N forNext

N forNext

It is good always to have an eye on the future, to anticipate change, to try to imagine that which does not already exist and to succeed in making it thanks to an overall vision. This is what has allowed Pirelli to adapt to changes in society and the needs of future generations. The next challenge is to imagine the mobility of the future which must be smart, sustainable and technological.

As she walked under the arcades, Anna passed other figures, all rushing along alone or in pairs towards an underground entrance or disappearing behind her. Her nose was running and, despite the lights and jingle of a nearby merry-go-round, she felt joyless as she hurried on her way.

Yet, she should have rejoiced. She was on her way to meet Pierre, this guy she had been chatting with non-stop for almost a week. But, for once, she wasn't experiencing that sort of delighted fear that comes with a first date. She felt jaded. She told herself that love no longer had its place.

Admittedly, Anna had been on dating sites for months now, which perhaps explained her sense of weariness. In another life she'd had friends and time, but now she was working 50 hours a week and had no time for anything.

That's why she ended up creating an account on this app, where other people like her were swiping, looking for something and wanting it fast. There, all you had to do was scroll through the profiles, and when someone liked her who she liked in return, the little app immediately connected the two singles, who could then communicate as they wished.

She'd soon got into the game and was chatting for hours on end with strangers who, in real life, turned out to be much less attractive than in their pictures. There was Marco the quality engineer, Corentin the eternal intern who made electro music, Rodrigue and his dark eyes that looked like they were made up, Michka the bearded web designer, along with various others. Some dates had taken place in the summer, on crowded terraces.

Others in the winter in cosy little restaurants, a table for two in a quiet corner, and the bill vaguely fought over at the end, for the sake of it. She had known a few brief crushes with no consequences, suckers who struggled to understand that they were no longer wanted. She had grown bored, had tried with girls for a change.

Almost always, the story ended after one shot, followed swiftly by another flirtation. The offer was so vast, the possibilities so numerous that it was almost impossible to resist the temptation to try again. Another coin in the jukebox of bodies and emotions; one more dance, the last, you promise, but then on to the next.

That evening, she was the first to arrive in the caf where she and Pierre had planned to meet. She waited a good quarter of an hour before he appeared. Immediately her sullen mood was swept aside. They ordered wine but didn't need to drink much. Everything between them, their gestures, the words they exchanged, the looks, created a kind of comforting and gentle buzz. They felt like teenagers, savouring the moment for as long as possible; by closing time the waiter was almost forced to sweep them away.

Pierre offered to walk her home and they walked back up from H tel de Ville to Belleville. During the seemingly timeless journey, they barely spoke. They wanted to touch each other but didn't dare. Then, beneath the old brick building where the young woman lived, they kissed. Pierre held her against him. She wanted him to come upstairs straight away and sleep with her, but he preferred to go home. No doubt this refusal was a good sign.

As soon as she got into the lift, she wrote to tell him how much she had enjoyed the evening. And the words began to flow on WhatsApp, late into the night.
When she woke up, Anna was exhausted but happy. Immediately she picked up her phone and found a little message embellished with a heart. This tiny detail filled her with reassurance. Then, while having a coffee, she went through her emails, checked trends on Twitter, opened her employer's accounts to see if any clients had contacted them. Out of habit, she opened the dating app through which she had met Pierre. She scrolled through a few profiles, telling herself that she was done with this bullshit. Just one or two more faces and she would uninstall the app. A notification alerted her to another message from Pierre but, rather than reading it, she saved it for later. With her index finger, she continued perusing the names, the smiles, the lies, absorbed by the flow of images, the subtle hypnosis of variety. After all, it didn't matter. She just wanted to see who would be next. And then the next...

Language needs clarity and the Pirelli slogan is a perfect example Language needs clarity and the Pirelli slogan is a perfect example