Far from the front line of the information maelstrom to which he has devoted most of his more than four decades of professional career and also from the noise and stress of Madrid, the journalist Juan Ramón Lucas (Madrid, 1958) claims to have found his comfort zone in the writing of novels and in his beloved Asturias. the place where you are happiest. There, surrounded by nature and his horses, he now lives regularly, specifically in the municipality of Ribadedeva, where his family is from.
He only leaves the Principality when he has a professional commitment, which these days is the presentation of his third novel, Melina, the author's most personal to date. Inspired by the figure of her mother, she narrates the origin of feminism in very difficult times, during the post-war period, when women not only had to struggle to survive outside their homes but also inside them. "With these types of novels, I've found that writing is probably what I find most rewarding right now. And I want to do it more," says the journalist, who is also dedicated to producing programs and series and has also just premiered Cómo funciona Madrid, a new outreach and entertainment program on Telemadrid.
What led you to change register compared to your other novels and make this homage to your mother? Well, I have the strength to tackle it. That stuff that was at home and the stories that my mother had told my brother and me were always there. After two novels, it seemed to me that I had achieved a technical and even affective capacity to write that story. And so I did. Has your mother read 'Melina'? What do you think? Yes. My mother knows the notes and knew I've been working with them. She sees her childhood reflected there, which occupies a lot in the novel. The rest is fiction, but he thinks the result is very good, he liked it. What she wanted was that, even in the part that is fiction, there would not be a negative message of her life. He told me: 'I've been very happy and I'm very happy with your father, don't change it for me.' You broach the subject of feminism, and you even say that she was a pioneer in the movement. What was it like? The feminism that portrays that era is a feminism of battle, which had a precise and egalitarian goal. A feminism as a liberating social movement, which was not sectarian and was even capable of renouncing its own conquests in order to go down the right path. This is intrafeminism, which is what was practiced by women who lived without the need to be supported by a man and without the need to explain to a man what they were doing. And it is these women who circulate in the novel, who in some cases went through the life of the character who inspires my mother, who are able to live alone, earn a living on their own and do what they want without the need for anyone. There is still a need for a feminist impulse. What happens is that I believe that the feminism present, or at least the loudest, the one that causes the most noise and noise in Spain, is a feminism, I wouldn't say radical, but that forgets everyday realities. It is a demand for an egalitarian world that generalizes problems that do not affect that equality. I'm thinking about the Trans Law, which I think is very good that it is regulated, that it is legislated and the legacy that Irene Montero is going to leave on a right, but that this becomes a problem of feminist vindication and that it is placed first on the agenda of contemporary feminism, seems wrong to me. I have the feeling that when you have a more precise object or objective, when you are fighting for something concrete, which is a missing right, a right that does not exist or a change of mentality that is still necessary, you work better than with abstractions that do not affect everyone and that are not really front-line or first-order problems. Former minister Carmen Calvo said the same thing when Ana Redondo was appointed as the new Minister of Equality a few weeks ago. Of course, now we are going to see the differences between the two feminisms. A feminism that has its feet on the ground and that is the direct heir of those women who appear in the novel, even those who did not know that they were opening doors. And the other, which is the one I say that plays with a more unreal world and that goes beyond it and, therefore, disconnects from the reality of what women need at this time. Who am I to say what women need in those moments? No one, but the feminist movement itself has tried to bring order to all this.Blas? That crazed movement that is not able to prioritize the problems has done a lot of damage with its messages of almost criminalization of men as a gender. I don't want to victimize, but there has been a certain criminalization. The slogan 'I do believe you' is very dangerous, because it is not that women who denounce should not be believed, but that you cannot accept any breach of the presumption of innocence just because we are in a delicate and rights-based field. Of course, men continue to navigate in machismo and that we are the main aggressors and gender criminals, but that should not be an element that allows a rupture of the presumption of innocence as often occurs. Balance is in situations like those described in Melina, who are women capable of opening their own path and opening the path of others. Do you still think that in places in Asturias or in the depths of Spain it is still difficult for a woman to make her way? The mentality that is still present in many cases, and not only in the rural world, is that women work, bring money home, but also have to continue doing things at home and continue fighting for their own territory. History is also defined as "a journey of values". Have many been lost today? There is something that has been lost that seems very important to me, and I don't want to feel old... And it's the physical contact, the gaze has been lost, the human relationship in the broadest sense of the term, the contagious state of mind, the support, the shoulder to cry on... I believe that all this is being lost, just as the depth and rigour of the political debate has been lost. It seems that we think and discuss at the stroke of a tweet. Building walls in every sense is always bad. You have a very long journalistic career, don't you miss being in the front row of the news with everything that is happening now? No, nothing. The other day I was talking about it with some colleagues from Ondacero, which is the last place I was in the front row when I was running La Brújula. I don't miss it. I write about it, I give my opinion about it, but, who knows, maybe because of the fatigue of 40 or so years, because I don't like what I'm seeing or who knows if because I now have other activities that are giving me more personal satisfaction, more tranquility, I don't miss that first line of commitment in the job... still. Maybe I'm a bit unsupportive. How would you headline the current political and social situation in Spain right now? The wall begins to be built, to see what happens. Is the oven for buns? Who would you invite to dinner to get to know better? There are a lot of people, but I'm always curious about psychopaths. I'd invite Putin to dinner, see what he tells me. Who would you never sit at a table with? [Takes a while to reply] With a pedophile. It seems to me the most appalling crime anyone can commit. Hurting children, abusing them is the worst. Who would you cook your best dish for? I like to cook and there are a lot of people I admire, very good people for whom I would cook a dish. But I'd love to do it for Ferran Adrià [laughs]. To talk to him and to learn from life. Ferran is a guy who has a conversation almost as fast as his statements, because his brain goes very fast, but he has a very sharp vision of things. He has always seemed to me to be one of the great contemporary geniuses. dish to win you overSomething original with mushrooms.What has been the sweetest moment of your life? The sweetest moments of my life are always related to emotional issues, for example, the birth of my three children. And the most bitter? Some recent deaths, of someone very close, of a family member like Luis or Aníbal Vázquez, the mayor of Mieres. What stifles your appetite? The anguish, the fear. What do you binge on? Lately read, but I'm not going to be so cheesy, or pedantic. What fulfills me the most at the moment, what satisfies me the most, is the interaction with the horses. That's what I binge, and I'm talking about interaction, not riding. Who do you think is the parsley in all the sauces right now? Pedro SanchezWhen was the last time you got like a tomato? I turn red often. I suppose that when someone praises me or when someone tells me that they have felt something with what I have written... When was the last time you rode a chicken? I ride chickens when there is someone who does something wrong out of carelessness or aware of it. I'm very bland, but I'd like to have a salt shaker for comedy. I deeply admire and envy people who are able to make others laugh. It's a trait of sublime intelligence. What's got you fried? The idiots [flattened]. There are more and more. I'm fed up with people who believe that they are always right above all else, and on top of that, they want to impose it. I mean, the idiotsWhere do you spice up life? I believe that in everything, because as I am aware of my limitations, I am shy and sometimes it is difficult for me to move forward, I try to impose on myself to act in a different way, to be more alive, more attentive, even to dare to be ingenious. Because to be ingenious you don't just have to be witty, you have to dare, and sometimes I come up with things that I don't say. But, for quite some time now, I've been trying to get out of there and try to be more outgoing. Look, at the age I have to change at this point. For you, what are lentils...? Everyday life. I am not a person who resigns myself, but I do accept who I am, how I am and what I have. What is never missing from your table? OilAre you one of those who likes clear things and thick chocolate? Yes, and when I drink chocolate, I like it to be like that, thick and hot. One last toast and why. For all the good people who give their lives for others, and because there are diseases like cancer that will soon be history. Now that you're producing shows, do you have in mind to do any culinary ones, which are so fashionable? Well, I hadn't thought about it, but I'm going to give it a whirl [laughs].