26 December 2013

7 Things I Learnt on Christmas Day 2013

image via weheartit


Happy Boxing Day, if that's also a thing where you're from. I actually don't know what Boxing Day is or what event it commemorates. Yesterday was Christmas Day, which was rainy and chill here in Soweto. I spent the day indoors, reading Harry Potter -- a little -- and eating stuff that's too sweet. These are a few of the things the day taught me.

1. I'm going to be an awesome billionaire recluse one day! Like, sometimes I have doubts regarding that lifestyle to which I aspire but the holiday taught me that I'm so going to rock it as a rich recluse. Christmas Day 2013 taught me that I actually couldn't be bothered by the commotion and festivities happening outside my door. It's going to be even better when I have my beautiful cabin in rural South Africa. Yas.

2. Choice Assorted biscuits taste the same. Meh. There's a variety of biscuits in the box and they all taste the same.

3. My sister and I are totally different people and we're blessed for it and for having each other. She didn't see any appeal in my staying indoors and went out.

4. I should always buy peach and pineapple slices for my ultramel consumption. It just tastes better with those accompaniments.

5. Baths are awesome. My day couldn't have gotten onto such a great start had I not started it with a long, leisurely bath.

6. Welfare TV sucks!!! This wasn't exactly a new lesson but for them to not organise a day's entertainment in the form of movies is extra shady. UGH. I just wanted to watch The Holiday, Love Actually and It's Complicated, man.

7. I like a boy. Technically this was a Christmas Eve 2013 lesson but still. I'm panicking, fam.

How was your holiday yesterday?


23 December 2013

"Don't you think that it's boring how people talk?"

I call this my "Cobain" cardigan. I look like a bum in it but I love it too much. The nose stud is back.

6 December 2013

Lala Kahle, Madiba.

winnie madikizela-mandela
By Adrian Steirn
On this sad morning my heart is with the women who knew the man best. To mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela for her constant, true and unwavering support and belief I hope for strength, courage and peace.

25 November 2013

Music Monday | Bae

Happy Music Monday!

It's been a while since I typed up one of these. It's a quick post featuring my bae Phillip Phillips. He is everything on this song. When I was watching him on season 11 of American Idol I just fell in love with his voice and his artistry -- it's weird that his win was stripped down to just the girl vote. And if girls like and vote for him it means he isn't all that good because what do girls know? About anything?

I hope you enjoy this saudade-inducing rendition and that you look up his cover of Usher's U got it bad. How gorgeous is the woman singing with him?!

I hope you have a great Monday further.

22 November 2013

Inspire Me | Feelings.

I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls.” Ana├»s Nin

Nykhor Paul in Nykhor in Bloom for The Lab Magazine #7 June 2013, photographed by Kasia Bielska
Animated Black Girls 2013


PS: Tumblr is a nightmare.

20 November 2013

Ad World | I See my name in lights I see my Name in The Stars

My first such post (you know, about the South African advertising landscape) was meant to be on the industry's fascination with dancing natives and such stereotypes. But because I'm lazy -- as we all know -- I've put that off so long I've forgotten what I wanted to say. This then brings us to today’s post.

When I first saw the Halls TVC with the fast-talking, streetwise, rap-genius-from-the-future known to all of Southern Africa as "Kimmie Kool" I was in love. I laughed and nodded. Then I wondered if maybe some members of the coloured community may be offended by the spot. That maybe there was something in there that was a dirty, disgusting stereotype. Before you go rolling your eyes at me calling me "sensitive" know that I'm not. I've just come to expect the ad industry to fuck us over at every turn. We all know that the ad industry in this country is obsessed with "ooh, let's poke fun at ourselves and have a good laugh." That, along with sports and Mandoza's Nkalakatha, are what pass as a "nation building" plan. Meanwhile everybody and their mama know what would help us relate better to each other *cough* economic equality *cough* but I'm sleep. Each time an ad that’s meant to “bring us all together through humour” is produced it’s just an exercise in racial and cultural stereotyping.

Where was I? Yes, Kimmie Kool... The ad is nuanced in that in rings so true. Most of us know people working bill-paying jobs while waiting for their big break to come. If you don't then it's you. It's the struggles of today’s youth in [60 seconds.] I wouldn't be surprised if some companies have codes of conducts denoting that no shinny jewellery or any "I'll be a star one day" items are allowed in employees' cubicles or desks.

I relate to Kimmie Kool because even though I was painfully shy and lacked a "nice" accent I often practiced my YoTV link should the opportunity one day arise. I practiced my "sharrout" for the day cameras came to my school or if I was able to convince my mother to let me call in to the live shows. Kimmie Kool is not only a universal symbol for our reality show-obsessed generation. Let’s face it; most of us want recognition as being the best in our game. She’s a dynamic character with a dream. "I see my name in lights, I see myself in the stars," she croons. That’s more than I could put into a cover letter right now. I’ve lost my words.

Great job, Ogilvy & Mather Cape Town.

I'm still bitter that no one thought to tell me that there's an extended version of the spot on youtube.


16 November 2013

Out and About | Sanlam FWD Fair 2013

So the other day -- the other day being a little over a week ago -- I won some schweet tickets to an event that's just as schweet. I thought it was just my luck when during my morning taxi ride to my new part-time job (I'm currently temping as an assistant for a lovely company) I came upon a giveaway on Milisuthando Bongela's blog. The prize was a pair of tickets to the Sanlam #FWD fair. I obviously won, which is why I'm writing this thing.

It being the beginning of summer and Jo'burg having little breeze - it's a given that I sweated my way through the first 30 minutes at the ting. Bless every stall that had fans in front of which I could stick my face. All in all I think it was an incredibly well-put together shindig. In another life I could have made a day of it and hung out there the whole day. These are the sort of this to which you take your people, bruh.

I honestly do not consider myself a delicate person or the sort of woman/person with who artists would design delicate things in mind but this stall was one of my top three favourites. It belongs to a company called dear rae jewellery and the women who were holding the fort wore weeds + thorn-like crowns. I want one.

I almost ran toward this stall with glee etched on my sweaty face. They sold a lot of Zulu accessories and decor stuffs but the main reason I ran there [in my heart] was because of the shoes pictured above. Izingxabulela. I've wanted a pair from the time I was 11 or 12 years old but when the woman at the stall told me they were selling them for ZAR 300 I cackled [in my head] and walked away.

I enjoyed a lot of the decor and visual arts stalls. I wanted everything there. Made me wish that I was still writing for a decor blog as a part of my 9 - 5. The decor inspiration also made me wish that I had the bigger place I desire already.


I hug around this particular stall a long time looking at all the photographs. I love this idea to bits! But I'm thrifty so no, I won't be buying any of the expensive frames but I'd totally DIY this rustic look. How beautiful does Frida Kahlo look? Yaasss.

maria mccloy, african barber signs, barbershop signs,

buy maria mccloy bags, african print, african accessories,

It was great being in Maria McCloy's stall in the the flesh. She's one of Johannesburg's street culture pioneers and a great inspiration in general. Maybe one day I'll be able to buy one of her creations. 

My less than impressive paella. Neighbourgoods people need to stop hyping things up or taking delicious-looking photos of food.
The woman from Newstead Wines fetching my prize.
I didn't try any of the food samples [aside from the brownie crumb thingie from Counter Love] because sticking my not very clean hands in a container of samples other people have previously put their not very clean hands isn't my varb. I did however buy a paella and brownies from Counter Love after Heather Clancy's recommendation and my sampling. I ate my paella in the back parking area because there was absolutely no sitting space inside the fair marque. I guess this was a blessing because while eating on my feet [sorry mama] I noticed some bubble wrap and boxes. I took the pieces of the bubble wrap and secured my wines - the second part of my prize - and managed to get it back to where I stay without breaking one bottle. Yay!
For when I'm a rich, reclusive, lazy writer/creative and occasional alcoholic.  

Thanks again, Milli!


8 November 2013

How You Doin'?

Hey guys! I'm glad to see that some of you are still around -- yay! I'm now back on the interwebz, which means I actually have some money to buy a few gigs of data every now and then. Expect some posts I've had in drafts as far back as two months and maybe a tutorial on how I blog while poor - that's about every single post. I'm always on Twitter but lately its been less than usual. Dunno, man. I guess I'm trying to carve more authentic interactions and some sense of community. A sense of community that's missing from my timeline -- always an outsider looking in, lol-ing and #tagging nervously.

While I was on my forced internet hiatus I did a bit of brainstorming, which I'll soon use as a template to change things up on this here space.

I hope you're all well and that you're well-fed, dry and loved.

Yeah, that's a picture of my mug, uyaphakama?


19 September 2013

7 Things | Nim's Island

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Movie Still via a website called Just Jared. Cool.

I remember wanting to watch this film when it came out. It was during my YoTV-watching days and I wanted to see most of the films they promoted. Maybe it's fair that I add that I also have had a bit of a Jodie Foster thing. I, like, really like her and hope to see a lot her better films one day. One day. Anyway, thanks to the less than spectacular scheduling (among other things) that plagues the SABC I've gotten to see this film twice this year. The first time I got bored and changed the channel but wanted to write something about it, which would probably have just been "just because you find an island it doesn't mean it's yours" or whatever. The second time it played, which was a week or so ago I paid a bit more attention and these are the 7 'lessons" and things that annoyed me about Nim's Island.

1. Finders keepers isn't something I like very much.

The first time I watched the film I really gasped in disbelief when Nim was talking about "her island" in the opening montage. How exactly is that island hers? Moreover, I found myself trying to see how what Nim's dad did was different from what happened when Van Riebeeck docked in the Cape of Good Hope.

2. Fear will paralyse you.
Alex Rover, the writer, could be out in the world living and trying all the situations into which she writes Alex Rover -- the adventurer. She could be crossing the dessert on camel back or climbing a wall at the recreation club. I related to this aspect the most with my fear of the unknown and failing. I make plans but stay indoors. I have anxiety attacks about money and people. It made me think of the things I could be doing and writing --  if I wasn't too busy worrying about rent and that no one will ever love me for me.

3. Necessity as invention...
Alex Rover, the writer, is afraid of heights, open spaces, flying, germs and hasn't been outside her home in over a year when she receives Nim's one-word plea for help: "come." She packs up some canned soup and hand sanitiser, flies, gets onto a small plane, gets on a tiny boat and paddles out to 
20 degrees south, 162 degrees west. Meanwhile back on the island Nim tries to keep the cruise ship people away from the island she even re-activates the volcano on the island.

4 Heroes Fall.
A big part of growing up comes with realising that your heroes are just human. One day you come home and you see that your dragon-slaying, superwoman of a mother is just a woman with strong determination trying to put food on the table and keep a steady roof over your head. That's all.  You learn that her scars are part of being in the trenches, that her only reward will be the day you succeed. Others learn that their favourite "misunderstood musical genius" is just a drunk with words and pain. For Nim it was the realisation that her hero, the adventurous Alex Rover with an accent is just the imagining of a woman who's afraid to step outside her front door, let alone pursue adventure.

5. I want a treadmill.
There a scene where Alex Rover, the writer, is getting in some cardiovascular exercise while emailing Nim. This served to reinforce that having a treadmill would make getting and staying fit easy. I can see myself walking briskly while watching Survivor... You see it too, right?

6. Myth and belief make life richer.

I think if I came across a person or animal I thought to be mythical and they needed my help I would give it. The boy from the cruise ship momentarily believes Nim to be a mermaid and he's captivated by her beauty -- I suppose. He doesn't tell any of the cruise ship people about the girl he saw but later confirms to Alex Rover, the writer, that she isn't mad -- that there indeed is a girl alone on an island. Also, I've imagined what it would be like to one day meet a witch or wizard who needs my help. Wouldn't you have loved for your childhood to have been that park moment with young Severus and Lily Evans? I would have.

7. Tomboys are cool.

The amount of trees Nim climbs just made me so happy. It's beautiful.

17 September 2013

Let's talk a bit about real beauty


I haven't been consistently on this blog these past few months or at least I haven't been writing as often as I've wanted to. The last "ad world" post I did was in the second quarter of year and it was an international Dove campaign. Dove has had campaigns that appeal to me for as long as I can remember being fascinated by ads. In fact, I remember in my early high school days watching an Oprah episode  and seeing women of different ages, sizes and hues on billboards in their delicates. It was, as mam' Oprah would say, an "aha" moment. That there is a space to celebrate all sorts of beauty.

If I hadn't been on my blogging "hiatus" I would have written about/ shared Dove South Africa's new #RealBeauty campaign on here before today, my sister and I have discussed it enough times. It's something I relate to and I see myself in the women featured. The woman I relate to most depends on the day.

What is real beauty? For some it's natural and not very made up, for others it's the opposite. For me that's not the case as I don't think letting my hair sit on my head and do its thing (like I tend to do) and not wearing any make up makes me more beautiful than a woman who works on her hair and keeps her face beat and vice versa.

For the most part I've found that women's beauty is something that happens/is determined outside of us. Usually it's the Miranda Pristleys (or more true to life, Jackie Burgers) of life saying fuller eyebrows are in, privilege saying which skin tone or jeans size are more beautiful. But so what if your height or curves aren't in vogue? That doesn't make you less beautiful. And being all the things society and mainstream media celebrate as the standard of beauty doesn't automatically invalidate your beauty, your story and your realness. 
I find quirky features, gorgeous eyes and brilliant smiles to be most aesthetically pleasing. That's what I like or notice most on other people's faces and bodies.

What I enjoy about Dove's campaigns is that without fail they showcase the beauty of regular women, everyday women and encourage us women (it can sometimes get heavy-handed) to appreciate ourselves.

Real beauty is sincerity, real beauty is being authentic and giving yourself the freedom to change your mind and your "look". Liking yourself even if you still have that extra 10 kilos. I also think it's self-determination, choosing for yourself what is beautiful because at the end of the day it's not what I or anyone else says it is. It's how you feel after that overdue, long soak in the tub, it's how you look in your favourite shorts and how you feel when you've had your hair or nails done. It's how you treat yourself and other women.

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Do you boo.

What's real beauty to you? Join the conversation on twitter with the #RealBeauty hashtag (I'm @NomsZA there feel free to tag me and we can chat some more)


16 September 2013

Music Monday| Because mama is the best.

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I still (technically) blog here! This is probably one of my favourite songs ever. I hope you like it.

Happy Music Monday,

1 September 2013

Spring Fling Queen

"Black women can’t conform. Everything about the black woman is defiant. Look at their hair. Growing upward. Defying gravity.
— Unknown "

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Just some selfies to celebrate my huur and say happy spring. Be awesome and, in the words of the ineffable Suheir Hummad, spin your own records, queen. roll your own jays, star.

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Shirts available on the Stratafords page.

Happy Spring.


29 August 2013

Life | 7 of Best Things My Sister Says.


Seeing as tomorrow is my favourite Virgo's birthday, I thought maybe it would a cool, sisterly thing to compile a few quotes that will make you fall in love with her -- or something close. Ensure that your have yourself braced to swoon at the things my favourite soon-to-be 16-year-old says. K cool.

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26 August 2013

Music Monday | Tea Time.

Happy Music Monday, you lot! I cannot wait for Nothing Was The Same. Drake is definitely a fav of mine.

25 August 2013

Could have been.

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Things that would make tonight infinitely better:

* Rain.
* Having a job and money coming in.
* A Harry Potter film marathon.
* A lover to rub my shoulders and back.
* Not talking to the boy I loved for three years.

How's your Sunday going?


19 August 2013

Music Monday | Tunes that are new to me

Hey you lot! I know it's been a while since I've done a Monday Music post but here I am -- making dubious artwork and letting you in on my favourite tunes lately. I hope you enjoy this post and that your Monday is far from blue.
pilot jones

I heard this song from Ocean's first studio album (Channel Orange) for the first time last night. AND I'm hooked! I even changed my twitter bio after the third listen. Ahahaha. It's definitely not new music but it's new to me. I guess I have to take a closer listen to Channel Orange one of these days.

Power Trip

I've had this song on repeat for a few weeks now. As I tweeted a while back the most potent part of the offering for me is the husky, breaking quality of Cole's voice. Swoon swoon.


It's hard to believe that there's Lana Del Rey Music I heard for the first time last night, especially since I even bought myself the Paradise edition of Born to Die as a birthday prezzie. Of course I haven't played that CD (I don't have a CD player/radio.) This song is so cheeky and I love it. ahahah. I hope the "artwork" makes sense after listening to the song.

Happy Music Monday!

18 August 2013

I've been everywhere, man, looking for someone. Someone who can please, love me all night long.

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Imagine me sitting at a wooden breakfast table. It's imperfect, shabby wood -- the best kind. The sun is generously shinning in and my toes wiggle under the table, enjoying the warmth. My black ink pen is stuck in my hair and I have the newspaper turned to the Jobs sections. I use a neon pink highlighter to mark all the promising job ads. My writing journal, which is still very empty -- nearly two years later. My mug of coffee steams and wafts throughout the room. If it were a better brand it would have filled all my senses by now.

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I keep thinking that if only this ELLE job were more writing centred I'd be a shoe in for the final, or better, winning. That's on good days when my confidence is just above acceptable levels and I acknowledge that with great editing and writing-conducive environment I could be a decent writer. But it's not. It's called The Style Reporter and I could not be much moved by what people are wearing unless they ask me to guess how cheap it was or which relative left it to them.

We need to talk about how gorgeous Oluchi is.

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That's me: searching for a job, inhaling coffee aromas, self-braiding my hair, not writing and generally daydreaming through life. Today's a good day.

I hope you're all well.


*Title Where Have You Been - Rihnna 

27 July 2013

I wish I could create, I just want to do better.


Let them potate

Who you reppin'
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