There has been a lot of negative press about the vuvuzela. Journalists watching the Confederations Cup have been queuing up with their derisory descriptions, which range from the funny and annoying to the unfunny and annoying.
There is every chance we won’t be able to hear the vuvuzelas during 2010 anyway – their sound will be drowned out by the collective whinge of visiting fans and players. One BBC journalist did argue for the vuvuzela, arguing that an African World Cup with a European spirit would be pointless. Of course, we could make it more European, but that would involve switching off the sun and making everyone eat Cornish pasties for breakfast.
Quite rightly, FIFA’s president Sepp Blatter – a man with a name that sounds like a sort of weapon – leapt to our defence, saying: "That is what African and South Africa football is all about - noise, excitement, dancing, shouting and enjoyment.” I think the moaners will consider themselves suitably Blattered, and with the people who matter on our side, our reaction now should be as it was to the first mumbles of discontent: we should play louder.
So we felt it was necessary to celebrate the Kudu horn this month – or, at least, the green plastic thing that it inspired – by trumpeting our country’s astonishing list of sporting achievements since the birth of the Rainbow Nation.
Francois. Lucas. Roland. Josiah. Elana. Ernie. Oscar. Hestrie. Hezekiel. Penny.
The list really is flatteringly long, and we couldn’t begin to pay tribute to them all.
Elsewhere, we look at the latest of a string of quality rock bands to emerge from Bellville’s stark suburbia, we travel to (and scream into) the Grand Canyon, celebrate the release of our environment columnist’s third book and wonder what happened to decorating your house exactly the way you like it.
But before all that, we sing a loud and very out of tune Happy Birthday to Richard Branson, the father of all things Virgin. We are still thinking of a present to give him that he doesn’t already have - buying gifts for people who own hot air balloons can be tricky.