The Same Change
From high atop the crag of command, the chief of the mandrills scanned the horizon
as if he hoped to see a crucial sign come loose from its line. From time to time
his look would land briefly on his vassals, who were showing him their reddish and
glowing behinds as a sign of respect while passing before him. Apparently indifferent,
his trained attention never missed the least movement of the members of the tribe:
when he did not see them, he smelled and heard them.
The morning was going along in the tense normalcy of every day, for it was never
possible to discount the possibility of a secret conspiracy and its inevitable consequence:
the challenge and the struggle to hold on to power.
The sun was reaching its zenith, when all of a sudden one of the males brusquely
drew away from the circle of courtiers and placed himself at an unequivocal distance.
Before he could raise the cry of combat, the experienced chief knew that the moment
had arrived to display once again his authority and got ready for the fight. He
came down from the crag of command with a movement that was at once haughty and
vigorous. Standing up straight, with bloodshot eyes and showing his fierce fangs,
he pounded the ground with a terrible violence. His rival was waiting for him. In
every corner of the jungle were heard the cries of the contenders, who locked themselves
in a furious fight without a truce. At first dominant, the chief began to lose ground
to the challenger and finally succumbed to his assault. Rather than seeing himself
more thrashed, he decided to abandon the battlefield as quickly as possible. While
he nursed his wounds, he saw in the distance how the new chief climbed up on the
crag of command. Those who had been his former vassals started to parade in front
of the new chief, showing him their behinds as a sign of respect. Still hurting,
he joined them in the end.
The Same Change
From high atop his perch, the chief of the baboons scanned the horizon as if he
were looking for a signal. From time to time, his gaze would turn to his vassals,
who would show him their shiny red buttocks out of respect as they paraded in front
of him. Apparently indifferent, his trained attention never missed the slightest
movement of the tribe members. When he wasn't watching them, he was sniffing the
air or listening for them.
That morning, like any other morning, was charged with tension, for there was always
the possibility of a secret conspiracy and its inevitable consequence: the challenge
to the incumbent and the ensuing struggle for power.
It was high noon. One of the males abruptly drew away from the chief's circle of
courtiers and placed himself at an unambiguous distance. Before his rival opened
his mouth to roar his challenge, the experienced chief knew that the time had come,
once again, to demonstrate his authority. He prepared for battle.
He marched down from his perch. Standing erect, with bloodshot eyes and flashing
fangs, he pounded the ground with fearsome violence.
His rival was waiting for him. The cries of the two combatants echoed through the
jungle as they tussled. Although at first the chief seemed to have the upper hand,
he began to show signs of fatigue.
In the end, he succumbed to the challenger's assault. He withdrew from the fight
when it became clear that he was getting his ass kicked.
As he nursed his wounds, he saw in the distance how the new chief took his place
on the perch. The old chief's myrmidons began to parade in front of the new chief,
showing him their buttocks as a sign of respect.
Still smarting from the thrashing he had received, the old chief limped over to