From outside one will always triumphantly impress theories upon the world and then fall straight into the ditch one has dug, but only from inside will one keep oneself and the world quiet and true. /FK (Contact: TBONotebooks at fastmail.fm. The Blue Octavo Notebooks welcomes mail, although we cannot guarantee a response. Your email may be posted in part on The Blue Octavo Notebooks unless otherwise requested.) Please enjoy the notebook entries, and thanks for reading.

Saturday, February 14, 2004

You with the candy hearts! Put the “Be Mine” candies down, put your hands in the air, and STEP AWAY from the pink teddy bear! SLOWLY!

BURAIDAH, 14 February 2004 — Saudi religious authorities have warned the public against celebrating Valentine’s Day or selling gifts related to the feast, Al-Riyadh reported yesterday.

“It is a pagan Christian holiday and Muslims who believe in God and Judgment Day should not celebrate or acknowledge it or congratulate people on it,” an edict issued by the Fatwa Committee said.
Sheikh Ibrahim Al-Ghaith, president of the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, has also issued a warning against celebrating Valentine’s Day or the ‘feast of love.’

Al-Ghaith has instructed his officials all over the Kingdom to keep a watch on shops selling roses and other gift items to celebrate the occasion.

“You should also enlighten Saudi citizens on the danger of this custom, which is alien to our society, and make them aware of its negative effect,” Al-Madinah daily quoted the religious police chief as saying.

And I’ve been told that Israel is the most intolerant country in the Middle East. So it goes…

Oh, by the way, Happy Valentine’s Day!

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