Nov/Dec 2018 Current Moscow Time: 14:33:51
16 November 2018


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Thursday, May 05, 2016

A Very Russki Cinco de Mayo

by Alice E.M. Underwood

Okay, so there is no Russian Cinco de Mayo. That is, there’s a May 5, but without the margaritas and mariachi.

2do2go.ru

In Sync with Cinco

1. Russians may not celebrate Cinco de Mayo or its dorkier space sister May 4th ("May the Fourth be with you"), but they’ve got those beat with May Day. This year’s festivities saw some controversy when a group of LGBT activists was arrested and prevented from marching in the St. Petersburg parade – though Neo-Nazis with a sign declaring “For the Unity of Slavs and the White Race!” marched without interruption.

2. Eternal flames can burn out: flames painted on cardboard last forever. At least, unless they face water damage, graffiti, or, you know, real flames. But that hasn’t stopped Pereslavskoe, a village near Kaliningrad, from keeping up cartoon flames year-round and firing up the actual monument only on national holidays. Maybe the goofy painting will fire up patriotic officials to extend local gas lines all the way to the monument.

Vitaly Nevar / Novy Kaliningrad

3. Any Russian citizen is now eligible to receive a free hectare of land in the Far East region of Khabarovsk. That land can be used for farming, construction, and business – as long as the new residents don’t mind the almost complete lack of infrastructure. At least they’ll get an unobstructed view of forest as far as the eye can see (unobstructed aside from by other trees, at least).

In Odder News

  • The war on street kiosks continues: this time, shawarma and ice cream are in danger due to poor sanitation. But isn’t it worth it for ice cream?
  • Who says cheese and gymnastics are opposites? (As in, only one gets better with age.) A 40-year-old Uzbek gymnast is getting set for her 7th Olympics. Now that’s getting back on the horse.
  • Tajikistan has banned Russified surnames. If you end in an “-ev,” “-ov,” “-ovich,” or “-ovna” – consider chopping it off. 

Quote of the Week
"Yes, they call me Grandma. But in competition we are all equals."

—Oksana Chusovitina, who is breaking records by competing in her 7th Olympic Games this summer. She first competed for the Soviet Union.

Russian Cultural Literacy

russiapedia.rt

In Mexico, May 5th marks an 1863 victory over the French. In Russia, it’s the day Fyodor Dostoyevsky was arrested for counter-revolutionary activities and sentenced to death in 1849. If not for that sentence (cancelled at the last minute) and his four years in Siberia, we may never have seen the author we know and love today.

The Best of 2017
The Best of 2017

For our final TWERF of 2017, we look back and re-share some of our favorite stories from 2017. They may not be the most note-worthy or news-worthy stories, but we felt they were the most fun.

A little vodka, a little puppies, a little Despacito
A little vodka, a little puppies, a little Despacito

Let's go to Nizhny Novgorod to hear a Russian rendition of the song of the year. And then, lets meet some puppies and a vodka thief.

Aliens, help Russia!
Aliens, help Russia!

Darkness descends on Moscow, a cry for help ascends to the sky, and a foreign agent stays exactly where it is. Also huskies and ancient teeth.

Moon Colonies and Molotov Modernism
Moon Colonies and Molotov Modernism

Join Earth's first non-Earthbound nation, get an art lesson with a side of Molotov cocktail, and learn about lusty leopards. 

Fights, Oversight, and Voting Rights
Fights, Oversight, and Voting Rights

Russians practice their rights: heated debate, voting in North Korea, and not getting any more survey calls. 

Groundhog Day, Russia Edition
Groundhog Day, Russia Edition

Punxsutawney Phil ordered six more weeks of winter for the States, but the weather is getting much weirder in Russia: record-breaking snow and locusts, to start with. 

Stories of Sorrow and Uplift
Stories of Sorrow and Uplift

A Russian national tragedy is softened by stories of a skating grandmother and small children in the snow.

A Holiday for Every Occasion
A Holiday for Every Occasion

Traditional celebrations like Maslenitsa are accompanied by new ones, like Chinese New Year. The party never stops!