Vladimir Putin / White Plains

This framed portrait of Vladimir Putin caused quite the stir at one of the last estate sales I visited. The picture was moderately priced at $10. The women organizing the sale giggled in recounting that they had planned to hang a framed portrait of President Obama next to it, priced at “at least $100″. Unfortunately, they had not managed to find such a portrait in the days leading up to the sale. So Vladimir Putin hung alone in this hallway, gazing¬†unperturbed at the shoppers walking by.

In the end an old man bought the portrait for his friend – a retired CIA-operative. The man thought this gift would amuse his friend, who had spent the better part of his life limiting the spread of Soviet influence across the globe.