Testing the power of social media: a plea

July 28, 2010 8 comments

It’s funny how many things we take for granted. If you are reading this right now, chances are that you have very little reason to complain. Yes, your hair straightner might have broken and oh my god you might be ‘so stressed’ but you probably have a roof over your head, a job, a dog or a cat, friends and enough money to feed yourself every day. (Keep reading, I am not writing this to give you a bollocking – I really do need help – just read down).

I don’t blame you, we all do it. Often. All the time. But how often to you stop and take stock of just how privileged you are?

Anyway, the reason of this is not to give you all a talking to and tell you how grateful you all should be – it’s about asking for help. My Domestic Executive is a great lady. She is old but still works hard and diligently, she is never late and she never complains. She never asks for anything and she always does what I ask her.

Her husband died when her youngest was just six months old – she has five children – all of who she supports with her ‘salary’ (which is dismal – probably equal to what you spend on alcohol and take aways every month).

Now, my first plea is this: her youngest daughter did a short tourism type course and I am desperately seeking a job for her. It can be a very junior role as a PA or an admin person – taking reservations or anything plain and simple that will bring in a little bit of money into the household. Damn, she’d even take a job as a person who takes bookings in a hair salon or a cashier in a shop. If anybody knows anything please e-mail me at: antoinette.m@live.co.za – I will gladly send you her CV.

My second plea: one of her sons (her name is Anna, by the way) is a trained security guard and he is also looking for a job. If anybody knows of anything – I’d really appreciate the help. He was part of the World Cup security but, when everybody went on strike (which he didn’t take part in) he got told to go. Sad.

My last plea: Anna is currently looking for more work on Mondays and Thursdays and some Fridays. If anybody is looking for a reliable and hard working domestic executive, this is your lady. Anybody in Cape Town – let me know.

Right, so – this is my social media experiment – let’s see how well it does.

How can you help?

– Point me in the right direction to find jobs for the people above (they’re out there, we just gotta find them)

– Share this with your friends and family via Facebook, Twitter, e-mail – I don’t care – just get the word out there.

Really – this is not a lot to ask – it’s simply spreading the word however you can.

Can anybody please tell me…

July 4, 2010 Leave a comment

…who on earth wrote the poem “Hanover Straat”.

I can recite bits from it, it goes like this:

hanover straat was so famous,
die hele afrika het hom geken
was mos glo shopping paradise

……..
bananas, vis en groceries
on sale almost every day…

en die bioscope ‘n van riebeeck cent

toe one day kom die laws
wat decide hanover straat moet trek
hulle bou toe ‘n plaza vir al die babbies om in te trek
maar die babbies was toe nie vol nie
want hul customers was kla weg

erens le hy begrawe in die hart van distrik ses,
en besigheid is okie mee dieselle nie
want die culture van die business in distrik ses, is weg

Categories: General, Writing

There is always somebody cheaper

July 2, 2010 2 comments

Now, I understand just how dodgy that title sounds but it’s true – in all aspects of life (yes, even for those of you who have their minds in the gutter now).

I was recently doing some research to see how much other freelance writers charge for their work and I was shocked at how lazy some are and, while I admit that my fees are more than reasonable I was appalled to see just how many chancers there are out there.

Exhibit A:

Girl charges R250 (about $33) an hour.  A bit pricey but reasonable if it’s a very productive person but Exhibit A insists that she can only do one SEO article of 550 words an hour. ONE IN AN HOUR.  She says that “this is how long it will take her as a professional writer to do a good job”. What utter nonsense.

When I am “in the zone” I can easily churn out four to five 550 word articles which is when the price-tag of $33 seems more than fair but $33 for one article? Puh-leaze!

Exhibit B:

Freelance writer charges R300 an hour ($40 roughly) for two articles. Do I need to go any further?

When you are choosing a freelancer it’s a good idea to shop around for rates – if you feel that somebody is charging you a stupid amount, you are probably right.

** PS – Please note that this is written from a South African’s perspective and, due to the exchange rate, South Africans are usually cheap to hire as freelancers. Or I am completely undercharging and I should become more soulless and exploit people and throw around words like “professional” and “experienced” and totally up my fees.