Usually any wire story that begins with "An Iranian court..." ends up being horrific news, more often than not about some woman unjustly punished for, well, being a woman. But for once, this morning, I was happy to read a piece via Raw Story about a wife prevailing over her husband - albeit in a very bizarre way.
A woman, identified only by the first name of Hengameh, filed a complaint against her husband to collect her dowry, which, by Iranian law, a wife can claim at any time during the marriage. According to the article, the woman's lawsuit was precipitated by how stingy her husband is - apparently so stingy that he would even refuse to pay for a cup of coffee when they went out together.
Finding in the woman's favor, the court ordered the husband to pay his promised dowry: 124,000 roses. Although the verdict seems like a purely poetic punishment for romantic hyperbole, it is serious stuff. To ensure that the man complies, the court has seized his apartment - worth $64,000 - until he delivers all 124,000 roses.
Not unexpectedly, the man is now crying poverty, claiming that he can't afford to give his wife more than 5 roses a day (roses cost an average $2 a piece in Iran). But he might not have much of a choice but to fork over the 100,000+ long-stemmed apologies. A man who fails to hand over the dowry he pledged at marriage can be sentenced to prison.
On a related note, those interested in learning more about Iran's recent history and the country's treatment of women should watch the Academy Award-nominated film Persepolis, The Brooklyn Optimist's vote for the Best Picture of last year.