Sunday, September 01, 2013

Sun; Swearwords again; Facebook fury; Toilet rolls; Final Fiestas; and Syria.

Well, September here in southern Galicia has begun like every single day in August - with sun and blue skies. In fact, we even had these conditions when 90% of Spain was enduring storms and heavy rains. If this is global warming, bring it on. But it probably isn't.

There was a very laudatory (sponsored) article about Galicia in The Independent a couple of days ago. There were the inevitable couple of errors and, as ever, too much emphasis on Celtic influence but it wasn't bad on the whole. What brought me up sharp was the suggestion that Pontevedra is a hidden gem. I felt obliged to write to the paper saying this wasn't true and advising people to stay away.

HT to Lenox for introducing me to another Spanish vulgarism. The word cho-cho (inevitably) has several meanings, including 'sweets/candies'. But it also means what British newspapers would call a c--t. Lenox tells me young women in his part of Spain use it as a term of endearment with their female friends. And the dictionary tells me they sometimes combine it with the word bobo, meaning 'stupid'. And I thought it was odd they called themselves tia, or 'aunt'. As Lenox says, it's a different culture.

Click here for an Economist article on how/why using Facebook makes people miserable. At least if they're below 40. Or even 30. For the rest of us, it just renders us angry, if I'm anything to go by. Yesterday I was infuriated by the sudden appearance of a message from Guinness wanting to access all my data and refusing to disappear. But at least the well-endowed women fronting(!) ads for dating agencies haven't re-appeared since I changed my status back to single.

I'm not fully au fait with this but there seems to be some sort of dialogue taking place here in Spain between those of the Right who'd like the Franco fascist flag to be restored and those of the Left who'd like the republican flag restored. Or possibly merely recognised. Just what Spain needs - energy and brainpower being wasted on such unproductive trifles. More seriously, the Left is genuinely concerned about the rise of extremism on the Right. And the PP party must be at least a little worried for them to say they'll expel anyone who's caught playing at being a Nazi. Well, worried about their image, anyway. If not about the views displayed.

I finally found I hadn't been dreaming about toilet paper and that the name given for the failure to change empty rolls is rollaphobia. Or so says one of the companies who sell them. Click here for the ad.

Syria: Tough to call but, right now, I'm with those eschewing a gesture that could well make things worse. For everyone. But, I don't have an alternative to Doing-Nothing-Just-Yet, other than, if the aim is to punish evil dictators, maybe assassinating Assad. Instead, here's a penetrating commentary from The Onion on the subject.

I regularly aver the Spanish are never more efficient and impressive than when planning and setting up fiestas. So it is that, with more than a week to go, preparations started on Thursday for our Medieval Fair (Feira Franca) which kicks off next Friday night. This is our last big fiesta of the year, unless the town's bars succeed in getting the 'traditional' Octoberfest established. I wouldn't put it past them. Anyway, here's a couple of pix of the unfinished restoration of the Portugal gate to the old town, well known to pilgrims to Santiago:-

Finally . . . Just in case you ever wanted to know, here's a list of words in Gallego said to have Celtic origins.


Perry said...


You beat me to it with rollaphobia, but I would also offer No Volvere, loosely translated as nothing to pull.

Bing gave chocho as pussy & pussy as coño.

Azra said...

That open letter on The Onion from "Assad" was hilarious - and sadly true.

Azra said...

That open letter on The Onion from "Assad" was hilarious - and sadly true.

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