Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Illegal Pedestrian Crossings

I didn’t take long for me to figure out what the more “industrious” Kingstonians were doing yesterday. The winner, and still most popular Labour Day project in the corporate area is...drum roll please…painting illegal pedestrian crossings across the nation’s thoroughfares. I passed three such suspect pedestrian crossings on the way to work this morning. Though traditionally a job for the National Works Agency (NWA) it has become a favourite Labour Day activity in most communities. Who cares about the legitimacy, feasibility, safety and whatnot? Jamaica is quite possibly the only country where citizens can paint their own pedestrian crossings wherever they damn well feel like without consequence.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Review: Digicel Electronics Expo 2009

I went to the Digicel Electronics Expo held at the Hilton Kingston on Saturday. While I didn’t expect to see any alien technology, I was hoping for a little more than the usual suspects (flat screen TVs, game consoles and car stereo equipment). I was a little disappointed because I can see these things on any given day if I visit the plazas. I questioned the organizer’s decision to include an insurance company, car dealer, day spa and credit union (Globe, New Line, Adam & Eve and COK) as exhibitors at an electronics expo. I also thought the legion of scantily clad twelve year old promotion girls was inappropriate. I found the surveillance (IP cameras) and vehicle tracking product offerings from Digiview Security Systems particularly interesting. Entertainment included body painting, a magician, live shows and performances. The only thing missing was the cotton candy. This marriage of school fair and electronics expo was well promoted and well attended. Sadly, It would’ve only been worthwhile for techies if they brought along their entire family.

Friday, May 15, 2009

$5,000 Bank Note

The $1,000 bill just lost its position as the “high note” in Jamaica. The Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) has announced plans to issue a $5,000 bank note in September. The note will bear the portrait of late former Prime Minister Hugh Lawson Shearer. Is the new note justified? Is there any other reason for the new note besides commemorating the life of the late prime minister? That can easily be achieved by naming a school, park or a highway after him. Generally the premise for a higher note is because the current one has lost its purchasing power and no longer carries the same value. Yet local financial analysts insist that the new note isn’t an indication that our economy is headed in the same direction of other countries with very high inflation rates and equally high-value notes. The highest denomination of currency for other Caribbean territories like Trinidad, Barbados and Cuba is $100. The Jamaican government has just announced to the world that our economy is on life support. What message are we sending to the global financial community and potential investors? No point in objecting now, it’s already a done deal they’ve already made the stencil, ordered the ink and paper. Now if they would just do us all a favor and discontinue some of these damn coins.

See article here

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Pet Peeves

A pet peeve is a minor annoyance that can instill great frustration in a very small group of people, yet is experienced by everyone. I’ve listed a few of mine, they aren’t enough to change Bruce Banner into his alter ego but they sure do get under my skin.

  1. Street boys and junkies. “No, Don’t Wipe It!” How many times have you screamed that to windscreen wipers at stoplights and intersections in the corporate area? I’m becoming less tolerable of these junior extortionists who insist on spraying soapy water all over my windscreen and then charging me for a service that I didn’t ask for. I’m just as annoyed by persons who wash your car without asking during the fifteen minutes you spent in the KFC and then demand money.
  2. People who spend “forever” in ABM machines. You don’t need five minutes, even if your PIN is twenty characters long.
  3. People who wait until they’re in front of the cashier at fast food restaurants before they look up at the menu board to decide what combo they want. Why didn’t you decide while you were waiting in line?
  4. Tattoos on breasts. Why would you deface works of art? That’s like drawing a mouthstache on the Mona Lisa. Ever considered a hickey?
  5. Unsolicited text messages from my mobile carrier. LIME, I’m not interested in subscribing for your silly Blingback tunes! 

What are your pet peeves?