The desert (3)

The stasis of deserts legitimate

[Reader be aware that the title of this entry is, at best and wishfully, wordplay on the title of a song by the Swedish orchestral-death metal band Therion. However, knowledge of the same, both band and song, is not required for the reading of the following text]

 

 

I am fully aware that it will happen in about a month’s time from now; not that I’m counting down the days as some people do in hopes of being celebrated, but rather because it is an inescapable fact of my life and I am tremendously aware of it. Inevitably it will happen because I am—still—alive. That is: the day I was born, my 32nd anniversary of live birth; or, in short, my birthday.

A wondrous and momentous occasion for everyone involved, including those who hold me dear and those who rue my existence alike—because what is life if not a clear contrasting duality of facts and points of view.

And it is no small feat to live over three decades in this planet, or so I am led to believe by independent observers, because after all, there are many who were not able to come this far chronologically, and, as someone once said: “in this life, you’re on your own…”

 

Like never before and quite possibly like never after, I will celebrate with a purpose, I will celebrate with gusto—à la Zap Brannigan—and with a sense of completing one of the benchmarks for which I was placed in this earth: the fulfillment of a life-long dream or purpose.

Self-imposed of course; because, who else would impose their dreams on me? That would be folly.

For the past three years of my life, it has been it—life itself—who has prevented me from achieving what I’ve desired for the last five or so years of my life due to sickness, hospitalizations or general lack of funding has not made attaining said desires possible: visiting the forest that is. The universal forest is what I mean, not a specific forest rather the forest in general (though I’ve heard The Black Forest is beautiful this time of the year).

That unique combination of factors such as land, vegetation, fresh air, elevation, virgin landscapes, wildlife and pure water; that is the forest I long to meet, know and remember from my first glimpse to my parting gaze. Why? Because I’ve never been in such a landscape and/or climactic zone of course, no additional reasons are necessary to my taste.

I’ve lived in deserts, yes; I’ve lived in the city, also yes; however, I’ve never encountered the forest as one would in movies, fairytales or the magical whimsical videogames of warriors, sorcery and open worlds I so much enjoy. As I just mentioned, I have knowledge of it thanks to current technology, thanks to books and novels, thanks to videogames and movies, and, also, thanks to family members and acquaintances who have poured their beautiful experiences and memories, from their hearts and collective conscious, into the empty vessel of my soul—currently devoid of forest memories for good.

I am well aware of my unique functioning as a man full of emotions, guided by feelings and full of introspection and uncertainties. So it very well may be that other individuals don’t long for things and don’t see locales in the way that I do. I romanticize the visages I’ve never seen thinking of the impending beauty that waits for me, all I have to do is arrive at it. I elevate the ideals of a nature which I am yet to visit, partly (I believe) because it is unknown to me and as such should be an endless fountain of memories and beauty.

At the same time, I am comfortable in my concrete surroundings, in a walled-off abode that separates me from the nature which once covered the land where I now live. I do enjoy—perhaps sinfully, perhaps egotistically—the pleasures of the common men and women of this time and age, everything at the tap of a button, everything within our grasp, and all with immediacy.

And still I also know of (and know in fact) deserts, beaches, an inlet sea and one ocean. But there is more. More than the surroundings to which I am accustomed, more to this world of which I only know a mere fraction, more to the deserts in which I was scorched by the heat of nature and the contrarian heat of already established societies and ideals which I didn’t share—deserts in both terrain and ideologies, separated from “the rest” or “others” and very much inhospitable.

So it is that after many orbits around our sun the need and the desire burn within, telling me to complete this sort of pilgrimage to the one true god of nature and untainted beauty. And who am I to deny it or to deny myself?

It is time, for me, to accept the planet in which I live and it is time for us to meet and establish our most primal and intimate of connections: this life…

 

Echoes of the City (6)

Life… out of the back of a truck

 

It’s neither uncommon nor unheard of, but it’s also not everyday of the week one happens upon someone who appears to be asleep in their vehicle, be it a car or a truck—it’s obviously harder to sleep in a motorcycle or bicycle. Yet, that’s what happened to me on a Monday in July of 2017, as I started the week.

The woman was well dressed, at least by hipster-millennial standards (and by people-who-live-in-their-car standards as well), and I saw her as she was fashioning her belt and jacket over her somewhat wrinkly white dress—in all honesty it could’ve been a skirt/blouse combo, I did not have the time to properly discern, catalogue and critique her outfit. But the foremost thought in my mind, as I sped by on my way to work, wasn’t necessarily related to what she was wearing, it was: why is she getting dressed out on the street?

As I inched closer to her and the parked small (-ish?) Ford (maybe?) pick-up truck with a camper covering the back, I witnessed a brief glimpse of the answer. Or what I thought the answer was at the very least.

A bed had been fashioned in the covered back of the truck and there appeared to be drawers beneath said bed. The woman was standing by the truck with the back door open and was grooming herself. Ergo, the woman was sleeping in the truck and utilizing it as her abode.

That was my gut instinct…

EOTC6 (3)
Was this the same vehicle?

And though—as I said previously—it’s not everyday that one happens upon someone who’s hiding from the inclemencies of weather in their vehicle, this is still the city, the concrete jungle; and, as we all know by now, the city of angels does face a housing shortage. Well, no, let’s talk about it as adults who speak to children: it’s not necessarily a housing shortage, rather, an affordable housing shortage.

I was reminded of that very same fact the next day of my chance encounter, as I drove through the same streets where not 24 hours ago I had seen a blonde woman getting ready for her day in the middle of the street.

Just like it happens after every local or county-wide election, just like it happens after every national election, and just like it happens whenever there is an officer involved shooting of an unarmed man of color, it boils down to housing: where we live, where we want to live, where we are able to live, where we are allowed to afford a place to live, and multiple variations of the same questions and/or statements.

To some it appears to be a never ending issue/cycle without any viable solution in sight—to the point of some cynically seeing it all as “necessary evils” of modern city life. However, at least to me, the reality should be perceived more along the lines of “if the city and our society have not yet ended and are still evolving, then, how come the issues of society needed to be over yesterday?”.

I admit that I am not a social scientist, nor am I an economist; but I do believe that I have enough common sense to know that if our societal evolution has not yet reached an apex, then that should mean, even if by elimination, that the solutions to our problems as a society have also not reached a cusp point.

That’s what tumbled back and forth in the old brain of mine as I approached the area where I had seen the woman the day before. And as I suspected she was not there to be seen again, but I wasn’t surprised really. After all, this is a giant of a city and more often than not, changes take place one after another like a snowfall: from one minute to the next there is free parking and then there is street cleaning on Tuesdays; there is an ever swelling group of children at a given street light and then the streets are completely deserted; there is a clear path through surface streets and suddenly you are stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic without warning, those are the alchemic reactions of life in a modern city—someone could say, if they wished to add the sweetness of poetry to their life and surrounding events.

EOTC6 (5)
It is said we all want to live…

These changes—and many more which were not aforementioned but seemingly carry the same weight—happen every day, and one usually following the other in rapid succession; but not only in our surroundings, as we have built them through the centuries of human life. These changes also happen in the radio spots we listen to daily, in the programming of our TV’s, and, most importantly, in our livelihoods—work today, fired tomorrow.

So it was in my life as well, that I had been reminded of the conflicts regarding housing and affordable housing one day, the next? I’m hearing about the trials and tribulations of American progressive rock in the late 60s and 70s.

As I continued driving, Tool and the homeless encampments went by, and I thought more and more about it, about the reality of how but by a few cents and the grace of god—if you believe in said entity—it could’ve been myself, or, later, my wife and I who were out on the streets. Thankfully for us, that never came to pass.

But what about all the others who were caught in the snowfall of current events? What about those who weren’t lucky enough to escape the fate of the homeless encampments? Or what about those many individuals with names whom I knew and then were gone? Well, it would seem that the pages of history have to be filled somehow…

Las crónicas de Don Chon (4)

DE AQUELLOS TIRONES FAMILIARES

 

Fue hace unas dos semanas que sufrí un tirón en el tendón de la corva al jugar la contienda semanal de los lunes con el Realito, por lo que ese fin de semana no asistí a los entrenamientos requeridos de un equipo semi-amateur en el sur de California—entiéndase que los mismos consisten en ir al parque individualmente y patear la número 5 contra una pared.

A donde sí asistí, sin embargo, fue a la galería semanal de Don Chon INC, S.A. de C.V., donde de manera gratuita, siempre y cuando consumas lo que compras del establecimiento (compra requerida para la entrada cabe mencionar), te permite el buen abarrotero observar los juegos de la Liga MX, el Tri y la Selección Nacional Mexicana; a veces, estos últimos dos al mesmo tiempo.

Y como en la actualidad de esos momentos estaba sucediéndose la Copa Oro (o Gold Cup, dependiendo de donde sea uno), pues no había la verdad mucha tela de donde cortar…

 

Para dejar bien claras las cosas, no es que haya sido víctima de una entrada violenta o que me haya lesionado en un encontronazo súbito; no, todo es debido a las posiciones. Y es que de unas semanas a la fecha, casi como un mes más o menos, por fin descubrieron los entrenadores del Real Zamora (equipo también conocido como Realito, o El Realito) que mi posición ideal, en los juegos de 11 contra 11, es en la defensa central—siempre y cuando el equipo esté alineando una línea de cuatro al fondo.

De esa manera, y dentro de esa alineación, me es posible posicionarme delante del central que funciona como base o ancla (el que cuida la línea diría Rafa Puente del Río); y, si es necesario, ocupar el espacio del lateral derecho cuando suba este por las bandas o llenar el espacio detrás de los jugadores de media cancha para propósitos de recuperar el balón o intentar detener los contragolpes, que tanto daño le causan al Realito.

El hecho de que haya sufrido una lesión leve no es nada del otro mundo (me dijeron los paramédicos en el campo de juego), siendo que dentro de las filas del Realito ya ha habido víctimas de rotura de los ligamientos cruzados, esguinces, ruptura en el músculo pectoral, desgarre testicular y/o de escroto, mordidas de perro, y, en una ocasión por demás aparatosa, un diente astillado.

Me parece a mí—como narrador y protagonista—meritorio de ser mencionado el hecho de que yo mismo fui con el entrenador del equipo, el Calvo Aboytes, a decirle que me pusiera en la defensa central; esto después de que me comieran vivo como por mes y medio jugando como lateral izquierdo.

No obstante las victorias morales dentro de la institución Real Zamora, como se encontraban otros equipos jugando los playoffs, al Realito lo estaban invitando a jugar amistosos para que no se usaran los campos por personas ajenas a la liga.

Así que lamentablemente (o quizás para buena fortuna), mi lesión ocurrió cuando el equipo ya no tenía nada por jugar—al punto de que en el partido donde sucedió mi lesión, los trofeos que NO nos ganamos estaban a la espera de un ganador (el cual no seríamos nosotros). De igual manera, lamentablemente (en lo personal), sucedió mi lesión cuando ya me estaba afianzando a la posición que sí sé jugar: ¿o sea? caí rendido después de que por fin—como secretamente soñaba—se me permitió jugar los partidos enteros sin salir substituido de la cancha.

Oportunidad que parece ser, dirían observadores independientes, aproveche a medias nada más.

Don Chon 4 (3)

Ahora, regresando a temas de actualidad—y al nexo de mis historias que implican a mi amigo de los abarrotes—, cabe recordar que como mencioné, asistí a la tienda de Don Chon a ver como quince minutos de partido entre MEX y CUR (México y Curazao pues).

Me parece que queda claro que a Don Chon le gusta mucho el fut—dice mi amigo que si no se hubiera chingado la rodilla cuando se cruzó el borde que a lo mejor le hubiera hecho la lucha para ganarse un llamado a la selección. Esto en parte, he descubierto, por que las contiendas futbolísticas le dan quebrada para recordar, en voz alta, que su tío de Jalisco (de Zapopan me parece que dijo) jugaba para la selección en los tiempos de blanco y negro, y que por eso el nunca va a abandonar al tricolor.

Esto último me parece que Don Chon lo dice por temas personales; ya que el hijo de una de sus primas, siendo ella también de Michoacán, a pesar de tener apellido paterno y materno en su identificación estatal—y ser de esas personas que muchos dicen, de manera por demás cabrona: “trae el nopal en la frente”—ha proclamado el muchacho que su equipo no es el Tri; en realidad, es aquel descrito por Diego Balado como: “el equipo de todos”, es decir, el de las barras y las estrellas (USA! USA!).

Dijo Don Chon una vez que no es por ahí el asunto, que cada quien haga lo que quiera en búsqueda de la felicidad (siempre y cuando no sea agarrar una bolsa de sabritas y pedirle a Don Chon que las apunte, por que eso no se hace). Argumento que suena bien progresivo y tolerante; pero si recuerdo bien, una vez me parece que dicho muchacho y otros de sus primitos llegaron a los abarrotes, mientras yo buscaba una soda de toronja, para solamente ser regresados por Don Chon bajo pretextos de que tenía que cerrar tantito el changarro—pero con voz quedita y entre dientes le espetaba al muchacho que se cambiara la camiseta (traía el joven pre-adolescente una jersey Nike blanca con el apellido DEMPSEY en el dorsal).

No le dije nada a Don Chon aquella vez, por que no lo conocía tanto. Pero el día del convivio para el juego anteriormente mencionado de la Copa Oro, le pregunté a Don Chon antes de que comenzara la transmisión que si no iban a venir los Chones a la tiendita a ver el partido; no hubo respuesta.

Las alineaciones fueron anunciadas, los himnos fueron cantados y el establecimiento contaba con unos 5 o 6 asistentes (incluido Don Chonás) cuando mucho. No dije nada nuevamente. Se dio el silbatazo inicial y zumbó como loco el celular Android del anfitrión y escuché como decía para si mismo: “Que la chingada”.

Pasaron 5, luego 10, y a eso de los 15 minutos de partido fuimos anunciados: “‘Orá pues, que ya vamos a cerrar”. Unas risas por un lado, un “no mam’s Don” por otro y miradas incrédulas por doquier. “No la chinguen” sentenció Don Chon y emprendieron la retirada todos buscando el televisor más cercano.

Personalmente le titubeé un poco, pensando si debía preguntarle al Don si todo estaba bien, que si que pasaba, o solamente retirarme… pero recordé lo que me mencionó Don Chon respecto al tirón sufrido: “Ira pues, es que ya depende de ti como manejes la situación, decía mi tío que cuando él jugaba no los llevaban al doctor luego luego ni tenían los aparatos de hoy día, era nomás de que te aguantas por qué te aguantas si quieres jugar”.

Palabras muy ciertas de Don Chon—digo yo, ya que no conozco a su tío.

Don Chon 4
La hospitalidad de Don Chon

Pero sí, emprendí la retirada yo también recordando que hay ocasiones en las que uno se tiene que aguantar en el campo de juego o en el campo de la vida.

Yo no sé que mensaje haya recibido Don Chon, pero en la vida que ha llevado y ha tenido—asumo yo—, eso es algo más de lo que tiene que lidiar, y si es necesario, aguantar.

Uno no quiere lesionarse cuando va agarrándole la onda al asunto, así como uno no quiere recibir indiferencia por parte de los familiares a quienes busca uno proporcionarles mejor vida. Pero los accidentes de la vida ahí están, no pueden evitarse en perpetuidad.

Tarde o temprano, o te tropiezas o te dicen “I believe in America”—nuevamente, dependiendo la familia, que a veces son los Corleone los que dicen y escuchan ese credo.

Y será que quizás no siento ese tirón tan fuerte, tan primitivo y patriótico, de un lado o de otro que no puedo apropiadamente ponerme en los zapatos de Don Chon para ofrecer mejores consejos, pero a final de cuentas, ¿qué le puedo decir yo que me pongo camisetas de la selección nacional mexicana y encima chamarras de la selección nacional alemana?

The desert (2)

In a scale of North Korea to Freedom, how American are you in general?

 

If the calendar and my memories do not fail me, as they do individuals of a certain age, I believe it was early last week when I saw the survey. I didn’t know initially what the ultimate intention of the questioning was, after all I was just seeing the first query; although now and thanks to the 20-20 hindsight, with the added understanding of living in the a posteriori life, and after having seen the totality of the questions and the context in which they were posed—specially with the awareness of this appearing a day before the oh-so-holy 4th of July—it’s more or less clear to me what a possible intent could’ve been.

But at the very least the first question tried to start the charade off with a semblance of parity:

Desert2.JPG

 

Ah yes, the age old question “are we heading in the right direction?” asked without a clear explanation or definition of what a right or wrong direction can be.

Yes, there are clear actions that can be defined as wrong with a heightened sense of morality, or with a heightened sense of social equality, or under religious parameters, or under an ecological point of view. Under those certain subjective guidelines of life, as well as many others, there can be a clear distinction of both right and wrong; but, the belief that those terms are universal and can be used in an equal exchange of ideas and/or rectitude is—at the very least to me as narrator/author of whatever this text may be—somewhat misguided.

We forget the simple yet notorious truth that human life is not homogenous and that it has not been so through the years of humanity forming societies. Human life has so far been, or appears to be, an experiment of conciliating differences.

We forget that truth, regardless of the fact that our current era is one of points of view having more validity than facts, will be a constant. It will be a universal constant of undeniable facts, measurements, tests, adjustments, and re-tests.

If it were as simple as driving a metaphorical vessel from right to wrong, or vice versa, then course corrections would be the everyday norm and it would be, ideally, painfully clear when one was mistaken and needs to be chastised or decried—unfortunately, our every day life of discourse (or lack thereof) and leadership (or lack thereof) has made clear that that is not the case.

And, to me, the survey went in a sad down-hill self-aggrandizing direction from there:

Desert2 (2)

 

That’s a hard one. But hey, the survey designer should get his commendation for being able to craft multi-level questions that encompass philosophy, taste, emotion, geography and politics in one.

We are not told what construes to be an American, or which actions are defined as inherently American and which aren’t. Additionally, we are not given an example of how such pride may be felt and/or interpreted or espoused.

It may sound silly to some—usually to those who are sitting in their computer rooms in houses that great-grandpa bought after the depression, or the war, and where a same family unit has resided for decades and didn’t have to work through high school to pay for college. But why should it be considered silly?

There are still those in this world who are confronted with an impossibility of tasks to meet up and check-boxes to fill so that they can be considered “worthy” of a given nationality—in this case the American one. It is very self-serving to believe blindly in the fact that those parameters can be applied to ALL situations and ALL circumstances.

What pride can you feel for your own existence, when the fact is that you took no part in creating the self? The nationalistic pride alluded to is somewhat confusing, because you just are, by being born between certain parallels and meridians you became and no one, up to this point in history, questions that.

Yet someone who decides to leave the place where he or she was born, to travel, to toll, to work, to learn, to endure hardships, to not just survive but live and experience everything that there can be (bad and good), and, ultimately actually attaining a nationality, a membership into a different country, thanks to their knowledge, to their achievements, thanks to their own two hands, and by swearing an oath; that person (those persons) has done more than just being born, and still, after completing everything I just mentioned, the labeling is done so that they immediately fall within those who are questioned the most—listening until the end of the days the never ending: “Where are you REALLY from?”.

That is something, I believe, the survey was leaving out of the questions posed—which, incidentally, were not over yet.

But, again thanks to the survey designer, shades and levels of complexity as-of-yet unseen in online polling were added to what would otherwise be mundane queries; here turning from philosophical and geographical to quantitative and qualitative in one quick turn:

Desert2 (3)

 

It was quite something. Maybe that’s what they are referring to whenever they bring up the term: “American ingenuity”. The ability of grasping concepts that would otherwise be complicated and in need of abstract thinking, by superimposing them into the everyday lives of the general populace—which is the basis of the American political system, some historians have said. Such ideas and effects are quintessentially American and, thus, worthy of being celebrated.

Or, a tad more cynically, there exists the possibility of the authors of the study being referenced here having been caught just pandering to the festive and patriotic mood of the masses. In search of some sort of “click-bait” type of effect perhaps—although those usually involve the name of a given celebrity and an implication of possible nudity.

Maybe, if we were able to survey those who completed and assisted in the aforementioned survey, then those results could help us clear our doubts…

El Desierto (4)

Hombría descarada

 

En los Estados Unidos, y hasta donde yo sé, no está bien visto el rollo de la violencia domestica; tengo también cierto entendimiento a priori de que tal premisa puede despertar pasiones torrenciales, ya que podría interpretarse como que se le está restando seriedad al asunto. Sin embargo hay que recordar que en otros lugares del planeta (potencialmente del universo tambor), ya sea mal o bien visto, el rollo de la violencia doméstica es parcialmente aceptado por la sociedad de manera implícita—así como usualmente lo es en esos mismos lugares la palabra de dios; más no la gravedad, evolución o ciencias exactas.

Y lamentablemente para mí, como aficionado al deporte y a la vez como ser capaz de consciencia y entendimiento humano-social moderno, sucedió recientemente que ese veneno del abuso a la pareja permeó los umbrales de organizaciones a las cuales aprecio (a mi manera cuasi-fanática) y, sinceramente, la respuesta obtenida hasta la fecha por parte de las mismas me ha dejado atónito.

Nótese que no digo aquí que la situación está gacha por el hecho de que asuntos de violencia doméstica hayan pasado repentinamente a la primera plana en el mundo del deporte. No, no va por ahí el asunto. Es más bien una exposición de lo visto, a través de los ojos del fanático, y de cómo tales sucesos atentan contra los bloques más internos de la fundación humana que tenemos como individuos.

 

Para eso mismo, me parece debo hacer un pequeño preámbulo (pero conciso y bien escrito) de lo sucedido:

Como mencioné lo ocurrido es algo tentativamente reciente. Sin embargo, el hecho de que haya grandes cruces respecto a violencia doméstica/deporte, no lo es. Eso mismo no es algo reciente, no es algo nuevo, no estoy insinuando que descubrí la curvatura del planeta ni tampoco supongo el hecho de que sea algo exclusivo ya sea del mundo industrial o de las naciones en desarrollo.

Esto sucede increíblemente desde los equipos de futbol en Brasil, donde la reverencia al deporte es vista con tintes religiosos y/o nacionalistas; hasta la NFL en los Estados Unidos, mismos tintes, donde cada temporada aparecen nuevas acusaciones contra dos o tres (docenas) de jugadores.

En lo que respecta al hemisferio sur americano, podemos traer de la memoria reciente los haceres y deberes de un club Brasileño, mismos que fueron bastante mal manejados. Aquí hablamos de Boa Esporte, club de la segunda división en Brasil, que decidió contratar al portero conocido monónimamente como Bruno, quien había estado en la prisión por un rato antes de ser contratado.

Quizás Boa Esporte pensó que sería bien vista la contratación, que sería una de esas historias donde, de manera por demás agraciada, deciden dar una segunda oportunidad al pobre Bruno y al final de la temporada todos reirían y celebrarían la visión tan generosa de sus directivos al arriesgarse con el portero del pasado criminal.

El asunto aquí es que Bruno se encontraba preso al haber sido encontrado culpable de ser el cabecilla de una conspiración criminal; operación que culminó con el asesinato y desmembramiento de una Eliza Samudio, los restos de la misma habiendo sido dados a los perros para que desapareciera cualquier rastro de su persona. Y todo esto debido a que Eliza Samudio fue, de acuerdo a la evidencia y al vox populi, amante por amplio tiempo de Bruno y terminó dando a luz un hijo concebido a consecuencia de dicha relación. Bruno negó a su amante e hijo, como suelen hacer los hombres, y después formó su grupo de conspiradores y asesinos.

Mientras que en el primer mundo los Gigantes de Nueva York (#GoGiants!) no contrataron a un asesino de cónyuges, sí se vieron también envueltos en una controversia repugnante y vergonzosa respecto a uno de sus jugadores “emblemáticos”. Uno podría decir que no existe paralela alguna; pero de todas maneras, lo que sí hicieron fue ocultar la verdad respecto a la vida de su pateador, Josh Brown, quien había abusado a su esposa física y verbalmente.

Pero no es solamente el hecho de ocultar la verdad, apuntar el dedo índice a otros hasta el cansancio y conspirar para silenciar a las víctimas con amenazas difamatorias. No, no es nada más todo eso—que ya es bastante malo en una escala moral de buen samaritano—lo que embarra de mentira el logo tan bonito azul, blanco y rojo de les géants.

Está detrás de todo eso la verdad inescapable de que el dueño de dicha organización, un fulano llamado John Mara, escondió la verdad admitida por parte de su jugador y, para que suframos más anonadación, lo recompensó ofreciendo una extensión a su contrato a la tonada de 4 millones de dólares—que a mi entender, es lo que sucede con todos los hombres que abusan a sus esposas.

 

Pero bueno hablemos ahora del Bayern Munich y sus fans, que ellos fueron quienes me rompieron el corazón de manera más reciente.

No obstante todo lo anteriormente mencionado (y al sinfín de conocimiento que puede adquirir uno a través del Internet), a uno de los jugadores del Bayern le dio por sentirse muy hombrecito mientras reñía con su esposa por cuestiones de dinero (hasta donde yo sé), al punto que las autoridades locales intervinieron en dicha disputa. Este jugador, Kingsley Coman, joven promesa francesa, admitió ante las autoridades que lo sucedido, o más bien, las acusaciones ante su propia persona son verdaderas—admite culpa vaya.

Pero, al parecer no basta que un hombre por su cuenta vaya y ande con sus impulsos eyaculativos de violencia y pocas palabras para perjudicar la imagen de un club deportivo que procura mostrarse siempre eficiente, cortés y honroso. No, para echar sal en la herida tienen que llegar los fanáticos a empeorar completamente el asunto y entre ellos mismos (no obstante las admisiones de las partes interesadas, y no obstante no hayan estado ellos ahí) defender y culpabilizar a quienes les convenga.

¿O sea?

Andan tirando shit a diestra y siniestra diciendo que nada es culpa de Kinglsey. Pobrecito. La única culpa que tiene, si les creemos a los del club de fans, es haber contraído matrimonio a los 19 años de edad. Y eso, de acuerdo a la lógica de ellos (los demás pues), lo excusa de la violencia doméstica—como lógicamente sucede con todos los hombres con tantita feria arriba del promedio.

Nuevamente, tengo la consciencia suficiente como para admitir que yo no estuve ahí y por lo mismo no puedo de manera definitiva dar o quitar culpa, como no puedo ni sentenciar ni perdonar sin que el sistema legislativo local al conflicto tome cartas en el asunto. Sin embargo, lo que sí me parece indicativo de algo, es la disposición del joven Kingsley de admitir culpa y, voluntariamente, proponer su declaración de culpabilidad en un tribunal francés por adelantado.

No le digan eso a los del club de fans por que, como mencioné anteriormente, la culpa es de otros…

Y bien, también debo aclarar el hecho de que—y esto no lo sabía yo—en Francia, las leyes también definen como violencia doméstica, disputas respecto a finanzas, o, el privarle a la pareja el acceso con paridad a oportunidades financieras o dineros ganados. Y esto lo digo por que después salieron a la luz otros reportes respecto a la naturaleza de la disputa entre monsieur Coman y su joven esposa, diciéndonos que la joven trató de accesar la cuenta de instagram de Kingsley para promover algún producto a cambio de una buena cantidad de euros, Kingsley se negó con vehemencia y, como sabemos, a final de cuentas las autoridades fueron llamadas.

¿Excusa ese trasfondo las acciones de Kingsley Coman? Yo digo que no. Y no por ser mártir o víctima o sumiso o por sufrir de falta de huevos. Lo digo por que el asunto de la violencia doméstica afecta a todas las personas, a unas más que a otras debido a las experiencias individuales, pero igual afecta.

Y, lamentablemente para mí como fanático, el hecho de que nadie (ni fans ni directivos) dentro del universo rojo en Munich diese la cara o, como mínimo, una declaración por escrito me hace sentir traicionado.

Una cosa es ir y perder en España contra el Club Atlético Madrid, contra el Real Madrid o el Barcelona; otra muy diferente, es esconder o ignorar a conveniencia las noticias negativas y las acciones negativas de sus jugadores. Quizás no es una “traición” clara a los fanáticos del club, pero sí lo es a la sociedad de la cual los mismos fanáticos y miembros del club deportivo forman parte…

Echoes of the City (5)

I’m not from here, but my heart is…

 

What follows is a brief poetic opening, this in hopes of exemplifying both the sights/events that surround me through my day, and some of the sentiments the city of angels elicits in my self as I go about my everyday life:

The tacos next to the carwash

A market next to the church

Then a market next to the market

And so we all orbit around one same universe

But, is it the same universe? We question as we see it

Because we believe otherwise, we believe best and it shows

The obese woman strides through the intersection

Much too slow, much at the wrong time,

Red hand shines bright, a horn screeching

“I am fierce and I am myself!” she screams at the driver

“I am entitled to my space!” she affirms to herself

The bus driver, green arrow, at a standstill

The obese woman walks slowly, middle finger held high

The driver can’t turn left, he cannot turn left

The man who cooks al pastor looks over and stands as witness

Someone comes out from the church, also a witness

The bus driver, he couldn’t turn left…

EOTC5 (5)

Though I hail from the desert—or deserts, if I aim to be true to my life and own story—my senses are not yet contaminated with the hustle and bustle of The City; of a real city that is, not a metropolis sprouted in the middle of the desert as a hub for wanderers who aim for heat and solitude but still want to retain a degree of “culture”.

In these statements I say “contaminated” not necessarily because I believe that noun to be the truth of what happens when you move to a city; but due to the fact that many people I’ve met feel that way about what happens when moving from the periphery and into the concrete jungle.

And yes, there are those who may prefer to live in rural or secluded areas, far and away from everything and everyone. Be it in the forests, in the snow, in the coasts, in the aforementioned deserts; solitude can take many shapes, infinity of them. But that does not make them right over those who prefer to live otherwise—and, inescapably, vice versa.

So ultimately there will be some who will prefer a certain lifestyle over another; and, again and of course, not everyone will enjoy said decisions (one way or the other). Just like not everyone can stand the psychological toll of a freeway, of being at a standstill before what is supposed to be the open road with drivers to your left and to your right, with vehicles in front and behind, the throttle of engines and the heat of exhausts surrounding you as the clock ticks forward but your vehicle does not—as a confession I must say I’ve personally met some who end up having a small but noticeable “freak-out” in those circumstances. Just like them there will be others whom are not able to stand before the immensity of sands spreading without end into the horizon, or who are not able to cope with their own identities after seeing their inferiority when standing before a living, breathing forest—I’m even reminded of a certain Harry Haller who disliked both cities and town, popularity and anonymity, so on and so forth.

However, none of those concerns seem to bother me as much as they seem to do others. There are quite many other preoccupations in life, both larger and of more consequence, than the city traffic or our position in the perceived social universe.

Growing up I never dreamt of escaping my surroundings—as I have done in the past, I admitted to myself and others to being malleable, and to this date I still believe it and admit it. I did however, feel a weight on my chest, on my heart and on my ideas and though it may seem unfair to say it thusly, it was a weight created by others and not myself. Because it was only at the moment of my ideas being espouses that I felt alien, when I was made to feel as an outsider looking in.

Perhaps to appease a potential, albeit unwanted, future, I affirmed many times the supposed fact that I could’ve learned to bear such feelings; but decided against it. I could’ve learned to enjoy the carne asada, and the beer which would wash it down every Sunday, and the fact living in a relationship that brought me no happiness.

But I decided against it. I decided against forcing a life upon myself and others that would surely end in unhappiness. It seemed to be quite the appalling move, but all in all, why should I have had to condemn myself to unhappiness just to preserve the normalcy of others?

EOTC5 (3)

So it was that I came to The City, not ready for anything but expecting a more perfect future—paraphrasing the almighty, almost holy, constitution.

Would it be that my actions were tinged in selfishness?  Or would it be that I was searching for those options that should be available and viable to me just by existing? (As we are told we are created equal and in pursuit of several somethings that seem sometimes unreachable).

I guess the answer would depend, rather heavily, on whether or not the person asked has a positive idea of me or not.

Still, I am the one who after these ten plus years drives through these streets, walks through the countless miles of sidewalk, travels from point a to point b deep within the city’s bowels. I am the one who sees past fragments of himself in the individuals who walk the same streets through which I traverse. I am the one who sits by and listens to the sounds that sift through the concrete to mix and transform into a cacophony of life.

I am the one who can witness it all, graced by the never-ending life of this concrete fountain. I can, for better or worse—and for simplicity’s sake—; and due to having that option, I am content in ways I never was.

No, I don’t believe of myself as someone who is “blessed”, “gifted”, or particularly lucky in comparison to others—though I would admit to believing myself to be happy, in both fact and spirit. I believe the only actions I have taken, which could be considered different to my usual nature, were those in search of my own happiness, of my own acceptance, of my own self.

And I did find what I looked for, in part far away from the life I had lived, in part by transposing elements of my prior lives to where I wanted to be. I found what no one else ever said I could find, desire or dream of. I found it in The City, within its denizens, next to my fellow men and women, side by side in the non-stopping visage of human life.

The end result was the same we all long for:

A mixture of sad memories and new emotions which, when mixed, give a new meaning to the feeling of life; where all destinations are known, yet, every event is different.

In short, we gained ourselves. I gained myself and I would never lose me, for I am all I’ve ever had…