- Soca 2019! -

Thursday, August 16, 2018

THIS is mas!

Photos by Samuel Engelking

I would LOVE to play mas in such a costume!

Read this fantastic article, and check out the beautiful display this weekend.

📷SugaCayne Designs📷

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Carifestival - Carivaughan 2018

We have been attending the festival from the beginning, So, we didn't pay any attention to this boycott idea. Anybody that thinks thinks staying away from this event hurts anyone but the organizers, has likely never attended. If you weren't there last year or the year before, is it really a boycott? or are you just not that interested in supporting the event?

Killing this event will probably win votes for the councilor responsible for the permit cancellations. There are other ways to show your dissatisfaction.

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Why our Carnival continues to have stormers

I wrote this on Sunday evening, but decided to go with positive first, so I posted on the road pictures. But... 

So, many bands didn't get to be judged due to the shit storm of stormers that infiltrated the judging area. 
What else is new? This surprises you? That has happened before, and will continue to occur, as any long time Toronto Carnival mas maker or masquerader knows. Oh, you thought it would be different this year? I know. The positive, optimistic, hopeful among us want to believe that this year, it will work. This year, the changes we need will come. This year, _____ will fix the problem. 

Believe me, I understand the frustration of choosing THE costume, preparing for & awaiting Carnival day for months, only to be swarmed by non masqueraders in what is supposed to be a parade. The Lakeshore at it's worst is a claustrophobic nightmare where you get pushed around, costume damaged, cussed out, harassed, and assaulted. And now, the CNE is turning into the Lakeshore. People continually ask "why can't we get it together, and put on a proper Carnival and parade like other cities?" 

No matter how many times you change this parade, take it out of downtown, reverse the route, switch up the starting point, put it into the CNE, off the Lakeshore, IT DOESN'T MATTER AS LONG AS YOU AREN'T ADDRESSING THE LACK OF SECURITY, which always has been, and will always remain the main issue.

Trini-in-Toronto says we taught them they can storm. Well, I think we haven't stopped them from storming. When parade spectators started chipping in to the back of the band over 20 years ago, THAT WAS WHEN bands and organizers should have looked at this as a potential problem. When you refuse to look ahead, foresee the possible escalation of a situation, that shows poor planning. It also shows, frankly, a lack of care. Securing masqueraders should have been dealt with long ago, so that today's generation knows not to do it. But it's too late. This generation now KNOWS they can storm Caribana. 

Trini-in-Toronto says the blame is on ignorant West Indians. Well, I say no, it's Canadians. Let's be real about who's storming. Majority are teens and 20 somethings with West Indian parents or grandparents. And then you've got the other parade spectators who just go with the flow, get caught up in joining in with whatever the crowd is doing, they don't know any better, don't understand that they are ruining something. 

When people like to say Carnival works well in Trinidad because "Trinis respect the mas" - um, naw, don't fool yourself, they respect not getting their ass beat. The brute force packing weapons securing the bands perimeter that will throw them out of the band is what they respect. 
Mas disrespect

Let's be honest about the competition that exists between the 3 big bands. It's a competition, so of course there's always been hating on costumes, attacking leader's intentions, and their success. It's natural to defend & support a band you play(ed) with, and criticize a band you haven't. Blaming the band you have a rivalry with for the chaos at judging is an automatic reaction. It's happened before, and will always happen. (Remember just 2 years ago in 2016, when masqueraders from the Band of the Year said how much they loved it, had such a great time on the road, called it "the best Carnival ever"? Yet their rival band had a different experience, nothing but storming at judging? Hmmm, sounds familiar, huh?Stormers for the win
So again, if there was ACTUAL SECURITY at judging, and oh, this extraction team we were promised for 2 years, then masqueraders wouldn't be allowed to go back, only forward! 

It is so clear that harping about, in a very limited way, buying a costume/don't storm, or attempting to provide mas education can't stop storming. So really, the only question EVERYONE should be asking, and continue to ask, until we get an answer is why does the FMC not provide security? 
And for the love of all that is good, please STOP insulting us by playing your old broken down tune crying that it's the role of the Toronto Police force. 

Monday, August 06, 2018

The pictures: Toronto Carnival 2018

Always start positive, right? So here are our pictures, beginning with Trini-in-Toronto's... 

So good to see you again Jennelle! ðŸ’‹

It wouldn't be Carnival if I didn't run into Ranae and Kathy.  ðŸ˜ 

Nice meeting you Kevin, thanks for your comment about the blog. 


⬆️ Fever Mas crew! ⬇️


Designers Sam & Ronnie ðŸ’™ðŸ’œ

The last several years I had wanted to play in a corset or one piece, because they are often prettier than the bra option. So when I saw this beautifully designed corset, it was an easy choice. I also went with a spider panty this time because the fit was perfect, nicer than the other bottoms choices. The feathered wrist pieces were a new accessory for me, which I adored. What I was constantly adjusting was the shoulder pieces. They didn't stay in place on my shoulders, and broke a few times, which I attempted to repair.  The light headpiece had the impact I like, but the wires unfortunately left indents in my head. I simply can't go with a wired headpiece anymore. 

Doh let nothing stop we! 

Kudos to Fever Mas for stocking our goody bag with useful things, particularly this blue cooling cloth. It did work as it should when you poured some water on it. It's better than all the other "sweat rags" everyone carries and just throws away. And we sure needed it in that humidity! We also received the new Fever Mas logo tattoo, makeup remover wipes, a whistle, lotion (I'll bet people wished it was sunscreen) and this curious little gold thing I thought was a key ring, but has adhesive on the back, so it's a hook? 

Sunglasses were certainly THE accessory this carnival. Pink, mirrored, or decorated, I don't know how you could go without them. 

Fellow photogs Shirlanne and Tony.


Another Carnival peep we always see is fellow OTC devil Ronnie.  ðŸ˜ˆ



Tereka! ðŸ˜˜


😻Makeup skillz  

                                 ðŸ’Ž Designing DARYL 💎

Looking fabulous Azalea Zoe Hart 💟

Now, my pictures... 

Every year we see volunteer Sheldon! ðŸ˜Ž

Love this costume. ðŸ’–

🌸Queen Michelle's Sparkling Cherry Blossoms🌸

🌟 A favourite from the launch and on the road, Rebelle, Sophia Rickson's design. ðŸŒŸ

👍🏼This crew's shoes. ðŸ‘



Trying to corral us, lol...


Heading to judging before 2:00.  

A backpack and side pack I liked.  

This one though takes it! 

You see all kinda things along the route, but a wire bra?  
Guess she just went topless...?  

After judging, this gentleman from the US & I spoke for awhile about how our day was going. He said it feels dead. Last year, he told me he played in Saldenah's white section and said the vibes were strong, everyone was always full of energy. He said this time, he noticed people are all about getting an Instagram shot. He's played a lot of mas including in Jamaica and Trinidad, but knows you can't compare Toronto to Caribbean island carnivals. This is likely his last Caribana, he told me. 

After 3:00, when some stormers entered. And that was it for me, I was ready to head down to the lake. 

The annual lake shots. 

And, the heading home shot. 


Comments coming later. 

Caribana 2010 slideshow

Mardi Gras, Hamilton

Mardi Gras, Hamilton

Blog Archive

J'ouvert 2008!

J'ouvert 2008!

Mardi Gras 2010

Buublenut, Megan & Karabana at Caribana 2007!

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