I had dressed in a way that would make me look fit and neat. I had drunk 50 ml of organic brandy to ease tightness. I hadn't had any cigarettes to be perceived as someone leading a healthy life. I had settled myself to be in full control of my anxieties. I remember taking a taxi till somewhere nearby the restaurant, then walking at a slow, leisurely pace not to risk any sebum into my flawlessly-styled pompadour. Looking back on it, I have to thank God for being so set in my ways. Hadn't I used my recipe for success, our first date would surely have ended up in a disaster. Without her, my life would have been.

(Translated by Elena Florea / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year I / Corrected by Silvia Petrescu, coordinator of the translations)

Real Fiction is a collective project started in 2013 by Florin Piersic Jr. The concept of Real Fiction continued to exist as a Facebook group, after a volume of stories was published at Humanitas Publishing House. (In March 2021, the group has 4.500 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, setting their texts within the limit of 500 symbols (in Romanian language, so in English the limit might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise with an almost daily changed topic. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, and Luchian Abel. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

Versiunea în română a acestui text se poate citi aici, în rubrica Ficţiuni Reale.

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