Music, drinks, food and merrymaking are now the order of the day. And so it should be.
Let us kick-start the festive season with some Christmas music.
As a first option, we have at our electronic disposal the offerings of Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby and the others who have dominated the Christmas music genre around the world for endless decades. We also have our local bards who have their own versions of that same genre. Or, as a second option, we can choose to go in the opposite direction, to our authentically Caribbean menu, our indigenous Christmas musical genres such as crèche, parang and soca parang.
With respect to this second option, both our mental health and our physical health (as long as we do not over-indulge) can benefit significantly from a period of “Alegria, Alegria” (“Joy, Joy”) with our family, our friends and our community. Our prescribing physician in these medical circumstances is the irreplaceable Daisy Voisin, the late great all-time Queen of Parang.
The next step is to move on to the drinks. Any beer or whiskey will do, but we must be careful about our choice of rum. Nothing can disrupt a party as quickly as a politically incorrect remark about which country’s rum we do not want to drink. Wuss yet, noting could start a fight as fass as a argument over which Caribbean country have de bess rum!
The Editorial Board of The Caribbean Camera does not claim to have the expertise nor the fortitude to adjudicate on such a highly technical and culturally explosive issue. Our board is limited to a few beerologists, at least one rumologist and a mangologist who indulges in small doses of rum, wine, beer and gin from time to time.
Neither do we want to get into the dubiously structured specialty that governs the finer points of wine: red wine, white wine, home-made wine, fruit wine / cashew wine / cherry wine / hibiscus wine, rice wine, vin sec, demi-sec, sweet wine, fine wine, fine-bone wine, slow wine, artistic wine, wine-back, wine-dong, a-wine-is-not-a-wine, wine-dat-cause-chyah-chyah, wine-dat-cause-break-bottle-and-stab, et cetera, et cetera and so forth.
In all matters of “oenology”, as the specialty of wine is officially known, the board prefers to defer to the likes of Sparrow, Denise Belfon, Machel Montano and Allison Hinds.
And now to the food. We are proud that there is never any conflict among Caribbean people over what is and what is not Christmas food. We all like all types of Caribbean food. Differently put, we may be categorized as “see-food” specialists: we see food and we eat it!
We do not hesitate to join in the Christian practice of having a special season for goodwill and merriment. While Christians believe that the birth of Jesus Christ is a major development in the process of making salvation available to humanity, even the non-Christians in most Caribbean societies are heavily involved in the festivities at Christmastime.
On a very politically correct note, we close our Season’s Greetings with a specially edited version of a Caribbean ditty: “Felice fadder dead. Felicia fadder dead. Felice fadder dead. A breadfruit falldong ontop he head!”