Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Wisdom of an anonymous Bishop

I have a friend at work who is pretty funny. we have lunch together everyday. He is a serious game player with a high rank among gamers in Canada and call himself a Bishop.Today he told me something really wise. He told me that he couldn't earn one achievement in latest Call of Duty game in XBox and last night he dreamed about it. He said "Imagine how upset I was that I dreamed about it." Then he continued " you should make yourself fake challenges in life so that real ones have to stay in line". 

Monday, December 09, 2013

The Story of Two lovers

It was middle of a day about two years ago, when my colleage called me:

- Hiva I can see them outside of my window, they are here again.
- Who?
- The lovers.

For the past couple of years that I have been working in this building, every once in a while two cars one black and another one blue, come and park right beside each other, side by side, a woman gets out of one and enter to the other. The other car has windows all covered with sun reflector. After 3 to 4 hours, a woman comes out and each car goes its own way.

I recently moved to another spot close to the window with a beautiful view to a ravin and of course our parking lot. When I feel tired I look outside to refreshen my mind. It was about few month ago that I looked outside of a building and I saw them. The black car and and the blue car side by side. I was curious to see them, the famouse lovers that half of my office knows about.

At last, she came out of the black car, a woman in her fifties followed by him, a man of the same age. I should confess I was expecting a much younger woman. They hugged tightly and kiss each other long. Outside was chilly but they didn't have a care. It was obviouse saying goodbye was very hard for them. To me they are totally in love, affair or not, these two love each other badly.

This is awkward that two strangers having affair and chose a remote parking lot to meet and be with each other. They think no one of their family members know but then half of an office all strangers know about them.

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Seinfeld's Wisdom

Nima and I have started watching Jerry Seinfeld sitcome from beginnings. I like this show, and it's casual way of presenting ordinary people in their everyday life. The show is about nothing that's what I like about it. No fancy dressing of actors, pretty face boys and girls, instead Ordinary faces, light funny atmosphere.

Anyway we just started watching season 2, Jerry and George are talking about relationship and jerry says something which is quitte deep actually. Here it is "Relationship is a living organism, you develop it and when you starve it, it turns against you". This is so true. 

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Rememberence Day

I was nine-month old when my country engaged in a war which last for 8 years. With my family we lived in a city far far north of Iran. War front was all the way in south. I almost felt nothing;  Lost nobody in that war. I was too little and too protected. 

Iraq hoped to take advantage of Iran's revolutionary chaos and invaded part of southern land at borderline between the two countries. War began without formal warning. After two years, Iranian repelled iraqi's forces out and for whatever reason which is a mystery to me that nasty war lasted six more years. Iraq used chemical weapons during the war which claim many souls later, long after war was over. 

Many souls were lost from both sides, civilans died, suffered, wounded. Kids in schools bombarded. Sons who never made it back home and kept their parents waited for a long time hoping that maybe, just maybe one day they will see them again. Wifes who tasted bitterness of becoming a widow at young age and never had time to taste romance in their young husband embrace. Among Iranian soldiers there were many students mostly 16 to 18 years old, some even younger. All these beautiful brave souls perished. From both side of course; from both side. 

And all this for what, why?

 Because of one maniac who felt like invading another land, or another maniac who decided not to do peace at a right time. It's always like this isn't it. Give me one good reason, only one why it is good to start a war. Tell me why we should feel proud of perishing souls of other humans. Bombarding schools full of innocent children who are filled with life and cheerfulness. Why?

War is bad. War is always bad. 

Tuesday, November 05, 2013


I need two wings. I would open them wide and fly high up the tallest tree on earth. I would sit on one of it's highest branches, and let my legs loose in the air to swing with wind. I would tilted me head back and laid it on the tree trunk and let go of myself. I would become united with a tree, leaves, wind, smell of wet grass, sunshine, rain drops, bird song...Serenity, that's is what I would fly to.

I only need two wings.

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Cocaine and Cockaigne

Look at these two words Cokaigne and Cocaine

Cocaine as you know is a naturally occurring organic alkaloid present in the leaves of the coca plant. The drug makes one feel high, extremely elevates his/her mood and makes one feel suprime. 

Cockaigne or Cockayne (from Wikipedia) is a " medieval trope denoting a mythical land of plenty, an imaginary place of extreme luxury and ease where physical comforts and pleasures are always immediately at hand and where the harshness of medieval peasant life does not exist."

The two words are oddly similar. I think back in time before cocaine prohibition, advertisement could be something like: Cocaine takes you high up into Cockaigne :D

Thursday, October 10, 2013

I Love You Dad

در سايبان تاكى
        آويخته است انگور
مو گيسوان خودرا
        افكنده بر لب تور
درزيرطاق اين رز
         افتاده است عكسى , از دخترم كه ماهى است با هاله اى پر از نور 

خورشيد نيز آنجا ،استاده نام نيما
پيچد چو نام اين دو
در كوه آلپ وآندا
آوا دمد بگوشم آ،آ،آ،آ....

I sent him this photo. He emailed it back with a poem attached. My dad is a writer and he rarely write a poem, not for publishing just for himself. But this one is mine and I publish it in my blog. :D

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Dolce Vita

I love traveling. To me it's like getting a break from my everyday life, from my everyday little stupid stresses that burden my mind. Visiting new country, watching people far far away from my hometown that are living their own everyday life is quite calming for me.

Nima and I just came back from a trip to Italy. I can't say how beautiful, how charming how amazing this country sounded to me. We visited 7 cities in 9 days, quite hectic I should say. We walked 8 to 10 hours everyday to catch up with the beauty of this Roman country.

I still remember how I felt the moment I looked up and saw Duomo in Florence.God what an ambitious project. What wowed me even more is that there are a lot of these grand monuments all over this country.  

Imagine  how would a building which took 300 years to be completed under supervision of 400 art master would look like. Well that would be something like Siena Cathedral. Every square feet of this building is a master piece. We didn't know where to look at, up on the roof or down on the floor. This church owes her beauty to rivalry between Florence and Siena and of course good fortunes of rich merchants who wanted to buy  their way up to the heaven by donating a lot of money to church. 

I loved Tuscany landscape with those pointing pine trees, sunflower fields, hill towns that made me feel like I went back in time.

I loved Amalfi coast. Mountain reaches the Mediterranean sea with colorful houses decorating them was very charming to me. Dolce Vita :)

Rome is a city of art. Everywhere there is a trace of a great artist. If you ask me Romans had obsession with sculptures :). There are numerous bust, granite statue of Greek gods, stories of  bibles, I can go on and on. We visited Borghese Gallery which made me familiar with the phenomenon called Bernini. He was a genies sculptor who made several famous monuments when he was quite young.

I believe every trip that we go changes something in us. Travel has its own subtle way of changing us for a better person. Give us some insight, takes us out of our everyday life. Taste new foods, see people's passion on another continent at different era. I understand better now a difference between original art and a copy.

One last thing before I close this post.  In St Peter's Basilica we saw a beautiful sculpture called Pietà, a sculpture showing the Virgin Mary grieving over the body of Jesus. This is one of Michelangelo's most famous works at the age of only 24. There is something about Mary in this sculpture. Her face is calm, sad and as Nima said like she accepted her son's fate. How much you can show all of these feeling with a  piece of stone.
All photos credit goes to Nima :)

Monday, August 26, 2013

Tonight's Doodling

I see something, or hear a story and then my mind tries to find a conclusion, tries to judge, tries to say I know I know.  My conclusion can be very true, very off, or ok enough. The same as anyone else. I think communication is an art. How much you manage to interact with one another with minimum casualties? This is not easy. If you have no conflict, no argument, etc you are either a master of communication and soft skills or you are leaving in your own cave with minimal interaction.

Friday, August 16, 2013

You Got Me Today Mr H

My boss told me that one of our senior engineers resigned today. I am very close to this person and for the past couple of years I worked with him all the time. The news came like a shock to me. He continued talking about how much this change will not affect me at all and tried to convince me that this is even good for me.

This morning, I woke up, packed my lunch box, water the plants and my herb garden, turned on the alarm, got into my car and drove to work like every other day. Nothing was different to me, another day at work which I really enjoyed so far.

Now my mind analyzing!
What is going to happen to me? how much this change will affect me in general? What should I do? Should I give him a call and ask him why? well I know why, then what?
Should I call him and try to change his mind?

You got me today buddy!
Best of luck with your new job Mr H.

Photo credit: Andy Brandon

Thursday, July 25, 2013

The story of Kooh*

I first read the American version of the story about three Iranian climbers who got lost in Himalayan mountain last week. Then I started googling their name to see what was the latest news. Three young Iranian climbers lost their way after successfully ascending the peak. One of them called home a day before the rescue team call off the search. The leader of the team announce that there is no chance that they could be possibly alive in that latitude without food and water. They were too high for the helicopter reach. Finally it was decided to let their bodies rest in Himalaya.

 Here is part of what Scott an American climber who shared part of his journey to the peak with these guys, wrote: "In this world I have been lucky enough to live in many different places and meet many different people. Some good, some bad and in some rare cases you meet some who evoke a powerful feeling of good inside you, almost like a white light of happiness. These people are very rare and are the ones that make this world a better place to live in for all of us. There are so few of these special people on this earth that if you lose even a few there are tremendous negative effects for the rest of us. Aidin, Pouyu, and Mojtaba are of these few, rare people. The world will miss these young souls; I will miss these young souls. They were my friends and I am sad to see them go. My heart goes out to the families and friends of these individuals..." You can read the full story here.

Those who crave for the highest latitude, reaching to the very top, overcoming a thin air, exhaustion  and experiencing the absolute silent  of the old Kooh*, do it only out of passion. I do wish it becomes safer and we won't here about loss of loved ones.

Koohs has many stories to tell if one day they decide to open up. There are many precious souls resting in their arm.


* Kooh means mountain in persian.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Triathlon, Hiva's version :)

If I may replace biking with driving, then I just did my first triathlon Hiva's version. :)
45 minutes of swimming, followed by 20 minutes of running in a weather felt like 35 degree of Celsius and of course driving :)
I emptied the whole bottle of water over  my head and still felt like burning during a run. Nima and I have started running this summer. Today was our 8th week of running. We wanted to get a momentum that keeps us active till the end of the next cold season. Being active in a hot damp summer and a cold windy winter is impressive. Hats off to all Torontonian who stays active four seasons :):). 

Friday, July 05, 2013

Few lines on my summer life

Few days ago I noticed that our beautiful pine tree is loosing leaves. I got closer and noticed hundreds of sawflies larva chewing happily off the tree. In only few days the top part of the tree left naked, no leaves. I headed to Home Depot , got a bottle of insecticide soap and sprayed all over the tree. 

Also my herb garden is under attack with little green aphids. I didn't dare to spray the herbs. I wil wait to see if it gets worse. The pine tree still has many larvae who survived the first spray. I will try tomorrow and see how many will survive the second attack :)

Today I had my first swiming class session. The class was supposed to include three students but apparently I am the only one who registered. :):)

I took swiming class about 10 years ago with my cousin. We spent two terms and significantly progressed. It was so much fun for the two of us learning to swim. Our instructor was a young enthusiastic girl and she did a great job teaching us. I remember one time, Behi and I didn't practice and were behind everybody else , she sent us to the corner and said ' you two grab the pool edge and only practice foot kicks for 15 minutes. ' Behi and I were laughing, feeling like a child that teacher gave them extra homework. :)

Today in the pool I was the only adult student. The rest of the pool was filled with 4 or 5 years old kids whose parents were filming them and encouraging them to learn. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Radish Invasion :)

The herbs and vegetables that I planted three weeks ago, now mostly showed up. The big part of my little garden is occupied by Radish!!!!  ( yes Radius you were right).  
I thought they are basil, then I thought they are fungreek (Shambalileh) and finally after three weeks I noticed red roots and new radish like leaves. :) I do love radish but now the pro blem is with this density my chances of harvesting any red tubes are slim. 

At the middle I have thin long chives that some of them still have their seed hanged from their tip. I also have delicate dills here and there mixed with parsley and I guess mint or basil (?). There is one more type that I am not so sure that might finally be the funegreek or persian watercress. I don't know how much longer I should wait to be able to harvest anything but for now just watching them grow is satisfying. 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Deadly Chamber Story

Today we had a safety training and our instructor told us about a sad event that happens in British Colombia in 2006. The story was about a simple water sampling from a chamber at the rock waste storage of a mine in BC. There was a technician who took water from the chamber everyday without any problems. Everyday he simply climbed down a short ladder, get into the water stream, took a sample and that was it. But one day he went to the chamber and never came back. His wife reported him missing two days after and the company send another technician to check up on him. The second technician went into the chamber saw his co-worker's body floating in water. He thought he was drawn. Quickly he called 911 and then climbed down the ladder to pull out his body. He never came up again. Two rescuers came to the site and saw two bodies; they called for help. Then a first rescuer rushed down the ladder and collapsed, his colleague saw her falling down the ladder and rushed to help her, he never came back either. Full investigation was conducted on what happened in that chamber of death. The answer was, lack of oxygen. The combination of bad air flow, temperature and gas coming out of the rock waste made that chamber a death zone for that time that poor fellows visited the chamber. Measurement showed 2% Oxygen and 7% Carbon Dioxide :0. 

 For the same of comparison consider this, the air we are breathing contains 21% Oxygen and 0.04% Carbon Dioxide. Those poor fellows were suffocated in less than a minute. The sad part was that after the investigation the measurements showed normal level of O2 and CO2 at the top of the chamber. Which means there was no warning for them when they entered the chamber. They were suffocated the moment they reached at the middle of the ladder. Of course new safety measurements were established and enforced but it took 4 lives to realize simple task of water sampling from not even so deep chamber could be fatal.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Magic Beans

I had several bags of herbs seed which was hiding in our cold room for two years.  I wanted to plant some herbs like basil, mint, parsley, etc. Finally I made a move, went to Home Depot and bout a nice size Cedar box, couple of organic soil suitable for vegetable gardening and a layer of weed stopper fabric. 
I thought what are the chances that these seeds grow after waiting to be planted for almost two years. I pour the seeds generously inside the soil thinking that not many of them will show up. But my o my I was wrong. Only a week after planting these precious seeds look at them. I plant different kind and I have no clue what is what. The boxes had no label and now I am waiting to be surprised. Who knows maybe one of them turnout to be a magic bean. 

I remember I had dark green circular seeds which I placed them at the right side of the box and now you can see the results. At this stage I can't tell what are they :D. I have to ask an expert 
There are two other types of herbs coming out of the soil. They are not very visible in this photo you need to look hard. These little seeds putting a soil a side and reaching for a sun.  I love this.  I feel I have little babies to take care of. 

Sunday, May 05, 2013

Fidgeting in Bed

It's Sunday night again and I won't be able to sleep at 10: pm. During weekdays I get use to this routine of 10 to 6 but it only takes me two nights to come out of this habit.

Weather was gorgoues this weekend here in Toronto and you can imagine that everybody was out. There is a beautiful park in Toronto called High Park. The main feature of the park is cherry trees that Japan gave them to the park as a gift. This weekend the trees were in full blossoms.
Two sides of a curvy narrow roads covered with branches bended toward the road and covered with white magnificent cherry blossoms. Of course there were so many people all jumping up and down the trees, you dont want to miss the scenery which only comes few days a year.

We were walking down the road from top of the hill toward the pond with blossoms everywhere. The whole thing was surreal. We took few pictures with minimum 10 strangers in each photo with us smiling to their own camera :)

Anyway winter is gone and Torontonian are finally getting some sun. I try to go to sleep now :)

Thursday, May 02, 2013

The Ring Bearer

Here in Ontario as an engineer you are eligible to receive an Iron ring. You must wear the ring on your little finger of your working hand depends on if you are left or right handed. Today I received my ring and Nima as a ring bearer present it to me. The ceremony was private and I am not supposed to talk about it. No photography or recording were allowed. It was not anything special but still I am going to respect their privacy.

The ceremony was in downtown Toronto. By the time it finished the traffic was at its peak so we decided to stay in a cafe and enjoy the evening. I love it that downtown is so alive. Before the ceremony I arrived in down town at 3:00 pm, there were many people my age sitting on a patio. I was thinking to myself " don't you guys have a job? Are you all winner of a lottery or on social welfare? " how come I can't be sitting in a patio in downtown at 3:00pm?

Anyway we sited in Hard Rock Cafe with a view to Dundas Square which is the heart of downtown. Our waiter found us a perfect table right next to the window close to the patio door. The music was perfect, Freddie Mercury and David Bowie were singing together both very Young. Only a glass of Sangria made me tipsy with a empty stomach. After dinner we decided to walk in Eton Center one of Toronto's giant mall thus the tipsy phase cool off a little bit.

Sun, people, beautiful spring colors on dresses behind boutique's window, music, sangria and a ring of iron to constantly remind me of my responsibility all made it a perfect Thursday.

Monday, April 29, 2013

My Inner Jane Austin

What's with girls and Jane Austin's male characters. A proud handsome powerful gentleman who fells passionately in love with a girl but he is never needy. Who does not want that package :)

I remember the first time I became familiar with Mr Darcy phenomena, it was 10 years ago. Roja and I stayed at Behi's place for a weekend while Mr behi was out of town. It was midnight when my cousin put Pride and Prejudice BBC tv series into the player. I could barely keep my eyes open till I saw Mr Darcy and next thing you know it was 5 AM :D. At the end of the movie Behi said " you know girls Darcy's eyes are identical to Mr Behi's" :D:D:D

I recently host a Jane Austin marathon. With few of my female friends we watched 5 hours of Pride and Prejudice straight. Like a harmonic orchestra we sighed every time Darcy showed up ( I am giggling right now).

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Another Life Lesson

I had an interesting evening today. I talked, explained and listened to my friend just to realize how simple two minds can see things from totally different angle. It is not always easy to put yourself in someone else shoes and be fair. It is fairly easy for me to accept my mistakes and apologiz. Today I felt bad when I was reminded of my mistakes, I felt bad when I realized how much I hurt someone. At the same time I was frustrated when my explanation was not quite being heard. This is not an easy talk when two people trying to open up about their conflicts. You need an open mind, you need fairness. But I take a big lesson... When a conflict with a friend happens and you can't talk about it with him/her keep it to yourself. Try not to involve others. Try not to share your story with others. Because as time passes this only makes it more complicated. People may even add more to your story or say it to the wrong people at the wrong time and deepen the wound. Give it time, which will bring wisdom and perspective.

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

If you don't know Jérôme Poncet...

I have started watching Life, BBC TV series recently. I treated myself last year when I received an amazon gift card with buying several nature and wild life theme TV series by BBC such as Life, Madagascar, Nature most amazing events and so on. We were watching the first DVD tonight when I heard about this amazing guy called Jerome Poncet. I googled his name and here is his bio. What is in his gene that mine lacking!!! Seriously? "Having been sailing around the Antarctic area for the last 40 years, Jérôme Poncet is certainly the person who best knows the Antarctic Peninsula and all the islands of the Scotia Sea. A Pioneer in the Southern Latitudes: Known first for a 5 year round-the-world trip he accomplished in his early 20s along with his friend Gérard Janichon (from 1969 to 73) on board "Damien", a 10,10m cold moulded wooden sloop they had built. First small yacht to reach Spitzbergen (1969), to reach the Antarctic Peninsula all sound and to sail below the Antarctic Circle (1973) - Received the "Médaille de l'Ordre du Mérite" in 1973 (the French equivalent of a Knighthood) on their return to France. In 1974-75 Jérôme built "Damien II", a 15,20m-steel yacht suited to the type of navigation he had most enjoyed: Antarctica and the high southern latitudes. He has lived on "Damien II" with his wife and increasing family (his first son was born aboard) for the 12 following years, from Europe to Brazil, Polynesia, Tasmania, New Zealand, and to Antarctica and the Sub-Antarctic islands. In the meantime, he participated in several Races such as the Whitbread in 1973-74 (Safety), Saint Malo-Cape Town in 1975 (Skipper), Rio-Southampton in 1975-76 (Skipper), Whitbread in 1981 (Safety) First yacht to winter in Antarctica in 1978-79 and still the only yacht to have wintered so far South (67°45'S). Since then, about 30 "Damien II" have been built around the world. In 1987 he settled down with his family on a little sheep farm on an isolated island in the Falklands, a place close to his favorite areas of sailing, to nature and to a lifestyle he and his wife wished to have with their children."

Thursday, February 21, 2013


I typed random alphabet in YouTube search window. I do this when I like to find new talents around the world that I don't even know their name. This is what I got for SKN:

"Skinny Love"
I told you to be patient 
I told you to be fine
I told you to be balanced 
I told you to be kind

Here is Birdy version

And this the original version


Monday, February 18, 2013

Cuba, Havana, Beaches, Cigar, Cars and Che Guevara

We visited Havana recently and the city wowed me. The dramatic history of the city thanks to Spanish and British of older time and American and Russian influence is very interesting. Old Havana looks like a Spanish city attracted many intellects to herself such as Ernest Hemingway. There is bar with his name that apparently he used to visit very often. Some of these charming building are falling apart but who can blame Cuban for not having renovation on top of their list.

Our tour guid was a middle age man, fair skin and deep green eyes who spoke fluent English. He talked about Cuba with a painful pride. He loved his country was tired of being trapped in time. He didn't want to see his country another province of USA but in his own way he admitted that comonism is not working. He said: "when humans are not motivated they won't work hard.You cannot pay the same money to the one who work hard and the one who stands and do nothing.  But change is coming" he said with a hopefull tune. " when you come back again you will see how fast Cuba will change". He said with please-come-back-again-soon impression in his voice.

I felt like unfortunate situations trapped these people in time. After thirty something years still trying to show the revolution spirit is in the air is surreal. Every where there are photos of  Che Guevara ; every where I mean; on the wall, postal cards, and even mugs. I really doubt that a man like him would ever imagined that one day he will be a major icon in Cuba to attract tourists who like to buy his imprinted mug, magnets, plates, ceramics, etc.

You will see different races of people white and colored in the city which to me is another interesting feature for Havana. Old American Cars, fresh Cohiba cigars, the exact Replica of the White House, the hotel that biggest Mafia meeting took place in, Bay of Pig, the square that young Castro had his longest speech of 9 hours... are all part of what form this city or country I should say.

 So far I visited part of Mexico, Dominican Republic and now Havana. My first impression from people I encountered, including the hotel staff, stranger in street, the bus driver, tour guide , etc is that  Cuban are more serious, mostly educated ( education is free in  Cuba) and are into politics ( considering how much the government is involved in people everyday life I am not surprised).

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Thoughts for Tonight

I watched Lincoln movie tonight. I loved it. More than anything I love the fact the movie tried to show him as a man and his vision he had rather than a series of events happened at his time.
The directors didn't dedicate the movie to North and South war but tried to show what kind of man Abraham Lincoln was as a dad as a husband and as a person.

I liked it that his terror isn't shown in the movie it just shows his frail body in bed after the shooting drawn in his own blood.

I am surprised and amused that:

1- Lincoln was a Republican. Honestly I thought democrats were pioneers in banishing the slavery. I a shocked that 150 years ago they were so much resisting the idea. I always considered liberals and democrats as those who are open to change, are more flexible,are kind of more open minded in general. And on the other hand Republicans and Conservative look narrow minded, less flexible and backward to me. At least this is what they project by their acts. It's quit interesting how far each party came in 150 years. I think I shouldn't mix Abraham Lincoln with today's Republicans or Democrats.

2- How much USA changed from his time. Those people that were disgusted by the idea of having colored people equal before the law now have a black President who is a democrat. The very party who was so much against considering his ancestors equal before the law.

3-How much Gun technology changed but the laws haven't yet.


Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Live As Much As Noah

My eyes are closed, I am listening, only listening.
Aren't we blessed with arts. Who made this, how?!!
how many hours, how many days, I need to listen to all my favorite songs
How many lives I shall live
This isn't fair. I don't have enough time to finish listening, watching, reading what I want to.
How many lives I shall live to read your thoughts, to feel your pain, or to hear your laugh, through your songs or within your words.

"We shall live another life after this one, since we spend this one wondering"
From Saadi Shirazi
ای گنج نوشدارو
بر خستگان گذر کن
مرهم بدست و
ما را مجروح میگذاری
عمری دگر بباید
بعد از وفات ما را
کاین عمر طی نمودیم
اندر امیدواری