One man is stopping them from their quest. Andy Simmons. It takes a sense of humor. And Andy certainly has that. Andy takes great delight in the funny and oddball side of everyday life. Then you discover the Andy that observes America. His roundups of dumb criminals, crazy lawsuits, ridiculous excuses and out-of-touch scientific research will have you roaring with laughter -- and feeling much better about yourself.
He interacts with his school teacher, Maria Ivanovna shortened to "Marivanna", a stereotypical female teacher's name. His fellow students bear similarly diminutive names. This "little boy" name is used in contrast with Vovochka's wisecracking, adult, often obscene statements.
The most common topics are the war with the monarchist White Army , Chapayev's futile attempts to enroll into the Frunze Military Academy , and the circumstances of Chapayev's death officially, he was gunned down by the Whites and drowned while attempting to flee across the Ural River after a lost battle. Being well known in Russian popular culture, Chapayev, Petka, and Anka were featured in a series of Russian adventure games released in the late s and s.
A number of jokes involve characters from the famous short stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle about the private detective Sherlock Holmes and his friend Doctor Watson. Watson film series was broadcast on Soviet TV in the late s to mids. In all these movies, the characters were brilliantly played by the same actors — Vasily Livanov as Sherlock Holmes and Vitaly Solomin as Watson. The narrator of such a joke usually tries to mimic the unique husky voice of Vasily Livanov.
Occasionally the jokes also include other characters — Mrs Hudson , the landlady of Holmes's residence on Baker Street; or Sir Henry and his butler Barrymore from The Hound of the Baskervilles ; or the detective's nemesis Professor Moriarty. The preceding joke won second place in the World's funniest joke contest. His arch enemy is Inspector Juve, charged with catching him. A common theme is the interaction of a New Russian in his archetypal shiny black Mercedes S , arguing with a regular Russian in his modest Soviet-era Zaporozhets after their vehicles collide. The New Russian is often a violent criminal or at least speaks criminal argot , with a number of neologisms or common words with skewed meaning typical among New Russians.
In a way, these anecdotes are a continuation of the Soviet-era series about Georgians , who were then depicted as extremely wealthy. The physical stereotype of the New Russians is often that of overweight men with short haircuts, dressed in thick gold chains and crimson jackets, with their fingers in the horns gesture , cruising around in the " Merc" and showing off their wealth. Jokes about expensive foreign sports cars can be compared to German Manta jokes. Jokes set in the animal kingdom also feature characters, which draw their roots in the old Slavic fairy tales, where animals are portrayed as sapient beings with a stereotypical behavior, such as the violent Wolf; the sneaky Fox; the cocky, cowardly Hare; the strong, simple-minded Bear; the multi-dimensional Hedgehog; and the Lion, king of the animal kingdom.
In the Russian language all objects, animate and inanimate, have a grammatical gender — masculine, feminine, or neuter. Animal jokes are often fables , i. Aside from mammals, a rather common non-human is the "Golden Fish", who asks the catcher to release her in exchange for three wishes. In jokes, the Fisherman may be replaced by a representative of a nationality or ethnicity, and the third wish usually makes the punch line of the joke. A similar type of joke involves a wish-granting Genie , the main difference being that in the case of the Golden Fish the Fisherman suffers from his own stupidity or greed, while the Genie is known for ingeniously twisting an interpretation of the wish to frustrate the grantee.
These often revolve around the supposition that the vast majority of Russian and Soviet militsioners policemen, now called politzia accept bribes.
Also, they are not considered to be very bright. Imperial Russia had been multi-ethnic for many centuries, and this situation continued throughout the Soviet period, and continues still. Throughout history, several ethnic stereotypes have developed, often in common with those views by other ethnicities usually except for the ethnicity in question, but not always.
Chukchi , the native people of Chukotka , the most remote northeast corner of Russia, are a common minority targeted for generic ethnic jokes in Russia. Often a straight man of the Chukcha in the jokes is a Russian geologist. Ukrainians are depicted as rustic, stingy, and inordinately fond of salted salo pork back fat ; their accent, which is imitated in jokes, is perceived as funny. Ukrainians are perceived to bear a grudge against Russians derided as Moskali by Ukrainians :.
Georgians are almost always depicted as stupid, greedy, hot-blooded, or sexually addicted, and in some cases, all four at the same time.
A very loud and theatrical Georgian accent, including grammatical errors considered typical of Georgians, and occasional Georgian words are considered funny to imitate in Russian and often becomes a joke in itself. In some jokes, Georgians are portrayed as rich, because in Soviet times they were also perceived as profiting immensely from black market businesses.
In Russia itself, most people see "persons of Caucasian ethnicity" mostly at marketplaces selling fruits and flowers. In recent years, many old jokes about rich Georgians are being recast in terms of " New Russians ". Estonians and Finns are depicted as having no sense of humor and being stubborn, taciturn, and especially slow. The Estonian accent, especially its sing-song tune and the lack of genders in grammar, forms part of the humor.
Their common usage of long vowels and consonants both in speech and orthography e. In the everyday life, a person may be derisively called a "hot-headed Estonian fellow" or in similar spirit, a "hot-tempered Finnish bloke", a phrase popularized by the Russian comedy Peculiarities of the National Hunt to emphasize tardiness or lack of temperament.
Indeed, Estonians play a similar role in Soviet humor to that of Finns in Scandinavian jokes. Finnish political scientist Ilmari Susiluoto , also an author of three books on Russian humor, writes that Finns and Russians understand each other's humor.
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These nations are too boring and unvaried to rise into the consciousness of a large country. But the funny and slightly silly, stubborn Finns, the Chukhnas do. Jewish humor is a highly developed subset of Russian humor, largely based on the Russian Jews ' self-image. The Jewish self-deprecating anecdotes are not the same as anti-Semitic jokes.
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As some Jews say themselves, Jewish jokes are being made by either anti-Semites or the Jews themselves. Instead, whether told by Jews or non-Jewish Russians, these jokes show cynicism, self-irony , and wit that is characteristic of Jewish humor both in Russia and elsewhere in the world see Jewish humor. The jokes are usually told with a characteristic Jewish accent stretching out syllables, parodying the uvular trill of "R", etc.
To Russians, it is sufficient to begin a joke with: "So, an Odessan woman gets on the bus During the Arab—Israeli War sympathies of the ordinary Soviet people were on the side of the Israel despite Egypt under Nasser being officially a Soviet ally, " on the Socialist path of development ":. This joke is in part based on the common stereotype about Jews : to answer a question with a question. Common jokes center on the enormous size of the Chinese population, the Chinese language and the perceptions of the Chinese as cunning, industrious, and hard-working.
Other popular jokes revolve around the belief that the Chinese are capable of amazing feats by primitive means, such as the Great Leap Forward. A good many of the jokes are puns based on the fact that a widespread Chinese syllable written as "hui" in pinyin looks very similar to the obscene Russian word for penis. The following humorous possibilities for the misunderstanding of the Chinese syllable "Hui" are derived from Aarons's text: . Russians are a stereotype in Russian jokes themselves when set next to other stereotyped ethnicities. Thus, the Russian appearing in a triple joke with two Westerners, German , French , American or Englishman , will provide for a self-ironic punchline depicting himself as simple-minded and negligently careless but physically robust, which often ensures that he retains the upper hand over his less naive Western counterparts.
Another common plot is a Russian holding a contest with technologically-superior opponents usually, an American and a Japanese and winning with sheer brute force or a clever trick.
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Like elsewhere in the world, a good many of jokes in Russia are based on puns. Other jokes depend on grammatical and linguistic oddities and irregularities in the Russian language:.
The Russian word for " testicle " is a diminutive of " egg ", so the slang word is the non-diminutive form yaitso , cf. Spanish huevo. A large variety of jokes capitalizes on this, ranging from predictably silly to surprisingly elegant:. Some religious jokes make fun of the clergy. Clergymen in these jokes always bear obsolete names of distinctively Greek origin, and speak in basso profundo. Probably any nation large enough to have an army has a good many of its own barracks jokes.
Other than plays on words, these jokes are usually internationally understandable. In the Soviet Union, military service was universal for males , so most people could relate to them. In these jokes a praporschik warrant officer is an archetypal bully , possessed of limited wit. Dmitriev illustrates his sociological essay "Army Humor" with a large number of military jokes, mostly of Russian origin.
There is an enormous number of one-liners , supposedly quoting a praporschik :. Until shortly before perestroika , all fit male students of higher education had obligatory military ROTC courses from which they graduate as junior officers in the military reserve.
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