Mario is dead

Modifié le : 2019/08/07

I must have been nine years old or was it lat­er, I could­n’t say. It’s about my mem­o­ries and my apart­ment, it’s not tidy. We had just moved to Sainte-Croix-de-Lot­binière, from a small coun­try­side town. One morn­ing, I arrived at this new rur­al pri­ma­ry school. Every­one in my class was cry­ing. “Mario is dead” as I’m told. I look at peo­ple and ask who he was. I too am in shock, a boy our age was found hang­ing in his room. But I don’t show any emo­tion, because I did­n’t know the boy, and, as I was new, I did­n’t yet have these emo­tion­al ties with the environment.

My own hell, so to speak, was begin­ning. My future “com­rades,” at least some of them, but again, it’s so vague in this mem­o­ry, quick­ly got on my nerves, because I had­n’t cried. As a result, I looked like a heart­less man. Yet I was hap­py to arrive at this school because I was actu­al­ly run­ning away from the first one, the one in my home­town where I was the one we liked to beat after school hours, the one we used to laugh at and harass. In my mem­o­ry, this breach of the whin­ing eti­quette earned me anoth­er set­back at school.

So I was for a long, long time the laugh­ing stock of my com­pan­ions. Young peo­ple in the coun­try­side are just as hard as those in the city, if not hard­er. I was, more­over, the teach­ers’ favorite, I had good grades, I was suc­cess­ful. I still sur­vived and lat­er, even though my notes became fair in high school, CEGEP, and uni­ver­si­ty, I still earned my adult cre­den­tials. My jour­ney is a roller coast­er ride. I have my prob­lems and plea­sures, like all of us, and I may die of my stress. In the end, we can draw all the con­clu­sions we want, I’ll be dead anyway.

It’s only this morn­ing that I learned of Mar­jorie’s sui­cide. I read his farewell let­ter that appeared briefly on the news­pa­per. I think it’s a shame, a lit­tle piece of a young woman who seemed friend­ly. How­ev­er, I will not cry, this sto­ry is too far from mine. How­ev­er, a lot of ideas are hot. I am think­ing of this spe­cial­ist who says that we should not look for one or more cul­prits. I agree with him. The prob­lem is always more sig­nif­i­cant than the causes.

And I am think­ing espe­cial­ly of all those who sur­vive and who, on a dai­ly basis, suc­ceed in rais­ing this bur­den of fail­ure that threat­ens them. At a spe­cif­ic glo­ri­ous time of some kings, a sim­ple word could be enough to put you in dis­grace. It was nec­es­sary to use intel­li­gence and finesse, and sure­ly a lot of dis­hon­esty, to reach the top. Now, words cause so much pain and injury, as if our species was play­ing its sur­vival by this Dar­win­ian exer­cise of becom­ing the strongest, by crush­ing any head that wants to stand out.

Our species is ill-suit­ed ; its intel­li­gence pro­duces as many stars as vol­ca­noes, beau­ties as ugli­ness (hence this morn­ing’s pho­to…). I will not sur­prise any­one by say­ing that our world is not yet in the black.

Mar­jorie did­n’t have that strength. I know of oth­ers who, despite the lies, have forged them­selves either neu­roses or weapons or shells. And they con­tin­ued their exis­tence. I’m not sure there are more sui­cides among young peo­ple than before. Noth­ing is doc­u­ment­ed, and it is enough to dig into our mem­o­ries, how­ev­er impre­cise they may be, to real­ize that vio­lence has always exist­ed. It seems to be part of the “game.” For­tu­nate­ly, we may be becom­ing more aware of this (as with many oth­er things). It is dan­ger­ous, how­ev­er, to look for the easy cause so that we can move on. Just because it is com­plex does not mean that we should give up.

So we need to remem­ber our path more to under­stand what hap­pened to Mar­jorie, and maybe to this Mario (was that his first name?). It is through dia­logue that we suc­ceed in undo­ing tragedies. In her let­ter, Mar­jorie apol­o­gizes again for hurt­ing every­one’s feel­ings. Her let­ter is sur­pris­ing­ly lack­ing in dra­ma, or one is tempt­ed to read in it only the ordi­nary anx­i­eties of a teenag­er in the process of adapt­ing to the very harsh world of life.

That does­n’t excuse any­thing, of course. And, of course, we must dia­logue, silence this intim­i­da­tion. Although the bat­tle will always be between us — the sur­vival of our species depends on it — , I hope for more beau­ti­ful nobil­i­ty than unjust vic­to­ries. But to do so, we will need all our will. I dare to remain optimistic.