Now this week's Culture Shocker. The Iranian Labor News Agency reported on Sunday:
In the run-up to Valentine's Day on February 14 the printing works owners' union issued a directive banning the printing and distribution of any goods promoting this day....
Printing and producing any goods related to this day including posters, boxes and cards emblazoned with hearts or half-hearts, red roses and any activities promoting this day are banned....
Outlets that violate this will be legally dealt with.
And here is the directive passing the death sentence on Cupid:
No explanation for how Cupid might have been encouraging regime change, but one has to assume that "Western love" is somehow different from "Iranian love".
The problem is that Iranians seem to have missed the distinction. In recent years, cards, chocolates, red velvet roses, and teddy bears (OK, that last one may be a menacing sign of Cultural Doom) have spread across Tehran. A proposal to offset Valentine's Day with an Iranian "Day of Love" for the wedding anniversary of Ali, the first Shia Imam, and his wife Fatemeh did not catch on.
And thus the Iranian leaders find themselves challenged because of The Wrong Kind of Love. (Well, challenged by another version of The Wrong Kind of Love, but let's not remind President Ahmadinejad of his speech in New York in 2007.)
Here at EA, we understand the predicament. So to our friend Mahmoud and our friend Ali, we offer this advice: if Love is All Around, you can only kill it off by playing Love is All Around...over and over and over.