Thursday, September 15, 2016

Another quotable, for election season

Don't you just LOVE quotes that start with "There is an ancient [exotic culture] saying..."? And don't you just hate it when you find out that they have absolutely nothing to do with [said culture]?

Well, I am here to solve your problem!

Here is a 100% certified Hungarian saying that you can quote all over the Internet in a nice cozy bubble of authenticity. I am posting it now because the USA elections are getting into the "silly season" where accusations of lizard aliens and conspiracy theories of Illuminati from Atlantis are flying all over the news feeds.

The saying goes thus:

Amíg lószar van, veréb is van.

which translates into:

As long as there is horseshit, there will be sparrows.

The most convenient explanation of this saying is that as long as there are stupid things to be consumed, someone out there will definitely be up to consuming them, no matter how untrue, ridiculous, or useless they are. Or you can flip it to the other side: As long as there are rotten things in the world, there will also be individuals who make a living from them. 

There is a lot to unpack in this one bit of condensed wisdom - and it is very much quotable in our day and age of hoaxes, fake news, and urban legends. 

(And in case you were wondering: Yes, sparrows do eat horse manure. Or rather, bits of oats encased in it. This is so common that it was even included in my all-time favorite Hungarian children's cartoon.)