Breakfast with butter

The table is had. Has of everything, even butter. It is a continental breakfast. We could understand that this is diplomatic territory, like an exception. We receive deal of tourists and to a tourist no disturbs him the ignorance. This preferential deal is almost inexorable. The first condition of the traveller is his temporary character. …

Nuclear button theory

Here’s the thing: while we debate the coming winter of discontents, while we focus attention on the basket of commodities trying to correct problems at destination when they should be corrected at origin, someone opens Wikipedia (which keeps asking for contributions to the common knowledge) and finds that there are nine countries in the world with nuclear armament. That there are nine briefcases in the world with nine buttons like nine doors to an end with apocalypse. The difference now is that one of those nine has just warned that for weapons to be good for something you have to be willing to use them.

Independent republic style

They decided to humanize the environment. To remove from sight so much industrial sheet metal that should already be replaced by noble materials. To entertain themselves or to make Godot less unhappy if he had to wait there. And to recycle. Yes, to recycle. Because the painting still fulfills its function and the space obviously …

RVB against the world universe

He always wanted to have a word with the world. But the world had a certain mania for avoiding him. So he would climb up on some wooden sticks, sometimes with a clown’s nose and sometimes not, and he would talk to the apostle as well as to the universe. I don’t remember that he …

The man who wrote here

At this point in the 21st century, I do not know if it is appropriate to ask ourselves what Roberto Vidal Bolaño’s work is like, how it evolved, what traces he left behind, how much of his decisions were artistic or practical, or how many of his life circumstances were decisive in making certain choices or others. Perhaps the appropriate thing to do in September 2022 is to ask ourselves the same question he would ask us: what did we do? What did we do in the last twenty years in general and what did we do in these twenty years with the work of Roberto Vidal Bolaño in particular. I am sure there is a verb that would summarize a large part of the answers and, even if true, it would still be escapist: to resist. Resist, we all resist and we are here, although this here would have nothing to do with RBV.

Van days

Roberto Vidal Bolaño is not a Chilean writer. September 2022 marks the 20th anniversary of his death, which, by all accounts, was early. He was 52 years old and had an extensive and varied career as a playwright, director, theater and film actor, as an advanced film critic, as an agitator of majorities and a definitive weight in the fact that the Galician theater went from being a more or less eccentric dedication to a professional, demanding and enforceable exercise. The dimensions of Vidal Bolaño (Santiago de Compostela 1950-2002), who never published in Anagrama, were large in physical and literary terms. But playwrights are more concerned with the day-to-day life of their characters (and feeding the performers) than with the archive of their literary works. Thus, there is the suggestive paradox that Vidal Bolaño is one of the writers with the most work and with a more varied, more contemporary, more participatory work, and yet, despite the much he wrote, he is less taken into account than if he were a storyteller with less than four novels.

The writer who portrayed Galicia in the 20th century

Roberto Vidal Bolaño wanted Galicia to have its own theater that handled its own arguments. He defined a way of writing for the stage and his decision was decisive for the launching of Galician professional theater. There was a theater to be invented and someone had to start doing it. It was Roberto Vidal Bolaño who began to articulate a self-sufficient Galician theater, capable of explaining itself while explaining the country to which it belonged. A theater interested in achieving majorities and connecting the languages that were to come with those that had survived the years of repression. RVB was a practical man and a multitasking playwright. He was precocious and serious, argumentative and ironic. He turned a dedication into a craft, but it was not magic or union power: it was stubbornness and skill.

Days of glory of the best writer of Galiza

There Is now twenty years Roberto Vidal Bolaño went up to the van by last time. Bolaño It was not a Chilean writer. It was a dinamic repunante that did for changing the world and reaped a failure of the that can not blamed. There Are twenty years Galicia era another and you were others, …

Galician theater is conservative with playwrights

For Roberto Vidal Bolaño, Saxo tenor was a change of aesthetic and argumentative direction. With this play, Vidal Bolaño entered into the suburbs, into suburban life and what is surely more important, into another way of seeing individuals, much more related to their circumstances and much less capable of taking charge of their destiny. Despite being the playwright who most regularly premieres in Galicia, almost always with his company, Bolaño considers that Galician theater restricts the work of authors, new and old, every year, and that in this decision there is a mixture of circumstances, from conservatism to ignorance. Saxo tenor was a turning point in Galician theater. In many ways, it was an inauguration that had no continuity. The text of that production, however, survived as a dramaturgical reference.

Smith & Company (naïve story)

In the old days, those who owned horses were rich. And those who who owned cows were rich too. Those who had stone houses, or machines, or meadows, or trees were rich too. But one day, the rich, tired of so much working with things, decided they didn’t want to dirty their hands with the …

Rebecca and the clouds

Rebecca painted the clouds quickly quickely because the summer was ending and the sun was still naked. She looked them passed, like distracted sheep grazing some grass, here or there. The smallest of all of them, red from the effort of following the flock, stopped to look at the girl, and she thought she was …

Chronic death

The situation in Niger is very bad. This is naïve and obvious. The bad thing about truisms is having to repeat them and that the world hears them as such and at the same time denies the major: the situation in Africa is very bad, okay, we already know that. The last part of the …

Shadows nothing more

You know the joke?  There are many people who can be shot among those who demand the legalization of shooting. So I tell you, with this pose of telling a joke, that everyone wants to pass off as truth any matter that does not reach the first sentence of a joke. Half-truths, at best, and they …

Semper fidelis

It must be a Yankee Army custom to have a gala ball before marching off to war. I remembered it from the time at Fort Apache. It was done, he supposed, so that receiving the news of marching would have sufficient solemnity or, also, so that some officer could look circumstance worthy when pronouncing that …

The collapse we will be 

A collapse is not an accident. It is a process with a bad end. A process that ends badly even though everyone knows along the way that it is going to end badly. In many ways, a collapse is the result of not wanting to understand the symptoms correctly. The electoral ones, the economic ones, …

Thirds, fourths, fifths, sixths…

And where do you live: in reality or in fiction? Wherever you are, the same thing happens: an almost permanent manipulation of the discourse so that the universal condition of the spectator that is to be a citizen can feel calm and surprised. Even surprised at their own tranquillity.

6 | Neither virtual nor the others’

-Facebook, what is it? -A website for gossipers. -And why don’t you ask the mayor? -Because he will answer the same as you. But you’re the one in charge of culture, you should know. -Of course I know. We’re working on it. This week is going to be a spectacular Facebook. -Better than Rajoy’s? -You don’t have to write it, but …

Herd immunity

There are many days when we are a candour tied to a relic of progress. And we do not distinguish whether the rope we wear around our necks is condemnation or liberation. When young we listened to the promises of three-room apartments, but instead of receiving the keys in hand, we were given a spatula …

Early morning arrived

He put up a fight all night and did not give it up. Since he had come in, finding himself so uncomfortable. Pacing up and down the field despite playing away from home. He walked past the groups looking for faces, trying to find a look that would return some kindness. It was a delicate, …

Stories of a man who told stories

Xabier P. Docampo disappeared last week. Memory brings back to us his attitude as an all-stories storyteller as well as that humor he practiced to bring down the saints and bring up the people. (Four years ago of the text and a few more of the stories, but continue, they remain the same).

Gray matter

The box was made of cardboard and, when opened, the flaps made a movement to make way for a ceramic container of a very, very soft gray. Almost white. On the card were printed all the symbols of recycling, eco-sustainability, the second life of things. For those who could remember, the box had some kinship …

On the walls

You know how it goes. Summer in Ourense. The only wave that survives is the heat wave. You have the timetables of a lifetime. Those of a civil servant city where you are not a civil servant. You have the schedules of a world that doesn’t get hot at noon. You have to go to …

May de force forsake us

When the Constitution arrived, Star Wars was already here. The galactic western with confusing paternities arrived in Spain before the great text. When Luke still did not know who his father was, I was leaning out of the Xesteira cinema’s gallery in Ourense. It was 1977 and now it is frowned upon saying that the …

Bouquet

It had fallen right there. Burst. As if lightning had struck and split it. But without breaking it. It had fallen vertically, without drama, without signs, without slow motion. It died more instantly than a decaf envelope. He was beside her and it took him four or five seconds to recognize the seriousness of the …

The curved beam

One of the great armament advantages of the Ming emperor over the earthlings of Flash Gordon’s time was the curved beam. In spite of being a conventional weapon, it had the property of firing on enemies protected in the corners. There was no point in hiding because the beam came out of the weapon, advanced in an irregular line until it reached a spot, turned and located whoever unwarily relied on conventional physics. The sentry boxes had ceased to be a shelter. It cannot be said that the USA, Russia, Israel or the British Prime Minister is not testing weapons like the curved beam. But it exists.

May 13, 2022. Naked

I feel naked. Distrustful. But not both for the same reasons. I feel naked because I am no longer president of Galicia, Galicia, Galicia. And I know I have to be, but it is not that I enjoy it either. I have been president, president, president for so many years that now it is like …

Ourense has more terraces than Liverpool

In Ourense, many lines are crossed. In a morning that anticipates the summer, the Galician anthem on the speakers of the working class can come across the morning vermouth terraces with many big heads and no giant. The bouquets of maternal flowers come across the crosses of the maios and their copla soniquete. The Beatles do, too. Not The Beatles. The memory without almost any soundtrack of the most important musical group in history.

April 29, 2022. Farewell

GaliciaJacobean YearManuel: I remember many things at this time. Of when I met you at JMRB’s house, of when you proposed me to come, of the tensions of the intrigues and the transfers. One day they passed by asking who to notify in case of termination and the real possibility of it happening left us …

April 20, 2022. Impossible

It is not that everybody does not understand, it is that it is not convenient for them to understand so they give convenient explanations. I have to explain it among the immediate circle and some fewer close ones because they play the fool as if it were an emotional matter, but although sometimes I am …

April 15, 2022. Diary. Serious, serious, serious

Well, it’s already solved. I’m going to explain it because it’s funny this much business with succession, so much breaking and putting the pieces back together again. But not quite. There was only one way for this to work and it was clear from the beginning. Another thing is that everybody has to assert themselves. …

April, 12, 2022. Diary. Madrí, Madrí, Madrí

In Madrí everything is bigger. It is not a sensation. Everything is bigger. People are also taller. I don’t know if I will have to put heights on my shoes because after meeting Felipe VI and Pedro Sánchez I look short and this needs to be studied. But you have to measure because someone chose …

Mistaking curves for joys

It may be the caprice of property or the weakness of the state before the individual. It may be the winding character that comes to the map from the collective identity. There is something twisted in the immediacy of the horizon in which the Academy can find a reaffirmation of nineteenth-century loveliness. Bucolism’s victory against …

April 1, 2022. Diary

The time has come. It had to come and it came. Now I have to change my mind and start thinking differently. Because things are not working well. Now that they think the plight is over is when I am in the plight. They don’t notice my authority. Problem A) I could prioritize the confrontation …

March 18, 2022. Diary

I think I went a little overboard. I came off a little over the top. EGP is right. Even if I don’t say so. I’m not used to the rally. I’ve been doing this my whole life but raising my voice doesn’t make me any more authoritative. IDA, despite the faces she makes, handles the …

Bottle of nerves

Televisions were half a meter wide. Maybe I should say depth. It was because of the cathode ray tube: the bigger the screen, the bigger the back. Looking at the back of the TV was almost as interesting as looking at it from the front, except when Eliot Ness was on. The most interesting part …

March 2, 2022. Diary

Here’s how it goes. I know emotion is weakness, but I can’t help but get emotional in public and I should have trained this much better so that it is understood that stability is the main value of my character. Serenity, tranquility, stability. A little moisture does not tarnish that much and maybe it will …

Red Square 1993

Moths are born from forgetfulness. They are born and grow by eating the felt of hats, the cloth of flags. They take history books for lunch, leaving in the pages small volcanic eruptions, like empty lakes for the time to be. Right now they must be at a banquet of words like revolution, proletariat, comrade, …

Jack and Jackie, Miles and Frances, dad and mom

The car is chauffeured. Jackie can’t imagine car rides any other way. He likes Cadillacs, but has no problem riding in an open-top Lincoln, no matter how black it is. He can’t conceive driving through a city. Too many things to pay attention to. John is sitting next to her. He’s tall, blond and has …

What do you want, you bastard

The fact that the sun had been presiding over the morning horizon for two hours was not because of his joy. He jumped out of bed, put on his shorts and ran into the kitchen. Mom, I’ll get the bread. He looked at the clock and quickened his pace. Entered the bakery and looked for …

I had a farm in San Amaro

Melancholy can kill. In fact, it kills. The facts are not known because no one thinks it is relevant or worthy of change. Melancholy kills like sillines kills or ignorance kills. Or poorly attended healthcare. It kills like miscalculated accounts kill. Let’s not get dramatic either… It kills as life kills, but in this case, we don’t give it the importance it has. We are at war against melancholy, but we don’t know it because we are losing.

Chords and discords

Someone said that in popular music there are two categories: The Beatles and the rest. Fifty-two years after their dissolution, there were few new things left to see about the most influential band of all time, but Get Back was one of them. The docuseries that Peter Jackson put together about the limitless hours of recording of what was called Let it Be proves, once again, that there is always a difference between the group and the rest. Even at the end. Get Back might have been an ending, but it wasn’t the decline.

Distribution of Power

He was walking through the corridor realizing that earth’s rotation wasn’t fast enough for him. He didn’t have enough patience to wait for the cycles that put day and night over the houses, and with a very slow desperation, he would ruminate a set of bad excuses. He was walking through the corridor with clear …

So much happiness

So much happiness illuminated the past life with the same light that illuminates the sea at sunset. There was no complaint in their silence, as they watched the receding forest from the suntrap of the house. They hardly spoke in the late afternoon hours; what was necessary had been said. In the twilight they did …

On the straight way

In summer, the city was sweating through the stones. I went into the grocer’s and Don Alfonso turned around, airing his checkered apron, to reprimand me for being late: I told you to take the straight way. Then he told me: take the bottle of Marie Brizard and take it to Don Ricardo, from the …

Hamlet Accuser

His love was sick with Parkinson’s. His heart was wounded, from atrium to ventricle, by the arrows of offensive fortune, and every time he began to declaim, a world of butterflies stirred his body and brought back the memory of a face floating among the water lilies. He climbed the boards with confidence, but as …

Step inside

To enter the forest you have to accept three conditions. Trees are methodical, they resist standing, being unaligned, in the best sun of the day. They gently move the rumours like the corridors after a resignation. There is an unadorned bush, some signs of abandonment, a path without alternatives and an iron gate that civilizes …

Letter from Theo

Dear Vincent: I hope you are well, and that Ibiza has the weather you were looking for. Amsterdam is having a quiet summer. Lots and lots of people and the same old doubts. I think you should seriously think about spending some time here. Now is the time. There are some discreet houses in Hoekenes, …

We shall sell

When his father sold the land, he felt no pain. Perhaps relief. He was more in need of novelty than of that sure condemnation of the rural lex. He was tired of the peace without horizon, of the siesta in the summers, of the shadows of the gardens and the bugs in the orchard. He …

Sushi for two

Years ago, they had received the news of her death as when a couple ends: circumstances that change without any logic. Doors disappearing from the corridors of houses overnight. And hits against the same partition everyday. The news had been given bluntly and that hung over them for a long time. Even for no reason.  The news resisted …