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Episode Twenty-Four - SPANISH DWARF

Copyright © 2002 - 2005 Arthur Jarvinen

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The Invisible Guy has come to Seville by way of Cadiz, to the Plaza de Toros de la Real Maestranza on a tip from Jokko, who in his communiqué via a classified ad in a prominent Bulgarian newspaper that The Invisible Guy has taken out a subscription to for just such occasions, went no farther than to suggest that a day at the bullfights will be well worth the trip, especially if Josérita is in the ring. Josérita is a transsexual dwarf torero.
Josérita isn't a native Spaniard, having been born and raised in East L.A., but he went to Seville at the age of twelve to train in bullfighting and after taking his alternativa decided to make the city his permanent home. He has since become one of the most celebrated and popular toreros in Andalucia, not only for the novelty, as you might assume, but also because he really is quite good, a natural talent. However, his physical stature and build have made it necessary for Josérita to depart somewhat from classical traditions, and it does not surprise those familiar with his work to see him using some rather unorthodox maneuvers from time to time.
The bullfight is now in the final tercio, and Josérita's highly personal style and novel technique have not escaped the notice of The Invisible Guy, who has over the years
immersed himself in the study of numerous subjects both arcane and popular, mastered a variety of martial arts and competitive sports, gotten himself designated persona non grata in several of the world's most prestigious casinos on account of his impossibly good "luck", and familiarized himself with the finer points of many of the world's richest and most colorful cultural traditions, bullfighting among them. His interest was particularly piqued by Josérita's veronica, which one could without reservation say to be peculiar at the very least and would likely be inclined to go as far as describing as comical.

In a flash of insight The Invisible Guy suddenly realizes why the diminutive matador's gestures with the muleta, though singularly odd in the bullring, look strangely familiar to one with both Boy Scout and naval training in his curriculum vita; "Damned if the little guy isn't doing semaphore!".

"Duuh!!! Why didn't I catch on sooner?", The Invisible Guy thinks, gently chastising himself in his inner monologue as he scrutinizes the dwarf's stylized movements and posing more closely.

"Holy Toledo! I gotta go!" The Invisible Guy declares out loud and, despite it being well into the faena with the anticipated kill only moments away, turns and hastens toward the nearest exit, pushing his way through confused and irritated spectators.
.. .. .. .. .. .. .

Claude, occupying one of the cheap seats in full exposure to the late afternoon sun and wishing he had with him something a bit more refreshing than an overly warm split of an albeit excellent local fino sherry, glances again at the libretto of Bizet's Carmen, noting to himself that there is no such a thing as a "torreador".

Spanish Flag Torero with muleta My semaphore flags

Footnote to Spanish Dwarf:

It just so happens that in this particular fight the bull behaved so admirably that the crowd petitioned the President to grant an indulto, and the lucky boy was put out to stud.
TRIVIA: Cristina Sanchez, the first female bullfighter of modern times, took her alternativa in 1998 and retired in 1999 due to overwhelming prejudice among her male colleauges. Click for photos and more info on Cristina Sanchez.

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