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Win R5 000 with The Brain Surgeon’s Diet 16-Week Weight-Loss Challenge – No Chancers!

The Brain Surgeon's DietDie Breinchirurg se dieetThe author of The Brain Surgeon’s Diet Adriaan Liebenberg invites you to embark on a 16-Week Weight-Loss Challenge.

Stand a chance of winning R5 000 or one of three runner-up cash prizes of R1 000 each.

Liebenberg warns that “this is not a fad diet or a quick-fix solution” and only people who are serious about changing their lifestyles should take part.

To participate complete the online registration form before Saturday, 31 January, 2015.

Read more about the requirements for the 16-Week Weight-Loss Challenge:

At the beginning of the challenge and at the 16-week mark, you would need to e-mail a photo of yourself, holding a copy of a newspaper (to indicate the date the picture was taken), a second photo of your bathroom scale reading together with a copy of a newspaper (to indicate the date of the picture). At the 16-week mark you need to submit a short motivation (minimum 100 words) on how the Brain Surgeon’s Diet has changed your life.

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John Carlin on the “Ludicrous, Insane Notion” that Oscar Pistorius Thought Reeva was an Intruder

Chase Your ShadowJohn Carlin, author of Chase Your Shadow: The Trials of Oscar Pistorius, spoke to the Mail & Guardian about the process of writing his latest book, and Oscar Pistorius’ resonance in South African society.

Carlin says at first, like many people, he thought “obviously he intentionally killed her, obviously he’s a monster” and when he was let out on bail he was outraged, thinking “rich man’s justice”.

“It was only when I decided to embark on the book about a month later that I thought: ‘Listen, mate, just clear you mind here and start as honestly as you possibly can.’

“And then, when I started to find out more about it and hear things from people who knew him, I began to open my mind to the possibility that this, what seemed to me, utterly ludicrous, insane notion that he thought it was an intruder could conceivably be true.”

Carlin also believes Pistorius’ stunted emotional development echoes that of South Africa, and his good, “rainbow”, qualities echo the positive aspects of South African society.

Watch the video:

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Traveling the world to meet those who knew Oscar Pistorius, author John Carlin may have written the most honest and definitive portrait on him.

Carlin is also the author of ‘Playing the enemy’, on which the film ‘Invictus’ was based.

  • Not loading? Watch on YouTube

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Koos Kombuis: Kom ons vergeet nou van kleur en ras en laat staan vir Jan van Riebeeck

I-Tjieng“As daar een ding waaroor ek wel kwaad is – as Afrikaner en ook as gewone dude – is dit omdat ons hier in Suid-Afrika, na meer as 20 jaar van demokrasie, NOU NOG NIE van kleur en ras kon vergeet nie.”

Só het Koos Kombuis onlangs in sy rubriek vir Netwerk24 geskryf oor president Jacob Zuma se stelling dat Jan van Riebeeck die begin van al Suid-Afrika se probleme was.

Die skrywer van I-Tjieng: ’n GPS vir verdwaalde siele sê hy stem ook nie saam met die Vryheidsfront wat Zuma by die menseregtekommissie wil aankla nie. Hy pleit dat ons nou aanbeweeg van “hierdie holruggeryde onderwerp”.

Lees Kombuis se rubriek waarin hy nadink oor sy identiteit, versoening, die terreuraanvalle in Parys en hoeveel skuld daar werklik op Van Riebeeck se skouers gepak kan word:

Nou ja, hier in Suid-Afrika, waar die verhouding tussen Moslems en ander Suid-Afrikaners nie heeltemal so moorddadig disfunksioneel is nie, is dit seker nie relevant om “Je suis Charlie” op jou T-hemp te print nie. En al was my voorvaders Frans, is ek nie van plan om my ou Franse naam hier te gebruik vir publikasies nie. In Suid-Afrika is ek Koos, nie André nie – of dan “Kola”, soos sommige van my swart vriende my noem – en ek is ’n Suid-Afrikaner, ’n Afrikaan, en, durf ek dit sê, in soveel woorde, vir die eerste keer sedert my veelbesproke bedanking uit die stam soveel jaar gelede? – ’n AFRIKANER.

Ja, dit klink goed op die oor. Ek is ’n F*KKEN AFRIKANER!

En ek is nie kwaad vir Jan van Riebeeck nie!

Ek is ook nie kwaad vir Jacob Zuma omdat hy nie van Jan van Riebeeck hou nie!


Video and Podcast: Zelda la Grange Remembers Mandela and Discusses His Legacy

Good Morning, Mr MandelaGoeiemore, Mnr. MandelaTo coincide with the one-year commemoration of Nelson Mandela’s death in December, Zelda la Grange, author of the best-selling Good Morning, Mr Mandela, spoke to Morning Live, CapeTalk and Talk Radio 702.

La Grange tells Morning Live that the events in parliament last year made her realise that her Madiba was really gone. “It’s as if he was the moral conscience.” She shares what she would like to say to him now, one year after his death, and remembers some of the most important lessons she learnt from him.

“My message to him is we will keep on trying,” La Grange says. Watch the video interview:

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In an interview with John Maytham for CapeTalk, La Grange talks about the days leading up to Mandela’s death and the chaos that followed the sad news. She shares what his life, and death, meant for her and tells Maytham that she hopes to study this year to add academic value to her experiences.

Maytham asks her about her most vivid memory of Mandela one year after he has passed, to which she responds: “Still that smile on the 11th of July 2013. That smile was infectious. He was alive. Obviously he was not well, but he sparkled.”

Listen to the podcast:



* * * * * * * *

La Grange tells Talk Radio 702′s Nikiwe Bikitsha that the most important lessons she has learnt from life with Mandela include discipline, respect and integrity. She reflects on his legacy and the current state of leadership in South Africa.

Quoting from Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom, his former personal assistant says: “We need to remember that with freedom comes responsibility.”

Listen to the podcast:



* * * * * * * *

Earlier this week La Grange was caught in a media storm after she tweeted controversial views on President Jacob Zuma. For more on that read:

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Podcast: Ultimate Braai Master Justin Bonello Reveals His Top 3 Braai Tips

Cooked in the KarooUltimate Braai MasterJustin Bonello, co-author of Cooked in the Karoo and author of Ultimate Braai Master, spoke to Pippa Hudson on CapeTalk about the latest season of Ultimate Braai Master, a television show he hosts.

In the podcast, Bonello speaks about his love of braaing, especially in the face of loadshedding recently, and revealed his three top tips for braai masters: including that you should always use wood, for better tasting meat.

He spoke about the winning team of the third season of The Ultimate Braai Master, Mohamed Yusuf Sujee and Stephen Mandes. They won the final challenge even though Yusuf was fasting at the time, and could not taste-test even a morsel of his own food.

Listen to the podcast:


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John Carlin on Chase Your Shadow: “I Doubt Even Oscar Pistorius Himself Knows the Truth-Truth”

Chase Your ShadowJohn Carlin recently spoke to Garreth van Niekerk about the notion of truth in his book, Chase Your Shadow: The Trials of Oscar Pistorius.

Carlin said that he doubts even Oscar Pistorius knows the truth of what happened that night and told Van Nierkerk that the media coverage of the trial was “exactly like watching a sporting match and that’s the way it was viewed”.

The author shared that a big challenge was writing 90 percent of a book before knowing how it would end. “First the thing about this book, which it had in common with journalism, is that it had a deadline.”

The author spoke about what it was like to interview Pistorius, why his story grabbed him and whether judge Thokozile Masipa was biased or not.

Read the article:

CP: Yes. You’ve spoken in the past about the ‘truth-truth’ and the real truth.

JC: I attempt in my book to make an approximation of the truth-truth but humbly aware that neither I nor anybody else will be able to find out the truth-truth. I doubt even Oscar Pistorius himself knows the truth-truth. We’re all a mystery. Toward the end of the book I quote Joseph Conrad who says, “One’s own personality is a ridiculous and aimless masquerade of something hopelessly unknown.” Which is true, I think.

CP: You mention the Bees Roux case in the book. Do you think sportsmen benefit from a certain amount of leeway when it comes to the law?

JC: I don’t know. I mean, I’ve read some unbelievable things that Judge Thokozile was biased? People said some unbelievably stupid things that there was some element of racial bias? What the fuck are people talking about? She’s a black woman with a track record as a judge of putting people behind bars regardless of their skin colour. Look, what’s clearly true is that when you’re a sportsman with lots of money you’re going to get the best legal team in town. Definitely Barry Roux is an ace lawyer but on the other hand the state spent a lot of money too, much more than they would’ve spent on an ordinary Joe. So there is some inequality there. There’s a quote by this judge from the 1920’s who said, “The doors of the law are open to everybody like the doors of the Ritz hotel.” Which might apply?

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Marianne Thamm gesels oor die lesse wat sy geleer het tydens die skryf van Here I Am met PJ Powers

Here I AmMarianne Thamm het onlangs met Murray la Vita gesels oor die skryf van PJ Powers se biografie, Here I Am. Powers en Thamm het nagte lank om gesels en tot groot insigte gekom; hierdie lesse kon Thamm ook op haar eie lewe toepas.

Thamm vertel hoe Powers na haar pa se dood ontdek het dat hy al haar opvoerings op televisie opgeneem het. “Vir PJ was dit ’n baie bevrydende ding om uit te vind haar pa wás eintlik lief vir haar,” sê sy.

Die skrywer en assistentredakteur van Daily Maverick sê ons moet almal teruggaan en weer na ons lewens kyk met die wysheid van nakennis: “As jy ’n foto het van jouself as kind met jou familie, dan kyk jy daarna as jy 15 is en dit beteken vir jou een ding; as jy 20 is beteken dit iets anders.”

Thamm keer haar blik inwaarts en gesels oor haar verhouding met haar eie ma en pa. Lees die artikel:

“Ek dink ek het my hele lewe lank probeer om vir my pa te wys ek kán dit doen. Ek kan onthou toe hy baie oud en sieklik was, het hy vir ’n ruk by my kom bly… hy wou nie, maar hy kon nie alleen wees nie. Toe sit hy by my lessenaar terwyl ons my broer in Australië bel. En hy vra vir my: ‘What are all these things on your desk?’ So I said to him: ‘Dad, they’re awards.’ So he says to me: ‘Awards? You? For what?’ Teen daai tyd kon ek lag daaroor.

“Daar was vir my ’n interessante balans tussen my ma wat my absoluut lief gehad het. Sy was een van daai ma’s wat as jy ’n lelike prentjie gebring het vir jou sou sê: ‘My darling, that is so beautiful!’ en ’n pa wat sê: ‘Nee, dit is nie goed genoeg nie.’ Daardie twee teenoorgestelde pole het my gevorm… want ek was nie die dogter wat my pa wou gehad het nie. Nóóit.


Jerm Wonders Whether the Charlie Hebdo Attack will Cause Cartoonists to Back Off

Jerm WarfareComedy ClubUK newspaper Daily Mail recently featured an article by Associated Press who spoke to cartoonists from around the world after the attack on the Paris office of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Comedy Club and Jerm Warfare author Jeremy Nell, aka Jerm, was one of the cartoonists interviewed.

“I wonder if there is going to be some sort of chilling effect on cartoonists and satirists in general, kind of backing off from highly sensitive topics,” Jerm said. According to him, one possible scenario would be that editors might become more fearful of backlash and consequently avoid running controversial drawings submitted by cartoonists.

Read the article:

They pushed boundaries, one cartoonist said. They were “absolutely crazy,” another said. Across the globe, in Greece, India, South Africa and elsewhere, cartoonists are describing the satirists killed at French magazine Charlie Hebdo as among the most fearless and irreverent in the business.
Some cartoonists also worry whether the attack on the Paris office of a publication that caricatured the Prophet Muhammad could dampen a willingness to speak out, including in countries that may not face religious extremism but do experience a growing intolerance for free speech as governments clamp down on opposition.


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John Carlin Believes Oscar Pistorius is Neither a Saint nor a Villain, but a Complex Human Being

Chase Your ShadowIn a fascinating and well considered article for the Mail & Guardian, Phillip de Wet sums up John Carlin’s latest book, Chase Your Shadow: The Trials of Oscar Pistorius.

De Wet says Carlin is “searing in his appraisal” of the South African media, which he calls “blinded by bias against Pistorius”. But he is also unwilling to submit to the two dominant societal views of Pistorius, as either “a saint, martyred by the state because of a tragic accident”, or “a cold-blooded murderer”.

Read the article:

Carlin, neither sympathetic to nor respectful of either viewpoint, insists on seeing Pistorius as human, with flaws and redeeming qualities. He draws the reader to the same muddled and uncomfortable understanding. For that Carlin is unrepentant.

“It is something we do all the time, with famous people, with public figures, with politicians, even with political issues. We have a tendency always to try to clarify the unclarifiable, to simplify, to caricaturise,” Carlin says. “And my attempt was to paint the portrait of a complex and, I think, fascinating human being. That may generate feelings of rejection and disgust among people, but I hope above all else it generates some degree of sympathy and a sense of, ‘There but for the grace of God go I.’

“If your starting point is that Pistorius is a monster then you will find this book shockingly sympathetic. But I am absolutely sure, too, that the whole sector of people around the world who believe him to be this heroic, saintlike figure will be equally disappointed.”

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Nelson Mandela se les aan Zelda la Grange oor stilte en nadenke kan dalk die Karoo red

Goeiemore, Mnr. MandelaGood Morning, Mr Mandela“Nêrens as in die afgeslotenheid van ’n valhelm op ’n motorfiets op die langpad dink jy beter nie. Soos lewegewende suurstof is om te kan dink ’n kosbare kommoditeit.”

Só skryf Johan van Wyk in sy rubriek vir Netwerk24 oor Zelda la Grange se boek Goeiemore, Mnr. Mandela wat ook in Engels beskikbaar is as Good Morning, Mr Mandela.

In haar boek vertel La Grange dat sy dikwels op haar motorfiets geklim het om in die laaste dae van Nelson Mandela se siekte te ontsnap. By Mandela het sy geleer dat dit belangrik is om soms ’n stil plek te vind waar jy kan dink.

Van Wyk skryf dat Madiba se lewenswyshede dalk ook die Karoo van ontvolking en ander maatskaplike gevare kan red. Lees die artikel vir Van Wyk se idees oor hoe dit kan gebeur:

Mandela (wat sover ek weet nooit motorfiets gery het nie) spel dit in die boek uit hoe belangrik dit is om tyd te hê om te kan dink. Aldus Zelda het hy dikwels die versugting uitgespreek dat hy soms na Robbeneiland terugverlang, omdat hy daar tyd gehad het om te kon dink. Die groot, rigtinggewende lewenswyshede wat hy ná 27 jaar daar as president kwytgeraak het, onderskryf dit.

Weens die suidoos wat ons nou so teister, kon ek die afgelope tyd nie juis motorfiets ry om te kon dink nie.

Die byeenkoms in Cradock oor die toekoms van die Groot Karoo het my nietemin laat nadink oor wat gedoen moet word om, te midde van relatiewe welvarendheid op Karooplase, die ontvolking, agteruitgang en skrikwekkende maatskaplike verval, werkloosheid en armoede onder bruin mense met toerisme te beredder.