The Long Arm of Childhood

December 9, 2017

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I don’t know whether you share with me the trait whereby characteristics of your parents increasingly emerge from you unexpectedly and unbidden, but that’s certainly true with me, and I find it endlessly fascinating. This morning, an English acquaintance passed me in a café and asked the routine “How are you?” not expecting, I’m sure, the answer that he got: “Not bad for an old man.”

His eyes expressed surprise, and I didn’t detain him to explain that, from the time when my father was in his forties, perhaps, that was a stock answer of his. I’m sure I have never given it two seconds of conscious thought in my life, and if you had asked me if my father had any habitual answers to such a greeting, I’d have come up with nothing. But there it was on my lips—another person’s voice coming out of my mouth. And this is not just a sentimental invention: my mind’s eye saw him smiling. The subconscious is a marvelous thing, and results of its nurture in the far past can be fascinatingly mysterious.

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Here’s your link to hear and see the English writer Matthew Tree leading a discussion of civil liberties and their repression, with a Swedish-born environmental sociologist brought up in England, an Irish lawyer, and an American musician—all now living in Catalonia: http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/244202764.html

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A German, a Catalan, an Englishman, and an American do our best to untangle some of the current Catalan news as it existed today just a couple of hours before the imprisonment by Spain of the Catalan government members that are not in exile.

http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/240994777.html

Today in Catalonia

September 28, 2017

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Some of you can’t help knowing, and some of you tell me that you want to know, about the emergency that we are under at the moment here. In today’s program, the host, Matthew, gives a very good summary update on what has happened since his editorial last Thursday. But we three guests, an Englishman, a German, and an American weren’t exactly shrinking violets (and we did sometimes differ with each other). Obviously, the Spanish Prime Minister’s visit to the American President, a very great disaster for him who spent so many billion euros to get so little, was something that we had to talk about. But the main subject is naturally the suspension of many civil rights here in the run-up to Sunday’s scheduled referendum on independence. The very newsroom on the other side of the studio wall has in fact been visited by the traditionally feared Guardia Civil, and we considered that we might be interrupted (as a meeting that I attended here in Sitges on improved social services was invaded by twelve armed police). But we weren’t one of the media censored so far:
http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/235894933.html

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An exit of Britain, a judgment of a Parliament, and poetry in Barcelona and Sitges, discussed by a Ghanan, a Slovenian, an Englishman, and an American:

http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/216036357.html

So, today we naturally talked about yesterday’s Dutch elections that have so many resonances on both sides of the Atlantic. Also, the attacks on democratic votes further south; and there was talk, too, about a new movie on a great Catalan novel that sounds sensational. (And, uniquely so far, both guests—an Englishman and an American—were from Sitges. We’re quite different ideologically but seem pretty much in sync in the issues at hand.)

http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/208704114.html

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Today’s show:

http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/204401051.html

A Little More TV

January 30, 2017

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http://www.elpuntavui.tv/video/195835235.html