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Girl in a Car.

Photographs by Roibhilin Butler-Sloss (six), Kuchakian Poem by Nahabed Kuchak (probably) 16th Century.

Whoever has a white bosom

let her put on a blue shirt.

nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

Let her leave the button open.

Whoever notices, let his heart bleed.

Let me go to beg God to dry up the indigo seed.

Let it be exhausted.

Let the girl no longer wear blue.

And let the heart of the boy be cured.

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Changing Past to Past, and Focus on Present ( the grass is greener). A song by Arum Butler-Sloss aged ten…

Lost in folds of misery and despair,

My heart aches with loneliness that  I bear

Holding this burden for all to see,

I shall never see the moon, the stars, or the sea

Trapped in my mind with no way out,

I break free from my standhold, try a different route

I open my eyes and see I’m not blind,

My heart and sould have completed their bind

My ears shed their cloak, turning a new leaf

I see now, I hear now,

The grass may be greener, or rotten with leaves

Having to let go of the past

Falling through the present fast

Getting dizzy, getting confused,

I change and say I’m amused

And though I missed the greener grass,

It now could be rotten and with broken glass

Nicosia International Airport Perspective

saturday afternoons, hot, sticky needing air, Dad would take us to watch the planes take off and land from the 
groovalicious cafe at the airport.
The new state of the art terminal was built in 1968, glass, skylights, catch me if you can glam. 
In July 1974 it was overtaken by Greek Nationalists during the coup to overthrow President Makarios. 
It opened briefly as a mad scramble of people fled the country and then the Turks invaded on July 20th 
and bombed it. 
Today it belongs to the pigeons and swallowtails, surrounded by the boys in blue berets.....

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“Dr. Death,” Jack Kevorkian, dies at 83


Dr. Jack Kevorkian poses at the 62nd annual Primetime Emmy Awards in Los AngelesReuters – Dr. Jack Kevorkian poses at the 62nd annual Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles, California August 29, …
By Mike Miller – 1 hr 21 mins ago

DETROIT (Reuters) – Assisted suicide advocate Jack Kevorkian, known as “Dr. Death” for helping more than 100 people end their lives, died early on Friday at age 83, his lawyer said.

Kevorkian died at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan, where he had been hospitalized for about two weeks with kidney and heart problems, said Mayer Morganroth, Kevorkian’s attorney and friend.

The Detroit Free Press reported that Kevorkian, previously diagnosed with liver cancer, died from a blood clot that lodged in his heart.

Kevorkian, a pathologist, was focused on death and dying long before he ignited a polarizing national debate over assisted suicide by crisscrossing Michigan in a rusty Volkswagen van hauling a machine to help sick and suffering people end their lives.

Some viewed him as a hero who allowed the terminally ill to die with dignity, while his harshest critics reviled him as a cold-blooded killer who preyed on those suffering from chronic pain and depression. Most of his clients were middle-aged women.

“Dr. Jack Kevorkian was a rare human being,” his longtime attorney Geoffrey Fieger told reporters on Friday. “It’s a rare human being who can single-handedly take on an entire society by the scruff of its neck and force it to focus on the suffering of other human beings.”

Kevorkian launched his assisted-suicide campaign in 1990, allowing an Alzheimer’s patient to kill herself using a machine he devised that allowed her to trigger a lethal drug injection. He was charged with first-degree murder in the case, but the charges were later dismissed.

Fiery and unwavering in his cause, Kevorkian made a point of thumbing his nose at lawmakers, prosecutors and judges as he accelerated his campaign through the 1990s, using various methods including carbon monoxide gas. Often, Kevorkian would drop off bodies at hospitals late at night or leave them in motel rooms where the assisted suicides took place.

He beat Michigan prosecutors four times before his conviction for second-degree murder in 1999 after a CBS News program aired a video of Kevorkian administering lethal drugs to a 52-year-old man suffering from debilitating amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease.

STILL IN PUBLIC EYE

Kevorkian was imprisoned for eight years. As a condition of his parole in 2007, he promised not to assist in any more suicides.

He himself had appealed to leave prison early because of poor health, but said he did not consider himself a candidate for assisted suicide.

Kevorkian did not leave the public eye after his exit from prison, giving occasional lectures and in 2008 running for Congress unsuccessfully.

An HBO documentary on his life and a movie, “You Don’t Know Jack,” starring Al Pacino, brought him back into the limelight last year.

Born in the Detroit suburb of Pontiac, Kevorkian taught himself the flute and was a painter. Well read in philosophy and history, he cited Aristotle, Sir Thomas More and Pliny the Elder in his arguments for why people should have the right to die with dignity.

In a June 2010 interview with Reuters Television, the right-to-die activist said he was afraid of death as much as anyone else and said the world had a hypocritical attitude toward voluntary euthanasia, or assisted suicide.

“If we can aid people into coming into the world, why can’t we aid them in exiting the world?” he said.

Doctor-assisted suicide essentially became law in Oregon in 1997 and in Washington state in 2009. The practice of doctors writing prescriptions to help terminally ill patients kill themselves was ultimately upheld as legal by the U.S. Supreme Court.

Kevorkian was first dubbed “Dr. Death” by colleagues during his medical residency in the 1950s when he asked to work the night shift at Detroit Receiving Hospital so he could be on duty when more people died.

His career was interrupted by the Korean War, when he served 15 months as an Army medical officer.

After the U.S. Supreme Court permitted states to reinstate the death penalty in 1976, Kevorkian campaigned for performing medical experiments and harvesting the organs of death row inmates — with their consent — before their executions.

(Reporting by Mike Miller in Detroit and James Kelleher in Chicago; Writing by David Bailey; Editing by David Lawder and Greg McCune)

Motorcycles, Art, Booze, Food and Politics…Puzant Nadjarian says goodbye…

Mobile shoping by Puzant Nadjarian

You are standing outside, on the corner of Platonos Street in old town Nicosia. The woman buys her fruit and pockets her change. Behind her, a packed parking lot, despite the NO PARKING IDIOT signs  graffitied on the wall. You sip your coffee,  press your finger down and take the picture. You are Puzant Jean Nadjarian.

I was a teenager when I met him, he was a little older. Long hair, big beard, Rasputin eyes, a good-life belly and a fat roaring motorcycle. He rode with a pre-invasion mix of Turks, Greeks and Armenians, their common uniform, long shaggy hair.  A lover of photography and art, Puzant supplied us with our fix for posters, especially those coveted early Athena masterpieces we all had to have – mind blowing, state-altering, psychedelic trips, blockmounted and glossy on our walls. There was music too, rock and progressive and just about everything else. Puzant always seemed to find it first.   And then, way before anyone thought the walled city was hip, he beautifully converted that ancient sandstone house with its patterned  floors, archways and high ceilings into Plato’s Bar, the only bar worth visiting with a clientele so loyal it still homed in like pigeons long after he’d sold it and moved on. His life was about  great food, good booze, sharp wit, passionate debate and politics. And if you could do all that on  the back of a  motorcycle, you were in. Puzant was active within his community – The President of The Armenian National Committee of Cyprus (Hay Tad), a member of the ARF Dashnaktsoutiun and a member of the Artsakank Armenian-language Editorial Board. He was also a husband, a dad, a son, a brother, a friend.

You were standing on the corner of Platonos Street , Old Town Nicosia. You sipped your coffee, took a picture, got on your bike and left.  Asdvadz Hokin Lousavore, Puzant. Rest In Peace.

Puzant Nadjarian

Puzant ( Jean) Nadjarian will be laid to rest  on Saturday 12 March at 2:30 pm at Sourp Asdvadzadzin Armenian Church Nicosia, Cyprus.

 

photos by Puzant Nadjarian

Book on a page. Life in a hand.

An Armenian story in 35 languages

The Hands

By Elda Grin

When I was just married my mother-in-law wondered and complained all the time: “Your hands are so gentle and small!” She even showed the gloves I had been wearing before my marriage to our entire neighborhood. “Look at these gloves! They’re like a doll’s. How will these hands work?”

The neighbor women were examining the gloves, sighing and laughing.

“Don’t worry!” they calmed my mother-in-law, “Your daughter-in-law is a beauty instead!”

“Beauty! Who cares about her beauty!” My mother-in-law retorted in irony, “We need working hands!”

The yard where we lived was large. There were divans in front of small houses. From early spring to late autumn women used to cook there, wash and thrash the wool, sew their blankets, patch and knit, and everything they did was in front of everybody’s eyes. They would always find an excuse to come to our couch and watch me work next to my mother-in-law, chopping potatoes or cutting greens.

“Oh, God,” they sighed, “Such beautiful hands! They almost look artificial! It would be a pity to damage them.”

“Work never damages anything,” my mother-in-law would scold them.

Once a Kurdish woman brought sheep yogurt to our yard. She was not beautiful: she had bushy eyebrows and hard, chapped hands.

“Vardukh,” uncle Petros, my mother-in-law’s brother said, “If she were your daughter-in-law, she would have done all the work in a second.”

My mother-in-law kept silent, she neither agreed nor disagreed.

Uncle Petros was probably joking, but I couldn’t help it and cried in the woodshed for a long time.

A year passed, and I had a child. Once we were eating around the table. My mother-in-law had placed meat rissoles and fried eggplants on my plate. I ate it all and wanted some more, but felt embarrassed. I finally dared and directed my fork towards the plate with rissoles in the middle of the table.

“Maralo?” My mother-in-law exclaimed.

Confused, I took my hand away. Everybody looked at me in astonishment, then at my mother-in-law. I turned red.

“Maralo,” my mother-in-law repeated more calmly, but also excited, “your hands seem to be bigger.”

Everyone looked at my hands.

“They really do,” my father-in-law said with a kind of joy. “They look much bigger, don’t they, Vardukh?”

My mother-in-law stood up, went to the wardrobe and came back with my famous gloves.

“Come, put them on,” she said.

My left hand hardly fit into the glove, but the right one… the delicate lace of the right glove stretched out and tore.

“I swear on this piece of bread!” My mother-in-law exclaimed victoriously. “They really did get bigger!”

My father-in-law tapped my shoulder joyously.

“It’s true, knock on wood! Shall we drink to the occasion, Vardukh?”

He went to the cellar with firm steps and brought out a bottle of red wine.

“Here’s to my daughter-in-law, may she finally have proper hands,” he said raising his glass.

We clinked our glasses and drank the wine. I felt good.

Time passed. Now we don’t live in that old yard anymore; we live in a new four-story house. I have four children, and a few grandchildren. I save my “doll” gloves as relics that caused so much sorrow to my mother-in-law and amused the neighbors. My hands became hard, the joints swelled, manicure and creams have become useless…

“They have turned into worker’s hands,” my old mother reproached me once. “At least put some glycerin on them.”

But I am happy with my hands, even if sometimes I am forced to hide them from other people’s eyes. What would I do without them in this big family?

Every morning I plan out the hands’ jobs on paper. Finishing one job I move on to another. What else should I do? Then what? Anything else?

Sometimes while cleaning the floor or taking dust from the furniture, I stand in front of the photograph of my mother-in-law’s, now deceased, and show her my hands.

“Look,” I say calmly, “do you see what my hands turned into? Now they are the hands of a working woman! But you, being so conservative, woven completely of traditions, also being so well-off, never considered it worthy to put a wedding ring on your young daughter-in-law’s finger, not even a simple one… Perhaps now you will consider me worthy of that?”

My mother-in-law keeps silent; my monolog lasts several minutes. A duster in my hand, I am passing from the dresser to the record-player, from there – to the bookshelves, forgetting the old, typical female adage, which seems so small among the big and deep wounds…

“Faster, faster!” I tell my hands to rush.

Then I compliment myself: “Well done!”

Shouldn’t someone praise them finally?

Elda Grin (Grigoryan) is an Armenian writer, psychologist and legal expert. She was born in 1928 in Tiflis (Georgia). From 1943 to 1947 she studied at Foreign Language Faculty of Yerevan Russian Pedagogical Institute. Elda Grin is a Professor of psychology at Yerevan State University. She has published eight books of short stories, among them: “A Night Sketch” (1973), “My Garden” (1983), “We Want to Live Beautifully” (2000), “Space of Dreams

Yerevan – Artsvi Bakhchinyan, an Armenian Studies scholar, researcher, and translator based in Yerevan, brought into fruition a unique literary project. “Zangak-97” Publishing House recently printed a collection of 35 translations of one story. The name of the book is “The Hands,” authored by Armenian writer and psychologist Elda Grin.

The story was actually written in two languages: Armenian and Russian. Artsvi Bakhchinyan arranged translations in 32 languages, including the European ones, as well as Chinese, Japanese, Persian, Arabic, Turkish, Hindi and Hebrew. He prepared also a version in Western Armenian, included as an appendix.

Elda Grin, a Ph.D. in Psychology, has taught for many years in the department of Psychology at Yerevan State University. For more than a half century she has been immersed in literary life as an author of small stories. Her stories are full of intimate lyricism, psychological depth and thoughtful observation. “Brevity, the sister of talent”; these words by Anton Chekhov fittingly describe Elda Grin’s writings, whose small literary products often provide compelling life stories.

“The Hands” is composed of just 4 pages, yet it embraces the life of an Armenian woman from the time of her marriage until just before gaining the status of grandmother. This deeply philosophical, moving story has an unusual background. It was penned in 1984 in a difficult period in Elda Grin’s life, overshadowed by her husband’s illness. She was sitting next to him and recorded line by line the story of a young Armenian woman who falls among harsh in-laws.

“The Hands” was greeted warmly by readers, but soon this simple story underwent a terrible censorship up to discussions in the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Armenia, where is was considered to be “not in conformity with party politics and government.”

But the fate of the story would be different. As Armenian writer Sero Khanzadyan had noted, “In literature there are many works on women’s hands. However, from this standpoint, Elda Grin was the first to tell the world about the beauty and strength of women’s hands and about the plight of Armenian woman…”

The story was translated into three languages in Soviet times. In 2007, Artsvi Bakhchinyan received a proposal from the American journal “Translation” to submit a story from Armenian literature in English.

Afterwards, he translated it into Swedish, in cooperation with his Swedish-Armenian friend, Aram Hellstadius. Then Artsvi thought of collecting translations of the story into as many languages as possible and publishing them in one book. He wrote to many friends and acquaintances of his wide network and asked them to participate in his project.

“I am proud to tell that all my friends were enthusiastic with my idea and all of them agreed to make the translation on an unpaid basis (well, the only exception was a poet from Lebanon, but we found a better translator). This is a book of translators, so that’s why I put their brief biographies at the end of the volume. There are people of different calibers among them: from experienced translators with extensive background like Vartan Matiossian (Spanish) or Madeleine Karakasian (Romanian) to beginners.”

The colorful list of translators includes Armenians from Armenia (Maghvala Geurkova-Sahakyan, Georgian; Emma Begijanyan, Farsi), Diasporan Armenians (Harout Vartanian, Arabic; Maral Aktokmakian, Turkish; Arda Djelalian, Greek), Armenians from Armenia living abroad (Arousyak Bakhchinyan-Grino, French; Gohar Harutyunyan-Sekulich, Serbian; Armine Piloyan-Vrteska, Macedonian; Liana Yedigaryan, Chinese), people of Armenian origin (Eric Papazian, Norwegian; Armenia Nercessian de Oliveira, Portuguese; Kristiina Davidjants, Estonian; Kinga Kali, Hungarian), as well as non-Armenians living in Armenia (Konrad Siekierski, Polish; Inga Butrimait?, Lithuanian; Santosh Kumari Arora, Hindi). Among non-Armenian translators there are people involved in Armenian Studies and translation (Heinrich Hördegen, German; Roberto Bigolin, Italian; Thomas Feider, Luxembourgish; Antoaneta Anguelova, Bulgarian; Takayuki Yoshimura, Japanese), or just people with certain or occasional interest in Armenia (Sini Tuomisalo, Finnish; Gerda Davidian, Danish; Ingibjörg Þórisdóttir, Icelandic; Liene Grunda, Latvian; Libor Dvo?ák, Czech; Kateryna Botanova, Ukrainian; Schulamith Chava Halevy, Hebrew).It is interesting that women from different countries who translated “The Hands” confessed that they saw themselves reflected in the story. This once again confirms the universality of Elda Grin’s literature.

Written by Magdalina Zatikyan

Published: Tuesday March 08, 2011, International Day of Women

The Armenian Reporter International

” (2004).

Little Armenia Street Art…searching for Banksy

so with Banksy spreading joy throughout Hollywood as he prepares for his red carpet moment at the Oscar’s this weekend I went to see what street artists are doing in that slightly dog eaten neighbourhood next door…

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where on the map are the mafia?

Years ago when we first came to the United States people would ask “Where are you from?” and we would say “Armenia,” and they would look at us like…where is that? and you would have to get a map out and show them. Now they say “where you from?’ and we say “Armenia,” and they say”Oh yeah. The mafia.”

 

Rose Nairi, Hollywood California Feb 17th 2011

FBI arrest by blankie.

FBI SWAT team members arrest a man after storming a townhouse in the 4300 Stern Ave in Sherman Oaks Wednesday, February 15, 2011. The Eurasian Organized Task Force, a multi-agency task force comprised of local and federal agencies targeted members of the Armenian Power gang with a wide range of crimes including kidnapping, extortion, bank fraud, and narcotic trafficking. (Hans Gutknecht/Staff Photographer LA Daily News)
FBI SWAT team members arrest a man after storming a townhouse in the 4300 Stern Ave in Sherman Oaks Wednesday, February 15, 2011. The Eurasian Organized Task Force, a multi-agency task force comprised of local and federal agencies targeted members of the Armenian Power gang with a wide range of crimes including kidnapping, extortion, bank fraud, and narcotic trafficking. (Hans Gutknecht/Staff Photographer)

get Hye and rap