Friday, November 30, 2007

Two new Knights for Barbados

Professor Hilary McDonald Beckles (left) and Kyffin Donald Simpson, CBE, are Barbados' newest knights.

They have been conferred with the honour of the Knight of St Andrew, the highest award on the occasion of Barbados' 41st anniversary of Independence.

The 52-year-old Beckles, principal of the University of the West Indies Cave Hill, has been recognised for his distinguished service in the field of education, in particular at university level, and his dedication to the furtherance of the arts and sports, in particular cricket.

Kyffin Donald Simpson, founder of Simpson Motors and head of Interamericana Trading Corporation, has been recognised for his extraordinary contribution to the development of Barbados, seen in his establishment of the first Caribbean company in the energy industry and his lifelong contribution to business and philanthropy.

Also honoured in this year's Independence honours were Oliver Miller Browne,QC, for his contribution to the legal profession and the public service and Dr Leonard Alfred Nurse, for his internationally recognised work on climate change. They were awarded the Companion of Honour of Barbados.

The Gold Crown of Merit was awarded to Paul Bernard Altman, BCH, JP, Winston Hudson Bayley, Robert Livingstone Morris and Professor Velma Patricia Scantlebury-White.

Story & photo -

Happy 41st Independence Barbados

On behalf of the Cheese-on-bread family, I would like to extend best wishes to all Barbadians at home and abroad as we celebrate another milestone in our development.

Today we're especially thankful for having been spared the worse of yesterday's earth tremor and for making it through another hurricane season unscathed. To God be the glory.

To all those persons, Bajan and otherwise, who have contributed to our development, we salute you.

Just to give you a snapshot of how Bajans celebrate their Independence Day; the Independence Parade at the Garrison Savannah began at 8:00 a.m., and all the armed and unarmed units will put on quite a spectacular show there before marching down Bay Street to Government Headquarters, where the Prime Minister will be saluted.

All day long communities will be having sports and other fun activities and of course plenty of conkies, fish cakes and other delicacies will be consumed. In the east, the annual St. Philip Carnival will be taking place (from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.)

Again, Happy Independence all, and stay safe!


Thursday, November 29, 2007

Earth tremors felt in Barbados

Okay, peoples, now that the nerves have settled I can tell you that around 3:00 p.m. an earthquake measuring 7.4 on the Richter Scale hit near Martinique, at longitude 14.9 degrees North, 61.2 degrees West. It was also felt as far away as Venezuela, Guyana and Trinidad.

In Barbados, reports are still coming in but we seemed to have been spared the worse of it. Traffic is gridlocked, especially near the City, and there were reports of roof tiles falling from the Royal Bank of Canada in Broad Street, damaging a car and blocking the street. Part of a house in Ellerton, St. George reportedly fell into a gully. People are in the streets and walking to open areas. The cellphone system is partially down so persons are having difficulty communicating. Some patients were also evacuated from the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

In Guadeloupe there are reports that a 3 year old girl was killed and her sister injured.

Here is a report from

The United States Geological Survey has reported that a magnitude 7.3 earthquake has struck near Martinique.

ABC news is also reporting that a 3 year old girl was killed and her sister is in critical condition when a wall collapsed in Guadeloupe.

The earthquake struck the island at 3 p.m. local time approximately 13 miles (21 km) northwest of the island, at a depth of 90 miles (145.4 km).

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued a statement for Caribbean countries excluding Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands indicating that a tsunami was not expected in the Caribbean due to the depth of the quake.

In addition, the U.S. West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center noted that no tsunami warning or watch was in effect. According to the centre, no Tsunami's were expected along the coasts of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and the U.S. Atlantic.

We Bajans are novices when it comes to earthquakes and tremors, never having experienced any significant ones before. We have to get educated fast, because the earth seems to be on the move in the region and other parts of the world.

Map: Barbados Underground

Will keep you all posted, but folks overseas can rest assured that there are no reports of deaths or serious injury here.

For details on the quake, click here.

Earth tremor hits Barbados

Hi peoples at around 3: 04 we had an earth tremor, so had to exit the building hastily. Was in the midst of posting but will get back to that later. Will keep you posted. Information coming in.

Forty-one fave Bajan personalities Pt. 5

Here are my five remaining fave Bajan personalities:

Tessa Chadderton-Shaw - As the Manager of the National Council on Substance Abuse, Tessa Chadderton-Shaw (pictured with daughters Miah and Haylee) leads the fight against substance abuse in Barbados. Her passion for her cause is one addiction we should all have.

Timothy Callender - One of the most creative and prolific storytellers and playwrights that Barbados has produced, Timothy Callender's tales are so colourful that they transport the reader to a Barbados past.

Wendell McClean - Heroes come in all kinds of shapes and sizes; sometimes they're just people who do the right thing. The late academic launched a now legendary battle with the Public Utilities Board against the telephone company Bartel's attempts to raise telephone rates. Thank you, Wendell McClean.

Wendell Smith - The late actor performed in many plays, but I will always remember him as Cranston Browne Esquire Proprietaire of the Laff-it-Off productions. Another talented actor who's sorely missed.

Wesley Worrell - Paralympian Wesley Worrell may be wheelchair-bound, but he doesn't let his disability prevent him from participating in the Fun Ride and other sporting events. I understand that he's recovering from a recent illness, and I wish him well.

More accolades for Rihanna

Kudos to homegirl Rihanna, who rounded out a successful 2007 by winning Seventeen magazine's first ever style awards.

She was also nominated for three NRJ Awards, which are given out by the French radio station NRJ to popular musicians.

Rihanna’s up for International Female Artist of the Year, International Song of the Year for Don’t Stop the Music and International Album of the Year for Good Girl Gone Bad.

The ceremony will be held on January 26 and will also be broadcasted live.

I sense a Grammy's coming her way next year....


National heroes: Sir Hugh Springer & Sir Frank Walcott


In life he was a portrait of greatness. In death his image looms forever large.

From educator, to politician, leader of organised labour, parliamentarian, member of the Government and, finally, to the pinnacle of public life as Head of State. This was the spectacular and unexcelled rise of Sir Hugh Worrell Springer, Barbados' third native Governor-General. For six years up to 1990, Sir Hugh held that post, following the death of his predecessor, Sir Deighton Ward.

In recognition of his "good work for Barbados in general and for the Barbados Progressive League in particular", Sir Hugh is complimented by historian F.A. Hoyos. In his book "The Story of the Progressive Movement", the author points to Sir Hugh's "impressive contributions to the common stock of policy and counsel".

His long and distinguished academic career and public service mark Sir Hugh as among the greatest Barbadians of all time. A 1931 Barbados Scholar in Classics achieved at his alma mater, Harrison College, he later stood in the vanguard of public education policy-making throughout the Commonwealth for most of his life.

That scholarship qualified him for entry to Hertford College in Oxford where he gained a B.A. degree in 1936. He obtained the M.A. degree from this institution in 1944, studied law at the Inner Temple, London and was called to the Bar in 1938.

Sir Hugh Springer, already recognised as an outstanding administrator, was the organiser and first General Secretary of the Barbados Workers' Union from 1940 to 1947. He left Barbados that year to take up the post of Registrar of the newly established University College of the West Indies in Jamaica.

He worked in a variety of professional and political capacities, including being a Member of the House of Assembly; General Secretary of the Barbados Labour Party; Acting Governor and Commander-in-Chief of Barbados, as well as serving as Director, Commonwealth Education Liaison Unit; Commonwealth Assistant Secretary-General and Secretary-General of the Association of Commonwealth Universities.

By 1940, the Barbados Progressive League, whose labour programme had been outlined the previous year by new president, Grantley Adams, had won seats at the General Elections. Adams had also rededicated the League to political education and organisation as well as the development of trade unionism. Among those capturing a seat in Parliament was Hugh Springer who won on the League's ticket for St. George.

His administrative skills greatly benefited the Progressive League, of which he was General Secretary and which had created an economic section later registered as the BWU. So remarkable was his stewardship as the union's first General Secretary, that Hoyos wrote: "Hugh Springer's organising genius at this stage was of the first importance to the labour movement ...."

His already distinguished career advanced even further in 1944 when he was appointed a member of the Executive Committee, thus increasing labour representation as Mr. Adams had become a member two years earlier.

In a 1946 Barbados Progressive League-Congress Party coalition, led by Mr. Adams as the first Premier in the annals of the colony, Mr. Springer held responsibility for Education, Legal Departments, Agriculture and Fisheries.

It was impossible, however, to limit the services of so talented a son of the soil to Barbados alone. In response to the obvious regional need, he resigned from the League and the Union in 1947 to take up duties as Registrar of the University College of the West Indies, at Mona in Jamaica, a development regarded by the historian as a "severe blow to the labour movement".

But Springer had laid a solid foundation. For the BWU, he had bought properties including the first headquarters at the corner of Fairchild and Nelson Streets and the former Beacon building or "Unity House" on Roebuck Street.

Along with Frank Walcott, who was assistant to the General Secretary of the League and the Union, Hugh Springer had roped in the agricultural workers from the mid-1940s; consolidated divisions in the docks, and attracted membership from utilities, government, and clerical as well as white collar workers.

A published academic, Sir Hugh's work appears in regional publications such as "Caribbean Quarterly", "Pelican Annual" and "Torch" and in international publications such as "RSA Journal", and "Universities Quarterly", among others.

The former Governor-General was married to Dorothy nee Gittens and had three sons and a daughter.

Sir Hugh died in 1994.


Building on the foundation laid by such stalwarts as Sir Grantley Adams and Sir Hugh Springer, Sir Frank Leslie Walcott has become an heroic trade union fixture as much in recorded history as in folk memory.

A tough, principled negotiator with a visionary approach to bargaining for improved conditions for the working population, he served the island's first trade union - the Barbados Workers' Union - for 50 years.

Beginning as an active unionist in 1941, he rose from the status of a humble clerk at Lashley's on Swan Street to become assistant to Sir Hugh Springer, the BWU's first General-Secretary. He succeeded Springer on July 25, 1948.

Born on September 16, 1916, in St. Peter, the son of a policeman who died when he was very young, Frank was raised in Bridgetown and attended Wesley Hall Boys' School where he came under the strong influence of legendary Barbadian Headmaster of revered memory, Rawle Parkinson.

Walcott gained a reputation for being a good mathematician and skilled craft worker. In the late 1920s, when he was seeking employment, liberal and progressive forces were asserting themselves in a quest for democracy, including organising workers into trade unions.

In the 1930s, he became an active member of debating groups such as the Weymouth and Riverside Clubs where his fearless views attracted the attention of some progressive leaders. Hugh Springer who, along with Grantley Adams, led the Progressive League, formed in 1938, soon invited Sir Frank to join the labour movement. He showed promise as a union worker and from January 1, 1945 became assistant to Springer who was also General-Secretary of the Progressive League. After March 10, 1946, he was fully employed by the BWU and spent 45 years as an employee, initially being involved in grievance handling and later negotiations and all the administrative duties which fell under Springer's control.

Thus when Springer left the union in October 1947, to be the new Registrar of the University College of the UWI, his successor was obvious. Frank Walcott was appointed to act as General-Secretary on November 5, 1947, and the following year on July 25 was elected General-Secretary at the Annual Delegates' Conference.

Sir Frank distinguished himself locally, regionally and internationally. He consolidated the union's internal administration while engaged in organising workers and negotiating on their behalf.

It is significant that he acceded to the position of General-Secretary at a time when the union was fused with a political party. Over the next six years, he quietly achieved three objectives:

extricating the union from its junior position in the partnership with the Barbados Labour Party,

organising an effective accounting system which could pass the closest scrutiny of independent auditors, and

making the union more militant.

Describing himself as "frank by name and frank by nature", Walcott adopted a forceful but reasonable approach to trade unionism. By 1954, as they were captivated by his dynamism, workers in the utilities, in government as well as clerical and white collar employees became substantially unionised.
As General-Secretary in those days, when Barbados moved from being a British Caribbean colony to being a proud independent nation by 1966, Walcott embarked on a process of self-education, study tours, seminars and longer courses, including one at the University of Miami's Centre for Advanced International Studies, in preparation for his arduous task in the field of industrial relations.

Walcott had only an elementary education when he entered the BWU as a paid functionary. It is therefore remarkable testimony to his outstanding abilities, energies and character that he rose steadily within the organisation and expanded the role which he inherited from Springer.

In continuing the difficult task of organising sugar workers on plantations throughout the island, it was clear to Walcott that only organised labour and strong, capable leadership could reduce the power of an entrenched oligarchy which was accustomed to having its way in every confrontation with workers. Walcott proved himself more than a match for the planter-merchant oligarchy.

As Dr. Francis Mark points out in his book "The History of the Barbados Workers' Union", Sir Frank came to the post of General-Secretary "with none of the social or educational advantages or mystique of the Founding Fathers (Adams and Springer) and with none of the 'externals' which was linked in the Barbadian consciousness with traditional leadership, yet after five years in the post he was clearly the union's most forceful personality."

Walcott established the administrative authority of the General-Secretary and gained full confidence of the Union's Governing Council. By 1953 he was elected to the Executive Board of the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, a capacity in which he served until his retirement in 1991.

Recognition of his stature as a regional and international trade unionist followed quickly. He served as President of the Caribbean Congress of Labour for three terms 1960-1963, 1966-1969, 1977-1980.

Few other Caribbean trade unionists gained such honours as listed here, either before or after this period: Member of the Governing Body, International Labour Organisation; Vice-President Executive Board, ICFTU; Member of AIFLD (American Institute for Free Labour Development), Board of Trustees and Chairman, World Employment Conference.

He also made his presence felt at important regional and international conferences, among them the Inter-American Ministers of Labour and Trade Union Hemispheric Conferences, Commonwealth Sugar Conferences, LomT Convention meetings and a Special Session of the United Nations in South West Africa.

In a 1958 study entitled An Analysis of the Political Situation in Barbados, eminent author and political scientist, C.L.R. James, noted: ├┤Walcott impressed me as one of the ablest and most modern-minded labour and political organisers I have met in the West Indies. ... In reply to my question as to what he wanted, say for the next five years, he replied unequivocally that he saw himself as devoting his energies to the trade union movement."

Indeed, Frank Walcott never wavered in his quest to expand the union's role and consolidate its gains. Between 1958 and 1991 he made the BWU as strong as any in the region, concentrating not only on collective bargaining but on worker education and housing, as well as on evolution of the professional trade unionist and improvement of the quality of life in Barbados as a whole.

The Labour College at Mangrove in St. Philip, established in 1975, owes its existence to Walcott's progressive thinking, and he organised scholarships there for members of the BWU and their dependents. His guiding principle was: "Unity is strength. Where there is no vision, the people perish.

Arguably the single most important factor in the development of Barbados' unionism as a bulwark against a return to the entrenched exploitation of workers, he won the union's right to be represented on all important national developmental projects. He himself served on many Boards and Committees, including the National Insurance Board, National Economic Council and the Immigration Advisory Committee. He was a Director of the Export Promotion Committee and the Barbados National Bank, besides being a member of the University of the West Indies' Finance Committee. Walcott was also a Privy Councillor from 1970 to 1976.

He became a Member of Parliament form 1945 to 1966 and again in 1971 to 1976, and played a role in the famous Bushe Experiment as a member of the Executive Committee, the precursor to the modern Cabinet from 1948 to 1954. During 1966 to 1971 he served as a Senator and was President of that Chamber from 1986 to 1991. When Barbados gained Independence in 1966 he was appointed the island's first Ambassador to the United Nations.

It is not often that a Barbadian has stood out as extraordinary while working in the company of great patriots in their struggle for social justice. Yet, Sir Frank did just that alongside Sir Grantley Adams, Sir Hugh Springer and Mr. Errol W. Barrow. With them, and in his own right, Sir Frank Walcott made a truly remarkable contribution to modern Barbados.

Photos & copy:

Picture of the day

A St. James beach
Photo: Roger LaBrucherie

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Forty-one fave Bajan personalities Pt. 4

Robyn Rihanna Fenty - You all know I like to kid around about Rih-Rih, but all sport aside I'm quite pleased for her. She's like our own Bajan Cinderella, and if nothing else, I'm glad that Barbadian youths have someone in the international entertainment business they can claim as their own. Do your thing, Rih-Rih.

Rupert "Rupee" Clarke - From the time he burst on to the music scene in the Richard Stoute Teen Talent contest in the late 1990's, Rupee won the hearts of Bajan fans, especially the girls. With his then trademark plaits, he wooed them with his hit Ice Cream, had them Jumping and made them Tempted to Touch him. His music has appeared in the Pierce Brosnan movie After the Sunset and on an episode of Desperate Housewives. You go, boy.

"Shaka" Henry - I'm not much of a boxing fan, but I enjoy following the career of local boxer Christopher "Shaka" Henry (right) in the media. He has a tenacity and a belief in his ability that we can all do to emulate. An unblemished home record doesn't hurt either. Hear that, West Indies team?

Stephen Alleyne - I've said a lot about the late Stephen Alleyne in the last few weeks, so all I'll add is that he deserves to be recognised in some tangible way for his contribution to the development of cricket in Barbados. Nuff said.

Sue Springer - Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association Executive Vice President Sue Springer (left) is often in the media speaking about some aspect of tourism and she always does so in a calm, objective way. Since tourism is so important to the economy of Barbados, it's good to know Sue Springer has our back.

"Suki" King - I've lost count of the number of times Ronald "Suki' King has been world draughts Go-As-You-Please champion. There's no doubt that the man has skills; I wish the powers-that-be would recognise that fact.

Bajan dish - Fish cakes

Come tomorrow and Friday, all across Barbados people will be donning their blue and gold and cooking up lots of Bajan dishes like conkies, pone, mauby, cou-cou and of course fish cakes. has a nice recipe you can follow. Enjoy!


Barbados' National Heroes - Sir Garfield Sobers

According to the Concise Oxford Dictionary, a hero is "a man noted or admired for nobility, courage, outstanding achievements ... a man of superhuman qualities, favoured by the gods".

One need only a glimpse of his career to note how aptly these terms apply to sports super-star Sir Garfield Sobers who, for 20 years, bestrode the cricketing world like a colossus, leaving millions gaping in amazement and admiration.

Destiny seemed to have chosen him from very early for great things, endowing him with the capacity to play with great skill almost any sport involving a ball, particularly cricket, football and basketball.

He was the fifth of six children born to Shamont and Thelma Sobers of Walcott Avenue, Bay Land, St. Michael.

Gordon Bell, author of "Sir Garfield Sobers", records that Garfield and his similarly talented brother Gerald helped their Bay Street Boys' School team to win the primary school Inter-School Cricket championship for three consecutive years.

By age 13, Garfield had caught the attention of Garnet Ashby, captain of the Barbados Cricket League (BCL), St. Philip team, Kent, and Denis Atkinson who played for the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) team, Wanderers, (then located at Bay Land) and for the West Indies.

Ashby, who recruited him to play for Kent in the BCL competition, gave him his first opportunity to play cricket with "the big boys".

The opportunity to further hone his skills came by providing Wanderers cricketers, including Atkinson, with practice in the nets off of his seemingly effortless left arm spin bowling. It was there that captain of the Police team, Inspector Wilfred Farmer (a former Wanderers player and later Police Commissioner), saw him in action and shortly afterwards offered him a chance to play for Police.

By age 16, the prodigy was in the Police First Division team. That same year he was called to the Barbados trials for the 1952-53 tour by India to the West Indies. He made the team as 12th man, an honour for a lad in his first season of first class cricket, then getting his chance to play for Barbados when Frank King, West Indies fast bowler for the Test series, was forced to rest for the colony game.

At 17 years old, he made his international debut for the West Indies in the fifth and final Test against the touring English side in Jamaica in March 1954.

From such an auspicious beginning Garfield Sobers' 20-year cricketing career, took him to unforeseen heights, inspiring almost poetic praise from writers, broadcasters and his peers.

In Michael Manley's "A History of West Indies Cricket", the author describes Garfield as "the first complete Caribbean folk hero after George Headley". Australian fast bowler Keith Miller describes him as "a batting wizard" and "the complete cricketer", while renowned cricket writer E.W. Swanton in his book "Sort of a Cricket Person" writes: "There is a tradition of good sportsmanship in West Indies cricket, long established, which has never weakened. Gary Sobers is its perfect expression."

England's Trevor Bailey, who became a lasting friend of Garfield and who wrote a biography entitled "Sir Gary", said: "He could mishit and still score a six." Finally, renowned Caribbean writer C.L. R. James called him "this superb product of the modern age".

Sir Garfield's records, some of which still stand, include scoring in 1958 at the age of 21, an incredible 365 runs (not out) which stood for 36 years as the highest individual Test score ever made. It was erased in Antigua in 1994 by current West Indies captain Brian Lara who scored 375.

Another record is his sixth wicket stand at Lord's, in 1966, against devastating England bowling. He and David Holford responded to the attack by establishing a record partnership (posting 163 and 105 not out respectively). He was also the first batsman to score six sixes in a six-ball over in a first class match.

Sobers captained the West Indies cricket team for 39 matches between 1965 and 1972, the Barbados team in 1966 and 1967, Nottinghamshire from 1968-1971 and the Rest of the World for two tours - one of England and the other of Australia.

Altogether, he played cricket for Barbados for 21 seasons, English League cricket eight seasons, for Nottinghamshire seven seasons and for South Australia three seasons in their Sheffield Shield Competition.

Garfield was among the first personalities trying to integrate apartheid countries through sport by coaching black youths and playing in racist Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in 1969.

He was seriously criticised, mainly in the West Indies, for his actions. But his subsequent apology is all the more significant now that many players, including West Indians, have made a living doing the same thing in South Africa even before the end of apartheid.

Retiring in 1974 after his knee cartilage finally gave out, Garfield featured in another precedent when, in 1975, Queen Elizabeth II overturned tradition by dubbing him a Knight in an open-air ceremony at the Garrison Savannah instead of at Buckingham Palace.

In "100 Years of Organised Cricket in Barbados", historians Keith Sandiford and Ronnie Hughes accurately sum up this magnificent career.

They write: "When the cricket world discusses the greatest batsmen of all time the name of Sir Garfield Sobers features prominently in the debate. He is in that short-list which includes Bradman, George Headley and Jack Hobbs. When the greatest all-rounders are being discussed the debate is really about who should rank second behind Gary Sobers."

They rightly observe that Sir Garfield Sobers is "the star personality in the history of West Indies cricket" and that "he helped to make Barbados the strongest cricketing country in the Caribbean during its early period of Independence".

"He has inspired a host of youngsters to play the game and his influence can clearly be seen in the approach and mannerisms of his many imitators. As an international star lifting himself to the top by the magnificence of his cricket, Sobers has served as a role model to thousands of lower income Barbadian boys."

The authors continue: "He has been the role model also for millions of youngsters beyond the shores of Barbados. He is the single most popular of all Barbadians and he has taken our name to all parts of the world and covered it with glory."

This then is the significance of Sir Garfield's contribution to his country, a contribution that moves him from the realm of cricketing/sporting hero to that of national hero.

In the words of Sandiford and Hughes: "He is the embodiment of cricket excellence, and, as such, is one of our truly great national symbols. As a representative of the BCL, Police, Barbados, Radcliffe in the Central Lancashire League, South Australia, the West Indies and the Rest of the World, Sobers made enormous contributions to the growth and popularity of cricket. He richly deserved the engraving of his picture on a Barbados Independence Postage Stamp in 1966, the knighthood which Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II saw fit to bestow upon him in 1975 and the placing of his name on the Players' Pavilion at Kensington Oval.

"The name of Garfield St. Auburn Sobers will live forever in the fond memory of Barbadians and cricketers everywhere."

Truer words were never spoken - or written.

Photo & copy -

Barbados pic of the day

A day at the beach

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Forty-one fave Bajan personalities Pt. 3

Marvo Manning - A former beauty queen and broadcaster, Marvo Manning is also an accomplished actress, appearing in such productions as Pampalam and Dumplings in de Stew. This timeless beauty is the epitome of grace and poise (incidentally she teaches a course in Corporate Etiquette), and I can definitely see scope for her opening a Charm School in Barbados.

Father Massiah - If it's true that the truth will set you free, then rector of the St. Joseph Parish Church Father Errington Massiah (second in procession) is as free as the wind. Known for his candid nature, Father Massiah is a straight-talking priest who's not afraid to tackle what he perceives as the ills of society. God bless him.

The Merry Men - Their hit Beautiful Barbados is our unofficial anthem, and for over 40 years the Merry Men have been spreading the culture of Barbados to the world. Play on, guys.

The Mighty Gabby - There's perhaps no one more qualified to serve as Barbados' Cultural Amnbassador than Anthony "Mighty Gabby" Carter. This master melody-maker has written over 700 songs, and has been crowned Calypso King won the Pic o' de Crop Finals seven times. His calypso compositions do more than entertain; they chart the political and history of post-Independence Barbados.

Obadele Thompson - What a year Obadele Thompson has had. The Olympic bronze medallist married Olympic star Marion Jones in February, and in July the couple's son was born. He's had to weather the storm of Marion's fall from grace, but I'm sure he's handling it the way he usually does, with prayer.

Professor Oliver Headley - The late UWI professor once warned: “The sun will still shine when the oil runs out.” He emphasised the need for alternative energy sources in light of diminishing supplies of our sole non-renewable energy source – petroleum. In the early 1960s, Professor Oliver Headley became a pioneer for harnessing solar energy for both heating purposes and crop drying applications and this international visionary and pioneer explored the full potential and applications of solar energy until the time of his death in 2002. All those who have ears to hear, let them hear.

Dame Olga Lopes-Seale - Although "Auntie Olga" wasn't born in Barbados, her humanitarian initiatives here have endeared her to the entire population. I grew up listening to "Auntie Olga's Pageant of Youth" on Rediffusion, and the former broadcaster has made a sterling contribution to the developemnt of young children and the elderly in Barbados. Her National Honour was long overdue.

Red Plastic Bag - Stedson Wiltshire aka "Red Plastic Bag" aka "RPB" aka "De Bag" almost has as many calypso crowns as nicknames. His hits such as Sugar Made Us Free and Mister Harding are lgendary, and this year, the lyrical master won his eighth Pic o' de Crop title. Long live the King!

Richard Hoad - Richard Hoad's Friday column "The Lowdown" is a must-read, and it always leaves you with food for thought. He's our social conscience, and we should heed to his advice more often.

Richard Stoute - Could someone please give Richard Stoute the long overdue National Honour he deserves? Through his longstanding Teen Talent Contest, the veteran entertainer has provided an outlet for local talent, and has introduced Allison Hinds, Edwin Yearwood, Rupee and more to the world. Ignoring this man is a "hurtin' thing".

You gotta pay

If there's one thing life has taught me, it's that nothing comes for free. If you don't pay now, you have to pay later. That's why I've been concerned recently about the proliferation of projects and "eases" being announced by Government.

In the last two weeks, we've heard of an imminent reduction in electricity bills (which means Government will no doubt have to subsidise the local power company); a reduction in the prices of certain food items (a welcome move but the supermarket bosses are crying out for subsidies)and possible subsidies for Public Service Vehicle (PSV) owners who're vex becuase they have to charge students under 18 $1 and not the regular $1.50 fare.

On top of that, it was recently announced that we're getting a new $700 million hospital, road renovations, more money for housing and the list goes on. Bear in mind that major road works are still ongoing on the ABC Highway, where flyovers are supposed to be erected; we just finished the new prison at Lord knows what cost and the multimillion dollar Halls of Justice are still in construction.

All this capital works activity is very admirable, if only it weren't tainted by the real possibility that it's all pre-election promises. Elections are due any day now, and it's funny how every week there's some new announcement. People hadn't even gotten around to talking about how we're going to staff a larger hospital when it was annnounced that a referendum on Barbados becoming a republic would be factored into the next election ballot!

I know this is all part of the politics game, but I'd rather my Government admit times are tough, decide how we're going to tighten our belts and deal with these trying times than lull us all into a false sense of comfort then to admit later that the bottom has dropped out of the economy.

Anyhoo, I'm waiting patiently for the announcement of an election date. I suspect it will be after Christmas because our politicians know better than to compete with ham and jug-jug....

Tuesday links

Rodney Beckles is one lucky fella
Another Compton in St. Lucia's Parliament
Congrats to Asafa Powell
New Commonwealth head appointed
The ugly side of beauty
It's not too early for holiday financial tips

How to speak like a Bajan


Wait- Wait has a variety of usages. It can be used in much the same way as "by the way", e.g., "Wait, you hear bout dat dub fete dis Satduh?" (By the way, did you hear about that dub fete this Saturday?)

It can also be used to express surprise, e.g. "Wait...! Wuh goin on hey?" (What's going on here?)

Wha'/Wuh- what

Whaloss! - normally means "oh my goodness".

Wildboys - a negative term usually used in reference to boys on the block

To wuk up- a popular dance here that involves rotating your hips in a sexual manner

Wuh um is?- what is it?/where is it?

Wuh looka doh nuh- used when shocked or astonished at something.

Wuh looka my crosses- I mainly hear older Bajans with this and is used when astonished at something.

Wunnuh- means "you" in the plural form.


You - This word has various usages. It is a popular way to start a sentence especially if you want to attract the speaker's attention to something.

e.g: You! - It can be used to express surprise or astonishment, e.g., "You, dat shirt look so good!"


ZR - a form of public transportation

And that's it, peoples. Hoped you enjoyed my little tutoring session.

Source - Dictionary of Bajan Slang

Barbados' National Heroes - Samuel Jackman Prescod

He has been described by some as the "greatest Barbadian of all time" and the "saviour of his country", but though for others he shares these credits with a small number of patriots, it was doubtless Samuel Jackman Prescod's mission to improve the conditions of the Free Coloured people as well as to fight for liberating the slaves.

Prescod abhorred the treatment meted out to Coloureds and Blacks by the planter class and that dehumanising and debilitating institution known as slavery. From an early age, he set about trying to unite the masses, Coloureds, Blacks and Poor Whites, into a coalition of the oppressed and to agitate for their enfranchisement.

According to one historian, he fought for all the things he believed in, and people's love for him grew when they realised he was prepared to denounce abuses and support reforms that affected all classes in the community. As a result, the masses put their faith in him and Prescod skillfully used his influence to build up a political organisation - "The Liberal Party" - which fought for social justice for over 25 years.

However, it could probably be argued that Prescod had his greatest impact on people through the printed page. Recognising the power of the pen, he used the newspapers, of which he was editor, to write scathing articles accusing the planters of pursuing policies which suppressed Blacks and so made freedom unimportant.

Through this forum, he also provided free discussion on all topics relating to the labouring population and he tried to unite the Free Coloured, the apprenticed workers and the Poor Whites against the powerful plantocracy.

Among Prescod's early successes was the admission of Free Coloured people to vote in 1831 and from as early as 1839 he recommended that Universal Adult Suffrage be made law, but this proposal was ridiculed by the oligarchy in Parliament.

In the period of limited franchise, he was elected on June 6, 1843, as one of two members for the newest constituency, the City of Bridgetown, thus becoming the first non-White to sit in the House of Assembly. Later, he became the leader of a small group of white members in the House, who agreed with his policies. This was the Liberal Party which functioned as an unofficial "Opposition" for over 20 years.

Born out of wedlock in 1806 to Lydia Smith, a Free Coloured woman, and William Prescod, a wealthy landowner, he was named after Samuel Jackman, a rich white planter in St. Peter. He attended St. Mary's School and was later apprenticed as a joiner.

In this period Barbados was very much "heaven" for the elite Whites, "hell" for Blacks and "purgatory" for Free Coloureds. In this social environment, men of Prescod's complexion suffered humiliations and were relegated to menial positions in every sphere of life.

Fortunately, however, he had no intention of spending his life as a second-class citizen. He therefore "retired to a life of study and contemplation", preparing himself for the struggle against injustice.

His campaign for the enfranchisement of Free Coloureds started in 1829. It gained impetus because he chided them for being too complacent and not going far enough in their demands. When this group started the "New Times" newspaper in March, 1836, Prescod was given the onerous task of editing the publication.

However, after only eight months he relinquished the post because he felt the promise he had been given for full editorial control had been broken. He later joined "The Liberal" newspaper, which was founded by the Poor Whites, and spent 25 years educating the masses through its pages.

So strong was Prescod's belief that this channel of communication should remain open, that when "The Liberal" ran into financial problems a few months after being launched, he and Thomas Harris bought it. He was given a free hand by Harris to continue defending the rights of Blacks and it was probably not surprising that in 1840 he was charged with criminal libel and jailed for eight days.

Prescod's radical newspaper earned him a reputation of being a "counsellor", "adviser", "poisonous revolutionary", "trouble maker", and "enemy of the established order". One thing is certain: He made people think. In fact, historians argue that he was more effective as a journalist than as a Member of the House of Assembly.

Even during the apprenticeship system, 1834-1838, Prescod demonstrated his interest in the development of Blacks and his educational programmes focussed on helping them to know their rights so they could "challenge the plantocracy".

The effort gained him widespread support and respect and he consistently agitated for the establishment of primary, secondary and tertiary education facilities for the children of ex-slaves.

Prescod's courageous feats continued in the House of Assembly for nearly 20 years. He vehemently opposed class legislation and constantly defended the welfare of the underprivileged. He was also instrumental in getting the Secretary of State to decide that certain clauses in the Police Act be reconsidered and readjusted, because he felt they had sought to "maintain unjust distinctions between white and coloured people".

In 1860 he retired from Parliament and later accepted the office of Judge of the Assistant Court of Appeal.

Prescod died on September 26, 1871, at the age of 65 and was buried in St. Mary's Church yard. The "Barbados Times" newspaper, describing him as "the great tribune of the people", said he had not been induced to "swerve one jot or title from his allegiance to the cause of right and justice".

The editor of the "Agricultural Reporter", a newspaper produced by his adversaries, the elite white planters, stated: "Such a man is scarcely likely ever to appear upon the scene of life here or anywhere in the West Indies for the simple reason that the same circumstances can never exist again. His class can never again produce so strong a man in the sense in which he was strong because no one of them will ever (be) required to fight such a battle as that which he fought and won."

The Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic was named after this valiant Barbadian who struggled for the upliftment of the down-trodden.

Photo & copy:

Barbados pic of the day

Aerial view of the Garrison Savannah, and St. Michael/Christ Church border

Monday, November 26, 2007

Forty-one fave Bajan personalities Pt. 2

Last Friday I listed 10 of my 41 fave Bajans who I believe have made a contribution to the development of our nation, and here are 10 more faves:

Professor Henry Fraser - Whether he's showing off the architectural treasures of Barbados, urging Bajans to eat healthy or orating the accomplishments of those awarded National Honours, Professor Fraser puts his best foot forward. As Dean of the School of Clinical Medicine and Research, he's at the forefront of the battle against the dreaded chronic non-communicable diseases and we could all do to heed his advice.

Professor Hilary Beckles - Say what you like about the Principal of the UWI Cave Hill Campus Professor Beckles, you have to admit that under his guidance the Campus has undergone a remarkable transformation. Government needs to put him in charge of capital projects....

Dalton "Jackie Opel" Bishop - Spouge/R&B singer extraordinaire Jackie Opel died before I was born, but I grew up hearing his hits You're No Good, Every Word I Say Is True, Eternal Love and his megahit Cry Me a River. Before his tragic death at the young age of 32, Jackie Opel toured regionally and internationally and his songs appeared on US and UK labels. He was a prodigy gone far too soon.

Jeannette Layne-Clark - A prolific writer of novels and stage plays, Jeannette Layne-Clark is the talent behind popular productions such as Dumplings in The Stew. Skilled at capturing the dialect and vernacular of Barbados, Layne-Clark would be the go-to person if we ever got around to developing a lexicon for Bajan dialect.

John "Foo Foo" Walcott - Painter, actor, comic. John Walcott's talents seem endless. Perhaps best known for his roles as the idiot savant "Foo Foo" in the Laff It Off stageplays and feisty security guard "Tubby" in tourism commercials, Walcott is a comic gem.

Joseph Niles - Legend Joseph Niles is to gospel what Sparrow is to calypso in the region. With over 25 years in the business of gospel music, Joseph Niles is long overdue for a major national award.

Krosfyah - Although it has undergone its fair share of changes, the soca band Krosfyah has consistently produced quality music since its debut in 1989. Frontmen Edwin Yearwood and Khiomal have also had successful solo careers, but Krosfyah's talented guitarist and songwriter Anthony "Tony Rebel" Bailey deserves a lot more of the spotlight.

Mac Fingall - Mac Fingall is proof that at times it pays to play the fool. Comedian, entertainer, mascot and super MC, the name Mac Fingall brings a smile to the faces of most Bajans. And Lord knows we can always do with some more things to smile about.

MADD Entertainment - I have a lot of respect for MADD Entertainment. They've parlayed what most people would consider "mekking sport" into a viable business venture, and they never miss a beat when it comes to marketing their shows or DVD's. Happy 25th Anniversary, guys and gals.

Sister Margaret Marshall - Like Joseph Niles, Sister Marshall is a stalwart in the gospel arena. Her music has an appeal that cuts across generations and I fear we take her and Joseph Niles for granted. Give them their sweets now, powers that be, and leave out the posthumous sweet sentiments!

How to speak like a Bajan


Tearhead- a person with a bad temper

To thief- to steal, e.g.: "He wenT an' tief my mainguhs" (He stole my mangoes).

Thiefin'- dishonest, to be a thief, e.g.: "Dem politicians jes so thiefin'!"

Tight- used as an adjective to mean "cool", e.g.: "He does dress so tight!!!!!!"

To run a lot ah mout - to talk big

To run a lot of talk - to talk big

To be two mouted - to be a disloyal person


Unmarley- extremely rude, unmannerly

Source - The Dictionary of Bajan Slang

Barbados' National Heroes - Clement Payne

"Educate, agitate, but do not violate!"

For most of his life Clement Osbourne Payne conveyed the powerful message of this slogan as he tirelessly advocated the economic wants and political needs of working people in the West Indies. Whether in Trinidad, the land of his birth, or Barbados, his parents' homeland, he sought to educate the masses about their lot in life and urged that they transform themselves into a militant community of workers.

He is best remembered for four momentous months in 1937 when he struggled to help the poor working population of Barbados to see the importance of coming together to resist the elite white planter class. He held several public meetings in the City and its environs, denouncing the deplorable conditions under which ordinary people were forced to live.

Payne is regarded by some as an apostle of Barbadian trade unionism.

He launched a campaign to educate and stimulate the masses, delivering powerful, fiery speeches to audiences who responded with great enthusiasm. The Constabulary in Bridgetown saw Payne as a possible threat and from that very first meeting in the City he was under police observation "each moment of the day and night".

But that close surveillance did not deter Payne. Instead, he ensured that themes brought into the public domain during those meetings were highlighted. When the labour disturbances started in Trinidad in June 1937, he held a meeting in Golden Square to inform the working class about developments there, even though the police did their best to prevent it.

By that time, the workers here were serious about organising themselves and a resolution was passed to form the Barbados Progressive Working Men's Association. This attempt ended in failure.

On Thursday, July 22, Payne was presented with a summons to appear before the City Magistrate to answer a charge of willfully making a false statement to the Harbour Authorities concerning his place of birth. On arrival in the island, he had declared that he was born in Barbados rather than Trinidad.

He pleaded not guilty and the case was adjourned, but when it resumed he did not have legal representation and pleaded his own case. He was found guilty and ordered to pay 10 pounds forthwith or spend three months in prison. However, he appealed against this decision and received support, moral and financial, from the working class, much to the dismay of the planter-merchant oligarchy and the police.

He also held a meeting that night (July 22) which he described as "a historical one from many angles" in his book , "My Political Memoirs of Barbados". People from every stratum of society attended, and this, he said, "was a strange significance in Barbados".

He spoke of his conviction and Government's ulterior motive, and revealed his intention to go to Government House for an audience with the Governor.

Singing hymns and popular anthems, Payne and about 300 workers marched that morning to the Governor's residence. Shortly after arrival, he and 13 supporters were arrested and later charged for refusing to disperse as an assembled mob when told to do so by police. But although they all pleaded not guilty and the others were granted bail, Payne was remanded in custody.

While he was in custody, his "lieutenants" held meetings to sensitise workers to the situation. He won the appeal on July 26 against conviction for making a false declaration on his arrival in Barbados, but the expulsion order remained.

The charge was later withdrawn and the authorities attempted to serve him with an expulsion order. This prompted his supporters to hire a young lawyer, Grantley Adams, to represent him . Recognising the power of the authorities and the possible physical danger to his client, Adams advised Payne to accept service of the expulsion order.

Before his dream was realised Payne was expelled from Barbados, but he had sown the seeds of discontent which flourished and bore fruit on July 26, 1937, the night he was forced out of this country, never to be allowed entry again. It was the action of the local authorities to deport Payne, and Governor Mark Young's decision to uphold the expulsion.

He was deported that same night.

As news about the deportation spread, his supporters around the island forgot his slogan of non-violence and "exploded in violent, revolutionary upheaval" in some City streets. Armed with sticks and stones, they went along Chamberlain Bridge, Trafalgar Square to Broad Street and the commercial district damaging show windows of businesses, smashing cars on nearby streets and even pushing some into the sea.

The violence continued for four days in various parts of the island, leaving 14 people dead, 47 wounded, 500 arrested and millions of dollars in property damaged.

It is generally agreed by historians that Barbados was never the same gain. The disturbances forced the relevant authorities to recognise the need for social reform, the alternative being that the workers would do it in a way the oligarchy would never approve.

Such was the effectiveness of Payne's words and actions that the British Government appointed a Commission of Inquiry (The Moyne Commission), to investigate the situation in Barbados and other British West Indies colonies.

This signalled what was arguably Payne's most significant achievement, for the Moyne Commission determined that all of his charges against the island's rulers were accurate and in its report, insisted on reforms which he had proposed, the chief of which was introduction of trade unionism legislation.

Payne collapsed on April 7, 1941, while addressing a political meeting in Trinidad and died shortly afterwards.

The Clement Payne Cultural Centre was formed in Barbados in 1989 to perpetuate his memory and to continue his work of enlightening Barbadians about their history and struggle.

Photo & copy:

Barbados pic of the day

Cricketers (circa 1980's)
Photo: Roger LaBrucherie

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Rihanna named one of EW's Prodigies

Congrats to Rihanna, who was named recently as one of Entertainment Weekly's Prodigies for 2007. Every year, the magazine lists its top 25 entertainers of the year, and this year Rihanna shared the spotlight with actors including George Clooney, Will Smith and Johnny Depp, singers Carrie Underwood and Kanye West and others, and other young prodigies Miley Cyrus, Zac Efron, and once rumoured boyfriend Shia LaBeouf.

Here's EW's feature on Rihanna:

Rihanna's No. 1 hit, ''Umbrella,'' was the jam of summer 2007. On May 30, the single topped the Hot 100, Pop 100, and Hot Digital Songs charts — and set a record for digital downloads in an opening week. Days later, the 19-year-old songstress dropped Good Girl Gone Bad, her third CD in less than two years, which has sold some 800,000 copies to date. And in September, ''Umbrella'' earned Rihanna a double win at MTV's Video Music Awards. — Margeaux Watson

The best part about being so successful at such a young age is...
''I have a lot more business sense — things that you usually learn when you leave college and you're in your 20s. I've also learned common sense things like keeping good people around me who help me avoid making mistakes. But the best part about starting so early in this business is that I have more time to grow.''

The moment she knew she had become successful was...
''It really overwhelmed me when 'Umbrella' was No. 1 for so many weeks all over the world, not only in America, and broke records and made history. 'Umbrella' just went way ahead of me and where my mind was a lot quicker and earlier than I expected it to.''

How success has changed things for her...
''It doesn't affect me as much as people may assume. I'm in my own world most of the time and all of this is happening around me, but it isn't getting to me. The people around me keep me grounded and sane. I'm just in the middle of it all and they try to keep me away from the negativity and chaos. So they'll probably be the ones who go crazy before I do.''

Favorite career moment of the year...
''The VMAs. I was so honored. I could not believe that I won one of the biggest awards of the night, Video of the Year. Monster Single of the Year, I thought I had a chance. But Video of the Year was definitely the one I was like, There's no way. There are too many good videos and big artists in this category.''

Celebrity fan she was most surprised by...
''Celine Dion. I've been in Europe for maybe a couple weeks now, traveling and doing a lot of press and tour rehearsal. We've done, like, three TV shows at the same time. And every time she sees me, she's always singing one of my songs. I just love her! She is a legend. And if she only knew how starstruck I was meeting her.''

The career she'd most like to have besides her own...
''Kate Moss'. She just looks like she has a fun job. I know it's hard work, but she's a very successful model. I would like to try something different instead of just singing. If I had to spend a day in the life of another career, it would be hers.''

Photo & copy -

Friday, November 23, 2007

Forty-one fave Bajan personalities

Well, there's one more week to go before we Bajans celebrate our 41st Anniversary of Independence on November 30, and so far it's been fun thinking up facets of Bajan life that I can share with you.

Right now, Bridgetown stores are decorated with blue and gold lights and bunting (of course some of them also have their Christmas trees up but I digress). Locals songs are blasting on the airwaves and NIFCA and Community Independence activities are in full swing.

Forty-one years ain't 41 days, as the old folks would say, and it has taken the combined efforts of many Barbadians to help us reach this point. Political leaders and National Heroes aside, there are scores of entertainers, sports persons, journalists and ordinary Barbadians who have put Barbados on the map in their own unique way, or simply made life easier for the rest of us.

Here's my list of 41 Bajans who, in my humble opinion, should be lauded for improving or promoting the Bajan way of life. The first 10 will be posted today and the remaining 31 over the course of next week.

Alfred Pragnell - Some of my fondest childhood memories include listening to the late Alfred Pragnell perform short stories on Rediffusion, and I had the pleasure of interviewing him many years later. Alfred was a gifted griot who brought Timothy Callender and Jeannette Layne-Clark's characters to life. He'll forever live on in our hearts.

Alison Sealy-Smith - Bajan actress Alison Sealy-Smith has appeared on numerous US television shows (Street Legal, Kevin Hill, This Is Wonderland) and for a few years voiced the part of Storm in the animation X-Men. An accomplished stage performer, she has returned home on several occasions to star in local productions.

Allison Hinds & Square One - During their 17-plus years in the music business, Square One played for royalty, won numerous local, regional and international awards and captured the hearts of party-goers across the world. Barbados' Musical Ambassadors are sorely missed.

Austin 'Tom' Clarke - Perhaps Barbados' most famous literary luminary, Austin Clarke is a magician with the English language. From "Growing Up Stupid Under the Union Jack" to "The Polished Hoe", Clarke has a way of dissecting human emotion and placing the reader right at its centre.

Senator Andrew Bynoe - I don't think anyone has done more to promote the pork industry in Barbados than the Managing Director of Carlton & A1 and Emerald City Supermarkets, Senator Andrew Bynoe. The ads for his "proper pork" campaign were quintessentially Bajan and I'm convinced the sales of pork went through the roof. Proper.

Brian Talma - Barbados' "Action Man" Brian Talma needs his own television show. The windsurfer's boundless energy and zest for life is so contagious that he would be a natural on screen and his brief travel show for Virgin Atlantic was a hit. Work that out, CBC.

Dr. Colin Hudson - It's hard to believe that three years have gone by since environmentalist and Barbados' green conscience Dr. Colin Hudson passed away. I didn't know him personally, but the love he had for the environment was palpable. We could all do with a few more Dr. Hudsons around.

Giggurd & Boo - The comic duo of Patrick Maxwell (Giggurd) and Agie Yearwood (Boo) has been used to promote everything from HIV/AIDS to tax tips, and some Bajans still can't get enough of these two.

Gladstone Holder - The best way to describe the late journalist and Chief Information Officer of a newly independent Barbados was fearless and objective. His articles on political and societal matters were often talking points, and he was living proof of the saying that the pen is mightier than the sword.

Harold Hoyte - The former Editor-in-Chief of the Nation Newspaper was known for his objectivity and business prowess, and will be a hard act to follow. Enjoy your retirement, Sir Harold!

More on Monday. Have a good weekend!

How to speak like a Bajan


Safe - Safe has a wide variety of meanings depending on the context:
To be safe (of a person) - to be cool, e.g: "He real safe" (He is really cool);
To be safe (of a friendship) e.g: "We safe" - Things are good between us;
Safe (expression, in response to a statement) - Cool, Okay, That's fine by me

Sa'in- something

Scotch- In Bajan slang the word "scotch" is used when you want someone to move around so you could get a seat. For example, you may hear "Geh me a scotch dey so" (used like this it is considered rather impolite). The more polite form would be "May I have a scotch please?"

Other examples are "You want a scotch?", "Try'an scotch'on dey so"

Site- I get where you're coming from

To skin one's teet- to laugh e.g: "She always skinning she teet at some ting or de other" (she is always laughing at something)

To 'sociate wid sumbody- to associate with someone, to be on speaking terms with someone.

To look stink - to look bad in terms of dress or appearance, e.g "Uh uhhhh dat girl look so stink!" (That girl looks so bad)

To study- can sometimes mean to think about something or to be deep in thought,
e.g: "Wha' you studyin?" What are you thinking about?

Stupse- is probably what the Brits call "sucking one's teeth". It is done when you want to show disapproval at something and it can be considered fairly rude.

Sukka-bubby - kool-aid poured into a small, clear plastic bag and frozen.

Source - The Dictionary of Bajan Slang