Comments for Expat Chronicles Pictures, music, news, stories, and rants from a gringo in Latin America. Fri, 22 May 2015 11:33:25 +0000 hourly 1 Comment on Classism: The Spanish Legacy in Latin America by healthy carbs Fri, 22 May 2015 11:33:25 +0000 Good post but I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this topic?
I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little
bit more. Cheers!

Comment on Colombian Food: Worst of the Worst by Sondra Tue, 19 May 2015 18:50:49 +0000 For example I had a bandeja the other day. I stop eating because I was bored. Bored eating can you believe it jajaja! No really most boring/tasteless food ever but I’m glad Colombians like it especially if they wont travel. Other example all the packaged meat, ham, sausage and stuff you can buy at the supermaket is of the lowest lowest quality you can find in france, even the most expensive brands and its not even cheap! Meals are definitly not something to look forward to in colombia.

Comment on The Murder of Noah Goldberg AKA ‘Medellin Paisa’ by Cali Gringo Sat, 16 May 2015 17:47:13 +0000 There’s nothing wrong with being a sex tourist, as long as the whores aren’t underage. Prostitution should be legal and it’s immoral to put people in jail for doing that. The people who make those laws are just fucking uptight religious hypocrites.

Comment on 10 Things to Do in Lima, Peru by pokemon x y Gratuit Fri, 15 May 2015 13:28:29 +0000 Wow! In the end I got a web site from where I be able to genuinely take helpful data regarding my study
and knowledge.

Comment on Paisas vs. Rolos, Medellin vs. Bogota by Brandon Wed, 13 May 2015 22:18:58 +0000 For men, taking care of their appearance is a “little gay?” Are you joking? Gay is a sexuality, not a specific way of doing things. If more straight men weren’t afraid of being “a little gay,”
they would probably be much more attractive than they really are. Unfortunately your blog post lost all credibility after reading that statement.

Comment on More Gringos Visit: Inebriation Ensues by Josegidycc Mon, 11 May 2015 01:39:31 +0000 =

Comment on Colombian Food: Worst of the Worst by Morris Sun, 10 May 2015 19:46:14 +0000 It’s hard to believe that anyone who has lived outside Colombia could be in disagreement about this.
Before I go into my rant about Colombian food let me state for the record that I have lived in Colombia for the greater part of the last 6 years, almost all of which divided between Cali and Medellín. I love the place. It was not by accident that I chose to LIVE here. In my mind, Colombia is lacking in really only one thing. TASTY food.
A statement as absurd as “Colombian food is tasty” would be “Gringos are great salsa dancers”.
Are there a few gringos who are great salsa dancers? Yes, there are. Are gringos generally great salsa dancers? Absurd.
As others have said, perhaps it was Colin, you only need to go to a supermarket and look at the spice rack. HALF of it is “Color”.
Furthermore, and for me this is the key, if you ask the average Colombian if they like food “condimentada” or “con mucho sazón” they would almost all say no. If you THEN say Colombian food is bland, they all freak out.
It is so simple. In most cases, if you don’t cook food with any seasoning, it won’t have much flavor.
There are exceptions to this. A nice steak or some good cheese or good bread, etc. But in each of these cases as well the food is awful. A steak cut thin as a sheet of paper cooked harder than my leather belt. Or what about cheese? Queso Costeño? Could you squeeze a little more salt into it? Bread? They don’t even know what it is.
Rant aside, I’d like to clarify a point or two and draw a distinction or two as well.
First, I’d like to be clear that I don’t have any problem at all with Colombian ingredients. Perfectly fresh and healthy, and as someone above mentioned, often less contaminated, processed and modified. All good points. However, this does not change the fact that a “mexican” taco cooked with no seasoning at all besides salt will be horrible. Nor does this change the fact that it is INSANE put lettuce on a taco and THEN microwave it.
Colombian food, at least what I have eaten so far — a mix of some home cooked, a lot of lunch plate specials, and a smattering of various street food offerings, is a mixed bag.
It runs from the perfectly good to eat, bland home cooked food, to the utterly bland overcooked lunch plate deals to the absolutely god awful Colombian interpretations of American food, etc.
Honey mustard on pizza? Pineapple sauce (who’s kidding who? There is no pineapple in pineapple sauce, it is nothing more than glistening yellow sugar sauce” on pizza and hot dogs and hamburgers?
So, again I fell into ranting, sorry. The distinction I wanted to make is between Colombian food and Colombian interpretations of international food.
Colombian food, in my opinion, is good but bland.
Colombian interpretations of foreign food is UNIVERSALLY horrible. And often much much worse than that. There are no words in English, or I doubt any other language on Earth to describe it.
We are left with words like absurd.
In New York City, where I’m from, if we look at the average hot dog stand for example — what do we see? High end food? No. But for starters, the crap meat shoved into the thing at least has some spices in it. But let’s forget the hot dog itself. Look at the people lining up to buy one.
EACH one orders something different. I like mine with lots of mustard and a little sauerkraut. OK, that’s me. the next guy might want ketchup and onions, and maybe the next want mustard and ketchup… Whatever, we are all different and the hot dog guy KNOWS that everyone is going to order THIERS their own way. But here in Colombia? Here in Cali where I am for example? In a city of 3,000,000 people more or less, it is smallest of exaggerations to say that ALL of them order theirs the SAME way. Osea, con todo! If the guy has 6 different salsas and only puts on 5, the customer will as likely or not say “Hey buddy, whats up with the 6th sauce? You forgot one…” It’s as if they feel robbed if they don’t put EVERY sauce available on the hot dog. Guys got 6 sauces? I want all 6. Oh? He’s got 9 sauces, well then, of course, I’m goin’ with all 9.
It’s like drawing with crayons, but instead of drawing in red or blue or green or yellow, you take all the crayons together and just start scribbling a mish-mash. You end up with the color of mud. The same with a Colombian hot dog, you end up with the flavor of mud. Sweet against sour against bitter etc… They all neutralize each other and you end up with a lot of nothing.
I almost never eat hot dogs here in Colombia, but like most have had to have one for lack of anything else from time to time. I remember one time with a friend, who of course ordered hers with everything, and me, with only mustard. She actually asked me how I could possible eat mine so “bland” LOL, I almost died. I told her that counterintuitive or not, mine would be much tastier than hers. She was incredulous, then tasted mine and then agreed. Obviously, mine tasted a bit like mustard (to the extent the fake watered down excuse for mustard tasted like mustard to begin with).
Pizza? Oh please. I’m from New York. This really isn’t funny. It ought to be illegal to call that f’n crap pizza. It’s like they SAW something on TV, it was round, had hints of red color on it and melted white stuff on top.
So they recreated it by SIGHT. For the love of god! you can but god awful disgusting pizza cheap on the street, or buy almost exactly the same thing at 50000 pesos at Karen’s Pizza. It doesn’t matter where you go, it is all just horribly bad.
Someone made a comment about gringos eating a poor man’s diet. That wasn’t reflective of the real cuisine. Total BS. The common man’s diet is the ONLY indicator of the quality of a national cuisine.
You may be able to show me one or two super high end restaurants in a city that actually offer good food, but that does not in any way reflect on the quality of the cuisine as a whole.
In New York for example, you don’t need a lot of money to eat well. I’d put a $8 chicken parmigiana hero up against anything at that price point anywhere. And you can get one all day and into the night on almost any street corner in the city.

Anyway, apparently I had had that bottled up for awhile. Sorry for the rant, overall I think my country sucks and is getting worse by the day, and I feel very fortunate that I have been allowed to set up shop in Colombia and live and be happy. I like Colombians a lot and hope to have some more Colombianess rub off on me as I continue to live and grow as a person — just not the food. Sorry. That will never happen.
I will never have a dream about the chuleta that I can order for lunch tomorrow the way I would dream about a curry, or a proper pizza or a real pastrami sandwich while Im home.
The Indian’s have been developing an intact culinary tradition, uninterrupted, for thousands of years.That is culinary art. None of us is great at everything. There is no dishonor in admitting that Colombia doesn’t have anything of the sort. On the bell curve of flavor, with cuisines, like Indian, Thai, or Ethiopian for example on the flavorful side, there are some rather bland ones on the flavorless side. It just so happens that Colombia is on the extreme bland side. Doesn’t make Colombia a bad country. There’s no reason to freak out. It is just the way it is. Objectively speaking.

Comment on Dogs in Latin America vs. the U.S. by Isreal Tue, 05 May 2015 21:49:02 +0000 Thank you so much for info. I want to visit S. or Central America. What would you say is the absolute most friendly countries, and lastly, the easiest for a guy to get in with his 90lb dog? What I find horrific us the Asian practice of eating dogs, and am looking for a S. or Central American country where people would be very averse to eating mans best friend, even in rough economic times. Your help is greatly appreciated. God bless.

Comment on Be a Mindful Expat by Chili T Sun, 03 May 2015 03:36:29 +0000 Colin, nice reply. I’ve been dealing with head up their ass gringo self proclaimed “in country authorities” on Costa Rica since 1991. Sure, I was a bit of a blowhard myself at the beginning, talking the talk as we all tend to do. After the first 5 years, I had to reassess all that I thought I knew and it took the next 5 to relearn everything that I had gotten wrong. I spent the next 10 years walking the walk. I sympathize with your frustration at Guy’s ignorance but even a bad review is good publicity. Keep up the good work. You are showing your readers that you are infact “Anti-Fragile”, and I suggest to everyone that if you have not already read Anti-Fragile by Nassim Nicholas Taleb , get it. Colin, I expect that you have.

Comment on Colombian Food: Worst of the Worst by Niklas Fri, 01 May 2015 03:52:52 +0000 I am Swedish and I have lived in Colombia for almost five years. I can only agree with the article, Colombian food is completely tasteless and Colombians say it’s delicious. And they get really upset when you criticize the food. The strange thing is, if you serve them something tasty (not hot, tasty), they’ll like it, but then they’ll go back to their sancocho and plantains and think it’s great. I so much long for the international cuisine of Europe. But as people, Colombians are spicy and wonderful in many ways.