The cost of honesty

There is a word in the English dictionary which I fear above all else. That word is cowardice. My fear is that when the time comes to do something gut-wrenchingly difficult I will stand back, lower my head and walk away.

Most people have the ability to absorb a huge amount of (for the lack of a better word) abuse. Verbal, emotional, and potentially, physical. People can lie to your face, you know it, but be too coward to confront them about it. You could witness injustice, but choose to turn a blind eye in fear of retribution. Be discriminated against, but not have the guts to say anything.

For a long time, I felt I had to fight for every little thing. But now, one big battle every couple of months makes up for all the minor ones I forfeit every day. Some lost battles are small. Getting cut off in traffic. Taking shit from a boss. The everyday slights that drive us up to the edge. Some lost battles are life altering. Losing someone you love. Failing to achieve the one thing you have worked hardest for. – Ronda Rousey

The price you pay for this belief, is knowing not everyone shares your views. Some people are cowards. Some people choose not to get involved, not to stand up for themselves, take the abuse and keep going. You could pick a battle where you find yourself alone. The people you are trying to help or protect could be too coward to back you up.

There’s nothing you can do about it, accept it and move on.

Practice makes perfect better.

The reason why I put myself through the things I hate doing is because I am callusing my mind. Im training for life so that when something tragic happens in my life, I don’t fall apart. I’m training my mind, my body, my spirit so its all one so that I can handle whatever life is going to throw at me. – David Goggins

Cowards lie. They lie because they can’t handle the truth, or the uncomfortable situation created by telling someone something they don’t want to hear. I’ve heard people say the truth hurts, but so does deceit and lies.

Practice what you preach.

D.I.Y Biltong

I really love biltong, and being a fitness junky, the extra protein does come in handy. Ready-made bilton20150909_175905g costs in the region of R130 – R150 p/kg, whereas fresh silverside meat is in the region of R70 p/kg. So you can almost make it yourself for half the price (I said almost).

20150911_201916First off you need to get a hot, dry and ventilated place to dry the biltong. I don’t have a place like that in my house, so I rather built a dryer using left-over pieces of wood, a computer fan, a 12v transformer and a light bulb. For me this was the fun part, I really love D.I.Y and I had a buddy over to help me with the assembly, so it went rather quick. Just make sure there is enough ventilation and that your fan extracts all the moisture from the lamp heating the meat. Take care to put flyscreen material or any other porous material over any opening you might have in your dryer. Trust me, you don’t want any nasty flies sitting on your precious biltong meat, it will spoil all of it.
Once you have your dryer assembled, you can move on to the meat of the task (bad pun, excuse me). Go buy yourself some A-grade quality silverside meat from your local butcher, I bought mine at Checkers and it was R70 p/kg, but I’ve spoken to other people who said that their local butcher sells it for far less. Shop around see where you can get the best meat for the cheapest price.

You’re going to need the following ingredients:

  • Brown vinegar
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Red wine (optional)
  • Brown sugar
  • Coarse sea salt
  • Coriander seeds
  • Whole pepper corns

20150914_171657The first thing you do is pour two dessert spoons of Worcestershire sauce together with equal amounts of brown vinegar and red wine into a large dish big enough to put all your meat in and cover it with the fluid. You’re going to want to be able to cover this dish and leave it in the fridge overnight.

The next morning, take equal amounts of coriander seeds and pepper corns and blitz them briefly (about less than 5 seconds) in a food processor, just to open up all the flavour. Mix that with two desert spoons of brown sugar and coarse sea salt.

Drain your meat from the vinegar and wine mixture20150911_173546 and lay it flat on a tray. Sprinkle your spice mixture generously over both sides of the meat, taking care to rub it in as much as you can. After this, you’re going to want to let this marinate for another 8 hours or until the following day, whichever comes first.

The last step in this process is to hang your meat in your dryer and let the curing process begin. My dryer does such a good job that I can usually start eating after about 3 days. On the 4th or 5th day all the meat is completely dry.