Archive for the ‘Bulls’

Ampuero 2014

September 10, 2014 By: erik Category: Bulls, Family, Offspring, Photos, Spain, Travel

Ampuero 2014This past weekend we went to the annual festival in Ampuero. The best way to describe it is that it’s a mini-San-Fermín, the enormous annual festival in Pamplona known worldwide for its encierro (running of the bulls). San Fermín is seven days long, and the festival in Ampuero is only three days, but they do have a running of the bulls and they do party for all 72 hours for those three days. There is also a well respected dress code of wearing all white with a red scarf and optional other red accessories. The Ampuero festival is perhaps slightly more kid-friendly than the one in Pamplona. It’s also not as overrun by foreign tourists, which might make it closer to the San Fermín that Hemingway fell in love with. It might make a good destination for some cheap holidays in Spain. We had a great time, going out until the wee hours on Friday and Saturday night, and then going to the bull run on Sunday.

Zahí­nos 2012

August 14, 2012 By: erik Category: Bulls, Extremadura, Family, Offspring, Photos, Spain, Travel, Videos

On The Farm - Zahí­nos 2012My wife and I arrived in my father-in-law’s hometown of Zahí­nos on the evening of Saturday, August 4th, right at the height of the town’s summer festival. Our daughter, Nora, who had not seen us in a week was ecstatic to be reunited with us. After sitting and chatting for a while with my wife’s aunt, uncle and cousins, we headed down to the town fairgrounds for the most Spanish of all pastimes. A portable bullring had been set up and there were two bullfighters, including a hometown lad, scheduled to perform.

Ampuero Bullrun

September 13, 2011 By: erik Category: Bulls, Food, Offspring, Partying, Photos, Spain, Travel, Videos

Ampuero PartiersLast weekend we went to the annual festival in Ampuero, a neighboring town of 4,000 residents. Every year, they hold a miniature version of the San Fermin festival in Pamplona, complete with all night partying in white clothes and red scarfs, a running of the bulls, and bullfighting. Of the six years we’ve lived here, we’ve gone several times. We knew from past experience that it’s nearly impossible to park in a small town that’s hosting three times its inhabitants in a festival, so we parked on the outskirts of town to save the time and stress of finding a closer spot.

Spanish Childhood

October 05, 2010 By: erik Category: Bulls, Offspring, Spain, Videos

Bullfighting A ToddlerAs an American child, I learned everything I knew about bullfighting from Bugs Bunny. My daughter, on the other hand, is growing up in Spain. Even as a toddler, she is being toreada (bullfought?) by her grandparents. They even use one of her red cardigans to tempt her, just like Bugs Bunny might do.

Stephen Colbert on Spanish Sports

August 03, 2010 By: erik Category: Bulls, Funny, Spain, USA, Videos

From last night’s Colbert Report.

It has been a huge year for Spanish sports, or España Esports. Spain’s soccer team won the World Cup, Rafael Nadal conquered Wimbledon, Alberto Contador took the Tour de France, and Javier Bardem took the world record in the Thousand Yard Smolder. His prize? Himself. But there has been a major setback in Spanish athletics.

[cut to CNN footage]

The controversial tradition of bullfighting is now illegal in one region of Spain, the Catalonia region, which includes Barcelona.

[cut back to Colbert]

I don’t understand! Barcelona should be used to horrors. Their streets are already running red with the sangria vomited by thousands of American backpackers. I’ll say it again, folks. Barcelona is just the San Francisco of Spain. They’re a bunch of effete liberal elites talking down to the rest of Spain with their sthmug Sthpanish listhps. They don’t undershtand! Heartland Spanish values like Mom and apple paella. I’m with the pro-bullfighting community who have called the ban a “political manipulation”.


Work Related

January 16, 2009 By: erik Category: Bulls, Funny, Stuff I Found

No comment.

Also, check out

Definitely Work-Related

Prints and paraphernalia with this cartoon can be purchased from

No José Tomás Tickets

July 16, 2008 By: erik Category: Bulls, Complaining, Spain

A couple months ago, I read this fascinating article about bullfighting in the NY Times. It really is as fair and balanced as I’ve seen any articles about the controversial Spanish tradition. I highly recommend reading it.

In that article, I learned of a bullfighter named José Tomás, who came out of retirement last year to wow spectators in Barcelona, the stronghold of anti-bullfighting sentiment in Spain. Ever since, the phenomenon that is José Tomás has been snowballing. You know how they say that there’s a fine line between bravery and stupidity? Well, most of the people in the bullfighting community, including many professional bullfighters, think that José Tomás has gone way over that line. So when Marga, a fan of bullfighting, saw that JT was coming to Santander this summer, she got pretty excited. She said, “Look, it’s pretty clear that this guy’s gonna die young, so we need to see him as soon as possible.” That pretty much sums up the opinion of all bullfighting aficionados in Spain. (more…)

San Fermin 2008

July 14, 2008 By: erik Category: Bulls, Partying, Photos, Spain, Travel, Videos

Thats a lotta Bull!We didn’t really have any plans this weekend. On Saturday it was drizzling all day long, so we didn’t leave the house much. But on Sunday we decided, “Heck, the biggest party in the world right now is only 2 hours away. People travel from literally the other side of the world to go to it. We should go!”

Plus, it gave me a chance to meet a second person on my blogroll. This is the second person that I have actually had a beer with after meeting them, and following their life, on the internet. You may recall the first was when I spotted Scott from South Dakota, an American video blogger in Laredo, in a local bar. I’ve been following the lives of Theresa, an americana in Pamplona (The Rain in Spain… on my blogroll), and her family for well over a year now.

So I sent Theresa an email, we exchanged mobile numbers, Marga and I watched the Sunday morning bull run live on television, and off we went to Pamplona! (more…)

Extremadura 2007 (1 of 3) – Higuera Bullfight

August 14, 2007 By: erik Category: Bulls, Extremadura, Photos

On Friday morning, I cleaned the house a little and headed to Mondragon to pick up Gorka and his suitcase, go to a nearby town to pick up Aunt Marga from work (her oldest son talked her into letting him have the car to drive around Spain with his friends). When we dropped Aunt Marga off at home, Belén was waiting there with her luggage, and we took off for Extremadura. Eight hours later, we arrived in Higuera de la Serena, where Marga, her parents, and grandfather, were watching some sort of dancing horse show in the portable bullring. It finished as we got there and we all walked to Grandpa Ramón’s house for dinner and rest.

Bullfighting on NBC Nightly News

July 24, 2007 By: erik Category: Bulls, Media, Politics, Spain, USA

Most mornings I watch the previous day’s edition of the NBC Nightly News (with Brian Williams). Yesterday, they did a report on “Bullfighting in Spain” (viewable with ads at link above), where Brian introduced it as,

And now we go to Spain, where, tonight, perhaps the best known national custom is under attack. A lot of people think it’s high time to do away with a traditional pastime. They want to ban bullfighting, because, they say, it amounts to torture.