Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Internment Camps?

I was just talking to my husband about this the other day. I asked "Do you think the American public would allow the government to lock us (Muslims) all up?" He said that the government wouldn't do it. But i said yes they would. They did it to the Japanese. Besides, i'm under the belief that many would like to see the whole "Muslim problem" disappear. Who cares how.

Read this and decide for yourself. Why Is Halliburton Building Internment Camps?

Scary! I don't know where we'd go. I wouldn't want to live in an Islamic country for several reasons. Could they really go this far?

Say it ain't so!

I saw on CNN last night that the whirlpools they use when giving pedicures can contain flesh eating bacteria. They showed these women's legs all ate up with permanant scars. The whirlpool is my favorite part of a pedicure! It's like one of my five luxuries in life. I don't know what the other four are but i know pedicures are one of them. Anyhow, i won't be doing that anymore. It just wouldn't be relaxing sitting there wondering if later that evening my legs were going to get eaten my flesh eating bacteria. They said most salons don't clean them right...like 1 in 7 are clean. And some flat out lie. Arghhhhhh!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

The library.

I love the library. It's one thing (and parks) that i would totally allow an increase in taxes for. I use my library fully. I get books on cd for DH and his long commute. I get them for me for driving, cooking, etc. It allows me to read more than i could without them being on audio because of Little Dude. He even listened to a couple books with me when he was smaller and we spent a lot of time in our glider. It's how I read Bee Season (previous post) and many other great books that i wouldn't have had the time for. I also check out magazines from there so i only actually subscribe to two but i get to read four (if time permits).

I go every week and the librarians know me. It was this way in Denver too. Each week i also check out movies and cd's. We hardly use Blockbuster since the library has most everything. If they don't, then we go to Blockbuster. It's rare we go though since i request all my holds online and usually only have to wait a week or two for new releases. I also, of course, get tons of books, cookbooks, whatever i fancy (i can't believe i just used that word like that...hmmm) that week. Oh, and they also sell donated books. I also donate to them.

It's a great relationship i have with the library. And now that Little Dude is getting bigger and more interactive we'll be going weekly for their baby development class where i guess we sing songs and do developmental building games with our little ones and then we read to them at the end. It's gonna be good for him and good for me - and i'm hoping i'll meet some cool mom's. He's going to grow up with the library being a given. The librarians just love him and they compete for smiles. He seems to like the desi lady best.

My latest cool find at the public library: a Matisyahu cd. I think this guy lived down the hall from me back in Colorado. I swear it was him. There was a group of Jewish guys all living together and they would always be blasting the reggae and having these crazy parties. I actually wish i had gotten to know them because they seemed interesting. I was just starting to seriously study Islam at the time. I remember our incense competing. I liked Nag Champa or Patchouli (i'm a hippie like that) and they liked some potent stuff. I think it masked the mary juana they were smoking but anyways. Here is another website about Matisyahu. Good stuff.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Bee Season

I just finished this book per Leila's blog recommendation. It was excellent! I'm reviewing a book that is much like it, in tone. Anyway, i highly recommend it. And like Leila said, Life of Pi is great too if you haven't read it (and one of my (top ten books). Speaking of which, you'll have to make that list 12 now because this one and another just got added on and there is no way i can keep dwindling my favorite's list to 10. I need it to be top 25 or so to be fair.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

A quote, a book, and a little blabbing

"Please stop beheading people. It's not good PR. And send me $100,000." Zawahira to Zarqawi in a letter. What a quote! It's right up there with "leave the gun, take the canoli" from The Godfather.

Other news... Osama is now competing with Oprah for book club of the month.

I personally like Osama's choice better than Oprah's. I find Oprah's choices really annoying and saturated with victims and abusers - lighten up every now and then lady. Oh wait, Osama's isn't exactly light. Anyway, what do you think Osama's next choice would be though? The Art of War? I'm betting it wouldn't be Rumi.

Speaking of book reviews. I just wrote one and had to be nice when i really wanted to say, "This book was like trudging through quicksand. It took all the energy i could muster to just get from one page to another. Maybe it took so long to read because i kept flipping to the back to recount how many horrid pages were left to go." But since I am nice, and since she is an award winning author, i was a little nicer than i should have been, but not much.

I hate writing bad reviews, but i hate reading bad books more. And i really wouldn't want to influence other people to read a bad book so i have to be honest. Needless to say, I don't think this review is going to be one that is reprinted on the back of a book like a few of my reviews have been. Thank God the one i'm working on now is a breeze to read and very enjoyable. Maybe I should send Osama a copy.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Another meme!!!

I got tagged by ayalguita and I tag Aisha, Southern Masala, AnthroGal, Sister Surviving and Masooma or whoever wants to do it.

1. Your name spelled backwards. rerafyaw – since that’s what you guys know me by, but I absolutely love what my real name spelled backwards is. Purdy funny.
2. Last incoming call on your phone. Husband
3. What is the last thing you downloaded onto your computer? A hilarious video
4. What's your favorite restaurant? My kitchen…. Oh okay, there’s an Iranian restaurant I really like here. Their kabobs rock.
5. Last time you swam in a pool? 2 years ago I think
6. Have you ever been in a school play? Yes
7. 2 or 3? 2
8. Type of music you dislike most? Anything that the lyrics can’t be made out…aka heavy metal, etc.
9. Do you have cable? Thank God for that.
10. Have you ever ridden on a 4 wheeler? Yes
11. Have you ever made a prank phone call? Oh yes.
12. Boyfriend/Girlfriend? Married
13. Would you go bungee jumping or skydiving? Skydiving yes, bungee jumping no.
14. Farthest place you ever traveled? Europe. InshAllah Pakistan soon.
15. Do you have a garden? Sort of.
16. What's your favorite comic strip? Boondocks
17. Do you read a newspaper every day? A few articles online. Before marriage I religiously read the Sunday paper and drank coffee. Those days are gone.
18. Do you really know all the words to your national anthem? Nope.
(I don’t know what no 19 was)
20. Best movie(s) you've seen in the past month? Witness or Crash
21. Favorite pizza toppings? Meat, meat and more meat. I also like pineapple and jalapeno with green tobasco sauce added. I picked that one up while preggie.
22. Chips or popcorn? Chips.
23. Have you ever smoked peanut shells? Huh?
24. Have you ever been in a beauty pageant? Yes actually. I dabbled in modeling as a teenager.
25. Orange Juice or Apple Juice? Apple with pomegranate juice added. Yum.
26. Who were the last people you went out to lunch or dinner with? Excluding DH and DS – probably Aisha from It’s my Life.
27. Favorite type chocolate bar? Cadbury Nut and Fruit
28. When was the last time you voted at the polls? Last election
29. Last time you ate a homegrown tomato? Last summer from my “garden”
30. Have you ever won a trophy? No. I don’t think I ever competed for one though. I’m a bookish sort.
31. Are you a good cook? Yup.
32. Do you know how to pump your own gas? Yes…funny story about that one though.
33. Sprite or 7-Up? 7-Up but I only like these when I’m sick. I like my soda dark.
34. Have you ever had to wear a uniform to school/work? Yes. Eek…flashbacks!
35. Last thing you ate? Does tea count as food? It should. Prime rib last night.
36. Ever thrown up in public? Yeah…
(37-39 missing)
40. Who was the last person you visited in the hospital? My stepbrothers girlfriend like 10 years ago!
41. Did you have long hair as a young kid? Yes, very. Until my evil stepmother cut it off.
42. What messages are in your voice mail? God only knows. I have a bad habit of not deleting messages. I’m sentimental that way.
(43-44 missing)
45. What kind of bag do you have, and whats in it? Diaper bag. God only knows what’s in it. The necessites, and probably a million things that don’t belong in there.
46. What was the last thing you drank? Tea. I love my tea…
47. What is one thing you are grateful for today? Being alive. Having a good husband and a healthy son. It doesn’t hurt that the sun is shining.
48. What do you think about most? God, family, the world, politics, writing.
49. What is your new years resolution? Too many to name but the ones in the foreground… be a *good* mom and wife. By good I mean by my standards, not some hokey pokey ones.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Quirk Meme

My good quirks
1. I want people to feel good and be happy so I smile a lot and when leaving a store without buying something I always say something like “We’ll be back” if we really will be back or if we won’t I say something nice about something they have. I didn’t know I did this until I got married and he pointed it out. It’s something I’m actually trying to stop (being overly nice to a fault) but am not succeeding.
2. I’m giving. I like to do nice things for people even if I end up being used.
3. I’m very spontaneous and love trying new things.
4. I like everything to match unless the goal is to actually be unmatched…I really love unmatched if it’s done right.
5. I’m a really good driver – it doesn’t matter what my husband says – I’m a very safe and good driver. Having a kid did that to me. I used to be a speed demon…not no more. I turn my blinker on way ahead of time, etc etc.
6. I love the smell of paper and books and magazines. It’s like I smell the words. When I was in elementary school I loved the smell of handouts (you know the blue ink hand cranking copier smell?).

My bad quirks
1. I can’t focus on things. I have to do two or three things at once. I start projects and never finish so I have like 15 projects going and none finished. But while I’m into each thing, I’m really into it. Example: I was interested in the Amish a few weeks ago so I got five documentaries about them, watched them, I got Little Dude a kids book about them and read it to him, then for a finale I watched Witness…a drama about the Amish. When I do something I do it fully. I just often don’t finish doing them…
2. I’m a procrastinator and I can’t cure it. I have two articles due tomorrow and what am I doing? A meme…aka procrastination.
3. I can’t finish one book before starting another so I am always reading 3 or 4 books at a time. It usually isn’t a problem unless the books are similar. Like right now two books I’m reading are similar and I keep getting the characters confused. That’s not good when I’m reviewing one of them for the paper. Sigh.
4. I have a heightened sense of hearing and I can’t stand certain noises – it actually drives me crazy which in turns drives those around me crazy. We had to move from our last condo because the neighbors upstairs drove me crazy walking around in the middle of the night with high heels. Now we live in a quiet house on a little lake and the dang geese and birds drive me crazy. I hate noise. I think this one comes from my dad because he was always telling us to be quiet, talk lightly, etc. Let me not even talk about snorers… Other noises that drive me batty…a spoon against Styrofoam, fork or knife scraping against a plate, etc. Ironically, a crying baby does not drive me crazy but an adult talking loudly does.
5. I’m not good at accepting compliments or criticism.
6. I’m a perfectionist and it stops me from doing things. For example, I have a baby book and write down the stuff to put in there, but I haven’t put it in there yet because I want the book to look nice so I am waiting for a “good handwriting day” – does anyone else have those? Days that your handwriting is especially nice? But the good handwriting days come and go and the book is still there with scrap pieces of paper that need to be transferred to the book.

(I’m officially beginning to think that I am a crazy person and not a quirky person.)

My food quirks

1. I don’t like my food to touch in general - especially mashed potatoes because it gets discolored. But with Pakistani food, my food must touch.
2. I don’t like cold foods. Fruit has to at least be room temperature, ice cream has to be somewhat melted or served on something warm, there is no use for ice…etc.
3. I used to not like sweets at all but now I love them and actually can’t fall asleep peacefully if I haven’t had something sweet. That one is my husbands fault.
4. When shopping, I like to buy exotic things to try but in the end I really don’t like many of them. I am just trying to expand my horizons.
5. I love to cook but I don’t love to eat. I eat just because I have to in order to live. I really don’t get pleasure from it very often but when I do, I really do and I see what the big fuss is all about.
6. I like my meat or meat dish on the upper right side of my plate and the sides on the left lower. Yogurt or other condiments go between two side things.

My sleep quirks
1. In the winter I have to sleep with socks on even though my feet get overheated.
2. I can’t sleep with the bathroom door open.
3. I can’t go to bed until I’m exhausted. I never go to bed early.
4. I can’t take naps. Even when my baby was born and I was getting no sleep, I couldn’t take a nap.
5. I talk in my sleep.
6. I can’t sleep facing someone. I have to face the other way. It’s just creepy to me and too “in my face”.

Thursday, February 09, 2006


I had the greatest kebob roll of my life last night after the majalis. (Southern Masala - didn't you think it rocked?) I tried to bribe DH to give me his and the sweet guy that he is left me almost half for today's lunch. I just scarfed it down after seeing it sit there all lonely on the refridgerator shelf. Thanks dear.

Been looking at Ashura footage and listening to lectures and stuff. I just found a whole bunch of cool websites online. I'm so excited. It's too bad my computer is going to *break* this weekend. But it gives me something to look forward to when i get my new and improved computer.

And i have to give a big thanks to Dervish for leading me to Furl. All my linkies are safe and sound there for when my computer *breaks* this weekend. I'm also thankful they now make these. Now, all my files are also safe and sound. My hard drive no longer has control over my life.

Other thoughts of the day:

1. Jill Carroll is still alive. MashAllah. I'm so thankful for that and hope she makes it home safe and sound.
2. After ranting about all the violence and my frustratedness, DH made a good point that shifted my whole attitude. I'd share, but he's shy.
3. I actually teared up during last night's majalis. I'm usually only solemn, but a few tears did welt up. Is welt a word?


Melancholy may enter your soul, and ambush your happiness; but it will prepare you for true joy. Melancholy drives out all other emotions and feelings, so the source of all goodness may occupy the whole house. It shakes the yellow leaves from the tree, allowing fresh leaves to grow. It pulls up old bodily pleasures by the roots, allowing divine spiritual pleasures to be planted. Melancholy takes many things from the soul, in order to bring better things in return.

-Rumi, "Masnavi"

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

and more frustratedness...

I was at this procession last year... see last years post on my old blog and it was such a peaceful experience. In fact, my fondest memory is the bicycling American non-Muslim couple who stopped by and asked what the day was about and who later took a plate of hot food handed to them and listened to the lectures and learned a little something about those people they only hear about on the news.

Now i find out via email about the violence inflicted on Shias at this years NYC Muharram procession. What is going on? The recent violence and hatred wasn't enough for them? They had to go and inflict more, but this time on Muslims? Whatever they may say about us not being Muslims, they are not of the authority to decide that. Maybe they should read their Qur'an a little closer. Sister Scorpion posted this link - the group behind it.

Unbelievable. Just unbelievable. I feel so alone today. Hated and alone. I am sitting here with my son and crying because he knows nothing of what is happening in this world and is happily gooing and gaaing. What is Islam going to look like when he's a young man? My heart has a knot in it because i just don't know. He is hated by so many before he even talks or walks. How sad is that?

What can we do?

I couldn't sleep last night. I kept thinking about what is happening to our religion. What can we do to get it back? If it's not terrorism, then it's violence. I still can't believe a set of cartoons could create such a tiff. I understand how wrong they are but i still can't understand how certain Muslims take that as a reason to go crazy.

I don't think it's the cartoons alone. I think in general Muslims are tired. Tired of defending their religion, tired of living in poverty (so many do), tired of the West dictating how they should live, tired of war, just plain tired. I know I am and my life is relatively easy. All the conversations I have had with neighbors, friends and family about Islam trying to explain to them what we believe and why Islam does not allow violence are wasted. Now I have to explain why Muslims act this way and I just can't because we can only say so many times that "Islam doesn't condone this type of behavior." It's not an acceptable answer anymore.

What can we do to save our religion? I know it takes education in some parts of the world - sadly, Islamic countries seemingly need it the most. Muslims need the education. Education is needed in the US too but not in the same way. Our non-Muslims need to be educated so they know what Islam is and what Islam isn't. But we can't blame them (or these Danish cartoons) because as Hamza Yusuf was saying in a cassette i recently listened to, "Kafirs are doing what they are supposed to be doing. They are good at being kafirs. What we need to worry about is how we are as Muslims." It's a very good point. I'm ashamed right now of what my religion has turned into. I worry too how things will be for my son if this violence within Islam increases. Will there be a holocaust for Muslims in Western countries? Last night when i couldn't sleep, i kept thinking of how the Qur'an says in the end days, good will appear as bad, and bad will appear as good. Are we not in that realm already?

I'm just really sad today about our Ummah and wish i knew what to do about it. This Muharram will be filled with tears. Like in Karbala so many years ago, Islam needs to be saved. Who is going to do it? Are there any modern day Husayn's?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


Fish tacos and corn on the cob with spicy butter
Originally uploaded by wayfarer.

Monday, February 06, 2006

A bunch of tangents and a few rants.

1. Been busy going to the mosque. Little Dude has been really good for me there. Well, except the time the swinging end of a ladies scarf got his attention and he swiped at it missing the scarf and instead got her backside. Oops.

2. Haven't been online much the last few days and when i logged into my email this morning, there was a ton of emails. Most were from Flylady. I thought she was supposed to help me be organized and get rid of clutter, but she's cluttering up my mailbox.

3. I think (know) my hard drive is going to crash soon. I will soon get the new version of my computer. yay! The new model is much lighter too. Looking forward to that especially since my back is still all out of whack from Little Dude. I finally started seeing a chiropractor. Alhamdulillah.

4. Heard about the Prophet Muhammad Danish cartoons. That is just wrong on so many levels but what i want to know is why Muslims have to go all crazy and violent about stuff like this? Why do they have to make us all look crazy? This so isn't what the prophet would do (imo). When i first converted, i thought Muslims were great people. I realized soon after that even though a religion is perfect, it's followers aren't. This violence within Islam is just a shame. Yeah, the cartoons were wrong and deserve a response, but this is the wrong response. Two wrongs don't make a right. That's what i learned back home on the farm and it still sticks.

5. I watched a bunch of documentaries on the Amish and found them to be very interesting. What i kept thinking about while watching is why aren't Muslims more like this? I mean, why don't we have close knit communities and support each other. Why are Muslims so seperated? Sect-wise and otherwise. Amish and Menonites get along just fine. They have done such a great job at building a community. Community and unity is what Islam was built on. Why has it stopped? Why do so many backbite, slander, and envy? The Amish, if a barn burns down, gets together and do what is called a Barn Raising where they rebuild that barn as a community in one day. MashAllah! That's brotherly love. They don't have to ask for help and no one asks for payment. Why don't we have schools and communities and brotherly love? I'm not innocent here, people...i'm just saying...

6. They say it's going to snow today. Hmmmmmm. I really don't think that's possible here but we'll see. Ironically i just planted some new flowers on the front steps. I can't believe flowers are starting to come up. The daffodils are on the rise. I thought those were flowers you had to replant each year, but they keep coming. If it does snow, I know it won't be like the snow i'm used to (colorado).

7. Speaking of which, i'm really missing Colorado. I miss so much from there. Especially during Muharram. I converted a few months before Muharram and i associate Muharram with that and of course Colorado. I miss the sisters there. I met a sister (well actually two) from the mosque there that i just adore. We always went to the mosque, every week without fail. Often it was only us there as far as women goes. Anyway, we would have such fun. We'd talk, pray, listen to the lecture, eat and then laugh and talk over tea. I miss her so much. And then we got a third to our party when the sheik got married. His wife was also so much fun and joined us in our laughter. We would sometimes laugh so hard that we couldn't stop and we'd end up snorting tea. I didn't know until those two that religious institutions could be fun. I haven't seen it since. The mosque here, everyone is so serious and acting all high and mighty. Back at the other mosque, we were religious, but we were also human and it was a beautiful thing. MashAllah.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Meme - yay, i'm doing one!

Since i just asked what a meme was and was (not) tagged by Anthrogal ...

Four Jobs I’ve Had in My Life

1) The person who answered a 24 hour customer service line. I worked the graveyard shift and had to answer the phone in French and say "Sorry, i don't speak French, please call back at 8 am. in French. What a strange job was that? We only got like 1 or 2 calls a night each (3 diff people doing diff languages). We spent most of our time watching movies, debating religion, and sleeping under our desks.
2) Loan Associate
3) Financial Services
4) Freelance writer

Four Movies I Could Watch Over and Over, and Have

1) any Meg Ryan movie (Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail, When Harry Met Sally, etc)
2) Legally Blonde 1 & 2 (don't laugh, but they crack me up!) I love law movies and writer movies so i should put The Paper Chase in there too.
3) Good Will Hunting
4) My Big Fat Greek Wedding

and four more (i can't help myself)

5) BBC's Pride and Prejudice
6) Little Women
7) Amelie
8) Tortilla Soup (i lurve this movie!)

Four Places I Have Lived

1) Oregon
2) Colorado
3) Georgia
4) in a school bus (yes really, for a year and a half)

Four TV Shows I Love To Watch

1) Iron Chef
2) Gilmore Girls
3) Beauty and the Geek
4) American Idol (who doesn't like seeing kids get their dream realized?)

Four Places I Have Been On Vacation

1) Spain
2) Europe (4 month backpacking trip)
3) Florida
4) Puerto Rico

Four Websites I Visit Daily

1) Multilingual Quran and DILP in general
2) 1/4 of blogroll per day
3) Right now... sites with muharram lectures since i can't get out every night with Little Dude to the mosque
4) Email, Investopedia, Flylady, etc

Four Favorite Foods

1) BBQ ribs
2) Pakistani food...all of it but probably briyani or dalcha
3) Salmon my hubby makes
4) Iranian buffet

Four Places I Would Rather Be Right Now

1) Napping with my son in his swing...he looks so peaceful swinging while sleeping
2) Colorado
3) Paris
4) the Alps (the Swiss ones)

Four People Whom I Tag Next

1) Arafat
2) Zack
3) Baji
4) and the other Baji