Sport is a beautiful show, where the public admires the competition. In the 1980s I was a classmate of two polo players who have since become famous on different national teams. We were all proud of their successes and encouraged them to outdo their performance. On Mondays, after championship games, they both had huge bruises on their faces, eyes, hands. I asked them how they got that way. I've been looking at the sport differently ever since. On the surface it's the goal show, underwater it's the real showdown.

(Translated by Luciana-Maria Buruiană / University of Bucharest, Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, MTTLC, year II / 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 2023, the group has 10,790 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 every few days. The group's coordinators are Florin Piersic Jr., Gabriel Molnar, Răzvan Penescu, Luchian Abel, and Vlad Mușat. (Drawing by Adrian T. Roman)

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

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