14 May 2008


I just love Russian accents. I mean... they're so... Idunno.... Russian?

Thing is, I grew up in Houston, Texas. Also known as "Old Mexico". I'm used to accents. Spanish accents, German accents, British accents, Redneckian accents, and even a few people who spoke with no accent, like me. But there were no Russian accents.

From my childhood through early adulthood, we were in the middle of the Cold War. Our biggest concern was that at any moment the USSR would bomb us with enough nukes to melt the continent, and we would respond with enough nukes to melt their continent. I've tried to explain this to some of the children I know, but their biggest concern is that terrorists will try to blow up one or two of our buildings, and then we'll respond by blowing up every country that the terrorists might have come from.

And then we'll send Halliburton in to take their oil.

And then we'll raise gas prices to meet the greater supply and unchanging demand.

This last part confuses me, too. I learned some economics in college, and there's something fishy about this. But I digress.

When I was growing up, the only place I ever heard a Russian accent was in a James Bond movie. I loved those movies, of course, but I've always loved all kinds of languages and accents. And the Russian accent is really neat.

When I traveled to Hungary a couple of years ago, I had already been there for two weeks before it occurred to me that I was behind the now-defunct Iron Curtain. Twenty years ago, traveling there would have been very dangerous. Now, I only risk losing my luggage.

And that happens each and every time I go, which is why I carry my most valuable items and a change of clothing with me when boarding a plane. But I digress.

I could travel around, all over the place there, and not once would I have to hide from the KGB or disguise myself. It's funny how the world changes when I'm not paying attention.

Actually, I was paying attention... I was in the military, in the middle of the Atlantic ocean, on a US Navy ship, when we got word that a revolution had just started in Moscow, and we were told to stand by in case WWIII started. We became just a bit concerned, but a couple of days later the announcement came that we weren't going to war after all, and suddenly the world was a changed place. But I didn't really see the changes until I started traveling and also dealing with people with Russian accents.

I've thought about learning Russian just to be cool, but it wouldn't be as cool now as it would have been when we were still at war with them. Sorta at war. You know what I mean. Now, anyone can learn Russian, and without being labeled a Communist and tagged by the FBI. Not that many people do.... but they can.

Still, I love that accent.

1 comment:

HermitJim said...

Now that is a good post! Proud of ya! Let's have some more like that!