A Rapariga Que Só Olhava às Vezes, Talvez

Só voltou a casa do João dezoito anos depois.

Já não era a mesma casa, claro. A festa, essa, parecia exactamente a mesma. Até a Laura estava lá, como se o destino quisesse com muita força e simultaneamente atar pontas soltas e mostrar-lhes outras que nunca seria possível atar.

Lembrou-se de como ela o tinha acusado na altura de falta de humildade e o quanto isso o confundira. Só agora, passados estes anos todos, se apercebeu de que quem tinha razão era ela. Não porque não tivesse sempre suspeitado isso de si, não: era mais por ver esse seu perfeito defeito ser-lhe mostrado, ser-lhe devolvido, carregando dezoito anos de silêncio ou dezoito anos de pequenas e insignificantes tragédias, o que vem dar ao mesmo.

Encolheu mentalmente os ombros a meio da conversa com a Laura, sorriu, pediu desculpa e afastou-se. Ter que se explicar em voz alta ainda o assustava com a mesma violência de sempre. Noutra altura, pensou. Ou então nunca. Agora é que não.

Só reparou na rapariga que parecia olhar porque o João falava com ela, apontando-o com o dedo. A rapariga olhou e não pareceu particularmente intrigada. Sorriu-lhe ao passar por ele, em passo rápido em direcção à cozinha. Ele só teve tempo de reparar que era bonita, que o olhou directamente nos olhos e que dela emanava um qualquer desvairo que se adivinhava impossível de qualificar. Tentou esquecê-la logo ali. Conseguiu.

Como sempre nestas ocasiões ia bebendo e falando por não ter mais nada que fazer, apostando consigo próprio a cada conversa que era capaz de classificar os contornos do interlocutor do momento, antes mesmo de ele os explicar; inevitavelmente cediam à tentação de o fazer. Chegou a pensar, assustado, que talvez fosse até uma norma social que ele desconhecia por completo, obrigatória em agregações de pessoas nestas festas. Para não pensar mais nisso decidiu que devia ser simplesmente porque apesar de cada um verificar os seus alicerces de maneiras diferentes, muitos acabam por se imitar. Seja como for, foi ganhando as apostas que, uma vez ganhas, se tornavam irremediavelmente aborrecidas.

Pelo meio, muito de vez em quando, via a rapariga, do outro lado da sala. Não chegou a perceber se ela olhava, por muito curtos momentos, com o mesmo olhar directo ou se era ele quem o imaginava. Ela acabou por se ir embora, muito antes dele, a quem sobraram dias a lutar com a incerteza. Não sabia se era ela quem olhava e se sim, para que olhava.

Não era importante que fosse bonita, apesar de ajudar, claro. O que o deixou inquieto foi a suspeita, numa microscópica fracção de segundo, de que só havia duas explicações igualmente aterradoras para o olhar da rapariga, esse olhar que podia não ter sido nenhum.

Podia ser engano seu e então o seu próprio desvairo não tinha um lar, ou então, e pior ainda, não era engano e tinha.

Como nunca mais a viu, nunca iria saber e isso serviu-lhe de consolo.

• • •

To Not Think at All



“The martini felt cool and clean […] I had never tasted anything so cool and clean. They made me feel civilized. I had had too much red wine, bread, cheese, bad coffee, and grappa. I sat on the high stool before the pleasant mahogany, the brass, and the mirrors and did not think at all.”

Ernest Hemingway — A Farewell to Arms



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Keine Ahnung



Noch jede Frau, die er umarmt hatte, fühlte sich geliebt; jede aber, die er wirklich zu lieben begann, sagte ihm früher oder später, daß er, wie alle Männer, von Liebe keine Ahnung habe.

Max Frisch — Mein Name sei Gantenbein



• • •




Listen, listen:

Do you sometimes wonder if it could very well be that inner boundaries don’t change as often as we think, that there’s a possibility of purity in unstudied declarations?

As if not knowing where we’re running to was the only way to establish glorious, infinite epiphanies.

You know, just running on.



• • •

So What



I think I get it or at least parts of it: it’s mostly about the territory and not necessarily a genuine yearning.

This is all not to say that it isn’t legitimate, it absolutely is.

I just wish it were simpler however unlikely and (maybe) painful that sounds.

Someday, who knows.




• • •

The Part That’s Not



It begins like this (I think):

I am not of you. It’s either the other way round or both or none.

You can call it a shitty welcome I suppose, but then again I was just standing here, clearly not longing after amelioration: if at all, that only happens after it’s begun.



• • •

Yes You Do



It can sometimes be exasperating to yet again find out that reality can’t be forced, even when you try your best to not be aware of either reality, or of forcing it.

As if this obliviousness could transform it all into a charming little equation, one with a soothing moral balance leaning towards fairness (independently of what “fair” means to you.)

Contemplate, rather. Don’t you know that the shapes you assemble aren’t figments?

Yes you do.



• • •

The Short Night



Nothing happened yet everything was just right. The night was short but carried with it an intangible melody that no one seemed to notice.

Maybe because we didn’t pay heed to all the tiny twitches of light: we were lost in their lithe concert, more eloquent than any single one of them.

Maybe because it was the first night or the last one or both.

Somehow, we were not surprised.



• • •


Joël Andrianomearisoa — The Labyrinth of Passion

The Labyrinth of Passion by Joël Andrianomearisoa


You are never dedicated to something you have complete confidence in. No one is fanatically shouting that the sun is going to rise tomorrow. They know it’s going to rise tomorrow. When people are fanatically dedicated to political or religious faiths or any other kinds of dogmas or goals, it’s always because these dogmas or goals are in doubt.

Robert M. Pirsig — Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

• • •


Untitled by Patricia Geraldes

untitled by Patricia Geraldes


Since I imagine that you just assume that I know what to do next, let me be perfectly clear: I have no clue.

What’s more I’m not even certain that a “before” exists to command an hypothetical “next”.

(But I wouldn’t mind at all if it did.)

• • •




The occupational hazard of making a spectacle of yourself, over the long haul, is that at some point you buy a ticket too.

Thomas McGuane — Panama



• • •

Saving Grace


There isn’t one, is there? You thought that walking away would protect you from the cold, didn’t you?

You were oh so sure that it would be enough to cobble up a fortress built by Nature for herself against infection and the hand of war, but it never was, how could it?

On the other hand it is all so pretty and you’ve been told that pretty suffices.



* and yes, I do know whom I misquote.

• • •


The Window Pardox

Doesn’t this urgency to publicly announce your impregnable privacy and wise majesty strike you as a bit of a paradox? It’s as if you would open a window to proclaim to the world that it is closed.

Did you ever consider that the world might not care whether it’s open or not?

• • •

Nothing To Add


This is all there is, sorry.

Just a few qualities and many shortcomings (all of which vary over time, true, yet their relative proportions stay constant.)

Granted, none of this is in any way remarkable but I hope it presents an explanation, or maybe simply a sufficiently valid reason as to why I have no opinions to offer about this particular predicament or enchantment of yours.

Even if I wanted to I’d still have nothing to add.

• • •

Signs & Milestones



He said that he often thought about those signs that we’re absolutely certain to have shaped significant decisions in our lives. About how we’re generally inept at reading signs at all and then arbitralily choose some to be more relevant than others. I wonder, he said, if the signs we’re most inept at reading aren’t exactly the ones that actually matter most instead of the ones we single out.

Then again, we could be simply misinterpreting not the signs but that which we promote to be our life’s milestones.



• • •

Oh Well


Image © Lotus Carroll

What’s surprising (to me) is not so much that we harbor childish reactions beneath a veneer of maturity, that much is obvious.

It’s rather to discover that the veneer is paper-thin, and especially that none of this makes it any thicker.

• • •

Which is Real?


But on that particular day I did not even begin to feel interested in this chore, and was suddenly more deeply bored than I have ever been before, and just turned around and went back inside. Which made me wonder why I wanted to do this chore at all, on other days, and also which was real: my slight interest on other days or my profound boredom now. And it made me wonder if I really should be profoundly bored by this chore all the time and never do it again, and if there was something wrong with my mind that I was not bored by it all the time.

Lydia Davis ― Can’t and Won’t: Stories

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• • •



Bayes’ Theorem. Image © mattbuck


In no affairs of mere prejudice, pro or con, do we deduce inferences with entire certainty, even from the most simple data.

Edgar Allen Poe — The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket

…In other words, cavēte theorema Bayes, as explained by John Horgan.

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