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Thread: Russian Culture

  1. #1
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    Russian Culture

    I just got back from russia the other day, but i have to go back on saturday..

    so, i was thinking, there are many cultural things that i am probably not picking up because i wasnt born there. Like here we hold doors open for ladies and it is impolite to point.

    what i want to know is what are some differences that i could be doing wrong and not noticing it. I know i would cross my arms while waiting for a crosswalk and people looked at me weirdly... (is this a cultural thing?)

    thanks for the help!

    P.S. Russia is CrAzY!!!!!!!!!
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    Like here we hold doors open for ladies and it is impolite to point.
    The same in Russia.
    If you have problems with both posting new messages and sending PMs, you can send an e-mail to the Forum Administrator here:
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    У меня что-то с почтой, на ЛС ответить не могу. (

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zaya
    Like here we hold doors open for ladies and it is impolite to point.
    The same in Russia.
    then russians must not be good at following their customs. because my mother and cousin always got the door slammed in their faces by men.

    and any others? what about the arm crossing?
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    Undoubtedly, those men have bad manners.
    If you have problems with both posting new messages and sending PMs, you can send an e-mail to the Forum Administrator here:
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    У меня что-то с почтой, на ЛС ответить не могу. (

  5. #5
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    ok... makes sense now.

    but what are others?! I dont want to break some big custom when i go back on saturday!
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    Re: Russian Culture

    Quote Originally Posted by giovanni

    what i want to know is what are some differences that i could be doing wrong and not noticing it.
    Most Westerners talk too loudly in public, and (in Russian eyes, at least) make spectacles of themselves. You might have been doing that, I don't know.

    It might seem odd, but smiling at strangers is not well received. Smile in public, without a "proper" reason (e.g. talking with friends), and you're likely to be taken for an idiot and/or a foreigner.
    "Сейчас без языка нельзя... из тебя шапку сделают..."
    Cogito Ergo Doleo

  7. #7
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    I know i would cross my arms
    In which way?
    If you have problems with both posting new messages and sending PMs, you can send an e-mail to the Forum Administrator here:
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    У меня что-то с почтой, на ЛС ответить не могу. (

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    ...like he's hiding something.
    Correct my mistakes and I will give you +1 internets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xRoosterx
    ...like he's hiding something.
    That's not good.
    If you have problems with both posting new messages and sending PMs, you can send an e-mail to the Forum Administrator here:
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    У меня что-то с почтой, на ЛС ответить не могу. (

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    Re: Russian Culture

    Quote Originally Posted by Matroskin Kot
    Quote Originally Posted by giovanni

    what i want to know is what are some differences that i could be doing wrong and not noticing it.
    Most Westerners talk too loudly in public, and (in Russian eyes, at least) make spectacles of themselves. You might have been doing that, I don't know.

    It might seem odd, but smiling at strangers is not well received. Smile in public, without a "proper" reason (e.g. talking with friends), and you're likely to be taken for an idiot and/or a foreigner.
    ehh, i was not for sure. but i know my mother and cousin were. I knew this to an extent before i left, because my friends are all russians. I think i have the russian mentality down, but the language isnt coming great yet.

    and yeah, someone told me that quote. She said "to smile without reason is to show foolishness." which basically sums up russians. But my other FAVORITE thing someone said to me was "russia is the only country where you can get hit in the rear bumper while driving on the wrong side of the road."

    and any others?
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Zaya
    I know i would cross my arms
    In which way?
    um... like having your arms crossed across your chest? i dont know how to explain that really... but like you do it when you are cold?
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zaya
    Like here we hold doors open for ladies and it is impolite to point.
    The same in Russia.
    True. Some people, of course, don't do that, but it's percieved as bad manners.
    I'd like to point, though, that most natives here don't OPEN doors to the strangers (unless you carry smth heavy or have a baby), but it's considered polite to hold the door a little until the next person go through, slaming the door into other person's face is considered very rude (as well as banging the door loudly).

    I know i would cross my arms while waiting for a crosswalk and people looked at me weirdly... (is this a cultural thing?)
    Crossing the arms isn't actually offensive, so there isn't anything majorly wrong with that. But like many gestures it has slight culture differences in use.
    In Russia it's mostly a sign of impatience, irritation or stubborness. So while other people waiting for a crosswalk were relaxed or bored, your sudden gesture might make them think that you're in the bad mood or they irritate you somehow. Hence the weird glances.

  13. #13
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    Crossing the arms isn't actually offensive, so there isn't anything majorly wrong with that. But like many gestures it has slight culture differences in use.
    In Russia it's mostly a sign of impatience, irritation or stubborness. So while other people waiting for a crosswalk were relaxed or bored, your sudden gesture might make them think that you're in the bad mood or they irritate you somehow. Hence the weird glances.
    that makes alot of sense! thanks! even though russians do irritate me, i guess ill stop being so impacient at those cross walks.
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    and on a completely different side note... what vodka do russians drink? Last week the only types of vodka i had tasted like rubbing alchohol but a very thick syrup like texture.... is this what it is all like? What is your favorite brand/s?

    (i dont want to make the same mistake of wasting money on bad vodka next week... )
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    Quote Originally Posted by giovanni
    that makes alot of sense! thanks!
    You're welcome.

    I remembered a few things that irritated me somewhat about the foreigners I knew (I'm not saying you do such things, I don't even know whether these habits were based on cultural differences or they were just the habits of the persons in question). In Russia it's considered impolite.

    - sneezing/blowing your nose VERY LOUDLY, especially at the dinner table (most Russians try to do these things as quite as possible);
    - yawning or coughing without covering your mouth.

  16. #16
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    Русский Стандарт!

    If you get that vodka everyone will want to... well, It's good vodka!
    Вот это да, я так люблю себя. И сегодня я люблю себя, ещё больше чем вчера, а завтра я буду любить себя to ещё больше чем сегодня. Тем что происходит,я вполне доволен!

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    I used to buy my "vodka" in two liter bottles (reused soft drink bottles) from this guy I knew. I think I paid him $2 a bottle. He had a good reputation, so I wasn't worried about going blind from drinking it. It was good stuff! Not quite as clean tasting as store brand vodka like Nemirov, but it had a nice flavor. Can't beat the price, either.

    I don't actually recommend this to anyone unless you know what you are doing, and even then be cautious.
    "Сейчас без языка нельзя... из тебя шапку сделают..."
    Cogito Ergo Doleo

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    Quote Originally Posted by Matroskin Kot
    I used to buy my "vodka" in two liter bottles (reused soft drink bottles) from this guy I knew. I think I paid him $2 a bottle. He had a good reputation, so I wasn't worried about going blind from drinking it. It was good stuff! Not quite as clean tasting as store brand vodka like Nemirov, but it had a nice flavor. Can't beat the price, either.

    I don't actually recommend this to anyone unless you know what you are doing, and even then be cautious.
    did it have a good taste? I NEED a different vodka. I want something thats smooth, and doesnt taste like rubbing alchohol. Not like a syrup either. Should i drop more money on vodka? or is there some magic brand i am missing?
    Io seeeiiiii che non posso parlare il russo come tu....

    Da vero, sono Italiano!

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    Quote Originally Posted by giovanni
    Quote Originally Posted by Matroskin Kot
    I used to buy my "vodka" in two liter bottles (reused soft drink bottles) from this guy I knew. I think I paid him $2 a bottle. He had a good reputation, so I wasn't worried about going blind from drinking it. It was good stuff! Not quite as clean tasting as store brand vodka like Nemirov, but it had a nice flavor. Can't beat the price, either.

    I don't actually recommend this to anyone unless you know what you are doing, and even then be cautious.
    did it have a good taste? I NEED a different vodka. I want something thats smooth, and doesnt taste like rubbing alchohol. Not like a syrup either. Should i drop more money on vodka? or is there some magic brand i am missing?
    Maybe you just don't like Russian vodka. If you like brandy, any of the cognacs sold in shops are pretty good.
    "Сейчас без языка нельзя... из тебя шапку сделают..."
    Cogito Ergo Doleo

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    I don't know how someone can possibly not like Russian vodka.
    Correct my mistakes and I will give you +1 internets.

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