Recently I have almost accidentally rediscovered for myself the Eye On Moscow — one of the funniest blogs about Moscow and Russia in general, and, lets say, peculiarities of Russian culture and daily life. It is written by an American, Andy (?), who, as I understand it, has made a life for himself and his family here for many years, and despite jumping on board with all sorts of authentic Russian experiences, still picks up on many idiosyncrasies that escape the eye of a local. Here is Andy’s sharp, LOLs-causing and spot-on take on how Russians offer greetings and congratulations on all sorts of occasions (including successful bowel movement!) — I could not have written it better myself and the whole thing is an absolute must-read:
It is important not to forget to Congratulate A Russian Person, In Russian. This includes cashiers, co-workers, train station ticket ladies, and, of course, friends. Because if you don’t, you might as well open up a window and allow a draft into the room.
As you improve your skills and learn more about How To Congratulate A Russian Person, In Russian, you will discover that you must congratulate the person only on the day of the event. If you carelessly throw out a “With The Day Of Birth” to A Russian Person, In Russian, before their birthday, you might as well have asked them to sit down on cold concrete. If you know what I’m saying. Happily, the Russian language allows for a simple mechanism to allow you to Congratulate A Russian Person before or after the Congratulation worthy event.
Congratulations Also Include Everyday Events Such As: 5. “I Hope You Had A Good Bath!”/”With The Light Steam!” 6. “This Is Awkward, I Saw You Come Out Of The Bathroom!”/”With The Lightening!”