Saturday, November 27, 2010

Chicken Chest Driver vs Bright Orange Shirt Jabba

Second time around, I was given the most awesome opportunity to droop my lil’ sis to school. I am filled with nervous jitters and bursting pride. As we drove through St James, we spoke about having a proper breakfast to start off the day, and I offer doubles, one without any pepper. “I had yoghurt  already and I don’t want any doubles,” the precocious then 5-year old replied. “Ok, but tomorrow have something more than yoghurt.” I advised.

When we reached her school, I helped her out of the car, “Give me some sugar, girl” and she reluctantly planted a kiss on my cheek, I gave her a kiss and she wipes it off, “Lipstick, oof!” I feel like a first time parent as I see her off to her class, so I waited by the gate. As I chatted with the guard, I saw a sudden movement and saw a silver car  with tinted windows cornering my car. In the tinted windows, I saw rapidly moving hands, and a bright orange shirt. Next to him there was a patterned outfit that was also gesticulating wildly. I peered into the car to see if I knew the people in the silver car, I did not. The guard said, “You in a bad spot here, you should go.” I blew my sis a kiss and jumped into my car, but I could not move. I was viciously blocked by the silver car. I motioned to the driver to reverse his car so that I can vacate the spot. I could not move and he refused to move, instead he came out of the car, bright orange shirt, and orange cap, a local Jabba. His body fat wobbled around his body as he glared, cussed and gesticulated at me. He seems angry, what should I do?: (a) give him the sumo wrestler eye and come out the car too (b) blow my horn and rev up my car (c) make my mouth into an “O” and give him the choicest four-letter words that my mother never taught me, and would probably slap me my head spinning like an LP record spun on a music console by a dj? (d) drive away? Bright Orange Shirt Jabba advanced to my car, his peach fat lips curled and dribbled with poisonous yellow cuss words. When I looked into his car in front of my car, I saw a large woman, she was glaring at me, and I think I saw a small pair of little eyes. By now, Jabba seeing my reluctance to reciprocate his kindness, squeezed himself into his car. I confirmed with the guard that my lil sister will be alright, and drove off, not even looking at Bright Orange Shirt Jabba and his minions.

I was chicken alright, I moved away from a fight, my small heart rapidly beating within my chicken chest. I have some weight too, but considerably smaller than Jabba. I lived to see another day, untouched and relieved.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Things that make you Wonder

I have been Ella Fitzgeralding* for some days now. Not that I have just found something different from this chaotic mess of senseless music, and found Ella. I would like to think that she found me, like when a beautiful golden sunrise glow hits your face on a chilly dewey morning. (Sipping a cup of stinging hot coffee). The thing is that someone is a genius if they can describe her golden voice, scatting up your emotions into a happy crescendo. At this point you are ready to take on anything, like that nosey neighbor who can’t stop looking into your yard and commenting on the state of your struggling shrubs, or the boss who believes that weekends are for them to suddenly call and ask you to come to work A.S.A.P, since they have scheduled a meeting for Monday morning at eight.

So, what makes great music? Music that can make you listen to it, groove to it, sway and simply relax and let yourself go. Music that when you can listen to it over, and over, and over. There are many different genre of music like Jazz, Rock, Alternative, Classical, Hip-Hop, Bossa Nova and so on. Did you know that Soca and Calypso are also in the mix? Local music is just a good as the others (when they have real lyrics), 

In New York, I met a very Techno fellow, who listened to nothing else preferring artists like Janine Monet, and a variety of Japanese pop artists. He also enjoyed Manga comics and all things Japanese. When I told him about Ella he simply said, “Meh”! I also youtubed# some of our local soca music and the dances. He showed some interest, especially in the dancing part.

About four years ago, I explored the possibility of owning on CD any of our ol’ time calypso music from long dead artistes. I was warned that some of them had double meaning and the like, but somehow I just wanted to have a listen. Thinking that I would find it on iTunes, I typed up my search to find Roaring Lion under world music. I then typed soca to no results. Wow. I scrambled Machael Montano only to look under Genre to find ‘reggae’? Didn’t someone give iTunes the memo that soca is not reggae? However, since I was out of pocket I dropped the whole music collection idea. It has not died as yet.

Lately, I have gathered a good bit of locally inspired steel-pan music from Laim Teague and Andy Narell. I have got my Etta James, Nina Simone, Sarah Vaugn and the like (thanks to my dad relentless pursuit of jazz legends). I have heard of Yellowjacket and lately Yellowman. There are still avid Slinger Francisco (The Mighty Sparrow) and Kitchener fans (I never forgot the ‘Bees Melody’ when I got a grade B in a test). On times spent with my mom, there is a guarantee that during the course of the day I would hear Byron Lee and the Dragonairres. Driving to work or the beach brings out the Bob Marley. Jill Scott and India Aire blazes the way for empowerment, and Beyoncé is for girls night out. Machael Montano and Shurwayne Winchester are for parties and just plain liming. Michael Jackson is for music videos and moon walking. Ella is for everything else, but I still want my ol’time calypso music.

* CafféLatté Dictionary Ella Fitzgeralding v. enjoying exclusively Ella Fitzgerald music; scatting mood
#CafféLatté Dictionary youtubed v. searching for videos on...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Funny Conversations

Overhearing other people's speech is an honor, especially when it is a funny observation, or remark. There is a website dedicated to all these overhearers, some funny and others, not so much. Here are some of my favorites.

For more Overheards click here. Warning some of them can be quite graphic.

Friday, November 19, 2010

CafféLatté Magazine's 20 songs you cannot break up with (even if you try)

The songs are in no particular order. Feel free the state your opinions, I know I have some debatable selections. I don't have comments for all of them.

1. AL GREEN - Lets Stay Together

2. ANITA BAKER - Talk to Me

3. KEM - I Can't Stop Loving You


5. CHAMPAIGN - How'Bout Us

6. HAROLD MELVIN & THE BLUE NOTES - If You don't Know me By Now

7. LOU RAWLS - You'll Never Find Another love Like Mine

8.THE DELFONICS - La La Means I love You

9. GROVER WASHINGTON - Just The Two of Us

10. LIONEL RICHIE - Stuck On You



13. NINA SIMONE - Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood

14.FAITH EVANS - Tru Love

15. MICHAEL BUBLE - Try A Little Tenderness

16. MUSIQ SOULCHILD - Previouscats
Musiq is straight talk take it or leave it. His music has a genuine quality that is simple and straight, he lets you know where he stands and you have to make a decision.

17. BOYZ 2 MEN - On Bended Knee
This is self explanatory, the melody could melt stone.


19. INDIA. AIRE - Goodman

20. .38 SPECIAL - Second Chance
This is one of these take-me-back-moment music.

Honorable Mention:
WHITESNAKE - Is this love
This is one of my most beloved in my collection. It is a must have piece of music, and the guitar rift is incredible! I am not a fan of the hair, afterall it was the '80's

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Newspaper Chronicles

Today's news was typical, and one for me was very horrible, a 20 year-old woman losing her life, through no fault of her own.

In the same newspapers there were some very amusing stories and funny comics.

Tell me, how do you overtake 60 cars? How? Not 2, not 4, but 60? Who was he related to Flash Gordon Trinidad Edition? Steups!

This was really smart, something to think about.

Its good to see some Trinis still care for their pets. Please if you find her bring her home.

Time we get a Sweetbread Comic Book.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

On the road for Doubles

Today, I decided to spy on the average working Trinis up on my side of the country. I had an itchy sleep and I was not inclined to continue sleeping, I don't even remember my dream. So, in anticipation of the cool morning drive, I got up early, got dressed and hit the road. I did not get very far, everywhere there was traffic, although I left home at 7:20 am. As a worker-down-under, I was more observant of my surroundings and I was surprised on how much I missed going to work, with the multitude of masses.

There were people standing in the rain looking for yellow-band maxi taxi's, illegal and very helpful PH taxi's siphoning folks to work, frustrated drivers going through Westmoorings to avoid the highway traffic, garbage truck collecting garbage, schoolchildren collected by their private drivers, birds busy collecting food, young men getting doubles, some people slurping the channa from its bara, and many activities.

Anita Baker is surrendering her lovely voice to me via CD, and my windows are down. I am in no rush to get to work, and I feel fine. My day is planned and I am full, I just need to get my doubles, and the rest of the day is smooth.

Going through St. James, my breakfast of champions on the front passenger seat, many businesses were already open, and the delivery vans and their contents were in constant flux of movement. I was driving behind this dusty white van carrying boxes of some green vegetation, when we in the vicinity of a Kiss delivery truck, got stuck stuck in some mini traffic. A kiss employee wheeling his delivery trolley deftly between the stagnant cars, struck out his finger and sketched on the glass of the dusty van, I chuckled to myself, 'He is one happy fellow.'

After that, I came home. I realized that today I was really positive, and that positivity came out on my skin. I had more plans for today, but then I had this throbbing headache, that will not die. It was like a mini alien seeking to burst out of my forehead, so I took two Panadol and took a rest.

That was my day. How was yours?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Headless Chicken and Parking at Piarco Airport

The first few times I parked at the airport, was interesting, because when I returned to my car, I could not find it. At one point it took us almost an hour to locate the car, we ran around and around, frantically thinking that the car was stolen, pressing the alarm button so that we can at least "hear something". And to think I still had to pay the for the extra hour to exit the parking lot. I began to think that this was a conspiracy to 'extract' an extra $3.50. I was so embarrassed to relate this experience until I read of someone who had the same frustration, "running around like a headless chicken" looking for their car.

The 'headless chicken experience' is a one of a kind experience where anxiety, frantic search bordering to schizophrenic altitudes, pile onto the brain cells. It symptoms are twitching eyes, knotted eyebrows, mouth in a grimace, shaking body, and hands cryptically buckled and curved, looking to grab at anything remotely resembling the presently cherished looked for item.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Modern Contemporary Beach Home

am absotivley obsessed with beach homes. To me they are like the Absolut Vodka advertisements in major magazines (something that I look forward to). Some folks like forest living, and some like living in the desert, and others admire ranch living. What I did was designed a home with all the city amenities in a contemporary setting, on 3 acres, near the beach.

This home design comes with:
-3 car garage
-welcome area
-home office
-3 spacious bedrooms
-1 master suite
- wash room
- basement lab
-T.V. room
- pool
-tennis court

It is ideal for large families, and reclusive ones. As usual the inside is bursting with colour, to me white was too bland.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Forgiveness and the best slice of Bread

So you and a friend had a fight. It could have been brutal, or petty, either way, it turns out you you both no longer speak. Whenever you see them, you start grinding that old battle-axe like a viking warrior. When, you don't see them, you chuckle to yourself about the good times you spent together, and the times you comforted each other, through some problem, then you reach for the phone just to say, "Hi", and then you didn't.

What is you favourite part of a loaf of bread? Some people like the middle, it is the most advertised section of the loaf, perfect on both sides, others like the end, with the firm outer skin and the soft inner part, still others don't care as long as they get a slice. Which one do you like?

Now, picture yourself and friends as each of those 20 slices in that loaf, who would you like to be eaten first? Is it the first slice with the extra skin on it? The person who is protector, the tough one who got your back, no matter what, the no-non sense person, who delivers tough love? Or the slice in the middle? The people person, who is well liked, and approachable, and is especially a hit with peanut butter and jelly?

All of us, are a part of that loaf of bread, none of us is better than the next, we all came from Adam and Eve, and we are all imperfect. In the end we all die, some earlier than others. When we forgive someone, we show ourselves to be the bigger person, and we have a lot more class doing it, and nothing beats humility, its like salve for a painful wound.

When we don't forgive, we are like moldy bread, no one will eat it, and no one will like you. Not that you could care, or would care, but when you die, how would people remember you?

Just my two cents and no dollars.

Monday, November 8, 2010

When the house can take no more

There was a time when I hated to clean. Straight up honest, I simply hated to clean, I did not mind cleaning the bathroom, it is fairly easy, all you need is Bleach or Tilex. Spray it on, leave it overnight, rinse later. With the toilet bowl, bleach on cloth, wipe and mop like mad, and viola! You are done!. The kitchen was a whole other story. Especially when you live in a home with so much other folks. As soon as the sun comes up, you could find yourself facing a huge stack of dishes before you left for school, and double that after you came from school, plus you had to clean the stove, and oven, wipe the tables, and clean out the food pantry ever so often, so that cockroaches will not decide to squat, and then build a mighty nasty empire. Living rooms and dining rooms are fairly easy, just move around some items, sweep mop, cobweb....

I love books, I buy books, and magazines, I gave away my magazines, and kept my books, as a result, I have lots of books. I bought a book last week, and I have no more space on my shelf. There is a difference, I read all my books at least twice cover to cover. My roommate is seeking to get me out so that she can 'invite' that Peter guy, to help me rid my addiction of my book collection. It would take more than him, and his long face and goatee, for me to let my books go.

And then there are the hoarders....

One of the most famous cases of hoarding are the Collyer Brothers. Their house was so full of garbage, it was considered a health risk and a fire hazard and finally after clearing out, the city of New York decided to have their brownstone torn down. In that mangy place were pianos, a car, guns, anything that you can think of as garbage, was there, it was the perfect junk yard, or house in this case. The most gruesome, is when Langley Collyer was found trapped in one of his booby-trapped tunnels, half-eaten by rats. Up until this point, I was not aware that rats ate dead bodies, further research indicated that they do, so being cremated does not look so bad after-all. Today, all that is left of the Collyer Brothers is a clean and cute little park.

Living on your own has its own blessings, and one of those is to see how clean you really are. On a scale of 1 - 10, with ten being the height of the clean scene, I will give myself a 8. Making up my bed is a real chore that I dislike. What will you rate yourself?

Just a little thought for the day.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Tuesday into Wednesday Mumblings

Yesterday, I was speaking with a friend, we were talking about the future, and what we would like to achieve, that we did not achieve before. He plans to relocate, in a couple of years, and get someone special to be with. I, on the other hand, did not know what to say. While his plans are under construction, my plans have taken a different direction.

Ten years ago If you were to ask me what I would be in ten years, i would state the obvious: have a family, be married, and have a good job. Well, its 10 years later, and I am no where close to sipping a beer with my husband while snuggling on a sofa watching a movie on television, on a Friday night. Somehow, I can't account for this change of plans.

These days, my Friday nights are spent either eating ice cream in St. James, driving to Chaguaramas in the dead of the night, or doing some little projects on my computer. Which in itself is not bad, it is simply was not planned. I also thought I would be dead by a certain age, and so I had a Bucket List. well, a bucket is quite large, I had a Coffee Mug list. I thought, since I would be dead by a particular age, I might as well keep things simple and contrite. I am now the age at which I am supposed to be dead, and I am alive, beaten, bruised, and emotionally scarred, but totally alive. This I had not planned. Has this ever happened to you?

Tonight, I was speaking with a very dear friend, and she suggested that I change my way of thinking, my one track mind. She insisted that I go out and meet more people, and potential (marriage mates). I am a bit straight-laced, and I am not an all-over-town type of woman. Going out for the sake of meeting a guy, is not really on my agenda. If I go out its to get food, or beer, or put gas in the car, I can't see any benefit in looking for a man. If I do find him what are we going to talk carburetor? Obama?

For the sake of dreaming I might as well clue you in as to what my wedding dream used to be like. I would walk down the aisle in a pair of yellow Converse with stuck on crystals. My hair would be in a bun (no tendrils or fancy crap like that, just a bun), and I would be clutching sunflowers in my hands, and wearing a long cap-sleeved cotton and linen wedding dress in ivory (do you know how hot silk is in the Caribbean?). All I know the groom would have on a yellow tie, I don't even know who he is, what he looks like, and what he smells like. I tried to imagine the wedding night, and I am so clueless with it, I could quicker imagine having a cup of cocoa with large marshmallows in it.

I am done mumbling, and I hope that we never really meet, while I am falling on the ground, my groceries spilling all over the place.