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Dancing wid de star Ole George

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Finally Earl ‘Ole George’ Daniel, has made it. “Ole George” has been ‘danced around’ by EVERY Tom, Dick ‘n’ Harry foh years, trying on several occassions to gain recognition, and get his name lodged in de Guinness Book of Records as de world’s ‘longest sleep-walker’, i.e. walking widout sleep foh at least ah whole week.{{more}}

Firstly he walked round mainland St. Vincent foh six days, no dice; den he walked round Bo-bid-us, de USA and Jah-mek-her, still no dice Apparently all dem times when “Ole George” did dem marathon walks, he was never supervised by officials of de Guinness Book ah Records, ah major requirement foh recognition. But he has since done his home work, and had everything put in place foh de big one: “Dancing wid de Star, Ole George!” Lest ah forget, “Ole George” was accompanied on every marathon O.K-shun by his walk-mate, Joel Butcher, still waiting foh some-way (dah house) dat de ULP Administration did promise to rest his head, dat was supposed to be in wreck-ah-nay-shun of his feet oops, feat!

Ah remember when Earl “Ole George” was born in de early 1960’s in Murray’s Village. His parents lived in ah lickle board house foh Mamma Edwards, situated immediately above my home. Nice parents; his Mom came from Troumaca, she kept her distance from de gossiping neighbourhood, but his Dad, “Sugar” was in it all, ah “Fun-stick!”ah Seaman from Union Island, he is de Comedian dat “Ole George” tries to M.U-late. From ah very tender age, ten or twelve years ole, Earl was destined to be ah Stand-up Comedian from morning. At moonlight nights ah could still hear de kids under de street light at my gate, cackling out loud; when my two lickle ones came in and ah asked what was going on, dey would tell me how “Ole George” was killing dem wid jokes. He gave his life to Christ quite early; dat no doubt kept him in line wid discipline, good character and love foh de unfortunate. Ah lost track ah de young man foh ah while, but his older brother, Rawle remained in de village, started his family before moving on. Late one evening in de 1990’s ah heard ah familiar voice at de gate saying: “Mr Alexander, hold yuh dog before ah bite it!” Ah reckon-nice de vice, “Ole George” was back. Andrew Cummings and his family were visiting, jokes foh so! Andrew laughed until all his eye-water dun. George reported he had gone to Canada, got himself trained and qualified as ah Psychiatrist/ Sociologist and was back to mek his contribution. While home, he spent quality time wuking among patients and inmates at de Mental Health Centre and de Prisons, he never missed de opportunity to come-plain about de inadequacies at these institutions; ah believe de poor an frustrating conditions dey, drove him into walking all over de Globe looking foh solutions. But “ Ole George” could be as mad as his patients, one minute he dey hey, de next moment he gone. On one of his usual Nick-owe-de-mas visits, he is ah night visitor; he brought me some spicey do-coh-nah he made himself; apart from de main ingredient de sweet potato, he had tannia, plantain, hot pepper, say-nah-man and ginger. It was very tasty and nutritious. But he had come to bid me farewell foh de umpteenth time. “Ah moving back to Canada” he said. When ah asked him bout his “Walking Ministry,” he said dat walking was going to be one ah de main mission back to Canada, only dis time he was planning to walk across Canada.

He found himself in de Arctic region ah Canada, in Inukjuak wid de Eskimos, de Inuit people. He kept me ah-breast wid ah lot ah photos of himself in Igloo, fishing and news clippings wid work related stories of de plight ah de Inuit people, ah very depressed race, prone to high in-see-dents ah suicide. He was home last year or late 2010, and appeared wid ah French Canadian Couple on ah Thursday evening foh dinner which we had agreed to have on de Fry-dey. Ah suppose dat’s how he operates, ahead ah time. Embarrassed, ah had no food prepared; so ah cuss him stink in Vincy Creole, not overs by his French friends; but yuh can’t ever get George upset. It was during dat visit he informed me of de date, place and purpose foh de recently completed Six days non-stop “Record breaking Sleep-Dancing Feat!” i.e. “Dancing widout sleep foh ah week.” He was doing it to highlight de plight, de high rate of suicide cases occurring among de unfortunate Inuit Tribe. His mission was accomplished wid much Fan-Fare and celebrations among de Inuit people. Ole George, de Black Eskimo is ah Hero among de Inuit Tribe.

Earl “Ole George” Daniel’s Feat is being overshadowed by de Am-boss-ah-dah Gone-soft story dat brings different kind ah publicity, but dat’s life! Earl is now ah hero in another man’s land, de non-prophet in his own country, but we are still proud of all he is doing and will continue to do foh SVG in de name ah humanity. Lie-Za say dat is de VDO she wants to watch, Ole George doing Dutty Dancing foh six days. She expects to see everybody jumping pon de Band-wagon’ again, ready now to claim again, ah piece ah “Ole George” fame. She good right day, could be Quadrille, May-pole, Walls, Me-ring-gay, Soak-her, Ray-gay, Cha-Cha-Cha, Boss-han-over or whatever, Earl has given us all reason to be ah “Proud Vincy” and ah wish to identify wid “Dancing Wid De Star, Ole George!”

And wid dat, is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.

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