World

Where is the text that was supposed to be here?

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In the time between the title and these first words, what did you think about? If my calculations are correct, and they probably aren’t, it took you 2.3 seconds to scroll this far. A lot of things happen in 2.3 seconds. In 2.3 seconds, for example, a car traveling at 120km/h travels a distance of 70 ) meters. Light travels 689.522,70 ) kilometers in the same time interval. And a curiosity (unfortunately invented): it takes everyone 2.3 seconds to say “two point three seconds”.

It took me more than 2.3 seconds to find out on Google things that can happen. in 2.3 seconds. And, to my surprise, I discovered a statistic from the highly credible FBI that says, with 95% accuracy, that the interval between one crime and another across the United States is from 2.3 to 5.7 seconds. I also discovered that Lee Oswald, Kennedy’s assassin, took at least 2.3 seconds to reload the rifle that killed the American president.

More important than what you do is what you think in 2.3 seconds. Hence the possibilities are endless. Literally infinite, I would add, without fear of making mistakes. Of course, taking into account that you are reading a newspaper with a well-defined editorial line and, within it, an author whose line of reasoning, style and theme you probably already know, you can reduce the possibilities to a finite magnitude.

If we think that you, like millions of Brazilians, are worried about the country’s future in an election year, it is even possible to attest with some certainty that, in the space between the title and the body of the chronicle, you thought something involving the names “Bolsonaro” or “Lula”. I don’t blame you. And I even thank you for the consideration.

It is also possible that you clicked on the title without even thinking about it or, worse, with an already formed opinion about the content. Maybe you thought I was censored by the STF. Or that I was lazy. It is still possible that you won’t even read this paragraph, because you entered the text with the sole purpose of venting in the comments box. No problem. That’s what we’re here for.

As I’m kind of weird, I spent the 2.3 seconds splitting between three thoughts that alternated randomly. The first was an idea that maybe one day I might develop, about a man who spent his entire life regretting having voted for a tyrant who took everything from him. Before going around pointing the finger at my character, however, I propose that the reader put himself in his place, who believed in vague promises and seductive slogans. Heavy, huh? And this is precisely where the difficulty of telling the story lies: as an author, I would have to spend a few good months living with this character. I don’t know if I have the health for that.

Another thought that occurred to me during these 2.3 seconds has to do with the abyss. It’s just that the other day I was re-reading the never-too-mentioned Gustavo Corção. In “Lessons from the Abyss”, there is a passage in which the protagonist needs to fulfill some bureaucratic obligation. On the way to the office, however, he weaves the best metaphysical musings of Brazilian and perhaps world literature. Arriving at the counter of the public agency, he then records: “A few minutes later I was on the fourth floor of the ministry, in front of my stamped paper, without anyone there could, even remotely, suspect that I was coming from the depths of an abyss”.

As I have this passage in my memory for some time, I will not lie: it took me well over 2.3 seconds to think of the paraphrase perfectly adapted to the phase I live: “A few minutes later, I arrived here, at this exact point of the chronicle, a point so precise that it might be the case to mark it in bold, without anyone there (here?) could not even remotely suspect that I was coming from the depths of an abyss.”

Finally, I was thinking about how to ensure that you, the reader, scrolled down and arrived until the end of the text without saying that he is indifferent to the idea, to the poor devil of the man who voted for a tyrant, to the abyss that is mine and no one tacks. And especially to the unconfessable thoughts you actually had over the course of an interminable 2.3 seconds. But there is no guarantee for that, unfortunately. In fact, the only thing certain at this point is that the chronicle has come to an end.

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