Discover Floresta

10 Dec

Floresta, a working / middle class barrio in the west of Buenos Aires, was a neighborhood developed in 1857 after the construction of Argentina’s first rail line. Floresta was named after a kiosco / bar “La Floresta” located near the train station, a hub for travelers.  As you can imagine, the kiosco bar was named after all the flowers and foliage in the area.  I was lucky to have my own personal Floresta-expert tour guide to show me the barrio.  We started at the madness of calle Avellaneda and then made our way to the main plaza Velez Sarsfield.




Calle Avellaneda: The Mecca of Cheap Clothing

21 Nov

Sick of buying cheap ass quality clothes in expensive Palermo boutiques? Stop spending all of your pesos and just go straight to the source.  Even though the clothes in Buenos Aires tend to easily rip to the seams in the matter of weeks, you may as well buy it in all its poor quality glory on Calle Avellaneda in Flores and Floresta.  Within a 50 block radius and a whopping 1600 clothing stores, Avellaneda puts the shops in Once and the outlets on Cordoba to shame.

The epicenter of shopping madness is located on Avellaneda and Nazca, where you’ll find hoards of women, men, children and babies in strollers shopping for clothing and accessories at wholesale prices. Stores sell the items por mayor, wholesale-bulk shopping, and por menor, basically regular retail.  The majority of the stores will display in the window if it is por mayor, which indicates the minimum number of articles you have to buy (generally 5 or 6 items min.).  Other stores, may have two prices – the cheaper price being the bulk purchase, and more expensive, the por menor retail price.

With 1600 stores, it may be difficult to know exactly which stores are worth it.  Luckily,  La Nacion’s blog ranks the top stores on Avellaneda, make sure to read the comments for more tips.  Two of the favorites include:

Nare (Avellaneda 3090): You’ll notice that Nare offers the same women’s clothing as the stores on Avenida Cabildo and Santa Fe.

Glow (Helguera 426): Another women’s clothing store that specializes in shirts.  There is a minimum of 5 different pieces per person so come with enough efectivo (cash).

These stores, like most, are open Monday – Friday from 8/8.30 – 6pm and Saturday from 8.30 – 2pm.  Since this place is visited by the masses, try to get there early to dodge some of the insanity.  Seriously, there are a shitload of people – think rush hour on the subway, with people scrambling Supermarket Sweep style trying to stuff dozens of items into huge industrial-sized garbage bags.  Oh yeah, and be prepared to wait in line to enter some of the more popular stores – you may be in Floresta, but THIS IS ARGENTINA and you can’t avoid the infamous line.

Ricardo Fort-toon: Super Fort

6 Nov

The most dreamy man in all of Argentina, Ricardo Fort, heir to the Fort candy empire, has made it big.  Not just making guest appearances on network television programs like Showmatch, or singing the song “I know you want me”, or impersonating a gay robocop / Lady Gaga singing bad romance, Ricardo Fort has become a super hero starring in his own show.

 

RIP Pulpo Paul, even if you were a nazi

4 Nov

We all know the infamous Octopus Paul who correctly predicted the 2010 World Cup games.  According to the Huffington Post,  at a young 2.5 years old, Paul the Octopus (or Pulpo Paul in Spanish) died of natural causes. While the world was saddened by this loss, Argentine media sources claim that what many people may not know about lovable Paul is that he was, in fact, a nazi.

In July of 2010 TV Personality, Roberto Pettinato, took matters into his own hands to show all those Nazi Octopussies out there, or Octo-nazis, that the public will not stand for their authoritarian scare tactics denouncing Argentine fútbol (by saying the team will lose). “Your moment has arrived, you little Nazi octopus,”  proclaimed Pettinato, as he continued to liquify the pobre Pulpo Paul look-a-like (fast forward to 1:25).

 

Even Eco Bags Can Be Self-Righteous

2 Nov

Argentina Census 2010

28 Oct


If you are in Buenos Aires, you’d have to be living under a rock if you didn’t hear about the national census turned into public holiday turned into mourning of ex-Presidente Néstor Kirchner on Wednesday, October 27, 2010. With census buzz wiping Buenos Aires, converting hump day into a deserted and desolate city, many remained unaware of the questions to be asked.

In case you are interested, there were 3 different cuestionarios: básico de viviendas particulares, ampliado de viviendas particulares, and finally one for those living in viviendas colectivas.

Cool Runnings

24 Oct

Route 1: After work night time short run

Many are well aware than Buenos Aires is a great walking city.  Despite the narrow sidewalks, chimney smoking colectivos, and mountains of golden dog shit, this city also has great running paths.  In my attempt to motivate myself to get into shape, and my reluctance to join another gym because I will go once and never show my face again, I have mapped some of my favorite runs in the city. Continue reading

Springtime Family Fun: Bailando por un caño

17 Oct

You know you’re in for quite a treat when an Argentine television show becomes controversial for being too risque. TV in this country, infamous for huge titty close ups and even bigger thonged out ass shots (and ridiculous sound effects – boooooing!), may have to re-think the content shown during prime-time hours on public stations.  Debate arose last month as to whether the “Pole Dancing” night on Bailando por un sueño (Argies paco’ed-out version of Dancing with the Stars) was too sexually explicit for the 9pm time slot, a time when many families sit together to eat dinner, talking about their day, and watch partially nude plastic surgery nightmares slut it up by having their partners pour champagne over their exposed chest.

Simulating soft-core porn too much for TV? What should the Argentine stations do to prevent these claims that the broadcast is verging on pornographic content? The answer, change the time slot by one hour to 10pm.  If Janet Jackson’s Superbowl Wardrobe Malfunction or Bono’s Grammy F-Bomb upset FCC officials, imagine what shit would go down if they had to deal with this content.

WARNING, this video is NOT suitable for children… except for little Argies who watch Bailando Por un Sueño with the fam: Continue reading

Romantic Weekend Getaway, In Rosario

9 Oct

Only a 3 hour bus ride away, Rosario is the 3rd largest city in Argentina with a population of over one million people, making it the perfect spot to slip away for a weekend outside of Buenos Aires.  What’s there to do in Rosario?

1. Visit the Monumento Nacional a la Bandera (National Flag Memorial) 2. Cruise the Rio Paraná visiting the tiny islands in the delta  3. $CASINO$ 4. Pick up a hot chica, Rosarinas are known as the hottest in all of Argentina. 5. Eat french fries 6. Take lots of pics. Continue reading

Spanglishized

6 Oct

Those newbies out there who are just learning castellano, or more specifically porteño Spanish, may become perplexed when they hear what is presumed to sound like English words, pronounced in exaggerated Spanish accents, thrown into the mix.  No your ears are not deceiving you.  With the help of fellow expats, I have listed my favorite anglicized-castellano words and phrases.

*Disclaimer: It’s important to picture your favorite Argentine pronouncing all these words  in a thick over-exaggerated porteño accent.  That is why I have done my best to use my own phonetically-sound wisdom.

Some of my top faves:

  • Sorry Soh-rrrrry boluda, no puedo venir a la fiesta mañana.”
  • VIP “El VEEEEP en el boliche siempre está lleno de viejos sucios.”
  • Lunch “Tengo hambre, querés pedir algo para loonch-ay.”
  • After (after office) “Vamos a un aft-arrr después del trabajo.”
  • Man “che, pero que hacés monnn?”
  • Top “ese lugar es increible, es re-TOPE
  • Fashion “Me encantan los RayBans, son re-fashion
  • Sale “voy a la calle corrrdoba, hay muchos sailsss. Liquidaciones en todos lados!”
  • Cool “esa MAC es re kúl
  • Chance “no voy a la fiesta en la provincia, no hay chan-say
  • Full (afull) “Tengo mucho trabajo, estoy afoool
  • Ticket (receipt) “Ahora te doy el teekit”
  • Look “Quiero un nuevo loooook, punk emo o flogger – ¿que les parece?”
  • Too much “Qué personaje! Es tooooo muh-tch.”
  • Please “¿Me pasás la sal, pley-z?”
  • Okaaaaaaaaaaaay – Think Little John

Other Honorable Mention in the English to English Dictionary:

  • Hobby – Passtime, leeeeeisure activity
  • Notebook – Laptop
  • Mouse – computer mouse
  • Púlover, sueter pullover, sweater – how great is that púlover spelling?!
  • El Living – Living room
  • Mail – Email
  • Shopping – Shopping center
  • Basquet – Basketball
  • Tupper – Tupperware
  • Shot – of tequila
  • Rollers – Rollerblades
  • Brushing – (gettin’ yo hair did)
  • Lifting (gettin’ yo ass did)
  • Flash – Quickly
  • Hot – Think… Chicas HOTE, panchos HOTE
  • Super – Enormo
  • Barman – Bartender
  • Freelance
  • Show
  • Heavy
  • Delivery
  • Jeans
  • Freezer
  • Test

Watch this hilarious clip of Capusotto’s character “Gary Palermo” as he adds in random English words, that don’t really make sense, in order to look muy cool, top, fashion.

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