What, after all, constitutes “watching the sun set”?

(Note: Dear reader, It has been ages since I’ve posted anything on The Superb. And for good reason. That reason being, none of your business.)

I’d like to ask you to gaze upon this photograph:

Putin and Bush try to act like normal humans

I stumbled across this when reading the recent article posted on The Atlantic’s online journal, concerning Vladimir Putin’s understanding of western culture. The post touches on Putin’s failed political relationship with the Bush administration toward the end of it’s tenure. In description, it posted this image, captioned: “Bush and Putin watch the sun set in Sochi, in 2008”. More specifically this final meeting between the two men, took place on April 5th, on some dignitary’s residence which over looks the Black Sea. What caught my eye was the absurd juxtaposition of the caption, the intended image, the actual image and the unintended cuteness of the photo.

Note, even though they are “watching the sun set”, they aren’t even looking any where near the actual sun. Rather, they both seem to be holding there heads, cocked, slanted, distantly with what seems like defiant contempt for our most precious star. You could argue, however, that their heads are rotated away from the sun in order to engage in conversation, so their voices can be heard and eye contact can be established. This doesn’t make sense at all. Putin doesn’t speak English. Without an interpreter present, no such breeze-shooting could take place. Also, why would both of these men need to look away from their intended target in order to communicate? That sort of behavior so anti-Sorkin that it almost seems malicious.

Also note that Bush’s hands are in an unnatural, and arguably sub-human position. Who holds their arms like that?! That is absurd. It’s like Bush is pretending to put his hands in his pockets because he feels the pressure to fit in with what Putin is doing. But Bush can’t really have his hand in his pockets, right? They aren’t deep enough! Has a placed his thumbs through his belt loops?! Is this just Bush flaunting his unbridled Texas spirit? Only he can answer. But, perhaps, this awkward position may serve as a synecdoche for America’s political relationship with Russia. Trying really hard to act like everything is cool and we totally trust/get you, when actually, we both feel really awkward when standing near each other.

That brings me to the cuteness. It is odd to think, that these keepers of doomsday, these masters of the world’s armed forces, could look so childishly uncomfortable in their own skin when confronted with the serenity of the universe.

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