Saturday, 26 December 2015

La chica de Los Planetas

by Holden Centeno

So what should a guy do if a girl stops responding his calls (emails, tweets, whatsapps, whatevers)? There are a few options, some of them less annoying than others. For example, he can try to get over her. Holden Centeno (taking his nom de plume, or, rather, nom de Twitter after the protagonist of The Catcher in the Rye) decided to create a blog dedicated to his failed relationship epic love as a big letter to his ex... and monetise it. Am I alone in finding this somewhat creepy? I say, the chances of her coming back to him after this must be slim to none. Unless there never was such a girl as la chica de Los Planetas in the first place. In which case, he still can get lucky.

I borrowed this book from the library since I read the opening passage of the very first story, El profesor que pudo ser una guitarra, and got hooked:

Un año en la universidad, en una asignatura, me tocó con el profesor más hijo de puta que había en toda la facultad. Lo juro. Cada vez que otros compañeros me preguntaban cuál era mi profesor, me decían: «Olvídate de aprobar con esa cabronazo. Es lo más parecido a Satanás, aquí, en la tierra.»
The first two parts of the book, Vida y encuentros and Muerte y eternidad, are quite short and consist of five stories each. Because of their randomness and self-sufficiency, I found these stories greatly superior to those from the last part, La chica de Los Planetas proper. Can’t say why, but I expected more from the main dish. Or, rather, less, for a good short story writer should know when to stop. The best story of this lot is Madrid—Cariño, thanks to the absence of the very chica.

I have a theory that most human males go through the Holden Caulfield phase during their ontogenesis. Some, however, do stuck there for quite a bit.

No comments:

Post a Comment