It Ain't So Awful, Falafel by Firoozeh Dumas Comprehension Questions

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Explain the impact of the narrator's nomadic lifestyle on their childhood experiences and perspective on possessions.

The narrator's nomadic lifestyle has led to frequent moves between different cities and countries, resulting in a lack of stability and continuity in their childhood. This has likely impacted their ability to form long-lasting friendships and a sense of belonging. Additionally, the constant moving may have instilled a sense of impermanence, leading to a cautious attitude towards possessions and a reluctance to invest emotionally in material items.

Discuss the contrast between the cities of Compton and Newport Beach as described in the text.

Compton is portrayed as a city with signs of urban decay, such as graffiti, broken windows, and abandoned shopping carts. In contrast, Newport Beach is depicted as a more affluent and aesthetically pleasing city, with well-maintained streets, abundant greenery, and an overall sense of prosperity. The text emphasizes the stark differences in the physical environments and living conditions between the two cities.

How does the narrator's experience of moving between different countries and cities shape their understanding of socio-economic disparities?

The narrator's experience of moving between countries and cities exposes them to varying levels of socio-economic disparities. The text highlights the differences in living conditions, such as the presence of rusty cars in Compton versus the pristine appearance of Newport Beach. This exposure likely contributes to the narrator's awareness of socio-economic inequality and the impact of wealth disparity on the quality of life in different communities.

Examine the recurring theme of resilience and adaptability in the narrator's experiences of multiple relocations.

The narrator's frequent relocations reflect a pattern of resilience and adaptability in the face of change and uncertainty. Despite the challenges of uprooting their life and adjusting to new environments, the narrator demonstrates the ability to cope with the demands of each move and adapt to new circumstances. This recurring theme underscores the narrator's resilience and capacity to navigate the complexities of their nomadic lifestyle.

What kind of pictures adorn Original Cindy's home?

Framed pictures of horses

In Iran, what kind of pictures do people typically frame?

Pictures of deceased elderly relatives, typically from their older years

What are the names of Original Cindy's two kittens?

Captain and Tennille

What band and song are the kittens named after?

"Love Will Keep Us Together" by Captain & Tennille

What is the name of Original Cindy's dog?

Mick Jagger

What is the narrator and Original Cindy's shared favorite song?

"Love Will Keep Us Together"

What amenities can be found in the condo pool area?

Lounge chairs, tables, barbecue, and a twisty slide

What detailed stories does Original Cindy share with the narrator?

Stories about her horse, Magic, and their strong bond and connection

What literary reference does the narrator attempt to connect with Original Cindy through?

Literary references

What story does Original Cindy express interest in?

"Black Beauty," a horse's life story set in historical London

Explain the significance of the protagonist's dream of owning a canopy bed and a beanbag chair in the context of the story.

The protagonist sees the canopy bed and beanbag chair as symbols of coolness and fun, reflecting her desire for a more comfortable and enjoyable lifestyle.

What does the presence of six-digit serial numbers on the protagonist's mismatched bedroom furniture reveal about their origin?

The serial numbers reveal that the furniture was previously part of an auction of seized goods.

How does the protagonist's father surprise her in the story?

The father surprises her by allowing her to pick out new furniture at Sears, including the canopy bed of her dreams.

What reaction does the protagonist's mother have regarding the protagonist's choice of furniture?

The mother shows rare enthusiasm by supporting her daughter's choice of furniture.

What does the protagonist's father's generous mood allow her to acquire, in addition to the canopy bed?

The protagonist is allowed to get a yellow ruffled sheet and pillow set, plus a canopy cover with a lace border.

Describe the protagonist's encounter with a girl at the furniture store. What impact does this encounter have on the protagonist?

The protagonist encounters a girl her age at the furniture store, and the girl glares at her, reminding the protagonist of her impending start at a new school, adding to the challenges of adjusting to their new home and surroundings.

What is the family's nightly routine, as mentioned in the text?

The family's nightly routine involves sitting on the sofa, eating dinner, and watching a comedy, with the protagonist's job being to look up unfamiliar words in the dictionary.

How does the text end, and what realization does the protagonist have?

The text ends with the protagonist's realization of starting at a new school again, adding to the challenges of adjusting to their new home and surroundings.

What does the protagonist's father humorously comment in response to her request for a beanbag chair?

The father makes a humorous comment about eating beans instead of sitting on them in response to the protagonist's request for a beanbag chair.

What is the hope expressed by the protagonist's father regarding the new furniture?

The father expresses hope that the protagonist can use the furniture until she graduates from high school.

How does the protagonist feel about having an all-white, brand-new bedroom set?

The protagonist is ecstatic to have an all-white, brand-new bedroom set without any criminal past.

What does the carving of six-digit numbers on the protagonist's mismatched bedroom furniture signify?

The six-digit numbers carved in the furniture signify that they are serial numbers used by the auction house, indicating their origin from an auction of seized goods.

What type of home did the narrator's family move to in Newport Beach?

condo

What were the differences between their previous home in Compton and their new home in Newport Beach?

plastic flowers and a small patch of grass in Compton, while the new home had a large lawn and resembled a park

Who is Mrs. Mavis and what instructions did she give to the narrator's family?

Mrs. Mavis is the landlady who gave them a key and emphasized not to lose the pool key

What task was the narrator assigned regarding the 'Rules for Condominium Living'?

translating the rules for her mother

What were some of the regulations included in the rulebook for waste management?

specifying when to put out trash and how to use proper trash cans

What was the narrator's mother's concern about the new regulations, and where did she express a desire to return to?

She worried about following the rules and expressed a desire to return to Iran, where such regulations are not present

What activity did the family enjoy, and what did the narrator imagine about their new neighbors?

The family enjoyed grilling, and the narrator imagined having a party with their new neighbors

What burden did the narrator feel, and what was her desire regarding her role in the family?

The narrator felt burdened by constantly translating for her mother and desired not to be her translator forever

What were the challenges the family faced in their new neighborhood?

cultural and environmental adjustment, navigating the rules and expectations of condominium living

What do the narrator's observations and experiences reflect?

The challenges of cultural and environmental adjustment in their new neighborhood

What insights does the text provide about the family's experiences and emotions?

Insight into the family's experiences and emotions as they navigate the transition to a new home and community

Explain Zomorod's struggle with her name and her desire to change it.

Zomorod struggles with her name, which means 'emerald' in Persian, and wishes she had a more common American name like Sara. She feels embarrassed about her name and tries to fit in by choosing the name Cindy for herself, inspired by a character from The Brady Bunch.

What cultural differences does Zomorod face as an Iranian-American girl?

Zomorod faces cultural differences as she speaks Persian at home, has only owned a goldfish as a pet, and her mother does not know how to make oatmeal raisin cookies.

How does Zomorod's encounter with a neighbor named Cindy impact her?

Zomorod's encounter with a neighbor named Cindy leads to a moment of connection, as they share the same name, and she is invited to hang out.

Why are Zomorod's parents concerned about her integrating into American culture?

Zomorod's parents express concern about her integrating into American culture, questioning her about American customs like throwing a pie in someone's face.

What does Zomorod's desire to change her name reflect?

Zomorod's desire to change her name reflects her struggle to navigate her dual identity as an Iranian-American girl.

What themes does Zomorod's story shed light on?

Zomorod's story sheds light on the complexities of immigrant experiences, cultural assimilation, and the quest for belonging.

What does Zomorod's narrative capture?

Zomorod's narrative captures the universal themes of identity, belonging, and the challenges of cultural integration faced by many immigrant children.

How does Zomorod's journey reflect her internal conflict?

Zomorod's journey reflects the internal conflict of embracing her Iranian heritage while seeking acceptance in American society.

What challenges does Zomorod face in retaining her Iranian identity while integrating into American culture?

Zomorod faces the challenges of fitting in and finding acceptance in a new culture while retaining her Iranian identity.

What is the significance of Zomorod's desire to be known for who she is?

Zomorod's desire to be known for who she is, rather than her Iranian background, reflects her wish to be recognized beyond her cultural identity.

How does Zomorod's experience shed light on immigrant experiences?

Zomorod's experience sheds light on the complexities of immigrant experiences and the struggles of cultural assimilation.

What impact does Zomorod's story have on the understanding of cultural integration?

Zomorod's story highlights the challenges of cultural integration and the quest for belonging experienced by many immigrant children.

Explain the game 'The Six Million Dollar Man' played by David and the narrator. What actions are involved in the game and what role does the narrator play?

The game 'The Six Million Dollar Man' involves the narrator saying, 'We can rebuild him. We have the technology,' while David moves in slow motion like a robot, followed by jumping and moving around in slow motion. The narrator's role is to make electronic technology sound effects by squeaking 'Eee, eee, eee' throughout the game.

What happens when the narrator's throat starts getting scratchy and sore during the game? How does David react?

When the narrator's throat starts getting scratchy and sore, she stops making the electronic technology sound effects. David reacts by yelling 'Sound effects' and insisting that the narrator continues making the sound effects.

How does the game 'The Six Million Dollar Man' come to an end? What does the narrator suggest to David after the game?

The game comes to an end when the narrator's throat starts getting scratchy and sore, causing her to stop making the sound effects. The narrator then suggests that something else is cooler than 'The Six Million Dollar Man' to David.

What does the narrator ask David after the game? What is David's reaction to the narrator's question?

The narrator asks David if he knows what is even cooler than 'The Six Million Dollar Man.' David stops suddenly and asks, 'What?' in response to the narrator's question.

What was the reason behind the U.S. and British governments' efforts to remove Mohammad Mossadegh from power in Iran?

They wanted to make a profit from Iran's oil, and Mossadegh wouldn't allow it. He believed that the Iranians should profit from the oil, not foreigners.

What were the motivations behind the protests in Iran, and who was the target of these demonstrations?

The people in Iran were protesting against the shah's regime, which had the support of Western powers. They were unhappy with the shah's willingness to let Western powers profit from Iran's oil.

What historical event involving the popular prime minister Mohammad Mossadegh is discussed in the text, and what were the consequences of this event?

The text discusses the removal of Mohammad Mossadegh from power by the U.S. and British governments. The consequences included protests by the Iranian people who were unhappy with the interference in their government and the desire to profit from Iran's oil.

What is the name of the protagonist's real name and the name she introduces herself as to her first teacher?

Zomorod and Cindy

What happens when a boy defaces a poster in class?

It causes disruption and leads to a pop quiz as punishment

What causes the protagonist to arrive late to her next class?

Struggling to find her next class

How does the teacher's struggle to pronounce the protagonist's real name impact the classroom?

It causes a scene as the classmates stare at her when she corrects the teacher's pronunciation

What are the recurring motifs in the text?

The protagonist's discomfort with her name and desire to blend in

What is the central theme of the text?

The challenges of being a new student in a large, unfamiliar environment

What feelings of the protagonist are evident throughout the text?

Anxiety and isolation

What is the protagonist's real name?

Zomorod

What is the school the protagonist attends?

Lincoln Junior High

What does the protagonist hope to achieve by introducing herself as Cindy instead of Zomorod?

To blend in and avoid drawing attention to her real name

How does the teacher's reaction to the protagonist's real name impact her?

It makes her feel less anxious

What action by the protagonist reflects her discomfort with her name?

Correcting the teacher's pronunciation of her real name, leading to a scene

  1. How does the protagonist find solace in the story 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist finds solace in books and is excited about the upcoming opening of the school library during lunch.

  1. What physical activity does the protagonist dread in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist dreads the upcoming activities in PE, particularly tumbling and dodgeball.

  1. What does the protagonist compare herself to, feeling like an outsider due to her unique qualities?

The protagonist compares herself to a turtle.

  1. Who bullies the protagonist during a physical education class in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist encounters bullying from Original Cindy and her friends.

  1. What does the protagonist request to be called by the gym coach in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist requests to be called Cindy by the gym coach, hoping to fit in better.

  1. What does the gym coach emphasize in physical education, which worries the protagonist in 'First Day of School'?

The gym coach emphasizes the importance of hard work and effort in physical education.

  1. What does the protagonist pray for in 'First Day of School', showing her struggle to fit in and find friends in her new school?

The protagonist prays for a broken arm to avoid participating in PE activities.

  1. What does the protagonist feel hopeful about in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist feels hopeful about the upcoming opening of the school library during lunchtime.

  1. What is evident about the protagonist's struggle in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist's struggle to fit in and find friends in her new school is evident.

  1. What does the protagonist reflect on in 'First Day of School', regarding her previous experiences and struggle to make friends in a new environment?

The protagonist reflects on her previous experiences in Compton and her struggle to make friends in a new environment.

  1. Where is the protagonist from in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist is from Iran.

  1. What does the protagonist feel about her classmates' ignorance and stereotypes in 'First Day of School'?

The protagonist feels misunderstood and alienated by her classmates' ignorance and stereotypes.

  1. What political differences do Carolyn and the main character discuss between Iran and the US?

They discuss the lack of freedom of speech in Iran and the consequences of speaking out, contrasting it with the various ways Americans can express their opinions and the freedom of speech in the US.

  1. What do the main character and Carolyn bond over?

They bond over their shared love of reading and their interest in the main character's Iranian background.

  1. How does the main character's mother react to her daughter's new friendships?

The main character's mother seems preoccupied and uninterested in her daughter's new friendships, showing a distant and uninterested attitude.

  1. What plans do the main character and Carolyn make to spend time together?

They plan to meet for lunch every day and visit the library together.

  1. What career is Carolyn interested in pursuing?

Carolyn is interested in becoming a journalist and is well-informed about current events.

  1. What realization does the main character have about the political climate between Iran and the US?

The main character realizes the stark differences in the political climate between Iran and the US.

  1. How does the main character feel about Carolyn's knowledge and aspirations?

The main character is intrigued by Carolyn's knowledge and feels a connection with her.

  1. How does the main character's mother respond to her daughter's excitement about her new friend?

The main character's mother seems distant and uninterested in her daughter's excitement about her new friend.

  1. What do the main character and Carolyn bond over?

They bond over their shared love of reading and their interest in the main character's Iranian background.

  1. What does Carolyn express curiosity about regarding Iran?

Carolyn is curious about the political situation in Iran and contrasts it with the freedom of speech in the US.

  1. What do the main character and Carolyn plan to do together?

The girls plan to spend time together by meeting for lunch every day and visiting the library together.

  1. How does the main character feel about Carolyn's aspirations and knowledge?

The main character is intrigued by Carolyn's knowledge and feels a connection with her.

Describe Cindy's interactions with her friend Original Cindy and the rejection she faces from her.

Cindy plans to get tans together with Original Cindy, but Original Cindy rejects her and criticizes her for not talking much and for her lack of knowledge about a song.

What does Cindy wish for when she wakes up with a stomachache?

Cindy wishes she could skip school and be like Pippi Longstocking.

What confusion arises regarding Cindy's name?

Cindy's dad mistakenly calls her Susan, but she corrects him, revealing that she changed her name to Cindy from Susan.

What are the main elements of the narrative in 'Adventures of Cindy and her Origami'?

The narrative includes elements of friendship, cultural differences, and personal struggles.

What is the central focus of the story?

The story revolves around Cindy's experiences and interactions with friends and family, as she attempts to navigate social dynamics and find her place in her new environment.

What does Mrs. Klein offer to do for Cindy's mom?

Mrs. Klein offers to help Cindy's mom make friends, but they struggle to find common interests.

What offers does Cindy receive as a result of her interactions with others?

Cindy is offered a regular babysitting job by Mrs. Klein after babysitting for David, and she is shown a giant eyeball by David, whose father is an ophthalmologist.

What activity does Cindy engage in with her friend and what is the outcome?

Cindy plans to get tans together with her friend Original Cindy, but Original Cindy rejects her.

What does the text capture regarding Cindy's attempts to navigate social dynamics?

The text captures Cindy's attempts to navigate social dynamics and find her place in her new environment.

What does Cindy's friend Original Cindy criticize her for?

Original Cindy criticizes Cindy for not talking much and calls out her lack of knowledge about a song.

What wish does Cindy express when she wakes up unwell?

Cindy wishes she could skip school and be like Pippi Longstocking.

What confusion arises regarding Cindy's name?

Cindy's dad mistakenly calls her Susan, but she corrects him, revealing that she changed her name to Cindy from Susan.

What invitation does the protagonist receive from Carolyn, and how does she plan to respond to it?

The protagonist receives an invitation from Carolyn to go to her house on Saturday at noon to swim and have lunch. She plans to ask her father for permission to go and for a ride to Carolyn's house.

How does the protagonist approach her parents to ask for permission to visit Carolyn's house, and what are their responses?

The protagonist asks her father for permission to go to Carolyn's house and for a ride, which he agrees to. She then informs her mother that she won't be there for lunch the next day.

What does the protagonist reveal about her future aspirations, and how does Carolyn respond to it?

The protagonist reveals that she wants to go to either Stanford or Occidental and study journalism to report the news on TV. Carolyn responds positively, mentioning that the protagonist would be good at it.

What concerns and decisions does the protagonist face regarding her visit to Carolyn's house?

The protagonist is concerned about her mother's mood and the possibility of getting a 'no' if she asks her. She decides to wait and ask her father, who agrees to drive her to Carolyn's house after looking up the location on the map.

What neighborhood is described as very pretty, with real houses and no condos in the text?

Harbor View Hills

What does the narrator's father struggle to pronounce on the way to Carolyn's house?

Williams

What does the narrator compare the shah of Iran to when prompted by Carolyn's question about him?

a character from a fairy tale

What does the narrator's family have at home, prompting her father to admire the color Zenith TV models at Sears?

a black-and-white Zenith TV

What kind of chair is described as being in Carolyn's room?

a beanbag chair covered in orange shag

What do the narrator and Carolyn do after playing Yahtzee?

swim in the pool for two hours

What does the narrator receive from Carolyn's mother after spending time with the family?

her first 'bravo'

Where do the narrator and Carolyn often do homework together?

in Carolyn's family room, in front of their color Zenith TV

What does the narrator's father consider using instead of the name 'Williams' when struggling to pronounce it?

'George'

What does the narrator watch a report about on the color TV?

protests in Iran

What is described as being adorned with real flowers and lemons on the front door of Carolyn's house?

a wreath

What does the text provide insights into regarding the narrator's experiences?

cultural differences, friendships, and family dynamics in the context of the Williams family

What is the name of the Girl Scout troop leader in Newport Beach who discusses various activities with the girls?

Mrs. Stahr and Mrs. Woods

What type of dinner does the protagonist have at the Williams' house?

make-your-own taco night

How does the protagonist feel about the dinner at the Williams' house compared to Taco Bell?

enjoys it more than Taco Bell

What kind of dessert does the Williams family have after dinner?

make-your-own sundaes using a Lazy Susan

What does the protagonist learn about the taco shells during dinner at the Williams' house?

they come pre-bent in a box

What is the protagonist excited about in relation to the Girl Scout activities?

the camping trip as she has never been camping before

How many girls are there in the Girl Scout troop in Newport Beach?

around 80 girls

Who does the protagonist befriend at a break during the Girl Scout meeting?

Rachel

What kind of meal does the protagonist usually have with her family for dinner?

cold, boxed food

What is the protagonist determined to save money for?

college

What is the name of the protagonist's friend who is a native of Newport Beach?

Carolyn

What is the protagonist's feeling about living in one place all your life?

feels that it's easier

What are some advantages that the rich and well-connected in Iran have, as mentioned in the text?

The rich and well-connected in Iran have significant advantages, including education, high-paying jobs, and immunity from punishment for crimes.

What comparison is drawn between the privileged life of the rich and the constrained life of the poor in the text?

The comparison is drawn between the privileged life of the rich and the constrained life of the poor, likening it to cars on tracks at Disneyland.

How does the text contrast the likelihood of individuals rising from poverty to high positions in Iran and the United States?

In Iran, individuals like Abraham Lincoln rising from poverty to presidency is not a common occurrence, unlike in the United States.

How is the Shah of Iran's presence in the country described in the text?

The Shah of Iran is likened to a god due to his omnipresence in the country, with his image displayed in various public places.

What does the text highlight about the peaceful transition of power through elections in the United States?

The author has experienced different American presidents during her time in the United States, highlighting the peaceful transition of power through elections.

Despite the Shah's suppression tactics, what do protesters continue to do according to the text?

Despite the Shah's suppression tactics, protesters continue to demonstrate, even in the face of violence and death.

How does the Shah maintain power, as mentioned in the text?

The Shah maintains power through fear, displaying military might during parades, unlike the United States where democracy unites the country.

What challenges does the narrator's mother face as an Iranian immigrant in America?

The narrator's mother faces challenges related to loneliness, language barriers, and difficulty adjusting to life in America.

What contrast is discussed regarding American and Iranian parades in the text?

The contrast between American and Iranian parades is discussed, emphasizing the absence of military displays in American celebrations.

How does the narrator try to help her mother, and what is her mother's response?

The narrator tries to help her mother by suggesting she attend a PTA meeting to meet new people and learn English. Her mother refuses, insisting she needs to learn English first, and remains resistant to social interaction.

How does the text contrast the freedom of expression in America with the fear of imprisonment for such actions in Iran?

The freedom to express oneself in America is contrasted with the fear of imprisonment for such actions in Iran.

What economic differences between two girls are highlighted in the text?

The author's experience of babysitting for a low wage is contrasted with Carolyn's higher wage, highlighting economic differences between the two girls.

What factors contribute to the mother's reluctance to engage with American culture and make friends?

The mother's reluctance stems from her struggles with the English language, feelings of isolation, and the lack of a significant Iranian community in America.

What brings happiness to the mother in the story, and what does it emphasize?

The mother finds happiness when she briefly connects with other Iranian visitors in America, emphasizing the importance of cultural connection through food.

What aspect of negotiation and financial planning is highlighted in the text?

The conversation between the two girls also highlights the importance of negotiation and financial planning, particularly for college savings.

What methods does the Shah of Iran use to maintain power, as mentioned in the text?

The Shah maintains power through fear, displaying military might during parades, unlike the United States where democracy unites the country.

What does the story illustrate about the difficulties faced by immigrants in adapting to a new culture?

The story illustrates the challenges faced by immigrants in adjusting to a new culture, the importance of community and cultural connection for well-being, and the complexities of the immigrant experience.

How does the narrator's father contrast the experiences of Americans in Iran and Iranians in America?

The narrator's father explains that it is easier for Americans in Iran due to the presence of a community and access to English-language media, whereas Iranians in America face greater challenges.

What significance does the serving of traditional Persian food hold in the story?

The serving of traditional Persian food highlights the significance of food in Iranian culture and its role in fostering cultural connection and happiness for the mother.

What does the mother's reluctance to integrate into American society reflect?

The mother's reluctance reflects the challenges faced by many immigrants in integrating into American society.

What is the central theme portrayed in the story?

The central theme revolves around the difficulties of adjusting to a new culture and the significance of community and cultural connection for well-being.

How does the narrator's attempts to help her mother integrate into American society reflect the immigrant experience?

The narrator's attempts reflect the complexities of the immigrant experience, including resistance to integration and the desire to maintain cultural identity.

What emotions and struggles are evident in the mother's experience as depicted in the story?

The mother's experience reflects emotions of sadness and difficulty adjusting to life in America, as well as struggles with language barriers and feelings of isolation.

What makes the mother's sense of isolation more acute in America?

The family rarely encounters other Iranians in America, making the mother's sense of isolation more acute.

What is the name of the man who returns the lost pool key to the protagonist's family, and what unique characteristics does he display in his attire?

The man's name is Skip, and he displays unique characteristics in his attire by wearing a green and pink striped polo shirt with the collar up, light and dark green plaid pants, and shiny white shoes.

What gesture does the protagonist's mother want to make to thank Skip, and what alternate suggestion does the protagonist make?

The protagonist's mother wants to make some Persian food to thank Skip, and the protagonist suggests buying him a box of See's assorted chocolates instead.

Where does Skip mention he lives, and what does he offer to do with the protagonist's father?

Skip mentions that he lives in the house around the corner with a sign that says 'An Old Sailor Lives Here,' and he offers to bring beer the next time the protagonist's father wants to go fishing.

What does Skip find behind the bushes while walking his dog, and what does he say to himself when he finds it?

Skip finds the protagonist's family's keychain behind the bushes while walking his dog, and he says to himself, 'Skipper, whoever owns this keychain is a friend of yours.'

What traditional Iranian dish does the protagonist's mother prepare for a neighbor, Skip?

stuffed grape leaves

Who does the protagonist unexpectedly encounter at Skip's house?

Brock, a classmate who previously teased her in English class

What does the protagonist contrast Halloween with, in terms of traditions?

receiving nuts and dried fruits during the Persian New Year

What does the protagonist plan to dress as for Halloween?

a hobo

What does the protagonist's mother want her to emulate for Halloween instead of a hobo?

Rita Hayworth

What does the protagonist try to explain to her mother about the concept of a hobo?

the difference between a lifestyle and a Halloween costume

What does the protagonist express disappointment about to her mother?

her mother's lack of understanding and support for her Halloween costume choice

What gift does the protagonist receive from Pooya and Pooyan?

traditional Persian villager costume

In what location does the protagonist feel awkward about wearing the costume?

Newport Beach, California

What custom do the Poo brothers engage in during the meal?

taarof

What does the protagonist resent about the taarof and meal preparation?

the amount of work involved

What do Pooya and Pooyan wear as a reminder of their homeland?

gold charms shaped like Iran with a turquoise stone

What is the protagonist's deep connection to her homeland?

memories associated with Iran and the beauty of the Caspian Sea

What do the Poo brothers adopt as Americanized names?

El-veeeees and John Vayne

What behavior of the Poo brothers embarrasses the protagonist at the pool?

insatiable appetite and consumption of large quantities of food

Why is the protagonist reluctant to spend time with the Poo brothers at the pool?

embarrassment about their behavior and appearance

What challenges of learning English does the protagonist reflect on?

the differences between formal English and conversational English

What does the protagonist reminisce about regarding Iran?

the beauty of the Caspian Sea

What desire do the Poo brothers express at the pool?

to meet California girls

What costume was the protagonist dressed up as for the costume parade at school?

hippie

What did the protagonist's family give out to kids for trick-or-treating?

fruits and pickling cucumbers

Who gives the protagonist a pillowcase for trick-or-treating?

Carolyn

What did the protagonist go as for Halloween when she was only allowed to visit houses on her street in Compton?

mom

What costume idea does the protagonist suggest for Carolyn for the next year's Halloween?

dictionary

What unique costume does Carolyn show off, made by her parents as part of their tradition of doing something unprecedented each year?

Arm and Hammer baking soda box

What significant event does the protagonist's dad reflect on, emphasizing the significance of the year 1978?

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the president of Egypt and the prime minister of Israel

What does the protagonist's dad drive her to for trick-or-treating?

a friend's house

What is the neighborhood decorated as for Halloween, resembling the Haunted House ride at Disneyland?

elaborately

What does the protagonist's dad reflect on regarding the significance of the year 1978?

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the president of Egypt and the prime minister of Israel

Who arrives with a cute costume at Carolyn's house?

Rachel

What does the text depict the protagonist's journey of understanding and adapting to?

American Halloween traditions

What excites the protagonist about Halloween in Newport Beach?

Receiving full-size candy bars, which she had never received before in Compton.

What does the concept of 'taarof' entail?

Guests can stay for as long as they want, and one must always say yes to a favor to be polite, even if they don't mean it.

What gifts do the Iranian brothers bring for the protagonist's family?

A Persian miniature painting, dried limes, and a box of pistachios.

What cultural differences and language barriers worry the protagonist about the brothers?

Their limited English and the custom of 'taarof'.

How does the protagonist feel about the decision to host the Iranian brothers?

She feels frustrated about not having a say in the decision and dislikes being forced to help with their stay.

What parenting style do the protagonist's parents have, contrasting it with 'The Brady Bunch'?

Authoritarian parenting style, unlike the open discussion of feelings in 'The Brady Bunch'.

What creates tension as the Iranian brothers begin their stay with the protagonist's family?

The protagonist's dislike of the brothers and the looming cultural differences.

What does the protagonist's father struggle with while picking up the Iranian brothers from the airport?

He and the protagonist get lost on the way to the airport.

How does the protagonist feel about the Iranian brothers' cologne?

She finds it overwhelming and tries to cope with the smell during the drive home.

What excites the protagonist about her classes at Lincoln in Newport Beach?

She enjoys her classes and even looks forward to the Presidential Physical Fitness Test.

What atmosphere is created in the neighborhood on Halloween?

The neighborhood is filled with kids and parents dressed up for Halloween, creating an exciting atmosphere.

Who are the Iranian brothers that come to stay with the protagonist's family?

Pooya and Pooyan.

What is the significance of the discussion about the word 'Allah' in the text?

The discussion highlights the commonality of the belief in one God among different religions, specifically Islam, Christianity, and Judaism.

How does Sherman Dorfman contribute to the class discussion, and what is the outcome?

Sherman points out the belief in one God shared by Jews, Christians, and Muslims, and the class learns the word 'monotheism' as a result of his contribution.

How does the teacher handle the disruptive behavior of Mike McSummit, and what does this reveal about her character?

The teacher sends Mike to the principal's office and shows her commitment to maintaining a respectful and focused learning environment.

What does the class discussion about monotheism reflect about the educational approach in the text?

The discussion reflects the emphasis on learning and understanding different religious beliefs and concepts, promoting cultural awareness and education.

Explain the emotional challenges the protagonist's family faces during Nowruz in America.

The protagonist's family faces emotional challenges during Nowruz, with the difficulty of communicating with relatives in Iran and the fear and uncertainty they experience.

What does the protagonist's mother become emotional about during Nowruz in America?

The protagonist's mother becomes emotional when speaking to her sisters in Iran, making Nowruz a difficult time for the family in America.

What does the protagonist receive as a gift from her father on Nowruz?

The protagonist receives a five-dollar bill as a gift from her father on Nowruz, which she plans to save for college.

How does the protagonist explain Nowruz traditions to her American friends?

The protagonist explains Nowruz traditions to American friends, emphasizing the excitement and non-religious nature of the holiday in Iran.

What reflects the influence of American culture on the protagonist's Iranian traditions?

The protagonist's desire for gifts like gauchos, a pompom belt, and a puka shell necklace reflects the influence of American culture on her Iranian traditions.

What challenges does the protagonist discuss with her American friends regarding celebrating Nowruz in America?

The protagonist's longing for her family in Iran and the difficulties of celebrating Nowruz in America are highlighted, as she navigates the challenges of maintaining her Iranian traditions in a different cultural context.

What event does Rachel invite Cindy to, and what valuable gift does Cindy receive from her mother for the event?

Rachel's bat mitzvah and a valuable gift to take to the event from her mother

What does Cindy plan to use to wrap the gift for Rachel's bat mitzvah, and what languages does she recall learning from Rachel's family?

Sunday comics and Hebrew and Arabic

What historical information does Rachel's father share with Cindy about Polish Jews in Iran during World War II?

Rachel's father shares historical information about Polish Jews in Iran during World War II

What news event in February 1979 deeply impacts Cindy and her family, and what is the subsequent outcome of this event?

Khomeini's return to Iran and the subsequent revolutionary events. Khomeini rejects the government of Bakhtiar, who believes in democracy separate from religion, and forces Bakhtiar out after only 37 days in office

What significant news does Cindy wake up to on February 11, 1979, and what are the consequences of this news?

Cindy wakes up to the news of the end of the monarchy in Iran and the departure of Americans from the country. The Iranian Revolution leads to the departure of the Shah and the evacuation of Americans from Iran

How does the revolutionary events in Iran impact Cindy's mother, and what are the effects on Cindy and her family's daily lives and emotional well-being?

The revolution causes concern for Cindy's mother, who worries about her family in Iran. The revolutionary events deeply impact Cindy and her family's daily lives and emotional well-being

How does Cindy's focus on the revolutionary events affect her academic performance and emotional state?

Cindy's focus on the revolutionary events affects her academic performance and emotional state

What gift does Zomorod's mom give her?

a small porcelain cat

Where do Zomorod and her dad shop for camping equipment?

Woolworth's

What items do Zomorod and her dad find at the Last Chance Clearance aisle?

bulky sleeping bag, mesh bag, flashlight, and a metal bowl

What does Zomorod's dad refuse to buy for the camping trip?

air mattress or a folding knife

Who does Zomorod share a tent with during the Girl Scout camping trip?

Carolyn, Rachel, Howie, Kris, and Colleen

What are Kris and Colleen known for?

their intelligence and consistent high grades

What amenities are not available at the campsite?

television, radio, and flushing toilets

What does Zomorod's mom do while Zomorod and her dad shop for camping equipment?

stays home to watch TV

What does Zomorod feel like she's preparing for as she struggles with the size of the unfolded sleeping bag?

an African jungle expedition

What does Zomorod's dad prioritize while shopping for camping equipment?

finding the perfect parking spot

Who shares a tent with Zomorod during the Girl Scout camping trip?

Carolyn, Rachel, Howie, Kris, and Colleen

What does Zomorod plan to do with the small porcelain cat she receives as a gift?

put it on her desk next to her stapler

How does the revolution in Iran impact women's rights, according to the text?

The revolution in Iran leads to the restriction of women's rights, including banning them from being judges and enforcing the wearing of hijabs and long coats.

What is the narrator's reflection on the concept of dignity and its significance in the context of the workers at the Goodwill factory?

The narrator reflects on the concept of dignity and its importance, particularly in the context of the workers at the Goodwill factory.

What concerns and disapproval does the narrator express about Khomeini's decisions regarding women's rights?

The narrator expresses disapproval of Khomeini's decisions, particularly the restriction of women's rights, such as banning them from being judges and enforcing the wearing of hijabs and long coats.

How does the text showcase the shift in women's rights in Iran following the revolution?

The text provides insights into the shift in women's rights in Iran following the revolution, leading to a sense of disappointment and worry among the characters.

What impact does the revolution have on women's rights in Iran, as discussed by Dr. Klein and the narrator's father?

Dr. Klein, a neighbor, and the narrator's father discuss the negative impact of the revolution on women's rights in Iran.

What personal experiences and reflections of the narrator regarding the revolution and its impact on women in Iran are provided in the text?

The text provides insights into the personal experiences and reflections of the narrator regarding the revolution and its impact on women in Iran.

How does the text highlight the contrast between the previous modernity in Iran and the new restrictions imposed on women?

The narrative highlights the contrast between the previous modernity in Iran and the new restrictions imposed on women.

What discussion takes place about the impact of the new regulations on women, including the requirement to wear cover-ups?

There is a discussion about the impact of the new regulations on women, including the requirement to wear cover-ups.

What is the narrator's father's reaction to the regression in women's rights in Iran?

The narrator's father expresses deep concern and sadness over the regression in women's rights in Iran.

What does the narrator recall about a fortuneteller's son with Down syndrome in Iran?

The narrator recalls a time in Iran where a fortuneteller's son with Down syndrome was kept hidden away, highlighting the lack of opportunities for individuals with disabilities in Iran.

How does the narrator's experience at the Goodwill factory lead to a conversation with her parents?

The narrator's experience at the Goodwill factory leads to a conversation with her parents, who are impressed and momentarily distracted from the current events in Iran.

What concerns and uncertainty does the narrator express about the future after a revolution in Iran?

The narrator expresses uncertainty and concern about the future after a revolution in Iran.

What does the protagonist notice about the girls being asked to dance at the party and her own popularity?

The protagonist notices that the same girls are asked to dance repeatedly while she and others are not as popular.

How does the protagonist feel about Brock and his dancing skills?

The protagonist thinks Brock is a jerk but wishes he would ask her to dance because he is a really good dancer.

What does the protagonist observe about the girls wearing high heels and the rest of the attendees at the party?

The protagonist notices that girls wearing high heels are dancing while the rest, like members of a sensible shoe club, are just watching.

What does the protagonist express to Rachel about her feelings at the party?

The protagonist expresses her hatred for the situation at the party to Rachel.

Who encourages the protagonist to excel in school like his brother excels in surfing?

Skip

What does the protagonist plan to learn influenced by famous English and French-speaking actors?

French

What does the protagonist feel prepared for in seventh grade due to previous schooling in Iran?

seventh grade

What does the protagonist learn about Spanish street names and the importance of SATs from a friend?

Spanish street names and the importance of SATs

What influence does the protagonist have about taking Spanish for SAT vocabulary?

suggests

What does the protagonist share with friends about cultural differences from Iran?

cultural differences from Iran

What does the protagonist have insider information about for seventh grade?

teachers and friends

What does the protagonist and friends discuss about famous actors and their connections to Newport Beach?

famous actors and their connections to Newport Beach

What does the protagonist's friend suggest about SAT vocabulary?

taking Spanish for SAT vocabulary

What does the protagonist learn about the SATs and the need to take tests before college?

the SATs and the need to take tests before college

What does the protagonist look forward to, feeling prepared due to previous schooling in Iran?

seventh grade

What does the protagonist feel safe doing despite ocean dangers and family issues?

sailing

What are the names of the camp names chosen by the narrator and her friends at Camp White's Landing?

Sommers, Cleo, and Lentil

What activities does the narrator choose at the camp?

sailing, snorkeling, and canoeing

Which counselor encourages the narrator to become a counselor in training for the following summer?

Rainy

What event leads the narrator to become increasingly drawn to the idea of becoming a counselor in training?

discovery of feral pigs invading their tents

What does the narrator reflect on in terms of the differences between her life in the U.S. and the situation for women in her home country?

her original home country, Iran

What does the text capture regarding the narrator's growing passion?

her growing passion for sailing

What contrast does the text highlight?

contrast between the narrator's life in the U.S. and the situation for women in Iran

Where did the camp take place?

Camp White's Landing on Catalina Island

What are the potential dangers the campers are warned about at the campsite?

feral pigs and bison on the island

What activities fill the camp?

crafts, games, and sports

What nationality is the narrator originally from?

Iran

What does the narrator eventually develop a love for?

sailing

What event does the narrator hope for a boy to ask her to dance at?

middle school dance

What does the narrator plan for her twelfth birthday?

pool party

Who does the narrator offer to find an Iranian husband for?

Howie

What does the narrator's mother want to make for the birthday party menu?

kebabs

What starts the party for the narrator's twelfth birthday?

pool game and balloon fight

What is the narrator's expectation for the party despite her mother's bad mood?

to be fun

What does the narrator contact the condo association for permission to do?

plan a pool party for her twelfth birthday

What causes confusion among the friends during the balloon fight?

balloons not bursting

What does the DJ do, prompting the narrator and her friend to leave the school dance?

takes a break

What do the girls discuss about marriage and the narrator's Iranian culture?

marriage and Iranian culture

What does the narrator's friend, Howie, talk about wanting to find through prayer?

tall husband

What do the girls have a conversation about regarding God and marriage?

God and marriage

Describe the protagonist's first birthday party and the gifts she receives from her friends.

The protagonist's first birthday party involves unbreakable balloons, eating by the pool, and receiving gifts such as a pompom belt, a banana-flavored Bonne Bell Lip Smacker, a paint-by-numbers set, and a Clue game.

How does the protagonist convince her parents to let her go to Camp White's Landing?

The protagonist convinces her parents by promising to be extra careful, not go anywhere alone or in the dark, and by making promises to her parents about things she wouldn't do at camp.

What does the protagonist wear to prevent sunburn on the ferry to camp?

The protagonist wears a floppy sun hat given by her mom to prevent sunburn on the ferry to camp.

What exciting encounter do the protagonist and her friends have while on the ferry to camp?

The protagonist and her friends see dolphins in the wild while on the ferry, making it the best day of her life.

How is the story narrated and what experiences does it capture?

The story is narrated in first person, capturing the protagonist's coming-of-age experiences, including her first birthday party without her parents and her first time away from home at summer camp.

What are the protagonist's and her friends' feelings about attending Camp White's Landing?

The protagonist and her friends are excited about the prospect of having fun at camp, and the protagonist expresses her excitement about going to summer camp for the first time and not being scared at all.

What do the protagonist and her friends promise their parents about things they wouldn't do at camp?

The protagonist and her friends make promises to their parents about things they wouldn't do at camp, showing their willingness to adhere to rules and guidelines.

What concerns do the protagonist's parents have about her attending Camp White's Landing?

The protagonist's parents are concerned about the safety at camp, particularly involving horseback riding, highlighting their protective nature and concern for their child's well-being.

What do the protagonist and her friends do on the ferry to camp?

On the ferry to camp, the protagonist and her friends explore the boat and encounter tourists staring at them, adding a sense of adventure and curiosity to their journey.

How does the protagonist feel about going to summer camp for the first time?

The protagonist expresses excitement about going to summer camp for the first time and not being scared at all, showing her confidence and positive attitude towards new experiences.

What does the protagonist receive from her mom to prevent sunburn?

The protagonist receives a floppy sun hat from her mom to prevent sunburn, showing her mom's care and consideration for her well-being.

What is the protagonist's main desire in relation to attending Camp White's Landing?

The protagonist's main desire is to convince her parents to let her go to camp by promising to be extra careful and not go anywhere alone or in the dark, showcasing her determination and willingness to adhere to safety measures.

What is the protagonist's father's profession and work experience?

The protagonist's father is a Petroleum Engineer with 31 years of experience with the National Iranian Oil Company and five years with AMP Gas.

What suggestion does the protagonist make to her father when he is writing a cover letter?

The protagonist suggests that her father should mention something he has done in his previous jobs and include two more sentences in the cover letter.

Why does the protagonist advise her father not to mention the events between Iran and the United States in his cover letter?

The protagonist advises her father not to mention the events between Iran and the United States because of the unpopularity of Iran in those days.

What is the protagonist's reaction to her father's lack of realization about Iran's unpopularity?

The protagonist suggests that her father does not realize how unpopular Iran is these days.

What are the challenges the protagonist and her family face in regards to job prospects and cultural misconceptions about their home country?

The challenges include not hearing back from employers after sending resumes, and dealing with misconceptions about Iran and its people.

What plan do the protagonist and her friends discuss with Brock, and how does Brock's response reflect his attitude towards his friends?

The plan is to put the Lindens' pantry plan into action. Brock's response reflects his nonchalant attitude towards his friends' teasing and his willingness to meet the protagonist and her friends later.

What is the significance of the protagonist's interaction with Brock and his friends, and how does it contribute to the development of the story?

The interaction reveals the dynamics between the protagonist, Brock, and his friends. It sets the stage for the upcoming plan and adds to the character development and relationship dynamics in the story.

What is the name of Brock's pet-sitting business and how does it connect to the missing hamster incident?

Brock runs a pet-sitting business and is familiar with the missing hamster, connecting him to the incident.

What event proves Cindy's innocence in the incident and rules her out as a suspect?

Original Cindy wins a ribbon at the horse show, proving she was not involved in the incident.

What do the characters' suspicions and investigations lead to in the story?

The characters' suspicions and investigations lead to unexpected revelations.

What are the central themes of the story?

The story revolves around misunderstandings, suspicions, and unexpected developments.

What drives the plot forward in the story?

The characters' actions and interactions drive the plot forward.

What mystery does the protagonist's friend Carolyn create a list of suspects for in their Girl Scout troop?

The mystery of potential involvement in their Girl Scout troop related to a mystery.

Who does Carolyn suspect of potential involvement in the mystery?

Mary Elizabeth Crenshaw and the O’Shaughnessey twins, Kris and Colleen.

What does Carolyn persuade the protagonist to investigate for evidence related to the mystery?

Cindy’s house.

Who does Carolyn enlist to help investigate the mystery?

Another friend, Brock.

What does the protagonist feel pressured into doing in exchange for Brock's assistance?

Helping Brock with his math homework.

What is the protagonist's daily routine that reflects the family's financial struggles and emotional strain?

Assisting her father with job search tasks and witnessing the ongoing arguments between her parents.

What does the father do all day to stay updated about the hostages, causing friction with the mother?

Listens to the radio.

How does the protagonist feel about helping Brock with his math homework?

Pressured into helping in exchange for his assistance.

What is evident about the family's financial struggles and emotional strain through the protagonist's observations and interactions?

The family's financial struggles and emotional strain are evident.

What is the protagonist's father deeply invested in, particularly updates about?

The news, particularly updates about the hostages in Iran.

How does the protagonist's mother express her feelings about the hostages?

The protagonist's mother expresses sympathy for the hostages' families.

How does the father express his feelings about Iran's actions related to the hostages?

The father expresses disbelief at Iran's actions.

Describe the challenges faced by Iranian immigrants in America during the Iran hostage crisis, as portrayed in the text.

Iranian immigrants faced challenges such as discrimination, hostility, fear of persecution, adopting different identities, worries about relatives in Iran, and difficulties leaving the country due to government restrictions.

How does the protagonist, Zomorod, react to the hostile act of a dead hamster left on her family's doorstep?

Zomorod is distressed and unsure why her family has been targeted.

What opportunity does Zomorod's teacher offer her, and how does she respond?

The teacher offers her the opportunity to improve her grade by giving a presentation about the current events in her country, but Zomorod declines.

What is Zomorod's friend, Carolyn, determined to do, and how does she support Zomorod?

Carolyn is determined to find out who left the dead hamster and is supportive of Zomorod.

How does the story reflect the broader issues faced by Iranian immigrants in America during a tumultuous period in Iranian history?

The story portrays the challenges and discrimination faced by Iranian immigrants, as well as the worries about relatives in Iran and the difficulty of leaving the country due to government restrictions.

What are some strategies used by Iranian immigrants to avoid discrimination in America?

Some Iranian immigrants adopt different identities, such as Italian, to avoid discrimination.

What are the reasons for Iranian immigrants arriving in America?

Iranian immigrants arrive in America due to fear of persecution by the new government in Iran.

What are some of the experiences of Iranian immigrants in America, as mentioned in the text?

Some immigrants are wealthy enough to buy homes and set up businesses, while others escape with only their lives. Many are granted political asylum in the US due to the danger they face in Iran.

How does the protagonist, Zomorod, feel burdened by the events in Iran?

Zomorod feels burdened by the events in Iran and is hesitant to give a presentation about the current events in her country at school.

How does the protagonist's family experience discrimination and hostility in America?

The protagonist's family experiences discrimination and hostility in America, as evidenced by a dead hamster left on their doorstep with a note saying 'Iranians go home.'

What difficulties do Iranian immigrants face in America during the Iran hostage crisis?

Iranian immigrants face difficulties such as discrimination, hostility, fear of persecution, worries about relatives in Iran, and the difficulty of leaving the country due to government restrictions.

What support does Zomorod receive from her friend Carolyn?

Zomorod's friend, Carolyn, is supportive and determined to find out who left the dead hamster.

What are the protagonist's parents' nighttime routine?

warm nonfat milk before bed

What does the protagonist's house lack in terms of snack foods, and what type of kitchen contents does it contain?

lacks snack foods, contains Iranian kitchen contents

Whom do Carolyn and the protagonist suspect of leaving a note, and from where could this person have obtained the protagonist's address?

suspect someone from Girl Scout troop, knows protagonist's address

Whom do the two girls suspect of leaving the note?

suspect various people, including the protagonist's neighbor and a boy named Brock

What does Carolyn plan to do in order to confront Brock about the note and what questions does she plan to ask him?

create a plan to catch him off-guard and ask him questions about surfing

What does Carolyn accuse Brock of during the confrontation?

accuses him of leaving a dead hamster on the protagonist's doorstep

How does the protagonist feel about accusing Brock, and what is Carolyn's stance on the matter?

unsure about accusing Brock, Carolyn insists on confronting him

What is Brock's reaction to Carolyn's accusation?

denies leaving the hamster and appears genuinely puzzled by the accusation

How does the confrontation with Brock end?

Brock denies the accusation and leaves abruptly

What is evident about the protagonist's feelings regarding the confrontation with Brock throughout the text?

feelings of doubt and discomfort are evident

What does the text highlight about the protagonist's approach to detective work and making accusations?

lack of enthusiasm for detective work, reluctance to accuse without concrete evidence

What does the conversation between Carolyn and Brock reveal?

reveals tension and suspicion surrounding the accusation

What are the main reasons for the narrator's home being described as the most depressing place on earth during Christmas?

The programs on television are about the hostages and their families, the narrator's dad spends the entire day in front of the TV swearing, and the narrator's mom cries every morning, saying she is embarrassed to be Iranian.

What is the narrator's Christmas wish and why is it significant?

The narrator's Christmas wish is for her dad to have a job. This is significant because it reflects the narrator's desire for a change in her family's situation and her longing for a better life.

What does the narrator express about her Christmas wish and how does it reflect her perspective on her identity?

The narrator expresses that she technically can't make a Christmas wish because she's not Christian, but she still makes a wish for her dad to have a job. This reflects her awareness of her non-Christian identity and her willingness to embrace the tradition of making Christmas wishes despite not being part of that culture.

What does Brock ask for help with at the library, and how does the protagonist respond?

Brock asks for help with his essay on Of Mice and Men, and the protagonist agrees to help him but clarifies that she won't write the essay for him.

What does the protagonist decide to do about the situation involving Darleen Linden, and how does she feel about it?

The protagonist decides to take a few days to think about the situation involving Darleen Linden and feels unsure about what to do next.

What makes the protagonist nervous when she meets Brock in the library, and how does she respond to his request for help with the essay?

The protagonist is nervous when meeting Brock in the library, and she rubs her sweaty palms on her pants. She responds by agreeing to help Brock with his essay but clarifies that she won't write it for him.

What does Brock ask the protagonist about his essay, and how does the protagonist respond?

Brock asks when his essay is due, and the protagonist responds by telling him that it's due on Friday.

What motivates the protagonist to prank Mrs. Linden?

Her attempt to empathize with Mrs. Linden and understand her fear of those different from her.

What does the protagonist's prank on Mrs. Linden reflect about her character?

Her growing determination to combat prejudice and make a difference in her community.

Why is the protagonist hesitant to address discrimination initially?

Fearing repercussions for her family.

What event at the supermarket triggers the protagonist's plan to prank Mrs. Linden?

The drawing for a free turkey for Thanksgiving and a famous ham for Christmas.

What does the protagonist's prank on Mrs. Linden demonstrate about her willingness to address prejudice?

Her willingness to take a stand against prejudice, even if it involves unconventional methods.

What internal conflict does the protagonist face in the story?

Her conflict between wanting to address discrimination and protecting her family from potential consequences.

What does Carolyn, the protagonist's friend, demonstrate a determination to do?

Address discrimination.

What does the protagonist's mother do to protect her and her daughter from prejudice?

She lies about their nationality to protect them.

What motivates the protagonist's actions to stand up against prejudice?

Her determination to combat prejudice and make a difference in her community.

What does the protagonist's prank on Mrs. Linden reveal about her character's development?

Her willingness to take unconventional steps to address discrimination.

What does the protagonist's prank on Mrs. Linden reflect about her frustration and desire to stand up against prejudice and discrimination?

Her growing determination to combat prejudice and make a difference in her community.

What is the name of the protagonist in the text?

Cindy

What does Brock's father do for a living?

Owns a golf shop

What book is Brock writing his essay on?

Of Mice and Men

How does Brock cope with sadness, according to the text?

By sharing his surfing experience

What internal conflicts does Cindy experience in the text?

Conflicts about her cultural identity and experiences with cultural clashes

What are the prominent themes throughout the text?

Adolescence, friendship, and cultural differences

What emergency does Cindy have to help with at her home?

A plumbing emergency

What does Cindy consider doing when she feels worried about the plumber's intentions?

Consider calling the police

What does the text reveal about Brock and Cindy's interaction after reading Brock's essay?

Cindy is impressed by the depth and quality of Brock’s essay

What suggestion does Cindy make to Brock that leads to an awkward moment?

She suggests that Brock should hang out with her and her friend Carolyn

What does the text showcase about Cindy's anticipation and nervousness?

Her anticipation and nervousness about going to Brock’s house alone for the first time are evident

What does the text reveal about Skip, Brock's father, and his interaction with Cindy?

Skip makes a comment about Cindy’s intelligence and is often home due to owning a golf shop

What actions is the new government in Iran taking to erase historical ties to the shah's regime?

Changing the names of streets and institutions, arresting and killing high-ranking Iranians who worked with the shah, and seizing their assets.

What concerns do Iranian families in America express about living in the U.S.?

Concerns about American kids, drugs, and alcohol.

What secret does the narrator keep from her mother, and why?

The narrator keeps a secret about a hamster and a note to prevent it from ruining her mother's perception of America.

How does the father's emotional outburst at Sears impact the narrator?

It leads the narrator to defend his character and feel distress about their situation.

What challenges does the narrator's family face after the shah is kicked out of the U.S.?

Financial struggles and job insecurity.

What does the narrator struggle with when asked for a book recommendation by Brock?

She struggles to think of a book recommendation for his trip to Mexico.

How does the narrator's mother's behavior change after arriving in America?

She appears more optimistic and confident, offering guidance to newly arrived Iranian families.

What concerns do Iranian doctors in Iran have due to the new government's views on wealth?

The new government considers those who became rich under the shah’s regime as corrupt and subject to punishment, causing concern for wealthy doctors in Iran.

What does the father insist on buying despite financial constraints?

A new bedroom set at Sears.

How does the narrator feel about the family's visit to Sears?

The visit is solemn, and the father's outburst in Persian about the hostage takers and the revolution scares the narrator.

What is the impact of the new government's actions on those who worked with the shah?

High-ranking Iranians who worked with the shah are being arrested and killed without trial, and their assets are being seized.

What is the outcome of the family's drive home after the distressing incident at Sears?

They drive home in silence, avoiding discussion of the incident, reflecting the challenges they face.

What dramatic confrontation takes place at the market involving Mrs. Linden?

Mrs. Linden demands a ham she had supposedly won in a drawing, but the managers deny making the call, leading to a dramatic confrontation and her being escorted out by a security guard.

How does the protagonist show support for the market after the confrontation with Mrs. Linden?

The protagonist feels empathy for both the managers and Mrs. Linden and buys a sandwich to show support for the market.

What is the protagonist's feeling towards the situation in Iran and their family's belongings?

The protagonist's family, home, and belongings are still in Iran, leading to a feeling of uncertainty and fear, even though they are in America.

How does the protagonist feel about their father's reassurances regarding their safety?

The protagonist doubts his words, knowing he may not always tell the truth if it's frightening.

Who else besides the protagonist's family is trying to come to America, feeling unsafe in Iran?

Two uncles of the protagonist are also trying to come to America, feeling unsafe in Iran.

What does Brock thank the protagonist for, and what does he mention about his father's comments?

Brock thanks the protagonist for helping him with his English paper and mentions his father's comments on his intelligence.

How does the protagonist awkwardly interact with Brock when offering book recommendations?

The protagonist awkwardly offers to recommend books to Brock, who responds ambiguously and quickly leaves.

What extreme measures are some people resorting to in Iran, and what are the consequences?

People in Iran are leaving the country and resorting to extreme measures to take money and jewelry with them. Some individuals successfully bring their jewelry to America, sell it, and rebuild their lives, while others are caught and punished.

What does the protagonist reflect on regarding their family's belongings and situation in Iran?

The protagonist reflects on the difficult situation in Iran, where people are leaving the country and resorting to extreme measures to take money and jewelry with them, and despite being in America, their family, home, and belongings are still in Iran, leading to a feeling of uncertainty and fear.

How does the protagonist feel about the difficult situation in Iran and their family's belongings?

The protagonist feels a sense of uncertainty and fear, despite their father's reassurances about their safety.

What conflicting emotions does the protagonist feel towards the situation in Iran and their family's belongings?

The protagonist feels empathy for both the managers and Mrs. Linden at the market, but also feels a sense of uncertainty and fear regarding their family's situation in Iran and their belongings.

How does the protagonist react to the difficult situation in Iran and their family's belongings?

The protagonist feels empathy for both the managers and Mrs. Linden at the market, buys a sandwich to show support for the market, and reflects on the difficult situation in Iran and their family's belongings, feeling a sense of uncertainty and fear.

What event is the protagonist and her family watching on TV during Christmas 1980?

They are watching news coverage of the Day 417 hostage crisis

What movie does Howie invite the protagonist to watch on New Year's Eve?

A Little Romance

What is the protagonist's response when Howie invites her to watch the movie?

She agrees to go, as she doesn't have any other plans

What recurring pattern does the protagonist describe in her family's behavior after watching the news?

They watch the news, the protagonist and her mother cry, the father swears, the TV is turned off, and everyone goes to separate rooms

What is the purpose of the condo association board's decision to add a new chapter to the 'Rules for Condominium Living'?

The purpose is to celebrate the neighbors and share their stories as a part of Chapter ten, 'Our Community'.

Why does the speaker mention that 'we all came to this country from somewhere else'?

To highlight the diverse backgrounds and immigrant experiences of the people living in the community.

What does the speaker emphasize about living in a condo and interacting with neighbors?

The speaker emphasizes that living in a condo allows for seeing and waving hello to neighbors, but not always having the chance to hear their stories and experiences.

What conflict arises between the protagonist and her friend Carolyn regarding her decision to move back to Iran, and how does it affect their relationship?

The protagonist decides to move back to Iran, causing conflict with her friend Carolyn, who wants her to stay in the US. This decision affects their relationship as Carolyn is disappointed and wants the protagonist to stay in the US.

What does Original Cindy visit the protagonist to apologize for, and what other information does she reveal during the visit?

Original Cindy visits the protagonist to apologize for her behavior in the past and her mother's actions. She also reveals that her mother is leaving for Montana, and she plans to stay with her dad and pet.

How does Skip offer support to the protagonist, and what 'good news' does he share despite a negative experience?

Skip visits to express concern about a hateful act against the protagonist's family and to offer support. Despite the negative experience, Skip tries to uplift the mood by sharing 'good news.'

What leads to the protagonist's decision to move back to Iran, and what conflict does she feel about this decision?

The protagonist's decision to move back to Iran is due to the limitations she faces as an Iranian, contrasting with the American dream. She feels conflicted about leaving but ultimately decides to return to Iran.

Who visits the narrator's family to apologize for the actions of Darleen Linden?

Mr. Vitter, a member of the Rotary Club

What job opportunities are presented to the family through the Rotary Club connections?

Three interview opportunities for an engineer position

What kind of party is organized to celebrate the father's new job and their stay in America?

A potluck at the pool organized by Skip

What does the narrator do to help Cindy with the kitten adoption?

Helps Cindy tape flyers for kitten adoption all over the greenbelt

What does the pool party symbolize for the family?

A celebration of their new opportunities and their sense of community in America

What does the family's experience with the Rotary Club and their neighbors demonstrate?

The potential for support and opportunity in their new community

What decorations are used at the pool party?

Red, white, and blue streamers and balloons

What does the narrator's father's background qualify him for?

An engineer position

What does the narrator's father refuse the narrator due to a story about a friend who went blind after an incident with a cat?

A kitten

Who is trying to find homes for Tennille's five kittens?

Original Cindy

What food item do the Kleins bring to the pool party?

A homemade chocolate cake

What event occurs on January 20, 1981, in the story?

Ronald Reagan's inauguration and the announcement of the release of U.S. hostages from Iran.

What challenges does Zomorod's family face in the U.S. despite the U.S. hostages' release?

Her father's unemployment and financial difficulties.

Why is Zomorod devastated by the news of returning to Iran?

She feels that her life is over and expresses anger and frustration.

What internal conflict does Zomorod face regarding the prospect of returning to Iran?

She struggles with the idea of leaving her friends in the U.S. and feels resentment towards her parents and her Iranian identity.

How does the text highlight the contrast between joy and challenges?

It contrasts the joy of the hostage release with the challenges faced by Zomorod's family in the U.S.

What does Zomorod's internal conflict center around?

Her feelings of unfairness and struggles with the idea of leaving her friends in the U.S.

What does the text emphasize regarding Zomorod's feelings?

It emphasizes her despair over returning to a country with limited freedoms and her sense of injustice.

What does Zomorod struggle with regarding the prospect of returning to Iran?

She struggles with the idea of leaving her friends in the U.S.

How does the text portray Zomorod's emotional state?

It portrays her as overwhelmed with feelings of unfairness and despair.

What does the text illustrate regarding Zomorod's feelings towards returning to Iran?

It illustrates her resentment towards her parents and her Iranian identity as she grapples with the prospect of returning to Iran.

What is the significance of the contrast highlighted in the text?

It highlights the contrast between the joy of the hostage release and the challenges faced by Zomorod's family in the U.S.

How does the text portray Zomorod's emotional turmoil?

It portrays her as overwhelmed with feelings of unfairness and struggles with the idea of leaving her friends in the U.S.

Describe the protagonist's initial dilemma about returning to Iran and the alternative suggested by her friend Carolyn.

The protagonist is considering returning to Iran with her family due to financial issues, but her friend Carolyn suggests that she live with them instead.

What are the protagonist's conflicting feelings about living away from her parents in a different country?

The protagonist struggles with the idea of living away from her parents in a different country.

What are the protagonist's aspirations and desires regarding her future plans?

She wants to stay in the U.S. to pursue her dreams and education.

How does the protagonist ultimately decide about her future plans, and what reassurance does she receive from her father?

After discussing with her friend and family, she decides to stay in the U.S. Her father reassures her that they will support her education in the U.S. after high school.

What concerns does the protagonist's mother express about returning to Iran?

Her mother expresses her reluctance to return to Iran due to the current situation there.

What is emphasized by the protagonist's parents in their conversation with her?

The protagonist's parents emphasize the importance of family and their support for her.

What decision does the protagonist make about informing her parents of her choice, and what is the parents' reaction?

The protagonist ultimately decides not to tell her parents about her decision to stay in the U.S. Her parents express their love and commitment to her, despite the difficult circumstances.

How does the protagonist feel about her decision to stay in the U.S., and whom does she decide to share the news with?

The protagonist decides to call her friend to share her decision to stay in the U.S. She feels scared but excited about her decision to stay and pursue her dreams in the U.S.

Study Notes

Navigating Identity as an Iranian-American Girl

  • The protagonist, Zomorod, moves to America with her parents and faces challenges due to her Iranian name and heritage.
  • Zomorod struggles with her name, Zomorod, which means "emerald" in Persian, and wishes she had a more common American name like Sara.
  • Zomorod feels embarrassed about her name and tries to fit in by choosing the name Cindy for herself, inspired by a character from The Brady Bunch.
  • Zomorod faces cultural differences as she speaks Persian at home, has only owned a goldfish as a pet, and her mother does not know how to make oatmeal raisin cookies.
  • Zomorod's desire to change her name is driven by her wish to be known for who she is, rather than her Iranian background.
  • Zomorod's encounter with a neighbor named Cindy leads to a moment of connection, as they share the same name, and she is invited to hang out.
  • Zomorod's parents express concern about her integrating into American culture, questioning her about American customs like throwing a pie in someone's face.
  • Zomorod's experience highlights the challenges of fitting in and finding acceptance in a new culture while retaining her Iranian identity.
  • Zomorod's desire to change her name reflects her struggle to navigate her dual identity as an Iranian-American girl.
  • Zomorod's story sheds light on the complexities of immigrant experiences, cultural assimilation, and the quest for belonging.
  • Zomorod's narrative captures the universal themes of identity, belonging, and the challenges of cultural integration faced by many immigrant children.
  • Zomorod's journey reflects the internal conflict of embracing her Iranian heritage while seeking acceptance in American society.

Adventures of Cindy and her Origami

  • Cindy explains origami to a friend and makes several paper boats and a crane
  • She meets David, whose father is an ophthalmologist, and shows her a giant eyeball
  • Cindy babysits for David and is offered a regular babysitting job by Mrs. Klein
  • Mrs. Klein offers to help Cindy's mom make friends, but they struggle to find common interests
  • Cindy and her friend Original Cindy plan to get tans together but Original Cindy rejects her
  • Original Cindy criticizes Cindy for not talking much and calls out her lack of knowledge about a song
  • Cindy wakes up with a stomachache and wishes she could skip school and be like Pippi Longstocking
  • Cindy's dad drives her to school and calls her Susan, but she corrects him
  • Cindy changed her name to Cindy from Susan
  • The story revolves around Cindy's experiences and interactions with friends and family
  • The narrative includes elements of friendship, cultural differences, and personal struggles
  • The text captures Cindy's attempts to navigate social dynamics and find her place in her new environment

Adjusting to Life in America

  • The narrator's mother is an Iranian immigrant who struggles with loneliness and language barriers in America.
  • The narrator tries to help her mother by suggesting she attend a PTA meeting to meet new people and learn English.
  • The mother refuses, insisting she needs to learn English first, and remains resistant to social interaction.
  • The narrator's mother expresses sadness and difficulty adjusting to life in America, despite attempts by her husband to make her happy.
  • The mother's reluctance to engage with American culture and make friends stems from her struggles with the English language and feelings of isolation.
  • The narrator's father explains that it is easier for Americans in Iran due to the presence of a community and access to English-language media.
  • The family rarely encounters other Iranians in America, making the mother's sense of isolation more acute.
  • The mother finds happiness when she briefly connects with other Iranian visitors in America, emphasizing the importance of cultural connection through food.
  • The mother insists on serving traditional Persian food to the visitors, highlighting the significance of food in Iranian culture.
  • The narrator's mother's reluctance to integrate into American society reflects the challenges faced by many immigrants in adjusting to a new country.
  • The story illustrates the difficulties faced by immigrants in adapting to a new culture and the importance of community and cultural connection for well-being.
  • The narrator's attempts to help her mother integrate into American society are met with resistance, reflecting the complexities of the immigrant experience.

New Friends and Cultural Differences

  • The protagonist goes trick-or-treating with her friend Carolyn on Halloween, and she's excited to receive full-size candy bars, which she had never received before in Compton.
  • The neighborhood is filled with kids and parents dressed up for Halloween, creating an exciting atmosphere.
  • The protagonist feels a sense of belonging in Newport Beach and enjoys her classes at Lincoln, even looking forward to the Presidential Physical Fitness Test.
  • The protagonist's father announces that two Iranian brothers, Pooya and Pooyan, are coming to stay with them for two weeks, and she is not happy about it.
  • The concept of "taarof" is explained, where guests can stay for as long as they want, and one must always say yes to a favor to be polite, even if they don't mean it.
  • The protagonist and her father get lost on the way to pick up the brothers from the airport, but eventually, they arrive and bring them home.
  • The brothers give the protagonist's family gifts, including a Persian miniature painting, dried limes, and a box of pistachios.
  • The protagonist finds the brothers' cologne to be overwhelming and tries to cope with the smell during the drive home.
  • The protagonist feels frustrated about not having a say in the decision to host the brothers and dislikes being forced to help with their stay.
  • The protagonist's parents have an authoritarian parenting style, unlike the TV show "The Brady Bunch," where feelings are discussed openly.
  • The protagonist worries about the language barrier and cultural differences with the brothers, as they speak limited English.
  • The protagonist's dislike of the brothers and the looming cultural differences create tension as they begin their stay with the family.

Revolution in Iran and Impact on Women

  • The narrator expresses uncertainty and concern about the future after a revolution in Iran
  • The Goodwill factory employs people with Down syndrome, providing them with jobs and a chance to be part of society
  • The narrator reflects on the concept of dignity and its importance, particularly in the context of the workers at the Goodwill factory
  • The narrator recalls a time in Iran where a fortuneteller's son with Down syndrome was kept hidden away, highlighting the lack of opportunities for individuals with disabilities in Iran
  • The narrator's experience at the Goodwill factory leads to a conversation with her parents, who are impressed and momentarily distracted from the current events in Iran
  • The narrator expresses disapproval of Khomeini's decisions, particularly the restriction of women's rights, such as banning them from being judges and enforcing the wearing of hijabs and long coats
  • Dr. Klein, a neighbor, and the narrator's father discuss the negative impact of the revolution on women's rights in Iran
  • The narrative highlights the contrast between the previous modernity in Iran and the new restrictions imposed on women
  • The narrator's father expresses deep concern and sadness over the regression in women's rights in Iran
  • There is a discussion about the impact of the new regulations on women, including the requirement to wear cover-ups
  • The text showcases the shift in women's rights in Iran following the revolution, leading to a sense of disappointment and worry among the characters
  • The text provides insights into the personal experiences and reflections of the narrator regarding the revolution and its impact on women in Iran

First Birthday Party and Camp White's Landing

  • The protagonist's birthday party is described with her friends pelting each other with unbreakable balloons and eating by the pool
  • The protagonist receives gifts from her friends - a pompom belt, a banana-flavored Bonne Bell Lip Smacker, a paint-by-numbers set, and a Clue game
  • The protagonist wants to attend Camp White's Landing but her parents are concerned about the safety, particularly involving horseback riding
  • The protagonist convinces her parents to let her go to camp by promising to be extra careful and not go anywhere alone or in the dark
  • The protagonist expresses excitement about going to summer camp for the first time and is not scared at all
  • The protagonist and her friends make promises to their parents about things they wouldn't do at camp
  • The protagonist wears a floppy sun hat given by her mom to prevent sunburn
  • On the ferry to camp, the protagonist and her friends explore the boat and encounter tourists staring at them
  • The protagonist and her friends see dolphins in the wild while on the ferry, making it the best day of her life
  • The protagonist and her friends are excited about the prospect of having fun at camp
  • The story is narrated in first person, with the protagonist expressing her thoughts and interactions with her friends and parents
  • The text captures the protagonist's coming-of-age experiences, including her first birthday party without her parents and her first time away from home at summer camp

Detective Work and Accusations

  • The protagonist's parents have a non-action movie lifestyle, with a routine of warm nonfat milk before bed.
  • The protagonist's house lacks snack foods, unlike her friends' houses, and contains Iranian kitchen contents.
  • Carolyn and the protagonist suspect someone who knows the protagonist's address, possibly from the Girl Scout troop, of leaving a note.
  • The two girls suspect various people, including the protagonist's neighbor and a boy named Brock, of leaving the note.
  • Carolyn decides to confront Brock about the note, creating a plan to catch him off-guard and ask him questions about surfing.
  • During the confrontation with Brock, Carolyn accuses him of leaving a dead hamster on the protagonist's doorstep.
  • The protagonist feels unsure about accusing Brock, but Carolyn insists on confronting him.
  • Brock denies leaving the hamster and appears genuinely puzzled by the accusation.
  • The confrontation with Brock ends with him denying the accusation and leaving abruptly.
  • The protagonist's feelings of doubt and discomfort about the confrontation with Brock are evident throughout the text.
  • The text highlights the protagonist's lack of enthusiasm for detective work and her reluctance to accuse someone without concrete evidence.
  • The conversation between Carolyn and Brock reveals the tension and suspicion surrounding the accusation.

Three Short Stories Summary

  • Protagonist secretly goes to a market to witness a woman, Darleen Linden, demanding a ham she had supposedly won in a drawing
  • Mrs. Linden insists she was called to pick up the ham, but the managers deny making the call, leading to a dramatic confrontation and her being escorted out by a security guard
  • Protagonist feels empathy for both the managers and Mrs. Linden, and buys a sandwich to show support for the market
  • Protagonist encounters Brock, who thanks her for helping him with his English paper and mentions his father's comments on his intelligence
  • Protagonist awkwardly offers to recommend books to Brock, who responds ambiguously and quickly leaves
  • A character reflects on the difficult situation in Iran, where people are leaving the country and resorting to extreme measures to take money and jewelry with them
  • Some individuals successfully bring their jewelry to America, sell it, and rebuild their lives, while others are caught and punished
  • Despite being in America, the protagonist's family, home, and belongings are still in Iran, leading to a feeling of uncertainty and fear
  • The protagonist's dad reassures them of their safety, but the protagonist doubts his words, knowing he may not always tell the truth if it's frightening
  • Two uncles of the protagonist are also trying to come to America, feeling unsafe in Iran

Difficult Decision to Return to Iran

  • The protagonist is considering returning to Iran with her family due to financial issues.
  • Her friend, Carolyn, suggests that she live with them instead, and her mother agrees to consider it.
  • The protagonist struggles with the idea of living away from her parents in a different country.
  • She wants to stay in the U.S. to pursue her dreams and education.
  • After discussing with her friend and family, she decides to stay in the U.S.
  • Her father reassures her that they will support her education in the U.S. after high school.
  • Her mother expresses her reluctance to return to Iran due to the current situation there.
  • The protagonist's parents emphasize the importance of family and their support for her.
  • The protagonist ultimately decides not to tell her parents about her decision to stay in the U.S.
  • The protagonist's parents express their love and commitment to her, despite the difficult circumstances.
  • The protagonist decides to call her friend to share her decision to stay in the U.S.
  • The protagonist feels scared but excited about her decision to stay and pursue her dreams in the U.S.

Explore themes of cultural assimilation, identity, and the immigrant experience through a collection of stories focusing on Iranian-American protagonists and their journeys in adjusting to a new culture while retaining their heritage.

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