Friday, December 3, 2010
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Saturday, October 23, 2010
"Doors closing", the CTA train makes the announcement. I take the book out of my backpack. Two times in a day, I have 10-15 minutes to read a few pages until I get to the stop I need to get off.
Every time, the story of the book takes me to Tehran in the 80s. A unique time in the history of a country where a Islamic Republic is replacing a monarchy. Books which in opinion of the conservative rulers support the imperialism of the west are banned. Lolita, a novel by Vladimir Nabokov, for its content of pedophilia is among the banned books. A university professor, Azar Nafisi, and a few of her students get together secretly to have weekly discussions about Nabakov's writings. The story is not just about Lolita but the daily life of Iranian people in the 80s. The life in Iran in the 90s as I've experienced it was not much different from the 80s as the book tells. Iran was gradually becoming a totalitarian regime. A bloody revolution and a long-lasted war with Iraq have made people too tired and indifferent from what was going on in the government. A government raised from a revolution which supposed to grant freedom and independence to the country was taking control of everything in the name of religion and national security. It took more than 20 years for the country, to have its next generation, mostly students to rise up in 1999. The movement lasted one week until it was brutally suppressed. After 10 years, the next generation, my generation I should proudly say, rose up in 2009. This time, the movement lasted almost one year under violent suppression. When I'm looking back to 2009 and 1999, I see although the movement was apparently suppressed with brutal force but it was only suppressed, not eliminated or dead. The 1999 students movement was alive even after its suppression. It took its time to root in the society to create the 2009 green movement. The green movement is also still alive and rooting. The society is changing. I'm believing that a real change comes from down in the society not the government. If people change, the government will ultimately change.
"Foster", the CTA train makes the announcement. I close the book and put it back into my backpack. I come out of my little world of thoughts and start walking in the streets of Evanston toward school.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Monday, October 11, 2010
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Saturday, October 2, 2010
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
Tonight is the Persian Festival of Autumn (called "Mehregan" in Farsi). The autumnal equinox has occured tonight at 11:09 pm ETS. Tonight, the last day of summer 2010 in the northern hemisphere, also coincides with a full moon. This is a rare event which happens every 20 years. Tonight the moon looks abnormally large and yellowish. At the sunset time, the moon light and the light of sun set were mixing together and created a beautiful twilight glow. Happy Autumn!
Sunday, September 19, 2010
It is hard to believe that it was two years ago today (September 19, 2008) when I stepped off the plane in the U.S. for the first time. It seems just like yesterday. These two years have been a wonderful adventure, very educational. I've learned so many things and I've changed a lot. I'm still learning and changing. Thank you America for giving me this chance.
Friday, September 17, 2010
Marina City is a mixed-use residential-commercial building complex occupying an entire city block on State Street in Chicago located on the north bank of the Chicago River. The complex consists of two corncob-shaped 65-story, 587 foot (179 m) tall residential towers, a saddle-shaped auditorium building, and a mid-rise hotel building all contained on a raised platform cantilevered over defunct railroad tracks adjacent to the river. Below is a zoomed in shot of the lower levels of one the towers which is used as a multi-level parking structure.