Sunday Brew — October 11, 2020

Sunday Brew — October 11, 2020


Sunday, October 11, 2020

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Phillips fanatics continue to choke PNP

One of the things that led to the devastation of the People's National Party (PNP) in the September 3 General Election was the presence of its president as the party's offer for prime minister.

Behind, and sometime beside him though, were some tough-headed fanatics who would 'take no talk' in respect of Dr Peter Phillips' lack of acceptance by a majority of the Jamaican people. It was they who believed, and still do, that Dr Phillips is the greatest thing since slice bread (slice bread is not a big deal anyway).

True, Dr Phillips must be regarded, academically, as one of the finest. Politically though, he fell flat when it was time to market him as prime ministerial goods. And that is what the fanatics still cannot understand.

Why can't they, now that the Jamaica Labour Party lawn mower has cut almost every blade of grass in the PNP's yard, stop sitting on their heads and come to realise that Dr Phillips did not make it, and it's time to move on?

These are the same people who would kick you in the butt if you gave an opinion that to them appeared or sounded 'negative', when all you were seeking to do was outline or relate, in a constructive way, some faults which could have turned into positives if acted upon.

In three weeks' time, these are some of the same people who will vote in the delegates' election to choose a new president. They, who cannot see beyond their noses, will continue to make the choices that do not benefit this nation, not to mention their own party.

When we were going to primary school we called such fanatics 'coco headed', which seems to be in line with what the PNP has descended to.

A year makes a difference in cricket

My friend KD Knight reminded me of an error in my recent commentary on the late DK Duncan and his exploits as a cricketer.

True, DK attended Jamaica College and played on a Sunlight Cup cricket team that was captained by Anthony Abrahams, who later became a Rhodes Scholar, Member of Parliament, tourism minister, radio talk show host, among other things. The team also included Franz Botek, later to become a senior executive of the Cigarette Company of Jamaica, and treasurer of the West Indies Cricket Board of Control, as it was known then.

But I was one year late when I said that DK played on the 1959 team, when it was in fact the 1958 JC team that was triumphant – interestingly, victory confirmed in the last match of the season against… aah boy … Kingston College. The good thing is that I wasn't born yet, so there was no bragging that would greet you head-on.

The record will show that in 1959 Wolmer's Boys' School, the Corporate Area's most successful institution in cricket, won all eight matches that the great school played in the competition that year. The team was led by Freddie Jobson, and the vice-captain?, well, the small matter of one Keith Desmond Knight, a fast bowler who topped the bowling average, and who, strangely, was regarded as having a faster run up to the wicket than the speed of his actual deliveries. KD will tell you that he deceived so many batsmen who believed in that saying.

The Wolmer's team of the day could go down as one of the finest in schoolboy terms. It had as the big star Maurice Linton Churchill Foster, my former colleague in radio, who played for Jamaica for years, scoring 13 hundreds; and represented the West Indies, hitting a century, and an agonising 99 against India at Queen's Park Oval, Trinidad & Tobago in 1971.

Also there were Milton Powell, a stylish, elegant batsman, who many felt was better than Foster and was brutally murdered over 30 years ago; Mickey West, like Powell, a multi-talented sportsman who became my friend in later years before he died; opener Sydney Abrahams Jr; and Allan Rickards, the recently deceased chairman of the All Island Jamaica Cane Farmers Association, who kept wicket.

There were some fine, talented individuals in that era, many of whom excelled in their chosen professional fields later in life. Would KD have become a West Indies fast bowler had he not opted for law and politics? I leave that one to the fortune tellers.

The fly that almost destroyed a TV set

Interest in the United States vice-presidential debate was so high for me, that I was prepared 24 hours before the actual day, getting snacks ready from Tuesday night, only to realise that it was on Wednesday.

At the end of the glorified event, it fell flatter than any pitch prepared by the Jamaica Cricket Association — the combatants shying away from questions, though more so Republican Mike Pence than Democrat Kamala Harris; and a host functioning like a drunk referee in a boxing ring … who didn't have the guts to sanction Pence when he kept blabbing away past his time and allowing him to pollute the atmosphere with his verbal garbage.

And the manifestation of trash being present was clear with the visit of that fly that landed on Pence's head. Now, I hate flies, and from about a week now, some pesky ones decided that it is they, and not I, who control the space that I have occupied for years.

I raced for the first available item, an old newspaper, when the insect appeared to have hit my screen. Whap! One big lick and the fly was still there. Was it a ghost fly?, because the poor TV set was shaking from the physical abuse. It was then I realised that, oh no, the fly was far away in Salt Lake City, and it deliberately was following the garbage that was being uttered by Pence, who appeared so comfortable with the intruder serving as his crown.

My friend Jabba called me shortly after to say that he had sprayed “a good amount” of a certain insecticide on his TV, until he found out that the trouble was at the other end.

Seems there will be no more fun of the kind though, as President Trump has decided that he will not debate Joe Biden again, this time virtually. What did you expect? If a man is getting licks here, there and everywhere, don't you think he would throw in the towel of excuse?

Flemmings must learn

Whenever Jamaicans go overseas to live and work, study, or on vacation, they must conform to the regulations in those global spaces.

A six-match suspension is now what it will take for footballer Junior Flemmings, a former Jamaica College standout and Jamaica player, to learn the hard way, that you don't unleash disparaging remarks about people's sexuality, and expect that the matter will be treated as it would be in Jamaica.

The sensitivity of such a thing is unbelievable in a country like the United States where Flemmings plays professionally. How Jamaica deals with gay issues is in contrast to how the US and other countries handle them.

I do not embrace the lifestyle of gays, but I would never advocate anything harmful to befall them. They choose a lifestyle that, although is against the law in instances, they are comfortable with. And if you go to another man's country where the laws are more receptive to certain kinds of behaviour, it is not within your remit to trouble anyone, physically or verbally.

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