Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Those Funny Spanish

This post is dedicated to Those Funny Spanish

Firstly, my own 8th list of characteristics perceived by me and, secondly, a list garnered from Giles Trimlett's Ghosts of Spain. There may be an overlap:-

  • They accord a higher status to notaries and registrars than to lawyers
  • They don't regard efficiency as a god. Or even a totem.
  • They like blood and gore in their media reports
  • They know how to enjoy themselves. And how!
  • They wear anger lightly and dispose of it easily
  • They make my [journalist] job easy; they are always ready to talk, to give an opinion, to tell you things about themselves
  • They are naturally open and welcoming.
  • They are acutely, sensitively aware of what others say about them
  • They regard their home as an intimate space - a family refuge.
  • They meet in bars, in the plaza or on the street
  • They generally believe it is their right - even their obligation - to enjoy themselves
  • They celebrate, and demonstrate, in huge throngs - their enjoyment increased by the numbers with them
  • They like the warmth, the solidarity, the sense of belonging that groups give them
  • They wear their traditions, like their anger, quite lightly.There may or may not be gravitas
  • They have a passion for doing things en masse
  • They are one of Europe's most verbose and argumentative peoples, except when it comes to the Civil War. Where there is a vow of omerta.
  • They can be obstinate individualists when faced with authority
  • They like to live piled up on top of one another
  • They live a life of close physical contact, of loud, sociable bustle
  • They take their leisure - and their food - seriously
  • Their mothers are alway on hand to help
  • They have 2 contradictory impulses - anarchy and order
  • They enjoy tittle-tattle but are rarely judgmental
  • Sexual squeamishness is not one of their things
  • They are not given to moral absolutes
  • Cheating doesn't normally rate high on the list of things they care about. It's not frowned on, being seen as a bit of sporting rule-bending
  • They have always been intrigued by and admiring of chancers and rule breakers - the picaresque
  • They think, in their moments of introspection, that envy is one of their worst weaknesses
  • Sex scandals don't wash in Spain
  • They have a self-proclaimed reputation for being arnarchists
  • There's a legalistic and austere vein of Spanish life
  • Football is one of their greatest passions
  • They haven't, as a whole, loved to love their gypsies and many would rather not love beside them
  • They are blithely indifferent to prostitution and the (blatant) brothels
  • They seem to put brothel sex a par with talking, they're both paid for
  • No one is prepared to admit they're scandalised by brothel sex, seeing it as a matter-of-fact sort of business. "When it comes to sex, there's not too much prejudice here."
  • "But young men still have different ideas about what is acceptable sexual behaviour for them and what is acceptable for women."
  • They are Europe's largest consumer of cocaine
  • They are radically opposed to banning anything. "They don't like being told what to do".
  • In practice, though, they start their sex lives later than in other European countries.
How could one not love these people? I would do so even if most of their women weren't beautiful.

But, anyway, that's half the book. So more later in the week.


Patrick Glenn said...

That book was published like 50 years ago. Some things have changed. I think the Spanish are opening up about the Civil War. They like to live in large apartment buildings but not overcrowded in the same apartment. I think corruption in Government and the Monarchy is not acceptable anymore. Infidelity I think is less acceptable, not sure. The younger generation is changing all over the world because of smartphones.

Colin Davies said...

Well, 9 in fact but your points are taken. Things are changing faster than ever in Spain. One day it may be as bad as the UK and the US and I will have to find somewhere else to enjoy life.

Fer R said...

Related to our argumentative tendencies and our obstinate individualism when we faced the autority. Plus our exquisite art to apologize our conduct.

I remember I´ve allways been able to see lowered a fine or not be fined by a traffic guardian only using the Verb. The latest, driving my scooter few yards in opposite direction, I said the guardians who faced me: "I didn´t know you were there but, If I had known, I had commited my fault despite all, because I was plenty conscious of the illegality and, hence, I didn´t act with irresponsability, very on the contrary, I knew it was the time where children goes to school [there was a school in the corner], and I drove extremely carefully because I know I was driving in bad direction".

And It worked.

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