People wishing for a Happy New Year 2015 in Andalusia down in southern Spain were outraged Wednesday night, as a local television station cut to a commercial break, just as the chimes began to ring in the New Year.
Canal Sur is the public television station for Andalusia, and many people were tuned in, as they do every year, ready to gobble down 12 grapes for luck, one for each of the chimes leading up to midnight and the New Year.
It has been a tradition in Spain for many years to eat one grape for each chime, thus hopefully heading for both good luck and prosperity in the New Year. With the economic crisis in Spain, which started back in 2008 and still continues today, this tradition is probably even more important than ever.
Whether sitting in their own homes or in a restaurants or bar, people were poised, grape held just in front of the lips, ready for the countdown to a Happy New Year 2015 to start. However, after a big build up by the TV announcers, in front of the town hall in Almería, and just as the fun was about to begin, the television station cut to a commercial break, totally destroying the mood. See it all happen in the Spanish language video below.
El Pais reported that viewers throughout the region were left completely dumbfounded, grape in hand, staring in shock at their televisions, while first they were offered an ad for coffee, then another for the Jerez MotoGP World Championship.
People could not believe their eyes, and immediately became angry at the fact that this spoiled their celebrations. How could a television channel be that greedy to fill those important moments with ads? Have a look at the shock of a typical Andalusian family below, who decided to film their Happy New Year 2015 celebrations.
After recovering from the shock, many people headed straight for social media, posting comments and poking fun at the television channel. Twitter saw an outburst of both anger, but also fun, and ended up with the hashtag #canalsur trending worldwide.
— Trendinalia (@trendinalia) January 2, 2015
Fortunately, some viewers managed to retain their sense of humor, as with the tweet included below.
— clandestino (@altomonte74) January 1, 2015
This tweet roughly translates to, “The mess up by Canal Sur during the chimes is a reflection of how embarrassing Spanish TV is. Adverts during the grapes!”
Reportedly all staff at the television channel were in “absolute dismay” over the incident with a spokesman saying, “All of us here at RTVA apologize to Andalusians for this unfortunate error,” after an emergency meeting had been called.
According to the Local, the whole debacle turned out to be “human error” on the part of at least three employees of Canal Sur, and what turned into a not so Happy New Year for many led to the resignation of the television channel’s director of broadcasts and continuity, José Luis Pereñíguez.
At least the Spanish story is happier than that of the 23-year-old man who decapitated his mother on New Year’s Eve because she nagged him to do chores, as reported on the Inquisitr. That incident certainly didn’t end in a Happy New Year 2015.
[Image: Screengrab from YouTube video]