A Russian truck driver has successfully adopted a Viking persona and elementary English skills to avoid paying a traffic ticket in the World Cup host city of Rostov-on-Don.
Anecdotal evidence from the past two weeks of the tournament suggests that foreign fans have received preferential treatment from the authorities in cases of minor infractions. Last week, a police officer was filmed telling a blogger that foreigners, but not Russians, would be able to continue drinking in public after the World Cup ends, while an English fan who had defaced a statue in Moscow on Tuesday received a fine of just 3000 rubles ($48) for “violating behavior rules” rather than vandalism — which carries a maximum fine of 40,000 rubles.
In a filmed encounter posted on Wednesday, the truck driver in Rostov is heard introducing himself as a football fan from Iceland to a traffic police officer who had stopped him on the highway.
“I from Iceland, you know… Fan club,” the driver says in heavily accented English in the video posted on social media.
“Can you explain me what’s happened?” he asks the visibly confused police officer.
Despite the supposed language barrier, the trucker goes on to answer every one of the traffic cop’s Russian-language questions in English during the interaction.
“Good job,” the cop tells the driver, after seemingly having recognized that he was being fooled, but impressed, nonetheless, at the driver’s creativity.
As he is let go, the trucker is heard saying, “Thanks, brother, see you later” in perfect Russian, to which the traffic inspector responds with a knowing smirk.