Thursday, May 29, 2008

Two for the Bulls

 id=What better way to honour the memory of a saint - in this instance, San Isidro, than to ritually torture and kill a couple of hundred bulls? After all, San Isidro is the saint of agriculture and animals, and what farmer wouldn't want a couple of hundred bulls to be ritually tortured and killed in his name? I used to have an aquarium and it always amazed me that no one ever harpooned a sperm whale for the glory of Me. Not once.

A madrileño and not surprisingly Madrid's patron saint, San Isidro was often chastised by his coworkers for eschewing his plowing duties in favour of attending daily mass. One day, his master - intent on catching him off the job - found angels plowing the fields in his place. Or possibly found an angel plowing with him - it's all very confusing. People were so slipshod when it came to accurately recording the lives of peasants in the 11th century.

The performer of graveside miracles and cures, his body remains - miraculously, beca
use he is a saint after all - incorruptible. And just because he was such a swell guy, the most internationally recognized "celebration" - 30 fun-blood-filled days of bullfighting bull-killing - is celebrated in Madrid in his name. Like now.

week, two bulls weighed in with their opinion on the why-should-we-have-to-die-to-extol-the-virtues-of-a-dead-farmer question - an opinion they best expressed by goring two bullfighters bull-killers. On Sunday, 59-year old bullfighting bull-killer veteran Carlos Escolar Frascuelo - who perhaps should be passing his golden years gardening - was gored by his first bull, Toro "the Fair" (yes, I made that up). And by severe goring I mean a 20-centimetre tear in each thigh and several crushed vertebrae.

On Monday, the banderillero El Ruso - the one who preps the bull for the matador  id=bull-killers by ramming "decorative" metal spikes (banderillas) into its neck and shoulders - received 15- and 20-centimetre rips to the anus and a broken coccyx from his bull, Toro "the Righteous" (yes, I made that up). That's him in all his glory on the left. Guess he'll be reducing his intake of roughage over the next few weeks.

Too bad, instead of torturing and killing bulls, Madrid doesn't hold medieval swap meets and mechanical displays like they do in the Canary Islands during the fiestas of San Isidro. Perhaps that's for the next generation to fix. In the meantime ... Toro "the Fair" and Toro "the Righteous", I salute you. Job well done. Too bad you're not around to enjoy your accolades. .

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When is that place going to learn. I think thier only hope is in the young people who I think see bull fighting for what is is, namely animal cruelty.