Vladimir Putin will be inaugurated again, for the third, yep, the third time as president of Russia. So what are we to expect? People ask me this question when they’ve heard I’ve written a novel about Putin, and my answer is: TWEAK.
Putin is learning how to become the master of tweaking his image. Will he change overnight, wake up and become Mr. Nice Guy? No. But he will tweak his image to keep his popularity in Russia, to keep that 60 percent of the vote. Two ways he’s done it so far is by embracing his “ladies man” image, since he is rumored to be having an affair with 1) a hot Russian spy and/or 2) a super flexible Russian gymnast. Either way, it looks good for him, since he’s seen as young, vital and energetic–all the qualities that helped him get elected the first time around, because he was a departure from the aging, inebriated Boris Yeltsin.
Then there’s the face. I personally cannot tell if he’s had Botox or a facelift, yet I’m going to venture it’s a combination of both. Putin’s face looks scarily soft, shiny and wrinkle-free. People may be critical of his decision to beautify himself, but really, what choice does he have? He’s pushing 60, a portion of the Russian middle class resents him and he has to appear young if he plans to stay in power until 2024. Imagine if Dick Cheney had some needles injected in his face; it may have done wonders for his political career.
As far as I’m concerned, Putin will not make a huge change to his personality and the way he conducts business. Instead, he’ll focus on tweaking his image here and there. A little nip here. A little tuck there. Here are the tweaks I believe Putin will make in the near future:
- Ripping off his shirt once a month (at least)
- Selecting a television program to make fun of him…a little
- Entering the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, just to prove he’s still got it
Whether Russians like it or not, they have another six years of Putin. He will be the same Putin, the one we know today, and the one we’ll know even more after the next six years as president.