Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Thank you mama for being trash.

You know, I don’t have the best relationship with my mother these days. I’m sure that’s not surprising to anyone who’s read more than 1 entry in my blog. But an anonymous comment made in another entry got me thinking…

Let me start by saying thank you anonymous. You made me realize something, I probably wouldn’t have seen had you not mentioned the fact that I come from trash, and also invite it.

I do come from trash; actually, the bottom of the barrel. And there’s no secret about it. My family has never been more than white-trash with nothing material to show for our existence. But Dubai has made us something better. We’re now white trash with gold, diamonds, cars, and lots of other pretty things we didn’t have back home. But it’s true, no matter how you dress it; it’ll always be what it is.

Up until tonight, I blamed my mother for it. I thought she was the reason I’m so fucked in the head. Surely, the fact that as a child I went hungry for days watching her pissed drunk in the kitchen with rowdy partiers is why I suffer the way I do. Surely, she could have done something to change that before I became the complete fuck up I am today, right? I believed if she did something different my life would have ended up better, somehow.

And I have held this against her for as far back as I can remember. She’s apologized many times for the way life was when I was young; and I never really forgave her.

But it hit me today… And it hit me really hard… I shouldn’t be blaming my mom for any of this. I should be thanking her.

You see, if I hadn’t come from such a shit-poor family, I wouldn’t know how to differentiate what’s good on the inside, from what looks good on the outside. I’d judge people based on where they came from; as if it were somehow their fault they were born. I’d probably care more about what people thought of me, than I did what I thought of myself. Had I lived a life of security, I’d probably not be half as strong as I am today. Had my mama not shown me what it was like to feel really alone, I probably wouldn’t value the people in my life the way I do. If I hadn’t been through the absurd things I have, I bet, I’d fid it pretty damn hard to understand or sympathize with anyone else who’s been there.

So thank you mama, for raising me in a dirt-poor, alcoholic, trashy environment; cause if you didn’t I’d probably be judging people on where they were from, what they thought, how they looked or dressed, and I’d probably either be forced to keep my thoughts to myself (torturing me eternally) or hide behind a name-less veil when I did speak them, out of fear that they might think any less of me than I could handle.

Thank you mama, for making me real, for making me choose to live my life the way I want to and not the way the rest of the world thinks I should. Thank you mama, for securing my right to have an opinion and raising me to be strong enough to share it without fearing that someone else may have one that differs. And thank you mama for showing me that it’s alright to fuck things up, so long as you realize it and accept your mistake. Thank you mama, for apologizing and showing me it’s never too late and never a mistake to admit it when you’re wrong.

Thank you mama, for being trash. I love you, and I'm sorry I didn't see it sooner.

And in American news… today

Kentucky boy, 13, charged with threatening President Bush

When the leader of the worlds largest Army, ruler of the Number One Super Power fears the cyber-threats of a boy who hasn’t even reached puberty, to the extent of actually bringing him to court… I tend to wonder about a few things…

For starters… I’ve mentioned from time to time in another blog what I’d personally like to do to Bush. Why hasn’t Secret Service knocked on my door? Or tracked down my family members in Canada, if they simply can't access me here? I'm sure Canada would allow them to investigate. Certainly, I’m more of a threat being in the United Arab Emirates, aren’t I? And then, what does it really say when a 13 year old boys hates the president so much, he sends him death threats?

Police: Kindergarten student brought gun to school

Clearly, trying to keep the firearm away from your child isn’t enough. Maybe the only real solution here would be to NOT have one? But then, I guess that’s a little unreasonable; considering your unexaggerated need to be prepared for self-defense purposes, huh?

Slain Tennessee minister eulogized with wife accused of his murder in jail

What do you think the motive of a 31 year old mother of three girls between the ages of one and eight could possibly have for murdering her Minister husband who was described by a friend with, “You couldn’t ask for a better person. You couldn’t ask for a better guy”?

Bush sticks with Iraqi contract ban

Are you surprised in the least bit? Why would this man agree to allowing other countries help rebuild the one he destroyed (even if it might be done quicker, and with more expertise), when he can split the profits between only those who are similar-minded? I mean, international law didn’t apply to Bush when he invaded, why should it apply now?

Al-Qaida finds safe haven in Iran

Now, I could be mistaken… But doesn’t this sound a little familiar to you? I mean, didn’t Al-Qaida have operatives in Iraq, according to the Bush administration? And if my memory hasn’t been completely shot by all the sand I must be inhaling over here, wasn’t there mention of Iran being the next war target for Bush, during the first few months of the Iraqi invasion? And look at that, with all the nuclear-rights talks going on, who needs to imply WMD?

Police: Teens killed man who mooned them

Wonder if they’ll be charged as adults, or minors? And will their sentences will be 2 years, or 10? If you were the sister left behind, what you would feel these teens should be punished with, worth the value of your brother’s life?

I'm sorry. You weren't lying.

When my X told me about this three years ago, I called him a liar.

But according to an article in today’s Gulf News, laborers are deliberately jumping in front of cars with hopes of getting hit, so that their families back home will receive the blood money.

I’m always reading about the shame of people coming here and not returning to their homes empty handed. With as much respect as I can offer such people, after reading this… My family would rather live in a cardboard box, under a bridge and eat from garbage bins together, than have any one of us commit suicide for our financial sake. And my family lacks the closeness most Asian families seem to have.

There is something seriously wrong with any nation that generally feels money is more important than human life; whether it be the life of your brother, sister or even your own.

I have a friend who was hit from behind on Dubai-Sharjah Rd. He was hit with such force he smashed into the car in front of him. It was a very old car, and the driver was a very old man. The car caught on fire, and the driver died. My friend paid blood-money, and fasted for 60 days strait, even though he wasn’t actually the one to cause the accident. He still shows signs of severe guilt whenever he thinks and talks about it.

For each and every asshole who thinks killing themselves (and ruining a driver’s life, literally stealing his money, sending him to jail and forcing him to live with such gut-wrenching guilt for his remaining days) is something they’d like to do… I sincerely hope when you do get hit, your body is so severally mutilated it’s impossible to tell who you are, or where to send the money.

Anonymous… lick, baby, lick..

I don’t think there is anything more attractive in a person than the ability to feebly attempt to push another’s buttons, maybe upset them a little, cause a reaction, start a fight, speak aloud a controversial opinion or even make a rather ‘tainted’ observation about someone, while hiding behind an Anonymous shield.

I think it’s a personality trait just about everyone should acquire. I mean, it allows you to speak your mind without having to face any confrontation and surely what ever it is you think is relevant enough for you to share it, even if you’re not willing to stand by it, huh?

Anon honey, you couldn’t believe the conversation I ‘invited’ into my Blog… Believe that I’m now inviting you to ‘lick my balls’ since I’m pretty sure, I’m more like the man in our relationship.

I don’t know about everyone else, but I prefer to do good things anonymously, for the sheer sake of knowing no one will feel obliged to me, or assume I have ulterior motives for my actions.


And please, before I get any lectures on how rude this entry is, or what a horrible person I am… I’m well aware.

There’s a philosophy I live by… Take a step of kindness towards me, and I’ll try my hardest to take two back towards you. Try and be a mean little bitch, and I’ll show you who the crown of that position really belongs to.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


“tainted female: I don't want to preach about your personal stuff to you but where I come from the rule is "no means no" i.e. the woman has the right to call off the game at any time, even if the star forward is right in front of an empty net about to slam the goal in. So I don't think that anyone in their right mind should consider yourself responsible at all.

Especially in Islamic societies, self control is one of the most heavily emphasised virtues and I think that this should apply to any situation. It's what separates humans from animals.

So I wouldn't consider you "tainted". Sorry for any offence.”

Humm… This is a reply a MALE blogger gave me in SD’s blog, when I mentioned I DO think I’m at least partly at fault for being raped, and don’t believe that in every case, rape victims are innocent.

Since I’m not interested in having a debate about how I feel concerning this, especially one that will almost certainly turn into childish name-calling rather than logical, rational discussion, as many of the conversations there seem to turn into, I think it’s best to keep my thoughts here; and boy I have a few of them when it comes to this…

Before I tell my story and explain why it is I feel the way I do about that, I just want to point out the irony that Arab girls are considered spoiled, mindless, and mistreated while Arab men considered sexist for opening doors for their women, believing its wrong to use foul language in front of them, and in most cases being happily responsible for them financially and not forcing them into offices for eight hours every day.

But according to this comment made by a man, a woman is not spoiled or mindless for being able to get away with bringing a man to his sexual brink, completely naked and under him, with the tip of his penis not even a centimeter from entering her, and only then deciding it’s not ok to have sex, and calling “RAPE” if that centimeter distance apart becomes a centimeter too far in for a millisecond, for whatever reason; who cares if he didn’t hear her over his breathing, or thought she was into ‘role-play’ like so many of us are. What the HELL does body language say, when the mouth ALWAYS tells it truer!?

You GO girls! Keep pushing those rights to physically, psychologically, and emotionally torture your men and STILL make it their fault (and let them believe it too) with those sexual rights you’ve got! Whoever said male was the stronger sex was clearly mistaken, cause if men are accepting this SHIT now, clearly we’ve got the upper hand.

But who am I kidding? This side of the world is the delusional one.

My rape is MY fault. Thank you very much. And that doesn’t go to say the men have the right to go unpunished, only that I WAS the one who enabled them to do it in the first place. I made myself the fucking victim before it even occurred to them to commit their crime.

Fault - According to
a) A character weakness, especially a minor one.
b) Something that impairs or detracts from physical perfection; a defect.
c) A mistake; an error.
d) A minor offense or misdeed.


Take note of ‘b,’ ‘c,’ and ‘d,’ while I explain this so that it’s clearly understood.

I am an intelligent woman. I am not blind. I know all about the dangers of rape. I know that when drunk I do not concentrate or think strait. I also heard all the warnings about NOT leaving my drink unattended while out, and not taking an open drink from someone if I didn’t see it opened or poured. I was also wise enough to take heed of these warnings; and never ONCE broke that rule until I was too drunk to worry or think about it.

I choose to drink. Please see B, above and even A, if you will, since by choosing to drink I knowingly weakened my character, and I certainly impaired my physical perfection, of at least the way I was able to USE physical perfection; walk strait, see clearly.

Because I wasn’t able to think clearly, I accepted a drink I would NEVER have taken, had I been sober; as I was in persons house I didn’t know and given a drink by someone whose face I hadn’t seen once before he handed me the shot class.

I put myself in a position where I wasn’t able to take care of myself. I, fully aware of what could happen, did it anyway. FACT, it NEVER would have happened if I weren’t drinking. NO ONE made me do it; and certainly NO ONE told me if I was going to do it, I must do it in a stranger’s home. Now look at D, I certainly did myself a misdeed by accepting that glass, now didn’t I? It may NOT be a law I broke, but a fucking rule more emphasized than most actual laws.


And if I’m so wrong, and I did nothing wrong… Tell me ONE other girl who will knowingly put herself in the EXACT same position as I did that night, with the same sorts of strangers after experiencing this; believing since it wasn’t her FAULT she didn’t do anything wrong, or make any mistake and she can continue the same behavior without getting raped or assaulted ever again.

If you cross a fucking road in the states where there isn’t a fucking cross walk; YOU KNOW there’s a chance you’ll get hit by a car. If you do get hit, whose fault is it? Now, come on… So many of you have been writing to the fucking papers here about how backwards it is that the driver has to go to jail or gets punished if he kills some guy who decided to jump out and cross Shk. Zayed road. In fact, isn’t there a FUCKING LAW called ‘JAY WALKING’ in the states that makes preventing getting yourself from possibly getting hurt legally your OWN responsibility? Un-FUCKING-believable!

I’m pretty sure, now…

I’d rather be the donkey.

UAE lacks a lot…

Years back, my mom made the comment, “You know what this place needs? It needs a Subway!”

What do ya know, this morning I happened to drive right by a Subway on my way to work. Seeing it of course, is what prompted the memory of my mom’s comment, made so very long ago. It also initiated my thoughts about a number of other things the UAE doesn’t really have now. I wonder how many of these things, like the Subway, will make an appearance soon:

We don’t have public pornography here; you know, like on those stickers showing two completely naked people all over one another framed by a pay-phone number, that are stuck all over phone booths and signboards on the streets of London; or the afternoon pornographic movies shown on public television during all hours of the day, accessible to every person in every home that has cable in many parts of Europe. The poor children of the UAE who aren’t exposed to such things immediately after birth, and before they reach puberty are most certainly missing out on a lot of valuable information and social education because of this, aren’t they? It’s no wonder they’re such a dysfunctional bunch.

We also don’t have Retirement Homes for the elderly, Group-Homes for disgruntled, rebellious teens, or even Orphanages here, like the ones so commonly found in so many other places in the world. Now, I’m aware that Al Wasl hospital is currently acting like an orphanage for some abandoned children, but this is a rather recent development and not actually an official orphanage; yet. Let’s say this one is in the process of transition; while the other two, from my uneducated knowledge-base and completely inexperienced opinion don’t exist here in any way, shape or form. It’s understandable; since we all know that the elderly members of this society are simply taken out to the desert and left for dead when their children and grandchildren get too busy with their jobs or their own young and healthy family members, to take care of their incompetent aging family members. And disgruntled, rebellious teens here have clearly decided on their own, to pack up and leave the UAE for good, because they know they’re doing their family and society a kind-hearted social service, by taking their trashy behavior and know-it-all attitudes elsewhere. So courteous are rebellious teens, what else could you expect?! And the lack of orphanages of course, is simply due to the fact that all of the parents who weren’t expecting, didn’t want, were under aged, of financially unable to take care of the children they conceived, draw maps directing the sperm away from the egg to avoid conception so that no baby was every conceived in the first place! It’s such a shame people are losing that psychic ability here, and now, we have growing numbers of abandoned infants over-crowing what is meant to be a maternity ward in a government hospital.

Moving on, the UAE doesn’t have sex-education classes as mandatory lesson during primary school, that are pretty common in other parts of the world. That must be of course, because by the time people here reach primary school they’re already married, with three children of their own at home. Why else would they not need to be taught about sexually transmitted diseases, proper use of condoms and other birth control methods?

I’ve also noticed that the UAE doesn’t have Drug-Prevention & Awareness After-school Specials airing on cable television, which I believe is also pretty common elsewhere in the world. This of course, is because everyone in the UAE is an expert narcotic user and dealer already, and thus there’s no need to waste time & money re-educating us on warnings that could only possibly have been useful before we all became drug addicts, now would there?

The UAE lacks so much already, it almost hurts to mention nonexistence of government taxing, that almost the entire population of the rest of the world gets to enjoy, but we in the emirates don’t! Unless, of course you’re so arrogant to actually consider any other Islamic country as part of planet earth, then this statement may, be a little misleading. Now this one, I can’t explain, really. But I have to admit, it’s a little insulting that the UAE government doesn’t want to take my hard earned money, and leave a nice little personal note of how much they took on each and every one of my paychecks. A damn it, it pisses me right off that I don’t get the pleasure of filing for Tax Returns, here.

And you know, though America is considering reinforcing their once dismissed drafting laws, and so many other countries still do insist that all their national men enlist and serve the military at least once during their lifetime, I simply can’t comprehend why the UAE doesn’t have any such law forcing young men to serve. The only thing I can suggest is maybe it’s because we don’t need it? We all know this desert oasis is the most beloved country on earth and naturally should have no fear of occupation or reason to defend itself; besides it’s not like America or any other country has ever gone to war without first being formally invited by the country they intended to invade. I guess the UAE simply doesn’t have formal invitation cards, yet.

Faces on the milk cartons, is another thing I’ve never seen here. I suppose there’s no need for us to find all the kidnapped and missing children, as we’re all too preoccupied with more important daily tasks to care about where they might have gone.

So many things! I could go on, and on, and on, it seems!

But I think I’ll share just one more observation; the most poignant thing I noticed the UAE doesn’t have is exit restrictions; or a cage incasing it; or even Velcro cleverly adhered to the bottom of our feet making it impossible to get out. Luckily for us, if we can’t manage to create or import all these luxuries we’re missing from more civilized countries before we run out of patience, or simply can’t take the longing for them even a minute longer, we can effortlessly pick up and go to some other country that’s already happily nourishing them and so many more I’ve failed to mention!

Monday, March 27, 2006

Flash back...

This story from Gulf News today not only touched me immensely, but reminded me much of my first ever experience, on my first ever night in the United Arab Emirates.

When we arrived here, a home had already been prepared for us.

It was elegantly furnished from plush carpets & matching curtains, to bedroom sets and cooking utilities. And I’m not talking about the norm, either. I mean fantastic Christian Dior vases and Swarksy Crystal ornaments that finished-off each room. In addition to the furniture were countless sets of bed-spreads, linen & bath towels (all of which had been previously scented with Bakhoor). The bedrooms were filled with cosmetics and perfume for both men and women. Shampoos, deodorants, and soaps, seemed to fill all the drawers, and while lip balms and moisturizers were neatly arranged on top of each of the dressers. And of course, the bathrooms were filled with more than a months supply of just about anything you could need there.

The kitchen was filled with electric mixing, blending & chopping devices that my mom would never learn how to use; despite her many attempts. The cupboards and the fridge were full of more food than we could possibly eat in half a year; and almost all of it seemed to bear a ‘diet’ or ‘lite’ label; as if our hosts recognized we’d have to diet if we were ever going to reach the end of what seemed like a ridiculous amount of food for any five member family to have in their house at one time. I still remember having to throw away almost two full cupboards of moldy assorted breads & baked goods, just a week after we came. And I remember that beside the fridge was a stack of soft drinks as tall as my brother; and since no one in my family drinks the stuff, he certainly drank his height in sugar rich junk all by himself in less than a few months time.

Outside, our yard had been artistically designed to a host a beautiful arrangement of cactus’s and other desert plants. Which just so happened to lure an actual cow and five or six lambs into our yard for breakfast, while my family and I were just waking up. We learned to keep our gates closed that morning.

And of course, in the yard was a new Nissan Patrol, the keys of which had been given to my father.

My family was spoiled with gifts when we first arrived. My family isn’t Emirati. My family had not expected or requested such extravagant gifts. My family had never witnessed such generosity before.

Things have changed a lot since then. I’m not sure if a guest to my family’s host would receive the same treatment today as we received back then. And I’m pretty sure ‘stray’ farm animals wandering into your yard, on any given morning in modern Dubai isn’t going to happen. With all the drastic changes taking place, I hope the sheer generosity of this culture doesn’t take a huge hit. Being given something, anything rubs off on most people. And in return, my family and I found ourselves far more willing to give to others without any reason other than taking the opportunity to do something nice for someone else.

But why in the world are these fantastic displays of Arab generosity, which can be found often in any of the regional newspapers, not highlighted more often or recognized by other nations?

I’m a Canadian. I’m pretty sure that no government official, no matter how large their personal bank account, under any circumstances would even consider duplicating such an unsolicited, unexpected, over-whelming act of charity as Sheikh Mohammed just did for that family.

Now, I'm going to finish reading the paper.

Naming Names & Pointing Fingers

Victoria is the name of the city in British Columbia, Canada where I spent the first 14 years of my life.

Patricia is the name of my mother who single-handedly raised three girls, only two of which were biologically hers, and one boy. Child Support & Alimony are the names of two of financial rewards she was legally granted from three different X husbands, and never actually received.

Ed is the name of my biological father, who in an intoxicated rage, viciously bent my mother backwards over a bathtub and smashed her head into the side multiple times, while she was eight months pregnant with me. Asthma is the name my father gave my physical dysfunction that forced me to stop breathing every time I bumped my head as an infant which was instigated to that incident.

Anastasia is the name of the daughter my sister gave up for adoption when she was fifteen years old. Anakin & Sabrina are the names of her other children who were recently given to the state due to her and her husband’s inability to raise them.

Kelly is the name of my eldest sister, with whom I have no biological relation. Mom is the name she gives my mother, for taking her out of a feces covered crib, putting milk in her starving tummy, and doing the best she could to raise her while my mother herself still hadn’t become an adult.

Dean is the name of the father to Kelly’s first child. Accidental Death & Drunk Driving are the names of charges he faced after running over an innocent jogger with his car. Bail is the name of the procedure that allowed Dean to drunkenly brag about what he’d done to friends in a Pub the very week after the incident. Physical assault is the name of the crime he committed against the deceased’s brother, for silently drinking away his pain in the same bar, distracting the attention and stumping any approval from Dean’s companions.

Stable and well-off are names of the lifestyle Kelly now lives and the home she has created. Ashley is the name of her daughter, my 15 year old niece who just recently ran away with a known drug dealer.

Average is the name my family falls under in there.

Victoria West Elementary is the name of the primary school where I attended. Peer is the name of the people I learned real lessons from. Shawna is the name of a school-mate I had in grade 5, whose parents were unknown drug addicts. Responsible is the name I was given after cooking for, supervising, and assuring homework was done and clothing was washed for Shawna, her younger sister, and their mother. Withdrawal is the name of what Shawna’s mother was suffering as she lay helplessly shivering on the couch during my two or three week stay there. Ken is the name of Shawna’s father. Trafficking is the name of the charges that were brought against him, thus disabling him from delivering the substance that would relieve his wife’s suffering.

Correctional facility is the name of the place both Shawna’s parents were eventually sent. And ‘Ward of the State’ is the name of the position both children were given in their early teens, as their parents were stripped of parenting rights. Attempted Bank Robbery is the name of the crime both parents were charged with, after doing their time in the correctional facility. Suicide is the name of the last thing Ken did in this life; while behind bars.

Insane is the name of Shawna’s current situation is. Reality is the name of the belief she carried that forced her to call 911 emergency and ask for assistance because her head was falling off her body. Satan is the name of the voice she hears talking in her head.

Kyla is the name of Shawna’s sister, whom is two years younger than both Shawna and me. Smoking is the name of something I tried in 5th grade, only to have Kyla threaten to tell my mother because she was concerned for my health. Innocent is the only name you could apply to Kyla before her parent’s secret was known. Heroin addict is the name of what Kyla was the last time I saw her. Prostitution is the name of the job she took up to supply her addiction. Juvenile Detention and Rehabilitation are the names of correctional facilities she was sent to. A-wall is the name of her running away from them both facilities multiple times. Over-dose is the name of what got her caught by authorities every time. Dead may very well be the name of what she is now.

Jamie, Harry & Kegan are the names of kids I went to school with who bragged about beating the shit out of their parents on a regular bases and thus not having to do their homework or be home at reasonable hours.

Child abuse is the name of the charges brought against any parent, by either the child or the state who hits a child or teenager back in such situations; or under any circumstance there.

Michael Dunahee is the name of a three year old boy, who went missing from the neighborhood like multiple others during my 7 years attending Elementary School. Unsolved is the name of his case status at present date. Babysitter is the name of my relationship to him before his disappearance.

Debbie is the name of a school friend who actually ran away with the circus when she was 13 years old. Pregnant is the name of what happened to her before she ran away.

Minor is the name 7 or 8 of other peers were given just a few years later while being on trial for the violent assault and eventual murder of a girl they simply didn’t like. Cigarette is the name of one of weapons they used to harm her. Tortured is the name the state of her body was when found in a public park, as given by authorities.

Samantha is the name of a childhood friend who decided to conceive child when she was 17 years old. Billy is the name of the five year old girl whom Sam abandoned to move across country and live her life. Holly (if I remember correctly) is the name of Sam’s cousin, who was happily engaged to a man that was willing to raise her three children with her, though he wasn’t the biological father. Axe is the name of the weapon he used to hack up Holly and her three children in the middle of a quiet spring night while they slept in their own beds. Insanity is the name of the plea he used in court while crying his eyes out claiming he didn’t know why he did it.

YMCA is the name of the place I attended after-school. Sexual assault is the name of what happened to the young girl I saw running through the park at the YMCA, naked from the hips up. Purse snatching is the name of what I witnessed across the street from the YMCA, as a teenaged boy punched a senior citizen in the face and then ran off with her bag.

Glue is the name of the substance I remember children under the age of ten inhaled to get high.

North Saanich Middle School is the name of the school I transferred to when my family moved. Marijuana, Hash, Cocaine, LSD or Acid, Shrooms, Alcohol, and Mescaline are the names of some of the illegal substances I remember obtaining and using during school hours, with my peers. Laugh is the name of what my friends and I did while being forced to watch drug prevention and awareness videos while intoxicated, during class.

Forced entry, breaking & entry, under aged drinking, use of illegal substances, bodily harm, and possession of illegal weapons are all names given to unpunished crimes I either committed or observed along with my peers from North Saanich School prior to this incident.

Name is something the Police don’t have the right to know about you in Victoria, unless you’re under arrest. Officer is the name of the person who complained about that and teenager’s knowledge of that law that was a part obstacles law enforcement faced while trying to track teenaged criminals.

Popular is the name I was given by peers for the first few years in North Saanich. Rat is the name I was later given by a single male peer. Bev is the name of a girl whom I had my first street fight with, as a result of that Rat accusation. Reconstructive surgery is the name of the operation I had at 13 years old, to correct the positioning of my nose, because of the physical trauma that fight caused. Revenge is the name that was given to what happened to Bev because of that incident, by the very people who instigated my fight with her in the first place, and without my request.

High School Dropout is the name I shared with countless others, when I reached grade eight. Nothing is the name of what my parents or any other authority had the power to legally do to change this.

Andrew is the name of a boy who knocked on my door once or twice attempting to initiate a friendship that I rejected because he wasn’t considered cool. Milk is the name of the product he left his house to pick up for his mother, 3 months after I last saw him, but never returned home. Murder is the name of what resulted from 4 or 5 of my drunken peers ripping him off his bike, throwing him to the ground and stomping on his head until it literally crushed, in broad daylight, in the middle of the street. Heavy Metal is the name of the music he liked, and the only reason his rap-crazed peers violently assaulted him in the first place. Minor is the name they were all given while being charged in court. Reformed is the name they were given two years later after being released from jail. And Brag is the name of what they did about the easy time spent behind bars and their own ability to actually kill. Fear is the name of the power they now have over their peers. Lead is the name of what their position was considered among the gangs, last I heard.

Over-populated is the name most jails in Victoria, BC are given.

Rohypnol is the name of a drug that is easily obtained on the streets in Canada, and that was slipped into my drink on my last night of my last trip home from here; 7 years ago. Rape is the name of the assault that two men got away with that night, because by the time the drug wore off and I was able to clearly recall the few scattered relevant memories, and combine them with the physical condition in which I woke up and verify with any certainty what had happened, I was already on a plane headed half way across the world. Ridicule is the name of what one of the guy’s reactions was to my still intoxicated questioning over the phone, when the realization first hit my clouded and foggy head. Common is the name of the unpunished result of such crimes in Victoria, because by the time a woman realizes what happened there isn’t a single trace of this date-rape drug left in her body; thus no solid evidence.

United Arab Emirates is the name of the country I moved to when I was 14 and have lived in for the past 11 years. Islam is the name of the religion that makes the laws. Arabic is the name of the culture. Unheard of or extremely rare are the names given here to most of the incidents and substances I’ve recalled here. Inexperienced is the name of what the majority of the population who resides here is when it comes to such things so commonly accepted as a part of everyday life back home.

Uncivilized, violent, behind times, corrupt, inhumane and unjust are just some of the names that are wrongfully used to describe this country.

Peace of mind, less chance of becoming a victim to countless heinous crimes, decreased chances of my child becoming a substance abuser before he reaches his teens, tax free wages, a pretty damn good lifestyle, security, and confidence knowing my baby most likely won’t have to experience anything like the things I remember, relief from drug infested schools and laws that tempt rebellious teens to abuse their parents and get away with it, are the names of just some of the things I’m thankful for concerning the UAE, Islamic Laws, and Arabic culture despite this countries most bitched about flaws.

Maybe if some of the other expatriates sit down and think about what they experienced in their own countries and compared it with what they’ve personally experienced here; and not the stories they've read of concerning strangers in the newspapers (because if I were to do that in recalling what happens back home, this entry would be endless), they might find a few forgotten things they’re now taking for granted?

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Sharla – The part you’re refusing to see

Before you read this, please note that I’ve learned from cg’s comments on this entry a technical problem with her Blog may have actually been the cause of the incident I mention below. I apologize to cg for my accusation, and hope that anyone who may have read this over a first time and formed a negative opinion about cg as a result of this entry, will also see this note and reconsider.

On my way to work this morning I considered how to word this entry and had pretty much made up my mind, when I came here and got distracted by a comment made by the very person I had previously decided not to mention while rambling here today. This person inspired this entry, only she did so in a rather distasteful way, while what I have to say about Sharla is only in sincere gratitude and utmost respect.

You see yesterday I made a comment on cg’s blog concerning Sharla that cg decided not to publish; while immediately after, making a comment herself about keeping the conversation sober and there being nothing humorous about the situation.

If only I cared enough about this cg’s opinion I’d ask what the hell that was supposed to mean and whether or not it was in reference to my comment, because if so, she’d really need to re-read what I said…

In my initial comment I pointed out that Sharla, whom, like cg - as she mentioned in her Blog, I know personally, doesn’t only help support and protect battered wives but that she does it voluntarily, along with various other charitable services. I also mentioned that Sharla is married to a UAE national, who supports her in this and all of her other activities, yet he’s almost never heard of; and doesn’t seem to publicly face the negative attention she does.

I fail to see anything comedic or drunk in a comment like this (though this certainly isn’t the exact wording – my memory isn’t that great); but I’m left only to assume cg chose to omit my comment based on her personal bias towards me as shown in her comments made concerning my blog and my personal choices.

Here’s the point:

Sharla is a friend of my mothers.

She stood by me during my divorce, initially referred my husband and me marriage counseling, researched my legal rights and Islamic standing, and even accompanied me to the courts at one time. And for this, I’m ever indebted to her.

In addition, Sharla hosts dinners in her home, and invites English speaking Islamic scholars to give lectures for Muslim’s like myself, who can not fluently speak Arabic. She tirelessly works on organizing and taking parts in garage sales, food drives, and other fund raisers sending all proceeds to charity and opens her door year round to those who wish to make charitable contributions both publicly and privately.
And as I last heard, she’s well on her way or already has received official licensing for opening and running a charity here. And all of this is in addition to her safe-house.

With her dedicated lifestyle and her endless support for those who are in need and even those who aren’t, Sharla is probably the one person who has seen the worst of what the UAE can possibly breed.

What you all fail to see follows.

Sharla doesn’t complain about the injustices through letters to the editor in newspapers, or a personal blog made public. She doesn’t loathe or disrespect the UAE nationals, or Islamic laws. And yet, Sharla gets far more accomplished than the rest of us all put together.

But then, Sharla is motivated by something other than a need to bitch and complain.

Sharla is motivated by sincere compassion for people, the fact that she knows there is a higher purpose, and the deepest desire to see and help things change for the better. She’s blessed with the intellect to see the practices of people and the concept of their religious beliefs are two separate things. She knows the Islamic laws aren’t always practiced here, and she fights for true justice in the name of Islam with Islamic knowledge.

She’s logical enough to face all the injustices in the UAE and all the repercussions of those who oppose her and to fight for what she knows and believes in, while being humble enough to cover her hair, faithful enough to pray 5 times a day, fast during the month of Ramadhan, and give charity as all Muslims are commanded and even more, while greeting all people with peace and kindness; displaying the nature of Islam and its true followers.

Sharla is an American. Sharla converted to Islam out of her own conviction. Sharla does all that she does and is a reflection of the very Islamic beliefs, so many of you refuse to even learn about let alone acknowledge, while you praise her and her cause over her now famous safe-house, you obliviously despise the very thing she’s a true symbol of.

I may never be half the Muslim, or even the woman that Sharla is, but I’m blessed with eyes that fight not to see only half a story; even when the other half is something I don’t want to see.

May Allah bless others with the same ability to see, and never take my many blessings away.

Finally, may Allah bless Sharla for all that she does and all she suffers in the name of Islam, and give her strength to face conflict when it arises. May Allah reward her with peace of mind and heart in this life; and eternal bliss in the next.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Opinions are like assholes…

…everybody’s got one.

I read that somewhere, on some other site a long time ago. Not sure who the author is anymore, but I sure as hell relate with that person just now.

There are certain types of people in this world I simply can’t stand. And unfortunately, once I’ve seen one of the shallower personality traits in you, like using an edit button to change what you’ve said and then denying the same all together, or fighting an exhausted argument for the sake of trying your hardest to burn someone but then turning it into simple-minded attempts to belittle another because you just can’t make your point with your limited arguments, I simply can’t view you as a person of any substance. And I can’t imagine many other people do either, despite the plastic smiles they might give you.

Here’s the difference between you and I; I know I’m disliked. I accept it as a fact of life. I even view it as another person’s right not to like me and won’t interfere or attempt to alter their opinion; just like there are many people whom I don’t like.

One of the saddest things about living in this country is the number of people who forge their friendships, their likes & dislikes based on nothing other than their own personal insecurities.

Ironic, because I’m one of the most insecure of them all I’m sure. But I still won’t spend time pampering to a ‘friend’ I really don’t care for. I still won’t talk on the phone with people I can’t stand, and I certainly won’t mold my opinion because I think that’s what people want me to believe, or even that’s what they don’t want to hear because it’s going to get me a lot of extra attention.

Instead, I’ll walk in my shoes. I’ll base my opinions on what I know, and alter them when more information comes along if need be. And I’ll still think whatever it is I think of you.


Broken I find myself again today
Repercussions of love abused
Obscure memories; emotions obtuse
Kind words forgotten and unused.
Everyone has a story to tell,
No soul here knows not of love’s hell.

Hearts once beat together
Everlasting bliss the only wish
Apart; violently thrust forever
Relentless hopes to never
Tell another story
Shaped by a love they’ve lost.


Shattered are the souls
Homed by bodies of plastic
And paint
Tortured by our hearts
Tediously; we mask the saint
Enveloping our core
Rendering it cold forever more
Everything we are is formed
Defying our internal sores.

Dreams are lost in withering
Reflections of who I once was
Eternally forced to know
A life lived in the past.
My story but a repetition told
Sung by voices; young and old.
September 2005
I have a writing site. I used to write a lot, poetry, prose, I even started writing about book about romantic relationships with UAE nationals. But one day, the rhyming stopped and I haven’t found a pretty word since; so now I Blog most of my thoughts.
Anyway, this is something I found at that other site, from a long time ago. It’s almost ironic how it’s still relevant to the way I’m feeling about UAE these days. I wonder if I’ve grown any since then?

Lighten up a bit…

I had a wonderful weekend with my son; and even got a chance to visit my mom. But during quiet time, when nothing else was happening my mind kept drifting back to here and some of the comments people have made on previous entries.

Since, I’ve started Blogging here I’ve received pity, which I don’t want or need and don’t appreciate; advice, some of which I don’t necessarily agree with but don’t mind hearing, anyway; I’ve been accused of lying; which I most certainly have not and have no need to do; and I’ve been told I need to lighten up and that I should be comfortable with the treatment the UAE authorities have given me in the past; etc.

Overall I’ve simply been misunderstood. Maybe my IQ has reached an all time low and I’ve just forgotten how to communicate at all?

While I was talking with my mom last night, some of these comments found their way into our conversation. Actually, our conversation was revolved around me considering leaving here and going back home to Canada; giving custody of my son, who doesn’t even speak English, to his father, as I’m starting to think maybe that’s what’s best for him and me. I mean, when it comes to having an absent mom, or a mom who has clearly lost her mind, I think my son may be better off without me.

And I am on the verge of losing my mind, it seems.

You see, I don’t blame people for thinking my tales are far-fetched. It’s almost inconceivable that a person of my age has seen the numerous things I have, or experienced the things I’ve done. I myself would probably assume a person like myself were full of shit, because well, it is just too much. And I don’t blame people who misunderstanding my stories as peas for pity, or help, or whatever, because I’m sure most people who have been through what I have, look for those sorts of things. But it’s just not me. And I suppose I blame myself for people suggesting I should ‘take it easy’ or be ‘comfortable’ with the treatment I’ve received, as I’ve failed to clearly express my actual feelings towards certain experiences.

So let me make a final attempt to correct these things. I don’t resent the UAE authorities, or the local population, the law enforcement or any of the treatment I’ve received from any of them. I don’t necessarily hold grudges (except in one case), and so long as I’m not suffering at the time of sharing, I tend not to hold any animosity towards a certain situation, no matter how disgusting it actually was. I don’t feel sorry for myself, and I don’t want others to feel it for me either. I’m a grown woman and I take responsibility for what I’ve done and the consequences of those actions. I am one of those people who believes that if you don’t like the UAE, you should leave and because I’m starting to feel I don’t like it so much anymore, I am considering leaving. And it’s not because I can’t handle the legal system, or the politics, or the traffic, or the increasing rents, or the annoying complaints of expats, or those who think they have all the answers to fixing this beautiful country; and won’t shut up about it. It’s actually because the multinational society here has become so incredibly secluded for me I’m lonely to the point of almost talking to myself, from time to time. And for even that, I really only can only blame myself because I’ve learned not to trust people here; not to bother making new friends or associates.

My truths are outrageous. And I really don’t give a damn whether you believe me or not, or how you take them or anything else I have to say, after I’ve posted this entry; because, I’m going to share them anyway. I’ve been here more than eleven years now. What I’ve learned I’m sure some other person can learn from. How I’ve learned varies from one extreme to the next. My stories are only told for the sake of sharing. Whether you want to laugh or cry while reading them, do me a favor and don’t assume I feel the same way.

**Now, it’s good to see Balushi is back.
***And Secret Dubai, I just saw you replied to the woman & work discussion, I’m sorry I didn’t comment sooner. I hear what you’re saying and I don’t necessarily disagree with most of it, but for the parts I do, we’ll just agree to disagree; agreed?

Wednesday, March 22, 2006


Please create a new Blog.

Personally, I can only ever be fond a guy who refers to himself in a public forum as an “Ugly Stupid Donkey,” and I find you rather entertaining, myself.

And I’m sure I’m not alone on that call.


Unveiling Name Shame

I wonder if I’m the only person in the UAE who has ever tried to contact information to get a lost telephone number, address, or any other contact detail for some dear friend I’ve lost contact with, only to be told such services don’t really exist, or such information can’t be disclosed.

There is a solid generalization I can make about most UAE nationals and the culture of the UAE once you’ve spent enough time here, without feeling I’m being prejudice, insulting, or in any way offensive. I don’t like to generalize at all, but it seems a large percentage of nationals go to great lengths to keep their family name, tribal name and even first name at times, secret.

And this goes as much for people whose actions can make you think nothing less of them, than respectable, law-abiding, peace-loving, hard-working people, as it does for those with personalities less attractive, or culturally acceptable; depending on how you look at it. And it seems there are as many males who do this as females.

I find it fascinating, really. Many of these people have nothing to be ashamed of, in their family name, reputation or personality, so why all the secrecy?

If anyone has an answer to this question, I’d love to know what you think.

Sa7, ana 7mara…

But doesn’t that make you a donkey rapist?

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Emirates Police Force…

I think I like the ticket police the best. They seem to be the most enthusiastic about their jobs. I was once parked directly outside of Rashidiya Police station for one of the many day trips I got to make there, courtesy of my X husband. I was talking on the phone smoking a cigarette when this plump little man in a green suit, carrying his ticket book walked out of the precinct.

Are they called precincts, here?

Anyway, his smile grew as he walked towards my car and tapped on the windows. He was going to write his first ticket of the day just seconds after his shift started! Imagine the nerve of some western bimbo parking her 100% tinted, complete with windshield car outside the police station!

Since I’ve been told they have a minimum requirement for number of tickets in a day, his utter disgust and complete lack of recognition as he threw my license and registration back at me; without writing a ticket, didn’t come as a shock. I can even admire the will he had to actually do his job, something that’s seemingly only apparent on the ticket writers, here.

Years back, I was in the midst of another legal battle with one of the many psychos I’ve come across in the UAE. In the midst of one of my many, many trips to the Rifaa police station I got to see a full-fledge comedy play out in front of my eyes.

Picture this; my mother and I are sitting in some captain’s office, patiently waiting for him to resolve a labor-dispute between an Asian labor worker, his brother, and his Asian employer. The three of them were shouting simultaneously in a mixture of languages; Arabic, Hindi & English. From what I understood, the labor worker hadn’t been paid for more than eight months, and the employer wanted to sue him for not showing up at work during the past week; which evidently cost the company money.

After the three had screamed continuously for more than 15 minutes, the captain finally interrupted them, “Ok. Ok. You know what you have to do?”

All of them fell silent, waiting for the big authority to give them some sort of judgment.

“Go back to your office. It’s not far from here.”

All of them nodded, waiting for him to continue.

“Pick up your telephone, and dial 999.”

Well I’ll be dammed. They actually did as he instructed. All three of them left the police department silently, to go back to their office and call emergency over a labor dispute.

This isn’t the first bazaar display of law enforcement I’ve seen here. Maybe the first one was when I was just a teen. I was arrested in Sharjah, and accused of drug-dealing. I was just 14 or 15 years old; and though my companion may very well have been committing the said crime neither one of us ended up behind bars.

What’s amusing about this story is the fact that after hours and hours of psychological interrogation and I assure you, they know what they’re doing, and severely beating the fuck out of my male companions feet, and finally realizing we weren’t going to confess or give them urine samples, they decided to let us go. But before they did, I had to write a paper stating I would be good to my parents, do well in school and stay out of trouble in the first place.

**I might mention here, that regardless of my pleas, the CID captain and all of his staff refused to let me call my parents, and they didn’t let us go until near 11pm that night.

Later, I learned what I wrote was translated to Arabic, only not a single word in the Arabic script which stated I promised not to associate with the said companion again, was actually written in English.

How’s that for competence?

Moving on, I was again arrested years back in Rashidiya for driving without a license. Actually, the rookie decided to follow my best friend and I home because he assumed we were prostitutes.

It was after 3am and we were two girls driving alone. The truth is, we simply got bored of sitting in my house in Jumeirah and decided to go to her house in Mirdiff. Anyway, we ran into the house ignoring the civilian looking police car, and told her brother that we were being followed by strange guys. (None of the officers were in uniform, though we half knew they were police seeing how they kept flashing their badges at us while we were driving.)

Her brother went outside to talk and they asked for the driver. Being the twat he was, he called us out. I couldn’t provide a license; and funny enough the only one my friend had was an American one that expired 10 years before. They took us to the police station, and there we sat making friends with all the officers, while the rookie fought to press some sort of charges.

Around 7am the shifts change, the night staff gets replaced with the day staff. By that time 90% of the police station was fighting with the rookie to let us go. Finally, he gave in, but not without threatening to open a case against his colleagues for forcing him into it. I never did hear anything about that future case, I suppose it was all words.

So they agreed to let us go but first, I needed to show them some sort of picture ID to verify who I was. My passport was with my father’s office for visa or something like that, and I didn’t own anything else. Eventually, they accepted my Canadian social insurance card; which normally doesn’t have a photo, only for that occasion, in front of all the kind police men we stuck a sticker picture of my friend and I on the right corner.

After getting over their confusion and humbled laughs, and probably not wanting to spend anymore time at work than they had to, they let us go. The sticker is still there on my card.

I don’t know of any other country where law enforcement would 1) make such an assumption about a girl simply because she’s driving at night, or 2) let a law-breaker go without punishment or even proof of his or her identity.

But that Dubai for ya…

Next issue: RAS AL KHAIMAH courts. There’s a fun memory, I’m itching to share.

Bitch, bitch, bitch, whine, whine, whine…

I can not believe the amount of time, space and financial resources this society uses to bitch, whine and moan about petty bullshit. It’s incredible, really.

The ‘Letters to the Editors,’ in any of the UAE’s leading papers are full of repetitive rubbish from expats & nationals a like. There’s nothing more nauseating than repetition.

Open any newspaper on any day and I assure you, you’ll find a comment about a ‘psychotic’ driver, you’ll find a comment about the quality of accommodation, you’ll find something about the cost of living or construction, and lets not leave out the my-country-and-my-culture-is-superior-to-yours, letters now, either. You’ll defiantly see something about the injustices of the legal system here at least every other day. And if you’re inclined enough to read Gulf News, you’ll almost certainly find at least four or five letters stating the exact same thing, but using different words.

It’s amazing how many choices one language gives you to make the same point about the same fucking thing, isn’t it?

If you can’t beat them, join them. I’m going to bitch, bitch, bitch and whine, whine, whine about some of these things; because I’m cranky and I damn well feel like it.

My complaints are as follows:

  • This country can afford to build luxuries like 6 lane highways or Burj Al Arab, but it can’t accommodate international standard, competent hospitals or schools. Never ceases to amaze me; the priorities of some people.

  • A university degree is a MUST have for mother’s who wish to sponsor their children regardless of their position at work, or salary. This one in particular pisses me off, because a very good friend of mine was raped, scared to inform the police (can you blame her?), fell pregnant, lost a great job and ended up in her home country, a place she’d never spent more than a month in, during her entire life; that doesn’t even have medicine (I SHIT YOU NOT, I was there when she delivered) in the hospitals, let alone an economy where people can afford the pleasure of having children and eat at the same time!

  • The Plastic People. I don’t care who you are or where you’re from, if you’ve been in the UAE long enough you’re bound to pick up a layer of superficial plastic; otherwise you’ll become a social reject, and it’ll be virtually impossible to advance in any career. You MUST know how to make a fake smile convincing.

  • Racism Denial. Again, like the plastic people, no matter how ‘anti-discrimination’ you think you are, stay here long enough and you will become racist, whether you vocalize it or not. It’s going to make its way in, under your skin, and mold the way you perceive the world.

  • Communication Gaps. And now, I’m not talking about language here. I’m talking government-declared speed limits & other regulations. Example; Shk Zayed Rd has signs saying the speed limit is 100 kms/h, when in fact the radars don’t flash and the fucking police chief stated a month back in Gulf News, that the actual limit is 120kms/h within the city & 140kms/h when you approach Jebel Ali. Or the 160kms/h speed limit on the highway in Abu Dhabi, that was officially announced in all the leading News Papers, months ago, and yet all the signs still read 100kms/h. It’s only logic to see making the fucking rules clear would reduce road-rage, and traffic woes. Each person follows a different set of rules and all of us think we’re legally-right, so who is really to blame for the car driving 100kms/h in the fast lane that refuses to budge, or the guy flying by him from the right at 120kms/h, waving his fist in the air and cussing like a maniac?

  • Feigned Wasta. It’s a fucking joke. If you know the right people, you have it made here; no matter what you’re in to. But, if you think dropping a big name is going to influence my opinion, you’ve in for a rude-awakening. Fact; those who have wasta, those who know the right fucking people, don’t vocalize it. Most dogs will bite without barking, and most dogs who bark are too intimidated to actually bite. The number of people I’ve come across here, with this undesirably loathsome trait is astonishing!

  • Identity Envy & The Superior Nationalities. I met a guy once, who convinced me and a local friend of mine that he was Hamid Al-Falasi, the same family as this local friend. He even introduced himself to a police patrol as Hamid, when they questioned us all for being out so late. It turned out he was an Indian with a severe personality complex. The office he claimed to have in Bur Dubai, was actually his house; where he lived with his fully Indian mother & step father. When you ask a Palestinian, who has obtained a UAE passport where he’s from, he’ll tell you he’s an Emirati. When you ask an Indian, Arab, or non-Canadian who has obtained a Canadian passport, where he’s from he’ll tell you he’s Canadian. The question “Where are you from?” is not the same as the question, “What passport do you carry?” I just can not comprehend the obtuse lack of patriotism and self-respect so many people here have.

With all of the gripes and bitches, you know what bothers me the most? It’s the general hygiene of people here. One too many times I’ve turned my head in traffic only to see the guy next to me digging in his nose, or opening his car door to spit. I’ve entered too many elevators that absolutely reek of body odors so over-whelming I’ve almost vomited on numerous occasions. I’ve seen too many women use public toilets and leave without washing their nasty hands. And too many women in this country, who obviously spend hours painting their faces, walk around with visibly un-washed, oily hair. Just last week, I saw a girl I’d assume to be around eight years old, pissing in the parking lot with her mother standing by, only 3 fucking steps from the mall entrance; if you can make it that far you should be able to wait another minute; or as a mother you should make your kids go before you leave the damn house. And finally, and this one tops the cake, I’ve come across a public bathroom in Citicenter Deira, smeared in so much menstrual blood, you’d think a bloody massacre took place inside.

There a hundred and ten things any person can find to bitch about. If you’re going to do it, at least think of something new to bitch about.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Cultural Devices

I’m tempted to ask the clichéd question, ‘How much more can my heart take,’ but I think I’ve finally realized the answer. When it comes to enduring relentless pain, the heart, though feigned as most fragile, is in fact the ultimate strength. Its strength is powered by ability to torture its host time and time again, without ever letting an opportunity for masochism pass.

Should my body die, I’m sure my heart may still ache.

In my teens, I saw Dubai as the city of broken hearts and shattered dreams, because every person I knew seemed to have a heart-wrenching story of a love they lost. Mine, is much like many others.
I was a silly school-girl, oblivious to the power of love, the consequences of building a future based on story-tale endings and deepest longings. I didn’t mean for it to happen, and I don’t think he did either. But he loved me. And I loved him, and it blinded me. I was naïve enough to believe love really would conquer all.

He was from a well respected family, here. In fact, his father was a diplomat, someone whose name I still see from time to time in the media; only to conceive a week or more sleepless nights for me. And I’m just a nobody, really.

We spent nearly two years together; wrapped in each other. It was the most blissful time of my life; A real life fairy tale. I don’t believe there were ever two people more suited for one another than we were then.

We were torn apart by an almost hypocritical cultural devise.

His father and mother fell in love while studying. She was from the Emirates, he was from another Khaleeji country. He spent more than two years asking her father for her hand, to which my first love’s grandfather ruthlessly (and one time violently) denied. Despite this constant refusal, love conquered, eventually they wed. And together they created the man whom I would love so wholly and dearly, even years later I’d give up all I am and all I have to feel his arms wrapped around me for just a moment more; so long as death was promised to me the second he let go again.

Losing him made me believe my heart actually died, leaving only my skin & bones to mockingly feign the person I was, for eternity.

Losing him was like the first domino being tipped, creating a desperately painful chain of reactions destined to follow me for the rest of my life. Believing my heart had died; knowing I’d never feel such depth for another again, I married my now X-husband knowing I didn’t love him and never would. Believing I’d lost the only thing in the world I really cared about forced me into personal isolation, eventually causing my first and then second nervous breakdown.

In losing him I lost myself. And in reality, I didn’t really lose him. He was torn from me, by his parents who must have forgotten their own struggles in the past; parents who thought I wasn’t good enough for him; parents who didn’t want him to marry a foreigner.

We were too young to object. He was too young to defiantly do as he wished, and too good of a man to choose his own happiness over his parents. When he turned his back, he made the ultimate sacrifice for his parents; a move I’ll only ever be able to respect him for. But our bond was strong almost psychic at times. Our separation was only skin deep for years to come, until we finally succumbed to the bitter stench of reality.

It’s been almost a decade now. And I still think about him every single day. I’ve been diagnosed with emotional disorders. I’ve been on chemical medications. I’ve been married. I’ve given birth to a son. I’ve been divorced. I’ve been tainted by pain and I’ve tainted others with the residue of what I’ve felt. I’ve destroyed my life; and I believe it’s all because of that first domino tipping under cultural devices that may never change.

And even if they do change, it’s too late for our story to have a happy ending. Today, I’m not half the woman he fell in love with, and he’s not half the man I knew. By the time cultural devices change, the rest of the world will have changed as well.

Wash a single red sock enough; it turns pink and you no longer have a pair.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Well would you look at that…

I haven’t been blogging here a week and I’m already the cause of some poor person’s misery.

I don’t know if I should laugh or cry… But the evil ME is more inclined to giggle at the sheer stupidity of some people, even through my own unconscious guilt.

I did nothing more than let the guy know how he was making himself look. I guess he saw himself through an onlooker’s eye or something, because he’s deleted every comment he made and even his entire blog. It’s probably for the better, anyhow. He was one of the most sexist, single-minded, inconceivably atrocious people I’ve ever come across. And even I found some of the things he had to say embarrassing and shameful.

But it’s funny, because there are a number of people who’ve made far worse comments and even directly insulted the guy in other blogs and yet they didn’t manage push him to the extent of taking such a dramatic step, nor did he show such anger. I suppose there are no stronger hurts, and thus no deeper rage, than that of seeing yourself as the world sees you, and realizing the image is just disgraceful.

Penis or no Penis, you’re still a bitch.

I could tell you all I’m a virgin, but it’d be a lie. I could tell you all I HATE SEX, but it’d also be a lie. And you’d be pretty stupid to believe either of those things.

I don’t have a penis and that’s the truth.

And since that’s the truth, before I move on to what this entry is supposed to be about, I’d like to take this opportunity to ask all those wonderful drug-companies, who think spam is a great marketing technique, to stop sending me discounted order information on Viagra or Penis Enlargement formulas. Appreciate it much.

Back to what I was saying; I don’t have a penis and I don’t really want one. Though, I have wondered what it would feel like to think with a blood filled vessel erected between my legs, rather than actual brain cells within my skull, that curiosity just isn’t enough to warrant a sex-change desire.

I’m female; all female. And I don’t hate sex.

I can look at a man and determine whether or not I think he is attractive, sexy, or even obtusely ugly, and base all future associations and interactions on that initial decision. I can decide whether or not I would be capable of sleeping with him almost immediately. I can determine which parts of his body turn me on, and which ones turn me off. I can determine that a particular man isn’t good for anything other than sex. I can hire a man for work, based solely on his looks. I can have 2 or 3 or 4 boyfriends in my life at one time. I can even attempt to get into a man’s pants using trickery, lies and deceit, if I so wanted to.

If I had a penis, these things would be perfectly acceptable, normal and even envied by some. My question now is what is it about this vulgar-looking, rather ugly growth between a man’s legs that makes the standards so opposing? What is it about a penis that makes this behavior from any person acceptable?

All of us, male or female have evil intentions or thoughts at one time or another. We’d like to beat someone, steal something, or lie. We’re only evil if we act on those intentions. Just the same, all of us, male or female, have sexual desire’s and needs, but we’re only a bitch when we act on those desires in inappropriate, shameful ways.

I don’t have a penis. I have natural human instincts and urges just like the next person, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to lie to you about them, with hopes you don’t classify me a bitch or whore. Because I can do these things, doesn’t mean I DO, do them. I respect myself. If you do act on these desires, male or female, YOU are the bitch.

A bitch is a bitch, penis or no penis.

**This is indirectly related to the whole ‘equal-sex’ discussion that seems to be taking place around here. If we’re going to talk about equality between the sexes at work, let’s talk about it on a more intimate level too. There’s no point having half a debate, is there?

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Where did all the good men go?

I was reading another Blog around here (I would link it, but I just haven’t learned how yet), it was written by a male UAE national. He believes that women shouldn’t be offered jobs, and all of us should stay at home and cook & clean.

Being a Westerner who’s sick and tired of the equal-sex bullshit implemented first by the west but now making its way to Arabia, I agree with him… to a certain extent.

You see, I’m a dependant girl. I’d give nothing to have a man to love me, take care of me, go out and work all day and leave me at home to cook & clean, make babies and feed all of his fetishes and most secret desires. But unfortunately, there just aren’t enough men out there who know the value of a woman like that.

I have a good job and I make enough money to take care of myself. But I hate to do it, and wonder how long I can keep it up. It drives me nuts to know I have to go home to a messy house, because I haven’t had the time to tidy it.

I’m not bad looking at all; I’m not fat, manly, or even old. I’m divorced (because I chose to leave him) and I have a three year old son. I’m funny, I’m emotional, I’m brutally honest, and people tend to like me, in general.

I’ve been proposed to many times, before marriage and once after. But there’s always something missing. I’m a wonderful woman and I know it. Married guys seem to know it, as they’re always the ones I’m turning down & refusing to speak to. But the single, decent guys who actually want to take care of the woman who would give her all to take care of them seem to be on some other planet.

I’ll give my heart, body, and soul to the right man. But in return I expect enough respect to keep the relationship honest, enough devotion to keep my man from wandering, enough attention to keep me from getting bored, enough communication to insure understanding, and enough money to insure comfort & security.

I’m not asking for too much, I’m sure. But where are the men who see this?

I was once proposed to by a really good friend of mine; who’s still around for business associations today. He was UAE national, and his only condition was that I allowed him to take a second wife; a local as well. He offered to put me in a house, take care of my bills, and be there to support me financially. I refused. Because money like that isn’t worth the cost of my heart suffering the jealousy of knowing I have to share. I’m just not capable of it.

He married a national a while later. He’s now got a beautiful, Mashalla, baby boy. But on more than one occasion he’s told me he made a mistake when he proposed. And this isn’t an insult to national women; it’s an insult to those who can’t see my worth. He believes from his core now, that I would have been more than enough and a lot easier to spend the rest of his life with.

If we could turn back time, there are a lot of things we’d change. But turning back time won’t bring the good men back, it seems they’ll always be blind until it’s too late.

Here’s to Balushi, who wrote that he thinks women shouldn’t work. I agree with you, but find each of us women good men who will take care of us so that we don’t have to wear ourselves thin, before you start petitioning the government to enforce such a law.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Cost of my sanity

I couldn’t sleep last night. It’s my birthday today. And for me, that’s a depressing thing. I spent the night wondering what happened to me, why I ended up so alone, how I secluded myself from the world, why I feel so old, when in reality, I just turned 25.

Eventually, around 4am I decided to take my shower and leave for work.

I live in Ajman. I work in Abu Dhabi. I drive back and forth every day.

This morning, I reached Shk Zayed rd, near Diyafa St. around 4.45am. I was disgusted at the amount of traffic already there, but it wasn’t shocking; this is the Emirates after all. As some inconsiderate idiot in the fast lane insisted on driving 110kms/h without regard for anyone behind him, I casually overtook him on the right side. Just as I passed him I got flashed. I knew the radar was there, I knew it would flash at 120Kms/h, it just didn’t register in my head.

If you call 8007777 you can get the total amount of traffic fines you’ve accumulated. Actually, you can have them sent to you by sms. A great way to play with your friends because you get to choose the number the fine message gets sent to. It comes direct from Dubai Police, stating “YOU have this many fines and must pay this amount”, without stating the license plate number.

Anyway, back to what I was saying…

A couple of weeks ago, I was up at about 3000Dhs. So, this morning’s radar, in addition to the one I got last night, brings my approximate total to 3400Dhs, and that’s not including the one’s I didn’t notice or weren’t yet calculated.

I realized something with this morning’s flash; I wasn’t bothered by it. And it’s not because I have bags & bags of money to waste or think the fines are small. Actually, the opposite is true. I don’t have the money to waste on traffic fines at all. If I did, I probably wouldn’t be living in Ajman.

But, in comparison to the amount of money I’d have to spend seeing a psychiatrist over my road rage, my utter fall into insanity, 3400Dhs is a small fraction to pay. And that’s not even including the mental stress I suffer every time I pass yet another ‘go-cart’ driver, or idiot who got his license out of a cereal box. And we all know about the physical health problems caused by stress, now don’t we?

A while back, there were articles in the papers about ‘Mad Max,’ as they called him. He allegedly smashed his 4x4 into a whole a bunch of cars before being physically forced (by impact) to stop. Regardless of what the reports said and regardless of what the spectators thought, I feel sympathy for him; more than the owners of the vehicles he damaged.

You see, in my opinion, ‘Mad Max’ was simply acting on pure road rage. He’d had enough, and finally lost his mind. Chances are, if I didn’t speed passed all the inconsiderate idiots in the fast lane, or drive down the yellow line, cutting in at the front of traffic jams… I’d go insane and do a ‘Mad Max’ too. A hundred times I’ve told myself that the next time I have a small accident, I’m should deliberately hit as many other cars as possible, to cause damage to the vehicles, purely for the sake of getting that number of cars in a garage for repair, and off the damn roads for a while. Should I lose hold of my sanity, I might just act on such psychotic inclinations. So, add the physical cost of potential injury caused to myself and to others, to the list of costs I’ve listed above and you do the math.

A few radars & traffic violation fines, against Hospital & Treatment costs for both psychological & physical damage, in addition to losing my mind (I have very little of that to spare), and ever rising stress levels. And leave out the amount of money I’d potentially lose because I’m spending hours more on the roads instead of at work; actually making money, and you do the math.

I’ll pay the radars any day, thank you very much.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Girls & Boys

I divorced him because he was psychotic, not because he was a UAE national.

I didn’t marry him to get his passport, or take his money, or even because I loved him. I married him because I had a broken heart and I thought I’d never love again. I married him because I was mentally fucked and I couldn’t see any other point in life. I married him because I thought it’d change something in my life.

It changed everything.

I remember once, while I was so pregnant I could hardly stand up, a Bulgarian girl asked me how I did it. I had no idea what she was talking about. She explained, “How did you marry a local?” As if it was some sort of life long goal.

I remember feeling sick to my stomach at her question. It wasn’t my intent to marry a local. I married a friend. I married a friend based on a joke that went a little too far; right to the courts and down on paper.

Now, every time I tell a foreigner I’m divorced from a local, they seem to think that is the reason for the divorce. Locals NEVER stay married to foreigners. Local’s make bad husband’s. It’s bullshit. I refuse to look at the UAE nationals and make such a statement.

I’m sick and tired of the racial bullshit that this country festers. And I get to see and feel a LOT of it. I’m a blonde in hijab. Local women LOVE me; or at least the LOVE TO LOOK AT ME, as if I’m from some lesser species. Believe me. I don’t want to be wearing your clothing any more than you want me to be wearing it. I put it on for Islam, and since I’m not as good of a Muslim as I once was, I’d happily take it all off now. But I have a 3 year old UAE national son and a psychotic X husband who would most certainly use me removing my hajab as an excuse to fight for custody.

I’m sorry. I’ve been in this country more than 10 years. I’ve spent over 6 years in your courts. I’m not about to go there again.

I wonder if I walked around naked like the majority of the foreign women here, who are ruining your traditions, tempting your husbands, and destroying the innocence of your country… would you THEN stop looking at me with so much hate?

I’m not dressed like this to tempt your men, or make a mockery of your traditions. I’m not dressed like this because I want to be a UAE national. If I wanted your damn passport I could have had one already. Mine is prettier.

I have no problem with local men; except the ones who tell me they’re married and still want to talk with me. You all need psychological help or marriage counseling or something. I do have a problem with people assuming I divorced my X because he is from the UAE.

I divorced my X husband because he was psychotic, because I never loved him, because I couldn’t stay with him, because we had NO relationship at all, because he placed me in a state of mental torment even worse than the state I put myself in. I divorced my X husband because he’s Shia, while I’m Sunni and he couldn’t hold his tongue from insulting me for this. I divorced my X husband because he openly admitted to sleeping with prostitutes and I feared disease. I divorced my X husband for many, many reasons, and not one of them had to do with his nationality.

It’s one of the biggest problems in this country. Everyone sees skin before heart.

Just a confused little girl here, that’s all…

I was browsing other Blogs and was amazed at how many Arab-Hate ones I found. I was about ready to delete this Blog and never return to the Blogging scene again. With as much passion as I have for Islam & Arabs, I’m in no mental-state to debate the issues with people who, by their own words, seem to have dedicated large portions of their lives to nourishing their hate.

It’s incredible the way the developed West has managed to ‘abolish’ racism, sexism, and bias in their day to day lives when it comes to everything BUT Arabs and Islam. Go to any search engine and type ‘Arab Blog’ or something along those lines and the entire first page seems to be hate-links.

Hate. Hate. Hate. And more Hate.

I would love to hate the west. A part of me, very well might. But I’m a Canadian, torn between two worlds, it seems. I hate the uneducated westerners who refuse to learn, and I hate the simple-minded Arabs who refuse to see. There are faults in ever society. And the Faults themselves are not the problem. The problem is how we perceive them.

Women in the West are treated like they’re men.

Women in the East are treated like they’re objects.

Neither one is better than the other. It’s all about the angle you’re looking from.