Sorry for being a bit out of touch lately– been dealing with work, friends moving, etc. Plus I kind of needed to take a step back for a quick second. Until I realized that I can’t live without #sexandfessenjoon #truestory.
Okay let’s get to the real reason for this blog: my parents.
I’ve talked about my parents a lot and their cray tendencies– whether it’s having a llama at my birthday party *truth* or excusing me from sex ed in an effort to forever keep me in the dark about where a penis goes when you’re having sex (click here).
But at the end of the day…
I was raised like the little Persian princess that I am.
I didn’t grow up listening to The Beatles or reading Calvin&Hobbes– which after hanging out with my neighbor, I’ve been clearly “missing out on.” I wasn’t introduced to this song until I was in college (the white girl anthem at every bar):
I didn’t learn the lyrics to this song until the Glee version came out. And I had no idea what the members of Journey looked like until I looked up the video for this post. Fail.
Instead of jamming to Pink Floyd and Pearl Jam, I was rocking out to Leila Forouhar and Black Cats (during the Pyruz days- badbahkt only ended up having a one hit wonder after Shahbal kicked him out). My parents and I would attend monthly concerts where I would somehow get thrown on stage to dance with the band- and by somehow, I mean my mother. Not quite as glamorous as it sounds– I was the creepy little Persian girl with acne and a nose that still didn’t/doesn’t fit on my face.
But not even trying to front– when the members of Black Cats told me to “gher bede,” I thought I was such a bad ass.
It didn’t really end there– in addition to being taken to the “elite” Persian concerts that ANY Persian kid would die to go to (sarcasm… kinda), my parents also strived to make sure I had whatever I wanted- of course, only if it fit their standards.
My cousins and I always joke about how our dads give us so much trouble when it comes to school and finding jobs, but at the end of the day…
We have them wrapped around our manipulative little fingers.
I was the go-to babysitter in my hometown- whether it was for the Persian kids my little brother was friends with, or my piano teacher’s kids… I was the one who was called the most frequently to watch over the devil spawn while their parents went to a mehmooni.
Kind of ironic seeing as how much kids terrify me now.
I babysat on a weekly basis — kids ranging from all ages. One particular kid, still in diapers and one of my regulars, was super cute but always happened to take a big poop every time I babysat.
Not sure about you, but I really wasn’t trying to take care of all that.
Of course, I couldn’t wait until his parents got home because that would just be cruel. So instead, I chose to be resourceful by calling my dad and forcing him to come to wherever I was babysitting. He would always show up, change the baby’s diaper, and be on his way. The parents I babysat for never knew and always gave me a little extra when they saw the nasty poopy diaper in the trash. (Learn, don’t judge).
If you think that’s bad? I’ve never used a can opener in my life– and for my piano teacher’s kids, their mother wanted me to make them Spaghetti-O’s for dinner every time I babysat.
1. I had never used a stove. (Thank God, you can microwave that sh*t).
2. I had no idea how to open the damn can.
My solution? Call my dad — he would come open the can… and leave. To this day, I never buy anything from the grocery store that requires a can opener. Not happening. #sorrynotsorry.
And it doesn’t really end there, I had never had a casserole in my life until I dated a white guy last year. I had no idea what a quiche was until that same guy took me to brunch at his family friend’s house and that was all they were serving. My mom ALWAYS had my favorite meals on the dinner table- and they were NEVER anything but khoresht, kabob, and the occasional raviolis because it’s my favorite.
Even now when I have to go on “business lunches,” my boss spends ten minutes explaining to me what certain foods are. I’m sorry, but WTF is succotash? Plantains have been my most recent discovery and my mother has never been more disappointed in me– but they are SO BOMB. I’ve had meat loaf once and tried “hush puppies” for the first time last week.
And despite all the weird ass shit people eat in the U.S.– no one can understand why I put ketchup on my spaghetti/pizza. Or why I’m so obsessed with spicy pickles and mixing mast with my rice/chips/everything.
Being so far away from home has only made me realize how Persian I was raised.
We all know that our Persian backgrounds play a pretty big role in our lives– whether it’s having to attend Farsi class every summer (done) or playing Gole Sangam at the Norooz party every year (and done). It’s easy to forget how much of an influence our Iranian culture has on us.
Especially if your Farsi sounds anything like mine. Farsi is my first language but I can still hear the English accent seeping through every time I say something as simple as “laj-baz.” There’s a reason I love when a guy can speak Farsi like a bad ass.
But it’s interesting that sometimes I can’t express certain phrases or words to my friends because there is no translation for it in English. Or the fact that no matter how many non-Persian friends we have, we still tarof like someone else would understand how to reciprocate it.
“Um yeah, I didn’t actually mean you could have my burrito… bitch…”
Playing dress up for me wasn’t about trying on my mother’s high heels or jewelry or pretty dresses. My dress up games consisted of wrapping the bed sheets around my body like a chador. I used to wear a roosari around the house because I thought it looked cool. Let me tell you, those dress up games were only played in secret.
And no matter how hard we try to fight it- we always bring our culture to wherever we are. My non-Persian friends have been forced to endure endless Iranian documentaries/movies with me. I’ve successfully taught them all how to say “chort,” “gooz” and “jeesh.” So classy.
In regards to my parents– despite being thousands of miles away, they still treat me like a princess. My mom offers to fed-ex me Persian food every week and I have frozen gheymeh still in my freezer from her last visit in December. My dad calls me on a weekly basis to let me know that he’s taken my unused car for service and that my taxes are done.
Or the fact that my parents go INSANE if I don’t call them for a day. My mom starts every phone call saying, “Maloome kodom goori hasti?” (Rough translation: where the HELL are you?). At work isn’t a good enough answer.
But being a Persian princess really isn’t all that bad– REGARDLESS of how afraid Persian guys are to encounter one. (we don’t bite… that hard).
TWEET AT ME: @FARRAH_JOON