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IRAN: Mr Behi/Steve

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Take the true image yourself

Yesterday, I was in in a subway train to go home from work. I was listening to a podcast while seated when a group of Swiss tourists entered the train and attracted attention. The train was so crowded but no long time passed before one good man gave his place to one of those tourists who was a lady.

As soon as she seated, one of the passenger who had a good command of English started chatting with her. I have realised lately from listening to the same kind of conversations between Iranians and foreign tourists that one of the very first question people ask is "How different is Iran from what you used to think when you were outside?" and always the answer is "Wow! absolutely different!". I think that makes sense and shows a very irritating sense of dissatisfaction that Iranians have about the image of the country presented in media and it is always a happy moment when they talk to visitors and make sure that Iran is better that what they used to see on TV.

This lady continued that with her companions, they had already visited Shiraz, Isfahan and even climbed mount Damavand (easy to expect from a Swiss). She was surprised by the friendliness of people, openness of culture and mentioned that she had thought of Iranian society to be very fundamentalist. Then she proudly showed her camera. "I have taken so many pictures from life in Iran and will show this to people of my country", she said while mentioning her family had called her crazy when she decided to travel to Iran.

The moral of this story for me was that despite all these technological advances in the media, the true image of other people or places is still not easy to get. Perhaps, this is one of the motivating factors of blogging.

This was my view of the world@ 18:48, April 29, 2006. My eyes got shifted from the accelerating lines around the subway train going into the tunnel, to the steady efforts of the steps of the escalator pushing me up. My ears again took refuge from the subway station crowed to the voice of some other people far far away in another podcast.

posted by MrBehi @ 3:55 PM    2 comments

Friday, April 07, 2006

Ground control to Mr Behi

Well I hope your OK Mr Behi - haven't heard from you for a while.

So it's Friday night and I'm at home. Rachel has gone out with her work friends for a meal and drinks as one of them has to leave work as she has just found out she has a brain tumour. Rachel is really worried about her.

So me and J (my step son) are chilling out with a Dominoes (Aye Carumba Fajita no less) pizza and Batman Begins on Sky Movies. To be honest I'm not really watching as:
A. I'm writing this.
B. It looks pretty average - I'm sure J will assure me otherwise but then we watched the Fantastic Four a couple of weeks ago and other than Jessica Alba is was pretty much less than Fantastic.

So work has sucked this week. One of my team has taken a couple of weeks off, he has to go see his family in Venezuala. One family member is very unwell and he thinks this may be his last chance to see them. He seemed pretty worried about it.
It couldn't have come at a worse time for the rest of the team - we are absolutely over loaded with work at the moment and if I'm honest I'm struggling to cope.
The problem I'm having is we are pushing the limits of the technology we have. We are being asked to make predictions to very close limits and we don't really have the capability to make them. Engineering is not an exact science. It relies heavily on assumptions and generalizations which are either untrue or have a huge amount of variation.
It's also pretty complicated. I was in a meeting today and I'm sure the rest of the people hadn't got a clue what I was on about. It's a very male dominated environment and there are a lot of ego's - so you tend to find rather than saying, 'I haven't got a clue what you're on about, could you please exlain it to me' people just nod and change the subject to something they understand, usually so setting themselves up so they can spiel off a few anecdotes in front of some managers.
I'm feeling pretty cynical today - can you tell?

I was talking to my brother about all of this sort of stuff a couple of weeks ago. He's a really intelligent person. I was trying to explain how I feel at the moment. When I was younger I really thought that I was going to make a difference to something and as I get older I realise I'm falling into the rat race.
Is that a bad thing? Only if I carry on taking all this crap at work and have a heart attack before I'm thirty.

Hey, did you know that this site is recommended in the 'blogs of note' thing on the front of ! That's pretty cool really as I thought I was probably just talking a loads of rubbish. Must be Mr Behi's doing! Good effort though.

I love all the comments - they're really brillinat so thanks everyone.

I'm going to sign off with another top five because everyone seems to love them! Opinions opinions opinions....

Top five cars:

1. Delorean DMC12
2. Lamborghin Miura
3. Jaguar E-Type
4. Mini (original one not the new BMW one)
5. Ferrari 250 GT California

I know the Delorean was essentially a crap car but I can't stop loving it. My first exposure wat Back to the future, but I love the whole John Delorean story. FOr those who don't know about it, he was basically areal high flyer at GM in the 70's and tried to go solo with the DMC12. The plan was flawed as he wanted to make the car rear engined. Anyone who knows about the Porsche 911 will explain how Porsche have spent 40 years trying getting the chassis to handle the poor weight balance of sticking the engine in the boot. He ripped off the British government who subsidised the factory in Northern Ireland, it all went belly up and then to top it off he was caught doing some dodgy deals, I think to do with drugs. They should make a film of it.
Of the other choices, the Miura is just the best looking car ever made. Th E-Type and Mini hark back to the glory days of British engineering and the Ferrari is in Ferris Buellers Day Off and from age 9 to around age 25 I basically wanted to be Ferris Bueller. Unfortunately I ended up being Cameron. Watch the film.

If you're not interested in cars sorry for boring the pants off of you.


posted by Steve @ 9:53 PM    14 comments

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Sunday Rainbow

The weekend is coming to its end and I'm gearing up for another hectic week at work.
Today we saw a great rainbow - I haven't seen a rainbow for a long time. This one was crystal clear and you could see both ends of it. It was incredible.

I've just finished watching McLibel, which is a documentary film about two protestors who took on McDonald's after they (McD's) issued a writ against them regarding the content of a flyer they were distributing. It was a really good film and shows how that people can take on the big multi-nationals, but it takes some doing.
Check out:

I had a listen to your Podcast Mr Behi, it's cool to hear your voice and a some Iranian music. Great news on winning the iPod - is it the big one? I have a 4Gb mini (which I've yet to fill up).
What is interesting about your new year and the your cleanup is that we also cleanup in spring time (it's known as spring cleaning), there must some cultural tie in from
our ancestors?!? Also I was going to comment that our new year (31 Dec - 1 Jan) also coincides with the earth completing an orbit of the sun - but some other smart arse has put it on the comments! I guess that new year could start and finish any day of the year really - what dictates you start/end point? Do you use a different calendar system?
I did some spring cleaning yesterday. Trying to sort out the garden, painting fences and stuff like that.
This morning I got up at 5am and watched the Australian Grand Prix. It was a great race. I was a little bit disappointed in Jenson Button (who is the top British driver at the moment), he qualified his car in pole position (1st) but was fairly unimpressive in the race. He would have finished sixth but his engine blew up spectacularly on the last corner before the finish line.

Today was the 152nd boat race. This is a 8 man rowing boat race which takes place on the river Thames in London between teams from Oxford and Cambridge University. The course is around four miles long and they normally row it in about 16 minutes which is pretty incredible. Today it took a lot longer as the river was very rough and choppy. The Cambridge team were favorites and were deemed to be a smoother team, the Oxford team were classed as more powerful. In the end the Oxford won by a decent margin, perhaps helped by the choppy conditions.

Anyway I'm going to sign off with my top five films (as the top five tunes got me loads of good comments and I'm getting sick of the crap comments which just link to peoples porn finder sites...)

1. The Usual Suspects
2. The Shawsank Redemption
3. Goodfellas
4. Back to the Future
5. Star Wars

Nothing too high brow in there eh?!? I really wanted to put Sleepless in Seattle and It's a wonderful life, but I'm in a macho mood tonight!

posted by Steve @ 8:16 PM    14 comments

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