Monday, October 29, 2007

Irshad? Down The Street?

Usually, when I get home from work, I open up my email and when I see stuff from people I do not recognize, I just scroll down and “delete – delete – delete”!
I’m sure you do the same, right?
But tonight, just a few minutes ago actually, after returning from an excellent coffee time with this amazing John Irving book [I should be his agent, huh?]… I was just about to delete this one email from Chapters Rideau.
Since I practically LIVE there on weekends, they send me emails about upcoming events.
Well, I saw the name “Irshad Manji” and there was those squealing breaking sounds… you know, like when Wile E. Coyote goes careening past The Roadrunner in a cloud of dust and ends up falling off the cliff anyway, complete with severely exaggerated neck extensions, and that little final wave good-bye?
Yeah, it was like that.

Because I saw the name Irshad Manji.

She’s speaking where? Down the street from me? At the Chapters store?
And it has a Starbucks in it?
WHEN? → Friday, Nov.2nd, at 7:00 p.m.
How can I be a part of this event?
Just show up there?
Hell, yeah! I’ll be there!

For those of you who may not be familiar with Irshad Manji, she is ummm… a radical journalist, and most notably she is the author of the book The Trouble With Islam Today.
She is a fireball. A firebrand. Iconoclast. Rebel. Self-proclaimed Muslim Refusenik. She has been referred to as “Osama bin Laden’s worst nightmare” and I don’t mind this at all, seeing as he has been the cause of so many nightmares, for so many people who do [or did] not know him or his “god” from a smoldering hole in the ground!
I loved reading her book. I highly encourage you to read the thing.
I can’t wait to hear her speak on the topic of “Faith Without Fear.”

And so, hmmm… what is her book ABOUT, you may ask?
Well, it is about the trouble with Islam!
And what is the trouble with Islam?

Well, the trouble with Islam is the same “trouble” that is the scourge of all religions, be it Christianity, Judaism, Mormonism, or whatever else. And it can be stated in one word.
[Something that is never fun, but always mental!]
In my opinion, the "problem" with all fundamentalist religion is that it is convinced that even its most ridiculous and exclusivistic aspects [ and all religions have these] should be embraced by people that have no current desire to embrace them. Or adhere to them.

So yeah. I’ll be there!
Listening intently, sipping my Grande Bold.
But I will be neither as grand, nor as bold, as the woman up there, speaking.
Telling it like it is.

Meep, meep,
Wile E. Coyote



Sam Houston said...

You lucky dog...I'd love to hear this woman speak. I've admired her courage from afar for a while now and I wish that her message might begin to get through to the masses someday.

Karla said...

Ditto. I, too would love to hear her speak after reading her book. She apparently is starting on something called Project Courage or the Courage Project at NYU. Anybody know anything about that?

cipriano said...

Sam & Karla:
Yes, she is SUCH a gem! Her book was so good!
Clicking on the link at the end of my blog will take you to a page and if you click on the VIDEO clips, oh, they are just so excellent. They show what she is like. Talking with her [sort of fundamentalist-ish] Muslim mother....
So tonight I walked into a different Chapters building and they had a wee poster of Irshad, and they were announcing the Friday interview thing, but it said THURSDAY evening, the 1st. Like, tomorrow.
So I went to the front desk and said, "Ummm.... yeah. I received an email saying it was FRIDAY... blah-blah-blah."
The girl there assured me it was Thursday!
SO, I called the Rideau Chapters. The guy there assured me it was FRIDAY, as originally stated.
The poster is wrong.
Or something.
SOMEONE'S wrong, that's for sure!
See how dreadfully wrong we can be, about things we are so 100% SURE about?
The "religious" world needs to learn this.

Karla said...

Amen, cipriano, although it's more than just the religious world that is self-righteously POSITIVE that it is right, always right.

But more important: did it turn out to be Thursday or Friday? And did you make it to the talk?

cipriano said...

Karla, it was last night, [Friday] and it was fabulous.
She is so well-spoken, so clear-headed.
I am considering whether I should write a full blog-report on the event.
But yes, it was terrific.

Karla said...

If you need any encouragement to do a full-fledged blog entry, let this be it.