Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Why I not playing mas

My friends, all ten of them, will attest to my being a Carnival jumbie. This comes from years of trying to find me during the season. This has included tracker dogs and threatening voice mail messages. I have friends who, for years, have been begged to bring food to various mas camps while I toiled; or actually press ganged into finishing costumes. Then there are the faithful who drag around with me on my journalistic pursuits. You know, until recently I was still getting e-mail from brownie troops in north america, how's that for staying the course.

Yes, it's true, Carnival is the one time of year that I feel the need to engage in "the Culture". It's my thing, or it used to be. In the course of my rather checkered life, I have played mas, made mas, covered all things Carnival, in short, designed the T-shirt and sold it... I am a 'Carnival 'ho and proud of it. I've written over 300 articles on Carnival and its connections. So you get it, I'm into the Carnival. But I'll tell you now, I have only ever worn the bead and bikini thing once. It was an interesting experience. I spent the day tugging at my beads hoping that they would magically multiply and cover the large amounts of flesh that seemed to be on display. I had culture shock accustomed as I was to the more flattering, read covered up, creations of Mr. Minshall. No need to slave away in the gym, the love handles were covered. I did not appreciate my size six body when I had it but that's for another day.

Having slaved away at what was a labour of love for so many years I wonder when exactly I realised the honeymoon was over. Was it when I realised the costume cost more than my rent and car payment? Or could it have been having written yet another description of the what looked like the same King and Queen costumes. No, I think actually it was when it became all about the which fete and how many fetes. But it's not fun anymore. And I can't squeeze my size ten body into the size small costume, they all seem to be size small. If you looking for me, I'll be hiding out at home with hound, eating junk food in front of the tv in my jammies. Have fun for me allyuh!

Enjoy life

I just wanted to say...don't let anyone get you down, don't let anyone steal your joy. Do not allow yourself to be manipulated by the negative. Life is too damn short to be wasted on inconsequential things. We all live in a pressure cooker; deadlines, traffic, irritants, bank loans, credit cards whatever, but how much time do we in fact devote to being happy, just because. Think about it and then ask yourself if it was all worth it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


So I'm back at my desk. I've been away for over a week and tell the truth, I didn't miss it, nor did it really miss me. Not that I think the place will fall down if I'm not here. Quite the contrary, I think things will tick along one way or other.

Ostensibly I was off on vacation. You know, vacations should be things where you go off and ruminate on a sandy beach somewhere, waves splish splashing, sun shining, a man in a sarong bringing your drink with the requisite umbrella. Nights filled with twinkling stars or salsa dancing; or salty tapas as you flit from bar to bar, singing songs in spanish. Even days whiled away pondering an artist's work or cooking fabulous dishes with Nigella. Fun stuff.

Vacations should definitely not be spent rushing around a mall trying to cram in every possible moment of retail therapy humanly possible just in case you don't have another opportunity. Nor should they be spent listening to people go on and on about how awful like is in ....(insert country here). When to take the time to travel to someone else's country it should be for the experience of something different, whatever that might be.

The time of the steamer trunk, the long leisurely boat sail across an ocean to get to your destination is certainly over. A more genteel way don't you think instead of the mad dash across a crowded airport to cram into an iron machine with a few hundred people wheezing and coughing or whatever. Sure you get there faster and it's much more accessible to more people but has today's travel really enhanced our lives?

I think I was out of practice with this vacation thing but now I know what I don't want to do. Oh I don't mind the occasional shop til you drop etc, I relish the opportunity sometimes, the trick is to also do those other things that you want to do, the things that interest you. Meanwhile, I'm frantically planning my next little flit, off to some Caribbean island to see if I can get in some of that sand and sarong clad man time. Try it yourself!

Monday, January 7, 2008


You know, there are days when I long for the anonimity of a quiet beach, my book and dog. And then there are the days when I wish that I could have Gerard Butler gift wrapped, deal in possibilities right. But you know, a little fantasy never hurt so I do escape to the movies and lose myself in whatever the film maker dreams up for us, sometimes more successfully than others.

We get so caught up in the process of living that sometimes we forget to dream. Today I told a very old friend, someone who's nurtured my career incidentally, an idea I had for a programme. It was the first time in a long time I confessed that I still thought in tv. It's a really good idea and I can see it in my mind's eye, sort of like watching the movie 300. I get it.

Things that make you go hmmm.

Friday, January 4, 2008

And a Happy New Year to you too....

I thought I'd gotten off to a good start this year. Dropped the baggage and all that kind of thing, my time, etc. etc. Two things happened, though I refuse to let them negatively influence my life, they did once again remind me that you constantly have to question people in your life.

My friend/colleague Doug and I had tootled off to the tattoo guy. Doug and I have a very similar ethic, we are both tattooed and our tattoos are very personal to us. They're not about fashion, they mark passages and are almost in a way, a rite of passage. So anyway, it's a safe bet that we're both getting tattooed again. It was good feeling and since we were both at somewhat loose ends, the conversation was going well we stopped to have a convival drink together before going our separate ways.

To cut a long story short, I ended up having to take the keys of an acquaintance to prevent him from drunk driving. It was not pleasant but what totally pissed me off was that this man's friends or drinking buddies all sat around and watched him stagger out of the bar and did not even bleat. Imti did inquire as to whether his companion was driving to be told no, and all the men sat there giggling with her. Other than Doug who didn't even know the acquaintance no one seemed to care. At which point something had to be done. It's ugly and I prefer not to talk about it, I had keys. I am now not so sure I want to be speaking to these people. Doug and I left after I passed the keys on to the acquaintance's girlfriend. For all kinds of reasons I am still mad today. But I really don't want to talk about it.

The other thing was seemingly small, an old boyfriend took an e-mail that I had spent some considerable thought and time on, forwarded it to his address book, including me, passing it off as his own. He's passed my work off as his own before, quite a lot actually, so why did this bug me more. It underlined the lack of regard that this person who professes to be my friend, has for me.

Life lessons. So my friends, I've had my rant, I'm letting it go. I happily look forward to getting my new tatt, it means another passage but that's between me and my dragon. Happy New Year. Stand by your convictions and don't let anyone make you feel bad about it.