Posted 7 years ago
AQUÍ HAY JALEO (We've got rejoycing -or party, or commotion, or enjoyment...- ) reads this sign from the 60s. Like those you've got from CocaCola or any other soft drink, this was to be found at grocery stores. It now decorates our other kitchen (the one at "the other house"). I think these are not uncommon, but they sure are funny. Sadly, who made it remains a total mistery...
In the 1960s Spain was a country that was still developing after our Civil War (1936-1939). Franco's Spain had suffered both economic and political isolation from Europe and the US. After an aperture process that took place in the 1950s -when the US showed interest in having military bases in the country-, Spain was at last opening to the world, and the way we had to make ourselves known was that of the most basic topics: flamenco, paella, toros, football -the Real Madrid football club was already legendary-. At the same time, the Tourism institutions tried to promote Spain abroad using cultural items from our History: Don Quixote, El Greco, Velázquez, and others from our splendorous past. I still remember, when I was a kid in the 1970s, that whenever you went to a hotel in holiday resorts or in villages -and even in the cities- the decoration was too inspired in our 17th Century, and seaside rental appartments all shared the same monastic look... no wonder Spanish design didn't develope as it should!
Thus, the image of flamenco dancers or singers, the “gitanas”, the toreros... all of those became a symbol of our identity for both us and foreigners (something that I'm glad to say is in the past now), and they were thoroughly used in advertising targetting on both national and international markets (for intance, take a look at this funny 1965 TV commercial on Philips TV sets... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mh25E3S7WWM).
Whoever branded this olive oil JALEO already had the “Aqui hay jaleo” in mind. In a partying mood, it means something like “it's fun here” (but a jaleo can be something negative as well, just like some fight for intance).