Tag Archives: kitablar

Turkish Tuesdays, and Being an American when it hurts

(Originally posted in 2020, updated for the current pain:)

The Turkish book I’m currently reading is mentioned below the short incident on Judging on the Side of Merit.


I was thinking of an episode of a show, Magnificent Century, from Turkey that has been quite popular in many Spanish-speaking countries, and how much I love an early episode showing the entry of the young Sultan Suleyman (The Lawgiver, to the Turks, but known in the west as:) The Magnificent.  His new subjects shout as he rides by: “Remember that you are not greater than God!”  and the young ruler takes his duty seriously, alleviating several glowering injustices on his first day as Sultan.  Yet, I had some experiences when I lived in Turkey that show how defensive any ordinary person can be, seeing another person who seems to represent some injustice. 

I wonder how I would react now, to this same situation:


I was just reading the comments of the founder of NVC on reactions in a refugee camp.  It struck me that those reactions were the same as the reactions to me in Izmir.  When I lived in Izmir (in 2005, from March to November), teaching English, one day one of my neighbors saw me walking up the stairs toward our building, and she took my arm (as women often do in Turkey) to walk with me and talk.  But her talk was more of a harangue.  She let loose on me about how my government was blaming them for a genocide which they insist did not happen, and that it was all very hypocritical, particularly when the US operates Guantanamo.  I was thunderstruck that she would hold me, a person who had left my country of origin to find a job elsewhere, and to whom she could direct this rant only because I was one of the rare expatriats to spend the time and effort to learn Turkish, responsible for the Apology request.  So, unfortunately, I responded defensively, pointing out that I personally had nothing to do with my government policies, did not agree with much of those policies, and had not voted for the administration then in power!  None of those defensive arguments changed her speech.  Now I see that, like the man in the camp, she needed to vent.  I wonder if, had I allowed her to vent, simply listening and validating what she needed to say to any random American, would that incident and relationship have ended more positively?
Read, Write, Dream, Teach !

 from: 20 March, 12016 HE

So, it turns out that people all around the world can be both kind yet also defensive, sometimes at the same time. There is a Jewish concept called Dan LeChaf Zechut: Judge on the Side of Merit, or as we’d say, Give the Benefit of the Doubt.  I shall try harder to do that these days.

Oh, and I’ve just started a kids story called Küçük Kara Balık by Samad Behrangi in Turkish: page 1, and I’ve already got 5 words to look up!

September 29, 2020 –page 1

1.67% “So far, I get that an old fish tells his 12 kids & grandkids a story.
Irmakta (hmm: https://elon.io/learn-turkish/lexicon… … ırmak…)

kayadan, … kaya
vadinin… vadi
akmak: https://context.reverso.net/translati…

More on my continuing striving with Turkish next week.

Yassas,   γεια σας!    Salût !  Nos vemos!  Görüşürüz!     ! שָׁלוֹם

Action Items in support of literacy and hope that you can take right now:

1.) Search and share  two different resources to translate the word “Justice” into Turkish.

2.) Share your thoughts on how you like each of the resources you found,  perhaps as an update on your GoodReads reading,

4.) Write a story, blog post or tweet that uses a Turkish word.

Share your thoughts on how language learning may encourage empathy-building cooperation, and might help, or hinder, inclusive thinking.

2.) Write a story, post or tweet that uses those thoughts.


Click here to read, if you like:

Science Fiction/Fantasy Shows, Lupin, or $…

Holistic High School Lessons,

           or Long Range Plans, & Historical Fiction Serial Stories

Thoughtful Readers, if you are on Twitter, please consider following   #Project Do Better  on Twitter.


Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Turkish Tuesdays, and Two Lessons Hakan:Muhafiz/The Protector, s1e6 Teaches About Making Decisions

What do we learn from season 1, episode 6, and then, my impressions of this episode?

(spoilers remain untranslated…)

1.) Sometimes the old folks know more than you do!
2.) Make your own decisions.
Kıskanıyor, mi, Zeynep?

Hey, that’s beautiful Byzantine Greek!!!   HakanS1e6  Faysal bey, Nooo!!!
Poor kid, Curly!  No one takes care of him, no one is proud of him!!
Poor reporter guy, poor Zeynep, but at least her father is proud of her.
Well done, Hakan, means you learn to think when you work in the Grand Bazaar.
Çocuk değilsen, Hakan, ama kutsal bir görevin var.
Galata Tower!
So much history, and so much youthful stupidity.
Oh, no!  Emir!  Wife, daughter, dead, but then calls to report in!!  People!!
Kemal, this guy is not trustworthy.
But why not tell the Head of your Order?
Mazar, their relationship is none of your business!!
Bribe her with the car, then use her to put the professor in his place.
But touching the artifacts without gloves!!
Jerk!  All that to do the same thing to her!
Oh, no, Emir!!
İ love how important social relationships are in Turkish culture.
 For the same reason that Layla was able to talk her way to the neighbor’s house, so do these guys apologize. Social relationships and Harmony are very important. That is a lesson that we can learn.

I’ve got to find the book this show is based on! (mentioned earlier…)

e5: Turkish Tuesdays, and Two Lessons Hakan:Muhafiz/The Protector, s1e5 Teaches About Being Wrong ,


e7: Turkish Tuesdays, and Two Lessons Hakan:Muhafiz/The Protector, s1e7 Teaches About ‘What’s Behind That?’ ;


Click here to read, if you like:

Science Fiction/Fantasy Shows, Lupin, Money…

Holistic High School Lessons,

Thoughtful Readers, if you are on Twitter, please consider following   #Project Do Better  on Twitter.


Creative Commons License
Shira Destinie Jones’ work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Learning a language would help Hakan defeat the Virus: how? Ask the Loyal Ones…

#COVID-19’dan, nasıl kazanacayız?

How do we win against the #CoronaVirus?

Potansiyelim var.”  ==  “I have potential.”

Hakan, “The Protector” of Istanbul and of all humankind, argues that despite his lack of formal education, he has the potential to do just as well as any university-educated person, even to solve problems like a deadly virus epidemic.  And, in the end, he manages to do it.

(Hermione Granger y Amelia Folch would run to the #library to get the book Karakalem ve Bir Delikanlının Tuhaf Hikayesi by Nilüfer İpek Gökdel, to read about how one deadly virus was defeated by Hakan and the Loyal Ones, after learning Turkish, of course!)

Each and every person, Protector or not, has potential.  And every person has the human right to an opportunity to prove that potential.  But everyone needs education in order to bring out and fulfill his or her potential.   Hakan was given that education by Zeynep, his most Loyal One, but we all have a world-wide educational system that currently only works in favor of those who can either afford to pay, or have the opportunity to get scholarships.  Scholarships and education require enough stable housing to be able to study.  That requires at least enough food, clothing, and shelter to be able to concentrate or get safely to a library and concentrate for a few hours per day in safety.

Public transit often plays a crucial role in this, but this post will focus on the need for every person to have a free opportunity to gain education.  Whether it is a university education, or on-going adult education regarding consumer rights, legal rights of other kinds, like tenants rights and worker’s rights, or financial and debt-related rights, everyone needs training.  While most states do have some sort of free adult education, workshops on local laws, for example, most states do not have nearly enough resources available for all of the hard-working students who would like to attend university but cannot afford to.  I have a proposal for helping them to reach their potential, and thus helping us all to reach our fuller potential as a society.  And you don’t even need to learn #Turkish (although that will open windows on the wider world to you, should you choose to accept the challenge)!

What if every diligent student were offered free study texts and allowed to sit an entrance exam for free university studies, in exchange for the promise to help by giving back to the local community as payment for his or her studies?  For example, let everyone be given free SAT prep classes, and then, any person passing the entrance exam for university studies for free.  Suppose one passes the exam and studies accounting.  That person must first agree to teach free tax preparation courses every tax season, at least during the time he or she studies at the university.  Let everyone with a bachelors degree be given free LSAT prep courses, but then if admitted to a free Law School, agree to teach free courses on consumer rights, give free workshops on state debt laws, etc.  Let paralegal students study for free, but pledge to teach free seminars on local renters’ rights and let the MBA students study for free, but teach free seminars on investment and business planning or small business marketing planning in the local area, while studying for that free Master’s degree.

Meanwhile, remember: “Bu bir masal değil.”  “This is not a fairy tale.”

So, #LearnALanguage, compare the studies in various languages, and #StopSmoking!!

Let’s #EndPoverty, #EndHomelessness, & #EndMoneyBail while  improving these four parts of our good #PublicDomainInfrastructure:
1. #libraries,
2. #ProBono legal aid and Education,
3. #UniversalHealthCare , and
4. good #publictransport
Read, Write, Ranked Choice Voting and Housing for ALL!!!!, Walk !

#PublicDomainInfrastructure and #languagelearn,

April, 12020 HE