International Women’s Day is Upon Us; A Statement from Prime Minister Trudeau Reminds Us That Canada is Doing Much Better Than Our Neighbor, the USA; Put This in Your Pipe and Smoke It Defined;  A Rosie the Riveter GIF Brings Mixed Responses; Coincidences Abound Making it Perhaps Destiny; Last Minute Appearance by MBS; Photographs of Book Covers   

Prime Minister Trudeau, the leader of my country, Canada issued a statement which is quoted (in part) : 

“Each and every day, women and girls help shape Canada into a fairer and stronger country. As we mark International Women’s Day, we celebrate and recognize the achievements of women and girls in Canada and reaffirm our commitment to removing systemic barriers to advance gender equality in Canada and around the world…. “Last year, labour force participation for working-age women in Canada reached a record-high 85 per cent. This was bolstered by our Canada-wide early learning and child care system, which is already delivering $10-a-day child care in nearly half of Canadian provinces and territories and has reduced fees by at least 50 per cent in all other jurisdictions, with work on track to reach $10-a-day across the country in just three years. In addition, we launched the Women Entrepreneurship Strategy, which has provided funding to address systemic barriers to women’s equality and advance their full and equal participation in the economy through greater access to financing, mentorship, and training. By enabling more women, especially mothers, to participate in the workforce, and by

programs like the 50 – 30 Challenge, we build better futures for everyone.

“Internationally, Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy continues to guide our efforts to advance gender equality around the world. In 2021-22, Canada allocated 99 per cent of its bilateral international development assistance toward initiatives that either targeted or integrated gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls”  The statement ended: 

““On this International Women’s Day, I invite all Canadians to amplify the voices of women and girls, celebrate their enormous contributions in every aspect of Canadian society, and stand up for a more equal and equitable world.”

This definitely made me proud to be a Canadian. There are very few leaders that could be making such a proud statement. It should be read in its entirety. This might just be the time to compare Canada and the United States. “Inequality in the U.S. has always been higher than in Canada and, in fact, has risen faster for the entirety of those 35 years. In Canada, after increasing sharply during the difficult period in the early-to-mid 1990s, income inequality in Canada has remained essentially flat over the last decade.”

The situation in the USA is only going to worsen. Rather than participate in governmental programs helping women in child care, ensuring early learning and sponsoring 50-30 challenges the USA is mired in the abortion issue. No progress shall ever be made as long as this foolishness is allowed to continue. Oh well, it is not my problem. No longer live there, too old to worry about an abortion. 

But put this in your pipe and smoke it. “Why does Canada have less income disparity than the US? In a word: unions. Our higher union density ensures that workers enjoy better wages, benefits and protections. Read Jim Stanford’s piece in the New York Times. Here is the link. “

Put this in your pipe and smoke it is an idiom used to tell someone that he or she must accept what one says is true even though he or she might not like it or agree with it. I also hasten to remind faithful readers that the March 7, 2023 blog spoke of the uphill battle to unionize Starbucks, and the food industry in general. 

What did I do to celebrate International Women’s Day? It is early 10 am but already sent many International Women Day gifs to many Instagram followers. The GIF shows a Rosy the Riveter flexing her muscle  Here are some of the responses received: 

Me: Morning!! (Then sent GIF) 

He: You beat me to it. I was about to wish you. 

Me: I always do beat you. Hahaha 

He: Hahaha Have a good day!

Me: Thank you. I will. LOL is coming to help. I told him he best respect me on this day. He laughed!

He: He has to. 

Me: I does and I know he will. 

That conversation was with MUSAG, who is mentioned frequently here. 

He: You are bent on making me famous. 

Me: True. But anonymously. Hahaha Do you want me to reveal your true identity. 

He: No thanks 

Me: I knew it but thought I would ask. 

The other exchange with a woman originally met at a Starbucks in the Yas Mall, Abu Dhabi, she was visiting. We have continued communicating through Instagram. She has a huge following. Claire hikes and hikes and hikes up mountains and huge hills, showing the whole world that a women can do it.  She responded to the GIF with laughing emojis. 

Me: You have more muscles than me probably. But we are both strong women. 

She: We are!! 

Another with an Instagram woman follower who lives in Edmonton. I sent her my Rosie the Riveter GIF, she sent me a pretty Happy Woman’s Day sticker. 

Me: I like mine better. More muscle. Hahaha

She: Me too! Shows our strength! 

Me: And we got it!! Talking about it now on my blog which I am now writing. I love your response. It is going in there. 

She: Yes! So excited for the blog. My absolute favorite. So happy to be included. 

Me: WOW. I did not know you read it!!! That makes me so happy!!!! 

But here, another amazing coincidence. This from Wikipedia: Rosie the Riveter is an allegorical cultural icon in the United States who represents the women who worked in factories and shipyards during World War II, many of whom produced munitions and war supplies.[1][2] These women sometimes took entirely new jobs replacing the male workers who joined the military. Rosie the Riveter is used as a symbol of American feminism and women’s economic advantage.” 

There is a Rosie the Riveter WWII Homefront Memorial Park in Richmond, California. Richmond is just at the other end of the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge. I lived in Marin for fifty years and have visited the Memorial Park on more than one occasion. Richmond ,California has enormous significance for me in other ways. Richmond is also the home of the Masjid Al Noon, Richmond. I became of the Islamic faith during Covid, by telephone I received instruction from Imam Hamza from the Rashid Al Noor. I only spoke with him once, it was transformative, to say the very least. Further contact with him was blocked by an evil man, who was attempting to take the entire credit for bringing me to the faith. He, from Pakistan, a taxi driver was born in the faith. He had never read the Quran, this was purposive, he told me. He did not want knowledge to interfere with his practices. 

We shall digress briefly, speaking of my yesterday, but it is relevant to the story line. It was a day of pampering, of taking care of myself.  My first appointment with  hair stylist at Ricci’s. Then off to Khrome Nails for a pedicure and a color change – my fingers must match my colorful sling. An attempt to lunch at a nearby restaurant, failed, it was closed so instead, on a whim and by chance,  discovered a used book store, almost next door to Khrome. The Alhambra  Book Store (since 1990), has an enormous collection of used books, all exquisitely organized and catalogued. I chose four from the Islamic religion section. Two describing the Hajj, Irshad Manji’s The Trouble With Islam Today one I am sure you will be hearing about soon) and a small paperback Quran to add to my vast and growing collection. This from the Introduction.

“There are some who think that the presence of a realized person is essential for an understanding of the Quran. That is, it is solely with the assistance of a spiritual person that the meaning of the Quran will be revealed. That is to underestimate both man and the Quran. The Quran addresses the Quran’s mind and the mind is man’s greatest faculty. Discovering the Quran therefore on a purely intellectual level is sufficient to arrive at its meaning. Indeed, at the intellectual level, the Quran becomes an open book. But those who discover the Quran at any lower level cannot be said to have discovered it at all. Falling back instead on their community traditions for instruction and enlightenment cannot compare with the ideal approach to religion that the Quran so consistently offers.” The Quran translated by Maulana Wahiduddin Khan. A photograph of the cover of the book shall follow the blog. 

Those that fall back on community traditions have elsewhere been called ‘pious Muslims’ but also lazy Muslims. Lazy is unable to work or use energy. Many synonyms describe this adjective: indolent, slothful, work-shy, shiftless, loafing, inert, sluggish, lethargic, torpid, enervated,dull, plodding; remiss, lax, lackadaisical, do-nothing, bone idle. The San Francisco taxi driver, whose last name is also Khan, can be described as lax, lackadaisical, dull, remiss, slothful  and plodding. He took advantage of the benefits of the faith, which are many fooling himself, counting up his good deeds but failing to admit to, or recognize his bad deeds. I supported his entire family during covid days, enabling his health. 

I regard it as charity (although the IRS does not, she said laughingly). But at his moment in time I am neither vengeful nor angry. Definitely wouldn’t like to be him on Judgment Day, but I won’t be he – I shall be me. 

There was another ‘find’ at the Alhambra bookstore. A known treasured cookbook, no longer in my possession. It is perfect, absolutely perfect as it is full of delicious recipes – all vegetarian, therefore allowed by the Islamic faith. All this and I can cook too, I laughingly say. Got the book and have my groceries delivered by Save-On so I am ready to go!!! There is a song which can be yours for the asking. Nancy Walker’s I Can Cook Too Is most  amusing (although slightly vulgar) It can be found on YouTube. It will lighten things up, although not exactly appropriate for International Women’s Day. It does remind us that conditions for women have improved slightly over the years. 

There are so many coincidences contained in this true story. It does make me believe this must be fate or destiny. However, not sure where destiny may be leading me. I will trust in Allah (SWT), everything will turn out in the end (or not). I responded to an Instagram reel: 

Me: I understand! It is the relationship with Allah (SWT) that is important. Not winning or loosing. Winning/loosing is immaterial. 

You must listen to this reel.

At this very moment an Instagram post just appeared picturing MBS accompanied by a smiling woman ( k.s.a.1124) with this message:

He: Women are the source of development for any society, without empowered women it is difficult to reform societies, since women are half of society and they are generational educators. I did comment (of course)

Me: I totally agree. It is going on the blog. My blog, of course. 

It is rather prophetic, those words of MBS. Scotland (my ancestry) during the early twentieth century realized that women are generational educators long before other countries so instituted an educational system that included women, for this very reason. I once painted my face like the Scottish flag. I shall include that photo tomorrow. 

Looking good – better a Scottish flag than when my face was painted in the manner of the Qatar flag. Blue is my color. Sorry Saudi Arabia – green is not my color and the writing would be difficult to implement. But perhaps with a stencil??? I am not ruling it out – oh Ruler. Hahaha.