Is it really complicated?!


Fariba Lotfi
by Fariba Lotfi

Honestly, in light of all the grand things that are happening right at this moment in the whole world, I am not sure if it is right to have the pity concerns that i have, and to blog about it too!  But, what can i say.  As much as i am from the generation who witnessed the revolution in Iran and had a very socially conscious youth; i have to confess that i have lost most of it and am now much more interested in the ins and outs of everyday mundane issues in my life.  I was a much more giving person when i was young and lived alone!  In fact, i know whenever i am left alone (rare moments) i become a lot more tolerable person.  It is the kids, the boss, the husband, the in-laws, the mainstream mom's, etc...

Anywho, my mundane thought of the day has in fact to do with the war years in Iran, when i was a lot more mature person and had all the answers.  My memory was triggered when i read Shazdeh Asdolah Mirza's story about war days and Kabobi's (and people who owned them.)  Those were dark dark days; a lot of fear in the streets, as well as in the classrooms where my friends and i were at that time.  

I remember how some Khahar Zeynabs would walk in with their Chador Chaghchoors, giving us all a glimpse of their small handguns hanging on their belt, losly covered by their Chadoors.  For some reason, Khahar Zeynabs were always late to classes and our professors never objected to them being late.  They also missed a lot of classes; and the professors never failed them for missed classes either.  Oh, and they never aced the Maaref exams; you know, the courses that were shoved into our throat after the colleges re-opened.  To our surprise, Khahar Zeynabs would barely pass these courses; their grades were 10 and 11 at most!

Now that i think of it, Mousavi's wife reminds me of them.  Who knows, she could have been in the same institution as i was at the time! To me, she looks like she could have been a Khahar Zeynab back in the day.  That perhaps explains why i never warmed up to the idea of Mousavi and his wife being my president and first lady!  Those days, we all were very much intimidated by these Khahar Zeynabs.  And, we were as much scared of being stopped by Pasdars and Basijis in the streets and being taken to the Comites for Bad hejabi, or for holding hands with boys.  Mousavi at that time was all over the news; just like he is now; but of course in a different way.  We wanted to be as far away from them as possible and our goal was to keep a low profile; get our degrees, and get the hell out of there.  And that is what we did.

So, here we are, some 30 years later; most of us accomplished what we wanted; that would be to get the hell out of there and be as far away from the likes that Shazdeh Asdolah Mirza describes and many of us have experienced first hand.  Then, why cant we be just happy and dandy?! Is it really that complicated?!


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For Khale Zeynabs I recommend the movie Women's Prison

by Anonymouse on

This is a good movie and you can rent it or watch it instantly on Netflix.  It is a 2002 movie but based on early days of revolution through 2000s or 2002 in thic case.  I recommend it, shows the transformation of so many things including one such Khaleh Zeynab.


Everything is sacred.

Fariba Lotfi

Monda jan,

by Fariba Lotfi on

You are correct; afterall, who said that "when i was young, i wanted to change the world; when i got to middle age, i wanted to change the people around me; in my late days, I realized that all i can do is to change myself!"  Now, talk about apathy!!!!

And, sista (if i many say that) challenges seem to be my middle name!  They present themselves on a daily basis in my life; as if my bet with the devil was to "get me out of here, and i show you what i am made of!"

As for the women like Mousavi's wife (Khale Zeynabs in my days;) I've got only my percetions to tell.  My views are much colored by the fear they presented and the fact that we all knew our future (at least academically) is somehow connected to them.  When colleges re-opened, these Khale Zeynabs came back with big titles, the principal of so and so school; the manager of so and so Anjoman Eslami (super powerful position.)  You have to bear in mind that these Khale Zeynabs were a bit different than the ones who'd stop you in the streets for make-up and Hejab.  These bunch were the ones who had passed the KONKOOR, if you remember!  They chose their paths with both eyes open and were enjoying the power and the positions they had. 

Later, I heard a number of them easily got admitted to the Ph.D programs.   


Fariba, I think it's called self-survival ...

by Monda on

when we have to focus on our immediate needs (our health & sanity, kids', job's, family's). It all feels mundane compared to the difficult transitions we have been adapting to during the past 30 years. I don't know about your circumstances, but I don't wish any of my displacement and abandonment pains even on my enemy.  Sometimes when I feel myself in automatic mode, I create challenges for myself so life would not become meaningless, ordinary and boring. I think somewhere in my body I'm addicted to challenge.  Which is both a blessing and a curse. 

I can't stand Mousavi's wife either but I still wish I had first hand experience of the early revolution days in Iran. I never got to know women like her as you did.





by MM on

The dictionary defines apathetic  = uninterested, unconcerned.

You can also find:

1. Feeling or showing a lack of interest or concern; indifferent. 2. Feeling or showing little or no emotion; unresponsive.

I was apathetic regarding the renewal of my Iranian passport because it did not make a difference whether I possessed one or not.  Does that make me apathetic towards the renewal of my passport.  Yes.

I will let you decide, or maybe I should have said you have become more indifferent regarding other things around you, except for what is really important, i.e., family.

OK, I almost wrote that, e.g., maybe you were more excited about talking about "zeynabs" 10-20 years ago before you started a family, but I will not start another argument. 

Good luck.

Fariba Lotfi

MM jan...

by Fariba Lotfi on

So, does that make me (and, people like me) apathetic?




by MM on

what I meant to say is that over the last 30 years of lies from the regime, plus starting a family, you have become more focused on family and less concerned about everything else (family>>relatives>>everything else).  If not true, then I did not read your blog correctly and apologize.

Fariba Lotfi

Sima jan...

by Fariba Lotfi on

Khoob gofti janam!  I am in my lunch hour here and i smiled when i read your comment here:)

MM jan; I get what you are saying.  So, if i showed interest in the matters of the motherland, i wouldnt be apathetic and thus it would not be a shame? 

Then, perhaps we should start exploring what "interest" means...Is it to be engaged in conversations, to read, to discuss, to mull over?  If i'd done that then i'd be considered as "non-apathetic?" 

Again, please dont get offended! These are simple question from a clueless person who is much involved with so many forces in her pitty everday life.  She is just interested to explore how others deal with these issues.  I have seen so many conversations on IC that go south, just because people were offended really over nothing!




apathetic = uninterested, unconcerned

by MM on

apathetic  = uninterested, unconcerned


The difference between you and real apathetic people!

by sima on

Someone capable of sharp observations like you can never be apathetic. Real apathetic people aren't even aware of apathy -- or as Frank Zappa would say, they wouldn't know apathy if it bit them in the ass.

And thank you for your comment about Mousavi's wife. I can't believe people are buying her schtick. (Those golgoli rusaris kill me!)

Fariba Lotfi

Good point MM...

by Fariba Lotfi on

Just a question though; what does apathetic mean?  I know quite a good number of people who read/analyze/argue a lot about what is happening in the motherland.  Yet, they will never ever give up the hubby, kids, mortgage, pets, in-laws & out-laws even for one second (let alone a year) to go back to the motherland and actually do something!  Are they apathetic (like me) or non-appathetic ( I am not sure if that is an actual word!)? 

I am just wondering out loud here, please take no offense.  It really is a matter of trying to figure it out;)


lack of trust, 30 years of lies & changing priorities will do it

by MM on

The old Persian proverb says that once bitten by a snake you do not even trust a black/white rope.  So, it is sorta the truth.  We were promised utopia by a bearded man in France, and after he came in power, possessing his writings from the old time became a crime.

The new opposition is part of the same regime that looked away when people of different groups were being tortured / killed.  So, yes, that is why they look familiar.

Even now, here in the US, we hear about Charlatans who are taking advantage of Iranian-Americans, and two of them were just indicted for fraud (20 million and 430 million dollars) from trusting folks who used to deal with handshakes.  This matter of being able to trust is pulling families apart in Iran and Charlatans here do not help either. 

In your case, a combination of lack of trust for a snake-oil salesman, 30 years of lies as well as changing priorities; hubby, kids, mortgage, pets, in-laws & out-laws have just made you apathetic about all there is out there, and made you focus on what is important for you, only. 

No one can blame you, but just a damn shame.