Yesterday afternoon, shortly before the Central Election Commission announced Yushchenko's lead, Channel 5 aired footage of Yanukovych chewing on either sunflower seeds or candies at the pre-election parade honoring the liberation of Ukraine in 1944.
He was standing next to Putin and some other guy, and, at one point, he reached into his pocket and then put something into his mouth and started to chew on it, happily and vigorously. Then, as a good boy, he reached into his pocket again, turned to this other guy on his left and offered this tasty something to him, too. The guy accepted the treat. Putin stood on the right from Yanukovych, like a tiny little mouse (he's a small man in general and a very small one compared to the mountainous and monstrous Yanukovych), and it was clear that he saw what was going on - you could tell by the naughty look in his eyes. When Yanukovych turned to Putin to share whatever he was eating with him as well, Putin smiled politely and refused. Actually, he looked like it was all cracking him up, but his damn status didn't allow him to burst out laughing in front of everyone.
It was so hilarious. Yanukovych looked so idiotic. He looked like one of those rubber dolls from the extremely biting and popular Russian political TV show that Putin put an end to a few years ago. It was totally hilarious.
And all of a sudden, I began to wonder: what are we gonna do if Yushchenko gets elected as this country's next president? What, apart from building a truly democratic and prosperous state, are we gonna do if Yanukovych loses? Who are we gonna make jokes about? What are we gonna do with all our beautiful sense of irony, cultivated for so many years by our Soviet leaders and then by President Kuchma? In the past ten years, we've grown so used to disrespecting our current leader, who had provided us with such a smooth transition from the idiocy of the Soviet times. What are we gonna do when Yushchenko gets elected? He's such a positive man, he wouldn't give us reasons to sneer at him. Moreover, his victory would be too precious to mar with our totally healthy sarcasm. What on earth are we gonna do?
We'll see, I guess. We'll find ways to sublimate. Yanukovych and Kuchma aren't gonna vanish into thin air after their fiasco in two weeks. We'll survive.
I still hope so much that Yushchenko, boring or not, wins.