The third episode of Anthony Bourdain's new CNN show Parts Unknown took place in Colombia. All over Colombia, in fact: in Bogota, in the Amazonian jungle, in Cali, on Caribbean beaches. Along the way Bourdain got elevation sickness, talked about the war on drugs in a village ravaged by the drug trade, fell off an ATV, played a game involving booze and explosives, drank a bunch of local moonshine, and generally had a great time. He also discussed acquiring the nickname "the Enormous Cock" on air, so, you know, take that Fox News. Now, on to the Quotable Bourdain — feel free to add your picks in the comments below.
1: On Colombia: "This is a good place to experience both fantasy and reality."
2: On hospitality: "See you just stand here in the street and random strangers bring you delicious foods! This is a great country."
3: On what Colombia's known for: "Ordinarily, for all too many years, when this country makes the news or appears in a film or a television drama, it's not for its looks. Which are, I should say right up front, spectacular."
4: On the people of Colombia: "These are deep waters my friends, that no news story or episode of Miami Vice has ever come close to navigating."
5: On his ride to the jungle: "The planes travel with their own mechanic to cobble together anything that might go wrong, and stuff can go wrong. The risk is that we'll be able to land but not take off again, so this guy is our return ticket out of the jungle."
6: On bringing beer to an Amazonian village: "We have to make one stop along the way to pick up more cargo. Vital cargo, by the way."
7: A toast in the jungle: "The good people of this town can thank us for bringing in their fresh supply of cerveza. Think nothing of it, gentlemen, it was really our pleasure."
8: On Bogota's food scene: "Bogota is the country's capital and an almost two-mile high city with new lofty food ambitions where previously a restaurant scene didn't really exist."
9: On drinking carrot and orange juice to fight elevation sickness: "This is probably the healthiest thing I've had in awhile."
10: On a meat stew: "This is hangover food. I know hangover food well, and this is good."
11: On his language skills: "I don't speak Spanish. I speak a little Mexican."
12: On Bogota: "Bogota, back in the 90s, a really dangerous and violent place to be. Today in my repeated experiences here, kind of awesome."
13: On career goals: "The only worse idea that 'I think I'll try to make a living making music' is 'I think I'll try to make a living by opening a restaurant.'"
14: On playing tejo: "I am here for tejo. It involves alcohol and explosives."
15: On his tejo skills: "I should be good at this, I've been throwing pots into the dish sink from across the room for years."
16: On nicknames: "I need a poultry name. He's called the Old Chicken. I should be the Enormous Cock."
17: On segues: "This is where I say something that takes us seamlessly from a discussion about fresh meat to me hauling my aging carcass onto an ATV, sugar bear style."
18: On how he ended up falling off the ATV: "A little heatstroke leads to a lot of horsing around and we decided to open these puppies up."
19: On silver linings: "While a momentary concussion is seldom a good thing, waking up in Colombia on a beach almost always is."
20: On post-ATV incident aches and pains: "I'm hurting. I am feeling every minute, every hour, every month and year of my age."
21: On the cure for what ails him: "I need the anesthetic qualities of the local firewater."
22: On the cure for whatever ails anybody: "Some good food, a few shots of aguardiente, the sound of waves in the background, a nice sunset, these are things in my experience that will set most things right."
23: On hope and Colombia: "Don't get me wrong: problems, serious problems, remain, which is particularly heartbreaking in a country so beautiful, so generous, so proud, so eager to love and be loved back. I come back to my own country from a country like Colombia, and I think: if they can fix that, if they can make things better, then surely there's nothing we can't do."