Romanian Style

It's a new year, I have a new blog (or, at least, new look), but the same old subjects, blog-friends and recurrent topics. I salute my blogroll friend Krossfire, Dacia and differences.

composite of Zamolxis representation on top of Dacia Sandero StepwayVarianta în limba română pe FaṭăCarte Meta. We’ll drive through the following topics:

  • Dacia was the most popular European car of the past year.. almost
  • How are Romanians different
  • A counter-example for the so-called "free Dacian" spirit

Dacia, the locally made car we love to hate, is now (and has been for a while) the most popular European car. Even though in some countries other brands dominate (vc-bstslng), overall, Dacia wins (at least in July: ja-daso; and it feels like November; isn’t that sufficient? :). I’m guessing it’s not the design (less chips, more "lucru manual") but rather the price that made it a winning proposition.

Questions of style have been perplexing me for a long time – it’s a defining search. And, by extension, as a diasporan/purgatorian, I’ve also looked at what (if anything) makes Romanians different (Cartarescu and Plesu’s opinions notwithstanding). Romanians are less happy when compared to similar countries, lack the exercise of optimism and are quick to call each other stupid (ejprost) and elaborate insults. Elsewhere, Brontozaurel “detests Romanians’ friendship” (bro-2022, at-dedi).

Having lived outside Romania for a while, I had a chance to observe others and (at least try) to test such widespread beliefs. I think we are not all that different from people in other countries that share parts of our history. For instance, most of Eastern Europe and Asia have education systems that emphasized math (“real”) education. There is also a general tendency to abuse “physical discipline” (Luca) and nobody’s heard of the superiority of positive reinforcement to punishment (LE: see Skinner), only that “child beating is from heaven” (LE: a real Romanian proverb which I added to Wikipedia, together with "it takes a village", i.e., "e nevoie de un sat", which was also missing in the Romanian one.).

If anything, that last idea is probably the main reason why [some] Romanians may [sometime] be different ((LE: Generalized reactance?.

One reason I find it difficult to enunciate rules and axioms on what makes Romanians different / special, is that every time I get close to something like that, I start noticing counterexamples. For instance, I was reading Krossfire (kf-sddr; an old BlogRoll friend, coleg de multe excursii & discussions & poems – can’t find them all).

He’s venting on his blog on having received a delivery from a courier who made a number of time-consuming mistakes but, without missing a beat, extracted his tip invoking lack of change and went on his merry ways. He offers as an explanation the reluctance to negotiate. And that may very well be true, though if one would ever venture in a produce marketplace, virtually every peasant will argue for every cent almost as much as a Turkish merchant.

The counterexample that came to me as I was reading Krossfire’s article is that of TikTok-er @jazminedrives, who made a video (taken down since) about a similar experience she had with an UberEats delivery person, who messed up her order but argued instead of fixing the problem (dd-ttue).

Now, in all fairness, Krossfire may not have claimed that his story is indicative of Romanian customer service. There is something to be said there and I myself have said it in banned, mestecau, gaudeamus & pasaport.

Besides, Krossfire himself is a Holograf of blogoroaie: he’s positive and maintains good relationships with far more bloggers than anyone else I know, while keeping high standards of interaction.

In one of my comments on his blog, I provided video evidence of yet another “counter-example”. Recently, there’s been a follow-up of sorts (ctv-arson) – this, btw, not terribly related to the above, it’s mostly a reminder for myself.

Finally, my perennial resolution is to be more social, more positive and more tolerant. Will I keep it better in the new year?

Sources / More info: vc-bstslng, kf-sddr, dd-ttue, ctv-arson, bro-2022, at-dedi, ja-daso


  1. I'm on my way of owning a new Dacia Stepway (aka "the only good looking one"), because the car part/chip crisis left me with few options for "low long-term costs".

    P.S: Also, Dan Bitman (Holograf) is against vaccines, so you maybe I can have a different band for comparison :))) ?

    1. I guess I ought to be looking at some kind of metal.. How's Negură Bunget? :D


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