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Merit

In a world of meritocracy, you receive an inheritance. Not a big fortune, but some money to help pay your debts, help a relative who fell ill. You are grateful, but you did not merit this. You never did anything for it. You think about how many will never be covered by a rain of golden coins fallen from the sky, while some swim in pools of money, modern times uncle Scrooges destilating hatred towards any step directed to the sharing of wealth in the world and holding on to the belief that they earned what they have. It is such the world. 

Your daughter helped a friend cheat at a school test and got caught.  She was punished with a big F on her exam. She cries and explains to you she was only trying to help a desperate friend. Deep inside you understand her feelings,  but you agree she has to learn that helping a dishonest deed is the same as doing it. Some other parents heard of the situation. They talk to you and seem shocked by the school's decision to punish the accomplice and not just the perpetrator. They tell you: "I should warn my daughter this is how they do it". Your daughter admitted she was wrong and showed regret right away.  The other girl showed no remorse.  

A school rumor said your daughter was not going to be punished anymore, just the girl. This, you  heard from the girl herself, made her sad, not what she did, not what they did, but the possibility of being punished alone. Some people are happy to go to hell as long as they carry someone with them. Your husband wants to run for the mountains with your daughter away from the "psychopath in the making".  You remind him they are eleven. Deep inside, you wonder about the lack of remorse, about the deserving attitude, about the merit... 

This was not an easy week and you feel exhausted. The song playing on Spotify takes  your mind elsewhere, when Brazilian singer, Paulinho Moska, asks you what you would do if you only had this day, if the world was going to end. You feel tired and for a second you think you would do nothing, you would remain here typing until everything became cosmic dust. Then you see the image of your family in a collective hug, your hands on your children's hair, your husband's arms covering you all, your heads touching. If the world is not what we would like it to be or if the world is to end, what you want is to be with them, to love and protect them until the end. 


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