Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Chin Up Gussie

Forgive me readers for I have not blogged, its been ten days since my last post. I’ve been so preoccupied with the effects of the economic downturn and the random acts of foolery (and thuggery) happening in Jamaica lately. It’s such a challenge to remain positive when everyone you converse with is a harbinger of doom. I have never wholly subscribed to the “product of your environment” ideology but I’m willing to admit that all this cynicism is beginning to influence my thoughts and emotions. I am definitely going to need a stronger form of escapism if I’m to maintain my sunny disposition in these trying times. I don’t want to complain about the thorns instead of just smelling the roses.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Gussie does Sigma 2009

I was up by 6am, unheard of for a Sunday morning. This was my first competitive event since sports day in high school. The 11th annual Sigma Corporate Run was to be my triumphant return to the winner’s circle. Weeks of intense training were to culminate in one race. We joined the sea of runners in New Kingston all dressed in their company tees. Corporate Jamaica was well represented, from the seasoned runner to the couch potato. Prior to the race Team Gussie was busy taking pictures and updating facebook statuses. The race started on time at 7:30am (I hear it always does) and we all jostled for position as we made our way up Knutsford Boulevard. Fueled by pride I managed to run all the way up to the 2K point at the intersection of Waterloo and West Kings House Roads. Unfortunately, like Achilles’ heel and Samson’s hair I was betrayed by my weakness, “flat feet”. Running soon became a brisk walk, which at times turned into a leisurely stroll. By now the fitter members of Team Gussie had disappeared up Winchester Road. There were times when I had to dig into my reserves to avoid being passed by senior citizens and mere kids. Shortly after passing the 4K mark I could faintly hear the voice of my sensei telling me to remember all my training and not to bring shame to my dojo. I was joined by my training partner and we both managed to ignore the pain and sprint all the way to the finish line. After refueling it was announced that “we” were able to raise $14.2 million for the Bustamante Hospital for Children and other paediatric wards across the island. Kudos to the organizers, it’s a worthy cause and I’m pleased to have participated. One foot rub and several hours of sleep later I heard that the results were available online. I finished in just over 44 minutes, just two minutes above the average time. I'm thrilled with my performance, not bad for my first marathon.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Faeces In Fertiliser?!?

What’s this I hear about the Jamaican Government importing cheap fertiliser containing unprocessed human faeces? The first suspect batch of fertiliser arrived in the island four months ago. Presently it’s just an allegation made by the Opposition spokesman on agriculture Roger Clarke. His claim is being strongly refuted by Agriculture Minister Christopher Tufton. The shit has hit the farm! I’m going to immediately revise my diet while they go at it in Parliament and in the media.

The next time I’m in front of a Burger King cashier my order is going to sound like this: “Can I have a number two please? No pickles, no onions, no lettuce, no tomatoes, no cucumbers, no fries. Just give me the buns, bacon strips and the beef patty”

See Observer article

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I Reminisce…

I spent a good portion of the afternoon reminiscing about my childhood days growing up in St. Elizabeth. Remember when it was okay to be a child and there was no fascination with grown up stuff? A stark contrast from what obtains in today’s Jamaica. The good old days when little boys were gentlemen in training and little girls didn’t have perms but wore ribbons in their hair. I remember:

  1. Breaking the coconut and grating the meat so mom could make rice and peas for Sunday dinner.
  2. Listening out for the ice cream man on Sunday afternoon.
  3. Doing the Uncle Art’s puzzles at the back of the comic strip in the Sunday Magazine.
  4. Looking forward to my huge mug of Horlicks in the morning.
  5. Stealing sips of Bailey’s Irish cream from the liquor cabinet.
  6. Mastering the “pause” and “record” buttons so I could record songs off American Top 40 with Shadoe Stevens.
  7. Rewinding TDK 90 minute cassettes with a pen to save my Walkman batteries.
  8. Waiting for TV to sign-on in the evenings. Remember when TV would actually sign-off? Oh the horror!
  9. Wondering how many times I’d hear Dennis Hall’s dry cough in today’s episode of Schools Challenge Quiz.
  10. Wondering why my parents would bring umbrellas even though Roy Forrester clearly said it would be sunny.
  11. Spending hours in the library doing homework. Back then Google was known as the Encyclopedia Britannica.
  12. Greeting everyone and I mean everyone with Good Morning, Good Afternoon or Good Evening, lest it be said that Mrs. Clarke’s son nuh have no manners. An offence punishable by beating.