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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Gypmeisters beware. Kovaks is back


I finally met up with Larry Kovaks yesterday. We knocked back some Havana ron, and bullshitted over a couple Reig cigars. He told me after his investigation of Socrates Sanchez's brothel in the Raval he had an existential crisis. It was some pretty heavy stuff apparently.

But that didn't stop him from working. He gave me a head's up on the latest installment, Shame, Shame, Shame Part II (of VI, apparently).

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the dope on what went down a couple weeks ago in the giant hooker roundup.

Kovaks wants it to be known: he may be investigating outside the realm of guiri robberies, but he is back in full form. After the six installments of Shame, Shame, Shame, he'll be back with the latest scandalous method of gypmeisting. He calls it the Fake Baby Con.

Glad to have him back.

On a side note, he mentioned his gratitude for the letters of inquiry, and the true-life stories of woe people sent to him. He also enjoyed the "more salacious" emails. Purportedly these contained some pretty sexy material. Ladies must know that Kovaks has one true love, however. But he didn't really want to talk about it.

Friday, November 24, 2006

The Moritz Mobile

Some weeks ago I wrote about the Seat 600, the iconic car of the Spanish Miracle. I mentioned there was one going around town all done up with the Moritz logo, and I finally got a couple pictures of it:


Pretty cool. I'd drive it.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Breakin' the law

So I got a "new" bike. It's a frankensteined little beast, made of discarded parts from various models, and it has to have one of the worst paint jobs I've ever seen. So come on ladrones! I dare you steal it!

Today I felt like living on the edge. That's why this morning, before I went to work, I decided to break as many civic ordnance laws as I could. The result is probably a first in the history of this illustrious and increasingly anal city. Hell, if I wanted ordnung I would have gone to Bavaria!

So. Ladies and gents, the backlash has begun.

I hopped on my squeaky beater bike and rode down sidewalks wherever I could, making sure they were all less than 3 meters wide. I went a reckless 12 km an hour, of course (which is 2km an hour over the speed limit when on a congested sidewalk. Luckily I have an innate sense of speed, because my bike doesn't have an speedometer).

While riding as close as I could to the storefronts, I headed towards the nearest high school, zigzagging perilously through the mileurista masses. Then, still on my bike, I lit up a cigarette, began urinating, and began prostituting myself in a scandalous way while speaking in Spanish. Afterwards, I shamelessly locked my bike to a tree and went to a market and bought some piss-water wine and some Coca Cola. I dumped out half of the Coca Cola and poured in the wine and did a one-man botellon with my kalimocho* in front of the store. It was a liberating experience. At least until I realized my cataplines were swinging in the November wind (cold equals shrinkage). And in my wine-stained hands I had a five euro bill and I couldn't figure out how I got it. So much for being a rebel.

Speaking of law breaking, my friends and partners in crime The Gangsters of Love are playing tonight at Gracia's emblematic Heliogabal bar (c/ Ramon i Cajal 80) at 10:00 pm. Come hang out with anarchists and guiris and other low-life degenerates while we celebrate this day of thanks.

Full disclosure: Dan, the singer of the Gangsters, gave me the bike. This, however, in no way means I'm plugging his band because of his gift. They play rock & roll. No DJs or fancy shit like that. Good to bawl and brawl to. That's it.

Salut!

_

* kalimocho – is a mixture of cheap red wine and Coca Cola, popular with kids and reckless bike riding rebels like me. The coke masks the terrible taste of the wine and gives you an extra boost.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Rebellion in the Zoo 2

The Fauna Ibérica are at it again. Seeing their territory invaded by an alien species, they go out -usually after nightfall - armed with cell phone cameras. The following videos are a unique experience in which you can witness life through the eyes of authentic Fauna Ibérica, uncensored and raw.

This is what I found on youtube (click on the titles for a link to the video):

***

Guiris popo

Perhaps one of the great documents of our time. We have here an extended encounter between several specimens of Fauna Ibérica and the genus Guiri Popo. The Guiri Popo are in a state of inebriation and the Fauna Ibérica, realizing the Guiri Popo can’t understand their method of communication, proceed to taunt them. The Guiri Popo then try to ingratiate the Fauna Ibérica by finding common ground. As is usual amongst males of both species, they talk about football. One of the Guiri Popo talks about Barça. The only problem is this is the south of Spain and he fails to bond (Barcelona, for those who may not know, is in the north. The arbitrary geographical delimitation apparently affects many people here ). Guiri Popo, if he is not too inebriated, may learn a valuable cultural lesson.

***

Los guiris salen del corral

6 in the morning, possibly the Balearic Islands. Los guiris salen del corral, or the “guiris leave the pen”. Intrepid specimens of Fauna Ibérica risk their suntans by waiting, cell phone cam in hand, by the gates of a typical guiri establishment. Watch as a spectrum of guiris stream out of the hotel, both female and male, young and old. An impressive, never-before-seen documentation of the 6 am beach departure ritual.

***

Crazy Guiri

A typical example of the genus Guiri Discombobulus. The Ramblas plays host to many of them. There are watering holes nearby, where this specimen most likely drank fermented wheat water, thereby inducing a state of inebriated stupefaction. Many things happen in the inebriated state. If one is careful, on some nights you can spot the Guiri Discombobulus urinating furtively in corners, even on withered trees, thereby providing valuable nitrates to the top soil and continuing the cycle of life. What we have here, in Crazy Guiri, is a Guiri Discombobulus who has stripped all his clothing off. He is standing on the Ramblas, and other guiris and a smattering of Fauna Iberica look on. Eventually the elite Fauna Ibérica, Los Mossos, put a stop to this behavior.

***

Guiri los cancajos

An older Guiri Classicus shows signs of stress and possible senile dementia. As he runs within an imaginary cage the Fauna Ibérica stealthily film him. Accompanying this video is the haunting Vangelis theme to Chariots of Fire.

***

El jabonazo

A particularly vicious specimen of Fauna Ibérica in this one. El jabonazo, or the soaping, is a rare glimpse into the psychology of young Fauna Ibérica. From a perch, about three stories up, this young male throws a wad of wet, soapy tissue at what I presume are members of genus Guiri Estudiantus.

***

guiri borracha

In guiri borracha, or drunken girl-guiri, we witness a typical mating ritual tactic. She finds herself surrounded by male natives who, taking advantage of her ignorance of the native tongue, have her say, more or less, “I want to eat your genitalia” – in their variant of Spanish, of course.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Gay animal spanking?

Time for fun with stats ...

Leave it to the Italians to search for "drench ass coming slap girl story OR stories OR spank -gay -animal".

Leave it to Google to direct them to my blog.

The link he followed (I'm assuming it's a he) led him to one of the first blog posts I wrote called No More Cheap Tickets, Please. No doubt an edifying experience for this shameless gay-animal-spanker.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Orwell on nationalism

George Orwell, a man of experience and wisdom, left us a fantastic essay on nationalism. Below are a couple of snippets, but I think reading the whole thing is worthwhile.

The definition of nationalism according to Orwell:

By 'nationalism' I mean first of all the habit of assuming that human beings can be classified like insects and that whole blocks of millions or tens of millions of people can be confidently labelled 'good' or 'bad'. But secondly--and this is much more important--I mean the habit of identifying oneself with a single nation or other unit, placing it beyond good and evil and recognising no other duty than that of advancing its interests. Nationalism is not to be confused with patriotism. Both words are normally used in so vague a way that any definition is liable to be challenged, but one must draw a distinction between them, since two different and even opposing ideas are involved. By 'patriotism' I mean devotion to a particular place and a particular way of life, which one believes to be the best in the world but has no wish to force on other people. Patriotism is of its nature defensive, both militarily and culturally. Nationalism, on the other hand, is inseparable from the desire for power. The abiding purpose of every nationalist is to secure more power and more prestige, NOT for himself but for the nation or other unit in which he has chosen to sink his own individuality.

On what he calls "transferred nationalism":

In societies such as ours, it is unusual for anyone describable as an intellectual to feel a very deep attachment to his own country. Public opinion--that is, the section of public opinion of which he as an intellectual is aware--will not allow him to do so. Most of the people surrounding him are sceptical and disaffected, and he may adopt the same attitude from imitativeness or sheer cowardice: in that case he will have abandoned the form of nationalism that lies nearest to hand without getting any closer to a genuinely internationalist outlook. He still feels the need for a Fatherland, and it is natural to look for one somewhere abroad. Having found it, he can wallow unrestrainedly in exactly those emotions from which he believes that he has emancipated himself. God, the King, the Empire, the Union Jack--all the overthrown idols can reappear under different names, and because they are not recognised for what they are they can be worshipped with a good conscience. Transferred nationalism, like the use of scapegoats, is a way of attaining salvation without altering one's conduct.

Tripartit 2: The Electric Boogaloo

I’m sure no one outside of Spain really cares about the new tripartit. It’s so convoluted and regional that any of the regulars to my little soap box in cyberspace could probably care less.

Yup, this is about the regional elections in Catalunya – or should I spell that Catalonia, or, god forbid, CATALUÑA. The “Ñ” is considered downright evil by some in Catalunya, meaning by extension español, therefore, españolista, therefore, centrista, therefore FASCIST.

Let’s bandy that word about a bit more until it means nothing, why don’t we?

I guess my circle of friends and acquaintances is pretty small, because everyone spouts the same rhetoric. No one would ever, and I mean ever, vote for a party that was conservative. That means the PP, former party of Aznar (who I will proudly and loudly assert is one of the globe’s biggest fools). Which is a shame, because despite those morons Acebes and Rajoy, the PP's regional candidate, Josep Piqué, comes off in debates and interviews as a reasonable human being. And there's Ciutadans de Catalunya, a new political party of progressive -thinking anti-nationalists. Because they are anti-catalanista - that is, anti-nationalist - they are considered conservatives. This, despite the fact that they are not anti-catalan.

So, that’s democracy. The majority vote, even if it went to the CiU (the faux-nationalist conservative party), counts for nothing. Because of a pact between the "left wing" parties, and a slim coalition lead - about as slim as Judith Mascó - the new tripartit is born. Oh, sorry, it's now called the govern de entesa according to the ERC. I’m glad their clever PR people fooled me and the rest of Catalunya into thinking this wasn’t the tripartit again! If there’s one thing I believe in, it’s the power of suggestion.

The govern de entesa = tripartit with a disgruntled Montilla as president and an elated Carod-Rovira as vice president. The ERC will also be in charge of the culture department. It’s a good thing too. For example, it’s a good thing they forced the Festival Internacional de Cine Erótico to leave Barcelona. What an evil and degrading thing sex is for women! And shocking too. Ah, it’s understandable. Like porn director Conrad Son’s Les exxxcursionistes calentes, which was given subsidies by the Generalitat because it was - despite its being porno - dubbed en la llengua català (the movie was also dedicated to Carod-Rovira “el català més trempat” or "the horniest Catalan”). Then there’s Conrad Son’s next ode a la femme, El mar no es blava. Given subsidies, again, because it was dubbed into Catalan. I wonder if Sr. Son still considers Carod the horniest man in Catalunya, or if he'll still get his subsidies.

I have no ethical qualms about porno being dubbed, by the way. Just to clarify that. It just doesn’t make much sense unless you’d rather hear your groans and moans in dubbed català.

Well, they’re handing a vote to the PP is all. Rajoy, Aznar’s minion, is rubbing his sweaty palms in supreme satisfaction. Carod, the kingmaker, and therefore real president of Catalunya, is handing him the next national elections. Besides the ERC’s 300,000 thousand strong, he is reviled throughout Spain and large parts of Catalunya. Power is a nice thing, ain’t it?

I shouldn’t even get worked up about politics, because the intention of this blog was to talk about the seamy side of Barcelona. It was also to self-deprecate my status as guiri. The guiri term is pretty much played out now and holds no comedic value. And, robberies and such: since I moved out of Barri Sant Pere, I haven’t witnessed one robbery or one furtive pissing, not even an exhibitionist. Yes, what was once a daily occurrence in my old neighborhood is now stripped from my life. It’s so quiet here in the Eixample. About the only distraction I have is the neighbor’s border collie howling for hours on end. That, and the odd car accident, and the doppler shifts of sirens and super-tuned scooters wheezing by.

Jolines, I need some grit.

I need a party, and not no electric boogaloo (actually the sequel to 1984’s classic Breakin’ … kids don’t forget to chop the “g” off the gerund to make it cooler sounding). Unless Montilla and Carod perform the “rotating room” breakdance scene, replete with techno-fied sardanas blasting in the background, I think the next months to come are going to be redundant, to say the least. Oh well, it’ll give the pundits something to bitch about. I'll do my best to stay away from politics - that is unless another drunken ERC militant belligerently calls me a fascist simply for disagreeing with him ... oh, that's another story.

But, speaking of grit. Maybe I can find some on the trains. Check out this disturbed citizen’s letter to the editor in yesterday's 20 Minutos (the letters to the editor, by the way, are the best part of that free newspaper):

Fiesta en el tren

El día anterior a Todos los Santos, a las 11.30 de mañana y después de una larga jornada laboral, me encuentro en el tren de cercanías con destino a Sant Celoni el siguiente panorama vergonzoso: seis jóvenes fumando porros, una chica meándose, dos jóvenes dando patadas a la puerta del baño, una chica en sujetador andando por el vagón, gritos y risas de todo tipo, sin ningún agente de seguridad. ¿Cómo puede ser que después de pagar mi billete me encuentre este panorama?

Party in the train

The day before the Day of all Saints, at 11:30 in the morning and after a long day of work, I find myself in the regional train with the destination of Sant Celoni the following shameful panorama: six teenagers smoking joints, a girl pissing, two teenagers kicking the door to the bathroom, a girl wearing a bra walking through the train wagon, screams and laughs of all types, without one security guard. How could it be that after I pay for my ticket I encounter this panorama?

Since I’ve been relegated to walking and taking subways again after my second bike got stolen, this gives me hope. Girls in bras! Porros! Who would have thought!