Random words: БРИТЬСЯ/to shave

Men’s word today. Pronounced like БРИЦА.

Not an easy nut to crack, so to be safe it is better to use it as infinitive, if possible. If not, we should remember that it is not type 2 verb (looks like it!) but type 1, so in present, it would look as follows:

бреюсь, бреешься, бреется, бреемся, бреетесь, бреются.

If we remove the reflexive bit СЯ/СЬ, that would mean shaving someone else or shaving a particular part of the body apart from face.

Бриться (imperfective) – побриться (perfective)

Ok, now let’s try to link it with an image and a similar word in English. To me it sounds a lot like brie cheese. So, instead of shaving foam we can use this cheese? =) :


Random words: УБИТЬ. Kill 3 with 1.

A useful one sometimes. Let’s see how we can remember it.

You must already know the verb БЫТЬ – to be. As sound Ы is a hard nut to crack, probably in the beginning you always pronounced it like БИТЬ, completely unaware that it is another verb.

Быть = to be

Бить = to beat somebody

Убить = to kill (very close to бить, just add a prefix), perfective. A bit strange in the future: убью, убьёшь, etc.

Убивать = to kill, imperfective, regular.

For practise:

So that

Word-for-word: So that all were happy, must kill those who (is) unhappy. (In Russian we normally have singular forms with КТО – who).

How not to make Russian workbooks

In one of the workbooks I have, Поехали, there is an interesting dialogue (don’t be put off – it requires basic reading skills and very basic vocabulary):


That’s to the question of time spent and value gained – not all workbooks are equally good for you=) Even one of the most relied upon and popular, like this one.

Random words: СТАРЫЙ / OLD

In Russian, we often have two forms for adjectives – long and short. For the concept above that would be СТАРЫЙ and СТАР (masculine), СТАРАЯ and СТАРА (feminine), СТАРОЕ and СТАРО (neuter), СТАРЫЕ and СТАРЫ (plural).

Does it remind you anything?:


Random words: МЕСТО

Место should be read as *места or *местэ if pronounced quickly. Means “a place”. Can be used when talking to your wife or girlfriend, for example as follows:


Know your place, woman! (Source)

It is of neutral gender, therefore we would say

моё место, твоё место, своё место, пустое место etc

Fat or healthy – never mind!

It’s an exciting adjective in Russian, здоровый. You will probably hear something like this while drinking with a bunch of Russians (Ваше здоровье! – let’s drink for your health!) and think it is just about health – slim chance! Apart from “healthy”, it can also mean “very big, huge”. So,

здоровый мужчина can mean both, a healthy/strong man and a fat/sturdy one (aren’t in English fat chance and slim chance the same?)

I want

I want healthy food! For example, a huge hamburger! (in Russian these two adjectives would be the same! – a word play)

How to give urgent orders

I already explained here what Imperative mood is and how we use it to give orders or ask to do anything. That’s considered the most common and neutral way.

Also, among others, we sometimes use

1) infinitives (mostly when talking to dogs and in the army):

Сидеть! (Sit down! – to a dog)

Стоять! (Stop! – for example to a soldier, and what do we know about discipline?).

Master said

Master said, “Sit! Wait”… she will be waiting and hoping but he will not return…

2) past tense (sort of an urgent order, something which was meant to be done “yesterday”, depending on the context can be rude, or show different social levels):

Ключи мне дал! – Keys to me gave! (=Hey you give me the keys right now!!!)

Пошел отсюда! – Went from here! (=Go away!)


Petrov, swam (=swim) to the blackboard!

So don’t trust past forms! They can be an order sometimes.