April 29, 2009

Three handshakes just aren't the same

In the latest swine flu flurry, Reuters is reporting that a critical Lebanese national custom is under major threat. To help curb the spread of the disease, Lebanese Health Minister Mohammad Khalifeh warns that the customary three kisses to the cheek should be stopped. Please - that's like asking Lebanese men not to be hairy! Or Egyptians to respect personal space. Or Jordanians to actually laugh at a joke. Never going to happen, Internet. Never going to happen.

April 25, 2009

On being an older sister...

My greatest (read: only) talent is annoying the hell out of my little sister. While she takes my antics in stride, I'm sure there are days when Little One wants to punch me in the face, renounce our sisterhood, and take over my closet space. It's a fine line between what actions of mine she perceives to be hilarious and what clearly isn't, and I think I walked that line two days ago. For example, I:
  • ran an opened can of tuna under her unsuspecting nose (not hilarious)
  • put a whole pineapple on her pillow and tricked her into coming into the room under false pretense, only to have her look at me in shock when she saw it (hilarious)
  • faked my own death when asked to clean Coco's little box (not hilarious)
However, when I strategically maneuvered a hideous, winged insect onto a tissue and released it back into the wild, her only comment was, "thanks, you're the closest thing to a man we have in this house." This, coming from a seven-year younger than me, snot-nosed booger face. Watch your back, Little Jerk. I know where you sleep.

Colors Only

I've been on a 'no-white-food' diet for about two weeks now. While I'm still eating dairy, I've cut out all bread, rice, pasta and potatoes (THE HORROR!). I would do nasty, nasty things to someone for a bowl of spaghetti right now, but I have to admit, this diet is working wonders. Without a fully-stocked refrigerator (not the norm, but most weekends), I've been forced to improvise certain meals. Yesterday, not wanting to eat the "light" bran flakes in the kitchen cabinet because no, cardboard is not my favorite food flavor, I opted for some fava beans...and roughly 30+(ish) Peanut M&Ms. This food choice may give me rock hard(er) abs, but I'll probably need to do something about the side order of diabetes that's most likely to come along with it.

April 22, 2009

BlackBerry, I Do

Dearest BlackBerry Curve,

Because you have yet to thank me for handing my life over to you two short nights ago, I thought I'd take a moment to tell YOU just how lucky you are to have ME.

My last phone was great - it didn't pretend to be anything it wasn't. It made calls, sent texts, and was always there when I needed it. It did, however, have a couple of rough months recently, losing most of the glue that held it together. I tried to tell people that it would be okay and that no, superglue wasn't necessary, but after one fateful fall at the airport on Monday (as I was being ushered into a secret room for reasons I have yet to discover), it was gone forever.

Thankfully you were at home, waiting patiently for my arrival. You looked so welcoming in your sleek black box and all I wanted to do was pick you up, leave on your protective plastic covering, and tell you how pretty you were. The plastic covering has now come off, but I continue to tell people how great you are and steal glances in your direction every three to five seconds to make sure you're still there.

I promise to keep you in your sleeve, refrain from dropping you or letting abrasive substances touch your service, and yell at Little One when she threatens to put her grimy paws on you.

So, in short, you're welcome. You'll never find a better owner. Now if only you could think of a way to make your battery last longer and my fingers not hurt as bad because of all the chatting...

April 14, 2009

DoYou? DubaI?

Internet, I'll be leaving you for a few days again. I'm going to Dubai tomorrow morning, and no, I don't feel bad about it, even after reading this scathing report on the city. (If anything, I feel like moving to Dubai and fighting for workers' rights, but the powers that be feel it's more important for me to be filling out a completely useless logframe for a proposal that probably won't get funded anyway.) But I digress...

I'm going to get away from the city until Monday, and I can tell you right now, it's going to be hell getting me on the plane back. I met someone at Office Traitor's birthday party a couple weeks back who, at 30, retired and is now "exploring Cairo by day" and has set up shop in an art gallery. While I can't think of more mind-numbing things to do, there is nothing I'd rather do at this very moment than retire. If, for some unknown reason, I don't win the lottery (or snag a billionaire) while I'm gone, the internet BETTER work well upon my return.

See you in a few days, nerds!

April 13, 2009


It's official. The IT guy hates me. I was all up in his business last week complaining about the lack of internet and threatening to leave early because I couldn't get any work done. He seemed unfazed by my empty threats, but I did detect slight eye rolling every time I walked up to his desk. After wild hand gestures and long sighs, the internet was back to full speed by the end of the week, and I was as satisfied as one can be at this place anymore.

However, here we are on Monday morning, and I just paid IT-man another visit, telling him that the internet was slower than ever and "I can't work this way!" After looking at me like I was from Mars, because (GASP!) how could ANYTHING be wrong after he worked tirelessly (for ten minutes) to fix it last week, he offered this explanation:

"Ahh, yes. I can't really call "slow" a PROBLEM, but it may be due to the fact that I'm downloading a 400 megabyte application that I REALLY need."

Is that so? Well, do you really think this blog is going to pull up its own URL and write itself? Yeah, didn't think so. Fix it.

April 12, 2009

Not even cool enough for school

My dad has consistently been outshining me with his passion for gadgets and general coolness (see here). Over the weekend, he informed me that he "didn't like" his new Blackberry (*double swoon*), and instead traded it in for an iPhone (*single swoon*). If only the rest of us could be so lucky. I must remember to bring out the paper cup and string I've been using as my main means of communication the next time he's in town.

April 9, 2009

One can only dream

How did people ever get any work done before the internet? (By work, I mean chat the day away while perusing celebrity gossip sites.) Our IT guy thinks the reason the service has been so dodgy for the past two weeks is because someone in the workplace is infiltrating the system and essentially cutting off access to the rest of the office. I don't know if that's even possible, but if it is, I'm pretty sure a swift kick to the back of the culprit's knees will help. This in no way will allow me page surf faster, but it will make me feel better about the situation. Imagine if I actually believed in violence. It'd be a right battlefield up in here!

Going to get my Twitter on instead...

April 8, 2009

Prince Pepper Foot

I had dinner with some "friends" last night, and as usual, my many fears, hates and neuroses became the subject of quite an animated discussion. These subjects are of much amusement to the people in my life, and they take complete liberty with throwing what they think to be completely irrational thoughts in my face, all the while tossing their tiny heads back with laughter. One day, I tell them, one day...

After pondering over a number of different scenarios, they group came up with my ideal man. He'd be a cheese-eating, bird-raising, black pepper plantation owner with a foot fetish. So, sir, if you're out there, call me. WINK WINK.

April 7, 2009


Things about this day that kind of suck:
  • I'm eating diet bread that tastes more so of cardboard than usual. Pretending it's a giant Reece's Pieces isn't working.
  • I have actual work to do. With a deadline and everything. When did I sign up for this?
  • It's hot and I'm wearing a sweater by accident.
  • Said sweater has what I think is a minute spaghetti sauce stain in a very strategic location. I can't stop looking at it, but suspect my coworkers now think I'm some sort of self-obsessed pervert.
(Two good things about this day, though, are that I found a new favorite song and I'm one day closer to my vacation. What what!)

April 6, 2009

The Little Things

I've been at my current job for almost two years now, and am one of roughly 30 people at the organization. Our director, when not smoking his life away behind closed doors, is constantly asking if I'm following when conversations are in Arabic, and struggles to find the right words to say to me in English when he wants to explain concepts. This continues to baffle me, as I laugh at his Arabic jokes (not easy for me!), am pretty sure he's heard me speak the language before, and a large part of the work I do is not in English.

This morning, he walked into my office - where the IT guy happened to be at the moment - and started complaining about the slow internet. Mind you, the internet's been down(ish) for the past two weeks, and today is the first day of super fast service. He then turns to me and says, "Oh! What a nice haircut!" It's nice to know that he has no clue as to the contribution I'm making to his organization, nor how the internet works, but he has noticed that my hair is one shade darker than it was two days ago. I feel very confident about my future growth here.

April 5, 2009

Not cut out for this

Internet, I think I pulled my groin muscle. It makes no sense, seeing as how the most exercise I ever get is opening and closing the refrigerator door, but I think it happened. Yesterday, Female J and I were up before the roosters started crowing (ew, bird reference) and went to the Wadi Degla Protectorate for a walk. Mind you, why people in their 20s think going for "walks" is exercise is a whole other issue, but it was exercise nonetheless. About four kilometers in, I knew something wasn't right, but I soldiered on. It's been 24 hours since, but something still feels a little off. If you see me walking weird, do me a solid and assume it's not a limp, but a swagger. And then tell me how walking is going to make me Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition-ready by next week.