We’re starting off the end of the week right with a very special guest post by NASEEM joon – enjoy!
Oh Joon Joons,
Salaams and booses from the frozen tundra of Minneapolis, MN! This is another joon from the Joon Club (is that name sticking yet, or is it just me?), Naseem Joon, affectionately sending all my love from the heartland. I’m fortunate enough to write this blog post as both a guest and fan of S&F (and Saaghi&Farrah, too!).
Let’s get intimate before proceeding: I’m half Iranian, my favorite dish is gormeh sahbzi (I have a bottomless stomach when it comes to gormeh sahbzi), and I usually take my chai straight to the head.
And I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t had fessenjoon in a while. Yikes!
I’ve been an avid reader and fan of this blog and its lovely curators for quite some time.
I find something so magical about how stories written by two women I don’t know in the flesh have touched me so deeply, made me laugh, and resonated as identical reflections of my own life and experiences as a woman of Iranian heritage in the USA. I am so moved that I have taken the liberty of telling you yet another tale of the joonies and giving a slice of my own story.
As we joons know…
Education in our culture is just as important as football and freedom to those in the USA.
Now, don’t get me wrong, because that isn’t to say education isn’t emphasized to young people in the USA, or that we Iroonis can’t get down with buff men in tight spandex or feel inspired by that screeching sound of a bald eagle against the melodic riff of an electric guitar.
In high school, I was the only one in my group of friends where not going to college wasn’t even something to entertain. Some of my friends never gave education another thought; some had babies way young; some went to school to become actors, doctors, and opera singers; and some just disappeared off the face of the earth.
Even if I had pressed my baba for some time off to think about what I wanted to do or study in school, my parents (and ameh and amoo and maman bozorg) were terrified that if I took this course of action, I’d surely never climb back on the horse and become an underachiever who never made it to college and spent her life never tapping into and harnessing her potential.
To them, college was the next and immediate step after graduating high school, and that’s where I could figure myself out and choose an appropriate academic course.
No other option.
As is my nature to play devil’s advocate for the sake of a holistic argument, I disagree with this viewpoint. I know many people who never went to college and are successful, but moreover, are happy and grateful for their stations in life and the experiences and struggles endured to make it there, despite no post-secondary education.
And though I disagree and think college is just oneway to success (and not even guaranteed, at that), I always knew I would go to college, whether it was of my own desire or having grown up in an environment where it’s expected of you.
I don’t feel as if I were forced into school—I always wanted to go. I’m just showcasing another end of the spectrum.