Your Ideas

Gone Till November
5:50 pm
Thu October 30, 2014

Abnormal Normality

Iran is like small town America
Skippy Mesirow

Tehran – Persepolis

For four days now I have traversed Iran: from the busy streets of Tehran to the solitude of the desert and calming Shiraz to the dramatic Persepolis. I’ve taken long bus rides and taken short flights, bargained with locals and discussed politics at mosques. I’ve made friends with young Iranians and shared meals with older gentlemen. Yet, I have a problem. Writers block. It’s not for lack of movement or experience; it’s just that nothing stands out. You walk, you talk, you see, you eat.  

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Your Ideas
11:48 am
Tue October 28, 2014

Who’s A Racist?

I can’t remember a time when the terms “racist” or “racism” were used with the abandon that now infects our political discourse.  These are hateful words - akin to the worst racial slurs bigots apply to others.  Yet some partisans apply the term to anyone who disagrees with the current Administration’s policies or who calls for voter identification requirements.

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Your Ideas
11:03 am
Mon October 27, 2014

Setting Things Straight

A young couple in Tehran.
Skippy Mesirow

Tehran - Shiraz 

We in the West have a certain image in our heads when we think of Iran; evil scientists planning world destruction in a lab, crazy fanatical leaders plotting the demise of Israel and supporting terrorists to quell their maniacal, blood thirsty whims, bearded men wandering the streets, buildings crumbling behind them as old Soviet cars belch thick black smoke into the sky. They’re dressed head to toe in Arab garb, heads wrapped in turbans, eyes sinister and beards long. Women are forcibly shoved to the periphery of life, controlled and in fear. They look upon westerners with distain and malice. 

We are wrong.

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Gone Till November
5:08 pm
Mon October 20, 2014

We Should Never Hate Before We Care

Maroon Bells
Skippy Mesirow

Aspen – Tehran

A toe drags through the gravel, a raindrop lands on a hand, the clouds waft through the air as if being dragged by angels. The Maroon Bells appear stark white. They pierce through the clouds, surrounded by screaming yellow trees, ominously present and powerful yet benevolent. Amber waves of brush, burning red Aspen tops abound. A friend laughs, a child giggles, a deer frolics.

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Aspen to Central America
8:54 am
Sun June 22, 2014

On the Road: Acceptance and Reflection

Credit Skippy Mesirow

Tampico - Aspen 

320 miles from Tampico, roughly 40 to the US border. All that stands between me and it is one of the most dangerous stretches of tarmac in all the Americas. Carjackings, drug cartels, grenade attacks, mass murder, and general treachery. Along the way a multitude of police checkpoints, serving as both vanguards of security and targets of terror line the route. Each stop halts my progress, I become a sitting duck. The police, eager to demonstrate their militaristic bonafides don full tactical gear, head to toe camo, bulletproof vests, night vision equipment, massive assault rifles, everything designed for utmost intimidation. Yet, as public servants visibility is paramount, so, rather inexplicably, they layer high visibility jackets over their camo, neon yellow with orange vests with reflective stripes, the sheer lunacy of it makes me nearly double over in laughter. The irony of it, at least the giggle relieves tension.

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