Forty short stories. Nine fewer than Hemingway, but it doesn’t matter. They really have nothing in common with those. This time, for once, I tried to speak about myself. And I realize that mostly, I managed to speak of entirely different matters. Actually, this is just as well. In this book, you will find stories about hateful children, old witches, the dearest of friends, irritable café owners, glum cleaning ladies, insufferable bullies, Hungarian inventors, forgotten loves, muddled minds, insane artists, unexpected guests, dull-witted priests, unrealized dreams, sick bus drivers, crumpled photographs, organized beggars, mountain lakes, and the Americans on the moon. Not to mention others about hopes that never die, promises that somehow outlasted the passage of time, and various other events that it would be too tedious to mention. Whether these things happened to me, I’m not quite sure anymore. They must have, at least as much as they happened to other people, who most likely saw them very differently. But now here they are, and nobody can change a word. It will have to do. As for the rest, we might as well let it fade nice and slow. Maybe, it’s already gone.
Vittorio Frigerio has been teaching French language and literature at Dalhousie University (Nova Scotia, Canada) for nearly twenty years. Italian by birth, Swiss by education, Canadian by choice, he has always tried to avoid easy labels, and sometimes hard ones as well, believing that identity is not determined by fate, nor is it a duty, and that a bit of confusion can actually help to clear things up, even though it may not look like that at first. He has worked for many years on French authors of the nineteenth and early twentieth century and in particular on Alexandre Dumas and other so-called popular authors of the time. He has also written on the complex galaxy of mostly unknown or forgotten authors who published in the innumerable but short-lived newspapers produced within the French anarchist movement, including quite a few that definitely did not deserve oblivion. He has published several volumes of literary history and criticism in France, as well as novels and short stories in Canada, and a collection of stories in Italian: Sviamenti dell’ingegno (Josef Weiss Edizioni, Mendrisio, Switzerland). He is “directeur de publication” of the e-journal Belphégor (http://belphegor.revues.org/), a popular literature and media culture journal. To find out more, go to Wikipedia: https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vittorio_Frigerio