Monday, September 14, 2009

Better than space monkeys, anyway

This might not be something I want to admit, especially remembering the Faustian contract…but I have to share, anyway. An old friend of mine, from the first time I went to St. Petersburg, teaches at the state university.

Incidentally, one time he told me a humorous story: this was in the late-90s/early this century. He got a job as a bartender in a bar near to Gostiny Dvor. First day on the job, the New Russian (think Great Gatsby, minus the green light) owner came in, asked, “Who’s that guy?” and walked back out. My friend also walked out that night, never to return to the bar.

I thought it was funny when he told it, anyway. So, to my Starik, who now teaches English language pedagogy (that is, he instructs future teachers of English how to do their job), I got an etymological dictionary of all words and phrases related to the f-bomb, appropriately called The F Word.

Maybe not the cross-cultural connections I should be building, but all’s I’m saying is that hanging out for Starik and me usually consisted of a jaunt around some part of downtown St. Petersburg – which means that we have seen stranger things and heard much worse language. All I’m saying.

I’ve been reading the book every so often, for shiz and giggles. I particularly love this entry, either for the image, or maybe the alliteration, or just because it is something that is going to enter my own vernacular. Earliest known reference: P. Tauber’s 1968 Sunshine Soldiers, pg. 117.
“You look like a monkey f***ing a football.”

Ty pokhozh na obez'ianu, unichtozhaushchuju miach.

I don't think I need to translate that, do I?
Also, 'unichtozhaushchuju'!? Gerunds are fun in Russian!

1 comment:

Monica said...

haha!! I like that entry too! I'll have to say that to Paul in the near future and see what he says! thanx!!