Dr. Kwame Nantambu

American climate fashion change in T&T

By Dr. Kwame Nantambu
March 28, 2010

"Good news, good news, good news", "ring de bell", climate fashion change has finally hit the shores of T&T.

To all intent and purposes, the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago has now moved out of tropical meteorological zone into the temperate zone, not by accident but by calculated design.

And this calculated, planned and concerted design has come about as a result of the American re-colonization of all aspects of life in T&T 24-7-365, including the fashion industry.

Ergo, as of this writing, fashion advertisements in T&T's dailies validate the truism that T&T no longer has two seasons, namely, dry season and rainy season. Ipso facto, the fashion advertising industry in T&T has become the latest victim of global climate change.

Today, one finds that Trinbagonians can be seen casually walking down the streets in the boiling hot sun decked-out in thick, heavy winter coats as if T&T is under the climatic spell of a snowy winter a la America's east coast.

The sad reality is that mature adult Trinbagonians seem to function under the illusion that they are living in a temperate, cold climatic zone. They are just eager to feel and touch America by any and all means necessary -- even if it takes wallowing in climatic fashion "chupidness."

According to the public advertisements by fashion houses in malls, T&T now has four seasons. Whether this dramatic climatic change has been sanctioned, validated, authorized and/or verified by T&T's Meteorological Services is another story.

This new Euro-centric American fashion reality is very, very, very real and overt. "We like it."

Notwithstanding the cultural reality that T&T's culinary habits have been totally Kentuckyfried, Royal Castled, Blimpied, Church's Chickened, Mario's Pizzeriaded, McDonalderized, Burger Kinged, Subwayed, Pizza Hutted, Ginzanos subbed and Popeyed 24-7-365, this new climatic fashion genre is further compounded by the de jure fact that Trinbagonians are now bombarded by fashion advertisements which point the finger to north America's climatic conditions. "We like it."

Apparently, T&T's fashion industry sees its future in the four seasons -- Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall.

The stark reality is that when a people, especially a former colonized people as in T&T, refuses to look inward unto themselves for cultural solace, empowerment, direction and modus vivendi, then, that culture, albeit fashion industry, is doomed to failure and self-destruction when it opts to look outward.

The salient fact is that inwardness leads to power, while outwardness reaps powerlessness and dependency -- as in mental/psychological/cultural slavery. And this dependent cultural phenomenon speaks volumes as to the Americanization of the fashion advertising industry in T&T. "Free, free, how free are we; could you tell me?"

By way of elucidation, prima facie proof of this Americanization immediately comes to the fore as exemplified by the following American-driven climatic fashion advertisements in T&T: "New Arrival of the Summer Collection"; "Fall/Winter sale"; "Spring bling sale"; "Summer Collection"; "New Arrivals Spring/Summer 2009"; "Take Style to the beach this Summer"; "Last weeks Sale 70% off Winter Collection"; and on and on and on...

However, this Trini American-driven climatic fashion advertising insanity and madness do not stop there. On its heels, exist "Tru Valu Summer Block Buster 5 More Bonanza"; "Detour Summer Splash SALE"; Radio Shack's "Sizzling Summer Sale"; and let's not forget "Soca for Summer".

And this American-driven cultural insanity/madness continue as malls promote "Halloween makeup" with such news paper headlines as "Halloween creeps up on T&T". "We like it".

And to add insult to injury, one finds that on 17 March 2010, Trinbagonians celebrated St. Patrick's Day decked-out in green while sipping cocktails a la Irish-Americans in New York and elsewhere in the United States. Way to go Trinis. "We like it".

However, this American-driven cultural and madness are taken to the next level to the extent that the School of Business and Computer Science (SBCS) is now offering "2009 Summer Courses" and bringing up the literal Trini rear, one finds that there are advertisements publicized by well-established malls that specialize in "Silicone Buttocks" so that T&T women can get the "Best Seat".

Palance, palance, palance
Palancing on de road
Watch we palancing
Watch we palancing

Truth Be Told: These American-driven climatic fashion advertisements have completely transformed/turned T&T from sweet to sour a la American values, norms, mind-set and criteria for living. "We like it."

The fact of the matter is that "cultural revolution is the most basic condition" for a successful process toward mental/psychological liberation.

The American-driven climatic fashion advertisements in T&T represent a colossal, incredible but real dinosaur on the cultural neck of Trinbagonians.

They represent dysfunctional behaviour on the part of the powers-that-be who own those malls. But, do they really care any way, period? America, here we come!

"Shame, shame; big, big shame on you".

Indeed, the public actions by the owners of these malls begs the question: What is culture?

Answer: "Culture is simply the motive-force of a people's history"; it is the totality of a people's way of life, 24-7, 365.

Are the owners of these malls equating T&T's cultural history with America's? To attempt to do so is tantamount to Euro-centric backward, bankrupt thinking to the nth degree. Give me a break!

It may be all well and good to admire the American way of life but these climatic fashion advertisements are ridiculous. They reflect retrogressive cultural behaviour, period.

As was pointed out in the early 1960s, "the industrialized countries show the developing countries the image of their own future."

Translated, this truism means that T&T is frantically striving to become the United States of Trinidad and Tobago. Ergo, one can conclude that with the overt proliferation of these American-driven climatic fashion advertisements in conjunction with tall buildings that eventually the skylines of the capital city of Port-of-Spain will be a duplicate copy of Manhattan, San Francisco and Chicago a la United States of America. "We like it."

Truth Be Told: Trinibagonians who support these American-driven climatic fashion advertisements are suffering from neurological cultural brain damage, period.

However, the scary/dangerous fall-out is that Trinbagonians are walking around in their daily lives as if nothing is wrong with the country's cultural make-up. Maybe, cultural immunity/insanity have already set in. This is crazy. This represents typical Euro-centric cultural vagrancy in all its regressive manifestations.

In the final analysis, now is the time for all Trinbagonians to be proud of our culture and God-given climatic reality. T&T has only two seasons -- NOT four and daily life in T&T must be lived within that two-season context.

Maybe, just maybe, current Calypso monarch Kurt Allen is correct, namely, these mall owners who publish these American-driven climatic fashion advertisements are "too bright" to the extent that "dey nah treat de (fashion industry) right". Where is their "satellite" located? Certainly not in T&T. "Ah want to fall."

Truth Be Told: The powers-that-be in the fashion industry in T&T are de jure obscene American-driven cultural impersonators/imitators/fakers. Their American-driven climatic fashion advertisements represent nothing more than voluntary cultural castration, impotency and dis-location.

CNN "Breaking News": Welcome to the Republic of the United States of Trinidad and Tobago -- the Red, White and Blue has now replaced the Red, White and Black. The White kernel, as in KFC from California, U.S.A. , has also replaced the White British Governor from Britain on T&T's independence square. I rest my case.

Shem Hotep ("I go in peace").

Dr. Kwame Nantambu is a part-time lecturer at Cipriani College of Labour and Co-operative Studies and University of the West Indies.

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