Don’t let a Jamaican call you…

 

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Butu, gyal clown, mowly, pretty-dunce– these are just a few of the (sometimes hilarious) terms that Jamaicans use to describe people unfavourably, and if any of them is directed at you, it means you might have gotten on our wrong side. Don’t know where that is? Let’s just say it’s somewhere you don’t want to be 🙂

Jamaica’s official language is English; however if you touch down in Jamrock on any given day you will hear most people talking in Patois, our colourful dialect that has an English base but a strong African influence. It’s a mix that has produced a very unique language that people of other countries love to imitate; and you know what? We don’t mind at all; we actually love to hear someone with a different accent talking in Patois. Continue reading

Steel pan music is from Jamaica?

Mitch: You know I don’t think it would be such a bad idea if we went down to Jamaica. Did a little legwork.

Amanda: Nice try.

Mitch: But I do love steel drum music. Do you know why there are those little numbers on the inside of the drum?

Amanda: Will my life change if I do?

Mitch: Well each number corresponds to a note. Now it take years to master these notes. These guys are musical geniuses. Did you know that there are some notes that are only audible to them?

So I’m minding my own business, flicking through channels about two Saturdays ago when I spot a map and a flag of Jamaica on the screen. I check the name of the show and realize it’s called The Inspectors. Of course I’m instantly on alert as soon as I realize that Jamaica is being discussed. I see/ hear a couple of investigators talking about the lottery scam (whole other topic for a completely different post) and I already know this won’t be good, but I’m curious nevertheless. I grab my phone and start recording. Continue reading

Mi nuh deh a Jamaica now; mi deh a Ochi.

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So apparently Jamaicans the world over are feeling quite puzzled because of a WhatsApp voice note that’s been making the rounds in the past few days. In the message a female voice can be heard telling someone that she lives in Jamaica. No big deal, right? The cringe worthy moment comes, however, when she explains that she’s not in Jamaica, but is instead in Ochi. A weh di…Wha-???

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Now for anyone who is not really familiar with Jamaica, that means nothing. But for everyone who is from, or associated with yaad we know Ochi is the short for our beloved and beautiful Ocho Rios, a breath-taking town on Jamaica’s north coast. So if Ochi is located in Jamaica, what is this young lady talking about? Continue reading