Obscure events that have changed the world
Although your average Iberian macho doesn't really like to admit it, they know Spain got absolutely hammered by Islamic invaders.
Starting around 711, the Moors from north-west Africa totally annihilated Spain, and just about conquered the entire country in a decade. That's no small feat. We're talking about a time when it took about a decade to get from one end of the country to another, let alone with angry Christians trying to spike and spear you along the way.
So the Moors went sweeping across Spain. They had the cheek to propagandize the Spanish with strange philosophies and math, medical practices and sanitation, and maintain prosperous cities in which the Jewish, Christian and Arab populace could live peacefully together.
They took over everything, everything that was, except this little damp, cold, boggy strip of land up in the Asturian mountains. Here, one of your true Iberian machos called Pelagius got himself together a gang of about 300 irate Christians and took on and actually defeated the well trained and organized Muslim army pursuing him. Hardcore, or what!
The story thickens. It turns out that Pelagius' tiny mountain kingdom would be the essence and heart of the Spanish Reconquista
. Yeah, I know, I know, so it took the Spanish almost 800 years to get their act together, but still....you got admire the persistence and faith.