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Russian Man Tries to Sell Childhood Painting for $2.3 Million

A Moscow man made national news headlines this week for putting a drawing he made when he was only six-years-old on sale online for no less than 140 million rubles ($2.3 million).

41-year-old journalist Vladimir Mkrtchyan placed the ad for his old childhood drawing on Russian classifieds site Avito on Monday, and it quickly went viral due to its exorbitant price. 140 million rubles seems kind of steep for a childish drawing, but the seller considers it’s worth twice that much, because it reflects the realities of the Soviet era through the innocent eyes of a six-year-old boy.

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11-Year-Old Boy Dubbed Russia’s Strongest Child After Deadlifting 100-Kg Barbell

While most 11-year-olds are mostly concerned with school, video games, and surfing the web, Timofey Klevakin, a boy from rural Russia, is busy training in the gym and breaking weightlifting records.

Ever since he was five years old, Timofey was interested in weightlifting, watching his father train at a makeshift gym in their home village of Shalya, in the Ural mountains. Noticing his boy’s interest, Arseny Klevakin started training him, despite his wife’s protests over concerns that he was too young. At the age of six, during a regional weightlifting competition, Timofey managed to amaze attendants and judges by deadlifting a 55-kilogram barbell. He’s been working hard ever since, and the now 11-year-old is getting ready to break the national deadlift record for his weight class by lifting a 105-kilogram barbell.

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Russian Television Launches Reality Show Centred Around Life at Secluded Monastery

In a time when reality TV is pretty much synonymous with the Kardashian name, launching a reality show centered around life at a secluded orthodox monastery hardly sounds like a winning idea, but one Russian TV channel is going ahead with the project anyway.

A television channel entirely owned by a religious organization affiliated with the Russian Orthodox Church is currently busy filming a reality show with a spiritual twist. Named “Island”, the original program will take place at a secluded monastery located on a lake between Moscow and St. Petersburg. There, the 10 chosen participants will embrace the monastic lifestyle, taking part in activities like cleaning the monastery grounds, making candles, preparing foods and meeting with priests, as they try to find the answers to questions that have long been troubling them.

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Spray-Painted Polar Bear Baffles Russian Wildlife Experts

Footage of a full-grown polar bear with “T-34” spray-painted in black on its side has left wildlife experts in Russia scratching their heads as to who or why branded the animal this way.

The T-34 was a legendary Soviet tank that played a crucial role in Russia’s victory over Nazi Germany in World War 2, which has led some experts to believe that the text spray-painted on the polar bear spotted in Arctic Russia was nothing more than a poor military-themed joke. As to who would stoop so low as to spray-paint a polar bear and thus affect its ability to hunt for prey by virtually making it impossible for it to blend with its environment, that’s even harder to answer. On the one hand, it’s hard to believe that scientists would ever do such a thing, and on the other, whoever did it must have tranquilized is beforehand.

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Russian Cows Wear VR Headsets to Reduce Their Anxiety, Increase Milk Production

In an attempt to reduce cows’ anxiety and hopefully increase their dairy production, a cattle farm in Moscow’s Ramensky district has equipped its herd with specially-designed virtual reality headsets.

Research has shown that there is a link between a cow’s emotional state and it’s daily milk yield. In the past, we’ve heard of dairy farms playing soothing classical music for their cows in order to lower their stress level and increase productivity, but as technology advances, new mood-altering solutions are introduced. For example, the RusMoloko farm in Moscow recently equipped its cattle with VR systems adapted for the “structural features of cow heads”.

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Shelter Dog Gets Rejected Because of Its Perfectly Arched Eyebrows

Betty, a five-month-old puppy found on the outskirts of Bratsk, in Russia, and placed in the care of a local shelter, was initially rejected by families looking to adopt a dog, because of her unusual look.

When caretakers at the Dobrie Ruki (Kind Hands) shelter, in the Russian city of Bratsk, saw Betty’s black eyebrows for the first time they were convinced that someone had played a cruel joke on the poor animal and painted them on. They gave her a good wash, but the eyebrows didn’t go anywhere, and they realized that the white pooch had been born with them. It was a case of natural pigmentation, but a really unique one.

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Man Faces Five Years in Prison for Using Live Cat as Weapon Against Police

A 59-year-old man from Moscow risks spending up to five years behind bard for allegedly using a live cat as a weapon against police, last year.

On October 4, 2018, the suspect, Gennady Shcherbakov, was reportedly sitting at the foot of his apartment building’s stairwell. He had been drinking heavily and was causing a ruckus, so some of his neighbors called the police to report the disturbance. However, when police officers arrived on the scene and told Shcherbakov to go home, he refused to comply and instead grabbed a nearby cat and shoved it in the face of one of the police officers. The confused feline allegedly tried clinging to the man’s face, scratching him badly.

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Get Your Own Batmobile for Just $850,000

If you’re a Dark Knight fan with money to burn, you may be interested in this cool-looking Batmobile on sale in Russia for just 55,000,000 rubles, or about $850,000.

Batmobile replicas are not that uncommon nowadays, but the one currently being sold on Russian online marketplace Auto.ru, stands out in terms of looks, performance and price. First of all this is  very modern take on the iconic Batmobile, I’d say even more so than the Tumbler featured in the dark Knight trilogy. It has a very aggressive look, complemented by a menacing machine gun that actually comes with realistic sound effects, and measures 4 meters wide, which means you won’t be able to drive it everywhere. Powered by a 5-liter engine, this rear-wheel drive Batmobile has a top speed of 100km/h, and features a bunch of cool accessories – such as bulletproof windows, thermal imaging with 255x zoom, and a night vision camera – designed to make you feel like a real-life Batman.

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Zoo Keeper Who Lost Her Leg to a Bear Begs That the Animal Be Pardoned

Wild animals usually get put down after attacking humans, but a Russian zoo keeper who lost one of her legs to a caged bear has been pleading with authorities to spare the animal, claiming that it wasn’t to blame for the tragic accident.

On September 25, experienced zoo keeper and animal activist Vera Blishch was instructing a new colleague at the Municipal Zoo in Ussuriysk when a bout of vertigo made her lean towards a bear cage for just a split second. Unfortunately, that was just enough time for Manyunya, a 20-year-old female bear, to reach through the bars and grab the zookeeper’s leg. She suffered severe injuries, including multiple fractures, and eventually needed to have her leg amputated below the knee at a Ussuriysk hospital. Knowing that animals that attack people are put down to eliminate the risk of them attacking other humans, Blishch’s first concern upon waking from her surgery anesthesia was for Manyunya’s well-being, insisting that the bear was not to blame.

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Priests Drop Holy Water Over City to Cure It of “Drunkenness and Fornication”

Orthodox priests in Russia’s Tver Oblast region, literally reached new heights in their quest to save their congregations from addictive sins like drinking and fornicating. They got in an airplane and doused the whole city of Tver in holy water, in order to cleanse it.

Metropolitan Savva of Tver and Kashinsky, Father Alexander Goryachev and two other members of the Russian Orthodox Church performed the bizarre aerial blessing last Wednesday, in honor of All-Russian Sobriety Day. They boarded a small plane and brought with them 70 liters of holy water and two icons – the “Inexhaustible Chalice,” said to be able to cure people of alcohol and drug addiction, and one of John the Baptist. A married a couple that claimed the husband had been miraculously cured of alcohol addiction in the past was also present aboard the airplane.

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Russia’s Fascination with “Drug Bust” Marriage Proposals

Having armed men wearing combat masks manhandling you and simulating a drug bust hardly sounds like the scenario of a perfect marriage proposals, but it’s apparently all the rage in Russia.

Imagine driving a car, minding your own business, when all of a sudden a black van cuts you off and slams the breaks forcing you to do the same in a split second. That would be scary enough, but it gets worse. The van door slides open and masked men carrying assault rifles jump out and violently pull you out of the vehicle, while they go through your personal belongings seemingly searching for something. And then they find it – a small plastic bag full of white powder that they claim is illegal drugs. You’ve never seen it before, but they claim otherwise and you feel your legs shaking under you as you try to grasp the implications of the situation. Then, all of a sudden, one of the threatening men drops down to one knee, pops open a small case and says “Marry me!”

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Russian Billionaire Gives His Old School a Versailles Makeover

Did you grow up wishing the school you went to every day looked more like a fairy-tale palace? No? Well this Russian billionaire sure did and when he became rich enough to afford it, he actually turned his old school into a flamboyant palace, complete with gilded walls, marble floors and even a water fountain.

Walking into the 106 Secondary School in Yekaterinburg after its recent renovation you couldn’t be blamed for thinking you had been magically transported to a French Baroque palace like Versailles. With golden chandeliers hanging from the ceiling, gilded decorations covering the walls and luxurious marble floors, it certainly looks nothing like a Soviet-era school dating back to the 1940s. That’s thanks to the generous donation of a former student named Andrei Simanovsky who grew up to become a successful businessman and decided to fulfill his childhood dream of turning his school into a palace.

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Russian Man Hilariously Tries to Sell 3-Room Apartment Using Quentin Tarantino

A resident of Chelyabinsk, in western Russia, recently got his five minutes of online fame after his apartment sale ad went viral on social media for featuring renowned film director Quentin Tarantino.

The last thing you would expect to see while looking at photos of apartments to buy is an internationally famous director seemingly inspecting the premises and giving a thumbs up. That’s exactly why Alexander Kainov, from the Russian city of Chelyabinsk thought that adding some cutouts of Reservoir Dogs director Quentin Tarantino to his real-estate photos to make it look like he had actually visited the apartment would be a great way of attracting attention. Making a property stand out among hundreds, if not thousands of similar ones, isn’t the easiest thing in the world, but apparently adding some Tarantino works like a charm.

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Residents of Far-East Russian Region Wake Up to Bizarre Pitch-Black Morning

The people of Siberia’s Verkhoyansk district got a feeling of deja vu last Friday when they woke up to total darkness at an hour when the sun should have been high in the sky. A similar phenomenon occurred in the region just over a year ago.

This time of year, dawn breaks at around 4 am in Verkhoyansk, but photos taken by locals at around 8 in the morning show no sign of the sun, as entire settlements are bathed in almost complete darkness with a bizarre yellow tinge to it. Luckily, locals were used to such unusual phenomena, as just last year, in July, Verkhoyansk and other Yakutian regions experienced another pitch black morning. In fact some people took to social media to ask if this is becoming some sort of weird tradition.

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Man Sues “Extrasensory Service Company” After Psychics Fail to Bring Back His Estranged Wife

The Sixth Sense, a Russian company that allegedly specializes in extrasensory services, fortune-telling, spiritism and astrology, was recently ordered to pay damages to a client after its psychics and magicians failed to bring back his estrange wife.

The unnamed plaintiff, from the Siberian city of Omsk, was left by his wife in August of 2017. He told the court that he was devastated at the time, but found hope in a TV advert that promised to help people win back spouses and lovers, as well as remove various types of curses. With nothing else to cling on to, the desperate man immediately called the company, and was told by the manager that she could bring his wife back to him, as she possessed a certain “magic, sensory knowledge” that had helped her deal with similar cases before.

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