Tag Archives #carnivalnewbie

Carnival newbie tip: Thank your carnival veteran.

By Posted on 4min read52 views

Dear carnival newbie, If you are blessed to have a carnival veteran take you on your first carnival experience, they deserve ALL THE FLOWERS.  I have taken a few people out on their first experience, and it came with some challenges and lessons learned for the baby masquerader and me.  

Veteran masqueraders do this out of love of Carnival and the desire to see others enjoy it.  It fills my heart to watch a newbie’s eyes widen and witness the transformation that occurs with the rhythms coming from the truck and the infectious joy in the atmosphere.  It is heartwarming when they say, “I now understand why you love this so much.”

But it’s also very tiring.  And I have been in situations where I was left to feel seriously unappreciated.  So I will share what I go through as a veteran in hopes that you understand how hefty the task can be.

We are your teacher and mentor.

carnival newbie mentor pic
Side note, I miss this hair.

A great mentor will teach you what Carnival is about and why we play mas.  I have spent countless hours sending links for carnival newbies to read. I have fielded questions and demystified many misunderstandings. I have often helped newbies pick their costumes, make recommendations on what to pack, wear, and recommend products I feel would work for them. I have even given recommendations on footwear and also functioned as a personal fashion consultant, while still having to organize myself.  Although it is definitely easier to me as a veteran, it is also time-consuming.

We are your travel agent and concierge.

The experienced carnival-goer typically coordinates lodging and a car rental.  They give the heads up on which fete tickets to buy, and recommend which band to register with. They usually find the makeup artist for you. The experienced masquerader is likely the one who gets in town first, collecting a handful of carnival costumes to return to the hotel.  They go through every package on your behalf, making sure nothing is missing, you got everything you paid for, and raise hell on your behalf when you don’t.  Getting one costume in a bag with feathers is a task in itself.  Pay special props to the veteran willing to scoop up several in one trip.

Sometimes we are your seamstress.

carnival newbie tips
Carnival vets have learned to be innovative with costume repairs and hacks. Click this photo to learn about how I make my pasties.

Like a good carnival newbie, you packed a masquerader kit.  While a glue gun is self-explanatory, you haven’t the slightest idea how to work a needle and thread. We got you. I remember one night staying up to fix a costume while my crew slept, even rearranging bad feather work.  I did this because it was her first time, and I wanted her to feel her best and have the best possible experience.

Many new masqueraders won’t understand how to bend the wire to shape a headpiece, backpack, or wire bra.  Veterans led the way, showing you how to do all this and put on your costume.

Carnival vets put you first.

If you are a carnival newbie, getting ready for the day can be stressful.  Sometimes we help you get dressed first, or dress early so that we can help.  We will remind you to put some sunscreen on, drink water, and eat breakfast when you are nervous.  We will provide you with time hacks, know when the roads are closing, and have mapped out the best route to get to the parade. Many times we function as your photographer. 

While we are on the road, we will watch over you while having our fun and check in to ensure that all is going well for you. We make sure you eat, drink, and sometimes function as a security guard when you don’t know how to handle a stormer or politely curve a w(h)ine.

Supporting your carnival mentor.

Taking a carnival newbie under your wings can be daunting, but here are some things that you can do to reciprocate support:

  1. Follow their instructions, and trust there is a reason behind everything. 
  2. Be patient.  Sometimes our nerves are running high the morning of right along with you. 
  3. Pay attention. When it’s time to get on the road, know that what is taught should not have to be taught again.  Expect to do what is shown for yourself later. For example, if your leg piece falls, you can fix it yourself. 
  4. Remember that while your mentor is there for you, many things cannot be controlled.  In other words, costume distribution, road experience, food, and drinks are up to the band.  We would never intentionally lead you into a lackluster experience. Save your frustrations for the band, and don’t take it out on your mentor.

In conclusion, guiding the carnival newbie into their first experience is a labor of love.  Have you thanked your carnival mentor lately? Be sure to send them your love and appreciation. I would even recommend treating them to a few drinks or a meal.  It’s a lot of work!

To learn about my must-have items as a masquerader, click here.

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Freeing the Cheeks.

By Posted on 2min read58 views

I remember the first time I played mas with We Kinda Ting in 2015. I was approaching 180 pounds, had underestimated my weight gain and should have ordered a large panty. I didn’t feel good about doing this at ALL.

This was my sister’s second jump and so I relied on her heavily being the newbie between the two of us. She was completely unphased by what she saw, but all of my senses were overloaded.

Things hadn’t even started yet, but the music was infectious and the energy in the air addictive. I kept looking around at all of the women of different shapes, sizes and walks of life. Here I was feeling some kind of way about my body until…..

I saw a plus-sized masquerader in a THONG.

She looked so beautiful, confident and free. And even though my medium panty was holding on for dear life, seeing her put some things in perspective: That I had no need to feel insecure out there. All bodies were beautiful. So I let go and became addicted to playing mas right then and there. I know before we even started the parade that this was something I would be doing again.

But wearing a thong illuded me over the years. Even after significant weight loss and lifestyle changes, the thought of my cheeks in the breeze made me a little nervous. People know me best that I don’t like being scared of anything, so I told myself that I would set out to try it out sometime.

It wasn’t until Miami Carnival 2019 with Ramajay Mas that I decided that I was going to finally try it out.

Long story short, I don’t know why the concept of wearing a thong was so scary. It wasn’t anywhere near as daunting once I put the costume on.

A few things I immediately appreciated:

  1. It was VERY comfortable. I didn’t have to worry about constantly digging out my wedgies on the road.
  2. I didn’t have to worry about the bottom migrating in places it wasn’t supposed to be.
  3. I didn’t have to worry about wedgie-chaffing.
  4. A nice even tan on my bamsee. I didn’t look like a porn star when I got off the road.

Chances are if you have played mas before, you have experienced the one side of the panty up the bum, or both. Might as well just rock a thong.

The main thing I didn’t appreciate about wearing a thong bottom was that bare bamsee on grass or concrete wasn’t very comfortable. Depending on how long your jump is, you might want to consider using your flag or a rag to sit on for rest stops.

By all means, if you prefer more coverage, do you! But if you haven’t worn a thong because of fear, trust and believe there is nothing to be scared of. You’ll be amazed at how much more comfortable you will be!

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Weathering the COVID-19 Storm

By Posted on 1min read146 views

Just shy three weeks ago, I was enjoying sweet T&T; My soul infused with the rhythms of the truck and spirit of carnival.

Now I’m sitting at home building a website because the WORLD is pretty much on lockdown.

I’m going to be very honest, I was down for about three or four days reeling over Jamaica Carnival being postponed. But guess what? COVID-19 has many of us shut in our homes, but the earth is still spinning. There are still things that we can be focused on.

DJs: start working on those fire mixes and land that transition you’ve been working on.

Photographers: Start playing with features of your camera you’ve been avoiding, try new concepts and hone new skills.

Ladies, Carnival is expensive! Maybe we can start working on perfecting our carnival beats.

More time to work on our carnival bodies!!!!!

Small businesses: Start thinking about your rejuvenation campaigns.

Creatives: I have personally been slacking on building this website, but I’ve decided to seize the opportunity of not being able to go very far and channel my energy into something productive. This unforeseen time just saved me $1200.

Lets all band together, take care of one another and prepare ourselves to mash up the road like never before when this is all over.

Your sister in mas,

AWM.

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