Outside of Russia, this thing may be relatively unknown. But folks out there love it. And even President Vladimir Putin has given it a nod of approval.
Ladies and gentlemen, make way for the Russian spoon. And move over, vuvuzela.
If South Africa made noise in the last 2010 World Cup because of the vuvuzelas, Russia will use a local instrument in the 2018 World Cup to generate added hype to the quadrennial sports spectacle.
With their weird sound akin to the ruckus of a swarm of bees on the loose, the vuvuzelas annoyed fans no end, be it on the pitch or on television.
Taking a cue from that but hoping to get positive reviews, Russian organizers will use wooden spoons to keep the beat straight, strong, and melodic during matches.
The spoons are a percussion instrument from Ancient Rus’ which have a particular appeal. In fact, they are a part of a dining set.
Unlike a vuvuzela, a spoon can produce interesting combinations of rhythmical sounds, just like those of Spanish castanets.
But if noise is required, several spoons can maintain a steady rhythm and come up with a very loud sound underlining their versatility.
Although Russia have plenty of national instruments, the spoon topped the list of those suggested to be used for the coming World Cup.
Others considered were the balalaika, gusli, cymbals and accordion.
In the end, the spoon was chosen because it diligently meets its cultural association with the host country.
So when foreigners start trekking to Russia to watch the World Cup, they will learn that the spoon will be one of the symbols, and of course, defining sound of the tournament.
The idea of using the instrument was approved without hesitation by Putin.
In fact, he is expected to dole out a presidential grant of about one million rubles ($17,000) that delighted organisers no end.
His “okay’’ on using the spoons has also spawned several activities, among them for industrial designers and planners to carry out “spoons of victory’’ projects, and holding of a series of scientific and sociological studies related to the instrument.
And for now, please forget about the negativism on the coming World Cup that it will flop due to lack of sponsors brought about among others by Putin’s foreign policy in Syria and Ukraine, corruption scandals in FIFA, and hooliganism.
If everybody will just act and come together just like what the spoons will do to enliven our musical taste and unite us through the so-called beautiful game, then next year’s most-awaited football event is bound to pass with flying colours.
But can the Russian spoons be close to the heart of fans once heard around the world during the World Cup 2018?