say: “Cook that, Wilma!” Her indoors (in the cave) would meekly (and, more importantly, uncomplainingly) barbecue up a storm, he (let’s call him Fred, shall we?) would chomp through the whole antelope, throw her a few bones and then have his barbaric but ultimately satisfying way with her for the all-that-is-required two minutes on the roughly-hewn-out-of-rock dinner table before collapsing on a comfy animal skin for a good night’s kip.

After a hard day hunting, Fred was looking forward to a top-notch nosh and some quick nookie when he returned to the cave

After a hard day's hunting, Fred was looking forward to a top-notch nosh and some quick nookie back at the cave

But gradually, and almost indetectably (apart from the odd burning of a bra), this has sadly changed. And caused a highly unfortunate imbalance in our social order which has left real men like me very confused. I don’t see why I should hunt all day for a Fred-sized buck, only to be told to cook it myself while she reads Heat magazine and fannys around with her fingernails in front of the telly. I won’t even go into the manipulative tactics involving the purchase of Jimmy Choo shoes, visits to her mum and putting out the garbage that have to summoned up in order to procure a roll-around in which my tongue is expected to do 90% of the work.

I mean, have a read of this so-called “joke” sent to me by a female “friend” just yesterday…

Duties of Wives.

Three men were sitting together bragging about how they had given their new wives duties.

Terry had married a woman from Greece.

He bragged that he had told his wife she needed to do all the dishes and housework. He said that it took a couple days but on the third day he came home to a clean house and the dishes were all washed and put away.

Jimmy had married a woman from Italy.

He bragged that he had given his wife orders that she was to do all the cleaning, dishes, and the cooking. He told them that the first day he didn’t see any results, but the next day it was better. By the third day, his house was clean, the dishes were done, and he had a huge dinner on the table.

The third man had married a South African chick.

He boasted that he told her that her duties were to keep the house cleaned, dishes washed, laundry and ironing twice a week, lawns mowed, windows cleaned and hot meals on the table three times a day.

He said the first day he didn’t see anything, the second day he didn’t see anything, but by the third day most of the swelling had gone down and he could see a little out of his left eye, just enough to fix himself a bite to eat, load the dishwasher, and call a handyman.

God Bless South African Women!

Not all that funny, is it? That’s not a joke. It’s an outrage. And perfectly illustrates my point that things have got well out of hand. Did you notice that last little dig in the balls… “God Bless South African Women!“? Pathetic! And unnecessarily provocative. If you ask me. Which you did, OK?!

Now let’s have a look at the male fruit fly. The what? Bear with me. This little feller has gone up big-time in my estimation. In fact, as I write this, there’s one buzzing the not-so-pristine pawpaw (papaya for foreign Hatpeople) in the fruitbowl here at Hatman Mansions. I know this one’s a male because he looks very pleased with himself. Why? Well, he’s out of the house looking for food to put on the table (probably inbetween titanic trysts with other really hot female fruit flies) and his missus is home doing the vacuuming, laundry, feather-dusting and whatever else it is that needs to be done in fruit fly homes. Now this is much more like it, yes?


The very best of YouTube in under 4 minutes… enjoy the ride!

OK, so I’m not going to make a habit of posting knockabout YouTube material on here… but I defy you not to completely love watching “The Best of YouTube in 4 minutes”! Fasten those seatbelts…

Whoo. That was quite a ride, hey? Glad you survived. Even gladder that you are so grateful to me (with tip of red hat to myspace.com/hadouken) for wrapping up the history of YouTube in 204 seconds. No problem, Hatpeople. I consider it my duty.

World Cup 2010: Durban vs Cape Town… you be the judge!

Dear Judge and jury, I have two pieces of evidence to present before the court.

Here is Exhibit A…

Cape Town: Nice backdrop, pity about the half-finished, half-sucked Polo mint

Cape Town: Nice backdrop, pity about the half-finished, half-sucked Polo mint

… and here is Exhibit B…

Durban: Mmmm. Not half bad Pic: Lefty Shivambu / Gallo Images

Durban: Mmmm. Not half bad Pic: Lefty Shivambu / Gallo Images

That is all, Your Honour. I shall leave it to our esteemed jury to decide…

Who says that romance is dead?

With a humungously Errol Flynn-like doff of the red hat to Facebook friend Marianne Thamm, I give you this delectably romantic TV ad for that cats pee Americans like to call “Bud”.

Ladies, you are loving this little televisual gem of courtship as it should always be conducted…

Stunning. His big move certainly blew her hair back, didn’t it?

Future revolutions will be iPhoned!

I’m no gadgety geek but the stuff you can do on an iPhone is radness overload. Thanks to Umdloti iPhonehead Jimmy Reynolds for totally sucking me into an info-vortex which dumped me, head spinning, on Planet iPhone over a couple of G&Ts at the Bush Tavern yesterday.

And it just got much better. American photographer Chase Jarvis has developed an application for iPhone which takes photographing fragments of your world up to another stratosphere altogether. He’s calling it “The Best Camera” and it pretty much pulls in the best of all of the best things about taking pics with a cameraphone and enables everybody (with an iPhone of course) to record what’s happening around them at any time with a totally pro vibe attached.

Let’s see what Chase has to offer us (please be forewarned that our man is plugging his app and “how to” book to within an inch of vulgarity here – doesn’t everybody these days? – but this vid is a complete eye-opener)…

How was that for you, Hatpeople? “Get an iPhone” just zoomed straight to the top of your “Must Have” list? It’s on top of mine. I have to say that some of my most cool pix were snapped using the “Fluorescent” setting on an old Sony Ericsson K800 (see here). I recently became the lucky owner of a Canon EOS 50D – and I’m well chuffed with it – but, when it come to photographing arb stuff on the move, nothing touches whipping the old cameraphone out of the pocket and grabbing the image in an instant.

The iPhone, along with Chase’s awesome app, will massively enhance this whole slice-of-life capturing thing and my red hat is tipped in gratitude towards can’t-help-enough Stephen at Durban’s Gateway iStore for offering to lend me an iPhone for our Heart & Sole unicycling marathon across South Africa.

I’ll be documenting Geoff “Heartman” Brink’s mad 1,400km ride from Durban to Cape Town every inch of the way on this blog and the iPhone will give me the means to post words, pics and vid on the blog, Twitter, facebook, YouTube and flickr with a few brushes of its screen.

Now I just need to buy Jimmy a whole bunch of G&Ts in exchange for a crash course in how to get the minimally-loaded left-brained side of my lopsided head around the iPhone and Chase’s amazing app!

OK. So my tweetdick is (much) bigger than 2oceanvibe’s. Just saying.

Look. I think that men who go on and on about the size of their penises lack self-esteem and are childish. But, for once, I will release my inner childishness. And the size of my dick. Wait. This is all in the public interest. Trust me.

Blame it on Seth Rotherham, of 2oceansvibe blogging fame. He started it. Rothers likes to bang on about his personal suite at the Cape Royale Hotel, his latest Audi R8 Spyder and his twenis size. His what? Well, the little blogger found a site that measures tweeple (people who use Twitter) and their status on the humungously popular social network by penis size.

Women who use Twitter are not spared this form of social profiling. Nice. No trace of gender discrimination there. I like that. Why shouldn’t women feel what it’s like to have a twenis? All good fun, hey? But then Seth, overjoyed by the revelation of the size of his twitdick, splashes it all over his blog for all to see. And thereby opens the proverbial can of worms. Or, in his case, worm.

So. laydeez and, er, laydeez, let us, for a brief moment, plug into Seth’s twenis vibe…

A worm

A worm

Ag, shame. 40.3cm. What’s that in inches? Um. I actually make that over 15 inches. Not too shabby, Rothers. I have to say I’m quite impressed. A lot of Cape Town girls would find that more than acceptable.

So, heart in my mouth, I clicked on Seth’s, er, link to the “e-penis” site to see how I measure up. Nerve-wrackingness, I tell you. I mean this is important. Any woman who tells you that size doesn’t matter is either nurturing your fragile ego or lives in Cape Town and is desperate. Size matters. A lot. It always has. It always will. Get over it.

So, if you’re all sitting comfortably and appropriately fortified by a stiff drink or some or other illegal substance (and shooed the kids away to a safe haven), here are my results…

I'm fine with that

I'm fine with that

It’s OK. You can come out from behind the sofa. It’s only a picture. But quite something, hey? 53.4cm. That does sound about right. But let’s see how that translates into inches (because we still talk in inches, don’t we, ladies?) OK. My tweetdick weighs in at just a few layers of skin over 21 inches. Whopperness!

And didn’t you enjoy those little illustrative flourishes that the e-penis site obviously reserves for the bigger boys. I’m not going into any detail because this is, after all, a family blog. But I’m sure that you noticed that the sweet little Twitter bird sitting at the head of it all looks very worried and clearly suffers from some kind of vertigo. But, all in all, I’m quite pleased with the outcome. Nice turnout. But, being the discreet and rather reserved type, unlike Mr Rotherham of of 2oceansvibe, I’m going to keep this stunning victory all to myself. As real men do.

That’s just the way I roll… and roll… and unroll. Understated and overhung. Just saying.

Instead of dying, this man is flying…

We at Hatman Mansions are huge fans of extreme sports. Especially extreme cooking. Why, you should see the stuff that gets served up in the banquet hall of an evening. But I’m not here this evening to make you sick to the stomach. I’m here to make you forget that you have a stomach.

Which is what will happen when you see what Dean Potter does. Dean does freebasing, something that the Hatman Mansions people, as liberal as we are, usually draw the line at.

But this is different. Dean, bored with just climbing up some of the highest mountains in the world, and then base-jumping off them, free-soloing, highlining, baselining and just about anything else utterly nutty that one can do up at a height we normally only frequent in an aeroplane, has found a new rush.

Dean Potter drops in on some startled deer who were pretty much just minding their own business

Dean Potter drops in on some startled deer who were pretty much just minding their own business

Freebase climbing. What’s that? Well, I have a video full of gobsmackingness to show you just now… but it’s climbing up the most difficult side of the Eiger with only his fingers, toes and a 6lb parachute. And then falling/jumping off. Awesomeness overload. In fact, it’s even more than that. It’s spiritual. Please notice how Dean stops to meditate before falling 9,000 feet in about three minutes.

Listen to what he says between sublime acts of derring-do. He talks of how he used to associate falling with death but now it’s not about dying but flying. You sense his kinship with the cliffs, the rock-faces, that he drags himself up with just his fingers and toes. And then the adrenaline which does indeed freeline throughout his body while falling and flying thousands of feet through thin blue air. This is a seriously spiritual vibe Dean’s got going here, bru.

Come, let’s plug into that vibe…

Total radicalness or what? I’m not sure he would have the guts to conquer one of our Hatman Mansions dinners but, still, I’m quite impressed. I had such an attack of vertigo while watching Dean chuck himself off the Eiger that I had to sit on the floor for a while. But, all in all, that was nice work up there, Dean (read more about the great man here). Cool bits of soundtrack too.

So, tomorrow I’m tagging along for the last-ever construction tour of Durban’s new World Cup 2010 stadium. I’m hoping to get on that funicular which rolls up one side of the magnificent arch and leaves you standing 106 metres above the freshly-laid pitch. I’ll think of Dean Potter while I’m up there. So if you see a body freebaselining or whatever it is off the arch, you must know that Dean inspired me to get over my fear of heights. I just hope somebody will have a video camera to record it all. And that I remember how to open my ‘chute.

Take a dip into ‘Paris Hilton’s handbag’!

A tune that I just can’t get out of my head at the mo is Variety Lab’s (I Like) London In The Rain off the well-chilled Hotel Costes compilations (Quatre – No 4 – since you ask)… but – and don’t tell the Variety Lab crew – I’ve customised the lyrics (all six words of them) in my head and in the shower to “I, Like, Totally Dig Durban In The Rain”.

You see, yesterday and today are two of the roughly 23 days of the year that the sun don’t shine on our city of pure sub-tropical sumptuousness and, like the sprawling gardens of Hatman Mansions, I do like a drop of rain. Weather report over, may I give you yet another reason to fall in love with the city where all of you fantasise to be when the World Cup 2010 finals kick off in South Africa next June?

OK. So you’re on the edge of your seats, lungfuls of air tightly sucked in. Good. Here it is…

Just. Drink. It. All. In. Our ocean. Our city. Yes, OUR World Cup Stadium. With its glorious arch. Beautifulnesses all round there my babies!

Just. Drink. It. All. In. Our ocean. Our city. Yes, OUR World Cup Stadium. With its glorious arch. Beautifulnesses all round there my babies!

I thought you’d like that. This work of art was snapped by none other than Allan Jackson, scribe of the Fishnet column in South Africa’s Sunday Tribune, and you can see more of his photographic gems right here. Nice work, Allan. And thanks for sending this little i-marge my way.

OK. So I know what you’re thinking. You are sat there looking at Allan’s pic and saying to yourself: “Mmm, nice stadium but what’s going on with that beach, bru?” Nice. I love inquiring minds. Truth is, Hatpeople, that the Durban municipality, because they just cannot spend enough on ensuring that your World Cup experience is unsurpassed, are totally revamping our beachfront.

Like, totally. By the time our city fathers and mothers (and their cousins and their cousins’ cousins)  are finished tinkering with it, you lot sitting at Miami South Beach (and I know you’re reading this because my latest Google Analytics stats record a massive jump in American Hatpeople visiting this blog, no pork) will be physically contorted with envy. I’m cool with that.

What I’m not quite so cool with are the Cape Town crew who have been spamming me and saying that our WC2010 stadium (Moses Mabhida Stadium to you) looks like Paris Hilton lost her biggest handbag while on a whirlwind visit to Durban. Not nice. Quite funny. But not very nice.

As my Dad used to say, if you haven’t got anything nice to say, don’t say it. And, as always, he was right. He was my Dad. So my message to those Capetonians trying to wrench the World Cup limelight away from the most drop-dead gorgeous city in South Africa is this: “You carry on sitting under that silly little flat-topped hill of yours, sipping skinny lattes outside Giovanni’s in your poncy designer clothes and just focus on that pathetic well-sucked-Polo-mint confection of a stadium your municipality spent your rates money on.”

There. War declared against the Mother City. Cool. We Durbanites are legendary for our laidbackness. But we’re also, like, so totally Zulu up here. That’s just how we roll. And jump. And brandish our spears. So we will fight when we have to. Paris Hilton’s handbag! That’s just sick. And asking for trouble.

Toni Rowland appointed as ambassador for our Heart & Sole Tour

South African rock musician Toni Rowland has pledged her support for Geoff “Heartman” Brink’s trans-South Africa unicycle odyssey, which has previously been documented here and here.

Toni Rowland: totally behind Heartman's mad unicycle marathon

Toni Rowland: totally behind Heartman's mad unicycle marathon

Our Geoff is hard in training to undertake the approximately 1,400 kilometre stretch on one wheel later this year and was understandably “totally stoked” to hear of Toni’s support for his ride. Heartman is unicycling from Durban to Cape Town to raise awareness of The Sole of Africa, the Mineseeker Foundation’s anti-landmine campaign. He is also hoping, through a competition to be announced soon, to raise sufficient funds  to enable him to afford a “pretty awesome wedding” for the woman he so desperately wants to marry.

Toni, who recently released Unfolding, a new album which is receiving huge acclaim in the USA and Britain, is thrilled to be involved with the Heart & Sole Tour. She told fredhatman.co.za: “The Heart and Sole tour is just amazing. Geoff riding a unicycle across South Africa in a way reflects the whole plight of the people that are affected by landmines. A solitary figure on a single wheel is kind of what people who have lost a limb are left with.”

Toni is an active ambassador for the Sole of Africa campaign and has travelled to Mozambique with the Mineseeker Foundation to see for herself the effects of landmines on women and children.

This experience inspired Toni to write a song for the Sole of Africa campaign entitled “Put Your Foot Down”, which she wrote in Spain while recording Unfolding with former Uriah Heep rock superstar Ken Hensley. The royalties from the sales of this song are being donated to the Mineseeker Foundation. You can find out more about Toni at her MySpace profile or on her personal website.

Meanwhile, the Heartman has been drawing bemused glances – and even the odd cheer – while wobbling down the Umdloti beachfront during his daily practice sessions. He has upgraded from a 24″ wheel to a 36″ and, weighing in at a portly106kg, presents a rather formidable sight to locals not accustomed to seeing anything more exotic than a horse and cart offloading barrels of beer outside the Bush Tavern.

A formidable (and hilarious) sight he may be but Heartman didn’t exactly impress a Doberman Pinscher which ran across our heroic unicyclist the other day. My red hat is extravagantly doffed to local Umdlotian Marc Desvaux de Marigny (gollyness, I’d kill for a name like that) who captured this beautiful moment…

Fido adds a bitemark to the litany of bruises and cuts adorning Heartman's legs. Nice.

Fido adds a bitemark to the litany of bruises and cuts adorning Heartman's legs. Nice.

All part of the training schedule. Heartman needs those legs to be impenetrable before meeting up with those killer bulls which roam the roads around Mthata. Not to mention the huge risk of being gored by a fusillade of stilettos when he is mobbed by the adoring supermodels who will be waiting to receive him outside Camps Bay’s excruciatingly trendy Caprice restaurant when the Heart & Sole Tour team finally pulls into Cape Town. As Heartman’s back-up vehicle driver and general watch-his-back man, I’ll have a right job keeping the gals at bay. Hmmm.

It’s official: Refs ARE helping Man United!

For those of you who shared the agony in Biltong National Park’s Live Updates service on Sunday when Michael Owen seemingly scored the winner against Manchester City about two days after the final whistle should have blown, here’s clear evidence that referees are, indeed, helping old Hatchetface Ferguson and his Manky lot.

A media organ no less august and respectable than London’s The Guardian have published a study which proves beyond doubt that English Premier League officials show favour to Man U when they play home games at Old Trafford.

OK. We’ve suspected that for years. But here’s the the proof.

This awful photograph should never have been taken!

This awful photograph should never have been taken!

Right. That’s settled then. I hope you feel better. I don’t. But we can now rest our case. And we’ll never walk alone…