If you want to know who will be Russia’s next president, just watch the hair. Or lack thereof.
Throughout the 20th century, Russian leaders with hair and without have alternated: Nicholas II had a good head of hair; Vladimir Lenin was bald; Josef Stalin had thick hair; Nikita Khrushchev was л≈ысый как кол≈енка (bald as a knee); Leonid Brezhnev had густ≈ые в≈олосы (thick hair); Yuri Andropov was balding; Konstantin Chernenko had thick gray hair; Mikhail Gorbachev had a big л≈ысина (bald spot), and Yeltsin had a nice сед≈ая шевел≈юра (gray chevelure); Putin is balding, and so the next Russian leader will have hair by definition. It’s all so simple, this kremlinology...
Hair – в≈олосы – is becoming almost as important to Russians as it is to Americans. We worry about dandruff, though time was (in Stalin’s time) we fought dandruff as per the French proverb: Л≈учшее ср≈едство от п≈ерхоти – гильот≈ина (the guillotine is the best dandruff cure). Actually, there is a similarly dark Russian proverb: сн≈явши г≈олову по волос≈ам не пл≈ачут (when you’ve lost your head, it’s no sense worrying about your hair). It’s all about perspective.
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