ISSN : 2266-6060

Complement

Huge fans of soccer and beer, the couple had come from the United States as if on a pilgrimage. Three weeks, a time-tracked tour. Barely one or two days per city. Except for the most important ones: London of course, and Manchester, where we met on the miraculously sunny terrace of a pub. 
To prepare for the holiday, they had gathered information and opinions from the web, and copied the most attractive names into a text file. The printed list was stored in the inside pocket of the man’s leather jacket. He pulled it out when the discussion became more lively. The Mancunian who was part of our group had started to mention his favorite places, obviously unavoidable, the list had to be checked. Most of the names were there, the research was reliable. But the list quickly changed its role. It was now a shared space, where the hands of the two men rested, going through the items, each giving rise to the expression of new opinions, the sharing of anecdotes, the formulation of more personalized advice, in the form of exclamations that the beer made swell over the course of the evening. How many such conversations had the list already witnessed? Who would have known, seeing this simple piece of printed paper, that it had such power? And who can imagine what it had been loaded with? Additional recommendations, confidences, bursts of laughter, faces of strangers who became friends for a few hours, stories and images that were first attached to the names of places printed one above the other, and are now invisibly stored in the list itself, swollen with an unsuspected world.