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It Takes Two (Argentines) To Tango
July 20, 2011 12:25 PM   Subscribe


 
Is that really a crisis? I mean, we had the same thing happen with our national sport, hockey.
posted by 1000monkeys at 12:26 PM on July 20, 2011




There is a crisis in the USA due to foreigner's increasing proficiency in xenophobia, allowing them to defeat locals in important competitions.
posted by b1tr0t at 12:32 PM on July 20, 2011 [4 favorites]


As an expat in BA for over 3 years, this is .... totally unsurprising. It's always "i hate you, don't leave me" with Argentines and extranjeros...
posted by carlodio at 12:33 PM on July 20, 2011


Don't cry for me...
posted by Mister Fabulous at 12:37 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


Don't cry for me...

Since its WSJ, can I cry for journalism then?
posted by Chipmazing at 12:43 PM on July 20, 2011 [4 favorites]


Presumably, the Argentinians can't stand the idea of there being something they're not the best in the world at. It being tango is just adding insult to injury.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 12:47 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


Seems like a marriage of inferiority complex, deep-seated stubbornness and the inability to cope with change. Just like the Deep South.
posted by jsavimbi at 12:52 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


The Argentines are being xenophobic and stupid about this. They should celebrate that anyone is interested in Tango. Limiting the competitors to Argentines is shooting themselves in the dance foot.
posted by gen at 12:53 PM on July 20, 2011 [3 favorites]


Can we blame Timothy Ferris?
posted by Prince_of_Cups at 1:00 PM on July 20, 2011


The highest ranks in Sumo now contain a significant number of Polynesian and Central Asian rikishi. Coincidentally, there have been several recent public scandals about match fixing. Of course, this sort of thing never went on when it was still an entirely Japanese sport...
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 1:19 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


In my country there is problem.
And that problem is foreign dancer.
They win tango competition.
Because they better dancer.

Throw the foreign dancers down the well.
So my country can be free.
posted by punkfloyd at 1:26 PM on July 20, 2011 [6 favorites]


foreign dancers' increasing proficiency in the tango

One thing I doubt foreigners will be better at is looking damn fine doing it. Argentines people are some kind of italian supermodel mutants.

(at least to my American eyes)
posted by stroke_count at 1:28 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


I watched a little of the 2009 Mundial de Tango in Buenos Aires, and I was surprised by the number of non-Argentine competitors. I was also impressed with their quality; I don't know a lot about tango, but it seemed that the non-Argentines were pretty uniformly brilliant, whereas the Argentines were hit and miss. But I supposed that was partially the distance effect; the best tangoers from a small town 50 km from BsAs may or may not be at the top level, but the best tangoers in California who have flown halfway around the world to compete mean business. Except the Germans; they were terrible.

An amazing competition; artistic, sexy and still incredibly athletic and precise. And I assure you that the foreigners looked just as good as the Argentines (except for one Italian couple that were as orange and withered as kumquats). Apparently a Japanese team came in 3rd, (I only saw the preliminaries) which I didn't doubt; there were some amazing Japanese dancers.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 1:36 PM on July 20, 2011


Can't abide xenophobia, but in all my youtube watching there's yet to be a foreign couple who come close to the understated milonga of Javier Rodrigues and Geraldine Rojas.
posted by marco_nj at 2:11 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


Since its WSJ, can I cry for journalism then?

Granted.

/begins crying
posted by Mister Fabulous at 2:14 PM on July 20, 2011


Yeah, setting aside for the moment that they could adopt the North American all-star game formats like "USA vs. The World", I am a little surprised that a "prestigious citywide competition" can be ruled on by a municipal judge on the grounds that "Art has universal transcendence". Things like voting and democracy should have universal transcendence, but that doesn't mean a foreigner can participate in a local election.

Don't get me wrong, I was frustrated in my time in Japan when I'd see a "Help Wanted - no foreigners need apply" sign outside a local business, but I figured in the end why would I want to contribute to some bigot's success. I think the best course of action would be to let the Metropolitano remain limited and uninteresting, and hold another, higher quality (by being all-inclusive) like this Dance World Cup, to bring out the best of the world.
posted by Metro Gnome at 3:26 PM on July 20, 2011


Similarly, as a result of disputes with FIFA, England withdrew from international football in 1928, and played few matches with countries other than the "Home Nations." Jingoism and their reputation as inventors of the sport played no small role in this decision. In 1950, they were eliminated from their first World Cup by the US, and in 1953, they played a home match against Hungary with results that, in hindsight, might have been predictable...
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 3:51 PM on July 20, 2011


Is that really a crisis? I mean, we had the same thing happen with our national sport, hockey.

So you're suggesting Argentinians should turn to violence in future dance competitions in order to claim the international title?
posted by Hoopo at 4:35 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


Before I clicked on the article link, I knew at least one or two Japanese dancers must have either won or gotten high rankings in competitions, and bingo! GO JAPAN! Yeah! Kick some Argentinian ASS!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:34 PM on July 20, 2011


ALL YOUR TANGOS IS MINE!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:53 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


um... OURS!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:53 PM on July 20, 2011


Argentina: There are two ways this can go:
1. You let the foreigners compete, even though they beat you.
2. You don't let the foreigners compete, transforming yourself and your dancers in a few short years to just being big fish in a smaller pond - andforeign dance competitions WILL increasingly become the true premier events of the dance, the dance and the art and the champions will all become increasingly independent of your country, and the result result will be loss to, your economy, your art, and your standing.

It's a no brainer. If the foreigners are better, let them win and try to raise your game. Anything else is slow-motion suicide, even though it feels good right now.
posted by anonymisc at 7:51 PM on July 20, 2011 [3 favorites]


Can't they just teach Messi to do this, too?
posted by Xezlec at 8:48 PM on July 20, 2011 [1 favorite]


At another table, Osvaldo Cartery, a 73-year-old who won the world championship in 2004 and is nicknamed "Honey Feet," says foreigners' presence is something positive, validating the power of Argentine culture. "The Spaniards dance the paso doble, the Italians dance the tarantella, but the whole word dances the tango," he says.

We must heed the words of Honey Feet.
posted by reenum at 9:47 PM on July 20, 2011 [2 favorites]


I wonder how many other nations would have a similar freak out if other nations started encroaching on the sport that makes up a big part of our national identity. Like, say, foreigners moving to Korea and starting to stomp Koreans at Starcraft.
posted by sparkletone at 3:26 AM on July 21, 2011


Argentines people are some kind of italian supermodel mutants.

That might be because some massive percentage of Argentinians, indeed do have Italian DNA. And something like 1.5 million speak Italian making it the second most popular language. Immigration and all that....
posted by Skygazer at 4:17 AM on July 21, 2011


Also, this is a funny development.

Argentina should be flattered their famous dance is so fantastically loved and performed so well the world over. What a bunch of oversensitive wussies.
posted by Skygazer at 4:19 AM on July 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Since its WSJ, can I cry for journalism then...

Too late for tears on that score, I'm afraid. WSJ op-eds read more and more like propaganda directives these days...

/inevitable Murdoch derail and shadenfreuden comment.
posted by Skygazer at 4:25 AM on July 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


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