Date: Sun, 05 Nov 2000 13:49:38 GMT
From: Claude Marthaler firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: "ABOUT THE WORLD MAP"
Dakar, Senegal, km 111731
Sometimes, being sick or riding on a destroyed trail, your biker's world map suddenly and dramatically reduces in size to the circumference of your own fragile body, with your simple human meridians, warming up faster than the planet does. As much as politics, your health and the road change the scale of the world map. The only proof of any "advancement" is then one of kilometers based on your map.Riding your bike expands the size of the globe and reduces you to your mortal destiny.
After almost seven years on the road, the planet appears rather smaller than imagined before. Paradoxically also, riding around the world means missing the biggest part of it. Imitating the first young British aristocrats in the 185O's, the tourists/travellers are associated often with "idiot travellers" for the firsthand and to idealized heros on the second. The cyclonauts lives in a large time scale, a real world map; an inaccessible journey, incomprehensible to the locals he often affirms he is going to meet. Projecting a round and permanently moving planet on a flat sheet of paper is an abstraction which deposses the planet of its main properties.
Each and everyone then projects his own worldmap, like a conqueror. We (the small percent of humans rich enough to travel) are elitists like the British aristocracy had been. As a friend of mine nicknamed himself "Guerrero del'asfalto" (road warrior) : tourism is a perpetuation of war, in an apparently pacified version. Having a world map in your hands let your imagination travel safely and gives you the insurance of dominating it (like a General) and therefore your own destiny.
Modern "media" (in reality, a pure centralized system of diffusion of information having nothing to do with communication), bombarding with news worldwide, does not bring you one millimeter closer to your neighbor's flat.. The closest point might be in this case the farthest, the real political Far West of emotions, where our acts changes at each moment the real WORLDMAP.
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