admin @ Monday September 21st 2015 10:23

Brindis del público al sol, Riópar. More pics.

Infighting re Catalan UDI (next week? steps have been taken in a nearby military base) in the Barcelona Círculo de Economía / Cercle d'Economia (broadly speaking: "intellectuals" pro, entrepreneurs contra):

Cuando el economista Antón Costas, actual presidente del Círculo de Economía, presentó su propuesta en la que denominaba la Declaración Unilateral de Independencia de “brindis al sol” y aseguraba que “nadie tiene derecho a hablar en nombre de los catalanes", el sector liderado por Carulla clamó contra la resolución y los miembros de la junta se dividieron.

I think the phrase originates in Martín Murúa's 1600-ish description of one of the Incas in his Historia General del Perú:

Tubo por costumbre este Cusi Huana Churi, cada bes que beuia, brindar al sol hincado de rodillas, y pedille su beneplasito y liçençia para beuer con su bendiçion; y esta seremonia vsó toda su bida todos los días al salir del sol, y ansí le siguieron los de su casa.

Peter Harvey suggests "playing to the gallery," but I think a personal cost (whether acknowledged or not) is implied in the hopelessness, so I'd go with Neil Young, "Ambulance blues" (On the Beach, 1974):

Well, I'm up in T.O. keeping jive alive
And out on the corner it's half past five
But the subways are empty
And so are the cafes
Except for the Farmer's Market
And I still can hear him say:
You're all just pissing in the wind
You don't know it but you are
And there ain't nothing like a friend
Who can tell you you're just pissing in the wind.

Pissing against the wind is of course not a purely northern failing, and the English proverb appears to have come from the Italian. John Ray, A compleat Collection of English Proverbs (in the 1670 edition?):

Chi piscia contra il vento si bagna la camiscia. He that pisseth against the wind wets his shirt.

Or perhaps the Italian came from a lost British injunction against vomiting into the wind: don't.

A modification of the Spanish that might be appropriate in current circumstances is "brindar al sol en plena noche," toast the sun in the middle of the night.

  • John Ray (1) John Ray (29 November 1627 – 17 January 1705) was an English naturalist widely regarded as one of the earliest of the English parson-naturalists. Until 1670, he wrote his name as John Wray.
  • Martín de Murúa (1) Martín de Murúa, O. de M., (Gipuzkoa, Spain, c. 1525 – Spain, c.
  • Translation (634)
Categories: Les bourgeois

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  1. Tom
    September 21st 2015 16:12

    What steps in what military base? Genuinely interested. Email me if you don't want to put it here. Thanks!!

  2. Javier
    September 21st 2015 18:07

    I think that "brindis al sol" is a bullfighting related coinage, as Mr. Harvey says.

    C.O.R.D.E. is of no use here ( as you have probably realized). ABC archives are a bit more productive; the first "brindis al sol" dates from 1932 and is from the Seville edition:

    http://hemeroteca.abc.es/nav/Navigate.exe/hemeroteca/sevilla/abc.sevilla/1932/03/20/034.html

    - 2nd column, 6th paragraph -

    A similar expression "brindis al público de la solana", this time in a bullfighting chronicle, appears earlier, in 1916:

    http://hemeroteca.abc.es/nav/Navigate.exe/hemeroteca/madrid/abc/1916/06/12/010.html

    - 3rd column, under "Algeciras" header, 7th paragraph -

    But you should expect some other bullfighting related metaphors involving "sombra", and there are none, as far as I know. So there is probably some kind of relation to the "brindis al sol" of the Incas, as catalyst making the transition "brindis al público de sol" -> "brindis al sol"

  3. looby
    September 21st 2015 23:37

    Talking about throwing things to the wind, we were warned that it was unadvisable to throw my now rather charred Dad into the sea off North Yorkshire, as it has been known for a gust of wind to blow the deceased back into one's face.

    Bill Bryson, in Notes from a Small Country, invents a metaphor for an ineffectual action: (from memory) "...which has as much effect as a fart on Blackpool prom on a windy day in November.

    Oh Christ, here we go, those fucking impossible pictures of salad.

  4. Trebots
    September 22nd 2015 10:51

    @Tom: Torture chamber in the basement, big cross in the patio.
    @looby: A Hartlepool gent has said to me for many years, "You're as much use as a fart in a spacesuit" - damages no one else AND is unpleasant for the performer. The ashes thing is common: cannibalism?

  5. Trebots
    September 22nd 2015 11:38

    @Javier:

    Country bullrings often have the VIPs sitting at the west end with the sun going down behind them (as opposed to Christianity, which salutes the sun when it rises in the east). That might explain why there are no sombra references: the toast/salute was actually originally for the mayor/emperor/sun god, not for the public on one side.

    The ABC archive is wonderful. I can't understand why the Diario de Barcelona archive hasn't been digitised, even though much of it is pretty embarrassing for the nationalist inventors of Catalan history.

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