First it was Denesh Ramdin, the Trinbagonian and West Indies wicketkeeper, and then Transport Minister Devant Maharaj, who made me question how low we have fallen.
To me, last week, they both seemed bent on turning back the time.
Let us start with Ramdin. When CLR James wrote in his celebrated Beyond a Boundary that cricket was a game of glorious uncertainties, not anarchy, I believe he could not have anticipated the lowly depths to which Ramdin would have taken the game at Trent Bridge.
Having scored his second-ever Test century, Ramdin brandished a scribbled note, "Yea, Viv talk nah", directed disrespectfully at former West Indian captain, Viv Richards, who had criticised his performance earlier.
James left us the immortal question, "What do they know of cricket, who only know cricket?" through which we are helped to understand that cricket is not just about a knock of bat and ball, but a game that represents the wider historical, sociological and psychological expression of a people — particularly, the West Indian people.
So in a flash Ramdin's achievement turned me from elation to rage. I found myself questioning whether he was that mindless; didn't he understand that on the field he stands in the shoes of West Indian greats, playing what is still considered a "gentleman's game"?
Cricket is an art, James told us, not a bastard or poor relation, but a full member of that community; "a dramatic spectacle" which belongs alongside the theatre, ballet, opera and dance.
After 44 Tests, Ramdin proved still mission-less, sadly unaware of himself as an artist in a game of "finer points", one in which the personal result of the cricketer, as performer, is not the ultimate value.
It is those finer points, James helped us all to understand, as he lifted cricket loftily to the sublime, expressing his hope in Beyond to make right "the grave wrongs" and extend our "too limited conceptions of history and the fine arts".
Cricket, he summarised, is a search for our identity in which "Caliban (we, the colonised people), after three centuries, must pioneer into regions where Caesar never knew."
Ramdin stood clueless in Trent Bridge, like so many of his West Indian cricketing colleagues, ignorant of their roles in that West Indian journey which James charted.
Once one remains grounded, fortunately, one can almost "taste" the feeling in Trinbago that some are on that journey — but it is a taste that is clearly eluding our political leaders, and particularly the Transport Minister.
He now contends with Jack Warner for the role of the Government's point-man, but his delivery is that of a vengeful figure, stoking the fire of an already rabid political atmosphere.
O ne must recall that the Minister was first the voice of Gopio, a Hindu organisation which sought to advance the concept of identity politics.
In his every announcement one senses a hint of one-upmanship; past hurts emerge with scores to be settled — unfortunately in the public domain. His statements are naive, never ministerial, never delivered from a disinterested or national position.
Take his public positions on Caribbean Airlines. From the start, the Minister appeared compliant and yielding to the bullish chairman, George Nicholas, even allowing his ministry to be housed first in the "Nicholas Tower".
He was always the first and strongest defender of Nicholas against charges of excesses. Further, he was quick to make a weak, docile plea for Nicholas to take back his announced resignation.
Since Nicholas's departure, he has installed his fellow party member as chairman, a CEPEP contractor with no executive management experience, to head CAL.
What is the new chairman's first act? Rent, from persons unknown, a $20,000 a month vehicle, because he has meetings to attend — a decision the Transport Minister readily defended.
Last week, the Transport Minister was on the move again, directing his fire at the former PNM works minister, with varying figures for the purchase and repair of four vessels, to justify a $127 million Government purchase turned into a $6 million fire sale.
The announcement now leaves questions as to the beneficiaries of the sale, rather than the favourable reaction the Minister anticipated.
So we are still to find out the true cost of the MV Su. The Minister's math did not add up. Was it purchased for $32.6 million or $24.5 million, and was the vessel's repair cost $22.4 million or $28.9 million?
The Prime Minister now proposes to visit China, and one hopes she takes away at least one aspect of that country's experience.
China made its expeditionary trip, before Columbus, in 1405, with 317 vessels, reaching as far as Kenya. China could have conquered the world — but for the decision of one Emperor, who decided absolutely against exploration and trade. Five hundred years later, China strives for that lost world power status.
The PM must recognise that today's decisions could devastate Trinbago for centuries.
* Keith Subero, a former Express news editor, has since
followed a career in
communication and management.