Namo amitabha Buddhaya, y'all.
This here's a religious establishment. Act respectable.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Weird Wednesday: How I Became A Dallas Ambassador

There's a very good reason I never went into politics.  It's all because of this family curse.  See, generations ago, in Iceland, at a family reunion, one of my ancestors pissed off a local witch by refusing to coordinate the receiving crew for a rousing game of dodgerock.  She laid a curse on him and all of his descendants down to the seventh generation that went something like "May You Always Be In Charge."

Which is what happens.  It's very dangerous for me or other family members to join an organization because the odd are within six months we'll be President, or some other high ranking official.  Trust me on this. In one amazing year I watched my dad become President of the band parents association, the local flyers club, Kiwanis and the Society of Left-Handed Nordic Engineers Who Drive Tiny Trains.  (Okay, I made up that last one.  My dad isn't really left-handed.)  You'd think, being a woman, that I'd get out of this particular thing but guess what? Women ran the country back in 900s Iceland while the men took off and, you know, raided coastlines.

So I bought a condo; I got elected to the condo board as vice-pres. (I only escaped presidency because Joan threatened to divorce me.)  I joined OA; six months later I was running the Web site.  (As Seth Bullock of Deadwood: "I only said I'd be the building inspector because I didn't want to be the god-damned sheriff!") I got picked for jury duty; within minutes I was the foreperson.  (My name will be on that crummy verdict till the end of recorded time.)  I joined the church choir; suddenly I was in charge of altar flowers, chapel candles and something involving Sunday school.  Oh, wait, that's the other curse. The big-woman-with-large-breasts-and-a-clipboard syndrome that just sort of happens around churches. Beware, all ye well-endowed wenches who seek God. Whatever you do, do not let them hand you a clipboard. Not even if all they say is "Here, hold this for a sec."

Well. I've recently been placed in charge of something else.  This one is different, so pardon me if you have trouble taking me seriously.  I have been designated as a local ambassador for World Hijab Day on February 1, 2014.

What is World Hijab Day, you may ask, which is how I know you didn't click on the link. Geez, people, do you think I write HTML code to pass the time?  World Hijab Day is a day for non-hijabi Muslims and non-Muslim women who have never worn a hijab to try it out for one day.  See what it's like from the inside, as it were.  Why? Well, because especially in the Western world, there are all kinds of misconceptions about why women wear hijabs. A lot of people think that you only wear a hijab if your husband or father makes you. False: Most Muslim women decide for themselves how much to cover, often after talking about it with their husbands and sometimes religious leaders. You might also think a hijab is hot, uncomfortable and a symptom of women's oppression. False again. There are hijabs made of cotton and silk which are very cool and comfortable.  I'll admit I haven't worn a hijab outside for two hours in the middle of the Texas summer, but for the most part I don't even notice it's there. (And I'm never outside for that long in the middle of the Texas summer, but if I was, I'd point out that a hijab is pretty good sun protection.) And as for the women's oppression part, I don't believe that any woman should be telling any other woman what to wear. So if you're doing that, stop it.  Thank you.

So World Hijab Day is about promoting awareness, greater understanding and a peaceful world.  Which is pretty cool.  And--Oh. You don't even know what a hijab is.  (Uh, you could click on the link.)  Here is a pic of me wearing a hijab.  This is The Lavender One; I also picked up The Magenta One and The Grey One. (It was a good deal. Three for one.)  The Magenta One is my favorite but there are religious reasons not to wear a red or red-similar color in much of the Muslim world, so anyway, The Lavender One. I think I look kinda cute, or as cute as anybody looks in a selfie, anyway.  Joan looks very cute in hers, though it does have the unfortunate tendency to age-reverse her to about twelve.  (No pic of Joan. Sorry.  That is not happening in this lifetime.)

I'm waiting for somebody to point out that I'm not even Muslim.  (Thank you, guy in Ohio, for pointing that out.) True fact. I am, however, besotted with the Muslim world.  Pretty sure I've talked about this before, so I'll just say that in my opinion, Islamic women really know how to dress.  It's smart, it's practical and even if people are staring at you, you know they can't really see anything. And as someone who gets stared at -- a lot -- that's pretty nice. Someday I'll get up the nerve to post a pic of me in my Muslim swimsuit, which I bought for sun reasons.  If you want to imagine it, though, think of Jeannie's bottle draped in aqua with a hood.  Yeah, it really is that funny.  You can stop imagining it now.  Thank you.

So anyway, I found out about World Hijab Day and went to the web site and asked a question and suddenly I was the Dallas ambassador. This is just how these things happen to me. See above, re, family curse. I am now in charge of Coordinating An Event.  The first and only thing I thought of was inviting everyone to lunch at Afrah. Afrah was cool with it, so, making some phone calls and will pass around some flyers.  Saturday, February 1st at 1:00, Afrah Restaurant, 314 East Main Street, Richardson, Texas. Hopefully it will be warm and we can sit outside.

Somewhere, a 900-year-old Icelandic witch is laughing at me.  I just know it.

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