Tag Archives: Batho

Fresh Thoughts Again

20 Nov


The Monsieur can and does get into fanatic spaces as a mater of course. Earlier this week it was with a discrete inquiry (launched with charm and grace) that a seat at the second outing of The Fresh Thinking Series was secured. – Lets #FTS this thing right away, it is already a mouthful as it is – Please understand that a healthy dose of over-sell-and-under-deliver is the norm on the streets of Gaborone, so you know… its always useful to suck it and see *wink* for free, first. Next time we pay if it was everything it said it was on the packaging.  So what is it…? This #FTS – rummage around here a bit and you will get what they say it is.

The Monsieur has another view… #FTS is a great way to spend the day outside of the office actually, more importantly it is what you make it. Yes, you will have an excellent array of folks articulating things you have probably been too lazy… OK, too busy to google, or knew all along but needed someone to make it make sense. I say this because the people in the room listening to the podium were mainly high fliers themselves, so really the IQ in the room,  and university qualifications as well as the collective experience could turn the tide in Botswana in a shorter time than it takes to say B.C.L.

Sadly Monsieur’s #FTS was a victim of premature you-know-what as he had to leave the room to attend to matters of life and death. Upon returning it turned out that the best had been had and that was that… but this exposed a possible missed opportunity. #FTS pretty much just… ends. You have been placed on a super high by some super thinking and then you have to turn to your super friends and pretty much… well, super leave. The short breaks during the day long affair are an opportunity to circulate while the fresh ideas peculate. However nothing drives those ideas further home than a little liquid lubrication, a good sipping session where tongues can be unlocked further.

Frankly, as with many speaking/panel discussion situations the interaction can feel a bit two dimensional. It goes a long way to have actually inspiring content and a chance at spirited debate – however, because of our always on and always connected nature, attention spans are likely to need stronger stimuli every year. Without changing it, because it ain’t broke, perhaps a resolution session could be an excellent idea to help people internalise the inspiration. A call to action that helps bring everyone present one step closer to actualising the Fresh Thinking in high flying lives. Perhaps they can then report their progress to the #TFS website for all to see and be inspired further.

Best part… The Monsieur made new and rather diverse friends – A risk manager who seemed the type to go out and eye-ball the risk rather than rely solely on computer projections. A pâtissier who collected the Tswana jams littering the tables to go experiment with in her confections. An industrial designer responsible for the coherence behind an urban lifestyle brand from Botswana. Guess what… we are all going to do fresh things, together.

Next year…? The Monsieur is paying… voluntarily. Then perhaps you will hear a lot more about the Monsieur’s experience then.

Pic: The Pressphoto

Gareth Cliff – A Dry White

20 Apr

Gareth talking at gabs food and wine show 2012

The first time Gareth Cliff makes an entrance into the Monsieur’s sphere of existence was when he was getting a live beating on Twitter for daring to call a spade a spade. Thing is he was already notorious, infamous and yes, quite famous too for that trait. On this particular occasion the spade in question was South Africa’s then recently deceased Minster of Health, Mantho Tshabalala-Msimang. Honestly I laughed, god rest her soul, but sparking a ‘twar’ that drew a nice fat line in the Twitter sand box neatly separating black from white South Africans was already old. It was more fun to look at the issues being fired back and forth at 140 characters a second.

The main thing I gleaned from the resultant radio interviews, blog posts and newspaper articles was that this Gareth Cliff dude was one tough lekgoa yo. Sure we Africans don’t like to speak ill of the dead, however the Cliff had a point… he could have introduced it better. Anyway that was when Cliff first reared his blond head into my sights.

Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, what comes to mind today when you hear that name?

She was a minister in dereliction of her duties for the duration of her time in cabinet. Millions died needlessly because of her resistance to anti-retroviral drugs and the academic debate about the link between HIV and AIDS which was nothing short of pseudo-science.

Do you still get a side eye from some people for your opinions about Tshabalala-Msimang?

Many would agree with me.

What did people miss when you were trying to make your point about the minister?

There’s this idea that the dead must be respected regardless of their deeds.

Do you think before you tweet?

Yes, mostly. Like all humans, we are prone to say things without thinking from time to time. Twitter is no different.

Gareth on decks at gabs food and wine show 2012

Well, there it is, a perfectly rational dude, and though the Monsieur doesn’t listen to 5FM much, I liked him already… I mean, I do follow him on Twitter. Anyway, there is more to Gareth Cliff than my first time paying attention to him. Many people in Botswana may know him mainly from the very popular Dstv reality show, Idols. Several more people that like nice things will now recognise him from gracing the inaugural Gaborone Food and Wine Show at Airport Junction (Gabs) in November 2012.

Briefly, the 35 year old Cliff’s FB page says, ”Gareth Cliff is a tall, blue-eyed man from Pretoria, the capital city South Africa. His ancestors oppressed many people over their 300-400 year tenure in Africa. Gareth intends to remedy this with a terrific radio show.” I can’t argue with that, if it were up to the Monsieur to forgive him for something his ancestors did, that Mantotweet episode was payment enough. 35 years old and pulling serious numbers on his 6AM to 9AM radio show on 5FM is Cliff’s current calling. We meandered a bit through his career.

When did the radio bug first bite?

Oh I think I’ve always loved radio. I used to listen to morning shows on the way to school and I loved the idea of storytelling, of painting pictures with words. It’s magic.

At what point did you feel that you had found your thing?

I don’t know… I like entertaining people, having conversations.

What is about radio that brings you back every day?

It’s unpredictable, exciting, real.

If you were ever to leave the world of broadcasting, what would you do?

Make sandwiches.

Who was your radio hero, the person the inspired you to go into broadcasting?

I don’t really have a role-model, but I do look up to John Berks. I always loved the way he sounded, the way he was so comfortable behind the mic.

John Berks…? I don’t know… the Monsieur rather hoped he would say DJ Fresh, I mean… tattoos, a twisted sense of humour and more compilations released then there are haters at an R Kelly concert… winning!

How aware are people that DJ Fresh is from Botswana, and do they really care?

I think a lot of people do, but Botswana isn’t that far away or that different. I think we feel like we’re in the same family. The fact that SeTswana is such a widespread and important language here in SA makes the ties even closer.

But you see now, a hint at how clued up Cliff is about his country. Being on radio is not actually as easy as the best broadcasters make it sound. One of the questions I asked Cliff was simply…

Is the “New South Africa” ready to just be South Africa yet? 

Ha ha ha. I’m glad you asked that. We could learn a lot from Botswana about moving forward.

Don’t let that modest and democratic answer fool you, Gareth is very vocal about what he expects from his government. Radio isn’t his only weapon of choice, he writes too… open letters, blogs, books, and my personal favourite – the tweets.

Gareth at gabs food and wine show 2012

I deliberately didn’t ask about the book, I think it’s painful to get a person to big up their written work, rather go buy it and make up your own mind. The book is called ‘Gareth Cliff on Everything’ its 240 pages of opinion, basically pure unadulterated Cliff in page form. There is hardly anything he doesn’t have an opinion on, believe me the Monsieur tried to ask all manner of things…

In your opinion why is Idols relevant to the entertainment industry?

I don’t know. It’s just a good TV show. Let’s not get carried away.

If you were ever going to be the subject of a Roast, who would you least like to have roast you?

I haven’t thought about it. I don’t think I’d do a roast.

What is the secret to a long successful career in radio broadcasting?

I don’t know. I haven’t been there long enough to start speaking of durability or success. Ask me in another ten years.

What do you think was Riaan Cruywagen’s secret to looking exactly the same for the whole time he has been on tv?

I heard he is a vampire.

For the many of us that do not know of the undead looking legend of SABC TV called Riaan Cruywagen. He is that funny corpse that was wise cracking with Sipho Hotstix Mabuse at the SAMAs in 2012. Speaking of which Randal Abrahams did the wise thing and returned the awards to Sun City just down the road from Gabs City… but anyway, one last question.

If you were a wine, which one would you be?

A dry white.

Gareth Cliff: on air personality, all round good guy, quick draw tongue-slinger. Yes, well one sip out of the Manto shaped glass and the Monsieur was hooked.

*An abridged and quite different version of this article was first published in Lapologa Magazine

Photos – Lapologa Magazine (Taken at Gaborone Food & Wine Show)

This One Plus This One…

8 Nov

Mali & Vuyo

I need to stop doing this but my friendo’s are brilliance, so it is a bit hard to stop repping them at every turn. Who we are looking at is all sorts of untapped amazing. Left is former fashion buyer now fashion blogger, and dare I say it urban photographer. Right is non practising artist and is both a crouching tiger and a hidden dragon at Woolies.

Why are they sleeping… meditatively and smilingly…? Because its under control.

These two are getting an Asked and Answered real soon.


Pic – Mali

Word: Guerrilla Grapher – Definition: Max Mogale

3 Nov

This is the Max Mogale I happily stumbled upon one day on the Facebook. One of the happiest memories of my photography life. Sometimes its just best to let the original words do the (s)talking…


Conversation started 25 August 2009


Ewetse Khama

Fear not

Hey there Max, been looking at your booth series, killing me my African brother, straight killing me. Mare why you worry so much though? The bravery you displayed in documenting a time and space in a very tangible CPT (like who can tell its CPT?) is in my opinion historical. I have issues with that city so when someone can make it beautiful again, fuck the hat, I take my whole head off to them.

Another thing though, which may be linking back to the historical point, is that back when the Face and ID were popping for the first time, those things were like eye candy, until some peeps realized that they were mapping culture as it evolved… FYI, Max Mogale is doing it for CPT and MZANZI.


Oh…And I like that there isn’t a story to go with it. It would only piss me off. I unfortunately know exactly what I am missing, but some other person might miss the significance of having such visionaries plain chilling on your shoots. Mmmaphuti, Check, Yangiswa Check, and all those other types I fraternized with for years but never got to meet… it was something to do with ruining the fantasy. I didn’t want to go that far. I understand that I risked missing out on meeting fuckin brilliant personalities, but that’s the shit thing about the Cape… the fantasy’s are often stronger at times.

Hey man, from me to you, you put the hot shit in hot shit.

PS: Tell anyone I wrote any of this and I will deny it and call you stalker!


25 August 2009


Max Mogale


Thanks for that man. I’ve been looking at this message all day trying to decipher exactly what you are saying but the general vibe I get is a positive one. And I thank you for that. Im all bout the positive thing, tryna make it as a young black photographer in this game. Ive lived in CPT for a while and Ive always had my reservations about it, but its getting better. The people are awesome(as youve seen) and Im thankful that I have an oppurtunity to take a piece of their soul

Youre right, I am a bit sensitive bout my work because every shoot I do is one from the head and heart and I pretty much wing it when I get to it. Its always great to see it come out the way its intended. I thank you once again for your kind words


All pictures by Max Mogale

A friend in knead is a friend indeed

21 Jan

Food, food glorious food, that stuff will never go out of style even if niche haters, like anorexics, and over specialisers (stand up!) vegans, sometimes give food a weird aura. With all the Oliver/Ramsey/Lawson/Floyd etc mega calorie line up of food deities trooping through our weekly TV menu, we might never run out of ways of praising the much needed daily nutritional leg up.

The internet is a real “misexplored” jungle of new delights, old favourites and downright scary discoveries. There is much to indulge in online, much too much. Even friends have gotten in on the food action making their blogs one of my most visited food inspiration places online.

“What the frick is an egg special’ Et voila… Jizzfest in my mouth! BOOMSHAKALAKA!”

When my son met Ipel(eng) he decided he was gona hate on her right away. I was a lot more patient… and I am still waiting to hate on her. I have since discovered that she is not afraid to get her (very) beautiful hands dirty… in the kitchen anyway.  Her food blog is practical (like her) it drifts here and there (poetry and memories sneak in) while staying in familiar territory (tomato, onion, atchar, mayo in the glass jar with the green lid) You won’t find glossy pictures trying to trick your stomach through your eyes, nope! What you get is what it is, and this is probably what your first attempts at these recipes are going to look like… where you take it after that is entirely up to you, she encourages it.

“I have been walking and painting…and walking and painting…and cooking!”

Ni’Cole is an aspiring writer, in that she is yet to narrow it down to her niche, who got tripped up by the food thing and fell headlong into the pot to a blissful demise of marrying food to her musings online. The life journey that she is on is marked out with many food milestones instead of just scenic ramblings about le vie. Don’t get hung up on her sometime patently English point of view, she is just being inclusive of all her friends who come from all over the world, especially Botswana. Actually her leisurely take on food gives a great taste to food for thought. Now if only she could just get that book out…

“There are just some things in the culinary world that should remain as simple as possible. One of these things is the burger.”

Thembi is a criminal in that she eats so well and wears it better… but that’s not why she is getting mention here. Her dreamy cup cakes with rose tinted names like Red velvet are nirvana in a nibble. There was an occasion when some panana tried to fake the funk and described the cupcakes as “not nice…” When I asked what was “not nice…” about Thembi’s cupcakes it came down to, “it wasn’t what I expected…” Yes well there you go, a total case of expectations being so well exceeded that the cupcake novice found themselves in new territory and didn’t know what to think, or say. I say Thembi’s cupcakes are so good your senses just won’t be equipped to deal with it.

I find it more credible to look to people you know for recipe ideas, that way you don’t have to hide behind the excuse that Ramsay’s swearing turns you on, when in actual fact you are trying to avoid the fact that he is actually so talented it’s intimidating. Knowing your friend’s strengths and weaknesses but also seeing what they are capable of is a lot more convincing of your own potential to succeed at the stove. Take inspiration from your foodie friends then go start your own culinary revolution… or try not to burn a pot of water at least.

Pics – GlassTableGirl & Bella Pastry Bakery

The Twitterview – Sesame Mosweu and Emma Wareus

28 Dec

Apparently there is such a thing as a #Twitterview… yes Twitter is all grown up and not shy to show it off. Oh well whatever as long as it gets the job done. So about 2 days before Christmas  we peeping-tomed along on a Sesame Mosweu twitterview of Emma Wareus along with(out) a great many others judging by the relative lack of interjections along the way. It is interesting! Does this mean that We the Twitterzines are relatively polite enough to shut the hell up (and read) during Twitterviews…?

@Emma_Wareus are you ready for the #Twitterview at 08h15 CAT?

@SesameM yeah I am.. That’s 1:15am for me.. Lol.. I’ll be up.. Hw long will it take though cuz got an early morning..

@SesameM oh no wait.. That’s in 15mins.. Lol.. Didn’t realise that!! In that case, in supa ready 🙂

@Emma_Wareus Its 10 questions baby.

Bout to do a twitview with @SesameM on yaronafm TRE show… 🙂 🙂 can’t wait.. Let’s see what they gona ask.. *no exposing* haha xx

Hello @Emma_Wareus welcome. First question- At what point during Miss World 2010 did you know you will make top 3?

@SesameM honesty, I had no idea. Even wen I made top5, I ws thinkn “gosh, I’m prob here cuz they needed a bit of colour” lol

@Emma_Wareus What has been the hardest obstacle you have had to overcome during your reign? How did you overcome it?

@SesameM Ppl alwys askd me y Im sch an intellect n eloquent. Annoyd me @ 1st bt alowd me 2 show dem da beauty of my firm african education.

@Emma_Wareus Do you think anything is slightly easier when a woman, like you, is beautiful. Anything in at all in life, personal experiences?

Hope ya’ll are following my twitterview with @SesameM. TREseason4 yaronafm. From all the way in USA to all the way in Botswana 🙂

@SesameM deff not!! Beauty lasts a minute, wat u do with ur qualities lasts a lifetym. Its jst a huge misconception and I find it degrading

@Emma_Wareus Have you dated anyone after Miss World? Did you have any paranoia that men may like the title more than Emma?

@SesameM lol..was datin sme1 evn b4 MW..didn hv any paranoia anywy cuz I knw hw 2 tell da diff btwen a real gentleman n a man wit intentions

@Emma_Wareus Honestly is there any jealousy and tensions back stage at beauty pageants just like we see in movies?

@SesameM By da end of MW, u build sch strng frndships n sistahoods dat u focus on missing the girls n enjoyin the lst moments

@Jeslock yes I am.. I am half swedish. My father is from sweden. 🙂                                                                                      in reply to @Jeslock

@Emma_Wareus Who is your celebrity crush? Why them?

Gauteng fuel stations run dry – again. bit.ly/uhEozY1 hour ago
Retweeted by SesameM

@SesameM gosh.. I have many!! Lol.. Iv alwys had a schoolgirl crush on bow wow, jst cuz he so cute!! And Jason Mraz cuz of his AMAZING voice

@Emma_Wareus Have you carried on any of the responsibilities you had as Miss Botswana?

@SesameM its bin hard as iv bin awy frm BW. My respnsiblity divrted frm js in BW 2da world,as mis BW. Bt still do my work @hme frm overseas

@Emma_Wareus What are you doing in the US?

@SesameM I’m on holiday 🙂 also visiting a few agencies and doing some work with an org here for my project back hme with Miss World

@Emma_Wareus If given a chance would you enter a reality show? Why?

@SesameM yea. Jst 2 show people who I am n c me in my element as jst Emma. C dat Im a normal person dat thy can relate 2 n get to knw me mre

@Emma_Wareus If you were to be any character in Sex & The City who would you be that you relate most with?

@SesameM Gosh tough.. I think I’d be a mixture of Carrie and Charlotte. 🙂

@Emma_Wareus Why Carrie Bradshaw and Charlotte York?

!!!! RT @HipHopPantsula: #DearRappers If some of you love ur dads, pls Rap about it. We got enough daddy bashing songs. #dearDaddy                                                                                                                                                     Retweeted by SesameM

@SesameM I lyk givin advise bt neva seem to place it in my own situation like Carrie sumtyms dus. N Im “preppy” n optimistic like Charlotte

@Emma_Wareus Thank you so much for the #Twitterview have a blast and take care.

@SesameM anytime!!! If u got more questions, u know where to get me.. We should have an emma tells all unrated.. Lol. s/o to the homeland xx

Images – Mikey S and Fify Lowen

Totally #Dazed&Confused

9 Dec

We don’t need words or this one. Special 20 + 20 Covers Project for the Dec issue of Dazed & Confused with like 20 different special covers. Rankin shot all of them, he like cold killin it… dead. Eiiinaaaa, e mmmmpollaaa gone ha!

Pics – http://www.dazeddigital.com