Monday, September 16, 2013

When the King Gained Some Weight


Before my mother was able to bring my grandmother to America she hired a lady to stay in our Moscow apartment and take care of my grandmother. 

I don't remember much about her at this point. Alas, I can't even recall her name. She was single woman in her thirties or late twenties. She had a white dog, played piano. She was religious and her room (my childhood room) was adorned with Russian Orthodox icons. 

The one thing about her that does stick to my memory is her fondness for Elvis. In fact, in her quarters, pictures of the King shared shelf-space with images of Russian saints. 

One time when I was vising Moscow for the summer, my friend, this lady and I were sitting around the television watching her tape of an Elvis documentary. The movie progressed to the later stage of Elvis' life. 

This is when teenage Ivan decided to pronounce that Elvis has gotten pretty fat. 

I meant no malice with the statement and saw it as a simple proclamation of fact. But she must have taken it the wrong way, because she quickly snapped back, "we'll see how you look at that age."

I was taken aback a little, I looked to my friend for consolation but he burst out laughing.

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