Year archive for 2006

Divine drop

Posted: December 30th 2006 11:44.

Off-location, but too exquisitely grisly to omit: In September, when the 13th of 27 condemned men was hanged, the rope snapped and the prisoner landed on the floor and shouted: "God saved me!" He lay on the ground praying and shouting while prison guards and the hangman discussed whether there had been divine intervention and […]

Catalonia still in South America

Posted: December 30th 2006 11:35. Last modified: December 30th 2006 11:36

It's not that much more expensive to fly to Rio than to Madrid, so maybe Mr Quintanilla knows something we don't about continental drift.

Immigrant working conditions

Posted: December 19th 2006 12:21.

Re this: I met some Senegalese olive pickers in Jaén two winters ago living in disused pigsties next to a marvellous ranch. We didn't discuss religion.

Mini-series about mythical bandit Serrallonga to be filmed on out-of-town real estate development using cheap Kosovan extras

Posted: December 17th 2006 18:33.

That's the word from a friend at TVC on this. I'm sure construction magnates with well-filled safes the public will enjoy it immensely.

Barcelona is…

Posted: December 17th 2006 17:08.

My favourite bodega, offering Polonium tapas at €2.10 a plate, geddit?! (That's enough of that.)

Significance of Spanish playing cards explained

Posted: December 17th 2006 14:25. Last modified: December 16th 2006 11:38

From William Pulleyn's The Etymological Compendium, Or, Portfolio of Origins and Inventions (1830), via Google Book Search: It is generally believed, that Cards were invented for the amusement of one of the early kings of the line of Bourbon; but this belief is erroneous. Who the man was that invented these instruments of amusement and […]

Culinary value of whipped pig and baited bull

Posted: December 16th 2006 23:00.

GA Sala of Brompton says in Notes and queries in 1874 that "the Spaniards ... have not yet arrived at the stage of excusing [bullfighting] on the score that it makes the beef tender. This idea seems borrowed from the old story ... about whipping pigs to death. 'Carne de Toreo'--bull-fighting beef--is usually looked upon […]

Barcelona is…

Posted: December 16th 2006 11:49. Last modified: December 16th 2006 11:59

Or was, early this morning, a six-foot tranny (6’6” if you include the shiny red plastic booties) in yesterday's beard (black, of course), fishnets, and a rather fetching little gingham number, conversing with loved ones far away as she traipsed home. (Tranny trips.)

Extracts from the letters of Don Fernando to various kings and princes of the world

Posted: December 15th 2006 12:50.

Zazie@Cocanha has scanned extracts from two versions of the highly amusing Cartas d’el Rei D. Fernando, O Catholico, a varios reis e principes do mundo, e suas respostas: colligidas e commentadas por Fr. Antonio Tarfan de los Godos, Commendador na Ordem de S. João de Jerusalem: the first bunch from a manuscript in the collection […]

No room at the inn

Posted: December 15th 2006 11:53. Last modified: December 15th 2006 12:07

A bunch of deranged Catalanista xenophobes are campaigning to drive out "foreign" Christmas symbols. Don't anyone tell them that in Holland Santa Claus is believed to be a Spanish bishop or that current research suggests that Jesus was actually a teddy bear.

A sulky is a Russian dog

Posted: December 15th 2006 11:42.

The hilarious case (via Malaprensa) of Pedro J Soriano, Alicante policeman, trade unionist, and columnist for Las Provincias in Valencia, who plagiarised an article published on Orsai by Hernán Casciari without having the faintest as to what it meant, and who, when interviewed alla Ali G by Casciari (check the magnificent recording), said the equivalent […]

Resurrection through faith or a fairy take on the beastly bookseller of Barcelona?

Posted: December 14th 2006 23:14.

Item 000174 from Passe-Partout, the University of Lausanne's International Bank of Printers' Ornaments

Abbé de Saint-Léger’s Lettres au baron de H[eiss] sur les différentes éditions rares du XVe siècle

Posted: December 14th 2006 22:37.

Anyone know if they're online anywhere? I'm interested in the Floncel anecdote, which I believe is on page 24. Talk to me here and be forever blessed.

Denominación de origen 4-lane highway

Posted: December 14th 2006 17:20. Last modified: December 14th 2006 21:33

The excellent Catavino is upset that the authorities want to tarmac over 100 hectares of vineyards in the Duero. I'm a bit more blasé: the Spanish only buy their own product because the Chinese don't make it cheaper, and I cherish little hope for green open spaces in a country where the most popular form […]

How to flavour your cake with shashlyk for free

Posted: December 14th 2006 14:37.

This Nasreddin Hodja story (via Ray Girvan) reminds me of the custom in at least one particularly poor part of England in the early 20th century of having the man in the cornershop slice one's bread with the ham knife in order to add taste.

Error squared

Posted: December 14th 2006 11:51. Last modified: December 14th 2006 11:55

Regret the error includes an item from the Denver Post: Because of an editor's error, a sentence on page 8D on Tuesday in a story about Rockies prospect Hector Gomez buying a bus was changed from "On the back he put 'Los Peloteros' which in Spanish means 'The Ballplayers'" to "he put 'Los Plotters' which […]

Camel trammel

Posted: December 14th 2006 11:36.

RMF over at Fum i estalzí has the lowdown, with before and after pics, on the death of a camel (or is it a dromedary?) at Ataturk International Airport. Grey Wolf would not have been chuffed. (More on Google in English.)

Charles Nodier on marginal languages

Posted: December 13th 2006 18:15. Last modified: December 16th 2006 16:57

Nodier was a distinguished bibliophile and member of the Académie Française who ran the library at the Parisian Arsenal, which, according to Musset, was where romanticism set up shop. (Émile de Girardin says in Mme de Girardin that Hugo, like everyone else, fell in love with Mrs and called her Notre-Dame de l'Arsenal.) His novel […]

Generalitat’s “temporary expropriations” of property

Posted: December 12th 2006 16:31.

Interesting that a "left-wing" government has chickened out of time-share nationalising second and third homes in the mountains and along the coast, where the market is more difficult for tenants than in the cities.

Spanish spelling reform

Posted: December 12th 2006 16:14.

"Eñe rrepresenta balore ma elebao de tradision ispanika y primero kaeremo mueto ante ke asetar bejasione a simbolo ke a sio korason bibifikante de istoria epañola unibersa," and so forth, via JPQ, and without apologies to whoever wrote what may be the original.

Picture-posts

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