Russia vs. America

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
Now that I have spent at least a week in both countries, I am qualified to make the comparison.

Submitted: September 21, 2016

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Submitted: September 21, 2016



1.  Airports:  Pulkovo Airport in Saint-Petersburg is modern, efficient, and easy to get around in.  But it doesn’t have a food court.  Score one for America.

2.  Grocery stores:  There is a produktovy magazin around every corner in Russia.  When we still had those in America, we called them ma and pa grocery stores.  Now, we have SuperWalmart.  Advantage Russia.

3.  English language:  In Russia, not that many people are fluent in English.  Most people speak a little bit.  On the other hand, Americans can’t spell and have atrocious grammar.  I’m calling this one a draw.

4.  Handicap Access:  An easy win for America, Russia has a long way to go here.  Ramps are not expensive.

5.  Politicians:  America has Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.  Russia has Vladimir Putin.  A YUGE win for Russia.

6.  Drivers:  At first, I thought the drivers in Saint-Petersburg were insane.  But after a while, I figured it out.  There is a method to their madness.  There are rules, and everyone follows them.  It is an aggressive, yet effective system.  Advantage Russia.

7.  Guitarists:  America had Jimi Hendrix, Russia has Nikolai Gvozdev.  A slight edge to America.  But you can see Nikolai play tonight in Saint-Petersburg, at the corner of Ostrovskogo Ploshchad and Nevsky Prospekt, if the weather is nice.

8.  Women:  Russia has way more tall skinny women.  A win for them.

9.  Wifi:  The connections in Russia were spotty and I couldn’t upload photos to Facebook.  :(  A win for America.

10.  Manikins:  The female manikins in Russian stores have nipples.  Advantage Russia.

11.  Automobiles:  Most of the cars there are Japanese or German.  Not as many Ford, GM, or Chryslers.  We have way more gigantic pickup trucks and overdesigned SUVs.  America wins this one.

12.  Cleanliness:  There are litterbugs everywhere.  For a city of its size, Saint-Petersburg was pretty clean.  But, a slight advantage to America.

13.  Daylight Savings Time:  They don’t have it in Russia.  A sensible victory for them.

14.  Architecture:  Russia has thousands of years of history embedded in its architecture.  America has glass boxes and McMansions.  No contest here, a win for Russia.

15.  Capitalism:  In many ways, Russia is as modern as America.  But they have some catching up to do.  Advantage America.

16.  TV shows:  Most of the TV shows in Russia have a tough guy with a cut or bruise on his left cheek.  Advantage Russia.

17.  Hotels:  The Rossi Boutique Hotel was great and I will stay there again.  The food was good too.  But when it comes to meeting the needs of the modern, connected traveler, Russian hotels lag a bit.  A win for America.

18.  Football:  In America, the football is not round and mostly it gets carried around by hand.  But tackling is allowed.  Advantage America.

19.  Cheeseburgers:  In Russia, the cheeseburgers have sliced cucumbers instead of pickles.  A win for Russia.

20.  Clothing:  When you walk down Nevsky Proskpect, the main street in Saint-Petersburg, you can’t really tell by the clothing that you’re not somewhere in the US.  On average, Russians dress better than Americans.  Since I’m a slob, I’m making this a win for America.

The final score is America 10, Russia 9, with one tie.  America wins again.  Don’t we always?

As it turns out, people are the same everywhere.  If I learned anything in Saint-Petersburg, it is that the success of a trip to a foreign country is directly related to the skill of your taxi driver.  When you make your reservation with the friendly folks at the Rossi desk, tell them you want Roman Melnikov to be your driver.  He is a taxi ninja.  


© Copyright 2017 Serge Wlodarski. All rights reserved.

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