fredag, december 30, 2005

Loving Sabotage av Amélie Nothomb

Ett diplomatbarn har landat i Peking.

I wander around. There don't seem to be any colored soft drinks as one finds in Japan. All they sell is tea. "China is a country where tea is drunk," I say to myself. Okay. I walk up to the little old man who sells it. He hands me a bowl of steaming tea.

Barnet bor i ett område för utlänningar.

Take a crowd of children of various nationalities, enclose them in a restricted space built of concrete, and then let them loose, without supervision. Anyone who thinks the kids will extend the hand of friendship to each other is an idiot.

Dom leker krig. Det finns ett hemligt vapen och en puke patrol. Deras huvudfiende är östtyskarna. Amélie är stigfinnare och det finns inget bättre. Solitary combat.

I needed parents, enemies, and comarades-in-arms. To a lesser extent, I needed slaves and spectators - noblesse oblige. Anyone not belonging to the above categories might as well not have existed, and friends even less so.

Ja vad ska man med vänner.

My parents had friends. These were people they saw in order to drink alkohol, which came in various colors. As if one couldn't drink on one's own!
Apart from that, the function of friends was to talk and to listen. One told them pointless stories, they laughed loudly and replied with other stories. And then they ate.
Sometimes friends danced. A worrisome spectacle.
In sum, friends were a species of person in whose company one engaged in absurd, even grotesque activities, or normal activities for which their presence was unnecessary.

En italiensk flicka flyttar dit.

My braid was long and dark; hers was endless and sparkled jet black.

Loving sabotage har barnhjärta och vuxenhjärna. Ett stenhårt coolingbarnhjärta och en rolig klok vuxenhjärna.

Amélie Nothomb

Loving Sabotage. 1993. New Directions, 2000: ISBN 0-8112-1459-1
Underkastelsens sötma. 1999.

Min första bokreflektion publicerad i Good News Magazine handlade just om Loving Sabotage. Temat var barn.