Simon Cowell’s quest for Hope in Barbados – How much is that Dorgi in the window? Charity raises thousands of US $’s for pets

It’s that time of year when the Hope-Martin Foundation seeks to raise funds for neutering pets across Barbados, so this is sure to aggravate any bleeding-heart prats out there who say money should be spent on homeless crack addicts, but if we can’t treat animals well, then why bother moving along the scale and switch to humans? So if you don’t like it then skip this, ok?

Now let’s get on with the night’s festivities and their reason…

The foundation was devised once a popular UK Businessman, Tony Martin, learned that Barbados’ vast stray dog population was being sent to the gas chamber once caught by Animal Control. It seems he may have gotten a peep at conditions at that Blackrock facility apart from learning how some Bajans treat their dogs. Enough was enough, and so he set about to create prevention rather than termination and thus the Hope-Martin Foundation sprang forward.

While neutering is their main focus, they also seek to educate people and look to assist other?animals – which I know is necessary since there are many Bajans out there, strangely enough from the East like St John or St Joseph, who get a distinct pleasure in running over cats! My solution would be more along the lines of Solomon if raised by Dirty Harry… I made sure to contribute that night, I?gave enough to supply a running lead if they need one and filled out the donation form.

Since this is a local non-profit organisation, it survives on contributions in various forms – apart from my placing a drop in the bucket, they hold an annual celebrity auction to raise funds for medical equipment, maintaining the pet bus and supplying it with diesel, etc.

There was quite a list of hot items up for grabs, but unfortunately the Jennifer Aniston-autographed copy of “Marley and Me” did not arrive in time for the sale last night which was held at the Beach-House in St James instead of Lancaster Great House this year. Former auctioneer with Sotheby’s,?Roger Chubb, once again was the excellent impresario fielding bids.

There was live music from the VSOP Jazz Band superbly led by popular vet Dr John Duckhouse, playing charming old classics like Paper Moon and A-Train among other chestnuts. I even suggested to Simon Cowell at the start of the auction that he should audition the group, LOL!

Speaking of the American Idol creator? The top money earners included a pair of tickets for the finals of Simon Cowell‘s X-Factor in the UK which zooomed to a massive ten grand U.S. before arriving in a lucky patron’s pocket.

The second item to fetch a good piece of change was the late Boscoe Holder‘s “Lady With a Fan” which earned seven grand before the hammer fell! (Ten per cent went to the Hope-Martin Foundation, the balance being sent to the B’dos Community Foundation)

You ever went to Italy? Well someone last night laid out 32-hundred in American currency to spend four nights with their significant other at Casa Longobarda, a Renaissance-styled villa deep in the Italian countryside.

A chance for a couple to not only watch the premier of the next Harry Potter film, but attend the after-party was hotly debated and settled at 21-hundred in ye olde Greenbacks. Let me tell you, I speak of money – but credit cards flew about left, right and centre Friday night, I’m surprised I didn’t smell burning plastic!

The other man of the moment was the creator of America’s Got Talent (Still feel Nuttin’ But Stringz should’ve won, I also voted too), X-Factor (The Brit forerunner of AI) and American Idol {AI} itself – Simon Cowell!

Good Lord, what a feeding frenzy to get a photo or have a photo taken with American Idol’s favorite villain – I was actually shoved by an old man who it seemed was snapping Simon and his grand-kids, so all the old fart had to do was ask?

Simon’s galpal Sinitta was there, flitting all about the Beach-House and chatting with guests, almost as if she was making sure to be seen, but then I must be mistaken…

So I waited ’til the Nation newspaper crew moved away, had no wish for my questions to be stolen, then asked Simon (I’m not sure he remembered my name but he remembered me for when I told him we have the same birthday in October, plus during the same auction last night I loaned him my lighter for when he wanted a Kool to puff) if he really discovered new Bajan talent? I cited how Kool Barbados – no relation to Simon’s brand of smokes – implied he was at the Fish Pot and Simon denied this, however having read Piers Morgan‘s recollections of Simon in his biography “Do You Know Who I Am?“, I will digest this with a bit of a non-sodium substitute as he’s been known on occasion to promise you anything but give you Arpege

Simon ended up buying a rare Terry O’Neil photo-portrait of Elizabeth II and Prince Philip with a Dorgi ?(That’s a cross between a Daschund and a Corgi, seriously), and not meaning to be rude, but Simon’s ears seemed to prick up when he heard of the unusual canine – so he ended up laying out 44-hundred U.S. for the picture.

Another star of the night was Winnie The Pooh, a tiny puppy thrown into a backyard with maggots eating its back when it was just over a week old, now six weeks most of its fur has regrown with bald spots still on its back and at the tip of its tail.

You know, as Mr Cowell remarked at the beginning of the fund-raiser, while he adores Barbados and has invested in properties here – he still feels Bajans as a people have a long way to go in terms of how we treat animals. It seemed he was paraphrasing another great Libran, Mahatma Ghandi, who once commented how a country’s people treats their animals will give you an idea of their viewpoint. This may seem ironic from a man who makes a living being cruel – but his scars are not physical and if you’re strong enough, then Cowell’s remarks either spur you to do more… Like Jennifer Hudson! Or they bounce off of you, like that ridiculous guy who auditioned for AI with his own special version of “She Bangs.”

Well, it was a night of heroes and their heroics, and it could not have happened without Tony Martin,?Jan Downie,?Simon Cowell, Cornelia Coulthurst,?Duncan Heath, Jacqui Ashby, Terry O’Neil, Laura Heath, the Hope Sanctuary (Which is separate from the Hope-Martin institute), Dominique Maraj,?Roger Chubb, the Independent Talent Agency as well as?Corrie Scott (Her paintingSHELLfetched $600 US)! When they say say here “It’s gone to the dogs,” it’s worth it!
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  1. From ARGENTINA…I respect so much the animals, specially the dogs.I share with Mr Simon Cowell this feelings ?


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