Saturday, September 03, 2011


i was just thinking about the (extreme) ways things are going in romania, concerning people that should be mentioned in the national anthem, as tens of thousands of proud romanians carry flags with those people's faces as the flags' arms.

we like to brag with those people. hell, every country likes to do that: have a guy that has discovered penicillin? one of the medschool's wings gets his name. a guy flew for the first time around the world in his home-made flying machine? he's boosted to colonel honoris causa after he dies, so the family can be proud. a guy defended his position in the second world war, saved 19 comrades and killed 26 enemies? throw one of those purple hearts at that bastard. and, of course, all these guys have statues and streets named after them in a gazillion of cities throughout the entire country.

or, better, for all the guys that were successful in their lifetimes (presidents/emperors/kings, mainly): strap their faces on the money. because that's what the world generally accepts as the supreme form of success: money. however, romania is not one of these countries: our banknotes currently host a historian, a musician, an aviator, two poets, a theatre play writer and a painter. definitely, a proof that we're a country that hates its political leaders for quite some time. after 1989, we briefly had a sculptor, but he didn't last, probably because that douchebag used to live in france.

but why really stop here. why letting the population acknowledge (subconsciously, most of the time) who these men/women are after they usually die. and why so trivial, so undermining. nowadays, presidents are under the habit of decorating such men and women, many times post-mortem. the order of barney the dinosaur, the star of han solo, the heart of neverland, we got 'em all. also, we suck in the very essence of sucking when building acknowledgement pedestals: we turn our national prides into generals and colonels, although they're civilians to the bone, as they have always been. not to mention that, for many, becoming part of the army is on the brazing edge of offending their entire life's work, with respect to what peace means to art, science and sports.


two days ago, alexandru pesamosca, one of romania's greatest surgeons, pediatricians and a man among men, died of old age. during his professional activity, he probably saved tens of thousands of lives (around 50 years of practice, about 45,000 operations - do the math). he was never rich (he actually struggled through a life of poverty), he used to live in the hospital he was working and he dedicated his entire life to helping others. he was also a devoted christian and, in almost all accounts, i think the orthodox church may as well canonize him - that might help with the public relations. and i can just feel a post-mortem decoration creeping up on his corpse.

one of the best is gone, but we still have doctors, scientists, artists and so on that are very much alive and that deserve full acknowledgement. and, speaking from a strictly selfish point of view (because that's how i best function), i feel that we, the people, do not fully benefit from their genius while they are still alive. i consider myself lucky to be contemporary with one romanian raed arafat, for example. or with alexandru bălănescu. but these are just two people. i can't even begin to imagine the number of romanian people that perform at the highest level in their professional domains, and i don't even know who they are. 15 years ago, we had that "15,000 specialists" idea shoved down our throats, and everybody made fun of it. well, the way things are going (congratulations, new highschool graduates, by the way), we'll run out of those imaginary 15,000 specialists in a matter of years. so, we might as well get a handful of real ones while we still can.

so, for all the guys that still lead and for all the guys that will lead us: if you want your faces to appear on our money, some day, do yourselves a favour and get all these people together; your far-reaching contacts and database should spot them immediately. also, the elite-intelligent young ones: they need financial support. they're so few - give it to them. ask them about their work, about their domains of activity. ask them what do they think about it, what are some better ways in which things should go in those fields. take their advice into consideration. act accordingly. don't give them responsibilities, they already have more than you could possibly imagine. and don't even think about rallying them into a party, let them be independent, so their word can be trustworthy. yes, there will be tons of mud thrown at them, but you have the means to shield them, even by keeping them perfectly hidden, anonymous to the public and under a tenure. these are some of the few people that provide the means of existence to other tens of thousands. don't let them slip away, use them, that's why they're there, that's why they studied, worked and excelled. statues, streets, decorations - not really helping, unless you're playing "caesar 3".

we're so proficient in regretting and evoking good people after they die that we find no reason in supporting them while they're alive. and that's one of the (silver) bullets in a dead nation's curriculum vitae.