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II

Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

A Valentine Special

Friends – The continuation

O

A Story of Dreams, Love and Passion

By Maureen Rampertab livia smiled as she read the text, her friend, Nikhil staying in touch with her as promised, sometimes calling after midnight not allowing her to sleep. But as the years went by and he rose to greater heights in academics and social life, the calls, texts and gifts became less. It was something in a small corner of her heart Olivia had been afraid of but she took it in good stride as she focused on her studies. After graduating from high school she had begun teaching, a stepping stone to greater achievements in life. She did not have to sell at the roadside stall any more nor did her mother.Success from years of sacrifices had brought changes that made life better. She had blossomed from her sweet-16 prettiness to a beautiful, young woman with a body, slim and defined, a warm personality and intelligent mind. The combination of beauty and brains put aces in her hands and she must know how to play her cards so her dreams could become a reality. She could have moved to a middle class, developed neighbourhood but she chose not to leave but to stay and mentor young girls. It was one of the reasons she chose to begin her career as a teacher. In her quiet, private moments she would think of her friend, not having heard from him in a while. It would soon be five years since he had left and she wondered: “Would he come to see me or would he forget?” The bud in her heart had slowly blossomed over the years and loving him, the way she did she held secret, not sure if he could ever be hers. “I am yours though,” she had whispered to his picture in her dresser, “I am yours.” One late night, Olivia was jolted out of her sleep by a loud noise that sounded like a gunshot. She ran out of her bedroom as her brother exited his. “What was that?” she asked, scared. Criminal elements were always intruding in the area, much to the fear and annoyance of the residents. Her brother peered cautiously through the window and said “There’s a black Prado out there and someone’s leaning on the hood, like he’s hurt.” “Who is it?” “I don’t know, I’d better call the police.” As he dialed, Olivia heard a voice distinctly called her name. She froze, recognising the voice and looking through the window, she cried out. “Oh my God, it’s him! It’s Nikhil!” She opened the door and ran outside in her sleepwear before anyone could stop her. “Nikhil,” she cried, holding him, “What happened?” “Olivia,” he gasped in pain, “I came to see you,” and he collapsed. He was bleeding from a bullet wound after an attempted robbery by two men on a bike. A police patrol was immediately on the scene and they took him to the hospital. She waited, trembling as they rushed him into the emergency unit, praying in her mind for his survival. After what seemed an eternity, one of the doctors came out and told her the bullet did not cause severe damage and he was stable. “Oh thank you dear God,” she cried softly, deeply relieved. The doctor allowed her in for a few moments to see him. He was sedated and looking at his handsome face that had hung like a portrait in her mind for five years, loving him for every moment of those years, she whispered, “You came to see me, you did not forget me.” His family arrived, their worry, anxiety and anger causing a chaotic scene and she left, afraid of the questions they may ask. She returned in the afternoon but his mother, father, relatives and friends were still there and knowing now was not a good time to see him, she turned to leave when one of the nurses called her, “Olivia, he’s asking for you.” A sudden silence fell on the visitors lounge as everyone turned to look at her, the father, a dark look on his face and the mother with

deep disapproval. “You’re Olivia, the black girl my son went to see when he was shot?” The father’s heavy voice made Olivia almost tremble. She nodded, “Yes” “Why?” his mother asked. “I’m not sure.” “You’re not sure? He went to see you just two days after returning from abroad and you’re not sure why.” The anger in the mother’s voice hit Olivia like sharp stones. “I’m only his friend.” She said quietly. “A friend?” she scoffed scornfully, “Visiting you after midnight in an undeveloped area notorious for criminal elements. If he had gone to visit the girl his father wanted him to marry, this would have never happened.” Olivia turned to go then stopped. She couldn’t let them speak to her with such scorn as though she was unworthy. She should take a stance and speak from a pedestal of strength for who she was-a young, determined woman who rose from the dust of poverty to take an important place in society. She turned back and said in a cordial manner, “Mr. and Mrs. Sawh, I’ve known Nikhil for over five years and all that time we’ve only been friends. I am now an educator, who chose to continue living in a poor area to mentor young girls so they could have good lives. Selfless sacrifices and a passion for what I believe in, no money can buy, it’s priceless. Ask your son why he comes to see me.” She took a deep breath and stood there for a few short moments then walked away, satisfied that she had made her point. She did not go back to the hospital and only spoke to him on the phone. “Why didn’t you come back to see me?” he asked.

“I did but I couldn’t because there was too much tension around.” “I’m really sorry about that.” “I didn’t even know you were back,” she said, “Why did you come to see me so late?” “I was so eager to see you, to give you a surprise.” “Please don’t do that again, I’m still feeling scared from that night.” “Okay but I still have to see you, there’s so much to talk about.” They met in the city for lunch, went for drives at resorts, parks and walks in the gardens, a friendship rekindled but there was something different, a passion they shared held on a leash waiting for something to break that cord of restrain. He had been forbidden to visit her at her home and it was almost three months since that terrible night when he disobeyed that rule. Olivia had just returned from Church when the doorbell buzzed. She opened the door and he was standing there, a worried look on his face. “Nikhil, what are you doing here? What’s wrong?” He walked in and sat down, not saying anything for a while. “Nikhil?” she promted him to speak. He looked at her and sighed deeply, still worried. “My father is putting me under great pressure to get married to a business executive’s daughter.” That statement was like an arrow through her heart and for a long while she couldn’t say anything, just turned and stared through the window to hide the pain in her eyes. “Olivia, what do I do?” She tried to compose herself and said, “I can’t answer that, it’s your decision.” “I know,” he said, passing his hands through his hair in frustration, “It won’t be easy to say ‘no’ to my father but how do I share my life with one woman while I dream of another?” He came close to her and lifting her chin so she was looking him in the eyes, he said in a low voice, emotions like a rising tide. “I’ve been dreaming of her for the past five years, not being able to forget her, anxious always to see her, to hear her voice, to be with her, I can’t lose her now, I want that dream to become real.” Her composure crumbled like waves hitting a sand castle and tears flooded her eyes. Her lips trembled, wanting to say something but she couldn’t. He kissed her, snapping that cord that unleashed all the love and passion held so long in their hearts. “I want you to be mine forever, Olivia and I will make that happen, no matter what.” “I will always be yours,” she said softly. For this poor black girl, there will be fresh roses.


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

III

By Petamber Persaud

‘Fulcrums of Change’ Guyanese writers are ‘fulcrums of change’, never shying away from sensitive issues, questioning the text, publishing their opinions far and wide, inviting greater levels of conversation. That is one reason why Guyanese writers have become a distinctive breed, weathering popular thoughts to bring fresh perspectives to the table. Guyanese writers of African descent were in a way and for a long time lobbying for the recognition of people of African descent. As we move along the period designated ‘International Decade for People of African Descent,’ it is only fitting for us, enjoying the benefits of their labour, to say thanks to some (the list is long) of these courageous writers. At the turn of the twentieth century, a little-know Guyanese, Eric Walrond, was given the distinction to write the ‘Great Negro Book’. Waldron had distinguished himself among a group of prestigious writers, including Marcus Garvey, Claude McKay, Langston Hughes, Arna Bontemps, Zora Neale Hurston, W. E. B. Du Bois, and so was chosen to write the ‘Great Negro Book’. Waldron was at the time (1920s) associated with the Harlem Renaissance, USA, playing a major role in the group’s programme. During this time, he encountered the vilest forms of class and racial prejudice, triggering his most productive literary years. His short stories like ‘On Being Black’, ‘On Being Domestic’ and ‘The Stone Rebounds’ were like fodder to Black consciousness at the time. Later, he was entrusted a greater role in fashioning and changing public attitude when he was made editor to Marcus Garvey’s ‘Negro World’. In 1926, he published a collection of short stories, ‘Tropic Death’, which was highly valued alongside ‘The Quest of the Silver Fleece’ by W. E. B. Du Bois, ‘The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man’ by James W. Johnson and ‘Harlem Shadow’ by Claude McKay. Three years later, after Waldron published his book, another Guyanese – Norman Cameron, this time in Guyana published a significant book, ‘The Evolution of the Negro’, a subject shunned by thinkers on the British colonial portion of the world. (Cameron had three years previously returned from the UK, where he was studying at Cambridge University.) Within a short time of his return to Guyana, Cameron was already making his mark on the literary scene through his work as a writer, educator, mathematician, historian, poet, dramatist, sportsman, cultural activist and social reformer. Back in Guyana (1926) he was more Guyanese than when he left, an identity entrenched by discriminatory treatment in the ‘mother country’. Equipped with a ‘message’, an instrument to research, disseminate and justify, Cameron signalled his intention to stay home and mould a nation, participating in the affairs of his country, giving evidence in British Guiana Constitutional Crisis, and making submission for a new socialist constitution. He also published his views on various forms of government, including

communism and ‘Thoughts on the Making a New Nation’. Well qualified for the task, he was a witness to various stages of nationhood, started in his youth while growing up among living evidence of slavery and feeling the throb of a nation heading towards independence. Although he was a social animal, Cameron declared that ‘cliquism in clubs has never agreed’ with him. That declaration, supported by another statement, ‘mine has been a full life and complex with notable contradictions’, indicated that he was a no-nonsense individual, willing to stand up for his rights and to fight for the rights of other human beings. While Waldron and Cameron were already in the limelight, Ivan Van Sertima was gathering his thoughts to publish his magna opus, ‘They Came Before Columbus: The African Presence in Ancient America’. This was one of those controversial books that stabbed at misconceptions about Africans. Van Sertima knew what he was doing when he set out on that scholarship. “Many people feel a certain kind of happiness when they read my book. A certain kind of shadow lifts. The psyche of blacks is raised. No man who believes his history began with slavery can be a healthy man. If you lift that shadow, you help repair that damage”, he said. Van Sertima found many a loophole in the history of Africans written by the European. Hence, he went about studiously to set the record straight with an avalanche of scholarship and publications. But it was the creative Guyanese writers of African descent that brought the finer points of the discourse to bear through their art as fiction writers. Standing tall among such writers is E. R. Braithwaite with such novels as, ‘To Sir with Love’ (1959), ‘Paid Servant’ (1962), ‘A Kind of Homecoming’ (1962), ‘A Choice of Straws’ (1965), ‘Reluctant Neighbours’ (1972), and ‘Honorary White’ (1975).

These novels portrayed Braithwaite’s poignant exploration of all forms of discrimination, especially social conditions of and racial discrimination against Black people. Braithwaite’s frank and crisp use of language endeared the reader to the issues, catapulting many persons to action, improving their condition, righting wrongs. Mention must be made of Jan Carew, who lived and worked in many places with the singular fixation to right wrongs of discrimination, marginalisation and even gender inequity, fighting the ‘same cause’ by re-writing and righting history. His book of essays, ‘Fulcrums of Change’, has brought elucidation and enlightenment to many. O. R. Dathorne, as a child growing up in a colonial British Guiana, was uncomfortable with the accepted norms of the society that held one man superior over the other. In adulthood, unable to find a proper job in England in congruence with his Ph. D. (English) qualification, Dathorne moved to the African continent. Here he was influential in redefining African literature as one written by Africans as against one written on Africans by non-Africans. Beryl Gilroy was a prolific woman writer, authoring educational books for children to counter ‘[e]urocentric books foisted upon children in order to set their places in the slurry at the base of the pyramid of achievement’. And her adult books, novels and historical fiction were the ‘rewriting of wrongs imposed on the black man by correcting the ills of historical misrepresentation’. Grace Nichols’ writing is a voice of reclamation. ‘Picasso, I Want my Face Back’ please, ‘The Fat Black Woman’s Poems’ giving voice to the Black woman as she tries to be herself in defiance to the dictates of Western values, and ‘Sunris’ ‘reclaiming various strands of her heritage’. And the list goes on, all listing in the balance, all listing in the direction of respect, all listing in the direction of the rights of man. Responses to this author telephone (592) 226-0065 or email: oraltradition2002@yahoo.com

What’s happening: • Coming soon the first reprint of ‘An Introduction to Guyanese Literature’; will be available from the author at the above contacts, Austin’s Book Service (telephone # 226-7350) and at the National Library (telephone #226-2690).


IV

Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

The New Slavery by Joseph Beaumont Review by Anne-Marie Lee-Loy Ryerson University

B

INTRODUCTION

y 1871, the year that The New Slavery was published, slavery had been abolished in the British West Indian colonies for almost 40 years. During that period, some 90,000 indentured labourers had been introduced to British Guiana as a replacement workforce in the wake of freedom for the Black slaves – and as a means of maintaining the hierarchical socio-political structures of colonial society1. Unsurprisingly, indentured labour, a system that, Joseph Beaumont would memorably describe as “rooted upon slavery, grown in its stale soil” would quickly be accused of “emulating its worst abuses”2. Indeed, the earliest attempt to import indentured labour from India to British Guiana ended in scandal and public outcry when anti-slavery advocates’ accusations that the new labour system was really no different from slavery appeared to be substantiated by subsequent governmental inquiry and an excessively high mortality rate amongst the migrants. The scathing reports about the so-called “Gladstone Coolies” brought an abrupt end Anne-Marie Lee-Loy to indentured immigration from India for about six years3. By 1844, however, the Colonial Government bowed to the insistent pleas of the planters for a steady supply of controllable workers – the only type of labour that, the plantocracy insisted, would save the declining sugar industry in the West Indies. Indentured immigration from India was soon followed by indentured immigration from China. During the 1800s, attempts were also made to procure indentured immigrants from locations as diverse as Madeira Portugual, Barbados and the United States, but China and India would quickly become the most significant sources of indentured labour for the West Indian colonies and, more particularly, for British Guiana4. Unlike the first attempt to introduce indentured immigrants to British Guiana, the indentured immigration scheme that emerged in the 1840s was established as a state-controlled rather than private enterprise as a means of ensuring that the abuses inherent under slavery would be avoided. State control was exercised over the way in which the recruitment of the labourers was managed, the labour contract, and by a series of ordinances and regulations that set out the obligations and responsibilities of the labourers and their employers to each other. For example, potential labourers were interviewed prior to embarking on the ships for the colony to ensure that they were migrating of their own free will, while labour contracts spelled out that employers were responsible for ensuring adequate housing and hospital accommodations when necessary. It seemed, on the surface, to be an exemplary labour arrangement -- one in which the desperately poor had the opportunity to better their situations under fair, even generous working conditions, while planters were assured of the steady body of workers necessary for the intensive labour involved in sugar production. Nevertheless, from the very onset, the protections designed to distinguish indentured labour from slavery were undermined in the actual practice of the system; or as one contemporary observer put it: To the superficial observation it would seem, that persons who have been rescued from a state said to be bordering on destitution in their own country, who are provided with free houseroom, regular work and wages when they are in health, and in sickness have the advantages of a hospital, the attendance of a medical man and medicines free of expense, who have moreover a magistrate always at hand to hear their complaints, and a department of officers with the especial duty of securing their good treatment, can have no ground for dissatisfaction. A closer scrutiny, however, would detract much from the apparent value of these advantages, and would show that some of them at least are more nominal than real.5 Although these comments were made specifically with reference to the situation of the indentured labourers once they arrived in British Guiana, the existence of nominal rather than real advantages for the labourers very much characterized all stages of the indenture process. For example, recruitment agents in both India and China, eager to obtain the money that they received per individual recruit, were accused of kidnapping and forcibly containing individuals who were then shipped off to the colonies against their will6. In The New

Slavery, Beaumont reproduces a dramatic report from the Indian newspaper, The Pioneer, which details how a young woman was tricked with an offer for local work and then trapped in a room with other women to be shipped off as indentured labourers to Jamaica. She was released upon the interference of two English ministers but the event triggered a tightening of the laws regulating recruiters in India. In China, the phrase “the sale of pigs” to describe the process by which indentured labourers were recruited vividly captures the dehumanization and commodification of the individuals who were often violently coerced into embarking on the ships for the colonies. While The Pioneer hinted that sexual slavery of women was a dark underside of the recruitment system by noting somewhat obliquely that “Not the least ugly feature in the system is that it appears that young, good-looking women are the class of coolies preferred in ‘Jamaica’”, fears of just such a traffic in women were overtly expressed in China perhaps due to the fact that additional money was paid out to men who brought their wives with them as an incentive for female migration7. Indeed, when the suggestion that such money be allocated was first introduced, the Colonial Office was warned that the “wholesale purchase and shipment of prostitutes” would be the end result8. Reports such as the Agent General of Immigrants in Trinidad’s 1862 Report, which noted that the Chinese men had “for the most part, repudiated the wives whom they picked up at Hong Kong, more with a view of sharing in or appropriating their advance money” seemed to validate these fears9. The recruitment process was also marred by accusations that the indentured labourers were being enticed by misrepresentations and falsehoods about the type of work, wages, the conditions of labour, and even the length of journey upon which they were about to embark. In the colonies, these issues became part of a wide range of complaints that were leveled against the system that can be summarized under three main points: first, the indentured labourers were unfairly subject to criminal prosecution and severe penal punishment were they to be found to breach the terms of their contracts; second, planters were not upholding their obligations under the indentured labour contracts; and third, those entrusted to enforce the laws concerning indenture were biased on behalf of the planters. Indeed, in British Guiana, the law had become so skewed that immigrants who left their plantations to lay complaints with the Immigrant Agent, the colonial administrator who was charged with advocating on their behalf and supervising the indenture system in general, could be arrested and imprisoned on charges of vagrancy, while labourers who carried a sick worker to the hospital without first gaining the permission of estate management to do so might be charged with “willful trespass”10. It was this imbalance of power between worker and employer, coupled with violent intimidation that was often part of the daily interaction between estate management and workers, that led to accusations that indenture was simply a new slavery. Certainly, Beaumont’s description of the indentured labourer’s condition paints a picture of slavery in practice if not in name: Practically an Immigrant is in the hands of the employer to whom he is bound. He cannot leave him; he cannot live without work; he can only get such work and on such terms as the employer chooses to set him; and all these necessities are enforced, not only by the inevitable influence of his isolated and dependent position, but by the terrors of imprisonment and the prospect of losing both labour and wages.11 Some one hundred years later, Cheddi Jagan, the first premier of British Guiana, would make a similar argument when he claimed that the only difference between indentured labour and slavery was that the former substituted “paper chains … for iron chains”12. If indentured labour mimicked slave society in its labour structures and practices, then it should come as no surprise that the new labour system also inherited one of slave society’s deepest fears; namely, the fear of revolution. How do you keep tens of thousands of indentured labourers from rebellion? This was a question that was particularly pertinent in British Guiana, which had received significantly more indentured labourers in the early part of 19th century than either Trinidad or Jamaica. In August 1869, this question became even more pressing when a dispute over wages resulted in a riot and the beating of a deputy manager on Plantation Leonora. Although labour gangs “forsaking work for a long tramp to town” to lodge complaints with the Immigration Agent did not seem to be unusual at this time, the unrest at Leonora was striking for both the sheer numbers involved and for the trickledown effect it seemed to have13. For many members of the plantocracy, the answer to the question of containing such activities on the part of the labourers was simple: increase coercive power to crush the possibility that any revolutionary activity might take hold. Indeed, the immediate response to the

unrest at Leonora was to build up the police force and to make an appeal to the Barbadian commander of forces to ready his troops so that they might quickly come to the assistance of the colonialists in British Guiana if the indentured labourers rose up in a true revolution. There was, however, another response to this question of containment; namely, to hold the plantocracy legally accountable to their obligations and responsibilities as provided for by the laws governing indenture. In doing so, it was claimed that “the interests of the whole colony, and especially . . . the public peace” would be secured14. In 19th century British Guiana, prominent proponents of this latter position included Immigration Agent, James Crosby, one-time stipendiary magistrate, George William Des Voeux, and the author of The New Slavery, Chief Justice, Joseph Beaumont. Beaumont’s term as Chief Justice of British Guiana lasted between 1863 and 1868. He arrived in a colony where the local plantocracy, as represented by the Combined Court and the Court of Policy, was engaged in an overt struggle for power over the labour system with the Colonial Office. Of course, this struggle went back to the abolition of slavery in 1833, followed by the early end of the mandatory apprenticeship system, but it also included more recent attempts by the Colonial Office to maintain and enhance its reputation as an empire that had rid itself of the ugly scourge of slavery – an objective that clashed directly with the plantocracy’s desire to produce the most sugar possible at the least possible cost. This power struggle can be seen in such events as the rejection of the Colonial Office’s request for money to provide salaries for professional stipendiary magistrates, as opposed to magistrates drawn from the plantocracy, and in the Colonial Office’s refusal to allow legislation that appeared to favour the planters15. The Colonial Office reserved the right to make governmental appointment of outsiders to the colony in key roles in the application of the law, including the posts of Governor, Immigration Agent and Chief Justice. In fact, Beaumont was appointed to Chief Justice against the wishes of some of British Guiana’s plantocracy who had, through Governor Francis Hincks, put forward their own, planter-sympathetic nominee for the position.16 These governmental appointments were made to ensure the independent administration of justice thereby protecting the indentured labourers; but it is just such a lack of independence that Beaumont decries in The New Slavery. Specifically, Beaumont points out that although “the judges as well as the magistrates hold their offices at the pleasure of the Sovereign, … practically that pleasure is administered by or under the influence of the twin Colonial influences: and no one can hope to maintain his independence or his office against the will of these associated powers”17. He further goes on to suggest that to try to retain such independence when to do so was contrary to the interests of the planters meant emulating “a martyr’s vocation or possess[ing] a martyr’s spirit”18. Beaumont, the son of Wesleyan minister whom Beaumont described as “a vigourous opponent of slavery in all its forms”, must have possessed some measure of the martyr’s spirit; for as Chief Justice, he openly and regularly opposed the decisions of stipendiary magistrates when he believed that they were biased in favour of the planters19. Unsurprisingly, Beaumont quickly fell afoul of those in power, including Governor Hincks who had aligned himself with the plantocracy. Tensions between the two men would finally reach the point where Hincks would attempt to remove Beaumont from office on grounds that included having “caused public scandals and made the colony more difficult to govern”20. Although the Colonial Office would force Hincks to reinstate Beaumont, Beaumont continued to rankle the powers in


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014 the safety of the colony.

The New Slavery ... the colony. Barely a year later, when similar complaints were once again raised, the Colonial Office would find that despite the fact that Beaumont had not committed judicial misconduct, his “want of judicial temper” and his tendency to “embarrass the Executive Government rather than to promote the ends of justice” warranted removing him from office.21 If the plantocracy had hoped that by getting rid of Beaumont they would silence criticism about the treatment of the indentured labourers in the colony and thereby limit the interference of the Colonial Office in such matters, they were soon to find otherwise. On Christmas day, 1869, George William Des Voeux, a former stipendiary magistrate of British Guiana who was serving as Administrator of St Lucia, penned a letter to the Colonial Secretary, Lord Granville, to warn that the “ill feelings” of the indentured population “will ere long, unless checked by remedial measures, result in far more serious calamities” than the frightening riot that had occurred at Leonora earlier that year22. In response, Granville ordered a Royal Commission to investigate the conditions of the indentured immigrants in the colony. The Commissioners, Sir George Young, Mr. Charles Mitchell and Mr. W.E. Frere, began their investigation in the summer of 1870 and tabled their report in Parliament in June the following year. Beaumont, who was at that Joseph Beaumont time located in England, very much wanted to participate in the inquiry, but was unable to do so due to the cost of the journey. He therefore attempted to provide his evidence as three statutory declarations to the Commission, but, as Beaumont notes, the Commissioners felt precluded from receiving them 23. Beaumont was, however, undeterred and publically aired his observations, memories and concerns drawn from his experiences in British Guiana in The New Slavery. To read The New Slavery as simply a legal declaration or a compilation of facts, particularly facts pertaining to the administration of justice during Beaumont’s time as Chief Justice in the colony, is interesting in and of itself. One would learn, for example, of the extremely high number of prosecutions and imprisonments for labour law breaches, the imbalanced ratio of Chinese and Indian immigrants to other members of the colony within gaol populations and other interesting tidbits of information, such as Beaumont’s recollection that all of the Indian and Chinese immigrants convicted in the Court of Assizes were indentured labourers as opposed to free men. One would also learn that indentured immigrants were apparently more involved in violent offences, such as murder, than the creole population, and of the high death rate amongst the immigrants in general. But to read the text in this fashion is to miss out on an opportunity to explore one of the most important, although less tangible machinations of colonization. Specifically, The New Slavery provides an important vantage point from which to consider the significance of stories and storytelling to the colonial enterprise. Indeed, in many ways, The New Slavery is a text that is ultimately concerned with the way in which narratives set out the parameters of identity within spaces of colonial contact. The interpretation of the behaviour of individuals involved in colonial interactions is seminal to defining identity within such narratives. In this context, Beaumont’s anger about the behaviour of the plantocracy in matters such as the arbitrary stoppage of wages and the granting or withholding of passes, or his disgust with the pervasive presumption that “Court and jury were expected to convict” immigrants is not only directed at the “disgraceful failure of justice”; it also expresses his dismay at the “disgraceful failure” of the narrative of English fairness and respect for humanity24. Put another way, in Beaumont’s experience of British Guiana, the story of the English as “really so true and earnest in the detestation of slavery and organized oppression” clashes with “the habits and supposed interests of the planters”25. In his courtroom, he was faced regularly with stories of English brutality and disregard for life and their willingness to twist or ignore laws that would prevent or punish such behaviour. Indeed, cruelty, violence and other forms of oppression that the English plantocracy engaged in must have begun to appear distressingly as no mere aberrant feature of a now gone slavery, but as a fundamental component of English character. Throughout The New Slavery, however, Beaumont resists this ugly depiction of Englishness, invoking instead the narrative of English justice and fairness by interpreting the behaviour of the plantocracy as the result of their having become corrupted or as their blindness – and more specifically, a blindness born from ignorance rather than willfulness. In this way, Beaumont is able to condemn their behavior, but ultimately also conclude that, despite the fact that it is the indentured labourers who bear the brunt of abuse under indenture, the system does a “serious injury, not only to the Immigrants but to the community at large”; or, perhaps more accurately, a serious injury to narratives defining Englishness that Beaumont would maintain26. While Beaumont might not have consciously understood his work to be involved in a process of re-inscribing English identity through narrative, he certainly was very aware of constructing counter images of the negative stereotypes of the indentured labourers that were popular in the 19th century. In this, he was not alone. His contemporary, Edward Jenkins, for example, a barrister who attended the Royal Commission on behalf of the Anti-Slavery and Aborigine Protection Societies, wrote two texts, The Coolie: His Rights and Wrongs (1871) and the novel Lutchmee and Dilloo (1877) based on

this experience. Both texts attempt to provide a more positive image of the indentured labourers than was commonly held at this time. In fact, Jenkins specifically notes that the aim of his novel is to “throw the problems of Coolie labour in our Colonies into a concrete and picturesque form” 27. Jenkins achieves this by painting a sympathetic picture of the novel’s upright title characters struggling against the predominantly base and morally bankrupt society into which they have migrated. Nevertheless, despite Jenkins’ desire to “make the story [of indentured immigration] a wider and therefore, … a more interest[ing] study of human life” and thereby illicit sympathy for the migrants, the novel still constructs negative stereotypes about the labourers28. Most notable, his assumption that “shrewdness and cunning ability . . . are common to all these Asiatic immigrants”, manifests itself in characters like Chin-a-foo, Hunoomaun and Ramdoolah in Lutchmmee and Dilloo, or in his description of his reaction to the immigrants who air their grievances to the Dr CHEDDI JAGAN Commissioners in The Coolie29. In The New Slavery, however, Beaumont, albeit not entirely free from the assumption of English cultural and racial superiority, does recognize both the constructed nature of such stereotypes and the key role that they play in justifying the unfair and oppressive legal and socio-political structures of the colony. As a former Chief Justice, Beaumont is perhaps more sensitive than most to the conflation of discoursive narratives with the will to dominate since the court proceedings he was involved with often revealed how such narratives underpinned the exercise of oppressive power in explicit fashion. For example, throughout the text, Beaumont is particularly perturbed by his discovery that many decisions of the stipendiary magistrates in favour of estate management are based on the assumption that “there is some a priori discredit attaching to the testimony of Indians and Chinese”; that such decisions are grounded, in other words, on the popular stereotype of the “cunning Asiatic” rather than on uncovering the individual facts of each case30. Similarly, in a case where a Chinese convict, subjected to systematic physical and emotional abuse by an overseer in a penal settlement, finally strikes back, killing the overseer, Beaumont records a certain casual nonchalance in the defense that the prison’s superintendent presents to extenuate the behaviour of the overseer. The superintendent does not bother to directly address the facts of the case or seem to think it is necessary to justify the overseer’s treatment of the convict. Instead, despite the fact that the convict had never demonstrated any violent behaviour prior to the event that took the life of the overseer, the superintendent draws on the stereotype of the indentured immigrant as unruly and dangerous when he claims that overseers should be allowed “some such freedom [to commit abuse] … in order to maintain discipline amongst such people”31. In fact, the superintendent appears so sure that the court will rely on this stereotype to make a judgment against the convict, that his only other defense of the overseer’s behavour is to characterize him as a “good-hearted but an eccentric fellow”, despite, at least in the treatment of the convicts, very real evidence to the contrary32. One of Beaumont’s most powerful subversions of the narrative of the cunning Asiatic occurs when he points out that the difficulty in arriving “satisfactorily at the very truth and fact” in court cases involving the indentured labourers occurs not because “of any characteristic defect either of intelligence or of truthfulness on the part of the Immigrants, but of the difficulty of obtaining a just and accurate interpretation, not only of their language, but of their habits and ideas”33. In that brief statement, Beaumont readjusts the lens through which the behaviour of the indentured immigrants is viewed. The assumption that the immigrants possess innate degenerate and otherwise negative racially prescribed characteristics that make them inclined to criminality is challenged by placing a context around their behavior. Thus, for example, in The New Slavery, criminal activities such as opium smoking and gambling, which were popular amongst the Chinese migrants, are understood to be a reaction that is “caused and fostered by poverty and distress” rather than by an inherently debased morality. Similarly, the disproportionately high number of indentured immigrants convicted by the court is placed in relief against laws that are unfairly wielded to punish the immigrants through incarceration34. As Beaumont puts it: a “large proportion of these people … are forced into the position of criminals under the Labour Laws” (emphasis added)35 It is, in other words, not that the immigrants are more predisposed to crime than others, but that the law is more predisposed to identify their behaviour as criminal. Beaumont’s contextualisation of the indentured immigrants’ behaviour in this manner provides a radical readjustment of depth perception, so to speak, that requires an equally radical re-evaluation of the categories of “crime” and “criminal” in British Guianese colonial society. Immigrant activities previously perceived to be rebellious, defiant or subversive can be, once contextualized, re-read as resistance to oppression, rightful protest about abuse and means of self-protection. Indeed, in the final analysis, Beaumont so redefines the typical construction of indentured immigrants’ identity within colonial narratives that, rather than being depicted as a threat to British Guiana, the labourers are represented as a people whose self-control, patience and self-discipline are largely responsible for

V

The New Slavery is also unique in that it reveals that Beaumont is well-aware of the limitations that he faces in articulating the perspectives of the indentured labourers. Colonial discourses draw their authority to create knowledge about the colonized on the presumed panoptic vision of the colonizer as exemplified by Jenkins’ claim in the preface to Lutchmee and Dilloo that he can “reproduce with exact fidelity the picture of a Coolie’s life”36. In contrast, Beaumont recognizes a blind spot – or perhaps more accurately, a silence – in the stories of the indentured immigrants that he attempts to reveal. As he himself puts it: “I do not suppose that anything which I could say would have half the weight of that story of a miserable Immigrant’s life and death, told at first hand, and with all its piteous details” (emphasis added)37. In response, Beaumont consciously provides space for immigrant voices to be heard throughout his text. Indeed, the very structure of The New Slavery highlights such voices by beginning with the Chinese woodblock depicting indentured life and ending with the transcripts at the inquiry into the death of Low-a-si. Simply, the first and the last words belong to the indentured labourers. Of course, one might argue that such voices are necessarily translated and thus, perhaps the subaltern does not really speak38. Yet to do so would miss the fact that although work produced by those invested with colonial power such as The New Slavery – work like “reports, dispatches, minutes, judgments, laws, letters, etc…..amount to a representation of their will . . . these documents do not get their content from that alone, for the latter is predicated on another will”39. In this case, it is the will of the indentured labourers to be heard that comes through the text, muffled as these voices may be at times by the colonizer’s rhetoric and concerns. The New Slavery is successful in providing striking moments when the voices of the indentured labourers can be heard asserting their humanity, shouting their pain, and sharing their little joys. In Beaumont’s careful descriptions of the living that he witnessed, we hear the grumbling stomachs of naked, malnourished children and the murmurings of discontent when the police stop labourers on the road, demanding to see their passes. We want to stop up our ears at the screams of agony and the sounds of flesh being beaten as angry overseers and drivers assert their will. But we also hear the rustle of brightly coloured material being made into clothing or the tinkle of gold bangles and imagine the pride the immigrants must have felt to be able to make such purchases and the simple delight they must have found in being able to own something of beauty in a world filled with so much that was ugly. We listen to the shouts of greeting and the raised happy voices of friends and families as they gather in large groups to make the long journey on foot across the country to visit other friends or family on their days off. We hear the drums of taja and sense the spiritual release and spirit of community that occurs in that celebration. And it is in these stories that we glimpse the lives of the indentured labourers, not in stereotypical extremes as people depraved and degraded or nobly long-suffering. Instead, we are introduced to people who are more complex and also more familiar; ordinary people just “going about their little business or their domestic affairs, to purchase food or clothing, to see after their money matters at the Bank or with their debtors or creditors, to visit their friends or relatives . . . or perhaps to consult a lawyer or to make a complaint or application to the Immigration Agent General”40. It is in these moments that the writing of an obscure Chief Justice caught up in the nineteenth century machinery of colonial administration gains currency and relevancy and becomes a historical record of more than his work in the courtroom; instead, it becomes a powerful venue in which so many of the tens of thousands of unnamed and unknown labourers who lived and died under indenture can have at least part of their stories told. NOTES TO INTRODUCTION 1 See Table 2 in K.O. Laurence, A Question of Labour. Indentured Immigration into Trinidad and British Guiana 1875 – 1917 (Jamaica: Ian Randle Publishers, 1994), p. 522. For the purposes of this paper, the “West Indies” refers to Jamaica, Trinidad and Guyana during the colonial period. In further acknowledgement of this historical period, “British Guiana” will be used instead of “Guyana”. 2 Joseph Beaumont, The New Slavery: An Account of Indian and Chinese Immigrants in British Guiana (London: W. Ridgway, 1871), p. 14. 3 The name “Gladstone Coolies” makes reference to the man who requested and received permission to import the first indentured labourers from India to British Guiana: Sir John Gladstone. In May 1838, just under 400 labourers, signed to five-year labour contracts began working on a number of sugar plantations in the colony. See also J.Scoble, Hill Coolies in British Guiana and Mauritius (London, 1840); K.O. Laurence, Immigration into the West Indies in the 19th Century (Barbados, 1971); Edgar Erickson “The Introduction of East Indian Coolies into the British West Indies”, The Journal of Modern History, 6.2 (1934): 127 – 146. 4 The terms of the Kung Convention, signed in China in 1866, but never ratified by the British Government, provided for return passage of Chinese labourers. This cost was so prohibitive that it quickly led to the end of indentured labour migration from China. Indeed, after 1866, only two ships, the Corona in 1874 and the Dartmouth in 1879 brought Chinese indentured labourers into British Guiana. See also Walton Look Lai, The Chinese in the West Indies, 1806 – 1995. A Documentary History (Jamaica: The Press University of the West Indies, 1998). 5 From a letter from George William Des Voeux to Lord Granville, reproduced as Appendix A in John Edward Jenkins, The Coolie: His Rights and Wrongs (New York: George Routledge and Sons, 1871) p. 308. 6 See, for example, K.O Laurence, A Question of Labour, op. cit. and Arnold J. Meagher, The Coolie Trade. The Traffic in Chinese Laborers to Latin America 1847 – 1874 (XLibris)


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

(A look at some of the stories that made the news ‘back-in-the-day’ with CLIFFORD STANLEY)

CHINATOWN: EXCITEMENT AND FUN FOR ALL:

(Guiana Graphic October 11th 1964) Fair! Chinese cook out, PaiKow, Club Casino! Awards! Prizes! Contests! Games! Merry-go-Round, Walt Disney Characters ; Sat. Oct. 10th, Mon. Oct. 12th, Sat. Oct. 17th-“Cosmos” Sports Club. Non-Stop dancing every night- Tom Charles and his Syncopators- Plus another Band in the newly extended pavilion . Free giveaways including ONE PACK FLAVOR-AID each night to each person attending

KAIETEUR (Guiana Graphic October 11th 1964)

3-day air/overland. Sat (A.M) 10th/ Mon..12th October (Public Holiday). Fly to Mahdia, Potaro thence by forest road to Kangaruma and boat to Tukeit. Orinduik via Kaieteur one day excursion trip Sunday 11th October. Leaves Atkinson 9 a.m. returns 5 p.m. Fare: $45. Children under 12 half price. Guiana Travel Tours c/o R.H.Rickford, Demerara Life Compound.

MIRIAM MAKEBA COMING (Guiana Graphic December 11th 1964)

International Concerts confirmed a New York report yesterday that Africa’s greatest reigning singer Miss, Miriam Makeba, will sing here come March 15th next year. This great lady of song will bring her own orchestra and will be accompanied by her manager and a lady in waiting. Miriam, the XOSA tribeswoman of many voices from South Africa, became famous after playing the leading role in the opera KING KONG which ran for eight months in England.

AWARDS NOW OFFICIAL (Guiana Graphic October 15th 1964)

The Guiana Scholarship awards for 1964 have been officially announced. The winners of the awards are Charles Egerton Denbow of Queen’s College, Patricia Brandon of Bishop’s High School and Bernard Camacho of St. Stanislaus College. The successful students were chosen from among 74 who entered for the scholarship examination. Four other students were regarded by the examiners as being of scholarship standard. They were Brian Moniz, David Wilmot Braithwaite and Misses E.A.Griffith and G.H.Harewood.

$10 FOR REFUSING TO SELL MILK: (The Daily Argosy April 6th , 1964)

Mohan of Palmyra , East Canje was fined $10 or one month by His Worship Mr. Frank Vieira for refusing to sell one pint of milk for analysis when requested to do so by Senior Health Inspector A. Khursatee of the Municipal Health Department on January 19.

MOVE AGAINST NUDE BATHERS (Guiana Graphic October 4th 1964).

Police patrols have been set up and other precautionary measures taken to prevent people bathing in the nude on the seawall. This was announced yesterday afternoon by the acting Town Clerk, Mr. E.L. Mayers at the Council’s Statutory meeting. Since the beach was re-established some months ago, complaints have been made to the Town Council that many people were bathing in the nude. Acting on these complaints the Town Council wrote the Commissioner of Police and the Ministry of Home Affairs asking that some action be taken against the disgraceful behaviour of bathers. The matter was investigated and the Police and Ministry of Home Affairs have now informed the Council that patrols have been set up and precautionary measures taken.

FINED $50 FOR CRUELTY TO DOG: (The Daily Argosy April 20th 1964).

H i s W o r s h i p M r. F r a n k Vi e i r a a t N e w Amsterdam Magistrate Court on Monday fined Gaspar a fisherman, $50, costs $6 or two months after he had pleaded guilty to a charge of cruelty to a dog in the New Amsterdam market on Tuesday April 19th. R.C. Joseph Best , R.S.P.C.A Inspector told the Court that the defendant struck the dog with a rope on the eye.

SHIP’S BELL GIFT FOR St. MARGARET’S (Guiana Graphic October 16th 1964).

A 28-LB. ship’s bell, probably from a British man-o’-war in service 126 years ago, will be on its way to a Church in B.G. The bell is being sent by Mr. J.R..Chinery, the Headmaster of St. Botolph’s, a Church school in Kent, who this week explained how it started. “It began when I spotted a notice in the Rochester Diocesan News,” he said. This was a request from the Church of St. Margaret at SkeldonCorentyne, to anyone who could donate a bell to the church. “I wrote off when I remembered the old school bell. This had been put in storage in 1960 when workmen who were re-roofing the school building found that the bell tower was unsafe.” “The bell has been at the school since 1838 and was a ship’s bell before that. Although I have searched the records I have not been able to find the name of the ship to which it belonged, but indications are that it was a man-o’-war.” At an informal ceremony, Mr. Chinery handed the bell together with a cheque to cover the cost of carriage to a representative of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. A former pupil, 80-year-old Mr. John Benham, held the bell while 10-year-old Stephen Lambert , a present pupil at the school, rang it for the last time at St. Botolph’s. On hand at the ceremony too, was the Rev.PeterPeterken who was formerly curate at St. Maragaret’s Skeldon. Now he is Curate at St. Marry’s Swanley Kent, but he was able to tell the assembled school about Guiana and about the children at St. Margaret’s Skeldon. Clifford Stanley can be reached to discuss any of the foregoing articles at cliffantony@gmail.com or cell phone # 657 2043.


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Convicted murder accused freed ... but new trial ordered in the interest of justice

IN 1960, murder accused Jimmy Weeks was convicted by the jury by means of an alleged confession statement, and was sentenced to death by the trial judge. But an appeal to the Federal Supreme Court in its Criminal Jurisdiction, found that the confession statement was used in circumstances that amounted to the acceptance of inadmissible evidence. The Appellate Court, comprising Justices of Appeal Rennie, Archer and Wylie, allowed the appeal and ordered a new trial. The appeal rested on the question of a conflict between two

police constables over a confession statement which was decided on a note said to be made in the Occurrence Book by one of the constables, but which evidence was described by the Federal Supreme Court as inadmissible. Facts of the case disclosed that during the trial of Jimmy Weeks for murder, two police constables gave evidence of a confession said to have been made by him (the accused). There was a conflict between the evidence of the two constables, and a note made in the Occurrence Book by one of the constables was put in evidence in support of his version of the confession. The defence was at variance with the alleged confession. The Federal Supreme Court held that the Occurrence Book was inadmissible in evidence. Appeal allowed. New trial ordered. Jimmy Weeks had appealed against conviction of murder by the Supreme Court of British Guiana. Lawyer J.O.F. Haynes had appeared for the appellant, while Solicitor General W.G. Persaud appeared for the Crown. The judgment of the Federal Supreme Court was delivered by Justice of Appeal Archer. Delivering the judgment, Justice Archer pointed out that the appellant was convicted of the murder of Ismay Algoo. The deceased came to her death from injuries received at her home at about 2.30 p.m. on August 20, 1959. The post-mortem examination disclosed that death was due to laceration of her brain with haemorrhage following injury to her head and multiple other injuries.

The case for the Crown was that the appellant had inflicted several incised wounds upon the deceased‘s neck, face, arms and body with a razor while they were in her bedroom, and had followed her into the kitchen and there dealt her a blow upon her head with an axe. At the trial, two eye-witnesses to the alleged attack with the axe were put forward. They were the deceased’s two sisters who lived nearby, but there were no eye-witnesses to the alleged attack with the razor. The appellant went to the police station after the incident at the deceased’s house. The police constable in charge of the Inquiries Office at the time gave evidence that the appellant had told him that he and his reputed wife, Betty Algoo, had had domestic problems, and he had cut her with a razor and he believed she was dead and he was trying to cut his neck with a razor. Another police constable who was at the station when the appellant went there said that he was at the Inquiries Office when he heard the appellant speak to the Inquiries Officer saying that he had just killed Betty Algoo, and that he had a wound on the left side of his neck. The Inquiries Officer asked him what was wrong with his neck, and he said that he was trying to kill himself because Betty Algoo had ruined his life. According to Justice Archer, the appellant, in an unsworn statement from the dock, said that the deceased had attacked him with a razor and a struggle had ensued in the bedroom. She attempted to run into the kitchen and he tried to hold her back but she fell and hit her head on the axe. This statement, the judge said, was at variance with his alleged admissions to the police at the Inquiries Office, and the discrepancies between the evidence of the two police constables therefore became of some importance , particularly, in view of the absence of

VII

any direct evidence as to what had occurred in the bedroom. The officer in charge of the Inquiries Office said that he had made a note at the time in the Occurrence Book of what the appellant had said. He produced the Occurrence Book, and it was admitted in evidence without objection by counsel for the appellant, who, moreover, cross-examined the officer con- By George Barclay cerning the entry he said that he had made, and addressed the jury upon it. It was submitted for the appellant that the Occurrence Book was inadmissible in evidence. The judge commended the Occurrence Book to the attention of the jury, and invited them to consider whether the version of the officer who made the entry in the book was more likely to be correct than the version of the other police constable. The Solicitor-General has contended that it was admissible as a refutation of a suggestion put in cross-examination that no record of what the appellant had said had been made, and also on the ground that the entry had been made in the course of duty and contemporaneously with the report. He further submitted that, even if the evidence was inadmissible, the jury must inevitably have arrived at the same conclusion if it had not been admitted. Justice Archer added: “We are clearly of the view that the Occurrence Book was inadmissible in evidence. The judge should have excluded it, and the misapprehension as to its admissibility, and the failure of the appellant’s counsel to object to its admission cannot be allowed to operate to the prejudice of the appellant. “We feel unable to say how the jury, unassisted by the Occurrence Book, would have regarded such conflict, as there was between the evidence of the two police constables or to what extent such conflict considered in the light of the Appellant’s unsworn statement might or might not have made a verdict of not guilty of murder possible. “We think that in the circumstances the conviction should not stand, and the appeal is therefore allowed, the conviction and sentence set aside, and a new trial is ordered.”


VIII

Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Facial beauty - a leading influence on dentistry

Breathing Space

I recently retired from a high-pressure academic job in a country which is not my native country. I had a very, very difficult life with many traumas and hardships, but managed to bring up two children on my own without support from anybody. I was a stressed-out, busy and somewhat angry mother, and couldn’t give my children a sparkling, rich and fun life; but God knows how I tried and what I sacrificed. I’m old now, 69. I sometimes feel overwhelmed with the obligations I still feel to make my children and grandchildren satisfied with me. My children expect me to be the good and cheerful mother, but aren’t interested in my needs. I do not want to tell them about my problems because they usually don’t listen. I do not want to ask for help because they procrastinate, forget or ignore my requests. There isn’t much dialogue between us. I try to be a placid, understanding older person, who cooks good meals, plays with her grandchildren, and such. My children are by all accounts well-adjusted, but I find the way they treat me irritating. I try not to show my feelings. It’s like a charade. I sometimes wish I didn’t have any family at all. I want to silently disappear from their lives, make them forget all about me, and live a quiet, solitary life. I contemplated moving to another country or city, but that is difficult at my age. I contemplated suicide, but that would be a cruel way of breaking up. How can I slowly slide out of their lives without causing bad feelings? ……………

LINDA

Linda, the past is crushing you so much you contemplated suicide. That’s how much trauma you feel. You aren’t being crushed into a diamond. You are being crushed into not wanting to exist. We don’t always need to be counselled out of how we feel, but there are reasons not to consider suicide. Death closes opportunity and solves nothing. Suicide would hurt your children. It would taint their memory of you. They will ask, what did we not do that we should have done? More importantly, suicide sets a precedent for those left behind. It makes it more likely one of your kids or grandkids would kill themselves. Now you want the time to be quiet and your own. There’s nothing wrong with that. Not many people can admit it, but you can, and this is your life. Write a careful letter to your children. Don’t blame them in any way. A hint of blame will lead to argument and denial, and you want silence. You’re not looking for dialogue. Your letter is not open for discussion. It will be a statement about how you feel and what you are going to do. Give them a because. To accept and yield to the desires of others, people need a because. For example, I want solitude ‘because’, at this stage of my life, I feel I need to fully focus on my spiritual connection in the universe. I want to think about my life and what it has meant. That’s hard to argue with. That is private thinking. Tell them, ‘My soul needs to go on a spiritual walkabout, and I can’t take anyone with me’. If you stay, decide how to restrict contact. If you move, leave a point of contact, like a lawyer, so there is no search. Assure them they don’t need to feel bad. Once you get away, you may find another life. You may find something to be passionate about. Or you may spend time just being, enjoying what is around you without pressure. Shuck off the emotional burdens and you may be surprised how much life you have left. We don’t all like the same music. We don’t all have to live the same life. Follow the Nike slogan. Just Do It! Wayne & Tamara

Send Letters to: DirectAnswers@WayneAndTamara.com, or Direct Answers, PO Box 964, Springfield MO 65801.

Let us rise from our recumbent position on the dentist’s contoured recliner for a moment and look at teeth, not in the direct illumination of the dental examining light, but in the warm glow of contemporary society’s preoccupation with appearance, self-improvement and self-deception. Here, beyond the clinical surroundings, definition has come full circle. Focus has returned to glorification of the tooth. Their totemic power suggest, if not bestow, vigour and infrastructure of moral and social decay; but, again, symbols of power and glamour, and the mouth itself, the ultimate consumer accessory. As a body part, the mouth is one of the progenitors of the self –improvement movement. The public was spending vast sums on crowns (in lay terms, “caps”) and braces before anyone ever heard of ab flexors, health clubs or liposuction.

The modern era of tooth veneration was born of postwar prosperity and optimism. The free world had much to smile about, and everyone wanted a smile as bright, straight, and uniform as a row of identical suburban homes. Owning that dream mouth was suddenly affordable. As swords were beaten into dental drills, dentists became agents of assimilation. Even as the fight against tooth decay escalated, waged by a public energized by toothpaste commercials and sublimated Cold War fears, dentistry devoted more attention to cosmetic concerns. But ambivalence was at work, one whose antecedents we have seen in antiquity. Even with pain banished, the patient’s relationship with the dentist remained unsettled, a confusing blend of gratitude and antipathy. Let us examine the rich historical residue of these conflicted emotions. Hollywood can claim title as the uncrowned capital of cosmetic dentistry, thanks to the demands of the film industry. Stars required perfect teeth and dentists were essential for realizing the illusion Hollywood strove to create. Even child star Shirley Temple had her teeth capped to enhance her photogenicity. Years later, she described how she lost her two front caps after sneezing, shutting down production on a film until the caps could be replaced. Perhaps the film community resented this dental dependency. How else to explain the legacy of unsightly film that Hollywood left on dental work or its habit of denigrating dentists onscreen? Tinsel town auteur could make little claim for originality in this department. Visual artists had turned their attention on dental practices centuries before Hollywood’s heyday, often portraying its practitioners in a less than flattering light. When art turned its attention to dentistry, typically it was the dentist, not the artist, who suffered. Today these paintings serve as historical records documenting how proto-dentists conducted their trade. We can only hope future historians don’t employ Hollywood fines, or the work of early photographers, in the same manner. As the art and science of photography developed in the mid-nineteenth century, the lens of the new invention was turned on the dental parlour. Staged comic scenes were especially popular, portraying dentists in the most sadistic and incompetent light. They were pictured, for example, using heavy tools and brutal methods to perform dental procedures on terrorized patients. Others were shown employing bizarre gadgets in scenes satirizing the day’s obsession with electrical therapy devices recommended for toothaches and other maladies. The photos were often created in stereo views made for enjoyment as home entertainment, much like today’s television. Dentists were also the frequent butt of vaudeville comedy. In the early days of moving pictures, these comic routines were often recreated for film. The popularity of films doomed vaudeville and also brought down the curtain on the live street performances and travelling dental and medicine shows of the late nineteenth century. But the new medium proved more than capable of taking up where vaudeville comedians left off. But what is the point of all this jargon? I would not be surprised if the reader is lost. So, simply put, while facial beauty has had the leading influence on dentistry, the modern approach has recognised the great importance of general health in relation to oral health, mass prevention strategies and economics, which incidentally have a special place in Guyana’s dental programmes promulgated by the Ministry of Health.


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

IX

FOLKLORE

Boo Boo Jumbie

O

By Neil Primus

ld Mr. Washington had a guard dog. He thought it was the “baddest” dog on the planet. Most people knew different. He called the dog Goliath, but he really should have called him Evader. Once there was trouble, Goliath would be absent. Two parts Stray, three parts Rice Eater and one part Dustbin Terrier, the dog was good at only one thing eating. His favourite meal was rice. Goliath would go through a large bowl of rice as easy as a harvester cuts through a rice field, but with much more urgency. Goliath’s sleeping was something to see. He would lie on his back his feet sticking up and his tongue lolling out of the corner of his mouth. The animal knew every inch of the yard, and as soon as trouble arose, he would seek refuge in one of his hiding places. Mr. Washington liked to watch Goliath play. When he wasn’t bounding all over at hyper speed, he would be in endless pursuit of his tail. One good thing about Goliath was that even though he ran for cover he would raise hell before disappearing. This would alert Mr. Washington, who would ensure there was no threat. Most of the time there was not any. If dogs passing outside barked aggressively at him, he vanished. When thunder and lightning struck, he disappeared. If something fell making a loud noise, zoom! He was gone. When his master shouted angrily to draw his attention, that sent him into hiding. When he wasn’t hiding, he would be sleeping, playing or eating. Miraculously, thieves had never entered the Washington premises, so his master thought him to be very effective. Then things changed. Mr. Washington decided to take up chicken farming. He bought 100 layers and began rearing them in the pens he had specially built for this. As the chickens grew bigger, they began to attract the wrong kind of attention. Many of the village ‘limers and junkies’ passed by and made all sort of comments: “Mr. Washington, yo chickens getting fat!” “Ol boy, wen dey goin start laying?” “Washie, yo gon sell eggs?” Old man Washington had little patience with them, so he made his response short and to the point. “Get lost!” That did it for everyone.

Now Goliath had a problem. He started to see Jumbies! Whenever he slept they did not affect him. This caused him to begin sleeping for longer periods. Whenever he awoke, his eyes would be full of “boo boo.” Mr. Washington noticed this, and had a special rag to wipe the dog’s eyes. The rag was hung on a line under the house. After a time, the cloth was full of Boo Boo. The dog owner never bothered to wash it. Late one Friday night, Mr. Washington heard some suspicious sounds. Fearing for his chickens, which had already started laying, he called out to his dog. “Hoots!” Sick them!” “Get them Goliath!” This was part of his usual routine if he heard any strange noises. These always turned out to be false alarms. Crack! Crack! Something was moving around downstairs. Worse than that, there was blackout. Mr. Washington knew that this was an ideal time for thieves to operate; so did Fast-Hand Eric. He got that nickname because he stole any and everything he could get away with. Tonight it would be old Washington’s chickens and eggs. He had been keeping an eye on their development, and knew they had begun to mature. It is time to make a raid. He had thought of many scenarios, until the sudden blackout that night. He decided to go for it. Eric found himself creeping from pen to pen taking birds and putting them into a rice sack that he carried on his back. When he had about fifteen bagged, the hatch on one of the pens made a loud click. He froze. “Hoots!” “Sick them!” Washington had heard. It was then Eric remembered that there was a dog in the yard. He began to sweat. Peering around in the dark he tried to locate the animal. It was not around. Bram! Bang! Crash! The noise was loud and the timing was bad. He edged towards the side of the building hoping to make a silent exit. Baddam! Bam! Now, Eric was a seasoned thief but had never been easily detected, nor had he ever experienced such a stressful situation. The volume of the last commotion caused him to panic. He jumped about three feet in fright and dived behind a couple of old drums. Sweat poured from him. He looked around and saw a rag hanging above him. He grabbed it and dried the running swear steams. He dried his face, eyes and neck then tossed it aside From the moment he wiped his eyes things went from bad to

insane. It was as if a whole new work had appeared in front of him. Even though it was dark, he could see a strange figure standing a very short distance away. It was white, or sliver, or both. Poor Eric began to tremble. His knees went into jelly mode. His breath was laboured and tears were tumbling from his eyes. Suddenly he realised that he was not alone behind the drums. Someone or something was very close. He could almost feel its presence. He closed his eyes for a second and reopened them, hoping for the spectre to disappear. It stood there as real as sunlight. Something brushed against him and he let the bag of chickens go in his panic. Their sudden freedom caused a melee. The chickens run, jumped, screeched and flew in all directions. Scratch! Whimper! Moving in his hiding spot, he stared hard out and could barely make out a dark mass. Even if he wanted to, he could not run. His legs refused to take action. The strange figure in front of him was suddenly joined by another. Together they turned and headed for his place of refuge. Eric forced himself to stand up. Somewhere to his right he heard a whimper. A passing car threw its head beam monumentally into the yard and he found himself looking into the terrified eyes of a dog. As the Jumbies came closer, the two hidden figures drew closer to each other. Soon they were side by side both trembling with teeth chattering. Two bright eerie shapes loomed over the drums, and Eric could take no more of it. With a scream, he fell backwards, hitting his head on a column and knocking himself unconscious. He lay sprawled awkwardly with his bag beneath him inside of which were a few birds that did not manage to escape. Goliath too has seen enough. With a whimper he fainted, landing on Eric’s chest. When light returned 15 minutes later, Mr. Washington and his neighbours came upon an unusual sight Eric lay unconscious, beneath him his bag of for remaining chickens. Across his chest was Goliath as though keeping him under guard. Covering his face was the dirty rag Mr. Washington used to wipe his dog’s eyes. Goliath became a village hero. He was acclaimed the best and bravest dogs in the small community. Two persons knew better; Eric and Goliath. After that incident, Eric had plenty of problems with seeing spirits. But that’s another story. As for Goliath, he is still MIA whenever there is any sign of trouble. But now he has a new hiding place behind the chicken pen.


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Dr Carter Woodson - Founder of Black History Month

By Michelle Gonsalves IN one particular month of the year we celebrate the achievements of black men and women throughout history; and from inception, that month has always been February. ORIGIN Black History Month can be traced back to Carter G. Woodson (1875-1950),a son of former slaves, who was an amazing man in his own right. Although his family was too poor to send him to school, he taught himself the basics of a school education. At age 20, Woodson was finally able to attend high school, which he completed in just two years. He then went on to earn a bachelor’s and a master’s degree from the University of Chicago; and in 1912, became only the second African-American to earn a doctorate from Harvard University (W.E.B. Du Bois was the first). Woodson used his hard-earned education to teach, both in public schools and at Howard University. In 1915 he travelled to Chicago to participate in a three-week celebration of the 50th anniversary of the end of slavery. Before leaving Chicago, Woodson and four others created the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History (ASNLH) on September 9, 1915. The following year the ASNLH began publication of the

Journal of Negro History. Woodson realised that most textbooks at the time ignored the history and achievements of blacks; and in addition to the journal, he wanted to find a way to encourage interest and study of black history. So in 1926 Woodson promoted the idea of a “Negro History Week” which was to be held during the second week of February. Woodson chose the second week of February to celebrate Negro History Week because that week included the birthdays of two important men: President Abraham Lincoln (February 12) and Frederick Douglass (February 14). The idea caught on quickly, and Negro History Week was soon celebrated around the United States. With a high demand for study materials, the ASNLH began to produce pictures, posters and lesson plans to help teachers bring Negro History Week into schools. In 1937 the ASNLH also began producing the Negro History Bulletin which focused on an annual theme for Negro History Week. In 1976 the 50th anniversary of the beginning of Negro His-

‘Dr. Carter G. Woodson, Founder of Black History Month’ tory Week and the bicentennial of the United States’ Independence, Black History Week was expanded to Black History Month. Ever since then, Black History Month has been celebrated around the country in February. HOW CELEBRATED

Abraham Lincoln Frederick Douglass

There is no shortage of ways to celebrate black history. Teachers give lessons to students about important aspects of African-American history; bookstores highlight the works of black poets and writers, and galleries display the work of black artists. Museums feature exhibitions with African-American themes, and theatres present plays with African-American subject matter. African-American churches celebrate the month with a slew of events that raise awareness about the achievements of blacks in the USA. The holiday is also celebrated in February in Canada and in October in the United Kingdom. (Sources: www.black History Month - An Overview of Black History Month.htm, www. Wikepediaonlineencyclopedia.com)


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

By Rebecca Ganesh-Ally

Tips for Making A Small Room Look Big Looking to create more space in your home? It is possible to make a small space look and feel larger without having to break down any walls. Here are a few tricks on how to turn a cramped room

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Quick 20-Minute Party Appetisers 1. Mini Grilled Cheese Sandwiches With Chutney – Ingredients * 12 slices white sandwich bread * 12 ounces cheese thinly sliced * 1 cup fruit chutney (such as tamarind or mango) * 2 tablespoons butter Directions

into more spacious surroundings.

1. Form 6 sandwiches with the bread, cheese, and chutney. 2. In batches, melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat and cook the sandwiches until the bread is golden and the cheese is melted, 2 to 3 minutes per side. 3. Cut each sandwich into quarters before serving.

1. Aim for Three Points of Light An example is an overhead fixture and two table lamps. The eye travels to light first. Any space that is in a shadow is space you have wasted.

2. Ditch the Extra Furniture Clear away extra furniture like a desk or cabinets, for more mingling room, do not keep that unwanted table, just because…

2 .Cheese Quesadillas Ingredients * 8 8-inch flour tortillas * 2 cups (8 ounces) grated cheese * 1 12-ounce container refrigerated store-bought salsa

3. Space Out Artwork Start at the floor and measure 57 inches up the wall. The centre of your art or photo should hang on that mark. Why it works: 57 inches is roughly eye height for most people, which

Directions 1. Heat broiler. 2. Place 2 tortillas on a baking sheet and sprinkle ½ cup of the cheese evenly over each. Top with 2 more tortillas. 3. Broil until golden and crisp, 1 to 2 minutes per side. 4. Repeat with the remaining tortillas and cheese. 5. Cut into triangles and serve with the salsa.

opens up more space above the work, making the room seem taller.

4. Hang a Mirror- photo saved mirror The larger, the better. Position it across from an entryway or a window so that it reflects the natural light.


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Twitterati wish Abhishek Bachchan Happy Birthday!

Ranveer bonds with Deepika’s parents The actor played a perfect co-host to Deepika’s parents. Ranveer Singh is rather smitten by Deepika Padukone , whether he admits it or not. Proof is that he’s always willing to go that extra mile for her. Recently, at Deepika’s success bash, Ranveer constantly hung around her parents and made sure they were comfortable. We hear the actor didn’t let them be bothered about a thing and played the perfect co-host. True love?

Priyanka Chopra hurt but at work

Priyanka has joined the league of injured celebs, but the injury has not come in the way of her work. It’s been quite a few days since we have been hearing about some B-town stars suffering injuries. Shahrukh Khan, Esha Deol and Arshad Warsi are just few examples. And the recent one to join the league of these injured celebs is Priyanka Chopra. Yes, PeeCee busted her right knee recently. But she didn’t let the injury come in the way of her professional commitments. The Exotic babe has not only been promoting her upcoming film Gunday, but also is attending events despite the injury. The desi girl was seen wearing pink bandage on her right knee, but that didn’t stop her from shaking a leg on the show. That apart, Priyanka was also seen at the ongoing Auto Expo exhibition recently wearing the same pink bandage. We love this professionalism of Priyanka and we hope that she recuperates very soon.

Abhishek Bachchan turned 38 on Wednesday. The Bollywood fraternity turned to Twitter to wish junior Bachchan on his special day!

Gulaab Gang title track: It’s an open war between Madhuri Dixit-Nene and Juhi Chawla

The latest song from Gulaab Gang composed by Soumik Sen is powerful and high on energy It’s Madhuri Dixit-Nene versus Juhi Chawla, a war between good and the evil in the movie, Gulaab Gang. The title track from the film gives an insight into what to expect from the film itself. It’s stays true to the nature and the plot of the film – it’s dramatic, poetic and has heavy dose of politics and action! While Madhuri Dixit looks every bit the energetic social crusader, the one who kickstarted the gulaabi war, Juhi plays the dirty politician to the T. She is looks wicked, conniving and very shrewd. The once superstars come face to face and this is a face off nobody would wanna miss even if it’s on screen. Both hold their own position and make their presence felt through this song and the trailers.

‘Jai Ho’: Magnanimous Salman Khan does it again! This superstar is often in the news for both good and bad reasons. At 48, he is still one of the most eligible bachelors in the country, popular for delivering entertaining films and runs a non-profit organisation by the name ‘Being Human’. 2013 was a dry year of sorts for the Khan at the Box Office as he didn’t have a single release. ‘Jai Ho’, his latest, which released last month, didn’t quite live up to people’s expectations. The film’s lacklustre performance at the Box Office left many surprised but that hasn’t dampened Salman’s spirits. The unimpressive performance put up by ‘Jai Ho’ is surprising considering the fact that Salman’s films have been Box Office churners. His previous 5 releases have all been blockbusters so one does wonder what made the film slump. Nonetheless, Salman continues to do what he feels is good despite all criticism.


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

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Mr Latin’s Sibling, Kola To Wed Heartthrob In America Feb 15

Story by Osaremen Ehi James/Nigeriafilms.co

Nigeriafilms.com can exclusively and authoritatively report that the Kolawole Amusan, the younger brother of popular Yoruba comic actor, Bolaji Amusan, better known as Mr Latin, is set to walk down the aisle with his sweetheart. Information scooped by Nigeriafilms.com from a source close to the family confirmed that Kola, who is now in the United States of America (USA), where he lives, after he relocated to the Uncle Sam’s land few years ago, will exchange marital vows with his heartthrob simply identified as Temitope. The source disclosed to us that, “Kola, Mr Latin’s younger brother, will wed on February 15, 2014 in America. He even created a wedding website for the event (which we obtained from our source to check and confirm the story).” From other information we gathered from the website created by Kola, the wedding ceremony will take place at the Redeemed Christian Church of God, RCCG Restoration Chapel, Beechnut St, Houston. Kola and Temitope met at a baby shower in the US and they started a romantic affair afterwards.

Chita AgwuEverything About Me Is About Love Story by Nigeriafilms.com Nollywood actress Chita Agwu who recently suffered misfortune when she lost her mother and had an accident with her car is bouncing out stronger, the actress who has featured in more than 40 movies doesn’t think she can pose n*de in any movie, though she admits she can be sexy or half naked neither can she do it to get a man. She believes her smile can make a man lose his composure and fall in love with her. She made this revelation in a recent interview. Talking about the accident “I have changed like two cars after the accident I had and they are all brand new cars. As for the apartment; l had to move from my old apartment because it became too small for me. I only moved to a bigger apartment and not to a choice apartment!” When asked if she can marry an actor “If it’s my luck, yes. Everything about me is about love, I practice love a lot.” She said about her dressing “I dress as the spirit leads. When I wake up in the morning, I just dress the way my mind tells me to. But generally, I am a tomboy as I love sneakers. My boyfriend buys them for me a lot.” However, she cannot be caught tying wrapper on her bust” You can never catch me tying wrapper on my chest. While growing up, my mum used to advise me a lot on that and she used to say tying wrapper on the chest will press one’s breasts down.”

PHOTONEWS: OMOSEXY TAKES SEXINESS TO A NEW LEVEL AT THE MEET AND GREET INVEST AFRICA EVENT Story by Ediale Kingsley/Nigeriafilms.com Nollywood’s finest Omotola Jalade-Ekeinde was one of the few lots at the classy event tagged, “Meet and Greet Invest Africa”. The exclusive event which had other topnotch guests took place at the Wheatbaker Hotel, Ikoyi, Lagos on Saturday 1st February 2014. With less than a week to her 36th birthday bash, the thespian graced the occasion in an eye-catchy green ‘Oleku’ outfit designed by Ada Alter Ego. She also adorned pretty make up. All in the mood of celebration. Omotola is recognised by the organisers of the event, Tony Elumelu in conjunction with Mo Abudu‘s Ebony Life TV, for her film village project which tallies with the aim of the meeting. The event housed business leaders as they discussed investment opportunities abound in Africa (Photos:Daniel Sync/ RedHot Concepts)


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

MICROSOFT NEW CEO-Satya Nadella Facebook turns 10, Get ready for Galaxy S5!

M

icrosoft Corporation is an American multinational corporation headquartered in, Washington USA that develops, manufactures, licenses, supports and sells computer software, consumer electronics

and personal computers and services. Its best known software products are the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems (XP, Vista, 7, 8, ect.) Microsoft office suite and Internet Explorerweb browser. Its flagship hardware products are Xbox game console and the Microsoft Surface series of tablets. It is the world’s largest software maker measured by revenues. It is also one of the world’s most valuable companies. Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975 it is considered the third most successful startup company of all time by market capitalization, revenue, growth and cultural impact. One of its latest acquisitions is Skype technologies for US$8.5 billion. In its almost 40 years of existence, this elite company now sees its 3rd Chief Executive Officer (CEO) after Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer respectively. Critics consider him a “safe” choice for a company which some claim is in urgent need of a radical management change, as the PC buying slump continues to bite. I certainly agree. Meet India’s Satya Narayana Nadella, the 46 years old Hyderabad born high school cricket star, believed to have been, all along, one of a small handful of alleged internal candidates for the Microsoft CEO post. Satya, has been at the company for 22 years. As of 2011, he ran Microsoft’s lucrative server and tools businesses. His official title, as of the July 2013 “One Microsoft” reorg, became Executive Vice President of Cloud and Enterprise. Given Microsoft is remaking itself as a devices and services company; it’s not too crazy that Microsoft’s selection committee would choose a “cloud guy” to be the next CEO. Satya graduated from the University of Bangalore with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, he earned two more masters’ degrees: one in computer science from the University of Wisconsin, and another in business administration from the University of Chicago. He’s served as vice president of the Microsoft Business Division,

senior vice president of research and development for the Online Services division, and president of the software giant’s $19 billion Server and Tools Business. Narayana work led him to his most recent role as executive vice president of the Cloud and Enterprise group. His official biography lists him as in charge of “building and running the company’s computing platforms, developer tools and cloud services.” Cloud OS helps run Microsoft services like Bing, SkyDrive, Xbox Live, Windows Server, and Visual Studio. These services, especially Office, rank among Microsoft’s strongest. His advice to people on his first day of becoming CEO- “Always keep learning,” “You stop doing useful things if you don’t learn.” SAMGUNG GALAXY S5 SMARTPHONE Meanwhile, the South Korean gadget boss-Samsung on Monday sent invitations to its latest unpacked event, which is expected to include the launch of the Galaxy S5. The event will take place on Febuary 24 at the Mobile World Congress. But if you don’t have money for a plane ticket to Spain, don’t fret. Samsung will be live streaming the event online, www. sangung.com. P h y s i c a l l y, there was not much difference between the Galaxy S4 and its predecessor, the S III, but that’s about the change with the S5. “Mostly, it’s about the display and the feel of the cover. Samsung will go with a screen size of roughly 5.2-inches. It is believed Samsung will go with 2560 by 1440 pixels. However some suggest that the so-called “QHD” screen is not going to happen. The S5 is expected to have a 16-megapixel rear camera; up from 13 megapixels on last year’s and powered by a model Exynos 6 (64-bit) and Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 (32-bit), with 3 GB of RAM. The eye tracking in the Galaxy S5 have been debunked, numerous sources are talking about a fingerprint scanner, claims to be built into the screen, which makes sense if the Galaxy S5 uses on-screen buttons. In any case, the big question is whether Samsung can make the technology work well. That’s easier said than done. Even if there’s a metal Samsung phone floating around,

most folks will end up with a plastic Galaxy S5. FACEBOOK TURNS 10- FROM COLLAGE JOKE TO ONE BILLION FRIENDS! Love it or hate it you can’t get away from Facebook. If you’re not one of over a billion Facebook users, chances are your aunt Sattie, your high-school buddy Kevin, and many of your friends and relatives are already there. Today, Facebook dominates our online lives like no other Website except Google’s search engine. And, with so many of your friends and family there, it’s likely to be the site you spend the most time on every day of your life. Facebook actually started as “Face-mash” in October 2003 by Mark Zuckerberg. This site simply scraped images from the Harvard University dorms’ online people directories called “facebooks,” and asked visitors to vote on which person in every randomly selected pair of photos was hottest. Little more than a lame college Web trick, it was to prove to be the start of a multi-billion dollar business. Zuckerberg was inspired this small joke of a site to build a social network, thefacebook.com, which he launched on February 4, 2004. Well, that was his story. Days after he launched the site he was accused by the Winklevoss twins and Divya Narendra of stealing their idea for a social network. Years and millions of dollars of legal fees, the twins accepted $65-million for their part in Facebook’s creation. This first site was only open to Harvard students, but its membership took off explosively. Within its first month, more than half of Harvard’s undergraduates had joined up. Zuckerberg quickly expanded it to the other major colleges. September 26, 2006 he opened Facebook to everyone who is 13 and older with an e-mail address. The social media network has over one billion active users and is growing rapidly each day.


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

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Marie Curie (Maria Sklodowska)

-The most famous female scientist of all time Born Maria Sklodowska on November 7, 1867, in Warsaw, Poland, Marie Curie became the first woman to win a Nobel Prize and the only woman to win the award in two different fields (physics and chemistry). Curie’s efforts, with her husband Pierre Curie, led to the discovery of polonium and radium and, after Pierre’s death, the development of X-rays. She died on July 4, 1934. EARLY LIFE Maria Sklodowska, better known as Marie Curie, was born in Warsaw in modern-day Poland on November 7, 1867. Her parents were both teachers, and she was the youngest of five children. As a child Curie took after her father, Ladislas, a math and physics instructor. She had a bright and curious mind and excelled at school. But tragedy struck early, and when she was only 11, Curie lost her mother, Bronsitwa, to tuberculosis. A top student in her secondary school, Curie could not attend the men-only University of Warsaw. She instead continued her education in Warsaw’s “floating university,” a set of underground, informal classes held in secret. Both Curie and her sister Bronya dreamed of going abroad to earn an official degree, but they lacked the financial resources to pay for more schooling. Undeterred, Curie worked out a deal with her sister. She would work to support Bronya while she was in school and Bronya would return the favour after she completed her studies. For roughly five years, Curie worked as a tutor and a governess. She used her spare time to study, reading about physics, chemistry and math. In 1891, Curie finally made her way to Paris where she enrolled at the Sorbonne in Paris. She threw herself into her studies, but this dedication had a personal cost. With little money, Curie survived on buttered bread and tea, and her health sometimes suffered because of her poor diet. Curie completed her master’s degree in physics in 1893 and earned another degree in mathematics the following year. Around this time, she received a commission to do a study on different types of steel and their magnetic properties. Curie needed a lab to work in, and a colleague introduced her to French physicist Pierre Curie. A romance developed between the brilliant pair, and they became a scientific dynamic duo. DISCOVERIES Marie and Pierre Curie were dedicated scientists and completely devoted to one another. At first, they worked on separate projects. She was fascinated with the work of Henri Becquerel, a French physicist who discovered that uranium casts off rays, weaker rays than the X-rays found by Wilhelm Roentgen. Curie took Becquerel’s work a few steps further, conducting her own experiments on uranium rays. She discovered that the rays remained constant, no matter the condition or form of the uranium. The rays, she theorised, came from the element’s atomic structure. This revolutionary idea created the field of atomic physics and Curie herself coined the word radioactivity to describe the phenomena. Marie and Pierre had a daughter, Irene, in 1897, but their work didn’t slow down. Pierre put aside his own work to help Marie with her exploration of radioactivity. Working with the mineral pitchblende, the pair discovered a new radioactive element in 1898. They named the element polonium, after Marie’s native country of Poland. They also detected the presence of another radioactive material in the pitchblende, and called that radium. In 1902, the Curies announced that they had produced a decigram of pure radium, demonstrating its existence as a unique chemical element.

Marie Curie SCIENCE CELEBRITY Marie Curie made history in 1903 when she became the first woman to receive the Nobel Prize in physics. She won the prestigious honor along with her husband and Henri Becquerel, for their work on radioactivity. With their Nobel Prize win, the Curies developed an international reputation for their scientific efforts, and they used their prize money to continue their research. They welcomed a second child, daughter Eve, the following year. In 1906, Marie suffered a tremendous loss. Her husband Pierre was killed in Paris after he accidentally stepped in front of a horse-drawn wagon. Despite her tremendous grief, she took over his teaching post at the Sorbonne, becoming the institution’s first female professor. Curie received another great honour in 1911, winning her second Nobel Prize, this time in chemistry. She was selected for her discovery of radium and polonium, and became the first scientist to win two Nobel Prizes. While she received the prize alone, she shared the honor jointly with her late husband in her acceptance lecture. Around this time, Curie joined with other famous scientists, including Albert Einstein and Max Planck, to attend the first Solvay Congress in Physics. They gathered to discuss the many groundbreaking discoveries in their field. Curie experienced the downside of fame in 1911, when her relationship with her husband’s former student, Paul Langevin, became public. Curie was derided in the press for breaking up Langevin’s marriage. The press’ negativity towards Curie stemmed at least in part from rising xenophobia in France. When World War I broke out in 1914, Curie devoted her time and resources to helping the cause. She championed the use of portable X-ray machines in the field, and these medical vehicles earned the nickname “Little Curies.” After the war, Curie used her celebrity to advance her research. She travelled to the United States twice— in 1921 and in 1929— to raise funds to buy radium and to establish a radium research institute in Warsaw. FINAL DAYS AND LEGACY All of her years of working with radioactive materials took a toll on Curie’s health. She was known to carry test tubes of radium around in the pocket of her lab coat. In 1934, Curie went to the Sancellemoz Sanatorium in Passy, France, to try to rest and regain her strength. She died there on July 4, 1934, of aplastic anaemia, which can be caused by prolonged exposure to radiation. Marie Curie made many breakthroughs in her lifetime. She is the most famous female scientist of all time, and has received numerous posthumous honours. (Source:BIOtruestory)


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Being A Beauty With A Purpose UmadeviBux wants to ‘walk the walk, not just talk the talk’ By Saeed Imran K`halil

In its January 31 edition this newspaper’s Bombshell Entertainment supplement named as its weekly “Bombshell Babe” Ms. UmadeviBux. At just 24 years, thisZeelugt resident has already completed training as an English Language teacher and completed a degree in international relations. She was at one time, a teacher and a journalist. On the co-curricular side of things, she has participated in the National Youth Parliament as well as in fora in Bolivia, Portugal and Russia. The aesthetically stunning Ms. Bux also participated in a couple of pageants, namely the Miss Guyana India Worldwide Pageant in 2011 and the Miss Texila American University pageant last year, the latter which she won. When pressed as to whether she would bring her formidable resume and pageant experience to bear in the upcoming Miss Guyana World pageant, Ms. Bux, who is now on a scholarship at Texila American University pursuing studies to become a paediatrician, would only say she is “contemplating it.” Pepperpot solicited from the newly minted pageant winner an interview, a substantial excerpt of which we have published below.

“What Guyanese can do to help shape the perception of this country is to get involved, get involved in the everyday development of your country.”-UmadeviBux

Sunday Pepperpot (SP): Pageantry is seen as thriving on the objectification of women. What value do you see in women participating in pageantry and why do you want to do it? UmadeviBux:What a pageant does is it brings out confidence and self-esteem. It makes

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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014 XIX to work with UNICEF and work with children, become a “doctor For me, a strong woman is an independent woman, a self-suffiwithout borders”, if you may. I want to do something to make a change - not just talk the talk, but walk the walk.

“People say youths are the leaders of tomorrow but I believe youths are the leaders of today,” says UmadeviBux

Being A Beauty ... From page XVIII you more vocal in causes, because it provides a platform to speak out for what you believe in. It widens your perspective and brings out the essence in a woman. Before I joined pageantry, I never had any idea of makeup and accessories, and a pageant teaches you to do your best, be your best, look your best, speak well, and always put your best foot forward, no matter what. It all comes down to what [is it that is] different you can bring to the table, not only in terms of beauty, but brains as well. I want to do it because it helps me as an individual to grow. In life, it is always important not to be mundane, but to try and be different and do positive things to build on who you are. And I see pageantry as an avenue for that. The part that I love the most – and this is what captivates me – is being a beauty with a purpose. SP: You have pursued very diverse career paths: teacher, international relations, journalism, and now medicine. Why the variety, and what are your goals in life? Uma: I didn’t plan to become a teacher; I didn’t plan on becoming a journalist. Journalism is something I wanted to try, and when I applied [to Guyana Times], I didn’t really expect that I would have actually gotten the opportunity to do so. Journalism opened my eyes to politics, socio-economic situations of various countries. I mean, you would know before becoming a journalist there were a lot of things you didn’t know about. Teaching is a career that came to me, and that, after high school, I happened to fall into and eventually fall in love with. I always loved kids, and teaching taught me that it isn’t so much [about] the magnitude of the action you perform for someone, but the fact that you can bring some positive impact or change to someone’s life. I took a scholarship to pursue medicine because I want to do something for my country and I want to help children. I am a patriot and I want to serve my country. Additionally, I hope

SP: What are some of the causes that you espouse, that you would use the platform offered by pageantry to advocate for? Uma: Youth activism and cyber-bullying are things which I hold very dear to my heart, along with women empowerment. With the world becoming increasingly globalised, people say youths are the leaders of tomorrow but I believe youths are the leaders of today. Youths need to build that confidence from a very tender age to be the best that they can at whatever they choose to [so as to] realise their dreams and aspirations. There are things that they can do to motivate themselves become more active in society, go out in a community, start projects and help out. I was actually a victim of cyber bullying and I know what it can do to someone; it brings you down emotionally, it breaks you down mentally, and it makes you doubt what you are capable of and breaks your dreams. [Fighting] cyber bullying is something that I am very passionate about. Individuals who are victims of cyberbullying need to understand that they need to believe in themselves, that it doesn’t matter what people throw at you. All that matters is what those you call your loved ones think of you and all that matters are those positive things you are capable of doing in society. No matter where you go in this world, there are always going to be people who are going to try to pull you, and you need to remember to keep moving forward, no matter what the situation is.

cient woman,like my mom. She’s my inspiration. She is someone I look up to and she’s taught me the value of being independent and what it means to be able to stand on your two feet. It is something that she wants for her daughter. SP: In what ways can you, as an emerging youth icon, help positively shape the perception foreigners and even your compatriots have of Guyana? Uma: Being a Guyanese is something that you should hold dear to your heart. We are a land of six peoples and diverse culture, and amazing natural beauty. What Guyanese can do to help shape the perception of this country is to get involved, get involved in the everyday development of your country. Go out, meet people.See what people need and what you can do to help change it. When I’m abroad, I tell people about Guyana’s warm hospitality, our diverse culture, and the togetherness manifested in our motto: ‘One People, One Nation, One Destiny.’ And I actually show people, through the way I portray myself, that Guyana is not just a small plot of land on the corner of South America. It is one that can grow and develop into something amazing, and has potential to be one of the best developed countries in the world. Personality speaks greatly when you’re an ambassador for your country. It is the first thing people notice about you and the last they remember, and it’s key to always be sincere, always be truthful in your actions, and always put the interests of your country before anything else.


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Harmful effects of chemical skin bleaching and some safer alternatives By Michelle Gonsalves

As trends go, it doesn’t take long before one that has taken root elsewhere in the Western Hemisphere comes home to roost in Guyana. A somewhat disturbing one is the increasingly widespread practice of skin bleaching, as we are bombarded with lightening celebrities and cheap creams on the shelves. For clarification, we are not talking about using a bit of Ambi on the neck, underarms or other dark areas here and there but

more about the kind of fervent whole body bleaching that many have adopted to change their complexion entirely. How common is the practice? – You have only to look around at friends, co-workers family members and random persons in the street. This subject is a controversial one and this article could delve into colonialism, shadism, colourism and a variety of “isms” as awkward questions about identity and race are raised, but the motive here is NOT to examine why we as a

society even want to lighten our skin in the first place but instead to show how dangerous this practice is. It is now known that chemical bleaching can lead to serious skin and health conditions which include: permanent skin bleaching, thinning of skin, uneven colour loss, leading to a blotchy appearance, redness and intense irritation, dark grey spots, skin cancer, acne, increase in appetite and weight gain, osteoporosis, neurological and kidney damage due to high level of mercury used in the

creams, psychiatric disorders, asthma, liver damage and severe birth defects in children born to mothers who abuse certain chemicals. One of the most public proponent of bleaching is Jamaican singing star Vybz Kartel, who is idolised by many Guyanese youth especially in the more urban areas. The singer’s complexion has dramatically lightened in recent years and he even sings about his bleaching: ‘Look Pon Me’ contains the lines: “Di girl dem love off mi brown cute face, di girl dem love off mi bleach-out face.” His claims that he used cake-soap (laundry soap) to bleach his skin were debunked by the Jamaican manufacturer of the product, Blue Power

Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014 Group, and then he confessed that he actually used his own special concoction. In spite of the fact that he is awaiting trial in connection with the murder of a promoter in Kingston in July - as well as for illegal possession of a firearm and some drugs-related offences, he launched a range of men’s cosmetics in October 2011, which included a variety of ‘Skin brightening’ items. His countrymen though are waking up to the issue and health officials are running warnings on local radio stations, putting up posters in schools, holding talks and handing out literature about the dangers. According to David McFadden writing in the Jamaica Star, April 4, 2011, the phenomenon has reached such dangerous proportions”, a woman started to bleach her baby as reported to McFadden by a Dermatologist. Keep in mind that even though a cream is sold over the counter, it is not necessarily safe. Hydroquinone, a common ingredient of many of the creams in Guyana, (check ‘Precious’, Symba’ and ‘Septol’) for example has long been linked to a disfiguring condition called ochronosis that causes a

splotchy darkening of the skin and may even leave a web of stretch marks across the users face! The proposed ban by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) fizzled in 2006 and creams containing up to two percent hydroquinone are recognised as safe and effective but Hydroquinone was banned in Japan, the European Union, and Australia, due to concerns about health risks. The following will show some of the most common bleaching compound/techniques and how they work. They are loosely grouped in categories of unsafe, somewhat safe and safe. Some common skin bleaching agents and how they work Melanin is a complex polymer derived from the amino acid tyrosine and is responsible for determining skin and hair colour, depending on the concentration present. So the more melanin you have, the darker you will be. Most skin-lightening treatments, which can reduce or block some amount of melanin production, are aimed at inhibiting e. Many treatments Please turn to page XXV


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

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The story of Mishka Vasanti Puran

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By Telesha Ramnarine

HE never had the “luxury” of attending nursery school because the family was so “unbelievably” poor. In fact, at one point in her life, she and her family of four lived in London’s Thorncliff Hotel. And this name says it all. The living conditions here were indeed “thorn-like.” It was a very derelict hotel that refugees were allowed to stay in. Now 32-years-old, she has already established herself as a prominent lawyer, currently doing civil cases while at times dabbling in criminal practice. Meet the beautiful Mishka Vasanti Puran, who credits her humble beginnings for everything that she has managed to achieve in life so far. She was born in Guyana, but at the age of five, she left in 1985 with her father Vic, mother Sharon and a sibling to go to London. The family moved there to facilitate her dad’s law studies. “I don’t believe in those days there was a law school. There was no UWI. You would have had to go to Barbados but you would have had to been incredibly rich because you couldn’t work there. So there was no way he (her dad) could have afforded to support the family. He already had two children at the time. Hence, he took the London option. In London, they allowed you to work so that’s what allowed him to graduate and support the family,” Mishka explained

-from Thornhill Hotel to……

people thought she had everything made for her already. But she said this was not the case as everything she achieved came from her own strength, apart from the recognition she got from carrying her father’s name. “People might not know this but my office has always been separate from my dad. Everything that I have achieved or will achieve is based on my own drive, my own ambition and my own success.” Mishka started off in the criminal field but currently, she does mostly civil cases. These include matters dealing with estates, divorce, etc. She also does contentious matters having to do with applications for custody, maintenance, and property issues. Initially, she wanted to become a lawyer so as to emulate her father. But in time, she developed her own appreciation for the field. Initially, the intention was to use her office to assist women and children. “That was my idea based on the injustices I would have seen meted out to women and children while I was growing up.” In fact, one of her long term goals is to set up a legal clinic where she can provide free services for such ones. “As it is now, I do my own legal aid. I don’t collaborate with the Legal Aid Clinic in any way but if people are of limited means, I still assist them as best as I could.” Mishka’s office is located at Lot 105 Smyth Street, Werk-enRust, just opposite Central High School. CONTENTMENT AND DETERMINATION Throughout her hardships as a child, Mishka said she always entertained the hope that one day she was going to get out of poverty. And she credits her father for having thought so.

“So I had my own hardships. We grew up very poor and even as my dad became very well-known, he didn’t spoil us. He always taught us to get everything from our own sweat.”- Mishka Vasanti Puran

Mishka Vasanti Puran in an interview with the Sunday Chronicle. So Mishka started school in London when she was about five. This was after the family moved to a different location. During their time at Thorncliff, Mishka said her parents took the opportunity to save money. Eventually, the family moved to Trinidad and spent two years there. Meanwhile, Vic continued his studies. After successfully completing such, they returned to Guyana. At this point, Mishka completed her primary education at F.E Pollard in Kitty. Asked how the London trip was made possible in the first place, in view of their financial constraints, Mishka explained: “K. Rahaman and Sons was very close to my dad and still are very close to the family. They helped my dad with his ticket to London. He went over there with one pair of shoes. He always tells us that story and his shoe had a hole. And he was working and going to school. My mom’s family helped us to pay for the other tickets. My mom worked to support us as well. For one year when dad wasn’t working, she worked to support the entire family.” Sadly, Vic and Sharon divorced in time, but Mishka didn’t allow these new troubling circumstances to get her down. “At F.E Pollard, I came off as top student for my year and this for me was very remarkable because it was the same year that my parents got divorced. It was a tough year but one thing I learned from both my parents is to be very strong in the face of adversity.” Looking back, Mishka believes that the tough life she experienced while growing up helped to mould her to take on any difficulty that would come her way. After leaving FE Pollard, she secured a place at Queen’s College 1992 to 1999 and proceeded to write her Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) and A-Level exams. She pressed on to the University of Guyana and then to Huge Wooding Law School. She graduated and was called to the bar in 2005. She is the eldest of four children and is married to Viraj Jugdeo.

“He always said where there is life, there is hope. He always said failure is a luxury for the rich. We are not rich, therefore you cannot fail. So I always knew I would pass and succeed because I didn’t have any cushion to fall back on.” Looking back, she said qualities such as contentment and determination helped her to succeed through her bad days. “I compare myself to coal. It is just a black, lacklustre seemingly fragile object. But after years of pressure applied to it, the end result is a diamond. And that’s what I like to think; that my struggle is me evolving. I’m not saying that I am a diamond but me evolving into this precious thing that I am proud of.” Describing her personality, she said: “You can build a bridge with one brick at a time. That’s my take on life. I’m very simple. I don’t require much to please. If there is a spill, I’m the first to clean it with the cleaners. I don’t think of myself as being better than anybody. And I don’t think anyone is better than me. I am very determined.” “Sometimes people say I am refreshingly down to earth but it is because I have been through so much. I know what it is like to know only what second hand clothes are. I used to get unisex clothes so that my brother can wear them when I passed them on,” she recalled. “I don’t need to be measure by anybody. I don’t need to feel

MY OWN SWEAT Mishka said her dad never spoiled any of his children, but taught them to work for anything that they wished to have. “So I had my own hardships. We grew up very poor and even as my dad became very well-known, he didn’t spoil us. He always taught us to get everything from our own sweat.” When she first came out as a lawyer, Mishka said many

Mishka with her dad and grandmother the day she was admitted to the local Bar

accepted or I don’t need society to say that I’ve made it because I know that I have already made it, having regard to my past.” As for advice she would give to people like herself, she said: “Have a broad picture of what you would like to become. Obstacles will always be there no matter how rich or poor you are. As long as you can dream and see it, it will happen. In my opinion, we are all born with the same abilities, provided of course if you were born with special needs or whatever. It is just how you choose to use it.” WORLD SHATTERED TO PIECES Their world was shattered to pieces when they heard that their dad had died along the East Coast Demerara road on the night of October 15, 2012. He was incidentally celebrating his 57th birthday that day. Ever since then, the children (Mishka, Mikhaila, Maqsood, and Mikel) of former prominent lawyer Vicramaditya ‘Vic’ Puran are still distraught over their father’s death and are wondering just how to pick up the pieces and move on. Vicramaditya ‘Vic’ Puran Mishka, like the rest of her siblings, loves her father deeply and thinks about him on each and every day that passes. Mr. Puran, who lived at Barr Street, Kitty, purportedly died after his blue Toyota Tundra careened off the Mahaicony Branch Road and ended up in a canal at Esau and Jacob, Mahaicony, East Coast Demerara. He was reportedly returning from his pig farm, which he had earlier visited and had taken food for the animals. He travelled to the farm daily. A popular theory at the time was that Mr. Puran died of drowning after his vehicle went into the canal. But his family begs to differ. In fact, his other daughter, Mikhaila, had issued a press statement in which she said she was convinced that her father was killed. Mishka was one of the first persons on the scene and she recalled a number of things that proves to the Puran’s family that her father was murdered. NOTHING LEGITIMATE “I don’t believe. I know that he was killed,” Mishka told the Chronicle. After his vehicle was pulled out of the trench, she saw that the seats were not wet. “The trench was very shallow. He purportedly spent hours in the trench. I spend half an hour in my bath tub and I come out with pruned skin. His skin wasn’t pruny,” she observed. Furthermore, all of the seats were still clean. “You know how Mahaicony murky water is. But his clothes were Please turn to page XXXII


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014 XXIII she did not always lead. In fact, at least four of the women lead at

E V O R G N E GOLD

one time or another. From these recordings, Kempadoo-Matthews would “cut” a record of Elsie singing “Bangali Babu,” a song originally sung by a musician from Portuguese Quarter, Berbice, but which was truly popularized by Elsie. In the up-tempo “Shivaji Mandir,” which seems to resemble the intricate but traditional 14-beat chowtaal, the women encourage us to attend mandirs and sing the name of the God; and “Garam Massala” (Elsie, lead vocal) is a folk song that incorporated subtle ribaldry—using spicy Indian food items to describe the vivaciousness of “dis time young gyal” regarding courtship. A Bhojpuri recitation, which is customarily sung as a dulaha and dulahin enter under the manro (ceremonial tent) in a Hindu wedding, is heard for a staggering four and a half minutes—all vocals and no instruments. One cannot exaggerate the role of music in the life of Indians, where it has surpassed itself as an art form, becoming life itself. This was best exemplified by these weeding-gang musicians whose “life” belonged to the community. What they played to the villagers, were often rehearsed in the cane fields where saucepans and cutlasses became dholaks and dhandtals. It seemed unnatural, but underlying these recordings is an intensity that is characterized by all these years of impromptu versification. These women were so devoted that they often attended Friday night matikors and return home after the kanghan on Monday.

: a bustling clove of economic prosperity and business boom

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By Alex Wayne

his week it was with great expectation and a tingle of ‘tropical excitement’ that we prepared to make a much anticipated trip to Golden Grove Village, East Bank Demerara, our next stop in our weekly Village Focus

exploits. You see folks we had received word of the ‘sunny fiesta’ allure of this location, infused with the jovial banter of its happy people, always caught up in the bustle of getting things done to ensure a satisfying and reasonable means of existence. There is however a Golden Grove situated on the East Coast of Demerara is better known by that name than the Golden Grove on the East Bank of the same river. That is because the village on the East Bank is more popularly known by the shortened form, just GROVE. Eight miles from the capital city, going south, along the East Bank Demerara, is the sprawling two-mile long village of Golden Grove, somehow just called simply Grove. Lying adjacent to the village of Diamond, Grove, with a population of over 25,000 is easily the most densely populated, though not the largest village on the East Bank of Demerara. Originally a totally East Indian village, 25 per cent of the residents are now of mixed and African races. Administered under the Diamond Place/Grove National Democratic Council (NDC), the expanded boundaries of the former plantation include the original village, a housing scheme and two

‘Aunty Pearlie’ (right) is a merry soul that spreads joy and much love around Grove Village

squatting areas. Grove is divided into several exciting locations, the likes of Post Office Street, Lisa Street, Sarah Street, Station Street and several others. PLACES OF WORSHIP Religious places of worship are plentiful. There are two mosques, three Hindu and two Kali Mai Temples, in addition to several churches representing various sects of the Christian denominations. Many are ‘bottom-house’ churches. But they compete equally with the proliferation of liquor restaurants and beer gardens that flourish, especially on weekends Seventy-five per cent of the working population in Grove work at the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GUYSUCO) and the Demerara Distillers Limited at Diamond. For most, Fridays are the happiest day since that is when they receive their weekly wages and would engage in drinking and festivity, sometimes all weekend. VILLAGE TREKS AND LIVELIHOOD OF THE PEOPLE The almost intoxicating smell of rich, pure Guyanese sugar and molten molasses signalled that we had arrived at Greater Diamond, just a few metres from our destination. Jerking out of my reverie at the economic transformation of Diamond, I grabbed notepad, pens and camera and prepared for the task ahead. It was not going to an easy day for me because the midday sun was tearing at my skin, its merciless ultraviolet rays almost seeming wanting to cook me alive. I had sadly forgotten my umbrella, so like a ‘hard boiled country bred kid’ I steeled myself and prepared to brave the forces of Mother Nature. But when I began to think that the sun was my only discomfort, I received a rude awakening when a sand truck blaring its horn and raising suffocating clouds of dust almost ran me over. Seeing my shock and disbelief some taxi drivers almost laughed their heads off, but one very concerned housewife was in sympathy. “Mista yuh gat tuh be careful pond is road. Dem driva ain’t kay bout nobady. Dem ah behave as if dem deh pon ah race track. Is dem sand truck drivas does behave suh. Dem ah try fuh out run mattie fuh get laod and mek de big money. Is a day when dem kill somebody”. Heeding her warning I gingerly retreated to the road parapet and continued my explorations. I was approaching a cheery looking vegetable vendor who was close by the road side when again I was forced to scurry to safety my heart pounding in my chest. This time two sand trucks were seeming racing on the busy road since the drivers were ‘guffawing’ and shouting loud obscenities at each as their loud, raucous laughter rang out distinctly above the loud ‘churning’ of their truck engines. A few young men standing close by swore at the reckless maneuvres of the drivers and I dare not repeat what they mouthed as the vehicles sped by in a blinding cloud of dust and debris. That aside this village was a bustle of activity that had me very surprised and well, a bit awed. My first stop was to chat with shoe maker Rawle Pile who operated from a makeshift stall quite close by the Grove Main Bridge. And oh boy... This lad was ultra excited that he was obviously the focus and attention of a media personality. Setting aside his needles he informed that life was good in Grove and assured that he truly enjoyed

his profession. “Life is good in this village and everyone live here as one. I have been engaged in this job for over 15 years and during that time I must agree that my experiences have kept me glued to it until today. This is more like a side job for me but it is the one I enjoy most. Sometimes business is good and sometimes bad but I still survive since I also would drive around the village and sell fish from time to time. The two jobs combined keep my head above water”. There are a few other shoemakers in Grove but according to Mr. Pile this profession has dwindled over the years. He noted that his customers are satisfied with his service and that he has seen a distinct increase in clients since word of his good works is spread far and wide. Grove is mostly inhabited by ‘go-getters’ as indicated by several taxi drivers. While some are employed in the many clothing and grocery outlets one could find there, others are in good positions at the Bounty Farm branch, Digicel Branch, Med’s and US Pharmacy, Bill Express, Devon’s Auto Spares, Chinese Restaurants, and several lumber years that have sprung up in the village. Some housewives are poultry farmers, while some families still engage in farming both on a small and large scale basis. Yes a few are engaged in administrative offices outside the village, but self help initiatives and small businesses seem to be the order of the day. Many take up positions in entities like the Post Office, Luck Dollar Furniture Store, DDaily Fresh Chicken outlet, Hardat’s & Sons Lumber Yard, Automotive Arts entity and other business too many to mention. And many villagers believe in the humble beginnings of life and one such individual was the somewhat quiet Dorrie Dais, a vegetable and ground provision vendor who operates a small stall just by the roadside. She has been engaged in plying her trade by the roadside since 1982, braves the forces of weather, and of course, the ‘noisy and very irritating rattling of the speeding sand trucks’ to make a living. Her husband ‘Ravi’ is a carpenter but as expected he gets jobs on a seasonal basis thus prompting his wife to help out in the home. The two have father six sons the eldest being twenty two years, while the youngest is just three years old. But despite the challenges and discomfort she sometimes faces, the smiling Dorrie is humble and thankful for whatever she makes on the road. This with the little from her husband and eldest son who chips in keeps the family living comfortable if not luxuriously. “I doing dis jab fuh ovah 15 years and it is nat ah easy jab at all. I would normally gat tuh wake up at five ‘a’ clack and fetch out meh supplies with help frum me husband and sons all de way up Market Road up tuh where yuh see me selling hea. To get real good money

Poultry vendor Bisanti Singh supplies resident with fresh plucked chicken on a daily basis

ah does most times sell until seven in de evening before packing up. Normally me husband would come out tuh help me fetch every thing home”. Asked about her sales the smiling woman who chatted and expertly cleaned her eddoes noted that her sales can be determined by demand and by her aggression. “Sales would be decided by the demand of the customers and when things nah bright wid dem, I does gat tuh come up with some real strong ideas to mek a money. Sometime I would get into de streets and urge customers to buy ad meh stall since dem got plenty atha vegetable vendas. And dere is nothing like pitchin in wan or two extra plantains or ochro, or whateve. People does be pleased and dem ah come back fuh buy frum yuh again”. CHALLENGES While all seems to be well in this village a few complained of the drainage and irrigation system which they said can become very irritable at times. Some persons, specifically those living in the MARKET Street area noted that because of overgrown drains and a not properly cleaned main canal, their location becomes extremely muddy and flooded during heavy rainfall. Neil Singh who indicated that the lumber yard business was becoming highly competitive noted that there is great need for improvement in the drainage aspect of the village. “All is well in Grove boss. We get proper electricity and good drinking water, but one problem facing residents in the Market Road area is the drainage problem. When rain falls the place does get so muddy, people are hardly able to move around in that area. Those that suffer mostly are the persons with vehicles and those using donkey carts and horse carts to transport the items they would sell by the roadside. If something can be done about this problem, I think persons in that location would be happier citizens”.

Prominent figures from Grove

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The talented Kassri Narine has left a legacy of music behind for residents of Grove Village

her companions, she played the dholak, damru (small hand-drum), harmonium, and knew the homogenous lingua franca used on the plantations. To interpret the life of this cultural pioneer is not easy, because Elsie the musician evolved hand-in-hand with the very culture of Indian music which, incidentally, metamorphose due to the indenture experience, and was further complicated by its overlapping with the world of Western music. Thus, in playing music for the community from weddings to “nine-day” birth rituals to religious ceremonies, these estate-employed women existed between traditions. Because historians have largely ignored them, the depth of skills and their intricacies remain subdued, hidden. On one hand, traditional Indian songs (e.g., bhajans) were done closer to the Indian music scale, expressing a variety of raag (melody) and at differing taal (rhythmic cycles). On the other, their “rhyme songs” (that is, songs done in Anglo-Indian dialect) were sung in a Western scale and this led to substantial improvisation, pushing East Indian music into a region that was, arguably, neither East nor West. If you were lucky to listen to a number of songs by these women from Grove, recorded by Peter Kempadoo and Marc Matthews in the

ELSIE SARGEANT

n the annals of East Indian music of Guyana, the contribution of women who worked on the plantations and estates is unquestionably extraordinary. For generations, a group of women from Grove, East Bank Demerara—all members of a weeding gang, made some of the most remarkable folk music. Its quite deserving thatw e should mention at least two of them that contributed significantly to local music during their era. Elsie Sargeant popularly known as “Dougla” Elsie and Kassri Narine, called Kathy (kay-tee) (let’s also honour in spirit, their multi-talented supporting cast, all of whom have since died) Sundarie, “Polo,” Sumintra aka “Lada,” Budnee, Dulari called “Sardaren,” Kawalpatie, and Sajaan Ramotar. Each was a singer in her own right, and many were efficient on the dholak (drum). “Dougla” Elsie was born to an Indian mother and a Black father in the early1920s at Plantation Diamond (Diamond) on the East Bank of Demerara, bedrock of East Indian culture before its inhabitants migrated from the logees to Grove next door. As her mother died shortly after Elsie was born, the child came of age under the tutelage of a grandmother who came from India. Young Elsie started singing early, but would become most notable after her marriage, and move to Grove in the1950s. Essentially a folklorist like many musicians of the old, she lacked any formal education (music or otherwise), but knew how to sing between vernaculars and was familiar with the Hindu culture practiced locally. Apart from having the most distinct voice among

K

KASSRI NARINE

assri Narine (aka Kathy), house was just one block from where Elsie lived She was born in 1934 in what was originally “old” Grove (before the nuclear scheme was added), not far from where the first Diamond-Grove mandir existed (at the border of the villages). One of the first mandirs in Demerara, it was here (before the reign of the Deodat Sharma clan of pundits) under Pandit Durga (father of PPP MP Pandit Reepu Daman Persaud) that Hindu culture thrived—such as, allegedly, the first-ever staging of the Ramlila pageant-plays, based on the Ramayana. This community would have influenced her tremendously, as it did Elsie. Kathy had been singing since she was in her teens, and was exposed to some level of music at home since her brother, the late Sugrim Gobin, was also a music talent. Additionally, she had a chacha (father’s brother) who was famous for playing the enormous tadjah drum at Diamond ground whenever fairs were held. Arguably, Kathy was not as versatile a singer as Elsie, but her skills as a dholak player was indisputable. She was married twice and had four children altogether. When I met her, she rattled off a number of stanzas randomly (despite being weak), before speaking about the harsh conditions in which they worked and sang—before the time of electricity, such as when the villagers gathered at nights to sing in the presence of jug lamps—making what they called “jug music.” In 1973, two of her songs became records—one was “Oh Maninja,” a folk anthem or “rhyme song” re-popularize by Kanchan in the eighties. For the Kempadoo-Matthews JARAI sessions, Kathy sang a different (probably the earliest) version of the song. The record that was made, however, was done from a different session in Grove at the home of Sugrim Gobin, in a room constructed specially “for recording music.” Of course, it was primitive—a mere room with high, sealed walls to deflect car

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The renowned Elsie Sargeant was a great contributor to riveting Indian music in and around the village early1970s , you would realise some thirty years later, it is altogether, a mesmerising display of musical talent and feminine energy. The setting is raw with no acoustics to capture or purify sounds, and the instruments are rudimentary; there is a relentless dholak, backed by the undying presence of dhandtal and manjiras (or kartal; cymbals), and occasionally, tali (handclapping). The harmonium was set very low. While Elsie (who had an extensive repertoire of songs; a different type of song for differing occasions) was mostly the lead singer,

Our reporter Alex Wayne (right) in merry conversation with snack vendor Wayne Halley, who makes a living by selling snacks around the village


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GOLDEN ...

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engines and dog barks. Two of Grove’s well-known talents played on that record; Harrychan on dholak and Arthur Etwaroo (aka Arthur Barber) on harmonium. To capture the sounds from which a master tape was used to press the 45 records, Kathy used a tape recorder. In all of the folk literature to originate from the East Indians, there is almost no verse that is as poignant and famous as the chorus of “Oh Maninja.” Unwisely, as has been generally the case with East Indian writings—not regarded as proper culture by the guardians of Guyanese literature, these lyrics have long been ignored; The song epitomises the appalling realities of estate village life; there is stark poverty, rising cost of living, hard labor for little returns, thriftiness, brute estate management, and despair.                        LOST MUSICAL CULTURE Grove lost its great music culture long ago as it began to lose its music matriarchs. As generations changed, musicians migrated elsewhere or passed on; Arthur “Rock N Roll” Budram left for the city and Leonard Latachana (Chandi Orchestra) migrated to Canada. Others like Ata Baba, Raymond Bandhu, and the spirited women of the weeding gang died. Chandi Orchestra that toured Suriname disbanded and Sugrim Gobin, who had made about a dozen records, moved to Friendship—only to be murdered by “kick-down-the-door” bandits. After Kathy moved to Venezuela, Elsie remained as the last of the musicians in Grove. Where hard life had failed, old-age eventfully wore her down until the artist disappeared, leaving only the woman. Abandoned by the sound-system technology that had stormed away an oral tradition she helped glorify, Elsie became a mere accessory of the time. In 1993, the incredibly talented “Dougla” Elsie died, leaving behind her old dholak and a handful of exhilarating recordings, remnants of an excitingly rich past.

Construction and joinery also make up the ‘employment platter in Grove Village Neil Singh (foreground) is contemplating closing operations at their lumber yard in Grove because of competition.

GROVE VILLAGE BEFORE ITS EVOLVEMENT Everyone wonders why our villages were given the names they have today and not often are we able to come up with the true reasons. We searched really high and low for an elderly villager who should be able to come up with an insight on the origin of Grove Village. After about an hour we were directed to 84-year old Pearlie Liadrunie, a peppy old woman, all full of toothless smiles, with candle light dancing in her eyes. This woman certainly made my day and filled me with spirited energy, as ai marvelled at her still energetic moves, and merriment that seemed to bubble from her being. ‘Auntie Pearlie’ as she is more popularly known noted that as a young girl she was among the first settlers to have inhabited Grove Village. She said that at time this location was a dense fusion of towering trees, bush and foliage that hardly allowed much moving around. “Meh chile, dis village was noting of what it is today in my time. Meh fatha bring we hea when I was a lil gyal and we used to use trench wata fuh cook and drink sometimes. Fuh get prapa wata we had to walk tuh Diamond or dem atha village and it used to kill me. All ovah was tree and bush and plenty mud. De mud suh much dat people ah stick up in it. And it had plenty fruit tee and dem tree de deh in groves like. We had tons a guava, cherry, jamoon and plenty atha fruit trees. We had a large pine grove that grow hea by itself tuh. Accarding to me fatha who dead now, people began to call de village Grove because of the formation of them trees and bush. Dah is as much as me can tell yuh son”. ‘Aunty Pearlie’ explained that as the years went by the village saw the arrival of more settlers. She said that most of the tress there in her time would have gotten their ‘grove like formation’ from the planting pattern left by owners of sugar plantations in that era. Roads soon appeared through government interventions and electricity soon became a luxury most households could afford. In the late 1980’s this village saw an influx of commercial businesses and much economical initiatives as it became engulfed in the tentacles of ‘modern development’. Today Grove Village as it is more locally known is an exciting mix of business places a, nightspots and hangout bars that allows villagers a never ending ‘leisure time fiesta’ that keeps them smiling all the time. Taking a look at this settlement one might be tempted to say that this village has the makings of a little town, if its economic boost continues. Another remarkable factor about this village is how the residents engage in great harmony and a degree of camaraderie that would leave a lasting impression. Now folks you have soaked up the intriguing mysteries of Grove Village (Golden Grove). Join us next Sunday as we thrill you with the journey into another location that is bound to stir your senses and adventurous minds. Do have a fabulous rest of the week and remember to grab a Sunday Chronicle for guaranteed readers’ satisfaction.

Love is in the air, and this young lady has already selected her attire for Valentine

Roadside vendor Dorrie Dias cleans her eddoes for the day’s sale as her two sons wait to be assigned their daily chores Shoemaker Rawle Pile (right) ensures shoes last a lifetime in Grove and surrounding villages

The traditional horse drawn cart continues to be a popular mode of transport in Grove Village


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Harmful effects of chemical skin ... From page XX

Homemade ways to naturally lighten skin:

use a combination of topical lotions or gels containing melanin-inhibiting ingredients along with a sunscreen, and a prescription retinoid. There are a variety of chemicals used and they work in different ways but the most common ones as pointed out by Wikipedia.com fall into two classes those that inhibit melanin production and those that work in post-melanin synthesis. Those from the previous category include:

1. Papaya Soap. Using it regularly will lighten your skin. Lather it to your skin for 3 minutes.

TRETINOIN (also known as all-trans retinoic acid) is used mainly for skin discolorations. Negative side effect: Users of tretinoin have to avoid sunlight, as using tretinoin makes the skin more sensitive to UVA and UVB rays always and can have the opposite effect of darkening skin

4. Milk: Milk is a natural skin bleacher, pour some Milk into a bowl, grab a towel dip it in the bowl and rub it generously around your face.

HYDROQUINONE is a strong inhibitor of melanin production, meaning that it prevents dark skin from making the substance responsible for skin colour. Negative side effect: It has been banned in some countries (e.g. France) because of fears of a cancer risk. Hydroquinone has been shown to cause leukaemia in mice and other animals. KOJIC ACID is a by-product in the fermentation process of malting rice for use in the manufacturing of sake, the Japanese rice wine. Some research shows kojic acid to be effective for inhibiting melanin production, but it is an unstable ingredient in cosmetic formulations Negative side effect: controversial research has suggested that kojic acid may have carcinogenic properties in large doses. Other further studies show that kojic acid is not carcinogenic, but can cause allergic contact dermatitis and skin irritation. MERCURY- Many skin whiteners contain toxic mercury such as mercury (II) chloride or ammoniated mercury as the active ingredient. Negative side effect: Accumulates n skin and it can have the opposite results in the long term. Some studies suggest that long-term use could cause systemic absorption that leads to tissue accumulation of the substance. It was banned in Europe (1976) and in the USA (1990) for purpose of skin whitening. Possibly safer alternatives ARBUTIN is derived from the leaves of bearberry, cranberry, mulberry or blueberry shrubs, and also is present in most types of pears. It can have melanin-inhibiting properties. Arbutin and other plant extracts are considered safe alternatives to commonly used de-pigmenting agents to make the skin fairer. Medical studies have shown the efficiency of arbutin for skin lightening. AZELAIC ACID is a component of grains, such as wheat, rye, and barley. Azelaic acid is used to treat acne, but there also is research showing it to be effective for skin discolorations. It belongs to a class of medication called dicarboxylic acids. It works by killing acne bacteria that infect skin pores. Azelaic acid has been used for treatment of skin pigmentation including melasma and post inflammatory hyper pigmentation, particularly in those with darker skin types. It has been recommended as an alternative to hydroquinone (HQ). As a tyrosinase inhibitor, azelaic acid reduces synthesis of melanin. NIACINAMIDE is claimed to be a much safer alternative when applied topically for skin or genitalia whitening. According to research by Procter & Gamble, a cosmetics company, niacinamide has no adverse side-effects. It also promotes acne reduction, increases skin moisture, and reduces fine wrinkles.

2. Lemon juice and yogurt once a day is excellent mild bleach. 3. Turmeric: grind up “face turmeric� with olive oil and chickpea flour

5. Lemon. Cut a lemon into 2 halves. Rub it gently on your face and neck. Wash it after 10-20 minutes. Doing it regularly will cleanse your skin and slowly start lightening it. 6. Oatmeal and tomato juice. Mix equal parts of oatmeal and tomato juice. Apply this mixture to your skin and allow it to settle for at least half an hour before rinsing it off from your skin thoroughly. 7. Exfoliate. This will get rid of the old tanned cells and make way for new, cells! Sources: www. wikipedia.com, www. Jamaicastar.com, www. beauty and Grooming.htm, www. how to Lighten Skin Naturally _ Skin So Bold.htm


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The Beatles- arguably the most successful act of the 20th century.

Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014 By Steve Shelokhonov The Beatles were an English rock band that became arguably the most successful act of the 20th century. They contributed to music, film, literature, art, and fashion, made a continuous impact on popular culture and the lifestyle of several generations. Their songs and images carrying powerful ideas of love, peace, help, and imagination evoked creativity and liberation that outperformed the rusty Soviet propaganda and contributed to breaking walls in the minds of millions, thus making impact on human history. In July of 1957, in Liverpool, ‘Paul McCartney ‘ met John Lennon. Both were teenagers. Paul impressed John with his mastery of acoustic guitar, and was invited to join Lennon’s group, The Quarrymen. George Harrison joined them in February of 1958. In 1959 they played regular gigs at a club called The Casbah. They were joined by vocalist Stuart Sutcliffe, and by drummer Peter Best, whose mother owned The Casbah club. Early incarnations of the band included The Quarrymen, Johnny & the Moon Dogs, and The Silver Beetles. John Lennon dreamed up the band’s final name, The Beatles, a mix of beat with beetle. In 1960 The Beatles toured in Hamburg, Germany. There they were joined by Ringo Starr, who previously played with Rory Storm and the Hurricanes. In Hamburg, The Beatles made their first studio work as a backing band for singer Tony Sheridan’s recordings for the German Polydor label, however, in the credits the band’s name was changed to The Beat Brothers. From February 1961 to August 1963, The Beatles played a regular gig at the Cavern. They were paid five pounds for their first show, rising to three hundred pounds per show in 1963. In two and a half years The Beatles gave 262 shows at the Cavern in Liverpool. Brian Epstein was invited to be the manager of the Beatles in November 1961. His diplomatic way of dealing with the Beatles and with their previous manager resulted in a December 10, 1961, meeting, where it was decided that Epstein would manage the band. A 5-year management contract was signed by four members at then-drummer Pete Best’s home on January 24, 1962. Epstein did not put his signature on it, giving the musicians the freedom of choice. At that time McCartney and Harrison were under 21, so the paper wasn’t technically legal. None of them realized this and it did not matter to them. What mattered was their genuine trust in Epstein. He changed their early image for the good. Brian Epstein made them wear suits and ties, classic shoes, and newer haircuts. They were advised to update their manners on stage and quit eating and drinking in public. Brian Epstein worked hard on both the Beatles’ image and public relations. He improved their image enough to make them accepted by the conservative media. Most if not all of their communication off-stage was managed by Brian Epstein. On January 1, 1962, The Beatles came to London and recorded fifteen songs at the Decca Records. They were not hired, but the material helped them later. During the year 1962, they made several trips to London and auditioned for various labels. In May of 1962 Epstein canceled the group’s contract with Tony Sheridan and the German label. Brian Epstein was persistent in trying to sign a record deal for the Beatles, even after being rejected by every major record label in UK, like Columbia, Philips, Oriole, Decca, and Pye. Epstein transferred a demo tape to disc with HMV technician Jim Foy, who liked their song and referred it to Parlophone’s George Martin. On June 6, 1962, at the Abbey Road studios, they passed Martin’s audition with the exception of Pete Best. George Martin liked them, but recommended the change of a drummer. Being asked by John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and George Harrison; Epstein fired Pete Best. After a mutual decision the band was completed with Ringo Starr, who duly became the fourth Beatle. In September of 1962 The Beatles recorded their first hit Love Me Do, which charted in UK, and reached the top of the US singles chart. London became their new home since 1963. On February 11, 1963, The Beatles recorded the entire album ‘Please, Please me’ in one day, working non-stop during ten-hour studio session. In May and June, 1963, the band made a tour with Roy Orbison. In August of 1963, their single She Loves You became a super hit. Their October 1963 performance at the London Palladium made them famous in Great Britain and initiated the Beatlemania in the UK. The show at the London Palladium was broadcast live and seen by twelve million viewers. Then, in November 1962, The Beatles gave a charity concert at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London. There, performing for the rich and famous, John Lennon made his famous announcement: Would the people in the cheaper seats clap your hands? And the rest of you, if you’ll just rattle your jewelry. In early performances the Beatles included popular songs from the 1940s and 1950s. They played rock-n-roll and R&B-based pop songs while they gradually worked on developing a style of their own. Their mixture of rock-n-roll, skiffle, blues, country, soul, and a simplified version of 1930s jazz resulted in several multi-genre and cross-style sounding songs. They admitted their interest in the music of Buddy Holly, Elvis Presley, Little Richard and other entertainers of the 40s, 50s and early 60s. Beatles’ distinctive vocals were sometimes reminiscent of the Everly Brothers’ tight harmonies. By 1965 their style absorbed ethnic music influences from India and other Oriental cultures, and later expanded into psychedelic experiments and classical-sounding compositions. Their creative search covered a range of styles from jazz and rock to a cosmopolitan cross-cultural and cross-genre compositions. Initially the Beatles were a guitars and drums band. In the course of their career every member became a multi-instrumentalist. George Harrison played the lead guitar and also introduced such exotic instruments as ukulele, Indian sitars, flutes, tabla, darbouka, and tampur drums. John Lennon played a variety of guitars, keyboards, harmonicas and horns. Paul McCartney played bass guitar, acoustic

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The story of Mishka ...

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still clean. There was no sign that it was soaked in that kind of water. Mahaicony water would have gotten it dingy.” Secondly, she saw that the blood which emanated from his ear was dried on to his face. “Clearly, if you hit your head and you go into the water, it bleeds out into the water. It had to have had some sort of time to dry somewhere to form that layer over his face. So that’s the first alarming thing. I saw this personally.” Mishka does not believe that the authorities did enough, even from the point of view of an accident. “Let’s assume one hundred percent it was an accident. How deep was the water? Where are his skid marks? Is there Anything to show legitimately that there was an accident. There was no investigation even into an accident. And that, too, is disturbing. He was a very prominent figure. Why just leave it like that?” Mr. Puran’s vehicle was reportedly taken to the Mahaicony Police Station, but no one was told when the vehicle was being released. “At least I wasn’t told, and I would have thought that, being in the profession, I would have been afforded that courtesy of knowing when that vehicle was being released, so that I could have

done things to preserve the vehicle, which was the only evidence left,” Mishka recalled. To this day, she feels that her father’s murderer had to be someone he knew. “He would never have stopped his vehicle. I think in my mind that he would have stopped, and this was what happened to him. The windows were up, no AC was on, his lights were not on at the time, (who drives at night with their lights off?) And when I peeped into the vehicle, it was in park.” ASPHYXIATION Mr. Puran’s death certificate says that he died of asphyxiation, but it does not state asphyxiation by drowning. “It simply says asphyxiation which can cover many things, including being strangled, etc…it’s very, very wide.” Also, there were marks on his skin which could not be explained, Mishka said. “At the funeral, I was wondering why he was wearing gloves. I had never seen gloves on a dead body. So I was wondering if it was for style. Then I figured it out. His veins were as big as

Mishka with her dad (now deceased) Vic Puran pencils which could only happen before you die. It can’t pool up in your veins after you die. So whatever caused your veins to get big would have happened while you were alive, because your body is preserved in a state as it is when you die. So it would lend credence to the fact that somehow he was restrained. “He could have very well died of drowning. But maybe well, not maybe I am convinced it was not in the way that they said that he drowned, just because of the physical evidence. “But for whatever reason, I don’t wish to speculate. But nothing was ever done, and it would appear that nothing will ever be done. I am sure authorities will say there was nothing to show foul play. There are very good people in the police force, but perhaps it is lack of training, perhaps there isn’t a command from the top. I can only speculate as to why nothing was done. But it doesn’t mean that nothing can ever be done, because it is an indictable offence. Twenty years can pass and they can bring it up.” Mr. Puran was often said to be the lawyer who represented the high profile criminals. But even so, Mishka is contending that her father was just doing his job. “It was his job. He was not in any way emotionally connected to these people, or they were not his friends. It was simply his job and he was good at it. Whichever client he had should have been afforded the best representation they could get. We all want to be the best in our field. So whether or not you want to say its karma…well, only God can be the judge of that.” HE WILL NEVER DIE “I still grieve for him every single day. Every day I wake up, I feel like it’s the first time I am hearing the news. When I go to bed at night, I close my eyes and I think of him. And sometimes when I am praying, I still pray for him like I would have before, and then I realize he is not there anymore, and my prayers can’t do anything for him. I think the same thing with my sister,” Mishka expressed. The family always felt that Mr. Puran was untouchable. They never would have thought that someone out there would try to harm him. “He wasn’t a person that would warrant that. He was very peaceful. He always sought to coexist with everyone else. He never hurt anybody. Perhaps he hurt us as his family, but I don’t think that he ever went out there deliberately hurting people.” Mishka said her father left an indelible impression on her and her family, and on anyone with whom he came into contact. “He was one man, but he lives on through all of us. Each child has a certain attribute. He will never die in our hearts and in those that he touched, because whether you liked him or not, he was a remarkable person. He just had the charisma and the charm to pull you in, and anyone that met him will remember him to the day they die.”

With her siblings


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The Beatlesarguably the most ... From page XXVI

and electric guitars, piano and keyboards, as well as over 40 other musical instruments. The Beatles were the first popular band that used a classical touch of strings and keyboard instruments; their producer George Martin scored Baroque orchestrations in several songs, such as Yesterday, Eleanor Rigby, In My Life, and a full orchestra in Sgt. Pepper. John Lennon and Paul McCartney played piano in many of their songs. Their jamming on a piano together led to creation of their best-selling hit I Want to Hold Your Hand in 1963. At first the Beatles were rejected by Dick Clark after testing a recording of their song on his show. Then Brian Epstein approached Ed Sullivan, who discussed them with Walter Cronkite after seeing them on his CBS Evening News in 1963. Brian Epstein also managed to get their music played by influential radio stations in Washington and New York. The US consumer reaction was peaking and a single ‘I Want to Hold Your Hand’ was released in December 1963 by the Capitol Records. Their sensational tour in the USA began with three TV shows at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York, in February of 1964. After that The Beatles endured several years of extremely intensive recording, filming, and touring. They stopped public performances after 1966, but continued their recording contracts. By 1985 The Beatles had sold over one billion records. Music became their ticket to ride around the world. Beatlemania never really ended since its initiation. It still lives as a movable feast in many hearts and minds, as a sweet memory of youth, when all you need is love and a little help from a friend to be happy. The Beatles’ first two feature films, A Hard Day’s Night (1964) and Help (1965), were made in collaboration with an American director, Richard Lester. Their humorous, ironic, and farcical film performances are reminiscent of the Marx Brothers’ comedies. Later The Beatles moved into the area of psychedelic innovations with the animated film Yellow Submarine (1966). Their surrealistic TV movie The Magical Mystery Tour (1967) became the cause for the first major criticism of their work in the British press. Their film music was also released as studio albums. Original music by The Beatles as well as re-makes of their songs has been also used, often uncredited, in music scores of feature films and documentaries. Some of The Beatles concert and studio performances were filmed on several occasions and were later edited and released after the band’s dissolution. In 1999 the re-mastered and remixed film The Beatles Yellow Submarine Adventure (2000) delighted a younger audience with incredible animation and songs. All four members were charismatic and individually talented artists, they sparked each other from the beginning. Eventually they made a much better group effort under the thorough management by Brian Epstein. His coaching helped consolidate their talents and mutual stimulation into beautiful teamwork. Paul McCartney had the privilege of a better musical education, having studied classical piano and guitar in his childhood. He progressed as a lead vocalist and multi-instrumentalist, as well as a singer-songwriter. McCartney wrote more songs for the Beatles than other members of the band. His songs Yesterday, Eleanor Rigby, Blackbird, When I’m 64, Let It Be are among the Beatles’ best hits. Yesterday is considered the most-covered song in history with over three thousand versions of it recorded by various artists. McCartney accepted the agreement that was offered by John Lennon in 1957, about the 50/50 authorship of every song written by either one of them. Most of The Beatles’ songs are formally credited to both names, regardless of the fact that many of the songs were written individually. On June 25, 1967, The Beatles made history becoming the first band globally transmitted on TV to an estimated 400 million people worldwide. The Beatles were a segment in the first-ever worldwide satellite hook-up and their new song “All You Need Is Love” was broadcast live during the show. Two months later The Beatles lost their creative manager Brian Epstein, whose talent for problem-solving was unmatched. “That was it, the beginning of the end”, said Lennon. Evolution of each member’s creativity and musicianship also led to individual career ambitions. John Lennon was experimenting with psychedelic poetry and art. His creativity was very unique and innovative. Lennon wrote Come Together, Girl, Revolution, Strawberry Fields and many other Beatles’ hits. An out-of-context reprinting of Lennon’s remarks on the Beatlemania phenomenon caused problems in the media. His comparison of Beatles’ popularity to that of Jesus Christ was used to attack them publicly, causing cancellations of their performances and even burning of their records. Lennon had to apologize several times in press and on TV, including at a Chicago press conference. In 1967 John Lennon met Japanese artist Yoko Ono, whom he later married. George Harrison was the lead guitar player and also took sitar lessons from Ravi Shankar. Harrison had his own inner light of creativity and spirituality, he wrote Something, Taxman, I me mine, and other hits. Ringo Starr sang ‘Yellow Submarine’ and a few other songs. He has made a film career and also toured with his All Stars Band and released several solo albums. His 1973 release “Ringo” was the last album to feature all four living Beatles, although not on the same song. The Beatles created over 240 songs, they recorded many singles and albums, made films and TV shows. Thousands of memorable pictures popularized their image. 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John Cena becomes most-liked U.S. athlete on Facebook WWE Superstar John Cena has passed Kobe Bryant to become the most-liked active U.S. athlete on Facebook, with more than 18.6 million followers. Cena is the No. 7 most-followed athlete in the world on Facebook and has more followers than Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Roger Federer. The Cenation leader also has more Facebook followers than Kevin Durant, Michael Phelps and Tony Hawk combined. WWE has eclipsed 260 million fans through its global social media networks, further cementing its position as one of the most followed brands in the world. Currently, WWE has more than 172 million Facebook fans and 82 million Twitter followers across all of its networks. WWE’s network of Facebook pages has more followers than the NFL and its 32 teams’ pages combined. Last week, WWE announced that the WWE App has surpassed 10 million downloads in 220 countries since it launched in August 2012. The WWE App will be a key component in the delivery of WWE Network, the first-ever 24/7 streaming network that launches on Monday, February 24. Over the past year, the WWE App has been downloaded more than 6 million times, with more than 500,000 fans experiencing its second screen capabilities every week during Monday Night Raw

The Beatles- arguably the most ... from beginners to the leaders of entertainment, they learned from many world cultures, absorbed from various styles, and created their own. Their cross-style compositions covered a range of influences from English folk ballads to Indian raga; absorbing from Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig van Beethoven, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Elvis Presley, Everly Brothers, Little Richard, and others. The songwriting and performing talents of Paul McCartney, John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr, fused in the Beatles’ music. Lennon and McCartney initiated changes in music publishing industry by breaking the Tin Pan Alley monopoly of songwriting. Their legacy became possible due to highly professional work by Brian Epstein and George Martin. In 1994 three surviving members reunited and produced Lennon’s previously unknown song ‘Free as a Bird’. It was preserved by Yoko Ono on a tape recording made by Lennon in 1977. The song was re-arranged and re-mixed with the voices of three surviving members. The Beatles Anthology TV documentary was watched by 420 million people in 1995. The Beatles represent the collective consciousness of several generations. Millions of viewers and listeners across the universe became conditioned to the sounds and images of The Beatles. Their influence on the modern world never stopped. Numbers may only show the tip of the iceberg (record sales, shows admissions, top hits, etc.). As image-makers and role models they pushed boundaries in lifestyle and business, affecting customers behavior and consumption beyond the entertainment industry by turning all life into entertainment. A brilliant blend of music and lyrics in their songs made influence on many minds by carrying messages like: give peace a chance and people working it out. A message more powerful than political control, it broke through second and third world censorship and regulations and set many millions free. Steve Jobs, being a big fan of Paul McCartney and The Beatles, referred to them on many occasions and also was interviewed on a showing of a Paul McCartney concert. When asked about his business model, Steve Jobs replied: My model for business is The Beatles: They were four guys that kept each other’s negative tendencies in check; they balanced each other. And the total was greater than

Daniel Bryan’s #YESMovement spreads to Indonesia The #YESMovement has gone international.

Riding the wave of fan support that has nearly overwhelmed Daniel Bryan in recent weeks, a group of Indonesian WWE fans took to YouTube and recorded a brief, minute-long tribute to the former WWE Champion by performing his signature chant while Bryan’s theme music plays in the background. Their efforts did not go unnoticed, as WWE’s “Yes!” Man shouted the crew out on Twitter and included a link to the clip in his message.

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the sum of the parts. Great things in business are never done by one person, they are done by a team of people. The Beatles made impact on human history, because their influence has been liberating for generations of nowhere men living in misery beyond the Iron Curtain. Something in their songs and images appealed to everybody who wanted to become free as a bird. Their songs carrying powerful ideas of real love, peace, help, and imagination evoked creativity that outperformed the rusty Soviet propaganda and contributed to breaking chains and walls in the minds of millions. The Beatles expressed themselves in beautiful and liberating words of love, happiness, freedom, and revolution, and carried those messages to people across the universe. Their songs and images helped many freedom-loving people to come together for revolutions in Prague and Warsaw, Beijing and Bucharest, Berlin and Moscow. The Beatles has been an inspiration for those who take the long and winding road to freedom. Even after The Beatles had gone, the individual members continued to spread their message; from the concert for Bangladesh by George Harrison and Ringo Starr in 1971, to 2003 “Back in USSR” concert by Paul McCartney on the Red Square in Moscow, and his 2004 show near the Tsar’s Winter Palace in St. Petersburg where the Communist Revolution took place, just imagine. In 2005 the Entertainment magazine poll named The Beatles the most iconic entertainers of the 20th Century. In July of 2006, the guitar on which Paul McCartney played his first chords and impressed John Lennon, was sold at an auction for over $600,000. In July 2012, Paul McCartney rocked the opening ceremony of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. He delivered a live performance of The Beatles’s timeless hit “Hey Jude” and engaged the crowd of people from all over the world to join his band in a sing along finale. The show was seen by a live audience of 80000 people at the Olympic Park Stadium in addition to an estimated TV audience of two billion people worldwide. - The most successful pop group of the 20 century; they changed popular culture forever. From their first studio contract in 1962 until 1970, the Beatles lineup consisted of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr. This famous lineup is also known as the “Fab Four” while many other musicians claimed the “Fifth

Beatle” status. Those other musicians who performed with The Beatles on various gigs, tours, recordings, and on part-time basis were: singer Tony Sheridan, bassist Stuart Sutcliffe, guitarist Eric Clapton, drummers Pete Best, Andy White, Tommy Moore, Jimmy Nicol, and Neil Aspinall on harmonica and percussion, assistant and Hammond organ player Mal Evans, electric piano player Nicky Hopkins, and pianist Billy Preston, the only artist to receive joint credit on a Beatles record. The four Beatles sometimes referred to Brian Epstein as the fifth Beatle, albeit the label is now more often applied to George Martin, who produced nearly all the Beatles recordings, made arrangements and orchestrations, and played piano on several songs. Both Ringo Starr and George Harrison were singled out for praise for their performances in the first Beatles movie, A Hard Day’s Night (1964); manager (and former drama student) Brian Epstein predicted that Starr would turn out to have considerable acting ability. He did indeed begin a second career in movies as the Beatles broke up, while bandmate Harrison first befriended the Monty Python comedy troupe, then became a movie producer after he financed the Pythons’ Life of Brian (1979). (John Lennon and Paul McCartney had briefer movie careers, with Lennon appearing in How I Won the War (1967) and McCartney making Give My Regards to Broad Street (1984).) The Beatles stopped touring in 1966. To promote their new albums, they made “promos” - a predecessor of music videos. Individual members of The Beatles sometimes appeared on TV to give interviews. Their few live performances were for cameras, and invited audiences. Their 1969 rooftop show in London was for whoever could hear them, on the street below, and was their last-ever public performance. Their initial 1962 recording contract with Parlophone Records in England (a division of EMI) was for a series of singles, at a minimal royalty rate. After “Please Please Me” became a hit, EMI gave them a full five-year contract for singles and albums, and better royalties. Brian Epstein negotiated a new contract for them in 1967 just before he died; with its basic terms fulfilled by late 1969, Allen Klein was able to renegotiate with EMI, and got the band the highest royalty rate ever paid to a recording artist or group up to that time - a whopping 69¢ per album. John Lennon had already effectively quit the Beatles, but agreed to keep mum about it until the deal was complete; Paul McCartney announced the debut of his first solo album a few months later. The official dissolution of The Beatles was final in 1975.


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

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Aries - A dear one has been wandering around in a fog for weeks now, not quite knowing what to do and not sure of who to ask for advice about their dilemma. You understand the situation, so don’t wait any longer for them to ask. Offer. It’s time to pull out your legendary way with words and use it to comfort them. A bit of advice wouldn’t hurt, and maybe that nice, solid shoulder of yours, too. Taurus - Things are finally coming together just the way you’d planned and dreamed. Now aren’t you glad you didn’t totally lose it and get someone angry -- or angrier than they already were? You’ve also had time to perfect a battle plan to make a certain dream into reality. Turns out there really is something to be said for sitting back and waiting, and it seems you’re the expert in that department. Gemini - It’s time to shift gears. Put down the legal pad, the calculator and all other work-related or electronic devices. In fact, don’t just put them down. Put them away -- far away. You need time now for nothing but recreation, and since you’ve been working so hard lately, you may also need help to loosen up a bit. Of course, you haven’t been out of the circuit for all that long, so it won’t be tough to find a playmate. Cancer - Oh, my. You’re a bit angry today, aren’t you? Or are you just frustrated with trying to get things done and not being able to come even close? Well, back away from any sharp objects, and try not to take this out on the ones you love. They’re probably quite frustrated, too -- especially if they’ve been trying to get together with you and have run into some roadblocks of their own. Leo - Your own personal magic is running on high today -- very high. You’ve been casting spells on one and all for the past 24 hours, and you haven’t even done it deliberately. Well, now. That certainly explains why your sweetheart has been simultaneously wonderful and insanely jealous, doesn’t it? Take the night off from everyone else and give your sweetie some necessary reassurance. Virgo - As nostalgic as you’re feeling at the moment, it would be easy to let yourself get down in the dumps. But what purpose would that serve? We all think we’d do something differently if we had the chance, but why dwell on changing the past? Everything you’ve ever done has made you the person you are today. Be glad for everything that’s happened, good and bad, and look to the future. Libra - If you’ve been thinking lately about how to bring in a bit of extra cash on the side, an opportunity is about to come your way -- and you really should take it. Your intuition will be especially keen for the next couple of days and will tell you what to do. All you have to do is listen. Forget what you’ve been told, and forget the rules. Follow your gut. When has it ever let you down? Scorpio - You don’t do anything halfway, do you? That goes for love, in particular, and it goes double now. So when you realise you’ve been tearing up an awful lot today, and maybe even doing a fair amount of sniffling, don’t worry. You won’t be feeling like this for long. Call together the ones you love and tell them how you feel. If you have to be nostalgic, don’t waste it on television. Sagittarius - ‘A dream is a wish your heart makes’ isn’t just a line from a song -- it’s also quite true. And whether that dream happens while you’re awake or asleep doesn’t matter, as long as you make it come true. The good news is you’re about to find out how simple it will be to do just that. Pay attention to the subtle signals the universe sends your way -- and think of them as signposts. Capricorn - Clear your schedule of anything ‘productive’ because today is not a day for things that look even remotely like work. Daydreaming, sighing and reminiscing about the past, however, will suit you just fine. If you do have to focus on something, be sure you’re doing something you can perform on autopilot -- because concentrating will certainly be a tall order. Aquarius - It’s safe to come out now, and almost safe to make plans again. But you might want to give anything important -anything you really need to come out the way you’ve planned it -- another day or two. Before you set your most important plans down on paper, spend some time dreaming them up. That’s really what today is perfect for, anyway. The good news is you might even come up with someone who won’t stay just a dream forever. Pisces - You were hoping that all those mechanical and communication-oriented snafus you’ve been dealing with would be over. But they’re not. Well, give it a day or two more before you start thinking that things will never get better. They will. It’s just going to take a bit more of your world-famous patience to get through this. Yes, you probably are running low at this point, but try to conjure up just a bit more.


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Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

English


Chronicle Pepperpot February 9, 2014

Our Green Spaces: Three Parks Initiative

By Clifford Stanley

T

he Botanical Gardens, Zoological Park and National Park are green spaces which were established in recognition of urban areas having the potential to play a meaningful role in biodiversity conservation.  The Zoo, which plays an important role in the conservation of animals, has been described as a treasure of national and international importance. Apart from local visitors, it is the first stop for wildlife tourists. “Foreigners and scientists who visit Guyana to see the wildlife stop here first,  and then go into the fields after,” an official recently said. Similarly, the Botanical Gardens and the National Park are the two other components of Georgetown’s network of green spaces, which help urban residents stay in contact with the natural world.  Chairman of the Protected Areas Commission, Mr Damian Fernandes, however, recently disclosed that although important, the  Botanical Gardens, Zoological Park and National Park  are built on infrastructure and facilities that are decades old, and that are becoming increasingly difficult and expensive to simply maintain. These areas have experienced significant erosion and land settling since they were first established, and are now prone to regular flooding. This restricts the amount of areas available to the public during rainy weather, and constrains landscaping and recreational options. The structures in these areas are also aged, and in their current state have limited options for long-term sustainability. Mr Fernandeds recently disclosed that the three green spaces are poised to benefit from a ground-breaking effort called the Three Parks Initiative.

He said: “The primary objective of the Initiative is to enhance key facilities, and rehabilitate and improve infrastructure in each of these “green” spaces, in order to provide sustainable and quality services to the public.” Lights have already been installed around the full track at the National Park, security guards stationed at key points, and efforts to improve drainage are underway. The Athletics track is now being raised, and a number of facilities are identified for restoration, including historical features such as bridges, kokers, a national clock and a scenic trail. The Three Parks Initiative will aim to address the overall security and drainage situation in the Botanical Gardens while developing features such as fountains, landscaping, trails, and other recreational facilities.   The Zoo in particular, which was designed and built in the mid to late 1900s, will receive renewed attention.  Much of the Zoo was designed shortly after the facility was opened and thus in serious need of rehabilitation. In an effort to improve the facility, the PAC has developed a full-scale master plan and concept

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designs for the rehabilitation of the zoo. The plan was developed with the support of the Beharry Group of Companies and Conservation International (CI). The vision of the modernized zoo is to connect Guyanese and visitors to the country with the rich natural world that exists just beyond the limits of Guyana’s urban landscape. The zoo will accordingly be reorganized to represent the four major ecosystems in the country: Coastal Wetlands, Savannah, Mountain Highlands and the Lowland Rainforest. “The PAC is continuously working to engage interested businesses, individuals and other groups to join with us as we rehabilitate and improve these Parks and green spaces,”  Fernandes said..  For infrastructural projects, the Commission is also open to sponsors using their own contractors and issuing payments directly to these contractors, based on agreed designs and specifications.  “With the help of interested businesses individuals and groups, we can transform these areas for the benefit of current and future generations of Guyanese,” Fernandes said. (To be continued).


Selena Gomez

BAILED On Rehab

Selena Gomez ignored the advice of medical professionals and waltzed out of rehab just 14 days into a 6-week program over the strenuous objections of the rehab staff. Sources close to Selena tell us just after New Year’s she checked into a program at The Meadows called DAWN for alcohol, pot and Rx Ambien in addition to what her people believe is an unhealthy union with Justin Bieber.  But two weeks in, Selena bailed so she could go the Sundance Film Festival for her upcoming movie.  She told her people she would return to the rehab facility after Sundance, but when it was over Selena decided she was cured and there was no reason to return. Problem is that’s not the way the medical staff at The Meadows sees it the treatment programme is 45 days and Selena bailed four weeks early.  We’re told the staff feels it’s essential in any recovery to complete the therapy. Selena is telling her people she completed the toughest week, which the facility calls “Survivor’s week” so everything is fine. Thing is Selena’s not the doctor she’s the one with the problem.

Happy Birthday Kim Kardashian’s Nose - Miley’s Turns Looks Different - Again “Too Old” DOES Kim Kardashian’s nose seem to be getting shorter and sharper and more contoured around the nostrils? it

looks like Kim Kardashian’s nose is getting shorter and sharper and more contoured around the nostrils. Oh, and

Chris Brown -- Took Rehab Break ... To Party His Face Off

Of course you’re not surprised. There was no element of surprise to be had here, because it’s Miley Cyrus, on the cover of GQ Russia, and this photo could have been a photo from any of her Bangerz tour promotional, red carpet events, or any selfies she happened to take this past year. In short, boring as hell.  Except for her one leg , that one leg has been Photoshopped to the point that it looks like an arm, or a baby’s torso sans bellybutton, so if there’s any grand takeaway from looking at the GQ cover this morning, it’s this: ha ha ha Photoshop.

Justin Bieber -- The Idiot Knew He’d Get Searched And Still Smoked Up the Jet

upturned, too. There seems to be a slight upturn to the nose in the photos on the right. While we can speculate all

Chris Brown made a little pit stop on his way back to rehab Sunday after visiting his lawyer he dropped by Trey Songz’ blowout Super Bowl party filled with girls and booze and it’s possible the shindig could land Chris in some hot water. Brown was given a pass out of rehab Sunday specifically to meet with his attorney, Mark Geragos, for the singer’s court hearing the next day.   After the meeting, Chris decided it would be fun to enjoy a few Super Bowl moments with his pal Trey Songz.  There was nothing in the rehab pass indicating partying with chicks and booze was ok.

Justin Bieber is not only out of control he’s hard-core stupid.  He knew last week before he took off for New Jersey his plane would get searched by U.S. Customs yet he and his friends still hotboxed on the private jet. The pilot radioed in the air Justin and his gang was smoking weed on the plane and the flight attendant couldn’t get them to stop.  The pilot complained the smoke in the cabin was thick.  Multiple sources connected with Justin’s people called federal officials before the plane took off and they were informed Justin was on the list.  Justin’s people told him before he got on the jet that he would be searched in New Jersey and interrogated, yet he STILL smoked up the aircraft. We’re also told Bieber and his buds were abusive to the flight attendant because she ordered them to stop smoking in vain. And to add icing to the cake Bieber’s father was on the plane. By the time the plane landed the weed was gone, but drug-sniffing dogs detected trace amounts.  One person who was on the plane three hours after it landed says it continued to reek of marijuana.

we want, Kim has long denied any claims of plastic surgery, which is, indeed, her right. However, how does one’s face change so much in just 8 short years? Case in point Kim Kardashian is/was a beautiful woman now/at one point. Whatever she’s doing, though, if anything, it needs to stop.

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