the russian rocket

Artemi “Blackhawks Magazine” Interview Transcription

I was asked to either post pictures of/transcribe the Artemi Panarin interview in Blackhawks Magazine; I opted to transcribe it so you can actually read it!  I was afraid the pictures would be unclear.


Artemi Panarin came to Chicago from far away and has made it in a big way.  The Russian rocket became an instant fit with the Blackhawks, endearing himself to fans and teammates.  Panarin is still learning to speak English, but here, through an interpreter, he conveys how advanced he is at life and hockey.


You are a star in Chicago after only a few months.  Based on what you’ve accomplished so far with the Blackhawks, are you a star back home?

I don’t feel that I am a star in Chicago.  I would like to be, but not yet.  There are a lot of stars with the Blackhawks.  I am an OK player.  I’ve been good at times.


All right.  Now that you’re an OK player in Chicago, do they follow you back in Russia?

I come from a very small town.  Korkino.  Friends and family followed me when I played in Russia for a few years, and yes, now they can maybe watch some of the Blackhawks games if they are on television.  They would have to get up early in the morning.  In Russia, a lot of people follow the Russian players who are over here.


Do you ever get homesick? 

I miss family and friends, of course.  My mother and father do not live together; they are separated.  I am very close to my grandfather and grandmother.  My grandfather taught me a lot about how to play.  He played once, not at the highest levels.  Maybe they will come to Chicago for the playoffs.  I basically left home when I was 10 to pursue hockey.  So I have been by myself for a while.  No problem.  Sometimes it is good to be alone.  Sometimes it is good to have solitude.  That gives me time to go over things, to think things over.  I live by myself, but I’ve met some good people, including of course my teammates.


Do you cook for yourself?

Oh, no.  Oatmeal in the morning for breakfast.  But for lunch or dinner, I usually go out to eat.


You certainly look like you’re happy in a completely new environment, whether you’re playing hockey or off the ice.

I try to have fun all day, every day.  Chicago is very nice.  Lots of nice people, lots of nice restaurants.  There is one not far from the United Center.  Red Square.  I can go there and pretty much order for myself, whatever I feel like.


What are your impressions of the Blackhawks and Chicago since you arrived last summer?

I came here with high expectations.  I heard so many good things about the city and the Blackhawks.  So I was expecting this to be a place where I would like to play hockey, and I have not been disappointed.


Let’s talk about that.  Stan Bowman, the vice president and general manager of the Blackhawks, says he and his staff began taking a long, hard look at you just over a year ago.  But so did a half-dozen other NHL teams.  Why did you pick the Blackhawks?

I heard about the way they play and saw some of how they play.  They play a nice style, the way I like to play.  Skate, play smart.  I like smart.  I like to play with the puck.  So do they.  Good hockey.  What I thought it would be like is what it is like now.


Bowman said a couple of his scouts, Mats Hallin and Ryan Stewart, were instrumental in the process, plus Barry Smith, the Blackhawks director of player development, who had coached in St. Petersburg before you played there.

Yes, we talked quite a bit.  They were very positive that the Blackhawks and Chichago would be right for me.


You certainly didn’t pick the Blackhawks because of money.  Bowman signed you to a two-year contract at the maximum entry-level salary ($925,000), which is all you could have gotten anywhere in the NHL.  He also said if you had stayed with St. Petersburg of the Kontinental Hockey League, you could be making three times that.

No, it was not about the money.  I thought it was time for me to see if I could make the NHL.


You were not drafted by any NHL team.  Was it because you were thought to be too small?

Too small?  I don’t know.  Maybe.  But here I am. (Smiling.)


According to Bowman, your contract included a clause that if you weren’t on the Blackhawks roster by December, you would be free to return to Russia.  There would be no minor leagues for you.

Yes, but I was confident that I could make it in the NHL.  I could have gone back to Russia if I didn’t make it, but I wasn’t really thinking about that.


Recently, you lost your frequent interpreter, Viktor Tikhonov, who was picked up on waivers by the Arizona Coyotes.

A good man.  He helped me a lot with the language and with getting used to being in Chicago.  He’s a good player, too.  I hope he does well with his new team.  Also, I have become friendly with a good family in Chicago, Andrew Aksyonov and his wife, Yulia.  They picked me up at the airport when I got here and I spend time with them.  We are good friends.


You’ve obviously hit it off with Patrick Kane, your linemate, on and off the ice.  You’re taking English lessons on Skype, but Patrick says he thinks you actually understand what he’s talking about a lot of times.

(Laughs.)  There are some sayings, some expressions, that I have picked up in the locker room, being around him and the other guys.  I don’t think I will say them all here.  But we do have a way of communicating.  Or maybe we’re just pretending that we understand each other when we really don’t.  (Laughs again.)


If you were to take Patrick for a classic Russian mean–if you haven’t done so already–what would it be?

Borscht.  Have to have borscht.  Maybe Russian ravioli.  Like dumplings.  Dough on the outside, meat inside.  Good.  I haven’t taken him for Russian dinner yet.  He took me to dinner not long ago.  Italian.  He paid.  I like the food in America.  But not fast food.  I don’t do fast food.


How about American beer?  Hockey players everywhere like beer, right?

Don’t like beer.  Ever.  Don’t drink at all during the season.  Summer, vodka.


What do you think of Patrick as a player?

One of the best in the NHL.  He is great to play with.  We kind of have a mutual understanding of what we’re supposed to be doing on the ice.  And my fellow Russian, Artem Anisimov, our center.  I can’t say anything negative about him either.  He does everything well.  He’s another great player.  So many great players on this team.


But you’re only OK?

I’m OK.


The KHL is generally regarded as the second-best league in hockey.  What’s the difference between the KHL and NHL?

There are a lot of good players in the KHL and good teams.  And there is good support.  When I played in St. Petersburg, the building was full.  But not full like Chicago.  And in the NHL, there are more good players, more good teams than anywhere.  KHL is good quality, but not like NHL.  The game here is faster.


Why do you think the fans in Chicago have taken to you so intensely?  They love you.

Maybe some of them do; I don’t know if they all love me.  But if I get excited, I show it.  Maybe some people like that.  Part of my job is to entertain.  We’re here to have run, right?  The atmosphere for hockey in Chicago, it’s exciting.  Loud.


What other Russian players do you admire?

Pavel Datsyuk, Evgeni Malkin, Alex Ovechkin and Ilya Kovalchuk, who I played with in the KHL.  Now I am friendly with Vladimir Tarasenko, who plays in St. Louis.


Head Coach Joe Quennville, apparently, was the one who nicknamed you “Breadman.”  Do you know why?

Because my name sounds like that restaurant: Panera Bread.  I haven’t eaten there yet.  I have gone there for tea.  Lately the coach is just calling me “Bread.”


How does Coach Q communicate with you?

When I came here, he told me, “Shoot the puck.”  When I don’t play well, I can see the look on his face.  He doesn’t say anything.


With the strong start you had this season, a lot of experts are already touting you as a possible winner of Rookie of the…

(Without interpreter) 24!


Wait a minute.  You just said that without an interpreter.  You understood where I was going with that question.

(With interpreter) I’m 24.  I played a few years in the KHL.  I don’t think of myself as a rookie.  It’s my first season in the NHL, but not my first season.


All the guys say you’re funny and have a great sense of humor.  How is this possible if only one other teammate, Anisimov, can understand Russian?

Me, funny?  Maybe it’s something they see in my face when I’m smiling or laughing.  I laugh at something I say, they think it’s funny, and then maybe they laugh, even though they really don’t know what I’m saying.


Above your locker, you have a religious icon that you often look to and touch.

I am religious.  Orthodox Christian.  My grandfather and grandmother, a lot of it came from them.


You mentioned enjoying solitude on occasion.  Do you think a lot about hockey when you are by yourself?

Sometimes.  If I have a good game, I don’t think too much about it.  If I have a bad game, I think about it.  I am hard on myself.  I am a critic of myself.  I am harder on myself than anybody else is.  Sometimes the mind goes too fast.  You have to clear it.  When things are not going well, like some of the guys told me earlier this year, it is good to just relax.  Sometimes you think you made a bad play.  Then you look at the film, it wasn’t that bad.


Girlfriend?

Nyet.  Single.


What would you rather do? Go to practice or sit down for an interview?

Practice.  Especially if the interview is a long one.  If the interview is too long, I don’t like that as much as a short one.


Is this interview running too long?

I would prefer going to practice.  This interview, it’s not so short anymore.  It’s going longer than practice.  (Laughs.)

Pick-Up Lines 2

Synopsis: Remember how I said in the author’s note of this post  that I had another 3.5k words of Rocket Angel involving corny pick-up lines? Here you go! Rocket Angel AU fluff!

Pairings: Rocket Angel/Pharmercy (Fareeha “Pharah” Amari/Angela “Mercy” Ziegler), WidowTracer (Lena “Tracer” Oxton/Amlie “Widowmaker” Lacroix), Ice Bears/Russian Winter (Aleksandra “Zarya” Zaryanova/Mei-Ling Zhou)

The year is 2012. Lena Oxton is convinced that the world will end tomorrow, so she convinces Angela, with incessant wheedling and a pout she can’t resist, to attend an appropriately-themed party, hosted by the most elite women’s club in the city. The cover is an exorbitant, absolutely absurd thirty dollars, and that’s almost enough to make Angela abandon Lena, her current fuckbuddy/project/flavor-of-the-month Amelié, Genji, and Mei at the door, but the combined wheedling of her three friends and Amelié’s scathing glare make Angela turn over a twenty and ten to the gorilla of a bouncer with a deep sigh.

He adjusts his glasses as he steps aside.

“Have fun, Lena, Genji, ladies.”

“Cheers, Winston, mate!”

The thirty dollar cover seems fairer when they’re greeted in the line to the coat check by an absolutely stunning go-go dancer with flawless skin and brown eyes so light they look gold offering a tray of free ‘Revelation’ shots. Angela’s jaw drops and doesn’t close until Genji jabs an elbow into her side and whispers into her ear.

“Doctor Ziegler, if you keep staring at her ass like that, she might actually slap you.”

Keep reading

A rare two-person crew will launch to the International Space Station tomorrow morning
In the wee hours of Thursday morning, a pair of astronauts are scheduled to launch to the International Space Station on a Russian Soyuz rocket. NASA astronaut Jack Fischer and Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin are on the docket for this flight, scheduled for take off at 3:13AM ET from Baikonur, Kazakhstan. Read more

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky (1857-1935) was a Russian and Soviet rocket scientist and pioneer of the astronautic theory. He is considered to be one of the founding fathers of rocketry and astronautics. His works later inspired leading Soviet rocket engineers and contributed to the success of the Soviet space program. Brains and fashion sense always make an irresistible combination!

The NASA Village

Today in the NASA Village… Through the Prism of Language.

Dr. Hansen has been my Russian language instructor for the past 10 years.

”As a Russian/English language instructor at NASA, I’m proud to help my astronaut and cosmonaut students build these bridges – one brick, one word, one grammar rule, one step a time.”  

Why is it so important for astronauts to learn Russian? The first module Zarya (Sunrise, a joint Russian-US endeavor), was launched on November 20, 1998 from a Russian rocket. Two weeks later, the United States launched the second module “Unity,” aboard a Shuttle, and the two were joined by astronauts using the Canadian robotic arm of the Shuttle. The first crew arrived in November 2000.  

Since then, 4 Russian modules and 6 additional US modules, 1 European module and 2 Japanese modules, have been added to build the station into the masterpiece it is today.  Due to all the coordination that had to take place at the beginning of this vast enterprise, the expedition 1 crew were quoted as speaking “Runglish”. The International Space Station is one world’s best examples of pioneering science and research despite political affiliations. In order to ensure that the crews can operate as one, the Russian crews learn English and the US crews learn Russian. European and Japanese crews have the distinct disadvantages of having to know both of these languages as well as their own. Personally, language was more difficult than learning orbital mechanics! I tell the new guys, the first 10 years was the hardest, but most of them are way more talented than I am.

Training in Russia is performed in Russian, while training in Colonge, Tskuba (near Tokyo), Montreal, or Houston is conducted in English. It is critical that in an emergency situation, the entire crew is functioning as one. In some cases, that means knowing mutually your own/your crew mates well enough to understand their language capabilities and compensating such that communication is always clear. I think that is where “Runglish” came from. Beyond safety, however, another main reason that we need to understand each other’s language is the ability to reach out to each other, with our words and with our minds, to better learn each other’s cultures, and ways of thinking.  

My Expedition 5 Insignia- representing the partnership of the U.S. and Russia

As Elena demonstrates through her passion about her subject, learning another’s language is not just about learning the right words.

“Learning languages is certainly much more than memorizing words and wading through the jungle of grammar, trying to figure out what participles are and how exactly they could be used. In fact, it is a painstaking, meticulous, and – to be truthful – never-ending job of building bridges of mutual understanding between individuals and nations. It is through the prism of languages that we learn who we are, how we perceive ourselves and others, why we can be so similar and so different. These processes do much to promote our learning of how to become one family of human beings on the planet Earth. For those advancing the frontier of human presence in the Universe, everything begins with their ability to communicate with each other on-board their space vehicles.”

Get to know Elena in this interview we recorded for Tumblr!

Why Russian?

Why do you love your job?

How long have you known Peggy?

What does International Co-operation mean to you?


Next time on the NASA Village… Robotic Arms.

Do you want more stories?  Find our NASA Villagers here!

Later today, a Russian rocket is scheduled to carry a Russian cosmonaut and an American astronaut to the International Space Station, where they will live for a full year, twice as long as people usually stay.

No American has lived in space for longer than 215 days. Only a few people have ever gone on space trips lasting a year or more — the longest was 437 days—and they’re all Russian cosmonauts. The last year-plus stay in space occurred nearly two decades ago.

What’s more, NASA’s upcoming mission offers scientists a unique opportunity to study the effect of spaceflight on the human body. That’s because the astronaut making the trip, Scott Kelly, has an identical twin brother, Mark Kelly, who’s a retired NASA astronaut.

NASA To Study A Twin In Space And His Brother On Earth

Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

Bread Army

Artemi Panarin

Blackhawks Magazine

Artemi Panarin came to Chicago from far away and has made it in a big way. The Russian rocket became an instant fit with the Blackhawks, endearing himself to fans and teammates. Panarin is still learning to speak English, but here, through an interpreter, he conveys how advanced he is at life and hockey.

You are a star in Chicago after only a few months. Based on what you’ve accomplished so far with the Blackhawks, are you a star back home?

I don’t feel that I am a star in Chicago. I would like to be, but not yet. There are a lot of stars with the Blackhawks. I am an OK player. I’ve been good at times.

All right. Now that you’re an OK player in Chicago, do they follow you back in Russia?

I come from a very small town. Korkino. Friends and family followed me when I played in Russia for a few years, and yes, now they can maybe watch some of the Blackhawks fames if they are on a television. They would have to get up early in the morning. In Russia, a lot of people who are over here.

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