Saw that Yeltsin died. I think for me the defining memory I’ll have or Yeltsin, more than preventing the so-called coup, more than his giggle-fest with Clinton that time is actually a scene from the Simpsons. Homer is drunk and Moe’s and has to take a Breathalyzer before Moe will let him drive.
As Homer blows in the tube his breath goes past Tipsy, Soused, Stinkin’ all the way to Boris Yeltsin.
Now that’s drunk.
I also have to say that I’m officially putting Boris Yeltsin in the Alec Baldwin/Snoop Dogg Memorial Sunova Club.
What is the A.C./S.D.M.S.C., you might ask? Both those dudes can be major-league schmucks, real A-holes. Alec is at least as obnoxious with his uninformed political tirades as Sean Penn, and Snoop can’t seem to go three months without getting arrested for smoking this, shooting that, and let’s not forget the porn tapes…
Yet no matter what they do, you just can’t help but like the guys. For some reason no one has ever held Alec’s personal crap against him like they sometimes do for others. He just seems like a likable S.O.B. Same for Snoop. Even conservatives find him entertaining and non-threatening, and whatever heat someone else might face for repeated law violations doesn’t seem to tough Snoop.
That’s kind of how I see Yeltsin. No matter what he did—and for a guy in power so long, it wasn’t much—you never really hated him like other Russian leaders. People hated Kruschev, and many folks hated Gobachev, before Time Magazine decide to credit Gorby with ending Communism more than Reagan (almost 17 years later and I’m STILL pissed). Even now many people seem to loath Putin.
But Yeltsin? Somehow he skated by. Whatever crazy thing he’d do people would just pass it off. “Oh, that Yeltsin!” He’s definitely in the club.