By Yury Shimanovsky
Translated from Russian by Vadim Dymshitz


from "Sevastopol stories"

Back in my school days, I had a buddy, whose family name was Chistikoff.
What's interesting, all our guys called each other by name or by handle,
but this one, for some unknown reason, was called just by his surname:
Chistikoff and Chistikoff: So it was.

Well, the Chistikoff's dad used to be a rather big cheese - director of
the City Sports School and the Party member. Once he promised
to his son to steal for him from work a pair of new beautiful skis.
Though, under condition that he won't spill it out to anyone. Of course,
Chistikoff right away announced to everybody that his dad is going to get
him the skis from his work, and all we'll go to Pereval. (Sevastopol, to
let you know, is quite a "southern city," sometimes there would be no
snow at all for a few years. So, we guys, in a big secret from our
parents, slyly traveled to Pereval, a popular place in the mountains,
which is more then 60 miles away from our home, where it was lots of
snow and lots of fun).

In about three weeks, I think "why don't I call Chistikoff and find out
what about the skis?" I dial the number. His dad picks up the phone.
His surname, naturally, is the same, Chistikoff, and his voice is exactly
alike his son's.
"Allo,- I say, - is this Chistikoff?
"Hey, bustard! When are you gonna get the skis?

In short, the deal got screwed up.

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