Post written by Stephan C Tang, I love you Steph!As of today I commit to living my life like I am playing mas! To those of you who have never experienced true mas then you probably assume that I mean that I am going to run around “wining”, “gyrating”, “waving my hands widely in the air” and generally behaving scandalously. I only say this because I am aware that this is the general perception of carnival and for my friends in Toronto, Caribana. A mass of people, dancing and jumping and waving and generally behaving “wotless” as we say in Trini! However those who have experienced true mas know that there is so much more than that to playing mas. There is a transcendental experience that occurs, almost ethereal. When you are “chipping” on the street, surrounded by thousands of people, from all backgrounds, social classes, walks of life, religions, beliefs, orientations, diverse in every sense of the word. When you are listening to the sounds of the music or the sweet sounds of the pan. When you are dancing in a costume, feeling beautiful, no matter your body shape or size. When you are care free and worry free. When everyone is friendly and smiling. When joy and happiness seem tangible, you can feel it, see it, taste it as it washes over you and all those around you. When you are more than just an individual surrounded by people but rather you are more than just yourself, a part of something more, something greater than the sum of all its parts, a community. Where, for even the briefest of moments, you are free to be. This, my friends, is what playing mas truly is. It is living each day as though I am in that moment. Where I feel HAPPINESS, LOVE and most of all LIBERATED! I hope that each of you has the opportunity to experience it in your life. Today I choose to live my life like I am playing mas!