Spelling duz nut matter… part for (4)

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Well, who could dare laugh at a pun more than me? I am all for creativity and playing on words so you had me at ‘ Trini flava’, you know….. flavour —> flava (flav).

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However, allow your eyes to drift a bit further and you stumble upon the confusing ‘Savory Tambran Glaze’. Let’s take it word by word. I know that ‘savory’ is the American spelling of the word ‘savoury’ and I am aware that we all still get confused with the American vs. British spelling at times but how you gone be talking about Trini flava and hit me with American spelling? Or perhaps you are referring to the other meaning of the word savory stated here in the Oxford dictionary. I doubt it.

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Maybe tambran is the variation of Raisin Bran made with tam that never caught on or maybe it’s one of those weird made up words that some celebrity will joyfully bestow on their newborn under the guise of ‘ first name’. So what’s tambran? Well that will really have to be ‘tamarind’ which to be honest is yet another example of the fact that the English language has many words which are not pronounced as they are spelled or maybe we as Trinidadians are pronouncing it incorrectly which is also very likely. Feel free to torture yourself with a few courses in Linguistics to delve into the intricacies of this phenomenon or just have a great time researching it on Google.

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But let’s be honest, while that piping hot barra makes it way to your expectant lips, as you bite into a soft aloo pie, when you stare in delight at the seasoned pholourie you get at the Farmer’s Market, Santa Cruz and WHEN you wait for an eternity and a half in a line on Maracas beach and finally sink your teeth into a hefty bake and shark (*catfish) trust me when I say that the last thing on your mind is the spelling of that brown fruit used to make that ‘bess sauce’. If versatile is a word that can be used to describe fruit then it definitely hits the nail on the head when it comes to tamarind.

I know I said word by word but we’ll let the word ‘glaze’ slide for now although we’d much prefer the all encompassing term ‘sauce’ as we know that a true true Trini loves all types of sauces…garlic sauce,pepper sauce, bbq sauce (or should I say babecue: see related post) and the classic ‘fling-in-a-bit-of-everything-in-the-fridge-and-some-herbs’ sauce. All things considered, we allow intentional spelling ‘errors’ which are really a play on words to achieve some greater goal whether it’s to make a joke or encourage creative advertising and branding. In these cases the correct dictionary approved spelling of the word does not matter but please, some are really just errors that ought to be corrected.

Anyway, gotta go! There’s a doubles with slight, laced with a savory tambran glaze that has my name on it.

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Stink and Dutty

I’m sure a lot of you would be familiar with the song that is alluded to in the title of this blog post. Many people revelled to this popular tune and some even acted as if the much awaited collaboration between Machel Montano and Bunji Garlin was finally going to be the one thing that would be able to change the price of cheese or at least account for an increase in one’s salary. Anyway, point being that this was a much celebrated song, however, I see very little to dance about in the picture seen below. 2016-02-27_17-46-11

In this picture, there is nothing fun about being stink and dutty. Apart from the many concerns that these pictures would raise about one’s health and more so one’s personal hygiene, the most surprising for me was the fact that this business place was none other than a variety store. Do you know what this means? This means that a VARIETY of items are sold, one of those items being fans. Oh what a convenient but very much ignored fun fact. Now let’s not pretend that we all clean our fans with the same enthusiasm and faithfulness with which we watch the new episode of our favourite series weekly. *cough* Game of Thrones *cough* However, when the fan looks as if its modeling a new line of fur coats designed by Kim Kardashian then I think that warrants some level of cleaning. One can barely see the other side through the fan and God forbid you try to perfect your robot voice on one of these and choke on a dust bunny.

Furthermore, , if you really would prefer not to clean the fan then here’s a wild thought, why not take one that’s on sale to replace this one? When I walked into the store I did not sign up for a dust facial mask, sand bath or Sahara desert simulation but surely enough this LASKO fan was keen on sprinkling me with it’s prized collection of dust particles.

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This way to a poo.

I’ll have to say that what strikes me as stink and dutty in this picture is the level of idleness it suggests and the total disregard for public places. I fail to believe that the missing letters on the sign can be attributed to any reason other than human intervention. It’s upsetting that in a public pool, a sign that is supposed to read ‘This way to washroom’ would instead say ‘This way to a poo’. It’s mainly upsetting because in this instance it’s just a sign but this sort of tampering happens in different places and in other aspects in ways that are very off putting.

Given that mini rant and at the risk of sounding hypocritical, it would be remiss of me to ignore the striking linguistic value of this mixture of humour and semantics. One may say that either sign fulfills its purpose of directing the reader to the right place (if you get my drift). Others may focus on the ambiguity of the statement ‘This way to a poo’ in which case I would definitely be heading in the other direction.

What I’m trying to point out is that sometimes we deliberately neglect to do what would make life better for others in order to fulfill our selfish pursuits and we glorify or allow things that otherwise should be changed. Would it be so hard to clean or replace the fan? Is the sign simply a meaningless prank or is it a reflection of a deeper issue that we  often bypass. As I said earlier, in this instance it’s ‘just a fan’ and ‘just a sign’ but let’s not be indifferent and complacent because we realise that the implications of these things don’t affect us directly or personally enough.

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Selective Literacy

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It appears to me that this is one of those cases where I should politely start by saying “well I can only speak for myself…” knowing full well that I would have already began speaking on behalf of at least 80% of the Trinidadian population, when I say it seems that we are selectively literate. I’m not sure if this is a case where you fake it (ignorance) till u make it and then you can’t stop faking it (full fledged ignoramus). What I mean by this is, I would like someone to explain this new age phenomenon of choosing when to be literate. I’m not talking about pulling push doors dumb or ordering a KFC sandwich without the combo dumb and not even simply buying one shoe in Payless’ BOGO sale dumb. Rather, I am referring to those individuals who display behaviours as seen in the picture above, as they skillfully tried to present a masterpiece entitled:

‘Paper Model of Mt. Everest’ *not to scale*

Perhaps the person responsible for emptying the bin failed to recognise what was happening or maybe it was after hours, we don’t really know. What we do know is that surely if we guard the paper in our pockets then at some point we will find a bin. One day I went to use the ATM and I was surprised when the machine asked me whether or not I would like to have a receipt, I thought it was quite thoughtful and impressive. I only now recognise the reason for that feature. Good job guys! *commence slow clap*

Now don’t get me wrong, I am aware that some individuals are in fact illiterate and in no way am I trying to make a joke of those circumstances. Rather, I am highlighting that our literacy is definitely not something we should take for granted or ‘switch off’ for our selfish convenience . A sign clearly states ‘keep this room clean’ and yet many people chose to reside in Oppositeville, Population:completely lackadaisical. If ever there was a reason to SMH this would be one of them. Of course this could never be the only example of such disregard for clear signs and one’s environment, so let’s move along.

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This sign says ‘Place Umbrellas Here’ but when I looked in, it was full of garbage. Since some people had filled the umbrella holder with their garbage, I was forced to walk around with my wet umbrella as it dripped behind me leaving a trail of water droplets as if it were a re-enactment of Hansel and Gretel… SMH

All it would have taken was for one person to drop a piece of paper and in no time it became a dustbin. If only my bank account could follow suit and multiply the little money I would deposit ever so often.


#financialgoals #growbabygrow #mommaneedsanewpairofshoes #maybe2ifitsBOGO

Many signs around us are slowly turning into amber lights and so although we see them and we know what they really mean we choose to ignore, just as we speed up when we all know that amber really means slow down and proceed carefully. Unless of course you’re a true true Trinidadian (see picture below) .

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Now, I’ve saved the best for last and even now, to the end of my rant, I admit that even I have fallen short of fulfilling this simple request. DRUMROLL PLEASE…..

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Apparently it’s not enough to use one of the following, more appropriate alternatives:

  • Don’t touch vents
  • Doh touch d vents
  • Do not adjust
  • Refrain from touching vents etc.

CAUTION!!! Heavy Sarcasm Ahead

This maxi driver was clearly tired of saying the same thing. He was probably tired of seeing hands stretching above only to realise that they weren’t in fact reaching for the bell and he had had it with replacing vents which are so easily broken by the Hulks that walk among us.  He took matters into his own hands, walked up to the ‘Sign printing for Maxis’ shop and said something like this, “Hello good day. I’m tired of people touching the vents and so under each vent can you please write the words ‘please don’t *insert pseudo expletive here* touch vents’? with three exclamation marks please and thank you”. Unfortunately for him, I don’t think it would have had any greater effect than other popular alternatives and I am indeed speaking from personal defiance.

Why don’t we read, interpret and conform? Why is it so hard to follow simple rules and instructions? Why do we as Trinbagonians choose illiteracy? It’s about time for us to bottle some of the national pride we conveniently adopt on one of our many national holidays so in times like these we can release an ounce of national pride as well as concern for others, just enough to be consciously literate in doing something that will benefit us all in whatever way. I would therefore suggest that you remove the term ‘selectively literate’ from your social resume and stop making it something to boast about.

Mixed Signals

 

img-20160830-wa0013_liWe are all too familiar with mixed signals, sometimes much to our detriment, embarrassment and social suicide. From the most trivial ‘Is that person waving at me or someone behind me?’ to the more gut wrenching ‘Does he like me or does he like me like me?’ Let’s face it, regrettably, mixed signals and awkward situations are things we cannot seem to escape so we learn to live with them. Given that nice introduction and all, I would like someone to explain to me the situation that is happening in the picture above.

*dramatic pause for a moment of deep reflection and contemplation on life*

So…..will the real Slim Shady please stand up? (if she don’t catch that reference she too young for you bro, RUN!!) Ok ok but seriously, I could not help but laugh when I saw this ‘corrected’ error because of the random thoughts and questions that ran through my mind.

  • These two items aren’t even remotely related in terms of packaging. Hmm very suspicious.
  • Is this an exotic hybrid of sweet peppers? Fresh, goat sweet peppers…yum!
  • Is this sweet peppers or fresh goat? Can I use a lifeline please?  I’d like to ask the audience….jk we can all see that it’s clearly fresh goat.
  • Why wasn’t your hand placement higher so as to facilitate the appropriate correction of this error?
  • Ripping off the old label would have meant redoing the entire plastic wrap so lemme just slip this here real quick. Haters will say it’s laziness but we all know it’s called being ‘thrifty’ because all of a sudden you do care about saving your employers even more money than they already make.
  • Wonder what else they mixed up the labels on? #boycottoverpricedgroceries #babylonsystem #whosayhomegarden
  • Etc. etc because we all know I’m an overthinker

It’s not that I care that much about grocery store labels but if I didn’t care then what would I blog about right? Take a look at the next image.

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Which came first, the pancake or the sausage? Some may argue that animals were created first but I bet they’ve been having pancakes in heaven’s breakfast buffet since forever. Anyway, did this sausage not have a particular name before the invention of pancakes? If the word ‘pancake’ is an adjective in this scenario then I am quite perplexed. Is the pancake describing the batter used to cover the hotdog? Is it describing the type of sausages often eaten with pancakes? I NEED ANSWERS!!! This screams mixed signal and quite frankly I think they were doing a great job with the name corn dogs (maybe those originated in China #nochill).

Finally, allow me to draw reference to another example in which I was also very confused because whereas there was no question as to the product displayed, the prices were all different.

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Now, I would have liked someone to explain to me this manner of foolery as all three brushes had a different price. You can’t see the price on the last one but I promise you it was different and they clearly are all the same #76307 face brush. I was unable to count the bristles to see if perhaps some had more and if that would account for the variety in price. If I were to use a very accurate comparison I would say that the pricing gun is our consciences and the brush is ourselves. Some days I look at myself and I’m like YES!!! I am a studio master! *see label on packaging* I see a banging body, great hair and a cute, radiant smile that’s just as shiny as the silver part of the brush and I know to myself that I’m worth a whopping $31.95. Other times I feel hideous and I don’t look in the mirror for fear that it may shatter and ain’t nobody got time to clean broken glass when you’re busy crying over spilled milk right? On these days when my bristles are ruffled and I’m exhausted, my market value is reduced to $29.50. Granted the evident exaggeration, I know I’m not alone in this fight. I see you over there, you personification of a #76307 CALA face brush. We even give our own selves mixed signals, do you love me self or do you not?

Lesson time kiddies! There are many instances in which mixed signals drive us insane because we don’t like the uneasiness of uncertainty. Trivial issues pass quickly but in instances that have greater implications and require a bit more thought then my advice to you is to relax, clear your mind, be positive and know that everything will work out in due time….. or will it? See what I did there? #mixedsignal #plot twist. Just kidding! Keep your chin up and keep going because things will all get clearer soon enough!!!

Spelling duz nut matter…part tree (3)

I once knew someone from Cuba who spent a great deal of time thinking that garden slaw was really written as ‘garden’s law’.Given the fact that English would not have been her first language, we can safely say that it’s a mistake which can be excused and laughed off even a few years later. In these cases of overlap with foreign languages we tend to be more understanding so I was really taken aback when I stumbled upon the following sign a few weeks ago. Funny enough, the picture I’m about to draw reference to is also slaw related hmmm…. very suspicious indeed *insert out of context reference to Illuminati conspiracy theory here*.

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Firstly, I would like to know why the ‘&’ sign is imitating a one legged dollar sign, but as you will soon realise, this is the least of our worries. I was then tempted to give this blog the title of ‘Artistic Representation of a Dumb Blonde’ but my conscience stepped in somewhere to remind me of a few words and phrases such as care,morals, tact and of course the need to always be polite so as not to offend.

download-2However, my biggest concern is that I would like to know from whence cometh the spelling ‘coldslaw’. It is slaw and it is cold so why not right? Wrong! Even the pronunciation of that ‘d’ is highly unnatural,  (say it with me slowly….. colllDslaw, now laugh at how retarded you sound having said it more than once) it just takes too much effort and if it’s one thing we specialise in here in Trinidad and Tobago is using the least effort possible. Can I get an amen?

  • Paving roads?… least effort possible
  • Giving back pay…least effort possible
  • Any government related business….least effort possible
  • Customer service…..ERROR 404: NO EFFORT WHATSOEVER

Also, is that spelling of barbeque (BABEcue) supposed to be some sort of sick reference to the pig in the movie Babe? because…. #bbqpork #bbqpigtail #dohsaydat. If not then what is so great about it for it to be called not just BABEcue but ‘special BABEcue’ hmmmm. Now, being the person that I am, I purposefully passed back a few days later to see if there was anything special on the menu and by anything special I mean any incorrectly spelt words. I was not disappointed; see for yourselves.

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Well, well, well, what do we have here? There was absolutely no indication that this was a Chinese restaurant and yet they are serving ‘butterfly BARKED chicken’. hhahahahaha Then they want to say that Chinee people don’t sell dog but when you look at the sign, survey says…… BARKED! Who let the dogs out?? Definitely not these people because apparently they were on the menu that day lol.

Or maybe this is just a long lost nursery rhyme that we never learnt, because if the cow could jump over the moon and the dish could run away with the spoon then who’s to say that the butterfly can’t bark the word chicken or that chicken can’t be butterfly barked? Absolutely no one, but have no fear because if your taste buds have yet to acquire the taste for man’s best friend you can always have the BABEcue special for $25. It changed from special babecue to babecue special, kudos for the variation in word order now work on that spelling. Needless to say, I won’t be able to blog about these things if everyone spelt every word correctly, if everyone took those apparently long and excruciatingly painful 60 seconds to simply review and correct their signs before putting them on display. Thank you to all my unsuspecting providers of blogging material.

Stay tuned for part four of this series!

They will know you by your…. jewellery?

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Yet another request came in for a blog post, this time from overseas. For those who are unable to read the text it says:

Show your faith with religious jewelry. Easter Sunday March 27th.

I’ve been putting this one off for a while but I’ve finally beaten procrastination so here goes. Believe it or not it’s still Easter and so this post is quite appropriate. One day on my way home from work I fought the great fight to keep my eyes open as I was determined not to endure the embarrassment and hassle of missing my stop or being caught with my mouth wide open. In between sleep and wake I heard an ad on the radio encouraging consumers to get ready for Easter by taking advantage of the great sales to get their flip flops and have the cooler ready for that trip to the beach. Using those standards, I would have been considered well underprepared for Easter. Furthermore, there was always an enthusiastic conversation filled with well informed opinions of where to get the ‘bess’ hot cross buns. Comments would range from ‘nah their own too dry’ to ‘hmm dem duz rel minge on the icing’ and of course we can’t exclude the ‘they rel expensive, I should try to make my own ting home’. While there is nothing wrong in all of this, we must know how to strike a balance.

As I looked at the picture above all these thoughts came to mind and I couldn’t help but join that group of ‘holiday haters’ even if temporarily. We all know someone that boasts of membership to this group, those who refuse to indulge in the highly consumerized nature of celebrations such as Mother’s day, Valentine’s day and even Christmas.  I am not imposing my religious views on anyone, which is why I highlighted Mother’s day and Valentine’s day but we can all agree that consumerism is at times an all too powerful driving force in society.

Mother’s day seems to overcompensate for all other days of the year with extravagant purchases being made. Valentine’s day is a competition among lovers to be the best and show the most expensive, outward sign of an often disproportionate and superficial inward disposition of love. Easter is now about bunnies, parades, beach limes and apparently religiously themed jewellery to show your faith, the same faith that you may not even be practising *sips tea*. Acknowledging my exaggeration and counting on the goodwill of several individuals it may not be as bad as it seems but we can admit that many people have things upside-down. Unfortunately, this superficiality trickles into our everyday lives. How many times today have you thought about those things you ‘NEED’ which you know are really just wants. I too am guilty of this and I strive to refocus ever so often so just remember that in the end what they will really know you by is your LOVE.

 

Debilitating Uncontrolled Memory Breach (D.U.M.B)

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I am not a medical doctor nor do I have any experience in this field. I may also be in that one percent of the population who has never watched an episode of Grey’s Anatomy so help me God. However, I must say that due to my recent investigations and observation I am of the firm belief that many individuals suffer from an infectious disease which I have coined as D.U.M.B, that is, Debilitating Uncontrolled Memory Breach. Listen to me! Every evening I behold National Geographic coming to life as I witness the Safari of City Gate and the stampede of homo sapiens raging into what can only be perceived as red striped transportation chambers.

This comparison may not be exactly accurate but in a way it appears to be a human demonstration of diffusion as particles move from an area of high concentration (tightly packed group of homo sapiens) to one of low concentration (the luxurious and spacious comfort of air conditioned maxis). I have managed to capture a rare photo of this phenomenon as you will see below.

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Homo sapiens suffering from D.U.M.B rush into transportation chambers.

*this is not really my picture*

Exactly how does the disease affect an individual?

To be more specific, this disease affects one’s cognitive ability and memory.  Even the simplest instructions are extremely difficult to understand and follow. For example, the individuals seen above, although involuntarily so, are not able to follow the instructions of boarding the transportation chambers (aka vehicles) in an orderly manner as the sign suggests although it occupies a permanent and highly visible spot.

Cause 

I have yet to fully understand this disease but I am quite aware of it’s highly contagious nature due to how widespread it has become in our society. I would say that it is definitely airborne. Each day I am reminded of this sad reality when I come in contact with dumb people….sorry, people who suffer from D.U.M.B, and I try to stay far away for fear of catching it myself.

Symptoms

The following are the main symptoms:

  • Inability to follow simple instructions
  • Forgetfulness
  • Low grades
  • Repeatedly making stupid and hasty decisions
  • Constant feeling of being spaced out

 Detection

The problem with detection is that people who suffer with this disease are likely to doubt that fact even in the face of the evident proof that lies in testimonies from coworkers, friends and loved ones as well as their own actions. We can only hope that many more will come to accept that they are suffering from this disease so they can get the help they so desperately need.

When should you see a doctor? 

If you have concerns after reading this you should see a doctor if you experience any of the following as you would be in or near to the chronic stages of D.U.M.B:

  • Repeatedly being called names associated with a lack of intelligence
  • Hearing comments such as ‘do you understand the words that are comin outta my mouth?’,’ ‘think a bit more’ and ‘do you even have a brain?’
  • You are unable to control the urge to make a stupid decision that you know you will regret
  • You firmly believe that you are never wrong
  • Your IQ is a negative value
  • You are completely unable to efficiently follow any instruction given
  • You pull doors that say push and vice versa

Treatment options 

Prevention is surely better than cure and in this case where the only cure seems to be a dose of common sense then we are certainly doomed because as the familiar saying goes, ‘common sense just ain’t so common’. However, if you already have the disease I recommend that you try thinking before you speak and act. Additionally you ought to read more, maybe start with the series of books entitled  ‘………… For Dummies’.

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This driver has the right idea and is taking a proactive approach.

A lot of research is being done currently with the hope of eradicating this horrible disease. One dollar will be donated to the cause each time you share, comment or like this post.

All up in my Kool-aid

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Ok let’s play a quick game. From the picture on the left, can you see my left arm? Can you see the other passengers right arm? The answers for these questions are no and yes respectively. This was my predicament one morning on my way to work. ‘Buh why this woman hada be all up in my grill tho?’ I thought to myself as I cringed uncomfortably in my seat. I went into a deep state of reflection. Is it that she’s blissfully unaware of how much space she’s actually occupying? Is the passenger next to her so big that she has no choice but to occupy her space and half of mine? Maybe it has nothing to do with her. What if this car is just too small to ‘wuk taxi’ in our Caribbean island which is now unfortunately famous for this increase in obesity hmm well big things popping (pun intended). We rel GT, no not ‘get through’ rather ‘getting thick’.

There’s also the likely possibility that she couldn’t care less because judging from the looks of it, the content of the newspaper was deemed more interesting. More interesting than making herself a bit smaller so we could have all had a comfortable ride. So there I was paying $5 to be crushed when I can do that for free every evening in City Gate while trying to get a maxi to go home (AC please). This is no easy thing to swallow in a recession, my FIVE dollars for this half ah seat #whatdjail.

In addition, not only is she making my left arm temporarily unavailable and squeezing me into the car door but her hand is positioned on top of my handbag which is on MY lap. A lil more again and she would have sat on top of me. Well that would have truly been the cherry on top of this sundae. I am amazed that I was so skilled to be able to secretly take these two pictures, with the phone on silent of course after learning from many embarrassing shutter sound sell out moments *shudders*. I still admit that it did take me a few tries but all in the name of blogging.

LESSON TIME!! Sometimes we tend to be this lady and we make those around us uncomfortable and sometimes even crush them, metaphorically of course, we crush their spirit by what we do/say or even what we don’t do/say. There are a number of reasons as well, maybe we are unaware of how big we really are (our egos) or we are the ones being pushed on by another and so sometimes even without wanting to we can take it out on someone else or we are busy reading the newspapers (i.e we are too wrapped up in our concerns, feelings and thoughts to consider others) Which category do you usually fall into? Remember that just like you each person is fighting a battle, each person has a destination to reach that may differ from yours and each person is paying a price (to which $5 could never compare) so sometimes the least you can do is step outside yourself, and go out of your way to make them comfortable. Then the least you could have done may be the most that someone else has ever received and this can make a huge difference.

Spelling duz nut matter… part too (2)

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The moment we have all been waiting for, this is part two of the ‘Spelling duz nut matter’ series. This one is special because it was sent to me by one my friends (thanks Mich) so I’m glad to see that people do take an interest in my blog. Moving along… I mentioned in one of my earlier photo opinion posts that Trinis are known for not reading instructions and this sign of rules is no exception. Maybe this is the reason why we are so bad at giving directions, because we can’t even follow simple instructions :/

See video: Taking directions from a Trini

Please draw your eyes to the third ‘NO’ which states that there should be no picknicking  or coolers allowed around the pool area and as I finish this sentence the red squiggly line has already appeared to identify and signal the culprit.

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Because what exactly is picKnicking? It amazes me that someone would have invested time into designing this, it would have been sent to print, placed in its current location and proudly reviewed by those in charge after which many visitors would have passed by it. So from its inception to now why has this spelling gone unnoticed? Maybe we are so used to how it is actually spelt that we don’t even notice. Or do they know and are just too lazy to print a new sign? (see relevant photo opinion post Slow down) Well I am drawing attention to it NOW once and for all. The sign is being covered by leaves, whether or not this is part of the whole natural ambience and design or just neglect by the groundsmen I don’t know, the white letters are turning brown to slowly camouflage with the already green background of the sign and by extension the surroundings. I would say it has served its time and therefore it should not be a problem to have a new one done with the correct spelling.

Another message for management is that they have no need to worry  about persons not adhering to such as this activity technically does not exist. Lawyers benefit a lot from similar technicalities and if I were bold enough I would toat the biggest picnic basket I could find and lay out my nicest blanket and if I were reprimanded I would smile and lift my sign that would read, ‘Do not disturb, currently picnicking not to be confused with picknicking. Kindly refer to the list of rules posted. Thank you. By my management.’ However I have yet to master this level of bravery and fearlessness so I’ll stick to blogging.

So we’re back to square one of asking ourselves if spelling really does matter and if so then to what extent. Surely on legal documents accurate spelling is a must but take a look at the linguistic masterpiece below and you will find that it may not be such a big deal in other instances.

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With or without the extra ‘b’ we all know what it is and this would hardly likely affect our decision of whether or not to purchase food here. Especially with the added bonus of the smiley reassuring you of just how tasty it is. So decide for yourself how important spelling is but for the sake of us all, in public places that require longstanding signs such as the first example, ensure that your sign has accurate spelling please and thank you.

By management.

Is ah rankin’ ting

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Unless you are living under a rock, you would know of the brawl that took place recently between local ‘celebrities’ Ian Alleyne and Inspector Alexander. Staying true to our Trini culture, we have successfully managed to maximise on this incident turning it into a comedic masterpiece. This ranges from jokes, memes, videos, cartoons and even merchandise. Language is never out of the loop and as a passion of mine I have to admit that my favourite result is the new slang that has emerged i.e. “Is ah rankin’ ting?’ or ‘Is ah rankin’ ting with you or wha?’ It is so appropriate, so useful, so direct and I love it. How would you even begin to explain this phrase to a foreigner? Given the complexity of the relationship of the two men involved, the easily forgotten but more important case of alleged domestic abuse and of course the phrase itself, well you’d have your work cut out for you.

Anyway, moving right along. One morning as I arrived to work, dropped my things, counted down the days to vacation, grumbled at my having to be there and so early ‘to boot’ I then decided to make a cup of coffee. Among the choices was a box with packets of hot chocolate mix. I decided to read the box and was hit with two pictures for my next photo opinion post. Voilà!

Firstly, the manufacturers of this product wish to make it clear that they in fact use real milk  and I thought to myself if there was even such a thing as fake milk. As far as I know the only and without a doubt the coolest fake milk was the one that you fed your doll when you were younger; the one that ‘disappeared’ as you tipped the bottle over. *nostalgic childhood memory* If that is not enough to convince you then rest assured that there’s more because this REAL milk comes from Wisconsin. Excuse my ignorance but I would feel just as comfortable even if I didn’t know which country the milk came from.

By the time I read what is seen in the second picture I really had to blurt out a “buh what d jail is this, is a rankin’ ting with you or wha *brand that I dare not mention in order to protect myself*” They so boldface and boastful that they feel the need to say they have 4 more than Nestle’s box. I wonder if that means they have 10 for the price of the same 6 which Nestle offers although I highly doubt it. Talk bout marketing strategy and advertising! If you are not convinced by now then you are probably an advocate for brand loyalty, the same brand loyalty that compels us to buss our bank accounts to purchase brand name products when other brands work just as well or even better.

Well, if I walked around with the confidence and conviction of this box I would be invisible, untouchable and maybe even a bit delusional but it’s a good point to consider. As much as I joke around, I also reflect so bare with me a while longer. It may be a far fetched comparison but sometimes we try to be this box in order to stand out and appear more attractive to others but there’s a limit. As upright individuals, we ought to be just and see ourselves as we truly are and also treat others as they ought to be treated. I believe that on a deeper level this phrase (is ah ranking ting with you?) arose from the virtue of justice which seems to be lacking these days. What gives you privileges that I will never have? Why am I looked down upon? etc etc. Therefore, while it is used as a joke in informal settings there may be more to it at times. The next time the phrase is hurled at you, laugh it off and have a quick comeback but also think objectively, ‘Am I truly being just?’

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