It’s Friday again!
And before we begin dwelling in the puddle of blood and violence that we experienced this week, I believe I should address the big fat elephant in the room.
Yes, last week’s Weekly News Roundup went viral. Yes, it got thousands of hits. Yes, this week many new readers will show up hoping to experience the same laughter fest that they came across last Friday.
But the pressure is too big to top that, so let me just say: it’s not going to happen.
Last week was a collective experience so it was relatable, it had a narrative and it was perfect to let your parents/friends know about what an exciting/terrifying experience it is to live in Buenos Aires.
This week: meh.
It’s like when your favorite TV show wins a “Best Drama Series” Emmy award after a flawless season, and the writers become apathetic and rest on their laurels so they come up with a half-baked, disappointing plot that satisfies no one (I’m looking at you, writers of The X-Files, 24 and Homeland).
Well, that’s me today. I am those writers. So read it, take it for what it is and go on with your life.
In the meantime I’ll be crying in the bathroom, reminiscing of my glory days.
This is what you need to know:
There is really nothing funny to say about what was the biggest story of the week: the Marita Verón case, which investigated the disappearance of a 23-year-old woman from Tucumán. You probably know all about it by now, but in case you haven’t heard, all thirteen suspects in the case were acquitted, and national outrage ensued.
- President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner wasn’t happy about it and asked Congress to reconvene in extraordinary sessions before the end of the month to pass an amendment on the Human Trafficking law.
- After such a fucked up ruling it was only logical that an angry mob would show up a day later in front of the Tucumán province offices in downtown Buenos Aires to express their discontent. It was also only logical that the area would turn into a war zone that looked like a scene from Black Hawk Down.
- A couple of hours after the downtown debacle, another storm was brewing a few blocks away. You see, while many that day had headed over to Facebook to post about how “fun” it was to point out that at 12:12 PM on 12/12/12 it was like, “OMG it’s all twelves!”, every Boca Juniors fan in the known universe was getting ready for war, since they were all getting together in front of the Obelisco to celebrate the “World Boca Juniors Fan Day” (?), whatever that means. Over 50,000 people gathered there to chant happily about football and Jesus, but alas! When the crowds get too big they always end up losing control because you know how mischievous these guys are. So they broke store windows, ransacked entire businesses, destroyed the Mc Donald’s at the corner and tried to kill the police. Ha! Crazy kids.
- Remember how last week Crónica came up with those inventive headlines about Chernobyl and Venice? Well this week, their news van was pleasantly parked in front of the Obelisco during the Boca event, until it suddenly got surrounded by thousands of savages who pillaged and looted it, spray painted it and then destroyed it. Can you imagine being inside that news van while this is happening outside? And for a headline, I would have totally gone with “Mogadishu“.
- And since they were at it, the Boca zombies also decided it would be a good idea to attack the entrance to Canal 13, which as we know belongs to Grupo Clarín and is therefore the fountain of all maladies. Here’s the footage. Watch it. It’s a glimpse into the future. A grim testimony of what the downfall of civilization will look like once our planet is overrun by PC monitor-stealing zombies.
- Last Sunday night was a cause for celebration, as Argentine democracy turned 29 years old. The National Government, officially self-declared the standard bearer of the democratic movement in this country, decided to celebrate plurality and freedom by throwing a
political rallybig party at the Plaza de Mayo and around the country that included live music, fireworks, local delicacies and a special guest appearance by Cristina herself, who reminded us that democracy is beautiful and by the way if you don’t stand with her government you are a coup-monger son of a gun who deserves to be executed for treason.
- The United States of Awesome continue their heroic defense of Argentina against the vulture funds’ Evil Empire of Evilness, and now the Obama administration has requested the New York Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit to take Argentina’s appeal into consideration, a move that was to be expected considering they are being ruled by a Kenyan Socialist Nazi Communist Muslim that wants to destroy America by launching an attack on poor, poor capitalism.
- In other news, Argentina is not a deadbeat country (for now) since this weekend it is scheduled to pay $3.5 billion in GDP-bonds to private non-vulture bondholders.
- Not to ruin your holidays, but your ABL got adjusted for inflation today, which means starting next year it’s going to be 24% higher. Merry Christmas.
- Also, it’s very probable the after January 1st the Subte has to close because there’s no money. Happy New Year.
- OMG OMG OMG OMG OMG! *hyperventilates* Look! The Central Bank has for some reason (the holidays) decided to temporarily allow Argentines to purchase US dollars in cash if they are to be used for travelling/studying abroad. RUN TO THE BANK, FOR THE LOVE OF GOD! HURR-No, wait, most of you readers are foreigners and couldn’t care less about this. Never mind.
- For millenia, humanity has had to endure the many torments and tribulations caused by the act of sodcasting. Sodcasting, for those of you who are not well versed in pop culture, is the act of being an inconsiderate asshole by playing music on your mobile phone on a bus or subway so everyone around you can hear it. It is usually appended by a smug expression on your face that clearly translates as: “Do you have a problem?”. But praised be Jesus*! After today, sodcasting in the city of Buenos Aires is no more. Because the busy minds working at the City Legislature have passed a bill effectively banning the demonic practice from public transportation services, and if you attempt to waterboard our ears with your filthy 1970s rock and roll (or worse, your early 00s cumbia) the driver will have the right to get you off the bus.
- Of course, that’s all taking place in the realm of wishful thinking. Good luck telling the sodcaster to stop playing his music without getting into a fist fight. Or getting stabbed.
- Remember how a few weeks ago I said there was going to be a total of 18 public holidays in 2013? Remember how you went “Woa, that’s insane!”? Get ready, because in the next few days Congress will be debating yet another addition to the holiday calendar! As Congress gets ready to meet in extraordinary sessions because of the human trafficking bill fuck up, one of the other less relevant bills to be discussed revolves around declaring January 31st, 2013 a one-time national holiday in commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the Assembly of the Year XIII (that’s “13″, for those of you who never took Roman numerals 101), in which the United Provinces of the Rio de la Plata got together to discuss a new institutional government for the republic. It was then that the region, among other things, ended slavery with the Freedom of Wombs principle, which stated that anyone born from a slave was automatically free. The Rio de la Plata region: kicking the first world’s ass when it comes to civil and equal rights since 1813. Not really sure about anything else though.
- Gay people ambassador Madonna is in Argentina right now, offering
three shows this week that fans will never forget, not only because of their amazing production value but also because of how incredibly overpriced the tickets were and how late the performances started. Always eccentric in a “funny” (and not crazy) kinda way, the diva has made some unusual requests (like hotel staff not looking at her in the eye) which would sound horrible if we were talking about, I don’t know…Donald Trump. But since this is Madonna and she’s a liberal and she’s good with poor African kids and stuff she gets a free pass. Also, warning people not to look her in the eye? What is she, a creature from the Greek mythology?
- The media also reports that Madonna landed in Argentina in a private jet and brought with her a huge posse made up of musicians, dancers, assistants, cleaning staff, a personal trainer, security and doctors. She’s basically like a Smurf village on wheels.
- Moving on to the next over-pretentious celebrity event: Roger Federer is (was?) in the country! And everyone was fawning over him! By everyone I mean Cristina, of course, who was giggling like a schoolgirl when she met him. As the current number 2 tennis player in the world, he was confronted with incisive questions by eloquent sports journalists such as “What is your place in comparison to Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi?”. I swear if you pause that video at the right time you can see him rolling his eyes.
- He was probably also forced to say (at gunpoint) that he “wanted to have an asado, drink some Argentine red wine and visit the Boca Juniors stadium” and other cliches in order to prompt the Argentine population to say “Hey! This guy knows about us!“. Then somebody asked him something about tennis, but that was ridiculous because no one cares about that.
- Then on Wednesday came the first of two exhibition matches that he was going to play alongside local tennis superstar Juan Martín Del Potro in a stadium in Tigre before 20,000 who paid like 100 million dollars per ticket. Here are some highlights of the game:
- The event was hosted by legendary tabloid superstar and Big Brother host Jorge Rial, for some reason. The 20,000 people there were not happy so they booed him. For like the first 30 seconds, at least.
- At some point, in a giant screen, there was a “surprise” (and cringing) message from Diego Maradona that had absolutely nothing to do with anything, because as we all know everything in this country has got to be related in some way to fútbol. God forbid the day that doesn’t happen.
- When the time to sing the National Anthem came, the Tigre authorities selected the best possible singer to perform it in front of the ecstatic audience (and Federer): musical legend Cacho Castaña, known for his sexy parties, his misogynistic lyrics advocating for violence against women and for biting the semi-naked ass of a gay man. Unfortunately, and because of copyrights issues (please, as if anyone cared), it is not available on YouTube, so you’ll have to settle with when he butchered it some time ago in Mendoza. So here, enjoy the proud lyrics of our anthem sung by Castaña. And please stand while you do it. This is no time for frivolity.
- The song after such moving, representative anthem was one sung by David Guetta. No, I’m not kidding.
- Controversial judge Norberto Oyarbide, despised by a large sector of the population because they say he favors the Kirchnerite government, showed up at the VIP box. This is how the audience responded. He left a while later, scarred for life.
- As Del Potro and Federer were about to come out, a sector in the bleachers began to “sink” (as in “collapse”) and 150 people had to be evacuated. Del Potro and Federer were sent back to the changing rooms.
- By the time the game started, the Boca Juniors fans were setting downtown Buenos Aires on fire, so no one cared anymore.
Have a great weekend, everyone!
Send Adrian your comments, thoughts or tips at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter at @AdrianBono
And don’t forget to like the Weekly News Roundup on Facebook, so we don’t have to keep reminding you about this every Friday.
* Just an expression. I’m not religious. It’s not that I don’t like Jesus, I actually thought he was a great guy and everything. It’s what they did with his progressive, revolutionary message after he
died “ascended to Heaven” that I’m not crazy about. Sorry, Christians!