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SUNDAY SAUCE - Gold rush 1995 revisited

Published:Sunday | April 25, 2010 | 12:00 AM

Oxy Moron, Contributor

In 1995, the people of Xaymaca were caught up in a tornado of politics and winds of change. Since the days of Alexander and Norman, they had been promised Utopia, only to be given Babel instead. It had taken them long to discover that Utopia was like the carrot held before the sweating mule - unattainable. Now, they were convinced that the two forces, led by 'Apathy' and 'Arrogance', were redundant and no more would they vote.

Apathy they claimed was impotent and boring to death. The followers of Arrogance, who likened him to a white elephant, were not pleased with his showings at the polls. In silence, they griped and grieved. They would not forgive him for leading them to two straight major electoral defeats.

There was among them 'Golden Eyes' who, they believed, should be the new Don. Oft referred to as a clone of Arrogance, Golden Eyes himself yearned for the mantle of leadership and the reins of power. For sure, he was mellowed and he was ready to play his cards. So, he sent dissidents in the West to declare war on Arrogance.

Not daunted

But Arrogance was not scared. A regular martinet he was. A man with mettle as strong as Lady Macbeth's, and the owner of a tongue as sharp as the sword of Damocles, he lashed the mutineers with utterances of a Philippic nature, for he was not daunted by men of Doric backgrounds. War was declared on the dissidents who were steadfast in their call for his departure. Golden Eyes was hurt and he resigned. His agenda had stumbled upon a brick wall.

Having sensed the people's disenchantment with both forces and encouraged by pro-Golden Eyes rhetoric in the media, Golden Eyes once again sought counsel in the West. He knew that the West was not only the playground for tourists, but it was also the mecca for wannabes who had long been languishing in the political wilderness, hankering for the fleshpots of life.

Golden Eyes greeted and met with the movers and shakers in the West. He was impressed by what he saw and heard, and was convinced a third force should be his. And the New Dance Movement was born. He took the 'Hero' by his side, he being a man of the cloth and bastion of the faith. Yet it was the Hero who formulated the commandments and not Golden Eyes, the messiah.

To add to the biblical nature of the New Dance Movement, a star was chosen to be its symbol, for it was written that wise men should follow a star. Soon after, it was disclosed the star was 'borrowed' from the Republicans and it was returned. Was it not ominous to have one's sight taken away at birth? So the new force had to convene without a symbol.

The land of wood and water was suddenly inundated with prospectors in search of the golden mean, it being not too much (Arrogance) and not too little (Apathy), though the symbol of value. It was Rowe who said "Distant alike from each, to neither lean, but ever keep the happy, golden mean." Yet, it was said the frenzy was a desperate one reminiscent of the search for the elusive El Dorado.

Vision of change

Amid the clamour, Golden Eyes said, "Let us go to the people with a clear idea of what it is we are going to change to give the country a chance." However, it was Maya Angelou, American author and poet, who once said, "Chance has never yet satisfied the hope of a suffering people. Action, self-reliance, the vision of self and the future have been the only means by which the oppressed have seen and realised the light of their own freedom."

The race was now on and the stage was set. Golden Eyes, the baker, was prepared to run the gauntlet, though there were those who were ready to take the gilt of his gingerbread. Apathy sat in anticipation of the irony of faith; it might happen that an unexpected occurrence would render all such plans for a third party null and void.

Arrogance, with his Spartan fortitude, was forthright in his defiance. He quoted lyrics from popular songs by Buju Banton and Luciano in his 1996 New Year's message to placate his faithful followers. But Golden Eyes was confident he would finally lead the descendants of masters and slaves to halcyon days when they would drink milk and golden-coloured honey.

But fast-forward to 2010, years after abandoning the New Dance Movement and assuming command of the force once led by Arrogance, Golden Eyes is now caught up in a political maelstrom of international proportions and is accused of being hooked on Coke.