Light luggage from Iran!


by Kamangir

It was coulpe of nights ago as I was watching a Iranian programe I had downloaded earlier. It's a yearly celebration or festival that gathers all directors, filmemakers, actors and actresses in Iran. legends such as Ostad Entezami, Parviz Parastooi, Nassirian, Mehrjoui and other younger artists were present. It was through their speeches and jokes and conversations that something called my attention. Their honesty, sense of humor, humility and respect towards others artists and above all their breef explanation and analysis of the characters they have played. It was not the first time that I have come to realize the obvious, that somehow, for some reason the vast majority of our fellow Iranians in Iran, despite all the inconveniences and hardships, still try to make sense of out life, actually they do see and feel the sense of humanity. They try to express these things in their films, books and poems, Iranians have always had this need for expression, since very ancient times. However, it's been a long time since I started wondering where has all this gonne among us outside Iran? No matter how much I try to find some of the Iranian positive atributes in the large Iranian community outside Iran, there's isn't much to be found, specially in this known and so much wanted country called Canada. This country with a very large and increasing Iranian population could have one of the most robust and strong Persian cultural representations, however; for the most part the only gathering point, the only interesting events that gathers people in droves, is none other than the concerts. Every month or so there're concerts here and there for which tickets are sold very quickly, the best dresses and best suits and cars are to be seen in such gatherings. Everyone seems to be interested in showing up with a good looking couple, even good looking blond blue eyed girlfriends, while there, the more english words you use while speaking Persian, the more sofisticated you look, everything is so positive in appearance so 'chick' that even the non-Iranians present or simple bystanders are amazed at the 'glamour'. There shouldn't be anything wrong with this, but somehow, for some of us there're lots of things missing, too many gaps, an emptyness hard to describe. It makes you wonder why we cannot or do not want to gather for other reasons, why is it, that other communities such as the Italian, Greek and Croatian and so many others do seem to have lots of things to say to each other, but we don't. Should we assume that people from a very old and culturaly rich land have no other reasons to gather? other than concerts, which resemble showing off sessions of what I have and you don't. This is not what I was watching in the programme I mentioned earlier, these are not the same people I met during the years I lived in Iran, these are not the middle class teachers, bus drivers, workers and millions and millions of Iranian man and women in Iran.

There's this recent Iranian film called 'che kasi amir ra kosht' casting, Sharifinya and amin hayayi and the final soundtrack or song of the film says:

Khoshbakhti yani yek marde khikki

Hesabe banki, mashine meshki

Ezdevaj shekle yek zane chaghe

Daspokhte ali, jahizi kamel

Movafagiat yani ghabooli to konkoor

Raftan be Canada ba reshveo pool

The ultimate question, crossing one's mind is, are these the kind of things these Iranians leaving Iran, were dreaming of before leaving the country? Please, don't get me wrong, having some spare and leisure time is needed, be this a concert, movie or parties, However, what I'm referring to is the 'overall' attitude, the sad fact, that our cultural existance as community abroad has to be reduced to one-dimensional activities that do not go beyond concerts and bezano beraghs, for which Vancouver is second to none.



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Re: Great Topic

by Kamangir on

Dear masoudA

You're right. However i think there're some overall differences between the state of affairs of the Iranian community in Canada and the US. The good, decent and darvishmaslak families you're referring to in the US are the first main wave of people who left Iran right before and right after the so called revolution. The ones, subject of out topic here are just the last wave of new riches who do not share the cultural level of other Iranians.


Re: Totally agree

by Kamangir on


You couldn't have described it better. I'm in the wrong place.



I have to say that this is

by LostIdentity (not verified) on

I have to say that this is the 1st time I find myself agreeing with your point. I think the major reason for this kind of expectation that hamvatanan has about outside world is the natural outcome of international media bombarding domestic airspace. Obviously, people in Iran would think that the life is all good and easy outside Iran and people live their life hastle and worry-free with high sense of security.

We got to start believing in ourselves, know the cost of alienation and assimilation and do not brand our way of living as backward.

It remind me of the expression:
"khoroose oomad rah raftane kalagho yad begeereh, rah raftane khodesham az yad bord!"


Totally agree

by Mani (not verified) on

I totally hear you when you describe the general atmosphere in the Iranian community here in Canada.

Before moving to Canada, I used to live in France where there was practically no Iranian community. So by coming here, I had a lot of expectations from Iranians, as I was very enthusiastic to get back in touch with my Iranian culture.

But to my disappointment, most Iranians here were mainly interested in partying and showing off. There was little substance in those events (concerts, clubs), which were basically a way to dress up, drive with the nicest car possible, and just put on some attitude (mostly the girls) and go back home with a boosted ego.

I can’t count how many fights I have witnessed in those parties, which led me to slowly avoid going to them and waste my money and time on them.

I think one major reason why Iranians in Canada seem to be so shallow is that most of these people come from the “nouveaux riches” category, which basically means “the newly rich”, or people who have made a huge amount of money in the past 5-10 years with the corrupt and irrational Iranian “besaz befroosh” economy (for example buying a house or condo in North Tehran and selling it at 3 times the original price).

In Iran, these people very quickly become materialistic and are only interested in competing with each other (“chesmo hamcheshmi”), which leads to ridiculous lifestyles: giant houses, extravagant parties and weddings, all sorts of plastic surgeries, expensive cars, and of course, immigrating to a foreign country is seen as “cool”. As Canada has a relatively easy immigration policy, especially with the business investor visa (you “only” need half a million dollars as an investment promise to be given a full immigrant visa) and getting a Canadian passport only takes 3-4 years of residence (of course you can cheat that too), most of these people choose Canada as a destination and end up here, most of the time with no real reason or objective other than just to do like all the other competitors.

And the funny thing is they all have the same story: the father owns a business (factory of some sort), he has made $2 million in the past few years, so he brings the wife and kids, and he buys them a luxurious condo apartment cash and goes back and forth to Iran. Then, the same cycle of “cheshmo hamchesmi” continues here. The mother gets bored eventually and follows the Dad to Iran, and the kids hang out here with no real purpose, from one party to another, taking a so-called degree in some random college, spending their time in shopping malls and the rest of the time complaining about Canada’s weather and eventually going 3 times a year to Iran.

So if you expect to meet the “middle-class” Iranians, teachers, artists, interesting people with some depth in their conversations, you are in the wrong place.


The Struggle in Iran needs assistance in form of

by kouroush Sassanian (not verified) on

Steel Rain!!! Help is on its way . . .


Great Topic

by masoudA on

Great Topic

Here are my 2cents:

As one who has lived in Iran for half of the last 20 years - I find Kamangirs take very interesting and accurate.   Yes - new Iranian generation is fantastic - despite the mullahs.   Did you expect anything less?  we are a nation of survivors - and this new round of Arab attack is not our first test.   This generation of Iranians knows more about Cyrus than my pre revolt generation.   People in Iran live on the "Slow Lane" - which has it's ups and downs.  

I can also relate to what Dariush is saying - I have seen how stupid some Iranians can look pretending to live in the "Fast Lane" !!! but let's not forget one crucial fact -  You are comparing the best of those inside Iran to the lowest form of Iranian immigrants in LA and LA TV's.   I don't know how close you have come to some of the upper level in education and proffessional Iranian families in America and in LA - but trust me, they live a great sane darvishs life with all the challenges and pleasures America offers.  





You said it man

by Daryush on

First the song is from the band called Kiosk, they used to be in Iran and now they reside somewhere in the west, maybe Canada. I like them. Second I think Iranians culture needs to be revised. It starts from Iran and when the Iranians come here, you see it to blossom to this ugly community! My point for years to most of the Iranians that I meet is that it't not always the regime of Iran that is bad, let's take a look at the people and our culture. Maybe we find the true answer. Once in my life I took a trip to LA, and I have never met such artificial, arrogant, ignorant, unkind, and uncultured group of people. I am not talking about all of the Iranians of course, but that seemed to be the general culture. Since then I became a semi pro IRI. I thought I would never want these groups to gain any power in Iran because...Well do I have to explain?
Just remember that in this site they are some Iranians who want Iran to be bombed so they can go for a short spring break there and back! These are the Iranians my friend. They blast against another race (Arabs) while seeing themselves superior, then want Iran bombed! What kind of people are those? IRANIANS. Italians would never allow a foreigner to decide his country's future, but most of the Iranians I met in LA would love Iran to become the 51st State of tehe US. What kind of people are those? IRANIANS. They create Hafiz nights and sit and read Hafiz, they feel cultured and if you ask them what they are reading, they give you some none sense meaning they have no idea what they are reading, it's only for a show. What kind of people are those? IRANIANS. Ef-fe, Iranians. Efaadeh, Iraninans. Backward in thinking, well dress are Iranians. Then they blame IRI, take a look at the ones who "oppose" IRI and then tell me, what kind of people are those?