July 01, 2005

Ski Story

A few years ago, I went to buy a new pair of cross-country skis at a little shop in East Montpelier (pop. 2,600). I picked out a few pairs that looked about my size, and asked the salesman to tell me their differences. When I learned that one pair (brand name “Maverick”) was made in Russia, I said that was all I needed to hear, and snapped them up.

On that day, the idea for this issue’s cover story was born.

Since then, we have been gathering information and stories about unusual Russian imports into the U.S., using a very loose definition of the word “import.” After all, it would be hard to fit heirloom seeds or kefir cultures within anyone’s standard definition of an import. In fact, we had even thought of stretching the definition to include Google, since one of its two founders – Sergei Brin – is a first-generation Russian émigré.

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Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

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