Reading is funny

Reading Is Funny Day (April 1st)

If you have ever tried and failed at getting your child to put down the video games and pick up a book, this might be the day for you! Reading is Funny Day aims to show children that reading can be just as fun as more modern entertainment, whether it be with jokes, riddles, or funny stories.

Learn about Reading Is Funny Day

Reading Is Funny Day has been created for the purpose of showing young readers that reading a book can be just as enjoyable and entertaining as other forms of entertainment, for instance, playing a video game or watching the television. In order to ensure that books are as appealing as possible to younger children, this day focuses on books that are funny. Good examples include books of riddles, comedy books, and joke books.

A lot of parents experience the struggle to trying to get their children away from the computer screen. This is only becoming more and more difficult, as computers become more popular and ingrained in everyday life. However, you want your child to have varied forms of entertainment, and that’s why Reading is Funny Day is important. It gives you the perfect opportunity to pry your child away from the computer and to get them to embrace another form of enjoyment. By making them laugh and showing them how fun books can be, you can encourage your child to read books throughout the year.

History of Reading Is Funny Day

In order to understand the history of Reading Is Funny Day, we need to understand the history of a joke. We are sure you have heard plenty of jokes throughout your life, some good and some bad! From riddles to knock-knock jokes, there are certain formats that stick with us and give us the basis for a good joke. We’re sure you have heard plenty of jokes that ask why a chicken (or any other type of animal) crossed the road!

The oldest joke that has been saved is an ancient Sumerian proverb, which comes from 1900 BC. The second oldest can be dated to 1600 BC and it comes from the ancient Egyptians. This shows that throughout the ages, and no matter the differences in our cultures and way of life, one thing that we have enjoyed doing for as long as time is having a good laugh! You may be wondering what sort of jokes the ancient Egyptians found funny. Well, the joke from 1600 BC is as follows:

“How do you entertain a bored pharaoh? You sail a boatload of young women dressed only in fishing nets down the Nile and urge the pharaoh to go catch a fish”.

This joke was found scrolled onto papyrus and it is thought to be a dig at the Pharoah that was in charge at the time!

It was not until the 4th or 5th century AD that we started to see collections of jokes. What is so fascinating is that we still use a lot of these jokes today, such as those referring to people with bad breath and the absent-minded professor. At the time, the book was intended so that you could read it and then repeat the joke whenever the opportunity came about.

When the printing press was invented in the 15th century, you probably already know that one of the first books to be printed was the Bible. But did you know that one of the other first books to be printed was the collection of jokes we’ve just referred to?

It did not take long for joke books to take off either. Their popularity has been unquestioned ever since. In fact, one joke book that was released in 1470 was so popular that there were roughly 20 editions of the book generated in the 15th century alone! There are many books today that don’t get anywhere close to having 20 editions published!

Joke books today are still as popular as they ever have been. The way that they are consumed may be different, as a lot of people read online content and e-books, yet it’s unlikely we will ever see the day whereby jokes aren’t popular. Who would want to live in such a dull world?

How to celebrate Reading Is Funny Day

Take the opportunity on this day to show your children how fun reading can be. Download riddles from the internet to get your children engaged, go to the local library to check out a few funny books, or even spend the day making up funny stories of your own! Setting this day aside to concentrate on having fun reading can be a real eye-opener to the children of today and may even encourage them to start to read on their own on other days of the year!

The main purpose of Reading Is Funny Day is to introduce your children to the joy of reading, so that’s what your main goal should be. There are many different ways that you can go about this. You could purchase some children’s books in preparation for the day. Alternatively, you could go to the library together and pick out some funny books. This is a great way to spend some time together and it gives your child the chance to explore the sort of books they like.

You and your little one could also try to make your own book on Reading Is Funny Day. This is a great activity to enjoy on this day, and it will help to progress your child’s development as well. Plus, we are sure it is the sort of activity that your little one is going to get excited about. You can find lots of different examples of activities like this online if you’re looking for a fun way to engage your child and teach them about the value of a good book.

If you’re wondering where to start when it comes to funny books for kids, there are lots of great suggestions out there! I’m Bored by Michael Ian Black is a good choice! It is a book about confronting the age-old child mantra “I’m bored. ” In this book, a bored little girl is excited to meet a talking potato, that is until the potato declares that he finds children boring! The book follows the girl trying to change his mind, and it is assured to make both you and your child laugh. We would also highly recommend Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein. In this book, a little chicken wants her dad to read her a bedtime story. However, she keeps interrupting the book at every opportunity because she can’t bear that her beloved fairy tale characters continue to make errors! The book shows that children being an active participant in storytelling can be very funny and exciting too.

Whatever you do on Reading is Funny Day, make sure it’s fun! Let us know if you read any books that get you and your little one in fits of giggles!

View all holidays

READING IS FUNNY DAY - April 1, 2023

Got an idea for a holiday? Send it to us

Submit Now

  • History
  • Timeline
  • FAQs
  • Importance
  • Celebrate

World Reading is Funny Day, celebrated every year on April 1, is aimed at rekindling a passion for reading among the younger generations. Technological advancement and the advent of ever-interesting shows on screen have made reading seem rather boring and old-fashioned for kids. Hence, Reading is Funny Day is a perfect time to reintroduce your young ones to the reading culture by gifting them or reading to them a book that catches their young reader’s attention with a giggle or two.

History of Reading is Funny Day

To understand Reading is Funny Day, we must first look into the first book ever written, which originates from the Mesopotamia era. During this time, markings were made on clay tablets in scripts known as ‘cuneiforms.’ The art of writing was developed around 5400 B.C., with the first literary work being “Kesh Temple Hymn.”

The oldest records of jokes were traced back to 1900 B.C. The first extant joke book is the “Philogelos,” translated as “Laughter-Lover.” It contained 265 jokes written in crude ancient Greek dating back to the fourth or fifth century A.D. The invention of the printing press in 1439 A. D. made it possible to have more copies of books in print. The first-ever written children’s book was “A Little Pretty Pocket-Book,” by John Newbey, in 1744.

Since then, thousands of books have been published that can help ignite a passion for reading in youngsters — from “The Monster at the End of this Book” by Jon Stone to “Interrupting Chicken” by David Ezra Stein. The course of time has provided us with a vast repertoire of children’s funny books to choose from when selecting the perfect book to celebrate Reading is Funny Day with your kids.

Reading is Funny Day timeline


The Printing Press Is Invented

The printing press is introduced by Johannes Gutenberg.


The First Popular Joke Book Printed

About 20 editions of this joke book are printed.


The First Children's Book is Written

“A Little Pretty Pocket-Book,” the very first children’s book, is published by Jon Newbey.

Nineteenth Century

Cartoons are Introduced in Joke Books

The use of cartoons and drawings in Joke Books is introduced.

Reading is Funny Day


Do you think reading is fun?

Reading is and should be fun, it can be regarded as an educational as well as a leisure activity.

What is fun about reading?

Reading can be entertaining, as it increases your confidence, keeps you informed about people and happenings, exercises the mind, and ignites your creativity.

Does reading make you smarter?

Reading makes you smarter, as it helps to exercise your brain. It also increases your attention to detail, broadens your vocabulary, and makes you a better writer.

Reading is Funny Day Activities

  1. Read a funny story with or to your kid

    The idea of Reading is Funny Day is to foster a reading culture among children. Celebrate this day by reading a funny book with or to your child.

  2. Visit the library or book store

    A visit to the library or book store with your child can help stir up the reading curiosity of your child. Take your child on a special visit to the library.

  3. Set the pace

    Children are better stimulated by what they observe you doing than what you say to them. Asides from buying comic books to celebrate Reading Is Funny Day, you can also pick a book to read, and your child might join you. Children are natural copycats.

5 Facts About Books

  1. There are about 130 million published books

    We cannot count them all, but there are about 130 million published books.

  2. The Bible is the most sold book

    With at least five billion printed copies sold, the Bible remains the overall bestselling book of all time.

  3. The world’s longest novel

    The longest novel written, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, is Marcel Proust’s “Remembrance of Things Past,” with 9,609,000 characters (including spaces).

  4. The Codex Leicester

    The most expensive book in the world is Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Codex Leicester,” bought by Bill Gates for $30. 8 million in 1994.

  5. The Epic of Gilgamesh

    This mythic poem is considered to be history’s oldest known work of fiction.

Why We Love Reading is Funny Day

  1. It teaches a lifelong skill

    What we learn in childhood tends to stay with us for life. Teaching your child that reading is fun will motivate them to keep it up even when they are grown.

  2. Creates memories

    Reading is Funny Day creates opportunities for parents to spend more time with their children by reading exciting books to them. It helps create lasting meaningful memories.

  3. Revives the reading culture

    From reading a funny book like “Interrupting Chicken.” by David Ezra Stein, children can begin to develop a genuine passion for reading. This can be something they then pass on to their friends.

Reading is Funny Day dates

2023April 1Saturday
2024April 1Monday
2025April 1Tuesday
2026April 1Wednesday
2027April 1Thursday

































Holidays Straight to Your Inbox

Every day is a holiday!
Receive fresh holidays directly to your inbox.

Read online “Funny and sad. Collection of stories ”, Denis Davov - liters

photographer Evgenia Kulpina

photographer Dmitry Antipov

© Denis Dabovov, 2020

© Evgenia Kulpina, photography, 2020

© 2020

ISBN 978-5-4485-9422-9

Created by intellectual publishing system Ridero

Do I believe in angels

(mono conversation)

Do I believe in angels? Hmm, weird question. As a rule, they ask about God. A children's story, perhaps. Winged people probably don't exist. What do you think? Yes, yes, of course, wings are a metaphor, the personification of purity and the best human qualities, and perhaps even those wings that can only be seen with special eyesight or a certain degree of purity and holiness.

And who are they - angels? Why do you want them so badly? What for?

So what if they love us? Don't you love yourself? So learn. No one will solve your problems for you, not even an angel. And any good person, even me, can support, attract more affection and tenderness when you need them. I'm sorry, I allow myself to consider myself good.

I'm sitting on my roof the other day and suddenly I look...

How, what did I do on the roof? The sun is shining, the sky is closer and the view is unusual, not the same as down here. In general, I sat and that's it. I love this thing, sorry. Well, what's the wind? - I flew all winter without a hat ... Hardened, one might say so. Listening to the wind is like listening to a record on a retro turntable. It seems that both the mono sound and the speakers cover the words with a network of cracks, but this pleasure cannot be exchanged for anything else. The diamond needle of the imagination cuts circles through the vinyl memory of the ages, and the deciphered wind chime sounds so loud and so beautiful! It flies into the ears, into the skin, into the soul ...

And how many stories are on it, on this wind-player! Entire life. And the roof is her station.

By the way, not all of the angels generally want to interfere in the affairs of people. The higher ranks do not burden themselves with this at all. So don't be under any illusions. Everyone does what is destined, or rather, what he took responsibility for in his free choice. After all, love always brings freedom too.

Oh, how the fire in my heart flared up. I think I'm starting to love everyone again!!! No, the feeling doesn’t go away, it’s just that special outbursts come from time to time. I love the time structure for this feature.

And in general, everything depends on you. If you want angels, become an angel yourself, remember yourself, feel the wings folded behind your back, unity with the universe and...

I agree, a banal argument. That is why, when God wants to teach a person something, the space not only gives hints, but also reinforces with actions. After all, a person tries not to believe to the last, such a beast. And the angel throws up events sometimes not just unpleasant, but even cruel, if you do not want to hear him.

And who said that an angel can't knock on the head? - how else can. What did I take from? - well, just to love is not only to pat on the head, it is also to influence, lead through the secret passages of Darkness and Light ... lead to love. Therefore, everything in your life happens on time and exactly as it is necessary for you, even if you do not see the connections and cannot trace the sequences. It's your problem. Not a single normal person will go on about the desires of a blind kitten who has not yet come off his mother's boobs. But when he grows up and wiser, it is unlikely that there will be a need for constant supervision of him.

And yet... yet... every angel goes through the path of evolution, including through human incarnations, until he passes all the trials. Each of us is essentially a magician, each one is an angel inside, each potential God. But for this you need to go a long way.

Did you come across an unusual interlocutor? Not expected? Did you think that by approaching a stranger or a few on the street, you would find some kind of answer or maybe an excuse? You won't find. Not in me, not in anyone else. And this meeting is not accidental. In any case, you intuitively chose from the crowd the one who seemed attractive at first sight. Looking for sympathy for yourself, you choose someone who is internally similar to you in your virtues. First of all, the one in whom you see your own shortcomings will seem unpleasant. And so you turned to me with a question. And I saw you yesterday when I was sitting on the roof. Accident?

Are you asking me if I believe in angels? I believe in LOVE and this is the main thing. Only with it you need to go through life, otherwise life itself will become worthless and empty, and the soul will become sick. Love is not a fairy tale, not an abstraction, not an idealization of reality and not just a need - this is how I perceive the world and this is my GOD! And only in this I am happy. Lord, how I love this world, how much I love this world!!! Thank you for creating all of this.

And thank you too... for the question. After all, you asked yourself first.

Of course I believe in angels.

Well, that's it, it's time... to fly...

Hello, police?

(accident in an auto shop)

Toward evening, when visitors began to stop by less often, I was finally able to sit down and stretch out my tired legs in front of me. The day turned out to be fussy, but money-making. Half an hour left before closing, and I completely relaxed. But here a stocky man of forty-five appeared in front of me in a shabby black leather jacket, sweatpants and earflaps. I couldn’t see the shoes from behind the counter, but the look of it was already terribly ridiculous. Only the large glasses that he put on, taking it out of his pocket and wiping the glasses with his fingers when he entered the room, gave this image at least some kind of harmony. Unwashed matted hair peeked out from under the cap, and painfully red eyes looked out from behind the lenses of the glasses. Even with glasses, the man squinted very strongly and leaned over the glass of the shop windows, almost touching them with his nose. His movements were heavy and unhurried, as if something very heavy was pulling him to the ground. I got up and began to patiently wait for him to “ripen” and speak.

– What machines do you have spare parts for? the visitor asked.

- For VAZ, - I answered shortly and laconically.

- Where did you get it from?

- What?

– What is for us? Do you know what kind of car I have?

- I don't know what kind of car you have, - I'm surprised, - you asked about spare parts, I answered.

– Yes, I asked… and what did you say?

- I said: "For the VAZ."

- But how do you know where?! - the visitor did not let up.

- Do you think I don't know what I'm trading? Associate Professor, - I say, - stupid, and his name is Avas . ..

- Please do not insult! - the visitor was indignant. His voice became surprisingly sharp and loud:

- Maybe I have a bus ... Korean?!

- Yes, at least a Chukchi scooter. I trade in spare parts for VAZ, you understand?

- But that's impossible! You don't know anything.

- I don't know?! Yes, I have been in trade for 10 years and have been dealing with spare parts for all 10 years. I identify faults by hearing, by smell, taste and description by the client of a slightly similar car that he caught a glimpse of on the road!

– And if I have this one, this one…, I think…, I think… a bulldozer… homemade with a motor from a vacuum cleaner?

- Yes, even an excavator with wheels from a designer, even a sled made of paper according to patterns from the Soviet magazine "Murzilka"! - I flared up, - I have a narrow profile: components for VAZ.

- How do you know?

- I don't know what I'm trading?

- Do you know what?

- Why not?

- I don't know.

- And I don't know.

“Well, tell me what you know,” the visitor giggled in a very nasty way. Maybe, of course, not as nasty as it seemed to me then, but I was on edge, and my patience was running out.

Are you kidding me? - I asked and added, - I will explain for the last time: in my store, spare parts for only one brand of car, for VAZ. Clear?

- Understood. You want to say that you spied on me, choosing my car from a million crowd, and brought everything you might need to the store ... no, no, what is broken. So-so, it means that you somehow broke my car and waited for me to come to cut the dough!

– Lord, what the hell are you talking about? What is the probability that after a breakdown you will come to me? Shops in the city are like homeless people in the garbage.

- Exactly. Vitek is a bastard. “Go,” he says, “I know the store is good.” How much did you buy it for? Now everything is clear. I'm calling the police.

Having made this important announcement, he took out a simple mobile phone from the inside pocket of his jacket and began to poke buttons with his index finger.

– What kind of police?! I haven't seen your car and I don't know you, but the most interesting thing is that I don't even want to know. God save me from such acquaintances!

Judging soberly, I decided that my visitor did not have everything at home, but this did not add composure to me. It's always like this with me, it's worth getting a little angry and then nothing will stop you. I also understood this very well, but the adrenaline in my blood continued to seethe, turning out a whole fountain of unbridled emotions.

- You know what, young man, - the visitor did not let up, - Don't hang noodles on my ears, I can see right through you. And you don't have to know me. The same Vitek (who is a bastard) picked up his pipe, dialed the number:

- Hello, a burdock is coming to you.

...and that's it. Yes, if I hadn’t grabbed on to this “For you”, they would have swindled a long time ago, slipped some rubbish and another kick in the ass. No, I'll sell your whole gang. I will bring you all to clean water!

– What gang?! What gang?! I shouted in confusion.

- Criminal.

- The only thing missing here was the police. I don't know any Vitka. Although, he really is a bastard, and what a bastard, since he planted such a pig for me! Here after all sent the client.

- What? Am I a pig?! - the visitor was quite sincerely surprised, - Well, this already goes beyond all boundaries.

And phone:

- Hello, police?

- Idiot! VAZ means Zhiguli. Zhi-gu-li. Accordingly, for VAZ...

- What are you, offering me a bribe, do you want to pay off the Zhiguli? You snicker, you think that there are no more decent people left ....

- Among the decent, marriage also occurs in the form of a movement of the brain center through the intestines into the environment. And be a fool three times if I offer someone a bribe as a ransom for his own stupidity!

- Please be rude. Hello, police? - my unpleasant interlocutor kissed the phone again.

I prayed, raising my hands to the ceiling:

– Oh, Lord! How can I explain to him?!

- You will explain elsewhere. Hello, police?

- A Zhiguli is not beer, it's such a ... disposable car. And the word "VAZ" ends in "Z": winter, drifts, salary, snack, teeth, crack, plug, stutter, infection .... Clear?

- Of course, I understand. It is clear that I was in a hurry to call the police. Look, how you deftly sculpt excuses. And I have no proof.

I made an incredible effort to pull myself together:

- Let's go outside, I'll show you a Zhiguli.

The visitor immediately agreed, and we left. Not far from the front door, I noticed two pairs of old wooden skis leaning against the fence. They had such an unsightly appearance that the only thought that arose at the sight of four unplaned, time-eaten pieces of wood was that the former owner was too lazy to take them to a garbage container across the road and left them here.

- You see, the red "six" is standing - this is a Zhiguli, - I said and pointed my finger at the car.

- I don't see.

- How? Well, there it is, right in front of us.

- Where? Come closer,” the visitor asked, terribly screwing up his red eyes.

We approached.

- Well?

- What's "well"?

- So where? – asked the question, even more stupid in my eyes, the man.

- Here is the Lada "six"! I shouted, again unable to restrain myself, and in the heat of the moment slammed my hand on the hood.

- Where is it written? I see the Lada badge.

- So fret - this is the Zhiguli.

- Don't confuse me. First a VAZ, then a Zhiguli, and now I also added a fret.

- VAZ is a plant that makes Zhiguli, - I explain to him, - and Zhiguli and Lada are one and the same.

- Well, hello...

- Goodbye, good night, or better yet, goodbye!!!

- You will be forgiven in court. Hello, police?

To hell with him, I think, let him call wherever he wants, even to the police, even to the Kremlin, even to father Lenin in the next world . ... It's just that the police will get on their nerves later.

- Okay, - I say, - what kind of car do you personally have?

- My car is the best, - the dull visitor proudly declared and nodded at the skis standing at the fence, - It never fails and costs, well, none.

He took the mobile phone away from his ear, and out of indignation, I didn’t even know what to say.

Out of nowhere, the owner of the "six" appeared - a two-meter kid with broad shoulders and a large fleshy face with a fair amount of wrinkles. Without saying a word, he opened the door, took out a tire iron and started moving towards me.

- Hey, man, what are you doing? I got worried.

- Not what, but what, - he thundered in a bass voice, - Hit the car? hit. Well, now get your change.

He turned the crowbar in his hand, grabbed it by the other end with his second hand and easily bent it, tying it into a knot... in a marine one, I think. A dry lump stuck in my throat, my back was wet. I tried to justify myself, but the treacherous tongue did not want to make the sounds familiar to the ear:

- Ya for-for-for-for-for-for-for-for-for-for-for-for-for-inadvertently touched by hand, by chance... of tea... me.

The driver of the "six" threw the tire iron on the ground, grabbed me in an armful, and looking at this metal knot, I imagined with horror what an intricate figure my spine would now turn into. The fleshy, wrinkled face turned out to be very close, and a wave of the smell of fresh beer fumes washed over me.

- Zhigulevskoe? I squeaked softly.

“Uh-huh,” the face muttered.

The hands of the big man looked like blocks of stone, squeezing my entire rather rather big body in their stone vise. Suddenly I thought how good it was that I didn’t have time to have lunch, otherwise this thug would have one more reason to kill me.

- May I never see you here again! - the face thundered, dousing me with a new batch of fumes, and at the same second I found myself lying on the snow in some kind of ridiculous position, face up and pelvis also up.

A broad-shouldered big man, it is not clear how he got into a car that was not at all suitable for his dimensions, and, firing a farewell puff of gas, disappeared around the corner. I lay down a little more and, brushing myself off, rose to my feet.

- And yet, where is the proof? - sounded from behind the disgusted voice of the visitor, whose existence I completely forgot, - where is the evidence that this car is a Zhiguli?

“This is a cruciferous helicopter,” I retorted sarcastically and got ready to leave. Especially since it's minus twenty degrees outside, and I jumped out in one overall. But the man grabbed my sleeve and tried to hold me.

"Don't try to dodge, young man, I'm not done with you yet," he said rudely and took out his mobile phone again. I jerked my hand free.

- Hello, police? - he habitually threw into the phone.

“Get out,” I said quietly.

What?! Oh well...

- Get out, you idiot! I yelled.

I was overwhelmed with a terrible bouquet of feelings: resentment, anger, despair, disappointment, resentment again…. And all this was the culprit - he alone. I snatched the receiver from his hands and slammed it on the ground with all my might! Small fragments scattered in different directions, and I swung and, with all my might, gave the offender such a kick, from which he had to fly across the roadway and land in a snowdrift a hundred meters from my store! But he even moved from his place, only grunted once and that was it. And a moment later I felt a terrible pain in my leg and howled like a wolf at the moon, rolling on the snow.

- Don't open your mouth at someone else's back! – quite said visitor.

“That’s it, my dear,” he added, taking a cast-iron plate out of his pants.

Only now I realized that it was she who fettered his movements and, naturally, pulled him down. Finally defeated, fallen in spirit and body, I limped back behind my own counter to the nasty laughter of the unfortunate visitor. As soon as I stepped over the threshold of the store, everything immediately fell into place. The cash register was open and completely empty. In the heat of a stupid argument, imagining myself as a professor explaining the elementary foundations of addition to a brainless donkey, I went out into the street without even locking the front door, and thus I myself turned out to be a complete donkey. I have been robbed. A cursory glance was enough to understand that part of the goods was also missing. I pressed my face against the frozen, intricately patterned window and saw two people running across the road with a large and apparently very heavy sports bag. Each had a pair of old wooden skis sticking out of his armpit! I wept with resentment, and then suddenly burst out laughing. Just think, spent like a boy. I laughed long and hysterically. Tears continued to flow, falling into his mouth and down his chin. There was no strength to stop. But, if they told me now that a primitive theft would cost me such a hassle, I would give the money myself, without any pressure. Honestly!

Laughing and crying, I dialed the number and said the already beaten today:

– Hello, police?

A wonderful story

(the second case in an auto shop)

Somehow Ilya came to my department - a security guard from a neighboring store. And I was just bored to the limit. Indeed, who needs my spare parts before the New Year? So I gave him all my boredom and accumulated indignation:

- Here, damn it, people have gone: I brought a brush with a scraper to one here, but he doesn’t want to take a freshener!

- I don't understand, but what does the air freshener have to do with it? Ilya was surprised.

- How about it? His tire burst.

- Well?

- Well? He does not want to take a freshener.

– What does the air freshener have to do with it? Get him a tire.

- Why would I bring him a tire if he ordered a beam?

- So stop, stop. How is the beam connected to the burst tire, and what does the brush have to do with it?

- How about it? When the tire burst, he ordered a beam for me. I brought him a brush, but he does not want to take a freshener.

– Wait, why does he need a brush if he ordered a beam?! Ilya began to get angry and raise his voice.

- Why does he need a beam if his wheel burst?

- I don't know.

- Exactly: you don't know, I don't know, no one knows, and he himself, in general, doesn't know, doesn't remember and doesn't understand! So I brought him a brush. Is it logical?

– Uh-huh.

- But he doesn't want to take a freshener!

- Why does he need a freshener?

- Then, why the brush, which instead of a beam after the burst tire ... spare ... in the trunk. Clear?

- Understood. So you offered him the air freshener instead of the wheel.

– Well, what are you talking about? How will he ride that air freshener? It's not even round.

- And on a brush, so you can ride? - Ilya's voice was already breaking into a scream, and his face was reddened and covered with perspiration.

- Yes, no. Well, what are you, really? A brush instead of a beam.

- But a beam instead of a wheel?

- But the spare wheel, and the beam - it's generally like that ... drive away annoying insects - traffic police. It was like this: he went to the forest for a Christmas tree - to poach. And the weather was snowy, windy, not like now. I didn’t have time to turn off the road, the forest became a solid wall. He is to the right - the wall is to the right, he is to the left - the wall is to the left, he is back - it was not there. The snow is waist-deep and his Zhiguli is bogged down... there's nowhere to go. There was only one way left - up. He then fastened himself with a seat belt, which he had never done before, and began to jump while sitting. Jumped for three hours. The wolves, sitting around, watched with curiosity how the unfortunate victim twitched inside the strange iron trap, constantly hitting his head on the ceiling, and hoped for a quick dinner. And then the car began to resonate, rising higher and higher above the snow level with each jump. But he failed to repeat the notorious feat of Baron Munchausen. A flock of crows sitting on the birch trees was frightened by the terrible roar of the iron monster, got alarmed and, out of fear, threw "bombs" at the Zhiguli so that it dug into the snow up to the very roof! Another would have lowered his hands in annoyance and froze there, but the wrong one was attacked. The driver sat down, got upset, and then came up with such a thing: he turned on all the headlights, and turned off the stove in the cabin, just in case, so that the battery would not “land” and began to wait. Snow, as you know, reflects and refracts light very strongly. Headlight glasses also reflect ... from themselves. What if the light comes from within the snow? As a result of repeated reflection, the headlights and windshield of the car turned into a kind of magnifying lens and the snow around began to melt.

“It’s bright,” he says, “like in paradise, it even blinds your eyes.”

“Fairy tales,” Ilya did not believe.

- Have you tried it? I ask.

- No, but...

- Don't say it. In order not to burn the top of my head, I had to lie down on the seat. There are already puddles all around. The body was red hot. The salon turned into a microwave oven, and the fate of the grilled chicken in foil fell to the driver. He is at the door, but it does not open, he is at another - the same thing. The doors are welded on. He lowers the glass there too. But no, honey, wait!

With your belly button

Be a chicken!

Stuck. It sticks out of the door, dangles its arms and legs. He feels that he already smells of burning. The smell of burnt meat made the wolves worried and tried to get closer, but the hot beam from the windshield quickly made them hot. The rest immediately put their tails between their legs and rushed to the duck. But the driver did not even pay attention to all this - it was not up to that. Another minute and that's it - you can take the first sample. Fortunately, at that moment a tire blew in the trunk. How will she! How he would be kicked out of the door by an explosive wave ... then he already remembered that he had a gas cylinder there just in case ...

- So the balloon exploded? Ilya interrupted.

- No. I'm telling you, the tire exploded, and the cylinder lay next to it.

- Ha, such an explosion does not happen from a tire!

- Yes? Have you ever roasted a wheel in a microwave?

- Why? Yes, it does not fit in the oven.

- Then how do you know?

Ilya wanted to object, but I stopped him with a gesture:

- This is not the usual friction while driving, when most of the kinetic energy goes into the ground. Here, Ilya, the process is global, one might say, transcendentally unbalanced with the disinhibition of dormant charges of copulating particles! And the metal molecules from the gas cylinder played the role of an anti-reproductive catalyst. Understood?

“Understood,” he agreed sullenly, although his whole appearance suggested otherwise. “What happened next?

“I’m flying,” he says, “and I think how well everything turned out. A puddle around the Zhiguli is boiling, a puddle is boiling. If I had got out of the car myself, I would have boiled like a sausage in dough, well, in clothes, after all. And I hover over it, smoke with my pants, and I don’t care about anything.”

In general, he landed headfirst into a snowdrift. And the soft spot still burns with fire - it has been baking for the longest time. Twisted, rolled over. Once and again in a puddle sits wet from below. Went to the next snowdrift. So he walked for another forty minutes, melting the snow, until it cooled down. And for the last time he sits - it’s good so - from the steam itself it comes down, like from a kettle, the birches rustle, the crows sing: “Kar-kar”. Loved it, listened! I wanted to get up later ... no way ... I froze and again this place.

"What kind of misfortune is this?" - thinks.

How to be? Well, the birch grew nearby. He takes worms out of his pocket...

– worms? Ilya was surprised.

- Well, he's almost a fisherman. As I was going fishing in the summer, I carry worms with me just in case.

“Give it to me,” he thinks, “I’ll make bait out of them for birds.”

What bait?! They've been there for a long time. The bank itself bulged. If you hit it on the asphalt, the explosion will be stronger than from a tire - there is gas in the same place! And he, a fool, opened this jar, poked around in it, chooses who is more attractive: so, this ugly one, this one is crooked, this one has his mouth on one side, that one has a pimple popped up . .. Looks, crows have begun to fall from birch trees. They lie on the snow and do not move, only occasionally twitching their paws. And the gas flows from the jar and stretches to the sky like a thin thread. One crow fell very close. He reached out to her, took her by the neck, and the ice around him with his beak chipped off, chipped away. Broke off! And he followed the Christmas tree on foot. I later asked him why I got stuck in a birch forest ... behind a Christmas tree?

And he told me:

“You see, the New Year is just around the corner, the foresters guard their lands especially carefully. Some even, they say, dug caves for themselves in the snow, communicating with special passages, and not a foot from the entrusted site. They have become completely wild, they rush at people ... with fines, and it’s so easy when you really want to eat. Well, there are none in the birch forest, and there are no Christmas trees either, as it turned out. But I broke such a poplar there . .. you will swing! Nothing - I think - if my wife asks what kind of log I dragged? - I will say that this is a Christmas tree. And if he asks why is she bald? - I’ll say that while I was carrying it, it withered without water. Like, what, fool, is it the first time, do you see how flowers shed their leaves? According to the latest data, the Christmas tree belongs to the colors of the toothed family. Here, take it and dress it up, or I’ll take it back to the forest.”

Of course, it's not worth returning home empty-handed after so many adventures. He dragged this poplar, tied a Zhiguli to the roof, but he couldn’t leave. The current all went into the headlights. He did not turn them off when he flew away. It is understandable. What to do? He took out a large light bulb .... It was he who was visiting a neighbor last winter, so the light bulb is still in his pocket and lies just in case. He broke the glass near the light bulb (neatly, carefully), connected it to the battery, and began to heat the coil with a lighter. Thus, thermal energy is converted into electrical energy and the battery is charged. It's good that I had a lot of lighters with me just in case...

- Well, you're lying, well, you're brazenly lying! - Ilya boiled up, - It doesn’t happen that a current goes from a lighter!

- Why?

- That's all! I thought you were a normal guy, but you...

- Well, who am I? Liar, yes, liar? And have you tried?! Did you try it personally or did some of your friends?

- No, but it's clear enough.

Maybe you can write me a physical formula that proves that I'm lying?

- No.

- So, I have every right to be offended by you. Be healthy.

I crossed my arms and turned away.

– Come on, don’t pout, – Ilya backtracked, – let’s say I’m wrong…

– Don’t do me any favors.

– OK, tell me what you want?

- I want you to recognize yourself as a wet-bellied sage.

- By whom?!

- wet-bellied sage. Say: I am wet-bellied. ..

- No!!!

- Yes.

- No!

- Wise.

- No!

- Yes.

- No.

- Yes!

- Okay. I'm a wet-bellied vymu ... vymu ... decrepit. Satisfied?

- Satisfied.

– Peace?

- The world is a patch of holes. Listen further.

Having truly enjoyed revenge, I continued:

– Our hero eventually got electricity, but what’s the point? After the explosion, the steering wheel bent, melted and lay on the charred seat. The ignition lock, if it could kindle something, it was only an attack of pity in the heart of a motorist. The pedals fell to the floor, and there was simply no gearshift lever. In general, there was no question of the car driving itself. You need to push one on the snow, then on the asphalt, and even that poplar on the roof is heavy, like it was cast from cast iron. A bare trunk for three in girth and three snags of branches spread out in different directions. It's hard to drag, but it's a pity to leave. How to be? Out of vexation, the peasant wanted to kick the wheel with his foot; The puddles under the car froze long ago, and in a continuous layer, even get up on your skates. He tucked this layer on one side (hmm, it gives in), lifted it up, turned it over with the slippery side down and somehow rolled a Zhiguli onto it. It turned out one huge sled. Slightly pushed and that's it - the layer slides, as if smeared with snot. The peasant accelerated, jumped onto the ice and sat smoking. So I drove all the way to the house. There was only one problem: he accelerated, but he didn’t know how to stop. The beam, which almost fell off anyway, was torn off and began to steer it, as if it was not moving, but floating on a raft. Cars shy away from him, policemen just faint at the sight. And the pedestrians are applauding, shouting:

“Come on! Well done! You will get into the Guinness Book of Records!”

“But the book is far away, and the turn with the ticket to the next world is close,” the poor fellow thinks, “That’s a poplar for a coffin.

And then a bright thought like an icicle on the top of the head "bang." He began to break off pieces from the formation with a beam, as if with a crowbar. Where did the forces come from? Broke off! At the very last dying moment, the ice floe broke. A man jumped onto the hood of a Zhiguli car, which smoothly slid onto the asphalt and stopped as if rooted to the spot, and pieces of ice crashed into the wall of a five-story building, raising a cloud of icy fragmentation dust! They lay there until spring, when the sun's rays, having gained their former strength, melted them, turning them into an ordinary gray puddle.

Such a wonderful story happened to my client! And he and his wife planted that poplar near the house with the top of its head in the ground.

- Why else?

- Balda, so that the roots grow back. The tree grows with the top of its head up, and since he broke it .... By the way, it turned out funny with this poplar tree: now the branches are growing from top to bottom, like a real Christmas tree. And most importantly, as it took root, green leaves began to hang on it all year round. It is understandable why. The top is underground. How does she know if it's summer outside or winter?

- Who is she?

- Yes, this poplar tree. I passed by that house last night, I look - it's earing. And you can’t tell from an ordinary Christmas tree in life. The leaves have curled up into tubules from the cold, and you will see - needles. The children are playing around, frolicking, and the adults are decorating the tree, getting ready for the holiday. So it turns out that the Christmas tree is a poplar with tops! Wonderful Mother Nature!

- Indeed, wonderful ..., - Ilya said thoughtfully after a short pause that reigned at the end of my story, - a wonderful New Year's story.

- Why a bike? Don't you believe him?

- To him?!

- Of course, to him, but to whom? Personally, I didn’t lie to you, but I can’t vouch for him, although .... Of course, this is all true: no one rides an ice floe like a skateboard, no one melts the snow with headlights, no one charges the battery with a lighter, and no one looks for a Christmas tree in a birch forest. But not because it's impossible, but because it's illogical and because we don't know anyone else who did the same. But this does not prove that all of the above is a lie, because there is no one to refute in the same way as to confirm. And any unfounded disbelief is based on the fear of falling into a stupid position. Therefore, if one person does not fit into the usual scheme, then how logical is the assumption about the stupidity and implausibility of this off-scheme individual, just as logical and absolutely opposite: that he is much smarter and more educated than any of us.

After all that was said, Ilyukhin's expression was unimaginably stupid, even moronic, although he did his best to hide his incomprehension.

- So, everything you told me about worms, about dead crows and the rest ... what really happened?

- What do you think? That's it.

- Well, okay, okay. From the story, I realized that his spare tire really exploded and the beam failed. But why does he need a brush and air freshener then?

- You are some kind of blunt, Ilyukha. After all, he probably didn’t throw away the jar of worms, judging by his habits, so he simply needs a freshener.

Read the book “Funny to tears. Confessions and unknown aphorisms of a great actress" online in full📖 — Faina Ranevskaya — MyBook.

© Yauza-press LLC, 2015

Faina Ranevskaya. The life she told herself

Why write?

The first question: why write?

I already tried, I even wrote, then I destroyed everything. Silly. The advance had to be returned.

It is very difficult to talk about oneself, even in memories. I don't want to feel bad, it's good to be ashamed. Let others be better.

But recently I heard that quite decent, by the standards of decency, society had fun all evening, remembering my “pearls”, vying with each other telling various anecdotes from my life, admiring sharp language and impartial expressions. And it suddenly became scary. I am old, really old, life is lived, I will not be, what will remain, what will be remembered? Muley? "Pioneers, go to hell . .. pu"?

But there were dozens of roles played and not played, friendship, work and just meetings with such wonderful, brilliant people, there were, finally, thousands of smart thoughts and worthy desires ...

I am so old that I have outlived not only those from whom I should take an example, but also those to whom I should give it. Although it is possible and necessary to take a good example at any age and from people of any age.

I really don't want to be remembered only by evil language, anecdotes and everyday cretinism. What is, you can’t cancel it, but, besides a sharp tongue, there are still not so evil thoughts, how to deal with them?

I thought about it and realized that if I write memoirs, then it is not about how I lived and with whom of the great and simply interesting people I met, but what I thought, felt that these meetings gave me.

Why did my fate develop happily and so unhappily at the same time, why so many unplayed roles, why all my life I have been lonely?

It’s a sin for me to complain about the lack of recognition and fame, but it’s not that, it’s not that . .. I could do one thing - I did another, I appreciated some roles - they rewarded and loved for others, I didn’t take a step down the street because of recognition and popularity, but at home and you can't hear a word for a whole day... Only the dog's eyes of my Boy...


I have words that I was smart enough to live my life stupidly. Is it stupid? How smart is it?

Fate gave me the main thing that I asked for so much - the stage and the talent to play on it. As payment, she took everything else, leaving a lonely, useless old woman many, many years ago.

I didn’t manage to do more than I did, didn’t do what I did, but I managed to understand a lot in life. Someone else's experience has never taught anyone, not only fools learn from their mistakes, smart people too, but if my experience does not teach anything, then at least it will lead to smart thoughts? Mistakes and stupid actions can also give food for thought.

And if my thoughts also give one, then, perhaps, at least someone who has skimmed through my notes will remember that Ranevskaya had not only "Mulya" and "well . .. pa."

If you say it right, it does not mean that you will be understood correctly. What is better - not to speak at all or to explain at every step what exactly you wanted to say?

Childhood. In a family without a family

To Tatyana Tess grateful readers of what just did not send! In addition to gifts, often ridiculous, and letters in bags, there were pearls of his own composition. It's a sin to laugh, but I remember one:

“I was born in Moscow.

My mother gave birth to me…”.

The continuation was involuntarily born:

“…My aunt had no time to give birth at that time…”.

So, my mother also gave birth to me, I can't say anything about the employment of my aunts, I don't know.

But she gave birth not in Moscow, but in Taganrog. A wonderful city, besides, it is an honor to be Chekhov's countrywoman. There is no merit in that and no fault either, my parents tried.

In an attempt to write a biography, I didn't get far beyond the phrase: "My father was a poor oilman. ..". It’s true that Girsha Khaimovich Feldman had some assets in real estate and oil production, a dry paint factory, a small steamer “Saint Nikolay”, a big house and even his own janitor, which delighted me much more than a steamboat. The steamboat is ... here is the janitor - yes!

By the way, "Saint Nicholas" even had something to do with great, even great literature - Leo Nikolayevich Tolstoy traveled the Black Sea on it. This did not make the slightest impression on me, the janitor with his medal for courage seemed much more colorful than some Tolstoy.

I dreamed of having the same one by doing some heroic deed! Deeds did not turn up, no one drowned before my eyes, no one jumped out of burning houses, no horses were carried, overturning wagons, nothing happened in Taganrog for which a five-year-old girl could receive a well-deserved reward. And how I wanted ...

The janitor was an inexhaustible treasure trove of taboo expressions and a subject for imitation, which my parents could not like.

My "life in art" began at the age of four (I just don't remember before). The janitor swore so colorfully! .. And I also really liked how the ice cream seller and the beggar woman who begged for alms shouted. I tried to imitate: “clicked” through my teeth, cursed, called out: “Sugar is frozen! ..” - and asked for a pretty penny “for Christ’s sake”.

At first, the parents laughed, because the mumbling old woman in the image of a four-year-old child was clearly hilarious, then the laughter subsided. And yet the first years did not bother me, but only the first. Among the toys, which often happened in those days, was a set for the play "Petrushka". A small screen, simple dolls have become my joy and my domestic triumph. Play a performance, and then come out from behind the screen and bow sedately ...

It is very difficult not to become what they want to see you, and if this vision still does not coincide with your inner world, the struggle becomes deadly.

The family is well-to-do and, as the elder of the synagogue was supposed to be, very strict. The father seemed to be a despot, for any offense there was a punishment, sometimes even a flogging. For laziness or unwillingness to obey the rules - especially. Maybe that's why I have this very unwillingness to obey the rules?

She was afraid of her father, and therefore she did not love. Mother, very impressionable, even somewhat exalted, adored, unfortunately, unrequited.

There are four children in our family - Bella, Yakov, me and Lazar. I was about five years old when Lazar died, I remember this terrible grief, although at that time I hardly realized what had really happened.

Bella, pretty and sociable, was smart and daddy's hope. Jacob is an heir and also a hope. I was nobody. Ugly, stuttering, always immersed in fantasies or mimicking someone, but most importantly, incapable of learning.

Oh… this stamp was put on me in my first year at the gymnasium. I fantasized, fantasies were taken for lies, I was not able to listen to the tedious speeches of teachers for a long time - it was believed that this was laziness. The children laughed at stuttering, in response I closed up - they said that I was mediocre, unable to remember something.

All she could do was make faces, everything else was inaccessible. You ugly little fool, who will love such a daughter?

I was not loved. I had a family, but it didn't exist. In the life of the great, it happened when maternal and paternal affection and attention were replaced by the attention of nannies or governesses, sometimes this even led to amazing results. Not Nadezhda Osipovna, but Arina Rodionovna told Pushkin fairy tales. I did not have Arina Rodionovna, I simply hated my bonnes, and mutually. She dreamed that, while skating, the German Bonn would fall and hurt herself to death. But every time she came back even without bruises.

When she voiced Miss Bokk many decades later, she remembered not so much the German woman herself, but her hatred for her.

When a child has no one to lean against, even in the family there is no shoulder to lean against, he grows up either as a criminal or as an exceptionally closed and lonely person.

I couldn't be withdrawn, acting does not provide for either shyness or shyness, but it was born with me. There was loneliness.

The loneliness of an adult who has lived his life is scary, but understandable, it can follow from this very life, be the result of his own mistakes and selfishness.

The loneliness of a child is a thousand times worse than the loneliness of an adult. Children should not be alone, otherwise they will never be happy in life.

I don't blame my parents for anything, they lived as they could and thought it was right, but it was childhood loneliness in the family that predetermined the absence of a family for me later. There are a lot of people around me, but after the death of Pavla Leontievna Vulf, who replaced my mother in my adult life, I was left alone, completely alone, and now, when I have experienced almost everyone who is interested in my life, my inner life (only Nina Sukhotskaya is nearby ), especially lonely. Alone in the crowd is even harder than being a lighthouse keeper on a distant island.

I felt, even understood, that I was not loved, surprisingly, but I took it for granted, I did not try to become what I needed, to fawn or seek love. I just knew they didn't like it. What is better: to be strange, because not like everyone else, or the same with everyone?

My father gave me the name Faina (in Hebrew, Feiga, meaning “bird”). Hoped that I would fly. Flew, but not where he wanted. My father considered my passion for acting and performances a whim, if not foolishness, and was very upset because of frank failures in the gymnasium.

It's very, very difficult to see that you don't live up to expectations every day, especially when your older sister lives up to them. Bella is smart and beautiful, Faina is an ugly mediocrity (the desire to ape with abilities was not considered, rather, on the contrary, almost a shame).

- Have pity on the person, take him away from the gymnasium!

The gymnasium was not just a duty, but the most hated place on earth. I studied poorly, because it seemed almost a crime to calculate the profit of merchants who bought goods at one price and sold at another. Profit never interested me, and especially in childhood.

Read, read and read! Drinking, everything that came to hand, sobbing if the heroes were offended, and then getting scolded or even whipped for these tears. I realized early on that impressionability is punishable, as well as external manifestations of spiritual experiences. Shut up in yourself? But I preferred to endure a spanking or a long standing in the corner, but again and again weep over the fate of the heroes.

Unfortunately, the books were not always read to the end, not at all through my fault, it was simply part of the punishment for “nonsense” that I was deprived of the very book that caused tears. Later, I re-read it all and cried again.

Now I think that it even helped me fall in love with good literature. A person always wants what is impossible, and he appreciates the forbidden more, especially in childhood.

It is surprising that my impressionability and the ability to sob from one word did not add maternal love, and after all, Milka Rafailovna is a very exalted person, capable of sobbing inconsolably at the news of Chekhov's death. She herself was like that, but she couldn’t stand it in me, or rather, she tried not to notice me.

For my father, I was just a talentless lazybones.

I was taken away from the gymnasium after my sobs, but they invited home governesses to study. What changed? Only the children stopped teasing because of stuttering, the actions of greedy merchants did not become clearer, arithmetic was categorically not given, like geography. I was not able to imagine how far Paris or Switzerland is, where we went every year in the summer, how the “Italian boot” looks on the map, where it is so beautiful, I was not able to.

Why do you need to remember how it looks on the map, I'd rather show how a gondolier works with an oar or a boy makes faces in Paris.

Stuttering hasn't gone away either, it stayed with me for the rest of my life, although I learned to make this defect invisible.

Stuttering can be different, a different person cannot "take" the first consonant, especially the hard one. Then communication turns into a real torment both for the one who speaks and for the one who listens. "P-p-p ..." - and guess what he wants to say, either "hello", or "let's go!".

It’s different for me, I always “slowed down” on vowels, I’ll say not “p-p-p ...”, but “pa-a-please”. It's easier to carry and hide too. Stuttering is like a sigh or a yawn out of place, although it also interferes.

My sister had high school friends, one of whom, in my opinion at the time, was a genius at reciting poetry. Brilliant for me then meant that from an excess of feelings he howled, waved his arms and even tore his hair with a cry. Now that's art! That's passion! Shakespeare never dreamed of such a performance, although the youngster did not read Othello or Hamlet at all, but Moritz Hartmann's The White Veil.

The work is good, but why it was to tear your hair, stomp your feet or beat your head against the arm of the chair ... I don’t know. But it was impressive, especially for such an exalted fool like me.

All that remained was to sigh, because for my own howls I received scoldings instead of applause.

The provincial cities of Russia at the beginning of the twentieth century are a special cultural world, it is still completely saturated with the nineteenth century. Many cities in Russia had magnificent theater troupes worthy of the best stage in the world. Quiet, as Chekhov called it, empty Taganrog had its own theater, at the performances of which I shed tears.

And there was also a love for music. In every decent house there was a piano, albeit out of tune, on which the children strummed the obligatory bravura repertoire, but there were also very serious musicians.

On weekends yesterday's serious business people could get together to play duets or quartets. I remember Scriabin's magnificent concerto, it was he who plunged my soul into music. Real music where you don't have to howl or wring your hands to express your feelings.

But the opera scared me. Well, how can you stick a dagger in someone's chest and sing at the same time?! This is wrong, this is false...

I have said more than once that my childhood ended on the day when I saw my mother weeping over the news of Chekhov's death, and under the impression of these tears I read at random his Boring Story. I was nine years old. Mom's frank grief shocked me, I realized that in life you can be killed not only because of the death of a loved one, or rather, that a complete stranger can be spiritually close and dear so much that his death becomes grief.

Childhood is over, but was it childhood?

But if there was at least some kind of childhood - scanty, lonely - but there was, then there was no youth at all.

At twelve I saw "Romeo and Juliet" in color! Then I realized that either the film was hand-colored, or a filter was inserted into the camera. Who cares?! A handsome young man declared his love to a beautiful girl, standing under the balcony. And all this without squealing and torn hair. It turned out that feelings can be expressed beautifully and not only at the piano, but aloud, reciting poetic lines. And how to express!..

The result of the shock was a broken piggy bank and long savings distributed to neighboring children:

– I don’t feel sorry for anything, let them take everything!

I didn't know what connection there was between them. Probably, the soul so protested against the profit of merchants in problems in arithmetic. The hated arithmetic was shamefully trampled on and put in its place, because it turned out that the holy art is higher and more expensive than any profit!

Arithmetic, of course, survived, she doesn't give a damn about Faina Feldman's inability to use the four rules. And the merchants also managed without my profit calculations. But from now on it became clear to me: only art is sacred, and the ability to act on stage is the best of the arts.

What could I be after that? Only an actress!

Nobody at home understood this.

I don't know why I was still given money for a trip to Moscow, rather, to send my naughty daughter away. Girsha Khaimovich no longer had the strength to endure this shame in Taganrog.

I'm eighteen, I haven't graduated from high school, I have no profession, only a passionate desire to become an actress. The best, outstanding. Great would be nice.

A red-haired, kicking, round-shouldered, stuttering, and fainting dylda was supposed to be a gift for the best theaters in Moscow.

Gift failed. My stuttering, the ability to faint, excessive exaltation, lack of external data and education, despite the fact that in Moscow and its unemployed actors are a dime a dozen, they closed the doors of all theaters to me. At best, they looked at the impudent Taganrog as if they were a piece of furniture; at worst, they frankly declared my professional unsuitability, without even listening to a short monologue.

Now I think that if they had listened, it would have been even worse, because with all the understanding of what good literature and good acting are, I would read with the intonations of a schoolboy I know, that is, I would howl and tear my hair out.

The hair remained intact, and the appearance was enough for everyone.

Moscow is an expensive city, money quickly melted away, and there were no earnings in the theater. In addition, I tried to review all the performances, especially with the participation of Kachalov, whom I simply adored as exalted as I did everything else.

The visit to Moscow at that time did not seem to bring happiness. But there was nothing to return home. Upon learning of my problems, my father told my mother to send money for the return trip. Then there was a beautiful incident that people like to retell about me so much. For all normal people, this would be a sign of inability to live a normal life.

Having received the money, for some reason I didn't hide it in my purse, but just walked out of the building holding it in my hands. A strong gust of wind, I involuntarily grab my hat, which threatens to fly away, and release the banknotes from my hands. They fly, fly…

I returned home, I had nothing to live in Moscow.

But she did not give up and, to her father's horror, she began to prepare for a new attack on theater Moscow. Rather, there was no talk of Moscow, but in Taganrog I had already become noticeable. To reassure her father, she passed the exams for the gymnasium. Honestly, it wasn't that hard. And she went to study again - to the private theater school Jagiello.

My father endured, apparently hoping that I would go crazy and remain just a theater lover. It is clear that marriage will put an end to all these nonsense, but for now Girshi Khaimovich was willing to endure the stupid hobbies of his youngest daughter, but only as long as they did not expose him to the general ridicule. He agreed to support me until marriage, but he intended to choose a candidate for husband himself.

By this time I had made one of the life-determining acquaintances. In Evpatoria, I met Alisa Koonen, one of the most prominent actresses in Moscow, Tairov's wife and comrade-in-arms. Beautiful and smart, insanely talented Alice treated me well. Ninochka Sukhotskaya, the only one left by my side now, is her niece, who was just a little girl then.

Theater and only theater!

The father was not even horrified, he was completely angry. This conversation between us was the last, he shouted for me to look at myself in the mirror, the actress must be at least beautiful! To have his daughter grimacing on stage for money?! Never!

The meaning of the angry speech boiled down to the fact that either I am his daughter and only amateur performances in a friendly circle are possible, or ...

I chose the second.

She left for Moscow in tears with a small amount of money and a promise to her mother to help in case of emergency.

I never saw my father again, Feldman's youngest daughter succeeded in persisting with him, we ceased to exist for each other!

I met my brother's mother and family in Romania four decades later, in 1956.

Learn more