Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Maybe I'm Russian

Russian proverbs can seem very strange to Americans. They seem a little on the negative side, perhaps overly cynical. They make a lot of sense to me though.

I learned in grammar school to keep my head down and never to draw attention to myself. I learned this from experts, the Sisters of St. Dominic. The Russians have proverbs addressing the issue of living in an authoritarian environment:

"The nail that stands up gets smashed down."


"The tallest wheat stalk bends first."

There's another Russian proverb that makes sense to me:

"Let it be worse; let it be ours."

I'll let you fill in the blanks on that one.


Anonymous said...

tHat one about the nail is from the Japanese, not Russians.

CareyCarey said...

Fred, speaking of "The nail that stands up gets smashed down."

You're up and running at my "Who's That Knocking At My Door". Yep, you stood up and now you're my next victim... :-) and :-(

fred c said...

I read the "nail" bit in an article in the Christian Science Monitor about Russian proverbs, long ago. Maybe it just makes sense to people of many cultures. I'm sure that the Japanese feel the same way, maybe for different reasons.