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TGIF columns are in order by date from the most recent.

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To Serve You Better

IT WASN’T the half-hour drive through traffic that got to me, nor even that they’d told me on the phone to come to that branch; or that, when I got there, it was plain to see, through the all-glass frontage, that the store had been shut for ages, furniture carried away, cobwebs everywhere.

No, it was the sign on the door: “As part of our commitment to excellence and our ongoing determination to serve you better, we have streamlined our operation…” The sign, without irony intended, painstakingly explained that the shutting down of that branch without notice was actually an outstanding form of customer treatment a snivelling little rat like me probably didn’t deserve.

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Himself Sold Himself

Heself told heself, “You are charged for speeding”/ Heself start to shout, “The policeman lie”/ Heself told heself, “This ain’t no sport!”/ And he charge himself for contempt of court” – The Mighty Spoiler, from “Magistrate Try Himself”

IN 1958, WHEN Spoiler satirized privilege in his calypso about the country magistrate forced to hear his own speeding case, could anyone have imagined that the Chief Justice would be going to court this morning to attempt to prevent the Law Association from investigating him? Could the most perspicacious soothsayer, then, have predicted that the Law Association would be seeking, not to protect its titular head from executive interference, but to do some executive interference with him of its own?

Trinidad’s all-time leading intellectual, Lloyd Best, must be turning in his grave; with laugh.

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Radio Barrack Yard

God, grant me the change to buy expensive distractions, the drugs to endure the things I can’t change and the indifference to wisdom necessary for living in Trinidad – Reinhold Neibhur’s “serenity prayer” rewritten for 2018 T&T

OLD MR YEARWOOD used to impart to us, his form three CIC English class, his own approach to life: “He who knows, and knows that he knows, is a wise man: follow him; he who knows not, and knows that he knows not, is ignorant: teach him; but he who knows not, and knows not that he knows not, is a fool: shun him”.

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