Sunday, January 23, 2011

Islamic fascist assaults Coptic man in Rumaithiya

About three weeks ago, Sammy*, a young Egyptian Coptic, stopped at the traffic light in-between Rumaithiya and Bayan. Hamad*, a stocky, middle-aged Kuwaiti man parked behind Sammy, exited his car and quickly hurried to Sammy. Naturally, Sammy rolled down his window to ask the bearded Hamad what the matter was, thinking the issue was about a faulty taillight. Without warning, Sammy was socked in the eye by Hamad’s elbow as Hamad reached inside Sammy’s car to remove the Christian cross that was hanging on Sammy’s rear view mirror. “Damn you and your blasphemous ways! You are spreading your rotten religion in this blessed country!” raged Hamad. The two men struggled but Sammy managed to roll up his window before jumping out of his car to confront Hamad. “How dare you! This is my car and I am free to do whatever I want with it!” Hamad’s single phone call to the Kuwaiti police force brought in half a dozen police cars in seconds. A Kuwaiti man pulled over and tried to reason with Hamad. “Whose side are you on, him or me?!?” spat Hamad in defiant defense. The Kuwaiti man inquired, “Would you allow someone to force you to remove the Holy Quran that you have on your dashboard if you were in the United States or France or any Western country for that matter?” Hamad grew silent. And silence was what the police officers advised Sammy to do, “This isn’t the first offense Hamad and his associates have committed against non-Muslims. You can file a report, but adding one more court date to their long list would not make a difference.” Sammy backed down and Hamad was set free.

This was the story one of my good friends told me last week. A Coptic herself and one of the most decent people I have ever met, my friend said that the police’s efficient and effective role changed her view of Kuwait’s security, “It really is a safe place to be and Sammy’s predicament only furthered my sense of security here.” I, on the other hand, was fuming. “What has my country come to?” I said in exasperated anger.

Why are people forgetting what religion is when the heart of all religions, divine and earthly, is love and peace? Even the word “Islam” means “peace”! And how can people forget the history of Islam, when for the first time Christians, Jews and Muslims lived side by side while under Muslim rule? Idealistic as this may sound, this is a historical fact known to everyone. “That’s too bad Erzulie but you know what? I really don’t blame the crazed dude for attacking Sammy when the muezzin at the mosque that I go to on Friday mornings preaches things that include damning the people of the Jewish and Christian faith when he is able to get better results – for himself and others – if he substitutes ‘damn’ with the word ‘bless’ i.e. God bless the people of the Jewish and Christian faith," a relative of mine replied when I told him about Sammy's story.

To the misguided man or rather, pitiful monster who attempted to snatch the Christian cross off of the Coptic’s rear view mirror, I say shame on you. Shame on you and your inhuman ways that represent anything but the Muslim religion.

Download MP3’s…

George Harrison - My Sweet Lord

Norman Greenbaum - Spirit in the Sky

New Order - Touched by the Hand of God

The Beach Boys - God Only Knows

Tears for Fears - God's Mistake

XTC - Dear God

* Names have been changed for privacy reasons

at 8:30 AM 15 comments

Monday, January 17, 2011

I Heart Sandi & the English chick of 99.7

I’ve been a fan of this girl ever since she was with the punch-worthy Rasha and Talal on Marina FM. Out of the three radio jockeys, she is the only one who had a quick wit, smart and cheese-proof comebacks and a charming voice to add. It’s no surprise that I was thrilled when I tuned into FM 99.7 one Wednesday and heard a familiar, chirpy voice introducing a golden classic hit. I think Sandi’s shows are the only things that make me pop out my iPod’s car cassette adaptor to listen to what she has in store for her listeners with the exception of BBC Radio (wherever you are, you're with the BBC). On Wednesday evenings (I think it’s from 7 – 9 PM) Sandi has two, full hours of classic hits (70’s - 90’s music although 90's isn't that classic at all actually). During other days of the week (I don’t know which days specifically) she welcomes requests that do not stop at Rihanna and Justin Beiber (no and hell no). What’s more, she has a fabutastic show that plays only rare indie songs that are so refreshing to hear.

The other girl who turns my drive back home into something that I look forward to no matter how jammed the road is is the English chick (I think her name is Maha but I'm not too sure). I mean, yesterday, I drove two meters over a span of 10 minutes due to a car accident on my way home. Was I impatient? No. Was my growling tummy making me fidget with hunger? Surprisingly, no, although I tend to get a little cranky before lunch time. I was happily enjoying the classic hits that were being played on FM 99.7, songs that included Dire Straits' "Money for Nothing" (I did a double take when I heard the song's recognizable beginning; I couldn't believe that 99.7 would play something close to that!), Whitney Houston's "I Wanna Dance with Somebody," Foreigner's "Waiting for a Girl Like You" (this song made me wish I was on the highway so I could enjoy more privacy while I sang along to it) and other great picks. So English chick/Maha, thank you for making me look forward to my drive back home every day!

Chapeau girls! Here’s a little list for your next oldies night.

Download MP3’s…

Sister Sledge - He's the Greatest Dancer

Al Green - I Can't Get Next to You

Martha Reeves & the Vandellas - Dancing in the Street

Jr. Walker & the Allstars - Shotgun

Sister Sledge - Lost in Music

Sly & the Family Stone - Dance to the Music

Stevie Wonder - Uptight (Everything's All Right)

The Stories - Brother Louie

The Temptations - The Way You Do the Things You Do

at 8:30 AM 10 comments

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Can NBK be more stupid?

About a month ago, Gulf Bank made waves with its new, fresh and personal take on how it relates to its clients and vice versa. For the first time, Gulf Bank came out with a poignant television commercial and advertising campaign (check them out here) that revealed the genuine and attentive care it has toward its clients and that it truly is a people’s bank.

Lo and behold! NBK comes along and copies the entire concept including the name of one of the characters in Gulf Bank’s television commercial, Bo Faisal (see NBK’s stupid, copycat ad below).

Whoever worked on this campaign, from the sorry advertising agency that “thought” it up to NBK’s careless marketing team, lacks originality, brains and obviously did not do any research regarding recent campaigns.

Copying a concept that was used in an advertising campaign is something many advertising agencies do here and everywhere else in the world. But creating something ridiculously similar to a recent one (and a competitor's concept at that!) and using the same name that was mentioned in the competitor’s (i.e. Gulf Bank’s) television commercial? Shame!

MP3’s for NBK’s ears…

Frank & Nancy Sinatra – Something Stupid

Redlight (featuring Roses Gabor) – Stupid

Fossil Cities – Stupid Things

Note to NBK: Here’s something that might help you out

at 8:30 AM 8 comments

Monday, January 03, 2011

A New Year or...

The excitement of a new year was contagious. People were making plans to travel or gather with friends and family while others were content to stay at home with loved ones. Although everyone was cheery, there was a paradoxical sad optimism; “Happy New Year!” was followed by hugs and kisses. Right then I thought, “Well, happy is a farfetched wish.” Everyone has happy days, but we also have bad and sad ones too. Then I thought, “Why not say ‘Beautiful New Year’?” since beauty comprises all the experiences life has for us. Although it’s hard to perceive it at the moment, the short and long-term hardships and challenges we face have a twisted, deep beauty. Maybe it’s all about the beauty of experience and learning although the road can be draining and heart wrenching. But I guess that’s life, and it’s beautiful just as it is.

Have a beautiful 2011 everyone...

MP3's for your ears...

James Brown - Cold Sweat Pt. 1

Fairuz - Oghniat Al Wada'a

Diana Krall - Bye Bye Blackbird

Simon & Garfunkel - Bye Bye Love

at 8:30 AM 4 comments