Letting everybody play
We will make it happen, no matter how retarded it may
July 28, 2003
long time a go when kids played soccer on the streets
of my small home town,
when women didn't have to cover their hair (unless they wanted
to) and men
could wear short-sleeve shirts (without getting arrested by the "basijis"),
when we couldn't criticize the shah because if we dared we would
go to jail (kind
of like now), my cousin was born! strong and beautiful -- also
retarded (or so we
thought or think).
he was never allowed to sit with the rest of us.
he ate separately, in the
corner of the kitchen. everytime he tried to join us he was shouted
at by either
my aunt or her husband, his father: "get out!" just
his family was very well known in our town. they
were too important and wealthy to have a
retarded child! they wanted us to believe that we had one less
brother. the tragedy was, and is, that we believed it sometimes.
he had other brothers and sisters, very smart ones too!
their house was always full of
members of society. they all loved the kids, except
him. he was
never around. if he somehow escaped the little room at
the other side
of the house, where he was almost a prisoner, and made it to
the famous "get out" would ring in the house.
i always waned to know
what would have happened if he had interacted with everyone. if
together, if we were allowed to play with him like we wanted (we
always did if, we got
a chance, when his parents weren't around).
you know what? many
when women had to wear the "hejab", when men couldn't
wear short-sleeve shirts or
they would go to jail after his brothers, my other beloved cousins
both his parents passed away (may all their soles rest in peace).
and he became
the king of that house.
now when you go there He invites you in,
He asks the
maid to bring tea, He sets the table just like the way my aunt
remembers it all. he is retarded, but he knows what he was deprived
of, so he is doing
his best to live a "normal life". he is my cousin and
i love him dearly and i
am proud of him despite all of his disabilities.
when i think about the history
of Iran, this comes to my mind: every time we tried to make it
work, someone (i don't
who may be our
collective family) says: "get out!" as if we
are not good enough.
chance, and as retarded as our experiences with democracy might look like,
people of Iran will make it happen....
Like I said: just a memory!
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