Monday, 30 November 2015

A Tragedian in Spite of Himself by Anton Chekov (5/5)

First published: 1899
Original title: 
Трагик поневоле
Original language: Russian
Translation to English by: Julius West

Wiki says: In the play, Ivan Ivanovitch Tolkachov asks to borrow a revolver from his friend, Alexey Alexeyevitch Murashkin. Murashkin inquires to the reason, and Tolkachov complains bitterly about the bad events in his life. Murashkin expresses his sympathy, and then asks Tolkachov to take a sewing machine and a caged canary to Olga Pavlovna, a mutual acquaintance. [Spoiler: highlight to read]On hearing Murashkin's request, Tolkachov snaps and begins chasing Murashkin around the room, screaming that he wants blood.

I say: I absolutely loved this short play and found myself laughing out loud at the end.

My goodness, how accurate.

The synopsis says it all, really, but Chekhov puts it in much more humorous terms. Tolkachov complains about the people his life, only to have the person he was complaining to do the very thing he (Tolkachov) was complaining about.

That made sense in my head.

Most of us have a Murashkin in our lives, and if you cannot recognise him in those around you, chances are you’re him.
5/5 for this absolute perfection.

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