Despite the dire warnings, Hurricane Irene passed through New York City barely leaving any damage. But one lasting effect of the hurricane (or rather Mayor Bloomberg’s response to it) is a Twitter account that mocks the Mayor’s attempts at Spanish.
From an outsider’s point of view, Mayor Bloomberg’s willingness to learn a language spoken by many in his city and to try communicate with them better is an admirable thing. Given that his spoken Spanish sounds about as good as mine though, he has been criticised for not leaving important warnings up to someone with a better grasp of the language.
El Bloombito (aka Miguel Bloombito) is a parody of the Mayor’s Spanish skills. Examples of tweets include:
Los librariotequas del publico somos opening at el 12pm. Returno sus bookas! Que mucho fines!
Muchos trees esta falling downo. No stando under los trees. Que splat!
The Mayor was asked about the account in a press conference and seemed to take it well. Interestingly, from this article from the New York Times it seems that Bloomberg has been learning Spanish since around 2002 and has a personal tutor for conversation classes. He’s a busy man, but I would personally want my spoken skills to be much better after almost 10 years of practice! As I said before, Bloomberg sounds like I do when speaking Spanish, and I’ve been learning sporadically for around a year.
If you’re interested in who’s behind the account, take a look at this story from the New York Observer.
What do you think of Mayor Bloomberg’s language skills? Do you prefer El Bloombito?