Sarcasm Festival Kicks Off Blacktip Island’s Hurricane Season


Blacktip Island will host its inaugural sarcasm festival this weekend at various locations across the island. (photo by Paloma Fairlead/BTT staff)

To mark the start of the 2022 hurricane season June 1, Blacktip Island community organizers will launch the small Caribbean island’s inaugural Hurricane Appreciation Sarcasm Festival at multiple venues this weekend.

“As ever, everybody was rolling their eyes and saying, ‘oh, yay, it’s almost hurricane season,’ so we figured we’d embrace that whole-hog,” festival organizer Jay Valve said. “Sarcasm’s this little rock’s favorite pastime anyway, why not own it?

“There’ll be all kinds of sarcasm contests and demonstrations, like sideways compliments, muttering under your breath, smirking, eye rolling, and humble brags,” Valve said. “There’ll be ironic and non-ironic categories as well. We’re hoping for lots of good, old-fashioned passive aggression here. The only worry is if anyone will notice.”

Some in the community were dismissive of the idea.

“I think it’s a great idea,” Alison Diesel said. “Everyone will love it. In Jay’s dreams. A sarcasm festival? Seriously? Like that’ll ever work.”

Others focused on positive aspects.

“On Blacktip, sarcasm’s not just a maladaptive coping mechanism,” social anthropologist Catalina Luxfer said. “Here, it’s an art form to get you through your day. Something you really have to work at. I mean, a person can be unintentionally ironic, but sarcasm requires consciousness, intent. And constant practice.

“I’m especially excited about the delineation between ironic and non-ironic contest categories,” Luxfer said. “It’s a distinction most people miss, but it’s an important one. I’m surprised Jay came up with it, though. He couldn’t find his ass if he used both hands.”

Live music will be played at various venues by island-favorite bands, including The Social Morays, Young Jacques and the Double Hose, Duck on a Junebug, TURTLE!!!, and Schrödinger’s Merkin.

“The musical offerings are as diverse as the island’s population,” Valve said. “From traditional island country to death metal, there’ll be something for everyone. Young and old alike.”

Proceeds from the event will go fund the island’s planned hurricane supply shed.

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