What is a “Gocho”, and why are they laughing at Maduro? / ¿Qué es un “Gocho”, y por qué se están riendo Maduro?
Posted on February 21, 2014
UPDATE 02/21 8:02 PM: This post has broken the “all-time best” record by 8X! Over 14,000 Facebook shares (thank you!), 470+ Twitter posts, a sub/r/eddit, and a new WordPress Dashboard tag (what-is-a-gocho). Many people have sent in their thanks and much more material. Thank you all for the extra info, explanations, in-depth notes, and your compliments! I’ve started a Facebook page for the blog – please feel free to post photos & comments & notes at https://www.facebook.com/impliedinferenceblog - or E-mail me: email@example.com! (Note: Twitter posts will be auto-credited, since they’re already public. If you want to remain anonymous, send me E-mail – I will not reveal your name, unless you tell me it’s OK).
Este post ha batido el récord “de todos los tiempos mejores” por 8X ! Más de 14 mil acciones de Facebook (¡gracias!) , 470 mensajes+ Twitter, un sub/r/eddit, y una nueva etiqueta WordPress Dashboard (what-is -a- gocho). Muchas personas han enviado sus gracias y mucho más material. Gracias por la información adicional, explicaciones, notas en profundidad, y sus elogios a todos! He empezado una página de Facebook para el blog – por favor siéntase libre de publicar fotos y comentarios y notas en https://www.facebook.com/impliedinferenceblog – o escribir al correo: firstname.lastname@example.org! (Nota: los mensajes de Twitter serán automáticamente acreditados, ya que son ya públicos. Si desea permanecer en el anonimato, me envía un e-mail – no voy a revelar su nombre, a menos que me diga que está bien).
So, here are…
EVEN! MORE! GOCHOS!!!
Loki: “Tengo tanquetas” – “I have tanks” … Tony Stark: “Tenemos Gochos” – “We have Gochos”.
Chuck Norris can rest easy – Venezuela is in good hands. “Chuck! Venezuela needs your help! – What for??? If you have Gochos!!!”. Image & translation h/t FB: ViktorOm.
Policeman: “Play dead! The Gochos are coming! :(“. H/t Gladys Hoyeck via @Mmorin_Informa. Thanks to commenter Mari for clarifying the meaning!
“Hazte el muerto… vienen los gochos 😥”
Nicolas Maduro gets desperate and sends in helicopters to detect protests and barricade crews – Gochos respond by making “Heliport” markings on roadways. It may seem like a threatening gesture (“land here, see what happens”), but combined with other slogans – “Venezuela Ya Desperto (Venezuela Is Awakened)” and “Tachira Se Respeta (Tachira Respected)”, I think it’s more of an appeal to the chopper pilots’ consciences. The Maduro Mustache (TM) is a nice touch. H/t @geraldinehl.
Helipad, Gocho Style
View of the same helipad from the apartment building:
Another message to helicopter pilots – “Tachira No Se Rinde” – “Tachira Does Not Surrender”:
Tachira No Se Rinde / Tachira Will Not Surrender
Another message “welcomes” the G2 (Cuban Intelligence Directorate) operatives to Tachira. The joke here is that Maduro keeps pretending that he’s not importing thugs from Cuba – but the Gochos know better! Image h/t @VzlaSinMordaza.
Bienvenidos A Tachira, G2 Cubano // Welcome to Tachira, Cuban G2
Maduro sends in tanks – Gochos steal them and use them to block streets. Recycling – Al Gore would be SO proud!
“Venezuela would be better if these Venezolanos (major part of the country) were more like these Venezolanos (pointing to Tachira). In Tachira beats the true heart of Venezuela”:
Practicality. “If we’re all going to hang out here, and we’ve got fires going, hey, might as well make something good to eat.” Where else in the world are you going to see a street blockade – with a STEW POT in the center? Only In Tachira (TM)… I’ve been told that Gochos love their “hervido“, this seems to be proof positive:
Regular people use broken-down pallets & assorted boards to build barricades – Gochos cut down entire trees:
The “oversizing” trend isn’t limited to arboreals. Here, a couple of dozen Gochos drag a humongous rock toward a blockade position. I’d love to watch the GNB try to clear THAT obstacle!
ORIGINAL POST 02/21 4:40 AM:
Táchira is one of the 23 states of Venezuela, located in the western part of the country, bordering Colombia. Due to its location beyond the Venezuelan Andes, it has remained somewhat inaccessible until the start of the 20th century, and as a result, developed cultural differences from the rest of Venezuela.
“Gocho” is a term used to refer to people born in Táchira. Their cultural differences and phonetic accents are noticeable among inhabitants of other states, just as a Texan would stand out in the middle of New York. “Gocho” is used as a term of endearment among Tachirans, but carries a distinctly negative connotation in almost all other states of Venezuela, implying that Gochos are clumsy, naive, and easily fooled – i.e. “Country Bumpkins”.
“Gochos ruled Venezuela since the begining of the XX century to 1958 when dictator Marcos Perez Jimenez ran away because he didn’t agree to attack the soldiers and cadets involved in the coup d’etat (by the way, he’s considered the best president in the modern history of Venezuela despite his crimes)” (H/t Marcos Gonzalez).
But, during the recent unrest (sparked by the violent repression of a peaceful student demonstration in Caracas on February 12, 2014), the Gochos have distinguished themselves by not only offering the greatest levels of resistance to the government thugs, but apparently relishing the challenge and having a great time.
A picture is worth 1000 words, so I’ll just let the images do the talking…
“If you take me away, I will put again, I’m Gocho”
A street blockade in Tachira reads: “Si me quitas / me pongo otra vez / soy gocho” – “If you take me away, I will put this again, I’m [a] Gocho”. Well, that’s the literal translation. A commenter points out that “when they say “If you take me away, I’ll put myself back”, they are referring to the gochos presidents in the past, since government’s motto is “No volverán” (“They will not come back” – to rule the country)”. Image h/t @NotaSinCensura.
Another shot of the same blockade, h/t @JohanJurado.
“In Tachira, we’re waiting for the Navy down by the Torbes river… we look like we’re shaking (with fear)… HAHAHAHAHAHA”.
Image h/t @AnonsVenezuela, translation h/t @lugoadvertising. UPDATE: The joke here is that the Torbes River is very shallow and full of rocks, so even a small boat would be unable to navigate it, much less the Navy. Also, Rio Torbes is very representative of San Cristobal because of its red color – Gochos are very proud of their river! [Thanks to Marcos Gonzalez for the explanation!]
To build barricades, most Venezuelans use motorcycle and car tires. But not Gochos. Oh no. They take it to a whole new level:
Burning Rubber: Gocho Level. Quema de caucho nivel Gocho.
A group of Tachira opposition fighters bring a giant tractor tire to use in barricades. Original image posted with rhyming caption “quema de caucho, nivel Gocho” - ”Burning Rubber: Gocho Level”. H/t @Alesaotesi.
Concrete blocks, rebar, and construction debris – Gochos don’t mess around when it comes to guarimbas. H/t @yorsegabriel.
Gocho Guarimba in Tachira.
Gocho barricades are used as examples to others. H/t @soylindsay.
UPDATE: It has been pointed out that this is actually in the Ukraine. However, it’s still in the spirit of the thing!
Barricade, Gocho style. Guarimba, estilo Gocho.
Another “Gocho Guarimba”, this one employing a crane used for building skyscrapers.
Image h/t @Percy_Michael, explanation h/t Marcos Gonzalez.
Guarimba in Las Vegas de Tariba, Tachira, Venezuela.
For comparison, here’s a typical street blockade:
It’s not just the streets that get blocked, either. If you’re going to close off a bridge serving one of the largest highways in the region, you might as well do it right. Another Gocho construction:
Puente Libertador between Tariba and Carabobo.
But it’s not just the construction skills and the penchant for oversized barricades that earned this group their own distinctive hashtag #GOCHOSARRECHOS (“Angry Gochos”). It’s the combination of ferocity, cavalier attitude in the face of imminent attack, and a refreshing touch of insanity… for example, while normal people hide behind barricades, Gochos bring out a couch and put on a Batman mask:
Gochos hanging out. Avenida Pueblo, San Cristobal, Tachira, Venezuela
Image h/t @jsideregts.
…and in between repelling GNB attacks, apparently they like to watch TV:
Image posted by @choisy91 with caption “Los gochos son otro nivel” – “The Gochos are on another level”. Marcos Gonzalez adds that the “Maduro-in-crossed-circle” image on TV is forbidden by the government (shocker!), and its usage in this context means that people want to see TV that’s not ruled by the government.
Apparently, the current exchange rate is 1 Gocho : 5 Araguans:
“I’ll trade 5 Araguans for 1 Pissed-Off Gocho”. Image h/t @pettybooshwah.
And there’s plenty of Gochos to go around:
Tachira: yes, the protests are super-sized too.
Massive demonstration in Tachira, with the crowd fading all the way into the horizon… Image h/t @ReporteYa, with caption “Mi TACHIRA grande! Dando ejemplo! Caraqueño te falta espíritu GOCHO!” – “My great Tachira! Giving an example! Caracas, you lack the Gocho spirit!”
Gochos aren’t very big fans of Nicolas Maduro, either:
“Maduro metase su felicidad suprema por el…” – “Maduro can shove his ‘supreme happiness’ right up…”. Image h/t @Sangarccs. Thanks to commenters “Miguel” and “Vannessa” for the translation!
G-2 is the Cuban intelligence agency (the equivalent of CIA).
G-8 usually stands for the “Group of Eight” (world’s largest economies), but in Spanish, “8″ is “ocho”, so this becomes a pun: G-OCHO.
So, while the “sellouts” consort with the Cuban G-2, the Venezuelan patriots count themselves alongside the Gochos. (H/t