Mayan Technologies For the People (Rewind and Start Now)
Pedrito (tojolabal, two and a half years old, born during the first Intergalactic) is playing with a little car with no wheels or body. In fact, it appears to me that what Pedrito is playing with is a piece of that wood that they call "cork" here, but he has told me very decisively that it is a little car and that it is going to Margaritas to pick up passengers.
It is a gray and cold January morning and we are passing through this village which is today electing the delegates (one man and one woman) whom it will be sending to the March 21 consultation.
The village is in assembly when a Commander-type plane, blue and yellow, from the Army Rainbow Task Force and a pinto helicopter from the Mexican Air Force, begin a series of low over flights above the community. The assembly is not interrupted, those who are speaking merely raise their voices.
Pedrito is fed up with having the artillery aircraft above him, and he goes, fiercely, in search of a stick inside his hut. Pedrito comes out of his house with a piece of wood, and he angrily declares that "I’m going to hit the airplane because it’s bothering me a lot." I smile to myself at the child’s ingenuousness.
The plane makes a pass over Pedrito’s hut, and he raises the stick and waves it furiously at the war plane. The plane then changes its course and leaves in the direction of its base.
Pedrito says "There now" and starts playing once more with his piece of cork, with his little car.
The Sea and I look at each other in silence. We slowly move towards the stick which Pedrito left behind, and we pick it up carefully. We analyze it in great detail.
"It’s a stick," I say.
"It is," the Sea says.
Without saying anything else, we take it with us. We run into Tacho as we’re leaving. "And that?" he asks, pointing to Pedrito’s stick which we had taken. "Mayan technology," the Sea responds.
Above, a suddenly clear sky becomes golden next to clouds like marzipan.
The Sup, trying to remember how Pedrito did what he did.
(Above, the helicopter is a useless tin vulture).
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