Russian President and hairless, scowling badger Vladimir Putin has reappeared in public, after a 10-day absence and a string of public appearance cancellations. During his mysterious unannounced sabbatical, rumors swirled that he was sick, or dead, or attending the birth of another secret baby with his very-not-secret rhythmic gymnast mistress. But our favorite theory is the one where Putin went into hiding so he could get some plastic surgery on his craggy old face.

During a Q&A following a meeting with the President of Kyrgyzstan, Putin refused to address his absence, instead remarking "It would be boring without gossip." A CIA source told Gawker that the CIA was pretty sure that the Russian President was sick with the flu and that because he's very taken with the public's perception of his manliness, he had his people keep it on the low.

There are plenty of reasons to surmise that Putin's unmanly vanity about his face would be something he'd want covered up. He's gotten bad and obvious plastic surgery before. His surgical regimen of what looks like Botox and fillers needs upkeep to prevent his real face from shining ghoulishly through. And 10 days is just about enough time to recover from a little light face work.

When Putin disappears for a month, we'll know he finally got that Brazilian Butt Lift.

Images via AP.