Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Spain’s culture of comparison

Something that drives me nuts here is constant drive to compare everyone and everything to figure out who is smarter, richer, better looking, etc. It’s done in reverse though, so usually people talk about who is dumber, poorer or uglier.

Lately the pressure from the Spanish side of my family has gotten too much, especially around the kids. If our kids start piano lessons, the other grandchildren start getting pressure. Our kids speak English well? Time to send the cousins to English school. Then there’s the comparisons of where we went on vacation, what kind of clothes we wear (too shabby by Spanish standards apparently), whether our children are better looking than some other random kid they saw in the park, and on and on.

We haven’t had much luck promoting the idea that people can have different talents and be good at different things (and there’s nothing wrong with it!)

5 comments:

Charles Butler said...

Get used to it. Little else matters here - except one's perceived political affiliation.

Anonymous said...

Envy...the hallmark of Iberos....

Anonymous said...

Hi! Yes, envy..It ruins everything. I am also tired of the comparisons among friends, at work...If you are good at something, you NEVER should have the credit. I am so tired of Spain, and bored of Sant Cugat...

good luck, sc is a lovely bubble town, but we can not stay here for ever, I'm afraid. Life is going on in some place else and I am missing it..

santcugat said...

You sound like me on a bad day :)

Send me an email and let's have a drink before you leave.

Jeremy Holland said...

That and the need to use superlatives for everything (food, weather, art) when most are completely subjective or nuanced. Well, expect their football team being the best in the world.