Monday, September 22, 2008

Here’s a thing – The Spanish government appears to be flagrantly contradicting my prediction it wouldn’t take any Italian-style measures against the prostitution that scars the country’s image. And its landscape. More accurately, it says it agrees something really has to be done but that it doesn’t want to go so far as to criminalise the activities of the men. Instead, it will try to uglify/censure [afear] the activity so as to ‘disincentivise’ them. Well, I guess it might just work. And I await the campaign with interest. Meanwhile, the really positive news is that the announcement has been welcomed by the right-of-centre El Mundo.

Here’s another thing - The Minister for Health and Consumer Affairs says Telef√≥nica’s plans to start charging us for the previously-free caller-identification service is illegal. It’ll be more than interesting to see what happens next. Will the company cave in? Or will some other – more senior – minister announce that his/her colleague has had a moment of confusion? The sort of thing we’ve been seeing quit a lot of recently, under President Zapatero’s idiosyncratic form of leadership.

The news about road traffic accidents here continues to be very positive. Deaths over this weekend were massively down on last year. It’s generally accepted that one factor in this is drivers saving petrol by either slowing down or simply staying off the road. But, if true, this would surely be reflected in the figures from other countries too. Unless, of course, there’s a point beyond which the ‘easy’ savings have been made and other countries have already reached or even passed it. Anyone got the Portuguese data?

Sombre Quote of the Week

We spend the first part of our lives imagining that we will not die at all, and the second part hoping that we will slip into the darkness of eternity, aged about 105, while fast asleep. Jeremy Clarkson, pondering on an issue none of us can avoid.

Case in Point

There was a man named Dave Freeman who co-wrote the ultimate list - “100 Things To Do Before You Die.” It was filled with adventures. Bungee jumping, running with the bulls in Pamplona, surfing nude at night in Australia and so on. Then last month at 47, Dave tripped in his hallway hit his head and died. He’d got through 50 of the 100 things he listed. Ariel Leve, American writer and Times columnist.,


I don’t know whether this is true of other parts of Spain but there seems to have been a veritable explosion in internet relationships between local women and foreign men recently. Including two where neither of the women speaks more than rudimentary English. One of these had just been visited by her non-Spanish-speaking Dutch beau and the other is off to visit her similarly-handicapped man in Scotland because he’s told her she’s the woman of her dreams. But, as she had to get a friend to translate the message, one wonders how they’ll get on. Hand signals, presumably. Early on at least.

Well, it’s the 23rd of September and I still don’t have my copy of Prospect magazine due in the first week of the month. Actually, I haven’t even got the August edition due seven weeks ago. My suspicion is that, down at the Poio post office, they don’t just let this sort of stuff pile up during the summer holidays but go so far as to chuck at least some of it away when they get back. Happily for me, though, the good people at Prospect are always willing to send me a replacement copy.

I did, though, get the latest edition of Private Eye today. But a glance at the answers to the last crossword confirms I haven’t yet received at least the previous edition. And possibly never will.

Finally, here’s a message I’ve just received from a chap in New York. Anyone there who might be interested can write to me at

I am casting a commercial for Gadis, in Galicia, Spain. The commercial will be shot in NYC but we need some people that look like they come from Galicia. Do you know any Galicians that reside in New York and would like to be in a commercial? They would be paid, there are different rates for different roles and it would shoot early October.


Sierra said...

What Car - June 2008

"Europe needs to cut road deaths by 37% to halve road deaths by 2010, but only France, Portugal and Luxembourg remain on course to hit the target, which was set in 2001 - they have cut deaths by 43%, 42% and 38% respectively."

Portugal was worse in EU, but has now been overtaken (sic) by Lithuania.

Victor said...

"I am casting a commercial for Gadis, in Galicia, Spain. The commercial will be shot in NYC but we need some people that look like they come from Galicia.".......

Pray tell what does a typical Galician look like?
I'm sure if he put an ad in the New York times etc he will get a positive response.

Colin said...

Yes, I had much the same thought.

ANA said...

Regarding the Post Office. You should have a word with someone there as sometimes they deliver stuff to people who just happen to have an English name.There might be another Colin or Mr Davies enjoying your read right now.Having said this, I don't know how they might take this up there in Galicia and understand these situations are never easy and need some amount of preparation beforehand as complaints or suggestions here are often seen as criticism and you don't want to wound the postie!

Diablo Scott said...

Dave Freeman story... quintessentialy ironic!