Mankind's only alternative 21   NOV.   18  
Mankind's only alternative
Welcome
MAIN  RUSSIA  WAR NERD   [SIC!]  BAR-DAK  THE VAULT  ABOUT US  RSS
 
 
EXILE BLOGS

The Fall of The eXile For all those wondering what the "Save The eXile Fundrasier" banner is all about, here it is as simply as it can be phrased: The eXile is shutting down.
June 11, 2008 in eXile Blog

War Nerd: War of the Babies in Taki's Magazine The War Nerd talks about babies, the greatest weapon of the 20th century.
May 28, 2008 in eXile Blog

Kids, Meet Your President A website for Russian kids to learn all about President Medvedev's passion for school, sports and family.
May 22, 2008 in eXile Blog

Cellphone Democracy Cam If this girl was exposed to Jeffersonian democracy...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Dyev Photos Yet another hot Russian babe imitating the Catpower look...
May 20, 2008 in Face Control

Proof That Genetic Memory Is Real! Sure, the Ottomans shut down the Istanbul Slavic slave markets centuries ago...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Russia's Orthodox Church Youth Outreach Program The priest is going, "Father Sansei is very impressed with grasshopper Sasha’s...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

More Classy B&W Club Photos w/Russian Dyevs We took the Pepsi Challenge here...
May 15, 2008 in Face Control

Blogs RSS feed

Unfiled March 3, 2003
 
A High-Altitude Cure for Slavophilia
By John Dolan Browse author Email
 
 

When we first heard about the great package deals to Sharm-el-Sheikh, they seemed too good to be true. People said you could get a week in a five-star hotel, with roundtrip airfare from Moscow, for around $300. That was hard to believe: a week in the Egyptian sun, a break from the coldest winter since the Great Patriotic War, for $300? What was the catch?

Those amazing package deals are real. The only catch we encountered was the company we had to keep on the charter flight to Egypt. It turns out, y'see, that $300 per person wasn't nearly enough to keep the riffraff out. In fact, the riffraff, the riffest of the raffest, the sort of riffraff who would be snubbed at a drunken medieval thieves' tavern, were sharing our rickety old Tupolev all the way from Vnukovo to Sharm.

They had a way of making their presence felt, these six or so sullen guys. Even in the waiting room at the airport they'd been just that little bit louder than necessary. That sort of extra decibels from any group of young men still makes my blood freeze, as if I was back in high school. But for the first hour of the flight, all was well. The charter was almost empty. They had claimed the back; we were near the front. Plenty of room for everybody.

Then I had to push past them to get to the toilets at the back of the plane. Territory is always a problem on planes -- I've wanted to commit murder based on land-grabs by the guy in the seat next to me, unauthorized West-Bank settlements of an extra half-inch of armrest. When I tried to get past to the toilets, they moved aside for me, but only after a little pause that was meant to remind me that they were permitting me to pass.

Then, after a half-hour of peaceful reading-trance, suddenly the drunks' ringleader was in front of me clutching a nearly-empty bottle of Southern Comfort. He shoved his snout into my book and said in carefully-rehearsed English, "What-is-your-name?"

He was wearing a dirty black t-shirt with a skull on it, which seemed somehow redundant: he was pretty much a skull already, with a long nose and hollow eyes.

Anybody but me would've seen instantly that he was dead drunk. But though I understand drugs, I never understand booze. So I didn't see him as a pushy drunk; I just felt guilty for flinching. His charm offensive continued with a second rehearsed sentence: "Do you-want...-to-drink-with-us?"

Jesus God no, I would not like to drink with you. I would prefer, actually, to jump out of this plane.

But all I actually did was shriek, "Oh, uh, actually no, no thanks! Heh-heh-heh! No, nyet, sorry, no thanks," shaking my head quickly, rearing back in the seat so hard that my shoulders hurt next day.

But he had a firm answer to my quavery "no": "Yes!" he yelled, nodding, and repeating, "Yes! Yes!" To emphasize the point, he aimed the bottle at my mouth. (It was almost empty, but I didn't realize the importance of that fact at the time.)

I just tried again to say no in all possible variations, like those anti-nuke sun stickers from the 80s: "Non merci! No gracias! Nein danke!"

There was a long and rather awkward silence. The drunk looked down his long nose at me as little wheels turned inside his head, trying to figure out what to do next. And then hope, in the form of our flight attendant, came strolling toward us. He'd do something. But the fop was smarter than me; he took in the scene, sniffed prissily, and vanished behind the First-Class curtain. They didn't pay him enough to play Sky Marshal-not on charters anyway.

Skull-shirt kept aiming his breath and bottle at me; I kept refusing, with what I knew to be a stupid-looking American grin on my face. At last, with a look of drunken contempt, he gave up and decided to try his luck with Mark and Nastya, who were sitting on our left.

Mark was asleep, with headphones on. He'd been doing a bit of pre-departure celebration, and was still nodding. When shouting failed, the drunk grabbed Mark's leg and shook it. Nastya attempted to point out that Mark was sleeping, but the drunk didn't even hear her. A woman was making sounds, that was all.


SHARE:  Del.icio.us  Digg  My Web  Facebook  Reddit

Browse author
dolan@exile.ru
 
 
FROM THE VAULT
Shawarma Shuttle
Shwarma Shuttle Of The Week :

Desperate Measures For Desperate Celebrities :
Russian Hipsters On-Line
Moscow Hipsters Mock Provincial Bloggers :

Gilligan's Gulf :
 

 
 
 
LATEST ARTICLES

Save The eXile: The War Nerd Calls Mayday
Editorial
The future of The eXile is in your hands! We're holding a fundraiser to save the paper, and your soul. Tune in to Gary Brecher's urgent request for reinforcements and donate as much as you can. If you don't, we'll be overrun and wiped off the face of the earth, forever.

Scanning Moscow’s Traffic Cops
Automotive Section
We’re happy to introduce a new column in which we publish Moscow’s raw radio communications, courtesy of a Russian amateur radio enthusiast. This issue, eXile readers are given a peek into the secret conversations of Moscow’s traffic police, the notorious "GAIshniki."

Eleven Years of Threats: The eXile's Incredible Journey
Feature Story By The eXile
Good Night, and Bad Luck: In a nation terrorized by its own government, one newspaper dared to fart in its face. Get out your hankies, cuz we’re taking a look back at the impossible crises we overcame.

Your Letters
[SIC!]
Russia's freedom-loving free market martyr Mikhail Khodorkovsky answers some of this week's letters, and he's got nothing but praise for President Medvedev.

Clubbing Adventures Through Time
Club Review By Dmitriy Babooshka
eXile club reviewer Babooshka takes a trip through time with the ghost of Moscow clubbing past, present and future, and true to form, gets laid in the process.

The Fortnight Spin
Bardak Calendar By Jared Lindquist
Jared comes out with yet another roundup of upcoming bardak sessions.

Your Letters
[SIC!]
Richard Gere tackles this week's letters. Now reformed, he fights for gerbil rights all around the world.

13 Toxic Talents: Hollywood’s Worst Polluters
America By Eileen Jones
Everybody complains about celebrities, but nobody does anything about them. People, it’s time to stop fretting about whether we’re a celebrity-obsessed culture—we are, we have been, we’re going to be—and instead take practical steps to clean up the celebrity-obsessed culture we’ve got...

 
 
 

    MAIN    |    RUSSIA    |    WAR NERD     |    [SIC!]    |    BAR-DAK    |    THE VAULT    |    ABOUT US    |    RSS

© "the eXile". Tel.: +7 (495) 623-3565, fax: +7 (495) 623-5442
E-mail: office@exile.ru