Friday, July 31, 2009

From the soup nazi's old cabinet...

Eastern Mediterranean national unity consommé
(Serving size starves a country)

One lard-load of lard
Two Dozen clamshells
One whole token chick
One full dose of nepotism
Two sticks of saffron
Two tablespoons of date paste
A tinge of mastic
A squeeze of A1 steak sauce
Topped off with a swath of goatee

Wrap ingredients with exclusive newspaper cabinet roster scoops and drop in lard. Boil slowly over jet fuel. Serve when told so.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

From Lebanon 2009

Stray Bullet

To get lost in Beirut is not a difficult task. The streets do not fall on any numerical or logical grid o roads and avenues that can be easily tracked. As a matter of fact street names are often an issue of subjective interpretation for your Leon Street could be Emile Edde to me and Layyoon with a thick Beiruti accent for a third person who doesn't usually sport a thick Beiruti accent. Of course there is always the infallible landmark based positioning system except that neighborhood landmarks are often invisible to visitors. Have you seen Modca cafe recently? Well, it still is very much a reference point.  Mind you here we are talking about arguably a fully developed species of humans that struggles with orientation, so it would be totally understandable if an unintelligent lifeless form of matter such as the steel that commonly makes up a bullet goes astray during the very limited time it gets to get acquainted with the city between the pull of the trigger and ripping through a bystander. 

Still stray bullets take a lot more blame than they deserve. Not all of them kill, some just maim, others just crash land in the Baba Ghannouj at the outdoor restaurants which are crowded with the record breaking  3 million tourists. Here I do not mean to insinuate that the shooters of bullets might be at fault. They never are; not in this quasi-anarchy we run over here.  What I'm trying to say is that better urban planning wouldn't hurt. 

Stray bullets are another tradition from this great nation, and frankly progress and development should incorporate tradition rather than defy it. 

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Les Priorités

Three ministers took time off from their busy tourist  season schedule, after all one of these ministers promised the Lebanese 3 million visitors this summer, to address an issue that has thousands of citizens enraged n this country. The cancellation of  a French comedian's performances in Beiteddine has ruffled some elite feathers, as it should for where will this country be without the freedom of artistic expression. 
So what exactly happened, let's see. The dude was coming, so many people were enthused they added a second and then a third show... no problems there. General Security gave the OK even though it often prevents local acts from taking the stage, Visas are not an issue... Fine, then a TV reporter questions the dude's allegiances and thinks he's in bed with the Izzies.. Controversy, that's always good for business, free promotion... Dude cancels his trip.... Over 6000 activists join e-campaign against terrorisme intelectuel... 

I have to admire this stand against censorship although I'm having a hard time locating it. General Security is known to prevent shows or cut scenes from movies but that wasn't the case here and there were no threats made to the performer or the festivals. It was the  dude who cancelled his visit. On the Lebanese side, all that happened was that a reporter did not like the dude's alleged background...If the report is inaccurate then refute it but the reporter had no authority to and did not cancel the show... yet the ministers of Tourism, Press, and Culture felt that this reporter harmed Lebanon's image abroad. What will people say?!?!

Meanwhile Zeina Miri, 30 year old mother of 5, gets shot on her balcony. No facebook groups, no ministers holding hands at press conferences, and more importantly no fear for Lebanon's image.