Photo: Serge Lavallée
The Christmas of 1972 will remain in the history, faith, Jim and John.
Year-end gift to the reporters of the Duty, the series of Snapshots proposes that fictional texts inspired by archival photos of the Holiday season sent by readers to the editors. Today, a text by Guillaume Bourgault-Côté from a snapshot provided by Serge Lavallée.
Everyone thought that it would end up badly. Except we.
The scale of our suburbs, it is known as Jim and John. My brother and I, we like our nicknames, which are a little cinema. It is in any case certainly better than the original : Regis and Ronald, when you aspire to be in the world, it goes wrong.
We went to look for the pictures of eve this morning. Two weeks later, it is still bent in two, Jim and me. This Christmas 1972 will remain in the annals, big time.
Must say that, until that time, it was not necessarily good for us. Between our dreams (the glory-money-pleasure) and the reality, there was what one might call a challenge.
At home, our parents seemed to be bothered by their major, who began to give the impression that they were going to miss the boat of life. With two years younger than us, our sister already had her degree and a job that would carry her far away — everyone we repeated day after day.
For us, it was much less clear, especially with the stigma the public to have been a part of the first cohort of dropouts at the college. This is three years we defended what we called our “change of direction” pointing out the flaws in the new system, but the relationship was the reply easy.
“And your sister ? 95 % everywhere, it is also the fault of the system, I imagine ? “(Matante Line)
“It is sure that with the hair into a ball on the ears, it was to not hear strong, strong, boys. “(Mononcle Albert)
“In my time…” (The grand-father, who had never been to school, by the way)
“It has always lacked discipline in that house. “(Mononcle Jean-Guy, who had been the army)
Since we are talking about Jean-Guy : I remember a nightmare that I’ve done in the past year, about my afro. I used to be sunbathing on the back of the house listening to music. I had opened the windows, it came out like Woodstock. State of fullness, I fall asleep (I often dream that I’m sleeping). The dream continues a bit, and then I suddenly woke me up (well, in my dream) to see Jean-Guy next to my chaise lounge with the cutting-edge brand-new by my father in the hands. He shouts : “My sacrament, I was you to cut hair ! “
I woke up (for real) in fear and sweating, the heart pounding. This is the kind of thing that inspires me, Jean-Guy. It is not of the same school, him and me.
But to return to the college, the foundation of the case, it’s that we were victims of a form of segregation, Jim, and me — I say that to borrow a phrase heard at the beginning of the course in United States history (I missed the other). Always in the back of the pack, always being singled out.
That fact that we decided to make it a bang : we were going to crash there all this beautiful world pretentious, and find our way forward to us.
It was raised at the same time for the French classes, we shouted : “OK, bye ! “— that is all that we had gone through the head —, we have placed our afros and bang ! the door was slammed. It was found on the sidewalk in front of the college, convinced that the whole world looked at us through the window, impressed by our bravery.
Except that it is not. No one was looking, the course was resumed, and, if it is, someone may be asked : “was that them ? “
Suddenly, the small cold wind made us shiver on the sidewalk. It was November, and we had just come out of cegep without a degree, obviously, since it was released at the beginning of November to the first session. The small rush of adrenaline subsided quickly enough, thank you.
“OK, Jim, you did what ?
— I don’t know, John. “
This question, it is asked pretty often in the following two years. It does what ? Let’s say that we have done as we have : resourcefulness, enjoying the bungalow of our parents, and outlining some plans clumsier, sitting in the half-moons with flowers in the living room, often in the belly after our session of push-ups in the garage.
Until the day where Jim had a genius idea — if this term applies to us. It was just before Christmas 1972 and we had not a cenne to buy gifts for anyone. “Why we would not try poker ? “
The poker ? At this point, I was ready to try pretty much all to achieve my dream (glory-money-pleasure). It is therefore left to poker, with a motto in our afro : bluffing. Bluffing until the end, my John.
We arrived in a living room more or less legal, filled with this trust, that only fools can have the time to do something they have never done.
And it was right, Jim and me, because we have made a small fortune without even realizing it, by navigating with the three words of poker that we knew (fold, all in, and bluff).
A small fortune, true as in true.
In the mean time, we washed the banker in front of us — we called him the same because he had a suit and plucked a stranger who was playing with a santa Claus’s hat on the head.
The director of the show (a guy who would not have entrusted the children they never had) came to see him because he had never seen it (1) — or maybe also because he didn’t want to pay (2).
But they had won. A lot of money. And nothing was said to anyone.
We waited for two weeks without changing anything in our habits of life — wake up late, make false plans in the living room beside the TV, donning the push-up in the garage. Our parents did not see it coming. Until the evening of new year’s eve.
We arrived in the lounge topless, our mother said : “well, it’s going to do ! There’s still limits ! The family is coming, are you going to dress up. “And we said :” No.” We are going in the South. “And then we burst out laughing.
We knew that it was going to end well, our history. It is sure that some will say that this is not quite finished, in the sense that it has already burned half of our cash spending ten days in the South.
But Jim and me, we know deep inside us : if it worked once, it’ll work twice.