Wednesday, December 26, 2007

1. Holidays are nice and all, but this time of year doesn't mean much to someone like me who doesn't celebrate christmas and marks the new year with the spring equinox (nowruz). Iranians do celebrate the winter equinox (shab-e yalda), however, and it was nice to be able to have friends over for a mini-party. This was our humble Shab-e Yalda spread, complete with requisite items such as dried fruits and nuts along with fresh servings of pomegranates and watermelons, as well as a copy of Hafez's poetry, which you use to read your fortune from:



For more background information on the history and traditions of Shabe-e Yalda, you can check here and here.

2. I was sad to hear both about the christmas day mauling of visitors to the San Francisco zoo and the killing of the tiger who was responsible for the death of one person and the injury of two others. Tatiana, a Siberian tiger weighing about 300 pounds, was the same animal that ripped the flesh off a zookeeper's arm just before Christmas 2006. I guess poor Tatiana really hated christmas or something!

3. These days I'm experiencing an overwhelming amount of frustration with nearly all Iran-related discourses, whether they originate in or outside Iran. I'm going to publicly commit myself to trying to take-on and unpack some of this stuff in 2008 because I'm not happy with the relative silence I've fallen into over the last few months. I hope you'll hold me accountable!