NEWS

‘I don’t think anyone can achieve political solutions on their own’

How did your life change after (being the commentator for) the Euro 2004 soccer championship? It helped in certain areas, and I owe a lot of my recognizability to that. But it has also brought its own problems. I might be more recognizable, but it seems I have gone down in the estimation of some people, and that was an estimation that I had been seeking for years. I had to prove things because an image was created by the media that was not a reflection of reality. What I liked is that Euro 2004 got people out into the streets celebrating. I think the street is generally the preferred arena for the Left to get out and talk to the people, and I see that as a gain. The upsurge of fanaticism, nationalism and sexism, however, made me sad. When I came back to Greece – in Portugal, I did not have a clear picture of it – I saw that I wasn’t outside the problem, but that some were reacting to me as if I was part of the problem. I can honestly say that there were times when I didn’t know where to hide. It helped my professional life, but on the personal level it was a major letdown. Excess is one of the Greeks’ many characteristics. Is there something that you wish Greeks didn’t have? I find it hard to generalize. I don’t think there is one characteristic common to all Greeks. I can only speak politically and say that Greeks should be more aware with regard to the power centers. I have noticed that Greeks have a tendency to seek solutions as individuals, to suit themselves first. I don’t think anyone can achieve things on their own and I think we have to rediscover collective effort and participatory action.