SHORT STORY: Santa celebrates Christmus in Jamaica

Santa celebrates Christmus in Jamaica? For argument sake, lets say Santa Claus did come to Jamaica, met with the jonkonnu and paraded with Brer Anancy for Christmas. This is a short story by Anthea McGibbon.


A woo dat a scratch di window Sammy. Lil Aisha neva stop shout till ar bradda rush guh look a who weh mek suh much noise. Low and behold a Santa weh him always a hear bout stuck up in a dih macka tree outside. Di branch dem bend right ova till them start scratch scratch pon dih window pon Aisha room.
Dih lil boy shock till im almost drop a grung, but nonetheless he tell di pickney fi gwaan pray. ‘Everyting alrite Aisha’. Sammy neva believe inna Santa yet, but disya white plump man stuck up inna him tree cudda neva come fram anywhere but the sky. Santa cheeks red like cherry, and him coat thick like wool and clean clean.
Him never understand how fi climb, how fi jump, how fi du anyting Jamaican and him a one big big big bag stuck. “Psst a yuh name Santa..” An wuss im neva realise seh a Jamaica him deh we the pine tree weh people use fi christmas tree grow outside a people window. “Ho Ho Ho Merry Christmas Ow Ow Ouch, help me please, this is real prickly” was the response from the plump fellow.

Di boy neva do nutten more dan ask Santa if him really have toys inna di big bag and ongle wen Santa pramise fi gih him some, him tek wan stick an poke poke dih man and di bag till dem free up.
Bup, Santa landed on his bag. “Ey Santa yuh lucky suh till yuh hav da bag deh.” “Ho Ho Ho Merry Christmas.”

Santa, “a dats all yuh can seh?” asked Sammy. “A how yuh reach inna wi macka tree? We neva write nuh letter. Inna disya christian cuntry yah people nuh write letta fi yuh bring nuh present. Mih wuss nuh believe inna yuh cause mih a christian.”
“Plus nobody nah nuh money fih buy nuh whole heap a nutten, so inna Jamaica we go street parade guh watch jonkonnu dance every year.” A nuff pickney want toys, you couldnt gi all dem pickney deh toys.

Little helper

2135484-a-figure-of-santa-claus-sitting-on-a-roof-with-a-slade-with-a-pine-tree-around-stock-photoHo Ho ho, Merry christmas – it seems to me thats why I had the accident and fell into your tree. I’ll see what I can do. How about being my little helper? Could you help me to share some toys this year.
Santa inna Jamaica we nuh fih chat to strangers yuh knoa.
“Ho Ho, I wont harm you dear lad. However I cannot stick around long, as my reindeers will soon come looking.”
“Reindeers, inna hot hot Jamaica yah, Santa a wa yu a talk bout.” Shhhh!

Ho, Ho! Awright little lad. I’ll give you some toys and you help me find a way to give away some more. “Santa mih waant toys fi everybody inna mih neighbourhood, but if mih madda find out she will peel mih skin wid lick.
Ho, Ho.. well do you have someone..” “Wait, Wait, to rhatid christmus pudding” Mih have an idea” Why yuh nuh sneak inna dih parade and walk and hand out some a dih toys dem.
Di parade wid di jonkonnu dem. Dat way nobaddy wont suspect yuh.
“Ho, Ho what a brilliant idea. Ho where will the parade be.
“Santa, mih seh yuh lucky suh till. A tidday tidday a di parade and a same round town yah dem ago jump up and frighten di pickney. Mi nuh fraid doa.
Wait deh, if mih tell yuh a weh, yuh will gimmie my present fram now. Mih nuh di present dem dun and mi an mih sista nuh get none.
Mi will hide dem til lafter di parade su mi madda tink a di parade mi get dem.

“Ho, ho well lets get going then. Here’s that skateboard you always needed and your sister could do with this Jamaican doll.”
“Santa, a nuh seh mi eva a go believe inna yuh a fly round di worl pon dem big goat deh doa, but tanks.” “Mek mi go hide dem an cum back.”

Awrite come now, mih sista still a pray, an mi madda inna kitchen a cook. Mek mih show yuh a weh. Lickle later wen u a pass mih, hole out yuh hand an mi will put one chicken sandwich in deh cause yuh mus hungry.
Mi nuh noa how yuh ago manage, cause later pon Christmus day, everybody a go town centre guh look pon the nativity scene. Lef some back fi da time deh yuh hear.
Ho, ho ho seems like I’ll spend Christmas in Jamaica after all. Let me ping the elves to see if Mrs Clause can help with the other countries.
“Santa, no disrespect, but doan mid if people tink yuh a wear wan Santa costume and poke you or draw yuh hair. Wuss if a wan rasta pickney a look on.
“A christian country dis, and at christmas all some rastaman sing christmas carol and join di parade fi memba baby Jesas!” But dem love get present instead a fi gi out as mi seh wih nuh gat much money.
Ho, ho merry christmas.

Santa celebrate Christmus

Later inna di day Sammy spot Santa an show two a him fren. One a dem was Big Boy. Big Boy go up to Santa and question im bout church, an him belief inna God. Santa tell Big Boy seh him believe inna God and dats why him hand out present at Chrismus (Christmas).
As him a walk off Brer Anancy start go up to Santa fi walk di rest a di way beside him inna di parade.
Big boy neva ball out nutten else dan “Merry christmas to you too and hold dih bag tight.” Same time Sammy rush up and add “A nuff tings a go gwaan inna chuch, inna street and dung a parade fi christmas.”
Big Boy start mek fi ask Santa bout him clothes, an just start tell Santa how him fi glad seh di time cool when Sammy put him hand over him mout.
Sammy dis drag Big Boy hand and carry him guh look fih him lickle sista fi surprise ar wid di dolly weh him get earlier.

Meantime Big Boy deh wonder if Santa guh gi baby Jesas present tuh.

Anthea’s Christmas message


Wooi a Jamaica birthday bash to memba fi centuries

Guddeh Oneil “Nazzleman” Scott, weh win di national popular song contest dis 2016 yah, and Big up to all royal Jamaicans. A nuff people call dih Jamaica Cultural Development Commission JCDC, but still dem nevah mek nobaddy miss nutten in a di recent celebration of di country’s Independence and Emancipation.
Ah mean to seh dih activities dem all ova dih island sell off dih memories in a real way. If yuh even guh one a di event dem weh keep cross di island you bound fih stick like glue to di tv fih ketch di schedule and some part a sinting weh kippup, an den more a di documentary dem weh show.

Storm or no storm

After di Earl storm pose a threat, dem well understand when sum people neva tunnup. All sum reporters and photographers ketch dem fraid and an miss out pon dih Gala weh dem swear seh wudda postpone. JCDC staff still guh all out fi mek sho nuttin nuh go wrong wid di event dem weh kippup storm or no storm.

Big Deal Gala

But dih Gala was a Big Deal, a sweet precious priceless Big deal pon Sattiday, August 6, 2016. A nuff tings kippup same way cross dih island, but dih National Stadium and Ranny when a carry dih swing. A deh suh fi dih Grand Gala all a dih big leagues fih di nation did go by farminality.

A suh it start 6 pon di dot, a suh dem tunnup in a orda and by that time, the Stadium did more dan half full. People siddung a wait pon dih big leagues dem.

Colonel Lemuel Lindo, Commander of the Jamaica Combined Cadet Force, The Honourable Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange OD, JP(Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & sport), The Honourable Justice Zaila Rowena McCalla OJ (The Chief Justice), Her Worship The Mayor Councillor Senator Dr Angela Brown Burke (Mayor of Kingston and Saint Andrew), The Most Honourable Portia Simpson Miller, ON, MP, (The Leader of Opposition) .. but tap she neva show at all. A dih Hon Dr Kenneth Wykeham McNeill, MD, MP, CD as Opposition Spokesman on Tourism represent well for har

So when The Most Honourable Andrew Holness, ON, MP as the Prime Minister for Jamaica arrive the whole Stadium was in an uproar so loud that mih sure seh di people pon di outside tink a stampede a galang inna stadium. Mih seh fire tek mih belly bottom di way mih feel proud a how di people dem galang like a some cue card read fih dem get up and shout wen dem sih him. Anyway Mrs Holness was her sweet self inna her black dress and green bag.
After The Honourable Steadman A R Fuller, CD as Deputy Governor General arrive, Andrew Osbourne sounded the Abeng and the gala officially start off.

jagala300 20160806_211206amcg

Before dat though mih did think it start areaddy wih what di military force dem galang wid. Dem march and dem form and dem demonstrate suh much sinting and dem finally form the numba 54 cross the field.
As if to memba some a wih inna one official way seh Jamaica a fifty four as a country an a dat wih a celebrate.
Nuff said pon dat, a nuff nuff highlighting tings guddung afta di official start an a nuff time di people dem weh come full up dih Stadium couldnt keep inna dem seat.
Naw, before dat di Prime Minister and Hon Babsy Grange as Minister a Culture gih two speeches, short short and spicy spicy bad. Both a dem talk bout dih Jamaican dem weh a represent wih as Ambassadors inna di Olympics dung deh a Rio, Brazil.

Performance Time

Dis year dem have five stage suh the programme did short and spicy, a suh one performer outta di 1,000 plus run off a one stage, and anodda one just start dem ting pon anadda stage. An den no matta weh yuh did siddung, you bound fih si a good piece a di almost 20 performances. Big screens also mek people sih wah dem fi sih big big to.
Oliver Samuels, Ity an Fancy Cat, an Joan Andrea Hutchinson didda di main voices fih di night. A dem mostly kippup up di humourous side and all chat out a who a come on next.
Oneil Scott, who did win di JCDC national popular song contest in dis 2016 year, was dih fuss fuss performer and nuff flag raise wen him sing him song Nuh Weh Like Jamaica.

Lata on, dem mek him sing out most if not all a di song dem weh win through di years an a deh suh di people inna dih Stadium galang wid tings.
Especially when him touch pon di cultural ones dem – di dancehall influence won dem did nice, but Jamaicans really like di ole time favourites dem still especially Land of My Birth and Play Di Music.

Dat alone cudda lively up di gala, but odda tings mek the people dem do more dan sing and rise to dem feet a wave flag whole heap a time. Joan Andrea Hutchinson good caan dun wid dem patois poem bout Jamaica deh.
Dis year dem have five stage so the programme did short an spicy, a suh one performer outta di 1,000 plus run off a one stage, and anodda one dis start dem ting pon anadda stage. An den no matta weh yuh did siddung, you bound fih si a good piece a di almost 20 performances. Big screens also mek people sih wah dem fi sih big big to.
Oliver Samuels, Ity an Fancy Cat an Joan Andrea Hutchinson were the main voices for the night. A dem mostly kippup up di humourous side and a chat out a who a come on next.
The regular performances dem include raising of the flag,
flag display, bands, and dis year dem put in one special segment in tribute to Jamaicans down a Rio Olympics.
All di singa dem from Nexus, Carifolk Singers, Las Voicers Melodiosas rendered The National Song for schools.
Yuh shudda deddeh fi si Jamaican a dance and walk pon stilt look like real giant Jamaican simaddy a prance up and down. Although most pickney did diss want sih di section dedicate to di yout while oddas diss wait fi sih fireworks.
Odder musical interjections were by Gyptian, Nesbeth, Capleton hoo sizzled the Stadium grounds, and a few time wen singers go pon di stage at least 20 dancers rush pon di grounds an galang bawd a kippup rumpus, jumpus. Capleton hoo come on just aftah the Rasta episode, get wan personal flag salute by twenty or so dancers.
All di visiting under 19 netball team from England who get dem pixtcha tek nuff time did diddeh as special guests.


Big Up Jamaicans pon 2016 Emancipation Day

Lawd a massy, mih belly a buss. Today is Emancipation Day when wih as a modern day society of Jamaicans celebrate what galang way back in 1934, when our foreparents were freed from slavery.
Some Jamaicans diss a find out seh dih day before diss on July 31st, nuff a dih slave dem did run go up a dih mountain top dem afih lay wait the break of the dawn of August fuss, 1934. Pon dah day deh, August fuss, the Emancipation Declaration was read loud aand clear and nobody nuh haff fih ask if the slaves dem neva run go inna di different chuch house dem go gi God praise and gloarih.

Wha mih lov best is dih different celebration dem weh a appen all ova Jamaica mek mih feel like a still dih day when dih slaves get di freedom. Augus mawning a really sinting. Sligoville sell off doa. Seville Park inna St Ann wussa sell off wid dem free chocolate tea fih warm up people belly.

An some people even carry a touch a jonkro batty (rum) fih lace dih rum fih jump up and galang like how dem slaves did feel and galang years back when.


Nuff vigil a gwaan, even inna Black Riva, Saint Bess.
Denbigh showground a go maddening with all dem bull cow, and odder pretty pretty animal pon display fih show off Jamaica agriculture. Last time mih go Denbigh mi almost feel fih bite one a dih prize cow dih way him fat and look sweet like meat inna mih plate already. But when the artiste dem start perform mih soon realise seh a show and tell and dih artiste dem did a fantastic job a move dih crowd off them feet dancing all day and stright till night mih tell you. as for the comedians dem.. ahh well mek sure yuh go tek it in.
Den now right ya inna Kingston, Ranny William Centre pon Hope Road a nuff a galang. Mi can tell you how JCDC a host one piece a Independence Village.
But a nuh dat a sweet mih suh, a di onstage performance dem wah a galang lata.
Mih go last year and mi belly full mih almost nuh go buy none a di real Jamaican food dem pon sale fi tie in mi love fi Jamaica.
Sell off activities all ova dih place.
Now nobadda waste time, right till Independence Day, nuh lose out.

Nuff tinting a gwan fi gi yuh chance fih jump up and relive the celebrations of the freed slaves weh mek wih proud fi call wiself Jamaican tidday tidday yah.
Mek sure youh check diss site fi di full listing a wah a guddung fih di rest a week fi celebrate Emancipation and Independence inna one. The stadium small suh no plan fi guh gala diss suh, a nuff tings a gwaan. By the way, if yuh realise seh yuh nagga hole from now, plan fi gu uppa Ranny Williams pon Hope Road fi watch di show a stadium live. But yess galang early or you aggo miss dat too.
A wan big helluva place, but a fram all ova people come, dem park early diss fi get settle in. All fram farin people start fly dung now fi ketch up pon dem roots wah almost a grow left them.
Tan teddy and tell mih weh yuh go.

If u gats pictas sen dem een, dih boss wont mind fih post dem fi yuh as a dissya site ya nice fih Jamaicans strut up dem stuff.


Christmas in Jamaica for ole time’s sake?

Puss juk, oonu sih yah now — dis Christmas yah gawn in 2013, was one piece a sinting. Mi travel through dih city a try find some goodas celebration in true Jamaican style an nutten. Not even chocklit tea.. Everybody a holler and a bawl bout hard times.
Vendors a camp out extra inna bendown plaza, az nutten nah sell outta di pile a clothes an tings dem go tek pon consignment from di Chiney wholesdale. Good fi some a dem cause some a dih sinting dem Hugly caan done and some a dem look like it build fi half a use.
So mi come to thinking afta mi a pass some woman a chat bout di good ole days when dem was picknininis an a enjoy Christmas.
Den there is good ole Mass Glen among some olda folks weh always siddung pan mih eays a tell mi dis an dat bout when him was a bwoy, right deh pon mih van back pon Hanover Street. As soon as im sih mih a siddung, him walf craass wid him stick an plop beside mi fi tell mih all kinda tings, an poor mih sometime not eben mih can keep up fih write wen dissa man ya inna him 90s start fih chat.
So den her’e a lickle list a tings dem ole people used to enjoy weh wih coulda well do wid now fi kip up real Jamaican Christmas a yaad.
1. Food a di fuss ting some people a go tell you bout Christmas so mi a go start by asking who memba di good ole chaklit tea? Dis because mi love chocklit and mih Christmas neva feel real widdout a bun pon mih tonuge from all the hot oil a float inna dih enamel cup.
2. Who memba di duck bread weh shape like duck or crocodile. Dem dayz deh pickney used to fight fi tail or wing as if it matta to di taste buds
3. Who memba Christmas pudding with sweet potato and cornmeal with a dash a coconut milk, different from blue draas or duckoonu
4. Who memba di pig, goat, cow or fowl weh yuh puppa or granny kill pon Chrismus eve
5. Den Chrismus mawning wen yu haffi tep down to chuch all wehn the new shoes a bun out you daylight saving time
6. Who memba a sing carols, all wen you a tink bout di chrismus dinna you a go home go eat
7. Who membba di Cantata and Chrismus concert
8. who memba eggnog, some get it cold, some get it hot
9. Who memba gungo peas special
10. Who memba di Chrismus cake, real fruit cake, heavy like lead an smell like Rum bar. Was your sorrel laced with red label wine, syrup and rum too?
11. Who memba the sorrel and the ginger beer weh buss up bottles like homemade bombs
12. Who dih socks weh dem mumma put up ova dem bedhead pon Chrimus eve, and den fill it with fee fee and balloon, dis fih tell dem a mawning seh Santa pass thru
13. Who memba a put up peppa light inna di ackee tree
14. Who memba a go Christmas market, dis fi eye shop or window shop.. but if you come home late, dog nnyam yuh suppa
15. Who membba dih new clothes
16. Who memba tram car round town or riding the more modern train from townn to Montego Bay
17. Who memba when Jonkoonu had meaning, children ran wild but they learnt about their true history through these characters

Nuff tings mi memba, mind yuh some a di memories dem prod up betta inna good hearty discussion with some a dih olda folk dem weh talk till wata come a dem eye like Mass Glen when him memba seh him did have all a him teet dem fi eat till him belly feel like it a buss. Most of all I memba bout all dem happy smiles and haappy faces, every baddy polite and well couldnt wait fih Chrismus and Boxing day fih go cross Aunty so and so, and Grannie fih eat dung dih place. An nobady neva mind.. one big family especially among family, adapted family and friends and boy di chuch coulda mek you feel like the whole world a yu family..

An before mih leave mek mih tell you bout how dih wan Tessanne Chin gih dih whole entire Jamaica one piece a present with har VOICE breakthrough!
Mih fi wan neva tink she did need fih enta but yuh dun noa, that’s in di ideal world wen at least the mahority a famous Jamaica get it right a tart invest in artist back-a-yard to abroad.
Still big up oonuself from Jimmy Cliff right to Shaggy to Third World to Usain and Barrington Watson right to dih one Bernard hoyes.. Oonu goodas Jamaicans weh spread dih flag abroad.


Jamaica culture and ‘b***ymanism?


Well now, in Jamaica dem hav all kinda ism, nuh mek duppy fool yuh! But a wah catch dem creature deh a dih University a Technology di odder day, yes the pressitgious UTech college tun unviversity.
Di ting tun up wen tv shed lite pon wan secuity guard a beat dih living daylite outta wan student, and the footage did seh a because im gay, dat him an wan nex yute wenna doogo doogo. Dih security guard who since get arrested catch dih bwoy wen a mob o odder students run down di two alleged b***yboy dem fih God ongle know. Dih fuss class idiot dem claim tek refuge inna dih guardhouse and a so dih secuity get im fi dun him out.. almost.
BUT mi waa oonu tink, cuz oonu claim to be well thinking Jamaicans –
1. Onnu nuh realise seh B***ymanism, yes homosexuality for want of a stooshie stooshie word ago leagalise and dis action yah gainst dem bwoya a go onlge give support fih speed up dih process
2. den now a two fuss class idiot – dat deh security neva know all along seh im deh pon candid camera.. kiss mi mumma backside. A wah tek im. Im gi di bwoi some lick, lef right, an centre, plus some kick. Fi wa.
Den nuh tek bad sinting tek joke dis time, di newsteam dem now seh di security did check seh dih boy a tief cause him a run from weh dem tief two cars dih nite before. A suh mih noa Jamaican people dark.. Cuz we believe dih explanation given by a oo dat now — well som big head at UTech weh come gih speech
Tel mih now, two wrangs doant mek one right, but a 3 wroangs.. suh wih backk to square wan…
Wa b***yman tings a do pon capus.. a suh doogie doogie between man an man sweet dat dem heat rise afta Sandy so much dat dem haffi let off air weh students– leaders of tomorrow can sih dem. Well gracious me.
So a wah diss a tell me bout Jamaica doa eeeh… as much as wih homophobic.. fraid fraidy a dih b***yman ting, wih have a live an direct b***yman culture fih dem wan ya come out fih gi live show an neva een a penny seh dem a go draw mob crowd.
Mih personally tink seh if a did wan woman and wan man student, mob wudda come same way fi even watch show.. but dat a me…
Jamaicans love drama, and whole heap a dem a secret pervert. dis listen to dem chat.. Nuh watch how some a dem b***yman yah gwaan, dem doogo doogo inna di closet more dan man and mih
wait nuh leave out government yuh nuh. both sides have its portion of gay politician Dem gay till izza shame.
Jus tink when J-Flag bring up Human Rights Act as I said before — homosexuals going to go legal.
Memba dis nex time yuh wa tun up—
Human Rights international seh everybody have rights to be demselve, believe dem ting as long as dem nah get phtiscally abusive.. my own wuds. so wen it come to eventually man will get legal fih screw all dawg weh some Jamaican start awready as long as dem nah physically abuse.. so really massa and missus a di physical abuse ting dem gwen tek and legalise di b***yman dem tings.
But a ova time dem gwine get public listings.
All di tape from Peter king.. dat gwine have its time to show.
Rite ya now.. mih a tell all whoo waan listen save oonu energy –fi deal wid di wuss to come.
B***tymanism going legal, if for no odder reason but dat esp PNP government love bailout and haffi tek it as the bigger heads of di world ARE gay. Dem full music industry, business industry, politics and more dan any Jamaican realise. Use u energy pon oonu self – how oonu gwine survive, how wih pickney dem gwine grow to be and survive.
Di cuntry going get poorer.. suh yuh gwine need energy fi plan yuhself outta personal poverty.
Passon pickney gwine chat up wah parson a do from long time an a give God and church bad name, an more lickle pickney gwine act big an nuh wan learn till it too late.

Tek cyah till nex musing!



Do you remember ole time Jamaica…rhatid?

Yuh memba Jamaica wayyy fram wayyyy back yonder? Yuh did alive doa? Awrite, jus stay yasso, and pretty soon, wih gweng go chat to some ole time Jamaicans. Hello dem is both young and old an’ mek dem tell dem story. Mih chat to wan Mass Glen dih odder day and oi what a ting wen dem used to use war lamp fih light dem way a wayy back when.
Jamaica Public Service yes JPS brite… dem put up all kind a sinting bout dem fih Jamaica 50 and not one piece a information fih teach poor Jamaica pickininis bout dih history, the jurney if yuh will on how we come from midnite darkness a good 50 years ago to today – solar lite chat.
Mi memba wen wih catch peenie wally and put in a bottle fih light at nite to rahtid cup.
Ai sah, if mih do get dih chance, mih get some a dat information fih yuh. Write now thou mih will bring yuh mih lil chat wid Mas Glen an ‘im war lamp.
Meantime, if yuh have memories, post dem yah so or link mih, mek mih post it in an ideal place.
All ’round.
Tek cyah, walk good!


At the heart of Jamaica, Jamaican Art!

Well massaS and missuS, mih well hope oonu have had visits to the heart of Jamaica. i memba did day dih Professa Rex Nettleford tell mih seh I muss look at the way a country treat dem artists to noa where day country is going. Mih find out even more so now seh a true dih man did a talk.

Most times, even when dih artist dem abstract and seem so abnormal.. if you check it out, dem really a express what dem sih inna society.
Jamaican artist and artiste, weddah dem a singa, painta, actor or a form fool inna studio dem truley nuh diffrent being dih moutpiece o society. Pay attention an yuh will well sih how dem a tell yuh watta gwaan inna society.
speaking of which wan very pertinent show start up at the Mutual gallery.
Super Plus Under Forty Competition. yes mi chilus, a real sinting painter, photographer a go get hole heap a money from super Plus if dem can beat out everybaddy else and express good good bout watta gwaan.
Dem put it all unda di good name of The visual Arts and wih love Wayne Chen cause him truley truley lead business community an support dih arts big time.BIGG UPP Wayne Chen.. yuh visits dem all ova dih worl a pay off, sell off. It luk like a ongle yuh learn from dih fuss world country an dash on money pon di arts like dem higher class a country dem deh. Nuh wonda yuh successful an a get bigga. Still readers, trod down to Mutual Gallery from November 1-month end.
The four artists dem weh dem pick fih vie fi de title fih fine arts expression are: Marvin Bartley, photography; Leasho Johnson, painting; Berette Macaulay, photography and Olivia McGilchrist, photography.
Come and vote and watch for more on who wins.
Dem all as the rules stipulate have to be artists under 40, no not age.. by dem wuk.. like jussa buss.

Tek Cyah!



Bringing back Ole Time Jamaica for success of the country

The following is an article that was submitted for my website.. but I find it real valuable insight for my readers here. Karl Vernon is a former employee of the Gleaner with remarkable skills in writing if nothing else. He is very passionate and one of the few persons who remains blunt. A graduate of the University of the West Indies with over 5 years experience as a writer(as deportee), subeditor he has been a major contributor analysing the culture of Jamaicans. This article is both fun and very useful, so read on…

RIGOR MORTIS OF AN ISLAND IN THE DARK (We need ‘Ole Time Jamaica’ for success) by Karl Vernon

What ails this 10,990 square kilometers of an island rock cemented into the beautiful azure Caribbean Sea? The cancer of violence, poverty, indiscipline has mestastized 100 fold. The howls of the wolves mingled with the bleating of the innocent sheep have created a gigantic orgy on this the dark side of the moon.

Romantics dance in the glory of their memories chatting about ‘ole time’ Jamaica! But was ‘ole time’ Jamaica al that good? I am gonna rip asunder the gross misconceptions!

From 1962, Jamaica has been living and enjoying one great big party. The cocoon of self indulgent bacchanal wraps us tightly as we are being suffocating by the party cum mayhem which has sneaked inside of our ego-filled vacuum chocking us to death on the bile which pours from our hypocritical lips and asses. It’s time for a wipe up or for that matter a wipe out. Time for a change, time for a revolution!

The immortal beast of murders stalk us leaving blood stained like the on the Shroud of Turin. Into the hot gates of hell we march, the brave 500 of innocent Jamaicans trying to take a last stand against Xerxes-like forces. We are being embraced by the loving arms of death which kill all and sundry and which has no end in sight or any signal of dissipating.

Alas we crawl, alas we chew on our fingernails of ideas, trying to stanch the flow of life which disappears from there people every day.
Freedom isn’t free at all. It comes with a cost, the cost of blood. Not to take that quotation lightly and to abuse the innocent but it has to STOP now and forever. This is no time for semantic dabbling and squabbling and or Sophist philosophy. It is the time for action. It is not the time for beautiful death or rain of blood in the dark of the morning.

What are the views? If you have any, please share them. The political correct world which we live in will see the emotional aspect intrepidly getting in the way, creating a rolling stone of an obstacle which will crush was like a giant mudslide.

Jamaica has always been a violent place society. It was found, colonized and still is being governed by violence. The blood of wrath runs through us all and wakes the ghosts of the Grim Reaper. As a society which was built on blood, it will not come easily overnight. Lots of mind altering brainwashing will have to be done, some immoral, some dead wrong to get this society back on track. The cycle of violence which engulfs us all makes one wonder how it began and how can we dismantle the wheel of doom

The Police in trying to do their job do sanctioned or non-sanctioned terrorism. It makes one wonder the many reports of shoot outs and men have been killed and guns taken off them while not one cop has been scarred. Is it that the gunmen are such poor shots and the bullets from the AK 47 stops Matrix like before these paramilitary executioners masquerading as police officers? On the flip side, you have the zombie-like gunmen who kill wantonly, mercilessly, who are adored in song and dance as legendary shottas. The hypocrisy of us all is the drug which sparks the madness swirling around and in us.

The lack of foresight, the lack of intelligence (overused word) by the powers that be to locate, medicate and eliminate the abominations which we suffer comes back to haunt us all. The garrisons all need to be torn down. Every single one of them and the inhabitants spread far and wide as the wind blows sand. The indoctrination of a culture of discipline, respect, tolerance for the fellow man needs to be urgently addressed or else as we see, hear and feel it every day, we shall all fall upon the sword of evil which we live by.

A nation of consumers, we are one giant market place consuming all the shit which is produced overseas while we export little or nothing. Bauxite alone cannot save us neither is tourism which as you know is owned by private interests. Jamaica needs to wake up, re train and train its most PRICELESS COMMODITY- its people on how to be in tip top shape for the 21st century or else we will be left wandering by the drying up stream of a stagnant economy which will leave us parched and dying of thirst.

Imagine, Jamaica’s earning from foreign remittances is 20 percent, about equal what is made from the combined effort of bauxite and tourism. We are in dire straight ladies and gentlemen. The percentage of arable land is not great. 16 per cent of arable land is in use
Yet about 17% of our workforce is employed in agriculture. A whopped 65% is in the service industry. Don’t ask about the heavy industry as it is VERY minimal. Our debt is 134 % of GDP which is some 14 billion. We are on shaky ground!

The good if you see any is propped up, a stiff breeze of adversity. How long will Jamaicans stand aside in the face of outrageous, criminal behavior and reason it away as someone else’s problem? Do not talk to me of gunmen and corruption. Do not speak to me about Jamaica’s and God’s love for this country.

Do not attempt to lie and justify to me these despicable crimes; this casual murder of women and children, this forced starvation, this denial of medical treatment, this destruction of a people …all while engineering the events that justify the bloody reactions. I see. You see we all are to o blame for the indiscipline which bleeds us dry. The blood cannot stop running, the sutures will not hold. We are in a barrel to the bottom of the river. Only the few brave will voice and echo the brave saying No RETREAT, NO SURRENDER.

But as things are a going, I have seen that we have already surrendered. I have never lived my life with regret until now. I am seeing the crystal ball better than a Ms Cleo. I am seeing reality and if we do not wake up from our beaver like slumber we are as we are doing WILL DIE IN HELL
You cannot make me blind to what I see. I see. I hear. I feel.
Every evil thing they do brings them a few feet closer. I have nothing more to say.

For more articles by Karl Vernon visit


Eh Eh, Jamaica soon turn 50!

Eh Eh, I remember when Roy Rayon won JCDC’s song contest with hit song “22 years to salute”. If oonu bawd, tell mih de year and you just might get a prize.
I sit back now thinking of the upcoming silver anniversary of our achieving Independence from England August 6, 1962.
What really will we be achieving for us to galang like we deserve to be growing those silver hairs. I started two columns on my own website. One is important dates to remember in Jamaica’s culture history. I certainly am going to highlight at least one major achievement in Jamaica’s history per year in this section to reflect on at least 50 things to be GREAT-FUL for – sports, science, arts, culture, banking.. you name it. Now I invite you too.. if you got something to add.. Please do.. others may never know or even remember till we tell them. Here goes in a little of this English and a lickle a dat Jamaican tongue mix:

1. TENK GOD FI SHAGGY and the buzzing circle round him:
Shaggy and Friends concert launched in 2009. A powerful event, if eva dey was wan. Did you know this event not only helps children of Bustamante, but is a power tool in promoting Jamaica’s creative power to the world.
Added to that the book ‘Shaggy Parrot’ series the brainchild of Jana Bent led team exposes lickle pickney pon whole to the arts and culta of Jamaican.. Mi well proud a dem two related Jamaican project dem ya.

Stay connected for more updates yah suh!!


‘Team Jamaica’ makes us all bigger and better as one

The following excerpt is from a speech made on the final day of the Team Jamaica course which ended June 4, by Anthea:
May I recognize the presence of our trainers and organizers, and judges who made us more complete as Jamaicans.
The Team Jamaica Programme promotes the reality that “Together everyone achieves more,” and I’ll add FOR JAMAICA.
I will do a brief overview. How does it enhances the delivery of our professional services? Please see more in the Team Jamaica pullout of the Dear Jamaican tabloid.

A few students do a 'One Love' pose on Jamaica Day!

In 1996, after several disconcerts surfaced within the industry such as visitor harassment, one Jamaican, Mr Horace Peterkin, dared to come up with a solution. The Team Jamaica Advisory Council was formed and training of skills began in 1996. The programme fully developed by the Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo) was officially launched in 1997. The Team Member training is the first certification level of the Team Jamaica training.

I participated in the weekend Team Member training held mainly at Knutsford Court hotel, from May 13 to June 4, 2011. It was fun and the team did achieve a lot together and grew more hospitable. Hospitality, above all, is critical in the delivery of any professional service from being a lawyer, politician to a room attendant.
After four modules we know Knowledge is indeed power. The training was made interesting with power point presentations and activities.
You can only imagine just how proud we feel being better equipped to speak about our country – it’s people, history, folklore, beliefs, language, culture, food, entertainment, music, dance, flora, fauna, environment. We also confidently share on our attractions and events, achievers and achievements, show a dance step or two, share about Jamaican proverbs and riddles.
There were also lessons on police community relations, self-development and self esteem, customer service. All this empowers all professional service providers, but especially within the tourism industry to deliver better. The list of providers include tour representatives, hotel employees like entertainment co-ordinators, custom officers, airline personnel, craft traders, attraction employees. Please see more in the pullout.
The tourism product is a combo of experience and memories, I now can help to create with an enthusiastic attitude. Fellow tourism workers, this training gives the knowledge of the tourists, how they see us and why they come to Jamaica as being among the best tools of a professional service provider. It makes you understand other workers as being Jamaican team-players in delivering services for visitors whether international, regional or domestic. This inspires me most in the delivery of my package of offering souvenir art.

Taking a leaf from our presenters, we are more confident, as we prioritise the needs of each tourist – the customer. Thanks Mr Oneil Thomas for those dance lessons and clarity on our culture and environment, Thanks Ms Charmaine Henry we are better customer service providers. Ms Shirley Lindo thanks for assisting us to develop our self esteem. Mr Charles Cross thanks for that trip through our history. Corporal Winston Harris thanks for training our watchful eye and Ms Maureen Aarons we are no more dryland tourist thanks to you, but Jamaicans knowledgeable about exciting attraction spots.

Mr Oneil Thomas monitors the demonstration of Jamaican dance taught as part of the Team Jamaica training (Team Member course May 13-June 4). The demonstration is being done by Craig Green and Kelleye-Jean Barnaby on Jamaica Day. ANTHEA McGIBBON PHOTO.

As an arts and culture Journalist, I am equipped to share more accurate information, and to foster better relationships, visitor awareness and interest. Now we know how much each Jamaican is a walking advertisement of who we are collectively. We will show how tallawah we are as creative Jamaicans, full of love, strength, talent and plenty achievements to share regardless of one’s reason for coming. Some come for nonobligatory reasons such as leisure, health, and some must come for family, friends, ceremonies, special missions, trade. As one team we offer various types tourism such as business, eco, culture, community.
We are a rounded Team Jamaica – “Together Everyone Achieves More” ensuring that “When tourist come they know,” and gain unique memories from experience.

Please see Team Jamaica pullout where Team Member graduates share briefly, and photographs testify of the fun we had learning how better to serve this dynamic tourism industry. As a special bonus, please see my song “Team Jamaica Journey Fi Betta.” Let’s sing the verse verse together to the tune of Mek mi tell bout the story of the blessed virgin Mary! 1,2,3 and ….. sing along!
Walk good together!

VIEW PDF of Dear Jamaican newsletter