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THE LOWDOWN: Going to lay down sword and shield

Richard Hoad

THE LOWDOWN: Going to lay down sword and shield

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Violence is never the best way to settle issues, but very often other methods don’t work. – Olutoye Walrond
I feel purty and so flirty, it’s alarming how charming I feel, and so purty, that I hardly can believe I’m real . . . . Even into the lonely goatherd’s life some sun does occasionally shine. And when it does, oh boy!
The purple patch started, I suppose, a week or so ago when a very pretty, super beautiful, vivacious Pakistani girl came visiting. She was doing research and asked me, among other things, what class I considered myself.
That was a hard one. In terms of income, definitely lower low class. But as far as having almost everything I want in life, I suddenly realized I’m wealthy upper class.
Praise the Lord!
Mind you, an extra wife or two, say, the aforementioned Pakistani lass, wouldn’t hurt. Ado may have a little wine left in the bottle, but my cup runneths over.
And then my wife gave a cashier at Carlton Supermarket a $100 bill, obviously thinking it was $2. And, lo and behold, the cashier ran out to the car park to apprise her of her mistake! Isn’t it wonderful that Bajan honesty is still alive and well?   
And good things kept happening. James Husbands handled me proper with a solar water heater repair. A clerk at St Thomas Post Office was especially helpful and pleasant, as was Guyanese Saul at Portvale, who got me some molasses and treated me to a discourse on Suriname and Guyana.
Nor did it end there. The crème de la crème was a call from legendary pianist Ebbie Gilkes which, for me, was the equivalent of picking up the phone and hearing Louis Armstrong or King Curtis on the other end.
Ebbie was a boy of 12 during the 1937 Trinidad riots when an angry crowd poured oil onto an injured policeman and burned him alive. He deplored any reckless talk about violence.
Finally, Olutoye Walrond commented on my last column! Not only that, but he referred to another column. I don’t know Olu personally but he has such an aristocratic, supercilious mien that even when he appears on TV I check to see if I’ve stepped into dog poo or involuntarily broken wind.
So it was a signal honour to discover that he is an occasional Lowdown reader. And I figure we should nail down his thesis that, while violence isn’t the best way to settle issues, we shouldn’t hang around in peaceful protest like Jesus, Gandhi or Martin Luther King would advocate if other methods are taking too long to work.
But now comes the difficult part: just when is violence justified?
In other parts of the world they riot over food prices, oil prices, austerity measures, lack of markets for farm produce. Just where do you draw the line?
A fellow in my area got violent and threw all the food away because his wife didn’t put any salt meat or pig snout in the rice. I don’t know if Olu is a snout man, but I personally feel such action was justified.
And one senses that, but for our conservative nature, Bajans might recently have lost their cool. I mean, that lousy Olympics coverage, dubbed “Olympus interruptus”, had people seething. Then to add Barney Lynch, a politician, was just too much. As was cutting to an ad when West Indies needed three runs to achieve a rare triumph and we wanted to savour every minute.
And while most Bajans thanked God for sparing us from yet another storm, we wonder why VOB (which now seems to stand for the voice of something else) would tempt His wrath with constant emphasis on abomination. Besides there are a few, and a few is all it takes, who would contend that today’s Government is also “squeezing the last drop of blood out of the people” (Olu’s words).  
Anyhow, enough of that. Congratulations to the Windies, the athletes, the calypsonians, Gwyneth Squires, my pudding and souse dispenser, and everybody.
By the way, I got an email saying: “Horny cougar needs satisfaction. Browse her profile and hook up with her!” Think I’ll pass her on to the Wild Coot. He bragged last Monday how he dealt with a cheetah. I ’fraid them big cats, bo’!
• Richard Hoad is a farmer and social commentator.