Chuck Norris vs Communism
That’s not the plot for the movie that you are going to catch on Showtime in the wee hours of a Friday night, though it certainly could be. For our purposes here, it’s the start down a path that shows the interesting part Chuck Norris and the VHS tape played during the communist regime in Romania in the 80s.Irina Margareta Nistor was a translator at the national television station. A meeting with an entrepreneur led to her becoming the under the table voice that brought Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee, and a host of other larger than life stars to the people of Romania. Her story has now been chronicled in a documentary by Ilinca Calugareanu, and it is fascinating. You can watch a short version of the upcoming feature-length documentary at the New York Times.
Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction
It’s an old saying, and one that sticks around because it pans out again and again. Truth, on occasion, really is stranger than fiction. This is one of those occasions. Let’s say you are a big-shot television executive, and I come to you with a pitch about a princess of Romania (the royal family was forced out by the communists in 1947), who now makes her home in rural eastern Oregon, where she has married a former cop. Oh, and in their free time, they run an illegal cock-fighting ring! You would probably tell me to take a hike. That’s just too outlandish to be believable. Why would a Romanian princess end up in eastern Oregon? Is there actually cock-fighting in Oregon? And isn’t getting a former cop involved taking it a little too far? It all just sounds so fake.
As Mr. Corso would say, “Not so fast my friend.” Let me refer you to this story at the BBC. It seems that Princess Irina, of Romania, and her husband, have indeed been charged with multiple counts of operating an illegal gambling business and conspiracy to violate the federal Animal Welfare Act after a big crackdown on cock-fighting. These are strange days at Blake Holsey High.