“Be careful, and don’t run into sanctions turbulence!”
1. Last week, at a Moscow investment forum, VTB Bank chairman Andrei Kostin staged a lavish skit that combined two of everyone’s favorite things: Harry Potter and money. In the skit, “Andrei Dumbledovich,” played by Kostin, summons three bright young people to save the planet from the evil dollar — sorry, “Dollar-de-Mort.” Harry marvels at the dollar’s resilience: “I remember when he was little and only cost six rubles” (one dollar now costs 64 rubles, it has not been at 6 to the dollar since 1998). Nevertheless, Dumbledovich urges on his disciples: “We’ll give it a good fight!” If only fixing the economy were as easy as saying “Sanctionum Leviosa!”
2. Ever felt like the weather was so depressing, you had to hide in virtual reality to feel better? Turns out cows feel that way too. A farm near Moscow has developed a VR headset that farmers can put on their cows during notoriously gray Russian winters. The VR headset, which is designed specifically for cow vision, projects bucolic images of green fields and sunny skies in the hopes that cows feel more relaxed and produce more milk. No cows could be reached for comment, but we’re guessing they’re over the moon about their cool new moovies (pun creds to @hannahmakes on Twitter).
3. In Cherepovets, a set of gates materialized in the middle of a path. It sounds like a spooky sighting one month too late for Halloween, but actually, there’s nothing paranormal about it. A local clinic (to which the gate leads) wanted to build a fence with gates, but there were delays in building the fence, so only the gates were finished. Locals with a sense of humor planted signs around the gates reading “Warning: Mines!!!” Hilariously, the guard came every day to lock and unlock the gates. The clinic took down the gates a few days later, but it promises that the gates and fence will soon be installed in a less joke-worthy manner.
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