Saturday, October 31, 2009


He descended from the railcar and ordered that the track behind the train be pulled up and laid in front of the train. He pounded his shoe on Lenin’s platform for emphasis.

Later the train began to roll again. This time it went further than before. But then it stopped again.

Brezhnev said he’s fix things. He scrambled down the ladder, gathered the new foremen around him, and said, “Comrades, divide your workers into two groups. Line one half along one side of the train, and the other along the opposite. Rock the train from side-to-side so that it feels like we’re moving.”

And they did. Inside the railcar Lenin, Stalin and Kruschev marveled at how Brezhnev had been able to get so much track laid in so little time, and at all the distance they were moving across the wilderness.

Outside, Joe Bidenchev, a new foreman, encouraged the workers saying, “Look, Comrades, at how many foremens’ jobs we’ve saved.”

Okay, the last part wasn’t part of the original telling.

Reminds me of the general summarization joke of life in the USSR: We pretend to work and they pretend to pay us.

We are barreling down the track to re-enact it here unfortunately.