Joho the Blogbarcelona Archives - Joho the Blog

November 9, 2011

You Barcelona Birds

You Barcelona birds don’t know how good you have it.
You give your city two stars
because once a tourist left you a crust that had some mustard on it —
Don’t eat the yellow bread, is that so hard to remember? —
and last February a pigeon bullied you aside.
You ought to come to my city some February.
Is there even a word in Spanish for slush?
Yeah, Boston would grow you a pair,
and then would shrivel them up until they make a high-pitched ting.
How you like them tiny frozen apples?
So why don’t you go back to TripAdvisor and fix your ratings
even if you have to make up a new login.
Try “A_Little_Perspective23”
or “WuzWrongDaFirstTime.”
Stoopid Barcelona birds.

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December 8, 2010

A blog not to trust

Just a note: if you’re going to Barcelona and come across blogs that favorably review the BCNinternet guide site, you should be aware that the site pays bloggers to write reviews and link to them. I know because they asked me to, and then confirmed it in an email.

Hmm, I wonder if this post counts as a review…

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April 16, 2010

Veggie in Barcelona

Just a note to fellow vegetarians passing through Barcelona: The best vegetarian restaurant we’ve found so far is BioCenter, 25 Fortuny, right off the Rambla. The menu is fairly small, but the food was really good. We had a very tasty seitan dish (sort of how I remember veal) and gnocchi. Reasonably priced, too. We haven’t been to many of the local veggie restaurants – see for a list – so there may be better ones, but you’ll get a tasty meal at BioCenter. And tell them Los Lobos sent you. (They won’t know what you’re talking about, but you might enjoy their momentary look of confusion.)


The next night: We had a lovely meal at Smilo, which bills itself as a pizzeria but has a very good Italian menu with numerous veggie entries. The pesta ravioli and veggie risotto were both delicious. The place is bright, clean, and very friendly.

Later still: We had a lovely, delicious meal at Vegatalia , off Las Ramblas. The eggrolls were fanatastic, and the risotto and seitan were delicious. Clean and friendly. Highly recommended.


April 14, 2010

In Barcelona

Light bloggage because my wife and I are in Barcelona for a few days. (Hint: Frequent flyer miles have a lot to do with it.)

I haven’t been here since 1971, when Generalissimo Franco cast his cold chill on the place. The city is as beautiful as ever, and now so lively. Loved our first half day. Looking forward to another two.

Some random observations:

Who was the first person who looked at one of Gaudi’s plans and said, “Yup, I want to spend a lot of money to build one of those”? The blueprints must have had laughinstock written all over them. Very cool, though. What you at first think is sort of silly at seemingly random turnings reveal angles of great beauty. These buildings make you remember how utterly boring most modern architecture is.

We visited a recently unearthed synagogue in the old quarter. Tiny. It’s not an active place of worship, but my wife discretely prayed there. The historical marker on the outside has been covered with a gradffito that – weirdly – only revealed itself in the photo I took: Free Palestine.

Why do street singers/guitarists around the world confine themselves to the 1960s-1970s songbook? Is “Knock Knock Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” really that good? On the other hand, we heard a street guitarist playing classical Spanish music so well that we bought her CD from her: Tita Avendaño.

We’ve seen almost no smokers. I’m beginning to think that Europe consists of two cultures at this point: Smoke-free surface-dwellers and smoking mole people. It’s the only explanation.

We’ve been eating well as veegetarians. We had a very good, simple tapas-like dinner last night in a local place, and right now we’re using the free Net at Ovni, an all you can eat buffet that is listed as vegetarian, although do very small pieces of ham count as vegetarian in Spain?

Anyway, having a great time. Wish you where here.