Monday, November 27, 2006

It's hard being a (nation of) Muslim


An African-American co-worker approached me (in the men's room, of all places) and asked me if I was Muslim. I said that I was, but I was a little reticent about it. Firstly, I'm not very religious; secondly, I don't bond with people on religion; thirdly, the last thing I needed was to have someone at work hold me to a standard to which I very loosely adhere. Finally, I had a nagging suspicion that while we were both Muslims, he was Nation of Islam and I'm just plain old Sunni.

This would have been a very awkward conversation, explaining to him that I didn't believe a space ship was orbiting around earth waiting to rescue all the brothers nor did I think I could ever work a bowtie into my 'look'.

My fears were unfounded; he was very nice and very pleasant. He seemed interested in the fact that I was a Muslim from the Arab world and he didn't attempt to test my faith or talk politics. His pleasant demeanour will make my attempts to distance myself from him that much harder. I mean, what if he chastises me for not eating Halal meat? I even have a problem with my own use of the word 'chastise'. The reason I left Egypt is so that people would stop chastising me. Also, if he invites me to 'break bread' with him, I'll have an even bigger problem. I like eating alone.

He'll doubtless construe this as religious snobbery. I may inadvertently stir up some ethnic strife up in this bitch as a result of this culinary snub. He may inform his friends who will doubtless waylay me and end up pelting me with bowties. If I'm lucky.

15 Comments:

Anonymous lynn said...

How would you find out if he is "Nation of Islam" or not? Does he talk really loud like a preacher? If he is "Nation of Islam" I think you can eat with him. I doubt that they eat "halal".

Whatever happened with that woman that you went out with? Did you call her?

7:31 PM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

She called me. I've been seeing her pretty much every week. We still haven't had sex though:(

9:11 PM  
Blogger Cairogal said...

Seriously, I don't think Nation of Islam followers are really Muslim by the traditional, and even the not-so-traditional definitions. From a religion founded on tolerance, they spew a lot of intolerance.

I'm wondering why you don't eat with other people. Ever?

9:40 PM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

I'm kind of a sociable loner, if that makes any sense. I spend so much time alone that it's hard to break out of that. Plus, most of the people I get along with are a little anti-social, so we discourage each other from over-mingling. It's a sickness.

9:58 PM  
Anonymous tom said...

Someone spoke to you in a men's room? Doesnt he know that is against the law of man?

4:11 AM  
Anonymous lynn said...

I knew you were being too pessimistic after that first date. Now, what we really want to know...Has she blogged about you again?

I can see Basil and a few of his very closest friend out to dinner together all at different tables.

8:05 AM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

Tom: I hear you, man! It's one of the ten commandments (I think)

Lynn: No blog entries about me but she knows I read her blog so I doubt she'd try it. Anyways, no blog is good news. I'll keep you posted.

9:13 AM  
Blogger jokerman said...

there is no breaking bread in Islam, & why are you on at so much when it hasnt happened yet

9:58 AM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

Muslims don't eat? I was being facetious by saying 'breaking bread' rather than eating. It sounds like the kind of thing a NOI man would say.

Besides, check the title of the blog: RAMBLEfish.

10:32 AM  
Blogger Cairogal said...

Does she know she have this blog? I don't remember, but I think you said this already.

11:38 AM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

I'm assuming you mean does she know I have this blog and the answer would be no. This blog is confidential. And kind of scandalous.

12:10 PM  
Blogger Cairogal said...

This is scandalous? I need tp proov resad my comments beforte eending.

6:28 PM  
Blogger Basil Fawlty said...

Women take it the wrong way when men maintain blogs where they expose their subversive nature, profess a fondness for porn and dissect their dating lives with sportscaster-like objectivity.

8:21 PM  
Blogger Forsoothsayer said...

i love eating alone too. i hate it when people talk to me when i am eating.

5:44 PM  
Blogger laura said...

I don't mind eating with people... as long as they aren't WATCHING me eat.

5:54 AM  

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