The Ballad of Mihai Viteazul

The biggest non-Hungarian statue in Cluj-Napoca is of Mihai Viteazul, known as Mihai “Bravu” in the southern regions of Romania and “Michael the Brave” in English. Today, there are statues of Mihai all over Romania and several villages bear his name. His incredible claim to fame is that, in the year 1600, he united all…

Why Do Romanians Hate and Fear Russia?

Over the years, I’ve documented a deep-seated fear and loathing for Russia amongst Romanians, and I really want to know why. Setting aside, momentarily, reactions to the policies of Russian President Vladimir Putin since 2000, I wanted to know if there is any factual basis for all this enmity. Therefore, I decided to go through…

Survivorman Les Stroud in Romania

Word Count: 523 The other day, I was surprised when the Unsleeping Eye alerted me to the fact that a popular survivalist had filmed not one but two episodes in Romania. The show is called Survivorman, featuring the legendary Les Stroud, and Season 7 Episodes 2-3 were billed as Les doing some survival in “Transylvania”….

Bonemian Rhapsody

You know it’s rather easy to mock Americans for their stupidity but at some point you have to have a little patience and understanding because little American kids are constantly being spammed by misinformation. Case in point is the map above, which incredibly wrong on so many levels. This is a screenshot from a 1984…

The real story of Vlad Dracula the Impaler

Working on something else at the moment but recorded this audio of me telling the true story of Vlad Dracula the Impaler If you can’t hear the file, the direct link can be found here (note: there are 10 seconds of silence at the beginning). Enjoy!

The Transylvania Book Fair

After all the research lately into taxes, politics and business, I thought it was time for an unequivocally positive story from around these parts. Last weekend here in Unicorn City was the first Transylvania Book Fair (link to Romanian news article about it here). There are a couple of other book fairs which come to…

You Know You’re Romanian When…

…a foreign, drunken, philandering buffoon who cheated on his wife during their honeymoon and was best friends with a horrific pedophile is a better ambassador at promoting your country than your own idiotic and unnecessarily combative Minister of Tourism.

Hey, hey we’re the Hungarians!

Ahh, the Hungarians. I lived here a long time before I even began to gain the slightest understanding about them and I don’t think I ever will fully understand them all the way. To understand the Hungarians in Romania, it’s essential to travel back through time to the beginning of the Hungarians as a separate…

Hey, Hey We’re the Germans!

One day you might find yourself tooling around southern Transylvania in your fine motor car, just enjoying the fresh air and suddenly come around a bend in the road and enter the town of Sibiu and you’re going to think, “Mein gott in himmel, have I just arrived in Germany or what?”. Yes, pretty much…

Vlad Tepes, Dracula and Vampires

I used to tell people I lived in Cluj and they’d be like, “Huh?” Then I’d tell them it was in Romania and they’d scratch their head with their mouths hanging open. Then I’d say, “It’s in Transylvania” and they’d grin and slap me high-fives and go, “Sweet, vampires.” LOL Well first of all, to…