TICO BULL – I’ve seen this video a half-dozen times this morning and still every time it makes me laugh. I am talking about the latest video by Venezulan president, Nicolas Maduro.
I titled the video, Maduro in “Open English” to his nation.
Open English, for those who don’t know is a series of funny commercials by a Colombian company promoting learning English. The commercials poke fun at the pronunciation and literal translation from Spanish to English.
In one of the more memorable commercials, if “pollo” is chicken, the “repollo” (cabbage) must be re-chicken. Makes sense!
In the video, Maduro, attempting to do a “Chavez” (the speaking off-the-cuff” of Venezuela’s president Hugo Chavez), he is laughed at in person by the crowd in front of him and made fun of in the social media.
Unlike Chavez, Maduro does not have the charisma and charm of his predecssor. When Chavez made mistakes in English, the people laughed with him, not at him. Chavez could do or say anything and still be loved. His hand gestures, his vocal inflection, his facial expression, were all part of the message.
Maduro, not having his own identity tries to do the same. English is not a Latin language, you cannot express that Latin emotion in the same way, you cannot get “HOPE” out of “ESPERANZA”, at best you get “HOPPPP”!
But, the Maduro farce is not only for his English.
Recently, Mr. Maduro was in Costa Rica to attend the CELAC meeting hosted here.
Before his arrival a big deal was made about his security, of the threats against him in the country. Then, what does he do? On the way from the airport, to the CELAC meeting location a short distance away, he stops the vehicle he is driving in the middle of the autopista General Cañas, to get out and wave to the people by the side of the road.
So, where was the threat?
That same night, he left Costa Rica for Nicaragua, to spend the night there, while paying for an entire floor at the Marriott in San José, one of the ritziest in the country. And then, the next morning, his security tried to bar reporters from taking photo of his return back to Costa Rica.
Well, at least he brought some laughter in my life this morning.