Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sparked by Friday night’s events, the Sunday papers are inevitably full of commentaries on the botellón phenomenon. One writer even saw it as a fascistic affront to democracy. The majority opinion appears to be something must be done about it, though no one seems to have a solution.

I had another go at reading a Francisco Umbral article today. This one seemed to be a somewhat misogynistic rant about modern Spanish women but, given his penchant for allusions and metaphors, I can’t say I fully understood his viewpoint. However, I was impressed that, as with his earlier article on freedom-loving English men in bowler hats, he was able to mention both Virginia Woolf and lesbians. I’m beginning to suspect he may have something of an obsession and will keep my eyes out for the next allusion.

Looking at a map in the Archaeological Museum yesterday, I was struck by how large the Kingdom of León had been in the 10th century. Basically, it covered the NW corner of the Iberian peninsula, taking in León, Castile, Cantabria, Asturias, Galicia and a good chunk of North Portugal. So where on earth are the León nationalists? And why are they being left behind by the Catalans, Basques and even the Galicians? OK, they might have to give up on a claim on North Portugal but surely, in today’s pluralist Spain, everything else is up for grabs if they’re determined enough. After all, in Spain history counts. Above all else, it sometimes seems.

As one who regards the man in question as responsible for much of what is wrong with British society, I can’t say how thrilled I was to read this headline today in El Mundo – ‘Rupert Murdoch predicts his own extinction’. Apparently he feels vulnerable to the internet in general and to blogs in particular. All strength to us.

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