HRH cannot get through the week without purchasing “7 Days,” Russia’s equivalent of “TV Guide.”
But this obsession is not to find out when “Dancing On Ice,” will be, but rather to read his horoscope – or “goroscope” as the Russians pronounce it. This is one of those little character hiccups that forever endears him to me, along with the fact that he can never admit that he’s done something wrong. Since we had three weddings, HRH is much overburdened with remembering three different anniversaries. A week ago, I was so busy with Velvet and various service providers, that I only recalled the third when I was lying in bed sipping a well-deserved glass of wine, watching “Inspector Lynley.”
“Darling,” I texted him over in Moscow, “Did we both forget that today was our anniversary?”
In the morning, much refreshed, I rolled over to find this message on my iPhone:
“I love you!! Call me!”
HRH, if pressed, will tell you he doesn’t believe in God, the goodness of his fellow men, health insurance, and certainly not that Barack Obama is going to change the world for better. But he does believe with all the fervor of an original disciple what “7 Days” tells him is going to happen the upcoming week. For the week of the 8th of March, “International Women’s’ Day,” that one day of the year when Russian men give themselves over to housework and fawning over the females in their lives, “7 Days” predicted:
You have a calm week ahead of you. Now you are more inclined to compromise than to assert your independence. These thoughts will allow you to focus on your personal life. In addition, a new diet, exercise, and spiritual practice will bring you happiness and have a good affect.
I was hardly impressed. You don’t have to be Deepak Chopra to come to those conclusions.
Interspersed with television timetables are articles about cheesy Russian celebrities and their wildly decorated homes, which is why I would never go a week without “7 Days.” I want to get them all bound in leather covers, so we can preserve this delicious slice of Russian culture. I want to say “7 Days” is a cross between…but then, I can’t really think of two things that could ever define the perimeters of “7 Days.” It is inspired by “OK” magazine, that smutty and pimply younger sibling of “Hello!” but “7 Days” goes much further in its sheer awfulness. You have to wonder what ordinary people in Russia think when they see “7 Days.”