Thursday, July 10, 2008

I'm sorry I've been neglecting Iberian Notes. We've been doing all this stuff for MundoFreaky.com, and we're actually having lots of fun with it. I've figured out--and have been taught by Murph--a lot about how to make this running a website work.

The weirdest thing happened to me tonight. I'd been down to see Murph and Clark at Miguel's downtown, and we broke it up when midnight came around. I caught the last metro going up on the yellow line, and there was this trashy-looking couple with a kid about a year and a half old. They were smoking heroin off aluminum foil.

I noticed what was going on, and I don't have a cellphone, and so I alerted the people around me quietly (didn't want to call attention to myself and get attacked by the messed-up male). And no one would do a damn thing. I said call the cops, somebody's got to stop this, these people are junkies and they're dragging around a baby. Nobody did anything. I got shrugged shoulders and who gives a shit.

So after about eight minutes of these people failing to get the baby's bottle in its mouth and smoking heroin and behaving all fucked-up, I got off the train at my stop and alerted the security guard, who called it in.

I should have given those people a twenty and taken the kid.

46 comments:

Oriol said...

wow, you alerted the guard and should have taken the kid, you are an american hero!

Anonymous said...

Or at least alerted social services so that the parents could be informed of their right to a montly scag stipend and then you could have been a Eurotopian hero.

Anthony said...

Gosh that is bad. If you'd have asked me to call, I would have said I already did. I rarely take the metro as I tend to go long distances by scooter.
I used to call the mosos d'escuadra 092 whenever I encounterd someone begging with a baby (99% of the time Romanian Gypsies women) in the street and the mosos d'escuadra would come by and take them away. I haven't called in latley but one could really do it every day they go out in the street.

Last night, I called the authorities about a water leak at the plaza Francesc Macià where the Tram is. The automatic sprinkler system went berserk and a gyseer fountain was flooding the street. What with the recent drought and all I felt it was important.

Erik Wirdheim said...

John,

I understand you - being a foreigner also I would first try to encourage "the locals" to take action. Good that you advised security. Poor little child!

//Erik in Vilanova

John said...

I thought the whole point of the post was that I'm not a hero, because I didn't do anything but tell a security guard.

I have called the cops several times when it looked like there was a big problem--once in Lawrence there was a guy screaming obscenities at a woman in a bar and it was about to get violent, once in London when I found this guy passed out in the middle of the street drunk and about to get run over, once in Barcelona when I saw this smacked-out junkie passed out on Ferran at the Rambla at 6 AM, and another time when I saw a homeless guy on the Rambla staggering around with his pants down, pissing all over himself, and about to hurt himself real bad, and once in Lawrence when the temperature was well below freezing at night and a homeless guy was passed out on a bench downtown.

None of that's heroism, it's being responsible and doing your minimal civic duty.

John said...

Oh, yeah. A long time ago here in Barcelona some guy locked a dog in his car trunk and the poor dog was going crazy in there, barking up a storm, and I called the Guardia Urbana.

shtove said...

The only thing to do was take the child to the security guard.

Anything short of that was just a demonstration of concern.

You didn't do it, so why criticise others?

Anthony said...

shtove...yeah right, I'd like to see you try to take a baby away from some drugy (or not) parents. They would slit your throat. Not to mention that legaly you have no right to do it. That is up to the legal authorities to do so.

MaxedOutMama said...

Trying to wrestle a baby away from two druggies might not be the safest thing for the baby, aside from the personal danger. When people are all drugged up they can be quite unpredictable. And I guess John wouldn't have gotten any help from the bystanders.

Calling police/security would be the best option, but if you don't have a phone....

Joan said...

So you're having fun with mundofreaky, ok... but please go back to Iberiannotes as soon as possible... Maybe you aren't aware of this, but... Iberian Notes is a million times more (unintentionally) freaky than MundoFreaky.

Jonathan Monroe said...

As an American living in Spain, Iberian Notes helps me makes sense of this great and crazy place.

Come back soon!

Dillard said...

John,

E-mail was not received. Correct address is

wheat32@gmail.com


Dad

louise said...

Doing something (ie getting the security guard involved) is a hell of a lot better than doing nothing at all, which from your post seems to be what everyone else on the metro intended to do.

Good on you!!

Anonymous said...

Will you ever be posting again. Let us know, so that we can stop checking. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Hey. As a keen observer of stereotypical Spanish phenomena, did John fall victim to the one about the wife leaving him after August vacations or where the hell has he gone off to?

Joan said...

Maybe... Or he just realised he's written too much crap for too many years, and that he's the worst political commentator ever and a freak. So now he's hidden under a rock and writing stupid crap again(but more honest) in mundofreaky.com

It's a pity... So much going on the world and we're missing his stupid comments defending Dubya!!! Can we now say he's been the worst president ever of the USA?!... Oh yes!!!... Where are you now, John???!!!... Defend your master, little man...

Tom said...

@Joan - yes, I think that John's resignation from blogging must be connected with the fact that he got so much wrong, so much of the time.

For some time, I have wondered just how this foolish cheerleader for chaotic free market capitalism would respond to the United States and United Kingdom governments nationalising banks left right and centre. Similarly, his opinions on the bizarre McCain campaign for presidency might have triggered some interesting nonsense.

As to whether his wife left him or some other personal disaster befell him, I'm sure that everyone would agree that however much John irritated with his opinions, we wouldn't wish any ill on him.

Or perhaps he simply joined ERC?

David said...

MundoFreaky.com isn't a patch on Iberiannotes in terms of sheer entertainment value, I'm afraid.

Please bring back Cataloonacy and Cataloonies asap, 'straight-taking minister Acebes' and 'rapid-fire Eddie Zaplana', along with 'plucky Portuguese prime minister José Barroso'...ah, those were indeed palmy days in the Açores, when Dubbya, Tory Tony and Ansar decided to go one up on the Tordesillas Treaty.

Well, I don't know about ERC (which one of the several ERCs, btw?) but John did join the Brunete mediática for a short while, when Losantos and his crew were putting out that short-lived rag, the 'Spain Herald'. I suppose the abysmal lunacy of Libertaddigital & associates proved to be too much for John to try to bear with a grin.

Anyway, despite his outlandish politics he seems a nice enough guy. Although he occasionally threw the odd fit of temper -don't we all- he's got a good sense of humour and he's a good writer who played it by the book most of the time.

Please John, do come back, we're all craving a decent fight!

David said...

'straight-talking' Acebes, no innuendo meant there.

Anonymous said...

Hey guys, I think you have described him perfectly.

See John? People are still coming to iberia notes to check if there are new entries... Come on, come back...

Joan

Anonymous said...

My favorite moment was when one old friend of his found this blog and realised how much he has changed since those college days. So back then they called him Jesus, and he was so disappointed he called him Judas this time!. Great one. I can prefectly imagine the young Chappel being really active on the radical left.

Joan

Carl said...

Even people who swore they would never read John again are still coming back to check in.

Best wishes John.

Anthony said...

PEAK-A-BOO! ;)

Anonymous said...

Has anyone seen the series Spain On the Road Again on American PBS, with Mario Batali and Gwyneth Paltrow. The scenery is gorgeous and the food looks great, but it's really annoying to have Spain play second fiddle to Mario and Gwynnie.

http://www.spainontheroadagain.com/

And no, I don't work for them.

Shannon

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Anonymous said...

Yikes. The site has gone free advertising for sexxat. Apparently John's moving ecumenical surveying of Catalan reality really did prove too much for his media naranja.

Anonymous said...

Maybe that's why john hasnt posted in so long. Que lastima.

Anonymous said...

Hi as admited to being bi_polar or something so maybe he's depressed or he want's to see who wins the USA elections. If a Obama wins Johns KKK redneck ansesters(and perhaps some of his living relatives) are going to be rolling in there graves (the livings one too as it might shock them to death!)

Shannon said...

Anonymous: How dare you? Keep your vile speculations to yourself. You know nothing about John or his family.

Anonymous said...

White Supremacist Rage Boils Over After Obama Victory; Racist Site Crashes After Election


New York, NY, November 10, 2008 … In the aftermath of the election victory of Barack Obama, white supremacists rushed to online discussion forums to vent anger and disbelief that voters had chosen an African-American candidate as the next president of the United States.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which monitors and exposes extremist activity and rhetoric, said anger among white supremacists and other right-wing extremists in response to Obama's victory resulted in an avalanche of vitriolic postings on racist Web sites. At one point, the chatter so overloaded the server of the most popular white supremacist Internet forum, Stormfront, that the site was temporarily shut down.

According to ADL, racists are incredulous that Obama was elected primarily by white voters and are seething with anger at the prospect of an America led by an African-American man.

"We always expect a reaction from the bigots when events occur that they believe are contrary to their interests and worldview," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "While it's clear that race didn't matter to the vast majority of the American people in this election, race matters to racists."

Mr. Foxman added: "The amount of invective, anger and rage being vented on white supremacist sites in the aftermath of the election is startling. Many racists are convinced that President-elect Obama's achievement means that whites have lost their place in America, and they are predicting the beginning of a race war."

The League has posted a sampling of comments from white supremacist online discussion boards and Internet forums on its Web site.

Well-known extremists, like former Klan leader David Duke, as well as anonymous individuals online blamed everyone from white "traitors" to Jews, minorities, and Republicans for bringing about this event and destroying their vision of a race-divided America.

The white supremacist chatter on the election has focused on several themes:

• "Tragedy" for America: White supremacist and former Klansman David Duke announced on an Internet radio show on election night that, "I believe tonight is a night of tragedy and sadness for our people in many ways … the country is not recognizable any more."

• Predicting a "Race War:" While some racists announced that they would leave the United States, others suggested that Obama's election win would provide a catalyst that would move whites to become active racists. Some predicted the election would prove a boon to racist recruitment efforts. Still others suggested they were planning on arming themselves with guns and ammunition to defend themselves in a coming "race war."

• Calls to Violence: While making no direct threats against the president-elect, some white supremacists expressed a hope that Obama would be killed or die while in office. One racist referred to a recent alleged plot by neo-Nazi skinheads to kill Obama and minorities, expressing a hope that someone else would carry out an assassination attempt: "… hopefully he'll get assassinated before he gets into office. Just don't be (expletive) idiots about it like those skinheads were," wrote "Trellen R." An anonymous poster on white supremacist Hal Turner's blog went further: "Someone will kill him! And I will celebrate! It's just a matter of time."

• Blaming Jews: Not surprisingly, many white supremacists are blaming Jews, suggesting that Jews control U.S. government and media and promote multiculturalism. Others suggested Jews exercised control over the Obama campaign and the Democratic Party.



The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry

Anonymous said...

Anonymous,

Get over it. We elected a Black American as our President. I know this really depresses you since Europe has a very long way to go to catch up with us and all your pre-conceived notions are crap.

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Anonymous said...

Not even the US elections could stir Chappel-slash-whatever he briefly changed his surname to? The woman definitely left him.

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El Mago del Dedo said...

it is been a year. come back man!

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catalonia blog said...

It's a shame that you aren't posting again. Let us know, so that we can stop checking.

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Anonymous said...

How do you call this an Iberian Blog if you completely neglect Portugal?

Something is not well in your head

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Ben said...

Too bad John moved on before I came up with a new name for his blog: Franco-American.

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Bakersfield Photographer said...

Those trashy-looking couple were so rude and shameless. They should be aware that they have a baby to take care of rather than to smoke. Good thing you were there to save the baby. You have such a good heart.