I am repeatedly foiled in my attempts to practice my Russian outside of the classroom. Upon detection of my accent at several local coffee shops, the baristas immediately switch to English. Props to them for speaking English well, but I tell them over and over again that I want to practice my Russian. No dice.
So how do I get my revenge? Whenever they ask me what name they should put on my coffee order for when they call over the loud speaker to tell me that it is ready, I come up with the most Russian sounding name I can.
First, I started with ‘Boris’, but that didn’t get noticeable reactions. I guess Boris is too generic.
Then I tried ‘Vyacheslav’. Then I started saying my name was ‘Yuri Dolgorukiy’ (Yuri the Long Hand), the founder of Moscow in 1137. Right now though, whenever I am asked what name to put on the cup of coffee, I say, in my thick foreign accent, “My name is SVYATOSLAV!” That usually gets a laugh out of them.
Definitely open to suggestions about names I should try if anyone has any ideas.