The time machine
Musings, memories and further esoteric rhapsodies
By Yasmine Rafii
Not long ago, I had the occasion to celebrate my eighth birthday, in
Manhattan. As I remember, it was a sweltering August day and my parents,
little brothers and I had just arrived from Chicago, on our way to a great
adventure. We were going back to our homeland, Iran. The journey would
start on board a ship, the SS Liberte, which was due to sail in three days.
In the meantime, we did the usual NeverBeenToNewYork routine and took in
a few of the more prosaic sights. Times Square, Statue of Liberty, Macy's...
I think that about covered it.
My main birthday wish was to see, the now classic film based on the
H.G. Wells novel, "The Time Machine". It had just opened in a
very grand theater in Times Square. The Time Machine in Times Square. Profound,
no? My dilemma, of course, was how to accomplish this with two baby brothers
in tow. This was less profound... GO TO FEATURE
Kowsar directs "The Rover"
Written by Aphra Behn
Directed by Mohammad Kowsar
November 19 - 22 Thursday - Saturday, 8 pm; Sunday, 2 pm
Little Theatre, Creative Arts Building, San Francisco State University
$10 general, students, seniors Special Discount Offer
Written by the great Restoration playwright Aphra Behn, The Rover depicts
the sojourn of rowdy cavaliers and exiled anti-Cromwellians seeking romance,
sex, fortune and adventure in Italy during the month of Carnival. Disguises,
cross-purposes, duels, intrigues and comic relief guarantee both poetic
justice and the final triumph of superior female intellect. This piece,
an instant classic of English Drama, brought not only fame to its feisty
author, but also literary immortality.... MORE DETAILS
Those happy Brits
Los Angeles Times
November 9, 1998
Pursued by a tabloid newspaper and an ex-lover, Britain's agriculture
minister disclosed that he is gay--the third Cabinet member recently to
endure controversy over his sexual orientation. Agriculture Minister Nicholas
Brown said he made the disclosure because an ex-lover offered to sell the
story of their relationship to a tabloid. Prime Minister Tony Blair swiftly
rallied to Brown. Welsh Secretary Ron Davies resigned last month after
being picked up and robbed in an area of London known for gay cruising.
Another controversy arose after a columnist for the Times of London said
on TV that Trade Secretary Peter Mandelson is gay. The BBC later apologized
to Mandelson. Culture Minister Chris Smith is openly gay.
* Don't forget the real "boys"
Khashayar Lessan writes: Ali Khalili's "Farewell cherry tree" is a tale only too well
known to most of us Iranian expatriates. I too suffered mildly in a London
high school as an Iranian while the war went on back home. But let us not
forget the real "boys," the men of Iran's armed forces: conscripts,
volunteer forces or otherwise; the army, navy and the air force, who defended
our land at a very critical juncture in our history, sometimes with bare
fists and often with weaponry much inferior to that of the foe...
Whatever the causes of [the Iran-Iraq] war and its prolongation, we
have to stop ignoring and ridiculing these men for the sake of political
correctness and start honoring them and give them credit where credit has
long been overdue: for staying behind, for risking their lives, and fighting
for the homeland and their beliefs. Thank God, and many thanks to these
brave souls, Iran's map is in exactly the same shape and size that I remember
from my primary school times... FULL
* Not another Shah, but...
I just read one of your letters called "Another Shahanshah? No thank you," and I must
express my shame in being Iranian and my outrage of how closed-minded some
people can be. I am no Shah lover, or molla lover for that matter. I personally
believe in a free society. I am sure this person's bad experience with
the SAVAK has left him/her with terrible memories and of course for people
like him/her they blame the Shah's regime...
[But] as for political prisoners, well let me tell you something else
after visiting Evin prison. Most of the prisoners did not belong in those
filthy disgusting cells whereby instead of four people there were 12 in
one room with four beds! All imprisoned because of their beliefs and for
being brave enough to stand up to their government... FULL
Iranica: Secretary needed for Persian
Heritage Foundation in New York
The Persian Heritage Foundation in New York seeks a part-time secretary,
proficient in typing in Persian and familiar with MacIntosh system, for
about 8-10 hours a week. Please contact Dina Amin by fax on (212) 749-9524
or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Remuneration
negotiable and commensurate with experience.
Book of the Week
A Persian Requiem
By Simin Daneshvar
Translated by Roxane Zand
The first published novel by an Iranian woman and one of
the most widely read novels in Iran.
Click here to read about this book
New! Books on Rumi
Top body moves to guarantee investments
TEHRAN, Nov 15 (Reuters) - A powerful Iranian
state body which advises the supreme leader has adopted measures to guarantee
investments in the country, Iranian newspapers reported on Sunday. The Expediency
Council, chaired by former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, considered
the the requirements of economic sectors and ways to deal with risks to
capital and property, Iran Daily newspaper said ... FULL TEXT
Khatami urges more transparent state media
TEHRAN, Nov 16 (Reuters) - Iranian President
Mohammad Khatami called in remarks broadcast on Monday for more transparency
in state media, suggesting Iranians would turn to foreign media out of distrust
of Iranian reports. ``We are only fooling ourselves if we cover up realities
in our society or the world. People will eventually find out somehow what
is happening,'' Khatami said in remarks carried by state television ...
Tehran, Helsinki to review human rights
Tehran, nov. 16, IRNA - Finland and iran will explore security
related issues, human rights and refugee problems in a joint gathering to
be held in helsinki, it was announced here monday. visiting finnish foreign
minister, ms. tajra halonen, told reporters, without elaborating on the
date of the gathering, that a group of academics, diplomats and politicians
from both countries would participate in the gathering ... FULL TEXT
"Dust Dance": Best Asian film
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Abolfazl Jalili's "Raq-se
Khaak" ("Dust Dance") has been named Best Film in the Asian
Film Festival in Tokyo ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN
Soccer team heading for disaster?
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Leaving out big names from
from the national soccer team could spell disaster ... FULL TEXT IN PERSIAN
Piruzi 1 - Esteqlal 0
Tehran, (HAMSHAHRI) - Piruzi registers ANOTHER win
against its historic rival in front of more than 100,000 fans ... FULL TEXT
dollar now offered at up to 700-705 tomans
Source: Sehaty Exchange (U.S.) Tel: 602-595-0777
Swedish public radio's Persian service.
How to stop smoking
Dr. Eric Westman helps you give up cigarettes for good.
There is a pattern to life. I am sure of it. Every now and then, I think
I get an inkling of what it looks like. It starts out with a tendril, as
fine as a baby's hair. Then curling in on itself, over and over again, now
left, now right, dovetails into another tendril and then another and then
another. Like the carpet under my feet, a repetition so refined and purposeful
that it lulls one into complacency. " Relax," it says, "life
was designed by as true a master as there ever was." No winners, no
losers, just the eternal dance. Spiraling up, spiraling down. Saddled with
centuries of inept and vainglorious leadership, that curving tendril that
is the Persian soul, cloaks itself in martyrdom's doleful mantle, and weeps.
And yet, what glorious pattern makers we are!
"The time machine"
November 16, 1998
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