Saturday, 30 January 2010

Circular No 430

Newsletter for past alumni of The Abbey School, Mt. St. Benedict , Trinidad and Tobago , W.I. 
Caracas, 26 December 2009 No.430
Dear Friends,
Here is another Old Boy, that the Circular has known since its conception and we would like to include him in our Newsletter: BC Pires.
I would like remind our readers that the 2010 Circulars are on the new website at
All previous years can be accessed from the home page.
Keep well.
From:   BC
Date: 1/12/2006 8:45:40 AM 
We’re back in Trinidad , my wife having completed her studies last November.
We all came back in June and she returned for her last semester from Sept.
So I don't miss the warm climate;
I miss taking a drive without reinventing the wheel every morning.
Take care
On Jan 12, 2006, at 8:39 AM, LADISLAO KERTESZ wrote: 
Dear BC
Any news to tell?
Did your move work out smoothly?,
Are you with your family?
Are you in London ?
How is the newspaper where you are working?
I have you in the listing but without a Form V graduation date, and of course no telephone number, can you provide it?.
Do you miss the warm climate?
Hope that I am not intruding in your life?
Please inform me when you meet V.S. Naipaul.
God Bless
On Jan 10, 2006, at 3:09 PM, LADISLAO KERTESZ wrote: 
Dear BC
I hope that this year will be prosperous and that your career gets ahead full steam.
God Bless
Ladislao Kertesz (editor Newsletter) 
About BC Pires
Written by Administrator   
Monday, 02 March 2009 18:48
In the international economic downturn or recession or crisis, writer BC PIRES, creator of the newspaper column, Thank God It’s Friday, is the favourite satirical newspaper columnist of Britney Spears, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, sex symbols and porn stars generally, as well as President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama.
BC Pires is also the preferred or approved or highly-rated Trinidadian writer of the late Princess Diana, World Cup Soccer FIFA Vice-President Jack Warner, some wanker or the other on the International Olympic Committee, Tony Soprano, Jack Bauer from 24, another couple of wankers from the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes, Mick Jagger & the Rolling Stones, the Roots,  to say nothing of Rhianna, who is from Barbados, where BC now lives and from where he makes daily film and movie picks from the prime time schedules of HBO, Cinemax and all the DirecTV channels.
BC has written for the London Sunday Observer, the London Guardian, the Trinidad Express, Trinidad Guardian, the Barbados Nation, Caribbean Airlines in-flight magazine, Caribbean Beat, the Caribbean Review of Books, the Observer Music Monthly, the Observer Sports Monthly, Wisden Cricinfo magazine and also on this website, BC Raw.
He would like to write for Harpers magazine, the New Yorker, Rolling Stone, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Super Bowl programme, Time, Newsweek, Major League Baseball, the English Premiership especially Manchester United and Chelsea and Wilkipedia.
BC was also told he had to get in as many hittable keywords in this bio as possible, hence the sudden deep and meaningful relationship he developed with John F Kennedy and the Kennedys, the paparazzi, cheap discount sales and all those nude celebrities.
He is the world’s first heterosexual male lesbian and spends far too much time reading, writing, listening to music, watching movies and going to restaurants – though he has managed to turn most of those pursuits into jobs.
He has been called savagely witty, insightful, iconoclastic and penetratingly intelligent; then again, he’s also been called a short, fat, bald mofo.
He has two children and has stabilized on one wife, who designed that great BC DVD ABC icon rip-off of the Godfather and may or may not delete this sentence when she puts this bio up, assuming she doesn’t make him do it over and include references to CNN, the BBC, Sky Sports, David Letterman and Jay Leno.
BC himself put in the following references to Jimi Hendrix, David Rudder, the Rolling Stones, Johnny Winter, Carlos Santana, Andre Tanker, Miles Davis, Bob Marley & the Wailers, the Roots, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Alice Cooper, William Faulkner, Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Jean-Paul Sartre, Richmal Crompton, Samuel Beckett, VS Naipaul, Derek Walcott, Krzysztof Kieslowski, Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Jack Nicholson and Harvey Keitel, without whose writing, music or films, he’d have been pretty much firetrucked at one time of his life or another.
On that basis, rum should be mentioned, too.
He is a lawyer by qualification but has been, largely speaking, nothing else but writing since 1988.
If you’re in a hurry, only the underlined bits are true and they’re all you really have to read.
October Water Shock (taken off the INTERNET)
BACK in the Abbey School , one of the half-dozen or so secondary schools I went to and was expelled/suspended from, I had a Canadian pardner named Mark Newcombe.
Predictably – given that we were all aged 16 or 17 – in school, Mark Newcombe was called Stain Stalespunk; which is reason enough to remember him but he comes to mind – so to speak – now because of something he wrote for the school magazine.
Honesty forces me to admit the Abbey School magazine was barely deserving of the name.
It comprised about four cyclo-styled legal-sized pages folded in half and stapled in approximately the middle; and they were so badly blurred that to attempt to read more than three lines without resting the eyes was to get a certain migraine headache and a possible brain tumour; not unlike this shiretrit, come to think of it.
The Abbey School magazine was edited by Llewellyn MacIntosh, the calypsonian Short Pants, if memory serves – though, of course, this could be yet another instance where it double-faults - and Mackie (as he was known before dropping his long name in favour of his short pants) had asked Mark to write a 500-word piece on a foreigner’s impressions of Trinidad.
I can’t remember his other 480-odd words – this was 1975, mind, and a lot of rum-and-water has flowed under this bridge since that time – but, as long as we have weekends like the last one, I shall never forget Mark’s first sentence: the Government of Trinidad and Tobago has developed an admirable plan to remind its citizens of its past: its past without electricity or pipe-borne water.
Great line; all the more so because it has so obviously stood the test of time.
Water went in St Ann’s around the time Ato Boldon was warming up for the 200 in Sydney; and our Ato came back before our water did (Naturally, water went again before he did).
First, we got no answer on any of WASA’s help lines; then, after a day or two, when they realised that we weren’t going to hang up, one of WASA’s customer service reps eventually admitted they couldn’t solve our (or probably any, for that matter) problem.
I may have been the only person in Trinidad deeply grateful to Hurricane/ Tropical Storm/ Strong Breeze Joyce: if her buckets-a-drop had not chanced to fill my daughter’s plastic wading pool (forgotten on the lawn on some sunny day of the distant past) we’d have had no water at all for five days.
I know there are whole communities in Trinidad that fantasize of such short interruptions in their water supply; but that doesn’t help flush my toilet.
The worst thing about having no water, though, is being forced to deal with the illiterates who deliver truck-borne water on WASA’s behalf.
I don’t know how they manage to swing contracts to deliver such a vital thing as water but I would guess they sign said contracts with an X.
The more calmly you speak, the more confused they become.
The women I had the misfortune to deal with could barely understand English.
I would write to complain but know they would just be excited over getting a letter.
Water eventually condescended to return on Sunday evening, around 6pm, allowing us almost an hour in which to feel nearly civilized before electricity went.
And, in much the same way that it takes a kick in the groin to make you realise that you’re better off with a stomach ache, T&TEC’s help lines made us nostalgic for the relative dazzling efficiency of WASA’s.
Now, apart from the Job’s Worth’s who do their $300 a week in two days and then scratch their asses for three, I readily admit that people you talk to on the phone at T&TEC can be as courteous as those at WASA; but that doesn’t allow you to watch videos by candlelight any more than you can wash your dry Crix down with WASA’s politeness.
What makes T&TEC’s so-called customer service discernibly worse than WASA’s, though, is the basic attitude.
At WASA, they try to avoid doing their job of helping you; at T&TEC, they act as though you are meant to help them.
When you ring T&TEC’s emergency line and say, "I’m calling from St Anns and we have no electricity", they invariably reply, "Yes, we know about it" and put the phone down, if you’re not quick or experienced enough to speak again at once – as though you’re doing them a favour and not they, you, a service.
Even if you persuade them to talk to you, they can only ever tell you when a crew has begun to work; they never know what the problem is or how long it will take to fix it.
You might as well ask them what mark to play or what gender your baby is going to be.
Which brings me to the end and another beginning and two things that make this week terrific despite WASA and T&TEC.
Next Friday, I may have come down enough from the first to consider the second, viz, taking the Mickey out of that grey-haired slanderer; but, for now, I am way above his or any pettiness: on Wednesday night, my son was born and I am still bubbling in the glorious wake of his arrival.
BC Pires is as high as a pseudo kite.
(The above was taken of the INTERNET and can be read on BC´s Web page)
Date:  21 Jun 06:42 (PDT)
Subject:  Circular No. 84 The Abbey School MSB
Dear BC
I have been writing these newsletters since 2001, every week God willing.
I am a 1960 December graduate at the MSB.
This week’s newsletter has a class photo and names of that group.
I would need information on you for the web page that is being reactivated through Donald Mitchell QC, in Anguilla , another oldboy of my times.
Please send me your column so that I may include it in the newsletter.
Of course if you have written any stories on MSB and those that were part of our lives from 1942 to 1985, I would appreciate it very much.
Hope you have gotten some more circulars since the first one.
God Bless
On Sat, 21 Jun 2003 09:42:43 -0400, BC Pires wrote:
Dear Ladislao
I am the BC Pires who wrote that column.
Your circular has reached me by some circuitous internet route; tell me more about the circular and yourself.
I don't see any reason why I would object to the column’s reproduction but would like to find out a bit more before formally saying yes and good of you to ask first; very abbey school. :)
Take care
Caracas, 20 of September 2003.
Dear BC
I have taken your name of the mailing list as per your request.
I hope that you have good luck in your new work, and soon be able to join the group again.
If you feel to write on your MSB days, please drop a line.
Remember that there are a couple of MSB oldboys in high positions over there in UK that you might want to contact for your advancement.
God Bless
On Wed, 10 Sep 2003 16:18:44 -0400, BC Pires wrote:
How you going?
Please take me off the dist list for now, since I am in England and it's very expensive to clear email so I’m trying to limit them to work-only.
Take care
RE: Death of Theodore Guerra Jr.
Tuesday, January 26, 2010 11:37 AM
Dear Ian, 
It is sad to hear of any brother passing away; however this was still a younger man for our alumni, I am so sorry to hear this, as Tim and I did not see eye to eye with Theodore all the time, as he would report us to the monks. 
Once I know I was one of the guys who pelt stones, and once Theodore head got hit, it may have been my stone, I feel terrible now,
We were about 13 yrs old, he had a hard time getting along with others, now I understand the relationship problems he had with his father, as a few of us had.  
I am so sorry to hear this, may God Bless our brother, as he passes over White Stones, to a place where he will be at peace,   
Thank you letting all of us know. 
Glen McKoy. 
From: Joseph Berment-McDowald
Sent: Mon, January 25, 2010 10:15:19 PM
Dear Friends,
The death of Theodore Guerra Jr. was announced by the media today.
If I remember clearly, he was the one of the two Guerra boys called "Fenebo".
He arrived at the Abbey School around 1972. 
During his stay he was much disturbed and had difficulty in adjusting.
After school he had great difficulty and what appeared to be an off an on relationship with his dad.
I last saw him in 1995 when I was the manager at the ACE hardware store in Cocorite Trinidad.
He gave me a cell number which was soon out of order and never was able to keep touch as he had promised.
My heart goes out to this tormented soul whom some say took his own life.
I also feel for his father whom I suppose was equally tortured by their difficult relationship.
His dad (a former police man) became one of Trinidad and Tobago 's leading criminal lawyers and is highly respected in his profession as a highly capable attorney at law.
If memory serves, he received the distinction of receiving silk.
It pains me that despite Theodore Srs. kindness and openness to me I had never felt that it was appropriate for me to intrude sufficiently enough to keep in touch with his son.
My pain and grief is for them both.
I believe that those of us whom knew the deceased at the Abbey School should make it our business to have a show of force at his funeral.
My several attempts to contact Mr. Guerra Sr. have been fruitless.
If any one can help me contact him please do.
Kindly pass this on to all whom are not on my list of contacts above.
Your Brother,
Joseph Berment-McDowald 
Sent: Sat 7/25/09 6:52 AM
Hi Ladislao,
Thanks for sending the circular.
I tried sending an e-mail to Allan Chandler but the e-mail address appears to be incorrect or no longer active. 
I'll check out some of my photos from my days at Abbey and send them to you soon (hopefully I can find them!!).
Keep up the good work!
Now to the photos. Remember to use the code on the photo.
Ladislao Kertesz,
09DP0001DPHFAM, Derek Philipps and wife Marie Anne
09BC0001BCP, BC Pires at the TT film festival 09
09GI005ESCOUTBADGE, Scout badge courtesy of George Iwaskiewicz
07MP0001MPRBRU, Manuel Prada and wife with Bro.Rupert

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