Scribbles not Outlines 3 plus blogging about blogging

My cable package now includes the FX channel which is about to show the new seasons of Dexter and NCIS. Woo-hoo!

Further on the trashy tv tip, We watched the first episode of Dirty, Sexy Money last night. It looks good and will probably fall into the category of “T.V I talk to my Mum about”.

Donald Sutherland plays one of the main characters in the above programme. The man is 72 and looks fantastic. I’ve googled ‘Donald Sutherland plastic surgery’ and nothing incriminating came up, so I will presume it’s natural. Time has given him such an interesting face. I’m tired of watching actresses whose faces don’t move. Such butchery makes me feel nauseous and sabotages any attempt at emoting.

Aging is an inevitable process, so I wish we could embrace it’s beauty rather then railing against it. Why fear getting older?

When asked if she was frightened about becoming 40, Elle MacPherson (yes, wisdom comes from all sources on this blog) stated, “Well the alternative is not turning 40 (i.e dying), and that’s far more frightening.” Indeed.

Sad news from the States, being nice about Muslims is not a vote winner – all candidates.

Gossip folks! No, this doesn’t involve any celebrities. To think, people see gossip as a female foible.

Help wanted – I want to add some items to my blog’s sidebar (new comments, recent posts, e.t.c). Anyone out there with WordPress savvy? Done! Jazak Allahu Khayran and hijab flutter to iMuslim

It would appear that British food is the Millwall of global cuisine.

Finally, I wrote this as a comment on Umar Lee’s blog, but I wanted to repost it here:

What it comes down to is that the Ummah is flowing with haterade and we can see this oh so clearly on the Muslim blogosphere.

It takes many forms. Outright insults, to digs in the guise of piety or enjoying the good. Some people cannot praise anything, without first insulting something else.

I’m sure everyone here reading this, knows already knows that we are meant to make 70 excuses for our brothers and sisters.

Words have power and that includes the power to hurt.

Blog constructively people. If you have a problem with what someone has written, either email them so you can relay your concerns in private or when you write your comment take care to critique the words and not the person. Alternatively, let it go. Is it really that important?
Do not write a ton of insults, or just as bad, write a thinly veiled denunciation on your own blog which is obviously about them. The Islamiblogosphere is small and everyone will know who you are talking about.

I address this advice to myself before anyone else.

I’ve seen and read a lot of hurt feelings on the interwebs and so much of it comes down to people not extending each other basic courtesy. Be nice folks.

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Meme: Things better left unsaid.

Saw this on Ali’s blog and it resonated with a few things I’ve been thinking about lately. My list seems rather negative, but then I find positive things are easier to say.

1) I never realised until recently what it must have taken you to write that letter. I was the stupid one, not you, but I didn’t know that then.

2)I wish we had said goodbye properly. I appreciate everything you did and I hope that you are happy.

3)I admire you so much. You are still one of the people I look up to most. I try to tell you that, but I don’t think you really believe me.

4) Even though you are sincere and mean well, you are wrong in so many ways. I hope you realise that one day.

5)It’s such a shame you had to open your mouth and be so rude. It’s a shame for you though, not us.

6) I don’t know why you cannot be happy for me, but until then, I don’t want to be in contact with you.

7) I’m giving you a pat answer because it’s too personal to share with someone I hardly know and even if I did explain it, I don’t think you would understand.

8) It was me. Something I ate is obviously disagreeing with me. Sorry.

Btw, none of these are addressed to Mr Outlines. Strange as it seems, I tell him everything. Even if I don’t want to, my mouth opens and the words spill out.

Outlines Review: White Girl 10/03/08 BBC2

White Girl begins with the desperate move of a mother and her three children to an Asian area of Bradford in order to escape her violent husband.

Leah (an outstanding performance by Holly Kenny), 11 years old and the eldest child is the titular white girl. Her mum is an alcoholic and she bears much of the responsibility for her younger brother and sister. Initially, she feels alienated within the community, but gradually she befriends her asian next door neighbour. As she does so, she discovers more about Islam, until she converts, an action which brings her into direct conflict with her family.

I absolutely loved this film. With realistic dialogue and performances, more then any other drama dealing with similar subject matter, it showed the solace and joy of faith.  To non-Muslims, it can be baffling to outsiders why people become Muslim and why, even in the face of opposition from their loved ones, coverts feel it’s a belief and a way of live that they cannot leave.

Minor quibbles would be that one character said ” Allah, Peace be upon him” which is obviously incorrect. The modern soundtrack was also a tad obtrusive at times (but then I have a Dogme 95 view of music in films) and there was some unnecessary nudity.

As a convert, although, Alhamdulilah, my personal circumstances were not nearly as dire as Leah’s, I definitely could relate to her feeling and actions. As the time period since conversion increases, it is easy to forget the struggles and often loneliness which initially follow conversion. White Girl was a reminder for me of all that had happened since my conversion and how thankful I am.

You can watch the film online here 

Scribbles not Outlines 2

It’s all about hair…

Um Outlines came to visit and of course we went shopping. While wandering around a posh department store, we spotted a threading booth. I have never had any threading done but I’d heard it’s good. Plus, my eyebrows were so unruly, they were on the verge of being slapped with an ASBO. So we both sat in a chair and let the therapists get to work. It’s a weird sensation, but bearable.

When she was finishing off my brows, the lady said, “Would you like your upper lip done too?”

“Is it that bad?”, I replied.

“Well… the hairs are quite long”.

I do attend to this area from time to time, but admittedly the last time I had done so, could only be described as long ago.

(Burning with shame) “Ok then”.

I’m not sure if I was being a big baby, but it was sore – My eyes were watering!

However, I was very pleased with the end result. I whisked my Mum away before she could be persuaded to shell out for an overpriced bottle of Aloe Vera gel. She also had to feel my top lip and feel how smooth it was:

“Very nice dear. Better then that time you bleached it, that looked awful”*.

One of the downsides of wearing hijab is the difficulty in getting a decent haircut.

Not to be too descriptive, but sans hijab, I was starting to look like a Fraggle. After an aborted trip to the hairdressers, I’d had enough.

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I washed my hair, brushed it out and pointed to my husband how short I wanted it.

Mr Outlines is a meticulous sort anyway and the owner of a neatly-trimmed goatie, so I figured he’d be able to cut hair in a straight line.

Result! Job done in a few minutes and without all that hair-tugging hairdressers do.^

Can some decent films be released please? I’ve forgotten what the inside of a cinema looks like. There’s not even much I want to get out on dvd. Suggestions welcome.

Book suggestions are also always welcome.

Some of us Muslims are a tad cynical, thinking that there’s no bad stereotype that the media wouldn’t use.

Here’s a banned car advert: YouTube.
Worth getting a Yellow Card for:

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Taken from ummahpulse
Donate, make du’a, educate yourself, educate others and remember that nothing is infinite except Allah Subhannahu wa ta’ala.

*Bleaching does look bad. I’m not sure why anyone does it. It always makes me think of Lanugo hair, especially when people bleach the hair on their arms. My excuse was that I was young, foolish and frightened. It wasn’t until I went into a beauty salon and saw the range of areas that they wax that I realised how much facial hair removal goes on.

^I have a microscopic pain threshold when it comes to my hair. I cannot bear for anyone else to brush it, except me. One of the main reasons I hate going to the hairdressers. Yes, I am odd.

Where the Muslimahs are

They’re shopping in Primark. I was in there on Saturday and there were dozens of us.

Where I lived before, there was a small but diverse Muslim community. Walking about the city centre, you would see a few sisters in hijab, but no more then that.

I’m now living in a city with a sizeable Muslim population. When I first arrived here, as soon as I stepped out of the station I passed by a group of sisters who gave me Salaams with beautiful smiles. I got in a taxi and the driver was also Muslim.

So much is written about Muslim women and it doesn’t just make our religion sound ugly, it makes us sound ugly too. Dowdy, battered, oppressed. There aren’t many positive adjectives attached to us.

That is why I love seeing Muslim women in public. I love seeing the diversity of our skins, all shades. The variety of dress from abayas, to Western clothes in layers. Dupattas and denim, trainers and sparkly sandals. Hijabs that are precisely pinned or cleverly wrapped. Sisters that don’t wear hijab, but always have a prayer outfit tucked away in their bag. I love that we are here, No matter what they say, what they write, how they stare, We are here, living our lives. Just like you…but Muslim.

I love my beautiful sisters and I am proud to be among them.

Scribbles not Outlines 1

A weekly (or whenever I feel like it) miscellany:

Mouth ulcers are really, really sore. I had two last week. There is just no need to experience that much discomfort in your mouth.

After hearing so much fuss, I’ve rented the first season of The Wire. I’ll let you know if it’s any good or not.

Brad Renfro was left out of the ‘Death Reel’ at the Oscars. I always liked him and really hoped he would make it through his problems. Sadly it wasn’t to be. Drugs are crap. There’s more I could write about that, but that’s what it boils down to.

Ya’ani, Abu Sinan is back in the blogosphere! Ru7 and have a look akhi/Ukhti

I think I’m going to buy a new mobile phone. Any suggestions?

Several news stories made me feel like this.

I recently tried Iranian ice cream. It was a very pleasant mix of creamy/rosey/nutty. I wanted to find out where ice cream originated from. According to Wiki, different forms of ice cream have been made all over the world for centuries. I find that fact to be strangely uplifting. Also, I found out there is such a thing as fried ice cream(!). Has anyone got a recipe for this? (LuckyFatima and Umm Farouq, I know you both love cooking, have you heard of this?).

As this is a random post I thought I’d post a photo I’ve wanted to stick on my blog for ages. Long time readers will know that my admiration of Ms Tymoshenko stretches back a long way.

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Alhamdulilah for everything!