miércoles, 4 de diciembre de 2013

Los Conflictos De Los Toros

Los toros... An event at once horrifying, grotesque and an intricate game between man and beast.  A violent dance that is not even close to being fair, with the odds stacked against the bull.  Trotting in, the bull appears somewhat confused by the open arena and the eager crowd.  He's slowly weakened, poked and prodded, tired from charging around the arena.  Only after this does the real dance begin.  It is a shame: the best bit only happens after the bull has been worn down and injured.  Having said that, with a skilled toreador, the dance can be truly breath-taking.  A furious bull, charging, turning in tight circles, following the cloth, or turning firstly in one direction and then doubling back on himself, going where the cloth leads him: it is genuinely astonishing.  And even more so, when after this tight dance between enemies the toreador turns his back on the bull and walks away, arms upraised to the praise of the crowd.  How can he trust his opponent that he has been tormenting not to run him down?  I don't know, but for some reason the bull doesn't.  Maybe the bull doesn't understand it is a fight to the death.

It is really an emotionally confusing event.  The setting itself buzzes with excitement, the stabbing and the deaths of the bulls seems tragic - and even more so when the crowd celebrates it.  I often found myself on the side of the bull, cheering against the crowd, cheering on the underdog who didn't even necessarily know what he was fighting for nor the rules of the game.  But the archaic attire, the bold colours, the food vendors - all build an enthusiasm which sometimes left me sickened - enthusiasm for violence and death?  Like the gladiators of ancient Rome: in the end it is a spectacle.  Shocking, unsettling, exciting and above all else: dramatic.  I am glad we saw the two startling and conflicting faces of the event, but I have no need to go again.  And although once was enough for me, it wasn't enough to  understand the event, something I'm not sure I could ever achieve.  Despite all the associations with los toros - masculinity, sexuality, risk... I can't get past the violence at its core.

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