Friday, May 15, 2009


I never feel more American then during the Eurovison competition. This entry from the Netherlands embodies everything the competition means to me. I'll let you interpret what I mean by that. Enjoy!

Monday, May 11, 2009

The brain drain

School girls at Golestan Palace in Tehran taken by Tori Egherman

These girls were photographed (by me, Tori) in front of Golestan Palace in Tehran. They are not from the class of 1993.

My friend Maryam's high school class of 1993 is now gathering on Facebook. She showed us pictures of the group of teenaged girls posed in their black hoods and manteaus in the school's hidden playground. "We threw rocks at those windows all the time," she laughed. "Here we are throwing away our books. It was the last day of school and those books were from our religious studies classes."

Her school was a public school not too far from Palestine Square and the "Den of Espionage". In her class of 32 girls, 20 that she knows of now live abroad. 20! That she knows of. I told her that I am pretty sure that I am the only one of my classmates living abroad. (Any Central High School '78 graduates out there that want to challenge my assumption?)

"Of those 20," Maryam continued, "at least four have non-Iranian husbands." I am willing to be that as time passes that number will go way up. Most of my Iranian (women) friends living abroad are married to foreigners. They must think I'm nuts with my Iranian husband.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

My Uncle Napoleon

I've said it before, and I'll say it again: My Uncle Napoleon is the best book about Iran that I ever read. It's author, Iraj Pezechkzad, will be at Stanford. So if you are lucky enough to be in the area (I'm not, unfortunately), go hear him speak!

Details at Payvand.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Campaigning: Mir-Hossein Mousavi Style

Photograph from a rally for Moussavi in Mashad
Photograph from a rally for Moussavi in Mashad.
Originally uploaded by mookoo1

Note: this is part of a series that we are starting on the current election campaign in Iran

We learn from Ghalam News, Mousavi's website, that his supporters are suggesting methods for spreading the word about his campaign. One suggests that supporters offer rides to travelers in order to gain an opportunity to promote Mousavi's campaign for the presidency.

The Mousavi campaign has selected green as its color (the red hankies and armbands may draw more attention than the green,, but you can still catch site of a few in the above photo). Supporters are being asked to wear green armbands or wave green flags. Some hardliners (Kayhan) have accused the campaign of trying to foment revolution (remember the Orange Revolution?)

“Our symbols are religious, not velvet,” Abolfazl Fateh, Mr Mousavi’s campaign manager, was quoted as saying by Kalemeh, the internet site.

Mr Shamsolvaezin said reformists were not inciting a revolution by adopting a symbolic colour and hardliners were worried because they do not know their own society well enough and think it is on the verge of an explosion.