I'm crazy, you're nuts


Jahanshah Javid
by Jahanshah Javid

There was a popular book you may have read or heard of. Remember "I'm OK, You're OK"? I think it was published in the 60's or 70's. I remember looking at the cover among my father's books in 1989 but I'm not sure if I read it. But in the same year I did read something called "Games People Play". It was the first book that gave me some insight into the mind and human behavior. I was so impressed by its theories that for a week or so I felt and acted "normal". Then the effects wore off and I was back to being my inadequate, insecure self.

Normal. I've always wanted to be just plain normal. No hang-ups. No fears. Happy. I wanted to meet and talk to strangers without feeling weird. I wanted to belong. I thought everybody was normal but me. I wished I could be like my father, my mother, my brother, sister, teachers, tennis champions, doctors, engineers, librarians... anybody but me.

This idea that everything out there was perfect became a terrible burden. Somehow I felt I could not do anything right, ever. There was an acute fear of failure. Simple mathematical problems left me dazed and confused. If someone asked me which is heavier: a pound of feathers or a pound of rocks, I would smile and think "thank God! That's easy. A pound of rocks!" Frame that question in a different way and I would still give the same answer.

Anything difficult I would avoid. Anything challenging I would leave to others. I was a talentless moron and I knew it, felt it, believed it. So I escaped. I created my own world. I built a little canal in our garden and watched the water from the hose snaking through the mud walls and thought it was the coolest thing ever. I climbed trees and jumped on rooftops. I read fairy tales and detective novels. I watched Star Trek and Bugs Bunny. I spent hours and hours doing jigsaw puzzles. I dreamed about the neighbor's daughter. I became best friends with our dog, who loved me no matter how stupid I was.

Those brief moments of play, joy, relief, comfort and fantasy were overshadowed by the hell that was the classroom. Being forced to read things I hated or did not understand. Doing tons of homework. Sitting still and listening to stuff I could not and would not get my head into, five-six days a week for 12 years!

And then there were the horrendous fights between my father and mother, which got progressively worse. I don't know what they fought about. Didn't matter. All I heard was my mother's furious rage. I don't know what this has anything to do with the topic at hand, but just thought I'd throw that into the mix! But the thing that probably did screw up my sense of self-worth even more was the physical punishment I got for teasing my younger sister and occasionally for getting poor grades.

So, where am I going with this? What I want to say, basically, is that I always believed there were people I could truly look up to; individuals who are Good, Smart, Kind, Considerate, Mature, Tolerant, Pious, Modest, Truthful, Forgiving, Honest, Perfect... with capital letters. But not any more. I'm shocked -- relieved, actually -- that everyone on this planet is struggling to be normal and balanced. Being normal is not the norm at all.

People you least expect do the weirdest, dumbest, meanest things. I see them every day. Clueless, lost... so caught up in meaningless jobs, slaving away, without thinking what they are doing, why they are doing it, eating, sleeping, waking... I'm sounding like Henry Miller! But seriously... the whole planet seems to be on auto-pilot. People stick to their routine, without thinking for a second, without realizing simple realities.

I'm even doubting whether icons like Hafez were as Good and Wonderful as what they preached and produced. If you can't live up to your own words of wisdom... what's the point? I wish I could take a peek at Rumi's life. How do you think he treated his wife and kids? This man has arguably written the most beautiful, lovely, spiritual things ever and yet I bet you he treated his wife like a maid, like a baby factory. Do you think he ever took his kids for a walk? Caress them? Listen to them? Or was he busy worshiping Shams?

Honestly... No one, no one, no one is perfect. Everybody is shockingly human! Weak! Hypocritical! Confused! To various degrees. Even the very best.

So that's it. My fear that I'll never be as "normal", "mature", "good", "wise", "brilliant" ... as others has subsided. It's all relative. Some are better, some worse. Tell me there's a perfect, amazing person out there and I will give you a look like don't kid yourself for a second.

Of course I'm going on and on about how imperfect humanity is just to make myself feel better, to stop thinking and worrying about my own imperfections. I'm not trying to belittle and put down others -- it's obvious that no one is perfect. But the obvious is not always that obvious. I've stopped looking for virtues in others and instead focusing on my own actions. I'm not beating myself like I used to. The fears and insecurities have not gone away, I've just accepted them as normal part of life. Sort of :)

Living and traveling alone in the past year seems to have helped me come to terms with myself. Or just made life more tolerable. I don't know... I don't know if I'm making any sense. But that's okay :)


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13th Legion

Jahanshah Jaan

by 13th Legion on

Jahanshah Jaan

Thank you for sharing your thoughts, I to found this to be one of your best blogs, it hit home and made me feel somehow close to you for I saw so many  similarities in our childhood and life experiences…wish we could sit down and have a cup of coffee and chat in person one day ;) I also related a great deal to SamSam III’s original comment.

As for my own views on the subject from a spiritual & philosophical perspective witch for me it all boils down to our ethical education and “Parvaresh Fekhr” or “total field of perception” our view and understanding of who we are and what our relationship is with this universe we live in which gradually changes and expands based on our last set of experiences in life, I believe that if any of us was normal or perfect we would not be here on earth for I personally believe that there exist another dimension of existence “a non material one” that is home to the enlightened or the perfect” those souls that have sort of reached a state of “total consciousness”

I see the earth and life as a laboratory or university for learning and experimentation the science or art of becoming normal, perfect or simply stated a true human being as opposed to the human animal, to experience the type of things that SamSam III mentions and much more:

to figure out this crazy world. You need to process out hundreds of romances to figure out its shallowness, you need to sleep with hundreds of russian hookers to bore out with meaningless sex, you need to fall from mountain of wealth & reclimb again nemerous times to find out emptiness of possessions, you need to read hundreds of books & travel to a hundred city to lose your one dimensional world, You need to pilot a plane or climb a cliff to figure out just how earthly you are, You need to give this adventure up for the sake of a lil angel to figure out what real joy means and thus you need to fall a hundred times & rise a hundred times to finally make sense of you & things around you and without that experience you shall never get it.


The challenge is that it takes some of us a few years, some of us half a life time, some if us an entire life time and some of the passage of many life times (call it reincarnation or successive life’s) to experience all this and reach some state of total enlightment, total consciousness, perfection or being totally normal or whatever one may want to call it!

I thinks that if we pay close attention to the works of Hafiz, Rumi, Shams and some of the other greats they give us plenty of hints about there was no promise of this world “life on earth and the human experience” being a rose garden and they have all hinted of reaching another realm of consciences and enlighten reuniting with an ultimate “beloved” through enduring life in this crazy material realm, the pains of not being normal and having to blaze our own path to something greater than this “one dimensional realm” and to greater inlightment.

And so our journey continues through this dimension ;)

Thank you for sharing a wonderful blog.

Wishing you and all the readers a merry holiday season and a happy new year of health and greater experiences.

Cheers.X III 

Anahid Hojjati

Dear yolanda and SamSam, thanks for comments addressed

by Anahid Hojjati on

Dear yolanda and SamSam, thanks for comments addressed to me. I don't think I will blog SamSam's comment but I will probably read it again. It was a good one.  Yolanda, Iranians are smart but so far not smart enough to get rid of IRI. I had an amazing 10 minute talk to a coworker from Chile today. His siblings were involved in fight against dictatorship in Chile. Only 10 minute talk but interesting. It mde me want to read more about last years of Pinochet 's power in Chile and whether there are lessons that Iranians can learn from them.



by yolanda on

Hi! DA,

 LOL! So "Please, take care!" has bad omen!........Be very honest with you, I did not even know it! :O)

I am glad everyone is happy and no blood-bath here!

It is a great blog and very edifying!

Dirty Angel


by Dirty Angel on

Of course, I'm joking! I was sar-be-sar-ing


sar be sar (literally, that would be head-butting - sar means head, and be can mean many prepositions - , but in Persian everyday lingo, as far as I know, it's that I'm taking the mickey within a kind of rapport)


"Please, take care!" *

"What's three times worse than war?" "Three wars?"


*(When I first saw your signature line,I used to think: what have I done this time! ;;) 



by yolanda on

Hi Anahid,

    Iranians are smart....they can versify anything from Shahla's death (Divaneh's poem), green movement (your poems), to this "crazy"/nuts topic in this blog! It is amazing!

Thank you for your post!



by yolanda on

Hi! DA,

   What kind of comment is that? You are joking, right?


Dirty Angel

So obvious, you're not Irooni

by Dirty Angel on

first you're dumb at school , second you don't like Rumi.

You're an Arab. And a very normal one at that. Even your First name has King in it.  Arabi! Admit it!

Boro ba in beloo-gget, ehsaas behet dast dade, boro be khodet bepffft.


"What's three times worse than war?" "Three wars?"


Anahid & Yolanda jaan, that was just a tiny slice of my life

by SamSamIIII on


that i thought to share. Thank you for being a good listener. We all need an ear to talk to some times & some enlightened as you dear ladies might even make sense or learn from  our insecurities or over confidence. 

Anahid jaan, as for blogging it i,m afraid i cant but i be more than pleased if you do, be my guest.

Cheers madmuazels !!!


Path of Kiaan Resurrection of True Iran Hoisting Drafshe Kaviaan //iranianidentity.blogspot.com //www.youtube.com/user/samsamsia


Truthseeker jan, No problem

by Monda on

No prob bro/ sis, see what you mean, it can get nuts here, reason why i visit it sok-soki : )

i like mine with soy milk 'cause i'm allergic to cow dairy.


Apologies Monda aziz

by Truthseeker9 on

Perhaps, due to previous attacks on me just for being honest , I am myself becoming paranoid.   ....... time for some hot chocolate I think ....


HUH?!! Truthseeker9

by Monda on

Sorry if I've caused a confusion. I did not get to read your comment prior to leaving mine. We are all lone observers here. And if we can be truthful in doing just that, then this site has accomplished lots for our community.

I just read your comment to JJ, unfortunately could not follow you. Sorry. 


Dear Monda

by Truthseeker9 on

I am not sure why you found it necessary to make a clarification so quickly after my comment. There is no need to attempt to disassociate yourself from my comment. I responded to this blog’s content without reading yours, I am acting as a lone observer just voicing my honest view. I was not looking for approval from anybody.

Anahid Hojjati

yolanda, amazing, this was the comment i wanted

by Anahid Hojjati on

To write to SamSam. His was indeed poetic. I was going to ask him to blog it. Sam, can you blog it?



by yolanda on


    Thank you for your great post......it is very poetic and philosophical......great job!

Hi Monda,

    Thank you for your great posts.....I enjoyed reading them very much!

This is a great blog and I like every post here!


Thanks Faramarz

by Monda on

Same here!


Thanks Monda

by Faramarz on

Self doubt was killing me, but you came to the rescue! Thank you.


JJ, I commend your introspections

by Monda on

By no means was I implying irresponsibility on your part. Nor was I asking you about how crazy would be Ok. I merely tried to offer a piece of My thoughts, that crazy is a norm, with some considerations. 

I enjoyed reading Princess, Faramarz, Solo and Comrad here. Be Happy learning. That is our most important responsibility in this life time.


Dear JJ

by Truthseeker9 on

Thank you for this blog.  I agree that we are all responsible for our own behaviour and actions, and that nobody is perfect. With regards to this site, you are the Editor here and indicate that you have a Policy on Personal Attacks. What I have seen many times is that many person attacks, some clearly libel are flagged but remain on the site. You cannot shrug off the responsibility you have as a Moderator to say that this is of no consequence. If such behaviour is not punished, it has been successful in getting a positive response and will be used again and therefore the behaviour is reinforced in the person until otherwise is learnt. It is not just I who belives that the extent to which some inidivduals’ mean and abusive behaviour has been rewarding in the past may be one reason why they continue it. It is the concept of reinforcement.

Meanwhile, I thank you for your efforts and commitment for working towards Democracy in Iran.


Trying to act normal has driven me crazy

by Rea on

So, I stopped trying. Have been much happier since.


maziar 58

Soul searching

by maziar 58 on

JJ thanks for the great blog of yours and the few brilliants nameless commentators views.

what a wonderful world we live in ?

If we're able only to avoid the hardships we encounter.

JJ  I hope you did not write this blog right after having a bottle of LAMBRUSCO .              Maziar


Happy to see you in the club

by comrade on

I, a perfectly confused man am witnessing the birth of a confusedly perfect observer/thinker.

Keep drinking whatever they are serving you there, JJ. And write more.   

Never increase, beyond what is necessary, the number of entities required to explain anything.



Self Doubt as a Virtue

by Faramarz on



The tapes of a conversation between JFK and his wife Jackie that were released about 2 years ago revealed that both of them were immersed in self doubt as the 1960 election with Nixon was nearing. JFK was asking Jackie what they should do if he loses the election and can he ever get another job! Imagine that! An educated couple from great families with solid resumes were worried about the next job.

Actually, studies show that successful people are generally full of self doubt as they make relatively important decisions and that helps them to ponder longer and harder.

So no worries! Just keep worrying!

Flying Solo

Great News

by Flying Solo on

At any stage of life, early or late - when we finally come to accept ourselves the way we are, is a moment for jubilation. I am very happy for you Jahanshah. 

Here is one of my all time favorites, which just about sums up the whole shbang of this thing we call living. :)




by Princess on

I think what you are discribing here is your process of gaining wisdom - be it through growing older or through travelling.

I think for most of us, whether we are aware of it or not, the ultimate goal in life is to be at ease with ourselves, ie. with who we are and where we are.

I personally sense that as I am growing older I tend to see increasingly more beauty in imperfection. I find perfection and "normality" boring.

I enjoyed reading this blog JJ. I had a smile on my face all the way through reading it.

Anahid Hojjati

I agree, Souri, it will be great if you blog on Existentialism

by Anahid Hojjati on

Is this is the one that says..., oh forget it, let's wait for the blog. I don't want to show how little I know of it.

Niloufar Parsi

makes a lot of sense

by Niloufar Parsi on

JJ, thanks for the piece. i very much identify with most of it.

souri: a blog on the basic elements of existentialism would be nice...




by Souri on

Reading this, gave me a feeling that you are approaching to the philosophy of Existentialism.

I've got in this mood when I was too young, then I've changed to something more political as a result of the revolution in Iran.

I know you have already read some of Sartre books for sure, but if I may, I'd like to suggest two of his excellent works for you to read.

The age of Reason (which is actually a mirror of your present thoughts on life)

The Nausea
(for which, Sartre was awarded a Nobel prize but he declined it)

Of course there are so many other books from Sartre for you to investigate more about this aspect of the "Life" which is now haunting your thoughts, but these two books are the best (in my opinion) to start on Sartre philosophy.

The age of Reason is really for you! lots of similarities between the protagonist and your own personality!
I'm sure you will love it.

Good read; 

The good behavior of the people, warms our heart and make us thankful.....  And the bad ones, just make us to recognize and appreciate the good ones!


You need to be crazy

by SamSamIIII on


to figure out this crazy world. You need to process out hundreds of romances to figure out its shallowness, you need to sleep with hundreds of russian hookers to bore out with meaningless sex, you need to fall from mountain of wealth & reclimb again nemerous times to find out emptiness of possessions, you need to read hundreds of books & travel to a hundred city to lose your one dimensional world, You need to pilot a plane or climb a cliff to figure out just how earthly you are, You need to give this adventure up for the sake of a lil angel to figure out what real joy means and thus you need to fall a hundred times & rise a hundred times to finally make sense of you & things around you and without that experince you shall never get it.

People only share a dimension they want to share . Judging them based on that one encounter is fatal mistake of yet one dimensional souls themselves ;).

Meet, accept, learn & move on. 

Thats how you mature your world view to perfection like me ::)). Crazies dare to venture, normal never does.


Path of Kiaan Resurrection of True Iran Hoisting Drafshe Kaviaan //iranianidentity.blogspot.com //www.youtube.com/user/samsamsia

Veiled Prophet of Khorasan

JJ Jan

by Veiled Prophet of Khorasan on


It is easy to talk the talk but hard to walk the walk. I was not around to see Hazef and Rumi but I would not be surprised if they had lots of flaws.

I did read some very disturbing things about Sadi and his treatment of non Muslims. To make it short people specially Iranians like to make demi-gods. Then worship them. From Rostam to Ali we create legends. At least we know Rostam was created by Ferdowsi and was a legend (Ferdowsi says it himself: Rostam yali bood dar Sistam; Man kardamesh Rostam-eh dastan - apologies for any mistakes). Ali on the other hand is still worshiped by many people. 

We do not need to be perfect; just try to be good enough. And do not get full of ourselves pretending to be more than we are. The one thing I really dislike is "high horse" types. People who get so sanctimonious and are "holier than thou". They are usually the worst of the crowd.


Don't listen to SP. The green bud is good the skunk is the best. But I am too old for that stuff now.

Yours, VPK

Anahid Hojjati

Jahanshah, shoma ham Khosh o khandan bashi.

by Anahid Hojjati on

Dear JJ, I deleted my facebook comment, I might add it later but reason for deletion was that sometimes I have seen people bring evidence of one person's weirdness the fact that they are up during night. I just did not want to give them more evidence :). I take naps when others are awake and then I am awake when others are asleep. But seriously, I like the sentence:" I m crazy, you are nuts." since you gave me your blessing, I will use it.  Shoma ham Khosh o khandan bashi.