It’s a walk in the park…

Walk the Talk 09On Sunday, 26th August 2009, I participated in the 702 Discovery Walk the Talk charity event. I was entered representing, and on behalf of, the South African charter of the Monash Alumni Committee.

This is the first time I have actually participated in an event created specifically for a ‘charitable’ cause. It is also the first time since breaking my arm that I have participated in any kind of physical activity. It may also be my last, that is until my arm heals completely of course or until I can learn to stop sustaining additional injuries!

Upon taking part in the Walk the Talk event, I had no idea what charity it was for. For all I knew, it could have been in support of the ‘Foundation for the protection of Swedish Underwear Models’. Unfortunately, that was not the case. A quick Google search revealed that this years Walk the Talk was in support of the ‘Laureus Sport for Good Foundation’. A foundation that I personally, have never heard of before. Apparently, this is what they are about:

Laureus Sport for Good Foundation Laureus’ core concept is simple, brilliant and daunting: to create global awards that recognise the achievements of today’s sports heroes; to bring sportspeople together; united in achievement but divided by sporting code and then, once that community is brought together, put their reach and the support and investment of Laureus’ Founding Patrons and Partners to work by supporting a message that can help social projects around the world who are using sport as a tool for social change. That message, simply, is Laureus Sport for Good (Laureus.com, 2009).

Alright, I think I get it. So, this foundation honours sports ‘heroes’ in the hopes that they will somehow, once attaining some kind of sponsorship deal, bring on social change within ‘disadvantaged’ communities? Kind of like how South African cricketers have spurred on the underground movement of illegal ‘cricket-eering’ in the middle of crime ridden Johannesburg?! 

So, to put things into a mildly cynical perspective: I fried my lily white forehead, while speed walking a five kilometre course in under 50 minutes, butchering my tender loving feet in the process, thus incapacitating myself even further than I already am, in order to help some company foundation honour sports “heroes”, who, according to the mission statement, may not actually end up helping anyone? Seriously?!

Look, don’t get me wrong. Considering I do have dreams of entrepreneurial grandeur that are mildly fuelled by philanthropic desire, I am all for charitable endeavours.

Subsequently, all ranting and cynicism aside, the impressive fact remains that over 50 000 people participated to help make a difference in this years Walk the Talk. No matter how small each persons individual contribution may have been, a difference was made. After all, Gestalt psychologist Kurt Koffka once famously said, “the whole is other [greater] than the sum of the parts”.

So although I do feel that the Walk the Talk event could have raised funds for a different charity, just the notion of so many people compelled toward actively participating for change, in itself, is a testament to the progress of South Africa as a democracy. To have overcome adversity for positive change, even if only for a day, is enough to be considered a great achievement and inspiration to all.

Even after all of my raving, if I had the choice of doing it again, I would do so without hesitation. Next time though, I will just use different shoes and take Baz Luhrmann’s advice;-)

Until the next time “Milieunairs”!

 

Read More

Breaking News: Pokémon Exist!

Hey Milieu Pals,

Have you heard the news? In a recent discovery made by a Japanese journalist,a secret lab was found that has begun genetically engineering animals to resemble the cute critters of the world renowned Pokémon brand. Apparently they wanted to create a Pokémon Zoo to help increase Japan’s dwindling tourist economy. CNN.com had the following to report:

"In a startling discovery, made by the infamous Japanese reporter Ms. Yoshiko Sakurai, the evidence of an advanced experimental gene splicing and cloning facility was found in Saijo within the Chugoku Sanchi district of Hiroshima. The facility was said to be experimenting with animal DNA, through a new genetic process that incorporates the peptide bonding of nucleic acids; and the dismantling of RNA chains through the use of a revolutionary restriction endonuclease called Moniseraze. Through this new process, the Japanese scientists were able to splice genes from different animals to create new biological organisms. Although this is a tremendous breakthrough for modern medicine, it is in direct violation of the Genetics Act of 2001. The organisms created offer striking resemblances to that of the famous Japanese Pocket Monster concept, Pokémon".

I hope you all enjoyed that piece of well written and semi-believable balderdash… LOL ! I’m sure most of you figured out that it was a false news story that I made up. If not… then I hope you have/had a good laugh at it !

So, do any of you Milieu Pals out there like Pokémon? For those who know me quite well, you’ll know that I’m really into collecting Pokémon cards, among other kinds of card collections. I have been a Pokémon fan for… gees… its been so long that I can’t even remember when it started in South Africa . Regardless I really enjoy playing the card game and the suspense of not knowing what cards you will be receiving when you buy a new ‘booster’ pack of cards.

Some of you, who are reading this, are probably thinking the following… "Pokémon, did he say Pokémon… HA HA HA HA"; "That’s for kids man, you’re twenty already"; and so on and so forth. I have only the following to say to those with such a narrow minded perception of individualism: when I started collecting the first series of Pokémon cards I was fortunate enough to obtain 2 Charizard Holographic cards. Both of those cards (in near mint condition) now have a collectors retail value of $160 dollars each, which equates to R1 040 (at time of currency conversion) and that’s only for a single card. My collection is now regarded as an investment, not just a child’s game .

Okay, the point of this entry was to actually discuss something that I found with regards to Pokémon. I can’t remember how I stumbled onto the site; I think it was from clicking on a link in the TeamXbox.com forums. Basically I was redirected to a site, called Worth1000.com, and onto a page for a Photoshop competition revolving around Pokémon. The aim was to create Life Like Pokémon.

I was amazed at what I had seen! Some of the people who submitted entries are really talented. So, I’ve decided to share the photographs with all of you. You may find the photographs of the ‘Real Pokémon’, with their names, in the album entitled: Breaking News: Pokémon Exist! For the website I got the photographs from, please click here.

View Breaking News: Pokemon Exist!

View Full Album

I should actually be studying now… considering the fact that I have two theory intensive exams for next week Wednesday; Psychology: Organisational Behaviour and Integrated Marketing Communications.

Wish me luck!

*Update* – I found this fan made video on Youtube which has even more pictures of ‘real’ Pokémon.

Pokemon Exist
Read More