Monday, March 19, 2007

Like a Rhinestone Cowboy

It seemed to good to be missed: living mariachi legend Vicente Fernandez, live at the Queretaro bullring. Unlike any of the bullfights we've seen here, Vicente was playing to a packed house - thousands of working-class Mexicans, most of whom, I'd be willing to bet, had been on or near a horse within the past 48 hours. And this was despite the $40 ticket price - a week's wages is some places around here. David and I were the only white people in the entire house.

We were also the only ones who couldn't recognize every song withing the first three notes and, if we did recognize one, we were the only ones who didn't scream like teenage girls. Vicente can still squeeze himself into those mariachi pants, and came sauntering out with a pearl-handled revolver on his hip. (I think it's an east-coast/west-coast mariachi thing.) The crowd adored him, treating him like late-period Elvis despite his having the stage presence of late-period John Paul II. At one point, we thought he'd fallen down and broken his knee, but he was just limping into the crowd to get some lovin' from the ladies in the expensive seats.

Here's a couple of minutes of the Big V in action:

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