Voices from Russia

Friday, 14 December 2012

Elephants Stranded in Siberia Saved by Vodka

00 cartoon elephant. 14.12.12

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What do you do if you’re stuck with two elephants on a Siberian highway, your elephant-transporting truck is burning, and the pachyderms are freezing in -40 degrees weather {-40 degrees Fahrenheit… the only place where the Celsius and Fahrenheit scales coincide: editor}? The correct answer is that you make them jog and give them vodka. A local official said that the problems started when the two Indian elephants, owed by a travelling Polish circus, were enroute from Novokuznetsk to Omsk in Novosibirsk Oblast late Thursday. The hay in the truck caught fire from the diesel generator heating the cargo section, where the elephants were. The truck had to be stopped and the elephants promptly released. They escaped the fire unharmed, but were left stranded on a Siberian highway in winter.

The handler made the animals jog so that they didn’t freeze. Meanwhile, the local authorities were alerted, and the animals moved into a heated garage nearby. As an added precaution, the elephants were served two cases of vodka mixed with warm water. The official told RIA-Novosti, “They roared like it was the jungle… they must’ve been happy”. A spokeswoman for the Omsk city circus said that the animals only suffered minor frostbite to their legs and tips of their ears, nothing that’d disrupt their performance schedule. Their handler was admitted to hospital, also with frostbite.

14 December 2012

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/russia/20121214/178159421.html

 

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14 December 2012. Sergei Yolkin’s World. The Elephants Didn’t Do it for Fun; They Did it to Prevent Freezing to Death

00 Sergei Yolkin. The Elephants Didn’t Do it for Fun; They Did it to Prevent Freezing to Death. 2012

The Elephants Didn’t Do it for Fun; They Did it to Prevent Freezing to Death

Sergei Yolkin

2012

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For them not in the know, -40 is the only time where the Celsius and Fahrenheit scales intersect.

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Two elephants were dumped into the 40-degree frost (-40 degrees Fahrenheit) after the truck carrying them caught fire. To warm the animals, their trainer plied them with two cases of vodka mixed with warm water.

14 December 2012

Sergei Yolkin

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/caricature/20121214/914804345.html

Editor’s Note:

RIA-Novosti gets a Big Green Weenie Award on this one. In the Russian version (which I used), Yolkin portrayed the elephants with “red” trunks… the English version lacked this vital visual clue to drunkenness. Yolkin was making a visual “play” here and the ham-fisted English editor removed it, destroying the fun of the cartoon. The red trunks were a cue that these elephants were nothing but two drunks full of the usual “vodka wisdom”…  and the editor removed them! They must be related to somebody with blat… that’d explain why RIA would keep on such a klutz.

BMD 

Bears at the Moscow Zoo have Gone into Hibernation

00 Bear in Winter. 14.12.12

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On Thursday, Yelena Mendoza, head of the Department of Public Relations of the Moscow Zoo told RIA-Novosti that topsy-turvy Moscow weather didn’t discomfit the brown and Himalayan black bears, noting that they went into hibernation on schedule in late November, saying, “In the wild, bears usually hibernate by late November, we try to get them to bed at the same time. They’re hibernating now”. She explained that the keepers reduce the amount of feed to the bears, putting them on a “light” regimen, then, they stop the food and only put water into their enclosures. Thus, the animals realise that it’s time to hibernate. The zoo has two brown bears and three Asiatic black bears, which hibernate with the arrival of cold weather. They usually wake up at the end of March, when the snow begins to melt. In addition, a sloth bear, a spectacled bear, and polar bears live in the zoo, but they’re active during the winter, Ms Mendoza said.

She added that, in general, the zoo’s inhabitants of the zoo are quietly adapting to the advancing cold in Moscow, noting, “We’ve changed the animals’ diet. For instance, with the large cats, we have to give them more meat”. Ms Mendoza went on to say that they put more hay in the waterfowl pond, and the birds enjoy basking in it. Now that we have decreasing temperatures, she added that all of the animals are now in their “winter” living quarters. In November, the Moscow Zoo switched into its winter routine; it’s now open to the public from 10.00 to 17.00 MSK, but the box office at the main entrance and the petting zoo will cease operation one hour before closing at 16.00 MSK. On 31 December, New Year’s Eve, the zoo will close at 15.00 MSK, and on 1 January, New Year’s Day, as usual, it’s open free of charge. During school holidays, the zoo will be open even on Mondays.

13 December 2012

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/science/20121213/914644863.html

14 December 2012. Sergei Yolkin’s World. New Year’s Coming… It’s Bringing Us Plugs!

00 Sergei Yolkin. New Year’s Coming... It’s Bringing Us Plugs! 2012

New Year’s Coming… It’s Bringing Us Plugs!

Sergei Yolkin

2012

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Here’s another visual pun from Yolkin. Of course, there’s “plugs” and “corks”… and that the champagne’s bottled up until we “pop the top” on New Year’s. In addition, the traffic’s bottled up until then, too. In colloquial Russian, пробки (probki) means “cork”, “plug”, and “traffic jam”… all at the same time. Add to this simmering slumgullion the mega-bung-up on the M10 motorway between the Centre and Piter. A Russian would see the joke and the play-on-words immediately… it’s a cultural thing.

By the way, Russians don’t give a rat’s ass what the EU says about “champagne”… it’s always been “Soviet Champagne”, and it’s going to remain such unto the ages of ages… EU or no EU. I told you that Russians have a Sicilian attitude to legality…

BMD

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Leonid Mednikov of the Yandex analyst service told RIA-Novosti that Moscow road conditions are congested and bunged-up in December; they’re close to their maximum traffic limits due to the pre-New Year fuss.

13 December 2012

Sergei Yolkin

RIA-Novosti

http://ria.ru/caricature/20121213/914635312.html

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