There’s a game I created in the lead up to the trip, it’s called ‘Tell people you’re going to Iran.’ It involves telling people you’re going to Iran. I’d go through the itinerary, then pause and say ‘Oh yeah, and Iran’. It was like saying you just shat yourself. Someone would drop their glass. Any American patriots in earshot would get straight onto the phone about me aiding the enemy. Most people develop a look on their face that says ‘Why? Why, why oh why?’. Then they come right out and say it, ‘Why would anyone want to go to Iran, they’re dangerous people.’ I would then strike an arrogant, patronising tone, and mock people about their ignorance. I then loudly ridicule them for getting their news from Rupert Murdoch, before storming outside in a huff, clicking my fingers so that my entourage and loyalists follow. It’s when I’m outside I realise no one followed, and they’ve already forgotten about me and moved on to something else, so I just go home. I leave pubs like that a lot, I try and say goodbye but everyone just ignores. ‘Guys, I’m off, see you later’. Nothing. ‘Who was that guy anyway?’
Me thinking I’m going to get stoned to death or kidnapped in Iran, is like a Persian or Arab thinking that if they go to the US/UK, they’ll be stripped naked and photographed on their knees with a dog collar, and then killed by sadistic western soldiers, as happened in neighbouring Iraq. Or have their door kicked down and house burned by heroic troops. We only hear the bad stuff about Iran, and the bad stuff is bad (Sharia Law, anyone?), but it’s only a snippet of a vast, ethnically diverse country, in much the same way that there’s much, much more to the USA than military invasions. We can’t judge entire nations and their people purely on the bad apples. Heck, what would happen if the world judged Australia on its choice of Prime Minister? We’d be laughed at everywhere we went, more so. There is no way you can explain Tony Abbot. I’ve tried, it can’t be done. Just take it. Americans abroad had to cop it during the era of W Bush, it’s only fair that we too accept ridicule for giving power to a brain dead ideologue.
Is Iran dangerous? Well, yes – if, I plan on having gay sex, taking drugs or try to enter the country illegally. That said, Iran is a much safer place to try and enter ‘illegally’, than say, Australia. You don’t wanna mess around with that countries borders, they’re fucking crazy. ‘Stop the boats! Lock them up! Send them to Papua New Guinea!!!’. Wtf? Furthermore, I like to keep all options open on a trip, so I’m not ruling out gay sex, or snorting heroin from the breasts of a muslim escort . I play hard, and I play fast – a bull like me has no time for rules. (For any Revolutionary Guards reading, I’m just pullin your headscarf). From what I read, Iranians are among the most ridiculously friendly people in the world – they’re so happy you decided to see their country, they just wanna make a good impression. That, and they’re naturally hospitable people, much like many people across the Middle East.
This is my closing statement before crossing the border, everyone huddle round, cue piano… Throughout the world, Governments tend to serve themselves and the careers of their their staff. The militaries serve their weapon contracts and geopolitical strategic interests. Corporate media serves the interests of the military and big business. The people just try and get by off what they’ve got, whether in New York or Tehran. Iran? Respect the law, know the customs, learn some phrases, be open to conversation, don’t snort smack from a Muslim’s breasts.
See you on the other side*
*Please note, my head and my body may reach the other side separately. In such circumstances, you are encouraged to reduce mail costs by shipping all body parts back to the family in the same package. Modest funeral requested.