September 27th, 2016

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Friendly Mr. Mallard


He saw me first and approached me in the woods of the Marblehead Neck Wildlife Sanctuary this afternoon.

“Hello. I am Mr. Mallard”

I was looking for the birds high in the trees and totally missed how he got close to me.

“What’s going on, sir?” – he asked me with a friendly smile.

I explained to him that I am a photographer and I am trying to get photos of the birds. I hear them in the trees. I saw chickadees and blue jays and a few warblers but they got scared and flew away from me.

“Do you want to make a picture of me?”

I looked at the little Mr. Mallard and realized that I don’t have photos of mallards featured in my Birds portfolio at Chidlovski Blog Chidlovski.

“That is so easy to fix!” said Mr. Mallard and smiled into the camera.

This the debut of our photos of mallards at Chidlovski Blog Chidlovski.

If you see Mr. Mallard in the pond nearby, please tell him hello from me.

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Now and Then (1972-2016): Russian Fans


The outlook of Russian fans changed drastically since 1972.

To begin with, Russia went through huge changes in the last three decades. There is no more USSR. The country got exposed to commercialism and became more open to the world.

Russian fans today travel around the world to support their national hockey team. Back in the 1972, there were very few Russian fans cheering for their team in the first four games played in Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg and Vancouver. Those were mostly professionals being in Canada on a business occasion.

Russian fans in Luzhniki consisted mostly of the VIP audience. The interest to the series was huge. Tickets never made to the regular ticket sales places but distributed directly to the Soviet elite.

If you look at the photos of the Soviet spectators in Moscow in 1972, you’ll see a lot of Soviet police officers and the majority of people following the dress code of the Bolshoy Theater rather than some sports event.

The average Soviet fans watched the 1972 Summit Series on TV. A few went to the Luzhniki Arena and were lucky enough to exchange badges and other sports memorabilia with the Team Canada members.

Today, Russian sports fans crowd is much more colorful and diverse. Hockey fans wear national team jerseys, hats and scarfs. They bring hockey banners and various Team Russia attributes available in the souvenir shops. They are more opened and cheerful for their team.

It’s a big difference between the look of the Soviet fans in 1972 and the Team Russia fans today.

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Now and Then (1972-2016): Bench Russia


The look of the Russian players and coaches at the bench reflects changes in Russian hockey in the last decades.

Legendary coaches of the Soviet team Tarasov, Chernyshev, Bobrov, Kulagin and Tikhonov preferred to manage their team being in fromt of the players’ bench during the game.

Vsevolod Bobrov, Team USSR coach in 1972, followed this style too. It was odd in the eyes of Canadian coaches’ eyes according to their post-series memories.

Nowadays, the coaches of Team Russia and clubs in the KHL are overlooking the games from behind the bench with players. It’s one of the signs of conversion to the NHL style.

Somehow, it’s one of the elements showing how many things Russia preempted from the NHL. Although the KHL was created as an alternative league to the NHL, it did patterned most of the hockey experiences from the NHL.

Perhaps, the only thing left untouched is the bigger size of the ice rinks in Russia and in Europe.


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Debates on the Debates


There is a great deal of debates and discussions in Russia about the first Presidential Debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Obviously, most of the experts suggesting the outcome of the debates won’t vote in the U.S. elections by definition. However, the spotlight in Russian media is on the U.S. elections almost with the same intensity as it was on the recent elections to Russian parliament a week ago.

No social studies or polls were conducted but it seems that most pro Kremlin voters in Russia find Trump as a more likeable candidate.

Representatives of opposition to Putin note that it is more likely that Hillary won the first round in the debates. She looked and acted more like a president to be elected than Trump.

Interestingly enough, despite contradictory stand on immigration by Trump, the biggest Russian American community in Brighton Beach in Brookline, NY seems to have Trump as their choice too. Historically, they tended to vote for Republican Party ever since they moved to the United States in the early 1970s. With Trump being a non-mainstream Republican candidates, it seemed that Brighton Beach voters might switch their voices in 2016.  Radio Freedom reports that most residents of Brighton Beach support Donald Trump.

Just a few observations based on the read of Russian news and listening to the latest radio talk shows from Moscow.

I am not sure how many Americans actually know about the outcome of Russian elections a week ago. But, no  doubt that U.S. Presidential elections are being followed in Russia with a big interest.