Tag Archives: opinion

I don't even like fish!
I don’t even like fish!

I have previously said, in a post somewhere on my blog, that I am not a fan of fish. I don’t like the smell, look and taste of it. I have also said that I love food and that I love trying new foods. With that being said, great food excites me! It really does (all food, for me, can be an aphrodisiac).

This past weekend, I was disconnected from the internet and all forms of social media and visited some family members out of town. One such relative was an older brother of mine that I grew up with. This would have been the first time in years that we would be under the same roof for an extended period of time. *let’s break for necessary details here*

This brother is the brother that has always tried to get me to eat the things he eats and I somehow always give them a taste and end up liking them. It is either we have very similar tastes in food or he just knows what I would like to taste in food.

*now we can resume* So being a good big brother, he got up Sunday morning and started making breakfast. My typical breakfast would contain ‘breakfasty’ foods like eggs, bread, sausages, and other delights. My brother got up and made the breakfast he was feeling for since he doesn’t “really eat meat anymore.” He proceeded to steam some fishes!

Now don’t get me wrong. I was not completely surprised because I saw the large fishes and I could smell them as well. I just thought they were for dinner, which I would not have been around for. Fish is not really breakfast food, especially not steamed fish.

Anyway, the plate came before me and I was a little taken aback. Here was this big, whole fish – head-on and swimming in sauce, looking at me. Grotesque! I decided that because I didn’t want to go to the kitchen and make breakfast myself, or go without breakfast, I would give it a try (after all, he did thinly slice ockras into it).

IT WAS DELICIOUS! Granted my mind was acting all kinds of ways for me to feel bad but my stomach was fine. IT TASTED GREAT! And now I am just feeling for more fish. This is so unlike me. Or maybe I was missing out on something for years.

 

*PS there are only 3 times I have tried fish and loved it and this brother was involved in two of those times (roasted and steamed fish).

 

Are there any foods you’ve tried that surprised you by how good they are? Share them with me.

 

Advertisements

Almost Over is Not the End

Its July (‘Finally!’ I can hear some people say) and more than half of 2017 is in the bag.

I took a moment and looked at the things I had hoped to accomplish by this time and some of them I have yet to and others seem that they will not be accomplished. A part of me feels, or I should say felt, a little disappointed that after trying my hand at setting S.M.A.R.T. Goals I may not achieve  them all.

Just this morning, my advice to a friend was that she needed to examine a particular situation as if she was not directly involved in it, to give it a fair judgement. That’s what I needed to do (take your own advice nuh sista!). As it turns out, being rue to self, I had set AMBITIOUS goals (I apparently changed the meaning of A in SMART Goals). The goals I had set for the time-frame I had set them for were quite ambitious in that any once could have told me that they were either too heavy or just too much for me to take on alone especially in the time I had set out to do so.

I am not disappointed in setting goals beyond what I can readily attain. I am, however, disappointed in the fact that somethings will have to be rescheduled. I believe they are all of equal importance and choosing which to delay is hard. It is a good thing I find solace in knowing that my journey is not the same as the next person’s I can’t compare my life to theirs. My life has to be compared with itself over a period of time. Without a doubt I can see growth and progress. So while half the year is behind me I am not behind in meeting goals and REALISTIC goals and targets

If you are reading this and you too have realised that some goals o targets for this year will not be met, don’t begin to beat yourself up about it. Step out of the situation and think about how you can shuffle it to move forward. Remember there is no blueprint for this thing. We are all trying to figure it out too.

There is no wrong or right way to pace your life.

What are some of your goals or targets for this year?

How I see it…PROTEIN CHOICES

Last month (October 18 & 23 2013) two caricatures were published in the Jamaica Observer that somehow were saying what I was observing and thinking, just in a more extreme/radical way.

The dominant source of protein from meats in Jamaica is (I am now tempted to say ‘was’) chicken. For the last few years I have watched the price of chicken climb to the sky. In more recent months we have seen the price skyrocket to the point where chicken is now way too expensive for the masses to buy as they would AND chicken back (the oh-so necessary) is now going through a shortage!

Chicken was reasonably affordable at one point and families could enjoy the meat kind a few times a week. Now that is not so possible. To add insult to injury, our beloved Minister of Agriculture, the Hon. Roger Clarke, made a statement that we need to find alternatives to chicken such as ox tail and beef!

Ox tail and Beef!?!?

This man seems to be so out of touch with the realities Jamaicans face. Chicken and the two aforementioned meats are nowhere in the same price range per pound. Chicken is eaten by the masses not just because of its versatility but also its price! Please tell me HOW are Jamaicans to afford ox tail and beef in these hard times when 1. Chicken back short! and 2. We can’t even afford chicken any more.

First this:image

 

Then this:

image

 

I am not suggesting that we will be looking in the direction of wild animal as such, for our meat alternatives to complete our meals. We can explore the following:

  • Start eating more of what we haven’t consumed much of. This is tricky though. It has to be affordable and in good supply (don’t want after two months we are back at square 1…searching for meat!)
  • Drop the price for other meat kinds while the chicken drought passes (this goes against the laws of business and marketing)
  • Lets go Green! When last have you challenged yourself to go without meat? Lets eat up the herbs and the greens man! Some good callaloo you want!

The other day I was just realising how not just humans suffer from this shortage of chicken and chicken back. I was cooking dinner and my dad told me to cook extra so the dog and our two cats could have something to eat (No! My pets do not eat those fancy things you see in pet commercials). Now I’m thinking to myself (as I always do) about the cost of the food and the quality of labour that had to go into providing it then preparing it and MI GRIEVE! Mi grieve to know say good food that is so expensive has to be given to the animals. In a former life, they had food to stone each other with but while the IMF is still real in Jamaica, that is just a shadow of a past life.

I love my pets, though they make me cuss sometimes, but my mind couldn’t help but think: ‘With the way things are economically, it is hard to prepare food that you worked so hard to provide and having to think about food for your pets as well! So, my solution is that in such times, DO NOT keep pets that cannot CONTRIBUTE TO DINNER!’

Big up all farmers out there!

How I see it….EDUCATION

It’s no secret that the entire world is still feeling the discomfort of the financial crisis that struck a few years ago. So many things have seemingly gone wrong and continue to go wrong in every country around the world. I like to think that just as how the planet goes through environmental changes every couple billion years or so, human beings have to undergo changes as well.

Some of those changes go by unnoticed until what we are used to and what is, show stark differences. (If you are weird like I am, you can observe the length of the second toe on older persons and compare them to the length of those of persons born 1988 and forward). Some changes are very obvious because they make us uncomfortable as they are happening. The current change in our way of thinking that has been forced on us by this crisis is one such situation.

We have to change the way we look at education for our futures.

When I was growing up, I thought that going all the way on the educational ladder would mean that a comfortable life would be waiting for me to step into it at the end of the day. Oh boy was I wrong! Growing up I had read about the Great Depression of the 1980s but everything I read glossed over the gravity of the situation and never in a million years, as a child, did I think that I something like that would happen again (even though I learned that history has a way of repeating itself).

Now I feel the need to be brutally honest with young people still in the school ranks. I don’t want them to be as naive as I was and then get a rude awakening. EDUCATION is NOT the ANSWER!

First of all, I am not discrediting the value of a good education. I do support persons who pursue it but this is how I see it:

  1. What’s the point in paying hundreds of thousands of dollars to the government/ a private entity for tertiary education when:
    1. You might just end up in debt.
    2. The odds of you remaining unemployed are unbelievably high.
    3. If you do get a job, it may not be what you are qualified for nor pay what you should be earning with a degree.
    4. At the end of the day, you have all this qualification on paper that cost you an arm and a leg and you cannot get a job that is worth anything.

Unemployment in Jamaica is at a dismal level and to be out of a job means that more than likely you will be like that for a very long time. The truth of the matter is that there are NO JOBS in Jamaica and our schoolers need to know this. The jobs that many of them want are being held on to “for dear life” by the older persons already in those positions and if the positions do open up, believe me, a replacement has already been decided on.

Of course, I must commend the Jamaican government for doing their part in seeking to secure employment for as many Jamaicans as possible. Some of these jobs are being provided locally and others are being provided internationally. This sounds like GREAT NEWS doesn’t it? Yes, but not for the group of people I am most concerned about.

Situation: See, the government is procuring jobs that require Masons, Carpenters, Welders, Housekeepers, Cooks, Waiters, Fruit Harvesters and the like.

Problem: A vast majority of the persons in tertiary institutions are not paying their ‘blood-sweat-and-tears’ money to learn how to be any of the above. With the exclusion of the doctors and lawyers in the making, a great deal of tertiary students are studying something in management, the arts, social sciences and (not so sure anymore) education.

Problem Made Worse:

  • There is this ‘new school’ of entrepreneurship being preached left right and centre in Jamaica. Get this! Not everybody can be an entrepreneur! No! What if we all had the ability and mind for it? The market would be absorbed into competitors and other entrepreneurs. Who would you market and sell your goods and services to? The competitor?
  • Jobs being advertised are not for graduates. Having spent all your twenty-little bit of years moving up through the school system and getting an education, you see the perfect job that you KNOW you can more than manage but guess what? The employers require 2, 3 or 5 years experience in a similar role!!! Where on earth do they expect you to get that experience when:
    • You had spent all your life in school;
    • No company wants to employ you so you can gain that experience!

Do these people think experience ‘sell a shop’ or you can pick it up at the roadside? No matter how you beg a company to employ you so you can get the experience and even go the extra mile of stating that they need not pay you, they always fork out the generic response: “Well that’s a very generous offer there [INSERT NAME HERE], but as I had said before we don’t have anything at the moment. We will be sure though to keep your resume on file for when something opens up!” DON’T HOLD YOUR BREATH FOR A CALL BACK!

  • This is probably the least nonsensical advice you’ll get from the already employed and content: Look for jobs outside of Jamaica. This isn’t too bad especially if the jobs are within CARICOM. If they are not, then you need the added trouble of getting yourself an up to date passport and a visa.

Solution: If at any point you want to live and make something that can come close to being called money then…

  • Be prepared to work several jobs.
  • ONLY get a tertiary education if you feel that it is an absolute must! At the end of the degree you may just feel like you could have gained all that knowledge with a good internet connection and for a lot less money.
  • As cliché as it may sound: GET SKILLS! There is nothing wrong with wanting to be a bank manager but do not let that be the only thing you know how to do! The skills you choose to gain can complement your area of study or be a complete contrast; it’s up to you! I have two friends who are trained bartenders. One has a degree in Tourism Management and the other in Law. (Women will never stop doing their hair. Learn how to do it and make some residual income or save yourself money by no longer going to a hairdresser)
  • Be ‘even up’, ‘nuff’, kiss ass! It may not sound like what you want to hear so let me phrase it differently; Network aggressively, network broadly and network all the time.
  • Volunteer as much as you can. Volunteering to help the homeless and needy is great but that’s not the kind I’m talking. Volunteer in the field that you are passionate about and could see yourself working in. Make yourself an intern somewhere (this takes lots of ‘stick-to-it-ivness’).
  • Believe it or not, you start making the future you from high school. Make wise choices from early, pay attention, ask questions, learn more. The better the foundation you have from early, the easier it seems to become. (for me to explain why I used the word ‘seems’ would be another blog post on practise and how it affects perception)

By no means are these the only solutions that are out there.

This is just my advice to those still in school. I do not foresee the financial and economic situation in Jamaica getting better for years and as such I am saying this for the benefit of somebody.

How I wish somebody had sat me down as a child and been this frank with me. The world was much too pretty of a place in my head.

 

 

 

 

 

Official Footer

Isn’t he also required to work….?

While browsing through a Bajan newspaper that was a few days old, I stumbled upon a Relationship Responsibility 101 article that in essence advocates the 50/50 rule of responsibility. I was, however, drawn to the bold pop out text below and the picture that was placed above it in the article. image

image

Isn’t he also required to work to ensure that his wife stays interested in him….? THAT! That half of the question and the photograph (particularly the man) had me thinking along a whole different line. This is open for discussion and I would love your responses and takes on the matter!

Follow my thoughts along this route…..what if the two individuals above met each other like that but before they met, one was skimmer and the other was more muscular and fit………..?

On the one hand, many women meet men while they themselves are in one physical state and make changes they deem necessary to keep their partners interested. Similarly, women meet their partners at times when they may not have been ‘physically’ at their best and become determined to let their partner know that that is not who they are.

I find that men, on the other hand, may meet their partners when they are ‘physically’ not at their best but do nothing about it by pulling on the lazy-cards of:

  • If you can’t love me for who I am, then why love me at all?
  • If you met me like that and loved me, why change it?

I am very much aware of the fact that these lazy-cards are drawn on by both genders. I just want to know two things:

  1. Why is so easy to become complacent with one’s appearance once in a relationship?
  2. Would you not do anything about your physical appearance because your partner met and fell in love with you while you were not at your best?