Aryan Skynet

Historian and filmmaker Kim MacQuarrie’s recently published Life and Death in the Andes: On the Trail of Bandits, Heroes, and Revolutionaries, a volume of intertwined historical portraits and travel anecdotes, contains the following episode in its first chapter, “The Hunt for Pablo Escobar and the Search for El Dorado”:

“Do you know what Colombia’s greatest ‘sport’ is?” asks Alexander, a twenty-eight-year-old Colombian teacher from Bogota. Alexander is giving me and two of his friends a ride out to Lake Guatavita, the sacred lake where the story of El Dorado was born.

“Soccer?” I suggest, staring through the windshield from the front seat.

“No,” he says, shaking his head.

He looks over at me, and I shake my head, too.

“Murder,” he says matter-of-factly, shrugging his shoulders. Alexander swerves to give a wide berth to a tight cluster of bicyclists on the right-hand side of the highway, their helmeted heads…

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