The other day, I failed to comment on a few utterances that emerged in the course of the one known as Orbán Viktor’s – main job: Ownfeet’s father, Tiborcz’s father-in-law, beneficiary of Narcisz the dog’s fortune, as well as best friend to Mészáros Lölö gas breeder, swine engineer, hotelier, media mogul and strawman, second job: 3.3 million Hungarian people’s prime minister – radio show appearance. Going to see to that now.
Next year, everyone from pensioners to wage earners to our youth can take a step forward. Our economic situation has not been as encouraging as this since 1990. Now I’m not saying we have arrived but that we’re headed in the right direction, and we belong among the countries that are winning, which has not been the case for a long time.
The mental mayhem known as Orbán has begun to dabble in fortune telling too, which is no wonder at all, what with him being a gifted little dictator. To date, several thousand have taken a step forward. And another, and another. Those at the front of the queue have successfully crossed the border to start eking out a living as slaves/migrants in a random country in the antidemocratic, oppressive death trap that the lap of the dilapidated West is.
For some unfathomable reason, very few have headed for Russia, and even fewer for Azerbaijan. Instead, they opted for the Merkel-led recidivist failure that gloomy Germany is, or for Austria, which has basically become one giant migrant-sardine tin, or the UK.
So the one known as Orbán has forecasted an exodus of not just young workers but pensioners and children too. He may well be right, because I keep hearing stories where young emigrants who left a few years ago have found their feet in their new homeland, built a life for themselves and are now taking their whole family with them. Sometimes their parents too. So, yes: every demographic does indeed take a step forward.
Those who aren’t able to take a step anywhere have no economically viable professions, agility, courage, or the ability to learn new skills and speak no foreign languages. They’re left with the world they’ve made for themselves. Breast beating on the pretext of such opaque virtues as being Hungarian, a Christian and similar achievements that they haven’t attained with work because these require neither work nor mental investment of any kind.
Just how many steps and in which direction they will take I can’t say, as I’m no Orbán Viktor. Which is something everyone can be thankful for. But I suspect that they’ll carry on mashing the ground on the spot where they have been all this time. And slowly but surely, out will come family mascots and coats of arms, landlords will resurrect the right of first night, and the clergy will begin claiming their dues again.
Smoke tax will supplant the internet, and serfs will bow bare headed whenever their mighty-and-honourable lords and masters leave swirling dust clouds in the village in the wake of their all-terrain vehicles whose price tag would comfortably cover the entire village’s living expenses for five years. But, as the 4WD is not theirs, and neither is its price, (they merely generate it), they remain in their tumbledown huts, bury their children who die from curable but untreated diseases and throw long sideways glances at their parents and grandparents as soon as they’ re too old or frail to work, because they’ve become but a liability and a millstone around their working offspring’s necks.
But everyone’s happy in their own place. Members of the Orbán, Tiborcz, Mészáros, Garancsi, Rogán, L. Simon, Lázár, Szijjártó families will be living it up in the lap of luxury, foreign castles and yachts. Their children will be enrolled in prestigious private universities before carrying on the family business: Hungary Ltd.
Those who have taken a step forward will have found their niche in Vienna, Berlin, London and several other spots of the decadent West. They suffer no homesickness, not even for garlic flavour lángos.
Those who are labouring under the impression that they’ve taken a step forward, but have been treading water for years in reality, are happy, as they believe that soon they too will be driving flashy cars, their children will be going to expensive schools and they too will finally arrive not-sure-where. Even though they won’t. They’ll remain wretched, forever kowtowing servants whose greatest reward and delight will be (as is already) the chance to toast their one and only prime minister as he tucks into his beef stew. For dessert.
Translated by Judit Gábris
Edited by Réka Eszter Szabó