Wednesday, November 03, 2004

It seems that only 1.5% of Spanish men take up their right to paternity leave. Or 1.52%, to be speciously more accurate. This may be because it is not called ‘paternity leave’. Men here are only given the right to a part of their wives’ maternity leave. Not a good idea in a macho country. At least not if you want the men to take the leave. But a brilliant idea if you’d rather they didn’t.

Yesterday’s development in the Galician political imbroglio was a lighting trip from Madrid by the president of the PP part to have a short but ‘excellent’ meeting with Mr Fraga. As a result of this, there has been a stay of execution for Madrid’s preferred successor to Fraga. Madrid takes the position, we are told, that it would be better to run the risk of losing the next regional elections than forfeit national dignity. What dignity would this be, I wonder. Apart from an answer to this, we now await the counter response of the rural barons. Or the ‘clan of the beret’, as they are called, to emphasise their peasant origins and powerbase. And this is by colleagues in the same party.


I went to a football match in La Coruña tonight, to see Liverpool play Deportivo. Although I went with Andrew, who is a Liverpool supporter, I wore my blue and white Everton scarf. This was to both annoy Andrew and to show solidarity with Deportivo, who sport the same colours. Treading our way carefully through the happy band of Liverpool fans near the ground, it wasn’t long before I was given my first friendly Scouser greeting. “Hey, you fucking twat” were, I think, the exact words. Oh, how I miss the Liverpool wit and repartee of my youth.


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