A few months ago, there was an article in the LA Times about the new Canadian show, “Little Mosque on the Prairie,” depicting the lives of a few Muslims living as minorities in a small town in Canada. Somebody (can’t remember who) had a few youtube clips of this show on their blog, and so I watched it for the first time…even though the review I had read had filled me with a few misgivings, which I can’t quite remember anymore.
In short, it was interesting. I watched a few episodes and, after the stereotypical airport and journalist scenes, which I totally related to, I found myself going “this is bad news.” Why? Because of the imam’s character: Why is he clean-shaven?! And why did episode 5 have instances of him and the single female daughter of the mosque founder gazing into one another’s eyes, albeit with entirely innocent smiles? There was just something wrong with that picture!
Then there were the scenes of the conflicts Muslims face over moon-sighting issues, whether to have barriers in mosques separating the genders, and whether to Halloween or to Halal-oween. At first blink, I was like, but these are non-issues! Nobody I know cares about having a barrier or a separate room for women! Everybody I know goes ahead and does Halloween to whatever extent they are comfortable with! What’s the big deal?! And then I stopped and realized that of course these are the issues our parents had to overcome when immigrating west-ward. Of course, some of the newer issues (like barriers in mosques) will gain momentum. There is such diversity in our thought processes! Sometimes, you get so used to the diversity, that you don’t even recognize it as diversity anymore…until a screen-writer spells it out for you one after the other!
But I am still not down with the imam and the chic looking all admiringly and compassionately at one another. Thats just plain weird. For an imam? Come on. Is that even realistic/probable?