Slow Ass Internet Connection

Yuh know folks, I am really fed-up with the quality of Internet access we have here in Trinidad and Tobago. It has been almost 5 years now that Internet has been available here in T&T and throughout all that time we have not witnessed much advancement in the technology and services available from our local ISP's.

But,the fact is, most of our local ISP's are not to blame. Ever Since it's introduction, TSTT has had total control of our Internet access in Trinidad and Tobago. Whether you solicit an Internet connection from any of of the other providers including, Interserv , Carib-Link, WOW.NET, Rave or Opus the fact remained that when you accessed a website locally or overseas your request for that website passes though your provider and then passes through TSTT. This is because legislation has prohibited and of the other Internet providers from sourcing any direct Internet connection from anyone else other than TSTT. Actually, the law prohibits the transmission of data out of this country via any other medium other than TSTT. This left a loophole , enabling ISP's such as Carib-Link, Interserv and WOW.NET to setup satellite links for the purpose of downloading data. So whereas your request for a particular URL (Webpage) will be transmitted via a TSTT link the actual text and graphics could be brought down via a much faster satellite link.

You may think, "Hey, that's great ! that means that Carb-Link and the like are much faster than TSTT and the others". Well, that's not necessarily so, the fact is that the accessing of a webpage, an image , a mp3 file, or just about anything else on the net requires both transmission and reception of packets. Hence, even if you have a Carib-Link connection data packets must still be transmitted via TSTT and this is where the problem lies.

TSTT's main "pipe" (i.e bandwidth) out onto the Internet is too dam small to accommodate the constantly increasing number of Internet users in this country, and despite the fact that they have made some upgrades to it over the years TSTT has failed to keep up with the demand. The result is a bottle neck scenario. Imagine if you will a nuts bottle, yuh know the ones with the long narrow neck, now imagine that your data is a nut at the middle or bottom of that bottle. Tip the bottle, and what happens ? .......Congestion !

TSTT has also failed to keep pace with the technological advancements in the industry. Services such as DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) and Cable Modems, otherwise known as broadband Internet connections , that offer fantastic rates of speeds and are widely available throughout the United Stated and Europe are but mere "pipe" dreams to us here in Trinidad. To it's credit, TSTT has introduced ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) which, although not as fast as DSL, does offer up to 128K of bandwidth. The only problem is that the service is available at such an unbelievable cost that most consumers are either unable or unwilling to pay for it.

So, after all of this, what do we do ? Well there isn't anything much we as consumers can do. Our only hope is in the fact that at the end of this year TSTT's reign comes to an end. The Telecommunications industry will be open up to foreign competition and with this there will be a fight for market share causing dinosaurs like TSTT to either shape up or ship out. So be patient my friends, all it not lost, hopefully by this time next year we'll be able to download an mp3 in 2 minutes instead of 2 hours !



Race & Politics in Trinidad & Tobago

I have been purposely delaying writing this article because I have had problems putting the words together. It is such a touchy topic that I really don't know where to start, but yet still it's a view that I have been wanting to express for a long time.

Although I am a black man and quite proud of it, I have many friends of different races. I have never considered race as an obstacle to friendship and I never will. Racism has never been something that I have understood, I mean, I could never understand how you can hate someone just because of the colour of their skin. After all ,diversity is the spice of life isn't it ? It would be pretty boring if we all looked the same.

Knowing this about me , you can see why it angers me to see the state to which politics has affected race relations in this country.  Never before have I seen the politics divide this country in the way that it has before now. It has reached such a state that I don't even discuss it in public anymore for fear of offending someone. The last thing I want to do is to fall out with one of my friends over political issue, because politics is so closely interwoven with race in this country that it's hard to tell the difference. It seems that if you're Black,  people automatically think that you're a PNM and if you're Indian you're a UNC. Not to mention if you're a black man and you decide to support the UNC you're an automatic "traitor to your race" as in the case of Winston Peters (aka GYPSY) or vice versa in the case of Nafeesa Mohammed who we see has been tormented by members of her own family for choosing the PNM. It this what out country has come to ?  The land where "every creed and race finds and equal place".

Anyone who denies that our country is racially divided has been either been away for a very long time or has been living under a rock with their head in the sand. You can feel it everywhere you go these days, the racial tensions , especially with the upcoming elections drawing ever closer each day. I personally experience it in all aspects of my life. In work, on a day to day basis I encounter competitors who use it to their advantage to gain business from customers of the same race or religion. I'm my social life I have encountered looks of scorn and dismay from members of both races when I chose to date and Indian girl. Why must I and people like me be subjected to this ? Is it because I have chosen to ignore the racial lines ?

To be continued....


"Go T&T , show them what you got ! "

Who is de "genius" that come up with this dumb ass chant ?  In the history of football chants I have never hear of one so dumb. Ah mean, de ting doh even sound local. De first time I heard it I couldn't believe it. I say nah, dey must be just using that for de Carib Ad. Ah didn't want to believe that in a country of such talented musicians that is the best thing they could come up with.

Now, all of a sudden , ah hear that it is de official chant for our national football team. How de hell did that happen ? Who authorize that ? Something so important you would think that they would get people opinion on it or something, sheeeeeesh man ! Oh, and by the way, where dey get dem bony ass girls from to dance on de Carib Ad ? Dem girls like de suffering from the "noassatall" disease, and wuzz de story with that lame dance dey doing ? Wham, dey cyah wine or what?



Y2K Everything !

Oh gosh man ! Ah tired hear that term used ! "Y2K this , Y2K that !" It's only January 2000 and I'm already tired of hearing the term "Y2K" ! This is gonna be , if it isn't already, the most over used phrase this year. Every where you go, whatever you do, you just can't escape it !

I was driving pass the corner buy the Mas Camp Pub this afternoon and low and behold what could I see hanging from the from roof , a twenty foot wide banner saying "Y2K ....." something or the other. It looked like a banner for Minshell's Carnival 2000 band, but I'm not sure. After I saw the Y2K thing I stopped reading. I am just at the point where I'm fed up of people trying to capitalize on the popularity of the phrase ! If it ain't Y2K Carnival , iz Y2K Sports Bar or  Y2K Fete   or some other shit ! Ah even see a man stick a big sticker on his old,  beat up car mark "Y2K COMPLIANT" !  Gosh people give it a rest ! I can't take it anymore !

The big joke is, I haven't heard of anyone having any serious problems with the Y2K computer problem ! Is it that everybody was so well prepared that we all outsmarted the bug ? Or is it that we all made too much of a big deal about this dam thing ! Either way, I was on of those people who knew that nothing serious would have happened, but ya know, deep down inside,  I was kinda hoping that something would. I must say it was a big let down ! I just kinda hoped that come Jan 1st 2000, there might have been something major like a power outage or the ATMs spewing out money or something ! Ya know , some excitement ! But , alas, nothing.

But, although the problem is all but gone, the phrase lives on ! One would have hoped that it would have died with the bug, but I guess not ! How long will we continue to over use this dam phrase ?  How many more times must we see it on TV or in the Press or on the Net ? and ya know we go see it even more for Carnival !

Sheeeeeesh ! We kill de bug, leh we kill de phrase too nah !!!!



"Cellular Syndrome"

I can't help but notice the abundance of cellular users in Trinidad and Tobago these days. It seems as though everywhere you go you see someone talkin on a cell. In the past, the cellular phone used to be something of a luxury, phones were out of the price range of the masses, and seeing someone with one was something of a novelty. Today, with the reduction in price of not only the phones but also the service, cell users are in abundance, or one might even say OVER abundance. The cellphone has become more of a necessity than a luxury and it is good to see people of all classes being able to benefit from technology.

TSTT has been the primary beneficiary of the insurgence of users onto the cellular market. After all they are the sole provider of the service, well......at least for now anyway. The demand has become so great that TSTT has run through several Cell Codes including 680 (the first, and original cell number), 678, 620, etc, and over the course of this year we have seen the introduction of digital cellular services which I have heard is much clearer that the older analog service.

There are many advantages to owning a cellphone. The most important of which being in the unlikely event of an emergency be it your car breaking down on the highway, or it being stolen. I for one was glad for mine the day the alternator belt in my car decided to give out on the highway somewhere between Couva and San Fernando. I was able to call my friend and mechanic Berks to come to my rescue as well as inform the customer who I was heading by that I would be late.

But with all these advancements and advantages of the cellular phone don't we as people flaunt the dam thing too much !!! I see way too many people walking around with these phones practically everywhere they go. These things are clipped onto their waist or hang around their necks as more of a fashion statement than  anything else. I even say one girl (and I stress on GIRL , she was still in her teens ) with one around her neck, which matched totally with her outfit of green and red. Surely we don't need to have these phones on our waist all the time, do that many people really call us ? I for one don't give out my number to just anybody. But with the free incoming calls service being offered by TSTT to it's digital customers until the end of the year people have been giving out their numbers freely and with the greatest of ease. The thing is, what if TSTT decides to resume charging people for incoming calls, what are those people going to do ? Are they gonna keep their phones off so that they wont receive the abundance of calls that they are encouraging now ? Ah well dat is their problem !

But my real grievance is with the fact that 80 percent of these people who walk around day in and day out with cell phones on their waist and around their neck never receive calls on the dam phone anyway ! For most of them its like "well everybody else has one, so why not I ! " If anything having a phone with you all the time makes you use it more. You find yourself making all sorts of calls that you really don't need to make. Calling people just for the hell of it , and , at the end of the month, calling 800-Cell to say "Hey I think someone has been using my phone " cuz ya can't believe the BILL !!!.

Food for thought people !




"Savannah Strollers"

Now picture this people, my office is directly opposite the Grand Stand, Queens Park West, so somtimes when I stay in work late I get to see women walking around the Savannah.

Now it's usually a plesant site, cuz I love my trini women ! But on occasion you wonder where some of them come out from ! :)

But, hey, this is not about that. This has nothing to do with the various shapes and sizes that one sees on an afternoon. No, this has to do with what they do while the're walking. Once there are two or more gathered together there is always a converstion going on.

I swear , if Trinidad women could loose weight by talking, each and every one of them would be tin like a broomstick !!!!

Trini women talk incessantly !!! Even the ones that you think are quiet, once you get to know them, could wear off ya ear in about an hour !!!! Now you might ask "why then Cmad did you name this story "Savannah Strollers"" ? Well, it does have something to do with the Savannah. I saw the most hilarious sight this afternoon, two women one short, one tall "walking" around the Savannah together. The funny thing is that the taller one had such a long stride that while she was talking a brisk stroll her smaller friend had to end up taking a small jog to keep up with her !!! And , you may ask "well what kept the smaller one going ?" Well ........ Yes, That's right ! Ole Talk !

The smaller woman was so engrossed in de dam Ole Talk that she didn't seem to mind jogging to keep up!!! Actually it look like she was being lead by her head !!! Her head was stuck out in front of he body in an attempt to hear exactly what her taller friend was saying !!! The whole scene was  so hilarious I had to stop and take a good LAUGH..............heheheheh !

Allya Trini women is trouble yes ! Heheheheh But ah love allya too bad !!!!



"Manic Mondays"

Remember the song from the eighties :

"It's just another manic Monday,  I wish it was Sunday,   'Cause that's my funday My I-don't-have-to-runday It's just another manic Monday "

Well it only serves to remind me of exactly how much I hate a Monday Morning ! Then again who really likes Monday Mornings ? Most people hate them like me !

I wanna start a world wide crusade to get Monday changed to a public holiday, so that it becomes part of the weekend ! I think that If we worked from Tuesday to Friday and had Saturday, Sunday and Monday for the weekend, the world will be a better place ! People would be allot happier, there would be less stress, less traffic (well on Monday at least), etc, etc.

But ya know, then we would begin to hate Tuesday Mornings ! Cause Tuesday would be the start of the week, everybody would now hate Tuesdays, the Bangles would have to do over their song, we'd have to change all the calendars, watches, and basically all date/time sensitive equipment ! We could end up having another "Y2K like" disaster !!!!!!

Sheesh, I guess I have to think this thing through some more ! Don't wanna send any planes crashing or anything 'cause I want an additional day for the weekend ! Hummmmmm...............Lemme think...... WELL we could just take Friday off !....humm nah, same problem !.........WELL we could just add another day to the week by shortening each day in the week !!!!.........nah that would REALLY cause a big mess ! :)

:) Ah well, I'm working on it !!!!





"Moody Managers"

People, I'm sure you must have had this kinda manager at one point in time. My whole arguement here is something that I have observed over the years both with people I have worked with and at customers of mine.

I find it unfair that Managers normally take out their personal problems and fustrations on the employees that they manage. Far too often I've seen it happen where a manager of a department or company, who maybe experiencing some personal problem of some sort takes it out on his or her poor defenseless employees.

He or she will enter the office in a grumpy mood and proceed to carry on in a mad rage, demanding unnecessary things in unreasonable time frames, asking confusing questions and cutting you off before you try to answer, and in general just being a real bitch !

I ask , is this what they teach you in Management Studies ?

I for one did one year of a degree course in Information Systems and Management and at no point did they teach me how to be a BITCH !

Shesssh ! what gives these people the right to come down on others and terrorize an office ? Because they name "MANAGER" !!!

Personally I believe that being "MANAGERS" , a position of authority and respect, they of all people should learn to exercise some form of control and demeanor in the office rather than take out their fustrations on innocent by-standers.

I accept the fact that it is not always easy to leave your personal problems at home, they do overflow into the office and vice versa, but still people should take the time to consider the effect of their actions on others.



Taxi Drivers

Aint got much to say here, I HATE THEM !

I believe, these people are the scum of the earth. They pollute our air with the a thick black smoke from their filthy diesel engine filters and traverse our roads in a manner that reminds one of circuit racing at Wallerfield.

They have absolutely no consideration for people other than themselves, and seem to think that because they are on the road whole day , THEY OWN IT ! Think about it folks , how much of your life do you spend cussing out taxi drivers, for either bad driving you or choking you with smoke or just stopping anywhere they dam well please. If you add it up I'm sure it's quite allot.

These people are responsible for the frustration and annoyance of hundreds of people on a daily basis ! I for one see it everyday and I PISSES ME OFF !

I say we gang up together and KICK THEIR ROYAL ASSES !!!!


......and then charge them $3.00 for it !




Women Who Frequent "de Level"

Firstly , If I have to explain to you what "de Level" is , then you need not read this article. Sheeesh ! :)

Man, ah go tell ya, I just like to lime in de Level on a Friday (occasionally) for de music. But I does see brudders go in there to tackle women and that is de worst thing ya could possibly do !

I sorry for those who disagree, but de level is de worst place to pick up women. Women in there does feel that they is the best thing on earth ! and some dam ugly women too ! Dem wanna play dey cosing on ya and cutting real style and shit !! :)

I like to go and observe how dey does brace man after man  and ketch real kicks. Even de big mampees and dem does be bracing men ! :)

De problem is that on an average night in de Level there are much more men than women. Women know this , so they cut real style and ben and screw and in the end they end up going home alone like dam fools ! :) Sheeeesh it's so stupid. Also , on a whole sistas have too much attitude ah Phnom which I believe originates from trying to emulate the lifestyles of sistas in the states. Ah men with songs like "BILLS , BILLS, BILLS" and "NO SCRUBS" , what do you expect !

Anyway that is another grievance by itself, lookout for that one !



Snobby Convent Girls

Being an ex-fatima boy I have experience with snobby convent girls. I used to date one , and I'll tell you right now, it was hell ! We used to be fighting all the time, ask Ftaz he would tell ya ! I don't wanna go into details bout that but if you people really wanna know I'll write about it in the That's Life section.

Anyway, the reason why I'm so pissed about this again is because today I saw one, a schoolgirl , driving her parents car with all her prissy little friends, in West Moorings. She and they were obviously on summer holidays and just came from liming in the Mall.

Anyway, You know the traffic light by Mc Donalds where the little kids sell fruits to people who stop at the light ?  Well I say them there today. So everybody stops at the light right and the little kid gets up (he looked like about 7 or 8) and approaches all the cars and trys to sell his goods. The first couple of cars he approaches , people signal no thanks or whatever in a polite way. So he approaches the car with the girl and she gestures such a snobby kinda "getaway getaway " kinda wave at him as if to say "don't come around me" for which it seems she gets a laugh from one of the other members of the car.

I know that she is a convent girl, saw her in uniform before. Now I'm not saying that all convent girls are like this, but allot of them are. Prissy and Snobby. It's a shame that these people come out like this, thinking that the world revolves around them and no one else matters. I felt sorry for the little fell when I saw that, but he didn't seem to mind. It's like he was accustomed ................being in that neighborhood and all .

Grunts & Greviences
Slow Ass Internet Connection
Race & Politics in T&T
Go T&T.......
Y2K Everything !
Cellular Syndrome
Savannah Strollers
Manic Mondays
Moody Managers
Taxi Drivers
Women in "De Level"
Snobby Convent Girls