No Russian shoe-maker would ever buy shoes of his own make

“The new experience of normalcy is testing. It can be hard and painful. Suddenly one may disclose that his standard of living is much, much worse than one thought it was. Every day one sees a lot of people who definitely live better than himself or herself. Especially those pompous New Russians with their insulting habit of showing everybody their newly acquired-God knows how-riches. Strange and humiliating thoughts come to one’s head. Why is the whole world living better than we? Are those vulgar Americans, materialistic Germans, light-minded Italians any better than us-so spiritual, so cultured?”

Posted March 22, 2001

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