So what about this vacation?

Illustré par :


This little story, therefore, as a preamble, a little light, in order to set the tone of this chronicle, which will deliberately be at odds with the prevailing climate for too many weeks, and to which I have occasionally added a grain of salt, not to say superfluous. Because, isn’t it, the mass is said; and repeated at length of comments, articles of newspapers in all kinds with giant titles and in bold characters: It’s the end of the beans, the end of the world is fast approaching, there is going to be war — which could start and spread to the Ukraine, the Near, Middle or Far East, or even in perfectly unpredictable places — we have entered the era of the ecological deficit, which will see a scarcity of just about everything and anything else; the list of small and large disasters to come, tomorrow or a little later, grows longer every day that passes. This is for the so-called international situation. As for our little Kingdom and the political luminaries who are mandated to ensure that it does not do too badly, the forecasts and prognoses relating to the post-election period of last May, which I mentioned in my column in the previous issue of this newspaper, have finally turned out to be what I said they would be, apart from a few tiny details, and I will not go into them again, as this would be an insult to your sense of observation and your critical spirit, dear readers.

Nature, in its infinite wisdom and undeniable « know-how » has endowed us with a brain. And, incidentally, of the various organs and functions of which it is the uncontested master. (It should be noted that a great variety of animals are similarly equipped with all the necessities for the perpetuation of their species and thus, in possession of forms of intelligence which deserve our friendship, our respect and our consideration). We are, therefore, from our birth and according to the immutable laws of heredity — a good part of which remains a deep mystery — the happy owners of this strange and unappealing — if we observe it isolated from the rest — thing, protected by our cranial box whose thickness protects it, relatively, of course, from the blows and other small accidents of everyday life. Because it can happen that a fall, a chance encounter with a blunt object or a stray bullet — from a rifle, a submachine gun or a pistol — plays havoc with the strength of our skull. But these are events that occur only in extreme circumstances and, in any case, like so many other things, perfectly hazardous. The brain, all this said, has, among other functions, to allow us to enter into relation with the external world and what it contains, to grasp and understand as much as possible its complexity, to appreciate its beauty or, on the contrary and according to the actuality of the days, our moods or our states of mind, to find it ugly, hostile, dangerous or absolutely unbearable. The brain is therefore, in a nutshell, the communication tool common to all our fellow human beings that we share with each other, willy-nilly, according to the circumstances of our lives.

Our lives, let’s talk about our lives, about the use we are still allowed to make of them, mired as they are in the crudest necessities disguised as free choices dictated by the famous and sacrosanct cultural activities of all kinds, as well as, similarly, by the injunctions of commerce and stores. These activities, more and more associated with the innumerable gadgets that can be slipped into the pocket and consulted at any time are, in the end, only the most trivial way to escape the panic that should inspire us the implacable look at the reality of our dull existences. But finally, until proven otherwise, we will have to continue, forced as we are, to participate in the great farce of progress, growth and forced labor which is its corollary, to go on, year in, year out, along the marked paths in search of or, better, the expectation of happiness. Unless, of course, you take the small, tiny step to the side that is within everyone’s reach if they have the desire to do so. This slight movement, this tiny bifurcation consists, quite simply, in the obstinate and systematic refusal of all forms of injunction, solicitation, seduction, wherever they come from and whatever their possible attractions which, for the most part, are illusory. One will therefore refuse to buy and possess anything that is not absolutely essential to a simply decent and dignified life, one will be satisfied with what cheerfully assumed simplicity and relative frugality dictate, and finally, one will deliberately turn one’s back on false needs for the little things of daily life. For the rest, we can easily do without television and radio, and avoid reading newspapers with large print runs in favor of blogs and alternative websites for information and analysis (there are some very serious and reliable ones), in order to clear our poor brains of the mountains of filth that have accumulated over time.

And then, and then… we will not complain about the rain, nor about the upcoming frosts; and we will silently rejoice in the beauty of the clouds, in the comforting warmth of the rays of the day star and, when night comes, in the luminous face of the moon. We will go slowly on our peaceful way, with a smile on our face, we will take care of our garden when we have the happiness to be able to enjoy it and the door will be open to the outside world, to our neighbors, to our friends; to the vast world and all the surprises, happy or not, that it can still hold for us. For it cannot be a matter of shutting oneself up in a petty and fearful cocoon and removing from one’s sight what — if ever — could happen as surprising events in which to take part in one way or another. The lassitude and disarray that invades so many consciences, the miserable spectacle offered almost everywhere by a disoriented political class incapable of conceiving of any action other than the struggle for positions and the imbecilic pursuit of austerity policies that only accumulate failures in all fields, all this can only be taken as a moment in a History that cannot be conceived as finished or frozen. Everything, everywhere and at all times, is movement: sometimes infinitesimal, sometimes tempestuous, always unpredictable. And, although, individually, we feel embarked in a whirlwind with a thousand faces, frightened and powerless in front of a reality on which we feel we have no control, we want to believe that, perhaps, by some miracle, the innumerable voices that everywhere scream anger and despair become one, thundering, universal. And that, suddenly, deafened and paralyzed by fear, the mass murderers and the madmen of God, the decision-makers and the princes of finance evaporate into the ether, or into the mud; and disappear, just like that, quite simply…

Jean-Pierre L. Collignon

Espace membre

Member area