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News about news

Two weeks ago, Serezha came to the shooting wearing a black and white plaid shirt, the very same one that we found later that day on some random guy who walked into our studio during set change. It was kind of funny so we took a picture. Then, yesterday when the show went on air, internet forums exploded with posts from Serezha’s fans desperately trying to find the same shirt. Apparently he is setting the trends around Tokyo. It was funny to see how an ordinary UNIQLO shirt can cause such hysteria. I wouldn’t be surprised to find it sold out pretty soon, hehe.

Then a week ago we went to check fashion crowd at United Colors Of Benetton event at La fabrique – the usual place for this kind of gatherings. It was nothing special, not like the last time I was there for Levi’s x Nylon party – this time only couple of models, some fashionistas, mostly staff and sales people.There wasn’t much coverage although media was present and we even got our picture taken for some sort of report.. We just stood there drinking and talking till it was time to go home. ^-^

Then on Monday, we had our second to last shooting for “テレビでロシア語”. We usually finish around 5 and go home right when Dima comes for his “survival guide” shooting. We never saw him in action till yesterday. He usually does 2 to 4 shows in a day so the lines he has to memorize are 4 to 8 pages long. It’s much harder for him to deliver because he doesn’t get the breaks like we do. While Serezha is talking to the camera, I can sneak a peak into my script. Dima on the other hand has no such chance and has to say line after line till he is done with the block. What surprised me the most was his ability to be absolutely relaxed. I mean he was joking around the whole time. I usually start to panic when the 10, 9, 8, …countdown starts but he was flirting with our director till the silent 2,1 and then delivering the lines perfectly.

While Dima was finishing up, me and Serezha got an opportunity to see the inside of NHK newsroom. It’s pretty hard for outsiders to get in so I couldn’t miss such chance. The place was huge, divided into mini sections by functions such as news traffic control, correspondent operations, media translations, news writing section, news priority section and finally a small dark room with huge red lamp that read “on air”. That’s where a newscaster sat and delivered news.  When we came in, Halle train accident footage in different languages was on most of the screens. Next to them were sitting translators and newswriters who assembled the story and then moved it further up the chain. I saw a big world map with pictures of correspondents resigning in each country. Guess who had the most of them? The one and only drama queen – the US. Russia had three, Africa had one.

There was also the room called “Otomari” – stay-in for the night. Poor folks live in that newsroom for days or maybe weeks. That’s why in Japan there is only one greeting among media people – “Ohayou gozaimasu”. For them, it’s always good morning.

After NHK, three of us had dinner at a nice Thai restaurant on Dogenzaka and then coffee at starbucks. We spent two hours talking about dreams and achievements. That’s when I found out that Serezha is a big fat overachiever. He took second place in the national Russian literature contest and finished high school with gold medal which is something like valedictory in the US. Then, he graduated from University with red diploma – 100% of excellent grades.It’s such a mystery to me how can such a smart guy who is also a part time model and TV personality cannot find a job in Tokyo. I wish luck will come his way soon enough to reach him before he is completely given up…

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