Scratchie\’s World

School Done!!! Other stuff in life to write about now….

Life Lessons

I’ve never been a a fan of English Literature. In fact, I failed the subject miserably in high school probably (more like most certainly) from not trying. I just despised it and hated the idea of being forced to read for passing grades rather than for the love of the book. Granted there were some good books forced upon us but eventually the bad ones won out and my love for reading kinda went through the door.

I remember having to examine certain phrase and find it’s source in literature. I asked my grandfather and he was able to just rattle it off. That phrase was:
“Neither a borrower nor lender be, for loan oft loses both itself and friend,
and borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry. And this above all, to thine own
self be true….”

I remember him jokingly saying that most phrases given to look up come from one of two places, The Bible or Shakespeare. This one came from Shakespeare…Polonius preparing his son Laertes for foreign travel in the play “Hamlet”.

This phrase has been relived so many times in modern society and is as true today as it was then. Think about our own financial dealings. So many times we’ve tied ourselves into the credit cards and bank loans and the hire purchase that we can’t even breathe at the end of the month. The pay cheque belongs to somebody else and we are forced to beg borrow or steal to survive till the next pay cheque (which incidentally isn’t ours either).

I’ve been a lender on a few ocassions and I’ve managed to recover a few of those loans. I keep telling myself that I won’t do this again and still I keep getting myself into these kinds of dilemna. I loaned some funds to a friend who was in deep hot water at the time and I had a little bit extra from some allowance or the other so I decided to help out a situation, since this person has helped me out in the past. Now getting back the funds is the hard part. Now I’m not saying that things are not hard because I know the situation but I can’t help but feel a bit slighted since I don’t see the effort necessary to repay my funds. Case in point, this person came into some extra money recently and chose to repay some outstanding bills from whenever with a “plan” to repay me out of the second part of her payout. To date that promise is yet to materialize. My question is, “Is it because I am a friend why I am not a priority?” Now I’ve seen this person “beg” tickets to the Jazz Festival and get sponsorship for other things which to me are not of any priority and yet I am still awaiting my money. Now in very much the same way that you can acquire these expensive sponsorship to these events I think you could acquire sponsorship to help repay the debts that you have. My thought would be that if I know I owe so many people so much money then three nights of singing no matter who the artistes would not be paramount on my agenda. In fact I would certainly be keeping my little tooshy quiet. I guess some of us think differently. Who knows, maybe I wanted to go to the Jazz Festival too but couldn’t spare the funds because all I had extra is tied up in a loan to somebody.

I know I will be repaid, that’s not the point, my only concern is when. Everytime I think about it I have a new round of depression and anger and disbelief all rolled into one. This is my friend treating me this way. And yes the person is still a friend and will remain that way because despite whatever is not so right there are more than enough good thing about them to make me overlook this shortcoming. The writing here is because I just need to vent a bit.

One thing I can assure you is that it won’t happen again not with this person at any rate.

January 30, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 13 Comments

Frightening

Today’s children (and adults) are living in a digital age. They are exposed to so many issues. As a parent how do you protect them? It may be all well and good for you to say that it’s only a computer screen and you can’t shelter them but this article from Dateline NBC paints a shocking picture of what can happen.
It’s quite a few pages long but when I started I went through them all and thought immediately about my own kids one of whom is an internet junkie.
From my own point-of-view, I’ve met a few people from the cyberspace realm and they have proven to be pretty decent people. If I were living in some other country maybe I would have been a little more apprehensive. Then again we face dangers in everyday life. Is the answer to just simply isolate yourselves away from everybody or everything? In reality, the persons we meet online could have well been met at a friends party. I guess the key to it is that if it doesn’t feel right then leave it alone.
Be safe you all.

January 24, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Nadda

Well the weekend went by really quickly and it almost feels as if it never started. I took some time out toady to go watch some driving at the dexerity event held near by me today. It was relaxing.
The shorter one celebrated her 14th birthday on Friday. Hard to believe that she has reached that already. She had a good day and tied it up with a games evening.
Heard a corny joke on Friday and decided to share it with you guy:
Well Jesse and his brother Frank decided to hold up a train in one of their glory moments. The gang all got on and one gang member decided it was his turn to make the announcement but he wasn’t too bright.
“Ladies and Gentlemen…this is a holdup……we shall be….robbing the women and raping the men!!”
Miss Prim and Proper in the front asked “What did you say?” Not too Bright says in his best holdup voice ” We will be robbing the women and raping the men!”
Miss Prim and Proper pipes up…”Don’t you mean robbing the men and raping the women?”
Not so bright stutters but before he can answer, from the back of the train a strange voice shouts out . (It’s Mr. Gay Lord Frankyguy) “Hello there missy is you or is them robbing the train?….leave them alone to do what they want to do to us men!”
Have a great day all.

January 22, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 5 Comments

More Political Chit Chat

Well I haven’t ben able to get about the task of blogging although I have been reading. The joys of school life have returned.
OK for all you non Jamaicans out there…there are 2 major political parties in Jamaica…the JLP and the currently ruling PNP. There are also quite a few others including a major party wanna be, the NDM. They are probably the closest thing to a rival that the 2 major parties will have in the foreseeable future (somehow that don’t look like it spell right). Now we are in a sad state of affairs when so many people can’t make up their minds about who they want as leadership simply because…THERE IS NO LEADERSHIP.
I am facing this dilemna 1 year before an election because I honestly don’t think the JLP has sufficiently adjusted its policies and style of leadership to take on the problems being faced by this nation. They have not settled down to the task at hand and have offered no alternatives to the current mechanisms. The PNP on the other hand look like a bunch of imcompetent idiots who can’t tell their nose from their tails. Problems that have arisen are given some serious band aid treatment and that goes no further. What are my solutions? I really don’t know that I have any to offer…but hey, that’s why I not involved in politics. One thing for certain is that our political system and criminal elements are too closely tied together for comfort. Politicians attend funerals and parties for the area leaders (a nice way to say area dons or badman dem).
Frankly, it is time that we start to weed out the problems one by one. We have put such high emphasis on traffic offences and yet the murders continue. I am not saying ease up on the traffic offenders because I believe that a traffic offence is as bad as any other crime but we ALSO need to look heavily at the other issues as well. I say bring out the army if that is what it takes, have curfews if needs be but we cannot have 4 or more murders a day and still expect that it will be business as usual. The tourist will stop coming (unless we can find a way to market Jamaica as the murder capital of the world being a good thing).
I get frustrated every time I think about our political system. A party is elected and they are put into Gordon House. They dismantle everything started by the other party because it wasn’t good enough. They start their thing and it goes on until they leave office. A new party is voted in and the tear down process starts again. We need to reach a stage in this country where we examine the policies and methodology put in place by our predecessors and find a reasonable starting point on which to build. Don’t try to sell me the idea that every single thing the other party did was no good. We need to have a collaberative government and stop the stupidity of the faction system. Not because you are the oppposition party means that you have to oppose everything that is presented. Not because you are the ruling party means that you lay own the rules and nobody can differ in opinion.
I recall the days when there was the budget debate and it really was a debate. The proposals were tabled and a final decision was made after discussion and rebutal. These last few years the Minister of Finance gets up and simply tells you what he is going to increase and it is effective whenever he says and sometimes as early as tomorrow. No discussion, no chance for review, nothing, just take it or leave it. Maybe that’s why so many people are skeptical about his bid for party presidency.
Our system needs revamping and from my point of view this can only be done by removing all the current players and declaring them ineligible to participate in the leadership role. Honestly as a citizen, I can’t see a path for our future and I think that is sad particularly because I don’t think I’m alone in this frame of mind.
Anyways enough from me…later all.

January 19, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Hopefuls


These are the four Prime Minister hopefuls here at home. One of these four persons; Hon. Portia Simpson -Miller, Dr. Karl Blythe, Dr. Omar Davies or Dr. Peter Phillips will be Jamaica’s Prime Minister at least for a short time until the next election. I can’t help but wonder what each will bring or take away from our little nation that will make such significant differences in such a short time. The two names that one has been hearing consistently are “Portia” and “Peter Phillips”. Whether or not either is successful will be determined at a future date.
Right now we the common people kinda just hope that they don’t destroy civil Jamaica during their campaigns.
Jamaicans tend to be really passionate about their politics so……..take it easy people.
Have a great day you all.

January 16, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 11 Comments

Equity and Equality

I’m seeing the message played out in front of my eyes. A few weeks ago our pastor at church tried to give the differences between equity and equality. His theme based on the fact that you can be equal without being equitable and vice versa. I couldn’t qute figure it out then but then he gave an example but let me set a stage first………. Our church is in one of the most affluent areas in Kingston. It is surrounded by financial wealth. All the neighbourhoods are predominantly residential and at the high end of it as well. Let me say now that I don’t live in any of these areas 🙂 (before anybody gets any ideas). I work in the downtown area. This is an area noted for poverty and some really crass residences and residents. Let’s say that there are no apartments and townhouses down here. As a matter of fact you will find more squatters and tenament yards here than anywhere else. Now Port Royal Street, Harbour Street and its environs and all the way westwards to Marcus Garvey Drive were badly damaged by the onslaught of rains over the last few months. Parts of these major thoroughfares were reduced to riverbed type passageways. But as i said they are the only ways through downtown. Now Norbrook Road is a typical residential roadway and used in comparison to these others only by a handful of people. It too was damaged but I drove there shortly after the rains and it was passable not perfect but it could use with some swerving here and there.
Pastor told us that by January he would safely bet that Norbrook Road would be fixed but that the others would remain until whenever.
Well it is January and guess what…Norbrook Road was fixed from the week after he spoke so that puts it at mid November. Well Marcus Garvey Drive was repaired a couple of weeks ago and Port Royal Street is still to be fixed.
The situation is equal……both will be fixed. Not equitable because it has come down to a case of money talking. The roads that provide service to the greater population and the greater need of our nation has again succumed to the injustice in society. Why?….because it’s not in an area populated by the well to do………. 😦
Sets you think………….
Tomorrow maybe I’ll take on politics…heheheh.
Later all

January 13, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Tech Stuff…..(Boring to Dr.D)

Well Dr. D will not like this but it will be short. I finally got my router last night and felt like a millionaire. I had to use my phone a friend life line but it seem that everything is up and running. The one I bought is one without an external antenna. It works well from the wired point of view but the signal got really weak really fast when the wireless side of things was used. The many corners and concrete walls between the bedroom and the living room where the router is located may have something to do with that. So I have two options 1) Hard wire the bedroom 2) move the router halfway down the passageway using patch cables 3) stay out of the bedroom when using the laptop. All in all I am pleased. Setup was fairly easy but I got a little confused with some of the settings. I called a friend and he talked me through it in few minutes. pretty straight forward. We are yet to complete the firewall settings since he was unfamiliar with how this particular router set the permissions and filters so it will have to wait until he returns from abroad. Thanks for the help Mr. C.
I like option 2. Since I anticipated that there would be an issue with the walls and the signal I went looking for cabling the other day and all I kept finding was CAT-6 I am familiar with the CAT-5 and therefore need to know the difference between the two. Are they compatible and will the devices be able to work using the CAT-6 cables. The connectors look the same but hey…it’s all the same to me.
Anyways for the time being I can at least have access when the kids are online with the desktop.
Other than that everything is fine on the home front. School has restarted and I’ve had one class thus far. That course seems interesting (until it starts to dig out yuh tripe with unreasonable deadlines and…..) and I’m going in open-minded. We’ll see how it pans out later.
Anyways, I gone do some work so till later.

January 11, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 13 Comments

Free Paper Bun!!!

Well my last day of the school holiday was spent looking about the car. I have been calling it a piece of scrap iron and I’m going to behave myself because it has served really well over the past few years. So the one time it decides to act up isn’t sufficient for me to be dissing it. The pothole scene in Jamaica finally took its toll on the ride. I had to change almost the entire front end over the course of Friday and Saturday. Control arms, ball joints, bushings, tie rod ends and finally an alignment were the order of the day. Thank God for Nissans otherwise parts alone would have seen me “in debt up to my eyeballs” as one commercial put it. 🙂 In all I spent about US$175.00. I use the US cost so most of you can relate. That’s about $12000.00 Jamaican. Quite a hefty sum out here. Good thing is that the car feels great. no more squeaking and groaning and strange sounds when you drive on less than ideal roads.

As my heading says…back to school today. Classes are Mondays to Thursday and most finish at about 8:00 or 9:00….arrrrgggggh!!!!!! So after a long day at office I will have to drag my sorry self up to campus and sit and endure the torture of lectures and tutorials for another 14 weeks followed by exams in weeks 16 and 17. Can you resign from school?….I don’t know but I’m gonna give it a try and see if they accept the resignation. Nah….only 5 semesters to go so I may as well tough it out.

Had dinner with wifey’s family last night and it was a pretty enjoyable evening. Met a classmate at the supermarket who had gone to have her baby. Congrats to her and her little girl who should be about 3 months old or so. She told me of another classmate who also had a little girl recently so congrats to her too. So that makes only one young lady who I have not heard about. I neglected to get a phone number for her but I know she used read here some times. Hope all went well with her delivery too.

Anyways I gone do some work since I wasn’t here on Friday. Later all.

January 9, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 6 Comments

Lots about Nothing

Well I haven’t had much to talk about and quite honestly I’ve been under some stress at office over the past few weeks so to come home and fight with the children for the machine and then force a post hasn’t been the way to go just yet. Don’t worry about it, I’m working on the solution. I bought my router and I see from the tracking that it has been delivered to my mailbox service in Miami so in a few days it will be in Jamaica and I can start messing with stuff that doesn’t trouble me :).
Yesterday there was this big discussion at office about our justice system here at home. I won’t get into the detail but to say that it has stemmed from the recent release of Mr Adams and the other police following a jury trial in December. I can only state that I think the verdict was arrived at after much thought and based on the depth that the jury went to obtain information I would hope that their verdict was fair and reasonable. I can only hope that all involved are able to live in free conscience at the end of the day.
BBC has done us badly and honestly we may have done it to ourselves. What am I speaking about?……Read more here. Them boys going on really badly and it need to stop now.
I was kinda shocked yesterday at the kind of video games available to today’s teens. My son borrowed this game called Grand Theft Auto San Andreas from a friend and has been playing it for a few days now. I can safely say that i can now understand why it is under so much discussion. The game is horrific. It has all the elements of criminal written all over it. It portrays quite abit of the mentality of society today. The guns the violence the crime from prostitution to grand theft auto and murder. What struck me was when he “stole” a car and somebody ran him off the road, his reaction is to get out and “pop him with some shots”. I just kinda sat there. and looked. I am insisting that he returns the game to his friend. Reality though is that in a few months he is legally an adult and I can only then insist that I don’t want it done in MY house. He is a pretty decent young man though…riddled with all the teenage worries but hasn’t gone too way out on the limb. Straying from the point…..If these games are market driven how then can we be any better off if we continue to fuel the essence of the problems with this kind of gaming. Some argue that “It’s just a game”…it is not just a game, it models behaviour that children emulate. It may be marked mature but then what about the adult that is playing in the presence of the 5 year old who then says….”shoout him daddy” when a real incident of poor judgement in driving happens on the road. He has seen it done like that in the game so why not in life. My teen is learning to drive and I constantly remind him that it’s not like GT4, the cars don’t bounce off each other in real life. (Not that he drives to deserve these comments, but I am not taking any chances 🙂 ) .
I think we have major issues to deal with in today’s world. But I also see the small issues that we need to address and one can only think that if we start to manage the small issues then the larger ones may be more manageable as well. This article for instance shows something that should never happen at the international level.
My last thought goes to constitutional rights in the US. I have seen laws enacted and enforced over that last few years that essentially promotes the rights of those persons who feel that religion has no place in society. Their judicial system seems to be upholding that concept. My question is…By upholding the views of these persons are they not now trampling on the rights of those who hold the view that religion does hold a place. Can we now sue the various entities because I as a Christian have lost my constitutional right to say public prayers in school?
Do we have a case?
Anyway enough from me this morning…have a great day all.

January 5, 2006 Posted by | Uncategorized | 10 Comments