• Nov
  • 23
  • 2011

The Shroud of Secrecy Surrounding Black Tuesday

Posted by Katherine Stott In South Africa, Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on The Shroud of Secrecy Surrounding Black Tuesday

Living in South Africa, you’d know how the gloom of today is not merely a reflection of the weather. Yesterday was Black Tuesday; a day in South African history that will forever be marked as inconceivable yet true. The SA government voted in favour of the Secrecy Bill that will allow corruption to run rife through our political veins, without the journalistic world being able to comment on it. Legally, that is. How one could even fathom the introduction of such a law is beyond each and every rational mind and is something that the upstanding members of our communities have been fighting against for months. Petitions have brought the passing of this bill to a standstill before and perhaps old Jacob Zuma will do what is right and not put his stamp of approval on it, thereby allowing it to become law. My suspicions are against old JZ at this time, but it doesn’t mean it’s the end!

We all foresee a future where investigative journalism is about to become the enemy of the state; but at the same time we all know that every journalist worth his salt would more than likely now fight even harder to expose the truth. It’s been said that every ANC member of parliament was ordered to be present for the vote yesterday, producing a dominant force that would overthrow any decisions to do away with this bill. In addition to them being in attendance, each and every ANC member was also apparently ordered to vote in favour of the bill; whether they wanted to or not. What does this say for the ruling party? Not only do they want to enforce something so heinous that it insults the very intellectual capacity of our people, but they are also squashing any personal opinion or goodwill for the country that any of their members of parliament could hope to bring to the table.

I know I annoy the crap out of people with my eternal optimism; always looking for the ray of hope that indicates to me that everything will be fine. But I truly feel that this entire debacle will cause a host of ANC voters to wake up and shift places towards a vantage point facing the DA. How could any intelligent human being actually support something that is to the detriment of their country and their own personal wellbeing? In my opinion, the ANC have just shafted themselves royally and they can prepare for a number of lost supporters from those who actually understand the implications of this ridiculous bill. To me, they are just further proving to the world that they are a bunch of monkeys in suits with a dangerous amount of power in their hands, forcing their insane plans on a wealth of people who are too clever and too much in love with their country to not do anything about it.

Watch this space. All hope is not lost; in fact this might be the explosion that launches the ANC into oblivion where they belong. In the great and really catchy words of Journey: “Don’t stop believin’, hold onto that feeling!” Yes, it’s grey and miserable outside, but inside I’m feeling rather warm and positive.

 

 

  • Oct
  • 19
  • 2011

The Twisting Of Reality

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on The Twisting Of Reality
The Twisting Of Reality

This morning after dropping the kids at school, I was listening to Gareth Cliff on the radio. I don’t particularly like him Twisting of Reality - Yin Yangor the music he plays, but I do like the fact that he often raises interesting points of discussion. This morning he was chatting about how the actor from Transformers was beaten up outside a nightclub for no particular reason; no doubt by some steroid fuelled gym buddy with a penchant for picking on scrawny men. While I’m not the least bit phased about what happens in said actor’s life, it did get me thinking about our society in general.

So often, we go out into the world and come face to face with these less than desirable people. Those who’s sole mission is to get into a fight, cause chaos, vandalise buildings or create general havoc. Why do they do it? Who knows? But the thought of them made me realise something that could be deemed quite sad. No matter how “at peace” the world is, no matter if there comes a day where guns are banned and crime is no longer a factor… there will always be these sour people who are less than thrilled with life. Those who detest being happy just because to them, it’s a sign of weakness. There will always be this shift of perception, this skewed reality that’s caused by drugs, alcohol, too much adrenaline from too much red meat, steroids and altogether crappy parenting and upbringing. Nothing can ever be just right, or just perfect, not even when it is – if that makes sense?

That also brings me to another thought. Now that I’m on maternity leave I have all this time to do these wonderful things that I’ve been missing out on; like watching my son do karate. I went and sat in on his class yesterday and noted that the first full half hour was simply them discussing concepts. Yesterday they were trying to wrap their heads around the concept of yin and yang, although they never referred to it as that. Their master was trying to explain to these little 8 year old boys that nothing exists without it’s opposite. That we cannot love everything… because there would be no balance created by those things that we hate. We cannot always be happy, because how would we know happiness without first knowing what it is to be sad?

In light of my comments on the twisting of reality; we also can’t always be at peace and live in a world where nothing goes wrong. There will always be that constant push and pull of the yin and yang, the complementary behaviour that one gives to the other. We’d also probably get pretty bored if everything were always peaches and cream. I suppose we always just have to know and trust that everything is as it should be. No matter what the situation. And that poor skinny actor who got beat up, well maybe he was asking for it… but maybe it was also because it led to something greater or more beautiful in his life. Maybe next week you’ll read about him getting engaged to the nurse who tended to his wounds? You just never know… trust. Know. It’s all going to be ok, even alongside the steroid filled junkies.

 

  • Jul
  • 28
  • 2011

Count Every Blessing; Relish Every Moment

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on Count Every Blessing; Relish Every Moment
Count Every Blessing; Relish Every Moment

I’m having one of those weeks where I find myself contemplating people, love, life, emotions and all the little ingredients that mix together to enhance all of said contemplations. I know that with Finn being inside me, my emotions are definitely heightened, but certainly not erratic or in any way out of control. In fact, I’d like to think that they are more in tune to what is happening around me, what I’m feeling inside me. Pregnancy is kind of like a harmless hallucinogenic for my emotive state, enhancing everything I feel, all that I love… making it deeper, brighter and so much more “coherent”. I don’t know that everyone experiences this in pregnancy as I’ve come across some first class emotional terrorists. And perhaps I wasn’t always like this, because I do remember being quite bleak in the beginning of my pregnancy with Finn.

It is with this attitude that I’ve decided to construct a little list of all that I’m grateful for. It actually came about after reading a fabulous email from a  fellow Quirk colleague entitled “33 Ways to Stay Creative”. I thought it was so cool that I printed it out and stuck it on the wall next to my desk. And now, sitting eating my lunch, my eye happened to land on number 21: Count your blessings. I have so many, but I never take the time to actually sit and think about them or even “be grateful” for them. So that’s what I’m about to do.

I’m a blessed being because…

  1. I am married to my dream man. Truly. I always dreamed of this tall, dark stranger who would serenade me with his acoustic guitar and hold me in the most comforting, protective embrace whenever I needed it. Enter Michael John Stott and my dreams have been realised.
  2. I have the most incredible, loving, compassionate children who already understand the value of love. Without them there is nothing.
  3. I am blessed to be pregnant with my 3rd baby and so look forward to meeting my little Finn Patrick Stott.
  4. I’ve been one of the fortunate beings to be born into a family who loves me, unconditionally, and expects nothing less than for me to love my life and live it.
  5. I’m surrounded by people that I love and who love me back with all intention and intensity.
  6. I can feel my connection to the Earth and its’ beings. It’s an amazing feeling to know that you are a part of this beauty that surrounds us… a lot of people miss that in their constant quest for material satisfaction.
  7. I have an incredible job working for one of the foremost digital agencies in South Africa – #quirkrocks. We have the most exceptional team of talented, awesome individuals who make work an absolute pleasure, not a task.
  8. I love what I do for a living and I’m good at it.
  9. I have more than enough of everything to be happy and content. Abundance is beautiful when it is made up of the right things.
  10. I have no doubts about my abilities or my place in this world.
  11. I have a beautiful collection of furry friends who are always pleased to see me and will drop whatever they’re doing to come and snuggle up with me.
  12. Mike and I have a beautiful home which is slowly becoming our dream house. I’m so grateful that we’ve got the money to fix it up the way we want to… a work in progress, it is slowly morphing into our own creation.
  13. I have wheels. Some people don’t. I watch them on freezing cold Jozi winter mornings and feel proud for everything I’ve accomplished; albeit very sorry for them out in the cold.
  14. I have faced death and destruction through my experiences and thus have so much perspective on what is truly important in this life. I feel so many people obsess over trivial little things that mean nothing in the grander scheme of things.
  15. My life is full of potential. Opportunity comes in all shapes and sizes and I’m able to recognise it every time it crosses my path.
  16. I’m healthy, in every way I can be.
  17. I have full control of all my senses. I can see the beautiful day, I can smell the sweet jasmine, I can feel, I can taste, I can hear music… without which life would be colourless.

There is more. I know there’s much more and if I sat for long enough I could write a book about it. For now, I know that every second is an opportunity to make a change or have the time of my life. I’ll never take that for granted. Count every blessing; relish every moment, because you never know what is waiting for you in the seconds that are about to follow.

family is everythingfamily is everythingfamily is everythingfamily is everything

  • Jan
  • 26
  • 2011

Perspective is Like a Cup of Tea

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on Perspective is Like a Cup of Tea
I've pretty much given up coffee. And there's ...Image via Wikipedia
We decide how we want it to taste, we decide how we want it to look… We make it just the way that we like it, the way that we are used to having it. But certain factors can change the perfect cup of tea; it goes cold from sitting for too long, it tastes weird because the milk is going off… There are many external factors that can influence the final outcome of our fresh brew.
The perspective that we choose to have on life is not far off from the perfect (or sometimes, not so perfect) cup of tea. 
  • We choose how we want it to taste; every experience that we savour is born from our own decisions.
  • We choose how we want it to look; life’s beautiful portrait is ours to paint, with whatever elements of colour and substance we want to have in there.
  • Milky, straight-up, sweet or not; our perspective on life is perfect because it is our own creation.
There are a myriad external influences that impact on our “perfect perspective”… Be it negatively or positively. Friends, family, work, stress, traffic (mmm…. loving that). What we choose to let in to sway our perspective is again, of our own choosing… But then we mustn’t be surprised when the tea is too sweet, or it has that familiar and unwelcome undertone of sour milk.
Sometimes a different taste is a welcome change; sometimes we learn to enjoy our perspective from a different angle until it becomes the norm. And sometimes all we want is what is familiar… even if it is bad for us. In saying all of this, my mom will argue that all we need is a good cup of tea to change our perspective.

Ok, I’m all “analogied out”. Good night, world.


  • Dec
  • 30
  • 2010

Maxin’ and Relaxin’……

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on Maxin’ and Relaxin’……
Marina Beach, ChennaiImage by anaxila via Flickr
There is nothing better than having time off… Time off from reality, life, work, routine and just the general comings and goings of a regular existence. I love my life, and I do what I want when I want; but sometimes I just need a break from the norm to recoup and gather my thoughts into one neat and compact bundle. And there is no better place to do that than at the beach… 
We didn’t know if we would get to take a break away from Jozi, what with the move and all, but as it appears we managed to sneak in a week of downtime at Marina Beach. Amber and Cam are in Sedgefield with their dad, so taking advantage of the downtime has been really easy. Since we’ve been here, we’ve had a couply drinks at the bar, strewn ourselves all over the beach, swam in the sea and the pool… but mostly, we’ve slothed out to the max. I’ve charged halfway through a book in the last 36 hours, as has Mike; we’ve permanently fixed our asses to the couch, sunbed or patio chairs, and we’ve just eaten, drank and read our way through a whole bunch of lazy days. 
Too blissful for words!
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  • Dec
  • 01
  • 2010

A State of Bliss…… (Day 16 of the 30 Day Trial)

Posted by Katherine Stott In Love & Relationships, Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on A State of Bliss…… (Day 16 of the 30 Day Trial)
A State of Bliss...... (Day 16 of the 30 Day Trial)
Sitting here savouring the last few days before everything changes, sipping some of my favourite wine and listening to the tunes we hand picked for our wedding CD (that we have yet to post to all of our guests… 8 months later). I am smiling inside at the realisation of where I am right now and how perfect it is.
A few moments ago I was sitting quietly (wine in hand), remembering our perfect day and how each song that we chose for our wedding was representative of a certain stage in our relationship and our lives together. And now listening to them again they evoke the exact same feelings that we were experiencing at that time. The song we walked down the grassy bank to (there was no aisle); the song we danced to as Mr and Mrs Stott; the songs we sang at the top of our lungs while driving down the road; songs we danced to in the TV room; songs that always reminded us of each other whenever we heard them… they were all a part and parcel of this ultimate journey that has been treating me so well. And now here I sit today with this incredible man, enjoying the same love and appreciation for him that has only matured and grown more beautiful with age.
I glance to my side and see the contract for my new job… my dream job, it seems. Looking ahead of me I see the naked nails poking out of the wall from where we’ve already packed our memorable photos into boxes. The changes are happening all around me and yet everything is still constant; peace surrounds me even though I’m surrounded by the chaos. I could quite possibly be the happiest I have ever been… or maybe that is also just another constant that I have been too busy to recognise? Aaaaah….. bliss.
  • Nov
  • 29
  • 2010

The bigger picture is so vast… (Day 14 of the 30 Day Trial)

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | 1 Comment »
Crackin' Up the UniverseImage by Anua22a via Flickr
Sometimes I lose sight of why it is that I do things… I put these plans in motion, I send all the thoughts, wants and desires out there into the Universe, and then when they come back I forget why it is that I wanted them in the first place. In these situations it is usually because I have lost my vantage point on what the final outcome will be further on down the line. I forget the enormity of what I’ve accomplished until I recollect my thoughts and track them back to the moment of inception.
What is completely and utterly profound (in such a way that it becomes absolutely awesome), is the fact that everything I want (like really really want), I get. The things that I convince myself that I will achieve (not can achieve… will achieve), I do. The things that I convince myself I will have, I receive. At the moment these wishes come true, it suddenly becomes so overwhelming that I actually get a little bit scared! The internal dialogue feeds off my doubt and fear, and I wrap myself into such a knot that I effectively back down from what I was trying to attain in the first place. A bit silly, but totally human!

About 3 months ago I set a plan in motion and in the last week I received the fruits of my labours. After the elation had died down I asked myself, “now what?” I couldn’t remember where I was headed with this plan of mine and I had totally lost my grip on the outcome, the reasoning and the absolute awesome-ness of the whole idea. It took me the entire day to see the bigger picture again; to recollect exactly where this element was going to fit into the grander scheme that I call my life. I guess it boils down to trust again… and just knowing that we are exactly where we are supposed to be at exactly the right time. I mean – I asked to be here, and that’s precisely what I got: Me. Here. Now. So now it is time to enjoy… :)

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  • Nov
  • 26
  • 2010

You gotta fight… for your right… (Day 11 of the 30 Day Trial)

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on You gotta fight… for your right… (Day 11 of the 30 Day Trial)
Bliss Dance, Burning Man 2010Image by Michael Holden via Flickr
So my little whirlwind of emotion slowed down and eventually came to a halt today. That was after everything spun out of control momentarily. But now everything is over, and the calm after the storm has been amazing. I am priveleged to be seeing the world from a completely fresh standpoint now, and the view is divine. Still, it was no easy task getting to where I am… The last 48 hours have tested me in every way possible, and I am so proud of myself for walking away having accomplished so much and having done it with a clean conscience and for the right reasons.
I know this makes absolutely no sense to anyone reading it, and I’m not about to share the gory details, because that won’t serve any purpose than to defame a person or people. I have no intention of sinking to a level that I would not be proud of. But essentially, I had the opportunity to finally speak up for what I believe in and for the things that were concerning me a few weeks ago. And hell… did I speak up. I let it all go! Every ounce of pent up frustration, every little drop of emotion, every sleepless night, every worry and concern… I let it all go in a fluid and compelling case of reason, truth and a little bit of fury. It was the perfect release!
Not only did I make my point, but I made it viable and I made it so coercive that my words are being considered, and my point of view is being seen as something that is worthy. I have created an avenue for perspective and an opportunity for change… And the best part about it is that there are no broken hearts or feelings of animosity.
I feel such a profound sense of freedom, and the weighlessness of being without a care in the world. You gotta fight… for your right…… to…. well whatever it is, it is worth fighting for if you truly believe in it with your heart and soul. And only good can come from such a noble battle.
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  • Nov
  • 24
  • 2010

Waiting can be rewarding (Day 9 of the 30 Day Trial)

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on Waiting can be rewarding (Day 9 of the 30 Day Trial)
squared circles - ClocksImage by Leo Reynolds via Flickr
So yesterday I was harping on about “looking for the signs” and how sometimes we need that guiding light to illuminate the way for us… when difficult decisions become too overbearing for us to consider. I was saying how I always have to analyse everything and make sure that I’m doing everything for the right reasons…
I had a lot on my mind yesterday, which is why I was pondering such stuff. In a way I was hoping to find some kind of resolution at the end of my blog, but it never presented itself. That is until today… The questions I was asking; the decision I had to make and the elements that were stringing it altogether had a secret meeting of their own and decided to simultaneously sort themselves out for me! Just like that… The questions were answered; the decision was made for me due to some additional information being added into the mix; the little elements? Well they just sat there and looked pretty for me while everything else just slotted so perfectly into place.
Sometimes sleeping on things is the way to go. A good friend of mine always used to say: ” If I ever feel like commiting suicide, I will have a sleep and then re-evaluate my decision afterwards.” Quite dark for an eye-opening quotation, but it sells exactly what I’m trying to say. Sometimes the decisions don’t need to be made there and then, even though it might seem life-threatening if they aren’t. Sometimes a little patience is all that is required for the knotted mess of thoughts, ideas and emotions to untangle themselves.

And sometimes sleep is the only answer…

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  • Nov
  • 23
  • 2010

Looking for the signs (Day 8 of the 30 Day Trial)

Posted by Katherine Stott In Thoughts & Concepts | Comments Off on Looking for the signs (Day 8 of the 30 Day Trial)
Yin yang pictureImage via Wikipedia
Every day we are faced with decisions; some monumental, and others rather trivial… but each and every decision amounts to something – be it life changing or not. I am one of those people who looks for signs and symbols in everything that is presented to me. I weigh the odds and debate the pros and cons, and try to determine how each decision will impact my life. The fact is that every possibility has a “counter possibility”, if you will. The yin to it’s yang; the dark to it’s light… all forming the resolute balance that keeps everything flowing.

When it comes to the more important stuff that involves definite impressions on my life… sussing out every angle is imperitive. But how do we know for sure? The signs are often there but perhaps not as clear as you would have hoped. Perhaps you have been waiting for this moment for ages, and when it comes time to make the decision to put it in motion, suddenly the pieces don’t fit together as you anticipated they would? Where are the signs that tell you this is right? Or wrong? Maybe they are there but you’re just looking too hard… And by you, I mean me.

Sometimes we just need someone to push us in the right direction and say: “Here it is! This is the path… your choice will be rewarded; travel this way!” But then where would be the fun in that? Trusting yourself; your instincts and your heart is the way forward. But not always easy… *sigh*

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