I thought I was giving birth. To dragons.


Heartburn woke up me up in the early hours of yesterday.  Just like the burglars who broke into our house a week before.  (That’s another story)

At first I thought it was my Mother-in-law’s cooking as we had dinner there.  Turned out it wasn’t because my heartburn was so severe there was no way it could be caused by a mortal’s cooking.  It made me think I was able to give birth to fire-breathing reptiles, turning into Phaleesi, the Father of Dragons.

I suffered through the pain because I didn’t want to wake the Wife.  Besides, my mother didn’t raise a whining baby.  (Well, actually she did but I eventually grew into something resembling an adult.)

I stumbled out of bed before the alarm went off, ready for gym because I’m a sad old man, in desperate need of attention.  I changed into my gym attire which consists of sweat pants and a t-shirt.  For some weird reason our gym doesn’t allow a shirtless man with batman shorts to train there. I don’t own the clothes that seems to become the standard which is a vest, cap, tights and matching shoes because I’m not a narcissistic asshole.

I went downstairs and woke Dude as I’m a good parent who feels that moderate levels of torture makes better human beings.  He growled at me, twice.  So it’s getting better.

We were at the door when my stomach turned.  Like Hurricane Matthew.  I ran back upstairs, leaving Dude with a huge frown on his face and basically dropped my innards in a flash flood.  (I’m sorry if that seemed a bit graphic but I did lose about 2,3 kg without even leaving the house!)  I told Dude that it probably would be wiser to stay at home because any physical exertion, aka squat or benchpress, might lead to the most embarrassing moment of my life.  He was thrilled and ran back to bed, while I returned to my porcelain throne.

I dropped the kids and drove to work with my heartburn reduced to a mild simmer.  I didn’t take any medicine because we don’t have any medicine for heartburn.  Our family never suffer from heartburn until we do.  Maybe it wasn’t even heartburn. Maybe there’s an alien about to pop out of my stomach!  I Googled some  natural remedies but because I don’t work in a kitchen none of them was available to me.

I lost my appetite somewhere at my house. I probably flushed it. Anyone who knows me will tell you, me not wanting to eat implies I’ve also lost my sense of humour.  They are co-dependent.  Hungry Pieter = Grumpy Pieter = Stay the hell away.  Or feed me.

What can I say, I’m a complicated human being…

Sometime during the early afternoon I finally gave up on my brave act.  My heartburn was still hanging around like forgotten Christmas decorations after New Year, I was kind of nauseous, completed a walking marathon of 6.4 km consisting of trips to the office bathroom (which in itself is the worst experience of my life) and my pectoral muscles were still sensitive from chest day.  I was basically in labour.

I decided to go home and sleep and feel sorry for myself.  Wife welcomed me with open arms because she loves me.  She handed me an effervescent bomb that consisted of three different tablets, moon-dust and the spit of Hulk.  The reaction in the glass resembled an experiment gone wrong.  I was desperate so I simply downed the drink, hoping I haven’t recently done something to piss of Wife to give her a reason to poison me.  Men never know these things.

Turned out it wasn’t poison.  It actually worked and I felt better when I woke up two hours later.

Sitting at a function later that evening, because there’s only so much sympathy in our household, Wife turned to me and said:

“Wow my love, how do you feel?  You don’t look too good.  You actually look a little yellow.”

She sounded surprised like she didn’t believe me initially.  Or maybe she thought I was exaggerating my ill health like I was some kind of big baby who couldn’t handle a little stomach flu…

As if any man will do such a thing?

Gym will never be the same again.

I’ve been busy.  On all fronts.  And things changed.  Drastically.

This week marks the first time that I was able to persuade Princess to join us in our routine torture sessions before the sun shows his friendly, fat face.  (I’m still moderately intrigued as to why she suddenly agreed to join us but in order to protect my sanity, I’m not going to dwell on that too long.)

Selling the concept of training in the morning was far easier than the execution thereof.  It took a lot of persuasion to finally get her to wake up and get dressed in some kind of sports attire.  Think ‘trying to fit and elephant in a mini cooper’.  Not that I’m insinuating she’s fat because she definitely is not.  She’s not even overweight.  Besides wouldn’t I be an awful parent if I called my daughter an elephant?  Even though she laughs like Heffalump.  I’m getting side-tracked…

My point is, it was extremely difficult.  Like watering a precious orchid on the edge of the highest cliff you can think of.  I sat on the edge of the bed in the dark, touched her shoulder and whispered in the kindest voice I could muster at o4h40 in the morning. “Time to wake up…”

Princess grunted.

I tried again.  This time telling her how she’ll regret not going.

She grunted again and turned her back to me.

I switched on the light and I think she cursed.

I’m kidding, she’ll never curse, at least not out loud.  She got up.  I woke Dude and started filling water bottles.

Eventually everyone was in the car on our way to gym.  All four of us.  (They had a friend sleep over and I needed a posse.) No-one was talking mainly because they were asking themselves what they’ve done wrong to deserve a life like the one they’re having.  I tried lifting the mood by cracking a few jokes but it turns out I do my best work after 10h00.

I’ve never felt so proud walking into a gym, unless I count that time I benched my body weight.  I was flanked by my two beautiful, chirpy kids even though they didn’t resemble beautiful or chirpy in any way.  Not even remotely.  They were more like a pair of grumpy, morning breath-ed, bedhead ridden, annoyed teenagers.  They were the poster children of why people should NOT wake up early.

Anyhow, moments later, they seemed to get used to the idea of exercise and I think they both managed a smile of some kind.  Then it happened.  Seeing them do their thing on a wide array of gym equipment…I’ve never felt so old.  (And having to spend fifteen minutes scrolling through years to log my birthday, certainly doesn’t help!)

It suddenly struck me that these two young adults, sweating away, were my kids.  I’ve always hoped that by setting some kind of example, they would be encouraged to do some exercise as well, and by the looks of it, it might have actually worked…who knew?  I’m acutely aware as to how special these moments are.  And how rare these moments will become as they get older. For now I’m just basking in the blissful joy of having my kids join me, doing something that I love.

I smile when I see the Dude stacking more than one plate on either side of the barbell. He’s my Dude.

And the tall, blonde chick running on the treadmill…SHIT!  I forgot about all the potential perverts…And she’s my Princess!

So she’s only going three times a week.  Maybe two.  And never without me…

The newly weds.

I got a window seat because I love to fold my legs behind my ears in order to sit comfortably on a plane.  All the isle seats were taken and like every other flight I’ve taken in Australia, this one was packed too.  The couple took both seats next to mine.  Fortunately she chose the middle seat and being small and petite, I knew there wasn’t going to be a lot of in-flight wrestling about the arm rest.  That thing was mine, bitch!

They were attractive in an Abercrombie and Fitch kind of way.  All smug and groomed and pretty.  She wasn’t ugly either.  I have to admit, I wasn’t paying that much attention to them, as I was already halfway through Episode 5 of Stranger Things which, for those of you who is still living under a rock, is frigging awesome!  (You need to binge watch it today.  It will blow your mind and I want to adopt those kids.  Especially the chubby one.)  Geeks have never been so cool.  Well, present company excluded, off course.

Back to the couple.  Once we reached cruising altitude, I ignored the discomfort of the person behind me and moved my seat back as far as it could go, which was maybe one inch.  I got ready for some upside down me time. Only to have the rock on her finger blind me. I closed the window shutter and had to wait three minutes for my normal vision to return again.  It must have been a forty carat ring, and most probably fake.

Then I started noticing other things.  She was playing with her I-phone and not so much playing, as sliding through a thousand photos of her in a white wedding dress, keeping the phone at an angle so I could share in all of her glorious poses.  There was also excessive touching and smiling and cuddling and happiness that made me puke a little in my mouth. They should get a room, me thinks.  And then it hit me, newlyweds…

Like all newlyweds, she basically begged me to asked her about the wedding.  And being the kindhearted, courteous, friendly man that I am, I didn’t bother.

I also understood why she was so small, she was merely malnourished in order to fit into that damn dress. It’s probably also the reason why the dude had such a perfectly groomed beard. Damn show off. You have facial hair, I get it.

I got back to upside down and government conspiracies.

Moments later I felt a little pat on my shoulder, like a fairy farting in close proximity and low and behold it was the bride.  She nudged my attention towards an angry looking air hostess who was trying to get my attention. I was instructed to:

  • Switch off my laptop.
  • Place said item in overhead locker.
  • Open the window shutter.
  • Fold back my tray table and
  • Put my seat in the upright position in preparation for the landing.

For those of you who have not flown before, that is basically everything one has to do as a passenger on a descending plane of which I was blissfully unaware.  The show is that good!

I smiled sheepishly at the couple, blaming my lack of compliance to the captain’s instruction on Stranger Things. She suddenly became even more excited and as it turns out, she’s also a huge fan.  Of the show.  Not of me.  I’m not that famous.

Knowing she was a geek in the body of a Victoria Secret’s model, I asked her about the wedding.  She started babbling and I immediately regretted my decision to ask her in the first place.  They got married on the Saturday and were on their way to their honeymoon somewhere in the gold coast and blah…blah…blah.

I missed most of it and when she eventually came up for air, I bragged about the fact that I’ve been happily married for 20 years.  They seemed genuinely impressed.  I’m not sure why. I’m no model but I’m certainly pretty enough to find a wife, and more importantly, keep one.  Besides, I’ve been told I have a great personality that hides most of the awkward features of my face.

Maybe it’s because I look younger than I am and they couldn’t comprehend how a dashing young man like myself could be married for so long… I’m sticking with that.

I should have told them about my two teenage kids, as that would have certainly caused a minor explosion of their minds.  But they were already rushing off, hand in hand, or shall I say shoulder-in-shoulder to their next destination.  Not a care in the world. Wait till you have kids, I thought.

I’m kidding off course…Kids are a real blessing and they’re lovable and cute, especially when they’re sleeping.

Jokes aside, I love the institution of marriage, the public declaration a couple make proclaiming love and a life long commitment to one another. I can only hope that they end up half as happy as I am in my marriage, but seeing that he isn’t married to the angel I am, I doubt that very much…

And I really, really miss her, right about now…

A status report.

I’ve been dead tired for the most part. I’m blaming jetlag. But this time it’s been really bad. It’s the kind of exhaustion that make me believe that the zombie virus could actually exist. I conducted a meeting and drove myself to the airport without actually being aware of me doing it. I think, I passed out on the plane from Brisbane because I missed the meal service. Well, it’s not really a meal service, it’s more like a snack bar.

I was sitting next to a newly married couple and I know this because of the way she made me watch her wedding photos on her iPhone.  And there was a lot of touching and smiling and looking happy.  It was totally inappropriate and I reckon newly weds should have a separate section on a plane. She begged the question and I asked. They were on their honeymoon. Do you now understand the kind of shit I have to deal with when I travel internationally?

It was pissing down in Melbourne and I know thats kind of crude but was there a monsoon I wasn’t aware of? And it wasn’t humid, summer  rain, it was cold and miserable, like the kind you see in England. Every day.  People were hunched under umbrellas and thick raincoats.  I didn’t have either. So on my return to the hotel, I looked like one of those dogs from an SPCA commercial, before they got rescued.

I have to admit, I might have had the best lamb rack ever.

I saw a queue of guys sitting at the hotel, looking like they were there for a prostate exam.It turned out it was for an interview. So that’s basically the same thing.

I got an earlier flight to Sydney and there was no one in the queue through security.  That means I’m buying a lotto ticket because good luck comes in threes right?

I sat next to an elderly couple who could be the poster children for a happy retirement. I wanted to take a photo and post it to my bucket list.

I managed to catch some highlights (or would that be lowlights) of the presidential debate. It was watched by more than a 100 million people. WTF? Are there so many lonely people in the world?

Here’s a few thoughts:

  • Didn’t Trump know that it’s useless to interrupt a woman when she’s on a roll?
  • And I think he was sniffing so much because he was crying on the inside. 
  • And not paying tax is a crime, not proof of how smart you are.

At least South African might not be the only nation who has a president they’re embarrased about.

Kids take note, this is why it is important to prepare for important events. Otherwise you’ll only end up sniffing and interrupting your way through it…

Sydney is really cold tonight and like most seasoned travelers, I’m not remotely prepaired for it. I guess the wine will have to keep me warm.

See ya.

(PS – I apologize for the many typos as I’m writing this on my phone and you know what they say about big hands…

That guy needs big gloves…)

I’m down under

Where they love sheep, beer and winning against South Africa. I’m kidding…they never win against South Africa…

(And that caused a minor explosion.)

I’m in Sydney at the moment where a group of guys are shouting at one another in a friendly manner. They must all be deaf, or just have a dark desire to inform random strangers about their weekend. Or maybe they’re just drunk. We all know there is a direct correlation between the amount of alcohol and the volume of your voice.

I’m staying in Coogee beach and please don’t get me started on some of the names they give places down here..

I’m having steak which is priced at the value of a small house where I come from. Fortunately I’ve quit the habit of converting currency because if not, I would certainly starve to death. The guy singing in the corner just finished his set and is packing up. I’m not sure anyone else noticed.  It’s eight-o-clock on a Sunday night, so I reckon they’ll probably roll up the streets and switch of the lights soon.

I’ll be visiting Brisbane and Melbourne, so hopefully there will be some blog worthy events happening soon.

At least I have Twitter…

Ten reasons why parenting teens and parenting toddlers are exactly the same thing.

I’m half-way through the war and I’m happy to report that there’s only been a limited amount of injuries and no casualties.  One can only hope that the post-traumatic stress of the battles won’t cause excessive psychological damage in the long run.

The war I’m referring to is trying to get my spawn to migrate from kids to teenagers.  And I have two.  Don’t feel sorry for me, just send money.  And alcohol.

Seriously though, thus far they haven’t turned into the raging hormonal freaks so many other parents warned us about.  They’re merely two hormonal, moderately erratic, older versions of the loving kids that used to live in our house.  Two people trying to understand who they are, where they fit in and how to cope with life.  We pray that this journey of discovery ends in complete acceptance and unconditional self-love.

We’re blessed to have two of the most wonderful, unique and amazing people call us Mom and Dad.

Dude is simply awesome with the warmest personality and I’m happy to report that we share the same sense of humour. He still thinks it’s cool to go to gym with Dad.

Princess is absolutely stunning with a mind-blowing sense of responsibility and I’m happy to report that we share a taste in music.  She still thinks Dad is her superhero.

All three of us love Wife more than life itself and we’ll be the first to admit that our success at being human is because of her.

I felt it important to provide a status report for all the parents who still have to travel the treacherous road of raising teens. First off, you only need unlimited WiFi, loads of patience, the ability to say no (and stick with it) and a very good sense of humour.  The good news is that parenting teenagers is very similar to parenting toddlers, so that means you’re all qualified.

It’s also the bad news.

  1. They’re always hungry and will whine until they get fed. Fast food still works best, even if it doesn’t come with a toy.
  2. You still have to feed them even though they consider themselves not to be kids anymore.
  3. You still have to dress them, especially if they want to go out in public with you.
  4. You still have to clean up after them or offer money and they might do it themselves.
  5. You still have to remind them about the importance of taking a bath, especially on a Saturday.
  6. They still won’t listen to everything you say, mainly because they’re stuck with headphones most of the time.  (They normally react very quickly when you throw something at them.)
  7. You still have to manage awkward mood swings and irrational outburst of emotion, especially when you use the demon word “No”.
  8. You still have to decipher their ability to communicate, as they’re using words you wouldn’t understand, irrespective of how hip you might think you are.
  9. You still have weird aromas wafting from their rooms, mainly composed of creams, cologne, lunch boxes and farts.
  10. You still have to listen to their music, which fortunately doesn’t include that annoying, frigging Barney-song.

I’ve been tweeting

A love to laugh as much as anyone who isn’t walking around with a stick up their arse.  (Ass for my American speaking friends and buttocks for the rest of you.)  Just because I can.Prentresultaat vir twitter

So some of you might have been wondering where I’ve been lately and I’m grateful to be missed.  For those who haven’t even noticed my absence from this blog, please fake a feeling in order to spare mine…

Besides the fact that I was out of town, or more like out of the country, I was tweeting.  It’s my latest addiction and just to prove to all of you, that I’m not lying, I’ve decided to post fifteen of my Twitter-ations over here.  (I also create words on a good day.)

I trust some of these will make you smile but hopefully there is at least one that will make you pee, even if it’s just a little.  It’s a few random (hopefully funny) thoughts of me living life.

There you have it folks.  This might be some of my best work.  (And that might be the saddest or greatest thing I’ve ever said about myself.)  Feel free to follow me on Twitter if your keen on reading more about the randomness of life, especially considering the fact that I also retweet a few other dark, twisted and hilarious folk.

See, I’m a nice guy, ask my mom.