UNDILUTED pays tribute to John Maxwell by featuring two previous columns by him from the Hot Calaloo UNDILUTED archives:
Not just a book but an invitation to join the Goodwill
Revolution against an unfair, unjust and deceptive system that
keeps the world poor and without hope. Find out how you can join,
quit the rat race, and achieve a happier more meaningful life for
yourself and others through goodwill to all .
by Donna Hemans ... $16.10
---------------For the Life of Laetitia by Trinidad -born Merle Hodge Price: $10.54
a wonderful book about a young girl in the Carribean, the first of her family to go to secondary school.
|Another time, I
went to a Jamaican play. Doors open at 7 but we milled around in the
hallway until 8 when the box office opens. Then
when just before the start of the play. the announcer makes fun
of keeping us waiting, attributing it to some quaint
Jamaican custom. We were not amused.|
|I go to another
play, only to learn that the leading actress has dropped out, and her
part as a sexy attractive young lady is read, yes read,
script in hand, not spoken, by the matronly middle-aged director.
I’m so glad I did not take an American with me.|
|I attend carnival
parade in Washington DC. The masquerade bands are bedecked in
beautiful costumes, but you cannot see them because the crowds have
joined in among them spontaneously almost obliterating the view of the
costumed participants. Join in by all means, but stay behind the band.
I have to wait in the heat for half hour between floats.
Do the math. The police did. The carnival culminated in a
concert in the park. The headliner did one song and the police moved
in to close them down. Because of all those frustrating delays, they
had exceeded their allotted time. “Time’s up!” said the police
and that was that.|
Caribbean concerts presented with some outstanding performers. But can
I get a seat to watch? Only if I
lug some portable chair around. Instead,
I must stand around for
over an hour for the show to start. I might have to stand even more
while the introductory act does their thing. Then at last, after all
that, the real show begins. By that time my remaining un-replaced knee
is demanding that it needs surgical replacement too. Is there a
Caribbean concert where we can sit down or is that too much to ask? Or
are all these concerts only for the young and the spry|
You get the picture?
There is a sense among Caribbean organisers that they are the only game in
town and Caribbean people will put up with any atrocious service they dish
out. They reserve this bad
treatment for us.
Now, I know that
some of these organisers have put their heart, souls, time, tremendous
work and even their own money in these efforts to keep the Caribbean
culture alive. It is very commendable. But, they need to hear this
criticism. They need to heed this criticism. To ignore it would be
undermining their hard work in the long run. The Washington DC carnival no
Attorney General Kamala Harris, whose father is Jamaican, has been elected
the state’s first new US senator in 24 years and, according to the
She will become the first black
politician in history to represent California in the Senate.
Harris beat her fellow Democrat Loretta Sanchez for the open Senate
seat to replace retiring Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer. California’s
unusual primary system allows for the two top finishers from the June
primary to advance to the general election.
It was the first major test of the “top-two” primary system, an
experiment in democracy that California voters approved in 2010 in an
effort to reduce the highly partisan influence of the Democratic and
Republican parties and give independents and moderates more clout in the
credit rating agency Standards and Poors (S&P) has lowered its
long-term foreign and local currency sovereign ratings on Barbados to B-
from B. The global ratings agency says the outlook for the island is
a statement the S&P said over the last several years, the
Government’s financial profile has been eroded “because of
persistently high fiscal deficits, reflecting both budget slippage and
agency noted that the central bank continues to finance the Government,
“which we consider at odds with its goal to defend Barbados’s
long-standing currency peg with the US dollar”. The report added that
the “deficits, coupled with current account deficits not fully financed
by foreign direct investment, (FDI) have increased the country’s
S&P said while economic growth should pick up during the next two to
three years, there is “lacklustre private sector confidence, continued
delays in several tourism projects and potential spillover from Brexit”,
and this should keep growth moderate.
approves US$39.6m loan for Jamaica
International Monetary Fund (IMF) is providing Jamaica with US$39.6
million and is commending the island for its continued commitment to
reform the economy.
IMF said that its executive board concluded the 13th review of the
US$932.3 million four year Extended Fund Facility (EFF) Jamaica has with
the Washington-based financial institution.
said that as a result of the review, Jamaica will receive immediately
IMF said Jamaica’s continued commitment to the demanding reform program
even in the fourth year of the program is commendable.
quantitative performance criteria for end-June 2016, as well as the
continuous quantitative program targets and structural benchmarks, were
met. Domestic confidence indicators are at an all-time high, and there are
improving signs of economic activity, including agricultural recovery,
strong performance in tourism and manufacturing, increased FDI (foreign
direct investment) inflow, and stronger private sector credit growth.”
IMF said that real gross domestic product (GDP) growth is estimated at one
per cent for the financial year 2015-16 and is projected to reach 1.7 per
cent in the next fiscal year.
statehood supporter wins Puerto Rico’s governorship
ardent supporter of statehood for Puerto Rico has won the governor’s
race on the island after campaigning on a pledge to turn the economically
troubled US territory into the 51st state during his term.
Ricardo Rossello of the New Progressive Party had nearly 42 per cent,
or 566,000 votes, when his main opponent, David Bernier, conceded defeat
with more than 70 per cent of precincts reporting. Bernier had more than
527,000 votes or 39 per cent.
Rossello, a scientist and the son of a former governor who also sought
statehood for Puerto Rico, argues that barring island residents from
voting for president deprives 3.5 million people of their full rights. He
also says statehood would boost an economy mired in a decade-long slump, a
belief that resonated with many voters.
After six decades under US embargo and Soviet-inspired central
planning, Cubans have become masters at finding ingenious solutions with
extremely limited resources. Few are as creative as what Havana's
fishermen call "balloon fishing," a technique employing a couple
of cents worth of condoms to pull fish worth an average month's salary
from the ocean.
On any given night in Havana, dozens of men can be found "balloon
fishing" along the Havana seawall, using their homemade floats to
carry their lines as far as 900 feet into the coastal waters, where they
also serve to keep the bait high in the water and to increase the line's
resistance against the pull of a bonito or red snapper.
These fishermen use condoms as floats. They blow
up about four of them at a time to the size of balloons. Then they
are tied them together by their ends, attached to the end of a baited
fishing line and set them floating on the tide until they reached the end
of the fishing line as much as 750 feet long..
to Dr. Kumar Mahabir of Trinidad and Tobago)
ever heard of the Ramleela festival? I hadn’t. Ramleela
is perhaps the oldest living form of free outdoor folk theatre in the
Caribbean. It definitely holds the unrivalled record of being the only
play to have been performed at dozens of venues in Trinidad and Tobago for
over 100 consecutive years in the region.
by community groups throughout the country, villagers all serve without
the expectation of payment. The attractions include the performances of
actors in their glitzy costumes, their opening parades through the
streets, their rhythmic stylized dancing, the colourful stage décor, the
spectacular giant effigies, and the thunderous tassa drumming.
play the roles of animals, clowns, humans, saints, gods and demons through
masks, costumes, props, gestures and body movements. They do not speak but
mime to the songs and dialogues of a pundit [priest] who narrates
through a loudspeaker in Hindi and English.
performance takes place in a large flat space in a playing field fenced
off by bamboo trunks. The spherical “stage” allows the crowd to have
unrestricted view from all vantage points. The final scene of the play
climaxes with the torching of the 30-foot effigy of the giant demon, Ravan.
He turns into a towering inferno in the dark night until he totters and
comes crashing down to the ground with thunderous applause from the
his Nobel Prize acceptance speech in Sweden in 1992, poet and playwright
Derek Walcott spoke glowingly of the awesome annual re-enactment of Ramleela:
“Here in Trinidad, I had discovered that one of the greatest epics of
the world was seasonally performed, not with that desperate resignation of
preserving a culture, but with an openness of belief that was as steady as
the wind bending the cane lances of the Caroni plain.….
[the performers] were not actors. They had been chosen; or they themselves
had chosen their roles in this sacred story that would go on for nine
afternoons over a two-hour period till the sun set. They were not amateurs
but believers. There was no theatrical term to define them. They did not
have to psych themselves up to play their roles. Their acting would
probably be as buoyant and as natural as those bamboo arrows crisscrossing
the afternoon pasture. They believed in what they were playing, in the
sacredness of the text, the validity of India …
first-choice goalkeeper Andre Blake has been named US
Major League Soccer (MLS) Allstate Goalkeeper of the Year
2016. The number-one pick in the 2014 SuperDraft, who plays for
the Philadelphia Union, won the award ahead of the New York Red Bulls’
Luis Robles and US national team and Colorado Rapids’ Tim Howard.
Andre (Blake), who started his football career at Clarendon College has
played at the National Under-17, 20 and 23 levels for Jamaica.
Passengers at Kennedy Airport
ran for the exits on Aug. 14 after cheering at a terminal bar during the
Olympics was mistaken for something sinister. Panic spread to two other
terminals when news of a gunman spread on social media, and police
responded by drawing their weapons.
However, it only loud cheers for
Usain Bolt which somehow led to a false report of gunshots, according to a
review by a team of top security officials. Poor communication among
police, private security and other personnel contributed to the mass
panic that erupted at the New York City airport
A letter from the officials to
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh
Johnson, made public on Monday,
blamed both airport employees and law enforcement for fueling the hysteria
by overreacting to several mistaken reports of gunshots, instead of
seeking to calm travelers.
Among the more glaring missteps:
At the height of the chaos, the flight crew of a Korean Air jetliner
deployed evacuation chutes, “producing a ‘popping’ sound that may
have been mistaken for gunfire.” The officials also said that in the
end, the airport had no efficient way to let travelers know the threat
The chain-reaction scare began
with a call about a disturbance at a cafe, where travelers were watching
TVs showing Bolt sprint to a gold medal victory in the Olympics. Several
calls that followed reported shots fired in the same terminal, the letter
After spotting Port Authority
police officers pull their weapons and move toward the commotion,
Transportation Security Administration agents began heading for the
emergency exits, it said. Passengers followed their lead, with some even
fleeing onto the tarmac.
Over the next 90 minutes, a
total of 275 officers — 88 from the Port Authority and 187 from the New
York Police Department — responded to the calls before authorities
determined there was no evidence of a shooter, the review concluded.
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