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Monday, December 11, 2006
Note to idiots going to clubs
Trying to pick a fight with foreigners simply because they are foreigners is not cool. It does not make you smarter, it does not make you look better, it does not make you a better man. It actually makes you loc petty, redneck and stupid.

The mere sound of someone speaking English because they do not know Romanian is not supposed to make you angry. Not all people know Romanian. And this might be news to you, but Romanian is rarely needed by foreigners.

Besides, you might stumble upon a guy that is way to pacifist and open minded to contribute to your picking a fight with him. So you will just end up looking stupid and feeling frustrated, while the rest of the world is having fun…

I think the best you could do is stay home next time, OK?
posted by Alina @ 10:24 AM  
8 Comments:
  • At 12/11/2006 4:38 PM, Anonymous Shameel Arafin said…

    Hi Alina. I came across your blog through the article on the Romanian hacker, but then saw the piece on foreigners in Romania.

    I live in Philadelphia, and visited Bucharest, Vama Veche, Busteni and a few other places in Romania about 4 years ago. I spoke English, and have to say I didn't have much trouble anywhere -- bars, clubs, etc. I think in my case, people were a bit confused, because I am Bengali (and therefore brown ;) ), but I behaved like an American. I think people thought at first I was tsigani, but were confused because of the way I dressed and talked.

    Anyway, I had a great time in Bucharest. I also wanted to say that I come across Romanian programmers on the web all the time, and they seem to be a very talented bunch of people.

    Regards,

    Shameel Arafin

     
  • At 12/11/2006 4:53 PM, Blogger Alina said…

    Shameel, thank you for your visit. Your are right, most Romanians would act normally around foreigners. That does not mean there are no idiotic exception. For those people I think it is recommended to stay in, so that they don't cause trouble for Romanians and foreigners alike.

    Glad you've enjoyed your visit in Romania. Are you planning to come visit it again?

     
  • At 12/11/2006 7:53 PM, Blogger Tubby said…

    I have had one occurrence in life with people resenting my not speaking their language. It happened in the 70's when I was going to New Brunswick, Canada and made a stop on the way in Quebec, Canada to have a drink. The predominant language in the province of Quebec is french and when my friend and I started speaking English in the tavern then some of the french Canadian patrons became very upset. Fortunately there was no fight but it was sad to be treated by some as an unwelcome visitor in a province of my own country because of a language difference.

     
  • At 12/11/2006 8:15 PM, Blogger Alina said…

    Sad indeed...See, i think what people say should worry us more than the language they say it in.

     
  • At 12/11/2006 10:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Alina, don't sweat it... it's not worth the time. Everyday I look around and see too many stupid/ignorant people. They won't change... so the only thing we can do (actually, there's not much that we can do :D) is to wait for them to die and hope that the new generation will not repeat their mistakes and worship this ill culture.

    Am I too radical? Maybe.
    Do they deserve this? Yes, I believe they do!

     
  • At 12/12/2006 6:29 PM, Blogger Alina said…

    Alex, you are a bit radical! I mean, maybe some are not open minded because no one took the time to explain or convince them of the opposite? I still have faith...little, but some :)

     
  • At 12/14/2006 1:01 PM, Blogger Ali la Loca said…

    I totally agree, Alina!

    And I wonder - would people get as upset if someone walked into a bar speaking only German or French? The principle is the same - a foreign tourist that doesn't speak the local language - but there is something about speaking English (and especially American English) that rubs a lot of people the wrong way.

    I think as long as someone takes the time to learn "hello" and "thank you" in the language of the country they are visiting, and exhibit respect and goodwill to their hosts, all is well. :)

     
  • At 12/14/2006 1:06 PM, Blogger Alina said…

    Ali, I think the reason behind all this is a very wrong Romanian concept: foreign guys can come and sweep our girls off their feet, but we won't allow it for too long...The guy in question was German, but he sounded a bit American. However, he could have spoke whichever language, I guess...It would have been the same reaction.

     
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Name: Alina
Home: Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania
About Me: "This is my church. This is where I heal my hurts". It's also where I feel free and my preferred means of expression.
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