Bears & Vodka

Blogging about Russia like there is no tomorrow

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Words of the Week — Attention Edition

Last week was all about spotting the tiny details that turned the world around. See if you can spot some too.

The Abay Cow

May 12, Moscow. One of the participants of the peaceful protest movement Occupy Abay took out his cow for a walk.

The Abay Cow

Why? Maybe he wanted to show the cow what all these meetings are about, maybe he wanted to show the occupiers what the cow looks like. Maybe he decided to feed the cow with the the fresh Moscow grass. Or maybe he was on a quest to provoke the police. To everyone’s surprise, the police stood strong.

The police spokesman stated that walking a cow does not infringe any of the civil laws, as the cow is considered a domestic animal. So unless your pet violates sanitary regulations, it can roam free—albeit on a leash.

An unprecedented case of police civility.

Grandma on Demand

Federal channels face great challenges these days. The stubborn opposition has been camping at Chistye Prudy, calling this indefinite protest “people’s stroll”. All these days this perfect news hook has been receiving wide and energetic coverage in social media, while pro-Kremlin state channels remained silent. But finally they found a way to cover the issue without deviating from the editorial policy handed down by the authorities.

Dramatic story in Channel One evening news bulletin showed an elderly lady clearly infuriated by the fact that protesters were barbarously “trampling down grass and tulips” and—oh, gosh—peeing wherever they wanted to. We cannot but mention that Nina Toporova (name of the lady) was delivering this speech against a perfect flowerbed of white tulips.

Nina Toporova, the Grandma on Demand

As later discovered by bloggers, Mrs. Toporova was an active member of United Russia and was earlier spotted in a number of video footages praising the party in power and its key political figures. Moreover, it turned out she lives 2 km away from the site of opposition camp, so granny is highly unlikely to be disturbed by the noisy protesters.

The conspiracy was uncovered partly by Ksenia Sobchak, Russia’s glamour icon, TV host and a newly-hatched oppositionhead. Sobchak tweeted about the grandma-on-demand incident, and, allegedly, even phoned the old lady personally, requesting the latter to take a stroll while self-copulating.

Hashtag #бабкаповызову (Russian for #grannyondemand) quickly peaked in the Russian Twitter, causing public resentment and fury. Granny herself denies any political overtones in her speech, now complaining that hooligans gather near her house and show that TV footage with maximum volume level over and over again.

On Protesters’ Livers

Dmitriy Peskov is sure that the protesters deserve the most brutal of treatments

Dmitry Peskov is sure that the protesters deserve the most brutal of treatments

May 6. March of the Millions. Many arrested, some wounded, everybody pissed off. The same day Dmitry Peskov, President Putin’s spokesman, was interviewed on Dozhd’ channel and said that police should have been much more violent with the protesters. As if those words weren’t enough, the next day at the Duma session he shared more with Ilya Ponomarev, an opposition deputy. Had he been the member of the British parliament, he would have said something like “The protesters deserve to have their heads smashed and their blood smeared across the pavement, for what they did to that police officer.” But since he was in Russia, the original quote featured smearing the protesters’ liver across the pavement—a phrase as strong as the one with the smashed heads.

Russian bloggers were quick on spreading the word too. Such obnoxiousness coming from the representative of Russia’s highest authority hints that the officials consider all the protesters nothing more than scum. However, no surprises there: that emotion has been clear from the very start of Russian protest movement in early December.

Attention to Decoration

This year’s Victory Day on the 9th of May was traditionally marked with military Parade, this time featuring… fake veterans. Russia’s top blogger Rustem Adagamov was outraged at this fact and published a sensational post in his blog.

A Fake WWII Veteran during the Victory Day Parade

Photo by Konstantin Zavrazhin, Rossiiskaya Gazeta

He spotted this Lady General, wearing fake military decorations. We can see the Order of the Hero of the Soviet Union along with the one of the Hero of Socialist Labor on her jacket. A brief research reveals that in the history of USSR there was only one woman who possessed these two awards at the same time—the famous pilot Valentina Grizodubova.

The woman in the picture is also wearing three orders of Great Patriotic War. But again, historically only one Soviet woman, distinguished bomber pilot Nadezhda Popova, received them.

A curious fact—in 2010 the same lady as seen in a colonel uniform, and this year she has been promoted to general. But even being in this high position, she doesn’t know that saluting with uncovered head is wrong.

The 9th of May is one of the major holidays for the Russians. This day they honor the veterans who contributed to the victory of 1945. The incident that took place this year is outrageous, given that a number of true participants of the war didn’t manage to get to the Red Square because of the closed metro exits that morning.

Originally published at Bears & Vodka. You can comment here or there.


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