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Not the English way

21 June 2010

My theory of British imperialism is that it wasn’t so much about grabbing control of everybody else’s commodities like oil and minerals, or even looking for a captive market for their finished goods, as it was a desperate search for something decently prepared and tasty to eat.

Tasty Argentine asado is being cooked the way it should be, not on the savage pampas, but on the playing fields of the Esher Rugby and Football Club in Hersham, Surrey.  Ian Burrell of The Independent (with photos by Facundo Arrizabalga) report on the Anglo-Latin (and Latin-Anglo) communities:

“I remember the day when a friend’s father in the North of England told me I was the first Mexican he ‘had ever seen not riding a horse’ – meaning in John Wayne films and The High Chaparral,” says Libertad West, a Mexican-born recruitment specialist who arrived in Britain 20 years ago. “The perception of Mexico and Latin America was very different to today’s sophisticated knowledge of the younger generation as a result of free movement across continents. People are very familiar with Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. When the British Museum organised an event to celebrate Mexico’s the Day of the Dead last year, it had to shut the entrance gates for the fifth time ever in its history.”

Oh well, one expects some cultural distortions from primitive people… one might forgive their incomprehensible need to drag the ghost of Frida Kahlo into any discussion of Mexican (and Latin American) culture, if  —  with proper tutelage — the British can be civilized enough to learn at least how to prepare a decent meal.

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