The Combatant – #6

That is why he hates to leave home late. It is five o’clock in the morning and he has not even reached the Red Line yet. The flow of cars converging to his path means heavy traffic ahead. The red lanterns of the cars glow like the eyes of bats at night, a million of them in procession to reach their dark master. He could check the map app on his cell phone, but certain things are better not to know. He usually feels good about having unusual work hours. It helps him to pretend not to be a mere worker coming and going in his daily toil, like Sisyphus carrying his rock up and down the mountain. His schedule usually avoids traffic. But today — today — he will have time to stop feeling special and join the pack.

Continue reading

Point-to-Point

Lampposts in a favela and in life: Point-to-point.

You have to show impetus. Even if you are going to get stuck ahead. Even if it’s a one-way ticket. Only in this way do you honor past combatants, set an example for the present ones, and inspire those of the future. Point-to-point, more than an effective technique of tactical progression, is a statement of petulance: you will not stand still — no matter the circumstances. And, more than that: you go forward. You do not go around. You do not retreat to advance. You just go. The straight line is the shortest distance between two points, isn’t it? Yes, so keep going. From dash to dash, you draw a line and advance. From point to point. There is more than violence in combat. There is a certain wisdom. Show momentum and you progress toward your goal. Because if you retire at this most difficult time — if you loose the impetus — then you won’t go anymore.

Continue reading