Posted by: martinworster | September 8, 2004


Dodgy Barnet. Lame hairdressers in BCN make Howard Jones look cool. Plus Spanish celeb obsession.

 What do you need to do to find a decent hairdresser in Barcelona? I’ve tried all sorts of establishments and I continue to walk out disappointed and with a dodgy Barnet. At the moment I’m looking like the bastard lovechild of a C-list flamenco player and a dodgy Spanish waiter. Howard Jones with a mullet. In Catalonia they have there own version of a non-ironic mullet and I guess my hairstyle is morphing into this. It’s always the same scenario having got it cut and the hairdresser gets out the mirror so you can see the short, not back and sides. His or her proud work. I always fein a smile. ‘Si, es bueno’, not wanting to hurt their pride and aware that haircuts are pretty final. They can’t glue the cut ends back on. Looks like I’ll have to be flying back to Blighty for my tri-annual snip.

It’s interesting to note what’s shown on the news in Spain. Every weekend there’s always major car pileups and carnage which is actually no surprise considering the way they drive. They also seem to relish in showing you the gruesome bits. Twisted metal as half the car as crumpled in on itself. Perhaps an artistic close up on a pool of congealed, Rioja blood. I’ve seen this with other instances here too, they seem to revel in the macabre. I remember after M11 (the Madrid bombings) when they had a camera man on the scene immeditely after the bomb zooming into things you really didn’t want to see. Every week there always seems to be big fires too. Recently there was a big story over the Windsor tower in Madrid which burnt down. This was a huge skyscraper in the capital which raged with fire for days. Talking of Windsors and things buring down, they also seemed to give more coverage to the Charles Camilla wedding than back in Blighty. They love Royal Families here. They are much more family oriented in general so any Royalty here is perfect soap fodder for the population to play out their fantasies and realise their worst nightmares.

One reason – amongst many – for moving here was to get away from what I perceived to be the celebrity obsessed culture of the UK. This is closely linked with greedy materialism and a snide descent into label obsessed Chavism. Beckhams bought another Bentley. Coleen Rooney has gone on a four day shopping bender. Which B List soapstar / model / footballers wive / untalented pop star has added a few Ds to her tit cup size? All such great role models for our children too. Well I’ve come here and it’s worst. They don’t have the red top newspaper tabloid tradition (although Hola / Hello magazine was started here), but rather there celebrity obsession is played out day in day out on TV. And, although hard to believe, it’s worst than ours. 


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