|Rosa 'Darcey Bussell' 11 August 2022|
This blog published 11 August 2022 I have placed back to 3 July 2022 to fill some missing gaps.
With so much time in my hands, being almost 80, a widower and living alone with two cats, Niño and Niña, I have ample time to think and reflect.
But I do have a routine. One of them, when I wake up at 7:30 with the two cats on top of me (they are quiet and let me sleep), the first thing I do is go to my phone and check CNN but also these Argentine publications:
La Nación: (sort of like our Globe & Mail) and it has pay wall and it is slightly right of centre.
El Clarín: slightly left of centre and with pay wall.
Buenos Aires Times: This is in English with no pay wall and I believe it is the best well-balanced newspaper which has two former writers (one an editor) who worked with the venerable Buenos Aires Herald where my father worked in the 40s.
Infobae: has not pay wall and has lots of info on futbol but also interesting cultural pieces on Argentine history
La Prensa: Another venerable newspaper that was raided and closed by Perón when they wrote stuff he did not like. This paper has no pay wall and it is definitely right wing. But it has lots of cultural stuff that has not political focus. When I read it in the 60s you needed a dictionary because of the difficult and rarely used words in their content.
What do the red roses in this blog have to do with anything above?
While I am a Canadian, who on some days feels Texan or Mexican there is this constant realization of my argentinismo over my mother country.
In Argentina there is less evidence of overt racism because of colour barriers that are not as visible. The indigenous peoples were systematically killed in a 19th century Desert Campaign and the ones that survived are part of the mestizo population. This means that discrimination in Argentina is ruled by the use of language, having a famous or well-known patrician surname or with outright wealth.
The wealthy patricians did not approve of Maradona because he was a "cabecita negra"(one with a small dark head) and they adore Messi because he is white.
My O’Reilly family lives mostly in the prestigious barrio of San Isidro and Tigre, and the males all have played or play rugby in the Club Atlético de San Isidro. They survive the-beyond-60%-inflation by storing US Dollars in safety deposit boxes and have bank accounts in Miami.
But in relation to the red roses here, I want to point out the curious use of language to separate those above from those below.
In my San Isidro family if someone sneezes you say nothing. Anywhere else you would say, “Salud” (your health). When you show up and they are eating you never say, “buen provecho” (may the food be good for you”), you say nothing.
For a while in the 60s if you wanted to go to the bathroom you would say, “¿Donde puedo hacer pis?” You simply never used the word baño (bathroom).
In Spanish there are two words for red, one is rojo the other colorado. And that is why this heretofore semi patrician Argentine calls the red roses above coloradas.
In Argentina as a little boy when my mother or father would read me a story they would finish by saying, "Colorín colorado este cuento se ha acabado." This is equivalent to, "And they lived happily ever after."