Economy could fall down
We jamming still! We jamming still!
Full Extreme, Ultimate Reject ft MX Prime
Ultimate Rejects’ hugely popular Trinidad Road March tune seems to have accurately captured the mood of partygoers around the Caribbean and here at home in Barbados.
Even amidst straitened economic circumstances, people are still partying hard as the sizeable crowds at last weekend’s Yello Phenomenal Friday and Puff of Colour showed.
And really, what’s so wrong with that? Not a thing if you ask me though I know not everyone shares my view. In fact, almost every year around Crop-Over there are always people who pipe up to say that if people are partying so much then it must mean that the economy isn’t really so bad. Or on the flip side of the same argument, they will say that people are wasting their money in spending so much on all-inclusives or particular costumes or whatever Crop-Over festivity they deem frivolity.
To that I say – stop counting other people’s money for them!
10,000 or even 20,000 people at a fete is not a true reflection of how hard the country is being hit by high unemployment, high prices, and even higher taxes. It is a snapshot of what can be afforded by a small portion of the population. Moreover, even among those crowds there will be some who would have scaled down their Crop-Over budget from what it would have been in times of plenty. They may choose one fete over the other but the fact that they have chosen to party doesn’t mean that they too aren’t feeling the bite. They just aren’t feeling it to the point of having to cut out partying altogether.
As to the other side of the argument –that festival fans are wasting their money spending on whatever party they choose to patronise, my counter is that far from wasting their money, they are helping the economy.
Have you ever given serious thought to the reach of the ‘fete economy’? Besides the promoters, there is a whole ecosystem of people who make money from fetes - the lighting people, the sound people, the staging people, makeup artists, nail techs, boutique owners, seamstresses, barbers, bar staff, taxi drivers and the street food vendors who are patronised afterwards. I’m probably missing out a few but the point is that Crop-Over is a very lucrative time of year for these people, many of whom are entrepreneurs and small businesspeople.
I’m more than happy to support them with my fete dollars. So this Crop-Over and every other, I’ll be jamming still.