We add pansies and lamps. But it's a cultural center, Mr. Mayor. Chairs would be better. Yes, but my cousin's company sells lamps. How many, chief? Well, half the budget's on pansies. 1000? Okay, chief. 1001 lamps. The councilors were elbowing each other. The village cultural center had 50sqm, half the windows missing and a toilet in the courtyard. They'd been instructed to use the whole budget by Monday to upgrade. And where do we put the lamps? On the nightstands taken last year from the former mayor's cousin.

(Translated by Bianca-Maria Marinescu / 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 January 2022, the group has 7.830 members.) The authors write ultra-short stories, with the texts limited to 500 characters (in Romanian, so the length of the English translation might be a little different) - a flash-fiction exercise on a topic that changes almost daily. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, Răzvan Penescu, and Luchian Abel. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

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

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