Monday, July 27, 2009
Sunday after church, my friends and I struck up a conversation about tithes and offerings. One woman who was within earshot said she was willing to do more but her income is severely reduced. We learnt she was a washerwoman who due to the prevalence of washing machines was seeing her relevance disappear. At once I understood her point and thanked my lucky stars that my mother was no where to around to crow and crow.
The washerwomen I knew were essentially poor, uneducated, low skilled but proud women who rather than wait for hand outs plied their trade. Growing up I could recall my relatives not trusting the washer with some treasured pieces of clothing for fear they would be ruined with clorox or worse a scrubbing brush. Sheets, towels, home clothes and other assorted bits were fair game. Saturdays were generally wash days but since it was not a 9 to 5 job, the enterprising washer could and did wash for several homes during the course of a week. If I am to judge by the church sister's lament there are many other frustrated ex washerwomen out there. Somehow, without my even noticing it a cross section of persons have become redundant.
Monday, July 20, 2009
This cricket thing
Then there are the players who I choose to see as the Civil Servants. Everyone knows them. They are just there going through the motions while most think they are really inefficient. In their world though everything is just peachy so they clamour for wage increases and the like but the service still stinks.
Then there is the electorate aka as the fans. They have this love/hate relationship with the civil servants but above all they are long suffering. Along the way the public becomes disillusioned and begin to stay away from the polls-see the dwindling gates at cricket. Some die hard party hacks hang on grateful for the little crumbs that they are offered from time to time. Of course they don't realise that the little gifts are band aids designed to mask rather than heal.
Others sit and mourn not only for the lost legacies that political giants like Worrell, Lloyd, Richards, Marshall and others created but for ourselves-our pathetic selves that are so incapable of building on greatness or effecting change, real change.
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
A little dose of hypocrisy
So it got me thinking about the hypocrisy many Caribbean people are using with reference to beatings. Suddenly, everyone knows that beatings are wrong even though they quote incessantly that to spare the rod is to spoil the child. If Michael Jackson were a Caribbean child growing up in the 60's, 70's ,80's and beyond he would get his fair share of blows and name calling. Let him lose his school books and is blows. His lunch money, blows. God forbid if he talked back to some adult, failed an exam or left some chores undone to play cricket in the road or to go to the beach. Let's not forget Common Entrance and the pressure to attend one of the top schools. I know you all know what I'm talking about.
The truth is I don't see Joe Jackson as the devil(though admittedly his behaviour at the BET awards was bizarre)but as a man who saw music as a vehicle to drive his boys to a better life. His methods may not have been palatable to the American public and us but how many of us would not do the same with a prize like fame and wealth dangling before our eyes? I want to believe we would have worked those kids the same way. Just look at those children on Toddlers and Tiaras who are made up, primped and pushed into competitons after competitions.
Then the detractors harp on Michael's self hate as if it is uncommon. Are we willing to examine the reasons for bleaching and the glorification of good hair and features that are Eurocentric? Are we?. And when black men abandon the children they father are they not scorning their DNA as we claim MJ did by fathering white children? look at the Man in the Mirror people. We may be closer to the persons we dislike than we think.
Monday, July 06, 2009
H1N1 and Jouvert
Last Thursday night the Minister of Health announced to the nation that St Vincent and the Grenadines had recorded its first case of H1N1 formerly known as swine flu. The twenty eight year old woman had arrived in St Vincent from Canada and complained of feeling unwell. After being hospitalised her samples were sent abroad for testing and yielded a positive result for H1N1. Even though I no longer have the same doom and gloom thoughts about the virus I felt a bit uneasy knowing it had reached our shores. I knew immediately that every little sniffle, sneeze and cough I experienced would trigger off thoughts of H1N1 and the accompanying flu shots. In that I was not alone as I soon discovered my friends and co workers were demonstrating more than a healthy share of paranoia. It was rather surprising to realise that many of them thought H1N1 was a certain death sentence. Note to authorities: There is still an awful load of educating to do. Seeing that we are at the high point of our Carnival celebrations I expected to see more masks than usual as part of the precautionary measures. I, was quite unprepared for this pun on Swine flu as demonstrated by some Jouvert revellers early this morning. Sometimes, you just have to laugh at serious stuff. Oh, Jouvert was fabulous-great music, great company and all round good vibes.
Wednesday, July 01, 2009
Jnr Carnival sights
Peace and Love
Haiti I'm sorry by Players Int'l.
I can't wait to see what Mardi Gras will be like.