Russians Are So Weird

Russians keep messing with my head. For the second time this week, I turned on Russian TV and what do you think I saw?

Yes, fucking St. Louis. Again! It’s like they are obsessed with us or something. Here is the snapshot of our famous STL Arch on Russian TV 2 minutes ago:


The reason why I turned it on was to see what’s going on with the fire in downtown Moscow. But apparently downtown St. Louis is of greater interest to the Russian viewers.

I wonder, are Michael Brown protests the only thing they’ve been showing since the last time I tried watching Russian news?

The Wire

N and I are still on season 1 of The Wire (yes, we tend to come very late to the TV-watching party), and here are my impressions so far.

The show is very professionally made and extraordinarily entertaining. Of course, there are also many problematic aspects in it, which is not surprising since it’s a popular TV show.

The noble white Knight in a crowd of black people who are, without an exception, inferior to him morally, intellectually and in every other way; the insistent “lazy blacks” motifs; the sexism that is just overwhelming – it’s all there. My understanding is that the creator of the series started working on the idea for the show back in the early 1990s, which explains much of this. It’s probable that these trends will not hold until the end of the series, but season 1 is like this.

But the show is amazing. The comedic aspect is great. The scene where the people in the towers throw TV sets at police officers would make any post-Soviet person collapse with laughter. There are also less successful scenes. The most contrived and jarring was the scene where the characters say nothing but “fuck” for 15 minutes. Even the actors looked embarrassed for participating in something so obviously HBO-pleasing and childish.

Putin Tells the Truth About the Crimea

Today, a documentary was aired in Russia in which Putin calmly recognizes that he did annex the Crimea, that the “referendum” was a sham, and that he was ready to deploy nuclear weapons if anybody had tried to stop the annexation.

I remember how much time and energy I wasted on convincing people here on the blog and elsewhere of exactly this and feel very annoyed. It would be great if the next time I say something about Ukraine and Russia people whose knowledge about the region is limited to something they vaguely heard on the radio manage not to inflict their useless “opinions” on me.

Nothing is more frustrating than having to deal with folks who believe they need to have opinions about evrtything and refuse to get even minimally educated before opining.

A right to an opinion has to be deserved by a massive investment of time and effort into learning and getting informed.