Nov/Dec 2018 Current Moscow Time: 06:37:32
13 November 2018


  The world’s biggest country, in a magazine. Since 1956.


Thursday, September 06, 2018

A Walk on the Wild Side (of Russia)

by Irina Bukharin
Of bugs, lip synching police and a very cute kitten

1. As it turns out, Siberian transport police have got some fire moves to encourage you to get moving, too. They released a hot new track called “Three Lines of Fate” (how could it not be good?), a song that lauds the work of these policemen and encourages people to travel. In it, transport police of all types lip sync and dance to the music, albeit in a rather limited way. Still, even if Billboard doesn’t place this jam on its Top 100 list, “Three Lines of Fate” has won a place in our hearts.

 

2. When you’ve had one of those days (you know which ones we’re talking about), only a poop emoji will do. Well, maybe that’s only true if you’re a millennial. Anyway, Yandex Maps is conspiring to take this privilege away from users! Yandex Maps has a new feature in which users can label map locations using three emojis (and you can take this quiz to guess cities based on their emojis!). Given this power, internet trolls have quickly covered the map with poop emojis and other coded emojis that Yandex Maps finds offensive. What Yandex Maps giveth, Yandex Maps taketh away, and so the company is limiting which emojis one can use on its maps.

3. In a certain Russian city, people are slipping, cars are skidding out, and it’s getting hard to breathe. No, this isn’t due to a very early snow storm, or to a late one, or to toxic waste in the streets. In fact, the plague that’s been bugging Taganrog is exactly that: a plague of bugs. To be more specific, Chironomidae, a mosquito-like bug that, very thankfully, does not bite. These creatures are absolutely covering the city’s every available surface. The streets are slick with them, the air is heavy with them, and the people are covered in them. This mysterious swarm may be due to the unusually warm and sticky summer the area was subject to. Regardless, we think we’ll let Taganrog sort out this fly in their ointment before we schedule our next visit.

In Odder News:

Dasha the Cat

Photo: Vadim Kirilyuk

  • Cute as a wild kitten: scientists rescued a wild kitten and prepare her for life outside
  • A true fail: everyone has a life when a school’s ceremonial balloon, shaped like a 5, turns over into a two (in American parlance, hopes for an A get turned into an F)

  • Leaf through the amazing photos from a reenactment of the Battle of Borodino, the biggest military reenactment in Europe

Quote of the Week:

“In the middle of June she went outside for the first time, and immediately ran back inside, to her humans, because she got too scared.”

— Vadim Kirilyuk, one of the Dasha’s caretakers, offering up a very sweet and sad moment of the wild kitten’s life.

Want more where this comes from? Give your inbox the gift of TWERF, our Thursday newsletter on the quirkiest, obscurest, and Russianest of Russian happenings of the week.

Burger Bucks, Dyeing of Shame, and Flying Ballerinas
Burger Bucks, Dyeing of Shame, and Flying Ballerinas

Burger King makes money (its own), broke taxi passengers turn green, and summertime snow. Plus, a ballerina with a backup plan, Borodino, and the Museum of Death. 

Fake Countries, Sausages, and Mystery Highways
Fake Countries, Sausages, and Mystery Highways

How to be patriotic to a nonexistent country, get a proper education, and deal with a highway through your house. Plus buildings, bridges, and bratwursts to die for. 

Evil Clowns, Ballerinas, and Other Movie Monsters
Evil Clowns, Ballerinas, and Other Movie Monsters

Clown horror is horrid for clowns, a ballet scandal on the silver screen, and a pack of protesting porkers. 

Guns, Gents, and Stalin
Guns, Gents, and Stalin

Heroes who caused deaths, heroes who saved lives, questionable movie heroes, and the heroes who make art and cheese. Which is your favorite?

The Biggest Cheesecake, The Artsiest Robot, and The Spaciest Station
The Biggest Cheesecake, The Artsiest Robot, and The Spaciest Station

A record-breaking cake, a robot breaking (conceptions of) art, and a space station breaking international boundaries. Plus, flying cars and how to live on Mars.

Spying for Russia and Flying for Russia
Spying for Russia and Flying for Russia

The glorious deeds of a famous spy, the smaller deeds of everyday spies, and a whole new horizon for female fighter pilots.

Putin in Birthdayland and Alice in Wonderland
Putin in Birthdayland and Alice in Wonderland

For Putin's birthday, a fake burger, a real burger, and a puppy. Plus, St. Petersburg rooftops, frogmen, and how to bathe in crude oil.  

Bread and Circuses. And Tetris.
Bread and Circuses. And Tetris.

Arcade cars, patriotic circuses, and administrative festivities. Also, some crazy murals, Moscow's transformation, and the secrets of Peter the Great.