"I’ll take the gunbao chicken, some springrolls, and 32,000 b/d, please…"

Simón Boccanegra says: Some of the stuff that’s been going down recently borders on Caribbean surrealism. The story about the Chinese drilling rigs is pure farce. Readers may remember that, some weeks ago, one of those Chinese rigs PDVSA has been importing blew up. Turns out that when the two rigs arrived, PDVSA’s people realized the manuals were in Chinese. But instead of going to the Chinese oil company and asking their technicians for help, what did they do? The went to a Chinese restaurant in Anaco and asked the staff for a translation! Turns out the chinese guys working there were cantonese, and the manual was in mandarin, so they couldn’t help the ingenious engineers from the red, very red PDVSA. Undaunted, they went back and tried to run the rig anyway. The result is already fodder for yesterday’s newspaper: the thing blew up. It reads like a Three Stooges script, but it isn’t.