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The hell with romance
Persian men can't even spell "romantic"

March 13, 2001
The Iranian

Reflecting on my detestable Valentine's Day a few weeks ago, it occurred to me -- I hate Valentine's Day. I don't know the first thing about being romantic. I'm a Persian man after all. Persian men can't even spell "romantic". I mean, come on. Who are you kidding? Be a man and admit it. Acting romantic is not included in our Persian package. The romantic section of our brain has been held hostage by our sex drive. The hell with romance. Let's just get it on. The way we real Persian men see it, romance is for sissies. We skip the appetizer and go straight to the main dish.

Based on my extensive research, Persian men get easily insulted. Being romantic requires thick skin. You have to endure insults, slaps, humiliation, abuse, pain, etc. We have egos that rival the Titanic. It's big, slow, clumsy, and it sinks down to the bottom in minutes. Genetically speaking, our Persianity does not allow us to be romantic. We are way too selfish. Being romantic requires caring and sacrifice, things most of us don't care much about. It's hard work. It requires discipline and persistence. Screw it. Give me my hot tea, my afternoon nap and I'm a happy man.

One big obstacle that prevents us from getting romantic is our diet. Persian men love cholokabab with extra onions. Tell me, how in the world can we get romantic with the opposite sex when our breath smells like koubideh. The odor is strong enough to kill flies twenty feet away.

Forget about anesthetics in the operating room. Bring in a guy who just had koubideh for lunch and have him burp on the patient. The patient will be knocked out for three days. Ever wondered what tear gas is made of? It's koubideh in a canister. Do you want to get even with people you don't like? Lock them in the trunk of a car with your leftover koubideh. There must be something seriously wrong with a woman who doesn't mind romancing a guy with koubi-breath.

Another big obstacle in our way of achieving romance is our facial hair. A million tinny needles pointing out in all directions looking like a living sandpaper. We can strip the paint off our cars using our face. This face is not meant to be used for romance. This face is meant to be used as a weapon of mass destruction. Soldiers of the Persian Empire did not use swords or spears. They attacked the enemy with their beards. Our facial hair, not used with caution, can cause permanent damage. The government should issue permits to us to carry it around.

I figured out why the Taliban grow their beards all the way down to their chests. It's a bulletproof vest. No bullet can ever penetrate that thick facial hair. The worst part is that cactus on our upper lip we call mustache. No sane woman would ever get close to that thing. You can give her scars that would last her a lifetime.

And finally, of course, there is this one item called perception. We don't want to romance the opposite sex. We want them to cook and clean. We like our women to be just like mom. We don't romance our moms -- why should we romance our women? Get your butt in the kitchen and cook something; my family is coming to stay with us for next, oh, six months. We force our women to wear thick tablecloth over their head even in the scorching summer heat. We treat them like second class citizens and deny them any opportunity to be better than us. How can we romance a creature we don't respect?

To us, women are nothing but unfortunate reproductive machines. If it were up to us, we would spend all our time with our buddies playing football. We romance our BMWs. It's German made and it never gets headaches or bitch about our shortcomings. We romance our remote controls because it never says, "I can't change the channel; I'm on the phone with my mom." We romance our hair removal products because it never says, "Sorry, I'm on my period and I can't put out."

This is really bothering me. I'm sorry for insulting your Persian-ness but I'm telling it like it is. The hell with Valentine's Day. It's such an unnatural thing for us. I propose that we Persian men, all over the world, change Valentine's Day to Male Bonding Day. We can buy each other candy and roses, pat ourselves on the back, go to happy hours and talk politics or argue about who's the best football player. Daie or Azizi.

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