Thursday, December 30, 2010
Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
"Both perspectives, pessimism and existentialism, wouldn't necessarily see depression as a malady existing in a person's head. A pessimist and existentialist might, in fact, agree that the world itself is screwed up, that social norms are themselves pathological, that feelings of despair, anxiety, loss, and pointlessness may be typical in people who are exceptionally intelligent and observant."
"Philosophers such as John Stuart Mill, William James, and Friedrich Nietzsche suffered the worst throes of depression. A host of other artists and writers suffered the same fate, including Edgar Allen Poe, William Blake, Mark Twain, Wolfgang Mozart, Charles Dickens, Vincent Van Gogh, T.S. Eliot, Ernest Hemingway, and Sylvia Plath."
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
To date, the UN inquiry has reportedly spent in the range of $200 million ...The tribunal currently has an annual budget in excess of $40 million...Hezbollah's website claimed the documents cited by the CBC were "purchased from UN sources."...In fact, the documents came from sources close to the investigation... "We paid for our hotel rooms, we paid for our air fare, we paid for our meals, but the information that was in those reports was given to us by sources who were offended at the handling of the investigation, or the mishandling of the investigation," said the CBC's Neil Macdonald, who broke the story..."It was given freely and out of a sense of outrage, and that's that," he said.
Apart from that: Some remote control device bearing Saudi-Syrian fingerprints will soon put an end to the movie and ask everyone to go to bed... that is if they find they still have one.
Monday, November 15, 2010
Friday, November 12, 2010
P.S. I didn't watch it myself, but again a trusted source.
P.S. 2: BBC is running this particular segment. I just watched it.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Cab driver in English with a strong Lebanese accent: Why are you crying? (The guy just looked upset)
British guy (trying to speak slowly): Because I had a rough fight with my girlfriend.... she wants "la liberté".
Cab driver: Did you hit her?
British guy: non... non... jamais
Cab driver switching to French: Moi.. Je frappe ma femme chaque jour. Ici, la liberté, il n'ya pas... femme aller. Il y'a beaucoup. Allez... Toz.
True story from a trusted source sitting in the back seat.
Sunday, October 17, 2010
Now there is this other category of people with whom you might have had long conversations or had coffee with let's say not so long ago or had an unforgettable fight with, or seen a million times, and then one day they pass by, throw a glance at you, a glance of "I know you", then lower their eyes and go by without even a smile. I do understand that in some of these situations, one or each of the two people would be wondering if the other had recognized them, but in most cases, it is this recognition that they find hard to admit.
So this pretentious Lebanese knows a lot of people, you included, and behaves the same with all of them. When they find themselves in a crowd but unaccompanied, you find them restlessly looking for familiar faces, and then they spot you and they run towards you, with "don't you remember me? we met yesterday". Of course you remember them but then you would say "remind me of your name!!!"
Saturday, October 16, 2010
I was waiting for the elevator, cross legged, my elbow on the elevator's edge, when I realized that I have been waiting for more than five minutes. I remember I had a rush of thoughts invading my head, some meaningful ones and some nonsense. I can't remember any of these thoughts now, all I remember is the image of me waiting by the elevator, cross legged, my elbow on the elevator's edge. I did not see myself stand there, yet in my memory I have that copy image of myself standing there and that useless memory is now carved in my head. As useless as it sounds, as stored it is in my memory to the extent that I have to write it down here so that I get it out of my system. And yet now it has become even more memorable after it has been written.
Before the age of speed, and when everything around was slow, the "meantime" had a certain meaning. Roads were not mere connecting lines but were part of the destination plan. People used to take food for the road, stop for a bonfire, or just contemplate sceneries. In the slow motion age, same as in the speed age, people invent coping systems. Here we are stuck in between the two ages, we are like that stupid old wrinkled man in the car unable to reach to nowhere and slowing everyone behind us.
Friday, October 8, 2010
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Monday, September 27, 2010
The context of the quote, which is from "All about my mother", is a pre-operation transsexual having a speech about her looks. She does talk about her plastic surgeries (fake breasts, lip job, etc.). It is true the quote refers mainly to dreams of transsexuals to look in a certain way but it does touch on plastic surgeries which I think is a similar phenomenon. I do believe that if a person cannot come to terms with her/his looks, and if this she/he has an idea or a "dream" of how best to look like, they will be more authentic when or if they do, not only because they will resemble more their dreamed image about themselves but more because they are no longer obsessed with how their looks does not reflect who they really are. This is a long discussion anyway. And discussing plastic surgeries, beyond the "Haifa wanna be" phenomenon, or even with such phenomenon included, is not a shallow topic, it can get you to some deeper arguments touching on feminism, LGBT issues, and human nature.
No, it is not a shallow topic. My own journey has been one of redeeming an integrity which I have felt to be violated after my realization of how much of what I call "me" isn't really "me." Incorporated in the image of who I am were the opinions and desires of others, what I was "supposed" to be. We tend to treat ourselves as commodities and hence attempt to better those traits which we think, in turn, would better our price and value on the market. Be it the market of love or work doesn't really matter for the instrumentlization is one and the same; and treating our selves as means is an inherent part of an economy which has so distorted our view of who we are — our humanity — that we easily waste our lives in quenching the resulting anxieties — but never to succeed. For a life thwarted in growth and built on illusion can never offer genuine satisfaction.
If a person needs a certain faith or requires a certain image in order to feel good about him/herself, then that is ok as long as that person remembers and keeps the doors open for change and possibility. As long as he/she knows that the human is something different from what is being proposed(though he/she may not know exactly what the human “is”), and that it is towards that human that he/she must strive.
"We tend to treat ourselves as commodities and hence attempt to better those traits which we think, in turn, would better our price and value on the market. Be it the market of love or work doesn't really matter for the instrumentlization is one and the same":
It is a non ending struggle, striving to be or to look like the dream image or what people call self realization (which as you rightly said is an illusion) but it doesn't negate the fact that it does give you self satisfaction, albeit short lived. But isn't this illusory struggle that keeps us all going somewhere? We are bound (no cursed) with something called "time" that can only function in a linear way. Once you undo that, let's say when or if science finds its way to a time machine (by finding a way to making m=0 in the e=mc² formula, as someone explained to me, but that's another story), so unless we do this, we are all doomed and we will keep looking forward to things, waiting, longing, looking, wishing, and dreaming. I am not going to say that the truth lies back in the start under Santiago's pillow (as Paulo Coehlo believes), no I trust that our fate, yes fate (in a non-religious sense) is to be beaten by time. Remembering is maybe the only gift we were honoured with. But I also have faith in science.
You know, I think I will post this discussion if you don't mind.
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Friday, September 3, 2010
...and so there was this man who had everything he wished for in life, he was rich and successful, he had a beautiful, smart, and loving wife, a nicely furnished house with a backyard, and all his friends adored him. One day, out of a sudden, something happened to him and changed his life. As he was crossing the street, a speedy car almost hit him, he caught sight of it at the last moment and evaded what could have caused him his life, but as he was moving away he tripped into a muddy hole. "Fuck, Fuck, Fuck!!!," he said as he looked at his dirty suit. All could have worked well for anyone in his place but for our man the unexpected happened. As he walked back home to change his suit, he ran into his neighbor. "What happened to you?" the latter asked. "I, Fuck, stumbled, fuck, in, fuck, a hole, fuck, a car, fuck, almost, fuck,....", and so on. He could not stop saying the word "Fuck" after each word he used. At first, he didn't realize, but the more words rushed into his mouth, the more "Fuck"'s he heard himself saying. His neighbor was already long gone when he closed his eyes, took a deep breath, and started all over again, but to his surprise, more of the "Fuck" involuntarily spilled in between his teeth. He thought that he maybe needed to sleep and everything will be normal again when he wakes up. He didn't greet his wife at home nor did he answer all her whats and whys but rushed straight to bed. When he woke up few hours later, he could think clearly without any Fuck but would fail every time he whispered a word to himself. Days passed by and our hero had tried every possible cure and treatment to no avail. Doctors failed to understand or explain what was going on let alone to cure him. At first no doctor could reach the point to allow him in until he wrote down his problem on a piece of paper and erased afterwards all the unwanted "fuck" words; he had to leave a few though for obvious reasons. But all in vain. Speech therapy was useless as well. All readings and googling were futile. Priests kicked him out of churches. He could no longer pray anyway, not even in his own bed. His wife left him, he lost his job, he had to sell the house, his friends no longer wanted to hang out with him. He started recalling how it all started, trying to understand for himself what had happened on that day. He grew desperate by the day, and he even went to that same spot where that car had almost crushed him, he tried to get himself ran over by a car, maybe he would regain his life, but all cars stopped and shouted a "Fuck" at him and left him like a wreck in the middle of the road. He then could no longer take it and decided to die. He bought a gun, loaded it, put it is his mouth and pulled the trigger but the bullet did not go off. "Fuck", he said then the bullet went through his head and brains and the echo of the word "Fuck" could be heard miles away for years afterwards.
P.S. Alternate ending: The gun jammed three consecutive times. "what the fuck! Fuck this fucking gun" he said and he renounced the idea of killing himself. Years later, he found a job in
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Sunday, August 29, 2010
Saturday, August 28, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Friday, July 30, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
"Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans," said John Lennon. Except for me, John, it seems that waiting is all what happens to me while I'm planning to have a life. Oh, and, John, listen to this: in Lebanon, traffic is what happens to you while you're seriously making other plans.
Monday, July 5, 2010
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Monday, June 28, 2010
Thursday, June 24, 2010
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
Saturday, June 19, 2010
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Saturday, June 12, 2010
I know people who make fun of other Lebanese when they speak English with a Lebanese accent. They "Zazouzi", they say, referring to their pronunciation of the "The" as "Za, or Ze" with a strong Z. I must say that while I find "zazouzying" totally fine, and while I believe that I respect people who speak a foreign language with their own accent, even when they can very well hide it (on the other hand we find it funny or even sexy when foreigners speak Arabic with a French or English or Russian or Japanese, etc. accent), it annoys me a lot that those same people most often ignore the basic grammar rules of the Arabic language. They would correct your pronunciation of the word "dictionary" but they wouldn't be offended if you tell them that their Arabic sucks. Lebanon is the only country I know of where the native language is taught at schools as a second language. This funny website is advising to master what they call the "Lebanese language" and "then study Arabic if they choose to add another language to their vocabulary." And yes, although he wrote in fluent Arabic, Said Akl despised the Arabic script and he called for using Latin Alphabets instead. The Guardians of the Cedar seriously called for making the Said Akl's "Lebanese dialect" as the official language of Lebanon. Unfortunately, although their political plan failed, most Lebanese people are Guardians of the Cedar is this sense. Facebook is making things worse.
Friday, May 28, 2010
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Monday, May 17, 2010
Where in the world do you find valet parking services inside a parking? Well, in the parking of the ABC mall in Beirut. So basically, you are inside a parking where obviously all is left to do is park your car in the parking lot and move on to the entrance. Yet, here in Beirut, at the ABC more specifically, you also have the option and privilege of giving your car to the "valet" who will park it for you (so that you don't go through the hassle of changing your car gear to P) and that all for only 3,000 extra Lebanese Liras (on top of the 2,000 L.L.). Someone will do this for you. Isn't it amazing? Oh and you also get the closest parking lot to the entrance which is 2 walking steps less!! You don't have to suffer any more the trouble of closing the car door yourself, or walk 10 steps to the entrance, or even worry about moving your elbow and neck while parking. The solution has finally arrived. The Lebanese genius will do it for you. Yes, and guess what? Soon, on the way out,you will be lining up at the entrance (as you do whenever you go clubbing in Beirut, in Music Hall, and Sky Bar, and White, and Cassino, to name a few) waiting for the valet to get your car back because soon many Lebanese would feel ashamed to keep on parking their own cars on their own, that would totally be embarrassing to someone faithful to preserving a Lebanese lifestyle.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Friday, May 14, 2010
Thursday, May 13, 2010
Why does winning the lottery seem to be a very likely and an easy target when you buy your tickets but then the moment you see the winning numbers, you suddenly realize how hard it was from the start? you feel as if an injustice has befallen you. What did I expect, you ask yourself? then you check the winning numbers again to torture yourself with how one number, one fucking number, could have made all the difference. What does it matter if you hit the 19 but got a 20 instead? That is the whole issue, it is not just a small difference, it is a difference, and that's what matters. Why would you feel better if you had chosen 1 instead of 19? You lost anyway.