Here are two of the promised jokes about good ol' Heydar Aliyev.
1) Heydar is hanging out with his young son, Ilham, and is showing him a scrapbook of his glorious political career. He says 'Son, here's a picture of me with the head of the KGB. Here's another picture with me and the whole Politburo hanging out on the Black Sea. Yeah, Brezhnev and I were real chums, back in the day.' Heydar then shows some recent picutures from his political adventures in Azerbaijan.
Ilham is just amazed that his father is so influential and has rubbed shoulders with so many powerful people. In youthful exuberance, Ilham blurts out, 'some day, when I grow up, I want to be a politician, too! I want to be president of Azerbaijan, just like you!'
Heydar slams the scrapbook closed and looks indignantly at his son. Assuming his official voice, he chides 'My son, why would Azerbaijan need two presidents?'
This is particularly ironic when one considers Heydar's end. He was apparently too incapacitated to communicate with anyone when his son gained political support to run for president. Maybe Ilham learned a few lessons from Dad. I don't know what I'm implying.
2) After a long and full life of 'service,' it's time for Heydar to die. God tells the devil to go get Heydar, and take his soul down to hell. The devil complies, makes the necessary arrangements, and knocks on Heydar's office door. He walks in the oak-trimmed suite and tells Heydar that his time is up, it's time to die, and that he was there to take his soul to hell.
Heydar looks incredulously at the devil and says 'Just who do you think you are? Do you have an appointment? You can't talk to me that way, who sent you?'
The devil responds and says that he is the devil, and that Heydar made his appointment with him long ago.
Heydar gets even more infuriated and demands 'Who sent you?' The devil doesn't respond, but insists that Heydar come with him. Heydar refuses, and says 'That's it, buddy!' He promptly calls his guards and tosses the devil in jail.
The devil stays in jail for three whole days before some 'friends' of his are able to pay the bribe to get him out. The devil slinks back up to heaven to report to God. 'What happened?' God asks. 'I send you out to do a job, and you come back empty handed after having disappeared for three days!'
'I couldn't help it,' replies the devil. 'He had all these inconvenient questions, he wanted to know who sent me, and then he threw me in jail!'
'Wait a minute,' says God. 'You said he wanted to know who sent you... you didn't tell him, did you?'
Which just goes to show that even God is afraid of Heydar Aliyev.
Somehow, the punchlines are always a little funnier in the language they were told in. Or maybe I just don't have the gift for jokes. On another note, I found a really strange optical illusion for everyone's viewing pleasure. Really, really weird.