The @naky chronicles

Internet star, made in chavismo
Internet must-read

One of the great things about new media is discovering new voices, people who wouldn’t get heard if the public sphere was still in the hands of the stiffs who reign over the op-ed pages in El Nacional and El Universal, with their stuffy Carlos Blancos and their Manuel Felipe Sierras leaving no space for the real talent.

That’s just one long-winded introduction to Naky Soto’s latest piece in Prodavinci. In it, Naky chronicles Caracas – or the ordeal that living and shopping in Caracas has become. She picks up a Central American academic at the airport who had the misfortune of losing her bags, only to discover a city of neglectful parents, urine-filled public bathrooms, animal-print thongs, and baby dolls. She doesn’t stop at the rant, though. She puts it all in perspective.

The money quote:

“Es cruel sonreírle a quien te maltrata, porque de no hacerlo las consecuencias pueden ser peores. Es un exabrupto negociar la prestación de un buen servicio partiendo de la sumisión. Cada transacción comercial que realizamos fue un golpe a la decencia: porque les sobra gente, porque no les interesa atenderte, no les interesa que vuelvas, porque aún la crisis no ha cuestionado su poder. El poder de una caja registradora que podría no sumar nada si decidimos no tolerar sus insultos.

Fuimos atropelladas varias veces, verbal y gestualmente. Para mí, es un registro más de un extenso mapa de barbaries, para ella es una fotografía dolorosa de una ciudad que desconocía y a la que dudo le interese regresar.”

Read the whole thing. And if you hunger for more, then brace yourself for this.

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  1. Excellent recommendation. I have been reading her and her husband Luis Carlos for a while and they have been an excellent source of information and, why not, depending on the topic, funny and yet truthful.There is a counted few that evoke that feeling. Have you seen their hangouts?

  2. In the nineties I lived and worked in Venezuela and thouroughly enjoyed my time there. So after a few years I returned with my Venezuelan wife to spend a number of months in the country.
    On arrival at Maquetia I thought it strange our bags were being x rayed. Nevertheless we waited in the queue as , well , we were in Venezuela.
    Our bags had passed through the machine and then I heard a Cuban female accent shout at us. Stop! Oh sht I thought, what have I done. She then ordered a young Venezuelan worker, quite a pleasant chap, to search our bags as there was food inside. She was correct but nothing unusual in a couple of tins and the likes. She then ordered the Venezuelan worker to then take the food to the “usual place”. After having searched our bags the young man informed the Cuban that there was no food, only books. And he smiled at us and I said thanks.
    As time passed we were at Maquetia awaiting the departure of our flight. All was going well as we made our way down the tunnel to the aircraft. I was “Guardia” searched and asked a few questions just before the aircraft. My Spanish is not too bad but at times it is best to pretend otherwise. And then one Guardia said to the other, “put the gringo to the end of the queue and we’ll search him again when everyone is on board.
    And they did. They couldn’t decide whether or not to take me backstage for further “questioning”. They decided otherwise and as they did so the young Guardia squeezed my testicles as he smiled and laughed. It was bloody painful. I fell to the ground as they walked back up the tunnel laughing at the stupid Gringo. I would like to say their accent was other than Venezuelan but that would not be true.

    • Robert,

      Wow! Sorry that happened to you. We shouldn’t let badly behaved people ruin the freedoms of others.

      In Venezuela there is a general tendency to allow for way too much” freedom” – this just has the opposite effect in the end of taking away the freedom of the well behaved.There are way too many folks who are not standing up to this in the name of what they perceive as ” freedom” of expression or other such misunderstandings, and not enough people who realize that FREEDOM also has to include protecting others.So in order to have a properly free and JUST environment, some types of false freedoms have to be prohibited, because there is no real freedom without

  3. Apart from what others have said I have to add this:

    Her Spanish is impeccable. Very seldom do I find a Venezuelan writing in Spanish for a non-casual use who knows how to use punctuation and when to use a tilde, among other things.

    That is also part of what is wrong in Venezuela: even people with years of formal education and who live there – in a country where Spanish is the official language – don’t care to write properly in their own language even on a newspaper.

    Yesterday an oppo politician tweeted a link to an article from El Nacional about Maduro’s “millonas”. The author tried to imagine how representatives of the Real Academia in Spain would discuss the inclusion of Maduro’s word in the new dictionary. The text was supposed to be funny, but it was very badly written. While the author was focusing on Maduro’s nonsense of a word, he didn’t care for how he himself was using his mother tongue.

    So: it is a particular pleasure to read her.

  4. Prodavinci is a source of excellent and insightful writing , its full of recognized names in the literary journalistic or intellectual spheres , including both Venezuelan and Non Venezuelan writers . A window to another bigger world . Its basically critical of the regime but does include the ocassional Chavista outlook , like Colombia writer Ospinas beautifully written pieces . The phocus is on Venezuela but there is a bit of everything to sattisfy an inquiring mind . Mrs Sotos pieces are a welcome addition to Prodavincis roster of excellent writers . You also have a comments section which is also above average in content and in the quality of the writing . Some of our master bloggers have had some of their pieces published there !! Shows you how good a digital magazine it is .


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