Having a bad week? Had customer service issues in both the public and private sectors?
Well, sit down and relax. I have just the thing for you.
Recently a Russian friend of mine enlightened me with the pure genius of Cheburashka, a stop-motion animation sensation (though in the above link he doesn't appear until 2:45, so be patient). He's a big-eared, 5-year-old-boy-sized, previously unknown creature who, in a series of Soviet cartoons, got stuck in a crate of oranges and wound up transported to Moscow, where he begins life again in a whole new series of misadventures with Gena, an accordion-playing crocodile who plays chess with himself for fun. The antagonist is some crazy old bag of a woman who has a pet rat.
It's great theater. On the strength of just four episodes (about 70 total minutes), Cheburashka has won me over. I'm a huge fan. If you're not familiar with him, you will be too.
It's too bad that over a 14-year period, only four Cheburashka episodes were made. Apparently Soviet Disney (or whatever their equivalent was) didn't have much of a budget for stop-motion animation.
Goddam Soviets. They could have made Cheburashka a universal brand, and instead they opted for the dictatorship of the proletariat. No wonder their economy collapsed.