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December 2012

ARTICLE-LACED UP IN ARIMA LIMIN IN TRINI

The buzz of the clippers, and the look of satisfaction on the faces of the freshly cut and shaved patrons reflected back on the standard of professionalism. This also reassured me that this would be a great experience and I would write about it one day.

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LACED UP IN ARIMA LIMIN IN TRINI

Getting a cut at DARIUS’ HAIRTALENT BARBERSHOP.
Touching down at the PIARCO, INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT in Trinidad was an exhilarating feeling. Mid- November in Trinidad is like mid-Summer in New York, (very hot and humid).
Located off of Queen St., and across the St. from the renowned restaurant CASTRO’S is, DARIUS’ BARBERSHOP. Nice and cool on the inside, and the pleasant atmosphere of the staff gives any visitor the feeling of appreciation.

If you are familiar with the city of Arima, then you will know the geographical location of the world’s famous, ‘DIAL’. Located in the heart of Arima. Surrounding the DIAL is three distinct businesses complimenting patrons with their needs. ROYAL CASTLE CHICKEN, HEARTHY FOODS, and PAY-LESS SHOE stores are respectively on each corner. Further down the street is the area known as, ‘THE DRAG MALL’.

Nestled away from all the busy-ness and noise, DARIUS’ HAIRTALENT is a community fixture as well as a landmark for quality hair-cuts. Well known and respected, established in 2005, this barbershop is like no other. As soon as you walk in, you are greeted with a cordial welcome. With Darius, Yarniek, Paul and Hayden tentatively attending to those in the chairs, they still have a moment to greet you. Right from the door you know, that you have come to the right place.

I had the humble opportunity to meet Darius at his barbershop. I spoke with him briefly about his establishment and what he means to the community. Open and candid about the love he has for his city, and the love that they had for him was apparent. As I sat on the sideline waiting for a line-up, I observed numerous patrons get their haircuts.

The buzz of the clippers, and the look of satisfaction on the faces of the freshly cut and shaved patrons reflected back on the standard of professionalism. This also reassured me that this would be a great experience and I would write about it one day.

Darius got a break from his busy craft and we were finally able to speak. We opened up with the establishment of the shop. He mentioned that it has been in the same location for over 7 years and is known all over the island. He said that they are known from: Sangre Grande to Port of Spain all the way over to San Fernando, Trinidad. For those familiar with the wide range of territory, it is impressive to have that much clientele!

Darius mentioned, that he started cutting hair over 20 years ago and he is a Registered Barber. The full name of the shop is, DARIUS HAIR TALENT. He also said that his shop is a family orientated business with much support from the surrounding community. Known by locals, Darius expressed that the community is a rough one; but a kind and loving one at the same time. A fact that I felt from day one. As we exchanged stories, Darius and I went across the street to CASTRO’S RESTAURANT and enjoyed some delicious food. The night was young, but as we sat and talked time began to slip away. Being that it was a long day for the Master Barber, we concluded our conversations and began to embark upon our travels to our next destinations. As described by Darius, he is a dedicated family man and it was time to go home to his family. Our lime was good! I felt that we had made a connection. I knew that I had established a friendship and found a great Barber in Arima, Trinidad. DARIUS HAIRTALENT, 41-41A SORZANO STREET, ARIMA TRINIDAD, WEST INDIES TELEPHONE# 1-868-757-0263

ARTICLE-FYI

YCMG E2W MAGAZINE

FYI’S LIST…
AAAHHH NEW YORK CITY’S FINEST! BUT IS IT REALLY? I’M TALKING NEW YORKCITY’S PUBLIC HOUSING… NOW “UNLIKE” ALL OF NYC’S OTHER WELL RESERVED BUILDINGS THAT EXHIBIT THE SPLENDOR AND GREATNESS OF THIS CITY’S WELL-POLISHED BIG APPLE. NEW YORK CITY’S HOUSING DOES NOT REPRESENT OR CARRY THAT UNBLEMISHED PICTURE. READ MORE

FYI

YCMG ANGELICA MANN E2W MAGAZINE

FYI’S LIST…
AAAHHH NEW YORK CITY’S FINEST! BUT IS IT REALLY? I’M TALKING NEW YORK CITY’S PUBLIC HOUSING… NOW “UNLIKE” ALL OF N.Y.C.’S OTHER WELL RESERVED BUILDINGS THAT EXHIBIT THE SPLENDOR AND GREATNESS OF THIS CITY’S WELL-POLISHED BIG APPLE. NEW YORK CITY’S HOUSING DOES NOT REPRESENT OR CARRY THAT UNBLEMISHED PICTURE. IN FACT IT’S QUITE THE CONTRARY! I HAVE BEEN AROUND IT LONG ENOUGH TO SEE THE DILEMMA THAT THE PEOPLE HAVE BEEN DEALING WITH AND CONTINUE TO DO SO IN SILENCE. LIKE AS IF TO SAY THEY SHOULD KEEP QUIET, BE HAPPY AND SATISFIED WITH WHAT THEY ARE GIVEN. ALSO, THE PEOPLE ARE QUIETLY FORCED TO DEAL WITH THE UNHEALTHY AND HAZARDOUS LIVING CONDITIONS. WHICH HAVE COME TO BE THE NORM WHEN ONE IS FACED WITH LIVING IN AN ECONOMICALLY LOWER AREA. DON’T GET ME WRONG. NO, I’M NOT SAYING THAT WE SHOULD GET ANYTHING FOR FREE! BUT WE SHOULD GET WHAT WE PAY FOR IN TAXES JUST LIKE EVERYONE ELSE. IF MONEY TALKS THEN WE SHOULD BE WAY PASSED WALKING… LOL… HELL WE HAVE ALREADY WON THE RACE. WE AS A PEOPLE SPEND WAY MORE THAN OUR SHARE IN THIS ECONOMY… SHOOT WE SPEND WHAT WE DON’T EVEN HAVE. BUT, BACK TO THE SUBJECT AT HAND…. WHY IS IT THAT MOSTLY SO CALLED MINORITIES WHO LIVE IN NYC HOUSING… AND FURTHER MORE WHY IS IT THAT THE REGULATIONS AND PRINCIPALS AS OTHER APARTMENT BUILDINGS/LUXURY APARTMENTS/BUILDING COMPLEXES AND SUCH DO NOT GOVERN THESE BUILDINGS? PUBLIC HOUSING CONDITIONS ARE WAY BELOW ACCEPTABLE STANDARDS. EVERYTHING IS DONE JUST THE MINIMAL. IT’S ENOUGH TO GET BY WITHOUT CAUSING ONE TO RAISE AN EYEBROW OR GO A STEP FURTHER AND PLACE COMPLAINTS. I’VE KNOWN PEOPLE WHO LIVED IN NYC PUBLIC HOUSING DEVELOPMENTS FOR OVER 25 YEARS AND THE MAINTENANCE AND APPEARANCE OF IT HAS NOT IMPROVED. IN DEVELOPMENTS OF SUCH SIZE ONE WOULD THINK THAT SOME FORM OF SECURITY WOULD BE INSTITUTED; JUST FOR THE SAKE OF SAFETY OF THE TENANTS AND THE PRESERVATION OF THE BUILDING. NO SECURITY ALLOWS NON-TENANTS, UNDESIRABLES AND VANDALS TO HAVE ACCESS TO PREMISES WHICH THEY PROBABLY HAVEN’T ANY RESPECT OR REGARD FOR. IS THIS REALLY HOW PROGRESS WORKS? OR IS IT JUST HOW IT WORKS WHEN IT INVOLVES US? HOW IS IT THAT THE BUILDING INSPECTORS COME AROUND AND SEE ALL THE INFRACTIONS AND COSMETIC WORK THAT IS NEEDED TO BE DONE IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN THE STRUCTURE AND INTEGRITY OF THE BUILDINGS? ISN’T THERE A GRADING SYSTEM FOR WHAT IS ACCEPTABLE AND WHAT IS TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE (OUT OF COMPLIANCE)? THE PROJECTS ALWAYS FALL SHORT OF THE AMBIANCE OF LIVING IN ONE OF THE WORLDS MOST BEAUTIFUL CITY… NEW YORK! WHICH LEADS ME TO THE ACTUAL TERM “PROJECT”! WHY IS IT WHEN REFERRING TO N.Y.C.’S HOUSING’S FINEST. WE COIN THE TERM “PROJECT”? BUT, TRUTH BE TOLD IT IS CORRECTLY SO…. AS WITH A “PROJECT” IN THE VERB FORM MEANING; SOMETHING YOU SEE IN THE FUTURE, FORECAST OR FORESEE. ALSO, “PROJECT” THE NOUN FORM MEANING; BEING A TASK, SCHEME OR SOMETHING WORKED ON WITH A FINAL OUTCOME. THE SAD THING IS THAT THE FUTURE’S OUTCOME IS NOT GOING TO BE GOOD OR BENEFICIAL ONE FOR THE CURRENT OCCUPANTS. BUT IT IS BENEFICIAL TO THE ‘NEW’ OUTSIDERS WITH THE HIGHER INCOMES. LET’S GO BACK A LITTLE… REMEMBER HOW I STATED THAT WE PAY TAXES? BUT PAYING TAXES WHEN WE SPEND MONEY IS NOT THE SAME AS THEM TAXING YOU WHEN YOU GET YOUR PAY CHECK! THIS IS WHERE THE PLOT THICKENS! SEE THERE’S A LITTLE FORMULA THEY USE TO DETERMINE WHO GETS WHAT? NOW ALTHOUGH WE DO PAY TAXES… WE AS A PEOPLE DO NOT HAVE THE MORE PROSPEROUS OR BETTER PAYING JOBS. MORE PEOPLE IN LOWER-INCOME AREAS, DON’T WORK OR HAVE THE LOWER PAYING JOBS. THEREFORE, THIS AREA BY SURVEY STATES THAT THEY DO NOT PAY ANYWHERE NEAR AS MUCH TAXES AS OTHER HIGHER INCOME/MORE DENSELY EMPLOYED POPULATED AREAS. THESE RESIDENTS MAKE MORE MONEY THEREFORE TAXED MORE. THUS MEANING THAT YOU PAY FOR WHAT YOU GET! SO SINCE THEY HAVE CONCLUDED THAT WE DON’T PAY MUCH IN TAXES… WE GET JUST THAT! NOT MUCH! SO WITH THIS FORMULA IN PLACE WE COULD NEVER WIN THE RACE. WHY? BECAUSE WE DON’T GET HIRED FOR MOST JOBS. NEVER MIND THE HIGHER PAYING ONES. THE ONLY TIME THE SECTION WOULD STAND A CHANCE AT DECENT ACCEPTABLE LIVING CONDITIONS, INCLUDING THE PROVISION OF MORE EDUCATIONAL MATERIALS FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS, IS WHEN MORE PEOPLE OF A HIGHER INCOME BRACKET MOVE IN. THAT’S’ ONLY WHEN YOU WOULD START TO SEE THE GRADUAL YET STEADY CHANGE OF AN IMPOVERISHED COMMUNITY. THE POWERS THAT BE WOULD BESTOW THAT AREA WITH WHAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN A GIVEN. ALSO, THEY TAUGHT US IN SOCIAL SCIENCE THAT WE COULD NATURALLY ONLY DO AS GOOD AS OUR PARENTS HAVE TAUGHT US AND LAND SIMILAR JOBS THAT THEY MAY HAVE HAD. IN OTHER WORDS, GENERATION AFTER GENERATION STUCK IN THE SAME VICIOUS CYCLE. NOT TO MENTION THAT WE WERE AN OPPRESSED PEOPLE FROM THE BEGINNING OF THE INSTITUTIONALIZATION OF AMERICA AND THE SAME OPPRESSION STILL EXISTS TODAY IN MANY DIFFERENT FORMS, WHETHER IT IS INDIRECTLY OR DIRECTLY. SO WITH THIS IN MIND HOW DO WE BREAK THESE CHAINS AND GO FORWARD WITH OUR OWN “PROJECT” SET IN PLACE… DESIGNED TO WIN WIN WIN!!! SEND IN ALL YOUR COMMENTS, SUGGESTIONS AND VIEWS TO E2W@FYI’S.LIST

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