Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Farewell my Mentor

No wonder I was cranky yesterday. My soul was mourning someone dear to myself who I haven't seen for ages. My father told me today "Poor Abu Huda, died". My mother turned to me and said "I didn't tell her yesterday". That's when I went to my room to have a look on the treasure he wrote me, and shed some tears.

He was the man who taught me about mankind and animals, love for the homeland, freedom of women, freedom of mind, science and bravery, crimes and society, and bravery itself.

He taught me how to play chess and backgammon. He opened my eyes to see things were there in front of my eyes but I couldn’t see. He was my first mentor. He taught me language (Arabic and English). He taught me sciences (physics and metaphysics). He taught me religion (heavenly and pagan) and history (the written and the actual). He told me there are two sides to every story.

The story started when I wasn't done with my homework while my sisters and I where staying at my grandmother's home, and she wanted to take us and visit her friends. It wasn't that I was careless, nor was I lazy, but I just didn't like to memorize things without understanding. What use would it be if I memorized this poem or that, especially when the poet has died centuries ago. I had hard time to recite Qura'an from my memory. I was too young to understand and the teacher wanted us to memorize.

I carried the book with me and promised my grandma that I'll try my best to memorize. It was a stupid idea then because it inspired my grandma's friend to sent me to her husband to help me. I didn't know him then. He was just the old man with bended back and scary voice.

That old man was funny and friendly that I forgot that he was even older than my own grandfather. He started with some jokes and riddles to attain my attention that time flied by and we had to leave but I wanted to stay even after I had memorized the ayat from Qura'an and even some funny verses.

We made an agreement that whenever I have to memorize in religion class or Arabic class, I would come to him. Later we made it regularly two day's a week visit. But when my parents were busy someday and couldn't pick me up early he helped me to do all my homework that later on it almost became a daily visit.

We used to study in the visitor hall and when they have visitors we would study in the living room. Sometimes we would sit in the garage or the garden for change. He would even talk about gardening and climate. He was one of those people who had encyclopedic knowledge. He was a true philosopher who came from an earlier age. But alas, his granddaughter was too young to appreciate him. And all he needed in his age was to speak up his mind and pass it to the next generation. Luckily I was there.

He was a communist and that was a reason why he ended up spending many of his young days in prison. But even there, he turned the cell into a classroom where he taught Arabic lessons and I believe some of his wisdom.

After I stopped the lessons, which I don't really remember why, was it his age or my age? Was it the uncomfortable feeling I detect from his family? (Because they had to be home) or whatever it was, I used to call and ask about him every now and then. Then I didn't recall him that my mother used to remind me to call him and get him a gift on Teacher's Day. By and by I even forgot him.

After the war his daughter used to come and visit us. And before I leave Baghdad I went to visit but he was sick and I couldn't see him. Later I heard that they were threatened and they left their home to Basra. And just today I heard he passed away. I feel I'm a careless student because I didn't keep in touch with him. The other day I remembered him and I wished if I could tell his wife that I want the books he left and the hundreds of notebooks he used to write. His grandsons and granddaughters were not that interested in his writings or his thoughts. But I thought it would be silly because I haven't talk to them all this time and they left their home to Basra, not sure if they had the time to carry all those bulky books.

He used to teas me and say "a girl in your age, what do you know in this life? Name three things… just three… I bet you would say: read and write or sing and dance" I used to add "I know how to play violin, I know how to draw" and he would laugh at me. Even his laugh was scary but I got used to it and I used to look at his wrinkles and think "oh my God! How old is he? I forgot that he's that old" He was with Nazik al Malaika and Badir Shakir Al-Sayab, they were in the same class. They were dead back then and now he joined them. May he rest in peace.

Here's why am I writing. This was my very frist real post.

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Monday, April 09, 2007

Fourth Year, Worst so far

Whoever those people may be, the people who nowadays sketch the scheme in Iraq, they must have studied Abraham Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs very well and acted upon it. Since April 9, 2003, the policy in Iraq appears to be almost based on this theory. It's the policy of "What to do to hurt this nation more?" I bet they sit, looking at this philosophy and try to be creative someway of another. Here's my analysis of what's going on according to Maslow's Hierarchy

First of all prevent people from getting their elementary needs: food, water and other bodily needs. I don't mean there's no food but I mean making it difficult to get. High-prices is one of those problems but considering the whole picture, prices seem a trivial thing.

Then the second level: deprive people from obtaining safe environment. No security, no protection from physical and emotional harms. Those explosions and bombs planted on the sidewalk sum most of the problems. People get hurt either because of being injured or losing loved ones.

The third level under all this chaos and absence of security there's no social life. People can't communicate with friends and family.

The fourth level: Esteem. Who can attain self-esteem when all one can feel is helplessness and failure? Who can be autonomous under the above circumstances?

The fifth level which is the most important: Self-actualization. To realize one's dream, to be able to grow emotionally and mentally, to achieve one's potential and self-fulfillment.
All the words become illusions when the dream is stolen. No motivation, no satisfied needs to activate Motivation. This "M word" scares the big planner. This is the word that makes "puppets" rebel against "the puppeteer" and cut all the strings attached. I doubt it if they were the real puppeteer because they seem to be nothing more than puppets themselves. And for the numerous militias in Iraq, I do believe they don't know that the same "Puppeteer" is controlling them.
That's why they want big religious men to declare Fatwa against resistance and killing invaders. While it's a "civil rights" to defend one's country against occupation forces, as described in one of the UN entries, and the UN had admitted that it is an occupation.

Back to the question "What to do to hurt this nation more?" Let's change the passports. They will be busy trying to get new passports, whether they are inside or outside Iraq. Let's block avenues, streets, and highways; there will be enough traffic jam to imprison them at home, away from home or just to waste a good deal of their time. Let's wage a war against Bathist, what the heck? This could be the easiest as approximately two thirds of Iraqis were members in that party, voluntarily or reluctantly, starting from students in high school to teachers, professors, government employees, to name a few. Let alone the several militias trying to turn it into street fights.
I believe this is the Policy of hungering & Stealing the dream. This policy itself deserves applause in the world of Hatred and Evil, where demons study hard to obtain and master this degree of Hideousness.

Here's what I wrote last year "Neither a fall nor liberty Day", and I still insist on that.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

MBA News Update

Officially Attawie declares that the week of exams is through and that two exams were approached in successfully (even though we'll have to wait for the marks) while the third one was an utter disaster that might even lead to complex consequences which would defect marks and ultimately would have a negative affect on the GPA. The first two exams were Human Resource Management and the second Research Methods.

As for the third one was Financial Accounting, the course that panicked her since the day she registered and she previously announced that she needed luck with this exam. After weeks of studying and three weekends spent only for understanding and solving every single accounting problem in the textbook, all the attempts were in vain.

Reliable source has reported that after she finished the exams, Attawie calculated the marks she was sure she can get and it was only 12 out of 25. Later in an interview she stated that this was the worst paper she ever submitted.

Rumor has it that she was about to cry when she submitted the paper and she apologized to the professor for the "horrible messy paper" and the professor replied "it's alright, first Accounting exam!"

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