To Laugh or Not To Laugh

10 years ago, when we were going to move to Russia, I anticipated how my American husband will get excited about it.  He grow up in the South, and travel overseas only twice, so I thought he should be thrilled about the prospective to move to Russia.  “Aren’t you excited about it?!!! “- I kept asking him looking at his face with hope.  “You are going to such a great country!!!”  Despite my enthusiasm, my husband seemed to be worried and much less excited then I would expect .  I ordered a lot of Russian literature as Chekov, Nabokov, Bulgakov, Bunin, to name the few.  I even took “12 Chairs” by Ilf and Petrov  from the library to slowly introduce him to the culture. I was especially enthusiastic about this one. Really, how can you not like “12 Chairs” ? When I read it, I cry from laughing…I have to say that the book was some kind of shorten version of “12 chairs” translation, I guess, because it wasn’t as big as it shoukd be.  But, anyway. I gave to my husband the book and he started to read it at evenings.   I watched him…He didn’t laugh, not even a smile.  Well, that was strange.  I waited two more nights – the same reaction (or no reaction to be true).  Then I finally gave up and confront him with question.  “So, do you understand what is this about?” “ Sure,” – he answered to me.  “Did you get it?”-  I repeated (it’s my favorite habit all family members hate). “ And who is Ostap Bender? What kind of person he is?”-  I continued to interview him.  “Just a сute criminal,”- he answered calmly.  I was shocked.  Just a criminal!!!??? Ok, Yes, maybe, BUT!!! It’s not all about that…” He is just great –so funny, smart and creative! All Russia admires him!”  “All Russia admires a criminal…Why am I not surprising?”- he grumbled and turned off a reading light.


5 thoughts on “To Laugh or Not To Laugh

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