—I can’t handle watching improvisational comedy, it’s too taxing, I said.
—How so? he asked.
—Well, it’s not unlike driving past a horrible accident, except the accident is comprised of unemployed actors desperate for attention.
—Actors always loathe being upstaged.
—Especially from the audience.
—I did that once, at an improv show, caused a total mutiny. The troupe was looking for suggestions of clichés that parents tell children, like ‘clean up your room’ or something. People called out things, nothing took. Then there was a huge silent pause before I shouted my suggestion.
—What was it?
—‘Everything will work out fine.’
Much like vaux-de-vire, Z daily, sometimes twice a day, shares upbeat couplets about the “right” way for us to proceed. This includes everything from opining on military conduct (abstain from politics or else) to asking his constituents to steer clear of attempts to incite popular unrest (ignore calls to overthrow the leader).
An exercise of deconstruction is taking off here as wide-ranging discussions about the venue prompt patrons to ask uncomfortable questions. In some cases, they completely ignore what the manager blurts out. In others, flaks produce drama from anonymous official sources.
Separating the stories about war managment from actual firsthand accounts of individual heroism is an complicated and arduous task. It’s a lot like working a clump of hardened chewing gum out of a healthy head of hair.
Typical vaudeville performances were made up of a series of separate, unrelated acts grouped together on a common bill. The types of acts included popular musicians, singers, dancers, comedians, trained animals, magicians, ventriloquists, strongmen, female and male impersonators, acrobats, clowns, jugglers, athletes, lecturing celebrities and minstrels. United24 ambassadors come to mind.
Which brings me our recent state-sponsored cryptoanarchism act, kind of, and Brigadier General Yuriy Shchyhol, head of Ukraine’s State Service for Special Communications and Information Protection. Shchyhol, together with his deputy, was taken into custody this week after investigators found $1.5 million burning a hole in his bitcoin wallet. One day later, investigators arrested a parliament deputy for offering a $5,000 bitcoin bribe to an official for steering government war-restoration contracts his way.
Remember two years ago tomorrow:
The press conference will take place at noon on Black Friday at Creative States in Kyiv, a “five-star hotel for businesses.” The ground floor has a cafe decorated with uncomfortable, weird-looking couches, including a sofa with throw pillows that each feature a photograph of the cast of “Friends.” The place is home to MDMA wholesalers and three floors of new companies, including Kuna, Ukraine’s like you can get away with murder crypto dealership1.
The most comprehensive report on crypto and crypto in Ukraine is, of course, there.