‘Ole Benalmádena’ sits in El Diván the politicians of the city with the intention that while they talk to us about the mundane and the divine they show us their kindest face, away from the sometimes tiresome political discourse to which they have us accustomed
Juan Antonio Lara, councilor of the Partido Popular, inaugurates El Diván of Ole Benalmádena and submits without censorship to the battery of questions, humorously, with which a section is born in which we have proposed to learn more about our politicians, but outside of corseted offices.
-What memories do you keep from your childhood? Were you a naughty child?
-Not at all … – (sighs) – I’ve always been very controlled by my parents, perhaps because of being an only child. I lived in the Plaza de Andalucía in Benalmádena Pueblo and, literally, they wouldn’t let me leave the square.
-I can’t believe you didn’t do any mischief as a child …
-I would have to think a lot to tell you one … maybe in my generation things were different, we were, let’s say, more innocent … To tell you something, I remember that my parents had totally forbidden me to ride a motorcycle and of course, I had friends with whom I was going to play to football and they told me that they would take me to the field on a motorcycle, which was actually a few meters away, and I would ride. He was about 16 years old, he was not a little boy. The thing is, my parents always caught me …
-Did you have a nickname?
-In my house there were no nicknames but it is true that I was an altar boy for seven or eight years and they knew me for that, although the truth is that I have always been known as Juan Antonio from the squarebecause I spent the afternoons there playing with the friends.
– Do you have any superstition?
-None but I do think a lot of things that people do out of superstition. It’s something that catches my attention …
-Any hidden skills that you can make public?
-Well, I am very versatile. My parents have had a field and I have always helped in everything and I have even touched the masonry … and I am still the same today, but on a smaller scale. My house inside is painted by me, for example. I love doing things different from my day to day because I avoid the routine.
-What is your greatest strength?
-To be honest. Or at least, I try. I like to be objective and listen to people, perhaps it is by default of my profession. I do not know if that will be easy to combine with the policy that requires a lot of public exposure …
-And your biggest flaw?
-I have many defects … I am very squared and although I try to rationalize everything, I confess that sometimes it is difficult for me to compromise.
-Historical or fictional character preferred?
-I always loved Superman.
-What phrase do you use when someone bores you and you try to show interest?
-I’m a lot of listening, as I have told you. I understand that there are people who tell you this or that because they really need to vent … Perhaps I use positive phrases so that the person feels that I am attentive to what he tells me …
– Are you more of a traditional tavern or a Michelin-starred chef’s restaurant?
–Well, I am comfortable in all places. The same thing I get into a little barand I have a great time than going to an expensive restaurant. Although I like the flatter environment better because I feel more comfortable.
-In politics it is seen that languages are very important … Are you more of Cambridge English or of the Spanglish type Ana Botella with her “relaxing cup of coffee con leche”?
-By my profession I have always had a good level of English. And if I have to face another language that I don’t know, I prefer to shut up and say nothing rather than mix the words of one and the other and make a mistake.
-I was going to ask you if you had a tattoo or piercing, but I think it would be better if we ignore the question….
– (Laughs). Well, better, because I don’t have any….
-Why are the inhabitants of the Arroyo called chichilindris and those of Benalmádena Pueblo torruzcos?
-That’s very old. The truth is that they have told me different stories about its origin … for example, they told me that the torruzcos comes from the fact that it seems that those of us who lived in Benalmádena Pueblo threw stones at those of Arroyo de la Miel …
-What do you spend your free time on?
-I recently lost my father and I like to spend most of my free time helping my mother on her farm and spending time with her … If you ask me about the time I dedicate to myself, the little I have is to do some sport.
-What is that song that you always put on after a bad day to cheer you up?
-Well, I’m very into old songs -he blushes-. I really like Julio Iglesias, Camilo Sesto… Now thinking about it, the fault of my musical tastes is the Bar Manolo, which is in the square where I grew up. In this bar every night they played songs by these artists and since I have spent all my childhood and adolescence there, perhaps those beautiful memories have been linked to this type of music and that is why I like it so much.
-Which is the colleague of the municipal corporation that you most admire?
-I greatly admire the deputy for Culture of my party, Víctor González. He is very versatile, he has been in politics for a long time and causes me a lot of admiration both personally and politically. He is a person who has known how to use all the years of experience in politics to learn, to advance and above all to do a good management of public services …
-And what else do you argue with?
-Uff, well I could not give you a specific name, because the truth is that I argue a lot with all the colleagues from the local government. You know what happens … I can’t stand the lie. I mean, if someone says something to me and the next day insists that they told me otherwise, it bothers me a lot …
-If a Senator from Compromís dared to ask this question in a control to the Executive of Rajoy, Ole Benalmádena will not be less … what protocols has the PP adopted before the possibility of a zombie apocalypse in Benalmádena?
-Zombie apocalypse? – (He is surprised) – Now there are so many needs and real problems that I don’t think that kind of protocol is relevant for zombies or for things like that …
–The annoying question:I could ask you about the Gürtel case or about Bárcenas, but I prefer to make blood … how did your body stay when you saw Cristina Cifuentes doing the “cuñao” in Telecinco’sLast Dinner?
– (Laughs). Everyone can express themselves and participate in whatever they want. If what you ask me is if I would do it, then absolutely not… I respect that she lends herself to it but because of the way I am, I don’t see myself in those stories.
–The nice question: What is the PP’s star project for Benalmádena?
-There are many but if you ask me to summarize it in one; what we want is to make citizens’ eyes shine with the policies we implement. We want people to be proud of Benalmádena.