The Día del Amigo descends upon us in a haze of alcohol, so depending on who you are, now is your chance to score rounds of discounted fernet with your squad of friends or LinkedIn connections.
The holiday first evolved from the World Friendship Crusade, a similar celebration started by Paraguay in 1958. The Rotary member Enrique Ernesto Febbraro is credited with setting the Argentine celebration to July 20, the date astronaut Neil Armstrong landed on the moon. Febbraro decided that this accomplishment symbolized “a gesture of friendship, from humanity to the universe,” and sent a thousand letters to one hundred countries to join in the holiday.
Today, thousands of people crowd at bars, parks, and house parties to celebrate their amigos. If you try to reserve anything in Palermo, you will find it has already been reserved and has a waiting list that stretches to next year’s Día del Amigo. Your Whatsapp hasn’t blown up like this since your last birthday. Your Instagram is saturated by too many happy people you don’t even know. Strangers at the bar are yelling all around you, and you just want to enjoy a nice gin and tonic, but your order is #403 and they’re only at #84.
If the Argentine definition of personal space is usually this close…
…then today at the bar, prepared to be absolutely crushed by both strangers and friends.
Though many Latin American countries celebrate on different dates, nobody revels in the Day of the Friend like an Argentine. According to a survey by consultancy D’Alessio IROL, 84 percent of respondents participate in the celebration, and six out of ten will do so with food. And according to a survey by market researching firm Kantar Worldpanel, beer, wine, and fernet top the choices for alcohol, and 73 percent said they would give a gift. However, respondents largely preferred this to come in the form of experiences (restaurant, spa) rather than material goods, though bottles of wine is still a popular choice.
Here are some ideas for you to maximize your celebration of this special day promoting a culture of peace and harmony.
- Post a selfie with your most attractive friends against the backdrop of a club or brunch spot and include the caption: #amigos #amistad #eldiadelamigo #losquiero #festejo #vivir #risa #amor so that everyone will know they inspire you every day with their positivity, buena onda, and number of Instagram followers.
- Alternatively, tweet a picture with that guy or girl who always hits on you (but whom you’re not really into) and write, “BUENOS AMIGOS!” or just “Amigos!”
- Withdraw from your student savings account and treat all your friends to $19 avocado toast. You might never be able to afford your own apartment, but maybe your friends will share one.
- Send each of the corporations selling you El Día del Amigo-themed products a Facebook friend request.
For real, though.
Score the group packages, spend time with your loved ones, party till 7am. Or maybe you just high-fived them at 12:01am last night and went back to sleep.
Every day (or at least half the days a year) should be considered a day to celebrate your friends — but only in Argentina does the entire country completely lose their shit for 24 hours over friendship.
Make of this what you will.