Her Persian Voice

Heard the sharpest retort to one of the vilest insults recently. Of greater interest, though, was the woman who launched it.

Nasrin identified herself as “Persian.” Yeah. She’s Persian, all right. As Persian as I’m African. She’s a 20-something Cali girl through and through.

What gained my favor was her having enough pride in self to supplant Persian for Iranian. The former carries nobility stretching back into antiquity.

A Persian background is replete with culture and atavistic figures. Xerxes? Cyrus? Esther? Their respective histories are as current today as their living importance in the past.

Iranians, their inheritors, are poor cousins. Compared against their classic progenitors, they lack stature. Who esteems them?

Not only did the 1979 Iranian Revolution hobble their society through radical fundamentalism, it also lowered a decent segment of the globe’s perception of the country.

Having attended Arizona let me surmise Nasrin’s origins. Eavesdropping and a few subsequent questions filled her picture.

Her parents are my contemporaries. They were exchange students at Southern Cal while I faked being a scholar east of them in the Sonora Desert. Who knows? Perhaps back in the autumn of ’79 when Charles White and the Trojans ran up and down against my Wildcats inside the Coliseum, I’d given Nasrin’s mother a long once-over and sneered at her father.

The desert Southwest and Southern California have climates that compare favorably with the Maghreb, Levant, Arabia, and Western Asia. What better reason for high percentages of desert dwellers to matriculate in universities stretching from the Pacific into the West’s arid voids? Hey. Better Tucson or Los Angeles in the winter than Ann Arbor or Syracuse.

Maybe they were Zoroastrians. Maybe they were Jews. Or simply our Western lifestyle so enamored them that both concluded returning to the mullahs’ stifling and stultifying Iran held zero appeal and even less future. Plenty of their compatriots, several of them my classmates, a few close enough to have been associates, in any case succumbed to the restrictive holy opiate, obeyed the call, and fell for the affliction of pitiless, myopic Islam.

Overnight describes the speed of change when demure yet urbane and stylish Persian coeds suppressed their attraction beneath hijabs and boxy clothing demand of them to wear publicly. At one time, remote as we saw the former – especially measured against uninhibited Western girls, hadn’t some of the bolder ones once been mildly curious about a few of us less barbaric infidels? On the other side of the new divide, guys who once partied just as hard or heartier than their American hosts suddenly snatched up temperance and behaved abstemiously around women, both the highly lusted after impure blondes and chaste fellow believers.

Nothing like misinterpretation of Koranic verses in order to drain life.

An American, Nasrin may’ve only disappointed her folks in the expected and accepted ways.

In Las Vegas from Los Angeles for an early spring weekend bacchanal, she and several best buds had rented a cabana at a swank Strip hotel’s dayclub. In this accessory of creature comfort all the better to debauch in softer pleasure at the pool.

Moreover, the extravagance behind the cabana insured an attentive wait staff; further distinguished the guests inside it from the roaming party people; while it also drew envy.

Doubtlessly Nasrin’s pool attire differed substantially from any her mother had sported during the same youthburst.
Modest Catalina suits likely satisfied the mother’s swimwear choice. Nasrin flouted the bounds of skimpiness. Two pieces of artfully sewn black fabric barely shielded her bits. To be generous, or sops to what passes for Las Vegas propriety, she’d worn and fashioned a bandana into corralling her mink hair. Knotted in front, a white fishnet sheath girded her slim hips.

Thick soled flip-flops, perhaps the poolside version of corridor creepers, added an inch or two to her 5-foot-6 height and kept the soles of her feet clean.

Sunglasses perched upon a nose which might’ve also served as a boat’s prow obscured her eyes. Essential grooming curtailed eyebrows that left on their own would’ve snaked a hairy black caterpillar across her brow. Through self-assuredness she dismissed those traits that might’ve hobbled a less confident woman.

Nasrin’s skin some shade just beyond cinnamon, she somehow enhanced smooth flesh through having painted her finger- and toenails turquoise and further engorged her wide pliant lips with deeper red rouge. Among a yappy bunch of companions with similar backgrounds, leanness, and shared makeup she did not stand out. Yet she held her own.

Goaded by the DJ’s techno thump, a pale shirtless crew of loud beer-swigging bros lazily swaggered poolside. To a man buff by quality gym dedication (and who knew maybe chemical means as well) ripped V torsos reared from their board shorts off of which jutted arms gnarled with muscle. Besides the usual chunky status watches shackling their wrists, fine silver chains ended in small crucifixes or other religious medals nestled between the plains forming these beasts’ chests. Predatory in manner, the pack sought to sample and sup from the available females presented.

Whatever scant charm this bunch possessed disappeared in their less than gallant conduct. Beer cup contents enlarged their already substantial senses of selves. Listening to them, someone more mature might’ve been correct thinking these boys had simply big-footed into a female smorgasbord.

And given half a chance the guys intended being sloppy at the feast. It was their prerogative, wasn’t it? Indeed, didn’t the whole gang see itself disbursing 10cc’s of joy after frenzied exhaustive repetitive thrusts?

The amount of female shade they incurred during their progression reminded of how an eclipse darkens all in its path. Where merriment had brightened, their passage left a dearth of mirth behind.

When these gibbons reached Nasrin and her gaggle tactics changed. The boys developed a condescending offensive. Their insincerity amused the girls. They strung along the pretenders. Unfortunately the other side didn’t quickly grasp it was being chumped. One of the dimmer bulbs thought he was on the way to getting over.

How hard was it imagining believing himself on the way to scoring some strange, exotic, brown trim? The last election released rampant Anglo egos. Wouldn’t Nasrin or any of her friends who succumbed to the new dominant bullying have been his just reward in this skewed America? Why not? So she ably filled in the subject lines thus far left blank in her estimator’s version of an Only Could’ve Happened in Vegas adventure.

She and her friends had trifled with these silly intruders long enough. Nasrin and pals dismissed them airily. The men got the message but lacked the grace to leave quietly.

The biggest A among all these Alphas brushed off her brush off and insisted they dance. Truthfully? The beats dropping from the speakers at that moment might’ve best served for an Elaine Benes kind of herky-jerky. Taste alone demanded staying stock still.

Nasrin’s downturned lips and sour expression further emphasized her spoken demurral. She wished her assayer and his fellow honey pot prospectors would shuffle elsewhere. Male vanity being fragile, and his having been dinged, no way he was creating space between them.

The young man’s insult was novel. He didn’t travel the easy route and point out some flaw. All women must have flaws. Even if they don’t. Especially when they don’t. That’s the first mistake that misinforms all weak men.

What tumbled from the boy’s mouth fit so much of the narrow-minded indoctrination sufficing for present-day common discourse. Maybe later that afternoon, several more beers tucked under his belt, his slander might’ve been spittle-flecked and him issuing it red-faced. For now yelling sufficed.

“What kind of Arab are you!? Are you a terrorist!?”

Music did not skip, though conversation quieted somewhat. Those in the near vicinity became uneasy. Somewhere security personnel must’ve stirred.

Obviously Nasrin spied the medallions adorning his chest. Uninjured, she responded in her flattest possible voice.

“I’m as much a terrorist as you are a good Christian.”

In our Baboon America who can doubt that young man, and tens of millions aping him, never fails professing such devotion despite his contrary practices?

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