Another archetypal Russian peasant joke: Ivan is offered a chance to wish for anything, absolutely anything — but the genie tells him that whatever he gets, his neighbor will get twice as much of.

"Each of us has two cows," reasons Ivan, "so I wish that one of my cows shall die!"

(see SovietSurvival & ProverbsRulesBureaucracies)

TopicHumor - TopicSociety


According to one of my classmates, a version of this story is recorded in the Torah. In that variation, two servants of the king loathe each other, and the king makes an offer like the one above: the first servant gets anything he wants, but the second gets twice as much. The punchline is that the first servant asks to have one of his eyes put out.

(correlates: CleanupHitter, OnOneFoot, ChallengeGrantFiction, ...)