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“No matter which profession you belong to – everyone sometimes likes to play a trick on colleagues. Both office plankton and people of heroic professions like to have fun. Nothing human is alien to astronauts as well.
In 1975 a historic “the handshake in space” took place – it was a famous docking of two spacecrafts the Soviet Union “Soyuz” and the US “Apollo”. The Soyuz was guided by two Soviet cosmonauts - Alexey Leonov and Valeri Kubasov. After the Russians and Americans docked, they met in space, embraced, reported to the Earth and, of course, made history. Later it was time to have a first lunch together, when the commander of the "Soyuz" Leonov suddenly offered:
- Let's drink Russian vodka!
- Sorry, but we do not drink actually – replied Americans.
- Come on guys, we do not drink as well, but it is a tradition! – said Leonov, and took out tubes with the label - "Russian Vodka".
So, Soviet cosmonauts urged Americans to take these tubes, “clink glasses” and drink. And after Americans drank, they were very surprised because in fact, inside of the tubes was BORSCH (traditional Russian soup). Alexey Leonov was a real joker, even in the space and before the flight he took with him several labels from bottles of Russian vodka. When astronauts prepared for lunch, he just put these labels on the tubes with their food. So, it was a joke with the elements of national humor. Americans really liked it.” (you can check this story on the Internet).
Legend No 1: «Spring Vodka»
Once unnamed cosmonauts from Russia carried a little bit of real, terrestrial alcohol aboard the Soyuz space station in metal tubes for space food, without warning each other about it.
Outside the porthole it was the reckless time of Post-Soviet total mess, sloppiness and weakening control. The dashing 90s were not only on the Earth, but also to some extent, in the Space.
During the evening time, when there was a shift change at the Russian Flight Control Center and the visual control over the cosmonauts on the Low Earth orbit was slightly weakened, one of the astronauts remembered about his priceless secret stash.
He promised his orbital colleague a small surprise and quickly flew into the compartment for the on-board nutrition and from a pile of various tubes with space food, he found one special tube, which he sneaked through the number cordons on the Earth. When the space dinner was in a full swing, one of the cosmonauts, let’s call him Petrovich, took out his surprise and offered his colleague, let’s name him Sanych, to play in water bubbles.
The goal of this game was to swallow as many bubbles as you can for the certain time. First player at this game was Sanych – he quickly started to catch bubbles with the mouth and swallow them. And right after the second bubble he got the idea of this surprise, but as they were still under video and audio control from the Earth, he said to Petrovich: “The water of excellent quality! Probably, it’s a spring water?” At that moment, the first space brand “Spring Vodka” was born!
Legend No 2: «Antigravity Cognac»
It was a third day of the flight on the Soyuz space station for the astronauts Sanych and Petrovich. Those who was flying into the space knows firsthand, that the first days of the flight are the most difficult in terms of the human body adaptation. Over these days the astronauts usually feel sickness, nausea and even vomiting. Because of zero gravity, all human vitals are not stable and “flight” inside the body. This is actually the reason of feeling bad and all symptoms of upcoming vomiting during zero-g.
It was a lunchtime when Sanych decided to show Petrovich his surprise secretly prepared from the Earth. After coming back from the on-board food block, Sanych offered Petrovich to play in water bubbles as well, but now the game’s rules were changed. The idea was to guess what bubbles are made from.
So, Petrovich swallowed the first, second and already third bubble, and with a serious face of the Finer Things Club member he told: “Well, by the way, I did not understand its taste clearly. Could you please repeat one more time again!” And then again and again. After this “game” astronauts felt all positive effect of the alcohol on calming human’s vitals, mind and body. It was the story explaining «Antigravity Cognac» emerging.
Legend No 3: «Antiradical Wine»
Sometimes there are extraordinary periods at the space station when flashes on the Sun produce high-energy particle flows that ionize everything in their path, including human-made space objects. The power of space ionizing radiation is so high that the shell of the space station is just like a tin can for the bullet. In this case, over a day of flight in a normal mode, the cosmonaut is able to get the annual dose of radiation on the Earth! But each space station has its special secure places where the general water supply is stored, and this water can be an excellent screen to protect human against the ionizing radiation which is everywhere when you are in the space.
Just in one of such days our astronauts Sanych and Petrovich were sitting near spare water reserve for the station. And while waiting out the dangerous period of flashes on the Sun, Petrovich again surprised Sanych with his practicality, because he took a soft tube with a red liquid from a hidden place near water balloons. Then Petrovich explained that the best treatment to eliminate free radicals from human’s body is to drink red wine. And after tasting the liquid from hidden tube, that was actually red wine, it was called «Antiradical Wine».
At the company’s NY party, after drinking several glasses of good old whiskey, I told these stories to my friend – Andrey Vedernikov, and he totally supported this idea. Moreover, he continued coming up with the names of Vodka in Tubes: “Space Orbital”, “Space Way”, “Space Acceleration”, “Space Spiked Vodka”, “Space Cheerfulness”, “Universal sadness”, “Space Weightlessness”.
As my brother, Sergey Elin, who is a special connoisseur of alcoholic beverages, also was invited to our New Year's Eve party, after my stories he immediately began to generate various thematic names of potentially attractive brands, especially for the Space Cognac: “Space Star”, “Space Multi-star”, “Galactic”, “Black Hole”, “Lone Pulsar”, “Big Boom”.
And everyone enjoyed this idea of creating his own brand mark for the alcohol products that can be taken to the space ships with tourists during the flights to the Low Earth orbit and Lunar orbit. Than it was my turn to generate the names for the Space Vodka: “First Cosmonaut”, “Let's go!”, “Space Special”, “Cosmonaut Overboard”, “Space Breakthrough”, “The Star KETs”, “Space Dreamer”.
Andrey Vedernikov began to resent, but what about our dogs, monkeys and beetles, who will remember about their heroic deed for the mankind? And here is his version of alcohol perpetuation of animals, first of all, he started from a friend of man - a dog. We did not have enough imagination for monkeys and insects, because at this time we were already drunk enough. So, Vodka names in the honor of dog cosmonauts: “Squirrel and Little Arrow”, “Husky”, “Little Star”.
Our ladies who was carefully watching our creative alcoholic impulse and were not so much drunk as we, decided to make a contribution in the process of creating vodka names. Maybe because of the small level of drunkenness, their memory was working much better and they remembered such important historic names of the space ships as: “Vodka Soyuz”, “Mir Spacecraft”, “Apollo–Soyuz” or simply “Appolonovka” based on the borsch.
And, of course, excited ladies remembered about sweet alcohol drinks by the end of the New Year’s party.
They generated the names for the Space Liqueurs: “Space Tenderness”, “Space Fantasy”, “Space Shroud”, “Space Meetings”, “Space Elegy”.
And, finally, being totally drunk, we generated our names for the Space Wines: “The Moonwalk”, “Space Smile”, “Space Fun”, “Universal Happiness”.
P.S. Why do we publish all this? Bearing in mind the restrictions adopted by the State Duma on spilling alcohol in the containers or bottles, which are not controlled, or poorly controlled by the EGAIS system (electronic tracking and monitoring system), our idea was totally destroyed by governmental rules. And it is really sad, because with the right support this idea could become a serious independent business.
Authors of the idea: Vladimir Elin, Andrey Vedernikov, Sergey Elin
Moscow, 26 December 2017 http://intersofteurasia.ru