03/12/2014

Bad Steers, Bad.

Oh my word. Steers is so awful. Steers didn't want to help the firemen. Steers are the devil. We should go and boycott Steers because they suck so much. I hate Steers. #BRANDFAIL



Please.

It's time we reevaluated this whole #BrandFail business. Society has happily started swapping out brands and their content managers willy nilly.

Yes, that content manager has been hired to be the "voice" of the brand and it's their job to do it properly. But when it's convenient to cause an uproar, when it adds excitement to the days of those bored on Twitter, and when it gives us an "evil" to go and attack - we seem to forget that there is a person sitting there. A person who can make a mistake. Does Steers really hate the firemen? No. Obviously not, don't be flipping ridiculous. Does that content manager hate the firemen? Again, I'd say not. Did that content manager make a dumb mistake, oh yeah baby.

But let's be honest, their biggest mistake was the fact that they didn't spot it in time and delete it. Because how many of us have done that before?

I run plenty social media accounts and I like to think I am pretty good at my job. That said, the amount of times that the wrong account has tweeted about being hungover is astounding. I just catch it before anyone sees it. (Sorry bossmen, don't hate me).

Social Media is a dark and scary place. It's a place where real and imagined becomes blurred. It's a place where people hide behind their phones and computers demanding attention (and freebies, and money, and anything they can get their hands on) from whoever will give it. And it's the content managers who bear the brunt of it.

STOP MIXING UP BRANDS WITH THEIR POOR CONTENT MANAGERS. AND VICE VERSA, STOP MIXING UP CONTENT MANAGERS WITH THEIR POOR BRANDS.

Content managers don't deserve to be shouted at. They aren't the ones who effed up your order, messed up your phone signal, put a frog in your salad, or caused load-shedding.

And brands aren't the ones who tweet dumb things.

Get off that high Social Media horse, and let's be real.






29/08/2014

One year later.


It’s been a year. 
365 days. 
1/25 of my life.
A year without having a dad.

At the time, I thought I'd never smile again. That I'd never be able to go a day without crying. I felt like my life had come to a standstill. I didn't know what was next or how to carry on living. It sounds like a cliche, but my world had turned grey. 

Jewish mourning laws are all about structure. For the first 7 days after the death of an immediate family member, a period of time called Shiva, there are many, strict rules to abide by. Among others: you sit on low chairs, don't watch TV or any other entertainment. You don't shave, you don't have long leisurely showers or baths. You don't even leave the house. You cover all art, all mirrors - this time is not about the superficial. You're forced to think about what has happened, no distractions, no denial.

Then comes the next few weeks taking you up to 30 days after the death. It's a time called Shloshim. Here the rules get a bit less strict. You can leave the house and go about your daily business. But you still can't listen to music, go to shows, movies, concerts. No dancing, no singing. No listening to the radio. You don't cut your hair or buy new clothing. Among a whole lot more. The end of Shloshim is the end of the mourning process for all family members, except for those who have lost a parent. For us, this carries on for a full year.

So, that has been my life and it has helped me more than I thought possible. I learnt about all of this at school, and didn't really see how it could benefit anyone. But I was so wrong.

All this structure gave me a way to move forward. It gave me direction. Showed me, pretty much by force, how to live. There was never a worry that I was doing the wrong thing, disrespecting his honour, making a wrong decision - they were all made for me. I was never given a moment to forget or deny what had happened. At every point, I was forced to remember, and ultimately, forced to accept and cope with losing my dad.

Death intimidates people. I've seen it first hand. You can feel when one of those awkward moments are going to happen, like when you meet someone new and they ask where your parents live or what they do. I try keep it light, but people who haven't been through this sort of loss, generally don't know how to act. Understandably. 

I've also had people be quite rude. They ask why I can't do something, and when I explain, they say that it sounds stupid to them. I've even had someone tell me that they don't understand why people find loss so hard to deal with, that it's just "the way the world is". 

The thing is that death will always be hard to deal with. But for me, accepting it and dealing with it, not forcing it out of mind - let me come to terms with it. 

There has been one very poignant change in myself that I noticed over the last year. After it happened, I used to say that he had "passed away". I couldn't bring myself to say it. But now, a year later, I hate those words. In a way, it feels like it's disrespectful. Like it isn't real. It's trying to ignore the truth. He died. It sucks. It's horrible. It breaks my heart. But it's what happened. And now that's what I say. I don't tip toe around it, because it makes it sound like it was easy. It lessens that pain, which was so very real. It's a harsh word, but it's just the reality.

This year is a leap year in the Jewish calendar, which means there is an extra month. So, my year of mourning only ends on 19 September. I have a few more weeks of this structure and then everything goes back to "normal" - I'm more scared of that than I thought I would be. Although, I am looking forward to buying some new clothes and cutting my hair. I'm going to miss the rules and the structure. And my constant reminder - through limitation - of my darling dad.

It's been one year. 
365 days. 
This lovely, smiling man died on 30 August 2013. 
I was 24 years old - far earlier than I expected to be without a dad.

I get through my days. Life has carried on. And while the heartache and sadness never goes away, I've learnt how to live around it.









25/07/2014

I am not an attractive girl - a response to Jason Motta.

Ladies and gentlemen, it's official: I am not an attractive girl. How do I know this? Because Jason Motta has listed 17 things that a girl needs to do to be attractive on Thought Catalog, and I barely tick any of the boxes.
This is an attractive girl, not a woman dammit! Don't you use that word!

10/07/2014

Breathe Salon and Spa Review & Competition

Choice kills me. I'm that girl sitting in the restaurant, intently reading the menu while the rest of the table burn holes of hatred through it, as they wait for me to choose. And the same goes the spa:

"What treatment are you having today?"
"Uhhh"
"Hello?
"Uhhhhhh"
"Hello? Anyone there?"
"What even are you asking me questions for?!"

This said, spa treatments are often an easier choice, because I go with the one I can afford.

Until now. Until I was invited to The Breathe Spa & Hair Salon.

Sit down or you may hurt yourself. No, sit. Are you sitting? Good. Now read this:



400 buckaroodles for 3 treatments over 90 minutes? You've got to be kidding me.

Located in the heart of the Winelands, on the Pearl Valley Golf Estate, Breathe offer a full range of treatments from manicures and pedicures, to hair styling, hair and eyelash extensions, body treatments, and more.

After a scenic 45 minute drive (this is a lie, I am terrified of driving to places I don't know, but for most it would be considered scenic) I was ready to get some spa in my life. Clothes off, robe on, tour time then... relax.


I wasn't actually able to try the full Winter Special: I'd just had gelish done on my fingers and toes and had an event a few hours later so I was worried that I would have a facial break out. Bad timing Kayli. So after an amazingly relaxing back massage, I had reflexology for the first time. And guess what, apparently my body is very healthy and calm. How do I know this? Because the therapist kept telling me that a certain prod would hurt and nothing did. Yes, I am the epitome of health, pass me another burger and chips, dammit.

Whether you go for 30 minutes, for the day, or you even book the venue for corporate events or pamper parties (they can even do kiddies birthday parties) you are in for a good time. Not only is Breathe beautiful, it's intimate, unpretentious and I was comfortable from the minute I arrived - literally and figuratively.


COMPETITION

How would you like to win a Winter Package from Breathe? The real version, not the useless Kayli version. All you gotta do is:

1. Tweet this: "Hi @KayliVee I want to win a relaxing Core Warming Winter Package from @BreatheSpa_HS http://bit.ly/1rauhJm"

2. Like Breath Spa and Hair Salon on Facebook

3. If you don't have Twitter (gasp) or for an extra entry, you can comment on this page saying which three treatments you'd choose.

And, GO!


T&Cs
Winner to receive a Winter Warmer Package only
Winner from Cape Town and surrounding areas only
Prize to be redeemed by 31 August 2014






10/06/2014

The Irit Noble Show Competition

As some of you may know, in the year after you lose a parent, Jewish mourning laws stop you from doing certain things. One of them is going to shows. So when I was offered tickets to the incredible Irit Noble’s new show, The Irit Noble Show, I sadly had to turn them down. Happily for you guys, I’ve decided to give them away!

This exclusive (age restriction 16, I’ll have you know) show, is only running from the 11 - 21 June, at the Galloway Theatre. If you’ve seen Irit perform, you’ll know she is quirky, naughty and very, very funny. Expect a “comedy-cabaret show presenting big-band songs interspersed with sexy, sassy sometimes outrageous stories recounted in her inimitably casual, conversational, stand-up comedy style.” There are also guest appearances from musicians like Lionel Bastos and Shen Winberg.

Bookings can be made with The Waterfront Theatre School at www.waterfronttheatreschool.co.za at R100 per ticket. Group booking special also available – book 6 seats and only pay for 5.

Keep up with the goings-on online here:
Facebook event: http://on.fb.me/1kM3n9f
Twitter: @MsNoble
Hashtag:  #IritNobleShow



To win a double ticket to the Irit Noble Show, all ya gotta do is:

Tweet:

“Hey @KayliVee, I want to win tickets to the new @IritNoble show! #IritNobleShow http://bit.ly/1oPYhIs"

If you don’t have Twitter (or for an extra entry), like Gypsyfeet on Facebook (<-- and="" click="" competition="" o:p="" post.="" share="" the="">

Smooches and good luck!





Winners from CT only
Ticket subject to availability on date requested

28/05/2014

Things from The Women's Lifestyle expo

A while ago I had a competition to win ticket to the first Women's Lifestyle Expo, where I told you all about it's awesomeness. I, and a few other bloggers, were lucky enough to have a full on spoiling (and wine drinking) night at The Fire And Ice Hotel. I'm not going to bore you by showing off what we got to experience, or with photos of an expo you can't attend - but here are some of the pretty cool things I saw that you can buy in-store, online, or experience yourself. For more from the expo click click! 

Thank you to The Women's Lifestyle expo for a seriously amazing experience, and well done for pulling off such a successful event! Another thank you to the lovely Fire and Ice hotel for hosting us beautifully. Can't wait to see you again next year.

22/05/2014

A day of Realisations.

This isn't really a blogpost. This is more for me, because talking is difficult.

Today has not been a good day. Physically I am fine. Work is great. Life is good. Until two things dawned on me.

1. I don't have a "home" anymore.

I am a proud Durbanite. A very proud Durbanite. Although I don't want to move back, I think it's a wonderful place to grow up. My mom is moving out of the house I grew up in and I am so happy for her. The house is big, high-maintenance and has had a few break-ins and she deserves better. But, what does it mean to "go home" anymore? I know this is irrational. Home is not where the foundations are, at least not in the literal sense. Home is not my bedroom. Or the lounge. Or the kitchen I sat in learning how to cook from momma-bear herself. I know that home is where my family is, but somehow, it's not. I'll get over it. this was a minor realisation compared to number two...

2. It's Father's Day next month.

And I am terrified. I haven't spent a Father's Day with my dad in many years, but it's not being in the same space that's the point. It's having a father to call and tell him that he's amazing. To be able to say that he is the best dad that anyone could ask for. It's about having a father to celebrate. And for the first time I don't.

I'm not too sure how to deal with this. Celebrate his memory? I try do this every day. The 15th of June is not a milestone I'm looking forward to.



13/05/2014

Nepotism .2

I wrote a blog a while ago about my amazing sister. And here is another one.

BECAUSE SHE IS SO FREAKING AMAZING.

Check out some of her latest creations below and also, click the link to go enter her competition to win baked goods to the value of R500 on Facebook! (Winners Cape Town onl7)


05/05/2014

I'm glad that I'm not a stripper - The Pole Project

I’m really glad that I am not a stripper.

Not because of what they do.
Not because I think lowly of them.
Not because of anything moral or judgemental.

Just because I am really, really, reallllly bad at it.

As I explained here (click click) I recently started pole dancing classes with the INCREDIBLE Kathy Lee who founded The Pole Project. Kath makes is look so flipping easy, each time she shows the class a move I’m all like, “Yeah buddy, I can do that with my eyes closed”.

In short: I can’t.

Pole Dancing is hard. Seriously hard. While Kath flips around as if she's allergic to gravity, I'm busy shooting to the floor in fit of legs arms, contorted expressions with a a bit of casual shrieking. I even got me some war wounds to prove that I am taking it seriously (or that I am good at falling on the floor).

Ouch
You don't dance in takkies, this was the next day.
Takkies ain't sexay

All of that said, it’s so much fun and great exercise for the whole bod, including muscles you didn’t know you had. At each class you learn a few news moves, and them combine them into a routine. I wouldn't say that I am a natural, but at each class you do feel more and more confident - both in yourself and in your abilities. My arms are a bit (read: very) weak, but I hear from the other girls that they get stronger really quickly and as you get used to the moves it all feels a bit more natural. 

Starting this Wednesday (5th may) the beginner's class is being split into beginner and beginner plus, for those who have had a month or so of experience and want to step it up a level. So it is really a good time to get involved. To see the class schedule, clicky click hereYou can also sign up for a free trial class on that page, to try it out and see if it works for you.

So I'm going to carry on trying and failing and learning and failing and trying and learning some more. I am no natural, and I don't really ever see myself effortlessly and gracefully moving like Kath can, but look what I have learnt to do! 

It's harder than it looks. 

Follow them on Twitter: @ThePoleProject
On Facebook: The Pole Project 
And hopefully see you at a class soon!


22/04/2014

The Pole Project: time to let loose

The truth is, a small part of me will always be disappointed that I've never had the chance to whip my hair back and forth on a bar like one of the Coyote Ugly girls. I watched Striptease with one eye open, half anxious my parents would walk in, half desperate to jump up on a pole and give it a whirl.

That said, I certainly don't have moves like Jagger. It takes a good few gin and tonics to get me on a dancefloor, especially if people are watching, or heaven forbid, JUDGING me.

It was a combination of absolute panic, peer pressure and sheer fascination that resulted in me gravitating towards a big pole dancing pole at The Women's Lifestyle expo this weekend. I think it was the six cups of coffee I drank before 10am that got me to actually take the pole for a spin. And this is how it went down:

Not sexy
All I can say is that I'm not a natural. I felt like I was learning how to drive again, I just couldn't get it. BUT I AM NOT GOING TO LET THAT DAMN POLE GET THE BETTER OF ME, DAMMIT!

Pretty, pretty pictures (Samsung S4 Zoom Review)

No matter where I am, whenever I whip out this bad boy someone comes over to ask what it is. Not just a great conversation starter, the Samsung S4 Zoom is a phone and camera in one.

Hey Big Boy

I am an iPhone girl through and through, so swapping over to use this as a phone was quite intimidating. On said iPhone, my OCD-self has put all my apps and programs neatly in little folders, everything simple and straightforward. The Samsung had me nervously swiping through the screens, looking at all the pre-installed apps with fear in my heart.

Once I manned up, yoh, this phone is pretty damn awesome. The great big, high-quality screen made my iPhone look puny and old. Mr. Zoom has all the functionality of the S4, but with a 16MP camera and 10X optical zoom, plus some pretty flipping insane in-camera editing. Check here for a full list of features.

The Zoom:

This is to show you just how close in you can actually get. It's a little creepy stalker.
No zoom. This is where I was standing.
10x Zoom: Oh look, kayakers.

10x more Zoom: pixilated but OH HEY!

A billion Zooms: Come at me bro.

 Crazy ass macro:

Wanna get close up and personal? You can. Very close up.


Yeah, that's an itty bitty fingerprint.

Night + Motion:

This one is always a toughy AND I didn't use a flash.





In-Camera editor:

Spot the difference. This is the same photo, not cropped, the light was edited out.


Prettiness:

Views and stuff. Unedited. Great detail.





10x Zoom from in the bedroom, out the balcony and through the trees

 Food glorious food:

Also unedited. It helps that the food was stunning to begin with.




Food in the dark:

Not as great in the dark, which makes me sad.




There is no way around it, the Samsung S4 Zoom is big and chunky. It isn't particularly light and you can feel it knocking around your handbag. I still use my iPhone as my day-to-day phone, but when I am at events, do reviews or am out somewhere where I know I need great pics, I take the Zoom. At around R7000 for a phone and on-the-go camera in one, it is quite a deal.

08/04/2014

Women's Lifestyle Expo (Competition closed)


I love an expo. A whole bunch of stuff in one place without having to go from store to store guessing who sells what. PLUS, you find things that you don't even realise that you need!

So what better a place than this definitely need-shopping, than The Women’s Lifestyle Expo? From 18 – 20 April 2014 at the V&A Waterfront’s, The Lookout, expect to be preened, pampered, spoilt and pleased. "This luxury lifestyle event is where every aspect of the super mom, career girl, domestic goddess, and fashionista in you can be validated and celebrated" say organisers

They promise bubbly and oysters, express manicures, stunning beauty products, and advice from fashion to career to lifestyle, from over 100 curated exhibitors showcasing their brands

 Some of the exhibitors are... drum roll please...
  • Rhebokskloof - champagne, wine and oyster bar sponsors
  • Jo Carlin - designer
  • Lisa King - shoes
  • Landy Walker - designer
  • Poppy Divine – loungewear and sleepwear
  • Pam Golding Properties
  • Otto de Jager weddings
  • Palazzo Baths  
  • EWGA - Executive Women's Golf Association
  • Sarah Lambourne Art
  • Claudine - tarot card reader / Feng Shui
  • Miyu Homeware
  • Adventure Bootcamp
  • Life Activation
  • Bodytec
  • En masse - massage
  • Sprayology - tans
  • Eye Candy - eyebrow and nail bar
  • Dee Miros - Raw food 
  • Fake Bake
  • Sleep in Rollers
  • Lip Voltage
  • Yoga Life
  • Aden and Anais 
  • Bo Baby
  • Tim Noakes  - Real Meal Revolution
  • Larry Soffer - Mentalist


COMPETITION TIME!

Who wants a DOUBLE ticket to the Women's Lifestyle Expo worth around R250?
Each of the following is an entry. You can enter as many times as you like!

1. Tweet the following, "Hey @KayliVee I NEED tickets to @WomensExpoSA because...FILL IN YOUR REASON HERE! http://bit.ly/1sv0Xyx"

2. Follow @KayliVee on Twitter

3. Follow @WomensExpoSA

4. Like GypsyFeet on Facebook and share the post on the page!

5. Like Women's Lifestyle Expo on Facebook.

6. And for the last entry or if you don't use social media - GASP - then comment on this page with why you need a ticket. 

Smooches.


T&Cs:
- Winner in Cape Town only




26/03/2014

Step Out of Line

Opportunities.

Some people expect them to just come their way. And if they don’t happen, well, it wasn’t meant to be. If that’s the way you feel, then fine. As long as you’re dealing with it quietly. But then you get the other kind of expectant people. The ones who expect opportunity to give them a lap dance to let them know it's there. They're the ones who whine and complain and then expect some more.

As much as we may want it, opportunities do not come along, dancing and waving their little opportunity arms around, asking to be taken. Opportunities lurk where you don’t expect them, hiding in the corners, pretending to be out of your reach. But the thing is, they’re there.

You just need to track them down, grab them, get them in a headlock, and never let go.

I didn't grow up in a particularly wealthy family. My parents tried to give me what I wanted, but I could tell it wasn’t easy for them. So, when I turned 14 I decided to get a job. My mom is a caterer, and using my experience in her kitchen, I convinced a restaurant to hire me as a waitress, because I was very good at explaining types of food to people. What started out as a holiday job, turned into nearly four years of waitressing, training, managing and learning.

Fast forward.

Varsity. Needed cash for tequila. Oh, and petrol and stuff. So, I got a promo job. My many years of waitressing taught me how to talk to anyone and up-sell pretty much anything. Promos went well, but I wasn’t keen on the outfits. So, I upsold myself and ended up running the Cape Town branch of this Joburg-based promo company - sourcing staff, doing all their training, and overseeing events.

Fast forward.

First day on Twitter, I notice a little blog called Foodblog Cape Town, which had about 700 followers on Twitter and 300 on Facebook. I sent them an email, “ HI TEAM, PLEASE CAN I WORK FOR YOU FOR FREEEEEE? YOU DON’T HAVE TO PAY ME, I JUST WANT TO HELP”. After joining the team (not a team, just one lovely guy named Marvin) it took us two years to find ourselves, with plenty of money spent along the way to make it happen. Three years later and now we’ve gone national, with nearly 45,000 followers.

I work my ass off. My day job is in advertising. My night job: Foodblog(s), freelance writing, and my personal blog. I never sleep. But I take every single opportunity I can get my hands on. And when I don’t find one, I look for it. Sometimes I fail. Actually, often I do. But who cares, at least I tried. (This doesn’t include bike riding, which I tried once and immediately gave up).

The other day I did a call for writers for Foodblog Durban and Joburg. I got HUNDREDS of replies. But what I explained to each applicant, was that they would have to pay for their first few reviews, because I couldn't take the chance of organising them a meal with no proof of their competency. Just like I did all those years ago.

And guess what? Of the HUNDREDS of applicants, THREE agreed to buy their own meal. THREE. Really? Seriously? I was literally dressed up as an opportunity, dancing and waving my little opportunity arms around, asking to be taken. There was no passion, no desire, no excitement to be a part of something – just expectancy.

People aren’t willing to take a chance. To lose. To fail. And sadly, even to try.

Being a part of this Citroen campaign, to see who “steps out of line” most on Twitter, has been very interesting for me. Not because of the things I’ve read or seen, but because it’s actually taught me a lot about myself.

I’ve been stepping out of line since I was a little girl. And I dare you to do the same, too.

19/03/2014

I have a drug problem

And what I mean by that, is that I have a problem with drugs. A big one.

I’ve recently started working on a project that brings me into contact with a lot of homeless people. These people who I'd cross the road to avoid as I walked from my car to my office, people who I'd change lanes to dodge, people I'd ignore if they rang my bell – these people have suddenly become, well, people to me.

In working with them, I’ve heard their stories. And the stories they tell are richer, for lack of a better word, than those of many a published author. Life on the street is terrifying, and for most of them it was drugs that got them there.

Take Ryan*, estranged from his family after he lied to them, stole their money, sold their belongings to buy drugs and pay off drug debt. He’s been clean now for 6 months, but they want nothing to do with him. Or Wynand*, the ex-model who lost everything when coke became his everything. There’s also Sheila* and Carl*, a track marked couple, who want to go to rehab, but can’t afford it. And since Carl broke his leg and can't work, they've used up what they had saved.

Then there are the euphoric, but depressed crack-heads; a woman on mandrax trying to give you her baby; prostitutes so high on tik they can’t string a sentence together; the old men and women with minds whittled away to nothing by years of abuse.

Some of them were born into it. Addicted from birth, they stood no chance. I met a woman with a baby so stoned, he couldn’t open his eyes – just a limp mound on her back. But I'll say it again, for many, it was drugs that got them on the street in the first place.

Drugs mess people up. But still, every weekend, girls whip on their high-waisted bum shorts and lumo tops, and boys flex their muscles in their low-cut vests, and together they pop some MDMA or shnaff some coke because #YOLO.

I’m not going to tip-toe around this. Doing drugs is fucking stupid. Fucking irresponsible and fucking stupid. One bad buy and you end up with something that isn’t just the usual stuff from your dealer. You could be the next Ryan or Waynand or Sheila or Carl, or any one of the 7000 homeless people sleeping on our city’s street. 

And if someone has a problem with me calling them fucking stupid and fucking irresponsible, well honestly, it's not me who has the problem.

Add your voice to the "I have a drug problem" campaign, by sharing your opinion or a story about how drug abuse affects your life in Cape Town on Twitter, with the hashtag #ihaveadrugproblem. 

If you or someone you know needs help with substance abuse, phone the free 24hour helpline 
on 0800 435 748. For more info on the City of Cape Town Substance Abuse Campaign, click here.

*names have been changed.