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KUMA Games uses #ISIS to advertise it’s #Fail

July 8, 2014

I was reading an article about the Mariam Yehya, the Sudanese women sentenced to death for switching religion to Christianity in Sudan, (article link: http://www.mugrn.net/ar/13887) when upon scrolling down I saw this:

بالصورة  تضامن ناشطين مع مريم يحي الطبيبة المتهمة بالإرتداد عن الإسلام

 

Translation: “Da’ash” (ISIS) – Free War Game

I clicked on it ofcourse… and I got to this site: http://wahdatalnimr.com/

العاب اكشن وحدة النمر

A game (ofcourse arabized) by KUMA Games … in New York.

Very mature and culturally sensitive. Very.

Manual: When to start a revolution?

July 4, 2014

The Arab Spring (yes, there were real revolutions in the past two years, for those that prefer to blame chaos on conspiracy) has altered the region dramatically and dictatorships have killed tens of thousands of citizens in the past two years.

But what started in Syria marked the end of the spring that was launched in Tunis, as we know it. Ofcourse a quick glance of the region… not a single country’s leadership deserves the reign (please don’t object by saying Dubai is perfect, reality check: it’s not!).

Mohamed Abu Khder who was murdered and burned by Israeli settlers by @Occupy2gether Palestine

The Syrian crisis has been ongoing for 2 years now. Neither a solution nor a peace treaty seems to be looming in the horizon. Other countries still in turmoil: Bahrain, Libya, Egypt, Sudan, Iraq(ofourse!), Yemen, and the never-ending Palestine (and Lebanon by extension of everything, as always). With the “Islamic States of Iraq and Sham” ISIS, ISIL, Madmen with beards and bazzukas, or whatever you wanna call them, declaring an “Ummah” of their own on top of existing borders (not taking consent nor opinions of  their citizens… zionism much?), AND, declaring Caliphates for each state to “rule” them, where are the eyes of the region?

ISIS

ISIS declares their “ummah” by Reuters

@Alaa Abdel Fattah and 15 Egyptian activists sentenced to 15 years in prison for peaceful “protests” #Egypt – Picture by Reuters

Protest is Sudan in support of Mariam Yehya who was charged with Execution because she changed her religion to Christianity in #Sudan

Well… FIFA for one, vacation in Europe, and ofcourse… the epilogues of yet another “Bab El 7arra”.

If you’d like to start a revolution, a protest, a humane call, here’s what you should avoid, in order to get any attention:
1. FIFA
2. Champion’s League
3. Ramadan
4. Eids (both of them)
5. Christmas
6. Summer (May through October) – It’s just too hot for people to think or focus + vacations, no schools, etc.
7. Weekends (especially Friday)
8. An Armin Van Burren Concert in the region
9. 9PM on weekdays (weekends are out of question) – that’s when prime movies are showing on TV
10. Talent Shows on MBC1 – all of them. just not a good idea.

When can you have a revolution, protest, or a remotely dire discussion to the vitality and existence of human kind in the region?

Monday and Tuesday, between 8 – 9 PM

We can rally all (what’s left) of 300 Million citizens in the region and give them a minute each on tv every Monday and Tuesday for an hour. That’s 5 Million hours / 2 days a week / 52 weeks a year = 48,076.9 years.

That’s probably how long we’ll need to realize we are ignorant and inhumane! It takes more than giving pocket change to a young begging girl to become human. Why is this child on the street to start with, why is she not in school, parents? law? government? where are your taxes going? Where is the returns from the money that the governments are laundering from you? Why is there no R&D in the region? Where is our right to speak? to learn? to work and conduct business?
Where is our right to breathe clean air? unpolluted food? 24/7 power and water? Internet … some decent affordable internet!!!!

Where is our right to exist?

(apologies for the graphic image… but this has to be seen)

Syrian citizens crucified in Deir Hafir, #Aleppo by #ISIS via @green_lemonnn

I  disown the Arab League for forbidding me from my basic right of travel within countries they claim are related by language (which they are not) without the bestowed permission of authorities that i’m not a threat to their national morals (being a Lebanese girl is always a threat to cultural morals). Let’s just cut the crap and end the nostalgia of unity “Arab” nations… bala habal.

Let’s have a revolution next Monday night at 8PM, we can even vote for the topic we want to protest!  It’ll be a blast!

 

Supporting Talent; June list

June 10, 2014

So I’m a mini crowd-funding addict. Sometimes it’s books, gadgets and green products; other times it’s just a few dollars in hope to make a difference.

Here’s what i’m supporting this month:

  • The amazing Tania Saleh, for her new album “A few images – شوّية صور” [link]
  • Edward Maalouf: Road to Rio De Janeiro 2016 Paralympics [link]
  • National Youth Orchestra of Iraq trip to the US to perform [link]
  • Green Glass Recycling project Lebanon (if you haven’t noticed yet, this blog is a major advocate) [link]

Everbody Leaves by Art 7aké

Worth looking at and supporting (online + offline)

  • Deghri Messengers – Bicycle delivery in Beirut. Green and Healthy. [crowdfund][Facebook]
  • Art7aké – Unique Arabic hip pun shirts, and prints. [crowdfund][Facebook]

Happening this week onwards:

June 9 – 15 –  Beirut Design Week [full program]
June 10 -15 - NE+AR: The Netherlands meet the Arab world Exhibition @ Beirut Souks
June 12 – The Outpost Housewarming Party (the outpost is an amazing magazine that you must check out)
June 16 – CCCL’s Party for Life 2014
June 18 – 22 – Afkart; Design, Music, Art @ Zaitouneh Bay
June 19 – Barakat Waraq – Animated Film Hour @ Beit Waraq

Ofcourse there’s always Lebtivity.com for more

On an unrelated note: a good one for Ghassan Rahbani / Hiba Tawaji on the Arab Spring

WishList: Made In Lebanon

April 8, 2014

My mom is a super crafty person: a brilliant dress maker, cook and everything DIY. I grew up believing you shouldn’t pay for what you can make yourself, and to evaluate what you buy by its quality first.
Being a workaholic i have less time for DIY but still have a fondness for quality handmade everything.

Being in Lebanon for the past few years, i was hoping to adopt a more hand made lifestyle… but it seems more difficult than I anticipated.

Glass furnaces no longer roar like they used to. Crafty carpenters sit with grim faces. Home made produce has been hijacked by the “organic” and priced up. Quantity & “made in China” has triumphed the market place.

Bokja Design Chairs – Modern, Creative and Local.

The core of the problem is not that people don’t want hand made goods. It’s that these professions are abandoned by newer generations that are moving into desk jobs and “i want to be a manager” attitudes. We respect the suit, not the human in it.
One thing i loath about traditional academia is its celebration of theorizing and analyzing rather than doing. Not everyone is cut out for books. Many undergrads frail through college, only to graduate into mediocre jobs, unemployment, marriage or a mobile-phone-credit-refill shops.
Elite schools have more opportunities for children to explore their talents, but how many children go there, how many can afford to?

Recycled Blue Glass – GGRIL (did you know that glass is 100% recyclable and that there’s only one glass furnace operating in the country still?)

The problem: Social pressure, Education, government support.
Social pressure:
What did you really want to be when you were young? A painter? An actor? A designer? What made you tick and drew a smile on your face? Every passion can be a profession! It takes some work and perseverance, but also passion, to succeed.
Maybe it’s time to pick a hobby, and fly with it. It disgusts me that many parents label hobbies and pets as a “waste of time” and “juvenile” – even though they are essential to teach time management, compassion and discipline.
Education:
Did your arts teacher really teach you how to draw? craft? or anything… my siblings’ art teachers sit in the classroom and gives them crayons. done. nada. no techniques, no art history, nothing :/  (yes she gets paid to do nothing, and have the nerve to protest!)
Music, Arts and Sports (and anything non-traditional”) are under appreciated subjects in school curriculum, not enough institutes are available across the country to endorse these talents either. For heck’s sake, there isn’t even accessible Dabke classes!

Ants Accessories – Makhoul Street, Hamra

Government support:
How about we cut taxes for craft industries, support and endorse them through subsidies and incentives? Facilitate distribution, safety measures, protect intellectual property… or furnish the government buildings and public facilities exclusively thoroughly local furniture, glass, paper, stationery, etc?
It may not sound like much, but imagine how many public institutes and buildings (whether offices or barracks) exist in Lebanon and how many chairs these require… enough to keep many carpenters busy!
Also how about the Media stops labeling made in Lebanon as “ooh shu exotique!” and use a more assertive tone and promotion ;)

Made in Lebanon [Green Glass Recycling Initiative] [Ants Accessories] [Bokja Design]

Carpenter / Saida, Lebanon

Carpenter / Lebanon

Glass blowing / Lebanon

Wishlist: Public Transport at Beirut Airport

March 18, 2014

Is it too much to ask; to be able to arrive at the airport get on a bus, train, tram or ferry and head to a station.

Public transport in the Lebanon is so under developed, ironically the “conflict of interest” for Van #4 drivers, cab drivers and other infamous routes always seem to be an obstacle for any progress.

Arriving at the airport of any country / city, is a reflection of your trip to come. Arriving at Beirut Airport is … let’s just say… a nightmare. Between haggling cab drivers, smoking policemen and intrusive luggage workmen, it’s not the most pleasant experience (and probably a true reflection rarely portrayed by the Tourism Ministry Ads).

The main challenges: Consistency, Quality and Reliability.

Charles Helou Station © Haytham al-Moussawi / Al Akhbar

Charles Helou Station © Haytham al-Moussawi / Al Akhbar

An idea:
Two buses should leave the airport every 30 minutes to two destinations: Cola Bridge Station (main station for all transport heading South) & Charles Helou Station (main bus station for heading North). (– A single bus stop maybe designated on route to/from the airport for midway pickups and drop offs.)

A clear route map and schedule of buses should be available at multiple locations throughout the airport to guide arrivals (in Arabic, English and French)

The buses need to be monitored and controlled by the airport to make sure they are on time and meeting cleanliness and hygiene standards. (maybe some of the ideal staff can have some work to do ;) )

The same should be available for arrivals to the airport; a consistent bus that leaves Cola / Charles Helou every 30 minutes to the Airport.

Beirut 2020?

Questions for 2014 أسئلة لعام ٢٠١٤

March 14, 2014

Questions for 2014 أسئلة لعام ٢٠١٤

شو وضع الكهرباء؟ سفن وجبنا…وين الكهرباء؟
هل سيبقى نبيه بري بالحكومة بعد سن التقاعد؟
حيسير في انتخابات؟ ايمتى و ليه؟ بتترشح ميريم كلينك؟
التوقعات ل٢٠١٤ بتقول في صلحة بسوريا على المستوى الطائيفي… اتفاق متل الطائف؟
بيبقى الشارع اللبناني “هنّ” و “نحن”؟
بيضل في حوريات بالجنة؟ او بتقلب “مثلية”؟
بيبقى في شعب بالبحرين برا الحبس؟
هل يبقى السيسي؟ وايمتى بيطلع علاء عبدالفتاح من السجن؟
كم دولة من “الربيع العربي” تعود الى “حالة الطوارئ” ؟
هل يسقط التاج؟
العالم شو وضعوه من الاحتلال الإسرائيلي؟ ايمتى بتفقد امريكا الأمل؟
هل يسقط اوباما؟
في أزمة عالمية جديدة؟
في سواح هالصيفية؟ بدنا سواح هل الصيفية؟
لي ما في باص على المطار؟
لي مكبات الزبالة بعدها بتحترق بالغلط؟
شو سعر الرصاصة؟ وال ب٧؟ طيب الكلاشن؟ امريكي؟ روسي؟ ايراني؟
بكم الليلة بالمعاملتين مع تناقص الطلب؟
بتنزل بورصة الجواز السفر اللبناني أكتر؟
مين ليبيا؟
بلا مزح في “دولة” داعش؟ انا بعد مش مستوعبة الخبرية…
وعاملين اسم البلد “acronym” كمان!!
شو ممكن تعمل على كذبة نيسان بعد أكتر من هيك؟
بتصّفر السما وتزّرق الشمس؟
بيتصالحوا عندالمنعم ونيكولا وبيصير عنا انترنت أسرع بالبيت؟
بترجع فاطمة؟ او بتنتقل على حريم السلطان؟

بتتذكر الحكومة تفتح شي حديقة او فسحة خضرا بالمدينة؟
بزيد عدد مستوعبات الزبالة على زواية الشارع تحتى ما يكون عنا حجة نكب بالشارع؟

 شو وضع مافيا الڤالة؟
ومواقف السيارات عامة؟

كتير صعبة نشيل الثلاث صفر حد الواحد، وتصير الليرة تحكي؟

بيرجع الله بيلتفت ببلد اسموا لبنان

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Censor Ministers not Bloggers

March 12, 2014

Here’s the deal; I’m a design major, and through out my college years have been assured ENDLESSLY that media / awards are mainly sponsorship and financial based.
You can always do the math, the higher sponsorship levels always get more awards, by coincidence… It could be that they have $$ paid more for applications, say for … 20 website applications, at a rate of $5000, and want to send in your management for a couple of days, about another $5,000 – quite a budget; we haven’t even booked tickets yet! But you have submitted a ton of material, more likely to be reviewed and more likely to win something (this is the benefit of the doubt)
However, that doesn’t make you an award, that makes you a supermarket, you pay more, you get more.
Many younger and vibrant boutiques / agencies /individuals are doing amazing work, but you are only rewarding those that can afford it, and those are not many… Is it fair? Financially, yes? Is it professional… shove it!

Is Rita right? She doesn’t have to be, that’s why it’s called a blog. It’s an opinion and an honest one for that matter.

Instead of Pan Arab Web Awards reaching out to her after realizing the problem, taking the feedback (and waking up to their rep) and introducing changes, or even embracing or explaining the reasoning behind their strategy… *drum roll* … they tale legal action! [more]

Deja Vu moment:
Benihana Kuwait [review] [lawsuit]
Abir Ghattas’s Photo
Zeid Hamdan (General Suleiman Song) [story][release]
and the list is endless…

And to think that “web awards” being a little more “digital” and assumptivly more “open minded” would know better than to take that root. But they might as well be running Kitten beauty contests (oh wait that would actually be better, since it would promote more adoption… or something).

How about we take on another approach, can we sue Butros Harb for his sectarianism and Randa Berri for her fight against women’s rights (which is against the UN Human rights, which again, btw, we are signed on as a country)! Can we sue MTVLebanon News for the love of wrong news (always reporting casualties, blocked roads and death before confirming them, always deleting their tweets and changing their titles!)

Pan Arab Web Awards vs. the Web

Pan Arab Web Awards vs. the Web

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