Irish Travellers and Roma Adoption  

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My resolve to stop speaking about the difference between Roma / Gypsies and Romanians was recently shaken by an Irish couple, one of whom had a Roma sister adopted from Romania.

Ad Kalendas Dacas Guarantee  

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Feeling that the previous article, on how I can help you with your misunderstandings or simply to better understand certain concepts you may be unfamiliar with, was incomplete, I added a few more clauses, mostly having to do with a money-back guarantee and also describing my first attempts at implementing the answer.

Like a Dacian  

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As I’ve been getting closer to a long-planned trip to Europe, I had to face the prospect of more hostility and less-than-enlightened assumptions related to my ancestry. I am quite tired of going through that and have been preparing to start answering the question “where are you from” with “Dacia” – and will be doing so starting tomorrow. With this article, I will answer the follow-up “isn’t Dacia a car?” or “what is that?” or “where is that?” with “look it up!”

Opencube Manowar-ian Existentialism  

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I recently commented elsewhere on the sense of existence and even read a diaspora blog, and before I forget, I mirror here my thoughts for all the English-speaking world to marvel. If I were to summarize the teachings of this Zen piece, it’d be “survival implies constant self-deceit.”

Travel to and Road-building in Romania  

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I recently read a longer article on Bloomberg about Romania and its lagging infrastructure - more specifically, roads and highways. Much to my surprise, all that I was reading on other blogs (or hearing from my relatives) was described and explained as facts. (blmbrg-cows) 

Beligan-Ponta, Plesu-Bendeac  

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A more recent politico-artistico-philosophical scandal, far more interesting to me but, apparently, less interesting to the Romanian public, is the open conflict between Andrei Plesu, my favourite philosesseist, and the PSD cultural wing.

Meleschurian or Turchurian candidate: SRI-racha Fall  

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Sriracha is a 'sauce piquante', SRI is the Romanian Secret Service, fall is autumn, and in Romanian "picant" could also be derived from 'to fall' which is 'a pica.' We look at the consecutive declarations of Romania’s president, an allied journalist and finally, the candidacies of other president-hopefuls, from the head of the Romanian Secret Service, Melescanu and to the former Justice Minister, Macovei. But most of all, the title is a tip of the hat to Vlad Petreanu and his excellent expose, with a title that translates roughly as “The [secret] Services Autumn.”

The Greatest Plagiarizer in SE Europe  

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If you follow Romanian news, you mustn’t have missed how Victor Ponta, the current Romanian prime-minister, leader of the most popular (and also crypto-communist) PSD party and the most likely winner of the upcoming presidential race, launched his candidacy, on his birthday, on a stadium.

Contests and Primus Primates  

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One contest I thought about is superscrieri (superwritings). That got me thinking of other contests, such as fiction in Canada or the US Visa Lottery.

Dan Alexe vs Dacopaths  

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I sporadically come across Dan Alexe's writings. He's a smart dude, he's courageous, and he seems to constantly be bullying "protocronists / dacologists" whom he calls "dacopaths" ("dacopati" cf Romanian original, a term most likely inspired by the derisive and pejorative “psychopaths”). I thought I deconstruct / smite him a bit.

@PepsiCanada #pepsipopup in #Toronto  

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This could very well be a paid post, but it's not (unless you consider a free concert and a couple of Pepsi bottles as 'payment'). I was just passing by their tent and the music caught my ear; I enjoyed it while watching a cover of Talking Heads (Psycho Killer). All in all, a great opportunity to reminisce on what Pepsi meant in my childhood.

Liberté, Égalité, Vaseline  

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One of the things I've been doing with my life lately is moving to a more “mobile lifestyle” (or “nomadic”, as a friend has described it), which includes digitizing my paper archives and moving everything online. Obviously, this involves some sort of encryption before moving stuff to the cloud, but for now, let's have a look at my old passports, which somehow makes me talk about representative democracy and its inherent corruption.

Vaverite, or Latvian little birds  

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"Little birds" is the English mot-a-mot translation of bijboace, clampacioace, fofoloance. Just the other day, a Latvian friend visited me and brought me as a gift some candy from her native country. And as she explained laughing and blushing, the candy name had a dual meaning.

Theft, Commons and Antiziganism in Romania  

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I have a ton of things to do so that I can leave. However, part of the preparation is to look through local stuff and one such thing is this. The theft of a tablet in a small town, used subsequently to publish photos of the new owner, is a good opportunity to explore questions about policing, bias, antiziganism / racism and herd mentality.

death and peace with grandma I  

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Contemplating the inevitable death of a relative is tough. It's been on my mind for the past few days and I can't shake it. Death is inevitable in itself, but when the sand in the hourglass has accelerated its fall due to a voracious cancer diagnosis, for many it becomes far scarier. I tried to take it in stride, but its unavoidability is still depressing. Even the Simpsons episode with Homer dying with a bucket list containing “make peace with dad” is not as distracting as it could be.

frozen green peas–mazare cu carne  

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One of my favourite recipes from childhood was 'mazare cu carne' or green peas with some kind of meat, usually veal. As I (re)discovered two bags of frozen green peas in my freezer, I figured it's time to either revisit those or try something new.