Sunday, October 15, 2017

Absolutely Fabulous: Parliamentary Fashion

You really can tell so much from fashion or someone's dress sense, can't you. Or you can be left entirely nonplussed by sudden transformations. What did we make, for instance, of our very good friend, Balti of the Balearic Parliament Presidency, having donned what looked suspiciously like a suit? Admittedly it was denim, but there was that rarest of sights in a Balti-style: matching top and bottom. Was this a sign of Balti edging towards establishment respectability? Can we anticipate him getting a haircut some time over the remaining period of the current administration? Or was it simply that the Felanitx charity shop had got some updated stock in?

The new Balti look was given an airing at the do for the Guardia Civil on Wednesday evening, when the atmosphere was so frosty between Sweet and Friendly Francina and the Witch of Salom that they should have all been togged up in scarves and mittens. The reason for this, what with Maria looking straight at Francina when accusing the government of undermining national identity, had something to do with a bit of a carry-on in Catalonia, whatever that was all about.

Balti wasn't alone in mystifying or intriguing keen political fashion observers. Earlier in the week there was a line-up of various parliamentarians who had gathered for a photo opp to publicise a highly worthy initiative, which is that next year will be the year of mental health in the Balearics. One stresses that this is a most laudable idea, but what sort of statements were some of our dear parliamentarians making in order to honour it? I mean, why was Marga Prohens dressed in some kind of Baby Doll frock and looking as though she was sweet sixteen? The contrast with the Podemos Boot Girl, Laura Camargo, couldn't have been greater. Laura was in a power black dress. She might have failed in her bid to become the Podemos Coordinator, but she was leaving the victor - Granny Mae - in no doubt as to who still wears the trousers, the boots and the black dress around Podemos. She has, after all, spent the past couple of years letting Alberto Jarabo know this.

But there was more. The Earth Mother, Patricia Gómez, had traded in the kaftan for a full-length black gown and white jacket. The health ministry must have been having a cocktail party to celebrate having reduced consultant waiting times by 0.47% this month. It was hard to think what other explanation there could possibly have been.

And then, ah yes then, there was Xe-Lo. Removed from the public eye for some months since having been dispatched to the Valley of the Fallen behind the PP in the parliament arena, Balti's predecessor was clearly determined to make a real statement and to confirm one's suspicions that she had indeed spent much of her time as parliament president developing the Xe-Lo range for the fuller feminist.

What a statement it was too. Black t-shirt on which was emblazoned in a sparkly silver on two rows - FABU LOUS. Well, you go for it, girlfriend. It must indeed be absolutely fabulous to still be picking up the parliamentary pay cheque, despite having been banished by Podemos. But while we're at it, what actually was it with the use of English? Does the government's linguistic "normalisation" police know about this? Maybe there should in fact be a government fashion normalisation department. No, forget that, they might actually think it's a good idea and put Balti in charge.

* Photo comes from the Partido Popular.

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