Dallas, TX – Thirty minutes into his I’tikaf, Saleem Niwad peeked out from his makeshift, isolated space to ask for the password to the mosque’s wi-fi network.
I’tikaf is the personal, spiritual retreat, in which Muslims seclude themselves from others to engage solely in acts of worship. Observers are restricted from engaging in casual conversations with others, and are required to spend this sacred time in a mosque, typically during the last 10 days of Ramadan.
“Clearly, Saleem didn’t get the memo,” said Khalid Khan, volunteer at the north side mosque.
Mosque officials observed 37 year old Niwad as he struggled to conform to the strict requirements of the I’tikaf.
Niwad’s irritating voice could be heard echoing throughout the prayer hall, as he periodically complained about download speeds from behind the flimsy bed sheet separating him from other worshippers.
“Can someone reboot the router?” he asked in a resentful tone as others lined up for the afternoon congregation. “Anybody? SO much buffering.”
Fellow Mu’takifs (people who observe the I’tikaf) complained that they had to endure Niwad’s sporadic outbursts of laughter throughout the night, apparently from watching downloaded episodes of It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia.
“He kept FaceTiming with his ex-wife, telling her he’s become a changed man… and he kept calling every five minutes to tell her how the I’tikaf is tough, but he’s committed,” stated an anonymous Mu’takif who had to camp beside Niwad.
Earlier this morning, Niwad sparked temporary hope among other worshippers as they heard him loudly chanting ‘Ameen.’ However, after closer observation, Niwad was really humming ‘Amen.’
“He was singing Take Me to Church… in the middle of a mosque prayer hall!” exclaimed a shocked Khan as he slapped his forehead and shook his head.
“It truly is the end of days.”
As the last day of Ramadan draws near, Saleem Niwad is expected to complete his I’tikaf and return home, but not before he completes the fifth season of Game of Thrones.