January 22, 2015 • Razvilka, Moscow Region
Re: words and deeds
My elder brother has a wife and four children, aged almost zero to nine years old. Boy-girl-boy-girl.
In this situation, of course, overall carelessness means that all six of them are stepping on each other’s toes, running around, jumping, being late getting somewhere, losing socks, toys, passports, and so on and so forth.
I don’t know exactly in what terms the youngest part of the family reflects on these difficulties (and whether they do reflect on them), but the eldest part of the family, it goes without saying, periodically tends to resort to dramatic statements on the matter.
For example, the mother of the family took a shine to a remarking, “It’s time to lather the rope!”
You can utter this phrase exhaustedly and phlegmatically. Or, on the contrary, belt it out while wringing your hands. Or stress each word strictly and disapprovingly. Basically, there are plenty of fine options.
But, as we all know well, “We cannot predict / How our words will resound” (Tyutchev).
Eventually, after a while my three-year-old nephew showed up and said, “Mom, I lathered you a rope.”
He pulled out a fairly long piece of twine, solicitously adding, “With good antibacterial soap.”
June 17, 2016
Community volunteers in Novosibirsk have spent a grant from the mayor’s office to organize a Zarnitsa [Soviet-era children’s war game] for children with disabilities. The goal was to adapt the children to life and integrate them into society. This is an interesting way of doing it.
The Novosibirsk authorities organized a Zarnitsa game for orphans and children with disabilities.
“Put down the pistol.”
“There will be live fire. We are going to be firing, and we will be fired on.”
[Sign on left:] “Red Army warrior! The lair of the fascist beast lies ahead.”
“This is a war game, which the young generation needs nowadays.”
The game was meant to help the child adapt to life.
Translated by the Russian Reader. Photo courtesy of fakty.ictv.ua