The Deaths of Colonel Aureliano Buendia’s 17 Sons

Self still lost in the dream of Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude. Reading prevents her from thinking over-much about Dearest Mum (a call came in from Citibank today, alleging that Dearest Mum opened an account in the branch near Daly City uncle’s home, but she neglected to give them a mailing address. When self called Dear Uncle to see if he knew anything about it, turns out he had accompanied Dearest Mum to the bank, but was extremely reluctant to say anything further: the mysteries of Dearest Mum and her tortuously complicated financial machinations drive self crazy), besides which self adores, simply adores Garcia Marquez, who seems to know everything about irony, pathos, wit:

Aureliano Serrador had left his girlfriend at his parents’ house after having taken her to the movies and was returning through the well-lighted Street of the Turks when someone in the crowd who was never identified fired a revolver shot which knocked him over into a cauldron of boiling lard. A few minutes later someone knocked at the door of the room where Aureliano Arcaya was shut up with a woman and shouted to him: “Hurry up, they’re killing your brothers.” The woman who was with him said later that Aureliano Arcaya jumped out of bed and opened the door and was greeted with the discharge of a Mauser that split his head open . . . Fernanda ran through the town like a madwoman looking for Aureliano Segundo, whom Petra Cortes had locked up in a closet, thinking that the order of extermination included all who bore the colonel’s name. She would not let him out until the fourth day, when the telegrams received from different places along the coast made it clear that the fury of the invisible enemy was directed only at the brothers marked with the crosses of ash. Amaranta fetched the ledger where she had written down the facts about her nephews and as the telegrams arrived she drew lines through the names until only that of the eldest remained. They remembered him very well because of the contrast between his dark skin and his green eyes. His name was Aureliano Amador and he was a carpenter, living in a village hidden in the foothills.

The passage goes on for quite a bit longer, but now self has to go to Walgreen’s to pick up some bilin that one of her sister-in-laws requested: several tubes of Johnson & Johnson Blister Block, a product which self is hearing about for the first time. But people in Manila are so “up” on all the latest products! When self was in San Luis Obispo with Dearest Mum, after Dearest Mum began to gently snore, self took a peek into her toiletries case (Bad daughter, bad!). There she saw a wonderful profusion of Clarins skin products. Self was so tempted to try the “anti-aging emulsifying cream,” which probably cost several hundreds of dollars, but she desisted and instead made do with her homely pot of L’Oreal “Deep Action” night cream ($16.99 from Long’s).

Stay tuned, dear blog readers, stay tuned.

1 Comment

  1. November 20, 2008 at 4:08 am

    I don’t know which I loved more, the bank account call or the toiletries bag. Sooooo funny. Manila moves faster than New York.

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