... but do y'all really still believe in coincidences?

July 27, 2020 by Lucian Mogosanu

In case it's not obvious from the silence permeating this here virtual space during the last month or so, I've been away for a while, a while that came and went, leaving me in front of a blank sheet of paper, a vacuum waiting to absorb my words and together piece them, making sense of all this while that I've been away.

So what was I saying? Oh, yes, I've been away for a while. I've been working pretty hard, the already immense pile of things-to-be-conquered slowly becoming a mountain, immovable as it is tall. I can't say I find this bothersome, quite the contrary in fact: if you woke up tomorrow and there was absolutely no work left there, no soil to work on God's green Earth, well... then what? You'd take a well-deserved rest, wouldn't you? And then what? Oh, you'd rest some more? But then what? As far as I can see, there's no significance whatsoever to attaining perfection other than that of death; and death is an eventual certainty, so why the hell not do something while you're here, instead of just being?

Sure, the weight on my shoulders has been constantly growing. And yet despite that, one day I stopped working and instead I decided to switch to partying pretty hard, leaving somewhere on a shelf all the internets, technologies and computers, not to mention "news" and all those other useless distractions. In other words, I woke up one morning at seven, prepared to go visit friends and family; which resulted in a trip over to the seaside so we can admire the majestic sunrise near Tuluz1, followed by a trip back to Bucharest, followed by a sunset on the shores of the lake Mogoșoaia, then by a longer and even more eventful trip back to the Black Sea, followed by so much back and forth that by now I have no idea which one's back and which one forth.

At this point you'd expect me to start droppin' some really neat photos on yo' respectable eyes. I've decided not to; although I do have a hundred or so pieces ready for my viewing pleasure, on one hand I'm not as particularly interested in publishing the fruits of my labour as I was, say, six months ago. But more importantly, while I myself do appreciate the sunrises, the beautifully-shaped white clouds, the warm, salty sea water, the hot sand, the cold iced coffee and all that jazz, I don't think they're a particularly good vehicle for what I'm about to say next.

Not much has changed on the Romanian littoral since 2019: the service is still half-assedly shitty; the prices are still quite fuckin' high, except when you know people2; and I won't even go into the details of how during summer the place gets crowded with the stupid, the wretched and the illiterate, in short, the Romanian orcdom. You'd expect they all figured out Bulgarian superiority by now, but instead resorts such as Eforie Sud emanate a distinct '90s atmosphere, minus the witty limericks shouted by the dude selling grilled corn. It all looks pretty bizarre if you sit and think how we're actually in 2020 the year of covid, close to the Great heat death.

I obviously called it, no one wears the damned masks, which by now has government officials almost begging citizens to use them. Remember back in March how they brought the army to the streets and how all the self-proclaimed experts noted how "it's good to panic early"; well, how did that help? The orcs meanwhile became too eager to live their lives like before, which rendered the supposed power of the state unenforceable and left the actors involved talking empty meaningless talks and dancing around in their funny costumes.

But really, all this is only the tip of the iceberg. It's obvious to me now, more than any time during the last three decades, how both the socialist strategy and its failure are exposed to the common man. 2020 Romania looks eerly similar to, of all years, its 1989 counterpart; and the common man, as stupid as he is, remembers the pain all too well and reacts accordingly. This is how Mangalians have relegated supermarkets to their rightful place at the town outskirts, and this is how when you want to buy something in that place, an actual something, you'd better have some sort of connection to the local WoT, or else tough luck.

People know each other on the southern and northern Black Sea shores of Romania, and beyond, in stark contrast to the overcrowded enclave of Bucharest3, where folks are simply drawn into a WoT-less black hole that's undergoing a slow, painful death. No, I know it doesn't make any sense to you, but it's obvious to me. It makes absolutely no difference whether the ongoing great destructuring of society was a mere accident or a deliberate act of terrorism; the destructuring is well on its way, but at the same time the more tightly-knit groups are enduring and will likely survive it, the very same way they did three decades ago. This is why to my eye Mangalia, a small town where people live mostly off the local Empire-financed shipyard, is more of a citadel, in other words more civilized a town than ye olde Bükreş can ever hope to be. But more generally and at the same time unsurprisingly, this supposed failure of democracy is in fact a failure of urban society, may it rest in pieces.

And now -- back to our regular schedule.

  1. It's okay, you're not expected to get this, and otherwise good for you if you did get it. 

  2. Granted, the food is cheap, i.e. circa twenty euros for full meals and drinks for a couple. If you're thinking of staying for a while, though, try to avoid the ten-euro-per-couple meals, lest you develop some nasty stomach bacteria coupled with explosive shits. 

  3. Some of my readers complain that blogs, and mine in particular, are too full of self-serving and self-gratifying inner references that make little sense to an outsider's eye. And I can see it, how does an outsider gather the resources to deal with one's personal representation of knowledge, with his graph of ideas, with whatever power of expression has arisen from the blogger's head? And what would impel one to expend such resources for just-another-blog-on-the-internets? I can see it and I don't mind it one bit, regardless of how complex or on the contrary, of how poor my own knowledge-graph might be.

    As far as I'm concerned, I've just hit the symbol "Bucharest" right now, and I'm looking to provide an explanation to the outsider -- mind you me, not necessarily to the outsider that's familiar with this particular symbol, despite knowing less about what that blog is than he did before; but on the contrary, to the one who isn't, regardless of their familiarity with The Tar Pit. And it so happens that I have plenty of references, among which: Bucharest botanical garden in the spring, as viewed through a couple of camera lenses; A photographic tour of Bucharest; in today's issue: Lacul Morii; Bucharest, part zwei: Herăstrău, Cotroceni; A brief look at the real estate rental market in Bucharest cca. 2019; Linguistic ruminations on the connection between dead relatives and how "the people" aren't worth two shits; and other urban subcultural considerations. And from this plethora of references, I now need to pick one that's adequate to the context and anchor it, because how else would I go about explaining "Bucharest", really? How would you?

    I guess writing yet another whole three-paragraph footnote about this was the better choice, wasn't it? I'm convinced it was, in the sense that I won't have to explain myself again next time this comes up. 

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