MAVIS BECKLES: Evahbody vex and angry
We used tuh consider ourselves as very happy people. All kinds o’ people from all about used tuh come from all ovah the world and when evah ya ask dem what they thought ’bout Barbados, one o’ the first things dat used tuh come out tuh duh mouths was dat Barbadians were very friendly and then the next thing was howgood the food was here.
Well, the food is still very good ’cause one thing nuhbody ain’t gine stop, nuh matter how hard things get, is a Bajan from getting he guts full. Bajans love duh bittle. Wunna ain’t see how duh does got the supermarkets block up when duh hear anything ’bout a storm or any kinda system threatening the island? Even though the people does be telling dem all the time not tuh stock up pon certain things, the trolleys does have in all kinds o’ things like dem hear dat somebody is banishing dem off tuh a deserted island. So dem does have tuh stock up and make sure dat duh got enough food, all types o’ food, hear? Not only the basics nor the tin stuff the people keep telling dem dat duh suppose tuh stock up pon. Duh just love duh guts, end of matter.
But it is the friendliness dat like it gone through the eddoes. All of a sudden it look tuh me like people forget how tuh smile and make a li’l joke. Bajans used tuh laugh summuch dat duh used tuh laugh at duh very selves. Evahthing was “No problem”, but in recent times, years, we ain’t laughing. We getting on like some o’ dem people I met when I spent a li’l time ovah there in England a few years back. I talking ’bout people who would look at you and just grin wid duh mouts but look away and look back quick at dem and you would see the grin just disappear quick so. Ya know it ain’t real!
But I ain’t talking ’bout dat, I talking ’bout a laugh from deep down inside, a laugh dat was genuine, a laugh dat when ya hear it would make you laugh or want tuh laugh. A laugh dat was contagious; a laugh dat was Bajan, only Bajan.
Nowadays ya like ya cahn even make a li’l joke wid some people – the li’l things dat people used tuh find funny or even laugh off, some people does get real angry or defensive ’bout. It is as if some people frighten as France tuh even crack a smile far less laugh, like duh believe dat if duh barely start tuh smile, you gine want something from dem or want tuh get close tuh dem.
I ain’t want tuh knock nuhbody, especially the young people, but dem wid all the gadgets and modern evahthing dat there is doan even want tuh look at ya far less smile. First of all, ya cahn talk tuh dem ’cause duh cahn hear you. And ya know why? Duh ears plugged up wid the earphones. Then duh ain’t seeing you ’cause duh too busy looking down in the palms o duh hands all time at the gadget duh got in it. So, this generation like it ain’t one dat gine help we tuh maintain the reputation we had of being one o’ the friendliest in the Caribbean or even the world.
I know some o’ ya’all gine be saying, like a good friend, dat my head ain’t good but she know dat Bajans getting real serious too. Evah little thing is a big issue fuh most o’ dem nowadays and, look, duh complaining ’bout evah single thing.
Who ain’t complaining and griping dat duh ain’t got nuh wuk, complaining dat duh ain’t got nuh money or duh ain’t got nuhbody tuh help dem wid somewhere tuh live or duh complaining ’bout how hard things is like um ain’t hard fuh evahbody else.
Look, I would like tuh tell all hands o’ wunna who does be walking or driving ’bout wid wunna faces like wunna grease dem wid cement – stiff, tight and hard – tuh lighten up, relax li’l bit and stop giving wunna selves the lot o’ unnecessary stress. Wunna doan see how all of a sudden ya does be seeing Freundel Stuart in the papers laughing up a storm? I cahn remember seeing he laughing suh much.
Things hard as nails and we getting on like pit bulls tuh one another. It ain’t gine make it nuh easier, so try and relax and laugh a li’l bit do.
• Mavis Beckles was born and raised in The Orleans. She has an opinion on everything.