Countries we never hear about #3: Venezuela

21 12 2010

Ok, it’s been a while and I’d like to say that Ban Ki Moon has been on my back about another article in the “where are they now?” countries articles but he has not because a) I have a bad back and b) He doesn’t know me.

While we are on the topic though, why do World Leaders continue to insist on having hilarious names. Must I, every time I see a news story on SBS (at least twice a year), be subjected to the head of the United Nations whose name only makes me think of Westpac bending over?? Let’s not get started on Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. His name makes Ronald Raygun seem positively cartoon-like.

Answers later, so you don’t cheat!

As usual, I digress. For today we have the honour of recognising a nation whom I am quite sure you have heard of but 13% will believe that this nation is in Africa, with all the other ‘funny sounding ones’ but you’d be wrong. Yes, we are speaking of the glorious nation of Venezuela!

You’ve heard of Angel Falls, the Andes, the Amazon Jungle and Pabellon Criollo right? Ok, three are places you can visit in Venezuela and one is not actually the Presidente but a shredded beef dish. If you thought the dish was Angel Falls you should visit your Geography teacher and give them a serious punch in the nose.

Venezuela wallows in its unenviable relative anonymity for much the same reason as other countries discussed on this blog. It is simply TOO representative of South American countries. Invasions by people who ate paella back sometime before football was invented, morbid fascinations with military dictatorships and Zorro. Hot jungles, Cold mountains, women with G-strings on beaches and.. whoa. Back up! Brazil? Anyone? OK, so some South American countries have made their way into the International Sovereign State Celebrity list, it must be possible.

So what has Venezuela got going for it? I’m glad you asked! A cool flag for starters:

Yep. Primary colours, some pretty stars and a little cresty-thing with, oh, no. A horse, some wheat and, yes, another flag (which makes a flag, with a crest which features a flag). When will these South Americans learn not to set graphic art deadlines to Flag designers right before siesta???
“Hey Pablo, are you feeneeshed with the flag design now?”
“Huh, no Paulo, I am not. I hem however (with single finger raised in the air) neeearly feeneeshed!!”
“Ho K, I am so tired Pablo, I will see you later Hombre!”
“Man, I too am buggered. One more theeng in thees square.. one more theeng!! Oh, stuff it! Another flag!! Now where eez Mr Teddy??”
Some simple changes I’d suggest? Firstly, not a horse, a UNICORN!! Yeah, who doesn’t like a Unicorn eh?? With any luck, Venezuela could even get a decent polo team, glue horns onto the white horses and get a sponsorship deal through Mattel with Barbie on board, Yeahhhh!
Next. Not wheat. That is so, agrarian, so Stalinist. Croissants man!! Everyone loves Croissants. Now, I can hear roars of derision already that Croissants are French, blah, blah, blah. However, I have one word for you, ok two: French Fries!! You’d also get the approval of quite a few muslims (mostly short-sighted ones) who would really like the crescent, particularly if it was a green, mouldy croissant! I know. People should hire me as a PR consultant with this genius but, sadly they don’t.
Now, the final change I’d recommend to the flag would be to swap the flag in the crest for a big screen TV. Then, build the biggest big screen TV and show the flag on the screen, with the flag on its screen and the flag on its screen and so forth down to the smallest flag on the screen of the the TV on the flag. The best bit, though? tourists who visit the screen could be shown a subliminal message in the smallest screen on the flag on the screen that encourages them to pay over $1 USD for a Coke, whilst visiting. Stick a vending machine next to it with Coke for $1.10 US and watch the GDP rise, baby!
In conclusion, the country could also consider actually getting a President called Pabillon Criolli. Sure it is a national dish of shredded beef and rice but the rest of the world already thinks it could be the president and the Venezuelans would think it was a hoot! There we have the crucial point of marketable difference: the first South American state to NOT take its politics too seriously. Of course, it may take some time to degrade it to the state of the chookhouse of Australian parliament, the circus that remains the Italian parliament or the sheer Anarchy of the Taiwanese equivalent but it is all baby steps on the way to International Celebrity!



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: