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By Tag > Nikita

109 lessons available

Runaway bun

Wanderlust – the inability to stay in one place – may not be a typical Russian affliction, but still, there are many Russians abroad nowadays, on the look-out for a less-boring or a less-dangerous country to settle in. To some, they are reminiscent of the most famous of all Russian fairy-tale chara...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: September 12, 2013

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Guests are a-coming

Despite their natural reserve and seeming unfriendliness, Russians are well-known for throwing exuberant parties. The backstage of the festivities can be stressful and chaotic, but the result is always delicious. Our lesson will provide you with some menu suggestions among other things – so you'd b...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: September 05, 2013

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Kings of the road

A car with its flashers on rushes onto the wrong lane, crashing into someone who wasn't paying enough attention and who then is blamed for the accident. This is not a scary road movie, this is Moscow reality. But who's the real culprit? Was it the ambulance, the fire department, or the police? None...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: August 29, 2013

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Meeting with a car

Here you are, driving to an important meeting in Moscow. You're almost there – but whose car is parked there, blocking your way? We'll find it out in this lesson, together with the discussion of Russian parking habits and some useful words you have to know when driving or walking along Russian stre...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: August 15, 2013

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Dodging the draft

There are many concerns on a young Russian man's mind, like: "Why did my girlfriend leave me?" or "Where can I get more money?" or "What am I doing with my life?" But very often they are overshadowed by another one: "How can I avoid the draft?" In Russia, military service is compulsory, and not ever...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: August 08, 2013

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Job Interview

Prepare to get some goose bumps: We're going to a job-interview. Thankfully, it's someone else's future on the line: Let's see whether he's got the necessary qualifications to be a journalist and whether he'll get the position. That'll also give us a chance to find out more about the Russian job mar...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: August 01, 2013

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Grandmas and grandsons

Who's gossiping there on a bench near our house entrance? Of course, it's the grannies – or babushkas. And what would they discuss more gladly than their pride and joy – their grandchildren! Let's listen and find out more about babushkas and their role in Russian family life. In today's grammar sect...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: July 25, 2013

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A friend in need

When you're down, when life sucks, or when your boyfriend has dumped you, nobody can console or support you better than your best friend. True friends might be brutally honest with you, but they'll never let you down and always lend a hand when needed – that's what the notion of true friendship mean...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: about

Published: July 18, 2013

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Planes, Trains, and May Day

May Day, May Day! These words would never cause alarm in Russia: On the contrary, the first days of May are the best time for having fun and travelling around, because the whole start of May is like one long weekend in Russia. In today's lesson, you'll not only find out why this is so, but also get ...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: in_on_by

Published: July 11, 2013

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Being a real man

Men and women – it's a miracle that they can co-exist at all, considering how often they want different things and how many different opinions they have about one another and each other's duties and obligations. Still, it often works out somehow – let's hope that today's dialog heroes also will find...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: has_to, want

Published: July 04, 2013

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Indispensable ushanka

It's not a stereotype: Russians do wear ushankas, or ear-flapped hats, a lot. And confronted with a serious Russian winter, you would, too. But an ushanka is not only great against sub-zero temperatures; it's also a fashion statement. Our lesson will introduce you to different kinds of ushankas – an...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: June 27, 2013

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No more 1990s

Russian business isn't always clean and fair. Why is the businessman in our dialog going crazy? Because his former partner is refusing to pay him back, and is afraid neither of the tax agency, nor even of a legal suit. These businessmen of today! Life was much simpler back in the 90s when a scammer ...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: June 20, 2013

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Destination Baikal

If you're still undecided about your next vacation trip, how about Lake Baikal – one of Russia's greatest natural treasures of legendary purity and beauty? Admittedly, it's not easy getting there, and it is quite unlike the usual holiday resort with all its comforts – that's why the ultimate questio...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: June 13, 2013

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Reading Dostoevsky

Have you read Dostoevsky? Even though many Russians haven't, they nevertheless all agree that he is the most influential and famous Russian writer ever. That is, if one doesn't count his eternal rival, Leo Tolstoy, of course. In today's lesson, you'll get to know both, and maybe choose where your pr...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: o_about

Published: June 06, 2013

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The troubles of Russian football

One of the best conversation starters with a Russian male (and often female) of any age is football. By football, we mean soccer – the only kind of football as far as Russians are concerned, and the sport nearest their hearts. Our lesson will help you in sharing your football thoughts with Russians ...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Topic: sport, football

Published: May 30, 2013

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Sleep, little one, go to sleep

It's beddy-buy time! Well, obviously not for us grown-ups. Instead, let's stay up and learn a famous lullaby loved by generations of Russian kids. It was also used as a cover song of the first Russian kids' TV-show Goodnight, Little Ones. See if you can recognize the melody. In today's grammar, we a...

Host: Nikita, Tanya
Topic: poem, kids, lullaby

Published: May 23, 2013

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Lada's Last Stand

Bad news awaits us in today's lesson: A car crash is never fun. But wait a minute, are we talking about a Soviet-era Zhiguli here? In this case, a car crash might be a blessing in disguise. Let's find out why in this lesson, and have a look at cars and Russian car industry in particular. We continue...

Host: Nikita, Tanya
Function: auto_vocabulary

Published: May 16, 2013

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Leaving Moscow

Where is the "real" Russia? Some people firmly believe that the one and only place to live in Russia is Moscow. Others think that Moscow isn't really Russia at all. In today's dialog, we'll witness someone's life choice between these two options, and have a chance to compare the capital and the "pro...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: May 09, 2013

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MMM: Mysteriously Missing Money

What's better? Stuffing your savings into a mattress, or investing it in a profitable venture? Obviously, the thought of having your money work for you is appealing. Lots of Russians felt the same way and so bought shares in MMM – Russia's greatest financial fraud of the 90s. And as crazy as it soun...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: April 29, 2013

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On the Road

Russians love their cars and fast driving, but their relationship to Russian roads is much more complicated. "On the road again…" – many Russians dread such a perspective. The many reasons for this can all be found in our lesson, so let's start our engines and hit the road ourselves!Today's grammar ...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: April 25, 2013

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A ride in marshrutka

Another ride in the marshrutka – the shuttle mini-bus - is due today – side by side right next to a lovely Russian girl. Let's listen to her incessant requests and demands addressed to her fellow-passengers and learn how to make our own: The marshrutka is a place where you'll have to use your Russia...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: April 22, 2013

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Wish Fish

Choosing presents can sometimes be very tricky, especially if you're searching for something suitable for two people who get along with each other like cats and dogs. In such cases, it often looks like only the Golden Fish can help you – one that fulfills all your wishes.After first appearing in Ale...

Host: Nikita, Tanya
Grammar: let's_let

Published: April 18, 2013

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Going to the ballet

If you are planning to go out in Moscow, classic ballet at the Bolshoi theatre is certainly a number-one destination. Musicals come and go, but the Russian ballet with its classic pas de deux has always been a part of the national heritage and is still a wonderful opportunity to enjoy beautiful danc...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: verbs_motion

Published: April 15, 2013

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Women's day in Russia

March 8th – International Women's day – is widely celebrated in Russia. However, this holiday is not about the rights and freedoms of women. As you'll find out in our lesson, it's more about flowers, and presents, and a cake – and women don't seem to mind.In today's grammar, we'll have an overview o...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: April 11, 2013

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Grandfather Frost

Did you know that Russians not only have their own Santa Claus, but that he also comes not at Christmas time, but on New Year's Eve instead? And not late at night through the chimney, but right through the front door to your happy kids? Come and greet him, too, maybe there'll be presents?In today's ...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: April 08, 2013

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Greetings from the Traffic Police

Surely you, dear listener, are one of those drivers who have never broken any traffic rules in their entire life. Even so you're not safe from the Russian traffic police and their fines: They have to fill their quota, after all, that's why they'll sometimes fine you just for the sake of your ready m...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: April 04, 2013

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Village life

Granny's pies are fresh from the oven, kebabs are emanating heavenly smells, the sunset is perfect – at times like this, there seems to be no better place than a Russian village. Up until the moment when you have to trek to the faraway outhouse while being pursued by swarms of bloodthirsty mosquitoe...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: plural_nouns

Published: April 01, 2013

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Cops and robbers

In Russia, it's sometimes hard to say who you have to beware of more, hooligans or policemen. The rule of thumb here is to keep away from both of them. Let's see whether our dialog's hero followed this rule, and discuss some police-related topics as well.Today's grammar deals with spatial prepositio...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: March 29, 2013

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I love Russian

Learning a foreign language can be difficult at times: You start with such enthusiasm, and then all those new words and rules seem to pile up. But persevere, and you'll have a breakthrough. Many have been through this stage already – look at our dialog's heroine: She'll get over through her sudden a...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: language

Published: March 27, 2013

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Office in a former factory

Today, we're going to visit a factory. But wait, it's not a factory anymore – it has been converted into museums, offices, recording studios, shops and what not – and everything is available for rent. That is, if you don't mind funky neighbors or the whole idea of an art cluster – which has become v...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: March 25, 2013

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The Speckled Hen Tale

Sit back, listen carefully, and let us tell you a story – and not just any story, but the most famous of Russian children's fairy-tales: Speckled Hen. Maybe it's not the most exciting or the cutest of all tales, but it's definitely one of the most enigmatic – even parents are often at a loss. Let's ...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: March 22, 2013

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Maslenitsa – Butter Week

In Russia, the winter season – and especially Maslenitsa, Russian Carnival week - is a season of pancakes. No one can resist Russian pancakes filled with caviar and eaten with mead – except maybe some extremely health-conscious fitness addicts.In today's grammar, we'll get to know another subtype of...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: March 20, 2013

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Wrong Airport

There are so many things to think about when heading to the airport: flight time, tickets, passports, luggage… And last, but not least: Is this my airport? In today's lesson, we'll discuss how to get in and out of an airport and how not to mix the airports up!Today's grammar is about the verbs of th...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Topic: airport

Published: March 18, 2013

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Polar Night

Would you like to live in a place where the night sometimes lasts for more than a month? Exotic as it may sound, there are several big Russian cities where the polar night is a part of everyday life. Let's listen to a telephone conversation with one such city and learn more about the conditions beyo...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: March 15, 2013

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Learning Russian

Oh those Russians, oh that Russian language… So difficult to learn, or is it? With a little effort, you're already making progress, and we hope that soon you'll master the basics. Step by step – that's the key!Today, we're revisiting some of the most important grammar basics: Russian grammatical gen...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: March 13, 2013

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Comrade, can you spare a dime?

Beggars are a sad part of every city in the world, and Russia is no exception. On the contrary, the populace of panhandlers is so vast and multifaceted that one can talk about a separate complex subculture – or sub-society. In this lesson we'll get to know it a bit closer – but not too close: Some m...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: March 08, 2013

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Going Postal

Today's lesson is a cautionary tale about Russia's state postal service – "Почта России." Unfortunate, but true: The Russian Postal Service is nothing to write home about. Let's take a closer look at its weaknesses and find ways around them.You have to know from where to where you're sending you pac...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: March 06, 2013

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We are working!

It's work time again! Let's visit a Russian office and find out what the employees are doing. They should be working, by the way, but you never know in Russia! And sometimes, what is regarded as leisure in other cultures is considered hard work here – which can lead to misunderstandings.In today's g...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: March 04, 2013

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Calling from Yakutsk

You have to be tough to live in Yakutia – not only because it's one of the Russia's coldest regions, but also because the rest of the country doesn't seem to understand how unusual it really is. Let's find out more about it in this lesson.In the grammar part, we'll learn prepositions that delimit pe...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: March 01, 2013

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From Russia with love

Just arrived or ready to depart – there is always a good time to get some souvenirs from Russia, otherwise who'd ever believe that you've been here! A nesting doll is always a good choice, but there are plenty of other goodies to bring home and show off – let's see what they are!In today's grammar, ...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Topic: souvenirs

Published: February 27, 2013

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What time is it?

Oh, not the alarm clock again! But yep – it's ringing, which means it's time to discuss the Russian concept of time: both formally - How do we ask about time in Russian? - and philosophically – How do Russians view time?In today's grammar, we learn how to use verbs in the present tense, focusing on ...

Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: February 25, 2013

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Russian Time Zones

Russia's vastness has its drawbacks: While one business partner is getting up, his client has already gone to bed – a not-uncommon situation that can make business dealings a real headache. No wonder that Russians are infamous for their lack of punctuality – maybe their many time zones are to blame?...

Host: Nikita, Tanya
Grammar: in_and_after

Published: February 22, 2013

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Oh, those blue jeans!

Clothing stores still remain a terra incognita for many husbands, where dragons hide in the price tags. Russia is no exception. Let's take a stroll around a typical Russian store and find out more about cool things and their sizes.In today's grammar, we discuss adjectives and their endings again. Th...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Topic: shopping

Published: February 18, 2013

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Mister Twister

Today, we're making the acquaintance of an American millionaire who once came to Soviet Russia and was immortalized in the children's poem "Mister Twister" written by Samuil Marshak. Let's read its most famous excerpt and then find out more about foreigners confronting Russian life.Mr. Twister will ...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: February 15, 2013

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At the market

Today, we're going to buy some fresh fruit at the market. While the character in our dialog doesn't seem to know what he wants to buy, it's still a good chance for us to learn some useful expressions and measures.In today's grammar, we continue to discuss adjectives and their various endings....

Topic: food, market
Host: Masha, Nikita

Published: February 13, 2013

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Airport Check-In

In Russia, like in any other country, you should check into the airport well in advance. But with luck, one can manage to get checked-in five minutes before boarding. Listen to our lesson for important airport vocabulary plus useful check-in expressions and you'll achieve cruising altitude in no tim...

Topic: travelling
Host: Masha, Nikita
Grammar: airport_time

Published: February 11, 2013

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The wine must go on

What's a romantic rendezvous without sufficient quantities of alcohol to accompany it? At least that's what some people - like our dialog's hero - firmly believe in. They are even ready to put their date "on hold" while they run out and get more drinks, because alcohol isn't sold all night in Russia...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: February 08, 2013

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Hangover

Where would Russia's famous drinking culture be without its most natural consequence — the hangover? It firmly belongs to the Russian life-style and today we'll get to know it closer (but not too close, please!) as well as learn how to avoid it in the first place and how to cure it in the worst case...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Topic: bars, moods

Published: February 06, 2013

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What's the house number?

Finding the right address in a big city is quite an adventure – especially in Moscow, where the house numbering system is pretty tricky. Our lesson will help you to get it straight, so that you'll always be able to understand where the house that you need is!...

Host: Masha, Nikita
Topic: address

Published: February 04, 2013

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What a wedding!

It's  a wedding day today – for some, the most important day of their lives; for others, a happy opportunity to gossip gleefully about the bride's looks and the groom's faults. Let's join in on the celebrations – or at least on the gossip – and learn more about Russian wedding traditions.Today's gra...

Host: Nikita, Tanya

Published: February 01, 2013

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