Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Bratislava Curse

Known to the scientists studying this phenomenon as the Bratislava syndrome or the Bratislava effect, The Curse is a radiating, Bermuda Triangle like occurrence in Central Europe that follows Murphy's Law and where anything that can go wrong, will most certainly, go completely wrong.

The epicenter of this Phenomenon seems to be the city of Bratislava, on the Danube River, most famously known as the capital of Slovakia. Its proximity to Vienna gave it the nicknames Little Big city or Twin City. So far it is believed that the influence of the curse spreads as far as Vienna, thus inflicting its influence on a radius of 1hour's drive from the epicenter.


The curse manifests itself on travelers to Bratislava. No direct occurrences on locals have been noted so far, although there is a supposed influence. To this day, all locals questioned about the city have expressed a negative opinion about living there. However, no proof has been brought as to definitely link this to the Curse. The locals are very helpful and nice.

More precisely, the curse acts on travelers, attracting them to the city, causing them misery, trying to make them turn on each other (so far it hasn’t worked). The curse induces a state of frustration and fatigue by making the travelers lose their way around town, making them turn around many times to search for an address, etc, leading to a terrible time for the unwary traveler.

Despite help from the natives, travelers often loose their way and have trouble finding their friend’s flat. The curse sometimes attracts unknowing travelers to the labyrinth of the panelaks, the old communist apartment building complexes, making them turn in circle for hours.

Other manifestations are related to the city’s transport system, outgoing and ingoing trains and buses are affected, as well as tramways and buses inside the city (there is no metro, or none has been spotted by our researchers, despite their best efforts). Thus, trains and buses are often late. Should the train or bus be on time, Murphy’s Law is applied once more and the traveler will, most certainly either: be late himself or he will be mislead (the curse acting again) and will try to embark on the wrong train or bus.

Zone of influence

So far, the curse seems to be stronger in the area that spreads from the main railway station to the main bus station. Looking at a map, one will see that these are in opposite parts of town, meaning that the curse cover the whole of Bratislava.

Some accounts state that a focal point is this communist fresco in the departure hall of the railway station.

Scientists studying this phenomenon have been lead to believe that the curse, probably due to some strange paranormal activity in the area, might be stretching as far as Vienna, possibly even influencing flights and buses in the region. What is known for sure is that the curse tries to keep travelers in Bratislava for as long as possible, or as long as it takes for them to miss connecting buses and trains.

Examples and occurrences

The first time a strange event was spotted by our researchers (without it being called a Curse), was in November 2008, when, during a road trip in the area, two of our fellow scientists, I.D and V.A, passed through Bratislava on the way to Zvolen. While trying to find the bus station, the two saw almost all that was to see of the town, under steady rain. The pair got on the last bus, taking the last seats, and thinking nothing more about it. Two days later, while going from Zvolen to Brno, the two ha to change trains in Bratislava, at around 22.00. Because of misleading information, the two board a train to Minsk, only to realize this a few minutes before departure. Thankfully for them, they managed to break free of the curse and arrive at their destination.

One of the most famous occurrences happened in June 2009 when our leading researchers, I.D and Jiminy Cricket, a.k.a. A.R decided to take a trip to Bratislava, to visit some friends. They became aware of the Curse by mere accident, as the plan they had was simply to take one of the buses or trains from Prague to Bratislava and have a weekend with friends. The Curse started to act before they even left Prague, as I.D was stuck at work, making them loose all connections and forcing her already tired and preoccupied with work, boyfriend to come pick her up.

After a long trip, under the rain, the pair arrived late at night in Bratislava and tried, against all hope to find their friend’s flat. By the time they are rescued by the friend’s girlfriend, the couple had already been in the Panelak for an hour, searching for the street name on the buildings. During the whole weekend, they were too tired and some friends were too sick to go out and have fun.

When they decided to leave Bratislava, on Sunday, the Curse decided they had to stay and they found the car locked by the police for wrong parking. One hour later, after paying the fine an releasing the car, they finally leave, only to arrive to late for the last bus to I.D.’s home. Deciding to go to A.R’s house, the two loose one more hour in a traffic jam, thus ending a weekend haunted by the Curse.

Finally, the last event related to the Curse happed in August 2009, when the same couple was returning from a long weekend in Romania, via Vienna. The effects of the Curse on transportation were very obvious, as the two had a one hour delay coming from Bucharest and so missed the bus to Prague.

The Curse was now obvious, as they were forced to board a bus to Bratislava, from where there are more connections to Prague.

Once trapped by the Curse and brought to Bratislava, they had to face the city transport system in order to get to the railway station and lost precious time because of it. Murphy’s Law came into effect once more, and the worst happed: the train had a one hour delay. Once in Prague, the Curse seemed to follow them once more, as I.D. missed her connection and was forced to wait for hours for the next one.

Two before and after pictures of Jiminy Cricket, of JCOBW – Jiminy Cricket Observatory for a Better World(c), waiting for the train in Bratislava. (1) Hopeful that the train will be on time, and (2), after he learns that the train will be delayed, demonstrating the power of the Curse.


  1. brilliant post!!scary experience tho'...

  2. :)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))) =))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
    asta e tot ce pot spune :))))))))))))))))

  3. It is not funny. The world has been warned...

  4. And there are other facts I could tell you about Bratislava… Never go there, people, never ever!!!


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