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Mom Confessions Mom Confessions

If you want to know something about Russians.

Posted by on Jan. 7, 2014 at 6:59 AM
  • 220 Replies
2 moms liked this

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An American going to Russia for the first time is bound to notice some differences in the way people act. Here’s a short list of things Russians do that Americans might find a little weird…


1. Dress up for going to the store


Russians, especially city Russians, love dressing up. For example, even if going for a casual walk, a Russian woman may wear a nice dress and heels, just because.



2. Sit down for a minute before heading on a trip

If Russians are about to go traveling somewhere, they will pause after they’re completely packed and dressed and literally ready to walk out the door to just sit quietly for a minute.




3. Make really long and complicated toasts

Only the laziest of the laziest of Russians will make a toast of “To health” or something short like that. Seriously. Expect to hear anecdotes and too much reading into them.



4. Tell anecdotes at every opportunity

Russians love anecdotes. There’s a list of about fifty that every single Russian who has not been living under a rock for the last century knows. They might be in the middle of telling a story and then say, with relish, “And, you know, this reminds me of an anecdote…” and proceed to tell it, even if it’s completely irrelevant, right in the middle of the story. And then often forget what they were saying in the first place.



5. Congratulate each other on getting out of a shower or sauna

They say, “S lyogkim parom!” (Basically, “Congratulations on a light steam.”



6. Answer “How are you?” honestly and fully

Russians don’t say “Hey, how are you?” when passing each other on the street. Or if they do, they’re prepared to stop dead in their tracks and have a full-fledged conversation right then and there, because “How are you?” in Russian demands an actual answer, not just “Great, thanks!” or, worse, another “How are you?”



7. Never smile at strangers

Even in service areas (like malls or restaurants). Smiling at people you don’t know is actually becoming more and more acceptable in Russia due to Westernization, but don’t be surprised if you visit Russia and strangers don’t smile at you if you make eye contact. It’s not a thing. Smiles are supposed to be genuine, to be shared with friends.



8. Celebrate New Years more enthusiastically than Christmas

The tree is for New Years. Presents are for New Years. Forget Christmas. New Years is THE winter holiday.



9. Rewatch old Soviet cartoons constantly

If you survey random Russians on the street about their favorite cartoon, the spread will likely not be very large, and they will all be from the Soviet era. Most likely you’ll hear “Nu, Pogodi!” (the Russian version of Tom and Jerry), “Bremenskiye Muzykanty” (The Musicians From Bremen), “Snezhnaya Koroleva” (The Snow Queen), and maybe a couple others.



10. Call pretty much any female “Girl”

If you want to call your female waitress, you yell, “Girl!” If you want to address a fifty-year-old woman, you can call her “Girl.” If you want to address an actual girl, you call her “Girl.” Any woman short of a babushka (grandmother) is “Girl.”


11. Sit down at the table for a meal and stay there for hours

Hours and hours and hours. When groups of Russians get together for dinner, they will sit down, have dinner, and talk. Then they will talk some more. Then they will have tea with dessert. Then they will talk. And talk some more. And then maybe have some wine or other alcohol. And then they will sit around talking. They will sit at the table, talking, at least until the metros close and people are forced to leave for fear of not being able to get home. And that’s pretty late.



12. Keep bags

Seriously, Russians never ever ever throw away any bags. Never know when you might need one.



13. Prepare twenty times as much food as is necessary for the amount of guests coming over

And most of it will have tons of mayo.



14. Live with their parents

Again, this is becoming less and less common with Westernization, but often an entire Russian family will live together in one apartment (ie, grandparents, parents, children...maybe others?)



15. Are extremely wary of strangers but turn into your best bud and invite you over for tea if they’ve talked to you for more than ten minutes

It's a thing.



16. Never show up at someone’s house without a gift of some kind

It can be a dessert or a wine if it’s dinner, or it can be chocolates or flowers (so long as it’s not an even number of them). It’s not really important what it is, as long as you bring something.
by on Jan. 7, 2014 at 6:59 AM
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Replies (1-10):
imyourPuppy
by Gold Member on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:02 AM
Bump
abecee
by on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:06 AM
1 mom liked this

I doubt all russians are like that.  Everyone has quirks.

momtosandl
by Silver Member on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:06 AM

I guess that dude in the background with the camera is a tourist :-)  

Anonymous
by Anonymous on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:06 AM
And to add one more; expect a Russian man to give you the orgasm of your life with that accent in bed.
tlcory
by Platinum Member on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:10 AM

Lol yes I have many Russian friends and there is truth to much of this, my DH is Romanian and it's almost the same in Romania.

Mocha.Maya.Me
by on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:11 AM

 Ah, so basically the are like Americans who were raised with manners and to understand proper etiquette- with the exception of the not smiling, saving of bags, and making complicated toast at every occasion. ( we save that for weddings )  LMAO

I'm a small part Czech also (with a decent amount of Russian kin) gotta love marriage as a means of a peace treaty. ~winks~

Are you headed to Sochi soon?

imyourPuppy
by Gold Member on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:57 AM
No. I would love too:-), but I'm in US.

Quoting Mocha.Maya.Me:

 Ah, so basically the are like Americans who were raised with manners and to understand proper etiquette- with the exception of the not smiling, saving of bags, and making complicated toast at every occasion. ( we save that for weddings )  LMAO


I'm a small part Czech also (with a decent amount of Russian kin) gotta love marriage as a means of a peace treaty. ~winks~


Are you headed to Sochi soon?

imyourPuppy
by Gold Member on Jan. 7, 2014 at 7:58 AM
:-) they are all like that, believe me, I know. :)))

Quoting abecee:

I doubt all russians are like that.  Everyone has quirks.

abecee
by on Jan. 7, 2014 at 8:00 AM

You know every single russian in the world? 

Quoting imyourPuppy: :-) they are all like that, believe me, I know. :)))

Quoting abecee:

I doubt all russians are like that.  Everyone has quirks.

 

imthatgirl0607
by Platinum Member on Jan. 7, 2014 at 8:00 AM

I work with a russian mail order bride. 

She's...interesting. 

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