Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Adidas, adidas

You know those photographs of Fidel Castro wearing an Adidas jogging suit that were published at the weekend?

A friend of mine who now lives in the United States emailed to remind me that in the 1980s - when she was a teenager in Cuba - such capitalist attire was strictly forbidden at school.

Wearing an Adidas t-shirt, let alone a jogging suit, was enough to have you branded “ideologically deviated”. Which was bad news.

Of course, Castro banned a lot of other things beside Adidas during his ideologically pure phase, which lasted the best part of 30 years, until the spectacular collapse of the Soviet Union. As I recalled recently in this post, when I was growing up in the small town of Banes in the 1960s, listening to The Beatles was also regarded as decadent, bourgeois and counter-revolutionary.


A whole childhood spent without the joys of The Yellow Submarine ...

4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is a very very awesome blog.
~M~

4:02 pm  
Blogger Henry "Conductor" Gomez said...

Two quick notes:

When I was a child we used to say that Adidas was an acronym for "All day I dream about sex."

The other note is that fidel has worn this Adidas windbreaker before. When Jimmy Carter visited Cuba in 2002, el maximo took the peanut farmer to a ball game and he was wearing the jacket which I guess was part of the gear of the official Cuban baseball team.

And that reminds me that when the Cuban national team played the Baltimore Orioles in Cuba (it must have been about 10 years ago) their gear was really terrible.

Their caps were those adjustable ones with the foam in the front and the plastic mesh in the back. When they arrived in the U.S. to play the second game in the exhibition they were presented with new caps by New Era (they make the official caps of major league baseball). These caps were fitted, wool ballcaps like the pros wear.

Since then I guess fidel has been self conscious about the way the Cuban athletes look when they are competing and so you see that they have gear from Germany (Adidas) and Japan (Mizuno).

1:45 am  
Blogger Luis M Garcia said...

Thanks, Hery.
Interesting - we are often led to believe that all these capitalist goods are out of bounds because of the imperialist "blockade".

8:18 am  
Blogger La Ventanita said...

well we all know what's off limits to regular Cubans is not off limits to Fidel and Co.

Great blog.

5:36 am  

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