‘Can anyone help me? I’m looking for this song by Ricardo Igea,’ somebody asked on Facebook the other day...
‘Ricardo who?’ you ask.
‘Never heard of him.’
Needless to say, Wikipedia is none the wiser, either:
‘Oh, that Ricardo! You mean that mad poet from Zaragoza who smokes like a chimney but has a smile and a voice you could die for?’
‘He’s bloody brilliant if you ask me. Didn’t he do Swimming Without Wings? That song reduces me to tears every time.’
Poor Ricardo. Amazon won’t sell his albums, Wikipedia won’t give him an entry, and YouTube won’t get his song titles right.
‘What do you mean, We won’t sell his albums?’
‘Oh, hello, Mrs. Amazon. Sorry if I woke you up.’
‘Never mind that. Just answer the question.’
‘Why can’t I find Ricki’s albums on Amazon, Mrs. Amazon?’
‘They were discontinued ages ago, so don’t go shooting the messenger. You can still buy Todo Lo Que Tengo. It’s a cracker!’
‘I’m pleased to hear it, but my Facebook friend wants to download Gafeína. That’s on Las Manos del Médico, isn’t it?’
‘Have you tried Spotify?’
‘Of course. They told me to go and listen to Inma Serrano.’
‘And what about his web page?’
‘Inma’s a man?!’
‘Ricardo’s web page, you fool.’
‘Oh, sorry! Well, there are some great articles and links, but there’s no sign of Gafeína.’
‘At least the link to Indigencia still works.’
‘Eat your heart out, Phil Collins! I say.’
‘So what’s Ricki up to these days?’
‘Well, he’s reinvented himself as Muchacho Mochila. Backpack Boy.’
‘Backstreet Boy? I’m pretty sure we’ve still got him on Amazon.’
‘Backpack Boy. Muchacho Mochila in English. Well, that’s my translation.’
‘And a pretty crap one if you ask me.’
‘Have you any idea how difficult it is to translate well from Spanish to English?’
‘What’s wrong with Google Translator?’
‘What’s wrong with Google Translator?! Did you see what they did to Báilalo?’
Ricardo, Ricki, Muchacho Mochila, Mumo... He’s still making the best music around. I wanted to finish with a link to his latest masterpiece, Hoy Es Siempre Todavía. It goes without saying, unfortunately, that I couldn’t find one that worked:
I’ll keep searching J.
–¿Por qué no bailas?
–Why aren’t you dancing?
–I am dancing!
–¿Vienes aquí a menudo?
–Bastante. Soy la mujer de limpieza.
–Lo mismo digo.
–Do you come here often?
–Quite a lot. I’m the cleaning lady.
–Oh. Pleased to meet you.
–Shall we dance?
–¿Cómo te llamas?
–¿Y eso cómo se deletrea?
–Tal como suena: L, O, L, A, Lola. La, la, la, la, Lola. Una Coca-Cola, por favor.
–What’s your name?
–So how do you spell that?
–As it sounds: L, O, L, A, Lola. La, la, la, la, Lola. A Coca-Cola, please.
–¿Tu casa o la mía?
–No tengo casa.
–Your place or mine?
–I don’t have a place.
Mañana vas a tener un clavo de mucho cuidado.
Tomorrow you’re going to have a terrible hangover.
Spanglish for Impatient People, Lesson 19, "at the disco"