Thursday, 16 August 2007

The More Things Change...

Not everything is different here in Africa - Americans are still snotty bastards, banks still screw you at every opportunity, and Windows... well, let's not go there...

I was leaving my apartment yesterday (sorry, my flat) and ran into this American woman in the elevator. There was some sort of police siren shenanigans going on all through the morning, and she made some comment to me about it, inciting conversation - nice and friendly, right? Well, when I asked what it was, she started to get all snooty and rude, like, "I can't believe you Americans - never pay attention to anything going on outside the States." According to her, it was probably some demo because of internal strife in the government or something - she was absolutely appalled that I didn't know that the Internal Finance Minister was just fired. She was slightly mollified when I mentioned that I had just arrived here, and didn't yet know all the political situation. Of course, the real answer had nothing to do with any governmental issues - the traffic police were on an illegal strike, and were blocking the HELL out of downtown traffic yesterday morning. Man, the line of traffic (luckily going the opposite direction to my shuttle bus) snaked off as far as I could see. Stupid Americans...

What is really snaking my sneakers right now is the bank - the Standard Bank
of South Africa Limited has decided to put me through who knows how much useless security tests or something before they'll allow me a checking account. I opened the damn account two weeks ago, they told me it would take three days, and they STILL haven't approved it. Even after telling me on Monday that they would expedite the situation so that I could buy my car, incompetence and laziness rule. But frankly, this is nothing new to me in the banking world - I take pride in having always hated banks with every fiber of my being. Nice to have the comforts of home...

And actually, I don't even want to get into my current issues with Windows... Let's just leave it at that, shall we?

By the way, I just want everyone to know that I really appreciate all the comments - makes me feel well connected to the continent back home. And I swear I will put up photos soon - but what am I supposed to do when the yard monkeys swiped my USB cable upon arrival?

5 comments:

Susan said...

ah oh - you are becoming a grumpy old man

Fred Flintstone said...

well - you wrote this before you realized that the bank had finally recognized you. Also - one inconsistency - you said it was an American women in the elevator - but then she was dissing on Americans - is that really true - or what?

sorry about the poor quality of my comment - but some yard monkeys just showed up and I have to fight them off.

jamie said...

ok. you know what? all of this jibber jabber from the peanut gallery is not helping matters. does mr. flintstone live in Africa? does he? then i think he should post some pictures of his yard monkeys too.

all i'm saying is that if you're reading this, and you're in AFRICA, we need to see pictures of your yard monkeys. no more excuses about sirens or stolen usb cables or windows or stupid americans. YARD MONKEYS!

Alex said...

Look, yard monkeys are INVISIBLE! For God's Sake!

Alex said...

Fred - it's true the bank finally recognized me, but that doesn't make them any less evil. Also, yes, the woman was American, but specifically that snotty, superior, holier-than-thou type of American ex-pat, who thinks that she's so much better than all OTHER Americans...