Thursday, October 21, 2004

Vacation: the crazy guy

On Saturday Volodya had a birthday party. It was a very good party even though I behaved badly and ate all the carrots. I don't even like carrots, but Lyalya make some kind of a carrot salad thingie, and it was very good and I ate it all. I think I should be ashamed. Tried to eat all the chocolate cake, too, but many other people were way faster.

One of the guests at the party was a guy named Y., who is a friend of my parents', and of Volodya and Lyalya. Everybody says he is a very nice guy when one-on-one and sober. I'll have to take their word for it, since I've only seen him at parties and rather drunk.

In fact Saturday was only the second time I'd seen him. The first time was at Benka's birthday party 4 years ago. He'd rather startled me then with the most insane party conversation I'd ever heard, and I had heard quite a few when I used to hang out with people who often enjoyed 2-3 drops of LSD for recreational purposes at parties.

This time he was even better. He opened the conversation by challenging me for being a disrespectful daughter to my father. I am not quite sure whether he meant that I disrespect my father by disagreeing with him sometimes, or by not disagreeing with him enough. Oska listened in on that and was rather amused. In the end of this topic, Y. said that if I were his daughter he would try to improve my personality by applying physical violence. All of the above was not said in an aggressive tone, but in a rather neutral and helpful tone, as if advising me about some improvement if interior decoration. I did not raise the obvious question of whether or not he has ever practiced the improvement of his actual daughters' personalities in the aforementioned way.

Then he told me to describe my average day in Finland. I did; he told me I was lying but did not expand on that. He asked me how does it feel to run away from Objective Reality and hide in a Small Artificial World like Finland. I told him that we have Objective Reality in Finland as well. He said he meant running from a country that is significant in world politics to one that isn't. I told him that while there is a number of things I miss about the US, being a Global Leader in Building Democracy in a Separately Taken Arab Country (Volodya's description, not mine) isn't one of them. At that point he started a long tirade about people who live in other countries while their own country is fighting against terrorism. This reminded me of Russia and Russian attitudes and I almost started singing

Значит все мы, кровь на рыле,
Топай к светлому концу,
Ты же будешь в Израиле
Жрать, подлец, свою мацу.
Мы стоим за дело мира,
Мы готовимся к войне,
Ты же будешь, как Шапиро,
Прохлаждаться в стороне.

(Sorry to those who don't speak Russian, I'll try to translate it later.)

Then he started a lecture on how wrong and bad I am about not wanting to have children, but the lecture was not unusual in itself as such lectures go. Then he decided that he wanted us to hit each other's hands and see who is faster. He was faster, in fact he had a very good reaction. He told me that I really suck and that I should better stop doing martial arts. I told him that since I practice Krav Maga for fun and exercise rather than to become the world champion, I don't see why not being particularly good should bother me much. Or him. He responded with new insults to my personal morals and martial arts skills, but then calmed down and found a new victim.

A couple of hours later he suddenly came back to me and said that he wished to fight, and that I should come out into the living room and fight with him a bit, and that he will kick my ass. I came out into the living room, mostly out of concern for a possible fight in the dining room and flying saucers (not of the UFO kind, but the kind you put your cake in). I'd often seen fiftyish Russian men fighting between each other just to resolve the question of who can beat whom up, but I'd never imagined myself being a party in such a fight. But there I was, ready to fight and quite concerned. (The last time I'd sparred drunk at a party was 12 years ago and it was not a happy memory: I had to spend most of the rest of the night bringing various cold objects to my victim and apologizing profusely. Free sparring with a man who does not have his ball protector on is not a good idea.)

In the end it turned out all right: we did not break each other, ourselves, any innocent bystanders or inanimate objects. He protected his balls very well to the detriment of nonessential organs like shoulders, head and ass. I tapped him on the sides and the ass with my foot several times. He got some punches through, and so did I, but most of the punches were deflected from both sides. Then he started telling me that I am in fact pretty good (meaning the martial arts and not the moral character), and peace, booze, tea and cake have finally came upon us.

He is not bad himself at his martial art. I am glad for him: if he regularly talks to almost-strangers at parties that way, he surely needs the fighting skill pretty often.

In the end, however, he still managed to piss me off by repeatedly asking what kind or revenge I'd take if somebody killed my parents. And that was after he discovered that I can in fact fight him. Silly bugger. Heh.

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