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The price of 'style'

My childhood was punctuated with my mother reiterating – “if you have nothing good to say keep your mouth shut.”

I reached a point where I tried her advice simply because her hands were not slow, but I really did not agree and I still don’t. We like to be polite, or proper or politically correct, in many instances I see it as hypocritical.

We like to talk, and the truth is that many of us don’t say anything meaningful, we skid and slide and manoeuver gingerly around the real issues and disguise what we are really thinking in ‘diplomatic language’.

This school bag thing. Look, I ain’t say anything earlier because I was in shock, twice. First that a bag cost so much money and then that they’re actually selling.

In my next life I want to come back as a school child and stay a school child forever because it is clear that they are living the sweet life – no bills, no taxes, a truck load of rights, seemingly very little responsibility and money to get the latest or power to demand and get it.

I heard about this North Face bag and a Broad Street store came to mind and I dismissed it. Then I went into Bridgetown and they were everywhere – hung up on the street, in boutiques, little one-door establishments, some people were even out of stock and expecting the ‘latest’ to be here in a week.

I feel as if I was in solitary confinement in Her Majesty’s Prison Dodds and I recently got released and can’t really fit into society.

We does get caught up and get on real foolish at times. Why would a school child need a $350 bag?

I went into Bridgetown last Wednesday evening and all I saw attached to the back of school children was the North Face. And let me hasten to say too that they all appeared very flat and empty.

Not discriminating or stereotyping but the majority of children I saw with these bags are children from schools whose entry mark is low and whose CXC results are embarrassing. I guess the polite thing would be to say ‘newer secondary schools’ or leave that out all together.

Our priorities are tangled and we are setting a bad precedent.

These bags are fashion statements. We don’t want to see it but this is a block in the wall called problem that we continue to erect. We banned scarves and cell phones but we see nothing wrong with this. We talk about distractions and the high price tags attached to certain things that the school does not claim liability for, but we see nothing wrong with this.

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