The conversation was good, but it gained momentum even when someone mentioned a text from my colleague Madeleine Lacsko to a competitor. I confess that I stopped reading in “Gospel According to Tarantino”, but that is beside the point. What matters is that she evokes the biblical character Ester to talk about Michelle Bolsonaro and explore the idea of the wife as the moral support of man. Chat goes, chat comes, we stay there, recognizing the many qualities of our respective wives. “And woe to you if you don’t recognize it!” said one of them. Mine.
From Michelle Bolsonaro we move on to the situation of national cinema, the eternal dispute between dog-lovers and cat-lovers, the strange youthful habit of spending hours in front of the cell phone watching videos on YouTube, bicycles , ice cream – and, finally, the vote of Minister Cármen Lúcia, who, in practice, recognized the existence of an “exceptional effort” in Brazil. Everything to elect Lula.
“To whom she do you account for your vows, in addition to your own conscience?” someone asks, feeling sorry for the supreme solitude. And we all agreed in a reflective silence soon interrupted by absurd interjections! it’s unbelievable!. Taking advantage of the illusion of freedom that still hovers over Alexandrinistan, and united in the trust that bathes our friendship, we exchanged opinions as sincere as they were unpublishable.
Until one of those present at the fraternization, whose name was not I mention with fear that he will end up having to serve coffee to the Federal Police (again!), brings us back to the melancholy reality of the common man and his unitary, selfish vote, devoid of any commitment to his wife, children or future. “I want to see when the children and grandchildren of those people who make the ‘L’ ask how they could support the PT’s censorship and theft in defense of democracy. I just want to see if this becomes a Venezuela”, he said.
At the time I imagined the son of some leftist, those who greet with a soft hand, you know?, charging his father to support censorship “to fight disinformation” and the PT to “unite the country”. The father looks one way, looks the other. “Oh, Dad, you’re not going to tell me that in 2022 you voted for Lula, right?”, asks the brat. The father chuckles before replying: “Keep it down. If someone listens to you, he is capable of confusing you with a fascist. I voted for Lula, yes. Patience. I was young and ignorant. Now go out to the backyard and get Rex, your mother is already sharpening her knife.”
I laugh and my laugh apparently interrupted a very important reasoning of a friend. Which was mad! I apologized and began to describe the scene in the previous paragraph, substituting only “some leftist” for the name of a specific leftist known to all present. My wife showed up right at that time and was already pulling my ear. “Are you talking bad about others?! Tsk, tsk, tsk” – and she stomped off. I even thought about going back and explaining, but…
…I was called by my friends, who wanted to know what race, after all, was the Rex in the story. “I do not know. I think a Pomeranian Lulu”, I replied. Someone tried a pun on “Pomeranian squid”, but it didn’t work. We still talked about this & that, such & such and so on. And I swear I tried to pay attention when one of them started telling about his adventures during a recent trip to Italy (“Wow! There are some churches there that I don’t even tell you about. And the museums, then?!)”.
The story of being accountable to the offspring, however, did not get out of my head. I was wondering if it was arrogance on my part. But I also kept thinking about the commitment we tacitly assumed with future generations: to make the best decisions possible, thinking not about the diabolically utopian future of ideologies, but about the palpable future of what, for lack of a better word, I will call common sense. – one that doesn’t require great efforts of imagination or rhetorical contortions.
“I’ll write about it!”, I said, getting up and interrupting one of my friends who was talking excitedly about something. “But already? So soon!…” said the host, struggling (and failing) to contain a yawn. Lifting my tired, human frame, I called out to the woman and an eternity and a half passed before she decided it was time to leave. On the long walk from the 22 floor to the ground floor, I flashed a smile of genuine happiness. How good it is not to be a pal of an ex-convict.