Here’s to tracksuit pants Saturdays – and beer and cake

2014-05-05 13:19

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It’s not a milestone, perhaps more a regime benchmark: I’ve reached that place in life where I feel perfectly comfortable wearing tracksuit pants on a Saturday night.

German fashion fuddy-duddy Karl Lagerfeld once said: “Sweatpants are a sign of defeat! You lost control of your life, so you bought some sweatpants.” Bitch, please. Whatever.

In a bid to acquire tangible testimony to this bright bolt of self-insight, I decided to buy a new TV. I bought my flat-screen from Cassiem at Tafelberg Furniture as the fog lifted over Green Point one morning. Walking home with the big box held aloft in front of me, I was unable to see, but thrilled.

The cardboard box contained more than just a large, flat. chunk of shiny black plastic and plasma. It symbolised a new, better me. It held the promise of a more mature, tracksuit-clad individual, calmly gazing upon intellectually stimulating viewing pleasure on Saturday nights. I believe the scientific term is “cocooning”, or more broadly “growing up”.

At home, the box was disposed of next to the sofa, where it stayed unopened for a week.

Then, I felt ready.

It felt right. I pried open the box, unwrapping its contents with unchecked abandon. Yessss! Oh, but wait. What? It soon transpired that the flatscreen required assemblage of sorts. Two hours of screwdriver tampering and a bottle of Pierre Jourdan Tranquille later saw the thing dangling drunkenly and my resolve run dry.

See, it’s fun being all “independent like” until your new television set arrives in two pieces with a little side-order of screws. Suddenly all your gay male friends have “hobbies” and other time-consuming preoccupations. The nerve. I considered summoning an ex-boyfriend – but not for long – and even checked the user’s manual.

Eventually, the wobbly TV went onto my car’s backseat and we trekked back to Cassiem, who put it together in four minutes, max. Dear Cassiem.

Back at home, the now fully assembled TV glowed under my admiring gaze until, another week later, I tried to switch it on. My fingers stroked and prodded the set’s every inch to no avail; it returned my expectant stare with blank detachment that bordered on a rebuff.

“Never fight an inanimate object,” American author PJ O’Rourke sagely advises. But hey, things were getting out of control.

I finally managed to lure a friend over with promises of beer and cake. After a brief examination, he discovered the on button and the television sprang to life in a flash of blue. It was beautiful.

Who knows, maybe one day I’ll sort out the reception issue, my new TV doesn’t even channel SABC. Which is disappointing as I was hoping to devour some DA commercials before they are banned.

Anyway, the best part of getting a new TV really was disposing of the old one; a big clunky silver box. Candice who works at my flat once a week started singing the morning I asked her if she would like to take it. Candice is of a sunny disposition as a rule, but that day her mirth rang extra loud. Her gospel songs poured through the open windows as I left for work and I could hear her tell budgie that the Lord provides. Candice has two young sons.

She was the first person to message me “Merry Christmas” last year. Her SMS wished my family and I much love and happiness. I cherished it.

Isn’t it fun how perspective continues to evolve?

Here’s to tracksuit pants Saturdays (and beer and cake).

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