This con­ti­nent of preda­tors

The Mercury - - GOODLIFE -

HUGE mys­tery foot­prints have been found and pho­tographed in parts of south­ern Africa, ac­cord­ing to Sky News.

Heav­ens, are th­ese per­haps made by more of the un­savoury char­ac­ters said to be as­so­ci­at­ing with peo­ple in high places, that we keep read­ing about?

But no. It turns out the foot­prints were made 200 mil­lion years ago by megath­eropods, mas­sive flesheat­ing di­nosaurs that used to roam Africa and were the an­ces­tors of the bet­ter-known Tyran­nosaurus rex,

The foot­prints are de­scribed as a “sig­nif­i­cant find” by Dr Lara Scis­cio, of the Univer­sity of Cape Town.

Phew! So th­ese foot­prints have got noth­ing to do then with state cap­ture, gang­ster­ism, rack­e­teer­ing and money laun­der­ing. Th­ese were ami­able Mr Bigs, sim­ply wan­der­ing about the place look­ing for some­thing to seize and de­vour.

Come to think of it, has much changed over 200 mil­lion years?

Park­ing chaos

A MAN who is close to rugby tells me the chaos at Kings Park last Satur­day when ticket hold­ers to park­ing on

the outer fields were turned away be­cause the fields were al­ready full (my­self in­cluded) is a con­se­quence of the rugby ad­min­is­tra­tors get­ting to­tally lax about han­dling crowds.

“In the 1990s when Kings Park was packed for every game there was tight con­trol, of­fi­cials mak­ing sure ev­ery­one parked prop­erly, no ex­tra space was taken up, you had to braai at the tail of your car not be­side it. To­day any­thing goes.

“Then when you do get a big crowd you get a sham­bles. Last home cup fi­nal in 2007, I nearly got into a fist­fight with a guy who’d parked his 4X4 then set up a chair in the space next door ‘to keep it for a friend’

“I was about to drive over his chair – my wife was freak­ing out. Things can get tense in th­ese sit­u­a­tions.”

My in­for­mant says Kings Park also of­fers “on day” park­ing at R70 (I had not been aware of that) and that was prob­a­bly also part of the prob­lem.

If that is so, surely they can’t sell what has al­ready been hired? That would be fraud­u­lent – sell­ing park­ing space that has al­ready been paid for by some­body else. Don’t they keep track?

Maybe we who were turned away should in­sti­tute a class ac­tion. Roll up, roll up! Court case of the cen­tury – the Idler and oth­ers ver­sus the KZN Rugby Union. Bring your own boerie rolls!

Col­lec­tive scream

IS IT RE­ALLY a year since Don­ald Trump was elected? Well, al­most.

Amer­i­cans plan to com­mem­o­rate the one-year an­niver­sary by scream­ing into the void of space.

Thou­sands of Face­book users have signed up to at­tend events on Bos­ton Com­mon and in Wash­ing­ton Square Park, New York, on Novem­ber 8. Sim­i­lar events are planned in Mi­ami, Philadel­phia, Dal­las, Austin and in Belling­ham, Wash­ing­ton.

“Join us as we en­joy a col­lec­tive cathar­tic yell into the heav­ens about our cur­rent po­lit­i­cal es­tab­lish­ment,” wrote the or­gan­is­ers of the New York event.

About 2 000 peo­ple have said they will at­tend the New York protest and 15 000 more have in­di­cated an in­ter­est. More than 4 500 have regis­tered for the Bos­ton event with 33 000 oth­ers show­ing an in­ter­est.

“This ad­min­is­tra­tion has at­tacked ev­ery­thing about what it means to be Amer­i­can,” says Jo­hanna Schul­man, who has helped or­gan­ise the Bos­ton scream­fest.

But is all this a good idea? The only per­son likely to take it se­ri­ously is Trump him­self. The counter-blast across the Twit­ter­sphere is likely to be con­sid­er­ably worse than any scream into space.


The phi­los­o­phy prof holds up an empty may­on­naise jar. He fills it with golf balls. The class agree it’s full. Then he pours in some peb­bles and shakes the jar. The peb­bles have taken up the space be­tween the golf balls. Then he pours in some sand and shakes. Then he opens two cans of beer and pours them in. The jar is def­i­nitely full.

“This jar rep­re­sents life,” the prof says. “The golf balls are the im­por­tant things – your chil­dren your fam­ily, your friends. What­ever hap­pens, so long as you have them you have a full life. The peb­bles are the less im­por­tant things – your job, your house, your car. The sand is the small stuff. And there’s al­ways room for a cou­ple of beers.”

Last word

HOW is it pos­si­ble to find mean­ing in a fi­nite world, given my waist and shirt size? – Woody Allen


A red squir­rel col­lects a wal­nut from a tree in Pit­lochry, Scot­land.

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