Monday, September 28, 2009

Off on Jewish holidays!

I go to a school where we get Jewish holidays off. I also have to really hope that Eid falls on a weekend so that I can actually go to Eid prayer without worrying about taking a makeup exam for the one I missed. While EVERYONE and their mama gets to go home for Christmas, I have to limit how much time I spend talking on the phone with distant family and friends wishing them a happy Eid. Don't even get me started about the month of Ramadan and school, that's like an entire blog all together. I would take it to capitol hill and make a case out of it, or maybe just the assistant dean's office, but I don't have energy to battle like I used to. I'll leave the activism for the next generation.

Nevertheless, I'm quite grateful to have today off to do some catching up. Happy Yom Kippur for those that celebrate!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Are guys scared of girls in hijab?

The other night I was chilling with a friend at an arabic cafe when we bumped into one of the arab med students on campus. He invited himself to join us when right behind him walks in this White girl sporting some booty shorts. She walks up to a shelf displaying shisha accessories for sale and within about 10 seconds of her arrival the owner of the place and another employee happily rushed to her service....and I mean rushed!

"Did you guys just see that?" he said..."um yea!" we both replied. "I didn't get service like that...I actually had to go find him. Man that is discrimination against guys!" and he went on complaining about how unfair it is that it's socially acceptable for men to get discriminated against in society.

I had to chime in and let him know that it's not exactly a guy/girl thing; as a girl who proudly wears hijab I don't get such preferential treatment either. I pointed out that when I go to such places my nonhijabi friends usually get special attention in a way that I don't. I understand that one of the purposes of hijab is to give off a certain image and ward off a certain type of attention....but sometimes the differential treatment crosses into the unfair zone.

As an example I pointed out that I used to frequent this place last year with a Persian, nonhijabi and somewhat of a risque-dresser, friend. Sometimes she would get there before me and thus would be by herself until I showed up. On those instances it wasn't uncommon that by the time I came she would have been served with some complimentary drink, desert, and once even a free hookah. I would either end up mooching on whatever free stuff she got or I would end up ordering something I wanted and paying for it! Not that I would want any greasy server checking me out out of the corner of his eye and winking at me, but it wasn't cool that we both came together, we're both girls, and I would pay but she wouldn't. If I got there first and was waiting for her all alone I didn't get anything more than a cordial greeting.

My nonhijabi friend completely agreed with me and says she notices stuff like that all the time when she goes out with a group of girls mixed with hijabis and nonhijabis alike. Although they all came together and are sitting together, and are socializing in the same manner they're still looked at differently and get different attention. Of course there's a certain type of attention we're thankful to not have, but when our waiter is attentive to every word the girl next to me is saying but completely ignores me like I'm not even there......that's just rude! The irony is this differential treatment is much more obvious in arab settings and it's something that Arab guys practice more than Americans....that's my personal experience!

My nonhijabi friend's theory is that she thinks it's because a lot of guys are just intimidated and maybe even scared by girls that wear hijab. For some guys they look at a girl in hijab and see little else. We might as well be a walking hijab and thus they put up an instant barrier. I'd hate to think that anyone was so judgemental of me, but it doesn't mean there's no truth in it.

Our med student friend was listening like this was the first time he was hearing such observations and then added that it's totally not like that across the board. For him he was always more attracted to girls that wear hijab as opposed to those that don't (awwww how cute)...maybe it's just the way he was raised he concluded.

So what are YOUR thoughts about this trend? I definitely don't want this to turn into a discussion regarding the purpose and/or validity of hijab, that's not the point here. I'm talking specifically about our observation that nonhijabi girls get excluded from preferential treatment that their friends get in social settings-and it's usually by our own kind.

Coincidentally, I didn't end up paying for my coffee or hookah that night :)

Monday, September 21, 2009

Eid: A Photo Post!

Can you believe I made it to salat al Eid EARLY? I love to hear the takbeer on Eid morning!

Downtown for some crepes!

Super fresh!

Ed Hardy can do more than just tatto-inspired Tshirts

Who says we're too old for Eid presents?

We happily discovered we had Muslim neighbors who bake things on Eid!

The Saints totally whooped the Eagles. Ya3ni what more can I ask for today?

At some point I had to face reality and remember that I have two semi-killer exams the next day. Needless to say there wasn't very much sleeping that night.

Kul Sana winto salmeen!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Eid mubarak!
I'm so happy today and I'm filled with so much love and gratitude on our holy holiday. I truly hope that everyone else is having a happy eid.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Your blogging/blog reading hiatus

So what makes you go into a blogging hiatus? Is it because you just don't have anything to talk about or did you come to a point where blogging is no longer enjoyable? Maybe for some the blog scene became a place filled with question marks they'd rather not be associated with. I went through a phase like that.

I've kind of sort of been neglecting my blog. For me it's not that I don't have anything to share-it's quite the opposite. I don't mean to sound so cliche and typical but I'm incredibly busy. I haven't watched TV in like a month. I haven't even watched the Saints play their first game and that's the truth! Free time is limited so I prioritize doing things with friends when I have it. Speaking of which I feel like my social life is withering away as a result of the new move and being in a different class this year. It really sucks and even makes me feel sad sometimes but that's a different post all together.

I've definitely been on hiatus from blog reading. I did some catching up this morning but I just feel too guilty spending time reading blogs. In fact I'm feeling guilty right now that I'm not studying at this moment and haven't even started studying today! My friend whose in all my same classes left a dinner early last night to go back to the library and study till closing time. What did I do? I chilled for another hour catching up with old faces talking about nothing, went to starbucks, went to the masjid, hung out after, then I slept in and was very close to being late for clinic this morning, and now I'm behind on life!

So yea I don't read blogs anymore. After this round of exams is over I might go back to routinely checking the reader for those high quality blog posts.

So that's my blogging hiatus explained blog post.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The view from my window

It was a rain day!

I moved into my apartment/condo early last week and I finally have a sense of housing security. It wasn't yet ready but as soon as we got the keys me and my friend masriyya (now my roomie) moved in. Work was still being done on the place but we didn't care. We couldn't spend another day being homeless especially during Ramadan and so close to exam time. So we moved in initially with nothing but her old mattress and our bags of junk.

Free valet service, 24 hour concierge, balcony with a view, our own bathrooms, walking distance to restaurants and shops, biking distance to the beach, and did I mention we have FREE VALET SERVICE.....I'm totally loving it!

The biggest downside is that we've moved farther away from our favorite masjid to go to in Ramadan. We've also moved away from the usual hangout spots to the point where I've been feeling a little out of the loop with my friends since the move.

We're so excited to start having people over and we're even making plans to host this year's Eid dinner. Hopefully we'll have some living room furniture by then.