Laughing Without an Accent: Adventures of an Iranian American, at Home and Abroad

By Firoozeh Dumas

Within the bestselling memoir humorous in Farsi, Firoozeh Dumas mentioned her adventures turning out to be up Iranian American in Southern California. Now she back mines her wealthy Persian historical past in guffawing with no an accessory, sharing tales either delicate and funny on being a citizen of the area, on her well-meaning kin, and on fun cultural conundrums, all advised with insights into the universality of the human . (Hint: it could possibly need to do with brushing and flossing daily.)

With dry wit and a daring spirit, Dumas places her personal detailed mark at the topics of family members, group, and culture. She braves the unusual palate of her French-born husband and learns the nuances of getting her publication translated for Persian audiences (the censors edit out all references to ham). And alongside the best way, she reconciles her cherished Iranian customs along with her Western ideals.

Explaining crossover cultural foodstuff fare, Dumas says, “The most eldritch American culinary marriage is yams with melted marshmallows. I don’t understand who considered this Thanksgiving culture, yet I’m guessing a hyperactive, toothless three-year-old.” On Iranian marriage ceremony anniversaries: “It simply firstly appeared atypical to have fun the day that ‘our households determined we must always marry even supposing I had by no means met you, and albeit, it’s no longer figuring out so well.’” On attempting to slot in together with her American friends: “At the time, my father drove a Buick LeSabre, a complicated French notice which means ‘OPEC thank you you.’”

Dumas additionally files her first 12 months as a brand new mom, the familial chaos that ensues after she gets rid of the tv set from the home, the event of taking fifty-one relatives on a birthday cruise to Alaska, and a highway journey to Iowa with an American as soon as held hostage in Iran.

Droll, relocating, and correct, giggling with out an accessory indicates how our transformations can unite us–and presents indelible evidence that Firoozeh Dumas is a stand-up comedian of the top order.

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Not able to conceal her disgrace, my mom apologized. “Bebakhsheed, i'm so sorry,” she acknowledged, “but what used to be within the field isn't any longer on hand. ” My mom known as my father and defined the location. “It used to be a good mistake,” my father stated. “No one will ever understand. ” a couple of months later, the recent tuition yr started. at the first day of faculty, my brother Farshid wore his new outfits, his new footwear, combed his newly lower hair, and went with my mom and dad to fulfill his new instructor. the trainer checked out my mom and dad. They checked out her. My mom and dad unexpectedly wanted they have been invisible. Her identify used to be Mrs. Javaheri. From that day on, on each attainable social gathering, Farshid provided Mrs. Javaheri with a bouquet of bananas. And Mrs. Javaheri, fortunately, continuously smiled. Of Mice and Mandalas i used to be staying at my mom and dad’ condominium in Newport seashore while I bought a call for participation for a conversing gig in Palm Springs. I had by no means heard of the association, they'd be assembly at six within the morning, and there has been no point out of a talking fee—all undesirable symptoms. I thanked them yet became them down. I made the error of pointing out this to my mom and dad. “What? ” my father acknowledged. “We could have include you! take note the Date competition? ” My mom and dad and that i had attended the Date pageant close to Palm Springs again within the seventies. just like the Garlic pageant, which we had additionally attended, the Date pageant was once primarily an excuse to stroll round consuming deep-fried meals on a stick. There had additionally been, after all, carnival rides I wasn’t allowed to move on, because of my father, the engineer. “Who assembles those? One free screw and you’re lifeless. the following, have a funnel cake. ” There additionally have been the considered necessary competition, with the neighborhood highschool women all dressed up, and the stand with the child animals, which i wished to the touch yet which have been additionally off-limits. “See these teenagers touching the goats? They’re all gonna be ill the next day they usually won’t be aware of why. Let’s purchase a few curly fries,” my dad provided. at some point after rejecting the talking gig, I obtained one other email from an identical association letting me understand that I may still re-evaluate. “Our individuals are a robust and winning workforce of individuals, all on the most sensible in their careers. talking for us may release your profession in incredible methods. Our participants don't believe in limits. ” I were a broadcast writer for just a few months and had spoken at a few bookstores, libraries, senior houses, and ebook golf equipment. I knew that it used to be as much as me to unfold the notice approximately my e-book, yet I had no manner of judging which gigs I may still settle for and which I should still decline. i used to be afraid that the single I handed up will be the one with Oprah’s cousin within the viewers. as much as that time, I had stated certain to every little thing, yet this Palm Springs invitation used to be too a long way and entailed spending the evening in a lodge, for which i'd need to pay. I e-mailed again and requested what number of people will be attending the assembly and if any in their contributors have been within the media. I bought a cryptic reaction: “We have countless numbers of participants, even though because of their nerve-racking paintings schedules, now not each member attends each assembly.

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