Es viernes otra vez!
God, no. Can you imagine? If you’re wondering why everyone is freaking out these days about Spanish dubbing, keep reading and you’ll find out.
You have probably noticed a decrease in content this week, and that is because we have been switching servers and re imagining the site so it’s easier for you to navigate it and find the stuff that you care about (pictures of kittens) without having to be disturbed by real world problems like inflation and Maradona. That’s OK, we totally get you. In fact, we love you so much that after switching servers all our articles lost their precious “likes” and “tweets” and “+1s” (Google Plus, seriously?), but we still chose to do it because we want you to have a seamless experience while reading The Bubble.
And also because our last server sucked, but whatever. It’s all for you guys, it’s all for you.
This is what you need to know:
- Welcome to the beautiful country of Anitnegra, where up is down, down is up and everything is so topsy-turvy that it makes Superman’s Bizarro World seem like an unexciting realm of predictable polar opposites (and that includes a cube-shaped planet!) This week, in an unprecedented turn of events, Argentina gained the support of two unpredictable allies in its heroic crusade against the ruthless beak of the vulture funds: the Obama administration and the International Monetary Fund. If your head just exploded, it’s understandable. As we all know, Argentina and the U.S. have been on and off since the beginning of time. And the last few months have been particularly tortuous since it always seems like we’re one step away from closing down their embassy, which would suck because their 4th of July parties are awesome. And the most recent scandal, with the whole “I’m spying on all of you” thing hasn’t helped. So imagine everyone’s surprise when suddenly we hear that the U.S. Department of Justice is apparently considering the “unusual step” of entering the bondholders’ lawsuit that this country is facing and side with us. And on top of that, we learn that the IMF, which is barely on speaking terms with us because of the whole “neoliberal decade and cooked up inflation numbers” thing, is also supporting us. It’s like Christmas. The world has finally acknowledged that we were right all along so yes, we can get cocky.
- Of course, it could also be the fact that “forcing sovereign nations to repay their overdue debts is a controversial topic in the developing world and in the halls of U.S. government agencies,” but no. Let’s be cocky.
- Oh and by the way: when it comes to Argentina vs. the Vulture Funds, the U.S. has usually sided with us in the past. But hey, if the media here decides to go “OH MY GOD, THE U.S. LOVES US” then I’m pretending this is huge news too. Don’t shoot the messenger.
- Right. The media is the messenger. Don’t shoot me then.
- Since I know you get bored easily and those last bullet points were kind of a drag (no kittens!), let’s use this one to congratulate President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner who officially became a grandma this week. And a hot grandma! Her grandson was called Néstor Iván *rolls eyes* in honor of former president Néstor Kirchner and this was of course the perfect opportunity to politicize the poor kid. But none of them had the epic narrative bespoken by Venezuela’s president Nicolás Maduro, who said he celebrated the birth of “a new Néstor Kirchner for the history of South America.”
- Score one for capitalism! Despite all the anti-American rhetoric, once again it becomes clear that business trumps ideology any day of the week. We hate the U.S. government but we love U.S. corporations (which, ironically, run the U.S. government). As long as we avoid doing a little research on the pressure exerted by powerful special interests groups, we’re cool. The big story this week was an agreement signed between oil giant Chevron and local YPF to invest $1.24 billion in the Vaca Muerta shale oil and gas formation, considered one of the biggest reserves in the Western Hemisphere. Many are unhappy with the deal, including the Mapuche community, which occupied two oil wells in Neuquén to protest the deal. The agreement gave the anti-Kirchnerites the perfect excuse to mock them, especially since it’s only been a few days since Cristina unleashed her heavy artillery against the US over the Snowden and Evo Morales scandals. Seems like we went from this to this in a few days, no? You could find myriad of tweets making fun of the whole thing, but if you ask me, this is definitely my favorite:
— Adrian Bono (@AdrianBono) July 17, 2013
- Poverty in Argentina is on the rise according to the Barometer of Social Debt of the Catholic University of Argentina, but since this study bears the word “catholic” on it and Catholicism equals conservatism (and therefore fascism) we refuse to believe it and let selective exposure do the job. So basically if you agree that poverty is on the rise, this is true. If you think poverty is not on the rise, this is obviously false. Your call. I’m not even trying anymore.
- And speaking of poverty – or lack thereof – Argentines figure in position seven among foreigners buying property in the US. Cristina, always trying to irk whoever doesn’t like her, asked for a round of applause for investors and said she still preferred a house in Paris.
- How’s your Spanish, kids? You better start practicing, because very soon you will be forced to speak it if you want to live in the totalitarian nightmare that this country is becoming. Haha! Nah, I’m kidding. I just like to bait those few Kirchnerites who like to call me a right-wing nut job whenever I criticize the Government. I like to bait you guys, but I also love. No, but seriously now. Many around the country are freaking out because this week Cristina announced that the Government would begin enforcing a law passed in the 80’s that makes it mandatory to dub all foreign audiovisual content (namely movies, TV shows, documentaries and ads) into neutral Spanish. Naturally the anti-Ks exploded with rage, since they saw it as a cheap ploy to fan the flames of cheap nationalism and sentiments of xenophobia. Which in a way it is. Franco did it in Spain, Mussolini did it in Italy, so of course. At the same time, the Ks applauded the measure, since they saw it as a new victory in the battle against cultural imperialism and American propaganda. Which in a way it also kind is. In fact, many (many) countries in the Western world have similar laws in order to make it easier for people to understand the plot and create jobs for professional dubbers. So I don’t know, it’s up to you. Personally I don’t give a damn, since the last time I ran home to watch a TV show was in 1997. TV is dying so quit bitching. And if you’re wondering what movies would sound like in Argentine Spanish, here’s Back to the Future, re imagined by former MTV cartoons Alejo y Valentina. They were big in 2003, so don’t feel uncool for not knowing them.
- The Pope replied to Cristina, and his response was as boring as you suspected it would be.
- Yesterday was the 19th anniversary of the AMIA bombing, Argentina’s deadliest terrorist attack, that left 85 dead and hundreds of injured. The investigation continues to find those responsible, with Iranian officials still suspected of being responsible.
- As a friendly reminder, please remember that it’s Friend’s Day tomorrow, another excuse for people to go out, get drunk, pass out on the curb at 4 am during below zero temperatures and get pneumonia. This is the only day of the year (besides Christmas and New Year’s Eve) that cell phone coverage collapses due to high traffic and your Facebook timeline gets flooded with messages from people you haven’t heard from or seen since 2006. And still, you force yourself to appreciate the folklore because of the FOMO factor, so you regale thousands and thousands of friends* with an “I love you, let’s get together soon!“. So there. Happy Friend’s day.
- You know what could make Friend’s Day even more awesome? Snow! Yeah, that’s right. Ever since that traumatizing July
9, 2007 in which we Buenos Aires denizens were terrorized by snow flakes eerily falling over our heads and cars, life has never quite been the same. And even though we initially boarded up our doors and windows and slept with our lights on, fearing the prospect of a whiteout, we have warmed up to the fact that climate change is going to kill us all anyway so why not celebrate? This photo of people celebrating their impending death by snow at the Obelisco looks pretty fun! So now, every July, the media begins milking the “Will it snow?!” cow over and over and over and over again. Then it doesn’t snow, we get sad and forget all about it until next July, when the cycle begins once more. So… will it snow this weekend? OH MY GOD, MAYBE.
- Speaking of snow and impending death: remember last week when several skiers fell off a chairlift in Bariloche due to the strong winds? Well, it seems the Moirai (the gods of fate, people. Come on!) are still pissed off at skiers since a chairlift in the La Hoya ski resort suffered a malfunction and left a hundred of them hanging 20 meters above ground for four hours while enduring -8°C (17°F) temperatures. Since it was after 4 pm and chances are at least one of those people saw this movie, some began to panic and considered jumping. Eventually they were all rescued and no one was killed, unlike the movie I just mentioned.
- In the meantime, a private jet had to land blind at the Neuquén airport after the air traffic controller fell asleep on the job. I know, you’re probably thinking that the poor fellow was exhausted after hours and hours of stressful work, guiding countless planes to safety and looking after thousands of lives, and he just closed his eyes for a fragment of a second. Well, not exactly because when his peers went to see why the hell he wasn’t responding, they found him asleep on the floor, laying on a makeshift mattress with the microphone by his side. Oops.
- Diego Maradona, who still matters for reasons beyond my comprehension (like, really, I don’t get it), got into a kerfuffle with the paparazzi who were following him after he landed in Argentina from wherever it is he lives now. Mauritania? Whatever.
- There it is, edited in all its splendor and with some scary music added in post-production so you will quiver at the thought of hearing Maradona’s name. Oh well, at least hurling stones at a paparazzo is a step up from shooting at them, like he did in 1994.
Enjoy the weekend, kids. Oh, and happy Friend’s Day*!
* Facebook “friends” do not count.