3 min read

#4: Our regularly scheduled programming

Hey, it's another Tues... oops, I'm sorry, it's a Wednesday, actually. 😬 This Extremely Unannoying arrived a bit late, but look at the bright side: you're one day closer to the weekend! Anyway, this time around, I brought you a good book, a good movie, a good exhibit, and a sneak peek of something exciting.

Let's get into it!

1) We're kind of f'd (?)

A new book came out at the end of February, one I've been waiting for for quite some time. It's called What's Our Problem?, and it's written by Tim Urban, the guy behind the stick-figure blog Wait But Why.

The book was six years in the making—during which time Tim stopped posting on WBW altogether—but I'm happy to report that it was worth the wait. What's Our Problem? is excellent!

If you have a gnawing feeling in the back of your mind that something is amiss with the discourse today, if seeing increasingly polarized politics makes you anxious, or if you watch fearfully as trust in science and facts crumble, this book is for you.

It won't solve anything but will provide several clever lenses through which you can finally understand what has been happening these past few years and why. It also has some really funny drawings and a few laugh-out-loud passages, so don't worry, it's not all doom and gloom.

It's a bright book about dark topics, and I suspect it might be one of the best ones of 2023.

2) A box full of surprises

I have a habit of going to the movies purposefully ignorantly. I try not to read synopses or reviews—I prefer to not know anything at all about the film I'm going to watch.* This, more often than not, enhances the experience quite a bit. Not just because I don't have the movie pre-digested for me by a critic but because I can be truly surprised by everything the creators planned.

I recommend you watch the movie R.M.N. in a similar manner. Especially if you are from Hungary or Romania. Just take my word that it's an excellent film, buy a ticket, and go watch it.

It's a delightful little box of surprises all through its two-hour runtime.

(*Shoutout to my kind, movie-going friends and my mom, who keep abreast of cinema news, and let me know what to watch so I can just wander into the theater like a wide-eyed five-year-old.)

3) The inner lives of panel-dwellers

Panel buildings are a staple of the urban landscapes of the former Eastern bloc countries. They were the Soviet answer to the mass housing crisis after World War II—once a poster child of modernity and progress, now a symbol of slow decay and a particular kind of hopelessness.

However, the (usually) grey walls hide unique human lives, and a new exhibit by Balázs Somorjai will show you what lies beneath the uniformity of these prefab buildings. Panel World is free to attend at the Robert Capa Center's 8F Gallery until June 3, 2023.

While you're there, make sure to also grab a coffee from the awesome baristas and lounge a bit on the comfy sofa installed right in the event space.

Maybe even try the apple pie. Mine was divine.

+1) "Why no essay, my man?"

If you're eagle-eyed, you might have caught that these last two issues haven't included a new essay from me. That's because all my writing efforts are directed at something long overdue: the third episode of our podcast with Ádám Freisinger.

Here's a sneak peek of my Scrivener sidebar for the curious:

This episode will be about something that has been bugging me for the past two years: what's happening to our shared sense of reality and why we are losing our trust in science and in each other. It's one of the hardest things I have ever tried to wrap my head around, but I think it'll be worth it in the end.

Anyway, if you've been waiting for a new Második Hallásra episode, I hope this makes you happy, and if you haven't heard anything from us yet, maybe check out our first two stories wherever they serve fine podcasts.**

And if you'll excuse me, now that I told a whole bunch of people that the third episode is definitely coming, I need to go back to panic-write a script. Peer pressure is real, y'all...

(**The title roughly translates to "On Second Thought," and the podcast is in Hungarian, so this one is only for our compatriots, I'm afraid.)

And with that, this is it for this week's Extremely Unannoying. Thank you for reading and if you enjoyed it, maybe tell a friend? I always appreciate it if you help my work find new people to delight. 😊

Bye-bye; see you in two weeks!