Thursday, June 30, 2005

School Books

My eyes fell on my 8th Grade Arabic language Textbook.. well its barely a book... I picked it up.. and went over the pieces and scripts that someone apparently thought that getting kids at that age to memorize them was a good idea. The first piece in the Index is titled "من دلائل قدره الله," which basically means proof of how Allah is great. Rather than letting kids reach their own judgements and conclusions, we're telling them what to think. I have a big problem with how I was schooled... Rather than letting us become independent thinkers, we were tucked in-line with apparently the mainstream of Arab Pride "الماضي التليد" they called it. Basically its the Idea that Arabs are great.. and the only reason they're not doing so well economically, socially, politically, and most everything else is because they forgot their religion.. and when they do get back to it its gonna be smooth sailing from there.
Then the rest of the material is pieces written by folks like Taha Hussain, Ahmed Shawqi, Tawfeeq Alhakeem, and others that fancy wearing Tarboosh on their head. The material is very good... its an excellent prelude to learn the basics of Arab literature.. That is given up front... but I am concerned with one thing... These folks were around back when the Arab nations were under French and British colonization.. It was a very low point in the timeline of the region.. that is why the material in our Education curriculums favor death and martyrdom.. and the sacrifice of one's life for the well-fare of the nation and the people... At that time.. this was what you needed, because the people that wrote these texts were humiliated that someone that wasnt really from around here was walking around with a big gun ordering people around and taking advantage of their resources.
That was then.. this is now.. the question that BEGS for an answer.. is WHY HAVEN'T THE SCHOOL BOOKS CHANGE SINCE THE TURN OF THE CENTURY?? I bet you.. the cirruculum in 1925 Egypt is EXACTLY the same as the curriculum in 2005 Bahrain. Other than the new printed edition, we still have these subliminal messages that Arabs are better than people that dont speak like us... and that a Kaafir (infidel) is wieghted as half a brain in a religious court, and that its very honorable for someone to blow themselves up in a bus or a plane full of white people
Public education in the west is quite different.. research and development, new discoveries, change of definitions, and innovative features are quickly furnished in the education system. Notice, every year.. the famous dictionaries like Webster have a list of new words they're gonna add to this year's edition...
I cant seem to find my science book... but I am certain the material is just loose translation of old french material that needs updating, and rather than making students curious about their environment and new discoveries, they are just told that metal expands with heat, and water turns to gas.. class dismissed.
When was the last time our school books have been revaluated?

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Old Jerusalem

Some people, although I might have great respect for them and their opinions, irritate me every once in a while... Just because they got a western education, or had access to a chance that leaped them into prominent positions in society, they start to refer to Bahrain as a backward society. Its in their lingo, to the extent that its not the matter of consideration anymore, but more like a normal flow of any conversation. Example: person A "how long did it take you to get to work today?" Person B " I was stuck in traffic.. thanks to the retarded people that cant go around a small accident. Such a backward society."

I'm gonna tell those folks a story a reverend once told me...
In old biblical times... there was a city in old jerusalem... at the entrance was a wise gate-man. Someone comes up to him and says "wise man, tell me, how is this city?" And the wiseman would say " well how did you find the city you were at ?" And he said " It was wonderful... men were like brothers, it was so safe we didnt have to lock our doors, and the people were friendly and nice." So the wiseman said " then you will find this city to be the same."

The next day someone else walks by and says " Oh wise man, how is this city?" And the wise man says "well how did you find the city you were at ?" and he said " the people were hateful, you cant trust anyone with a secret, and men were jelous of each other!" The wise man said " I'm afraid you're going to find this one to be the same."

Moral of the story: life is what you make of it.... what you see is sometimes what you want to see

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Real Estate is it?

Around the Island, different types and styles of holiday homes are decorating the horizon. Namely, KFH , GFH, and Durrat Al Bahrain have hired most of the people I know to bring in the big dough from Kuwait and Saudi, to pile up dirt in different figures. I donno if anyone noticed this, but doesnt durrat al bahrain up-side down look like a scary-killer clown? Anyway, so somehow they bought off the sea without us hearing about it, someone pocketed the money, and now they're making holiday homes we cant afford.
Funny... I thought the alayam propaganda machine said there were a couple of homes that are about to fall on their inhabitants' heads with the slightest breeze?
Dont worry about it poor people.. hopefully with the "government bonus" you can afford a new fan... thats your share from the sea-shore we've just sold to the nice folks over at the Bahrain Financial Harbour... who gives a fuck about the poor anyway...

Here's an idea... if we were so good at bringing in that much capital.... why the fuck dont we start something productive for a change... Factories for example? And rather than beat up the unemployed at the royal court.. we can actually give them semi skilled jobs... hey.. and if we make a few more widgets than we need... we might sell them to other countries... maybe that was what Adam Smith was thinking about when he wrote the Wealth of Nations THREE FUCKING CENTURIES AGO !

And if we make alot of stuff other countries buy... maybe we can afford those nice shacks in Amwaj and Tala and Areen by then....

oops... i think the ceiling is cracking...

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Things I dont necesserily like

Im gonna list a couple of things that happen on a daily basis and get on my nerves.... please add anything that annoys you too. Interaction is needed.

1. Since when is it cool to write stupid messages on the back of a car window? (il majroo7... m5aawi il layl... maakil diyaaay)

2. Girls that think if you helped them out with something that you're sucking up to them, or trying to get their number.

3. People that cant stand in line at a queu, then complain that their rights are violated.

4. The Police.

5. Someone that can afford a 2 kilometer wall and his neighbors are wondering if they're gonna have dinner tonight.

6. Again, the Police.

7. prices ending with 900 fils ( 17.900 fils)

8. People that still rant and chant about the war.

9. Folks that sip coffee at starbucks - seef saturday mornings, just to show off to housewives and other shoppers that they work in banks and get saturdays off.

10. Other folks that sneak from their jobs and go to starbucks saturday afternoons to pretend they're bankers. (Honestly.. they're always there... usually BDF studs)

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Michael Jacko

First of all, admit it if you were once a Michael Jackson fan. I'm Bad? smooth criminal? beat it?
ringing bells do I hear?
No shame there folks...
Now, am i the only person that sees this, or are they attacking michael for nothing other than the TV and newspaper ratings? The media was silent for like 9 or 10 years after the first lawsuit, and just like that they decide to attack him when the BBC documentary aired.
Michael, although turned his skin white, will always be black at heart. Like kunta kinte in the movie roots... when the white man brought him over and gave him a christian name.. he said
" NO! my name is KUNTA KINTE !"
Michael was brave enough to be black when he stood up for himself and said "NO! THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH LETTING ORPHANS SLEEP OVER AT NEVERLAND!"
But the media cant let this one go can they? I mean out of no where... we didnt even hear of any lawsuit until they started running promos of how weird her is.. until this greedy fortune-hunter met some ambulance-chaser and gave the media a circus....
I can care less about Michael or princess diana or the pope... who drives these ratings ? I bet its viewers like us...

ps: around 5,110,000 people around the world died of aids while the jackson fiesta was going on.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Sunni Vs. Shi'a

governments are very smart. In fact, I stand in Awe watching how social divide is woven. Once, a fox was walking around in the jungle… where he saw two monkeys fighting over a piece of cheese they found. The fox put on a turban, and proclaimed to be a judge. He divided the cheese into 2 unequal pieces, and gave them out. Of course the monkey with the short end of the stick got upset, so the fox tries to fix his mistake by eating out the extra share that was an unfair advantage. Now the other monkey is upset, and tries to attack his brother. The fox jumps in again to fix the situation, and eats up another piece of the cheese. And this goes on until there is nothing left other than hate and regret.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Arranged Marriage

Since nowadays anyone that speaks English and wears eyeglasses is considered educated, if not a renaissance man, I have noticed a weird trend. Some folks blurt out the stupidest arguments, and somehow they are considered as "givens," or laying stones for any issue.

I had an argument with a friend of mine that fits the profile I described earlier. He thinks that arranged marriages are better than normal ones. This is the funny bit.. his reasoning is that both families get to see how compliant the man and the woman are before they sail off….. EXCUSE ME… is this a new dog you're thinking of buying, and wondering if your house design can accommodate such random creature you're gonna choose at the pet store??

Then he pulls out the amazing fact that more normal marriages end up in divorce and child support and the whole mess… I bet that is true… you know why??? Because the type of person " I mean ladies here" that had the courage to choose her husband… is more likely to walk out on him if he treats her badly… She has this internal control over her life.. and the balls to say " SOMETHING IS WRONG HERE!" Rather than the passive, shackled, cage bird, trophy wife that’s gonna probably accept bad treatment exactly the way she accepted this man in the first place without her consent.

And of course, no arranged marriage discussion is ever complete without rubbing the family card in your face. You hear it every time "would you allow it for your sister?"
Same old life line they cling to when you're grilling them with common sense and logic. Sir we are discussing my life.. and my wife-to-be's life… My sister is a whole different person.. and guess what? I don’t speak for other people… what she thinks is her own independent opinion…. But that’s the way they see life… how do I enforce my values on someone else….

I tell you folks… watch out for those educated look-alikes!

Ezekiel 25:17

There's a passage I got memorized. Ezekiel 25:17.
"The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness. For he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know I am the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon you."
I been sayin' that shit for years. And if you ever heard it, it meant your ass. I never really questioned what it meant. I thought it was just a cold-blooded thing to say to a motherfucker 'fore you popped a cap in his ass. But I saw some shit this mornin' made me think twice. Now I'm thinkin', it could mean you're the evil man. And I'm the righteous man. And Mr..45 here, he's the shepherd protecting my righteous ass in the valley of darkness. Or is could by you're the righteous man and I'm the shepherd and it's the world that's evil and selfish. I'd like that. But that shit ain't the truth. The truth is you're the weak. And I'm the tyranny of evil men. But I'm tryin'. I'm tryin' real hard to be a shepherd.
This is my favorite movie scene. The famous Pulp Fiction Diner scene. When Vincent and Jules have some coffee and take a breather after they evaded death and shot a man by mistake. Its my favorite scene for two reasons; the first is because Jules comes to a realization - not that he's gonna turn into a better man... Samuel L. Jackson is the Bad Mother-Fucker... but because something dawned on him..
The second reason is that Jules questions good and evil... is it me? or is it the world thats evil and selfish ?

Friday, June 10, 2005

Always Look On The Bright Side of Life

Always Look On The Bright Side of Life from
Monty Python's Life of Brian

Cheer up, Brian. You know what they say.
Some things in life are bad,They can really make you mad.
Other things just make you swear and curse.
When you're chewing on life's gristle,Don't grumble, give a whistle!
And this'll help things turn out for the best...

...always look on the bright side of life!
Always look on the bright side of life...
If life seems jolly rotten,There's something you've forgotten!
And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing,
When you're feeling in the dumps,Don't be silly chumps,
Just purse your lips and whistle -- that's the thing!
And... always look on the bright side of life...
whistleCome on!

other start to join inAlways look on the bright side of life...

For life is quite absurd,And death's the final word.
You must always face the curtain with a bow!
Forget about your sin -- give the audience a grin,
Enjoy it -- it's the last chance anyhow!
So always look on the bright side of death!
Just before you draw your terminal breath.
Life's a piece of shit,When you look at it.
Life's a laugh and death's a joke, it's true,
You'll see it's all a show,Keep 'em laughing as you go.
Just remember that the last laugh is on you!

And always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the bright side of life