Early Morning Open Thread: Happy Muslim New Year 1434!

Note from faithful commentor Amir Khalid, early Wednesday morning:

… As of sunset today, it is the first of Muharram, 1434; New Year’s Day in the Muslim calendar. Not a religious holiday (after all, we’ve just had Eid al-Adha), but the turn of the year offers the usual opportunity to make new beginnings and resolutions and all that.

Diwali, of course, was earlier this week. As was St. Martin’s Day, when in European tradition the livestock that couldn’t be fed through the winter was slaughtered and the first of the season’s wine tasted, and children still carry lanterns through the streets to celebrate. November 11 was also the pre-Christian Scandinavian New Year, and tied to the Celtic Samhain festival at the end of October, when the veil between the world of the living and the world(s) of the dead was said to be thinnest. The folk-lore in the temperate Northern hemisphere always comes back to wrapping up the busy outdoor agricultural half of the year, digging out the artificial lights again, taking stock and wrapping up a year’s worth of change, loss, regret, and interpersonal conflicts as everyone prepares to spend the next six months huddled together in the dark and cold. Of course, it’s not entirely coincidental that our American founders chose to stage the annual elections after the harvest had wrapped up and before the weather made it too difficult to travel on foot or by horse, either…

So I did wonder if Muharram might represent another facet of this ‘wrap up Persephone’s half of the year’ tradition, but of course the Muslim calendar is lunar-based and so the New Year isn’t seasonally fixed… but still: “new beginnings and resolutions and all that”, and many happy returns to our Muslim commentors!
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We must love one another or die.

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34 replies
  1. 1
    MikeJ says:

    Nothing to do with the new year, but since everyone was talking about the fail whale Orca recently, Ars has an article on Narwhal. Orca died on 1200 reqs/sec. Narwhal handled 10,000 r/s and didn’t hiccup.

    I’ll bet the Romney campaign saved a lot of money on development and deployment. Look where it got them.

  2. 2
    amk says:

    That kenyan muslin usurper responsible for some Myanmar terrists’ release.

  3. 3
    WereBear says:

    Happy New Year!

    Love the Auden.

    I am currently reading Yes I Can , by Sammy Davis Jr. (which you would know if you had joined the Balloon Juice Good Reads group…) and it should be required reading for all Republicans.

    Young Sammy was tossed from the coddled world of vaudeville into the Army, where he was painted with white house paint and had his nose broken several times, fighting. Then, as a headlining entertainer, he had to be careful going out for a burger after the show, lest a greasy spoon refuse to let him in.

    But I doubt they would read it… rather long.

  4. 4
    danielx says:

    When you wake up sneezing at 4 am, you know the day will not be as good as you could wish.

  5. 5
    JGabriel says:

    W. H. Auden (via Anne Laurie @ Top):

    We must love one another or die.

    I like that poem. Auden, however, was never satisfied with that line. We’re gonna die anyway, he reasoned, and, for a while, changed it to, “We must love one another and die.”

    I think Auden eventually stopped reciting it at public readings, due to this dissatisfaction.

    Just a bit of trivia to accompany the quote.

    .

  6. 6
    MaxxLange says:

    @WereBear: I had no idea that Jews faced such discrimination in the Army.

  7. 7
    JGabriel says:

    __
    __
    MikeJ:

    I’ll bet the Romney campaign saved a lot of money on development and deployment.

    You’d be surprised. Incompetent consultants are frequently just as expensive as the competent kind, and sometimes more so — even before you factor in the expense of the consequences.

    .

  8. 8
  9. 9
    MikeJ says:

    @WereBear:

    I am currently reading Yes I Can , by Sammy Davis Jr.

    You know what the title of that book should be? “Yes, I Can If Frank Sinatra Says It’s OK”. ‘Cause Frank calls the shots for all of those guys. Did you get to the part yet where uh… Sammy is coming out of the Copa… it’s about 3 o’clock in the morning and, uh, he sees Frank? Frank’s walking down Broadway by himself…

    Fuckin’ limeys.

  10. 10
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    Did I miss the front page post about the IDF live tweeting their attacks on Hamas?

    What a fucked up world.

  11. 11
    Schlemizel says:

    @arguingwithsignposts:

    I did see it in an earlier thread. How soon before they have the live video stream?

    Tangent: You had to know something like this was going to happen soon. Palestine was talking about going to the UN asking for recognition again. Bibi for brains had to provoke a response so he can claim they are terrorists and recognition would hurt the peace process.

  12. 12
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    totally OT but 16th (which it’s 45 min away from down here in Koala land) is my 30th birthday. Madness. Also: entertaining because i feel so damn young and most of my age-cohort are starting to feel old.

  13. 13
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @Schlemizel: I figured someone might have mentioned it in the comments somewhere, but I’ve had IRL shit to do, so haven’t been able to follow closely the last day. Just figured someone among the FPers could post about an actual military operation instead of village bullshit.

    They’re posting vids and photos on youtube and flickr, but not livestream yet. I doubt that would come, because there’s no control over a live feed video stream if something fucks up.

  14. 14
    MikeJ says:

    @MikeJ: Reread the original Orca article. I was wrong, it did not choke on 1200 requests per second. It choked on 1200 requests per *minute*. I got confused after reading Narwhal’s specs, which was actually given in requests per second.

    We regret the error.

  15. 15
    scav says:

    Happy New Year! especially to all those that would like or need a little more symbolic traction on getting things moving in a better direction.

  16. 16
    arguingwithsignposts says:

    @MikeJ: Totally OT on the subject of the article, but the tech unit’s sign – from a design standpoint – sucks. Ugh.

  17. 17
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @MikeJ: Thank you. It needed to be said.

    @TheMightyTrowel: Happy birthday.

  18. 18
    NonyNony says:

    @JGabriel:

    You’d be surprised. Incompetent consultants are frequently just as expensive as the competent kind, and sometimes more so — even before you factor in the expense of the consequences.

    And consultants working to get their share of that sweet, sweet grifting money from a political campaign might just have their core expertise in something other than building systems.

    Related – did Romney’s team name their app Orca because they knew the Obama team named their app Narwhal?

    Cause orcas eat narwhals, and I could see them thinking that’s clever. Too bad narwhals are faster than orcas, and you can’t eat what you can’t catch up with.

  19. 19
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: :) thanks. Wish i were asleep though. i’ve been marking essays all week and i’m about ready to scoop my eyes out with a rusty spoon. only 3 left!

  20. 20
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: :) thanks. Wish i were asleep though. i’ve been marking essays all week and i’m about ready to scoop my eyes out with a rusty spoon. only 3 left!

  21. 21
    TheMightyTrowel says:

    fywp

  22. 22
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @TheMightyTrowel:

    Happy upside-down birthday!

  23. 23
    Jamey says:

    The hard part about 1 Muharram is trying to remember not to date my checks 1433…

  24. 24
    Jamey says:

    @MikeJ: “Tonight: Spinal Pap.”

  25. 25
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    This was passed on to me by an employee of the company involved, so I’m reasonably certain I’m not passing on a hoax.

    25K “likes” on UNC Children’s Hospital’s Facebook page = $10K gift from Grifols.

  26. 26
    Hal says:

    Still unclear as to what the hell Benghazi is supposed to be about. Romney’s main point during the 3rd debate (which btw, I feel like happened months ago instead of just 3 weeks) was Obama not calling Benghazi a terrorist act soon enough. Other than that, what exactly is supposed to have happened that the President knew about and could have prevented?

    Also, voters give a shit meter pre-election was about a .5. Now it appears as nothing more than a vehicle for old man McCain and Linday Graham to use for re-election.

    Which also brings me to McCain. This man has been in the Senate for decades, and is what, a 107? Is this what McCain’s life has been reduced to politically? Clawing at relevance and desperation to hold onto his Senate seat. Jon Stewart once said of McCain post 2008 election (paraphrasing) that he went from being someone who wanted to be a transformational candidate to someone who’s fondest desire was to die in the Senate. Some people really know how to hold a grudge.

  27. 27
    Elizabelle says:

    @TheMightyTrowel:

    G’day and happy birthday. Great place to celebrate your 30th.

    You are just the right age. And these are the good old days. (Now with wallabies.)

  28. 28
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Hal: I think it’s a dogwhistle. Not the Limbaughian trolling kind of reverse dogwhistle, where you say something that your opponents will call out as racist just to rile them up while your supporters act like nothing happened; but the original kind of dogwhistle where you say something only your supporters will hear.

    In this case, they’re dogwhistling to conspiracy theorists who believe Obama is somehow in cahoots with The Terrorists, and deliberately allowed the attack to happen for some reason. They can’t say this explicitly, because it doesn’t make any sense, and this would be obvious if they said so explicitly. But they can insinuate that the coverup is the real story, that he’s got something to hide and we don’t know what it is, and they can blow smoke about it somehow being vaguely connected to the Petraeus affair and let other people’s imaginations fill in the rest.

  29. 29
    Felinious Wench says:

    My dad’s a comparative religion scholar. This is his favorite time of the year.

  30. 30
    John says:

    Anybody know anything about the Fox report of prisoners being held in the Benghazi annex? I know it’s Fox, but stopped clock and all.

  31. 31
    Yutsano says:

    @TheMightyTrowel: O-tanjyoobi o omedeto gozaimasu!

    (Seems appropriate to say since Nihon is on your side of the Magic Time Warp Line.)

  32. 32
    Sister Rail Gun of Warm Humanitarianism says:

    @John: I know it’s something Broadwell was claiming at a speaking engagement, leading to MSM speculation that she’d gotten it from Petraeus.

  33. 33
    JGabriel says:

    @NonyNony:

    Related – did Romney’s team name their app Orca because they knew the Obama team named their app Narwhal?

    Yes.

    Ars Technica:

    It was named in honor of the killer whale as an allusion to the Obama campaign’s own voter identification program, code-named Narwhal; orcas are the top predator of narwhals, Romney campaign staffers explained, and they were preparing to outshine the Democratic voter turnout effort.

  34. 34
    cckids says:

    @JGabriel: As with so many things related to campaign Romney, that makes me snicker. They were SO inept, it was like a rolling 3 Stooges movie.

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