The world’s biggest country, in a magazine. Since 1956.
Thursday, May 26, 2016
In the Mews
1. A missing cat usually means fliers on telephone polls and a modest reward. But when Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov’s prize pet went missing, the powers of Instagram were unleashed after comedian John Oliver encouraged the world to help #FindKadyrovsCat. Kadyrov isn’t pussyfooting around, and responded to Oliver’s disdain of pets and Putin alike. This is one catfight where the claws come out (even if they’re social media claws).
2. The rock group Leningrad's latest song is earning them mixed reviews – with legal repercussions. “In Petersburg, Drink” (which is punnier in Russian: “V Pitere – Pit’”) has the St. Petersburg prosecutor’s office suspecting the song ofpromoting drunkenness. But the Head of the Committee for Tourism thought it wasn’t so bad. One official’s profanity and alcoholism is another official’s influx of tourist money.
3. International diplomacy summits: political posturing, conflicting agendas, and... busting a move? Last weekend’s ASEAN Summit in Sochi covered ongoing partnerships between Southeast Asian leaders as well as expanding economic cooperation with Russia. But that all faded into the background when Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova performed the Kalinka, a traditional Russian folk dance. Tip to diplomats: Why cut a deal when you can cut a rug?
RosKultLit (Russian Cultural Literacy)
The music for the Kalinka was written by composer and folklorist Ivan Larionov in 1860. The hopping, squatting, and high-kicking were already part and parcel of Russian dance, and the two together – well, take a look for yourself.
In Odder News
Quote of the Week
"For the good of the Chechen people and stability in the whole region, we have to find this ******'s cat."
—Comedian John Oliver in a segment on Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov’s missing cat.
Cover image: Huffington Post
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.
Trouble in the tombstone industry, booming blockchain, and mercenary music hits. Plus, cats at work and a use of paper you've never seen.
Halloween or Hallowon't? The holiday is more trick than treat in Russia, so dive into the details and creep yourself out with some frightful tales while you're at it.
This year marks the centennial of the Bolshevik Revolution. Here's what that looks like, plus gas, cats, and seals (state seals, that is).
Ice Age lions thaw out, fairytale heroes meet social media, and foreign news needs a new passport. Plus, all about Russian art in less than 30 minutes.
Father Frost gets iced, a space shuttle gets wet, and cars get driven driverlessly. Plus, famous Russian buildings go on vacation, the Romanovs take TV, and Russian smilies)
Putin announces he'll run for president, the Olympic Committee announces Russia can't compete, and some swans announce that they want a new house.
An art exhibit proves once and for all that Putin is a superhero. Plus, World Cup counterfeits, how Russian media monitoring works, and a leopard cub.
What a Russian holiday looks like, the Romanovs go to The Gambia, and why secret police are extra special around the holidays. All that, and Russia's most popular cats.