Stuff My Host-Mama Says

I will be the first to admit I lucked out in the housing selection process. My family is wonderful, I live in a great location, and the food is to die for. But once in a while, my host mom will say something silly or disconcerting, and I can’t help but question her common sense.

On Food

  • I can’t eat after 5:00. I’m on a diet. Wouldn’t you just eat as much as you could at 4:30?
  • Have more cookies! You’ve already had four? That’s okay- they are good for you. I’m pretty sure the sugar and corn syrup outweigh the nutritional value in the oatmeal, but I can’t complain about the implications of this albeit poor logic.

On Health

  • You are sick? Well, your bedroom is warm, so you must have caught cold outside. I’m not sure that’s how germs work.
  • You didn’t go to the doctor’s? But you have a cold! When you are sick, you must go to the doctor. This defies absolutely everything we learned about in orientation.  I’m supposed to be laden with home remedies!  And honestly, what will a doctor do about a cold?

On Politics

  • I’m so glad that Obama is in office now. He is just like our Putin. They are both modern, young, and peaceful. I’ll concede on young.
  • Khodorkovsky is a criminal. Why he is getting a second sentence, I don’t know. But he deserves to be in jail, and frankly, I don’t know why more oligarchs are not imprisoned. I love this quote, because it really shows the Russian value system.  Whereas we see the Khodorkovsky case as a threat to free enterprise, Russians see it as the appropriation of their city. She used the word “privatization” with such disdain- and I really sympathized with her point of view, even though it didn’t change mine.

On Marriage

  • Before you marry a man, find out how he interacts with children. I didn’t, and it was a mistake. And check his zodiac sign. Horoscopes explain why certain people don’t get along with others. No words for this one.  I just wonder if she’s been updated on the new zodiac sign/schedule.  I wouldn’t want her mingling with the wrong kind…

Don’t worry, Nadezhda.  I still adore you despite all this, and sometimes, for it.

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