András Arató

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András Arató
András István Arató

(1945-07-11) July 11, 1945 (age 75)
Other namesHide the Pain Harold
Alma materBudapest University of Technology and Economics
OccupationElectrical engineer
Stock model
Stock photographer
Spouse(s)Gabriella Andrásné Arató
AwardsJános Urbanek Prize
Déri Miksa Award

András István Arató[1] (born 11 July 1945) is a retired Hungarian electrical engineer[2] and model. Best known for becoming an internet meme, András has been in and out of the stock photo and advertisement industry as a model since disclosing his identity. Arató's modeling for stock photography garnered attention as soon as 2011, coming to be known in meme culture as "Hide the Pain Harold" due to his overall facial expression and seemingly fake smile.[3][4][5]

He took up traveling to foreign countries such as Turkey and Russia for recreational purposes and kept a blog about his life and travels. The photos associated with such travels are said to be the cause of Arató's fame. While vacationing in Turkey, András Arató decided to upload personal vacation photos onto social media site iWiW, which were noticed by a photographer.[6][7]

Personal life[edit source | edit]

Born in 1945 and hailing from Kőszeg, Hungary, András Arató was raised in the era of the Iron Curtain.[2] He has stated that a major part of his childhood was a gargantuan chestnut tree growing in his hometown.[8] He would reminisce about it as if it were a tree of wisdom in his town as many do of landmarks in their own lives. Not much else is currently known about Arató's teenage and pre-university years. In 1969, Arató graduated from the Budapest University of Technology and Economics under the Faculty of Electrical Engineering.[9] After retirement, András Arató worked as a DJ for a local radio station for 5 years.[10] In 2019, he became the advertising face for Coca-Cola in Hungary.[5] In 2020, he starred in the Hungarian edition of Masked Singer (known in Hungary as Álarcos énekes), broadcast on the TV station RTL Klub.[11] Arató currently lives in Budapest with his wife Gabriella and his son.

Hide the Pain Harold[edit source | edit]

While Arató was on holiday, he was taking photos of his trip, uploading them to social media.[12] Not only his friends saw his photos, but also a professional photographer, who contacted him saying that he was seeking a model and offered him an invitation to a shooting. Arató accepted the offer and the photographer took some photos, which both he and Arató liked. He was invited for more shootings and over a hundred stock photos were made. He agreed for the photos to be used for this purpose, with the exception of photos of topics about politics, religion, and sex, as he felt those topics are sensitive to many people. Arató then looked himself up on Google Images and saw photos of himself as a doctor, coming from a hospital's home page. A few months after, he looked himself up again and discovered more photos, including one of his face pasted on all four faces of Mount Rushmore. These were the early stages of an internet meme. At first, Arató wasn't happy about people adding funny text to his photos, stating he wasn't really a "funny guy". Arató realised he did similar things while he was in school, like drawing on pictures in his course books of the Hungarian poet John Arany, making him look like a pirate. He stated that closing down a webpage would not really work, as the meme content could soon respawn, so after six years, he accepted his meme status. He hoped that everyone would forget about using his photos, but that didn't happen. Firstly, internet users from the United States started posting photos of Arató, then the practice spread to Europe, and later on, the rest of the world. He still thought that everyone would forget about the photos, but an internet user found out his true identity and emailed him, stating that there were many users who believed that he was not a real living person. At first, Arató ignored this user's request, but after getting more emails with the same request, he then agreed to upload a picture of himself. He uploaded a photo of himself holding a sign saying "Я ЖИВ" ("YA ZHIV", Russian for "I AM ALIVE") on his Russian fanpage. After a few hours, the photo has been seen by over ten thousand users as well as the international media. The photographer who took the stock photos asked him to smile. Many users saw his smile as fake, masking sorrow, hence the name "Hide the Pain Harold". In the photos, he stated he got tired of smiling too much.[1][4][13][14][15]

Works[edit source | edit]

  • On 13 May 1999, he published his report on Lighting Technology.[16]
  • Lighting lexicon / [ed. András Arató et al.] ; [intermediate a] Lighting Company. Budapest, 2001. 136 p.
  • For operators of interior lighting : : addition to the publication "Lighting Technology" / [... it's all set up. John the Great] ; [... interede. András Arató et al.] ; [ed. EGI Energy Management Limited Company]. Budapest : EGI, 2001. 46 p. or 46 p.
  • He co-authored the Street Lighting Manual. Spend. MEE Lighting Society, Foundation for Hungarian Lighting Technology, 2009. 310 p. or partly colored.Template:Note label

Awards[edit source | edit]

  • In 2002, András Arató won the János Urbanek Prize.[17] The Hungarian Electrotechnical Association (MEE, short for the Hungarian Magyar Elektrotechnikai Egyesület) awards the János Urbanek Prize yearly, which is given to a member who, within the framework of the Association life, has an outstanding theoretical or practical activity in the field of lighting technology.[18]
  • In 2010, he won the Déri Miksa Award from the MEE.[19]

See also[edit source | edit]

References[edit source | edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Hungarian TV Interview with Harold". Youtube. 1 March 2016.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Megosztom, 2018 10 18 19:00. "Kőszegen született, mémes világsztár lett belőle – Hide the Pain Harold". VAOL (in Hungarian). Retrieved 4 March 2020.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  3. "What it's like to become a stock photo meme". The Independent. 1 July 2017. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Arató, András. "Transcript of "Waking up as a meme hero | Andras Arato | TEDxKyiv"". Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  5. 5.0 5.1 onBRANDS (6 September 2019). "A COCA-COLA HAZAI REKLÁMARCA LETT HIDE THE PAIN HAROLD". ONBRANDS – ÉRTÉK ALAPON (in Hungarian). Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  6. Arató, András. "Transcript of "Waking up as a meme hero | Andras Arato | TEDxKyiv"". Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  7. László, Szily (1 March 2016). "Hogyan lett egy budapesti nyugdíjasból Hide The Pain Harold, a netes világsztár". 444. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  8. Arandria (3 October 2012). "Mindennapi csalamádé: A kőszegi óriás gesztenyefa". Mindennapi csalamádé. Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  9. Dániel, Bóna Samu, Szilli Tamás, Lengyel-Szabó Péter, Simor (1 September 2019). "András, aki 72 évesen lett világsztár: Haroldként". (in Hungarian). Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  10. "András Arato". TEDxKyiv2018. Retrieved 5 March 2020.
  11. Zrt, HVG Kiadó (8 March 2020). "Arató András, azaz Hide The Pain Harold volt az RTL Klub Szörnyecskéje". (in Hungarian). Retrieved 29 May 2020.
  12. "Man Behind Hide Your Pain Harold Reveals He Was Devastated By The Memes". LADBible. 11 March 2018.
  13. Media, Deen (2 May 2018). "Behind the meme: Hide the pain Harold". Youtube.
  14. ""Waking up as a meme-hero" TEDx Kyiv, TEDx Talk from Andras Arato". YouTube.
  15. "Hide the pain Harold, the Hungarian internet sensation". Daily News Hungary. 2 January 2018. Retrieved 30 May 2020.
  16. "Világítástechnika". Retrieved 26 May 2020.
  17. "Arató András | PIM Névtér". PIM Névtér (in Hungarian). Retrieved 26 May 2020.
  18. "A MEE díjai". Retrieved 26 May 2020.
  19. "Magyar Elektrotechnikai Egyesület" (PDF).

External links[edit source | edit]

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