Oct 28, 2017

The Beefcake Boys of Omsk

I've always thought of Omsk as the ultimate in distant exotic cities: in Siberia, full of Yakut nomads speaking Altaic languages and braving subzero temperatures and permafrost.

Besides, its multi-consonant name sounds like aomething a monster would say in a 1950s horror movie.

Turns out that Omsk is more pedestrian, a city of 1,100,000 in western Siberia, not particularly old (descended from a Cossack fort built in 1716).

The population is 85% Russian, so you won't hear a lot of Yakut or Nenets spoken (that's a thousand miles further on).

Not a lot of sightseeing: some old churches, the Dostoevsky Museum (he was imprisoned in Omsk for four years).

And the weather isn't even very cold: it hovers around 0 degrees Fahrenheit in January and February.

But what Omsk lacks in glamour, it makes up for in beefcake.

An arm wrestling competition.  Dig those biceps.

Omsk has its share of bodybuilders.

And swimmers.

An international wrestling competition where the winners get ceiling fans.

With junior and adult sections.

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