March 8, 2014 § Leave a comment
“The Fool” Խենթը is written by Raffi, (Hakob Melik Hakobian). Raffi being his pseudonym. I have read the translation by Jane S. Wingate, which has been brilliantly done to replicate and translate the exact words Raffi had chosen to write his book. This is not one of those books which you find regularly in the store which contain a happy ending, where everyone is content at the end and has everything they wish for. “The Fool” is different in that matter. It gives the reader a much more realistic view by telling the story slowly, developing the characters slowly without much of an anti-climax. It gives a near, non-fictional view of what life in Armenia was like for the people in 1877-78 prior to the war. It gives the reader an insight what the common people had to go through, the simple workers, his family and children, the soldiers, and how they all were affected by the forthcoming of the Russo-Turkish war and the closing in by the bordering countries and betrayal of their own people. Focussing on one particular good-hearted landlord and his family and their friends, to tell how they once lived in prosperity and happiness and how it was all stripped away from them slowly, bit by bit and leads to their tragic ending.
The story is not told in chronological manner. It begins with the main character, Vartan, at the start of the fierce war after leaving Old Khacho, fighting the Turks and Kurds whilst being the minority being attacked from all sides. The book starts with the proverb: “The fool rolled a stone into a pit; a hundred wise men came to the rescue but they could not draw it out. While the prudent man is considering the fool is across the river and away.”. Already a linkage to the title has been made. The reader already establishes some understanding on young Vartan’s complicated, character who is the only one out there who does not shed a tear as the men, women and children are slaughtered and their homes are burned to ashes. He looks upon the events with outrage, witnessing how the Armenians bear no resistance at all to their attackers, instead, falling to their knees and begging for mercy. One of the observants calls him ‘heartless’, but Vartan does not reply; “This people do not know how to die with honour.”. He mutters, indicating his indignation against the behaviour of his people and his disapproval of it.
This is an excellent book for someone wanting to have basic idea and understanding on the painfully hard struggle and historical context, pre Armenian Genocide, and experience what they saw and encounters through their eyes and their emotions and how strong they remained and the developing love between two innocent souls, destined to never be together. That along with the countless number of witty comments, anecdotes and proverbs which add humour to this deeply saddening novel.
March 7, 2014 § Leave a comment
It is the year 2050 and you are at the supermarket. People with digitally created shopping carts which are formed by laser lights are whizzing around using their jet packs and….okay, no. I do not foresee the future that way. Let’s start again. You are at the super market, everyone including you is on foot, there are no jet packs, just regular shopping carts which are being pushed around endlessly, bumping into people without apologizing and having to jump over them using your best athletic and martial art skills when, conveniently, two of them are blocking the isle. You get to the vegetable and fruits section. There are the apples you need to buy. Six of them packed tightly in a box, lined with see through foil. All perfectly rounded, each one identical to the rest in the same package, in fact, all the packages. Identical in colour, shape and size. You pick what you need and walk to the register which again have a long queue where you need to wait so damned long. It is 2050 for God’s sake, surely they would have fixed the problem by now.
But obnoxious customers and long waiting lines are not the issue here (yet). I am sure most of you know or have heard of GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organism), Dictionary.com states it as:
an organism or microorganism whose genetic material has been altered by means of genetic engineering.
Now, the biggest company producing GMO’s is the infamous, Monsanto. Their main profits come from providing strong (lethal) pesticides, but in order to do so and not damaged the crops, they genetically engineered more resistant seeds which could cope with these toxic amounts. I decided to visit their website on my mobile and the first lines which popped up were: “Improving agriculture” and “Improving lives” and underneath that, “Our innovations help farmers produce more food using fewer natural resources.”. The whole thing is a paradox, irony and Orwellian in one.They openly admit, propagandise themselves, saying to use fewer natural resources. Should a sentence like that not worry you? And to your previous slogans, Monsanto, you destruct the lives of consumers who consume your poison and that of the farmers. To give an example, a while back, GMO seeds were introduced in India. Of course it seemed like a wonderful idea, they would be able to plant the seeds and grow healthy plants each and every single year with out a pest break out or any damage to the crops. Great! Unfortunately, it became one huge tragedy. Hundreds of thousands of Indian farmers committed suicide. And what did drove them to that? The first year went perfectly, the crops were healthy, they sold at a good price and all was well. The seeds of the first generation were collected and ready to be grown as the second generation. The following year the seeds are planted, and to their utter most surprise…nothing grew! A huge devastation for the farmers, panicked, they contacted Monsanto who explained to them, that the seeds of the first generation are genetically made to be infertile and that you need to buy these seeds every year to grow the next harvest (at a high cost though!). This meant the end to the poor farmers, they would not be able to afford any of it and meanwhile with them having no income and no food to put on the plates of their wives, children and family, they saw no future for them and put an end to them selves.
This is utterly outraging and shocking. Naturally, Monsanto would react that it is’ Such tragedy but without evidence linking it to our poison seeds!!’. But we all know it is. It is reality, happening right under our noses and these huge, corporations can blatantly get away with it, with no shame whatsoever and continuing their destructive rampage over society, reaching out with their claws dripped in poison, ready to seize the world and gain power over the agricultural industry and the people. Because…we will not be having a choice later to what we eat, already, now in 2014, GMO seeds have been observed to be mixing with natural seeds, evidently, incriminating the superior and pure seeds causing them slowly to diminish. If we are not careful, all seeds found and grown naturally will vanish with the spreading of GMO seeds.
I am truly worried, mostly for the health of people and that of my own, without being said it is more than obvious that consuming GMO produce will have cause long term health issues later in life such as cancer and who knows what else. I, my self, try to buy produce which is not grown from genetically modified seeds, but it now near impossible to find these. As the people and inhabitants of this earth, we need to stand up and do something about this. Many have not even heard of it, an equal amount has, but does nothing about it. Though you might ask, what can we even do about it, start growing your own is a start! Already haven taken over USA and Canada, Europe will be next in their death-mission.
March 6, 2014 § Leave a comment
Don’t you just adore having those deep, flowing conversations with people sometimes…You know, the ones which start of a bit silly and lacking a real topic, but suddenly, one of the participants stumbles upon a topic out of the blue which struck their mind or was bothering them for a while already, it begins gradually, slowly hovering above the surface, and then plunges right into the deep depths and a vast pool of knowledge is opened up and the more you talk, the more questions you have, the more questions, the more answers you receive, the better your understanding becomes, the more positive and fulfilled you feel. Each person sharing their own ideas and opinions and enlightening one another.
It is such moments which makes me truly happy.
March 6, 2014 § Leave a comment
A man who I respect and admire, so I had to make this drawing of him. If he only he was more widely recognized for his valuable contributions to science and society…
December 25, 2013 § Leave a comment
I really do see this site as a way to let out my thoughts and feelings and it does help somehow. I also keep a journal in which I try to write in every day if I can. Mostly about what happens daily, my experiences, and sometimes I write short stories. They are usually not very cheerful ones and I apologize in advance for posting it on this day, (Merry Christmas to you all btw!! I love every single one of you) But anyway, here it is:
Dark, long days and nights which never seem to have a start or an ending. Alone, with the curtains closed at all times. There is no body left, you are surrounded by people, yet you feel completely alone. They occasional turn and talk to you, but you barely here a muffled mumble coming from far away as if you have sunk deep inside your self and all you can answer with is a short laugh and smile. You feel as if you are stuck in a pit, deep underground and can not reach out, nor do you have the will to do so. What is the point of it all any more. Your mind plays games with you, taunts you, the demons living inside dance at your expense, ripping you apart. The pain spreads all over you it feels as if someone has grabbed your heart and is squeezing it harder and harder….it is getting too much. For months you tried suppressing it, ignoring it and pretending as if nothing is wrong, as day by day they grew stronger, gaining ever more control of you. It has emptied you, no longer can you go to work, venture outside do any sort of activity other than lie on your bed all day long.
You softly pick at your lips, pulling of bits of flesh. You did that a lot when you became nervous. I like that about you, the way you did it, so carefully and delicately. It starts to bleed as you rip a piece but it goes noticed by you. Your gaze slowly shifts towards the old wooden clock hanging on the wall. It is 1:17 am. A deep sigh escapes from your mouth. I remember when your eyes used to carry such extraordinary beauty, as if a bright light being radiated from it, causing anyone who looked into your eyes to smile and feel positivity overcome them. What happened to those cheerful, big, hazel coloured eyes of yours. They have turned so dull and dark, with no expression at all except being filled with a deep sorrow.
Your gaze shifts away from the clock to the object lying in front of you on your bed, while you are sat with your legs crossed. Your favourite position. No longer do you feel any form of emotion, completely indifferent and callous to everything. The object remains untouched, and you turn your eyes to the window ahead of you. Strangely, the curtains had not been pulled shut on that one. It is as dark as your inside but you can hear the soft drizzling outside, the tapping of the droplets against the window. You used to adore that sound, tell me how it used to help wind you down, bringing peace. This time, it had no effect at all. You stare at it blankly.
You glare back at that shiny, metallic object which lies in front of you. It entices you, captures you and just as a magic does, draws you closer towards it. Lying there so innocently and still, yet at the same time carrying a looming force inside of it which can be activated with a single touch. A macabre air surrounds it. You quiver because it terrifies you because you know what fate awaits you in the next few moments.
A gulp escapes you, you heart beats ever so fast that you it becomes audible to you. But your eyes remain partially closed as if there is nothing wrong. You breathing becomes rapid and you close you eyes for a moment. Shutting out everything else, and it restrains you a bit. You re-open you eyes, and this time without hesitating you pick the object in your right hand. The intenseness of the icy surface sends chills right across your spine. Slowly turning it in your hand, admiring its beauty and destructive capabilities it has. Your release is right in your hands. The corners of your mouth turn slightly upwards into a half smile. Such a long time since you had done so.
The time has at last come. The object is raised to right next to right side of your head and you are overcome with sorrow, filling your head. The cold end of the object presses against your head, ready to strike out. Your fingers clutch around its grip, softly still. One last time you shut your eyes, and think of the better times you used to have, when you were happy. And as a tear rolls across you cheek you clutch your fingers tightly and you feel nothing any more.
(Guys, sorry it turned out this long, it was a really short paragraph that I had written, but the more I started to type, the more words flowed out of my head. Hope you kinda like it.)
December 24, 2013 § Leave a comment
“If you have pride in your heart, you have insecurity in your soul.”
December 21, 2013 § 2 Comments
I feel…nothing. I literally feel nothing. It is not as if I can not emphasize with people or feel emotions, I can not really express them. It is as if I am completely heartless and dark from inside. The worst part is that I am aware of it, and I can not seem to do anything about it or try to ‘care’ more. I get even depressed at times and I have many mood swings. And no going to a shrink will never be an option.
I have a diary (sort of) where I write my thoughts and short stories. It helps sometimes, but it is in no way a cure..I do not know what to do about myself.