White Balloon

Daily Journal of Mahaan, an Iranian-American student residing in USA.

Friday, November 30, 2007

scattered notes on a Friday afternooon

1. one of my discoveries in the past few months was the Current TV. It is a TV channel that was was established a few years ago by some progressive politicians (Eg: Al Gore). The TV channel has a close connection with their webpage and generally the Internet. Audience and ordinary people play the central role for this non-traditional channel. About 30% of the programs are produced by ordinary people with simple cameras. You end up learning a lot very diverse set of things with quite a fast paced style. If you have a digital-box, go for getting this channel. It is really something innovation.

2. In my town's film festival, I watched a very strong Israeli film named Beaufort. It is a anti-war feature which covers the days before Israel's withdrawal from Southern Lebanon in 2000. The movie mainly takes place inside a bunker and throughout the movie you really feel frustrated and tired and to some extent claustrophobic. That's actually the strength of the movie that you really feel the reality of the war. While it's antiwar, the movie presents the passion and sincere emotions of the pro-war parties too which makes its message even more effective.

3. I also watched Love in the Time of Cholera based on a novel by Marquez. This was an example of a totally failing movie whose single strength is its story (that doesn't have anything to do with the movie cast). I haven't read the novel yet, but from what I heard from a friend, the director has done a good job to screw up the Marquez's work. Actings, make ups and the whole plot are non-organized and at some points are even kiddish and cheesy. The only strength that I found in the movie was its beautiful melodic music which was a good support for the melodrama.

4. It's the time for peace business. It's interesting how the media fills the air with all sorts of peace messages. The packaging of the Annapolis conference which seemed nothing but a legacy show of Bush administration was so crappy. It was clear that at the bottom line neither Israeli nor Palestinian governments are ready to compromise on their own parts. And others like Saudis, Syrians, etc. just came to get some photo op and leave. And media was making so much of big deal of the event. What was the difference between this and Madrid 1990. That time Saudis were in the hallways, this time in the room. Then talking for a viable Palestinian state in peace and harmony with Israel (interestingly US president was named Bush then too). 15 years: US spent about 100 billion on Israeli army and $50 billion on Egyptian army. Saudis, Iran, Syrians spent about the same on Palestinians, Lebanese, etc. So in total at least $300 billion is spent there for military related costs. And guess what how many Palestinians are there in West Bank and Gaza? How much is really needed to improve their lives. Let's say $100,000 (that's a lot of money if think in large population scale). Where are we in the Math? 3 million X $100,000 = $300 billion. And don't forget that US alone has spent over $500 billion in Iraq. God bless the always flourished army business.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Confusion on a Sunday afternoon

Why many of us are incapable of simply loving each other and getting fulfilled from it?
Have we perfected all other aspects of our lives that we want to optimize the love factor? When a simple tooth-ache can creeple us so easily, how do we easily risk our happiness with emotional stabilities? What's this constant thirst? Does it ever stop?
Maybe only with a tragedy?!
I keep thinking about Babel.
Why can't we simply hear each other?

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Our self centerism, ego and love

I had a long chat with my cousin who has been one of my life time buddies and now lives in Egypt. While being a sharp and socially intelligent person, his view about many social and family issues is kind of traditional and conservative. He was worried about my brother who has recently separated from his wife. Throughout our conversation, I felt how distant are our mindset about these issues. How difficult is for him to even imagine people switching partners. I thought if one day, I'm gonna explain my separation from Reyhan, how difficult it would be to convey my thinking. We talked about some interesting story of his friend:

A guy named Ali, an smart architect who has married to his highschool girlfriend (named Azi) at age 22-23. Then Azi introduces her friend (who is also named Azi) to Ali. Azi-2 is even very facially look alike Azi-1 (the wife). While living in Iran, Ali gets into an affair with Azi-2. Azi-1 learns about the affair, but still tries to heal up the relationship, but Ali insists on divorce and they eventually do it. Ali then marries Azi-2 (he's all for marriage apparently). Azi-1 leaves Iran and immigrates to Canada. Ali and Azi-2 later work out their immigration and end up in the same city as Azi-1. Ali divorces from Azi-2. Ali is now trying to reach to Azi-1.

Yes, it's quite a drama. Years of Hollywood style stories is finally arriving into our lives. How much confused most of us are and how much self centrism has filled us!

The other night, I had a discussion with a friend about the first sight love and the way that people easily fall for such a phenomena. Today I found this interesting article about a research on the same issue. Quite an interesting read!

While the center piece of the study is about the relation between ego and first sight interactions, it was interesting for me to see how the same research has been packaged differently by various media outlets. Check out the title of the articles that has been written about the same study. Even an study which presents some of the flaws of the current social trends, is presented as a workbook for seduction and attraction!
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