Monday, September 17, 2007


A dark day in the history of both sides of the Jordanian river. Many of us were too young, or not even yet born to live such era. However, this era left few black dots on our lives. We hope that we have overcome the typical instigating questions of why it happened and who was the aggressor. We are beyond that. We should be beyond that. We ought to be beyond that. Darn it, you need to be beyond that.

Nevertheless, one can not forget how such bad days affected his/her life. We shouldn’t forget. Yes we should forgive, but please don’t ask us to forget. True that the battles lasted for 10 days, but those days were enough to leave such marks.

I sometimes try to drag my father to tell me more about what happened in those 10 days. He always leans back and tells me that he took them off his memory. I don’t buy that at all. I know. I then try the same with my mom. She tells me few details here and there. But not enough to draw a detailed picture of what happened.

The one story that they both tell always, is the attempt on his life on Feb of 1971. Well, they can’t lie about it, as the evidence are still clear in our old house on the edges of tabarboor. Bullet holes on the walls are witness of what happened that day.

As he was driving home one day, two PLO fighters were waiting by our house. As the car approached the home, bullets started flying. The driver was killed instantly. Dad ran to the house, with the two fighters chasing him. They finally got to him, and took away his gun. One of them was waiting by the door guarding the door. The other one demanded that my father kneel down on his knees in the front yard. He put the AK47 to his head. Mom screaming begging for them to let him live. I was one and a half years old in her hands. The fighter was yelling at my mom to shut up. Then suddenly, a bullet hits the fighter guarding the door. A Jordanian army sniper on one of the roof tops got to him. In the panic, the other fighter started shooting in all directions hoping to get the sniper. My father quickly ran inside to his other gun. Bullets allover the place. In the end, two bullets hit my father, one in the leg and one in the stomach. The second fighter was killed.

Sadly, the above incident left a bad reaction on my father. I remember when I left and came to America, dad portrayed Palestinians to be evils. He himself is Palestinian by origin, even though he was born in Jordan. But after maturing, I questioned his feelings toward his own people. He was always angry at the note of me mentioning that not all fingers are alike.

35 years later, he himself matured in this issue. Now, finally, acknowledged that not all fingers are alike.

So, whatever those days left on you, maybe it’s time to reach out to the other side for some reconciliation. War is over. Peace roots are strong in our land….hopefully.

I hope that you folks don’t misunderstand this post to be instigation of an old ladies and gentlemen. It’s an attempt to acknowledge the past, build on it, and look for a brighter future.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

My self made prison

Before I write what I wanna write, I know that ya'aal will ask and tell me "whats preventing you from doing it?" This is not about such question..I feel that I can't answer, but rather about venting. Venting that many of you may be dying to let out of your chest. Regardess....I'll speak my mind.
Sometimes, when I'm alone, and with no one around me, someone takes over my mind. It is as a nightmare that haunts me always, sleep or awake, it won;t matter.
I start day dreaming, or as some will call it, hallucinating, about Jordan. This is probably a good time to stop reading if your not in love with such beatiful land..i won;t blame you at all.
I sometimes vision myself sitting on my favorit childhood hill, of course in 6abarboor, playing with a stick writing some scribbles on a beautiful sandy hill. As I lift my head up, and watch those shiphards with their sheep roaming the beautiful desert, I live a wonderful love story of a young boy with this land. A yong boy who was forced to leave at an early age, his beloved land.
Visions like walking in the streets of amman, hearing the horns of the cars, and the yellng of the crowd. Smelling the aroma of food and gasoline that fills such streets. Walking from a place to another, a restaurant to a coffee shop, and passing by the small stores. Watching the faces of the people who are busy trying to figure out what to buy for their loved ones waiting eagerly at home.
Daydreaming has never been my thing...but it's haunting me now. I start to ask myself, why me? Why did I leave? How can I go back. Please don't ask me to answer such difficult questions...for I can't answer. Just stuck in a world I seemed to choose for myself, yet I blame others for my misery. On ocasions, satan seems to be winning some grounds in his battle against me, and I start asking and blaming God. Lasting for moments of course, before I snap out of it and go back into my blues.
I'm becoming more sensative..pathetically sensative you may say. I could be sitting down sipping my tea after a long day's work, and suddenly, my wife starts singing with a low voice songs from the folklor of jordan. I then feel tears from my eyes, yet, not flowing outside, but inside towards my heart torturing every cell in it. I wish she stops..but I seem to enjoy such torture. To add more on such miserty, I sometimes yell at her "stop". Only to se her going into her own misery speaking of how her aunt used to sing such sings to her as she helped her to sleep at night.
I came to realize that Jordan is a curse...a beautiful curse. It's probably painful to live jordan now, but I damnguarantee that it is more painful living away from her. Her hills, streets, alleys, aroma, harship, and the sweet nights we spent on the roofs laying on our backs counting the starts on a beautiful july night in 6abarboor. I guess some of us were distened to be tortured by her presence, as well her absence, from our lives.
What saddens me that many jordanian americans tried to go back and settle in jordan. Only to come back dragging the signs of failures for not coping. Execuses that may make sense to you, but never did to me.
True I found the career and respect that i worked so hard to earn..but I just can't win the tranquility of being "home". I kid you not, but I pray that I am forced to leave home..yeah..forced as in kicked out of the states. I just can't seem to make the "right" decision. Torn apart between protecting my career and family, and between a life that my soul is so eager to live...home. Between selfesness and between responsibility toward my loved ones.
So..why don't you simply pack your bags and leave?.....I told you not to why are you doing this to me? You'll laugh at what instigated such post..but so what? laugh anyway. I was listening to some sings...and suddenly..omar elabdallat song "ma7la eldaar weldeereh...." played on my computer as I was sitting down in my hotel room thinking about tomorrow. Suddenly..tomorrow seemed to be so far away as I was stcuk in my self made prison of torture. I guess I deserve it. Oh is a female dog after all, ain't it.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

My wife is finally a US citizen

Today, and at 9 am, was the court ceremony for the citizenship for my wife. Got up early in the morning, gathered the papers and got in the car as we drove to downtown Indianapolis. The appointment was 9:00 am. We were there at 8:50 by the court room door. Got in, sat down and waited for the ceremony. 9:00 am sharp, one Chinese American immigration worker started by telling the 52 naturalized citizens of what to expect in the ceremony.

The started calling names, and each person, went to the bench, took the certificate, and sat down on a designated seat. They called my wife’s name, and she got up, and took her certificate, and sat down. She looked back at me very panicked. I gave a look to comfort her and went to her and reminded her that this is nothing serious, just a celibration..sort of.

At 10 am, 49 new citizen were sitting down. Finally, the last three, who’s names were called earlier but were not there yet, came through. Two Egyptian young girls (sisters) and a Saudi young man. Now, we have a full house.

The judge then asked each one to stand up, and state the country of origin. This was something new to me, I never seen this before. I heard countries like south Africa (almost 10 from there that looked like nazi in hiding), Pakistan, libya, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, selvadore, Dominican, mexico, Serbia, Albania, and many countries. In the end, he told them why he asked the origin. He iterated the fact that every American came from somewhere sometime ago. He wanted all to know and see this as they r becoming citizens. He had a long speech, which I was really impressed, to a point that I was begging a korean woman to calm her son’s down a little as I wanted to listen. It was a very impressive speech about freedom of expression, democracy, and how citizens will loose their right, if they don’t exercise they right to vote and elect.

Then, a line of “politician opportunists” read congratulation letters from congressmen and house members of Indiana. All in all, 9 speakers gave speeches to the new citizens. I was only impressed by the judge. During the other speeches, I was busy searching the room for good looking chicks to smile, say howdy, and use zaid as a bait to get them come and say “ooooh..what a cute boy”. I couldn’t find any good looking ones.

I, however, was angered by the 25 or more kids who were thinking they were in a park. God I hate this. I mean if u know ur kid is a noisy kid, please get a baby sitter. One particular kid got on my nerves big time. As I was going back in the court room, I saw a seat open. I went there, but one of the kids there (he was Pakistani) said “there is someone sitting here” normal reaction would be “so?” and would sit down. But I always try to be nice as much as possible. I smiled at him, walked to the side, and stood leaning in the wall. Suddenly, a 4 or 5 years old kid sit in that seat. I starred at that kid, and he was looking scared at me. I kept starring at him. He never looked at me again.

In the end of the ceremony, I sat in the back seat. Those kids were playing and making noised. Then, that same kid came and wanted to play with them. That’s when I yelled at him saying “why can’t u kids be quite? Go outside and play, or be quite. This is not the park”. His mama came running toward him, as I sat leaning back. I managed to see his mom’s face, who was not very happy, but I didn’t care anyway. Couple of the people managed to give me a “good job buddy” look as they too were bothered by them kids.

So, walked back to the car, drove back to the house. So, today, my wife is a US citizen, and I gotta be honest, this was a very impressive day. I heard great speech by a judge that moved me and made me proud of such rights to vote, and express freely.

Friday, June 15, 2007

I miss her so much

I need her..want her..want to feel her on my lips, and feel it's warmness burning my desires. I want to kiss her so bad..but I can't. If I give in..I'll lose the respect of my wife. She won't be happy if I ever go back to her.

It's my cigarette....Tuesday, June/12/2007 at 6:20 pm, and as I was driving to hooters in cincinatti, I smoked my last cigarette. I decided to quit that specific day, cold turkey.

4 days later, I feel like shit, tired, and body so weak and numb. I never experienced the pain of addiction..but now I do. I never imagined being a slave to something so little, and now I do. I have never imagined how weak I am, but now I do.

Stop bo3bo3, think, take a deep breath (now that u can without pain in lungs)..and stand by ur word. It's today or never again. You lose the fight today, and u ain't standing up again.

Stop bo3bo3, think, and take a look at ur loved ones and what it will mean to them, if u kick the habit. I'll make it easy on u buddy...
Family? or a cheap pack of cigarette?
see, it's not so tough after all.

Stop, and don;t look back. Many people are living smoke-free...and so u could.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

I wish I can claim I'm strong, but I'm not

Tonight, I decided to go to the arabic restaurant, across the street from the hotel, for good old arabic food and a shisha. I gotta admit that I had fun eating, and smoking shisha on the side walk, beside cute college girls, and endurinf the looks of the passers as they watched me buffing and huffing smoke. Nevertheless, there was a wedding party in the restaurant, and there was a table full of bottles of alcohol.

You see, I've been alcohol free for about 7 years. Since the day I married my wife, I dissontinued drinking once and for all. I wish I can claim to be strong in that catagory, but sadly, I am not. The bottles were calling my name. and I felt a moment of weakness. I could hear the vodca telling me "come and get me oh sweet darling". Thats when I decided to run outside and smoke my shisha.
I travel a lot these days, and part of my work is "pampering" plant managers and managers in general. That means that I take them to fancy restaurants, and let them run the bill into the tripple figures to satisfy their drinking habbits. I struggle in such activity. I sit away from them, but my blood keeps itching for a drink. I wish I can claim I'm strong, but I am not. I am just lucky the God is watching over me. Every time I feel a moment of weakness, God provides an escape rout for me before dragging myself back into this sinnful habbit. I know that if I caved in, then I'm just gonna be wasted for years to come. I don't want that at all. Seven wonderful years so far and I pray that they last till the day I face my God.

I'm no angel, and I know your cheering for such confession. I'm just a human being, who is weak, volurnable, and tempted always by the devil. I just hope that God keeps watching over me and keep me away from such thing. It's bugging me that my wife interrogates me after I come home. She questions me and smells my mouth to make sure that I'm still clean. I am clean..and I hope it lasts forever.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

I miss her already

My parents stayed with me over six months. They had just left to jordan last week on thursday. I was planning for mega activities the minute they depart back to jordan. A vacation trip and some good old catching up to do with my wife and son.

However, I found out a week ago that I need to attend a conference in cinsinnati the week after they depart. So I'm stuck away from her. I also found out that I have to travel to Boston next week (for the week) and to tenessee the week after. Thats three weeks away from her, except for weekends. The months of july through december don't look better. I have to stay 2 weeks every month in both, cincinnati and tenessee. Thats not counting the urgent travling, and it usually happens.

I love my's creating an opportunity that I just can't say no to. Financial security to her and my family. Great career advancements. But I'm missing a touch in my life. I wanna walk outside to the park with her. I wanna go out and dine out as we used to do in the past. I wanna go shopping with her. But can't do it often.

So instead, I plan for my numbered days with her monthly to do something. Have fun just like any other couple out there. I wanna run in the house butt naked again. well..ok..maybe that was way too extreme, but u do get the picture. I wanna feel, act, behave, and live as a married man. I can't. I know that my parents will be back soon. Could be 2 months..or 5..who knows, but they r coming back.

I wanna be wild again..and live wild. But instead, I'm constantly flying/driving and it's having a toll on my personal life. I sometimes feel that I'm not married at all. The next three weeks will be harsh on the both of us. Maybe i should take her with me next time.

Monday, May 07, 2007

I am not racist

but have feelings...negative feelings toward some ethnic bckgrounds.

So, there is this conference that I'm attending in cincinnati, ohio. It's a technical conference on plastics. I checked in the hotel yesterday, sunday, and delayed my conference regeistration till monday. Historically, registration goes smoothly.

Monday 6:30 am: Bo3bo3 gets up from bed panicked due to the alarm clock. It seems that I didn't know how to set up the alarm. Believe me, alarm clocks these days are very complicated and you sincerly need a manual to know how to operate the thingie. So I woke up on some rap music. I quickly ran to the shower and prepared myself for the conference. 7:30 am and after checking my work email, I went down stairs to the restaurant for a quick breakfast. usually, a cup of coffee and a muffin would take care of me.

Monday 7:50 am:Bo3bo3 walks into Duke energy center, where the conference is located, only to find a long line. I could almost swear that 60% of the attendants are chinese and indians. As usual, I searched for a cute girl (and believe me, they are difficult to find in such conference). I found my victim, and waited as she got in line, and I quickly got behind her in line. Don't get me wrong, but I'm born a yacker and social by nature. "Hi how u doin...yada yada" and the conversation started.

Monday 8:45 am:Bo3bo3 is still standing in line. The problem is that many chinese didn't understand english pretty well, and some were registering today. I rigesterd few weeks back, but had to stand in line for my badg and schedule. These guys take too long on the registration booth. The lady tells them something simple, and they keep asking things that I have no clue how they relate to the conference activities. My legs are tired, and my back hurts from my laptop case. If it wasn't for this cute girl, I would've done something stupid, seriously.

Monday 9:10 am:finally, I got my badg and goodies and walked out to see if I could see anyone I recognize. I found what looked to be a couple of arabs standing in a corner. I walked to them and read their names on their badges. they were arabs. The usual "hala abo elshabaab..keef el7al" and we started talking. They were an algerian and a tunisian. We agreed to meet at lunch time to have a lunch together.

Monday 10:45 am:Bo3bo3 walks out of the conference hall and wait for those guys.

Monday 11:30 am:still waiting

Monday 11:45 am:realized that those arabs were not gonna show up. they must have been scared of me. i would've. All I wanted is a chat with fellow arabs and talk technical, thats all. they said at 11:00 am..yet..none showed up. So I decided to have lunch on my own.

Monday 1:30 pm:Bo3bo3 goes back to the conference hall and attends the afternoon session.

Too many chinese and indians. The problem with the chinese is that they never speak english and I hate the way the smile. The indians are funny. The minute one of them starts making more than $12/hr, they think highly of themselves. They start speaking in a language as if they were doctors. The walk as if they were the sultans. And they wear cheap $25 suites. Very cheap.

The problem is that this is only day one...4 more days to go . I can't handle this.
Oh well...poop happens I guess.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

clarification regarding saudi laws

ok...recently, I've been feeling like a youtube addict. In addition, I'm also feeling an addict on website.

Today, i read a news piece ( regarding a saudi woman with her 2 daughters. It appears that she traveled with her daughters to another town for some exams for her daughters. Her husband was sick in the hospital. Well, this lady tried to get a room in a hotel, but she was rejected because she doesn'y have "mo7ram" with her. She had to hav a male relativenfor them to get a room. So she ended up hiring a taxi and paid the driver money so she, and her daughters, could sleep safely.

Few days ago, I came across a story about saudi sexual harrassment against women. so I checked youtube, and found some disturbing videos. In one video, 3 young saudi's (and the 4th is video recording) are harassing 2 veiled women. They were groping them, touching them in all places, and in an instance, one man holds one of the girls from behind, and acting a sexual act that made me just go insane. The girls were begging these guys, crying, and trying to push them away. Finally, one of the guys may have awakened and started pushing the remaining 2 away from the girls as they ran away. The person recording the tape was yelling at they guys to do more to the girls.

Oh..what about the recent forced divorce because of "3adam kafaa2a"? In one case, the court ruled to divorce a saudi woman, against her will, because her brothers complained to the court that the husband is not fit (socially) to be their sister's husband since he was from a different tribe. The problem is this couple have 3 kids. The wife is in jail now because she refused to leave jail, except to her husband's home, whom she loves.

Sometimes I wonder, is islam really behind this? I am a muslim and I never heard such stories except in saudi arabia. Where are these laws coming from?

Ok..maybe some of my friends (and not friends) call me anti-women. Maybe I am to certain extent, allthough I strongly dissagree, but maybe I am unintentioally. But come on people...if women in saudi arabia are deprived from basic humans rights, how can men live happy? They are fathers, how can they approve such thing to their daughters? Whats the freakin reason or rationale behind preventing women from driving? seriously, did the prophet of islam PBUH say "thow shal not allow his woman drive a car or ride a camel"? I'm just going insane regarding this. And divorcing because the husband is not from a desired tribe? how did this evolve from islam?

I feel pitty for saudi girls..I really do.

And for jordanian girls too. Just yesterday, a father was convicted of raping (yes rape) his 2 daughters at the age of 8, and when they turned 15, after continious rape, they complained to the police. Guess what. The gave him six years jail, and because the mother dropped her rights, he got 3 years now in jail. Thats rape people. In the states, he gets many years in jail. And we blame the western laws and civilization? hell no, God bless america and it's judicial system.


Friday, April 20, 2007

Wicked thoughts I'm married..I know..and I know u know..but..but..ok. Well, I travel alot for business..but mostly in the states. My boss gets to do europe..while I'm stuck in north america. But thats not the see. I flirt..friendly flirt. I talk the talk, but never walk the walk.

When I was taking care of a french deligate, I took them to this dinner. they were 4, 3 guys, and hot knock out frenchie. I tried as much as possible to restrain my wicked mind from screwing up. But knowing myself, I always fail. So I was flirting with frenchie and talking about so many things. The conversation dragged to the nude beaches of france. My boss was winking at me to shut up, in a funny way. I just couldn't. Then frenchie hit me with the bomb. "you are a ladie's man aren't u". I sat back, paused for a moment, and said "no way..I just love to talk to women" with a wicked smile.

Then I started to flirt with the waitress. do u have a boyfriend" I asked. "yes I do, she answered". I quickly followed up with "well, sit down so I can tell you why you need to dump him". It was a lovely evening and all were laughing. My boss sat back and let me lead the night. When all was done, everyonr was happy.

Then few days later, a supplier took me to lunch. Again, my dilemma happened again. Nikki just looked fine. I asked one of the waitresses about her name. I called her to our table, and she came, eventhough this was not her table. I said "hi name is bo3bo3, and I can figure out ur name with few seconds looking at your eyes" She was suprised when I told her that her name is nikki. So I started chatting with her, and at the end of the day, she gave me a piece of paper with her phone number. Then, I knew that my humor flirt was crossing the line. As always, I showed the paper to my wife and she shook her head saying "ma2oltelak ra7 teeji 3araasak ghazz fehalshaghleh" So now, I can never have lunch at TGIF in indianapolis west side.

I need to slow down..but what can I do. I just love sweet talking's just in me. Nothing serious in my mind and no intentions..but..but..I need to stop this before it's too late.

Ok bo3bo3..think sweet thought..think mansaf..or magloobah with chunks of lamb swimming in the sea of love..I mean sea of rice soaked with eggplant and carrots..think man..think.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I want to die
(inspired by the song Vorreri Morire for Andrea Bocilli)

I want to a field of heavenly grass
Starring at beautiful clouds as they pass
Feeling the western breeze toward me mass
As my soul departs ..leaving me a carcass

I want to die while seeing your smile
Watching you happy and in such style
Feeling your heart beating for a long while
Of happiness, as I walk the long mile

I want to die, while touching your face
Remembering your love, that I still embrace
Sweet memories that I can never erase
Leaving this doomed world, without a trace

I want to die, sitting beneath a tree
A happy ending, for we both agree
A love that is never meant to be
And doomed for failure, I’m glad that you see

But I know my death, as it will be violent
Screams and agony, but never silent
A wicked life, God knows how it was spent
Too late for any recovery, too late to repent

So go ahead, take such miserable soul
You are only leaving, an unnoticeable hole
In a beautiful world ….so magical as a whole
But this soul of mine, is simply out of control

So yes, I want to die..I daily for it, pray
Release my pain, and set me astray
From humanity that is in total dismay
Yes..I want to die..please….show me the way


Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Superwoman does exist

I guess this post is dedicated to her...superwoman
Allthough Bo3Bo3 may sound an anti-woman some days..but thats because people missunderstand what he is trying to say..or deliver.
She is the mother of my children...and we can all try and analyze the amount of love or compassion that a woman has towards her children..but I guarantee you that we are not giving her half the credit she deserves.
She is a complete half..of the man. Thats to say that a man is only half man without his essential other half. The cup of coffee never tastes the same if she didn't put her magical touch on it. A smile is never a smile unless it comes from her shiny face. Allthough the time of miracles has long gone, and only Jesus had the healing hands upon touching a living soul, yet, her touch is a true healer when she lays her hand on the man;s shoulder for comfort.
Superwoman does exist..and it's no miracle to her. She loves being superwoman and she withstands not taking the full credit for her role in life. Try holding a baby in ur body for 9 months..and maybe you'll understand. I thought I did understand..but every day, i come to the realization that superwoman is becoming more super every day.
This is dedicated to superwoman. Without her, I'm half the man I think I am. But my superwoman is more super than any other woman out there..she is again, my superwoman.
I found that she is more super these days...My parents have been visiting me in the past 4 months. I was worried that she may be aggrivated by their presence..but..God..she is super. I have never seen so much love or compassion that any woman gives her parents, as much as my superwoman gives my parents. One would quickly become confused into thinking that they are her parents, and not in-laws. She takes care of them beyond belief..more than I do. She smiles to them more than i do. She comforts them more than I do. Sometimes, i become frustrated, especially with my dad, only to find my wife siding with him against me. And in our bedroom, she lectures me on how I should be more forgiving for their age, and should be more tolerable for their age. And when I say "come on honey, when was the last time you dressed freely in your own home?" Her answer is always "their comfort and their blessings are what will make you or me enter paradise"
I'm just amazed for her level of patience..and the sacrifices she is giving. Any woman in her shoes would've gone mad if her in-laws stay for 4 or 5 months..and this superwoman is never bothered by their presence. Add to that the fact that my parents become pushy sometimes, and would nag about her and what she is doing in the kitchen or going to the mall...yet, her responce is always a smile and sweet words to them. They then quickly forget their naging and start treating her better than their own daughter.

Oh well, happy mothers day honey for you are one hell of a superwoman out there.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


So I got up this morning to drive to cinci city. It's about 2 hours drive..and I had to make it. It was on a short notice, but thats the nature of my job.

Typically, I would get to the hotel room, order dinner, and get to work from my room. I sometimes debate myself to get the heck out and just take a walk while enjoying a camel's light smoke..but I usually fail. this time, I insisted on me getting out of the room. Life is more than just work work work.

So i walked on the ohio river side..and it was beautifull. I passed by Hooters..paused there..and again debated myself to go in. But come on were just in Hooters last week in memphis, come on buddy...just keep walking..come on, you can do it. I won finally..I mean the good side of bo3bo3 won (for a change). I walked to this nice sea food restaurant..called "Fish Market" on the shores of ohio river. I had to eat at the bar because thats where smoking is allowed. There was this woman who had a big cake in front of her..and she was laughin with the bar tender about how big is this cake.

I felt the urge to speak...not because she was beautifull..but simply because I have a big mouth. "hey..i can help you with that if you wish" I said. She laughed..and asked "can I join you?". Suddenly, I felt bad. All I wanted is to be friendly with this woman. "sure you can" I said. But deep inside, I was screaming "damn it lady..please don't"

Suddenly, she started yacking and talking about middle east, politics, love, diversity (and how she dated hispanic and african americans even though her dad didn't like it) and yada yada yada. I tried to ignore her as much as possible..but hey, even a bo3bo3 gets distracted by a half-dressed woman half drunk in a bar.

She then hit me with the big one. "can I get your email address so I can ask more questions about the middle east?". I paused for few seconds..and said sure u could. "I'll give it to you before I leave". I was counting on her forgetting the whole matter or maybe get a hint. At any rate, the food was great..and folks, try the oysters covered with lemon, garlic, and melted cheese with a side of spinach.

an hour later, she got up and said "it was nice knowing you,I gotta go now" I said "pleasure was mine, please drive carefully". I was relieved that she forgot about the email address (or even if she intentionally didn't ask for it, i didn't care in any way). I quickly paid my bill and left the restaurant fearing that she'll be back now that she knows I'm not from cinci city.

Oh well..I took the short walk back to the hotel..and passed hooters..and forced myself to keep walking. Who knows what was awaiting me at Hooters at this time of the night.

Here are some photos of the beautifull cinci city.

Friday, March 16, 2007

It's been a month

It's been a month since I posted anything. I'm really busy these days, and work is taking a toll on me. The responsibilities are growing and so are the expectations. My parents are visiting me these days. Allthough I love them so much, but I feel sad for I'm not able to take them around the states. I'm traveling like crazy these days..and I seem to spend more nights in hotels than my own home. I have lost good amount of weight in the past 2 months....and seem to smoke more these days.

For all my beloved anti-smoke nazi's, I promise that I'll quit very soon...maybe days. I guess this post is for those who are close to me and all those who care. Consider it a quick update on how is my life going on. Searching for a car, but it has to be uglier than my wife's car...or else..I'm in trouble.

My email is for all those who want to stay in touch. I can't promise when is my next post will be...but I sure miss blogging.

Note: my wife is a walking angle...I trully believe so, and I'll tell you why next time. God bless


Monday, February 19, 2007

When dreams turn into nightmares

It was a Saturday morning. I woke up a little happy that day. Nothing has happened yet, but I felt it was going to be a good day. I decided to take a walk. Gathered my walking gear (my good old friend of camel’s light and my dark glasses that I use to hide my eyes) and walked on the side walk. It was just a pleasant day and the sun was as crisp as it could ever get.

I saw a coffee shop at the end of the street right on a corner of another street. I decided to sit there for a while as I reflect on my days as usual. “What would you like to drink sir?” this young waiter asked me. “a black cup of coffee please” I replied. I took one of my “poison by choice” cigarette and soon after, the thick smoke of this beauty of art was filling my lungs and the surroundings.

I took out my small notebook that I always keep with me and thought of writing my thoughts. Although I suck in poetry, but somehow, it found a place to my heart. It wasn’t easy finding that small part of my soul that is sentimental, fighting it’s existence against my practical and scientifically way of thinking, but it somehow did.

I looked around for any inspirational object of person to initiate that process of writing. I waited for the pen to start writing, but with no luck as I couldn’t find that inspiration.

Suddenly, with my eagle’s eyes that usually search the planet for cute eyes, or cute faces, I saw this woman sitting down reading a book. I looked away, but again, somehow, my soul grabbed my attention and stirred back toward that woman. It seems that her blue eyes and thick reddish hair were too much for my eyes to look the other way. But there was something about that woman that wasn’t clicking right. She seemed to be reading but her eyes were not moving with the words she was reading. I then started to believe that she was simply in another world of her’s.

I decided to get up and start a conversation with her. I walked to her table and asked “can I join you ma’am?”. She noted yes without a word and quickly shut her book and leaned back on her chair as if she was waiting for the conversation. We spoke about many things from her personal life to mine and heck, we even touched a little on the subject of politics. The time then came for our departure and each of us went their way.

The next day, I went to the same coffee shop and waited for her to show up. She did, and we talked and laughed. I suddenly found myself attached to this woman and any interaction with her. Days went by and we spoke more and more and seem to get attached to one another. I gotta be honest with you, this woman made me feel just amazingly good. I felt that there was love between the two of us. We were talking openly with one another.

Then one day, and as I was eagerly waiting for her arrival, she didn’t show up. I suddenly felt not right as every cell of my body was crying for her arrival. But she didn’t. I kept going back to the same place day after day, but my unknown beauty was no where in sight. I never gave up on her. Somehow, she gave up and decided to disappear. I promised myself to tell her “I love you” the next time I see her, but with no luck. I miss that sweet smile of her and I miss the way she was playing with her hair. But with no luck. I started to suspect that I was living in a dream, a sweet dream, that was never meant to have a sweet ending. I kept pressuring myself to wake up from this dream of mine as it was taking a toll on me…and finally, I managed to awaken. I looked around and all I saw is my friend camel’s light sitting next to me. No one was around. I didn’t know whether to be thankful that I awoke, or feel sad for knowing that it was just a dream. How can a dream transforms into a nightmare……that I’m still searching for an answer for.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Traveling is not easy these days

oh boy. My flight from indianapolis got cancelled as I was sitting in the plane. So I got out and scrambeled to get another flight to cleveland. I finally found one that goes through cicinatti. I got it and went through security. I only had 2o minutes beofre my flight. They stamped my tickets with "extra security". So I was searched and grilled in questions while I hear my name on the intercom. I finally managed to catch my flight..barely. The next day, I flew back home to indianapolis. The airport was almost closed because it was snowing bad as u'll see in the picture. Finally made it through after spending 40 minutes "deicing" the plane to prevent it from crashing because of ice. I'm home now..but I just sometimes think how on earth I manage to be able to make it home.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

The long waited Battle

Finally…the wait is over. It’s been more than 3 months since I enjoyed a good home cooking mansaf. Today, I announce that I am a happy man. Finally…my wife and mom decided to please me by making me the happiest man alive.

Three months since I sat down face to face with mansaf. Day after day…I hinted and gave signals, but no one was paying attention. But the wait is over, and I stood face to face starring at the mansaf loaded with sweet looking lamb, and pine and almond nuts giving this master piece the greatest work of art.

Face to was a war in which a sole survivor has to emerge. This house was too big for both of us, and one had to go. It was a war of survival, and I fought it well. Slowely, one by one started withdrawing from the battle field. Mom, then wife, and finally my dad withdrew from the field. Suddenly, I saw myself alone with almost half of the big sweet mansaf tray still intact. But it has to go, or else, I will lose the fight. I kept fighting, and taking casualties as I felt my stomach was begging me to stop.

The heat of the battle was burning up. Two big chunks of meat are still trying to fight my trained forces of WFD (weapons of food destruction). With one blow, the first of the remaining meat chunks was annihilated. Then my forward forces isolated and siege the last enemy combatant hiding behind a small hill of rice. My forced advanced and took heavy casualties again, and captured the last enemy combatant. Take no prisoners was the goal of this battle. Dad, Mom, and wife were shocked watching the battle from a distance fearing for their own safety. They called for a cease fire and pledged to the UN community to interfere. But this was the long waited war and the last thing I needed is UN observers. So I finished the the last drop of rice and emerged the sole winner of this fierce battle.

Finally…I’m a happy man. I call on all men to withstand their grounds and fight their own battles with a mighty force. Don’t give up your fight. I urge you not to. Long live the revolution and God helps us all.

Monday, January 15, 2007

I hate Chicago..seriously I do

Ok, so I was sitting down in my office going through tremendous emails and suddenly, my boss walks in. “Can you do me a favor please?” he asked. I answered yes sure..whats up? “I have a meeting tomorrow in Chicago, but I can’t attend, can you go there in my place?’. I answered “you ###%^$ and %$#%^^% why the $#$#@@# do this to me” inside my head. But my mouth failed me and said “of course, count on me”. Damn bo3bo3..when will you ever learn how to say NO? So I arranged for the quick short trip knowing that I’ll hate every moment in it.

I got in my car and started driving to Chicago (around 190 miles from Indy). My coworker told me earlier to watch out for ice for the conditions are bad in chicago. I was just pissed off at my self. So I drove..20 miles..and it was raining..then 80 miles later and around Gary, Indiana, the snow rain started to look like snow, and the roads were ugly. I knew my day wasn’t got any better. I stopped for my red bull booster and went back on the road. The roads started to look uglier. Finally, I was on I-80. Constructions and trucks. At any rate, I called my wife asking if she wants anything from Chicago. She said bread/hummus, foul, cheese, ……..” Oh my God, now I have to stop on my way at “alrasheed stores”. So I stopped to get the stuff she asked for. No, I don’t follow her orders and she is not controlling me..but we both agreed that her opinion is what counts always .

I also decided to stop at the Nile restaurant for a falafel sandwich. I just love their falafel. Then drove to the hotel, about 15 miles north of O’hare on I-294. Only to discover that this hotel has decided to go smoke-free 2 months ago. Can my day get any worse than this? Oh yes it can. I’m looking from my window now and all I see is snow. Tomorrow’s drive to the meeting will be as ugly as it can get.

I hate Chicago so much. I end up staying 30 miles from downtown, and I a hotel that I can’t smoke in, and surrounded by snow. God, take me out of this misery…I hate Chicago.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The final chapter...freedom of expression

Those of us who were born in the Middle East, know for a fact that freedom of expression is a fantasy, a dream that never came true and doesn’t seem to in the near future. Governments never allowed it and the people themselves never bothered to obtain such privilege. I always heard that focusing on how to provide for the family is more important than complaining about governments or religious intolerance. Give me bread, not the right to speak was the norm back then. True there were lots of “revolutionary” movements, but all were politically motivated. The movement for internal change was taking the back seat always due to the focus on the Arabic situation on the political map.

When I immigrated to the States, I started seeing signs of freedom of expression. Although I was slow keeping up with the changes around me, but I tried to cope with such great change. Early nineties witnessed the first gulf war. We went out for a demonstration against the gulf war. This was the first time I ever go out in a demonstration. I didn’t need to cover my face nor I needed to fear baton waving security personals. It was a great feeling to be able to express your approval/disapproval with anything on mind. The uprising in the Palestinian territories was another example. Suddenly, I felt that I’m tasting something I didn’t know how it could ever taste have I stayed in the middle east.

I do realize that the foreign policy of the united states is full of flaws and injustice, but the fact that you, as a citizen, can express your disapproval with such policies is a great thing to have. I now realize the value of freedom of expression. And that somehow affected me when dealing with others. You can actually stage a demonstration and draw a funny picture of the president of the USA, in front of the lawn of the white house. Comparing such scenery with what you see on arab TV of arab demonstrators makes you see the two extremes. But the greatest lesson I learned was that freedom of expression has two sides. Just as you want to have the freedom to express, you must give such freedom to others.

One demonstration sticks in my mind was during the Palestinian uprising, and in front of a synagogue in east Cleveland. We were around 40 or 50 demonstrators. There were swat teams and police force that could’ve been larger than us. They pointed out where we can demonstrate and where we can not cross. They were holding the riot gear, and some even climbed on the roof of the synagogue with rifles to prevent any deviation. As expected, a group of jewish demonstrators also staged an opposing demonstration, and there was an area of about 10 feet separating the two groups. In this area, there were cops to prevent anyone from crossing their designated area. It was supposed to be a peaceful demonstration, but it turned a little ugly at the end. One jewish demonstrator crossed the the line and got close to our area shouting anti arab slogans. One of the cops got a hold of the guy and pushed him back harshly. A couple of jewish demonstrators ran toward us and they spitted at some of us so close before the cops could react. During that, one arab dude slapped the face of one of the two guys so hard that he fell, but by that time, police was concentrating on that small area and they prevented any further problems. We then went home after we expressed our voices against the Israeli occupation.

I participated in many demonstrations in down town Cleveland and few outside such as NY and DC. Just like most arabs here, we enjoyed such feeling of being able to express our views. Again, freedom of expression comes in two sides. During one demonstration in downtown Cleveland, the KKK were staging a demonstration in the late nineties. Many ethnic groups, including arabs, gathered along side the African American American community and staged an anti-demonstration to the KKK. For the first time I hear people yelling at us calling us names and demanding that the country be purified from any “colored” skin that is not Arian. I hated hearing those calls, but I realized that freedom of expression is far more than expressing your own views.

I was listening to the radio one day and I suddenly heard a speech. I can’t remember who the speaker was but it was a guy during the sixties about freedom of expression. The meaning of it is that when you as an African American, accepts the rights of a white angry man to burn a cross in his private property, that’s a freedom of expression. Just as you wish to scream for your right for equal opportunity in employment, education, and treatment. I tell you, the speech moved me so much that it changed how I view things. I, as a muslim, must accept the right of anyone saying that I, again as a muslim, bear an evil religion. He has the right to demand my deportation for no reason. He has the right to say whatever he wants to say about me, and I have to accept that. Only then, I can demand my right for freedom of religious practicing, freedom of wearing any cloths I wish, and freedom to speak my own language. Wait a minute bo3bo3, that means you also have to accept the fact that they have designated a part of the beach in Cleveland to be a topless beach. Ok..I mixed up here. But that’s the beauty of it. It’s to respect the others right to express, even in dress code, in the same manner that you demand acceptance from others.

Sadly, and being born in a middle eastern society, you would get conflicting reaction. If you try to adopt freedom of expression when dealing with others from the middle east, you would always run into a wall of rejection. This is so obvious in forums that have members from both camps. The mentality of such rejection is very strong. I could accept easily someone who attacks my religion or ethnic background, provided that it remains in the dialogue phase and never evolves into a violent behavior. Would it hurt me hearing someone attacking my prophet or religion? Absolutely yes. But I can not deny their rights to express freely their opinions. I’m seeing this always here and on other websites of course. But to me, I adore the concept of freedom of expression, even if that meant for others to call me a camel jockey or an arab hillbilly. It takes so much effort to practice how to freely express your views, but it takes twice as much to accept that others have the same right.

This closes my experience being an immigrant to the west. I tried to shed light to what an immigrant encounters, and what typical reaction he/she may have. With this, I knew I was gambling. I decided to strip almost naked so others see me through my mask and cloths, and I knew that it could generate animosity or rejection toward me. But to be honest with you, I came to the conclusion long time ago that this is who am I, and you could hate me or respect me based on whether you judge me relative to my past or today. It did back fire on me on few occasions, but believe me, I never cared. I am who I am, and what made me today, is what happened to me in the past up until yesterday. I shared so much details of my private life, and conveyed the details straight from the heart to portray exactly how I felt, regardless if it was a wrong or a right feeling. I hurt others and others hurt me. I loved others and others loved me. It’s life, and admitting such life is half way to the “solution” provided that there is a problem at any rate. Some of the actions I did in the past may seem to be unjustified and unforgiven, and I agree. But I don’t want to lie, so I’ll tell you this. As long as I have the respect of my family, that’s all what counts. Thank you very much for reading and I hope it left a positive impression on some of you. I also hope that these chapters have helped some to avoid the pitfalls that I have fallen into, for they now see the result and what could it do to the soul. My deepest apologies if my words have hurt some of you, for the intention was all the time a good intention. I’ll see you around.