Friday, January 16, 2009

Abalone Pastries!

The bird’s nests (if they’re real, they’re made from swallow spit) were selling for around $1,400 per pound, the shark’s fins for $800 per pound. But a visit to a Chinese grocery is more interesting to me for the Asianglish usage. The above named sweets at Kam Man on Canal were actually almond-flavored, but seemed to be named after the seafood because they were shaped like them. But the best was this on a large box containing a metal canister of sweet things: “Dense honeyed purpose of feeling,/Give the warm romantic and happiness to you,/Let you pass!” I had a dense honeyed purpose of feeling today when the super’s daughter, who cleans the hallways with a fiendish thoroughness, immediately let down her hair when I ran into her. Let me pass!Cher/che la femme.

In Che, Part I we learn that the legendary Argentine had asthma, so the film becomes a rallying cry for asthmatics of the world, unite. Look, chico, you too can cross the Sierra Maestra and smoke a pipe and big ol’ Cuban segars and, like, make a revolution and end up on tee shirts (see above) even without an inhaler. We don’t learn much else. I, like most Yankees, know very little about the Cuban Revolution; when the guerrillas attack a barracks, I assumed the attack was going to fail, because I knew Castro had gone to jail for attacking a barracks, but that earlier incident is not the one portrayed in the film.

I like the fellow playing the young Castro, who first shows up in his dark Latin lover mustache in Mexico City, but once he starts talking at the dinner table, and talking and talking, in that famous rhythm that I think is captured very well by Demian Bichir, we know who it is. It dooms the film up here in el norte, but thank god it’s mostly in Spanish. It would be unwatchable in Hollywoodish.

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