Bassy - Love Vine
August 17, 2007

Stop stoning de mango tree

Ole people got ah thing dey does say dat when ever yuh see school pickme stoning mango tree, is two reasons; one is dat it bearing, and two, de mango dem sweet. And dat saying goes foh almost everything now-ah-days, polly-ticks, cricket, Carnival Committee, Table Tennis, yes ah was reading Rohan Thomas’ piece last week and he hinted dat de mango tree in de table tennis association start ah bear mango.{{more}} Since last week ah hearing basa-basa brewing over Football wid who should be president and who should be on Egg-set-ah-thief, ah will bet me last dollar dat somebody suddenly discover dat mango bearing pon de Football Association tree and de mango dem sweet.

But football was always like dat, stone raining like ah quarry as far back as in de 1970’s when Rollit Waldron and Bung Cato ran things, was dat same Bung Cato who did push de slogan “Football, de game ah de people”. It was also under Rolit and Bung dat SVG moved up into de big league FIFA and CFU; in dem days de mango tree only push out two lickle blossom and man went wild in anticipation of ah bumpa mango season. Dey throw way Bung and Rolit, ah think Scoby Taylor, now abandoned and friendless took over, he was followed by Lea-cock in his first stint. Ah got me-self involved in those days, when ah say involved ah don’t mean involved in any trouble, no, ah was cheer-man ah de disciplinary committee. Players was behaving stink on de field ah play, one matter fresh on me mind was after ah match, ah player, right on de field, pull ah cutlass from his bag and chased down ah Referee (Bish-I).


But my real involvement was as ah Surveyor when dey asked me to line out de Playing Field foh de first ever CFU matches to be played here. De Arnos Vale field was new and big and was used in preference to Victoria Park dat couldn’t give de minimum size field. Now nobody ever told me what size field to lay-out, so seeing was ah International game, ah went foh de maximum size 90m x 130m, is years after ah realized dat it should ah been de minimum 75m by 110m. Anyhow it worked well foh SVG players who practised foh months on dis over-size field, in addition, we had ah rigid trainer name “Ounce ah beef” ah Karate man who produced ah team dat had stamina, fit and well prepared. So when Guadeloupe came and decided to play ah fast game in de first half, dey didn’t know what was waiting foh dem in de second half, dey had nothing left and bun early, leaving SVG to run all over dem and win de match. Dat was in 1979 de year we had one of SVG’s better team wid de Morris, Millington and Lowe brothers, Slick Bonadie, Ray Ballantyne and others, we gave T’n’T 3-1, Surinam 3-2 and lost to Haiti because ah bad handling by de coach. Dat year SVG came second in CFU and we were de talk ah de Caribbean, ah T’n’T commentator coined ah slogan after our performance: “ It is not de size of de country dat matters but de quality of de players”.

Yes SVG has had its glorious days in football already, and ah was heartened ah few years ago when de Morris brothers from de ‘79 team, returned to do summer coaching camps wid de youngsters here, using dey own money at dat. But dey kept come-plain-in to me about de negative vibes dey getting from de authorities, Guv-ah-mint as well as de Football Federation. Dat forced me last year to wrote about de lovely “Touch Football” dat ah saw de Morris coaching team doing, den ah spoke briefly wid de president of de FA who assured me dat he was open to all new I-dares and methods, but like dat was only talks.

Seeing-Clear Lea-cock de president is doing ah very good job, lots ah kudos, but he is an opposition senator and herein lies de problem. Ah sense dat de Guv-ah-mint feels dat any kudos dat he gets in football will be bonus points added to his profile as ah candidate in Central Kingstown; so is nuff polly-ticks playing wid “de game ah de people”. Be dat as it may ah think dat de Association, de parent body foh football in SVG, could do ah lot more foh de lickle youths, mind yuh ah recognize de contributions of people like Ian Sardine, Andrew Bramble, Rollit and others, but ah could see great benefits deriving out ah de Morris’ Program. And my add-vice to de present Egg-set ah thief to embrace de Touch Football Coaching Squad, and include dat program in de national plan foh de youths. Failing to do dat is like messing wid de chances available to our youths. Man we just had SVG’s basketball hero, Ah-done-all Foil doing ah fantastic program wid over ah thousand youths here in SVG; why not Des and Pete Morris doing it too foh de youths in football?

Right now we have wuk to do. Some how or de other we must get de polly-ticks out and get de Morrises contribution “in”, and “in” does not necessarily mean “in” de Executive. So Sports Minister Beach, de only name ah not hearing in all de pull-it-tek-all basa basa, is de best man to pull every body on board, minus de melee-sh-us elements of course, and we must stop stoning de mango tree.


Ah was only able to get lickle bits and pieces of de PM’s report on his recent overseas trip, vacation or whatever; quite ah lot was accomplished, ah few schools hey, ah lickle five million dey, small money but one-one penny does full basket. Contrary to what some might say, dat Airport will be ah reality, what is necessary now is dat we don’t mek dat another mango tree and start stone-in it, rather we must start looking early foh an airline dat will come here, we don’t want another red elephant like Grenada, notice ah didn’t say white elephant, ah fraid ULP “burn’n’hands” say dat is race-is-him too. Is now Ambassador Camillo could shut us all up by using his father’s begging skills and get not one, but two or three airlines to come here. Lie-Za came to de conclusion dat de PM functions better in absentia, he should go pon more trips, stay out de country way he could get more AIDS foh SVG, even his ministers dem making good ah de lickle chance dey get to speak out, dey run-in dey ministry and dey not doing badly either; way ole people say “when cat nah dey, look how red rat ah come out foh play” ley me hear Ralph’s burn’n’hands defend dat. Because wid dat, ah gone again.

One Love Bassy.