Sunday, November 29, 2009

I am sure you have no questions.

I discovered that once you overcome a certain fear in your daily life you also gradually beat that fear in your dreams. I used to hate cats. Okay fine. I used to be afraid of cats and used to have those dreams where someone throws a horrified cat at my face and then I would wake up screaming. I am not afraid of cats anymore. I still hate them though. Yesterday, I had a dream where I am staring at a cat right in the eyes and making fun of her. I even gave her the finger and she said "Meow". What did she mean? I forgot to ask her. I know this is not a new discovery but you have to know that I am not talking about cats here. Neither about dogs nor cows.

I am sure it is clear.

I think that if I were a professor I would be the type who would end every lecture with: Of course you dont have any questions.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Celebrate your democratic regime

It is amazing how Lebanese people and politicians disagree on almost everything about their country except on what makes their country backward. Come to think of it, the Lebanese people dont deserve to be considered as citizens before the law. This country is tribal despite all the glamour projected about it and a tribal mentality dominates across all its societies. I changed my mind and I am now against abolishing sectarianism in Lebanon, all forms of sectarianism not from the Noufous(souls/mentality) nor from the Noussous (texts/Laws). The current system is indeed the most representative. I hate representative systems.

Any limits to where this is going?

What is the replacement of the phrase "flow of a pen" in the euphoric technology era? something like "flow of board keys"? if in few years books in paper disappear to be replaced by electronic books only, instead of flipping pages, people scroll down and stare at a screen there will be no need for an index or a glossary in the presence of the find option. Technology makes life less poetic but will never beat the longing for beauty. Cameras did not replace painting portraits for example. Someone argued with me once that they can even make electronic books smell like paper if need be. I hate that. Imagine a time where kids are not taught how to write but only how to type.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I am not writing a book about it so there you go.

I hate democracy. It is said that this system of rule is the best one available because never two democracies ever fought a war, which means that it is the most peaceful; maybe but never the best. Democracies make everything imperfect and I am a perfectionist. I am still looking for an alternative and "best available" is too short of my ambitions. I even prefer dictatorships to democracies where the stupid mass reigns. In a democracy a stupid mass can elect a stupid ruler, or worse a stupid dictator. Do we have exmaples? Not so hard to find one not so long gone home. Why is Platonism considered unattainable?

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Memo to self: Airport observation

I hate flying but I love watching out people in the airport. It is one of the most peculiar places to watch how different people react vis a vis waiting. It is also the place where you can watch people without feeling embarrassed because everyone watches everyone. The whole scene differs from one airport to the other. For me the Beirut airport is so far the best place for such an exercise, especially with Lebanese women in their forties or fifties living abroad and coming to visit. Those women have such a bourgeoisie attitude and such delicate manners especially when in public areas -like in an airport- that you cannot stop watching them... like this one lady who can be summarized by blond hair, nice legs in high heals, lots of tanning powder and a very high chin. I would have said how snobbish she looked, but holding a book and reading in the one cafe at the airport, I could only say that she looked stunning. Give me a second, I might need to check on something... about my gender. No, I guess I am fine. She was like a pure combination of confidence and beauty. There are others who always remind you to tear your passport apart, but not this one. Later on I will tell about my observations at the Sanaa Airport or Hodeida.

The great battle

Loneliness can get addictive once you realize the value of time. The problem is that it can be repulsive for some for the same reason. While time passes are you in the course of living or in the course of dying? It all depends on how one perceives time. This is not a question of optimism versus pessimism or seeing the glass half empty or half full, it can be rather compared to drinking to forget or drinking to remember or more accurately drinking to suffer without pain. Most people who drink to forget a certain misery end up just remembering it, yet they do it because it is a means to remember their suffering without feeling it with the same intensity. It becomes a way of testing their tolerance for pain or of enjoying their endurance to suffering which without alcohol can be unbearable, something similar to pain killers that replaces pain with numbness. Now going back to loneliness, if you are someone who is of the second category of people, those who tend to drink to remember without suffering, then you don’t want to waste time forgetting, and hence you will be in constant strive for defying time. Remembering does not necessarily mean living in the past. It is a state of conserving the present and denying the future, in the sense of depriving time from the privilege of reigning over your future. In your struggle with time, you tend to make it as meaningless as possible, as slow as possible to the extent of boredom. In this, loneliness can be your best weapon. Yet, in your battle with time, you might win a battle but never the war. Time does not know defeat. Sooner or later, you get to enjoy your loneliness, boredom withers away, leaving you alone in the battlefield and time supremely reigns thereafter. Philosophers have always been consumed by the theme of time. Most of them concluded that it can only be defeated by death. This dilemma has also been a recurrent theme for art and literature which tried to defeat time with greatness or with utmost absurdity, or more stupidity.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

About Kundera

Love, infidelity, communism, Einstein's eternal recurrence, philosophy, existentialism, are all themes unbearably crammed in Kundera's book, the Unbearable Lightness of Being. All would have been nice only if Kundera realized that the reader knows very well that he is the author of this book with his photo big enough on the back cover and his name bigger than the title on the front page. Yet, Mr. Kundera in all his books, likes to inject his ego throughout the pages of the book unnecessarily. Had it been a literary art, he could or should have done it more subtly or at least make it consistent, yet, he suddenly pops out of sentences reminding the reader every now and then that the characters of the book are his creation and explaining how he created them losing the artistic storytelling style. This is only relevant because Kundera likes to think of himself as a novelist rather than a philosopher or a political writer. I do like most of his characters and themes and he does have some interesting philosophies there but he is the most annoying author to read despite the fact that I like his books.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Nun or Prostitute.

In the context of joking and playing games, someone once asked me if you had no choice but to be either a prostitute or a nun which one would you choose? I thought about it and found the question to be very philosophical, existential even. After my long struggle with existential questions in my early adolescence I somehow stopped caring much for answers. I found that questions can be much more informative most of the time. But for this question, I have a clear cut answer. Not a nun.

Haradh... The Horror.

Tomorrow I fly to Hodeida then take the car to haradh. oh, how I miss that part of the world! This time I am taking food, a blanket, a towel, wet napkins, necessities there if you are planning to come back alive. I am also taking a bottle of Martini, another necessity I realized to have some hope.

Learn from them... and if you dont, at least you will laugh

I love listening to religious channels on the Radio, the best entertainment you will ever get. I laugh nonstop. Priests and Sheikhs are the most hilarious people when they are serious. I just remembered that now when I turned to a religious channel on TV for less than 10 seconds and laughed for the first time today. In 10 seconds I heard a hilarious joke; a sheikh saying that "plays are forbidden in Islam because they entail acting and that some leading religious scholars had a fatwa saying that acting means lying because the actor is playing the role of someone he is not and hence he is lying on the public and lying is a vice." What I love most about those fatwas is that they use logic and come out with the most brilliant conclusions. Genius.

The banana republic

A Japanese friend who had been living in Lebanon for the past three years once told me with obvious excitement that if it were up to him, he would remove the cedar from the Lebanese flag and put a banana instead. He was so happy with his conclusion and was so disappointed to know that there is already a group on facebook with such a flag as a profile picture and the idea is not quite new. He was not the first to think of Lebanon as a banana republic but in a way coming from him gives you an idea of how obvious this is to a foreigner. In the streets, some people call him Jackie Chan and laugh and he is still wondering why. He would have appreciated the joke only if it had a little humour.

Lebanon: The State of Justice

The Minister of Justice in Lebanon represents the criminals or in other words the Lebanese Forces. That's just a small example on how things are run in Lebanon and some still wonder why nothing works or why foreign maids throw themselves from balconies, they are most probably giving a leading example to the Lebanese on what they should be doing. I heard the Lebanese lawyer Nizar Saghiyeh speak once and I thought that unless he is given this ministry, foreign maids will keep falling on our heads. Can you imagine how cruel someone should be to drive another human being to throw himslef from the balcony?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Yemen News

First news from Yemen: They are still chewing Qat.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Someone once said...

"She turned out more than one would think. A special magic originates from her eyes, travels a distance in no time, and penetrates your skin to find your heart, spreads out to your blood throughout your veins, and possesses your soul… that is only her look. I haven’t even talked about her smile, or her cheerful spirit, funny gibberish talks, endless determination, her success, her beauty, her skin, face, boobs, toes, legs… ok enough. Somebody’s head will explode with vanity."