31 July 2010

the Art of Choosing

"Poetry is what is gained in translation." by Joseph Brodsky

Sitting on my bookshelf, the Art of Choosing, the book is waiting to be read. I bought it couple of weeks ago based on a friend recommendation. I even read the first 3 pages and I loved it. Yesterday, my brother sent me the link to this TED talk. Choice is a very interesting topic and it is even more interesting when you look at it from different cultural point of views.

30 July 2010

"If you expect nothing from anybody, you are never disappointed." from here

My life is based on this but I guess this is not always true. Still, I'm sometimes disappointed from some people!

26 July 2010

On getting older

Mount Royal Park, July 2010

I saw my grandparents after 5 years. I don’t understand how I let it to get so long. It was a happy moment when I first saw them but seeing them after all those years, I realized how older they got. It was a slap in the face. It was an alarm going off. My grandparents were so young when they had my mother and I am the first grandchild. So, I was used to have the youngest grandparents as long as I could remeber. It is hard to watch your love ones get old.
Couple of months ago, I went to the hospital for a blood test and then there was a nurse talking to one of the patients. Both had knee replacement surgery and they were exchanging their experiences. The nurse turned to me and said: honey, never get old. I smiled and said I wish!

19 July 2010

Let's go hiking 2

Another great song with a different flavor.

let's go hiking!

I love everything about this song. I just want to dance non-stop.

17 July 2010

I am lucky enough to realize that in my life, there are some special people, who help me not lose faith in humankind. If they are real, which they are, I should still be hopeful that there are people who share the same values as I do.

It will be okay either way

"When we walk to the edge of all the light, we have and take the step into the darkness of the unknown, we must believe that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for us to stand on or we will be taught to fly."   ~ Patrick Overton

15 July 2010

There are some songs and music that just make your heart warm and happy.

14 July 2010

Guilty pleasure

I have started watching the Tudors. I have always been a fan of historical fictions/movies but by watching this, I don’t even learn much about the history because not everything is based on the actual story. Every episode is very long but I can’t help it. I could be doing so many useful things instead of watching this. The fact that Charles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk, is so good looking (in the movie!) is not helping either!
Sometimes, I can be a real chicken! I hate that about myself.

13 July 2010

fed up with stupid comments

What am I going to say? I can’t think anymore. There is a sense of anger, embarrassment, and awkwardness. My Chinese colleague shows up at my door step and asks me what I know about the lady who is charged with adultery and will be punished by stoning sentence in Iran.
What does that make me as an Iranian? What does this make people think about Iranian culture and traditions? Does it really matter to tell the guy, that yes bylaw this is what happens  in Iran but everyone is against it? Does it really matter than I am against this inhuman law and I don’t support it in any condition or situation? What should I really tell him?
Should I tell him this is what happens when there is this preconceived notion that anything has to be run based on what is dictated before you? Should I tell him through out history there were so many cases that people in power used religious beliefs and rules as an excuse to role people and Iran and Islam is no exception?
I don’t know what to think anymore.  

10 July 2010

There are times that you are surrounded by people but you still feel lonely...

7 July 2010

Am I too rude or bold not to play your game? Do not ask me to pretend that your affection for me is sincere and genuine. I do not answer your fake smile with a smile. If you miss me, pick up your phone once in while and give me a call. We live 2 min away form each other for god’s sake! Why you tell me something that you don’t mean it. Why everything has to be a lie. 
I am really sick of some idiots who come up with the most ridiculous ideas. I got one of those chain emails saying that recently a mountain in Iran with anti- HIV benefits was discovered. By the way, they spelled therapy, trapi. I remember someone told me that there was a time that some people believed having sex with a virgin girl could cure HIV. That was the time that the number of people carrying the virus grew very quickly in Africa.

5 July 2010

It’s one of those days that I wish I was in a remote island away from anyone. Doing my own thing, fishing from the sea, cooking by the fire and at night laying on the beach and looking at the stars.

3 July 2010


Taarof is not only very known tradition among Iranians but also it’s very dear to some. It makes Iranian culture one of the highest contextual cultures in the world. Nothing will be said verbally but you should recognize when someone is sincerely offering you something or they are just trying to be polite. From receiver point of view, you have to decline the offer at least once before accepting it; otherwise, you are considered to be rude. Also, there are other forms of expressions and slangs that we use to adore each other without really mean it. Depending on which region in Iran you are coming from, the level of taarof varies greatly. I believe people from Esfahan practicing taarof religiously.

Taarof really makes me uncomfortable. Even when I was in Iran, I wasn’t that good in doing it. I can blame that on my parents since they are not that good in doing it either. Both of my parents studied abroad before they got married. They easily picked up the non-taarof culture back then.

When they moved back to Iran and got married, it took them a while to start practicing taarof again. They were newlywed when my grandmother (my mom’s mother) decides to visit them one morning. That morning my dad bought some haleem (a very popular Persian dish - everyone loves it) for breakfast. When she arrives at their place my parents are having breakfast. So, they offer her to join them. My grandmother has been living in Tehran most of her life but she always kept her Esfahanian version of tarrof. Although she didn’t have breakfast that morning, she told my parents that she had already eaten, waiting to hear the offer for the second time. However, she was only offered the tea and my parents finished haleem by themselves. About 15 years later, I heard this story from my grandmother for the first time and since then I have heard it hundred times from my parents. Every time, they all laugh when they tell the story. My grandmother never tarrof when she visits us.