Militseysky protokol (Милицейский протокол) (English translation)

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Russian

Militseysky protokol (Милицейский протокол)

 
Считай по-нашему, мы выпили не много.
Не вру, ей-бога. Скажи, Серёга!
И если б водку гнать не из опилок,
То чё б нам было с пяти бутылок!
 
...Вторую пили близ прилавка в закуточке,
Но это были ещё цветочки.
Потом — в скверу, где детские грибочки, 1
Потом... Не помню — дошёл до точки.
 
Так ещё б: я пил из горлышка, с устатку и не евши,
Но я как стекло был, то есть остекленевший.
А уж когда коляска подкатила,
Тогда в нас было семьсот на рыло!
 
Мы, правда, третьего насильно затащили.
Ну, тут промашка — переборщили.
А что очки товарищу разбили,
Так то портвейном усугубили.
 
Товарищ первый нам сказал, что вы уймитесь,
Что — не буяньте, что — разойдитесь.
На "разойтись" я сразу ж согласился —
И разошёлся, то есть расходился!
 
Но если я кого ругал — карайте строго!
Но это — вряд ли! Скажи, Серёга!
А что упал, так то — от помутненья,
Орал не с горя — от отупенья.
 
...Теперь дозвольте пару слов без протокола.
Чему нас учит семья и школа?
Что жизнь сама таких накажет строго. Правильно?
Тут мы согласны. Скажи, Серёга!
 
Вот он проснётся утром — он, конечно, скажет:
Пусть жизнь осудит, пусть жизнь накажет!
Так отпустите — вам же легче будет:
Ну чего возиться, раз жизнь осудит!
 
Вы не глядите, что Серёжа всё кивает, —
Он соображает и всё понимает!
А что он молчит, так это он от волненья,
От осознанья и просветленья.
 
Не запирайте, люди, — плачут дома детки,
Ему же — в Химки, а мне — в Медведки!..
Да, всё равно: автобусы не ходят,
Метро закрыто, в такси не содят.
 
Приятно всё-таки, что нас тут уважают:
Гляди — подвозят, Серёга, гляди — сажают!
Разбудит утром не петух, прокукарекав, —
Сержант подымет, то есть как человеков!
 
Нас чуть не с музыкой проводят, как проспимся.
Я рупь заначил! Слышь, Сергей, — опохмелимся!
И всё же, брат, трудна у нас дорога!
Эх, бедолага! Ну, спи, Серёга!
 
Last edited by Aldefina on Tue, 03/01/2017 - 23:53
Align paragraphs
English translation

The Police Report

Versions: #1#2
To tell you our truth, we hadn’t had much drink
No kidding, you tell, Serioga! 1
And if it wasn’t sawdust they make vodka from
What harm could those five bottlefuls have done to us? 2
 
A second one, we drank it right near the counter, in a nooklet
But that was just for starters
Then in a little public garden, that one with “mushrooms” 3
And then….I can’t really remember – I came to the tipping point
 
But what d’you want? I’d been drinking right from the bottle being all into pieces, on an empty stomach
But I was glazing sober or rather glazing over
So when their carriage 4 got to us
We had had seven hundred 5 to each snout
 
It’s true that we forced a third one to join in 6
But that was a blunder – we overdid it
So what if we smashed that comrade’s glasses
That was because we had made it all worse through port wine
 
The first comrade said “You should quiet down
Stop kicking the row and break up”
I agreed to break at once
And I broke wild and I broke loose.
 
But if there's someone who I ran down – punish me harshly
But that’s a wide stretch, you tell, Serioga!
So what that I fell face flat on the ground – that was because of impaired vision
I yelled not out of distress – out of impaired thinking
 
Now let me a couple of words offtop of the report
What do family and school teach us?
That life itself will severely judge the ones like us. Correct?
To this, we fully agree. You tell, Serioga!
 
So he’s waking up in the morning to say for sure
Let life judge, let life punish!
So let us go – Bother it!
Why must you meddle if life should sentence anyway!
 
Don’t mind Seriozha’s keeping nodding
He savvies, he grasps every word
And if he keeps silent – that’s out of emotions
Out of repentance and enlightenment
 
Don’t lock us up, good people, the kids are crying home
He’s to Khimki, I’m to Medvedki
For all we care – the buses have stopped running
The metro is closed, taxies don’t take us in.
 
And yet it feels fine that we’re being respected in here
Look, we’re being given a lift and a bench seat!
It won’t be a rooster’s morn crowing that will wake us up
But a sergeant who will rouse us like we were humans!
 
They’ll nearly parade us out as soon as we wake up sober
I’ve stashed a rouble! Hear, Serguey, we’ll have a bracer!
And yet, my bro, how hard our way is!
Ah, you, poor thing, go sleep, Serioga!
 
  • 1. This is a monologue of a drunkard brought into a district detoxification centre and kept there overnight by a special Soviet police force who picked up drunk people in the streets in case they were lying unconscious or were out of public control. In the centre they were given medical aid if needed but mainly locked up till sobering up in the morning.
  • 2. In the morning a police officer interviewed their "guests" and made a police report which was to be sent to the respective detainee's workplace, which usually led to cutting down on incentives, bonuses etc. So the detained man is trying to make up and rehearse a plausible ( in his opinion) explanation to talk a police officer out of filing this report. The commonest alcoholics' complaint was that vodka for local consumption was fake while the genuine one went for export
  • 3. Children's playground had a sandy ground or ring with wooden umbrellas of a mushroom design to protect kids from the sun. It was a favoured meeting point for drinking as the playground was empty at night and locals couldn't make out the drinking people out of their windows and call out the police because of that "mushroom" umbrella screen
  • 4. a Detoxication Centre van
  • 5. Whenever you see or hear ". ..hundred" without the word gramms it always refers to the amount of vodka
  • 6. An average drinking party was 3 as the price of a vodka bottle was 3 roubles 62 kopecks which made clubbing in easy
Submitted by sandring on Wed, 06/06/2018 - 11:15
Last edited by sandring on Thu, 21/06/2018 - 23:36
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Comments
Aldefina    Mon, 18/06/2018 - 21:23

What a fantastic translation, Nadia, thank you muchly. Regular smile

Vysotsky is very difficult to translate. We don’t have many really good translations. I translated a couple of his his songs and I’m not happy with what I did. I mean, my translations correctly express the meaning, but they don’t sound like Vysotsky to me.

I translated this particular song twice. The second attempt is, without any doubt, the best translation I made in my whole life. It sounds good, is rhymed and you can easily sing it.

Anyway, don’t worry, I can’t imagine how to make a rhymed English translation of this song and what you wrote sounds good.

I would like to add one thing – the reason why Russians always used to drink in a company of 3 people was this tool: https://pl.wiktionary.org/wiki/stakan If you fill it up to the place where it’s already rounded, one bottle will fill exactly 3 “stakans”. The price of the cheapest vodka was actually 3 roubles 50 kopecks and the slightly better vodka was exactly 4 roubles, but in both cases you needed to pay for the bottle and its price was 12 kopecks.

sandring    Thu, 21/06/2018 - 23:16

Thank you, Andrzej! Well, I could never have guessed one bottle makes three glassfuls. What a discovery indeed. I really appreciate your vote Teeth smile

Aldefina    Thu, 21/06/2018 - 23:33

It's not a discovery, Nadia, just experience. Devil smile Wink smile