Monday, April 28, 2008


Rice price going up, gone up, it might even affect we folklore. Villagers gon think twice about throwing precious raw…uncooked…rice on they floor at night to ketch Ole Higue when she invade they home. Ole Higue, the ole blood-sucker, ain’t gon feel compelled to count hundreds o’ rice grains whole damn night ‘til sunrise and villagers ketch she. She gon scrape up every grain, full she pocket and flee.

Rice is the new pearl. My second brother in Florider tell my mother on the phone how they rationing rice now over there. My mother say she read in the papers how in China it is becoming a delicacy.

I know who fault it is after I hear a protest march in town on Friday.

Tramp, tramp, tramp, them protestors tramp in the broiling hot sun. Somebody holler something about high cost of food. Somebody holler something about guvament.

I put two and two together and make ten. It is we guvament fault why food prices gone up. Rice is food. Rice price gone up. Guvament fault. Rice price gone up in the world. We guvament fault, damn them, why they couldn’t stop drought and flood?

As I watch them protestors I wonder if I shoulda join them and add me two cents. I try to calculate how much it musta cost to do this protest. Cost of getting people together. Cost of taking precious time off from work. Cost of cardboard, markers. Nah, nah, I decide; I better take me two cents and buy plant seeds. I better use me energy to work in we garden when the sun ain’t rise too high and hot.

And if the day come when I can’t afford rice, I gon eat even more green plantain, cassava, eddo, sweet potato, yam, bide me time and wait for rice price to drop. That is what me nanee do during World War Two; she plant and grow and dig and plant some more...yes, me short, short, li’l, li’l nanee.

I still want me dhal and roti though…so flour better don’t go running scarce.


PI said...

Dig for Victory GG! That's the spirit. You're right about the government - not just yours. Flood, drought now famine? It's being so cheerful as keeps me going.

john.g. said...

GG, it's the damn idiots growing 'bio-fuels' instead of food that's doing it!

cadiz12 said...

the fact that there's a rice shortage is really scary, as that's what so many people in this world are dependent on! it's going to be roti more and more, then.

CG said...

I agree with you, people need to start planting vegetable gardens and eat healthier foods however I love my dal and roti. That's healthy isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Yes,I went to the big stores here in UTAH and there was no type of rice to be bought.Then we went to this out of the way shop and got 8 packets of brown rice.Das wha me dacta sey me mus eat .Wha he rass know? well I learn fu like it any way
Wow! roti and dhall now you talking me language ,sweeeeet...Mopsy

Guyana-Gyal said...

Mopsy, ow, you po' t'ing you, the doctor condemn you to brown rice? Biriyani it! Mmmm, don't lemme tell you how I looove biriyani rice. Plus, you must teach the doctah about roti with brown flour, okay, okay, it mix with white flour but it nice!

CG, just dash some calaloo and squash in the dhal and plenty garlic, you got healthy food there right away.

I think it will get sorted out, Cadiz, my mother says she remembers a time in the 60's when this happened. Well, I hope it gets sorted out.

john.g, my mum said, "Same thing me say," when I told her your comment. I can see a Hollywood movie in the making. People are starving. They try to break into a cornfield to get corn to eat but men with big guns, guarding the bio-fuel fields, stop them.

Your govt's fault too, Pat? I'm digging, I'm digging. Which reminds me, and has nothing to do with food price, have you ever seen the movie, Digging to China? Touching.

Anonymous said...

Not just rice, a world shortage of wheat too due to poor harvests is pushing the price of bread through the roof

Jdid said...

I switching to sweet potato and yam myself. they say dem have good carbohydrates anyways.

wait what allya duz do with green plantain though? i thought green plantain used to give ya the belly

look if people throwing rice for the soucouyant to count she could at least make herself useful and have the decency to pick out the bad grains by the time morning come.

Mr. Nighttime said...

There has been a movement here in the US for some time where people have been growing a lot of their own food.

Rice may be a tall order though. We grow some of our own vegetables in our backyard, but it is limited.

btw, GG, regarding your comments on my blog, Ledbelly was the nickname for Huddie Ledbetter, one of the the foremost blues singers of his time. He had a huge influence on many modern blues singers, especially people like Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and a host of others.

You can catch Eric Clapton doing one of Ledbelly's songs, "Alberta," here:

mjaSeattle said...

But protesting is so much easier... ;)

Stunner said...

The increase in the price of rice, this basic staple, is alarming and frightening indeed! You might have to hold off on the roti too, as the price of flour has gone up and seems it will go up again soon. looks like it's back to the yam fields, sweet potato, potato and cassava fi true!

Hayden said...

all grains gone up, and farmers saying they can't afford to feed chickens, so eggs, chicken going up too. The amount that we can blame on biofuels is still slim - that is a monster that is building, but today the diversion is small.

Right now bio-fuels are mostly pulling farmers beginning to plant that had their land in "land bank" (not planted.)

China used to keep a couple of years of rice stored, but they let it get down to 30 days - Australia can't grow rice for 6 years of drought - California rice crops short from bad weather last year too. Wheat being diverted to places that usually eat rice, now it's short too - Don't know where else....

we'd all do better planting and eating our veggies! Right now it may be the best choice.

Mr. Nighttime said...

Been a long time for me since I had roti.....Been outta Brooklyn too long..

sablonneuse said...

Not so long ago farmers in England were being paid to leave some fields fallow.
As for growing rice, we are getting so much rain here we might qualify as paddy fields (if it gets hot enough as well!)

Guyana-Gyal said...

Sab, I was wondering about that recently, if they're still paying people to not plant. I won't be surprised if France can grow rice, I've read how plants flourish in spring and summer there.

Mr. Nighttime, I also discovered the Jewish bread, lavash, which is great, there's also whole wheat lavash. And nan bread. Gosh, I'm hungry now! Our garden's small too, but I guess the theory is, if everybody grows, there will be surplus and prices will fall.

Oh, how could I not have noticed that Leadbelly sings the blues, I have the cd. Y'know, I always thought, his songs should play in the movie...if they made one...of Their eyes were watching God...that's one deeelicious book. Yes, my bro. told me of his influence on musicians, I think he said the Stones too. Leadbelly was Alberta's original singer? I have the Clapton version on cd. I've only played it like 100 times.

Hayden, how I wish more Guyanese could read what you said. It's what the protesters are not telling the ordinary folks.

Gosh man, Stunner, don't remind me about no more roti. Anyway, I know that green plantain and dhal taste good, I've tried it.

Hey Mike, come to St. America and find your long lost sun :-D Me, I ain't going in no sun to protest, fun and all.

Jdid, ole higue gon scrape up the rice for herself too! Green plantain is nice when you peel it, cut it up in thick-ish fingers, boil it for a few minutes or until it is done when the knife can go through, drain, then stir fry with a li'l bit o' cokenut or olive oil, onion, garlic, shallot, pepper. Eat with fish stew, curry, anything.

Ow, ow, Anon, don't remind me of no more, I wonder if wheat can grow here.

PI said...

GG: no. That's yet another film I've missed.

Stephen Bess said...

lol! I hear you, GG. I love some roti. You make me wanna run and get one right now. Great story!

Stunner said...

Never tried green plantain and dhal before, I need to try that one. I like green plantain with tin mackerel though!

Olivia said...

Gyal - scary about rice, and yes, flour. Also, since it's becoming so expensive to feed cattle the price of milk is going up too. What next?

Hello Potatoes...*sigh*
Gosh, even pasta is made with flour. Um....darn, and corn is being pressured by biofuel industry...we'll have to go with ancient things like quinoa and spelt.

LOL@ Mopsy: "wha he rass know?"

Viekevie said...

Yuh damn right!
And we can make breadfruit flour too!