Blogging for #MaikelNabil day: Botas Locas (Crazy boots)

Publicado en Apuntes Urbanos

In honour of Maikel Nabil Sanad, still in hunger strike in Egypt after 104 days (Spanish | English), I'm posting the 1974 argentinean song by our folk-rock band Sui Generis: Botas Locas (Crazy boots).

It's the classic anti-conscription song in Argentina and in other places of Latinoamerica as well.

Democracy was recovered in Argentina in 1983, and military conscription was abolished in 1993. This song was incorporated recently by the National Ministry of Education to the suggested contents to be used by school teachers when discussing the March 24, 1976 coup d'etat (every year, that day, we commemorate the National Day for Memory, Truth and Justice).

I hope these notes of freedom get to Maikel and those supporting his struggle.

Original Spanish, translation and free adaptation in some cases by me based on Songlations'.

Yo forme parte de un ejército de locos,
Tenía veinte años y el pelo muy corto,
Pero, mi amigo, hubo una confusión,
Porque para ellos el loco era yo.

I took part of an army of loonies,
I was twenty years old with very short hair,
But, my friend, there was a confusion,
As for them I was the crazy one.

Es un juego simple el de ser soldado:
Ellos siempre insultan; yo siempre callado.
Descansé muy poco y me puse malo.
Las estupideces empiezan temprano.

Being a soldier is a simple game:
They always insult; you always keep quiet.
I rested very little and fell quite ill.
The stupidities start early in the morning.

Los intolerantes no entendieron nada,
Ellos decían "Guerra,"
Yo decía: "no, gracias."

The intolerants did not understand a thing,
They were saying "War,"
I kept saying, "No, thank you."

Amar a la Patria bien nos exigieron.
Si ellos son la Patria, yo soy extranjero.

Love your motherland right, they demanded from us.
If those are the motherland, I am a foreigner.

[Chorus: "Yo formé parte de un ejército de locos..."]

Se darán cuenta que aquel lugar
Era insoportable para alguien normal,
Entonces me dije: "Basta de quejarme, yo me vuelvo a casa,"
Y decidí largarme.

You can realize that place
Was unbearable for someone normal,
So I said to myself, "Enough whining, I'm going back home,"
And decided to get out of there.

Les grité bien fuerte lo que yo creía
Acerca de todo lo que ellos hacían.
Evidentemente les cayó muy mal
Y así es que me echaron del cuartel general.

I yelled at them very loudly what I believed
About everything they were doing.
Evidently they took it badly
And so they kicked me out of the headquarters.

[Chorus: "Yo formé parte de un ejército de locos..."]

Si todos juntos tomamos la idea
Que la libertad no es una pelela,
Se cambiarían todos los papeles,
Y estarían vacíos muchos más cuarteles.

If we all together grasp the idea
That liberty is not a potty,
All the roles would be changed,
And many more barracks would be empty.

Porque a usar las armas -- bien nos enseñaron
Y creo que eso es lo delicado.
Piénselo un momento, señor general,
Porque yo que usted me sentiría muy mal.

Because to use arms -- they sure taught us
And I think that is the delicate part.
Think about it for a moment, Mr. General,
Because I would feel very bad if I were you.

[Chorus: "Yo formé parte de un ejército de locos..."]

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