WELCOME TO MY NEW BLOG!
I am glad to be back blogging on a daily basis! I missed the spontaneity of getting up, making a cup of strong black coffee, turning on the PC and…just taking it from there and blogging whatever comes to mind.
It seems now as though all of my summer had been spent back in time revisiting my university lifestyle…learning new computer programs. and all sorts of related things that might be of use to me in my work blogging (photoshop, powerpoint, audio/video resources, etc , etc)
I have to admit that I learned a lot, but it was SLOW going! At times painful. But always wonderful. The internet world has changed so much since I first got into blogging (2009) and there is a lot of new stuff out there …it is challenging just to pick what I need.
Yes, I suppose that that is the right word: challenging. I realized several months ago that it is time to make some changes to my blog and push the envelope forward. The next month or so will be important as I implement some of the more modern technologies and try to incorporate them into a blog that is , to a large extent, chess-oriented. Today I begin. Thumbs up, everybody!
Coffee, Iran, the Hijab and the FUSS
I don’t really have an opinion one way or the other about the recent controversy started by some female chess players in the USA who don’t like the idea of being forced to wear a hijab (even if they are going to be guests in Iran) so much that they now want to start a world wide boycott of Iran…My WIFE, on the otherhand, is fully supportive of the boycott. What do I know, anyway?! Being a man , I suppose, makes it easier to be neutral.
Iran coffee shop; 2001. Tehran. Photo by abbas.
BUT I do have an opinion about all the fuss being generated. I think the western chess-world is shooting itself in the foot (again!) by mixing politics with culture, especially cultural differences. It is not like the Muslims who emigrate to Europe or the USA and then refuse to integrate…this time we are talking about people who will be invited by the Iranian government to play in a tournament and being asked to show respect to the Iranian culture.
Regardless what you may or may not think of Iranian politics, there are no sides when it comes to women’s fashion in Iran. This is culture. True, only a few countries make wearing a hijab obligatory, and Iran is one of them, but this is not the issue here.
Boycotting a tournament for a principle is fine by me, as long as the principle in question is not an excuse to bring out all of the latent hatred towards Iran. The hijab is just a piece of clothing. If you want to make it more, then–apart from the initial sensationalism in the media–the chess world is going to be the loser long after everyone forgets what the fuss was all about.
(Below is a pdf embedded document of an Impress file that I put together on related items. Just click the upper right object to enter, you can scroll with a mouse. All the links are active. ENJOY!)