Fifties
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THE FIFTIES

My childhood was a happy space. A site where the act of playing installs in my life forever. Forever playing ...

I have the strange certainty of being watched, loved, praised. The little school in Flores: A brick house in Caracas and Rivadavia, the house terrace, my friends. A never ending party. Good student, not because I was nerdy, but because it was easy.  A little bit of a bully, but not much.

Read everything. Even when I did not know how to read. Salgari' s books and above all, a reading that will imprint me forever: Alice in Wonderland.  Perhaps, because, I thought, in that Argentina of the 50s, I was in wonderland myself. Of course, I wasn't.  But, I knew that later. Maybe too late, because that "sense of wonder" it is already a mark of origin.

Swimming in the delicious waters of those times, I see myself eating figs out of my cousin's fig tree in Vicente López. I see myself writing my fist poem that came out with ink blots.

My mother wanted a pianist daughter: at four I was already playing Bach. English classes, declamation, magic classes. I used to listen to operas in my Viennese grandfather's radio.

I fell in love with James Dean, and I covered my room with his photos. In the park where I used to play everyday, the Peronist government had placed a sign saying that: "In the new Argentina, the only privileged ones are the children."  I used to vent that slogan as a symbol in front of my parents who were anti-Peronists.

The radio was a kitchen ritual. Lorenza, my nanny, and I would laugh at Niní Marshall, suffer with Tarzan's adventures and dance with the Glostora Tango Club.

The fifties, so 'yanquis' (Yanquees), so little cake dolls, so cheesy, dressed me up in frilly little dresses for birthday parties where being blonde and blue-eyed was a winning card in such a racist country like this one.

I, like Alice in Wonderland, made out of all sense nonsense; of every solemnity, a trick; of every power discourse; an irreverent parody.  And Alice, still in the year 2000, remains my heroine. Like her, I often cheat while playing croquet with myself.

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