Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Haven't written for a long while. It's August here and really not too much is happening. I suppose you might have seen the minor flap created when the eight female ministers in Zap's cabinet (yes, like a good politically correct well-meaning idiot, he's named a cabinet that's 50-50 men and women) posed for Vogue. Of course, they got criticized both from the far left, for objectifying women, and from the PP, who accused them of not taking their roles as ministers seriously enough.

They've been having the Fiesta Mayor of Gracia over the last week or so. Gracia, the neighborhood where I live, is known within Barcelona for having a unique personality--sort of politically aware working- / lower-middle- / petit-bourgeois- class. Up here we still talk about "going down to Barcelona" when we mean going downtown (we're perched on the side of a hill above the city); it's almost like a small town within Barcelona. There's definitely a strong local identity. Anyway, they have a big bash of a Fiesta Mayor in which they have lots of traditional stuff, like dances in the squares and decorating the streets in high-school-gym-dance style and lots of free food if you know where to look for it. That and lots of booze, of course. The local squatters, however, have decided to take over the fiesta and raise hell until six in the morning while fighting it out with the local skinheads. Meanwhile, all the drunks who normally hang out in uncool places are showing up here from all over the metro area. Everyone up here is royally pissed off because Gracia is already the coolest party district in town, if you're an adult who prefers listening to good music and a couple of quiet beers in an interesting bar to partying and puking all night. The locals get pretty pissed off about all the noise, with some reason, and the Fiesta Mayor has been pretty much the last straw. People are mad up here.

The Forum is an absolute and complete disaster. They've gone so far as to announce false attendance figures. Meanwhile, they had to shut down the main building for a couple of days because it was leaking--for some brilliant reason, they decided to cover the roof of the building with water.

The Vangua hasn't said too much that's horribly offensive recently--you know, just some more of the same crap about how Americans are stupid and ignorant mixed in with pro-Saddam arguments. Same old everyday thing that I've already translated eight hundred times. It looks like Asshole Andy Robinson, special British correspondent in New York, has been paying some attention to me and Franco A. and Trevor, because he's started documenting his articles. However, he still doesn't bother mentioning that all his sources are from the extreme left. Tikrit Tommy Alcoverro is reporting on Najaf from back home in Beirut. He sure seems to have a vivid imagination. Anyway, virtually nobody in Barcelona is exposed to any information that might somehow be interpreted as, well, not anti-American. At least not from the newspapers and the TV. There's a right-wing radio station, the COPE, but they're often just as dumb as the local left. As for information from the foreign media, Josep Sixpack doesn't know English or any other non-local languages.

No comments: