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What makes Jordan a great place to live in?


I've written an earlier post about the reasons why I thought Dubai is one of the best places to live (Here) . Now, it's time to talk about Jordan.

Being a Jordanian, and someone who lived most of his life in Jordan, I should be able to write a comprehensive piece on the subject. However, those who lived or continue to live in Jordan know that the country changes very quickly. The social fabric in the country keeps morphing and changing. It remains to be a matter of debate whether those changes in all aspects of life are to the better or worse. What everyone seems to agree on is that change do happen, and in a pacey way.

Therefore, I realized that for someone who has been coming back to Jordan mostly for holidays for the past five years, it will make sense to ask for feedback from those who currently live there, or in some way have experienced the place recently.

So, this is an invitation to all of you out there, to grace us with your comments, telling us what makes Jordan a great place to live in?

Spread the word. We want to know what you think :)

The Illusion of Democracy

According to dictionary.com, a democracy is " a government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system.''. In popular culture, a democratic government is a goverment from the people, by the people, and for the people.

Based on the above, we see a huge association between the government and the people. This means that the government is directly or indirectly represening the population and its wishes. Performing what this population wants internally and externally.

Jumping to another concept called Responsibilities Versus Rights, this rightly translates to the following conclusion:

"In a democratic country, every citizen is part of the government. He or She has the right to all the services expected from the government, and responsible for its actions" 

In that sense, a citizen is a health minisiter when his chosen government passes a healthcare-related resolution. He is a finance minister, when his government decides the budget. He is an interior minister, when the government passes resolutions with regards to national security, and he is a defence minister or a soldier when his goverment decides to wage wars or sign peace pacts.

However, the matter of the fact is that the population is not held responsible for the actions of their representatives. equally, democratically elected governments rarely implement the population wishes. Should one of the previous statements be false, then the whole balance of rights versus responsibilities is ruined, and the whole process is just a big lie, cover up, and even a complete illusion!

Here is an example of an unbalanced equation!

Rights

A government elected by the people is supposed to work on a healthcare system that provides the best healthcare possible to the citizens of the country. The right of the population is to get what they elected the government to do. If that doesn't happen, the population will be stuck with a government that doesn't perform its duties. Logically, this government is illegal, and should be dismissed immediately.

Responsibilites

A government elected by the people decides to wage war on a soverign nation. The responsibility is immediately cascaded to the population, as their chosen government took the decision to attack another nation. Therefore, everybody in that country is a soldier, and as a result a potential target for the enemy. However, citizens are usually considered as civilians, and as a result attacking them is illegal and is a war crime. This violates the second argument of the equation. In other words, the population is exempted from the responsibility of waging war on another nation even if the government they chose went to war.

A very simple argument really, which reduces the whole process and concept into a politicized version of American Idol. A version in which you vote and acknowledge that a certain contestant has the talent and the ability to be a star singer, but as soon as the voting is finished and the idol is chosen what happens is anybody's guess. He or she might become a drug addict, a murderer, a football player, or simply a couch potato, but naturally you will not be held responsible for his actions, neither you are expecting anything from him.

The conculsion is that as long as the citizens are not achieving their goals behind electing a government, and/ or not held responsible for its policies, especially the foreign ones, the whole concept of democracy is an illusion, and a sedative. It becomes more of a capitulation of rights and responisbilities to a chosen few. This is greatly reflected by the relationship between a sheperd and his sheeps.

Chapter 4: Jordanians " THE GRINGOS "


There is always this nasty sheep that stands out. It's the one not taking the parallel route to the herd. It's a troublemaker sheep, chewing on a toothpick the Eastwood style, and fluffing its hair the other way around.

In a similar fashion the gringos have taken a wild path. An unorthodox style of life. They couldn't care less about what you think of their clothes, or their glasses. If they like it, then everybody else can bite the dust. They are intrigued by what the mass would consider a given. They are moved by what the crowds thinks dull and colorless. They, surprisingly, still read. They have hobbies. They've got talent. They sing and dance, fall and bounce. they play an instrument, they share a sentiment. Hate for all that is vain and mundane. All that is typical and sane. They're awkward, in a good way. They might be twisted in their heads, but it's really hard to say.

They've abandoned the mainstream, preferring to travel uphill. Inspired by their dreams, and stories they want to live to tell. Your car make is just a name to them. The color of your eyes tells of your genetics, no more. It's what you have in you that matters the most to them. With those guys, you might get away with charm for a couple of minutes, but then you'd better have something good to say.

There is an IQ prerequisite to talk to these guys. It's their law of attraction. They grew tired of stereotypes and status quo. They breathe change and action, vitality and authenticity. If you looked for them you wouldn't find them. They just appear before you, out of nowhere. There is no secret handshake. There is no safe house. There is no headquarter, home, bar or cafe. They roam the place like thirsty kids. Wanting to quench their thirst with ideas. After all, home is where the mind is.

They fall in love with arts, music, sport, physics, numbers and books. It's their religion. They practice and don't preach. They are always up to something, and they never fail to function. They've been accused of so many things; dreamers, losers, too passionate, too optimistic, too pessimistic, disconnected, dysfunctional, pretenders, and a lot more. But it doesn't deter them. for they have a vision. They have a reason for living. Life to them is more than a 3-meal day, an 8-hour sleep 8-hour job and 8-hour social disturbia. it's much more. 



They are the reason this country produced any success. They are the reason Jordan is still viewed favourably by some. They are the reason we still boost one of the most intellectual and desirable communities in the region. They are the ones who passed the unseen gate of immortals first. For you will see their traces after they leave this world. Lucky you are if you are a gringo. If you are a nerd or a geek, If you raise a couple of eyebrows from the masses, and if you were laughed at in high school, and dismissed as a loser. 


The Gringos are the pen and the eye of this country. They are the wind of change. They ensure continuity, while others provide the fuel. 

10 Reasons why it's great to live in Dubai


Dubai has been the subject of gazillion news items in for several years now. Ranging from articles written in owe of the huge progress and growth the city experienced, to the bashing of its policies and it's "supposed" decline. Nevertheless, everybody agrees that the buzz this city created throughout the world is unmatched in the region, and in fact many regions across the world. 


Reflecting on my five years I spent in this city, prompted by a discussion with a friend who finally decided to go back home, I decided to share with everyone some of the reasons why I, and many like me I would argue, consider Dubai to be one of the best places to live.






10. Business
Despite all what the doubters say, and indeed despite of the mistakes Dubai committed during its astronomically fast growth, it remains a perfect hub in the region. Let's face it. Dubai has the infrastructure needed to be the link between the East and the West. It also has what it takes to be the starting point for a regional and international business. 


A huge airport, and a first class airliner, in Emirates, gives Dubai the privilige of being the perfect highway people can take travelling anywhere in the world through this region. Numerous Free Zones catering to the needs of multinational companies provides a perfect home for regional offices and logistic centres. Free zones like Jabal Ali, Internet City, Media City, Knowledge Village, Healthcare City, Dubai International Financial Centre cater to numerous business segments and model.


It's also equally important that Dubai historically doesn't mix business with politics. This is most clear in the huge trade volume between UAE and Iran despite of the differences the two countries have, and the ongoing occupation of two UAE islands by Iran. Therefore, you won't  worry that one day the ruler will wake up on the wrong side of his bed one day and decide that certain country nationals are no longer allowed to enter the country, or conduct business in it. 






9. Weather
Europeans are in love with Dubai. The reason being that for a period of six month you constantly live under sunshine and temperatures ranging from 19 to 29 throughout the day. It's the perfect recipe. Perfect weather with a lot of sunshine that will significantly wipe off most of the reasons you might think of to be depressed. The only reason weather is not ranking higher than 9, is that for 4 months during the summer the weather is very unpleasant.






8. Mobility 
For many of us, who are not blessed with having a passport stating in one way or another that your are not a terrorist, or not an illegal immigrant, living in Dubai gives you a great deal of mobility. Your visit visa is less likely to be rejected if you are planning for a vacation in Europe for example. Apparently, they believe that if you live in Dubai, then you have a good job and no good reason to runaway or go and kill yourself somewhere! So, if you are a Lebanese, Jordanian, Syrian, Egyptian, Iranian or from any of the other doomed countries, your chances of being able to travel are better off if you live in Dubai than if you live in your own country. Suffice to say, you are more likely to be able to afford it if you have a job in Dubai, in most cases.


Equally important is that of all the countries in the Gulf Region that offers financial stability and career opportunities, Dubai as part of the UAE offers the greatest level of freedom to expats. You don't need your sponsor's approval to go on a vacation, and if you want you can leave for a 2-day trip on a weekend without the need to request your passport from the company because you are entitled to have it with you at all times. Trivial you might think. But if you live in Saudi or Qatar you will know what I mean.






7. Safety
This is not to say that Dubai is the safest place on earth, or that crimes don't happen in here. But if you are familiar with cosmopolitans, you will notice the difference in Dubai. Whether a male or a female, you will notice that you can walk almost anywhere in the city at three o'clock in the morning without fear of being attacked or hassled. You can leave your car running, apartment open, laptop bag on a chair in a coffee shop and you are sure that they will be untouched by the time you come back. This is in large due to the fact that UAE has a strict policy of deportation of criminals, as well as the fact that most residents are professionals who are benefiting from their presence in the city and they don't want to jeopardize that fact.








6. Freedom
Whether you are Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, atheist or a follower of any other religion in the world, you have the freedom to practice your religion. The city has several churches and Hindu temples. Christmas is celebrated in a similar fashion like Eid, and Diwali is equally as important. 


In Dubai you can choose to be conservative or a liberal. You can wear hijab and you can wear shorts. You can relax on the beach in your bikini, and you can set there dressed in a proper islamic costume. Alcohol is available in hotels, clubs and bars for those who drink. If you are a non-Muslim you can acquire a liquor license and have your own alcohol stock at home. The bottom line is, as long as you don't abuse it, and start getting crazy or intimate in the streets, no one will bother you. You do your own thing, as long as you are not publicly disrespecting the country's traditions and values. 






5. Luxury
Everything in Dubai was built to reflect a life of luxury. From hotels to malls. Streets to parks. Public transportation to cars. Everything is new and done neatly. You can drive an SUV while you'll be dreaming about it in Europe. You can own a Porsche, while you would only call it a DREAM car elsewhere. Even in the metro, you can have your gold section tickets and commute as if you are on board a world class airliner. 






4. Services and Facilities
If you are a European, you will know deep in your heart, even if you don't admit it, that Dubai provides a world class service in most aspects of life. All your bills and transactions can be done online. If you pay a handsome some of money for an apartment, you get your pool, Sauna, gym, security, facility management and parking with it. No compromises. Barring International City and Discovery Gardens, you always get value for your money. More so now that rents have went down to a more realistic and acceptable levels. 


Gas stations are malls. business buildings are fully equipped, and almost everybody have their delivery services. Dubai residents are spoiled to the point of laziness when it comes to services, and people love it. 






3. Activites
If you are an outdoor activities' fan then Dubai is the place to be. Walking, cycling, golfing, fishing, sailing, windsurfing, desert activities, fresh water activities and beach & sea activities. The facilities are available. You can always join a club or a community or do it on your own. 


skiing, ice skating and bird watching. When in the desert, you can take the pleasure of activities like camel safari and desert jeep safari.

You can enjoy the sea with activities like scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, parasailing and deep sea fishing

Team Sports? No problem. Some popular outdoor games are ball games like football, Basketball, Volleyball and Rugby.







2. Events
One of the most interesting things about Dubai is that you always have a feeling that there is something going on. It's true that the buzz went down a little bit after the crisis, but this normal even if you go anywhere else in the world. 


Concerts and tournaments. Art galleries and plays. Fashion shows and exhibitions. The cultural agenda in Dubai is always full, and you can count on a dozen of big time events every year that will break you routine and give you a taste of how life is all over the world. In the past few month Nickelback and Sting were here. Soon David Guetta will play in Dubai, preceded by Kelly Rowland. Bands like The Killers, Coldplay, Scorpions performed in Dubai. The Dubai Movie festival is an annual event. Circus de Soleil is a regular fixture. Car, Technology, Healthcare, arts and architecture events take place all the time. In simple words, you will not be bored. 






1. Multicultural Taste
In a world destined to shrink further into a tiny village, Dubai has taken the lead in becoming the melting pot of different cultures from all over the world, and definitely the only place in the middle east that practically lives the global village dream. 


It's not abnormal to be sitting on a table with 10 people from 10 different culture and be able to call them friends. This unique experience helps you get out of your box. Learn to understand people in a different way that the one you were made to understand through TV and mainstream media. Dubai gives you the chance to meet people from different religions and social background, and serves as a bridge that helps people see beyond stereotypes. It's a given that through mingling with different cultures you create this panoramic view of life, and learn as you go about what matters and what doesn't. You become more adaptable to change. More flexible in dealing with the other. You learn about what's important to people and what they hold important to their heart and values, and this to me is the greatest thing about this city.





Dubai from the 29th floor this morning

A perfect view to start your day with!

An Advice to all Arab/ Muslim bloggers



You don't realize how little accuracy there is in network TV reporting until they cover a story in your hometown.  ~Robert Brault


I came across this post about a dog. As I understand, a guy did something nice to a dog, and as a result he deserves to be praised. 


Accidently, the guy who did the good deed is an Israeli. The outcome of the story is 25 comments so far. Ranging from complaining about Zionist Propaganda, to ranting about those who think it's a Zionist Propaganda and believe that it was only about a dog.


I personally have no problem with the post, and I didn't actually read it. But I read the subsequent post and the comments that it received and I would like to lend "Ange" the writer, and the rest of the Arab/ Muslim bloggers an advice. After all, it's free of charge, and the best thing about it is that you can totally ignore it. 


What is the most powerful weapon in the world? A nuclear bomb? A hydrogen bomb? No, I strongly believe that Media, in all its forms and shapes, is the biggest weapon of our time. As Arabs and Muslims, we clearly lack in this department. We are not powerful or influential. We don't own huge network channels like CNN, FOX, SKY, BBC or the rest. In many cases we lost wars before they even began. I'm not only talking about wars carried out by tanks and guns, and aiming at winning a territory or some natural resource. I'm referring to public opinion, and the way people look at us.


Now, if I came across Ange's post, I would have probably read it, and kept browsing without leaving a comment. I have my reasons not to leave a comment, but this is just me. However, some people were a little annoyed by the post and they made it clear in their comments. I understand why they felt so. Ange got offended, and extremely defensive. I also understand that. 


Sorry about the long introduction, but I had to put things in the right context. 


The problem, I think, is that there is always subtext to the things we write. or they write. Few weeks ago, when disaster hit Haiti, people across the world felt it. Countries and NGO's from across the globe sent aid. Either in the form of man power, clothes, medicine, food or Money. As I was watching CNN for a full day, there was one story that kept being repeated and repeated. I think it was a woman, maybe a man, who was saved from under the rubble. Her family and neighbours were ecstatic. Happy to have him/her back, which I totally I understand and respect. That person was a victim, and he/she deserved all the help possible. Then you have images of the local crowd chanting the name of the country where the crew who did the rescue come from. "Good job Israel, Good job Israel". This is the same Israel who is still killing, abusing and starving Palestinians while the world is watching. This is the same country that still illegally occupies the land of other people. This, of course, takes nothing from the good job the Israeli rescuers did, and we applaud them for that. But the question that baffled a lot of people like me I'm sure was, why all the emphasis on Israel? Why didn't CNN show the good jobs done by France, Germany, Cuba, Japan, Brazil or any of the other countries? I'm sure there were others? 


It's a world of propaganda. It serves to polish the image. They say, you are as good as your last deed, and therefore whatever you have done, especially if not covered by the media, will be wiped off by a good thing you did, which gets tirelessly and relentlessly repeated. 


The problem those guys had with your post is that you applauded and act of humanity an Israeli did towards an animal. While they believe that this same person, or the regime he comes from will NOT extend the same act of humanity to Palestinian humans. They got tired of the overwhelming propaganda about how good Israelis are, and how evil and violent Arabs are. They see this post as another serving in the plate of good deeds of the Zionists. 


Once a newspaper touches a story, the facts are lost forever, even to the protagonists.  ~Norman Mailer


To be clear, I don't agree with those who posted comments on that post simply because they have probably pushed the post up the Technorati, delicious, bloglines, twitter.. etc rankings! Making it more visible to the world. Clearly this might be good for the blog hosting it, but for all the wrong reasons. 


If a TV network wanted to feature this story on one of its shows, it will probably be something like this: "A post about an Israeli man who takes good care of a sick dog draws scathing attacks from Arabs and Muslims in an anti-semitic wave. The post written by an Australian woman, A catholic turned Muslim through marriage, sparked attacks on her for showing sympathy towards Jews. We were not able to interview or get a picture of the writer apparently because her Muslim husband doesn't want her to show her photo on her blog."


How does that sound? Good? I don't think so. Neither for the blogger, nor for the commenters. She will sound like an oppressed convert, and they will sound like mindless and angry terrorists. I know she says that she doesn't write about Palestine, because she has nothing to add. But it was surprising to see how much she had to say explaining the difference between Jews and Zionists. How there are good Jews as well as bad ones. She is definitely right, but this discussion only serves to add fuel to the fire and emphasizes the difference between what she supposedly represents as moderate oppressed convert, and what they present as angry and racist Arabs and Muslims. She could've ignored those comments, or simply deleted them. They could've skipped by the post and let it be. We often shoot ourselves in the foot, and then make things worse while we try to correct the wrongs that we have done. I know she is an animal lover, but had she looked beyond the dog, she would've picked a different story. After all, there are humans all over the world who at the very least are as kind to humans as they are to animals. As one of the commenters, Femme I think, said she wished her family received at the Gaza crossing a treatment as good as the one offered to a bug! It's her own experience, it's her pain and millions like her. She has the right to be angry, she has the right to complain about it, and she has the right to hate because of it! She is human after all. I don't hear people anyone complaining about the never ending milking of the Holocaust story! It happened more than sixty years ago by the Germans under the watch of the Europeans. Until now any criticism of Israel is an anti-semitic act, and whoever questions the actual event of the Holocaust or the mere magnitude of it is criminalized and accused of anti-semitism! And the worst part is that Palestinians are paying for it. They don't seem to get tired of connecting everything to the Holocaust, and it doesn't look like people mind it! In fact, they still feel guilty. Then why are people surprised that Palestinians are also obsessed with their own ordeal?  


it's a complicated issue indeed. There is always sub-text. There is always something that will be taken out of context to get back at you, and bite you. We don't have the media. We are not the ones writing history in these times. 


I urge you to be careful. If you want to write something about Palestine. Please be careful. Please look at it both ways. We have enough people questioning our religion and our rights. It does more harm than good to have people questioning the despair and frustration others feel. If you didn't understand it, then who will? And if you want to write about animals, food, music, culture or anything else you want, be careful where that might lead. Watch out for the conversations on your blog. Don't let it divert and lead to where nobody wants it to lead. At least nobody we care about. Nobody who knows what we are all about. 


It's an advice. You can take it, and you can leave it.


People can, and will mutate the truth. Use it to their own good. Propaganda is built to brainwash people, and if you are not there... You never really know the truth.


If one morning I walked on top of the water across the Potomac River, the headline that afternoon would read:  "President Can't Swim."  ~Lyndon B. Johnson


That's all I have to say

Dubai: Wind of Change

I guess you don't really believe in the Global Weather Change until you see it yourself.

Dubai experienced a wet and windy weather that has almost never happened. Especially in February!

But it was a cool change!

Half-Baked Ideas: Life, Raising Kids, and Arab's Memory


Of Life and Expectations.



Life happens in a very random way. It's somehow depressing yet refreshing to know that your plans will most likely fall apart. So my advice is never plan farther than a year or two. Don't assume or expect. Things and people change. Life twists and turns in weird ways. One of your best friends will be someone who you haven't seen for 10 years. People you had many things in common with will soon drift and others will replace them. Places you planned to settle in might be the places you send postcards to, and those you used to send to might be your new home.

Raising kids



This advice comes with a great deal of credibility. Mainly because I'm single and have no kids, and so, I'm free of all inhibitions and psychotic protective behaviors.

if you want your kid to be more successful than you are when he/ she grows up, as a rule of thumb, they should be different from you!

Unless you want them to be copy cats and bad re-runs, you should unleash them and let them do their thing in their own way. 

More successful means not the same as you are. It means different. 

On Arabs' Memory. 

 In general terms, Arabs don't have a big interest in their own personal history. Interestingly, we more than anybody else tend to retain the biggest stock of our cultural history, and in many cases take it with us, oh so romantically, to the grave.

We are not big on birthdays and anniversaries. We don't usually celebrate milestones, and we definitely have a thing against pictures. You are unlikely to find an Asian who doesn't have a dozen pictures of himself in the cradle, whereas you can find many Arabs who don't even remember how they looked when they were young.

It's probably a reflection of what's going on on the political scene in our era. We celebrate our long and glorious history, but we rarely take actions on our current events or celebrate our successes, if there was any to celebrate anyway!

Chapter 3: Jordanians " The Hair Shirts "



THE HAIR SHIRTS
You need a Polo shirt, Diesel Jeans, Clarks shoes, and a Breitling. You need a BMW or an SUV, a BB, a so-called exquisite taste, and a 5-number car plate. These are the pre-requisites to the League of Extraordinary men and women. If you have the pre-requisites, then you're eligible for entry.
Self-haters who denounce everything around them. Jordanians by virtue of a document, and if given the chance they'll be anything but. They claim superiority to a world that fed them. They are disgusted by a nation that never stopped giving them. To them, this country can't do anything right. As the movie of the Jordanian life flickers before there eyes they fail to see anything but the black spots and the hidden signatures. They've succumbed to the notion that their survival stems from their distance from this society. They welcome foreigners with a cry for help. They'll bash everything they see to overcome their insecurities, and lack of self-respect.
they're overwhelmed with reality. Oblivious to the concept of classes. Everyone needs to be Upper Class. You need to get your morning coffee at Starbucks, watch your movies at Zara Center's, have your Shisha in Lemon, and NOT read your books in Books@cafe. You're unrecognizable to them if your net worth of apparel covering your body is less than 200 JD. They'll sing Odes of the wonders of the countries they visited, and compare it to the nothingness they see in Jordan. They have a soft spot for Lebanon. It's their best bid to achieve social immortality.
If you want to see them, look around you. They are the ones sitting on tables talking to each other in English, dropping a "ca va" every once in awhile. They are the ones staring at you, from the corner of their eyes, somewhere near the belt, for an eye contact with the masses hurts their superiority.
They love their version of Jordan. One in which they only see themselves. One in which everybody dines in a hotel and shops in a mall. One that breathes vanity and exists in their fantasy.
They have a keen interest in arts, but they can't tell the difference between a melody and a fart. They are the farthest there is from sophistication, but they definitely look the part. They are the parasites growing around ministers, and the country's blood-sucking sinisters. For them, narcissism is a religion, humility is fascism, and a nation is a minority of Gods and a majority of enslaved and ripe humans put there to glorify their mere existence. 
They dread the crawling of the easter Ammanites to their Green Zone. Down the years they retreated from Jabal Al Hussein, Jabal Amman, Shmeisani and Rabieh. They are still fighting for there lives in Sweifieh, while they still have a stronghold in Abdoun and Deir Ghbar! A counter attack has been recently launched at Jabal Amman, but it remains to be seen who will eventually prevail.
If you're rich, you're not necessarily one of them. However, you need to keep spotting yourself. As your humanity and your connection with reality is at stake. You have the choice. You can become superior by overcoming your superiority, or dwell in the hole of self-worship and shoot yourself to oblivion. To the dumpster of history.

Chapter 2: Jordanians "THE WINGERS"



THE WINGERS


In a world of superstars and celebrities those people take the different route of annonymity. They are socially outdated, and barely ever took a look at today's dictionary of Who's Who. They run through life with selfless dedication and make the best out of nothing. They're the ticking clock behind every functioning or barely functioning family, but life breezes past them like summer wind, and their unforgivable cluellessness is their only triumph.

They are deaf to The obscenely loud buzz of life, as somewhere along the line of their monochromatic life someone taught them that this is the best they're ever going to get. With an 80's hairstyle, and a 20JD- leather jacket they wake up everyday to do the same thing they did the day before. A weekend is for house shores. A picnic is a barbecue task on Airport road. Eid is family visits, and Jabal Al Hussein is the equal of the strip in L.A.

They pass by you like a Friday. As they exist, but to us we managed to strip them off every single meaning of spirituality. They've learned some 50 years ago that being a woman is a test. Being a man is an obligation. Work is routine, and life is a big greyscale scene.

They studied in public schools. They admire and resent those brats who graduated from schools usually referred to by 3-letter acronyms. Gel is as bad as Alcohol, and trendy Jeans are as sinful as thongs.

They roam the streets of East Amman and Every Jabal something during early evenings, wearing an empty look. Carrying a black plastic bag that is the only source of joy to that family. they are usually overwhelmed by how life left them behind. How their values are antiquities from the past, and how days move so freaking fast. They grow frustrated with the shadow they cast, but it's as far as the next morning that this feeling will last.

There pen is a stamp. They know how to guide you to the next office of that civil building with as few words as possible. they puff their cigarettes earth bound. They searched for their ambition but it's nowhere to be found. Unlike others, they usually underestimate themselves, but they compensate for that with their self-proclaimed high standard of morality.

They are the Janitors of a hospital. The infantry of a military. The traffic cops at intersections. The TA's in a faculty. The full backs in a football team. They play on the premises of the play. They walk at the edge of life. They are the wingers going forward and the guardians going back. They are the wings of a falcon. For without wings a falcon can't fly. But as he poses and stairs at you, those wings are held back. They just don't have the knack.

In their world, love is convenience, and respect is obedience. Fun is a travesty, and change is a tragedy. In their shells they are contained, writers, scientists, geniuses and hard workers! Unfortunately for the world, only few of them will ever break through that bottle knick called self esteem.

Chapter 1: Jordanians " The Floaters"

There are five types of Jordanians. At least 95% of the population belong to one of these types. The rest are just anomalies or simply not Jordanians.

These types are identifiable by their way of life. Not by religion or origin, but by social beliefs and codes of social communication.

In this Series of 5 posts we will go through the 5 types as an extensive Jordan 101 Course.

THE FLOATERS:

This group takes pride in being Elite. Not in a financial sense, but more on a moral level. the wrong doing of their own doesn't necessarily undermine their status as they have struck a deal with God to give them a signing bonus. A huge sum of good deeds that will always balance out their screw ups.

Males will look for a girlfriend, and girls will look for boyfriends. Guys will always look for sex by any mean, but they'll eventually look for a Virgin to marry! Someone whom no man's hands have touched before. For them every guy in a car with a girl is the boyfriend and he's getting some! The possibility of him being her brother, fiancee, cousin is absolutely absurd and unrealistic for them.

They all know what religion is all about. They know what's wrong and right, but they do all the wrong things. They want to enjoy life! Go out, party, have Girlfriends, dance, experience the nightlife, sleep overs, go camping with the opposite sex just for a laugh and a game of Monopoly through the night. They want to have a hobby. Play a sport. Maybe Tennis! They end up playing Cards until all their life's wild cards are spent. They are hooked to pipes running from their lips to the end of their dreams. To a bowl of stinking water as they vent their dreams and watch it become a white cloud blocking their sight.

They sit and judge and gauge. How much did they waste, and how more is there to waste. By the time their dreams are transformed into a proud gut, and their lungs rot, they find themselves a "Virgin" and go on to add mediocrity to a mediocre existence. Eat, Work, Drink, and sleep. They believe that they are the best thing that happened since bread came sliced. Syrians, Egyptians, Gulf people, Iraqis, Lebanese? No, they are not good enough.

They speak different tongues because they always try to fit! Gaddaish, Addaish and Addaih! They love their cars. They love their Shisha's and they love their coffee cups and keyboards.

They are stuck midway between Heaven and Hell! They don't drink but they don't pray, they don't think but they don't play!.. They don't read because it's lame. They don't play sport because it's immature. They love and they deny it. They have brains but they don't levy it. They are dressed in blue, grey and black. Probably Green on a happy day, But Pink would be just too Gay. They don't know where they stand. Are they on the left or on the right? Are they in the middle of it or just on the side? Are they vectors or just scalar values with no direction or aim?

They just float... The lost Children of this country.

To Be Continued....

Algeria, Egypt and the Arabic competition culture

To start with, we have to congratulate Egypt for a convincing win over Algeria. It doesn't get clearer than 4-0, and the win is obviously well deserved. Having said that, this game is a living example of everything that is wrong with Arabic football, and this reflects the many flaws we have in other aspects of life.

Algeria is probably as good as Egypt, maybe a little better or a bit worse. 4-0 might lead observers to believe there is a huge technical gap between the two teams , but what it really reflects is how bad we are at losing, and how unequiped we are in defeat. 3 red cards for a team of professional footballers who've just celebrated a birth in the coming World Cup! One might be a result of an honest mistake, or a clumsy challenge, but 2 or 3 is just an indication of emotional immaturity! They gave up, were pissed off and decided to have a go at the players to vent and conceal their weakness! Let's be clear, what the Algerians did doesn't reflect dedication, patriotism or professionalism. It only indicates bankruptcy and desperation. We are emotionally defeated and immature. We give up and as a result we change the course of the fight and start our own objectives which no one cares about but ourselves. There should be a very big question mark over the maturity of those red carded, and their involvement in the team going for the World Cup should be re-evaluated.

As for Egypt. Well, a game of football can not be equated to October War. Sending the whole population on full alert and having actors, singers and all sorts of celebrities charging up the atmosphere is an indication of desperation and utter absurdity. You lost the game and Algeria deserved to go through to the world cup. Live with it. If they were aggressive in supporting their team, you were not exactly the most gracious of hosts! Algeria is not the enemy. Much bigger rivalries exist in the footballing world! Argentina and Brazil, Italy and Germany, Italy and France, Argentina and England who played each other few years after the Falkland War, and till now the players respect and show admiration of each other! Grow up and accept the fact that you always choke when it comes to the World Cup!

Egypt are likely to go home with the cup, and Algeria are likely to lose 3 games in the World Cup and go home. In both cases our media will hail the result as a success, and we will still talk about that game Algeria won against Germany back in 1982. Basking in old glories just as we do in any other field of life.

We need to be reasonable and consistent. We need to be mature and rise to the occasion. We need to stop choking when things matter and accept our failures and successes as our own doing.

To all those reasonable Egyptian fans, congratulations and good luck in the final. To all those reasonable Algerians fans, hard luck and better luck in the World cup. To all the rest, get a life!

The Arab National Anthem!

Well... Not exactly. It's not even in Arabic, but it says exactly what almost 300 Million Arabs give or take think and wish every single day of their lives!



Uprising by Muse. A song for the oppressed. for those who had their dreams stolen, their ambitions shattered, their hopes diminished and their life hijacked by fat cats and blood suckers!

The Tallest Buildings in Dubai

Dubai has 54 buildings taller than 180 meters, and 47 buildings taller than 200 meters, only New
York City and Hong Kong come before Dubai in the number of buildings taller than 200 meters with
50 and 52 buildings respectively.

But, Dubai comes first in the number of buildings stand taller than 300 meters with 11 buildings,
While Hong Kong and Chicago both have 6 each.

The Tallest 10 Buildings:

1- Burj Dubai, height equals to 818 meters with 160 floors built for multipurpose usage. It’s also the tallest building in the world.

2- Almas Tower, height equals to 363 meters with 68 floors built as an office tower. It’s the 15-th tallest building in the world.

3- Emirates Office Tower, height equals to 355 meters with 54 floors used as offices. The 17-th tallest building in the world and the tallest completed building in the UAE.

4- Rose Tower, height equals to 333 meters with 72 floors used as a hotel. 22-ed tallest building in the world and the tallest building in the world that is used as a hotel.

5- The Index, height is 328 meters with 80 floors used for multipurpose.

6- Burj Al Arab, it’s a 321 meters tall tower with 60 floors used as a hotel.

7- HHHR Tower, 317 meters high with 72 floors.

8- Ocean heights, 310 meters height with 84 floors.

9- Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel, 309 meters height with 56 floors used as a hotel.

10- The Address Down Town Burj Dubai, 306 meters height with 63 floors.

For the complete list please visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_tallest_buildings_in_Dubai