Nothing annoys South Africans more than someone saying we're worse off than Zimbabwe. But at least we're not Botswana.
When we stumbled upon the Happy Planet Index (yes folks, there is such a thing), which rated South Africa among the 10 unhappiest nations in the world (shame on you for not knowing this), we at the Mail & Guardian decided to channel our wrath in a more positive way, by finding reasons to be blissful in South Africa:
1. We’re not talking about Malema
It was good while it lasted, Julius, and I for one will miss you, but let’s get real, there are many who won’t miss you at all. Sure, we media types will still hang on every word you say and scamper off to every press briefing you hold to tell us … well, nothing new. Hell, if you sneeze we’ll be there to say gesundheit. When you relieve yourself, we’ll… never mind. It’s over Juju. Time for us to move on and find a new you. You wouldn’t perhaps have Irvin Jim’s BBM pin number would you?
2. We’re not Botswana
What kind of cosmic misfortune did Botswana suffer to be more miserable than Chad? We thought they were getting right. Maybe the ANC Youth League knew something we didn’t?
3. We’re not talking about ‘The Spear’
Let’s be honest here, staring at another man’s furniture is never a pleasant experience. All the experts pontificating about cultural insensitivity, freedom of artistic expression and the continued slavery of the black body – bullshit. I’ll tell you what’s wrong. Continually observing a man’s chandelier is what’s wrong – stop it. Thankfully we’ve moved on, and we have the Film and Publications Board to thank for not allowing the innocents to lay eyes on another man’s low-hanging fruit ever again.
4. Lady Gaga is coming
OK, calm down. We know you hate her, because not since 1994 has someone made us queue for longer, albeit it virtually. But imagine for a minute that if even half of her 25-million little monster followers were to tweet about South Africa, Soccer City will be trendy again for the first time since 2010. Quite frankly, the “devil’s messenger” can wear whatever she wants – except a kanga. That’s asking for kak.
5. We have a new top cop
Filling Jackie Selebi’s size seven police-issue boots was always going to be a tough ask and we can appreciate why a behemoth like Bheki Cele failed. We’re happy that Msholozi has taken the ABC (Anyone But Cele) route and appointed a rock star like Mangwashi Phiyega. With her business acumen she’ll be able to spot a good lease deal a mile away. She’s also never been a cop or carried a gun, which can only be a good thing. We’re happy.
6. The ANC policy conference is coming up
Once again the brains trust of the ruling party will congregate on that historical landmark Gallagher Estate to debate the country’s most burning issues, like what exactly is on the lunch menu and where is the afterparty? Be prepared for riveting insight into how completely rudderless the party is. By the way, “Second Transition” is exactly like the “First Transition”, except for the number two. Basically, we’re all going nowhere, but we’re happy and that’s what really matters.
7. We’re not Botswana
Serious, WTF? Did someone schtoop a tokoloshe? We don’t know what is going on in Gaborone, but we can only be thankful it’s not happening to us. Maybe it’s just a case of bad Khama. Come on, own up, who puffed the magic dragon?
8. The Democratic Alliance is still with us
The official whining opposition continue to enthrall and entertain us with its attempt at big league politics. The party is building a legacy, one desperate viral campaign at a time. It will continue to be vigilant and defend the pillars of our democracy and the rights of old, white people. And we’ll continue to not give a shit.
We stopped short of doing 10 because, quite frankly, we didn’t want to over commit and under deliver (we ran out of ideas). Feel free to let us know your reasons to be happy in South Africa on twitter – use the #HappyinSA hash tag or the comments section. But we’ll have none of that beer and braaivleis bullshit, this is not LeadSA. Be creative, be interesting. For example, “I’m not on the Cato Manor hit squad list” or “I have textbooks”.