“There once was a brown horse that was brown like a bean, and he lived in the home of a very poor farmer. And the poor farmer had a very poor wife, and they had a very thin chicken and a lame little pig. And so, one day the very poor farmer’s wife said: We have nothing more to eat because we are very poor, so we must eat the very thin chicken. So they killed the very thin chicken and made a thin soup and ate it. And so, for a while, they were fine; but the hunger returned and the very poor farmer told his very poor wife: We have nothing more to eat because we are so poor, so we must eat the lame little pig. And so the lame little pig s turn came and they killed it and they made a lame soup and ate it. And then it was the bean-brown horse s turn. But the bean-brown horse did not wait for the story to end; it just ran away and went to another story.
“Is that the end of the story?” I asked Durito, unable to hide my bewilderment.
“Of course not, didn’t you hear me say that the bean-brown horse fled to another story?” Durito said as he prepared to leave.
“And so?” I ask exasperated.
“And so nothing, you have to look for the bean-brown horse in another story!”
-Sub Commandante Marcos
We are looking for the bean brown horse in the other story. This October Jam is about stories hiding inside all of us, as we resist the dark times we live in – a whistler in the crowd, a grave digger who sings to the dead, a communist standing at the sidewalk protesting all alone, a migrant worker who cooks between his labor shifts, a musician who orchestrates silence, a singer writing lyrics in the middle of a strike, lovers waiting to run away.
This jam invites people to share different forms of resistance, so that we may internalize each other’s dissent in all its complexities. The jam is a trigger to refresh the space of protest and dissent, so that we find alternate readings of life in the city-outside the columns of newspaper reports, the shrill noise of television anchors and the violence of headlines. We wish to move beyond the binaries of oppressed and oppressor, system and its people. We will instead pay attention to creativity in everyday practices of survival in the city, searching for continuities from past to the present.