How they say it— for the life of me? Well, for the life of me I don’t understand why people make up stories with bad or sad endings. Daily the world’s headlines are dominated by bad and sad stories, cruel, painful stories, so heck, why? Some people say it’s important to be real. But you shouldn’t take real too far, because real has more than enough real hurts to go around.
Much of the hip hop and dancehall crowd really got lost in real. They started celebrating violence against police officers, men who disrespect women and take advantage of them, and glory in violent revenge acts and snorting drugs. What a sick world we live in sometimes. Hmm, forgive me for drifting there. It was only to find examples of people getting it all wrong.
Tell me happy stories— Aha, I like the story of my fourth cousin telling his dad, my third cousin, don’t tell me no fish stories about big ones that got away; if you didn’t catch it and bring it home to eat, or sell, don’t tell. Tell me about the big, bad shark that opened wide his dangerous mouth filled with terrible teeth and as he moved to bite down on the girl’s chubby thigh she, by the grace of God, had a foot-long steel rod in her hand, and thinking quickly she stuck it in his mouth…and that Jaws is now as docile as a nurse or whale shark, its nutrition coming now solely from sucking in seaweed, plankton and dogteeth eggs.
Bah, by tomorrow I’ll be feeling sorry for that shark, the shame of his being reduced to eating microscopic organisms instead of solid food. So, instead—our girl, who did a little boxing, solely for self-defense reasons, of course not to beat up guys, she, she punched that bad bohga in the nose. And that punch, it was like a thousand bolts, the electric shock ran through that shark’s body from the snotty nose to the tail, and he never, ever tried to bite a girl or boy again. In fact, he became a very friendly shark; he even tried to become an entertainer at the Hol Chan Marine Park. But he didn’t get a welcome because of his teeth and his breed.
Uh-uh, that’s not a happy ending. That’s so sad, so sad nobody trusting him. We all need trust. One day we’ll trust the UDP again. The PUP say, not in a hurry, don’t forget the madabig letdown for 13 sakkin long years. And that reminds me, look what his friends did to Dean Barrow! He called the PUP whitéd sepulcher, and teef, and layad, and his friends, his friends, they made him look like a kettle on a faya haat. Bah, that was not a happy ending.
We need a happy ending. Aha, here comes….Johnny and his Blu band! Hurray for the NEW PUP. They are here to save us. Whoa there, you’re not getting it. It’s fiction. There has to be a happy ending.
Hart hit the ending for six
I told someone that I thought Hart struggled with the endings of his fiction stories, but in my books, in his latest, “The Crossing on Mahogany Street”, he juiced it to the rind. Maybe I’m not the measure. I get the chills when the singers/musicians pour the passion into Land of the Gods, definitely when it’s sung like a march, not a dirge. My, I needed a washrag and a steady yourself, control the breathing when the story climaxed with such joy, after so much pain.
I said I’m not the great measure, and I wouldn’t be volunteering my opinion of the piece if Belize’s elite literati wasn’t closed shop with the critiquing of local art. I have great respect for a number of Belizean writers, and I didn’t say our masters of prose were mean, not at all. But, ehm, if you had to hazard an answer to the lukewarm response to local pieces in our marketplace, no one would blame you if you put narrowness as a possibility.
It’s a cultural failure that we are so hesitant to throw the necessary commentary. Stop fretting if people don’t like your critique. Hate lies, hate distortions, hate misrepresentations, and remember every second of the day that God has many strings, one of them leads directly to you, and nothing in this world can sever that.
We have a vacuum, and in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. The fact is that most any say is better than no say ataal. I say that in this 2022, the non-politicians in our country should fight for a bigger share of the attention.
Looking back at “The Crossing of Mahogany Street”, there’s just this one part, in the middle of the story, where Hart was a little too mature for me. I didn’t like the idea of the hero, Lee, killing anyone, even in the noble defense of a friend. Okay, he hit the guy with a stick, didn’t shoot or stab him. Okay, that’s the real of the world we live in, young men dying in the hundreds in the streets.
Yes, I think someone said that good art mimics real life, but I think it can do without the tragedy. I would have much preferred if the villain had just had the sense beaten into him, not his breath beaten out. But maybe it’s the gravity of having a terrible misfortune that helped make the ending so exciting. Ah, a sweet happy ending for us softies. Thank you, Mr. Hart Tillett.
Stop play lost, Chebat seh
Hands down, Michel Chebat wins the infomercial of the year for the way he called out vax hesitators in that clip that has everyone, even the, ehm, hogs who took the hit, running for a place in front of the teevee. Chebat has a direct style. If he were a boxer, he’d walk straight across the ring and start flinging punches, and he wouldn’t stop until somebody drop. This is a guy who doesn’t doubt himself. And he believes, no offense, that our failure to contain this virus is because “sohn people still di play loss.”
Belize can’t wait for the next general election, when Dr. Manza throws his hat into the ring for the UDP in Cayo West. The bigger show would be in Cayo North, but after Dr. Figueroa had a taste of politics he got to like it, and he is now upper hierarchy in the red camp. So, Manza, who lapped up his role as media star, will have to settle for a battle against Chebat’s colleague, instead of the faceoff he and all of us would prefer.
Gray has to be mad
So, the story is being whispered about that Andre Gray is mad under his hat. So what? You can’t name one senior inventor who hasn’t been questioned about the stability of the screws in their head. Wasn’t the most celebrated of them all, Nikola Tesla, labeled a lunatic? Of course he was, and the world has to be thankful for that, for minds that invent things can’t be confined to a box.
The strangest of things is when a man isn’t bowled over by the opposite sex. Tesla wasn’t. There are only two types of men who are like that. One of them, it is too early for them to be getting any ink. The other kind, they have extraordinary minds, and they are on a mission to deliver to the world the gifts that God gave them. They will not be distracted.
If Gray is a quarter of those things that they or he says he is, you bet his screws aren’t that tight up there.