Spicy Joke “Fools” at the Havana Book Fair


By Daniel Benítez  (Café Fuerte)

Juan Rodríguez Cabrera, president of the Cuban Book Institute, delivers the Alejo Carpentier Prize to Del Llano at the Havana Book Fair. Photo: Omara García / ACN

HAVANA TIMES – The writer, screenwriter and filmmaker Eduardo del Llano pulled off a playfully joke at his own award ceremony and laughed with those attending the event at the 27th International Book Fair of Havana, which concluded this Sunday in the grounds of the La Cabana fortress.

Del Llano, who has suffered and denounced government censorship on several occasions, received last Friday along with three other authors, the National Alejo Carpentier Novel, Story and Essay Prize wearing in a black T-shirt with the letters “A Blowjob is better than no job.”

The photo taken by the Cuban News Agency (ACN) was published on the official Cubadebate site and it shows a smiling Juan Rodríguez Cabrera, president of the Cuban Book Institute, giving recognition to the writer, who wears the shirt with the motto allusive to oral sex.

This could be another of the jokes of Del Llano, known for his inclination to humor, who chose the main literary scene of the Island to perhaps expose the ignorance of the English language of those around him or the permissibility that exists for this type of messages.

Del Llano, 55, co-writer of the controversial film “Alicia en el pueblo de Maravillas” (1991) and who has achieved widespread popularity as the creator of the fictional character Nicanor O’Donnell, bearer of a sarcastic humor difficult to digest for the bastions of the ruling Communist Party.

In November of last year, the creator claimed to have been a victim again of censorship on Cuban television, where one of his scripts was not accepted for the humorous program Vivir del cuento, a highly popular weekly space of Cuban viewers.

Del Llano may have gotten his revenge at the award presentation last Friday. 

A Joke for The Enemy

Nicanor’s short films – which circulate in Cuba in different formats and clandestinely – reflect through absurdity and satire the needs of Cubans to survive after decades of socialism.

Del Llano won the literary award for his novel El enemigo (The enemy). In addition to the certificate and the publication of the work, the author will receive a check for 3,000 CUC (the same in USD).