Category Archives: Progressive Rock

Blame It On You - Poison (3) - Look What The Cat Dragged In (CD, Album)

UK society is a total disaster created by dumb dumb politically correct politicians. This disaster will never be corrected because no parliament will ever have the guts to admit its mistake and rectify it. In addition, the UK laws on rape, with no statute of limitations, and financially punitive maintenance payments for offspring, does not exactly encourage a man to go out and seek a mate of the opposite sex.

Immigration laws prevent you from obtaining a wife from abroad. I got mine from Wales. Although written some years ago, all of these problems are still proving to be a major disincentive for men to work.

As a draughtsman, I was often told that if I had no prior experience of drawing the companies components, then I would not be taken on. Most companies in the UK are too small to provide even one day's training.

As for what you did during all those years in higher education, in preparation for this interview, 'well that was one long drug induced psychedelic holiday, wasn't it? This gives too little time for a graduate to recoup the cost and effort involved in becoming a professional. Slowly the nation is loosing its skilled workforce, alternatively providing jobs in telephone support centres, warehouses, civil servants and of course the delivery driver or self employed white van man.

This makes changing one's career virtually impossible. Some employers, enraged by our poor public transport system, and never ending excuses from their workers, will not recruit people who do not have a car. The cost of living in this country is too high, and if HMG's vision of an all electric society powered by wind turbines, photo-voltaics, fuel cells, nuclear fission and fusion becomes a reality, the cost of living may well sky rocket, leading to even greater personal debt, if the government doesn't get it right.

To put it simply, people will be put off applying for jobs. Little has changed since. As a result of my experiences in life, I hate capitalism and democracy, and as far as I'm concerned employers can get stuffed. And I speak for many people, who are sick of menial wages and benefits, whilst having to stomach the announcement of numerous fat cat company director's remuneration details exposed in the newspapers. Director's pay has doubled in five years to an average of 3 million pounds, presumably for FTSE companies.

BBC executives have recently been awarded salary rises of up topounds, after the BBC not executives were finedpounds for five radio and TV scams involving rigged contests, plus an inexhaustible supply of repeat programmes, whilst three National Rail executives are now to get bonuses ofpounds each, despite rail maintenance personnel not turning up for work last Christmas. In a society where most people are earning 12, pounds per annum, this is blatant corruption sanctioned by the highest levels of government, in a society where political parties are financed by wealthy executives.

Because it is all out in the open, psychology dictates that it is legal. Never in my book! Politicians never talk about imposing a national maximum wage, and it is easy to see why. One gets the impression that they are all worshipping that pagan idol capitalism, instead of promoting Christian values.

The abolition of the ten pence tax rate, announced this year, is a clear indicator of the contempt HMG has for the grass roots of society. Genocide of the working class in the face of AI? Don't think it could never happen. Maybe then they will get the message about director's pay and global warming. For the average worker there are no exorbitant salaries, no huge bonuses and certainly no golden handshake.

Most agency advertisements do not even list the name of the employer. Most personnel departments do not send an applicant a map of the local area, radius metres say. They are unable to provide you with an accurate description of the job, using in-house terms only. As far as I know there is nothing to stop someone putting a job advertisement into a newspaper with the intention of stealing your identity, or sexually assaulting you at an interview.

Some of these questions I find so mediocre that it puts me off wanting to be taken on. Some statements like, "we never advertise our services because we're so good we don't have to," I find off putting. Others employ psychology to get you to accept a salary much lower than you had in mind.

They would ask you what your qualification is and then suggest that you go for something higher. At another place I was asked to spy on my colleagues and inform management if they were on drugs. I have no wish to work with such unprofessional people. They are pathetic. The assessor is in effect being assessed.

I cannot work in that kind of environment, as it is too stressful. It is obvious to me that HMG and employers are using CRBs as a means to divide and rule society through the work place. In such an environment few superiors make decisions for fear of being sacked over it. Currently there are seven million people in the UK suffering from depression and other mental illnesses.

Whilst the brain wants to work, my heart says no. Every time I look at the job advertisements in the local newspaper my heart starts pounding. I only realised why when I watched a television programme which revealed that the heart, like the brain, also has neurones. It will accept just so much abuse. Politicians are right when they say that many people on incapacity benefit want to work, but the fact is that they cannot, until HMG dramatically improves working conditions. Obtaining a job can be a financially dangerous act.

Often companies, including employment agencies have no idea what is going on in the nation's economy, because the government is not telling the masses through the TV, TUC, CBI and Jobcentres. They therefore have little appreciation of what the client companies long term employment needs will be.

Because of that he left the course. There is a growing tendency for companies to black list companies and individuals. I was once informed by an agency that I was banned from a company even though I had never worked there. Apparently another agency had arranged a contract for me, which I could not attend until the next day, because I had to buy a car in order to commute there.

For being a day late I was banned. The agency could have sent me by taxi, but did not. I was left totally unaware of the urgency of the situation. On another occasion, upon arriving at an interview, I was told that the job was a contract, even though it had been advertised as permanent. I later wrote to the company, telling them exactly what I thought of them, knowing full well that they would ban me. When the telephone rings, you dread the thought that it might be from the agency.

Generally speaking you worked from clocking in to clocking off, with no time to chat with anyone. You were usually segregated from the women, and expected to prove yourself on every contract. If you failed those tests you were out and barred. Blame It On You - Poison (3) - Look What The Cat Dragged In (CD one occasion, at the end of the day, I found my car boxed in by a lorry on an industrial estate.

Whilst attempting to move my car, some newly applied body work paint scrapped onto the battered wing of an adjacent vehicle. Needless to say someone saw it happen and the next day the owner was waiting for compensation. I paid him forty pounds, as hush money, but the management knew and booted me out, never to return. A few weeks later a colleague of mine went there and was booted out for spending too much time talking to other draughtsmen.

Contracting becomes a curse because the longer you are in it, the more time you spend only doing rudimentary work, whilst your IT skills quickly become out of date due to no access to on-the-job training.

It's no better for many scientists. The present sub-prime induced recession is nothing compared to what it will be like if governments do not manage economies and individuals directly. It appears that only technocracies will do that. Prior to the credit crunch the West Midlands was loosing jobs at the rate of net per week, mainly from engineering and manufacturing, the only part of the UK that had a net loss.

It never ceases to amaze me, the sight of young couples coming to the city in search of employment, whilst being prepared to offer their bodies in return for shelter. They obviously have not done their homework. With nothing to do, your brain deteriorates, constantly thinking of the same trivial thoughts, based upon early memory.

Dreams about your apprenticeship, whilst being unable to recall words, as you watch news stories about medical advances in dementia. Every month I think about going back into prison just to get away from this lunatic society, as 7, pensioners are declared bankrupt in the past year compare to only in figures released Which nation will I select?

HMPs are too overcrowded. We are constantly reminded of it by the media each day, and yet where are the Blame It On You - Poison (3) - Look What The Cat Dragged In (CD intended to defeat this trend? Some people regard forced retirement as an act of ageism, whilst HMG wants to make people work till they drop, by raising the retirement age to And yet the police can retire at fifty, strange? HMG ignores the fact that over the last fifty years jobs have been destroyed through automation. A process that is continuing.

Clearly a new approach is needed. Thus far there has been no announcement from HMG, nor the EC, regarding what policy will be pursued when artificial intelligence performs the coup de grace on the working class.

With global economics being far more complicated to manage than global warming, it is pretty obvious that governments are incapable of finding an acceptable solution to this problem. In Barclays and RBS banks were both facing difficulties. The first mentality exists in the entertainment industry. As politicians turn a blind eye to the subject, it is only a matter of time before this mentality creates a third world nation morality, here in the UK. When you reach this high a number of reasons, it becomes plainly obvious that HMG is not only clueless, it is a liability in its present form.

This political system must go. Now let's take a look at my proposed alternative:. Because of this it is a nation of square pegs in round holes. It is grossly irresponsible to spend up to ten years educating and training someone for employment, only to fail to provide a professional job recruitment system.

This system would operate at every level of society, economy and within every organisation including government. The NCVC would operate as follows:. When an organisation has a job vacancy the requirement details would be sent to the nearest Jobcentre. Every profession would have a reference number linked to a professional guild, so there would be no ambiguity as to what was required. The database would contain records of everyone, even children.

Education, training and annual employee reports from the organisations people actually worked at, would be interrogated by staff after initial review by AI's criteria. It would provide three suitable candidates who would be interviewed, one from the relevant professional guild, another from the employer and a staff member working for the Jobcentre.

The candidate would be required to undergo an interactive examination, on a computer, compiled by the employer and marked by the relevant professional guild. This is to find out whether the candidate has the necessary up to date knowledge, and if not, what HMG financed training is required, should that person turn out to be the best applicant. So you still want a secure well paid job in the big bad world of capitalism. The following is my cv curriculum vitae and is a glowing example of what not to send to an employer, since it's too complicated':.

Dear sir or madam, In answer to your advertisement, please note that I am presently seeking permanent employment. Due to company closures in engineering and manufacturing, I can no longer provide a job reference. I am available for interview at any time. I will bring along examples of my work, certificates, etc. I enclose my CV, and look forward to hearing from you. Studied maths, ship construction, ship propulsion, chartwork, navigation, meteorology, oceanography, first aid, fire fighting, seamanship.

Awarded two prizes for dissertations on the subjects of rocket research, and oceanography. Correspondence course in Industrial Engineering Work Study. Government Training Centre, Handsworth, Birmingham. Passed ASNT in X-ray, gamma ray, dye penetrant, magnetic particle and ultrasonic inspection of castings, plate and fabricated components.

Trained on mld2 parameterization software. Also used Edlin and Wordstar. Engineering Instrumentation and Control M strain gauges, thermistors. Computer Aided Design 5 P dogs, duct, Autocad. Computer Aided Engineering 4 D college computer network plan. Engineering Design 4 B M man. Engineering Design 4 B M parameterised drawings. Industrial Studies M shares, patents, company structure. Mathematics for Engineering 4 M diff.

Computer Aided Manufacturing Systems 5 M automation methodology. Manufacturing Technology A M production cost estimating. I have worked on the following software at education establishments and in industry:. Mathsoft's Mathcad. Applied Services Science 2 D heat loss, illumination and pump power calculations.

Electrical Installation A 2 M single phase cable calculations, safety, conduit, fuses. The Built Environment 2 D company structure, visual communication.

Administration 3 D contracts, estimating, accounts, tariffs. Design Principles 2 D Projects: garden centre, village hall, bungalow. Learned to create web sites using HTML computer language. Course included European driving licence for information technology. Course included, Continuity testing, Insulation testing, Wiring plugs, House wiring circuits and Three phase electric motor start control circuits. Mavitta Ltd. Ultraseal Ltd. Birmingham, engaged in process plant design, in It was a small company that made equipment that coated castings, thereby preventing creeping stress fractures.

I was only there a couple of weeks, mainly doing clerical work. About two years later Mavitta asked me to work for a car sun roof manufacturer. I turned it down because of the difficulty in signing back on benefits. I never worked again. Instead I created my own work. This web site. Mentally it proved far more rewarding. One more word of advice. At the end of each employment session I went straight around to the Jobcentre to sign on as unemployed.

If you don't do that, you not only don't get welfare benefits, but also you are not registering ultimately for your state pension. I worked for about forty companies over a twenty year period. Looking back upon my life, I can't help thinking that it's all a con.

Success in life is by pure chance, not simply effort. Chinal Management Services Ltd. I worked on just one drawing, a building services plan of east works, Longbridge. I was never told what it was for. A department meeting would be held on Friday mornings. I only attended the first one. I sat there for ages waiting for the manager to begin. I wondered why his second in command was grinning.

I leaned forward, and to my amazement the manager's laptop screen showed an airliner making a death plunge. About ten people worked in the department, only two of which permanently.

I got the feeling that someone was out to bankrupt the company. I was therefore glad when I had completed the six month contract. DRB Engineering Ltd. I only worked there for one month, during which time two other draughtsmen were fired by a psycho-manager, who plainly enjoyed his power.

I was the third victim. I complained to the directors about my treatment, but got nowhere. The factory was later demolished, the land becoming part of a luxury Sheepcote Street canalside housing development. I worked on building services drawings for a sport centre in north London.

I took two days off work due to sickness, during which time the company found a replacement CAD technician. It was over one month before I received my final pay and P64 tax statement, by which time I had already left my next employer. Don't work for a small company. Nova Design Ltd.

Worked at Simon Dudley on telescopic hydraulic platform design, in I was only there for one week, as the manager got a student in to do the rest of the work for nothing. Telford Management Services Technologies Ltd. Worked at GEC Alsthom on channel tunnel project, in I worked there for three weeks. Went off sick due to allergy with ten holly trees in neighbours garden.

My contract was terminated by GEC and I never got paid for my final week there. P-E International Ltd. Worked at Tudor Webasto Ltd. A modern factory. Good working environment. Worked on a drawing board producing drawings of bicycle components for quality assurance purposes. Worked there about two months, paid directly by Mavitta, who were represented to the contracts manager at Tudor Webasto by P-E International. Evidently my boss had forgotten to provide TW with draughtsmen for an earlier project, so Mavitta got banned.

So a director at TW fixed it so that his mate would get the contract anyway. It's all hire, fire, forget and banned. There's no love in the capitalist world. It's not exactly an easy thing to explain on a cv, is it? You get all these HR managers looking at this, and they haven't got a clue what's going on, nor whom to write to for a reference. Stuart Martin Ltd. I worked for this agency as an engineering draughtsman, engaged in building services design and detailing, at DGI International Ltd.

DGI Head office is in Kenilworth. Although it was some way from where I lived, it was a real pleasure to drive out into the countryside. When the contract ended, I felt very depressed. I never got that feeling on any other contract I worked on. I worked there self employed, paying very little tax. Soon after I moved into my apartment in Edgbaston. If it had not been for that contract, I would not have been able to furnish it. Gater Designs Ltd. I never visited the offices as it was only an agency, on the other end of a phone line.

I worked for them, inas an engineering draughtsman, on numerous contracts at:. Electropaint Ltd. I worked there a week or two. I got about four hours notice of end of contract. Newton Collins Ltd.

This was a contract on the extract system for the health physics laboratory at Atomic Weapons Establishment Aldermaston, Berkshire. Since I was not permitted to work on a defence contract, due to my criminal record, I terminated the contract after about two weeks, mainly because I was pissed off sitting around waiting for information from DSSR, located in Manchester I believe.

I detailed up an incinerator, and a shell and tube heat exchanger whilst I was there. Whilst leaving work one day I found my car boxed in by a lorry. Whilst extracting my car it grazed the rusty wing of another car. A 50mm strip of bodywork paint had rubbed onto the car wing, because I had recently had my wing repaired after a car backed into it.

I didn't find out about this mark until the next day, when I met the owner. Some people had seen the incident and reported it. I paid the owner twenty pounds compensation. My contract was terminated because of it. I worked there only two weeks. The materials handling at Meads was the only interesting work that I ever did.

It was what I had been trained to do almost twenty years before. There were about six draughtsmen there working back to back in a room, more like a submarine than an office. The working conditions were deplorable, insulting. The permanent draughtsman rabbited on about how the director and salesman conspired to turn down contracts, to devalue the company, because they were afraid of losing their jobs in a take over.

After that he went on and on and on about his sexual conquests. I couldn't get out of the contract fast enough. There offices were immaculate, since the previous owners had specialised in office furniture. I worked for this agency as an engineering draughtsman, on numerous contracts in the West Midlands, from to at:. The company made large air handling units for office blocks, installing them with associated ductwork.

I probably worked for them for about four months. The best technical illustration I did was that of an exploded perspective drawing of a car sun roof. The handle took most of the Friday to draw, only to be told by the manager that it was not needed.

I had to go back on the Monday to add the parts list, in German. Britax Weathershield Ltd. I was only there about one week. I dimensioned one drawing. Detailed heat exchangers on a drawing board. The contract lasted about one month.

This consisted of checking CAD drawings of control systems, which I assume were for nuclear submarines. The work lasted a day or two as my boss hunted around for another contract for me. Most of the large factory was idle, and would eventually be closed down.

Only there about one month. I'm not sure if I've got the company name right, and like many of these contracts, I have no idea where it was located. Yes, it was a prison designed by our oppressors, but it also gave us a sense Album) self-determination and control. Soweto was ours.

In America the dream is to make it out of the ghetto. In Soweto, because there was no leaving the ghetto, the dream was to transform the ghetto. There were no paved roads, minimal electricity, inadequate sewerage.

But when you put one million people together in one place, they find a way to make a life for themselves. The most common were the spaza shops and the shebeens. The spaza shops were informal grocery stores. People would build a kiosk in their garage, buy wholesale bread and eggs, and then resell them piecemeal. Everyone in the township bought things in minute quantities because nobody had any money.

You could buy a quarter loaf of bread, a cup of sugar. The shebeens were where men would go to drink after work and during prayer meetings and most any other time of day as well. People built homes the way they bought eggs: a little at a time. Every family in the township was allocated a piece of land by the government. One wall. Then, years later, a third wall and eventually a fourth. Now you had a room, one room for everyone in your family to sleep, eat, do everything.

Then windows. Then your daughter would start a family. Now your house had two rooms. Then three. Maybe four. My grandmother lived in Orlando East. She had a two-room house. Not a two- bedroom house. A two-room house. Some might say we lived like poor people. My aunt and cousins would be there whenever she was on the outs with Dinky.

We all slept on the floor in one room, my mom and me, my aunt and my cousins, my uncle and my grandmother and my great-grandmother. We had two shanties in the backyard that my grandmother would rent out to migrants and seasonal workers.

We had a small peach tree in a tiny patch on one side of the house and on the other side my grandmother had a driveway. I never understood why my grandmother had a driveway. Yet she had a driveway. All of our neighbors had driveways, some with fancy, cast-iron gates. None of them had cars, either. There was no future in which most of these families would ever have cars.

There was maybe one car for every thousand people, yet almost everyone had a driveway. It was almost like building the driveway was a way of willing the car to happen. The story of Soweto is the story of the driveways. There was no indoor running water, just one communal outdoor tap and one outdoor toilet shared by six or seven houses. Our toilet was in a corrugated-iron outhouse shared among the adjoining houses.

Inside, there was a concrete slab with a hole in it and a plastic toilet seat on top; there had been a lid at some point, but it had broken and disappeared long ago. The newspaper was uncomfortable, but at least I stayed informed while I handled my business. It was a long drop to the bottom, and they were always down there, eating on the pile, and I had an irrational, all-consuming fear that they were going to fly up and into my bum.

One afternoon, when I was around five years old, my gran left me at home for a few hours to go run errands.

I was lying on the floor in the bedroom, reading. I needed to go, but it was pouring down rain. I was dreading going outside to use the toilet, getting drenched running out there, water dripping on me from the leaky ceiling, wet newspaper, the flies attacking me from below. Then I had an idea. Why bother with the outhouse at all? Why not put some newspaper on the floor and do my business like a puppy?

That seemed like a fantastic idea. I took the newspaper, laid it out on the kitchen floor, pulled down my pants, and squatted and got to it. You are not yet a shitting person.

It takes a minute to get the first shit out of the way and get in the zone and get comfortable. I think God made humans shit in the way we do because it brings us back down to earth and gives us humility. The pope shits. The Queen of England shits. When we shit we forget our airs and our graces, we forget how famous or how rich we are. All of that goes away. You have that moment where you realize, This is me. This is who I am. You can pee without giving it a second thought, but not so with shitting.

The outhouse ruins that for you. The rain, the flies, you are robbed of your moment, and nobody should be robbed of that. Squatting and shitting on the kitchen floor that day, I was like, Wow. There are no flies. This is really great. Then I casually looked around the room and I glanced to my left and there, just a few feet away, right next to the coal stove, was Koko.

It was like the scene in Jurassic Park when the children turn and the T. Her eyes were wide open, cloudy white and darting around the room. I panicked. I was mid-shit. Then: the softest plop of a little-boy turd on the newspaper. I held my breath and waited. Trevor, is that you?! Every time she called out, I froze.

There would be complete silence. Finally, after what felt like forever, I finished. I stood up, took the newspaper—which is not the quietest thing—and I slowwwwwly folded it over. It crinkled. Then I folded it over some more, walked over to the rubbish bin, placed my sin at the bottom, and gingerly covered it with the rest of the trash.

Then I tiptoed back to the other room, curled up on the mattress on the floor, and pretended to be asleep. The shit was done, no outhouse involved, and Koko was none the wiser. Mission accomplished. My grandmother came home. The second she walked in, Koko called out to her. Yes, I can smell it, too. Is it a rat? Did something die? The second she walked in, my gran called out to her. What do you mean? Then my mom, who has a keen sense of smell, started going around the kitchen, sniffing.

She showed it to gran. How did it get there?! Did you find it?! I called out to everyone. Nobody came. Once my mom found the turd, all hell broke loose. This was serious. They had evidence. She came into the bedroom. Wake up! It was all hands on deck, time for action. The first thing we had to do was go outside and burn the shit. We went out to the yard, and my mom put the newspaper with my little turd on the driveway, lit a match, and set it on fire.

Then my mom and my gran stood around the burning shit, praying and singing songs of praise. So we needed everyone. The alarm was raised. The call went out. My tiny old gran was out the gate, going up and down the block, calling to all the other old grannies for an emergency prayer meeting. I knew there was no demon, but there was no way I could come clean. The hiding I would have to endure? Good Lord.

Honesty was never the best policy when it came to a hiding. I kept quiet. Moments later the grannies came streaming in with their Bibles, through the gate and up the driveway, a dozen or more at least.

Everyone went inside. Everyone sat in the circle, praying and praying, and the prayers were strong. The grannies were chanting and murmuring and swaying back and forth, speaking in Blame It On You - Poison (3) - Look What The Cat Dragged In (CD. I was doing my best to keep my head low and stay out of it. Then my grandmother reached back and grabbed me, pulled me into the middle of the circle, and looked into my eyes. Pray, Trevor. Pray to God to kill the demon!

I believed in the power of prayer. I knew that my prayers worked. So if I prayed to God to kill the thing that left the shit, and the thing that left the shit was me, then God was going to kill me. I froze. But all the grannies were looking at me, waiting for me to pray, so I prayed, stumbling through as best I could. Eventually I wrapped it up and sat back down. The praying continued. It went on for some time. That night I felt terrible. I know this was not cool.

God is your father. When you pray, He stops and He takes His time and He listens, and I had subjected Him to two hours of old grannies praying when I knew that with all the pain and suffering in the world He had more important things to deal with than my shit.

Most of them were dubbed into African languages. ALF was in Afrikaans. Transformers was in Sotho. But if you wanted to watch them in English, the original American audio would be simulcast on the radio.

You could mute your TV and listen to that. Watching those shows, I realized that whenever black people were on-screen speaking in African languages, they felt familiar to me. They sounded like they were supposed to sound. My perception of them changed. They felt like foreigners. Language brings with it an identity and a culture, or at least the perception of it. Part of the effort to divide black people was to make sure we were separated not just physically but by language as well.

In the Bantu schools, children were only taught in their home language. Zulu kids learned in Zulu. Tswana kids learned in Tswana. The great thing about language is that you can just as easily use it to do the opposite: convince people that they are the same.

Racism teaches us that we are different because of the color of our skin. Something is off here. I was a doctor and they were my patients. All hell broke loose. My grandmother came running in from the kitchen. We were all crying. But we kept crying. Then she beat the shit out of Mlungisi, too. Later that night my mother came home from work.

She found my cousin with a bandage over her ear and my gran crying at the kitchen table. A black child, you hit them and they stay black. Trevor, when you hit him he turns blue and green and yellow and red.

My grandmother treated me like I was white. My grandfather did, too, only he was even more extreme. What was I going to say? I was five. I sat in the back. My own family basically did what the American justice system does: I was given more lenient treatment than the black kids.

Misbehavior that my cousins would have been punished for, I was given a warning and let off. And I was way naughtier than either of my cousins. I was trouble. My mom was the only force I truly feared. She believed if you spare the rod, you spoil the child. Growing up the way I did, I learned how easy it is for white people to get comfortable with a system that awards them all the perks. Why would I do that? I had a choice. I went with the cookies. I thought of it as having to do with Trevor.

I had no other points of reference. Ninety-nine point nine percent of them were black—and then there was me. I was famous in my neighborhood just because of the color of my skin. I was so unique people would give directions using me as a landmark. Take a right there. Others would call out to their parents to come look. Others would run up and try to touch me to see if I was real. It was pandemonium.

Few people had televisions. I think people felt like the dead person was more important because a white person had come to the funeral. After a funeral, the mourners all go to the house of the surviving family to eat. Usually you get a cow and slaughter it and your neighbors come over and help you cook.

Neighbors and acquaintances eat outside in the yard and in the street, and the family eats indoors. The family would see me and invite me in.

Bring him in here. Dad was the white chocolate, mom was the dark chocolate, and I was the milk chocolate. But we were all just chocolate. My mother never referred to my dad as white or to me as mixed. I can see how you made that mistake. Soweto was a melting pot: families from different tribes and homelands. Most kids in the township spoke only their home language, but I learned several languages because I grew up in a house where there was no option but to learn them.

My mom made sure English was the first language I spoke. English is the language of money. English comprehension is equated with intelligence. After English, Xhosa was what we spoke around the house. As a naughty child, I was well versed in Xhosa threats. Outside of that, my mother picked up different languages here and there.

She spoke German because of my father. She spoke Afrikaans because it is useful to know the language of your oppressor. Sotho she learned in the streets. Living with my mom, I saw how she used language to cross boundaries, handle situations, navigate the world. You know how they love to steal. I would simulcast—give you the program in your own tongue. There would be a brief moment of confusion, and then the suspicious look would disappear.

I thought you were a stranger. One day as a young man I was walking down the street, and a group of Zulu guys was walking behind me, closing in on me, and I could hear them talking to one another about how they were going to mug me. Phuma ngapha mina ngizoqhamuka ngemuva kwakhe. Mina ngikulindele. We thought you were something else. We were trying to steal from white people. Have a good day, man.

That, and so many other smaller incidents in my life, made me realize that language, even more than color, defines who you are to people. I became a chameleon. If you spoke to me in Zulu, I replied to you in Zulu. If you spoke to me in Tswana, I replied to you in Tswana. Classes taught by nuns. Mass on Fridays. The whole bit. I started preschool there when I was three, primary school when I was five. In my class we had all kinds of kids.

Black kids, white kids, Indian kids, colored kids. Most of the white kids were pretty well off. But because of scholarships we all sat at the same table. We wore the same maroon blazers, the same gray slacks and skirts. We had the same books. We had the same teachers. There was no racial separation. Every clique was racially mixed. Kids still got teased and bullied, but it was over usual kid stuff: being fat or being skinny, being tall or being short, being smart or being dumb.

I had a wide berth to explore myself. I had crushes on white girls. I had crushes on black girls. Nobody asked me what I was. I was Trevor. It was a wonderful experience to have, but the downside was that it sheltered me from reality.

Racism exists. And at some point, you have to choose. Black or white. Pick a side. You can try to hide from it. At the end of grade six I left Maryvale to go to H. I didn't join up because I could not understand the language Companies now have no salary structure, which often results in asking for too much or too little financial reward. His expression is one of disgust. He thinks, 'Christ if all those under me work for so little, I'll soon be on the dole with my 30, pound salary.

As a result, one in four Britons have no savings. Some people work for nothing, paid expenses from the petty cash, just to get away from the nagging misses. Others, unable to admit unemployment, spend their days surfing the internet in their local library, whilst some women are night nurses, standing on street corners. I had no such advantage. Most men want to play their traditional role in society, through work in order to bring up a family.

In a society dominated by women's lib, females do not want to get married and have a family, with many preferring instead to be wannabe whores in their spare time. In this fortieth anniversary year of the Homosexual Reform Act the number of lesbians openly active in society is also oppressive. It is now more common to see women wearing tattoos. The number of marriages performed is now at its lowest level since records began. Women now have direct access to welfare benefits and social housing, almost automatic access to a divorce where they can have automatic custody of their children, whilst men are bombarded with programmes on TV telling them of how brutal men are to women.

In truth all the money that that man has invested in that marriage has now gone to waste. The overpowering feeling of rejection can result in a knee jerk act of violence. Much of the stress has been created at work, which HMG does nothing to eliminate. And any man who makes an advance towards a woman now runs the risk of being vilified, accused of sexual harassment. Men are now forced to live alone. Making friends in a world of state sponsored homosexuality is easier to reject.

With no family, then upon their death their estate either goes to a distant relative or the tax man. UK society is a total disaster created by dumb dumb politically correct politicians. This disaster will never be corrected because no parliament will ever have the guts to admit its mistake and rectify it.

In addition, the UK laws on rape, with no statute of limitations, and financially punitive maintenance payments for offspring, does not exactly encourage a man to go out and seek a mate of the opposite sex. Immigration laws prevent you from obtaining a wife from abroad. I got mine from Wales. Although written some years ago, all of these problems are still proving to be a major disincentive for men to work. As a draughtsman, I was often told that if I had no prior experience of drawing the companies components, then I would not be taken on.

Most companies in the UK are too small to provide even one day's training. As for what you did during all those years in higher education, in preparation for this interview, 'well that was one long drug induced psychedelic holiday, wasn't it? This gives too little time for a graduate to recoup the cost and effort involved in becoming a professional.

Slowly the nation is loosing its skilled workforce, alternatively providing jobs in telephone support centres, warehouses, civil servants and of course the delivery driver or self employed white van man. This makes changing one's career virtually impossible. Some employers, enraged by our poor public transport system, and never ending excuses from their workers, will not recruit people who do not have a car.

The cost of living in this country is too high, and if HMG's vision of an all electric society powered by wind turbines, photo-voltaics, fuel cells, nuclear fission and fusion becomes a reality, the cost of living may well sky rocket, leading to even greater personal debt, if the government doesn't get it right. To put it simply, people will be put off applying for jobs. Little has changed since. As a result of my experiences in life, I hate capitalism and democracy, and as far as I'm concerned employers can get stuffed.

And I speak for many people, who are sick of menial wages and benefits, whilst having to stomach the announcement of numerous fat cat company director's remuneration details exposed in the newspapers. Director's pay has doubled in five years to an average of 3 million pounds, presumably for FTSE companies. BBC executives have recently been awarded salary rises of up topounds, after the BBC not executives were finedpounds for five radio and TV scams involving rigged contests, plus an inexhaustible supply of repeat programmes, whilst three National Rail executives are now to get bonuses ofpounds each, despite rail maintenance personnel not turning up for work last Christmas.

In a society where most people are earning 12, pounds per annum, this is blatant corruption sanctioned by the highest levels of government, in a society where political parties are financed by wealthy executives. Because it is all out in the open, psychology dictates that it is legal. Never in my book! Politicians never talk about imposing a national maximum wage, and it is easy to see why. One gets the impression that they are all worshipping that pagan idol capitalism, instead of promoting Christian values.

The abolition of the ten pence tax rate, announced this year, is a clear indicator of the contempt HMG has for the grass roots of society. Genocide of the working class in the face of AI? Don't think it could never happen. Maybe then they will get the message about director's pay and global warming. For the average worker there are no exorbitant salaries, no huge bonuses and certainly no golden handshake. Most agency advertisements do not even list the name of the employer. Most personnel departments do not send an applicant a map of the local area, radius metres say.

They are unable to provide you with an accurate description of the job, using in-house terms only. As far as I know there is nothing to stop someone putting a job advertisement into a newspaper with the intention of stealing your identity, or sexually assaulting you at an interview. Some of these questions I find so mediocre that it puts me off wanting to be taken on.

Some statements like, "we never advertise our services because we're so good we don't have to," I find off putting. Others employ psychology to get you to accept a salary much lower than you had in mind.

They would ask you what your qualification is and then suggest that you go for something higher. At another place I was asked to spy on my colleagues and inform management if they were on drugs. I have no wish to work with such unprofessional people. They are pathetic. The assessor is in effect being assessed.

I cannot work in that kind of environment, as it is too stressful. It is obvious to me that HMG and employers are using CRBs as a means to divide and rule society through the work place. In such an environment few superiors make decisions for fear of being sacked over it. Currently there are seven million people in the UK suffering from depression and other mental illnesses.

Whilst the brain wants to work, my heart says no. Every time I look at the job advertisements in the local newspaper my heart starts pounding.

I only realised why when I watched a television programme which revealed that the heart, like the brain, also has neurones. It will accept just so much abuse. Politicians are right when they say that many people on incapacity benefit want to work, but the fact is that they cannot, until HMG dramatically improves working conditions.

Obtaining a job can be a financially dangerous act. Often companies, including employment agencies have no idea what is going on in the nation's economy, because the government is not telling the masses through the TV, TUC, CBI and Jobcentres.

They therefore have little appreciation of what the client companies long term employment needs will be. Because of that he left the course. There is a growing tendency for companies to black list companies and individuals. I was once informed by an agency that I was banned from a company even though I had never worked there.

Apparently another agency had arranged a contract for me, which I could not attend until the next day, because I had to buy a car in order to commute there. For being a day late I was banned. The agency could have sent me by taxi, but did not. I was left totally unaware of the urgency of the situation. On another occasion, upon arriving at an interview, I was told that the job was a contract, even though it had been advertised as permanent.

I later wrote to the company, telling them exactly what I thought of them, knowing full well that they would ban me. When the telephone rings, you dread the thought that it might be from the agency. Generally speaking you worked from clocking in to clocking off, with no time to chat with anyone. You were usually segregated from the women, and expected to prove yourself on every contract.

If you failed those tests you were out and barred. On one occasion, at the end of the day, I found my car boxed in by a lorry on an industrial estate. Whilst attempting to move my car, some newly applied body work paint scrapped onto the battered wing of an adjacent vehicle.

Needless to say someone saw it happen and the next day the owner was waiting for compensation. I paid him forty pounds, as hush money, but the management knew and booted me out, never to return. A few weeks later a colleague of mine went there and was booted out for spending too much time talking to other draughtsmen. Contracting becomes a curse because the longer you are in it, the more time you spend only doing rudimentary work, whilst your IT skills quickly become out of date due to no access to on-the-job training.

It's no better for many scientists. The present sub-prime induced recession is nothing compared to what it will be like if governments do not manage economies and individuals directly. It appears that only technocracies will do that.

Prior to the credit crunch the West Midlands was loosing jobs at the rate of net per week, mainly from engineering and manufacturing, the only part of the UK that had a net loss. It never ceases to amaze me, the sight of young couples coming to the city in search of employment, whilst being prepared to offer their bodies in return for shelter.

They obviously have not done their homework. With nothing to do, your brain deteriorates, constantly thinking of the same trivial thoughts, based upon early memory.

Dreams about your apprenticeship, whilst being unable to recall words, as you watch news stories about medical advances in dementia. Every month I think about going back into prison just to get away from this lunatic society, as 7, pensioners are declared bankrupt in the past year compare to only in figures released Which nation will I select?

HMPs are too overcrowded. We are constantly reminded of it by the media each day, and yet where are the jobs intended to defeat this trend?

Some people regard forced retirement as an act of ageism, whilst HMG wants to make people work till they drop, by raising the retirement age to And yet the police can retire at fifty, strange? HMG ignores the fact that over the last fifty years jobs have been destroyed through automation. A process that is continuing. Clearly a new approach is needed. Thus far there has been no announcement from HMG, nor the EC, regarding what policy will be pursued when artificial intelligence performs the coup de grace on the working class.

With global economics being far more complicated to manage than global warming, it is pretty obvious that governments are incapable of finding an acceptable solution to this problem. In Barclays and RBS banks were both facing difficulties. The first mentality exists in the entertainment industry. As politicians turn a blind eye to the subject, it is only a matter of time before this mentality creates a third world nation morality, here in the UK.

When you reach this high a number of reasons, it becomes plainly obvious that HMG is not only clueless, it is a liability in its present form.

This political system must go. Now let's take a look at my proposed alternative:. Because of this it is a nation of square pegs in round holes.

It is grossly irresponsible to spend up to ten years educating and training someone for employment, only to fail to provide a professional job recruitment system. This system would operate at every level of society, economy and within every organisation including government. The NCVC would operate as follows:. When an organisation has a job vacancy the requirement details would be sent to the nearest Jobcentre.

Every profession would have a reference number linked to a professional guild, so there would be no ambiguity as to what was required. The database would contain records of everyone, even children. Blame It On You - Poison (3) - Look What The Cat Dragged In (CD, training and annual employee reports from the organisations people actually worked at, would be interrogated by staff after initial review by AI's criteria.

It would provide three suitable candidates who would be interviewed, one from the relevant professional guild, another from the employer and a staff member working for the Jobcentre.

The candidate would be required to undergo an interactive examination, on a computer, compiled by the employer and marked by the relevant professional guild.

This is to find out whether the candidate has the necessary up to date knowledge, and if not, what HMG financed training is required, should that person turn out to be the best applicant. So you still want a secure well paid job in the big bad world of capitalism.

The following is my cv curriculum vitae and is a glowing example of what not to send to an employer, since it's too complicated':. Dear sir or madam, In answer to your advertisement, please note that I am presently seeking permanent employment. Due to company closures in engineering and manufacturing, I can no longer provide a job reference. I am available for interview at any time. I will bring along examples of my work, certificates, etc. I enclose my CV, and look forward to hearing from you.

Studied maths, ship construction, ship propulsion, chartwork, navigation, meteorology, oceanography, first aid, fire fighting, seamanship. Awarded two prizes for dissertations on the subjects of rocket research, and oceanography.

Correspondence course in Industrial Engineering Work Study. Government Training Centre, Handsworth, Birmingham. Passed ASNT in X-ray, gamma ray, dye penetrant, magnetic particle and ultrasonic inspection of castings, plate and fabricated components. Trained on mld2 parameterization software. Also used Edlin and Wordstar. Engineering Instrumentation and Control M strain gauges, thermistors.

Computer Aided Design 5 P dogs, duct, Autocad. Computer Aided Engineering 4 D college computer network plan. Engineering Design 4 B M man. Engineering Design 4 B M parameterised drawings. Industrial Studies M shares, patents, company structure. Mathematics for Engineering 4 M diff. Computer Aided Manufacturing Systems 5 M automation methodology. Manufacturing Technology A M production cost estimating. I have worked on the following software at education establishments and in industry:.

Mathsoft's Mathcad. Applied Services Science 2 D heat loss, illumination and pump power calculations. Electrical Installation A 2 M single phase cable calculations, safety, conduit, fuses.

The Built Environment 2 D company structure, visual communication. Administration 3 D contracts, estimating, accounts, tariffs. Design Principles 2 D Projects: garden centre, village hall, bungalow. Learned to create web sites using HTML computer language. Course included European driving licence for information technology.

Course included, Continuity testing, Insulation testing, Wiring plugs, House wiring circuits and Three phase electric motor start control circuits. Mavitta Ltd. Ultraseal Ltd. Birmingham, engaged in process plant design, in It was a small company that made equipment that coated castings, thereby preventing creeping stress fractures. I was only there a couple of weeks, mainly doing clerical work. About two years later Mavitta asked me to work for a car sun roof manufacturer. I turned it down because of the difficulty in signing back on benefits.

I never worked again. Instead I created my own work. This web site. Mentally it proved far more rewarding. One more word of advice. At the end of each employment session I went straight around to the Jobcentre to sign on as unemployed. If you don't do that, you not only don't get welfare benefits, but also you are not registering ultimately for your state pension. I worked for about forty companies over a twenty year period.

Looking back upon my life, I can't help thinking that it's all a con. Success in life is by pure chance, not simply effort.

Chinal Management Services Ltd. I worked on just one drawing, a building services plan of east works, Longbridge. I was never told what it was for. A department meeting would be held on Friday mornings. I only attended the first one. I sat there for ages waiting for the manager to begin. I wondered why his second in command was grinning. I leaned forward, and to my amazement the manager's laptop screen showed an airliner making a death plunge. About ten people worked in the department, only two of which permanently.

I got the feeling that someone was out to bankrupt the company. I was therefore glad when I had completed the six month contract. DRB Engineering Ltd. I only worked there for one month, during which time two other draughtsmen were fired by a psycho-manager, who plainly enjoyed his power.

I was the third victim. I complained to the directors about my treatment, but got nowhere. The factory was later demolished, the land becoming part of a luxury Sheepcote Street canalside housing development. I worked on building services drawings for a sport centre in north London. I took two days off work due to sickness, during which time the company found a replacement CAD technician. It was over one month before I received my final pay and P64 tax statement, by which time I had already left my next employer.

Don't work for a small company. Nova Design Ltd. Worked at Simon Dudley on telescopic hydraulic platform design, in I was only there for one week, as the manager got a student in to do the rest of the work for nothing. Telford Management Services Technologies Ltd. Worked at GEC Alsthom on channel tunnel project, in I worked there for three weeks.

Went off sick due to allergy with ten holly trees in neighbours garden. My contract was terminated by GEC and I never got paid for my final week there. P-E International Ltd. Worked at Tudor Webasto Ltd. A modern factory. Good working environment.

Worked on a drawing board producing drawings of bicycle components for quality assurance purposes. Worked there about two months, paid directly by Mavitta, who were represented to the contracts manager at Tudor Webasto by P-E International. Evidently my boss had forgotten to provide TW with draughtsmen for an earlier project, so Mavitta got banned. So a director at TW fixed it so that his mate would get the contract anyway.

It's all hire, fire, forget and banned. There's no love in the capitalist world. It's not exactly an easy thing to explain on a cv, is it? You get all these HR managers looking at this, and they haven't got a clue what's going on, nor whom to write to for a reference.

Stuart Martin Ltd. I worked for this agency as an engineering draughtsman, engaged in building services design and detailing, at DGI International Ltd. DGI Head office is in Kenilworth. Although it was some way from where I lived, it was a real pleasure to drive out into the countryside. When the contract ended, I felt very depressed.

I never got that feeling on any other contract I worked on. I worked there self employed, paying very little tax. Soon after I moved into my apartment in Edgbaston. If it had not been for that contract, I would not have been able to furnish it.

Gater Designs Ltd. I never visited the offices as it was only an agency, on the other end of a phone line. I worked for them, inas an engineering draughtsman, on numerous contracts at:. Electropaint Ltd. I worked there a week or two.

I got about four hours notice of end of contract. Newton Collins Ltd. This was a contract on the extract system for the health physics laboratory at Atomic Weapons Establishment Aldermaston, Berkshire. Since I was not permitted to work on a defence contract, due to my criminal record, I terminated the contract after about two weeks, mainly because I was pissed off sitting around waiting for information from DSSR, located in Manchester I believe. I detailed up an incinerator, and a shell and tube heat exchanger whilst I was there.

Whilst leaving work one day I found my car boxed in by a lorry. Whilst extracting my car it grazed the rusty wing of another car. A 50mm strip of bodywork paint had rubbed onto the car wing, because I had recently had my wing repaired after a car backed into it. I didn't find out about this mark until the next day, when I met the owner. Some people had seen the incident and reported it.

I paid the owner twenty pounds compensation. My contract was terminated because of it. I worked there only two weeks.

The materials handling at Meads was the only interesting work that I ever did. It was what I had been trained to do almost twenty years before. There were about six draughtsmen there working back to back in a room, more like a submarine than an office. I panicked. I was mid-shit. Then: the softest plop of a little-boy turd on the newspaper. I held my breath and waited. Trevor, is that you?!

Every time she called out, I froze. There would be complete silence. Finally, after what felt like forever, I finished. I stood up, took the newspaper—which is not the quietest thing—and I slowwwwwly folded it over.

It crinkled. Then I folded it over some more, walked over to the rubbish bin, placed my sin at the bottom, and gingerly covered it with the rest of the trash. Then I tiptoed back to the other room, curled up on the mattress on the floor, and pretended to be asleep. The shit was done, no outhouse involved, and Koko was none the wiser. Mission accomplished. My grandmother came home.

The second she walked in, Koko called out to her. Yes, I can smell it, too. Is it a rat? Did something die? The second she walked in, my gran called out to her.

What do you mean? Then my mom, who has a keen sense of smell, started going around the kitchen, sniffing. She showed it to gran. How did it get there?!

Did you find it?! I called out to everyone. Nobody came. Once my mom found the turd, all hell broke loose. This was serious. They had evidence. She came into the bedroom. Wake up! It was all hands on deck, time for action. The first thing we had to do was go outside and burn the shit. We went out to the yard, and my mom put the newspaper with my little turd on the driveway, lit a match, and set it on fire. Then my mom and my gran stood around the burning shit, praying and singing songs of praise.

So we needed everyone. The alarm was raised. The call went out. My tiny old gran was out the gate, going up and down the block, calling to all the other old grannies for an emergency prayer meeting. I knew there was no demon, but there was no way I could come clean. The hiding I would have to endure? Good Lord. Honesty was never the best policy when it came to a hiding. I kept quiet. Moments later the grannies came streaming in with their Bibles, through the gate and up the driveway, a dozen or more at least.

Everyone went inside. Everyone sat in the circle, praying and praying, and the prayers were strong. The grannies were chanting and murmuring and swaying back and forth, speaking in tongues. I was doing my best to keep my head low and stay out of it. Then my grandmother reached back and grabbed me, pulled me into the middle of the circle, and looked into my eyes. Pray, Trevor. Pray to God to kill the demon! I believed in the power of prayer. I knew that my prayers worked.

So if I prayed to God to kill the thing that left the shit, and the thing that left the shit was me, then God was going to kill me. I froze. But all the grannies were looking at me, waiting for me to pray, so I prayed, stumbling through as best I could. Eventually I wrapped it up and sat back down. The praying continued. It went on for some time. That night I felt terrible.

I know this was not cool. God is your father. When you pray, He stops and He takes His time and He listens, and I had subjected Him to two hours of old grannies praying when I knew that with all the pain and suffering in the world He had more important things to deal with than my shit.

Most of them were dubbed into African languages. ALF was in Afrikaans. Transformers was in Sotho. But if you wanted to watch them in English, the original American audio would be simulcast on the radio. You could mute your TV and listen to that. Watching those shows, I realized that whenever black people were on-screen speaking in African languages, they felt familiar to me.

They sounded like they were supposed to sound. My perception of them changed. They felt like foreigners. Language brings with it an identity and a culture, or at least the perception of it. Part of the effort to divide black people was to make sure we were separated not just physically but by language as well. In the Bantu schools, children were only taught in their home language. Zulu kids learned in Zulu. Tswana kids learned in Tswana.

The great thing about language is that you can just as easily use it to do the opposite: convince people that they are the same. Racism teaches us that we are different because of the color of our skin. Something is off here. I was a doctor and they were my patients.

All hell broke loose. My grandmother came running in from the kitchen. We were all crying. But we kept crying. Then she beat the shit out of Mlungisi, too. Later that night my mother came home from work. She found my cousin with a bandage over her ear and my gran crying at the kitchen table. A black child, you hit them and they stay black. Trevor, when you hit him he turns blue and green and yellow and red. My grandmother treated me like I was white. My grandfather did, too, only he was even more extreme.

What was I going to say? I was five. I sat in the back. My own family basically did what the American justice system does: I was given more lenient treatment than the black kids. Misbehavior that my cousins would have been punished for, I was given a warning and let off. And I was way naughtier than either of my cousins. I was trouble. My mom was the only force I truly feared.

She believed if you spare the rod, you spoil the child. Growing up the way I did, I learned how easy it is for white people to get comfortable with a system that awards them all the perks. Why would I do that? I had a choice. I went with the cookies. I thought of it as having to do with Trevor. I had no other points of reference. Ninety-nine point nine percent of them were black—and then there was me. I was famous in my neighborhood just because of the color of my skin.

I was so unique people would give directions using me as a landmark. Take a right there. Others would call out to their parents to come look. Others would run up and try to touch me to see if I was real. It was pandemonium. Few people had televisions.

I think people felt like the dead person was more important because a white person had come to the funeral. After a funeral, the mourners all go to the house of the surviving family to eat. Usually you get a cow and slaughter it and your neighbors come over and help you cook. Neighbors and acquaintances eat outside in the yard and in the street, and the family eats indoors. The family would see me and invite me in. Bring him in here. Dad was the white chocolate, mom was the dark chocolate, and I was the milk chocolate.

But we were all just chocolate. My mother never referred to my dad as white or to me as mixed. I can see how you made that mistake. Soweto was a melting pot: families from different tribes and homelands. Most kids in the township spoke only their home language, but I learned several languages because I grew up in a house where there was no option but to learn them. My mom made sure English was the first language I spoke. English is the language of money. English comprehension is equated with intelligence.

After English, Xhosa was what we spoke around the house. As a naughty child, I was well versed in Xhosa threats. Outside of that, my mother picked up different languages here and there. She spoke German because of my father. She spoke Afrikaans because it is useful to know the language of your oppressor.

Sotho she learned in the streets. Living with my mom, I saw how she used language to cross boundaries, handle situations, navigate the world. You know how they love to steal. I would simulcast—give you the program in your own tongue.

There would be a brief moment of confusion, and then the suspicious look would disappear. I thought you were a stranger. One day as a young man I was walking down the street, and a group of Zulu guys was walking behind me, closing in on me, and I could hear them talking to one another about how they were going to mug me.

Phuma ngapha mina ngizoqhamuka ngemuva kwakhe. Mina ngikulindele. We thought you were something else. We were trying to steal from white people. Have a good day, man. That, and so many other smaller incidents in my life, made me realize that language, even more than color, defines who you are to people. I became a chameleon. If Album) spoke to me in Zulu, I replied to you in Zulu. If you spoke to me in Tswana, I replied to you in Tswana.

Classes taught by nuns. Mass on Fridays. The whole bit. I started preschool there when I was three, primary school when I was five. In my class we had all kinds of kids.

Black kids, white kids, Indian kids, colored kids. Most of the white kids were pretty well off. But because of scholarships we all sat at the same table. We wore the same maroon blazers, the same gray slacks and skirts.

We had the same books. We had the same teachers. There was no racial separation. Every clique was racially mixed. Kids still got teased and bullied, but it was over usual kid stuff: being fat or being skinny, being tall or being short, being smart or being dumb. I had a wide berth to explore myself.

I had crushes on white girls. I had crushes on black girls. Nobody asked me what I was. I was Trevor. It was a wonderful experience to have, but the downside was that it sheltered me from reality. Racism exists. And at some point, you have to choose.

Black or white. Pick a side. You can try to hide from it. At the end of grade six I left Maryvale to go to H. Jack Primary, a government school. Of the thirty or so kids in my class, almost all of them were white. There was one Indian kid, maybe one or two black kids, and me. Then recess came. We went out on the playground, and black kids were everywhere. It was an ocean of black, like someone had opened a tap and all the black had come pouring out. I was like, Where were they all hiding?

Were we going to meet up later on? I did not understand what was happening. I was eleven years old, and it was like I was seeing my country for the first time.

And at Maryvale, the kids were mixed up and hanging out together. Before that day, I had never seen people being together and yet not together, occupying the same space yet choosing not to associate with each other in any way.

In an instant I could see, I could feel, how the boundaries were drawn. Groups moved in color patterns across the yard, up the stairs, down the hall. It was insane. Now I realized how few of them there actually were compared to everyone else. Luckily, I was rescued by the Indian kid from my class, a guy named Theesan Pillay. He ran over to introduce himself. Who are you? He took me under his wing, the Artful Dodger to my bewildered Oliver. Through our conversation it came up that I spoke several African languages, and Theesan thought a colored kid speaking black languages was the most amazing trick.

He brought me over to a group of black kids. Everyone cheered. Another kid said something in Xhosa, and I replied to him in Xhosa. For the rest of recess Theesan took me around to different black kids on the playground.

Do your language thing. So the fact that I did speak African languages immediately endeared me to the black kids. Have you not seen yourself? Because of my color, they thought I was a colored person, but speaking the same languages meant that I belonged to their tribe. It just took them a moment to figure it out. It took me a moment, too. Suddenly, I knew who my people were, and I wanted to be with them.

I went to see the school counselor. English is English. Math is math. You want to be in the smart class. Finally she gave me a stern warning. Being at H. Jack made me realize I was black. I spent my life looking at other people. I saw myself as the people around me, and the people around me were black. My cousins are black, my mom is black, my gran is black. I grew up black. But the black kids embraced me. With the black kids, I just was. B efore apartheid, any black South African who received a formal education was likely taught by European missionaries, foreign enthusiasts eager to Christianize and Westernize the natives.

In the mission schools, black people learned English, European literature, medicine, the law. The only way to make apartheid work, therefore, was to cripple the black mind. Under apartheid, the government built what became known as Bantu schools. Bantu schools taught no science, no history, no civics.

They taught metrics and agriculture: how to count potatoes, how to pave roads, chop wood, till the soil. Why educate a slave? Why teach someone Latin when his only purpose is to dig holes in the ground? Mission schools were told to conform to the new curriculum or shut down. Most of them shut down, and black children were forced into crowded classrooms in dilapidated schools, often with teachers who were barely literate themselves.

My grandfather used to sing the songs and laugh about how silly they were. Two times two is four. Three times two is six. La la la la la. What happened with education in South Africa, with the mission schools and the Bantu schools, offers a neat comparison of the two groups of whites who oppressed us, the British and the Afrikaners.

The difference between British racism and Afrikaner racism was that at least the British gave the natives something to aspire to. If they could learn to speak correct English and dress in proper clothes, if they could Anglicize and civilize themselves, one day they might be welcome in society.

The Afrikaners never gave us that option. She never felt like she belonged anywhere. She grew up with nothing and wanted something to call her own. They met and married in Sophiatown, but one year later the army came in and drove them out.

The government seized their home and bulldozed the whole area to build a fancy, new white suburb, Triomf. Along with tens of thousands of other black people, my grandparents were forcibly relocated to Soweto, to a neighborhood called the Meadowlands.

They divorced not long after that, and my grandmother moved to Orlando with my mom, my aunt, and my uncle. My mom was the problem child, a tomboy, stubborn, defiant. My gran had no idea how to raise her.

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