Hot ink and hot air: the demise of a newspaper

Since childhood, I have loved the smell of hot ink. Clutching my father’s hand, I would stagger down the Victorian lane where our regional newspaper’s press chugged like a dragon protecting its lair, and breathe in the silky, hot fumes, dreaming of putting those words from my head onto paper: having them stamped wetly onto…Read more »

Roadtripping & Research

Research road-tripping alone: the phrase is life, endured and known. It’s also one of the best ways of getting away on the spur of the moment when the Academy has just gotten Too Much. And so it was, early one Wednesday morning, that I hit the road and left the green hills of Natal for…Read more »

A bad day for Jacob Boo Boo

I was also late for Nelson Mandela’s funeral: in fact, I arrived shortly before Barack Obama. But that’s ok for two reasons – I had been wading through exam results at work, and I’m not a famous president. Eventually flying into the lounge trailing tablets, documents and colleagues, I was a little discombobulated to find…Read more »

Being the ‘Blade Gunner’ has its perks

International reporting about and commenting on the “Blade Gunner” murder allegations have reached saturation point, and the general hypocrisy underlying much of this raving leaves me completely nauseous. Reeva Steenkamp, the face of Avon cosmetics and Tropika Island of Treasure participant, is dead. Her family is mourning; her boyfriend, South African international double amputee athletics…Read more »

Bring back the dysphemism!

“The best lack all conviction, while the worst/Are full of passionate intensity”: Yeats’ famous line is probably truer now that it was 100 years ago. Tact, diplomacy and sensitivity have been taken to such extremes that it has become almost impossible to be honest. We tend to keep quiet, avoid conflict at all costs, curl…Read more »