Los bancos de favores
De las muchas virtudes de la novela de Tom Wolfe "La hoguera de las vanidades", siempre me ha fascinado su capítulo 17, "The favor bank" (imagino que en español lo hayan traducido por el obvio "el banco de favores").
Hay un momento en que Thomas Killian, su abogado (por cierto, inspirado en el abogado REAL de Nueva York Edward Hayes , como ha admitido públicamente Wolfe, y a quien le dedica el libro), le explica al protagonista, Sherman McCoy cómo funciona el banco de favores. Me apetecía hacer más bien mi propio relato, en este post, de cómo son los bancos de favores que he conocido yo en mi propia vida, pero me limitaré a citar literalmente a Wolfe, que escribe mucho mejor que yo:
- You ever hear of the Favor Bank?
-The Favor Bank? No.
Well, everything (...) in the criminal justice system in New York operates on favors. Everybody does favors for everybody else. Every chance they get, they make deposits in the Favor Bank. One time when I was just starting as an assistant DA, i was trying a case, and I was against the lawyer, an older guy and he was jst tying me up in knots. The guy was Jewish. I didn't know how to handle him, so I talked it over with my supervisor, who was a Harp like me. The next think I know, he's taking me in to see the judge, in his chambers. The judge was a Harp, too (...). We walk in , and he's standing beside his desk playing with one a these indoor putting sets(...). He don't ( sic ) even look up. (...) My bureau chief leaves the room and I'm standing there, and the judge says: "Tommy..." (...) Tommy, he calls me, and I never laid eyes on him except in the Courtroom. "Tommy", he says, "you seem like a good lad. I understand there's a certain Jew bastard been giving you a very hard time(...) I wouldn't worry about it anymore, Tommy" (...) After that, it's the judge who's tying up this lawyer in knots. When I say "Objection", I can't get to the second syllable before he says "Sustained!"
Now, this was a pure deposit in the Favor Bank. There was absolutely nothing I could do for that judge - not then. A deposit in the Favor Bank is not quid pro quo. It's saving up for a rainy day (...) if you've been making your regular deposits in the Favor Bank, then you're in a position to make contracts. That's what they call big favors, contracts. You have to make good on contracts.
- You have to? Why ?
- Because everybody in the courthouse believes in a saying: "What goes around comes around". That means if you don't take care a me today, I won't take care a you tomorrow.
( "The bonfire of the vanities", Tom Wolfe 1987)
 dice "don't" en el original, nótese que Wolfe cita las frases de cada uno de sus personajes con su propio modo de hablar, y que Thomas es un "Harp" (nota de Sergio).