Thursday, July 29, 2010

Lieutenant-General Peter Walls : How tall was he?

Lieutenant-General Peter Walls, who has died aged 83, was the last commander of Ian Smith's Rhodesian armed forces; his otherwise distinguished military career ended in humiliation when he became involved in the political turmoil that surrounded Robert Mugabe's accession to power in Zimbabwe in 1980.

The above headline was taken from the Telegraph. The obituary has some inaccuracies and also some interesting comments…but -

What has cropped up on numerous online forums with reference to the passing away of Lieutenant-General Peter Walls - exactly how tall was he? There seems to be discrepancies, and as a former police officer, Boy Scout and enthusiastic amateur forensic scientist, I believe I have solved the problem using a picture downloaded from the net.

Looking at a South African made standard 330ml tin of Castle Lager in Wall’s hand, it should be possible to work out his height. The can measures exactly 4 and  a half inches high. In the picture I printed out, the tin is 1 inch high. Using this scale, I measured his head. I had to guess a bit where it ended under the cap, but it is safe to say it ended just about where the badge ends.

That means his head is… I will just switch to millimetres for a bit…

Okay, tin is 25mm and head is 43mm in the picture. So if the real tin is 115mm, therefore 25mm is 22% of real tin. Erm…(I am getting a bit lost here.) So…if I divide 25mm into 43mm, I get 1.72 tins per head. Multiply that by 115mm = 198mm.

Convert back into inches (give or take a hair’s breadth), we have a tad under 8 inches, which means his head was about the size of a large turnip. Now if we look at the next picture - according to the chart, the head is 7 times the body height, thus he was 56 inches, or 4 feet 8 inches tall. Quite remarkable he was allowed to enrol in the army at all!

Obviously these observations may be not quite accurate, or for that matter, my math skills may be a bit wobbly.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

UFO over Zimbabwe – Plasma Powered Helicopter?

Picture of a flaming plasma  Flying Tokoloshe over Mana Pools recently.

I awoke from my bed today after having been abducted by evil aliens employed by Ebay, when I happened to stumble across a strange little blog about UFOs over Zimbabwe.

Fascinating stuff, so I contacted my reliable sauces, Daddy Brown and Red Ketchup, to see if they could come up with anything remotely food for thought connected to egg, bacon, sausage and toast.
They managed to obtain some classified information from the Zimbabwe office of Senator Precious Littlesense, which, under Littlesense, oversees the Minister of Money Making Machines. Amazingly, it would appear the Zimbabweans have managed to build an undetectable flying machine. Okay…well you sort of see it, but when it flies it is bathed in strange lights. On the ground you see it.

Picture of a Flying Tokoloshe just before being loaded with plasma. 

In fact, it is a sort of helicopter powered by plasma! The CIA claim Zimbabwe doesn’t have the scientific know-how to manufacture plasma, but they got around that minor detail by sucking the stuff out of the confiscated televisions originally stolen by thieving white farmers. Once the machine is powered up, it goes mental, gets very hot, becomes invisible behind an aura of red hot plasma, shoots around like some drug crazed banshee, lands tits-up somewhere, usually deep in the bush - killing the pilot. 

Picture of a Flying Tokoloshe cockpit. Note condensation on the windscreen. This is due to the plasma firing up and the pilot sweating buckets.

With the semi-successful trial flights of the secret machine - code named Flying Tokoloshe Mark 5.1 and counting - the Zimbabwean government has entered into negotiations with the Taliban, who are hoping to procure several of the ZANU airworthy certificated invisible UFOs, to help them fight imperialistic invaders (whom, oddly enough, seem to be paying for them via aid money for displaced poppy growers).

A healthy bribe to an official from the afore mentioned ministry, who wishes to remain anomalous (spelt correctly), did say off-camera that -

‘Thunderbirds are go - as soon as we have more plasma TVs and pilots.’

Professor Daniel Chingomas - surreal entrepreneur, inventor of the Flying Tokoloshe . Seen here shortly before being last heard of by agonizingly screaming his head off - whilst enveloped in a ball of fire several hundred meters above a school in Ruwa, Zimbabwe. Several pupils were treated for trauma.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Money for nothing, get your Chimps for free

I am in a filthy mood. Tried to sell some stuff on EBay, only to find the money has disappeared into cyber space and it is turning into a nightmare sorting it all out. I have sent EBay a strongly worded letter of complaint that either they, or I, have a link missing in our vital software.

Moving on. I have to tell you about Bubbles. Bubbles as you may know was the late Michael Jackson’s pet. For some strange reason he obviously disliked Michael changing his nappies because maybe he played Willie Wonker at the same time, and as a result bit him. M.J. was not amused and poor old Bubbles was sent away.

Now Bubbles had obviously got used to the rich lifestyle of his late and now departed owner, but being penniless and not being mentioned in the will, Bubbles had to find another way to make a healthy living. Luckily for him a great opportunity arrived when amazingly, thanks to some good friends who have fuck all else to do than believe in ridiculous Emails promising cash for nothing, he read this following Email –


I just opened this mail now... and quickly went into my bank account
I have received R300 000 in my account.
thanks Janette.

This was on the 9:00 o'clock news the other night and this works

PLEEEEEEASE READ!!!! it was on the news!

This thing is for real. Rest assured AOL and Intel will follow Through
with   their promises for fear of facing a multimillion-dollar class
action suit similar to the one filed by Pepsi-Cola against General Electric not too
long ago.

Dear Friends;

Please do not take this for a junk letter. Bill Gates is sharing his
fortune. If you ignore this, You will repent later.
Microsoft and AOL are now the largest Internet companies and in an
effort to make sure  that Internet Explorer remains the most widely used program,
Microsoft   and AOL are running an e-mail beta test.  When you forward this e-mail to friends, Microsoft can and will Track it (If you are a Microsoft Windows user)? For a two weeks time period.

For every person that you forward this e-mail to, Microsoft will pay you
$245.00 For every person that you sent it to that forwards it on,
Microsoft will pay you $243.00 and ! for every third person that receives it, You
will be paid $241.00. Within two weeks, Microsoft will contact you for your
address and then send you a check.

Charles S Bailey General Manager Field Operations

Well, well, thought Bubbles, surely this is a SCAM. Luckily many people thought also, but they gave it a shot and would you believe it, they hit the jack pot! Many of these amazing people who made fortunes by simply sending on daft Emails added their names to the ever growing list of dumb saps at the bottom of the original mail. Oddly, you may notice a large contingent of Afrikaners based in their homeland of the rainbow nation of South Africa, who rushed in to get a piece of cyber Witwatersrand.

As Bubbles originally originated paternally from Africa, he could understand the Boer's grunting gibberish and decided to give it go. Here are some extracts from the lucky people –

I thought this was a scam myself, But two weeks after receiving this
e-mail and forwarding it on. Microsoft contacted me for my address and
within days, I receive a check for $24, 800.00. You need to respond
before   the beta testing is over. If anyone can afford this, Bill gates
is the  man.
It's all marketing expense to him. Please forward this to as many people
as possible.
You are bound to get at least $10, 000.00. We're not
going to help them out with their e-mail beta test without getting a
little something for our time. My brother's girlfriend got in on this a
few    months ago. When I went to visit him for the Baylor /UT game. She showed me her
It was for the sum of $4, 324.44 and was stamped 'Paid in full'

Like I said before, I know the law, and this is for real.
Intel and AOL are now discussing a merger which would make them the
largest Internet company and in an effort make sure that AOL remains the
mostwidely   used program, Intel and AOL are running an e-mail beta test.

When you forward this e-mail to friends, Intel can and will track it (if
you are a Microsoft Windows user) for a two week time period.
Try it; What have you got to lose !
For what Its worth die vrou werk saam met my suster (die bankrekening  afskrif).

When  you forward this e-mail to friends, I! Ntel can  and will track it (if you are a Microsoft  Windows user) for a two week time period. 

For every person that you forward this  e-mail to, Microsoft will pay you $203.15. 
For every person that you sent it to that  forwards it on, Microsoft will pay you  $156.29
And for every third person that  receives it , you will be paid $17.65. 
Within two weeks, Intel will contact you for  your address and then send you a check..
I  thought this was a scam myself, but a friend of  my good friend's Aunt Patricia, who works at  Intel, actually got a check of $4,54323 by  forwarding this e-mail. 

It works I  just checked, my bank account and found extra  R20 000

U  won't believe it ...I just had a look at my bank  statement & there was an extra ..wait for it  .......50 000.00 in my account ..this really  works .....just do it ......I love u Douglas  ...thank u some much for thinking of me &  this GREAT gift !!! 

Hi ouens,  hierdie is die ware Jacob, ek het wragties geld  in my bank rekening ontvang om presies te wees  R125723.07, ja dis reg die volle bedrag en nog 7  sent. Microsoft is die beste, hulle gee verniet  geld weg somer so 'mahala'


Ek  het wragtag R 18000 in my rekening gekry! Julle  moet dit probeer!! Dit werk!!! 

From:  Wilna  van der Westhuizen
Hi ouens,

Glo my  hierdie is regtig nie 'n Scam nie, want 'n  bedrag van R22 000.00 is laas week in my  rekening inbetaal Jy moet net die e-mail  aanstuur vir soveel as moontlik mense wat jy ken  - that is it!

So Bubbles did as instructed and forwarded the letter to every chump on the planet. He waited, and guess what, a few days later money came pouring out of his computer screen. Fucking amazing! All brand new dollar bills!

So I am also going to forward this Email and soon I will be so rich, I will not need this blog anymore because I will be back in Africa shooting any chimp wearing a suit  and sporting sunglasses.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Drunk and stoned Zimbabwean ‘War Vet’ doctor employed by Bill Gates hacks dozens of mens’ manhoods off with the tip still hidden inside! Gates to be sued for billions!

Amazing, yet potentially true. In fact, if all goes to plan, you, as a Windows user, have a claim to a bit of foreskin.

As reported in today’s Guardian –

In Zimbabwe, Population Services International (PSI) is working with the government to try to get mass circumcision underway, using a "conveyor belt" strategy that allows doctors and nurses to move rapidly from one patient to another, operating on 10 instead of three patients an hour. The goal is to circumcise at least 80% of all young men between 15 and 29 – a total of 1.2 million.


PSI told the conference that it had devised a rapid circumcision strategy which it calls Move (Models of Optimising Volumes and Efficiency), using pre-sterilised, pre-assembled kits. Instead of stitches, the wound is cauterised.

Sounds like fun. Now we get Bill Gates involved –

PSI received financial help from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for the study demonstrating the efficiency of Move.

The whole story can be read here. For some strange reason, instead of an appropriate picture, of say Bill holding up a bag of foreskins to be sold on EBay, they had a picture of Annie Lennox, former howling butch-bitch of the ‘80s pop group Urinals or Eurhythmics or something. Not sure why. Maybe she collects knob ends.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Night Raid – a true war story.

Last of the Rhodesians: Chronicles of a Colonial Anarchist
Night Raid – a true war story.
 (Somewhere in Rhodesia, Central Africa, early 1970’s)

We knew that the enemy we most dreaded had returned to plague us once again. Year after year, that ever grinding war of attrition - the same old battle of nerves. We had never been able to really to corner them, and end it in a final fire-fight. At most, we could take out a few of their leaders and leave them disorientated for a while, but there was always another to take their place, and the guerrilla war would start afresh.

For most of the year we held the upper hand. Our latest base was comparatively new and our designated area for patrols seemed relatively free of the menace. Daily our small unit pounded the now familiar routes with an ever weary eye open. It was our land and rightfully so and we sculptured it as we liked, because we had made it our home. But they dared to question this with audacity. They remained for the most part unseen and would spook us from a safe distance.
            The rainy season always changed the scenario.  It was almost as if both sides needed respite from the game of hide and seek; a status quo, an unspoken agreement between the antagonists. We hated to slog through soaked grass and the ever increasing quagmire of rich, venial-red mud. Legend has it that Africa’s soil is that colour because of all the blood that has been spilled fighting for it. There would be more blood spilled, but we hoped our superior intelligence and armaments would ensure it would only be their blood that would soak into the ground to blend with their forefathers’ life juices.
The enemy had slinked back into our territory with some primeval instinct, just as the first summer rains finally came to break that smell of parched earth and moisture- starved yellow grass.  The incredible majestic force of tropical storms normally kept us in base. Few dared to go outside when Mother Nature decided to throw her weight around, randomly spitting deadly bolts of lightning that killed hundreds each year. The enemy knew of our fear. Not far from where we slept in our fortified abode was a small isolated oasis with dense foliage - a perfect hide. They were happy to take time out and reorganise their forces during this time.

We had used an observation point on the small hill overlooking their recently re-occupied stomping ground, hoping to spot them, but with no success.  Team leader reckoned that we would get some tonight. The Old Man, as he was better known, was frustrated with the previous failures. The whole thing was getting on his nerves, and he was starting to take it personally. That morning he had approached me.
            ‘I have a job to do, but I will be back about 6.00 p.m. The weather report is for a big storm about that time. I will try and nail their leader then. Get everything ready, I am taking you with me on this one.’
            I felt honoured, as I was still in my teens. Any thoughts of ice cold, pre-meditated murder never entered my head.

The timing had to be impeccable. We picked up our fully prepared weapons. I had checked them over that day, to make sure they were working perfectly. The last thing we needed were faulty tools of war. Not only would it lead to failure, the Old Man would never forgive me.  There was still a hint of light from another stunning African sunset, touching the edges of the gathering storm clouds with hues of orange, and in the distance, bright flashes of lightning were followed by the soft growls of thunder. We needed to be in and out before the storm hit us.
            Night was their weakness; their soft underbelly. They always seemed a bit chatty as darkness approached, but for the last few days, their incomprehensible mutterings had been loud enough to be heard at base whenever a storm started to approach. They had got away with it for so long that they were becoming arrogant. Surely it would give them away at last!
            The other members of our team would stay back at base. They would know sooner or later if we were successful or not. As we prepared to move out, the Old Man addressed them,
            ‘Leave some of the lights showing, that way the enemy won’t expect our surprise attack.’ After a second thought, he grinned wickedly, ‘Turn the radio on, not too loud though!’
            I thought that was a very clever distraction. He turned to me,
            ‘Once we are outside, I don’t want to hear one peep from you. Keep that loud mouth of yours shut for a change. Stay behind me and look for my hand signals.’ I nodded my head with acknowledgement; my heart was already racing with nervous energy.

 As we moved out, heading for the watering hole they used, I could hear the soft melody of the Paper Lace hit, ‘Billy, Don’t be a Hero’. Somehow, it helped to settle my nerves.
We moved quietly from tree to tree, freezing if we thought we had been spotted, crouching low and silent on aching knees, and then breathing a soft sigh of relief, as their short suspicious silence would again be broken. They were so confident that nothing was going to happen to them. They threw caution to the rapidly increasing wind, as they used the opportunity to call others before the heavens opened up, cutting off all communications for both sides.
            Adrenaline pumped through my body, overcoming any fear of failure. I had an overwhelming feeling that this time we would get at least one of them. The wind was picking up rapidly, ruffling my sweat-soaked crew-cut.
            Just before we had reached our intended cover of a group of bulrushes, we heard a noise, about three feet to our right. In the darkness, we had almost stumbled on top of them.
            ‘Shit, shit, shit!’, I thought.
            The Old Man gave me the agreed signal, and I opened-up with all I had whilst simultaneously, he armed his huge weapon in one smooth stroke and brought it, on instinct, into play. We were in trouble; my heart was going ape-shit, my hands shaking from the suppressed excitement. If the Old Man missed, we were lost!

I will never forget, even till the day I finally croak it, the spectacle that hit my eyes, as the darkness was brutally ripped apart from a bolt of lightning, so close I could almost smell the ozone it created. For what seemed an eternity, I looked squarely into the shocked eyes of the enemy.
This one was the biggest bastard I had ever seen. His throat bulged, ready to let out a defiant roar. As he prepared to leap for safety, obscenely huge leg muscles visibly rippled under his almost perfectly camouflaged outer skin.
‘Get him, Dad!’ I screamed in involuntary excitement above the massive clap of thunder that hammered at our eardrums.
The powerful beam of my flash-light replaced the spent lightning and kept the Bufo gutturalis in full sight, squatting on a large lily pad. Before it could draw its next breath and start that damn raucous din all over again, or escape into the deeps, the Old Man, from way over his head, brought the massive spade down, and one African Guttural Toad became airborne.
            It must have risen six feet into the air, as the shock wave pounded through the fishpond. The force, powerful enough to create a miniature tsunami, broke over the concrete walls, soaking our feet and bellied-up a few unsuspecting goldfish. It’s a hard knock life; a few innocent citizens, caught in the crossfire.
            The exploded corpse, its guts hanging out of a surprised mouth, came down and lay spasmodically kicking, just like the one we dissected at Biology class, as it lay at my father’s feet. Except this one looked more like a flattened avocado pear with legs. With a deft swish, he scooped up terminated toady and flicked it neatly over the hedge into the next door neighbours’ garden.

We went back to the house and celebrated our success over a cup of tea with Mum. We were all able to get a decent night’s sleep for the first time in days.

I actually became quite deft at terminating toadies. The best bit was to see if you could whack them again as they came down. Like a baseball striker, if you connected well, you blast the bastard really far over the hedge.
            Many years later, I told this story to my kids, but they weren’t having it. Well, in the late ‘90s, I was down in Beira, Mozambique, and demonstrated the technique on a beached jelly fish. I flicked it up and connected it perfectly. One small problem - unlike the toad, which had a rather tough skin, jelly fish exploded! All this was filmed on VHS, so one day I might be able to convert it and make a multi-million virus hit YouTube.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Colton Harris-Moore - He's Not the Messiah, He's a Very Naughty Boy!

Here is something to cheer us all up. I have followed the antics of this young man for a few months now. Amazingly he has almost 60k ‘fans’ on Facebook and an entry in Wikipedia. They list his occupation as – Thief, Burglar. No one has got hurt so far and I presume that those who were thieved should be covered by their insurance. Failing that, I am sure they can be well compensated when the block-buster film comes out.

He will be caught eventually. Hopefully they will not be too harsh on him. There must be some profession that could use his incredible skills…Wall Street for example!

Friday, July 09, 2010

Paul - The Psychic Octopus

I am still well embittered with my £3 loss after backing Germany to thrash Spain 3-1.
Now it looks like Spain will go on to be World Champions. Well, that is according to
Paul, the psychic octopus. This little rascal has cost me a fortune. Not in bets, but in the restaurant…hah hah.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Germany World Champions in Free Televisions

I seem to have recovered some what to be able to write this. Any one watching the game Germany against Argentina yesterday must have thought they were actually watching football for the first time. This was football at its finest. It is not to say that Marodonna’s team were rubbish, but they were simply and magnificently outclassed.

Now Germany’s young multi-cultural team are all of a sudden hot favourites to lift the title for the fourth time and their striker, Klose, may equal or better Ronaldo’s 15 goals.

But…some Germans will not be very happy if their team win. One group are the marketing geniuses from Media Markt, one of Europe’s biggest electronic retailers.
They started a campaign prior to the start of the World Cup, with an interesting offer – buy a TV over 500 Euro and bet how far Germany would go. For example - reaching the semi-final, you received 20% back. For winning, you get the TV for free!
It will be interesting to see if they were clever enough to have planned some kind of insurance policy..tee-hee.

The other group are the ones who are now wishing they had bought the TV and are sick as Argentinean parrots…hah hah.

My prediction for the final - Germany 3 – Holland 1