Why Russians don't want to live in Canada

Crimea, we used to go there all the time, to Yalta. ... And I would wear this Soviet child Speedo, which was very sexy, I think.

And we lived in this underground hut that was owned by Ukrainians and there was a little boy who was even smaller than me, and I was probably the smallest kid in the U.S.S.R., and I would beat him [up], I feel so sorry about it now: A Russian beating a Ukrainian, it sounds so prescient.

But then the next year, a Latvian chicken bit me.  And then a few years later, a Georgian kid beat me up. I think there's a lesson in there for Russia somwhere: You're hitting now, but you're going to get your comeuppance someday.

The real country that [the U.S.] competes with economically, in terms of world power, is China and maybe down the line some day, India.

I think Russia really needs attention. This is a country that desperately needs to be on the world stage at all times, otherwise it doesn't feel like a superpower.

About the author

Gary Shteyngart is the author of "Little Failure," is a memoir about his American immigrant experience.

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