Saturday, March 03, 2007

assorted pieces of news

I think my favorite Bulgarian holiday is March 1st, "Baba Marta." There are about a zillion variations on the fable behind the story, but the important thing to know is; it involves spring, storks, and the colors of red and white. I'm sure some clever volunteer will blog about this holiday, and I'll post a link to it later on.

so why do I like it?

because Baba Marta is the ultimate gift-giver's paradise!!!! the week following March 1st, the streets and main shopping areas are lined, and I mean LINED, with individuals selling "martinitzi." Martinitzis take the form for bracelets, cloth broaches for your jacket, necklaces, and rings/trinkets- the important part is the red/white combination of yarn. Some bracelets have colorful stones or beads (the turkish eye or a heart are popular) or are embroidered with your name, zodiac sign, or favorite football team. These martinitzi are exchanged between friends, family, peers, and coworkers in preparation for the welcoming on spring, so the more people you know, the more martinitzi you get and receive!!!! and at the low low price of 30 stotinki (about $0.20), you can buy to your heart's desire! They are so cool because individuals create the designs and think up new ideas and you can truly find a unique bracelet. Okay, I will try and take some pictures so that this makes more sense...but seriously, I love this holiday!

Right now at work we are collecting offers for our tech equipment that we'll buy for our USAID grant. It has been a bit frustrating because we have very specific price ranges for each item we buy, and not all the companies we are working with understand that! For example, we say "okay 1500 BGN for a laptop is our max" and we get offered one for 1900. hahahah. we are getting excited about designing our website, and we're planning our first power-point presentation led activity. On March 8th, the world apparently celebrates "International Women's Day" (minus America! I'd never heard of this before last year), so we are creating a presentation on women in Bulgarian history. Our presentation won't be until the end of the month, but it will be really cool because someone from the embassy will be here and will present a similar powerpoint on women in American history! I hope it turns out cool.

Speaking of women in American history, Ann Coulter continues to pollute every accomplishment ever achieved by women. This woman says the most extraordinary things I've ever heard and is perhaps one of the most intolerance people I have ever interacted with. She recently hinted that John Edwards was a "faggot" at the Conservative Policitical Action Conference. And okay, I agree that everyone has a right to their opinion, but what is that about? If John Edwards is in fact a "faggot," does this somehow affect his ability to be President? Last time I checked, that's a big resounding NO! So then what's the point of mentioning it? I know that sometimes it seems like we "liberals" are pushing society into a highly "PC-ed" language, but I'm forever in favor of decreasing the amount of hate speech in public, in private, and in the media. Anyone with me on that?


At 5:16 AM, Anonymous Angeline said...

i'm with you! more LOVE speech!!!!!

And I will be celebrating women's day on March 8th...I don't know how yet, but I will!


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