Here Streetwise Professor recounts his fortunate opportunity to meet up with the Russian youth activist Oleg Kozlovsky during his speaking tour of the United States (Kozlovsky had been stranded in St. Louis by the snowstorms on the East Coast). Turns out the professor named his blog after a song by this fellow on the right.
We had a wide-ranging conversation about all sorts of matters, from Putin, to the controversy over his passport, to energy, to Europe and energy, to Kaliningrad, to the effects of the economic crisis, to the militia and OMON, to the military and the effects of the reforms, to Khodorkovsky. After a while, he smiled and said that he didn’t want to sound so negative, so I suggested that we talk about politics and economics in the US instead-which ended with me apologizing for negativity.
I then took Oleg on a brief tour of some of the sites in St. Louis, notably Forest Park. Hopefully he’s now boarding his flight back home.
All in all, an enjoyable morning. One amusing moment came when he asked me about how my blog came to be named “Streetwise Professor.” I told him that it derived from a combination of (a) the fact that “the Street” refers to the financial markets that I had originally intended to blog about exclusively, (b) the fact that I’m a professor, and (c) my punk rock inclinations. He smiled and said that he liked the title because it makes him think of street protests.