Октомври

Изнервени, излъгани, без илюзии

Неверни, обидени, полудели

Ние тръгваме, отправени към обещаното

По пътя застлан

С грешни скрижали,

С вашите нарастващи криви, мъртви теории, социални договори.

Паветата се издигат и политат към вас.

Преквалифицирани, непредставени,

Като дърва без корени, без корони,

Космополитни, индеферентни към пола,

Универсални, хуманистични, човечни,

Неприложими мозъчни клетки..

Кой се нуждае от нашия здрав разум?

Нерационални, спонтанни, естествени

Напрегнати, смели, обезумели

Творци, в депресия и в истерия

Непредсказуеми, неустоимо

Готини,

Кой вслушва се в рока ни?

Силни, твърди, устойчиви,

Физически и умствено издържливи

Тежконосачи, дървосекачи

Камионджии

След нощна смяна

Ненужни строители на промяна.

Колко имаме в повече

Безработни, без вноски за осигуровки

Непродуктивни, негъвкави, недодялани,

Неносители на корпоративна култура

Излишна

Човешка

Структура

Непревратими в човешки ресурси?

Гневни, затънали в дългове, в риск.

На ръба на  колапса.

Toва не е  буря във водна чаша.

Това е вашата средна класа.

Вашите домакинства, електорат, членска маса

Митингуващи, протестиращи, демонстриращи,

Бунтовни данъкоплатци, бивши собственици, лузъри

Преебани от всякъде

Но вярващи в демокрацията,

Това е нацията!

С черни нокти или с розова вратовръзка

Те нямат никаква връзка

С парите

С игрите

С представителната власт.

Те имат новина за вас.

Нежаргонна, безпардонна

Гъмжаща

Тя е ни лява,  ни дясна

За статистиката неясна,

Преживяна oт първо лице

Маргинални, но не и овце

Изкрещяват директно в очи:

“Няма повече да мълчим!”

Така се събуди Уол Стрийт.

В Оакланд дори се сбиха

Първите герои се появиха….

….

А във същото време,

Във крайградски джендеми

Там на запад от Босфор

Дето изтока почва,

Но не още в Русия

Гласовете ни вият.

Огрубели, отчаяни, потни

Екзистенциално самотни

Ние сме непонятно различни.

Географски пръснати

Социалнo неравни

Културно неидентични

Ни сме чужди, ни свои

С вас не щем да говорим,

А отправяме ви псувни.

Идеология нямаме,

Извинения не търпим.

В автобуси от Прага

По железнита гари

Гурбетчии, бели робини и докторанти,

Невротични и негалантни,

Неносещи транспаранти

Към вкъщи пътуваме нощем.

Нямаме нищо общо.

Неразчитащи на процедури,

Реформи, институции, изборни урни,

Невярващи в неотменимостта на конституциоанните ни права

Ние прибягваме до директна борба.

И дори до етническо насилие.

Не защото сме “шибан народ”

А заради ваш’то безсилие

да въдворите върховенство на закона

и уважите нашата свобода.

Това не е пиянско безпътие

Това е гражданското присъствие

В пълно съзнание за вашия произвол

Изисвкащо самоконтрол.

А колко ме трогва в Америка активистката реч

Без гняв и не по задължение,

А в потвърждение,

Че гражданинът длъжен е да стане

Да каже свойто, пътя да покаже.

Таз крепка вяра, че някой го чува

Че на някой му пука

И вашето безразличие тука

Ми спира на гърлото буца.

Но дочувам смеха ви,

Демокрацията е просто спектакъл

За Евросъюза

Не заслужаваме ли нещо повече от това?

От вас ми се гади,

А ви пиша писма.

Политиката ви е неуважителна

И ще бъде разпитана.

Ние тука сме, много сме, викаме

С вас не искаме вече да свикваме

Изразяваме откровено презрение

На не едно поколение

Към фалшиво легитимирана власт.

Този свят няма нужда от вас!

24.05.2012 Варна

Cherry Blossom

I am obsessed. There are two ideas that have obsessed my time and energy these days. They are not new. I have had them for quite some time. But what brought them to blossom was my recent trip to the USA, my participation in a seminar on liberty and my ever growing conviction that the Americans are right – what you do is what you are.

This happened in the season of the cherry blossom. Washington D.C.’s prime time for love confessions. I knew about the cherry blossoms from Reni. She told me a story once about being on a date watching the cherry blossoms. I thought it was very romantic. The fact that I can’t remember that date’s name only means that love needs more than confessions to bring fruit. But I now understood how beautiful a setting the cherry blossoms are. And more than

that I feel like something in the air during that trip infected me with enthusiasm and new energy to make things happen.

Since I came back I acted on ideas I had kept in me for some time. Enough time thinking whether or not they make sense, doubting if the efforts are worth it and enjoying the procrastination and insecurity that often haunt my projects. It was time to confess to my ideas that I love them and I am ready to have them grow.

Idea One: During my research at the national archive I came across a memoir written by a Bulgarian trader and business leader Hristo Yotsov, a guy nobody knows much about in Bulgaria let alone abroad. His book is a gem for it presents a classical liberal viewpoint generated in Bulgaria as opposed to imported through an American NGO post-1989. It is not the view of an economic theorist or philosopher but the view of a practical man whose philosophy is all the more impressive because it reflected his own experience. Accounts of the economic history of Bulgaria often tell us that the dominant culture in the country is anti-capitalist and anti-market, state-dependent and state-reliant; that liberalism was introduced from abroad and capitalism was imposed against the heart of the Bulgarian nation. But entering into the life and memoirs of Hristo Yotsov offers us an alternative point of view, opens up a debate by giving evidence that the pre-WWII Bulgarian society was not a homogenous anti-capitalist tribe but included powerful voices speaking economic freedom in a local language.  The book is fun and exposes not only state incompetence but the author’s own process of learning by doing. I think that publishing his memoirs and making them available to a wider audience is a good idea and I have started acting upon it.

Idea Two: Poetry and story telling are my passions for a long time. I listen to The Moth podcast, a attend poetry readings every time I have a chance but those do not happen very often. This year around May 24th (The Day of the Cyrillic Alphabet) I am planning a literary event in Varna, my hometown on the Black Sea. I will gather young as well as established writers in the nice atmosphere of a bar and have them share their ideas and emotions through language. I want to see people stand up and share their creativity; open up their hearts and offer their stories to others; to make us laugh or cry and thus remind us of the boundless glory of humanity.

D.C. cherries are in full blossom for about 14 days. What will happen to these ideas in reality is up to the market, I mean up to other people’s attached value to them, not just mine. I needed to share the feeling of blossoms that has obsessed me in the last two weeks. And before I return to my more mundane work on chapters 5 and 6, I have just one more Idea three:

A love confession, when it is awaited and welcome, makes you feel capable and encouraged to go ahead with your bravest ideas. Makes you want to give, to reach further, to extend yourself. It leads to things following. America, with its tempting promise that anything is possible, reminded me once again of how enabling it feels to be with friends, to be who you are and happy. I took her confession with me into the Eastern European spring where lake Pancharevo is still half frozen. And started doing, I got going and soon things will follow. Not all trees blossom with the cherries and not all fruits are ripe with the strawberries but if you love something you will live up to it and see it complete, you will be what you do and you will be happy to be obsessed by it.

October

Frustrated, betrayed, disillusioned,

Half-certain, Half-mad, halfhearted

We are setting forth to a promise

On the road where you rolled

Your false scriptures

Your upward trends, your dead theories, your social contracts.

The pavement is being picked up and starts flying at you.

Overqualified, underrepresented,

Uprooted, underprivileged,

Cosmopolitan, gender neutral,

Universal, humanistic, humane

Irrelevant brains…

Who needs our common sense?

Irrational, spontaneous, natural

Intense, anxious, hysterical

Creative, brave, insane,

Unpredictable, irresistibly

Cool…

Who needs such a tool?

Strong and sturdy, resilient,

Physically and mentally tough

Heavy-lifters, night-shifters,

Lumberjacks

And drivers of trucks

Who needs their trails through the dark?

How much do we have too many,

Unemployed, non-contributing, uninsured,

Unproductive, unskilled, inflexible,

Unfit for corporate identity,

Useless

Human

Beings

Inconvertible to human resources?

Angry, indebted, at risk.

On the verge of collapse.

This is not a storm in a glass.

This is your middle class.

Your households, electorate, citizens,

Demonstrators, protesters, revolutionaries,

Rebel-tax-payers, ex-owners, losers

Screwed

But still patient,

The nation!

Not defined by its occupation

But by its lack of relation

To power

To money

To parliamentary representation.

They have a power point message,

Jargon-free, politically incorrect,

Messy,

Coming not from the left-right discourse,

Not from statistically aggregated scores

But from own life experience

Of excluded obedience

Simple message is ranted

“You can’t take us for granted!”

To this Wall Street awakens

And in Oakland there’s violence.

Respectively there are heroes.

But while no one was watching

On the backstreets where dark is

Somewhere north of Greece

In the beginning of the East

But not yet in Russia

Our voices are harsher.

Grumpy, desperate, tired

Existentially lonely we are vastly diverse

Geographically dispersed

Socially inhomogeneous

Culturally ambiguous

Neither here nor there

We don’t rant but we swear.

We have no ideology.

We don’t need no apology.

On the buses from Prague

In the railway stations

Migrant workers, sex slaves and PhD students

With no nerves or no manners

We don’t carry no banners

We are all going home.

We have nothing in common.

With no confidence in the process

In reforms, institutions and ballot boxes

In the inalienability of our constitutional rights.

We resort to fights!

And to racial violence even.

Not because we are simple bigots.

But because you failed to install justice

And defaced our freedoms.

This is not some chaotic anxiety

This is your civil society.

In full sobriety.

Asking for self-restraint.

I am always amazed,

When I go to America and hear the activists speak,

Not for fun or out of deprivation

But of duty and in confirmation

That a citizen must speak or lose.

This trust in communication

And the realization

That you are so deaf to the Public Sphere

Here

Brings me to tears.

But I hear your laughter.

Democracy is a show for the EU

And to you

We are no good for better.

You repulse me.

I write you a letter.

What you make out of politics is disgrace

But disgrace we can face.

We are here and many and ranting.

We are granted permission for camping

To express the deep frustration

Of more than one generation

With this false legitimization

Of rule.

The world is no longer your fool.

31.10.2011, Vienna

Gay Pride

America has impressed me with its civil society on many occasions but this one was the culmination of a long felt notion that things here are just different from things anywhere else. And this one is in a good way. New York. The Gay Pride parade was about to start rolling. I was walking down 7th Ave after a breakfast with friends over  the England Germany game as the impressions from football (i don’t call it soccer because it is called football first) were replaced by the faces and bodies of the sexual revolution.

As I reached Greenwich Village the atmosphere became more dense people were coming from everywhere and so did we: me and my friend Endre joined the crowd watching the parade. A beautiful and colorful flow of people who under the music and dances in their costumes and make up were making a clear political statement about who they are and what they want from the rest of society. Equal rights to work to marry and to enjoy life.

Unlike the event in New York, the Love Parade in Berlin and all its variations in Europe are primarily a showcase of eccentric art, techno music, rebellious behavior and open sexual provocation. It gives the message of how different and shocking we gays are, it is a demonstration of dissent from the normalcy of society. In this sort of shape the message  of equality gets lost for the more conservative part of society, it is just too hard to digest and people are turned off rather than joined in with the movement.

The American message was delivered in a rather different way. I was surprised by the lack of nudity by the carnival  in the parade by the simplicity of the message which was sang, shouted and danced away. The groups were numerous. Many different nationalities, religious groups, sports teams, corporations advertising themselves as a safe place to work for gays, mothers of victims of homophobic violence, same sex couples, universities and even elementary schools, West Point raising the questions of gays in the army, senators and political leaders who support gay rights, people who march with their lovers to demonstrate their love,  groups and subgroups which i could not have thought of were standing there representing a clearly stated demand for end of discrimination. They were not saying “we are so different form you, you don’t get us”. They were saying “we are the same as everyone else and we deserve the same rights and liberties as everyone else.”

This was a highly emotional afternoon and the sight of these people marching towards making a difference made me believe in their cause and made me a part of it. Instantly.

The Sоwer: Nebraska’s image of the prairie spirit

Unlike most state capitol buildings decorated with a gracious female representation of liberty, victory or progress, the state capitol of Nebraska features a mighty male figure of a sоwer in the middle of his activity, spreading the seeds of life across the vast prairie. The whole building is impressive with how it creates a mythology out of its local reality. It does not import greek goddesses or columns but it erects its own people to the top of its legislator’s dome. The interior design of the capitol is all about life in the Great Plains, the work on the land and in different spheres of life, the plants and animals of the state, the severe weather and the heroic acts of people working together for their common survival. Symbols of the land, the sun, the corn seeds, the cycle of life, the legends of the native americans the women writers and the spirit of creative energy  are all painted or mosaic-ed on the floors, walls and ceilings. It is the main building of a city that does not pretend it is urban where the steam train is no more significant that the buffalo. It is a state where the women are often tougher than the men and the men are having a hart time hiding their romantic sensitivity towards nature and open space. Continue reading

The Goddess of Progress

San Francisco City Hall after the devastating earthquake in 1906. Amidst the ruins stands a towering dome ordained with a mighty female figure, the goddess of progress*.  This is interesting because in the  ancient Greek mythology, where all European (type) gods and goddesses come from, there is no such goddess at all.  The very idea of progress was alien to the classical way of thinking where gods and people participated in the circular fulfillment of fate. Progress on the other hand is an inalienable American political idea. And economic idea too. Which stems from the epoch of the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, when mankind (again European) stopped consulting God on its  every  day activity and unleashed its exponential creativity in order to construct its own fate. So the lady atop of the San Francisco city hall is a controversial concept, a goddess of something that needs no god!

But what is progress? Surely the Americans would know something about progress. But surely they (at least some) know a bit about Greek Gods.  So why then erect a giant statue of something contradictory and non existent? Because we can! No, that’s why we built Vegas. Because victory and liberty were already taken? Or maybe because progress is nothing less than the ability to make your own God.

*The Goddess of progress survived the earthquake but was damaged during transportation and was never reinstalled. Her head can be seen in the City Hall exhibition court.