"I live at peace with myself, because I know I'm helpless and a coward. If I were smart and brave, I would do the only powerful thing that a helpless person can do – I would put a bullet through my head," Croatian writer Vedrana Rudan said in an interview with Kurir. Not a bit optimistic, she also said that the Earth was just paying us back for our negligent treatment of it, adding that the world cannot get far actually, as it is made up of people who have not changed since the times they lived in caves.
Incidentally, we decided to ignore the politics of the day, the Serbian-Croatian relations, history, etc. in this conversation. We talked about life, the theatre, and Rudan's new book, as well as the unavoidable coronavirus.
It was your birthday a couple of days ago. When you said that "the eighties are the new fifties", did you mean that old age is not necessarily bad, as it is often claimed in this region?
"The real fifties is the worst possible age today, no better than the eighties. You live in a world covered by facemasks. You lose your job and your health. You need to take care of the children you cannot put through school and old people who starve to death or die of sickness, here in 'this region' as much as in New York. That's what I meant when I wrote that the eighties were 'the new fifties'. To put it in a language that the nations and nationalities of 'this region' will understand – I was just messin' around. On the one hand, being old is disgusting because life reminds you of death in a thousand different ways; on the other hand, being old is a privilege because you're 'at risk', so the chances of surviving the coronavirus are zero. It's a good feeling – getting out of this hell that will only become worse. Humans were f**ing up the Earth for hundreds of years, and today the Earth is paying them back. Thank god that the human race is on the brink of extinction. We're the worst kind of animal of all animals, and we will get what we deserve."
You openly acknowledge that you are happy and content, and that you enjoy life. Is there is a universal recipe or advice for that?
"I never openly acknowledge anything. I'm a writer, I make up stories. When I'm typing a text on the computer, I am someone who writes about any old person, but very rarely about myself. My blog, Rudan.info, wouldn't be so popular if all it offered was a retelling of my own life. Am I happy, or am I lying? Do I enjoy life? Certainly much, much more than I did twenty years ago, but it's hard to get too ecstatic over the subject of life when I see how the people around me fare in theirs. Most die of hunger, sickness, or hopelessness. They feed us lies, put fear in our hearts, steal from us, kill our children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. You really have to be completely insane to be 'happy' today. If I did in fact write that I was happy – I don't remember what I write – that only means that I was more insane than usual that day."
Do you still claim that life is only for the brave?
"Life is not for the brave, life is for the insane. For those who buy all the stories sold by the masters. We listen to the drivel about the rule of 'democracy', the 'fair elections', about how Biden is a better option than Trump, as if they were any different. We look forward to the newly-discovered vaccine, which will remove our facemasks and chase death away. On the other hand, we are already getting the message that Japanese bats, even nastier than the Chinese ones, are out to get us. Try making ends meet when your pension is 200 euros, your rent 300 euros, your salary zero euros, and your future a fight for sheer survival, filled with bats zooming past all around you. Luckily, history has shown that humans are immensely stupid – they look for a leader and a whip. As soon as they get them, they put a facemask on, and wait for the vaccine, hungry, ragged, barefoot, and locked up. I'm not sure if I've already written this elsewhere – you might know if I have – facemasks protect not only against the coronavirus; they also provide effective protection from a revolution that we need more than the vaccine. The world – and when I say, 'the world', I mean the workers of the world – should unite. They won't do that. They didn't listen to Marx; they won't listen to me either. We deserve all this."
You once said that you hate power, "regardless of the camp in question". On the other hand, many people have said that you yourself are powerful and hold a lot of clout with the general public, and some are even afraid of you. Is that a paradox? What is power for you really? Who are the powerful?
"I hate power. Power means Gates, Murdoch, the owner of Alibaba, the owner of Amazon, Zuckerberg, Soros, Musk, and a few more lesser-known bastards. They have the world in their grip, and each of them presents his crime as an act of charity. My only power is that I can say without fear that the characters in question are scoundrels. F**k that sort of power. It was the powerful who sold us the idea that power means being able to write whatever comes to mind – take the internet, for example, where a coupla million 'powerful' scribble their bulls**t feeling as happy a pig in clean water (it's a lie that pigs love filthy water). You bust out your keyboard and we bust up your lives. The fools that we are don't need much more. I live at peace with myself, because I know I'm helpless and a coward. If I were smart and brave, I would do the only powerful thing that a helpless person can do – I would put a bullet through my head."
You vocally opposed the Polish law aimed at almost completely outlawing abortion, and gave your support to women. How do you comment on such a law in the 21st century?
Does it indicate that in a sense the world has not made much progress in terms of individual freedoms and the right to choose? "The world cannot make a lot of progress. The world is made up of people who have stayed the same since the time when they lived in caves. They are divided into males, who are physically stronger and financially more powerful, and women. The males, the rulers, are mostly concerned with waging wars and vying for Benjamins. The women are meant to give birth to slaves. The males are the ones setting the rules. The bastards in black Catholic cassocks are especially evil – they are prohibited by God from having sex in any way, shape, or form, and yet they f**k in all conceivable and inconceivable ways. Least of all with women. That's why they dislike women and want to control their bodies. I'm just sick to death of those filthy rich hypocrites, faggots, and paedos. They keep talking about abortion. They are obsessed with the p**y although their faith dictates that they should never see one. If my 'puny little pen' can help women open their eyes, wherever they might be, then I will do it. I like Polish women, and I can relate to their pain. I'm sorry that Croatian women aren’t as brave, and that they tacitly allow our clerics to mess with their lady parts even though they prefer children's bums."
And lastly, what sort of world will we be left with after the coronavirus?
"I have already said this. We will leave behind a world with more and more of the latest bat models."
A difficult situation around the globe
'CORONA HAS FINISHED CULTURE OFF – IT'S ON ITS KNEES.'
The Belgrade theatre Atelje 212 kicked off the new season with a play based on your book Dabogda Te Majka Rodila (May Your Mother Give Birth To You). The play is performed in peculiar circumstances due to the coronavirus. Has the coronavirus pandemic made permanent changes to culture? "As far as I know, the play is not performed. Corona has not permanently changed culture – it has finished it off. Not only – as you would put it – in 'this region'. Culture is on its knees around the world. And it's no accident. Culture is the one thing that differentiates a human being from a slave. Corona is incredible. It has shown the slave owners how truly fragile, obedient, cooperative and accepting of defeat us slaves are."
I know that you are working on a new book. When will it hit the bookstores? "Only corona can answer that question."
Kurir.rs/ Boban Karović