THE VELOCIPASTOR (2018) *SPOILER ALERT* **RAGING DUMPSTER FIRE ALERT**

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Director: Brendan Steere

Writer: Brendan Steere

Stars: Alyssa KempinskiGreg CohanAurelio Voltaire

Run Time: 1 prehistoric hour and 15 minutes

So wow.  I mean I was sold just by the name. I didn’t watch the trailer before and actually watched the movie twice. The first time I was too drunk and start watching the movie a bit late. In the end, we both fell asleep. However, my wife and I persevered and we managed to complete the herculean task of finishing this movie.

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This was a scene from the movie after the Pastor transformed….. 

This movie reminds me of why I actually like B Movies. The plot made very little sense, the acting was questionable at best, apart from the priest’s girlfriend (yes the human who turns into a dinosaur had a girlfriend), there seemed to be no greenscreen used throughout the movie. But this Brendan Steere dude was not to be stopped. This movie was still stitched with an interesting set of visuals that sometimes seemed like they were meant for someone on acid, and a soundtrack that was dormant for half the movie, and only came alive towards the end of the flick to some enjoyment. 

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The Pastor and his girlfriend… in China…

There were times when the movie tried too hard to be funny and failed dismally. When the movie continued with the flow of not trying to be funny, it turned out to be a reasonably well-written movie. I do think that Brendan Steele had the budget of a small piggy bank stolen from an 8-year-old. Some of the things I saw convinced me that the movie was actually shot and produced at least 5 years ago. I was shocked to realize that this was a 2018 movie.

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Poor ninja lost his arm… 

This movie is for the seasoned B Movie watcher. It came very close to being a waste of time, however, it ended up being mildly entertaining. Overall I give this movie 4.5 dino eggs outta 10. The movie was saved by the wonderful performance of the pastor’s girlfriend (as I mentioned earlier) and the rather entertaining score in the second part of the movie. A movie to watch after having had some strong liquor and if you have an hour to kill on a little bit of mindless fun.

 

Resting Bitch Face: Default Position of Zimbabweans

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They blacked it out but after the word resting the word “bitch” is there. It’s just the same colour font as the background

I have decided to use this particular phrase as the jump of position for this weeks rant.

Most Zimbabweans general setting is the resting bitch face. I say this, not because Zimbabweans don’t smile, but because most of us always see two seconds away from telling someone to fuck off. Don’t get me wrong, when someone deserves to be advised to perform a sexual act on themselves, the feeling of liberation is second to none especially when they deserve it.

Due to the extremely polarised nature of the politics in this country (partly thanks to Western media assisting in ensuring that there was an us against them mentality, partly due to Zimbabweans taking an us against them and each other, lack of shared vision and selfish nature among other things), it is next to impossible to critically analyze things. Furthermore, the people who are supposed to be watching the people who are supposed to be doing their level best to ensure the people of Zimbabwe are happy, are only commenting here and there without getting any more involved. The validity of the excuse or the reason is neither here nor there. The “watchdogs” or opposition seem as though they are merely there to make up numbers and to complain as though they are not in a position to effect change.

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Instead, I have found (in my extensive social media research. My opinions are my own) that the “opposition” will ALWAYS find something wrong with the guys in charge. It is easier to engage in mudslinging on Twitter whilst brandishing a resting bitch face, than to actually ask what the plan is.

So earlier today a member of the “opposition” posted a picture on Twitter of a statutory instrument with regards income tax exemption.

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What I mostly find fascinating about this incident, is that there is this “we” that is included. I am not sure how this member of the opposition decided that everyone feels the same way.

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This is the “I can tell from the way you are breathing… the answer is no” kinda look

No further information about this has been shared. Huawei is the leading 3G, 4G and LTE infrastructure developer. Most countries around the world use their infrastructure for their mobile networks. We do not know if this is to entice them to come and start getting more of our networks (there are only three by the way) onto 4G and LTE. This could also reduce the overall cost of the internet on mobile devices. I mean for me, I am more interested in what the potential pay off could be. What are Huawei bringing to the table?

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Deal with it

I get that people are mad with the “leaders” who are in power at the moment. That doesn’t mean that 100% of the things that they do are shitty. I hope that in the coming days, someone who has more information on this move by the Finance and Economic Development Minister is explained so that a critical assessment of the statutory instrument can be made.

If we spend our days waiting for the government of the day to fail at everything they do, then Zimbabwe will fail. Sometimes positive criticism does a whole world of difference that negative criticism. Imagine you spend your whole time in public office being told “we are disgusted by…” without providing any context. One day, there will be a crop of “opposition” leaders who will handle themselves better than the gangs we have no. For now, there is no opposition in this country. There are people on the other side of the political divide who are more concerned about their survival as opposition and their ascending into positions of power, than the real work that is required to make this country a place where we can talk positively about the future generations can have.

Let’s lose that resting bitch face we have for everything that happens in this country. If you do something often enough, you will believe it to be normal. Some of this behaviour isn’t normal. At the end of the day, we all do it, even me. Let’s turn that resting bitch face upside down and show some teeth instead.

Stop Faulting Other People For Crossing Boundaries You Never Set In The First Place — Thought Catalog

Your entire life is constructed of boundaries. Your coworkers know how to treat you because of your office culture, because of your company’s policies, because of common sense. Your family knows how to treat you because of what you have shown them you’ll tolerate. The people around you know how to treat you based on…

via Stop Faulting Other People For Crossing Boundaries You Never Set In The First Place — Thought Catalog

The Shared Vision Challenge: The Zimbabwean Context

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I have been having an internal debate for some time. For the longest time, I have wondered what could be the one thing that is holding this small nation of mine back from rubbing shoulders with giants. For a tiny Africa country, we have had the same kinds of problems that other countries around the world have had. In fact, I say this frequently, much to the dislike of people I know: the problems that Zimbabwe are NOT unique to us. I know a few people who try and make it seem as though Zimbabwe is a special needs case. In some instances, it is. As far as I am concerned, we are at least 3 decades behind the rest of the world in terms of our thinking, our way of life and our understanding of what is really going on.

For too long, people have preferred the default position of “head in the sand.” It is easier to feign ignorance and say “I don’t know what’s going on, and as a result don’t care”. That’s fine. No one needs to be forced to give a hoot what’s going on.

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However, I digress. There are a plethora of reasons that can be given for this little nation of mine struggling to get over the first three hurdles of this dash. I could spend a whole lot of time talking about government spending, corruption, and weak institutions. Fortunately for you, I am neither a lawyer, an economist or a policymaker. I am just a citizen of this country.

The main issue I would like to talk about is the aspect of a shared vision. What is a shared vision? According to the all-knowing Google, “A shared vision is what you and the other members want to create or accomplish as part of the organization. A shared vision is not imposed by one or a few people as an organizational mandate”. Using the Zimbabwean context and my own interpretation, a shared vision is when all interested parties are actively involved in the steering of this nation. Now I can already hear some of the people who are in the terraces shouting that this can never be done. “Humans are a problem. How would they ever agree?”. To some degree, I concur. Having a shared vision for a country like Zimbabwe is a waste of time and energy. Maybe it wouldn’t work.

Vector concept of creative teamwork

So I have these friends of mine who are living in the UK. They are as thick as thieves, however, they are not thieves apart from one of them who is an accountant (but that is a story for another day!). Every year, for as long as I remember, they get together and go on holiday as lads. They plan it, they fund it, then enjoy it. Job Done. That’s is a shared vision. An aim to achieve a certain goal as a collective. It requires negotiation, buy-in from other members, it needs to be financed, it requires transparency and also requires tough decisions and proper leadership. It requires for the collective to be sold a dream and to buy into that dream, to then follow that dream all the way from inception to project closeout. It requires contingencies to be put in place should any of the initial plans fall through.

Unfortunately in, and especially in Zimbabwe, the idea of a shared vision is a dream that will take some years to become a reality. The politics is so toxic that the opposition cannot and will not support the ruling party when they do something. Not everything they do should be supported. In fact, a lot of their actions have resulted in the situation we are experiencing. The opposition is where a lot of discontented Zimbabweans take their lead.

Zimbabweans have too much time fighting with each other. It has been an “us against them” situation since I can remember. I hazard to say since I was born. White vs black, Ruling Part vs Opposition Party, private school educated vs public school educated, rule of law vs lawlessness, young vs the old, those who fought in the liberation war vs those who didn’t. It shouldn’t matter whether you are white or black, Zanu PF or MDC, whether you have “war credentials” or not. Right now the time is not about who is more worthy than others. If you need a blood transfusion and you are in the hospital, the doctors won’t ask you which political party you support, or if you mind if the blood donated is from a black or white person, they will simply save your life.

A shared vision should be like receiving a blood transfusion. How it is administered and by whom are other issues that can be addressed in their own time.

The biggest danger that I see from this lack of shared vision is the development of the nation. We will continue to accept mediocrity and act as if it is ok. We do not have to agree with each other politically or ideologically. However, if we are talking about how we want the best for ALL Zimbabweans, we must be willing to come together, as that good is bigger than your religion, race, sex or ethnicity. We need to stop the vitriol that is can be seen on social media. Zimbabwean’s are angry, but they are angry with the wrong people, and most of the time at the wrong times. Less anger this decade. Please.

 

Harare’s Public Transport: A Different Perspective

I have been thinking about some of the things we get told by our government. One of their favorite soundbites is about how Zimbabwe will be a middle-income economy by 2030 (previously 2025, then they realized that it involved work that they weren’t willing to put in now so they added another 5years) and that Harare would be a world-class city by 2025.

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In my opinion, it will take a great deal of graft to achieve those two targets. There are a hell of a lot of issues that need to be addressed for that to occur. Majority of the infrastructure in Harare is extremely outdated, and long overdue upgrade, there are issues to do with financing the plan of a world-class city (I refer to the efficiency of revenue collection by the City of Harare), we have laws from pre-independence that are still being used today that will affect such progress, there are also cultural issues that need to be addressed (there is no real culture of cleanliness and pride about the city from the City Fathers down to the citizens of Harare).

Today I would like to share some thoughts that I have been having regarding the public transport system that we have in this country. For those old enough to remember, the government used to provide mass public transport in the form of buses that did local trips and also out of town trips, along with a train system. As the years went on, due to various reasons which I do not feel like going into, the mass public transport system that was provided by the government fell apart. Opportunists saw this, and decided to be rather entrepreneurial and started to provide alternative transport for people in the form of commuter omnibuses.

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As much as we hate the way they drive, the rude manner of the drivers, and the garish stickers that can be found on most kombis, they provide a vital function to the city. They get people moving to work, to the bank, to the hospital. Before we complain about kombis, it is important that we remember that simple fact. Without kombis, production would be even further depressed.

Not everyone can afford to drive and to be honest, driving isn’t for everyone. The challenge that we have in Harare and Zimbabwe, is that there are no other viable solutions for people to get around. One of the biggest problems that the government now has, is how to introduce its own mass public transport system. There are no dedicated bus stops where buses can stop, they do not have the capacity to finance a transport system and the condition of the roads is FAR from desirable. In fact, they have buses that they purport to be part of the now-defunct ZUPCO, but they are owned by private players and have stickers indicating that they are part of ZUPCO.

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Apart from that, the government’s resistance to implementing a public transport system allows room for me to speculate and conspiracy theorize that they have some vested interest in the kombis.

Ultimately these kombi drivers need to be commended. They are people on a mission. They wake up early, drive around blaring the hooters looking for people to carry and continue late into the day. However, I feel like there is a lot more than the government should be doing to enhance the service.

The service is very informal. There is no control over who drives the kombis, there are no specific checks done on kombis to ensure they are fit for purpose, no specific regulations with regards to insurance, there is no structure to the cost of trips (the kombis charge whatever they think is suitable depending on the situation i.e. if it’s raining, if its peak time), and there is no cohesion between the different areas that the kombis service. In most cases, if you want to go to a neighborhood near where you live, you have to travel all the way to town or halfway there to get to where you want to go. Until the city gets truly involved with the coordination, monitoring, and evaluation of kombis, there will always be a challenge with the provision of public transport in Harare.

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It is time for them to seriously consider subcontracting these services and then monitoring them to ensure that the people get the best value for money, and are able to ensure that they get to work.

The Meg (2018) *SPOILER ALERT*

A unprofessional layman critical analysis

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Director: Jon Turteltaub

Stars: Jason StathamBingbing LiRainn Wilson

Runtime: A painless 1hr 53min

Well, here we go with another B Movie with A list stars. This movie happened to be on TV on Sunday and I decided to watch it. I had watched the trailer some time ago, and when I saw that it was to do with a shark, I immediately realized that this was my kind of movie.

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So the basic premise is that there is some unexplored part of the sea that some scientists have been exploring. Its really deep and dark so who knows what’s in there. After they go in there looking for things they shouldn’t be looking for, they undoubtedly unleash a prehistoric shark.

In the course of releasing this beast, they call on Jason, who is a bit of a drunk (though he doesn’t do a good job of being a drunk. I have seen better performances at my local pub and the guys who drink there do not get paid to act like a drunk and the only experience they have is from spending time in the pub… being a drunk). Jason comes along and goes from drunkard to hero in two scenes flat.

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As with B Movies that involve large aquatic predators (Sharktopus, Sharknado, Anaconda), there are running montages, swimming montages, beach montages, and obviously boat montages. Also as with ALL B Movies, there is a crazy scientist, who doesn’t start off acting like he is crazy until he starts talking about tracking the animal and weaponizing it somehow. I mean who in his right mind would think, “Ooooo prehistoric giant shark. Let’s try to control it!”. Well, crazy scientists in most movies think that!

The movie becomes a little boring somewhere in the middle. I spaced out and started playing candy crush because the scientists and the muscle were having arguments about HOW TO CAPTURE this animal vs how to kill it. In the end, the crazy scientist becomes a shark snack, Jason murders the shark after impaling it in the eye with a sharp object and somehow getting to its brain, and The Meg is eaten by smaller sharks who want to ensure that there isn’t a bigger predator than them.

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I gave this movie a 2.5/5. The A List actors helped make the movie palatable. The dialogue felt strained at most, and if the movie was to get an award, I would suggest that it goes to the little girl who spent the movies trying to hook her mother up with Jason.

EnsignTongs

 

New Year, New Decade

Wow, it has been a long time since I came and shared some random thoughts on my blog. Today, I am somewhat motivated to start doing a little bit more.

I hope everyone had a fantastic Christmas and a wonderful new year. This is a new decade that has begun and there is a lot that I hope for in my personal capacity and also for this small nation of mine.

This year, I have decided to definitely make more of an effort to write a lot more. Writing musings has never been something that I did a lot of, but this year it will be good for me to fill your brains with the random ideas and thoughts that cross my silly mind.

Anyhooo for those of you who are there and who still take the time to read my stuff, thank you for the silent support.

You will be hearing from me soon….

Tongs