The world’s biggest country, in a magazine. Since 1956.
Thursday, July 05, 2018
1. All hail Saint Akinfeyev and his holy foot! On Sunday, Russia narrowly beat out the football heavyweight Spain during a penalty shootout, launching them to the World Cup’s Round of Eight. Who do Russians have to thank for this surprising victory? Goalie and captain Igor Akinfeyev, who blocked a Spanish shot with the tip of his cleated foot. As Russians partied like they’d never partied before (and that’s saying something), Akinfeyev took on a special status in Russian society. Amid the celebration there were many who came to terms with the last-ditch promises they had made on the condition of Russia beating Spain, and Twitter is littered with evidence of them running through the streets nude, getting tattoos, and even searching for spouses. Thankfully this is all a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence, unless, of course, Russia beats Croatia on Saturday.
2. Even if cleanliness is next to Godliness, it’s not clear that the deal offered in Volgograd’s train station is worth it. A sign in the station’s restroom reads in English, “The cost of the service is the soul, price 200 rubles.” Above it, the sign more comfortingly reads in Russian, “The price of a shower, 200 rubles.” This difference appears to have originated in the similarity between the words shower (душ ~ dush) and soul (душа ~ dusha) in Russian, compounded by the ever-tricky genitive case. But to be safe, English-speakers in Volgograd should keep their eyes out for either a horned beast in a cloak or a humorous Russian spirit by the name of Gogol.
3. It’s a new type of heavy metal. Alexandra Ivleva is an artist, but not the kind you just thought of. Ivleva, nicknamed the “Weld Queen,” makes beautiful metal structures through the art of welding. Attired in overalls and a welding helmet, the young artist makes beautiful and fanciful structures: a meditating bear, rocking chairs that look like people, and giant angels. With all this striking while the iron is hot, we wonder why she isn’t called the Iron Lady… oh yes, that one’s already been taken.
Hoppy Birth Day: a rare albino kangaroo is born in Kaluga
The Russian government isn’t making a whole new internet, but know it could, if it wanted to
“I'm looking for a wife... I promised Mom that I'd get married, if Team Russia won the game…”
—Maxim Omarov will have Team Russia to thank for his new relationship status
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.
Some people see spies everywhere. Other people just see dumpsters, birds, snow, dogs, boars, or artists seeking political asylum. (That's at least 4 separate stories).
Adapting to life in Russia? Comic books. Craving cuteness? Piglets getting saved from a fire. Not Russian enough for you? Ice swimming. And for good measure, zombies.
A polar bear travels the world, a historian serves up the Rhyme of Troubles, the Kremlin gets a new alien, and Presidents Putin and Trump get along by the skin of their teeth.
A Buddhist monastery in the mountains fights one millionaire, and Kiribati's islands welcome another one. There's also exorcism, the Facebook of 1917, and general happiness.
Convicts carve up the Kremlin, an assassin wins a prize, and governors drop like flies. Actually, that all sounds a lot worse than what happened. Find out for yourself.
Exactly 100 years ago, on February 23, 1917, the Russian Revolution began. And once you've learned about that, there's space, WWII reenactments, and a portal back to medieval times.
A friendly robot graces the metro and a politically charged (and financed) dance studio gets footloose thanks to the youngest Putin. Also, happy World Cat Day!
International Women's Day was celebrated by marches, flowers, and flash mobs. In other news, Russia and China are BFFs, and Prime Minister Medvedev likes ducks.