In Reply to: Jackie Bijan posted by Robert Oushalem on August 30, 2001 at 00:16:30:
: I read your dissection of a dear friend of mine and I did not appreciate it one bit.
>>>You may not appreciate, she may not appreciate, and I may not appreciate. What we like and who our friends are isn't the point. I think we could stick to the facts in the case.
I bleived I was going to respond and inadvertently I added my name to your board.
>>>You'll forgive me but I don't quite know what you mean. I don't know the down side of "adding your name to a board".
If you or anyone else believes I endorsed your diatribe against Mrs. Bijan, you are sorely mistaken.
>>>I still don't understand how this is any sort of an endorsement of my views. You seem to be doing a good job of making quite the opposite clear.
I want to clarify it that the followup was done out of error and my lack of sophistication on the use of the computer. So in order to clear the air, I am instructing you, Mr. Parhad, not to represent that I endorsed your comments or opinions about Jackie.
>>>Jeez, I wish I knew what you are talking about.
On the contrary I find your metaphor of you being the downtrodden Assyrian warrior waging a battle against Jackie. Your depiction makes Jackie out to be the "evil empire".
>>>Well, let's just say you don't know me, what I do or much about my relationship to Jackie. I admire your loyalty though. I'm not waging a battle against anyone, certainly not Jackie. I believe she was not honest with me, I believe she went about getting the monument installed in the wrong way...I believe having done it twice I know somewhat of what I say. I believe she caused me to waste four months here, and nearly cost us the monument. I believe that by failing to get on the agenda of the Arts Committe for June, July and of course August, was not the way to get the monument installed. But I doubt anything I say would sway you, and I don't really want to. Jackie has many fine qualities which I've seen first hand.
With all respect to you as an artist, you are not in the position to criticize this women.
>>>You can't have much respect for anyone, let alone an "artist", if you wont allow one to be critical. I didn't wake up one morning in a bad mood and decide to take off after Jackie. She did this same thing to me once before and I let it slide. This time, I called her on it. What do you find so awful in that? Incidentally, how much of the actual story do you know?
We only hear or see you at the conventions when you are hawking your art.
>>>I get tired of this, of having to convince people as ignorant as you appear to be...that no one in his right mind goes "hawking" art to Assyrians. The conventions have always cost more, and often far more, than any "revenue" they bring in. I don't do these things to make money...I know perfectly well what one needs to do in order to make money...and selling art to Assyrians is NOT one of them.
Although it is quite good, and I am proud of your accomplishments, we never hear about you until the conventions.
>>>It's true, I don't involve myself directly but I do things behind the scenes. I'm not one to seek out the light or get recognition for what I do. Narsai knows this, and Jackie does too. You would hear a lot more if it wasn't for the attempts made to frustrate, thwart, beat and arrest me.
On the other hand, Jackie is working hard each and every day on behalf of our community.
>>>I'd have to disagree with you there. Jackie puts in a lot of time enhancing her standing in the community. I've had all manner of conversations with her and observed her in all sorts of situations. There are many like her who undeniably "do good"...but they are doing it for themselves first, and weigh each project not according to "the" need...but to their need.
>>>The worst thing she could have done for the Shumirum Monument was go through the Mayor's office. That was a tip-off that something "else" was going on. No matter what the Mayor and his assistants thought or wanted, it is still the Arts Committe that has the ultimate authority and they especially don't appreciate the impression that you are buying influence to use against them. The mayor could always be brought in as window dressing later...but to have spent as much time on him and others in the beginning was just Jackie's way of helping herself first...then the rest of us if she could.
>>>No one knows more about what Jackie "does" than Jackie and we are all to be appreciative and thankful no end. In my case especially she felt that buying as many sculptures as they did, and as some friends she introduced me to did...I should have been all "sewn up". After all...would I risk future sales??? One of the greatest freedoms I've enjoyed and one which has cemented my friendship with Narsai, is my insistence on telling "friends" and patrons to go to hell. The smarter people figure out I must not be angling for the next sale or kissing ass if I do that, and they appreciate it.
>>>I think Jackie expected "loyalty" because she had "paid" the price for it. To believe this myself I would have to place little value on myself OR my work...and I don't do that for anybody, ESPECIALLY for anyone whom I sense feels they "deserve' something extra because they did me the "favor" of buying my sculpture.
It is through her tireless efforts that we even have a sucessful Assyrian organization in San Jose. We all have our own selfish reasons for not getting involved. Yet Jackie, with a family of her own, continues to strive to make our community a thriving ethnic arm of San Jose.
>>>I don't wish to get too personal here, but I can see you aren't too intimate with Jackie from your observations about her family life. I have a family as well...try raising one in this culture while working with Assyrians.
One that has the ear of city hall.
>>>If you pay enough, you get any politicians ear, or any other organ. It's a good move politically, but I wouldn't brag about it. It was just for the sake of that "ear" that this project was done in such an ass backwards way.
Jackie has worked hard for our benefit and I do not appreciate you accusing her of engaging in underhanded activities.
>>>People had the same reaction to my treatment of John Nimrod. They did not "appreciate" that either. What you people don't stop to consider is the behavior that led to my treatment of them. You don't know the details, you don't know the facts...I've attacked a friend of yours and you are defending her...that is comendable in you, but not particularly informed. But I am not attacking your friend...I am speaking out against what that friend did...she was my "friend" too. I don't cover for my children either...if they are wrong, they will hear about it. Jackie isn't a child, she should not have behaved in this manner in the first place.
You haev maligned a respected member of our community and I beleive you owe Mrs. Bijan an apology and ask for her forgiveness.
>>>To be meaningful an apology comes after there is some understanding and reconciliation. As of today, I owe Jackie no such thing. It is not maligning anyone to state what they have done. I made none of it up. You not liking to hear ill things said about a friend of yours is understandable, but the world can't run that way. The "community" is much more than Jackie, yet because she was angry over something that ocurred between the two of us, she decided the community didn't need to see my work, without asking how the community felt about it.
>>>I certainly don't expect an apology from her and would never think of having her ask my forgiveness. I walked into this knowingly, with one good example already about how far Jackie will go to protect her own cherished reputation, and how she'll let a "friend" swing in the breeze and catch the hell she should have. The same is true of Jackie. I told her once already that I did not approve of or appreciate the way she was handling the Shumirum Monument and how she was getting ready to use it as another resume' enhancer for herself. I think she believes her own hype...that only "she" can do these things, these "hard" things. They are not hard at all...and in this one case she was making them much harder than they needed to be. She wants to be approved of and appreciated for whatever she does, and her economic standing allows her the time to indulge herself. That's wonderful...but I don't have that luxury...I actually have to make things happen and move on to the next project...I can't afford to "milk" something for all it's worth TO ME.
Whatever your intentions were, benevolent or otherwise, I think your methedology is questionable. Remeber, the convention is from her efforts and those who assister Jackie.. Not you, or any other outsider who holds themselves out as a devout Assyrian.
>>>I'm not an outsider at all...don't know what you mean. For 22 years I've been making and carting bronze and plaster sculptures around the country to show at conventions. I've enhanced THEIR program, only most people are too stupid to understand that and look only at the price tag on the pedestal and assume I came there to make MONEY! I mean REALLY!!! I've also received $20,000. in donations from the AANF to help THEM live up to their mandate, which was NOT to jiggle and wiggle once a year, but to promote the Assyrian Heritage. I've spent years doing just that in about the most honorable way any Assyrian has done it in hundreds of years...and I was able to inspire fellow Assyrians to donate thousands of dollars to do it with...and though I get tired of saying it...I made no money.
The quote from an American Foundry to make the Hammurabi Monument was $152,000.00....I asked for $150,000.00. I am getting LESS... and nothing for "artists fee" which is the "profit". By the most conservative estimate in our profession I should walk away with $300,000.00 in my pocket for this monument...minimum! I'll walk away broke with barely enough to cover the costs. I sell my own sculpture and use the proceeds to fund these monuments. How much of Jackie's income, or yours, would you all be willing to use in this way?
So in conclusion, I hope you peacefully resolve your differences with Jackie. This web site is not the appropriate forum for venting your spleen and seeking to diminish Jackie in the eyes of the Assyrians of San Jose.
>>>Jackie and I will have to maintain our own respect wherever we go. I have no difficulty being "attacked" here or anywhere else. I can't be diminished anywhere unless I bring it on myself. I never vent my spleen, as I haven't done here with you.
>>>There is no need to resolve anything. I will go on in another direction as she will. Happens all the time...in fact it should happen with us more often, much more often.
>>>I appreciate your taking this time to speak out on behalf of a friend. Jackie is indeed fortunate to have you for one.
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