November 15, 2018

Whoosh, Bark, and Boo


Whoosh, Bark, and Boo
Easy, Breezy, Beautiful Clean Energy

1. Russia is blowing with the wind, at least when it comes to renewable energy. The Russian electric company RusHydro has opened up a wind farm above the Arctic circle to help one town move away from expensive generators and fuel deliveries. Tiksi, a town of 5,000, will use three particularly hardy wind turbines to offsetits use of diesel by 500 metric tons a year. This project was done with the help of Japanese researchers, in an effort to better supply remote municipalities with a stable source of energy.

2. There’s life in the old dog yet… one dog was recently memorialized for being the true best friend that every person wants, but doesn’t quite deserve. Belyash, a dog in Chelyabinsk, waited for his owner for two years at the last place he saw him, not knowing that his owner had died in a car accident. A few years after the death of Belyash, Chelyabinsk has given him new life through a statue, which portrays the dog in motion, looking for his master. (It’s okay, we’re all crying).

Waiting dog

Photo: tim_miloslavskii

3. What’s scarier than Halloween? Only someone trying to ban Halloween, which is a common pastime in Russia. This year was no different. For example, State Duma deputy Vitaly Milonov said the holiday should be banned, because it is based on Satan and the worship of dark forces. A couple of Hallow-haters claimed that Halloween either encouraged mass shootings or was disrespectful to victims of violence, and to top it off one archpriest said Halloween was for the brainless (to be fair, that is an apt description of zombies). Although most Russians don’t celebrate Halloween to begin with, we personally hope this didn’t dissuade the few that do!

In Odder News:

President Pumpkin

Photo: president_rf

  • This Putin-o’-lantern is something that happened, please take note.

  • Should you be able to eat caviar in prison? A probe into a convicted gang member’s luxe life behind bars aims to find out.

  • Sweet caper: one man stole 18 tons of chocolate to pay off his debts.

Quote of the Week:

“A celebration of unscrupulous and brainless people”

— Archpriest Andrei Tkachev, condemning Halloween and its adherents

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Some of Our Books

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The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas

This exciting new trilogy by a Russian author – who has been compared to Orhan Pamuk and Umberto Eco – vividly recreates a lost world, yet its passions and characters are entirely relevant to the present day. Full of mystery, memorable characters, and non-stop adventure, The Pet Hawk of the House of Abbas is a must read for lovers of historical fiction and international thrillers.  
The Little Humpbacked Horse

The Little Humpbacked Horse

A beloved Russian classic about a resourceful Russian peasant, Vanya, and his miracle-working horse, who together undergo various trials, exploits and adventures at the whim of a laughable tsar, told in rich, narrative poetry.
Stargorod: A Novel in Many Voices

Stargorod: A Novel in Many Voices

Stargorod is a mid-sized provincial city that exists only in Russian metaphorical space. It has its roots in Gogol, and Ilf and Petrov, and is a place far from Moscow, but close to Russian hearts. It is a place of mystery and normality, of provincial innocence and Black Earth wisdom. Strange, inexplicable things happen in Stargorod. So do good things. And bad things. A lot like life everywhere, one might say. Only with a heavy dose of vodka, longing and mystery.
At the Circus

At the Circus

This wonderful novella by Alexander Kuprin tells the story of the wrestler Arbuzov and his battle against a renowned American wrestler. Rich in detail and characterization, At the Circus brims with excitement and life. You can smell the sawdust in the big top, see the vivid and colorful characters, sense the tension build as Arbuzov readies to face off against the American.
The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar

The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar

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This acclaimed biography of one of Russia’s most important and tyrannical rulers is not only a rich, readable biography, it is also surprisingly timely, revealing how many of the issues Russia faces today have their roots in Ivan’s reign.
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This gripping autobiography plays out against the backdrop of Russia's bloody Civil War, and was one of the first Western eyewitness accounts of life in post-revolutionary Russia. Marooned in Moscow provides a fascinating account of one woman's entry into war-torn Russia in early 1920, first-person impressions of many in the top Soviet leadership, and accounts of the author's increasingly dangerous work as a journalist and spy, to say nothing of her work on behalf of prisoners, her two arrests, and her eventual ten-month-long imprisonment, including in the infamous Lubyanka prison. It is a veritable encyclopedia of life in Russia in the early 1920s.
Jews in Service to the Tsar

Jews in Service to the Tsar

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22 Russian Crosswords

22 Russian Crosswords

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