From 1973 to 1978, the Dannon yogurt company ran a series of successful commercials featuring centenarians from “Soviet Georgia“. Here is a transcript of one of the TV commercials (with captions in brackets):
In Soviet Georgia, there are two curious things about the people [Tarkuk Lasuria, age 96]: a large part of their diet is yogurt [Temur Vanacha, age 105], and a large number of them live past 100. Of course, many things affect longevity [Kasteh Tanya, age 101], and we’re not saying Dannon yogurt will help you live longer. But Dannon is a natural, wholesome food that does supply many nutrients [Shadat Marcholia, age 103]. By the way, 89-year-old Bagrat Tabagua liked Dannon so much, he ate two cups. That pleased his mother very much.
Georgia and Armenia have a lot in common: they both have weird alphabets; they were both early adopters of Christianity and remained Christian after the spread of Islam; they’ve both been batted around by much larger nations around them; and they’re both kinda Middle Eastern and kinda not.
A striking difference between the two nations, however, is that Armenia has an enormous diaspora and Georgia doesn’t. Due to the Armenian Genocide, large communities of Armenians can be found throughout Europe, the Middle East, and the Americas. In contrast, most Georgians living outside of Georgia are in Russia, and there aren’t even all that many there. Consequently, it’s not easy to find Georgian stuff to see when traveling. Remember that Georgian church in Istanbul? That was pretty much the only Georgian thing to see in the whole city, and Turkey is right next to Georgia.
Can you see where this is going? I’d like to see Georgian stuff everywhere I go, but there aren’t any Georgians in most of the world. But Armenians are somewhat similar to Georgians, and they’re very easy to find. This suggests a coping mechanism: I want to see Georgian stuff, but I’ll settle for Armenian stuff.
For the past few months I’ve been living in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and just as you would expect, there was no Georgian stuff and a good amount of Armenian stuff. So, I settled for the latter. Here are some pictures. They are: 1) a sign for the Armenian archdiocese (arzobispado) of Argentina; 2) an Armenian Genocide memorial; 3) a memorial for the Nagorno-Karabakh war; 4) a Spanish plaque from that memorial (note the name Artsaj); 5) a sign for some kind of church group; 6) a Spanish / Armenian plaque from a tomb in the beautiful Recoleta Cemetery; 7) me at the front door of the church of Gregory the Illuminator (San Gregorio Iluminador); and 8) the front door of the Tadron cafe (notice the Western Armenian transliteration — Tadron rather than Tatron for ԹԱՏՐՈՆ).