March 3, 2004

Revolutionary lexicography

Some have written to ask about the meaning of "come-flor" - part of the lexicon of Venezuela in revolutionary times.

The Venezuelan opposition is broadly divided in two bands, the talibanes (opposition hard-men) who think Chavez is Castro and can only be defeated on the streets, and the come-flores - flower eaters - who believe in peace, love and understanding and think some kind of accomodation with state institutions within the framework of the law is possible.

Many in the Venezuelan opposition - including, admittedly, yours truly - waver between the two positions.

As to the term itself, the image comes from the old children's story: Ferdinand, the bull who refused to fight.

The image is particularly apropos given my last name...