Fur Hat

In this satire of Soviet existence, an insecure yet much-published novelist, Yefim Rakhlin, learns that the Writers' Union is giving fur hats to its contributors in accordance with their value, and that he premiums in basic terms fluffy tomcat. Translated by way of Susan Brownsberger.

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Alright. I simply proposal you’d prefer to pay attention my opin­ ion. the unconventional is amazing . . . ” terrific had such an eye-catching sound that Yefim couldn't grasp up. “ . . . even though a litde long-winded,” Kostya went on. “ Long-winded? Why long-winded? ” “Well, let’s examine it. Take the start: T h e day used to be sizzling. Savely Morgunov sat at his table and watched a fly beat opposed to the windowpane. ’ lovely! ” “ it really is lovely good,” Yefim admitted bashfully. “Not beautiful good,” Kostva insisted. “Stunning! although imprecise. ” “ vague?

Baldy, have whatever to consume. ” Kukusha laid a plate o f dumplings at the desk. “ take a seat, devour, ignore the goddamn hat. this is often all my fault. I positioned you as much as it. glance, to hell with the hat. I’ll purchase you one myself, a greater one than anv o f vour asshole writers have. I’ll purchase you . . . how approximately silver fox? ” “N o! ” Yefim shouted. “Absolutely no longer! I’ll cause them to! while Karetnikov comes again, I’ll cross see him after which . . . ” He shook his fist and commenced to weep. seventy three I first heard approximately Yefim going mad from Baranov, at the mobile, after which from Fishkin on the Literary membership.

He cried, as though thrilled. “You desired to see me? yet why are you sitting there? you'll have knocked instantly! good, are available in, do are available. Wait, wait, mustn’t shake fingers around the threshold! ” And, drawing Yefim into the place of work, he embraced him heartily, even slapped him at the again, and peppered him with own questions, from which you can still inform that he proposal o f Yefim frequently. “Well, how’s your wellbeing and fitness? How are issues? H ow ’s Kukusha? Everything’s o.k. with Tishka at graduate institution? My grandson’s a grad­ uate scholar, too, because it occurs.

Yefim provided his neighbor a stool and cleared the frying pan from the desk. “Would you love a few tea? espresso? Or anything a section better? ” Yefim winked. Vaska shook his head. “No, not anything. the day prior to this I heard approximately you from there” He pointed to the ceiling. “Apparendy you're identified there. ” “Apparently,” Yefim acknowledged, now not with out delight. ninety eight “Who’d have concept it? ” Vaska decreased his voice. “ Do you will have a section o f paper? ” “Writing paper? ” “And . . . ” Vaska acknowledged. He moved his hand, miming the act o f writing.

A sore topic, I notice. I don’t ask of­ ficially, you already know, no longer from the— ha-ha— intelli­ sixty three gence element o f view, yet as a father myself or even as a grandfather . . . She’s settled someway, i'm hoping? no longer brief o f funds? Everything’s very well along with her kin? ” He knew, o f direction, that Yefim went each Tuesday to the most put up workplace, pulling his hat down over his eyes and masking his face. it really is uncertain what Yefim was hoping to accomplish by way of this simply because there he prolonged throughout the little window a passport with a photo during which his favourite Jewish eyes and face have been thoroughly un­ hid.

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