Friday, October 16, 2015

Day 16: The 6th ugliest building in the world...

The Torres de Colón, or el enchufe (the plug, because of the topper), were an unwelcome addition to Plaza de Colon. The Plug has earned 6th place in the World´s Ugliest Buildings list (did you know that was a thing? I didn´t...), and it´s currently the 12th tallest in Madrid, at 23 floors or 116 meters.

A past boss of mine, who had been to Madrid before they were built, came back from a post-building visit with the same opinion. Unsightly. 

She wasn´t wrong, but I kind of like them. Not because they´re beautiful, but because they´re different. No, they don't have the charm of the Edificio España, or the striking modernity of the four towers (coming up), but they are, well, visible. I can see them from all over the city, and they help orientate me. I like the old-school seventies vibe of the bronze glass. Mostly I like the symbolism: here there is a saying that to succeed, you need to have an enchufe. Tener enchufe, to know somebody, or to be well connected, is the most efficient way of getting anything done in this city, from finding a job or getting into a school to getting through any number of insane bureaucratic procedures with your sanity intact. 

So here it is, the ugly truth:
el enchufe. a necessary evil.

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