At the 2015 West Indian Day Parade

Mirroring, Guiding at the 2015 West Indies Day Parade in Brooklyn

Mirroring, Guiding

Glances, gazes at the 2015 West Indies Day Parade in Brooklyn

Glances, gazes

I brought my Couchsurfers along at the 2015 West Indies Day Parade in Brooklyn

I brought my Couchsurfers along

Representing? Representing at the 2015 West Indies Day Parade in Brooklyn

Representing? Representing.

He's not with the band, just passing through  at the 2015 West Indies Day Parade in Brooklyn

He's not with the band, just passing through.

A band named Drum Love, a sideshow with snakes: this dude's pythons  at the 2015 West Indies Day Parade in Brooklyn

A band named Drum Love, a sideshow with snakes: this dude's pythons.

September 7, 2015

In my 5+ years in Brooklyn I've never wandered into the West Indies Carnival Parade. I've driven through it, around it, past it. Never walked into it.

My Couchsurfers expressed an interest, mostly in the J'Ouvert, which I suggested wasn't necessarily the best idea. They ended up sleeping on it.

At this year's J'Ouvert, the NYPD arrested 13 people for gun possession, and an aide to the governor was shot in the head. The aide would later die from this.1 

Sunday afternoon, I drove us to Park Slope where we ditched the car. We walked the rest of the way to crown heights, Andrea and I with liquor in our soda bottles and Kuba with a beer in hand.

I didn't know what I was getting into here. I don't think I got any good shots. Except maybe that one of the dude with the statuesque physique, hand outstretched, mirroring the gesture of the figure on the column of the Brooklyn Pubic Library. Maybe he was just suggesting people go read a book? I didn't know what to look for, didn't know where to find it. 

However, comparing my experience to what I've seen online, I did find through experience that the media overreports on the violence and underappreciates the insane amount of joy in the streets. 


  1. It's interesting to me that the arrests were for gun possession and not discharges. Maybe that's just underreporting from the NYT or retention of information by thr NYPD. How would the cops know who was carrying without stopping them? Also interesting, and by that I mean it would be disappointing if it weren't so predictable, was the way the New York Post headlined their article, "Violence-plagued J’Ouvert festival isn’t going anywhere," framing the parade as a menace that has to be endured, tolerated. Lastly, how did editors at the Daily Intelligencer decide to categorize their story on the death of the aide with the dismissive tag "Sad Things"?

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