Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Month: August 2015

The next instalment of Standard Bank crazy

I have woken up into the 7th day of my conflict with Standard Bank in a far worse place than I was yesterday. I cannot believe this is happening to me.

A new drama unfolded yesterday (one that was partly my fault, which, ironically, is easier to swallow) that has left me with no access to my home loan account either. See, on Friday I was told that the R7213.77 stolen by Standard Bank when they randomly withdrew the money from my account and closed it, would be paid back into a new account, opened specifically for that reason. I was told that it would be done that day. And, on Friday afternoon, believing that was happening, I opened an email link (retarded, retarded, retarded) thinking that that was the real thing. So, somehow, on Friday I was also the victim of a phishing plot. Miraculously, I did not do one step in the process, so all those other crooks could do was transfer between accounts, instead of pay themselves. This they did. Which is why I had no idea how R2000 ended up in my new, totally unknown Standard Bank account set up on that day.

It took most of yesterday, and a very concerned Thulani (who was pretty responsive finally, as the only Standard Bank person who has been vaguely helpful) to get to the bottom of this plot. So, I had to cancel my card, change my pin and password, and now I can’t access either the new account set up to receive the money they took, nor the home loan account, which currently has no way of being paid into, since the debit order that paid my Standard Bank home loan ran off the account that Standard Bank closed. Yes. This is all true.

Today, the 7th day of this drama, feels pretty bleak. I cannot phone anyone because Standard Bank has a policy of not having numbers for anything except the call centre. I have sent emails to the consultant at the branch (she has not replied) and to Thulani, who also has not replied. I am beyond understanding what my next step is. And this damn production is taking all y time.


The Age of Outcry

imagesChapter 9

Thank you readers, for coming this far. Let me remind you. You are now on day 17 of my home rebirth deep mindfulness and being present meditation preparation experiential process.

In summary, I have, up to this point, introduced the skills and insights of being still, asking ourselves a genuine ‘how are you?’, inner listening, inner answering, pause, forming a mental picture of every word, finding the colour and form of the emotion, and doing the simple loud bang brain rewire. You are in a good place.

You have l-earned the in-breath of self control (chapter 6), the filling of the lungs of expansion and growth (chapter 7). You have l-earned the hold-breath of enlightened focus (chapter 8). You are ready.

You are ready for the out-breath of the age of outcry. The out-breath is the release. It is the expression and it is the letting go. The length of your out-breath determines your age. Of course this is not your physical age, it is your developmental age. And the outcry is the sound of your rebirth. The outcry is the tear of pain, the separation, the rebirth canal journey to your more free self. Are you ready?

So, get comfortable. Relax. Let your mind(full)eye(I) focus on the inner self. Make inner i-contact with your self. Acknowledge, silent greet, meta-physical hug. In-breath. Love is an inward expression. Self-control. Hold-breath. Enlightened focus. Now your first ever out-breath of the age of outcry. Let it go. Let it pass your vocal chords on the way out. Let go of the gender specificity of the soul sound. Release your outcry into the physical world.

The physical manifestation of the age of outcry will be tears, breathlessness, possible sore throat. You may see red, in dots or just metaphorically. This is because your molecules will be readjusting. No need for further action, just acknowledgement without judgement. Awareness without achievement oriented masculine thinking.

You have accessed the next stage in the meditation preparation experience. You have arrived at the outcry. It is the expression.

If your tears were put under a microscope now, the shape and form of the water configurations would be sharp, black and violent. They would form a physic-neural number, written in DNA. It would be calculable. It would be the age. The age of your outcry.


It is a bittersweet end to this series of tandem blog posts. I have loved these, and found them challenging. Please check out the others here. Dave Luis and Brett Anderson, thanks for all the words.



Standard Bank Hell continued

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. I have just been online and had a look at my brand new Standard Bank account that I was forced to open so they could pay me back the R7213.77 they stole from me and they have invented the arbitrary number of R2000 and put it into this new account. I kid you not. Please join me on Twitter (@meganshead) to RT the shit out of this crooked, vile, idiotic company. Standard Blank take things to new lows.

A Timeline of Standard Bank Hell

1. Thursday afternoon I got an sms from Standard Bank saying R7220 odd had been withdrawn from my account and my balance was 0 (zero). I thought it was odd and I went online to have a look at what I was sure was a mistake sms.

2. Nope. It was true. Every last cent that was in the account was gone, and the account was closed.

3. I called the help line. I was told that I needed to go to my branch because I wasn’t fica’ed and that’s why the account had been closed. No idea why (or where) my money had gone. We got cut off.

4. I called again. This time I was told, after speaking to two separate people, that my account was closed because it was inactive (I used it last week) and/or my bond was paid up (it isn’t). I was told someone would call me back. They didn’t.

5. Yesterday morning I called again. I was told the same fica story and that I needed to go into a branch.

6. Started tweeting about my pain the night before and got my first response as I was driving to the bank.

7. My ordeal in the branch lasted from 9.35am to 11.45am. This is what happened in those two hours and ten minutes.

8. I was told my account had been irreversibly closed because my fica stuff was not up to date. The fact that I had never been called, messaged, emailed or even snail mailed about this was entirely overlooked. An interesting note is that my message box on my phone is filled with many, random and useless smses from Standard Wank, telling me I had logged on, telling me about their products, telling me about their technical difficulties. It’s not like they don’t have my number or details. Wait! Doesn’t that actually mean that I am fully up to date with my fica stuff?

9. I was told that my account had been blocked since March, but I was never informed and my account was still active and being used. It is an account that has debit orders going off for my home loan and home insurance.

10. I was instructed (coerced) to open a new account so that when they found the money and honoured the ‘request’ for a refund there was an account to put it into.

11. Then I decided to change the debit order for the insurance to my Nedbank account. I was able to do that telephonically.

12. Then the social media guy phoned me, but he couldn’t call the consultant because SHE CAN’T RECEIVE CALLS.

13. Then the story of my debit order for my Standard Bank home loan. Get this. I basically need to REDO all the paperwork and have them co-signed with Big Friendly, because the debit order was set up on the account that was closed. Yes. Standard Bank closed the account and now I have no debit order for my home loan and, guess what? It is my problem. Probably, this was the moment where I completely lost my shit.

14. Then we had to write a letter to ask for my money back. Have you flippen ever?

15. Then I left the bank with the assurance that Julia would call me the minute something happened.

16. Then I decided to call the complaint line. 5 business days to manage my complaint about the closing of the account. 8 business days to get feedback on my debit order for my home loan. I lost more shit.

17. Then I decided to call the consumer protection office. They said I needed to talk to the banking ombudsman.

18. I phoned them. The pre-recorded message said I could only lodge a complaint 20 days after lodging a complaint with the bank.

19. Then I quietly lost my shit again and went berserk on twitter again.

20. Then late yesterday afternoon I got a call from Julia at the branch. She had managed to get hold of the department that had agreed to pay me back but it would take 48 hours, but there was a long weekend coming so I would only see it in my account probably on Tuesday.

Does anyone know if this is vaguely legal? I am utterly convinced that I have been defrauded by the bank. Anyone have any good ideas about what I can do, practically, to get some satisfaction and/or revenge?

PS. When I was regaling all who would listen, before a show we were seeing last night, a friend called them Standard Blank. I thought it was less rude and more appropriate than my Standard Wank.




To Mrs Northwick

Principal of Bizzy Beez  pre-primary nursery school and early learning centre

Re: Saffron Burger’s report

Dear Mrs (let it be noted that we would have preferred Mz) Northwick,

Thank you for your detailed comments on Saffron’s first term report card. My wife and I were rather surprised that you, the principal, would have that much of a hands on approach, and expected to hear more from Megan and Ntombesile, Saffron’s class teachers, about her progress. They are always the ones to hold her when she screams as we leave her, and the ones that help us get her into the RV when we pick her up.

I hope you don’t mind, but I think we will tackle your points one by one.

1. “Saffron is generally bigger than her classmates, and can be boisterous and physical on the playground.” Thank you for making mention of her size to us, but please do not say this directly to her. Her psychologist has asked us to protect her self image by refraining from any discussion about her size, weight, or strength lest it manifest in another eating disorder.

2. “Instead of playing with others on the jungle gym, she lures them up and then throws them off.” My wife and I have discussed this and we are comfortable that ‘luring’ indicates a form of consent from the other 4 year olds. No problem here, we think.

3. “Saffron has not been able to make the transition to stainless steel eating utensils since she still uses her plastic knives, forks and spoons as weapons.” Thank you for bringing up Saffron’s creativity here. We are just concerned that you seem to have put a negative spin on this. We are quite proud that she has developed her motor skills enough to stab, prod, gouge and slice so effectively with mere plastic utensils.

4. “Saffron is very affectionate, a wonderful quality in any child, but she needs to learn the difference between hugging and squeezing.” Isn’t that your job? I mean, learning is what needs to happen at the school. My wife and I believe you are trying to bring up the squashed bunny episode even though it was settled out of court on condition it was never discussed again.  She is only used to Denver our Pyrenean Mountain dog when it comes to animal affection, and she can’t get her arms fully around his neck. Obviously it is different with smaller animals.

5. “Saffron’s competitive spirit turns every singalong into a screaming session.” She has spoken to us about her classmates’ passivity and how she feels compelled to get them to sing louder. Go Saffron!

6. “Alan Higgins was brought to my office in tears after witnessing the de-limbing of all the dolls in the dress up section. Saffron told him she was doing to them what she would do to him if he didn’t agree to become her boyfriend forever and ever.” Alan Higgins? We will have to have a serious chat to her about that. My wife and I do not believe he is good boyfriend material at all.

7. “Colouring in is not a favourite activity for Saffron. Unfortunately, she does not appreciate that others might enjoy it.” Old news. Did we not replace all the crayons, crayon boxes and colouring in books when the incidents happened? And, “Hand prints in blood on the curtains are not, as Saffron declared, “works of art”.” My wife and I are deeply concerned here. Whose blood? Was Saffron allowed to touch someone else’s blood while in your care?

Which brings us to your last comment. “In conclusion, it is clear that Saffron has issues with boundaries, respecting the property of others, and sharing, making it impossible for her to retain her place at Bizzy Beez.” My wife and I get the feeling that once again you are declaring your incompetence at educating the young and impressionable of this world, but we have decided to give you another chance. We have decided that, against all our natural instincts to protect our child, she should remain at Bizzy Beez to turn around your track record and help you make a success of the place. So, when we arrive tomorrow, please do not hide in the building and pretend that nobody is there. We can see Ntombesile’s weave sticking up out the window, and we can hear the loud moaning of the other children. I know you said it was them crying in fear, the last time you tried this, but at this point I am sure you will say anything.

Thank you for your time. I am comfortable that we have the boundaries in place for a healthy relationship going forward.


Andrew and Sylvia Burger

PS. It has come to our attention that you refer to us as the Buggers, and not the Burgers. I am sure this is just a silly mistake.

This post is one of a weekly tandem blog post. There are three of us this time, writing on the same topic, and today’s is Boundaries. Please check out Dave’s and Brett’s take by following their links.

PS (of my own). I have no idea why this week’s post was the difficult one for me. I started it three times, trashed my first two ideas, and struggled through my final effort. I had writer’s block, idea insecurity, laziness and lack of commitment. I like my final piece, but it was a real struggle, and I think that it is worth mentioning that. It isn’t always easy.



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