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So I was sitting there innocently working on some more technical aspects of my life when-relief! The phone rang. Joy quickly turned to dismay when I realized it was this guy:

He’s an economist, a former presidential candidate, and former mayor of two comunas of Santiago, famous for dredging a beach and bringing the sand to Santiago to make a pretend beach for poor people who couldn’t afford to leave the city for the summer, or part of it. He’s part of the Pinochet-supporting rightwing UDI (Union Demócrata Independiente) party. He’s also a supernumerary member of the anything-but-mainstream Catholic group Opus Dei.

In short, Joaquín Lavín and I? Nada que ver. (totally unrelated, nothing to do one with the other, etc.).

To be fair, it was a recording, and he didn’t want to talk about his own politics. Turns out he’d like me to vote for his cousin, Carolina Lavín, who’s running for concejal, which my eileenoogle brain tells me means “town councillor,” but in truth I haven’t a clue what that person would do. Doesn’t matter, really because me? Not Chilean.

So it’s getting close to election time in Chile. Don’t expect quite the fanfare you’ve got going on in the states, and don’t get too excited about late-night phone calls, either. It’s just a 30-second distraction and then you’re back to your quehaceres (to do list). Also, look out for oversized-flag waving youth in the parks and plazas and at important intersections. They look like they could whip off the flags and take a javelin throw at any minute.