Thursday 3 December, 2020

Tell Us More: Jason Joseph, educator and traditional folk enthusiast

Jason C. Joseph has been an educator for the past 31 years.

He is currently employed with the Government of St Lucia as a music curriculum specialist.

He is also a part-time Educational Psychology lecturer and traditional folk enthusiast.

He has spent several years actively promoting the Kwéyòl language (particularly the written aspect) on the internet and on social media, under the name "kweyolsentlisi". His mission is to generate greater interest among St Lucians in the traditional art forms, and encourage more respect and appreciation for the Kwéyòl language.

Jason, a former calypsonian popularly known as “Bachelor”, can also be seen teaching St Lucia's traditional folk dances, strumming the cuatro with a folk band called "Toujou Kwéyòl", and writing and arranging calypsos for St Lucia’s junior and senior calypsonians. His favorite pastime is dancing, particularly folk dancing and salsa.

What is it like being in the public eye?

While I don't mind being known for my work, my personality does not allow me to enjoy unnecessary attention. I am much more comfortable in the background, working behind the scenes.


What is the one thing about you that often surprises people?

That I am actually a cool individual and not as unapproachable as they believed.


How would you define success?

Self-actualization, living consciously and according to your own terms, and being content despite your circumstances.


What has been your most humbling experience?

The few times that I have been ill and had to visit a doctor or the hospital. Death may be final, but being sick humbles you and makes you realize how much you need people.


If you could be remembered for one thing what would it be?

"He was an educator at heart and a decent human being."


Where is your happy place?

Any activity that makes me lose myself in the moment - where I am not rehashing negative events from the past or not worrying about the future. 


What is your greatest fear?

Getting old and withering away in bed, unable to take care of myself.


Animals or babies?

It depends on what animal and whose baby. I don't particularly like cats and I don't get excited about other people's babies.


What talent do you yearn for?

The ability to smile and remain calm while being disrespected or provoked.


What lesson has been the hardest to learn?

If you're going to foolishly continue trusting human beings and depending on them, stop being surprised when they disappoint you.


TV or music?

Tv series. It's more of an exciting adventure. Music to me is functional. I listen at specific times for specific purposes.


What food makes you happy?

Népòt manjé ki ni bon gou (any food that tastes good).


What is your guilty pleasure?

Waking up from bed with nothing urgent to do, knowing that I have the entire day to myself to do what I want, how I want, and when I want.


If you had to change one thing in your life what would it be and why?

I would say "no" more often and be less busy. Life is short and time is a precious commodity. We waste too much time engaging in pointless activities with people that won't even care when we die.


What is the business tip you have got and never forgotten?

"Know your worth."


Is it more important to you to be liked or respected?

To me, respect is everything. You do not need to like someone to respect their work, their uniqueness, or their human rights.


What is your personal motto?

Become the best version of yourself, and...

"Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence." - George Washington





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