Naomi Osaka, who represents Japan, served as the final Olympic torchbearer for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, lighting the Olympic flame during the opening ceremony.
However, before I am an athlete, I am a black woman. And as a black woman, I feel as though there are much more important matters at hand that need immediate attention, rather than watching me play tennis. [Naomi Osaka (August 2020), Twitter]
The idea of zero tolerance is also informed by risk aversion. It represents an attempt to abolish, administratively, the risks associated with the expression of an unwelcome idea or belief. Of course, in one sense, tolerance is risky. Once conventional restraints on belief, opinion and speech are removed it becomes difficult to predict the future course of public life. The freedom to speak and to pursue knowledge has a habit of going off in unexpected directions. [Frank Furedi (2018), How Fear Works: Culture of Fear in the Twenty-First Century]
A Quitéria, jovem de 18 anos que, por infelicidade, nasceu numa família católica e que, para maior desgraça, frequentou um colégio cristão, foi-se confessar ao Padre Zé.
– Senhor Padre Zé, pode-me confessar?
– Com certeza, Quitéria. Quando foi a última vez que o fizeste?
– Acho que foi antes do Natal.
– Queres dizer antes do solstício do inverno, não é? Como sabes, Advento, Natal, Quaresma e Páscoa, são designações cristãs autorreferenciais, que dividem os homens e ofendem os nossos irmãos muçulmanos, judeus, hindus, ateus e agnósticos. Por isso, o novo calendário litúrgico, em vez de utilizar denominações supremacistas e confessionais, usa as estações do ano, que são mais inclusivas, inter-religiosas e universais. E que pecados cometeste, desde então?
[P. Gonçalo Portocarrero de Almada (2021), Observador
[After Dark (2004), by Haruki Murakami]
The camera draws back slowly to convey an image of the entire room. Then it begins observing details in search of clues. This is by no means a highly decorated room. Neither is it a room that suggests the tastes or individuality of its occupant. Without detailed observation, it would be hard to tell that this was the room of a young girl. There are no dolls, stuffed animals, or other accessories to be seen. No posters or calendars. On the side facing the window, one old wooden desk and a swivel chair. The window itself is covered by a roll-down window blind. On the desk is a simple black lamp and a brand-new notebook computer (its top closed). A few ballpoint pens and pencils in a mug. By the wall stands a plain wood-framed single bed, and there sleeps Eri Asai. The bedclothes are solid white. On shelves attached to the opposite wall, a compact stereo and a small pile of CDs in their cases. Next to those, a phone. A dresser with mirror attached. The only things placed in front of the mirror are lip balm and a small, round hairbrush. On that wall is a walk-in closet. As the room’s only decorative touch, five photographs in small frames are lined up on a shelf, all of them photos of Eri Asai. She is alone in all of them. None show her with friends or family. There is a small bookcase, but it contains only a handful of books, mostly college textbooks. And a pile of large-size fashion magazines. It would be hard to conclude that she is a voracious reader. Honestly speaking, the information regarding Eri Asai that we can glean from the appearance of this room is far from abundant. It gives the impression that preparations have been made to hide her personality and cleverly elude observing eyes. Near the head of the bed a digital clock soundlessly and steadily renews its display of the time. We wait. We hold our breath and listen. The clock displays 0:00.
“A telegram for you, sir.” I poked my finger along under the fold that was fastened down, spread it open, and read it. It had been forwarded from Paris:
COULD YOU COME HOTEL MONTANA MADRID
AM RATHER IN TROUBLE BRETT.
I saw the concierge standing in the doorway.
“Bring me a telegram form, please.”
He brought it and I took out my fountain-pen and printed:
LADY ASHLEY HOTEL MONTANA MADRID
ARRIVING SUD EXPRESS TOMORROW LOVE
That seemed to handle it. That was it. Send a girl off with one man. Introduce her to another to go off with him. Now go and bring her back. And sign the wire with love. That was it all right. I went in to lunch.
[The Sun Also Rises (1926), Ernest Hemingway]