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Miklos Vamos

Budapest, Hungary

Miklós Vámos is a Hungarian novelist, screenwriter and talk show host. He is one of the most read and respected writers in his native Hungary. He has taught at Yale University on a Fulbright fellowship, served as The Nation’s East European correspondent, worked as consultant on the Oscar-winning film Mephisto, and presented Hungary’s most-watched cultural television show. Vámos has received numerous awards for his plays, screenplays, novels and short stories, including the Hungarian Merit Award for lifetime achievement. The Book of Fathers is considered his most accomplished novel and has sold 200,000 copies in Hungary. Close.

Miklos Vamos

Budapest, Hungary

Miklós Vámos is a Hungarian novelist, screenwriter and talk show host. more »

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In Hungary, At Least We Still Have Our Sense of Humor

Now this is the best possible question to send me. You may not be aware of the fact, but in Hungary everybody knows that I am the Good News Man: The one who is in charge of finding the silver lining in all of the clouds. Let me show you how it works. I have a double dose of good news for the world and also for my home country.

As to the world:

1. Economic recession reached practically every single country where there was any economical growth before. Good news: We already all know, so we may be able to do something about it.

2. Economic recession is easier to cope with than recession without that adjective. In my opinion, there has been another recession going on for a few decades. It is a recession in moral and cultural values and beliefs. Good news: That recession hasn't gotten any worse lately.

As to my beloved Hungary:

1. Economic recession cannot affect weaker economies as much as it does the stronger ones. Good news: Our recession can disappear faster than yours, dear American friends.

2. Even beyond that, a smaller country can only sink into a smaller pit. Seemingly, people in Hungary are not as worried as are the French, the English, the Yankees etc. This is probably a consequence Hungarians' well-known sense of humor. Good news: People here seem to be happier in the middle of crisis than people are elsewhere.

If you don't believe it, come here and see for yourselves. But you'd better hurry, Malév, the traditional Hungarian airline company is practically insolvent. (Well, you can choose other airlines, as long as they hold.)

Best from Budapest (BudaBest):

Miklós Vámos

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