Tag Archives: musings

En 1964, le droit de mépris coûtait 2 francs

16 Apr
Aujourd’hui j’ai regardé quelques fois cette vidéo que l’INA (Institut National de l’Audiovisuel) a mise en ligne le 20 mars dernier : Le livre de poche et le mépris. C’est un court extrait (42 secondes) de l’émission de l’ORTF (Office national de radiodiffusion télévision française) L’avenir est à vous, datée du 21 septembre 1964.

Il y a quarante-neuf ans bientôt donc, un étudiant en médecine, appelons-le le lecteur aristocrate, qui bien qu’il ne sait pas s’il y appartient, affirme être persuadé qu’il faut une aristocratie de lecteurs. Interrogé sur le livre de poche, il déclare en penser beaucoup de mal. Je cite :

“Parce que ça a fait lire un tas de gens qui n’avaient pas besoin de lire, finalement, qui n’avaient jamais ressenti le besoin de lire. On les a amené là, avant ils lisaient Nous Deux ou La vie en fleurs, et d’un seul coup ils se sont retrouvés avec Sartre dans les mains. Ce qui leur a donné une espèce de prétention intellectuelle qu’ils n’avaient pas. C’est à dire qu’avant les gens étaient humbles, finalement, devant la littérature, alors que maintenant ils se permettent de la prendre de haut. Les gens ont acquis le droit de mépris maintenant. Ce qu’ils n’avaient pas avant.”

Ce que ça m’inspire  ?

Petit un, je chantonne Ah ! ça ira, ça ira, ça ira ! Les aristocrates à la lanterne !
Petit deux, je me demande si tous les gens parlaient comme ça à l’époque.
Petit trois, sait-on jamais, comme mon père était également étudiant en médecine à peu près à cette époque, je sais de quoi je vais lui parler à la prochaine occasion pour qu’on rigole un coup.
Et petit quatre, je tracerais bien volontiers un parallèle entre l’aristocratie de lecteurs telle que décrite par l’étudiant il y a 49 ans et l’aristocratie d’internautes.

Au risque de sembler élitiste ou de ne pas voir un défaut que j’ai moi-même –moi qui gribouille sur l’internet de temps à autre– quand je vois ce qui se tweet, ce qui se facebook, ce qui s’instagram, etc., j’ai du mal à séparer le bon grain de l’ivraie, et j’aspire à une modération sévère chez ceux qui inondent le Web de tout ce qui leur passe par la tête.

Matin d’automne, le chaud et le froid

11 Dec
La cime des arbres, encore habillés de feuilles orange, semble s’embraser sous les rayons puissants du clair soleil de ce matin d’automne. Un beau contraste que cet orange cuivré sur le fond bleu du ciel. Alors que le jardin, dans l’ombre, est encore blanc et mat et que l’herbe est transie dans la rosée gelée. Quelques feuilles orange tombent, virevoltent dans l’air figé. Leur chute une tâche de lumière dansante et puis elles disparaissent tout à fait et se posent à l’ombre froide.

Things for which I am grateful

22 Nov
Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrate it!
Happy regular day to the rest!

My laptop acted up last night and today and what a prank it was for it to assess the disk corrupt, claim it can’t be fixed, and declare that reformatting and restoring from backup were in order. Turned out the disk got repaired and I tweeted I’m grateful for it:

This is the short-term gratefulness and there are other things I am deeply grateful for: I am healthy and literate in a country where life is good, I have a family of good people, I have a son whom I love from the bottom of my unfathomable heart, I live with his sweet father, I have a job I live for and colleagues who are kind, talented, dedicated, funny that I admire them. This is a fraction of the things I am grateful for. Today I thought about them, and I’m thankful.

The power of hypnosis

9 Apr
Hypnosis was a discussion topic at work the other day. I once blogged about how hypnosis had failed to help me with snowphobia. This was an epic session and funny, come to think of it. But I never wrote about the power of hypnosis. And I am now, because I was once successfully hypnotised.

It was some time during the summer of 1999, during a family vacation in Crete. The family of my boyfriend of the time. His father’s occupation was psychologist with a skill for hypnosis. I was regularly plagued with massive headaches. I had tried to cut down on coffee without visible effects. He offered to try hypnosis on me and I agreed. I don’t recall very much of the session.

He made me lay on a bed in a quiet room and he sat on a chair next to me. He made me close my eyes and listen to him. He said I wouldn’t fall asleep but the state I would be in would be very close. He said I would remember everything. It was true, but I gradually forgot, years after years.

I think is lasted less than a half hour. Near the end, he said my headaches were taken care of. He added they may return and if they did, we were about to work on how to make them go away. He instructed me to think of one word, and to remember it. Then the session was over. I went back to performing my vacation activities, a little dubious.

I didn’t have a single headache for many months and when I had one, it wasn’t massive like before, and it was rare.

As to the magic word that he made me think of —a word that I invented at the time— it still works even today. I don’t have to say it, I just have to think of it, say it in my head, and the headache disappears within seconds. It’s wonderful.

In all fairness

9 Apr
In all fairness, unfairness sucks.

This is really pushing my buttons. I think I was raised that way, being a twin. During childhood, the master word at home always was ‘equity’. I became highly sensitive to unfairness, yet my twin brother seemingly didn’t.

Years after years of being a grown-up and living in the real life, I’ve softened, but only by a fraction. Unfairness affects me far more than I wish it would, in my personal life and to a lesser degree in my professional life.

Because I don’t do well with confrontations, I reason a lot with myself, in pursuit of the right balance between an unfortunate situation and the bright side I can hold on to. For the greater good, or out of cowardice, I yield, hoping I can keep up with the choice I made, and hoping the effort is acknowledged. But too much unfairness, I can’t cope with ; there is just so much I can take. Sometimes I burst and the balance is broken.

Practices become habits, or systematic reactions start creeping into my everyday life, shaping an uncomfortable order. To avoid this, and preserve the balance, I try as much as possible to give hints or warnings that a situation is not ideal for me and that the balance is in jeopardy. But what is a significant effort or concession from me, is not necessarily reciprocated and my hints are ineffective. The value –or cost– of the status-quo is hardly ever the same for the involved parties.

Fortunately, it doesn’t happen frequently. Unfortunately, it’s distressing and overwhelming when it happens.

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