Bouncer brawl victim not that innocent

An apparent innocent bystander was injured in a fight between a bouncer and a patron at a popular Stellenbosch bar last Monday.

According to Kevin Els (23), he was the victim of a bouncer-related skirmish outside Mystic Boer on 8 February. Els, a post-graduate law student at Stellenbosch University (SU), said he was trying to break up a quarrel between a friend and a bouncer when he was attacked by a bouncer who punched him in the face.

According to Jono Fann, a bartender, the bouncer is employed by both Mystic Boer and Bohemia. On last Monday night he was off-duty at Mystic Boer but on shift at Bohemia. He assisted in resolving the skirmish even though he was not working that night. Both bars were reluctant to give the bouncer’s contact details.

When asked if bouncer-related violence was increasing in Stellenbosch a bartender at Bohemia, who also prefers to remain anonymous for fear of dismissal, said that he only knew of one other incident earlier this year. He added that, “they know better than to get involved in fighting drunk students. They could get fired or sued.”

ANN7 cover Sona after interdict against Juju

Africa News Network7 has attended the State of the Nation address (Sona) on Thursday night, days after the television news channel won a court interdict against EFF leader, Julius Malema.

The New Age newspaper and ANN7, a 24-hour news broadcaster, both owned by the Gupta family, were threatened by Malema on 4 February in a press briefing where Malema stated that they “cannot guarantee the safety of those printing The New Age and ANN7.”

Malema received a letter from representatives of the Gupta family in which an explanation and a withdrawal of the statements were requested. He responded by adding that the Gupta family must vacate South Africa.

Later the same day, Malema stated to the Sunday Times that, “We must respect the courts. But the courts can’t stop us from saying that we don’t love the Guptas. We don’t want their curry.”

Since Sona is one of the biggest events on the political calender, most local broadcasters were in attendance and ANN7 was among this group. Their victory in The Gauteng North High Court resulted in a back down by Malema on his earlier threats.

EFF protestors faced stun grenades as well as rubber bullets when they clashed with police forces a few hours before President Zuma was to deliver his speech. At parliament a red EFF wave surged into the National Assembly attracting a lot of justified attention.

On Tuesday 9 February, the Gupta family and all its subsidiary companies were granted an interdict by the Gauteng North High Court against the EFF, as well as Julius Malema.

Editor-in-Chief of The New Age, Moegsien Williams, told the Sunday Times that, “Our employees have the right to go to work and do their jobs without the threat of violence.”

Walter in the 3rd person

The door opens and in walks Walter, flashing a smile he quickly turns to shut the door. We shake hands and exchange greetings, I wave him towards the chair opposite me and we both take our seats. He seems rather nervous and I notice the beads of sweat forming on his forehead, I assure him there is nothing to worry about.

“I like Walter because he’s kind of average, but has nice legs.” – Antoinette, best friend

I notice he’s a relatively tall chap, standing at around 1.85 metres, with wide shoulders. Rather skinny, he comes across as a bit awkward and lanky. Gangly, I’d say. On top one notices he’s balding with a big expanse of forehead topped with a short buzz cut of mousy brown hair. Though what attracts the most attention are the expressive eyes & eyebrows combo going on. He probably plucks, I’m sure. The eye colour is quite difficult to make out, to be honest – greyish green discs that become hidden behind creased eyelids when he unveils his big, toothy smile.

Walter becomes pensive and reserved when our discussion turns towards his family background. His mother studied virology at the University of Witwatersrand and his father was a farmer in Limpopo, they met in a bar. His parents got divorced when he was 8 and his brother 10, their mother got custody. His father moved to Kwazulu-Natal and they visited him during school holidays. Their mother remarried a few years later and he gained a step-brother and -sister. His father remained single and bitter.

Walter started his schooling career at a private Christian school, insisted on by his religious parents. After the divorce, he was transferred to public school and remained there until completion of his matric. He was given the choice of going to a boarding school but declined; this was a good decision according to him as it strengthened his relationship with his mother. Walter adds, rather smugly, that he’s the first of his siblings to attend university and obtain a degree despite being the youngest.

“Walter has this unfailing gift of bringing about smiles everywhere he goes.” – Dominique, university friend

Describing your own character takes some reflection and I allow Walter some time to mull it over. The first characteristic he brings up is that he’s unassuming – interesting and unusual one. Open minded – that’s a lucky one to have. He’s friendly – which was apparent from the moment I first met him. Spontaneous – an uncommon one these days in our time worshipping society. Observant – which ties in with the unassuming one and one which he says has been very useful in his life thus far. As he previously mentioned, his mother was a big influence on his personality in that she gave him his space to develop it but also pushed him in the right direction from time to time.

“Any weaknesses?” He laughs, “Too many to mention.” He says he hates how he gets jealous very easily and quite often, though this has been with him all his life. He also describes himself as judgemental but pairs this with his observance trait in that he likes to prove himself right (or wrong) by doing the necessary research when a person or issue becomes his focal point. He adds that he finds it difficult to forgive and I ask him to elaborate. Apparently family and close friends receive forgiveness relatively quickly – depending on the transgression, though acquaintances and strangers will remain blameworthy until further notice. Lastly he adds irritable and moody to his weaknesses, stating that it takes long for him to reach his tipping point however when he does others might get hurt, emotionally. I leave it at that.

I switch our discussion to something lighter – interests, dislikes, etc. Like any other young adult, Walter says his main interests comprise of cars, technology, and music. Cars because they are such a huge part of our world and because he sees them as man’s greatest invention. Technology because in the 21st century it’s rather impossible to ignore it. And music because, “Let’s face it, what person gifted with functioning ears doesn’t like music?”

“Any other likes or interests?” Besides the abovementioned, he says he likes cats a lot – definitely a cat person. Loves travelling, though he has never been overseas – a Euro-trip is on his bucket list. He also enjoys movies, “but more the artsy, psychological films instead of the mainstream blockbusters.” He mentions fashion as well, since it’s the self-expression the world sees first-hand.

Time to name some dislikes. The first one Walter mentions is children. I laugh, “Why so?” He explains that they’re just plain irritating and that he simply does not have any patience when dealing with them. He plans to never procreate, but since he’s gay he says that won’t be an issue. Noteworthy. On the same level as children (possibly higher), Walter despises celebrity gossip and says it is utterly useless and pathetic because they are just human beings, no better than ourselves. Passionate. “Anything else?” Vegetables – he’s never liked them and never will. I respect that.

I ask Walter about his beliefs – religious or not? He says he’s agnostic, but spiritual at heart. As previously mentioned, he was raised Christian and followed the belief until he started university – got to love that exposure. He mentions how he never felt a connection with the religion, never understood the passion or the love, so it was easy for him to renounce his following. He says he still prays because, “We all want something to believe in.”

We move on to political views where he says he’s democratic, though he definitely does not have an interest in politics. He finds it incredibly tedious and rather repetitive. He believes that no politician can be trusted since we only have to look back at the world’s history to see this.

We’ve reached the end of our interview and I thank Walter for his time. We both get up and shake hands. He walks over to the door, opens it and disappears into the white void.