As the Russian saying goes, it is better to have 100 friends than 100 rubles. (Не имей сто рублей, а имей сто друзей.) Of course, a hundred rubles (now less than $3) won’t get you very far these days. And, in the age of Facebook, when everyone is “friending” people they hardly know, even friendship is devalued.
Yet 100 is still a rather significant milestone. So it is with cautious pride (knocking on wood, spitting thrice) that I herald the 100th issue of Russian Life since our company purchased the magazine in July 1995. However, my pride is more than overwhelmed by the sense of gratitude I have to all those who have made contributions to Russian Life over the past 14 years. I cannot mention here all 300 of our contributors (for that, visit our website, where contributors are linked to the articles they wrote), but I will single out our editors, more prolific contributors, and staff: Mikhail Ivanov, Robert Greenall, Scott D. McDonald, Lina Rozovskaya, Tamara Eidelman, Darra Goldstein, Maria Antonova, Nora Favorov, Kate Reilly-Fitzpatrick, Oksana and Alexander Gusarov, Claire Kimmel, Alexander Mozhayev, Maria Kolesnikova, Laura Williams, Igor Shpilenok, Ilya Ovchinnikov, William C. Brumfield, Marina Latysheva, Lada Bakal, Anna Hoare, Dasha Demourova, Eric Helque, Irina Titova, Denis Petrulenkov, John Varoli, Lev Berdnikov, Ash Webb, Robin Gorges, Meghan Taranin, Sergei Kaptilkin, Semyon Ekshtut, and Yelena Utenkova. And I also thank my family – Stephanie, Christopher and Sarah – for putting up with “all dad’s Russian stuff,” and my business partners – Bob, Andrei, Stephanie and Jim. Thank you, all! And apologies to anyone my age-addled brain overlooked.
Yet we reserve still greater thanks to you, our readers. You are the “100 friends” that make this magazine possible, thanks to your shared interest in things Russian. Unlike most magazines, Russian Life is sustained primarily by its readers, by subscription revenue, rather than ad dollars. I believe that is why, despite ever-challenging economic and political conditions, Russian Life continues to thrive. So please keep telling us what we are doing right and wrong, what you would like to see us cover, and what we should ignore.
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Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.
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Montpelier VT 05601-0567