Colin sez, "40-year-old Mikhail Puchkov decided to design and build a personal submarine during the stifling era of Leonid Brezhnev's regime when he was barely twenty years old. He built it secretly in an attic in Ryazan, about 120 miles southeast of Moscow."
Smallest Russian Submarine: Officially Registered as Boat
“I was not satisfied with the fate that was laid out for me. I wanted to satisfy myself and to have some respect for my life. If I learned to respect myself, I felt it would be easier to find my niche in life. I didn't know it would work. I just hoped.”
His family, particularly his father, condemned him and his submarine flights of fancy, and the longer the construction took, the more he complained. The first test of the sub came in 1984 and it “sank like a stone,” in Puchkov’s own words, breaking a rudder in the process and setting a climate for the early dives, which were always a bit tense. He said of those times:
“I was so distracted watching for leaks and checking all the equipment, that I didn't have time to enjoy it. You don't remember a thing afterward.”
It took three years before he was able to get the submarine to dive and surface. In 1988, he put the reinforced plastic sub in a box on a truck and shipped it to the Tosna River about 15 miles south of St. Petersburg. There, he continued his nocturnal voyages and in 1994, he took to the open sea on a secret cruise to the island of Kronshtadt, a closed military base in the Gulf of Finland.
Thanks to everyone who came out for last night’s final London event on the UK Walkaway tour, at Pages of Hackney with Olivia Sudjic; today I’m heading to Waterstones Liverpool One for an event with Dr Chris Pak, followed by a stop tomorrow at Waterstones in Birmingham and then wrapping up in the UK with […]
Last night’s sold-out Walkaway tour event with Laurie Penny at Waterstones Tottenham Court Road was spectacular (and not just because they had some really good whisky behind the bar), and the action continues today with a conversation with Olivia Sudjic tonight at Pages of Hackney, where we’ll be discussing her novel Sympathy as well as […]
The following is an excerpt from my new book, The PrEP Diaries: A Safe(r) Sex Memoir, now available from Lethe Press. The book chronicles the before-and-after of using Truvada PrEP, a recent breakthrough in HIV prevention that has prompted a new sexual revolution–except that most individuals have no idea it exists. Through sex positivity, explicit openness, and fun, I hope to make many more people aware that PrEP is an option for them in not just preventing HIV but having a better, braver sex life.
Boasting an IPX6 waterproof rating, the Trakk Bullet Ultra Compact Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker resists dust and heavy rainfall. It’s currently available in the Boing Boing Store.The Trakk Bullet offers the same wireless convenience as other portable speakers, but few are built as tough as this one. Its utilitarian construction is designed to be a totally low-maintenance […]
The Ticwatch 2 Active Smartwatch is a simpler take on an active wearable that raised over $2m dollars on Kickstarter and is currently offered in the Boing Boing Store.Somewhere in between the single-day battery life and platform-specificity of the Apple Watch and Android Wear devices, there exists the Ticwatch. Instead of trying to shoehorn another […]
Loot Crate is a subscription service that delivers a box of curated pop culture goods to your doorstep. To sample their geeky wares, you can order a single mystery box exclusively from the Boing Boing Store.Each month Loot Crate sends you 6-7 unique items and apparel, including collectibles, books, and t-shirts. Pulling inspiration from all […]