Folks, I really got to stop trawling the internet for what people have to say about Romania. Sometimes it just gets so bizarre it makes my teeth ring, you know? Truth is way stranger than fiction.
Oh well, I think it’s quite interesting to get a virtually live feed of what people who are examining and visiting and thinking about this country are doing and going through and experiencing.
On with the show!
If you thought that Romanian architecture meant Hungarian, Austrian or German architecture and that there was no truly domestic schools of architecture, think again. This blog has some great photos, including of some wonderful carved wood motifs.
If you’re interested in theater, this blogpost by a Romanian who has been in the United States for decades waxes on at great length on the subject. He also includes his personal story of witnessing the 1989 Revolution, which is interesting.
Then I found this post on yet one more of Romania’s beautiful natural places, this time the Orzea Gorge (Cheile Orzei). Gorgeous!
And the Paper Girl takes a rotten train trip on CFR from Brasov to Sibiu. Wish I could say she’s exaggerating but her observations are dead on.
The worst part is it looks like she took an Acelerat train, starting in Bucharest and terminating in Sibiu. If that’s the case, this train really should’ve made good time and not been halting inexplicably.
I don’t know what to say other than that the Chocolate Chip Professor has now gone completely over to the pro-Gypsy all-the-time side of things, writing a long post defending their lifestyle and heritage.
Romanians have an extremely negative view of Roma, as many of them are beggars, thieves, or scavengers in the garbage dumps.
About what you’d expect. Still, in the very next line:
And Roma have an equally negative view of the negative elements of their race.
So to convert this into American terms, white people have an extremely negative view of black people, as many of them are beggars, thieves, or scavengers in the garbage dumps but black people have an equally negative view of the negative elements of their own race?
I should bail out now, but still…
Their trade is passed on from parent to child, so if a parent is a member of the Tshor (thief clan), the children learn to pickpocket and steal at an early age.
So you’re openly admitting you’re part of a “thief clan” and you’re teaching children to steal and… this is good how?
Then hilariously he lists the various other clans (besides thief clan and beggar clan and garbage scavenger clan), including this one:
Cocalarii: ivory carvers who make combs or hair accessories (feathers or jewelry)
I almost fell out of my chair reading that. As far as I am aware, calling someone a cocolar is a tremendous insult, meaning “neighborhood smecher” as you can see at the link, and often a much stronger meaning in real life.
In fact the first definition is tigan bisnitar which means someone who is a dirty horse dealer!
Oh mercy… I think someone’s been pulling the Professor’s beard.
Still, the defense of All Things Gypsies must continue:
Income is usually cash-based, and income taxes are regularly evaded.
So they’re thieves, beggars and they don’t pay taxes. Awesome!
The most important event in Roma culture is the birth of the first son. Even if there are several girls in the family, the first son has a special place in the family value.
This after disrespecting his daughter right to her face yesterday. Whew!
Too much education risks disrupting the strict roles expected of boys and girls. As our host, Ghizelle, related in a matter-of-fact way, her older daughter’s husband didn’t want her to read books because she would get foreign ideas and not be satisfied with Roma culture.
Great! Gosh if only we had such wonderful people in America. Why not lobby Obama to let them in visa free? LOL.
The hilarious thing is I actually like gypsies. Unlike the professor, I don’t want to be one though nor do I want to go on at length waxing about their noble thieving ways.
Gypsies are the most stubborn people on the face of the planet and are incredibly resilient to change and insist on doing things in their own weird ways. So what? Let ’em do it. All the boo-hoo stories in the world aren’t going to change a thing and that’s that a gypsy is going to do gypsy things.
People can’t decide on one hand whether gypsies should be either exterminated (impossible, as neither Hitler nor Stalin could do it) or else force assimilated into living like everyone else on the planet – driving cars to go work in office jobs after spending childhood in school being “educated”.
Never going to happen. And even if it did, then what? Turn into more boring corporate drones drinking Coca-Cola? No thanks. The reason I like gypsies is literally because they don’t give a fuck. They do their stupid, crazy, weird shit like take your money and insult you to your face with a smile and follow 5,001 taboos and shout and dance and make ivory jewelry or whatever else :P That’s what they do and just leave ’em alone.
Switching gears, I see yet another party of missionaries is inbound for some Good Doing here in Romania.
And linked blogger Stephanie Teaches has received the first benefit of life here – patience:
Next time I get squeezed on a bus, I’ll say “Eh, it’s Romania.”
Next time I get stuck in an elevator, I’ll say “Eh, it’s Romania.”
And the next time I get “nudged” out of the way by a car, I’ll say “Eh, it’s Romania.”
It sounds facetious to say it but one thing Romania has taught me LOTS of is patience and that is an incredibly useful tool. A person with a measured control of patience can accomplish amazing things.
And last but not least, a very rambling and disjointed post from a Do Gooder working in an orphanage:
Because I don’t know Romanian, I don’t know what everything sounds like. She was buzzing her lips then all of a sudden she started talking!!! At first I thought it was Romanian but it caught the attention of one of the workers but it wasn’t Romanian. Jules was speaking her own language today!! I said da and ce to try and keep her going.
Mercy! No comment, but read the entire thing to hear about worms in diapers and a little girl named “Apa”.
5 thoughts on “The Professor Hearts Gypsies, CFR Sucks, Architecture, Patience and Changing Diapers”
I also like gypsies. My grandma had a family as neighbors and they were the greatest people ever. One of them overheard me say that I needed a new battery watch. Lo and behold, he came home that afternoon with one and just handed it to me (now, I don’t know how legit it was lol). Are there bad apples? Well, sure! What nation/people doesn’t? But we can’t stereotype…
Actually, Cocalar originaly meant a subtype of Gypsy, that works in the business of bone-carving (from „kokalo” = „bone” in romani). It just recently migrated into the general romanian language and started designating something akin to what the brits call „chavs” (that is also a gypsy word) or the american „guido” stereotype
Yah I saw it’s also mixed with a Hungarian word as well, interestingly enough. Still a pretty funny thing to read :P