Târgu Mureș is a beautiful and cute town in Romania, in the heart of Transylvania, with friendly people, an interesting history, the most romantic boulevard in Europe and a spectacular Palace of Culture.
Yet, outside of Romania, nobody has ever heard of it. Even most Romanians have never been here and are completely oblivious to the beauty and charm of this town. Why? At first I thought that it was due to the ongoing confusion between Târgu Mureș and Tîrgu Mureș, but most people in the world haven’t heard of either, so that cannot be the reason.
I investigated this mysterious matter more deeply, and I am proud to say, I think I have found the answer. Sadly though, the answer is shocking. There seems to be a conspiracy to deliberately hide news from, of or about Târgu Mureș from the rest of the world.
“How can this be done in a world of free news and information, particularly over the internet?” you ask. But the internet is exactly the problem. Or actually, the funny language used in Romania is the problem. The rest of the world doesn’t speak Romanian, so they use an automatic translator to read websites that report from or about Târgu Mureș. And mysteriously, the results look like this:
“Tg-Mures”, the abbreviation used by people who want to stay on the sideline of the Târgu/Tîrgu conflict, becomes Liverpool.
Ok, you will say, then let’s spell out “Targu Mures” to prevent this from happening. Let’s try:
Oh. Now Târgu Mureș becomes Southall.
But it becomes even more confusing because the same Târgu Mureș becomes a different city in other translations.
Colorado Springs is the place that comes up most often when you translate Târgu Mureș.
I don’t know about Southall, but this may finally explain why Liverpool and Colorado Springs are so well known, although they are objectively less beautiful, less interesting and less important than Târgu Mureș.
This raises the question how something like this happens. It cannot be a translation mistake because the words in Târgu Mureș don’t mean anything like “springs”, let alone “Colorado”. And because it happens again and again, someone must have fed this into the translation database at Google, Yahoo, Microsoft or Bing.
Why would anyone do that? I was contemplating this question when I remembered that there are hundreds of Romanians working for international IT companies. It must be one of them who has a particular grudge against Târgu Mureș and who developed this devilish prank in a conspiracy to keep our lovely town from the world’s attention. (It can’t have been a Hungarian, because they would have changed the name to something unpronounceable. It can’t have been a German either, because they would have bombed the city instead.)
My assumption is that one of the other Romanian cities vying for the nomination for European Capital of Culture in 2021 has bribed someone to insert this glitch into the translation software to lower the international profile of Târgu Mureș and to thus reduce our chances. The only other explanation is that someone has a personal grudge because a girl from Târgu Mureș left him or because he was kicked out of university here. The investigation continues. Your clues are most welcome.
And to my international readers: If you read anything about Colorado Springs, please be careful. It could be about a completely different place on a different continent.