Sunday, November 18, 2018

Thoughts from Hamburg, Germany: 18.11.18

Spanish life is not always likeable but it is compellingly loveable.
                                                                                                - Christopher Howse: A Pilgrim in Spain. 

If you've arrived here because of an interest in Galicia or Pontevedra, see my web page here. Garish but informative.

Matters Spanish
  • I wonder if I will ever get to try any of this.
  • I see Atlantis has finally been found, again.
  • Among some old papers, I found a blow-by-blow account of a World Cup football match between Spain and South Korea, watched in a Pontevedra bar. In 2002. Some of the things I noted:-
- Constant noise. Do Spaniards know how to stop talking?
- It's as if we were in the crowd at the match. Every good decision is applauded.
- Every move instantly analysed.
- Humour constant.
- Penalties looming. Hearts in mouth every time Korea comes forward.
- Terror now of last minute Korean goal. Even Spanish throw-ins are applauded.
- Extra time. Golden goal. Tangible, palpable tension. Cursing and swearing reach new heights.
- Second goal disallowed. Replays. Utter disbelief. Furore.
- Agitation refuses to die.
- Crowd now turning a little nasty. Every mistake by Spain now triggers an outpouring of Latin scorn.
- The air is purple with swear words I know and probably several more.
- Nil-nil final score. Penalty shoot-out
- Korea win the shoot-out and – unexpectedly and utterly undeservedly – go into the semi-finals while Spain goes into mourning.
- In eerie silence and with immense finality, the bar empties in less that 2 seconds.
At least the final comment answers the question posed in the first.

The EU
  • So long as the political elites in France and Germany aimed at a Bundesrepublik Europa, Brexit was both inevitable and necessary. Now that we are leaving, however, European integration has ground to a halt. With the election of populist governments, it may even be going into reverse. So, why leave now, one might ask, especially on the terms on offer.
  • Some pertinent overviews:-
- The only thing that is now absolutely certain about Brexit is that what we voted for in the referendum was not the utter chaos we are looking at today.
- Of course it would be better to remain in the EU than to accept this appalling “deal” – which is not in fact a deal but merely a precondition for a possible one. 

- The Withdrawal Agreement is not a “start”, as Mrs May keeps saying. It’s the end. [of Brexit].
- This is the place at which we were always meant to arrive: the destination determined from the outset by the select group of people who decide these things. 
- The choice of “this deal or no deal” is a complete red herring. The Remainers will stop banging on about a second referendum – which is a non-starter – and demand instead an extension of Article 50. This is a request that Brussels should happily accept.

  • Nice article on Fart and authoritarianism here.
  • Here's a list of words that the author says don't exist and are untranslatable. But then goes on to translate them . . .
© [David] Colin Davies 


Maria said...

Pasota is another Spanish word that has no equivalent in English. It means to not care about anything, like the Italian one - menefreghista, if I remember well. It comes from the word "paso" as in, "I'll pass on that."

Perry said...

An interesting post from you Maria.

Pasota, being defined showing unconcern or disinterest for everything that surrounds a person, sounds like the impaired empathy of a psychopathic personality, rather than just feeling jaded, dull, apathetic, or cynical from experiencing too much of something.

OTOH, love, being an emotion, its opposite is not hate, but indifference, a lack of emotion. That's not Pasota, though. Different cultures, different proclivities. The Germans have a word for the enjoyment one can feel from the troubles of others. It's Schadenfreude, from Schaden damage + Freude joy.

You set me looking for other examples.