When I first saw it being driven around by a local security company, it was hate at first site. It was too tall, too narrow and and I really just did not like anything about it. After speaking to someone who was driving one as a company vehicle, I began too hate it even more.
Some of the worst cars in the world will be defended by those that drive them. Not the Avanza. Most people I know that drive them wish they didn't.
I was maybe being a bit unfair as I had never driven one. I had been a passenger though.
My first experience of the Avanza was when a colleague had received one from the rental agency. It had a little bit over 20 000km on the clock and as soon as it hit 40km/h the plastic bits started rattling. I also thought it was a perfect example of how too make an interior look as cheap as possible.
Up until today, I had never actually driven one. I then got given one to drive from one of our branches back to our main office. Total distance: +/-350km
The first thing that I noticed was the lack of a radio... that's right: Toyota can't afford to put a radio in a vehicle that costs R130 000?? But they will throw in 4 electric windows.
I then realised that at speeds over 100km/h wind was leaking through a steady rate. This was even more noticeable due to the lack of radio. There was also that damn plastic rattling all over the place.
I tend to use my rear-view mirror quite often while driving and by the time I had reached halfway, I had a headache. Confused? You see besides the plastic rattling, so does the mirror. And anything further 20m behind me looked like a blur.
I could carry on all day about all the things that suck about the Avanza... but that would just be a waste of my time. It sucks, that's all there is to it.
Screw you Toyota, for thinking we're retarded enough to like the Avanza!
(Photo courtesy of www.dispatch.co.za)
I never appreciated my dad as much as I should have when he was alive and there are times I regret it! I think most of us that have lost a parent feel this way and there is no way to avoid feeling like this! The trick is to have someone tell you about the good stuff.
But that isn’t the point here, instead I want to think about the good things.
The thing is that I never realised how much I really did learn from him and how much I enjoyed the times I did spend with him.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I remember sitting and watching rugby with him which was really awesome. He even got me into supporting my favourite team, the Sharks! This is probably one of the reasons why I will never support any other team above them!
However, that isn’t what my dad was all about, far from it actually. No matter what I say in this post, unless you knew my dad, it will never do him justice.
My dad was the ultimate DIY guy. That comes from being in the building industry from his teens. He even had his own company at one stage, but that was way before I was born. In his time he built hotels, schools and plenty more. This was kind of awesome when it came to picking up little tips & tricks, here and there. It wasn’t until he passed away that I realised I should’ve tried to learn more from him, but I’m a geek and I never really appreciated that while he was still around.
The funny thing is I sometimes come across a problem around the house and I then remember a time way back and see my dad doing it and voila, I’m doing it. Maybe not to his strict standards but hey I still am doing it!
The other thing I remember about him is his kind and generous soul. At times he seemed a real bastard if he felt like it, but deep down those close to him really knew the truth. He was always willing to help if he could and sometimes even if he couldn’t he would try. He gave up his own time and would come help out to the best of his ability.
He was also very good husband to my mom for 30 years despite the age difference. He would spoil her rotten and loved her unconditionally. I also learnt a lot from him in this regard. It basically comes down to: What would Dad do? One day when i get married I just hope I can be the kind of man he was to my wife, and even the kind of father he was to me.
I was lucky compared to my half-brothers and half-sisters because I had the pleasure of having him around most of my life. But the best times were when we moved to Port Elizabeth and was no longer in boarding school. It was then that I really started appreciating him.
I also got my love of cooking from him. He was an amazing cook and could cook anything he put his mind to; he would take a recipe from somewhere and make it his own.
I could go on and on about the things that I admired about him, but the most important one to me was his sick sense of humour. He would drive everyone mad and was the master of sarcasm and wit. If you didn’t know him though and met him for the first time, this would be the one thing that you remember.
Lastly I just want to bring up the one memory of him that is stuck in my head the entire time I was writing this blog.
My dad never appreciated my taste in music and there was very few bands that could endure me listening to. The one that he really never understood was Nirvana. One day I was playing their album Bleach and he walked into my room and said that it was really horrible and how could they make music like that. I said to him that it doesn’t matter because their lead singer, Kurt Cobain, had committed suicide.
I will never forget his reply: “Well from the sound of things, he was dying for a very long time”
We miss you Dad and will never forget you! Now stop giving those angels a hard time!
I came across the latest Durex advert campaign via Twitter and it made me think of some of the brilliant adverts they have had over the years.
So I started looking up some of the better ones that they have had and thought I might as well share them with all you folk! So here they are…
I’ll start with the video adverts that they have had and I chose some of my favourites.
Have a look at the Outtakes of the Get it on advert here
First off, I realise that rugby may not be very geek, but I enjoy the game and look back fondly on the days sitting in front of the tube watching it with my dad.
He was one of those people who would moan before, after and during the game but I still used to love watching games with him. He had a knowledge of the game and it’s history that to this day no-one I know could match.
I miss those days but I still love the game. We are a rugby loving nation and I hope this will never change. There is nothing like going down to a pub donning you teams jersey and watching the games on a big screen with a ice cold draught in front of you or going around to a mates house and having a braai. Luckily for us South Africans, there are plenty of opportunities for this! From February until the end of May there is Super 14, which for those who don’t know is an interprovincial tournament between 14 South African, Australian and New Zealand teams. Then there is the Tri-Nations, again involving SA, Australia and New Zealand, but involving the national teams, between July and September. The last of the big ones is the ABSA Currie Cup between July and October which is a tournament between several local provincial teams.
My favourite is the Super 14 for a lot of reasons. All bets are off when it comes to the Super 14. Even if you are the biggest Springbok supporter no-one will think twice if you do support a non-South African team. Personally I support the Sharks and secondly the Bulls. I have both jerseys hanging proudly in my cupboard.
But this year I did something I have never done before. I signed up for the Sports Illustrated Super 14 Fantasy League. I then roped two good friends to create the own fantasy team and we created a league with the 3 of us competing. The Fantasy League involves choosing your team of 15 players, which can comprise of any player from any team. Your players then get points based on whether the appear in the match, whether their team wins the match, whether they score a try and several other criteria. You add up all your players scores and then you get ranked. If you aren’t happy with one of your players you can transfer them for other players each week, but these transfers are limited.
What this has done though is make me want to watch more games than I ordinarily would have, so that I can see how “my players” are doing. So for the next 4 months, I plan on watching a LOT of rugby.
Then last month I thought about starting it off again. This time I also used it to share links and gave my blog the name "Don Charlie V's Links Worthy of Mention" which was quite a mouthful. Then it started evolving; I was no longer just posting links, every now and again I would actually write detailed blogs about the links and sometimes there weren't even links to start with. I looked for links to suit my blog! So I changed the name of my blog as mentioned in previous post at the beginning of the month.
It didn't stop there, I started adding all sorts of fun stuff like the AddThis bookmarking & sharing button & live Twitter feed. I also started joining blog lists like Amatomu, Networked Blogs & Technorati.
Lately I have been contemplating changing the look of my blog and over the last couple of days, I went about designing a proper logo but this left me with a problem. It didn't suit the crappy Blogger template. So I started prowling the interweb looking for a suitable template. Eventually I found one which would suit my logo (with minor changes like transparency). It is a template called Red Light which I found on www.btemplates.com.
In less than a month my blog has transformed so much an I am loving it. I spend nights that i am not out, watching movies & series on one screen and blogging on my other screen. I may even take up to 3 days perfecting a blog post before actually publishing it... not always but sometimes.
Alright I probably don't have that many regular readers yet but who knows, that may change over time and I may even get a proper domain name if it comes down to that.
It looks like an entertaining movie but I'm just worried its gonna be a bit too much like Harry Potter, which I did not like BTW!
It almost made it into my top list except as I said, i just can't decide, but on that note, I thought i deserved a mention anyway...
Check out the trailer anyway...
Check it out by clicking the following link:
Win Stuff in free online competitions
There are plenty of prizes to win and they are FREE to enter!
There are a lot of really good movies coming out, so to make it easier to decide, I sifted through a lot of sites and came up with a list of my top 25.
3 things before you start:
1) The movies are arranged in order of release date - from current to last & the release dates are for South Africa.
2) If you get playlist errors with the videos, just click "Continue" and the movie will still play
3) I may not have included a movie that you think is better, but I'm just recommending, you can watch whatever you want. I won't judge...much...
This is definitely one for the fans of horror movies only! Also you have to see the first one before you watch this one... If the two criteria are not met you will be in the same situation as my friend Alex, who really did not enjoy it!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1311067
Official Site - www.halloween2-movie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=45601
Release Date - Out Now!
It has Benicio Del Toro & Anthony Hopkins in it. But if that doesn't convince you, have a look at the trailer.
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0780653
Official Site - www.thewolfmanmovie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=18844
Release Date - 12 February
The Book Of Eli
This is one of those movies that have not received great reviews, but still looks damn good and you still wanna see it...
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1037705
Official Site - thebookofeli.warnerbros.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=48563
Release Date - 26 February
From Paris With Love
I was halfway through the trailer and wondering where John Travolta was and then I realised. Looks like a kick ass movie though!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1179034
Official Site - frompariswithlovefilm.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=59398
Release Date - 26 February
This is just to restore my faith in the fact that vampires on not sparkly and are actually mean bastards who are not interested in high school girls and romance...
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0433362
Official Site - www.daybreakersmovie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=21566
Release Date - 5 March
Alice in Wonderland
I just love how weird this movie looks. Tim Burton is a genius as well
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1014759
Official Site - disney.go.com/disneypictures/aliceinwonderland
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=39384
Release Date - 5 March
After Titanic I lost a bit of faith in Leonardo De Caprio, but recently he has had some awesome appearances, especially Body of Lies. So when he is gonna appear in a Scorcese movie, you gotta want in on it!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1130884
Official Site - www.shutterisland.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=41300
Release Date - 12 March
Clash Of The Titans
Awesome battle scenes...thats all I'm gonna say
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0800320
Official Site - clash-of-the-titans.warnerbros.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=40223
Release Date - 2 April
Based on a comic about a bunch of CIA black ops guys who get betrayed. Trust me, this one should rock if it's anything like the comic!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0480255
Official Site - www.the-losers.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=50350
Release Date - 9 April (unconfirmed)
If you've seen the Planet Terror DVD, you should know this one, for the rest, just watch the trailer!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0985694
Official Site - None (see Wikipedia entry - wikipedia.org/wiki/Machete_(film) )
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=54801
Release Date - 16 April (Unconfirmed)
There are no words to describe how cool this movie should be! We all dream we could be superheroes; some of us actually try it out...
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1250777
Official Site - www.kickass-themovie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=43515
Release Date - April 23
A Nightmare on Elm Street
Can they pull of what Wes Craven did in the original? I certainly hope so!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1179056/
Official site - www.nightmareonelmstreet.com/
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=47103
Release Date - April 30 (Unconfirmed)
Iron Man 2
I'll say it now...this is my MOVIE OF THE YEAR
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1228705
Official Site - ironmanmovie.marvel.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=44655
Release Date - 30 April
Edge of Darkness
I hope the aging Mr Gibson doesn't let me down with this one. The trailer looks pretty good though. *hold thumbs*
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1226273
Official Site - http://edge-of-darkness.warnerbros.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=44503
Release Date - 7 May
Well, this duo pulled off Gladiator, so lets hope they can do the same here. If the trailer is anything to go by, I like!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0955308
Official Site - www.robinhoodthemovie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=20816
Release Date - 14 May
Prince Of Persia
Game to movie conversions have always been a let down. But I'm optimistic that this will be an exception to that rule...
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0473075
Official Site - disney.go.com/Disneypictures/princeofpersia
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=20447
Release Date - 21 May
Youth In Revolt
To be honest, this is one that I'm not sure about. The idea seems to be good, but can they translate it into something worthwhile? I'm optimistic!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0403702
Official Site - www.youthinrevolt-themovie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=41254
Release Date - 18 June
dum dadum dum dumdumdum dum dadum dum dum dadum dum... makes me feel like a kid again!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0429493
Official Site - www.ateam-movie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=40213
Release Date - 30 July
This movie is directed by Christopher Nolan, the director of the Dark Knight and starring Leonardo De Caprio. I have high hopes for this one. It kinda reminds me of Dark City though...
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1375666
Official Site - inceptionmovie.warnerbros.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=52815
Release Date - 30 July
Admittedly I know very little about this movie, except that it was written by Robert Rodriguez years ago, and that it is only coming out this year. I couldn't find any trailers, or even behind the scenes clips, for this one... sorry!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1424381
Official Site - None (but see Wikipedia post - wikipedia.org/wiki/Predators)
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=54800
Release Date - 20 August
All my favourite action heroes frrom the 90's except way older...awesome! There are rumours even the Governator is in on this one! Only ones missing are Chuck Norris & Jean Claude van Damme...
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1320253
Official Site - None (www.theexpendablesmovie.net is an awesome fan site though)
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=50319
Release Date - 13 August (Unconfirmed)
Resident Evil: Afterlife
I know i said that game to movie conversions suck, but i think the Resident evil series is the exception. And no it's not because of Milla Jovovich!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1220634
Official Site - None (see Wikipedia entry - wikipedia.org/wiki/Resident_Evil_4_(film) )
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=52423
Release Date - 10 September
The Last Airbender
I'm giving M Night Shyamalan one last chance to make a decent film. Lets hope he can convince me with this one. So far so good with the trailer
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt0938283
Official Site - www.thelastairbendermovie.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=44129
Release Date - 10 September
I'm not gonna commit myself, but if the effects test below is any indication this will be one awesome movie!
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1104001
Official Site - disney.go.com/tron
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=47155
Release Date - 31 December
If you watched Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz and loved them, I don't need to tell you any more... If you haven't you better be phoning your video store to rent them tonight! Not sure of a release date though....
IMDB - www.imdb.com/title/tt1092026
Official Site - www.whatispaul.com
ComingSoon.net - www.comingsoon.net/films.php?id=48063
Release Date - TBA
I thought i would help out and post some of the better ones I've found recently...
1) The Transforminators (by Black20 Studios)
This mashup trailer is absolutely brilliant!
2) The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon (by Richard Gale)
There are no words to describe this video - don't know what it is about it!
3) Phobias (taken from The Sketch Show)
Brilliant clip about phobias taken from a TV series called The Sketch Show
4) Surprised Kitty
Awesome short clip involving a kitten
5) The Burj Birdmen
This is for fans of base jumping. This is the world record base jump from the Burj Khalifa (formerly known as the Burj Dubai which was recently officially opened)
The Burj Birdmen from Jan-Paul Bednarz on Vimeo.