Syedyshev Oleg
Syedyshev Oleg

Humorous Essays Based on students' memories

"All have died
except for those who are alive, and those whom we remember"Confucius

Essay 55. We Are the Eleventh! So What?

Oleg Syedyshev

Oleg Syedyshev

"There is no future without past" - the folk saying states. It is difficult not to agree with this; as well as it is difficult not to concur with the undeniable truth, which says: "in nineteen seventy two since the birth of Christ there was the eleventh graduation of doctors from Kemerovo Medical Institute. We were neither the first, nor the fifth or tenth, and let it be so.
We were the eleventh! So what?
I liked the phrase so much that used it as a title of the essay. It happened so that this is the fifty fifth essay. And today there are one hundred and fifteen comments in my guest book. Relax, please, I am not going to store your mind with statistics. They are just two starting figures, which give me an opportunity to say, why and what for I have started all that and continue doing it.

I am a workaholic by nature and "dipsomaniacal". I have only three periods when I rest during a year; they are in spring - the vitamin deficiency time, so together with my wife I go there, where there are many vitamins and sun, September - the month of my birthday, and again we go to enjoy fruit of the new harvest and to the seaside and celebrate my birthday at the same time, and December - the month of my wife's birthday, winter is a reason to fly for a week or ten days there, where it is warm. And the rest of the year I work, and without any days off. So in June I had coronary artery bypass grafting - 5, and my doctor strictly limited my workload. And it occurred to me to start writing student memoirs. It captured me, like my work, and I feel that in this activity I am becoming "dipsomaniacal", too. One of 1972 graduates Volodya Fainzilberg, a psychiatrist, called this rehabilitation method a writer-therapy and wanted to lay scientific foundation to my hobby. Well, if he does that, and I have followers in rehabilitating by such method, and if they have positive results, like I do, I will be especially happy. So, let's consider that I have answered your first question: "Why am I doing this?"

The second question of "How?" is going to be a puzzler. To be honest, I even did not think about the form in which to write my recollections. I even did not calculate how much of those recollections there would be. The only thing I decided for myself at the very beginning was that the memoirs would be kind in their essence; and if I manage, then a bit ironical, but no, I should not say so. Irony presupposes second meaning, but I have nothing hidden between the lines. It will be correct to say that I wanted my memoirs to be a bit humorous or to make it simple comic. After I wrote the first five or ten essays I sent invitations to my friends to read them on my site and asked them to leave their comments. The comments surprised me. All the comments were very favorable, and if there was any critique, it was only of poor correction. And also there were suggestions to write about this or that. If my readers only knew that there was no proofreading at all then. However thanks to those comments I became aware that I am on the right way, and that was the time to think about how to do, what I was doing and in what form. I am not a literary man; this is my first literary experience. It is good that internet can give answer to any question now. So after browsing it I realized that I was writing essays. Well, and, of course, I liked the word by itself "essay" and without giving it a second thought I changed the name of "Student Stories" into "Humorous Essays".

I also liked some characteristics of an essay and in order "not to spoil all the beauty of the original", let me quote. Those, who read my essays, remembered the phrase of Sergey Sherbinin. So:
"An essay expresses individual impressions and considerations of a certain event or an issue and deliberately does not claim to be a definitive or complete interpretation of a subject".
"An essay presupposes new, subjectively tinted opinion about something; such kind of a work of literature can have ... purely fictional characteristics".
Well, my dear friends, I have answered your second question of "How am I doing this".

The last question is left: "What for?" At the very beginning I did not know why I was doing that. And, I will tell you more, I did not bother to think about it. I was just doing that. However, it is wrong to say so; at the beginning I was doing that for myself, in order to kill time. I was released from Kiev Heart Centre on the eleventh day after the surgery, and on the twelfth went at work. My doctor agreed to that on the condition that I would be not more than two-three hours at work, and then go home to do a set of rehabilitation exercises. Though when I started receiving responses to my memoirs, motivation was formed and formulated by itself. Not to sound proofless I will give samples of several responses. Read and consider carefully.
4 July, 2011 Svetlana Titova
"I read with great pleasure, and most importantly imagined everything in pictures, had a good laugh, it's been a long time since I had such a good fun. You write in a good literary style, I do not understand, why you were given a satisfactory grade for a composition at the entrance examination. I hope there will be the second set of your stories. I received a sufficient supply of positive emotions. I am looking forward to the continuation!"
4 July, 2011, Victor Kubasov
"Listen, with so much pleasure I read this!! As if the student years came back again... Write more, please!!!"
7 July, 2011, Anton Nikolayevitch Kazantsev
"Oleg Petrovitch! What wonderful and funny stories these are! I am reading with pleasure and laughing! It is just obvious that you need to write a book!!! I am thrilled!"
10 July, 2011 Lyubov Natchaeva (Reshetnikova)
"Very interesting!!! Good job, you gave a good idea!"
23 July, 2011 Nadezhda Svechnikova
"I read everything, interest is only growing. Continue writing! I wonder if you remember the quartet NASNANE; we were popular from the 1st up to the 4th year; there were student festivals, which were held with the full house. And our names were Natasha, Sveta, Nadya, Nelya...".
28 July, 2011, Larisa Kamenetskaya
"Hello, Oleg! I envy you in a good way; you managed to keep in your memory so many events, and tell about them so vividly and brightly, and with such warmth created images of once young friends... Of course, everyone, who reads your stories, has something of his own, which comes alive in his memory; and one feels even though briefly 40 years younger. It's great, that you stirred all that up! And the institute's buildings, and the professors, and the number 8 bus... You had your grandmother in Yagunovka, and I lived there with my parents. We graduated from the Therapy Department in 1973, we were after you. And Valera Kafeyev, L.Syrkasheva and D.Mkheidze you mentioned finished their 6th year together with us. You are a strong man, if after the coronary artery bypass grafting you picked up on everything so fast. I personally know what kind of surgery it is. I will be reading your memoirs with pleasure even if the student period is over".
2 August, 2011 Aleksandr Slavitskiy
Hello, Oleg!
With great pleasure I read your "Student sketches" for one night. It's great!
I returned to Kemerovo at the beginning of 1970s, though what you are writing about is referred to the end of 1960s (this is felt from the context of the "Stories").
There are familiar names, similar situations, charm and indelibility of our youth with its joy and disappointments, findings and losses. Anatoliy Mukhordov was our leader, when we were digging potatoes in our third year at the Yelykayevo collective farm; we had our own adventures there. Larissa Mirkina was my wife during 1977 - 78.
This is how interestingly life has interwoven; it is Brownian motion subjected neither to logic nor control.
With the wishes of strong health and success. Hugs!
Sincerely yours,
Aleksandr Slavitskiy.
5 August, 2011 Boris Gorban
"Good evening, Oleg! I read all of your pieces of writing... they are wonderful! Student years will never be forgotten. Where else one will meet such a unique associate professor as Golubev with his public world-view of Hegel. The story with a carafe became student classics, and looks like it was repeated more than once... Only a story with a number 8 bus is unique, on which I used to ride many times to a part-time job of a substituting intern at Yagunovka medical clinic... I failed to meet my deputy for the home front with a huge bag, it's a pity... Though one cannot manage in life without humor... Sometimes I feel especially proud of our Kemerovo State Medical Institute. Just think how many wonderful people and specialists it has launched into life... I am glad for you... write and be happy!"
11 August, 2011 Aleksey Krasnov
"Oleg! Thank you for the balm, which cures soul."
19 August, 2011 Yakov Kirsh
"Dear Oleg! Everything turned out nice and interesting. I was reading as if I was mesmerized by a scientific fiction novel, could not stop reading, though it is 03.00 in the morning already, and the Sun is rising above Berlin. Everything is depicted true to life and succinctly especially in a scene at a canteen, I even saw the student canteen. Why were we constantly hungry in our young days? I observe the well fed life of Western students and it is impossible to compare. The layout is just super, and design is great, everything is punctual, step-by-step and neat. Thank you, Oleg!"
27 August, 2011 Sergey Vladimirovitch Cherno
"Dear Oleg Petrovitch, this is Sergey Vladimirovitch Cherno writing, a head of the Scientific Research Center of Kemerovo Medical Academy (1997 Therapy Department graduate). For about 10 years I worked at the publishing house of Kemerovo State Medical Academy (KemSMA), and after I handed the responsibilities over to a professional (Kseniya Mikhailovna Anosova), I took the publishing house under my unofficial patronage concerning various arrangements. At KemSMA there is an old tradition to publish in a certain form memoirs /works of literature of its graduates/, employees as well as other materials about history of the school. After I read your "Essays" I can state that your sketches will occupy a well deserved place in the chronicle of the Alma mater. I took a liberty to place a small reference to the complete text of the "Humorous Essays" on the Therapy Department's page, and also sent a letter to the editor of "Kuzbass Medic" Olga Petrovna Tarasova. Sincerely, S.V.Cherno."

O.P. Syedyshev

O.P. Syedyshev

4 September, 2011 Oleg Sanin
"Oleg, I visited your site. Please, accept my compliments and sincere gratitude for what you have been doing. I read very little, though that was quite enough to immerse there, in that time. I can vividly picture a Georgian skiing and skating, and a piece of wire in a scull opening..."
I am very pleased that my essays are read not only by my student mates, who are, of course, familiar with the characters and situations, about which I am writing, but the graduates of other years as well; and Anton Kazantsev being twenty years old is still a student, though of a Kemerovo Medical Academy.
I am also pleased that the essays evoke a lot of positive associations in my readers.
I offered you only the every tenth response out of one hundred and fifteen I currently have; and with absolute confidence I make a conclusion for myself: readers like my essays. And if to consider the site's statistics and the one of the "Humorous Essays" in particular, it becomes obvious that more than two and a half thousand people visited it only during August. And how is it presented in Google?

Now I can with every reason answer the third question: "What am I doing this for?" I am writing essays on the motifs of student memoirs in order to make people's lives easier, to help them better cope with difficulties and to hold those who are gone in remembrance. One of the readers named me a Historiographer of 1972 graduates. I do not mind, though I realize that I am writing history of just a tiny segment of that life. And I enjoy writing! For the eleventh graduation!! For Everybody!!!

4 September, 2011.

© Copyright: Oleg Syedyshev, 2012
Publishing licence #21204260431

Translated by Viktoria Potykinato content