Monthly Archives: April 2013

Represent

Every five years—or more and more often, three—we work ourselves into a ritual frenzy to elect a squadron of persons who’re supposed to represent our interests. But more than representing our instincts of how our appetites should be fulfilled, and more than representing our ideas of how our sovereign resources should be distributed, these people are really charged with representing our dreams. These people are materially and spiritually charged with the duty of taking the individual and collective dreams of 1.3 million souls into the future. The tragedy of course, in these blessed isles, is that we seem cursed with successive squadrons of jokers, thieves, and henchmen who actually represent our worst selves. What is more, they really maybe only represent the worst among us! Ultimately then—they may not really be representing us at all…

Generations of these “representatives” have betrayed and savaged our dreams so much that the real tragedy of Trinidad and Tobago is that—individually and collectively—we do not dream any­more. And what ghosts of dreams we remember are increa­singly twisted, small and crippled things. Our tragedy, then, is that these people are in fact delivering us into our nightmares.

This is not what a nation is supposed to be. This is not what a civilisation is supposed to be. Read the rest of this entry

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The repeating Trinbago moment

There is a global “Trinidad and Tobago” moment here again. This moment has been created by gifted Trini practitioners who’ve carved international mainstream spaces for themselves and who now make it possible for genius locals to have access to global platforms upon which to operate.

This moment has been here before. The only time we’ve capitalised was during our Golden Age from the 1930s to the ’50s when people like CLR James, our panmen, calypsonians, cricketers and others strode across the world like they owned it. They walked straight from Laventille into Manhattan and into history. Straight from Tunapuna into the Russian Kremlin and into African nations battling for Independence. Straight from San Fernando into London where they changed Europe. During this period there was facilitation by all classes. Educated Trinis like Lennox Pierre joined hands with the working class to make opportunities. Artists and sportsmen collaborated. We’ve not seized these moments since. And they’ve been many.

There was the Billy Ocean moment. The moment with three Trinis on Fresh Prince of Bel Air (Tatiana Ali, Alphonso Rebeiro, Nia Long). The Trini sporting moment where over 20 of our athletes were ranked in the world top ten and/or held world records… They were many more. Our leaders messed up all…

At the moment there’re hosts of Trini talents in global mainstream spaces who’ve embraced and broadcasted their Trinbagonianess creating a buzz around our brand. Once again it’s our artistes and sportsmen creating this space for us—along with oil and gas professionals. This is an opportunity not only for sports and arts—but for Trini business, cuisine and ideas. Read the rest of this entry