Saying “Grace”

A lot of people say “grace” or other form of prayer before eating. This usually takes the form as a thank-you to God for providing them with food to eat.

I grew up with the simple Persian prayer Besmelah which means in the name of God. It’s mostly just a way of keeping God in mind. When eating, I generally say one of those for each animal that I’m eating as a way of acknowledging that an animal is dead so that I can eat and hoping that there is an afterlife and the animal is in heaven. There’s only a few simple rules I use:

  • I say it once for each animal. (I’m having roastbeef, I’ll say one for the cow.)
  • I repeat it for each meal regardless of the content (If I have more of the same roast the next night, I’ll say it again for the same cow.)
  • If I have something with multiple animals, then I’ll say one for each identifiable animal.
  • If it’s something like chicken wings, then there isn’t a way to know exactly how many birds died (some of the wings could be from the same bird), but I’ll assume each is from a different bird and say one for each wing.
  • If there is no way to know how many animals there are, like with processed meats like sausage or cold-cuts (a single piece of these sorts of meats can evidently contain meat from upwards of 1,000 different animals!), then I’ll usually just say a few (~3~5) as a best-attempt to cover them all.

Some religious people may be offended that I don’t specifically thank God, but I think that thanking, apologizing to, and hoping for the best for the animals who died makes more sense. It’s the least we can do. Also, because the grace I say is a single word (the meaning and intent matter more than the syntax), it is efficient to do it this way. It’s only fair.


I’m sick and tired of my mother always nagging that she works so hard (much of the work she does is her own making) and I never do anything (despite the fact that she calls me every 5-8 minutes). I’m constantly doing stuff for her, but can never remember them later. I’m going to start keeping a list so that I can throw some examples in her face when she nags. 😛 (Of course, she’ll probably just end up saying “You’re still using that example?”, but it’s better than nothing.)

  • Fixed her washing machine!

FML; Murphy was an Optimist!

I have decided to start keeping (I suspect using a gerund is unlikely to be accurate) a list of examples of why my life sucks. Some will be obviously bad or hurtful or damaging, others not so much bad as inconvenient, annoying, irritating, frustrating (I have a huge problem with frustration and don’t handle it well).

Now don’t get me wrong, I have no delusions of having the worst life; quite the contrary, I freely admit that some aspects are actually fairly good and nice, but there is no way it can be considered a great, comfortable, happy life either. The cumulation of all the difference circumstances in my life (financial, social, physical, mental, geographic, etc.) somehow create a convergence that makes me quite miserable overall (i.e., on average).

Whenever bad things happen to me or my (immediate) family, I can’t help but think that I/we are cursed because bad things not only happen a lot (far too frequently to be typical), but they usually happen in just the right way to maximize the hurt. Some people will say that bad stuff happens to everybody and things like these are coincidence, but even a die-hard skeptic has to admit that coincidence can only stretch so far. How many coincidences does it take before it becomes a statistical aberration? 10? 100? 1,000,000? Yes, a perfectly balanced coin, when flipped an infinite number of times will have runs of 1,000 heads in a row or 1,000,000 tails in a row, and so on, but that’s just theoretical since nothing in real life is infinite nor perfect. If you flip a coin 10 times and it comes up heads nine of those, then you just have to question if it’s coincidence or something else…

  • Last week I put a hold on volumes one, two, and three (of three) of something at the library.

    I checked on my holds two days later and saw that volumes two and three were already transfered to my home branch, but the third one (volume one) was listed as “Missing + 1 Hold”. What the‽ Why did the system not transfer my hold to one of the other copies if the one it was assigned to could not be found‽ There were four or five copies, two or three of which were in. I canceled the hold and put it again, this time it was assigned to one of the copies marked as “In Library”.

    Another two days later, it was Saturday, the day I go out to pick up my holds from the library. I checked again, and there was no change; it was marked as “In Library + 1 Hold”.

    I said “screw it” and decided to go to the library and pick up the copy of volume one in person because we were going to be in the area to run some errands anyway. A few minutes later, I arrived at the library and checked the catalog to determine where to find it, but when I did, it said it was, finally, after a week, “In Transit”. WTF‽

    They didn’t bother sending it for a week, and the moment (literally down to a few minutes) I decided they can suck it and I’d get it myself, they send it out! We ran our errands and a couple of hours later, I went to my home branch (with ~5% hope) and picked up my holds. Not surprisingly, volume one had not arrived yet.

    That meant that I had to wait for a whole week before I could volume one. If it were volume three, or even two, that would be one thing, but volume one‽ That ruins the whole set. (Actually, in this case, the books were really small, so I could get through the whole thing in a week, so any of them would block the whole thing.)

    This doesn’t seem like a big deal, but for someone with OCD like myself, having them split up like this, with different due dates, is quite painful.