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Thursday, 2 July 2009

IS JEREMY PAXMAN A FATO?

I often say I can't speak for the rest of Spain when it comes to the goings on and going ons here. However, I do have enough experience teaching kids from outside this province to be convinced that we may be living in the most backward, ignorant and brutish part of Spain. Many would get the hump over this and argue the merits of the joint and I would agree, up to a point. Until you have seen the startling difference in attitudes directed towards one's fellow human beings you will presume the whole of Spain is littered with boorish oiks and gobby, tunnel visioned smarty pants. The word Fato I have mentioned before and it needs to be reminded to all that down the road in Zaragoza they call the locals here in Huesca this name. Fatuous and full of self importance. Mix this with a narrow minded view of the world and you get the picture. It's a similar feeling that must have been aroused when the Conservatice MP Michael Gove accused Jeremy Paxman of being obtuse on Newsnight recently.

While some folk here might get their jotas in a twist my friend Jon from Bilbao often reminds me that there are plenty of others who are proud of being a burro, or pigheaded to be precise. Another friend, Angeles assures me that there is evidence of this throughout Spain but it seems to excel here. She told me the other day that here if you ask someone not to do something you think is wrong, like throw stuff out the window, bellow in someone's face, snatch something out of another's hands, run people over etc you will often be hit with the response ' Y tu?, and you? Henderson who has lived all over the planet tells me that he has never come up against the old two wrongs don't make a right school of thought as much as he has here. I must confess I do find it all quite draining and am making an effort not to justify, explain or deny my actions to incompetents. We have oiks back home, in fact we call them chavs and we probably possess more than the Spanish so we should be proud but it doesn't mean I can't have an opinion just because I am not from this town.There is an advert around town which roughly translated is all about being respectful to others and the town, not to paint grafitti, wear a crash helmet, you know normal civil behaviour. The ad implies that the other person does all these normal cringeworthy things and leaves the ignoramus thinking 'and me? what do I do?' I doubt if anyone has read it except those who don't need to be told.

When I mention my blog and some of the stuff I write some people here get all worried and say 'oh, you shouldn't write that' and give me an even more perturbed look as if I might get my head kicked in. I find it very empowering and hysterical, the idea that one of these Fatos could believe for a minute that someone whose ancestors fought Nazis amongst other derring does might be lying in bed at night shitting themselves in case said oaf might beat me up one day. Besides, you don't have to be a foreigner and have a point of view to stir up old hatreds and bitterness here. Bring it on.

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