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I knew him

I was at my fathers today and he had some old photographs laying around. This was one of them. When I asked who these guys were, he told me that the one on the far right was his uncle. Then I realized that I recognized him from when I was younger. He survived and lived in upstate New York as a farmer. I remember going to his farm, etc. Usually you see a lot of these photos around but wonfer if any of them survived? This one did and I actually knew him. Also look at their faces. At first glance they look like they are late 20s, early 30s but they must be closer to in their teens...


Mosin-Nagant Model 1891 Rifle

Ever wonder what make & model rifle all those Armenian freedom fighters ("fedayees" as they were called) were sporting in those old photographs. The most likely culprit is a Russian made rifle called "Mosin-Nagant Model 1891" (click on the photos to enlarge them). If you are in to specifications, here yah go:

1. Caliber: 762 x 52 mm 

2. Action: Manual operation, rotating bolt

3. Length: 1306 mm (1799 mm with bayonet)

4. weight: 4.22 kg (4.6 kg with bayonet)

5. Rounds: 5 in integral magazine

6. Muzzle velocity: 800 m/s

7. Effective range: 500 meters (now that's pretty cool)


Why I wrote this book...

I don't know about you, but over the years I have read a lot of Armenian based oral epics, novels, and memoirs. All have been pretty much depressing with an occasional light of hope trying desperately to shine through. I got really tired of it and wanted to read something that would be uplifting, positive, hopeful. I know that a lot of bad things have happened to Armenians over the past millenium but why can't someone write a novel with a more positive outlook and outcome... So that's what did. Hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it.


Top 10+ Things I've Learned from Tavid

When I had finished this book, a very smart person asked me, what did you learn from the main character, Tavid?  The question took me back a little bit.  At first I said, "I created him, I didn't learn anything from him."  But a few seconds passed and I realized that Tavid Kaloustian had taught me a great deal.  Because we learn from all of the characters that we create in our mind, the voices in our head.  Here's what I came up with:

  1. You are going to make mistakes along the way.  Hopefully, none of them are fatal.
  2. You are in control of your own destiny, environment, and the perception of the world around you.  No one else.
  3. When you are trapped and it feels like there is only one option, you are probably wrong.  There is always another way.
  4. It is possible to befriend someone who belongs to another culture or nationality.  Even if that culture's goal is to wipe you and your own off the face of the earth.
  5. Things may not always appear as they seem.  In reality, the things people say or do may have a very different intention than what you think.
  6. Your view of reality is simply that.  Yours.  Reality is relative to the person experiencing it.
  7. From the viewpoint of another person, your world doesn't exist.
  8. When the masses are looking in one direction, out of fear, habit, or ego, look in another direction and see what they are missing.
  9. Only a "perfect" soul can balance love & hatred, happiness & sorrow, violence & compassion, trauma & tenderness.
  10. Luck might just be a way of describing that the "right" souls are looking over you.
  11. Humor.  If you can't laugh in the worst of circumstances, what's the point of being here?


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