Thursday, October 1, 2009

tales from the golden age

I read the other day an interview with Cristian Mungiu. He was talking about his latest film entitled " Tales from the Golden Age"- a very well selected collection of so called urban legends... It brings back a whole bunch of memories...
going to school/ work on Saturdays, the power being cut off leaving us with, well...telling tales in the dark...Then there was the illegal and always "dangerous" listening on certain radios (Free Europe, VOA, BBC) followed the next day by my reporting everything to a friend of mine on the way to and from school. Then there were the days the grocer's next to the school got such delicacies as oranges, certain chocolate, cherries or even meat or certain salami. Those were the days! We were let or even sent sometimes by teachers to queue and get our little present for the day...of course this was not a daily habit, and in spite of what a normal person might think nowadays about a queue as being sth annoying and tiresome, well in time people would learn to live with queues. They became part of their life, it was the daily and ever-present activity of the long summer afternoons. And what stories and jokes people would tell then. I miss the humour people had those days- it was their only lifeboat- ...

And then there were the cartoons - "Mihaela" and the news on the "telejurnal"- snapshots of the president and his genius wife visiting places, campaigns for saving electricity, and some feeble glimpses into the world abroad. There was ABBA and Albano and Romina Power, and Jeniffer Rush, and there was Casablanca and Rebecca.

And since Cristian mentioned certain urban legends...well I couldn't overlook some of my own, right? The planes, sometimes crossing our bluest sky, were the Americans coming to rescue us... people were always watched and there was someone there that knew last night you ate pork and listened to forbidden radios... A real Big Brother watching us with his scrutinizing eyes.

I guess those days are long gone, yet leaving behind deep traces into people's lives, into their mentalities. We still have our urban legends, I'd dare say less charmant and less rich in meaning than those before... And with risk of being contradicted (that is in case someone would lay their eyes upon these lines), I would go as far and say that before the inner life was deeper- people used to live more profoundly and more complex, and maybe more silently. Now it's all becoming too surface like, glowy but's like living in a plastic world, with almost no direction, purpose, with no emotional urge... we just exist....... Please contradict me :)