Sneak peek into an estranged world. Cheers!

Posts tagged ‘work’

Lebanon or bomb-a-home?

Listening to the news in this country is like waiting for a huge bomb to explode in our face. Whatever we do, and wherever we are, we’ll always wait for this one call and wish we never get it.

I personally don’t actually listen or read the news, I simply scan it. I receive messages from LBCI, and MTV, always hooked on my phone; but what I scan for are the words explosion ‘انفجار’, bomb ‘متفجرة’, missile ‘صاروخ’, gun shots ‘قناس’ or ‘اطلاق نار’, and all the words relating to any murderous incident that might have taken place anywhere and everywhere around my country.

Some people continuously ask me, why keep these news updates if you won’t read most of them. My answer is simple, in case the explosion happens anywhere close to a place where I was, might have been, or usually am in my first reaction is to grab my phone, call my mother and tell her I’m fine, before closing the line asap for my other siblings to be able to call her as well before the lines build up and connections become rare.

So why call it bomb-a-home? Simple explanation as well; not only are targeted crowds, or person, or even place, get harmed with the onset of a car bomb or explosive or whatever the case might be; but ‘casualties’ as some call them are always the main victims of such savagery.

(Trying to put off the fore that spread to houses and cars around the explosion).

Homes are destroyed, schools, streets; people lose their lives, their children, their parents, their friends; but they also might lose their jobs, their office, bakery, market, library, or any other assets. They lose either literary their roof, or the way to keep that roof over their heads… they lose their home.

And yet we continue with our lives, going to work, going for a drink, or heading out for a road trip. We act as if it’s a normal thing, we have gotten used to the casualties, to the savagery, to the killings and destruction. We sometimes shout out, we shed tears for those whose eyes have dried out, we scream in revolt, and call for justice. Yet once the tensions thins out a bit we relax, we still nag, but we don’t do anything to figure a way to stop it; we don’t keep pushing our government to protect our rights, we give up on the fight and let our police (whose job is supposed to protect us) run around after lost souls that smoke up, instead of finding those that kill us.

Like today for example, where they found that the explosion wasn’t triggered from a distance, but where remains of a suicide bomber were found. (How can they even still exist?)

So what am I doing now? I’m still sitting at my desk at work, and so are all the rest of my coworkers; if we were to leave and go into hiding in our homes, which are not even that safe anymore, we would lose that job and that which keep our house’s roof over our heads. There is no such thing as a moment of silence anymore, once we have called all the people we know, all those we care about, and made sure they are safe; we go back into our trance of everyday life, trying to ignore the pains of the others so not to be overwhelmed.

So now I need to clock in the rest of my hours for the day. Have a safe day without fireworks my friends. And keep yourselves away from danger (if you recognize it in time).


It’s all about the hat!

So as some of you know it was Barbara a couple of days ago, 12 December (aka the Arab Halloween), started in Heliopolis, now known as Baalbek in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley.

But since we’re all at work, we needed to find a way to show up decent enough for work, but still enjoy the joys of a Barbara. So why not hats? Easy to wear and remove, depending on the circumstances.

Here are a few pictures; unfortunately faces have been blurred out for privacy reasons. Enjoy!

Traditional Lebanese farmer hat.

Frenshie, PIMP, Christmas tree,  Golden Tower, Cowgirl, Nurse, and villager.

Saudi wannabe.


My motorcycle diaries -2-

Part 2: The thrill:

Mother’s office was developing into a stable company, so she decided to hire a runner boy. I.H (let’s call him Bob) fit the job perfectly, coming from a small family from the south, and being the only male in the family, it was up to him to keep the household going.

Bob started working at Mother’s office at the young age of 17, running errands for the office, sending mails and making sure everything was in order.
He soon became “l’homme a tout faire” (the guy whose job isn’t specific to one chore, but caring for the office as well as helping Mother out in the household), taking the kids to their doctors appointments when the parents were too busy keeping their businesses running.

Bob had a motocross; the four siblings would ride behind him to skip traffic jams, making sure they got to school or their appointments on time, but always taking one at a time.

But Bob was also crazy; he saw the streets of Beirut like an off-road trail, cars as bushes and wild animals, pavement jumps as rocks, and pedestrians as trees. He would swerve in between them as if trying to win a race against his opponents, being the other bikers, and sometimes cars.

The youngest daughter of Father loved riding behind Bob; never afraid, never complaining, but with pure awesome ecstasy running through her veins. Her passion for motorcycles kept growing inside her, feeding her bloodstream, compiling in her brain. She was becoming an addict at the age of 8.

Yet no one paid much attention to what was happening once again, Father kept going to work for long periods of time while Mother was juggling her business with home keeping. The little girl was her siblings’ toy. When you look at a young girl in Lebanon, even watching her passions explode over mechanics such as motorcycles, you never worry or tend to think maybe this is what she wants; why? Because she’s a child, and a girl, it’s as simple as that.

She unfortunately doesn’t recall much of the feelings and ideas that were going through her brain during those first two parts, she was too young to recall much anyways, but she clearly remembers a haunting fascination that can be seen her my collections of small bikes (thanks to kinder surprise) and a lego bike she built at the age of 9.


Part two ended abruptly with a new-found project: her aunt’s motocross that had been stolen during the war was finally returned to its owners; in very bad shape, but still partly standing. Her aunt not being able to drive anymore due to an injury was forced to let it go, and leave it to her sister’s bidding, which made it end up in the little girl’s arms with the phrase: “you’re obsessed with taking things apart and rebuilding them, you fix it and it’s yours”.

And so the hardship began!

– End of part two –


Celluon, good or bad?

I personally didn’t try this new technology, but I’ve done quite some extensive research about it when I first heard word that a laser projection keyboard exists. Oh boy! Technological advancements do happen real fast!

So for those who don’t know of or never heard of Celluon’s Epic, here is a short overview: (


I know what you’re thinking right now: when can I buy it? How much does it cost? I want one! Awesome innovation! But heed some warnings, the product is unfortunately not 100% effective.
You can read about its liability in Gizmag’s review: where the product’s advantages and disadvantages are clearly pointed out by someone that has tried the product himself.

So why talk about a product that’s not so efficient and perfect?

It scares me! Yes I’m being serious; it scares me to the bones.

Why? Because imagine what such a product would do in Lebanon. We already have multiple car accidents due to people messaging while driving; imagine them being able to project a keyboard to make it “easier” for them to focus on the driving instead of focusing on a tiny touch keyboard on their phones. Do you think that will help focus their driving more or mess it up more (if that’s even still possible)?

I’m not saying it doesn’t have good features; it can help elder people or crowds with bad eyesight to be able to use it. It will also help you and others keep your phone/tablet or pc on-screen keyboards clean from oil, food products etc by typing on a table or a sheet of paper with no direct contact, as well as help you type faster for long essays, conversations or work related mails.

Watch: to see how the product works exactly.

In a small statistic I was able to conduct on 40 people (random ages, sex, race, background) 12 agreed that this product will probably endanger the Lebanese community drivers even more, whereas the rest thought it would definitely be safer. 37 would definitely buy it even though it is not 100% effective while 2 said they would wait for the next/better version of the product to be released, and only 1 said it would be useless since he/she doesn’t use their phone to type that much.

Now I know it’s a small statistic, but the fact that more than half of the people interviewed saw no danger in using a projection keyboard while driving worries me.
I am aware that other countries have a strict policy of no messaging and talking on the phone while driving, so the danger is futile for them, but in Lebanon, with our policies (review my previous posts: “I see civilized people!” And “I also like to live dangerously”), it could increase the toll of accidents by quite a high (hopefully not) percentage.

So what do you think? Good technology or Bad idea?


I am tansa!

I am tansa.

What is tansa? Let’s just say is a polite way of saying slave. So yes, I am a tansa.  


My father always repeated to me when I started my job, don’t nag, don’t get angry in public, when they give you work, you work your ass off (excuse my language), keep your head down, and that’s how you’ll make it in life.

Honestly I’ve been trying, so hard, so much. I’ve been labeled tansa for quite a while now and accepted it as a fact. I’ve even been carrying it on my clothes and forehead for all to see and know.

I partially blame my parents for that, for the too good education I got, in respecting others, helping them out before helping myself, having this need to make everything perfect, for being raised in being extremely selfless and keeping my head down.

Unfortunately they forgot to teach me how to stand up for myself when people notice and start taking advantage of that fact.
I wish I could write more about what I’ve been going through, but my work ethics stop me at every word. I am still employed in the company and plan to at least finish a whole year in it. So respect first, the words and letters will come later.

Let me put it this way, here is a scene: I have a certain number of things to do with the help of a coworker, we have a deadline, coworker knows I’m a tansa, coworker takes his time, I finish my part and his, coworker takes credit, I keep my head down. Keep your head down, keep your mouth shut, don’t nag, don’t say, don’t write, don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t.

I’m not sure how far I’ll go living this way, and for the first time in my life I’m not sure if my father’s advice is correct. But for now all I can and am allowed to do is be the best tansa I can.


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