Larisa Saenko discovered why Russian men are not in demand at the New York Bachelor Fair.
A middle-ranking bank clerk with a slight noble gray hair gallantly opened the door of his apartment, carelessly flung his dark gilt-rimmed glasses on a chair, dropped his jacket, and deftly twisted out of his tie loop. He retrieved his Cossack cap from somewhere, put it on the back of his head, took his sword from the wall, and, whistling, dashingly cut a loaf of sausage into even rings on the kitchen table, which had come out of a respectable black leather briefcase.
If you marry a foreigner and get ready to move to another country, study the local law in advance and do not expect that in case of your scandalous divorce and dispute for the child Russia will send troops to your rescue, warns Pavel Astakhov, Russian presidential commissioner for children's rights.
- I don't understand why you women need foreigners..." He said in his half-turn, quite in Russian, and the topic of the feast was high on the agenda. Whether it was a fresh wound on his heart, or just a sore point. - What's good in them? They even save on soap. They keep such tiny soap dishes in the soap-box and poke, poke, poke with a cudgel... You women need these soap dishes, - he wrinkled his nose in a sorry, squeamish way.
We don't need the soap. Though it's much nicer to be addressed as Mrs., ma'am, lady, and even yang lady - yes, that, too. Older American men are generous with compliments and not spoiled. Though their manners will seem more restrained compared to the festive fireworks with which the Russian suitor tries to stun the wooed lady during the first meetings.
There is no doubt that the Russian-speaking New Yorker will not offer to split the bill in half at the end of the dinner. On the contrary, he will offer after the meal to follow in a bar and try to buy a bouquet of flowers, and quite weighty, which you will have to carry the whole evening. On the way he will survey the eyes of passing strangers and make remarks. Pessimists - "ew, what a fat-ish and still happy. Optimists, "wow, she's so pretty.
Never mind - if he has no idea that his companion does not like either, or whether he did not care. You should be prepared for the fact that a married Russian American will try to load the evening with stories about the hardships of life - the burden of mortgages or disproportionate rents, the selfishness of children and the decline of society, in which no one will lend a helping hand. This is far more exhausting than the American "but problems," "kip smiling" and "happy ending," quite enough for a nice date in Manhattan.
A native Russian in America is especially talkative for some reason. He will tell the tragic story of how a successfully acclimated wife found a good job or started her own business, and it is this that punched a crack in the side of their family ship that glided smoothly through the waters of domesticity in pre-immigration life. Well, New York is a city of bachelors, where that status for both sexes is not perceived as loneliness, but as a free choice. And "just a husband," without all the other hypostases of spiritual intimacy, already seems a kind of atavism, I think to myself.
"Our" cavalier seeks sympathy, describing how she did not understand him while he was searching for himself and nostalgic for his homeland. He recounts how in the end the heartless rationalist pushed him out of his life. Like a worker bee, a droner, so as not to transfer the honey she had accumulated for the winter, I imagine, mentally taking the side of their ex-wives.
The Russian American from Russian-language dating sites, anchored in Brighton Beach or other places of mass accumulation of compatriots, is exactly the type of male with bitten wings, who can no longer fly, but still crawls and buzzes. It's good for him. American women are "cows" to him, European women are "brungildes", Japanese women are crooked, they comfort themselves. But we know that this macho man is not in demand in America, even within his own diaspora, and is completely uncompetitive outside of it. It's not because he doesn't have a face or an article, and it's not about the money, as they think. The fact is that even those of them who left their homeland as implacable fighters for rights and freedoms are bound to try to recreate in their own "unit of society" an authoritarian model, which they hate on a macro scale and are very comfortable in their personal lives. A model of the family that has been a thing of the past in America for at least half a century.
Trained in all kinds of tolerance, the real old-school New York men follow the principles of equal partnership, they love cooking themselves, at friendly parties they are the first to grab the dirty plates, they habitually share household chores with their working lady of the heart if they live under the same roof, and clearly are in no hurry to tie themselves to the bonds of matrimony. They are in no hurry at all, unlike the Russian American, who thinks that the dinner he paid for has paved the way straight to the bedroom. And he looks offended when the plan doesn't work out.
- He is insulted in New York, which is still an improved export version. In Moscow, he comes up in a bar, asks for your phone number, and if you don't give it to him, he insults you dirty," reports an update from a girl who has just returned from a vacation spent in Russia.
Successful Russian women inevitably overthrow the yoke of machismo by entering a liberal society of gender equality. As far as gender equality is concerned, true American feminists would certainly argue with me, and I would agree with them - Europe has given the States a head start on this issue. But not Russia. By comparison, the foreign minister is practically a woman's position in the United States. Would they put a "woman in labor" like Marissa Mayer at Yahoo to run a giant company here? I can't speak for the whole country, but on the domestic level in New York, women and men quite enjoy equal rights. Russian women adapt quickly, and are in demand in the local bride market. But a Russian man, on the other hand, torn from his native soil, loses his edge.
- Take our Kolyunka! I was persuaded at one of the orthodox monasteries, wanting to place in good hands a fellow countryman who had strayed into the household without any desire to become a monk. Kolyunka, a handsome-looking man in his fifties, of apparently creative profession, with intelligent manners, but no fixed abode, was seeking legalization in the United States in the simplest way possible: through marriage.
The answer that I was not American and that I could not raise Kolyunka's illegal status in any way caused disappointment in the matchmakers. But not for long.
- So why don't you just take him?
In Russia, this handsome man, who has broken more than one heart, would probably be ripped off with his hands. But in America, he's out of business, if you want to go to a monastery.
Something, after all, was going on with the Russian man: had the demographic mishap spoiled him so badly? Maybe that's why there are gentlemen in England, because statistically there are fourteen guys for every ten girls? And in Canada, even sixteen? In Russia, according to the latest CIA data, there are 16% fewer men than women. The prognosis, however, is comforting: there are still 5% more of them born, and with increased prosperity, improved health care and abandonment of bad habits, they have a chance to live to marriageable age with negligible losses. Changes in demographic proportions can completely reshape the culture of gender relations in Russia, our "Western foes" believe.