Alberto Rasore

Dinner of December 14, 2004

n Tuesday, December 14 we reunited at one of our already habitual dinners. The place, as usual, Il Vero Arturito on the corner of San Luis and Jean Jaurés, quite near Carlos Gardel’home, or Mom’s house as don Carlos would have corrected me.

As soon as we were arriving we met our habitual friends and several who came for the first time, whom we came to know at last personally. So the virtual relationship became ral, united by a common factor: our beloved and blessed tango, that El Morocho taught us to sing.

We were seating at different tables, where the greeting and the initial hug turned into an intense dialogue. While we were tasting empanaditas (small meat pies), gnocchi and chicken cooked in a Calabrian style, accompanied with wine and soft drinks, we went on talking and getting acquainted with our table mates, until they served ice-cream, accompanied by another dessert: words, music, singing and dancing.

The first to talk was Ricardo García Blaya, who saying that he is one more guest to the dinner party, told us everything about Todo Tango. The portal is five years old, and receives about 15.000 daily visits, is permanently consulted by historians, researchers, musicologists and people in general due to the quantity and quality of the articles, chronicles, biographies, music, sheetmusic, and the participation at La Mesa de Café. The site is constantly enriched by the contributions of the important collaborators: Bruno Cespi, Héctor Lucci and the ones present at the dinner like Néstor Pinsón, Abel Palermo, Guada Aballe, José Arisi, Héctor Benedetti and Federico García Blaya. Such growth has caused it to be jammed and the page becomes a little bit slow.

The microphone returned to the hands of the master of ceremonies, El alemán Enrique, who also called the role and worked as photographer. He says he knows nothing about tango, but he says nothing about the fact that he has conquered our affection and love because he is a worshipper of friendship. To make it evident in some way we wrote a dedicatory note on a parchment. It was not the only thing we signed, we also stamped our signatures on a request asking that the Malabia station of the B subway would be called Osvaldo Pugliese.

And the time of singing arrived. Accompanied by Sergio Crotti on guitar and without a previous rehearsal came the voices of “El gordo” Fernando Crespo singing “Pasional”, Hernán Salas who was showcased with “La última”, and the singer Ernesto Ariel sang “Ventanita de arrabal”. Silvia Horowitz made us hear “Pipistrela”. Jorge Dobalo sang “Nobleza de arrabal” with the accompaniment of the bandoneon player Antonio Pisano. The latter as well played a bandoneon solo. And the last interpretations of this circle of singers were performed by Mario Pino with “Una rosa y un farol” and the sixteen-year-old singer Tito Vasallo said here with “Che bandoneón”.

Although there was no much room, the small place among tables was more than enough for Horacio Préstamo and Adela who showed us how tango has to be danced. Previously Adela was chosen to draw lots to find the winners of the ever-present reveries made by Osvaldo Serantes. On this occasion Osvaldito brought a wooden carving with the inscription “Yo soy de Todo Tango”. The award was given to the lucky and loyal attendant, José Pedro Aresi.

Also our dear streetcar driver and organizer of the dinner party, Coco del Abasto, was present as usual. He plans everything so well that, almost imperceptibly, when it was later than 1.30 a.m. we began to leave the venue.

As I said above, the role was called and we have to remind you of who came to this event.

The women present, besides the above mentioned, were the poetess Cristal, Zulema, Graciela and Carmen who were accompanying Ernesto Ariel, El alemán and Hernán Salas respectively. It was the debut of María Victoria, Verónica, Carlos Vega's sister, a friend of the forum that lives in Los Angeles and as he was visiting Buenos Aires came to meet us. Also just arrived from Switzerland, but now to stay definitively among us Rodolfo Bergé was present.

Others who never miss the event were the collector Oscar Scocola, also known as Eduardo Arolas, the milongueros Orlando Castillo and his wife Susana, Leo Van Nispen, Ricardo Chiche Val, the Gardelian Ángel Yonadi and his friend the lunfardo poet Eduardo Weidmann, Maximiliano Palombo, Darío Murano, José, Silvia's husband, the brothers Cacho and Ernesto Scigliotti, Lito Gol, Palazzolo, Aldo Pedranti, Rosita and Roberto, Jorge, the son of our beloved Adolfo Sozzi and Roberto Testolín.

The final toast and the best wishes were accompanied with champagne. We left like we had arrived, with kisses and hugs, with the great satisfaction of having spent an unforgettable evening and with the hope of meeting again for the next dinner.

It will be in 2005, always with friends, tangos and the picture that says:
¡No sabés las ganas que tengo de verte! (You don't know how much I long to see you!)