Category Archives: barbados

Barbados Film Censorship Board bans Black Swan (via Barbados Free Press)

“SMH” as we say on Twitter.

Barbados Film Censorship Board bans Black Swan We don’t know if the ballet horror film Black Swan was banned for violence, sex or a combination of the two. Ho hum. It will be out on satellite or DVD before you know it. Sure, we have to have standards over what is shown in public, but when adults pay their money and walk into the Olympus Theatre to see a film that they know might offend some, that’s hardly the place for normal government intervention or regulation. It is true that no freedom i … Read More

via Barbados Free Press

The Society for a Quieter Barbados

I was recently sent a link to this site, which is the web presence of an organisation that campaigns for the abatement of noise pollution in Barbados. After initial prejudice about the slightly Pythonesque name of the society, it turns out to be a professionally produced affair with some interesting insights into the daily (and nightly) torments caused by barking dogs, traffic and bickering family members on that particular island nation.

You might think this was a gathering place for GOM’s (Grumpy Old Men) and indeed a fair few correspondents seem to be in that category, but there is a least one contribution from a sixteen year old who complains that he has had to do his studying for exams after midnight as that is the only time his family stops arguing with each other.

Having lived in Barbados, I can testify that there is plenty of unwanted noise about. This is not surprising in an extremely small and very densely populated country. Although our area wasn’t particularly badly affected by it, the most common noise pollution I came across was dogs barking. Dogs are very common in Barbados and many households will have several: they seem to be the most popular burglar deterrent. (Jehovah’s Witnesses will stop before your gate to ask if you have dogs before they ask you if you read the Bible.) In Barbados, most sleep with the window open to allow the breeze in. This, of course, allows the barking to penetrate and, if you are having one of those nights when your worries take on much bigger dimensions than they do in the day, you can end up raging all night at the selfishness of the dogs’ owners.

Our Sundays had, as background music, hymns and spirituals played (quite badly) by a saxophone-led band in a church held in a house across the pasture. It only seemed to stop once the cricket on the adjacent field started, confirming my suspicion that, next to one of a hundred brands of Christianity, the Barbadian’s other religion is cricket. I used to wonder if the congregation ever considered how “Christian” it was to inflict that noise on their neighbours for several hours on a Sunday without asking their consent.

I wish the Society for a Quieter Barbados every success.

Relocation and linguistic vandalism

Today a moan:

As a frequent user (and sometime manager) of recruitment websites that allow you to configure customised daily emails containing jobs filtered according to your criteria, I have become something of a connoisseur of the technology. You can appreciate then, my exasperation at receiving emails every morning from a particular site which does not allow you to exclude certain words, or more specifically, locations from the criteria. This results in an email containing jobs in other parts of the country to which you can neither commute nor wish to relocate.

The conspiracy theorist in me wonders if this is done deliberately to ensure maximum exposure to jobs in the hope that some candidates might be tempted to relocate.

Oh, and another thing. There should be a requirement for the people (agents) usually who write these job ads to have passed a course in written English with stringent demands in the areas of spelling, grammar, punctuation (especially apostrophes!) and clarity. If you read, as I do at the moment, several hundred job ads every day and appreciate the beauty of the English language, as, again, I do, you may understand my annoyance at the numerous daily acts of linguistic vandalism these ads often contain.

Apparently, bad English can lead to delinquency and violence, according to an editorial in the Nation newspaper in Barbados recently, though I may have missed the part where the scientific evidence for this claim is cited.


The UK parent division of Courts, the furniture retailer has gone into administration. Shops have closed and there have been reports of violent incidents involving furious customers who have not received their goods.

It appears Courts will live on outside the UK.