People & Places articles

A Stranger, an Assailant and a Man

Waking up in the morning, one has a pretty good idea how the day will progress: brush teeth, get dressed, eat breakfast, go to work, break for lunch, come home, have dinner, go to bed. A carjacking is never in anyone’s plans but that is exactly what happened to Armen one night almost two decades ago when, after dinner, he told his mom that he was going out to gas up the car because he had an early morning meeting the following day.

Chronicle This!

It’s a long and tedious drive back from Las Vegas. Darkness has set and the red taillights wind ahead of the car like an unending ribbon twinkling in the night. Inside the car it is anything but quiet or boring. Shahane and Gayane are making a stream of phone calls, remotely trying to complete the layout of the upcoming issue of the college newspaper they co-founded, along with Arpine, four years ago while sophomores at UCLA. “Lets just do a newspaper and have all Armenians – not just UCLA Armenians – write to it and contribute to it and that’s how it started. Very randomly,” Gayane says of the original idea. At the time, she believed that students needed an outlet to express themselves in ways not available to them. “This way, students can write how they felt about our culture and how they felt about being in the Diaspora as students in a very free way without being judged for it.”

O Tata!

The cluster of young women, dressed in their logo-ed shirts and black skirts look sleek and professional. They are here to promote a magazine. A few minutes before the floor manager is ready to open the house, they rush past the guests waiting in line and make their way towards the tables set up for them. Excitement is high. Over three thousand Armenians have made the 250 mile trip to Las Vegas, Nevada to hear the greatest Armenian pop star of today.

The Incident

The incident happened so long ago that I’d almost forgotten about it. Almost. But not quite. It took place many years ago, and the memory of it still stings as sharply today as it back then.

The Problem With Women

“The problem is very simple,” says Sevag, “boys don’t want to grow up.” It’s a simple statement to the complicated issue of the disconnection between men and women. Recently divorced, he feels keenly the effects of the phenomena of the breakdown of communication between the sexes.

You’re Too Much

“You look nice. What’s up?” I asked Mary. It’s a beautiful Saturday afternoon and Mary is sitting at a table with her colleagues, Manouk and Ani. Whereas they are dressed casually, Mary has arrived dressed for an evening out.

The Chef

The opening of the café is a success. “Eatery” is what Sevan calls it. Open for only two months, it is a hub of activity with Sevan at the center of it. Short in stature, with closely cropped hair and two day’s worth of stubble, he seems to be everywhere – outside greeting friends, inside managing staff, serving a plate here, a cup of coffee there – all the while keeping up a steady chatter with anyone within hearing distance without breaking his rhythm or flow of speech.

Where Are The Men?

In the ongoing dialogue between men and women, it seems the lines of communication are ringing with the annoying drone of a busy signal. The growing ranks of people remaining single, either unwillingly or by choice, has swollen to unexpected proportions in the last decade.