Eugene Onegin will be a Ghost of your Player Past

For Russian class, I am to learn the story of Eugene Onegin, a classic Russian tale written by Pushkin.

Because I am not yet competent in Russian, I simply read the summary off Wikipedia:

“In the 1820s, Eugene Onegin is a bored Saint Petersburg dandy, whose life consists of balls, concerts, parties and nothing more. One day he inherits a landed estate from his uncle. When he moves to the country, he strikes up a friendship with his neighbor, a starry-eyed young poet named Vladimir Lensky. One day, Lensky takes Onegin to dine with the family of his fiancée, the sociable but rather thoughtless Olga Larina. At this meeting he also catches a glimpse of Olga’s sister Tatyana. A quiet, precocious romantic and the exact opposite of Olga, Tatyana becomes intensely drawn to Onegin. Soon after, she bares her soul to Onegin in a letter professing her love. Contrary to her expectations, Onegin does not write back. When they meet in person, he rejects her advances politely but dismissively and condescendingly. This famous speech is often referred to as Onegin’s Sermon: he admits that the letter was touching, but says that he would quickly grow bored with marriage and can only offer Tatyana friendship; he coldly advises more emotional control in the future, lest another man take advantage of her innocence.

Later, Lensky mischievously invites Onegin to Tatyana’s name day celebration promising a small gathering with just Tatyana, her sister, and her parents. When Onegin arrives, he finds instead a boisterous country ball, a rural parody of and contrast to the society balls of St. Petersburg he has grown tired of. Onegin is irritated with the guests who gossip about him and Tatyana, and with Lensky for persuading him to come. He decides to avenge himself by dancing and flirting with Olga. Olga is insensitive to her fiancé and apparently attracted to Onegin. Earnest and inexperienced, Lensky is wounded to the core and challenges Onegin to fight a duel; Onegin reluctantly accepts, feeling compelled by social convention. During the duel, Onegin unwillingly kills Lensky. Afterwards, he quits his country estate, traveling abroad to deaden his feelings of remorse.

Tatyana visits Onegin’s mansion, where she looks through his books and his notes in the margins, and begins to question whether Onegin’s character is merely a collage of different literary heroes, and if there is, in fact, no “real Onegin”.

Several years pass, and the scene shifts to St. Petersburg. Onegin has come to attend the most prominent balls and interact with the leaders of old Russian society. He sees a most beautiful woman, who captures the attention of all and is central to society’s whirl, and he realizes that it is the same Tatyana whose love he had once turned away. Now she is married to an aged prince. Upon seeing Tatyana again, he becomes obsessed with winning her affection, despite the fact that she is married. However, his attempts are rebuffed. He writes her several letters, but receives no reply. Eventually Onegin manages to see Tatyana and presents to her the opportunity to renew their past love. Does he desire her only for her wealth and position? She recalls the days when they might have been happy, but that time has passed. Onegin repeats his love for her. Faltering for a moment, she admits that she still loves him, but she will not allow him to ruin her and declares her determination to remain faithful to her husband. She leaves him regretting his bitter destiny.”

The story I imagine might resonate with most “players” out there. Due to our modern world with shrinking borders and ever improving means of transportation, the average player may have up to three or four Tatyanas in his life.

Know yourself, that you may identify what it truly is that your heart desires, and you may learn your lesson before your last Tatyana marries and sets up a wall through which you’ll never pass.

Otherwise, like Scrooge, you may find yourself so lonely that your only friends will be the ghosts of the past.


7 thoughts on “Eugene Onegin will be a Ghost of your Player Past

        • To nudge you along to my point (that I’m satisfied you understand) – consider how I’m turning full circle on typical player things.

          Like going from wanting to bang everything in sight to being more selective and evaluating each woman as a wife and mother.

          There’s probably a Tanya or three in my past – should I encounter more, and I will…


          • Lucky you. There were no Tanyas in my past. Only bitches that I glorified.

            Although, there was this one Russian girl. She was rather ordinary, but she had that feminine character all right. She was not smart, but caring. She liked me. Simple as that.

            I told you I want to be a regular dude. She was a regular girl, just not damaged. There was no pain in it, no heartache.

            I think that is the kind of thing I want to marry. Something that does not hurt. Something I do not fear losing. Something that is simple and fits. Something ordinary.

            • To have a Tanya in your past, you need to have had some connection with her. Even so, the analogy is not perfect. The point I’m getting across is to not throw away good for a momentary search for better. Not throw good away because you don’t have eyes to see it.

              That’s a good place to start.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *