Paris in Motion

Paris in Motion

Paris in Motion is a spectacular stop-motion video of scenic locations throughout Paris set to the hauntingly beautiful ‘Angel’ by Massive Attack.

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#iPhoneographySA Exhibition

#iPhoneographySA Exhibition

South Africa’s very first iPhoneography exhibition is taking place on Thursday 1st September 2011.

For those who do not know, iPhoneography is the process of taking and editing photographs with only the use of an Apple iPhone.

A few weeks ago, I submitted some of my photographs for the exhibition.

I got in.

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The Red Carpet Screens: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1Part one of the epic two part finale, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was great. But it left everyone wanting more. 

The experience is not unlike being taken to a lavish all expenses paid three course meal and, just before dessert is served, you are told that you have to leave. Worst of all, we are forced to wait an additional eight months for our just desserts.

In addition to the unfortunate wait, it goes without saying that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 is not a word for word recreation of JK Rowling’s exquisite books. Instead it is a artistically thoughtful recreation.

However, just like Harry Potter and the Half-Blood prince, this is by no means a bad thing.

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Abracadabra

David Copperfield (Picture courtesy of The Extraordinary Project)If you are like me, you dread being called up in public during a live performance but lament it if you are not one of the chosen.

Last night we went to watch David Copperfield live at the Hollywood theatre in the MGM Grand Hotel. I have seen Copperfield live before, he came to South Africa many years ago, so this was not my first time seeing the legendary magician flex his card tricks. However, because we enjoyed his performance so much the last time, we decided to do it again, and boy did I get my money’s worth.

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Blogging on the Go!

Look I really do love to blog, but I never seem to be able to make the time to do it. Or when the inspiration hits, I’m never near my PC to get the dirty work done. However, that is all about to change!

For quite some time I have considered mobile blogging. Unfortunately, the WordPress mobile website is far from satisfactory. At least, that was the case with my previous Nokia and Windows Mobile devices.

I haven’t mentioned it to you all yet but I have made the move back to the iPhone. Yes I know, I was really negative about my original iPhone 3G back in 2008 (which I still haven’t been paid in full for after I sold it) but that was all pre-iPhone OS 3.0. Now, with my iPhone 3GS and the latest iPhone OS, I feel like I can see colours again!


For years I wished for a WordPress application for my previous phones. With the iPhone, my cries were answered.

The post you are reading now has been compiled on the WordPress iPhone application. It is pretty good. Not perfect, but acceptable enough for me to actually want to use.


For a free application it really is not bad. All I really miss is having the ability to justify my text, check my spelling, insert video, and place and position pictures or photographs into my post. However, those are features I suppose I can do without, for the time being.

Anyway, this was just a short and sweet post about the fact that I am back into the mobile blogging scene. Hopefully this new application will allow for a more organic blogging experience.

Until the next time Milieunairs!

(Update: I bought a new app called BlogPress and have edited this post with it. It cost $3 but it appears to be worth it)

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‘Speak ZA’ – Bloggers for a Free Press

Freedom of Speech - ANCYL I often prefer to steer away from political and religious debate, especially on my blog. However, today I am making an exception.

I have been made aware of a movement that is taking place. My fellow South African bloggers are taking a stand against the ANC Youth League and the current ruling party for attempting to strangle our right to freedom of speech.

A free press can be good or bad, but, most certainly, without freedom a press will never be anything but bad.
                                                                 ~ Albert Camus

As a result, South African bloggers have been called by Sipho Hlongwane to join in the protest against the jackboot tactics the ANC Youth League are employing to try and destroy the freedom of the press.

If you support this movement you are urged to spread the word by using the “#SpeakZA” hash tag via social media and by spreading the following statement on your blog:

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Don’t call him ‘Big Mike’

The Blind Side 01If you have not heard the news yet, then where the heck have you been?

America’s sweetheart, Sandra Bullock, won the Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Leigh Anne Tuohy in "The Blind Side" at the 82nd Annual Academy Awards.

The Blind Side" depicts the story of Michael Oher, a homeless African-American youngster from a broken home, taken in by the Touhys, a well-to-do white family who help him fulfill his potential. At the same time, Oher’s presence in the Touhys’ lives leads them to some insightful self-discoveries of their own. Living in his new environment, the teen faces a completely different set of challenges to overcome. As a football player and student, Oher works hard and, with the help of his coaches and adopted family, becomes an All-American offensive left tackle.    (IMDB, 2010)

The question is… did she deserve it?

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Through the Looking Glass

Screening - AFDA Invite & Alice in Wonderland Have you ever wondered what that Vision Mission pop-up was about, every time you purchased a ticket at a Sterkinekor cinema or online via the Sterkinekor website? Granted I have always been aware that it was for some charitable cause or another, but I never truly  understood what it was for. As a result, I can shamefully admit that I would always skip past the ‘donate’ option.

Well, on Wednesday night I was privileged enough to obtain an invitation, courtesy of Sterkinekor and Vision Mission, to celebrate AFDA’s Vision Mission commercial award winners as well as be privy to a ‘secret’ screening of a highly anticipated blockbuster film.

It was at this mystery laden awards event that I came to understand what the Vision Mission was all about and why, from now on, I will choose to donate that minimum R2.50 extra whenever I buy a Sterkinekor movie ticket.

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Bite My Apple

New Moon - VIP Party Invite 01 On Friday the 5th of February 2010, I was privileged enough to obtain an illusive invitation to “The Twilight Saga: New Moon Exclusive VIP party”, courtesy of Sterkinekor and MiMoney.

Over the last several months, Sterkinekor Entertainment in association with MiMoney, have been teasing Twihard’s (fans of the Twilight saga movies and books) with the possibility of attending “the most exclusive party in 100 years”. Entering was easy. Simply watch New Moon and text your ticket number to a specified number. Each entry increased your chances of obtaining an invitation to the event.

Furthermore, upon entering the competition, fans would receive a text message notification with a specific code. This code could then be redeemed at the viral marketing inspired ‘Bite My Apple’ website; in order to unlock exclusive content from the movie in the form of wallpapers and screensavers.

After being psyched about the event for months, I was obviously excited to be able to attend. The anticipation factor was intoxicatingly high!

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It’s Britney, Bitch!

Britney Spears - Circus Tour Memorabilia Even before we arrived in Australia, I knew that Britney Spears would be bringing her ‘The Circus’ tour to the land down under. However, I never thought I would actually get a chance to attend the concert.

For starters, Britney’s last show in Melbourne was on the 13th November and we were only set to arrive in Melbourne on the 16th. Furthermore, tickets to the event were not exactly cheap, ranging from stadium seating at $250 (R1700) per person to the insanely priced ‘Love Seats’ for $1500 (for two tickets –> R10 000 ). Consequently, chances of me attending Miss Spears’ performance were pretty thin.

Or so I thought.

Through a fortunate turn of events, Britney had actually extended her tour due to popular demand, adding three extra shows to her repertoire. One of those shows, as luck would have it, was in Melbourne.

I would be lying if I said that I was not excited at the possibility of watching the princess of pop perform in the flesh. After all, like the Queen (Madonna), it is not as if Britney would be making her way to South Africa. So it was pretty much a ‘This Is It’ kind of scenario.

Amazingly, my parents ascertained that this would be a fantastic experience and wholeheartedly agreed to buy tickets to the show. Not only that, but they even allowed me to opt for the ‘stool’ seating, which is directly behind the ‘Love Seats’ and, as it turned out, was literally a meter and a half away from the stage.

Britney Spears - Circus Tour Tickets

Without a doubt, ‘The Circus presenting Britney Spears’ was the best concert I have ever been to. I am unable to truly relay how awesome the experience was. The circus elements to the show, alone, were worth the price of admission; from acrobats, to martial artists, clowns, mimes, weapon artists, magicians… you name it and it was there (animals excluded). In addition to the circus element, I have never before been privy to a live performance with as much pyrotechnics and stage theatrics as this. The ‘wow’ factor was simply phenomenal. I do think that the experience was made just that much better courtesy of our seats which, as I have mentioned before, allowed us to be almost within two arm lengths of the pop princess.

Britney Spears - Circus Tour Performance

Contrary to the controversy surrounding Britney’s performance in the land down under, I can honestly admit that I would watch it again. So what if she lip-synchs? Anyone who has heard of Britney Spears knows that she is infamous for lip-synching (along with many other famous artists). So this was really of no surprise. In my opinion, if you want to hear an artist sing, buy the album. If you want to watch them perform, go to a concert. Whether they sing ‘live’ or not is irrelevant. With that said, it is worth noting that Britney did sing at least one song live, the ballad ‘everytime’. To all the naysayers who think Britney Spears cannot sing, let me tell you, this chick has a good voice. As a matter of fact, she actually sounds better live than through her recordings. So it is a shame that she does not perform ‘live’ more often.

Britney Spears - Circus Tour (Performing Everytime, Live)

Considering how close I was able to get, I was quite surprised to realise how small Britney Spears actually is. She is tiny. Then again, I am 6’4”, so a lot of people are smaller than I am. After two kids, she does look very good. While I’m on the topic of her body, it is worth noting that she is rather fit. She has good muscle tone; most definitely what could be described as a dancers body. So she is not petit and does appear to have some extra junk in her trunk. I think the biggest surprise to me was how small her boobs were. For those who know we, I’m a boob man. Britney has a good handful, but not what one would expect after all of the boob job debates. Have a look for yourself, in the album below.

I am truly so thankful that I could have this opportunity and would like to send a huge ‘I love you’ and ‘thank you’ to my loving parents who made it all possible.

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

 

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Becoming a Melbournian, one step at a time.

Cow Up a Tree - Docklands, Melbourne It certainly has been ages since I last wrote a personal post. To be frank, I always find writing about myself to be the most difficult. Not because I do not have anything to write, as I often do, but because my most recent life events have been somewhat too personal in nature to share with the world. Now I know that those are the kind of stories that make blog’s thrive. However, I had to take a step back in order to protect those closest to me by abstaining from aggravating any and all gossipmongers. More out of respect than courtesy, mind you. One day I may reveal all that has happened, but only time will tell. For now though, I wish to focus on the future and what has been happening over the last week.

As I have mentioned before, I have been neglecting the personal posts with which my blog was originally built on. Believe me, I actually feel bad about it. I love sharing my experiences, whether good or bad, and listening to people’s opinions. Or lack thereof. Consequently I will attempt to revive the personal aspect of Hans’ Milieu.

Okay, a quick recap of the last week:

Hans Haupt - Melbourne Nov 2009 I am actually in Melbourne, Australia, at the moment. I arrived last week Monday. The flight was pleasant with a total travel time of around 16 hours (including transit and flight times from Sydney to Melbourne). Actually, I wonder why there are no direct flight to Melbourne? Considering that the flight has to fly over Melbourne anyway. Very odd. However I have heard that Virgin will be flying direct to Melbourne from next year. Thank heavens for that as it will make travelling just that much better.

For those who are unfamiliar with my families ‘Australian’ history, all you you really need to know is that we have been planning on immigrating for the last 8 years. Well not really ‘planning’ per se, more like procrastinating. This year, however, I finally had enough of all of the indecision and took matters into my own hands. Thus I kindly told my parents, in the nicest way possible, that, if we could afford it, I would like to continue my Masters and Doctoral studies at Monash University in Australia. A logical move, considering that I am a Monash University Alumnus and already paying exorbitant international student rates, since that was the only way for me to be able to do my Masters at Monash University in South Africa. As a result I am currently enrolled as a Master’s student at Monash University’s Clayton campus in Melbourne, via external candidature (which allows me to stay in South Africa). Unfortunately, it is as complicated as it sounds.

Hans and Terrence - Melbourne Nov 2009 Considering my current academic situation and our continued, but never fruitful, desire to begin a new life in Australia, it makes perfect sense for me to spearhead our Australian move. However, it is proving to be quite a lot harder than we originally anticipated. More so in terms of finding a place to live than actually obtaining entrance to the country (for me anyway). Subsequently, the last week has been focussed on finding me a place to stay while I am in Australia pursuing my studies. Needless to say, ‘house hunting’ is incredibly tedious and rather tiring especially since options are rather limited, courtesy of the strengthening Australian dollar and constantly weak South African Rand. Regardless, I do have hope that we will find a moderate place in a respectable location.

In other news I spent some time with my cousin Terrence, who is currently in Australia via Monash University’s undergraduate study abroad program, I managed to watch New Moon (review coming soon), got tickets to Britney Spears’ Circus Tour for this coming Friday *school girl scream* and have generally been having a wonderful time in Melbourne; further experiences that I will continue to write about when I have the time.

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

 

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“Who is Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf”?

The Twilight Saga - New Moon Before we left South Africa for our Australian holiday, I was aware that I would be missing the midnight screening of the latest cinematic instalment of the Twilight Saga: New Moon. An event that I was not only looking forward to but one that  I had made partial plans for with friends and family. I will not beat around the bush, I was bummed about it. Not only would I miss the midnight premiere but I would also be unable to share the experience with those closest to me. However, that all changed once I stepped foot in the land down under.

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Heroes and Villains: Escaping Reality

Super Hero - Superman WW2 Have you ever wondered what life would have been like if Superheroes and Villains actually existed? For the most part, all we can do is ponder the infinite possibilities, often courtesy of video games, books, television, movies and, most importantly, our very own imagination.

Agan Harahap, a photographer and illustrator from Jakarta, Indonesia, has taken the concept of Superheroes and brought them into a pseudo-reality. By incorporating infamous characters into iconic World War II photographs, Harahap  has managed to blur the lines between fiction and truth. In so doing, he has managed to merge the fantastically impossible with our past physical existence, in order to create  a Superhero adorned alternate reality.

Harahap’s latest collection, aptly titled ‘Super Hero’, consists of memorable political and wartime scenes from the mid-20th century, but with one difference: the inclusion of notable Superheroes (or Villains?). This extraordinary combination is a true juxtaposition in effect.

With respect to the current global economic crisis, Harahap’s work could not come at a more fortuitous time. Coincidentally, the advent of the Superhero, according to Douglas Hyde (2009), was largely spurred on by the Great Depression and the start of World War II. As a result, comic books and superheroes were said to offer an ‘escapist form of entertainment’, where people could “go into a fantasy world where all the ills of the world were righted by these larger-than-life heroes” (Erin Clancy, 2009).

Subsequently, audiences at large are once again returning to the warm embrace of costumed Superheroes, with movies based on comic books generally becoming box office leaders. This trend, the resurgence of the popularity of Superheroes, may be a reflection of the current global economic crises. Clancy would agree citing “the comic book superhero came out of a context in which the political, social and economic realties were a little tough and we can certainly relate to those realities now in our own day” (2009).

Superheroes are back people and they are stronger than ever!

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

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Monash South Africa Cultural Day

Monash University South Africa - C Block Yesterday Monash held a cultural day. A day in which students from various nations and nationalities may come together as one and explore the contrasts between differing cultures.

One of the major attractions of the day, was the pitting of the different faculties and administrative departments against one another in a cook off. A ‘potjie kos’ cook off, to be precise. Being an Alumni and a part of the South African charter of the Monash University Alumni Volunteer Committee, I was naturally a part of their team.

Unfortunately we did not win the ‘cook-off’. Even so our ‘smoked beef with a touch of apricot’ potjie was a ‘raving success’. Mainly because you had to be stark raving mad to eat it. Mind you, I did have two servings of the stuff.

Smoked beef, with a touch of apricot, potjie Sadly we managed to burn our potjie and drop Blitz into it (fire lighters), hence the ‘smoked’ reference. We did attempt to salvage the meal with a helpful dollop, or three, of apricot jam. Although the jam did help, ever so slightly, there was no real way to lessen the burnt taste before the judges came around.

Thankfully, the judges were very graceful and were kind enough to not pull their faces when they tasted our dish as well as to label it as ‘nice’ – as in, it smells good, looks good but tastes off (synonymous with the descriptor ‘cute’).

All in all it was a fantastic day. One filled with side splitting laughter and the exuberant showing of latent talents.  It was also especially good to mingle with the Alumni crew and to see how our University has grown over the last several years.

For pictures from the event, check out the following album:

By the way if you are wondering about the traffic ‘green’ leggings, our theme was ‘Spring Yellow’. Thus each member of the Alumni Volunteer Committee had to spruce up their Alumni shirts with a yellow item of some kind. Hence my yellow shorts. Additionally, the girls continue to maintain that their ‘green’ leggings, are in fact ‘yellow’. Needless to say, the Fashion Police had a field day!

Ultimately, I truly am proud to be a Monash Alumni and look forward to participating in many more University inspired events. Furthermore, I am heartily looking forward to continuing my Masters studies in Australia from early next year. It is going to be so much fun!

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

 

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‘Au Revoir’… Matey

This morning I went to the airport to bid farewell to my cousin and his family who have immigrated to Sydney, Australia.

This is not the first time that they have immigrated. As a matter of fact it is the second time. The first time they went to Dubai, where they lived for about three to four years before returning to South Africa. However, they always knew that Dubai would only be a temporary change. Going to Australia on the other hand, is an entirely different scenario. For this time they have immigrated in an attempt to begin a completely new life.

As a result, a farewell was held for my cousin and his family on Sunday 13th September 2009 at Gilooly’s Farm. You may have a look some of the pictures in the album below.

Saying goodbye is never easy. This time around though, I knew that I would be seeing them soon, thus delaying any emotional responses to their subsequent departure. Nevertheless, it still was not easy to have said ‘goodbye’. So this is for you, my cousins.

Rihanna – Final Goodbye

I know that my time is coming. For those who do not know, my family and myself have been thinking about immigrating for many years now. Unfortunately, we have not taken any ‘permanent’ measures to ensure a way of immigration. However, my plan has always been to complete one year of my Masters studies in South Africa and the final year in Australia. As a result, and should everything go as planned, I will leave for Australia by March of 2010 (next year). I will most likely post about this, in more detail, at a later stage. So… do not be a stranger!

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

 

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