Sunday, December 30, 2007

On the Road: South

Tampa Bay, lots of fun and enjoyed visiting and the Pier and most importantly , is the Dali Museum in Saint Petersburg. It was and it is still fun since we are in Orlando today where we will celebrate the pagan new year! I hope you'all having a good time. The thing is that this is the South of the United States, muzzles me. The moment we passed Richmond, VA, I have come to realize that, this is really the South. Big tucks, people talk with a nice accent, smoke and cigarettes outlet all over the place, Waffle Houses in every corner, even the Arabs I came across, speak cool English. It is different and nice change of scenery. Perhaps, the coolest thing I saw so far is the mobile truck church, I guess for worship on the Goo!
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On the Road: GA

Checking out the fishes and make sure that they are well and taken care of...

Top of the Aquarium in Atlanta, GA, you can see the skyline

Cannot have a road trip without the great company of the Hayer, Jehad is my bud is featured on the picture...

Some suggest that if a person criticizes the States, this person should hit the road and leave America. But I truly think it is the other way around, if you truly wanted to love this country, you need to hit the road! To see the vast landscape, the people, the streets, the stores, the rest stops, and cultures of areas like Chicago, Dearborn, Denver, San Francisco, Atlanta, New York…etc. only then people will realize that America is much larger, much better than what they thought America was.

Some quick pictures for your viewing pleasure, I am currently in Orlando, FL, but on the way we drove by Georgia, we stayed there for two days, here are quick pictures to enjoy...or not!
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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Eid Prayer and 2 Cents

So, had a great Eid and still count to go out and do some more fun things. For the Eid prayer (Eid is the grandest Muslim day of celebration)I went with my roommate Jehad my roommate to George Washington University, the Muslim Students Association had a Eid prayer there, I actually liked the sermon, the young, informed and energized young man (Now I sound old) gave a lesson about being a Muslim and how the last major speech by Prophet Mohammad during his last and only Hajj in which he said something that is also quoted in the Koran, to the meaning of how the prophet have perfected our religion and completed his favor upon us and accepted Islam as our religion! I was touched on so many levels by this message and it actually got to me and made me think about religions in general and keep in mind that I just watched the "Golden Compass" a movie supposed to be anti-religion. My thing with this movie is it assumes that all religions want to control people and know what is going on on their lives, which is true for most religions, but not all. The concept of free agency is available in most religions, but actually not practiced in the way most religions conduct business. It might be not the religion that is bad or controlling, but those who understand it or try to offer their take on specific things, like taking the general laws and applying them to the particulars. anyhow, this is just got me tot think, not a good idea, but if we do not think we are dead...The Eid Sermon also talked about the experience of prophet Ibrahim and how he was asked to sacrifice one of his sons. This was a tough situation, and when he asked his son, the son's response "Do as you are told!" Man, see his son, did not say "No", nor say "What do you think dad?" "you do the right!" leaving an area to bargain with. The son said "do as you are told" This got me to think that such faith is possible...but I thought I mean there are all sort of crazy people out there, how do know that God talks to them or is talking to them. I know Ibrahim was a prophet of God, but others might not know that. That's where faith comes in, not facts, just good old faith.

For my Eid Celebration, I joined some friends of mine to dine at a Malaysians restaurant, one of DC's finest...I never had Malaysian food, but I have heard good things about it from my good friend Hanna Shihab that it is good and that it's like Indonesian food. Anyhow, I was actually impressed with the way they cooked their chickens, in a way their chicken and rice is sort of a fusion of Hawaiian, Japanese and Thai cuisine, I like two of the above, so it was a pleasant experience. The rice selection I must admit. they offer, white rice, brown and coconut rice, you guessed right, I took the coconut rice. I highly recommend it.
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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Native Deen

This is a band I have learned of more than two years ago, it is group of Muslim African-Americans who do songs about Islam, the great thing about them, that they are Americans and they are hip in the Middle East and Europe...this is their latest song, the band is called Native Deen
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Friday, December 14, 2007

Illegal Immigrants, Who?

These are funny cartoons about illegal immigration, I am not making a statement, but I am out for a laugh and actually those are knee slapper Funny!
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Thursday, December 13, 2007

My borther Majid

Here is a photo of my brother Majid, he is one year younger than I am. He has quite the resume, his the darker one in the picture. Majid has 3 beautiful little girls that I adore, he is a stud and actually in the hood people fear him because he can give people mean looks. He might not ever resemble me, but he is good brother, he used to beat me up growing up as kids and he actually always kicked it with me, if he (wasn't kicking me) He works for the Palestinian National Security. The reason I posted his picture to show how fashion is different, when I saw his shirt form far, I was like this is so lame...but I guess these body shirts are popular at home! not just for women, in fact women in Gaza might not wear them unless they put something more modest on top. But they can wear anything if they were in all female company!
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Friends & Meat

This is a picture of two friends of mine, they come form my neighborhood, we grew up together, the one with the knife and the one in the corner of the picture, both were killed more than two years ago. They both got killed together, I guess it is sad since I know these guys really well when i left home back in 2000. I do not know what they got into but it looks like with the second intifada, Faris and Romal got involved with some of these groups and both were shelled in the same hut, I do not know, but I heard that they had a roadside bomb and were waiting on the Israeli jeep to pass by it, but it looks like the Israelis spotted them and killed them both with another guy that I have known but not my a close friend. my point of posting these today is to reflect back on my life and what i could have done with my life if I did not come here to the States. But the real question if these guys had better opportunities would they be with us now? I leave you on that note!
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Thursday, December 06, 2007

Grads Rock and So Does Holiday Dieting


So, i will be going to Richmond, VA tomorrow Friday, Dec 7th for a friend's graduation, taking the Amtrak train for two hours which is not too bad. I was not familiar that other colleges would have ceremonies for December graduation, BYU did not! So, I will be staying at my friends home and just having a good time and wasting their time as hey are going through finals....graduation at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU)takes place even before finals are done! So I hope I can take some good pictures, and video with this nice family. I guess I have to dress up to the occasion and look groovy!...but I admit I have a worry though. I have been starch free for two weeks now, no bread, no rice and minimum potato (some comes in the soup though). and yesterday I was at a nice reception in Washington DC, with lots of great holiday foods and sweets, and they even served wine...but i rose above all that and managed only to eat vegetables, fruits, meat and cheese! So Outsourcing my diet to others might be risky...and I am not a freak or anything, this diet is only temporarily to help me eat less during the Christmas and New Year season. So far I have three more receptions to attend and I am certain that great food will be served ! I hope I can still maintain my diet! My friend did promise to make me breakfast burritos on the day i head back that would be Sunday!

Speaking of diets, couple of weeks ago, I was visiting with a wealthy family friend who has his own contracting business and lives in Virginia, he is LDS, but also Palestinian...I think there are like 4 other people who fit in this category in the entire world! Anyhow we were talking about career and plans for the future and he took personal interest in my career...Due to losing 30 pounds, my friend asked me to go with him to his giant closet (it was not like that) and actually gave me two designer suits, four freaking awesome designer shirts, two blazers and a nice pair of pants...boy that make my Thanksgiving. I think the items total to about $1800...the George Armani suite alone is above a thousand. so I will looking good this winter, accept I am a bit cold and I do not have a nice dress coat, I may just go back and say "Say, Omar I love the clothes you have given me, but a coat would be nice!" I am only joking here, he is such a nice guy...and I hope you maintains his health and still lose more weight and give more rags!

Good luck in the finals everyone and Happy Eid, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Happy Hanuka!
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Virgin Airlines

Take 1: So, you guys heard of Virgin Airline? I really did not know what to make of them name when I first heard about it few years ago. Anyhow, so I do not know anything, but I think Virgin Airlines is the terrorist favorite airline and no one telling us this best kept secret till now. I mean these terrorists are so eager to get to their virgins that they would want to get a head start on it by flying with the Virgins!

Take 2: I love airplanes and I love virgins, but who really, really loves both virgins and airplanes? Terrorists can’t wait to get up into your airplanes and your virgins. And you combine the two?

Take 3: I don’t know, maybe the whole airline is a scam. A giant flying roach motel. Terrorists come in, but they don’t come out.

Take 4: Truth is, I do not know this, but if Virgin has a flight number 72 I would stay away because this would means 72 virgins and this is too confusing and too tempting for a terrorist to pass on!

Which take you liked more if any? I appreciate the feedback!

Good day...
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Monday, November 26, 2007

True Stories Yet to Be Validated

Sign Reads: "Wanted Queen For Hanistan" "Interested" "Call Now"

-Hooters have a new energy drink, I saw it at the Korean Store the other day and it has their signature blond female in an "outfit" Is it me or what does Hooter have to do with energy drinks? The only thing I can think of "Hooters Energy Drink, Ladies, it will bumps You Up!"

-The Same Korean store had also beer and wine, but this time these wines and beers have rebates...What for? People who consume beer are most likely to forget about these rebates in the heat of the moment. This is a scam, things we buy when we are sober, we do not even bother to send in the are those who consume alcohol would be able to send in their rebate? I doubt it.

-Since it was Thanksgivings time last week, I love how many people brag about their recipes, "Hani, this cranberry sauce recipe has been a family secret since the day..." "We only pass in in the family," "it is a secret" Ohhhh....once I tried the awful cranberry sauce, I realized that the family should have been kept a secret, so I would not get to taste it."

-I live in a bad part of town, so bad that when you call an ambulance, the patients and the medics carpool in the ambulance to get to where I live.

-I do not do drugs, once you get to my level of sophistications, it is dangerous to do your own stunts, I have people do drugs and I just watch them do it.

-My friend Mustapha has a Jewish Mother and a Muslims father, one side of his family is scared of him and the other wants him dead.

-Rock Stars are so hot it makes sense why they have so many fans.

-When I do stand up these days, there is always a spotlight on the stage, I guess it is a tradition...Anyhow the first thing I think to myself when I am there "It is always good to be under the spotlight and not be asked a lot of questions and tied up to a chair"

-These days they have organic shoes, really they do, this also helps me lot since I am prone to sticking my foot in my mouth!

-If you are an overweight person in the shower, then the only friend you have in the bathroom is fog on your mirror so you cannot see what is going on with your bud!
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Things I will Remember to Forget...and so will you!

Here is an exchange between me (and my bud Jehad)with some crazy person who really hates Muslims to a degree that I have yet to comprehend. This person named AMPER0003 has a website that blogs and posts mean spirited videos against Muslims. Nice? No but OK, legal and unimportant! this person went to my videos on youtube and started writhing some interesting things, very vulgar so if you do not like this language...please do not read! You can tell this person has poor grammer, any other ideas? Have fun....

amper0003 (1 week ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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What do you want, morons?
The question is really stupid. But the Answers are all correct. All the islamic countries are populated by moslems, right? Yes. Moslems are stupid islamofucks, right? Sure!
Therefore it would be absolutely correct to call all moslemic countries as Crapistan, Ham-i-stan, Stupid-stan, or
Allh-hu Fuckin Acbarr.
alkabeer101 (1 week ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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Were you abused as a child? You know you can get help! I highly recommend you do just that! May the Force Be With You!
amper0003 (4 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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Just a couple words in responce - you do not deserve more:
Fuck Islam and fuck Muhammed.
kofkoto (6 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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God bless America and their smart ass people who have discovered so much .. like the fire ... mm .. and where the sun rises from ... and such things that 95% of the people here in the US don't even have any clue ...
I am so glad I am NOT an united states resident and I am NOT gonna spend the rest of my life in that brain-washed cell...
amper0003 (4 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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You will spend the rest of your life being fucked from behind by your moslem friends. You're Bulgarian, right, so you might still like it.
Russia made a mistake sacrificing lifes of her soldiers on Shipka. We should have let Turks stay there and beat a living shit of your grand-grand-grand-grand-daddy.
Go and learn Turkish and Arabic. You'll need it in the near future, stupid Dhimmi.

alkabeer101 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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While you were on the boat coming to America, you obviously didn't learn the most important
American value: religious tolerance. Like I said before, just keep talking. Let the world see how much you are full of hate. And keep the good spelling and grammar coming, you're making us laugh.
amper0003 (4 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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Come on, smart ass islamofucks, who the islamofuck care of your Crapistan?
Go and ask the same question in Mazari-Sharif, idiot..
alkabeer101 (4 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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keep talking. We love to see your insightful thoughts displayed for the rest of the world to see. Just keeping talking! Show the world your creative thinking and clever vocabulary. Best of all, you are more of a joke than the video. Ever thought about comedy? You are ART imitating LIFE.
amper0003 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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Be careful, islamomoron. You're making fun out of desent people. The very people who created (and still do) the United States of America the way it is - best country and best social system in the world. It allowed me, the immigrant with empty pockets as well as millions of the like to sucsseed. Try to show Bible on the streets of Saudi Arabia and you will be jailed for ever.
You think of yourself as a desent person, probably.
You wrong.
alkabeer101 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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At what point was George Washington, Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson or any other of the Founding Fathers made fun of? These are the people that created this great country! I am the grandson of a Muslim immigrant who is also a veteran of the US Army. What have you done to serve this country? Maybe you are just a penniless immigrant that came here for the welfare? My grandfather was too busy working hard to badmouth people of other religions .
amper0003 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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First. It is nothing wrong to be a penniless immigrant. Or is it, islamofuck? As millions of others I made it. And you are not at a position to accuse me of doing nothing. I completed my MD in Electrical Engineering here, by cleaning at night and paper delivering at the morning.
amper0003 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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Now my job and my taxes are paying that back very generousely. Second. Live Fouding Fathers alone; You make your silly videos with one goal in your little brain: To make the viewer think that all Americans are "funny ignorants". And you, Islamofuck, DO know perfectly well that this is not even close to reality.
Shame on you.
alkabeer101 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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Everyone pays taxes, even undocumented workers with fake social security numbers pay taxes. Now you think you know what I think. Do you have a degree in psychology?
alkabeer101 (3 days ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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I was wrong to question your economic status. The obvious deficit lies in your command of the English language ;)
amper0003 (15 hours ago) Show Hide Marked as spam
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It is a bon tone to use capital letters while mentioning any scientific discipline, my extra-sofisticated islamofucking friend. One doesn't need to have a degree in Psychology to bite you through. Allah don't like overestimators. Or does he? Modesty, rather Intellectual Modesty - this is The Word you must repeat as a mantra while praying your beloved Moon God five times a day. You over-estimate yourself. Remember - everybody can see that. Even my dog Muhammed.
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Friday, November 23, 2007

Day Thanksgiving Happy

Muslims do not consume Pork...
In a recent scientific survey, 99% of the pig population approves the Muslim Population, one percent that does not approve of the faith tends to have low job satisfaction and a low self esteem. That's some good news for the Muslims, that's why Fox News need to hire more pigs!!

I do not know what so many people when do learn I am a Palestinian, they decide to introduce me to their Jewish friends. "Oh, you are a Palestinian, you have to meet my friend Shai, he is of the Jewish faith" I say, "Sure, I will meet your friend,I am in the mode to meet some yahood."
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Thursday, November 22, 2007

My Veins

So I went to see the doctor the other day. I had the day off, so I thought I'd do something productive! So the doctor wanted to get a blood sample for a regular check up (cholesterol level) and the nice doctor who was German, (very efficient as we all know) and he did everything on his own, no nurses.

To get this blood he poked me more than five times to get to my veins. But could not get any blood out of me. He was so embarrassed, and joked, "For God's Sake, please keep your arms covered!" Good thing I was his last patient for the day. But I thought it was funny, the doctor drilled my hands like that, I think he made me feel like Saudi Arabia where everyone and their grandma is drilling for something, I mean C'mon I'm an Arab, but one thing I don't have in my veins is oil!
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Monday, November 19, 2007

C-Span and Fruits

Did you ever notice that that Americans have more fruits in their shampoo and lotions than in their diet!

I have been gaining weight like crazy lately, thus I am grateful for the fog on the mirror when I am done with the shower so I do not have to see what is going on in my bud!

I know I am not alone in disliking C-Span, but dude, I freaking hate C-Span TV, it's so boring and pointless. They said that C-Span is good for American Democracy, and what do I know about democracy! But I can tell you this that my hate to C-Span makes me long for dictatorships!
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Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Dead One?

I told a friend of mine that some members of a militant group in Gaza desecrated my cousins grave. Sameeh, my cousin his grave for the second time was destroyed but some secretive group, which is really sad for his family. There was a wedding in the family and the news came out during the weeding, it's sad. So, I was telling the friend who shall remain anonymous that my cousin's grave was broken (see picture) my friend looks at me and he/she asks, "The dead one?" I was like what!! What part about a guy in a grave you do not get, I am not sure if you guys bury your living, but yes, my cousin was DEAD!"
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Monday, November 12, 2007

The Broke Warriors

I have heard in many news outlets that terrorists groups go to the poor areas of the country and recruit members to fight for them. Since these poor kids and disadvantages has fewer options if any at all, they will most likely join in such groups that may or may not provide them with a salary or a welfare program. Being a poor is not a crime but being a terrorist is the crime and no one cares if you are a poor who is a terrorist. My second observation is how US army recruiters work in poor communities and tend to recruit more service men from disadvantages areas such as African-American schools, southern universities, or even immigrant communities. ROTC and others promise those recruits citizenships, scholarships and other benefits such individuals will join the military. I do recognize the moral difference since I am outside their groups, but I think in their own minds military men and terrorist think they are justified and have the moral cause. Thus, both sides of this war have the disadvantaged of their communities serving the military, carrying the fighting for them. This makes the war on terror is not fought by rich people neither American forces nor Terrorist groups enlist the wealthy ones. This struggle is a war for the rich fought by the poor. I do recognize that although a minority, there are well off individuals fighting in this war, but both do have their own ulterior motives.
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Kingdom Of Secrets...

Perhaps one of the reasons that many third world countries do not have democracy is because of their strong military sector in that country. Keep in mind strong military is a relative word, strong on their own people not necessarily on their enemies. For example, country A has strong military to suppress its people, but when country B goes to war against A, A loses without honor. Point is that since the military sector in these countries are very strong and major employers in that country, members of the army from the highest ranking officer to the lowest ones have to protect their employer and no one wants their paycheck suspended. Thus members of the army will do the most to protect their paycheck, not necessary the dictator they may disagree with and even hate him (notice it is not her). The moment a country has development and other employers than the army; it is only when people start wanting more democracy and diversity. I think from meeting lots of US troops and service men, I have noticed that the great majority of them are conservative Republicans who are die hard support tough policies and greater military presence throughout the world. However, the good thing is the United States is much more diverse and inclusive than third world countries in which militaries tend to be the sole ruler of the land. In other words, many dictators fear development because it may end up creating new jobs and two things would have to happen. The first is service men have more options of employment and they may join other sectors, causing them to maybe see the wrongs they were doing with the military, which will promote them to ask form more reforms. The second things, government now has to increases wages for their military personnel. So for a dictator to feel safe and untouchable, they need strong military that intimidates people with various branches such us secret police to build a kingdom of secrets.
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The Facebook Religion

I have seen many individuals who have changed their religion, converted to a different religion that the one raised into. Many of these individuals are great and spiritual and actually helped uplift me spiritually. On the other hand, there are some that I considered to be the facebook converts. Individuals in this group are usually lonely because they live among a group of friends who belong to one faith, thus they grow bored and question of it’s their own fault. Such individuals are good people and I am not questioning their faith or anyone's for that matter. However, in the same manner that a friend can send you an invite to join facebook or myspace or some other online networks, thus many join in religions for the wrong reasons because they want to have a network of friends, they also want to be part something big, a platform that some religions provide. In the same manner some of these converts may lose interests after joining a faith, in the same manners that facebook members abandon their membership in such services because it is not what they thought it would be. However, joining a religion for the right reasons is like having a great email address that is east to remember, maybe your last name and first, your friends all know to use it if they want to get a hold of you, you are least likely to want to change that....just a thought. There is also those who join a religion because they enjoy to be the victim. In other words there are some who are attracted to a religion because its controversial and they want to be in the center of something such. I hope I am not making a statement, but I have noticed this in various religions. I do realize that many do joint a faith for the right reasons such as founding spirituality and improving their relationship with the supreme power.
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Latest Stand Up GiG in DC

This stand up gig was three weeks ago in Dupont Circle Hotel Topaz, it went well, and the crowd liked it, I think my intro helped people get an idea of what they are about to get....enjoy!
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Thursday, October 11, 2007


Jehad and His Parents for his B-Day

BYU May, 2004 Trip to Green River

So, Ramadan will be over in 19 hours from now, excited to have the Eid coming up and the prayer in Virginia that will be on Saturday morning. It is going to be fun, but the thins is, Eid for me and for many others about spending time with others and those who you like. While, I do miss my family and spending time with them, I believe I am in better conditions than they are in the Gaza Strip. I hope things will settle down and i will be able to go to visit sometimes, however, that is not looking too good right now. So I will be trying to get to spend time with friends, I am planning to have me a nice Afghani kabob meal from this place few minutes away form where I live. It is great food and reasonably priced. I will be meeting up with few LDS friends and maybe my roommate Jehad.

This Ramadan was actually good since I got to spend a lot of time with roommate Jehad and almost always prayed together and broke our fast together and even ate Sohour (Early meal before sunrise) together, I felt some of the blessings of Ramadan. He is a great guy.

I live now in McLean which is an upscale area in Virginia, few miles away from DC, it is a very rich area full of corporate offices. You may ask how I can afford it? I cannot, I have been living with a family friends of mine from Provo and they are kind enough to take me in. This helps save me on my rent and I should be able to feel better since I am in a family environment
Maybe once Ramdan is over I can get back to doing some Stand Up, I need to get back in the mode, I have some new material like the Energy drink called Gee-Had, a ware in a bottle! But I miss doing some stand up gigs and meeting new folks form all walks of life. and I mean all sort of random people from the area.

Today, October the 11, 2007, I ran into an old BYU friend in the DC Metro, we have graduated together form the same major in 2004, it was good and we chatted on many things going on in our lives, the thing is, I remember this guy, but I can never remember his first name! I think we talked so much that people on the metro were sick of us! I did manage to ask him for his last name!

Work is going well, I got a new title at my job, I work on grants these days, I got a small raise, but I do work with my boss more than any other one in the office. I help her with her correspondence, grants and I do assist her when she need any help. It is tough because when you work with your boss on daily basis, things tend to get complicated since the closer your working relationship, the more difficult to handle each other. She is a former Congresswoman used to having staffers do all her things for her. But I learn a lot of things from her.

As you all know that my work permit expires in May 2008, and after that I am not sure what will happen with me, since I cannot go home even if I wanted to, the borders are closed and Gaza is an "enemy state" now according to the United States and Israel. I am working to figure out a way, but nothing substantial has happened yet.
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Monday, September 24, 2007

Less Safe....Less Free

The book starts strong and finishes strong. The use of statistics and various studies is common throughout the book to make the authors’ points more clear The book cites that as of Feb 2005, the FBI has yet to identify a single al-Qaeda sleeper cell; they cite 400 terror cases, most of which are credit fraud, immigration fraud, or lying to an FBI agent. P 10
It is all the more critical that we develop close positive ties with Arab and Muslim communities here and abroad. We need their eyes and ears if we are going to find the small number of persons actually planning to use violence against us. P 14

Out of the 90,000 Muslims and Arab nationals asked to register with the special registration program, not a single person has been tried for terrorist activates. 160 people were rendered p 25 various story, Arar and khaled el-masri

P 35 the loophole, the bush administration used is that by ratifying CAT, they will not torture in the United States, or they will not torture American citizens, but they free to torture other non-Americans or torture outside the States. That was AG view on the matter, senator McCain and others worked to close the gap in denying foreign nationals the prevention from “cruel, inhumane, and degrading Treatment.” Since in these admin interpretations, the US constitution does not extend to foreign nationals.

The book also exposes the how the US President should not be above the law even during war time. The book cites a number of examples where presidents have abused their power. Nixon, and wire taps, President Truman’s seizure of a steel mill during the Korean War. However, the only president that approaches the authority President Bush has is Nixon, quoted saying “When the President does it, it is not illegal” However, President Bush made one modification, “when the Commander in Chief does it, it’s not illegal” p.63

The book exposes how the Bush preemptive strike is only used against the weakest of target. However, such principle cane lead to dangerous outcomes, what if other nations such as India and Pakistan used it, Iran and Israeli, Taiwan and China, all in their own minds justified to use this principle. The book authors call on the United States to maintain a relation of trust with the Arab and Muslims communities in the states instead of targeting an entire community, a policy that will only alienate Arabs and Muslims in America and make them not come forward with and information that might be useful. This administration’s zero-tolerance approach is making the US less free and less safe.

The book also cites two separate studies, an Israeli study found out that most of the foreign fighters in Iraq are new jihadist and not veteran of terrorism which goes to prove that the Bush argument that “we fight them there, so we do not have to fight them here” false. Another Saudi study, profiled foreign fighters in Iraq, only to find out that these fighters have been radicalized as a result of the Iraq war.

However, the book cites on page 199-200, Israel Supreme Court ruling on torture to be more morale type of torture and coercive action, which in away contradicts Israel’s declared policies on torture and their refusal to sign on anti torture conventions. If Israel a moral authority in coercive force, then the US must be in deep trouble

The book proposed a four part “alternative preventative strategy”
1. Erect safeguards that reduce the likelihood of future harm without controversial policies.
2. Reshape the US foreign policy to address the root causes rather than the symptoms
3. US should eschew unilateral assertions of power formulate alternative strategies.
4. When coercive force is necessary, US should treat the rule of law as an asset and not as an obstacle.

I found the book to be informative and detailed in its account of events and policies shaped as a result of 9/11. Written by two of the US most decorated constitutional scholars conclude great irony in the obvious compromise of civil liberties that are making the US less free and the failed policies of this administration in the war on terror that is making the US less safe and vulnerable to more attacks and bad PR around the world.
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Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Dearborn: The Other Arabia

a group of my friends and I decided to leave for Dearborn, Michigan for the Labor Day weekend, it was a good call! We had a GPS system in the Car, a car is understatement, we had a huge truck, and if you call it a tank you might do it justice. The GPS system was set to toll avoidance, but we did not know this, so the trip that takes 9 hours, took us 12 hours. I was so sick of the riding in the truck that I said in the same amount of time, I could have been anywhere in Arabia, as appose to Dearborn the city of Arabs!

We have driven through DC, Maryland, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio and then Michigan. The weird thing was in West Virgina, where I saw a Burger King wherever one working there was white, no Latinos not Blacks in sight. We stopped in K-Mart to buy some supplies for the rood, we saw so many scary looking people with purple noses, little people, hair people, just odd looking people. I apologize if I am offending anyone, but there must have been some nuclear testing in this state. I have seen other part of West Virginia, that are just mind boggling. Not even funny, lots of hicks and strange looking people in that part of Virginia.

We arrived there at 2 PM, and we wanted nothing but to sleep, before we slept though, as we drove to my friend Abed's house, we saw Warren Avenue, where more than 80% of the signs and the stores had Arabic written on them. The morning we woke up to find that Abed's mom originally from Southern Lebanon has prepared us a nice breakfast, and I mean a nice one even in Arabic standards, all you can eat buffet of cheeses, Arabic pizza (manaqeesh) and other delights, I was so blasted! Abed's father is original from Syria and, they are a Shi'a family (Michigan has a large concentration of Shi'a Muslims) We went all over Dearborn and Detroit and it was great to see such concentration of folks of my background. We saw the museum, the Arab American museum; it had lot so cool things on display. We did see the largest mosque in America (according to Abed) it is a really nice place, nice is understatement; it is gigantic with many golden dooms! We ate tons of Arabic food, better Arabic food than from Gaza, I bet. We were stuffed that I thought our stomachs could turn around and sue us for damages. In between meals, we would have other meals. And Sweets, I mean Dearborn had it all, the best of Palestinian, Syrian and Lebanese delights. I do not need to mention that I spend close to 200 in grocery shopping in preparation for Ramadan. Groceries up there are so fresh and so inexpensive! I cannot complain!

In my quest, for great food, I have also tried both Halal bacon and Halal pepperoni when i was up there. It is meat made out of non pig meat, and prepared on the Muslim way, I tell you I loved what I have tried that I apologize for talking trash about bacon the entire time. It was good to have the bacon on my burger and the pepperoni on my cheese roll!

So in Warren Avenue, Arabs had tons of places where you can stack up the calories, but the fun thing was that their nearest gym was 10 miles away, not that many opt out to go to the gym, people up there work hard in all walks of life. Not only did Dearborn have Arab owned business, it also had a fusion of Arabic houses and American ones, they build extensions to their homes and there is always ongoing construction in their homes, however it is a slow process. Thus, because there is so much construction going in the streets and the homes, Dearborn looks more like an Arab country. I guess, Home Owner Associations are not too popular in that part of the country.

I liked being able to sit in the street and being a stranger there, but have everyone greet me like they know me for ages. "Hey George" says our host, "hello om Hasan" "how are the kids?" "Send them to have some tea with us" we were sipping tea outside and enjoying the good life while greeting people going up the street. Also the folks up there love their satellite dishes, if a home has less than three dishes hanged on the house, they must be missing some channels. I heard of a guy who has three thousand channels, from all over the world and more. I bet he/she can get even these aliens channels from a parallel universe.

We did see the Ford factories, the GM commerce buildings in Detroit, Tigers stadium, the Pistons stadium and many other places such as the Water Walk which is cross the river from Canada, so we were looking at Canada the entire time we were there. A fun fact about Michigan is their love for big cars, even janitors in that state drive huge cars around. I guess they get better quotes up there on their leases. Every home owens at least three cars, and everyone is doing its part in polluting our planet.

Needless to say, the Arab people of Dearborn are like my type of Arabs, I felt like I was sitting downtown Gaza with people who speak like me and have the same opinions about various things in life. I mean, I have met many Arabs in the States, but the population of Dearborn are my kind of ARABS, they are patriot Americans, yet unapologetic for their Arabness.
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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Funny Thing is...

-I moved into a new apartment in McLean VA, a really nice upscale area. I moved in with a family that I have known for some time. And from my window view, I can see the pool and people at the pool which is awsome during the summer! The first thought that crossed my mind was, "Wow, now I do not have to go to the pool to pee, I can do it from the balcony and the pee will get into the pool" Same results. I know this is bad, but I could not resist!

-In some immigration form I was filing for my work permit the other day, the form which also is used for citizenship and immigration asks for my race, and here are the two options that shock me: African-American, Native Indian. I was like why would native Indian want to become a citizen of the states? What part of native do not they get? Or the African-American, I mean does not the name say it all? They are not just African they are also Americans, so why would an immigration form include such useless and maybe insulting options. There was an option that reads white, but white can also be European who is seeking immigration to the United States. I thought this is the tax money in action.

-I was visiting San Francisco During Thanksgiving of 2001, such a nice place. Giving the reputation of the city, its parades and its colors, I was like wow, here is a couple holding hands, and another and another, then I got sick of it and gave up. So I went into a bathroom to take care of business, when I was in there, I hear a man talk, "No, Jack, not here, change your position!" I was like what? I started the panic, as the man's voice continues in comfort "Yeah, good boy!", "there is where I want you to be" I was like "What on earth are they two doing in the bathroom?" So I rushed out and then as I was washing my hands, the man walks out of the bathroom with his husky! I am neither used to two men being in bathroom together nor men with their large pets along for the ride in the Toilet.

-I think crazy people should not be allowed to own pets, maybe anyone who wants or owns a pet should be under contact review think Patriot Act! Ok, I admit I do not like pets, but when i see them mistreated, it breaks my hear, it really does. So maybe anyone who wants to own a pet should have three friends vouch for them to make sure that this person is a sane entity.

-If you are not a person know to have wisdom, what do you call your wisdom teeth? Or better do you have them?

-If you can have a biological offspring, why cannot you have chemical or physical offspring? I was never known to be a person of science.

-The image of Homeless people in mind, is a man dressed in old, dirty, and smelly outfit. Not in Portland, the homeless there wear Polo shirts and nice cargo shorts.

-If you are an person who does not have blue eyes, and enjoy a nice pair of black eyes, would you still call your eyes black if someone punched you in the face and your eyes are swollen.

-A Arab, Muslim coworker of mine was driving me home and he was bragging about his training to the FBI and how the agency gave him a a nice parking lot, near the door of the agency so he does not have to walk too far. I was like "Hey man, I hate to bust your bubble, but they wanted to put you where the camera sees" I told him that they might have watched the Godfather movie where the infamous line says "Keep your friends close and your enemies closer" since he is a Muslim that would make sense to get him a closer parking space. He said, "Yes, I think they wanted to give me less space to run from them!"
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Friday, August 10, 2007

Kosher vs. Halal

Kosher Hot Dogs have a tag or a slogan on their kosher product "We Answer to Higher Authority" which I think it's cool. However, if the Muslims to introduce a line of halal Hot Dogs in the West, what would the tag line be? I was thinking something along the lines "Killing, we are good at it" or maybe "We Kill Right and...left", maybe another one could be "Slaughtering, Perfected" , "Let the Muslims kill for you!" for change. Any other ideas?
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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Fire Truck!

I know I have not been updating my blog as often as I should, I apologize for being a bit lazier than usual. Well, last night around 11 PM, the fire alarm goes off again, this is the second time it goes off in two weeks. I do live in a magnificent building, like 17 stories high three different building connected together. I was in bed and I was last to move, so I told my roommates not to worry about it, or worry as much as they want, but I am not going to leave my bed. They looked from the window and saw some people out and asked me to go down. I yelled at them, these outside are the Asians in our building, they like to be safe and do not have a sense of humor to speak of. I think last week, it the fire was due to some Jewish guy in our building burning his bacon which ironic because Jews do not usually eat bacon (made of pig)No wonder God told them not to eat it thought. He Jewish guy in our building must be absenting the Lord! I think people who went to the street were all modeling their night gowns, that if they had any clothes on since last night was one of the hottest in DC. I have to admit though, when I got out two weeks ago due to the fire alarm, (something I did not do this time) I was entertained to see what people carried with them as they were leaving their houses escaping a fire. Some had pets, all sort of pets here, some had clothes, a guy had a computer, another woman carrying a jewelery box. My favorite the guy who was running from the fire and saving his box of Krispy Creme Donuts! Peace
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Friday, July 20, 2007

Bring Crazy Back

In the last two weeks, I have done two stand Up gigs at Soho House of tea and coffee, I am getting to know the comedians and the audience in the area, it is a lot of fun to be part of such a diverse group of people and all have something in common, a sense of humor; some are funny some are offensive, but most get laughs. I hosted the show on July 9th, my first time being an MC at comedy. It was fun and I liked it, but I think I have a lot to learn. Sometimes the comedians were so offensive to me to my friends, but I had to suck it in and say give it up to Lisa, the vocal lesbian who gave us intimate details about her lifestyle! But I did learn some new tricks in the business; such as when you are hosting, never steal the show. I did have about seven friends and coworkers attending that night, I felt sorry for some of them (Few Mormons were in the crowd) However on July 16, I did some stand Up in the same venue, they gave me some stage time and the audience waste much better, the jokes were funnier and I had a great response. Other comedians were not too offensive and I had coworkers of mine show us as Tony, Abed and Sara. On that show, I mustered some gut to share and test some of my new material or older material with alterations to meet the local preference. I felt it went well. I think I will have few more shows with this venue, I am getting to become friends with the guy who run it who also did some tours earlier in his life and boy we are clicking.

Do Homeless people date? I mean I really do not know, but I give it to them, they must have it down to a thing they do not have to worry about is the weird question of my place or yours? I mean they all are going to the same place…or are they not living in the same street? No need to restate the obvious or is there? I mean, he might live by a Burger King, home of the Whopper! Yes, Burger King is the place where you can HAVE IT YOUR WAY....

So, I grew up left handed in the Middle East, eating with your left hand is a really bad thing to do back home. So my mom trained to eat with my right hand because as she puts it, the devil will eat with me if I ate in my left hand, and the more I eat with my left hand the more food the devil gets. But I thought this such a bad idea, I mean the only thing the devil will get from the kind of goof I am eating is fat and sugar which will make him HUGE and overweight. On other hand, if I do not feed him, the devil will be lean and slim and much more tough to take out. C’mon I can take out an obese devil, but a lean one would be much harder. That is another reason why I like big people, they are taking one for the team, and they are beating the devil making him larger and lazier for all of us. I must admit that I do eat in my right hand now, but right using my left hand.
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Friday, June 29, 2007


I now have officially moved out to Virginia, from Maryland, still work in the ADC out in Goergetown in the nation's capital. I have moved in Pentagon City with my college buddy Sterling in a nice apartment with none other than the Mormons! I love it.

I was running the other day near my new place, which has a really nice parks and trails for joggers....I saw a child care place called "The Busy Bee", their next door neighbor had another name "The Smart Busy Bee" I said alright...may be there are rivals. A block away from these two places, there was another place for child care "The Athletic Bee" Now, I have had it...this place called the athletic as appose to the lazy bee child care place. I am sorry, but are we expecting a little bit too much of our bees these days? Back home bees are for honey not for intellectual work not for sporting events!

Do Homeless people date? I would ask them but they frighten me and I bet I frighten them too. I mean it is cool if they do because one thing they do not have to worry about if they go out is the question of "My place or your place?" Obviously they live in the same place and all streets are paved equally. They might argue though, "My place is by the Burger King" "Home of the Whopper" "Have it your way!"

Bankruptcy lawyers, I feel bad for them! These are the only lawyers that I sympathize with them. I mean, if these guys are rich, then their clients are rich and should not be declaring bankruptcy to start with. How do they charge their clients? I am sorry, but their clients do not necessary have the best financial sense. Or worst yet, try to explain their work to their kids, “Daddy, helps people become poor!” “Daddy’s clients do not have any money.”

Be Safe...

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Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Back On....

I have a new show here on July 9 at this venue I like called Soho House of Tea and Coffee out in DuPont Circle in Washington DC so I am looking forward to that....Over the weekend, I performed in two nights, one at a wedding (interfaith Jewish and Muslim) and a party for a group of Muslim young men and women (ratio was 10 guys to 40 girls) sounds familiar? I was told that i did well, it was my first day with the such mix group of my people, most people reacted positively, but few did not appreciate some of my material. I saw some guy with a beard and told me friends to watch my back if he tackles me or something, he did not. I guess for some who do not know me and my personality they might think I am a sac religious person which is not true at all.
As for the Jewish/Muslim wedding was great, the audience had to have some sense of humor to be at the wedding. It was out in Vienna Virginia in this low key neighborhood. I tried some of my new material and did well, I had some people come talk to me after the show and ask me questions which was nice. The audience was a mix of students, professors, professionals, peace people and some off duty cops to keep the peace between the Arabs and the Israelis. Afterward we went to a party at some friends house, everyone was drinking wine, I went and grabbed me some Hot Cocoa which kept my awake.

It looks that I will be in the DC area for longer than I planned for since I was hoping to hit the road in go home before the holy month of Ramadan, things have chanced, people got killed, borders were locked, streets where damaged,....etc. The farther I keep from Gaza, the better for me and my loved ones...
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Friday, June 15, 2007

Few More Good Men

I have had another cousin fall this week, his name is jihad was waiting on Eriz to be evacuated to the West Bank and he was caught in crossfire between Hamas and the is a story about him:

This is bad for all of us; I am troubled by what is going on home and the death of people I know by...I pray my family will be safe for the time being...

I removed the Video with Samih till I can get the video that few have of him shouting at the Hamas guys as they were puling him out of the vehicle, Ta3eesh Fateh Ta3eesh Al Fateh (Viva Fateh, Viva Fateh) which upset the high school dropouts and have them shot him in his legs even though he was shot in his chest and stomach...

I am sad for death of my cousins and many innocents in the struggle, but my cousin Manal has lost her brother Samih and three days later her husband Jehad…

I was sadden yesterday to hear about the death of my cousin Sameh Almadhoun by some of the militant groups back home, he was in his car with some of his companions where they were gunned down, he did not die but had wounds, they dragged him from his car and execute him in public minutes later. Some of you may remember him as i mentioned him in my blog he was the one who got me into Egypt and did me the favor of making some calls so I can go get my Visa to the US. Sameh was the leader of Al-Aqsa Brigade in Gaza and he was the last leader left holding President Abbas place of residence (Almuntada) This is really sad and it broke my hear may Allah be with my aunt and my uncle whose other kids are still running for their lives. There has been more than 10 attempts on his life before, and all failed, but this time they got to him. I won't be heading home for a while...

Here are some stories in the news about his death:

I have d
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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

ADC Convention

Part of the Annual ADC convnetion, there was a great comedy routine but the Axis of Evail comedy Tour....They were funny and entertaining, the room was sold out and they show was a milestone for both ADC and the Comedians. One of my assiginments at ADC was to sell the tickets for the show in addition I helped man the door, and after their show which I greatly enjoyed and learned new skills from, I had a chance to help the comedians sell their DVDs and merchnedise, I was there with them and helping them get their products sold, we sold all of their DVDS and they signed pretty much all of their DVDS and T-shirtis. After the show Maz asked me if I would take a DVD as thank you for helping them, both my and Tony my coworker got a copy each and they singed it for was really fun haning out with these guys and getting to know them. They had many fans froom all around the United States and all walks of life.
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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

My CoZ

Here is a story from Gaza about my cousin, (his father and mine are brothers) he is trying to get into a PhD program in the Tel-Aviv University, nd the department likes his qualifications and wanted to interview the story and yet the comments are best about it. It is something that more people should hear about...I grew up with this guy, he 28 years old with 3 kids. No he is not,7340,L-3409075,00.html

I wrote a comment # 44 commenting on the article...
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Someone Said....

A place where Papa Pays and Son Plays.

Life Insurance:
A contract that keeps you poor all your life so that you can die Rich.

A person who works up to give you sleeping pills.

It's an agreement in which a man loses his bachelor degree and a woman gains her masters.

Future tense of Marriage.

The hydraulic force by which masculine willpower is defeated by feminine waterpower.

An art of transferring information from the notes of the Lecturer to the notes of the students without passing through "the minds of either"

The confusion of one man multiplied by the number present.

The art of dividing a cake in such a way that everybody believes he got the biggest piece.

A place where success comes before work.

Conference Room:
A place where everybody talks, nobody listens and everybody disagrees later on.

Books, which people praise, but do not read.

A curve that can set a lot of things straight.

A place where you can relax after your strenuous home life.

The only time some married men ever get to open their mouth.

A sign to make others believe that you know more than you actually do.

Individuals who can do nothing individually and sit to decide that nothing can be done together.

The name men give to their mistakes.

Atom Bomb:
An invention to end all inventions.

A fool who torments himself during life, to be spoken of when dead.

A person who tells you to go to hell in such a way that you actually look forward to the trip.

A person who starts taking bath if he accidentally falls into a river.

A person who while falling from Eiffel tower says in midway "See I am not injured yet."

A person who lives poor so that he can die rich.

A banker provided by nature.

A guy no different from the rest....except that he got caught.

Someone who is early when you are late and late when you are early.

One who shakes your hand before elections and your Confidence after.

A person who kills your ills by pills, and kills you by bills.
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Monday, June 04, 2007


Do you ever feel so speechless when something happens, that you actually want to speak or start speaking at that moment?

When I am bored and got nothing on mind that can get me to think, I just walk to the nearest pharmacy or Rite Aid and just "hang out" look at people and see what kind of medications they are buying. I know this is creepy, but c'mon it is fun and entertaining. "Wow, she has a headache and she likes caffeine" Or that overweight guy who spend 10 minutes staring at the weight loss products. I hear myself say "No, that's not what you need, what you need is a place called Gold's Gym" Another person "Why is she buying these all these cold medicine" "It is not even cold anymore, maybe they are on sale" If is lot of fun and keep in mind not to remain idle in one corner, keep moving so no one notices you!

It is funny how a lot of people in America tell you be yourself, and once you be yourself and pass gas in public, none of these people seem to be near by!

I was in a friend’s house last night and they were giving MTV Movie Award, on of their new awards is "Best Summer Movie You Have Not Seen Yet" I thought how could you give and award for something you have not seen yet, or am I old school? What if we want to take this principle a bit farther and apply it to life? Best grade in a class you have not yet taken award! Or Best promotion in a job that you have yet to apply for. Best car award for a car that yet to be made....ideas?

I think it is strange the way people ask us questions and then as we answer them with disagreement, we learned that we should have given agreed with them or gave a different answer. For example some one asks you "Do you like Europe?" you answer "No, but I like France, Germany, and Italy" ok these are in Europe by the way. Or "Do you hate immigrants" you answer no and further say "I do not like Latinos and Asians" Ok there are all immigrant groups to this country. Best yet, you asks guy 'do you like women" he scratches his head and declares "No, but I like how they walk, talk, and smell" OK one thing for sure this guy likes the females. Really I did this myself, I would give and answer and then think more about it and then say "I guess I like this..." after I have said the exact opposite a minute ago.

A friend of mine from Senegal lives in DC and told me how he lived in a high rise building in Silver Spring, and his apartment number was 911. Being a Muslim he does not like the number, but it was the only open place because not too many people want this number, it reminds people of bad things. After all the hassle he had, he decided to move into a different apartment, and the only one he could find was 711, which in his opinion is worse because he works in a 7/11 store and does not like it much. Finally he moved into a different apartment 311 when Spain trains were attacked. This is for real...not

Why do clubs call whatever they charge you at the door "Cover Charge"? It is not like you are handing people's covers and coats as they do not walk in, nor do they check your coat for you when you walk in. I know in the clubs there are people that if you see them, makes you want to run for cover. Also, it is not like any of these people at the club are covered, most of them are not well dressed. Clubs need to change the name before someone sues them for false representation.

It never gets old when a woman complains a bout how guys are dirty and not so clean and neat as if all women are this way. I think guys need to ask those who complain to zip it or else. Say "If you wanted someone who is clean why do not you date a napkin?” It cleans really well. Napkins are all over the place you can find them in every restaurant from the fast food to the gourmet, so that should not be a tough task.

As I was in the Rite Aid store I saw this weight loss product that has a guy in his 70 losing weight and they compare his picture with his pictures when he was 40. I was like wow; I did not know that you need a medicine to help you lose weight as you grow old? I mean I am happy for you that it took you 30 years to lose 20 pounds, but c'mon why did not you do it sooner when you were healthier to say the least? This is bad advertising and it is misleading to us all. I mean we see crappy advertising all the time, but this one either thins that we are stupid or stupid to believe their crap and buy their so cold weight loss system. Here is a better idea, go down to Latin America and hope you catch a virus there that will help you shed some pounds.
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Friday, June 01, 2007

Bring Crazy Back....Again

I do not get Modern Art, I feel some of the drawing are products of people of inferior artistic skills. In fact, Modern art is another evidence that Affirmative Action does exist in art.

My Mormon roommate was not doing well and his faith was deteriorating, so I called the Mormons Missionaries to come and offer him support. It is time to give him a taste of his medicine.

No question about it, American killed many Arabs in its war on terrorism. Arabs are loyal customers to American cars. American cars companies are struggling now. Why would you want to kill your consumers? It is just a bad business practice. After all Bin Laden likes Whitney Houston.

A local child school has a name of "WEE CARE" one thing we know for sure that kids at that school are not learning how to spell English words properly.

More and More comics and politicians make fun of Arabs and Muslims, many of my friends are offended by that. But I am not. I only make fun of those who I do not fear. This is a good start, I do not want to scare people or be that person. s
A friend of mine called me and he was offended and insulted than an Asian kid have shot the victims of at VA Tech, horrible I know. His concern however, that he thought only Arabs and Americans are committing all the action and shooting in the globe. I told him it was not funny.

People who are going to Iraq to protect the American war in Iraq hoping to create media attention are wrong. By going to Iraq, the only thing you are creating is funeral. Get Real...Join the Establishment

I love when food is labeled "naturally" or "sugar free naturally" I do not know about you but I do not think it is ethical to make crap up and just say it is natural, like making food out of rubber and saying it is natural. It is natural but it is not very good to eat. Made of natural dog crap, sure it is natural.

Whoever said that dog's are man best friend did not live in America, because if he/she has lived here and saw man cleaning after his/her dog. The Man IS the Dog's best friend, I do not see any other animals collecting other animals crap!

9/11 was horrible for me, really. it is the day, I had to throw all my New York T-shirts the ones I bought from New York earlier...I do not want to remind people of these events. And there also were the terrorist attacks that killed so many innocent Americans.
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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Bring Crazy Back

In the local Safeway grocery store, there is a note that reads "If you find a mistake in our receipt, we will give you the item for free" sounds nice. However, the note further read "excluding purchases made on drugs and alcoholic beverages" This is such a shame because whoever made the exception to the rule is a Moron, it is not like people who are buying drugs and alcohol are alert to catch such a mistake on the receipt. Maybe they are trying to make a statement that wasted and druggy people cannot be trust.

I was at the local bookstore Borders and on the shelves, among the millions of books, I saw a book titled "How to shake hands, hug, kiss and greet in Latin America" I do not know about you, but do not we all know how to do that already? Walk anywhere and you will most likely see a Latin greeting someone and it is hand shakes, just go for the kisses. Why would you need a book for that? For crying out loud there are more than 40 million Latinos in this country, why do not you just ask one of them? And save the price of the book?

The thing about credit cards vs. debit cards is tricky. Why is it when you spend your money on a debit card, they ask you to use a pin password which is more sophisticated procedure than the signature required when you use a credit card i.e. when you are spending the bank's money not yours. So again, in the US, it is much easier to spend people's money than your own. What are the credit card companies trying to tell us? Maybe that they have tons of money and they do not care to take security measures to keep their money safe, but when it comes to your few nickels and dimes, they want you to be careful. Maybe the fact that they have so much money has something to do with not caring to ask for a pin password.

I love it when medicines go on do a sale, venders expect people to buy more of something or that the products are to be discontinued...First I do not want to wish people ill by encouraging them to buy more medicines and I do not think people would want to buy drugs that are being discontinued. And remember, cold medicine go on sale only in the summer time, who gets a cold in the summer? Maybe in Alaska. These possibilities are scary. What is the point of selling drugs for cheap?

Plus, if you call it COLD medicine, why do not you keep it in the fridge? and Remember my roommate Clay used to say, Keep your HOT sauce away from the Fridge

The one industry that always has American flags and patriotic lines in their products is the Dry Clean industry. Whenever, I pick my shirts, there are always wrapped in American flag plastic, or come with statements such as We Support out Troops, which is all great. However, knowing that most dry cleaners in the metro area are owned by Koreans and Chinese is strange giving the flag power.

Almost all Arab traditional dances and modern involve carrying a weapon. In Oman and Morocco, they dance carrying daggers, in Egypt they dance with a stick, in Palestine, they dance with guns, in Lebanon, they use sticks, in the gulf, and they use swords. Why? It is not like any of the Arabs need any bad PR. What does this say about us? Are we trying to have it both ways, saying yes, I can shake IT, but I still can kick your butt?

Why is that more fashion companies are making shirts and clothing with pictures on hot and gorgeous celebrities printed all over them. I do not know if I want that kind of attention. By wearing a hot celebrity t-shirt with the picture of some soccer player or Shakira if you are a girl, people will tent to compare you with them. Hani, you do not look at fit as the guy from Real Madrid. Or that girl's hips do lie unlike Shakira's hip "Hips do not lie" I want a picture of some fat dude, with a beer belly that would make me look good. Get Real.

I was thinking the other day, how do you fire a lobbyist? Really, the person that gets paid to change people's mind. If they manage to get their job back then you would have to hire them again because they did a great job lobbying you for their jobs. If they do not lobby for their job back, then you do not want them to work there in the first place.

The term, I have friends in high places, means that you know people who can make things happen, or that your friends in high places are dead.
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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Memorial Day In DC....

Right before the show on Monday, I went around in DC museum scene and enjoyed the places DC has to offer because it was Memorial Day there was tons to things to see and do, parades, and museums. I went to my friend Lindsay to the Natural Science Museum--where they have animals I guess. We also went to the native Indian museum which was really cool and I enjoyed the unique design of the building. Afterward, we went to Chinatown for some Chinese cuisine and I cannot say no to Orange Chicken nor to General Tsao Chicken. I was a great meal then we talked to Union Station check out the shops and kill time till the show. Right before the show I went to a bookstore in DuPont Circle and read some, it was nice. The club where I was performing was only three blocks away from the bookstore; it was nice walk in humid DC summer. Here are some pictures for you.
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DC Shows

So, last night was my second show for the weekend here in DC, my other one on Saturday and both went well. I have gotten so many positive feedbacks and laughs in both shows not to say that I did not have to patch some jokes up and reintroduce them.

The Saturday was in a lounge and a bar scene in downtown Washington DC, there was good audience who was there for the show. There were about ten comics and it was a contest, until now I do not know how won, but probably it would not be me. On Saturday the comics many of them were vulgar and offensive on so many levels, some were even explicit and graphic, something I do not find in myself. I was told by some of the audience, including my friend Lindsay and Nawer and his wife Camille that I good a good feedback, but remember they are my friends they won't tell me the truth. When I watched the other comics, I was like "what the heck I cannot believe this, what is she or he talking about" Some of the comics even had notes and were reading from them. I thought my comic club back, at BYU Humor U were much professional and funnier than many on the Saturday crowd. I honestly, felt that the Saturday crowd was tough and someone was paying them not to laugh. But I felt good about the routine, although some of my jokes are much funnier in Utah than here and the other way around. Take for example the "No, senor, I do not see any Arabs here" in Utah that was it wasn't so, still good though. In that night there were a number of Jewish comics who had great material and I laughed so hard, but the audience was like "So what?" I really thought the audience could do better and give some courtesy to people trying to entertain them.

There was an older white couple sitting in the front, these guys won't stop laughing at my jokes even when everyone was like "What?" I felt confidence by looking at these guys; I do not have reasons to believe that they had too much to drink.

On Monday show, I loved it. I liked the audience and the sitting, it was in a coffee show and there was a mix of people on racial and age background, something I came to love. I had four friends join me there and show support. The comics were all college age and were fun. Lots of female comics, although I still think Andrea my friend from BYU tops them all. They comics were great, some where testing new material which I have learned to be dangerous. Some of the jokes were great and even gave me ideas for new material. There was a great comic who did impersonation and he was my favorite. A lot of the comedians come from improve background and have done this before and always looking for participation for the audience which is important to get people's attention. I came to be the second to last, so I started my routine and I can tell that the audience was much better than the ones on Saturday night. This club is based on DuPont Circle in the heart of Washington DC. I had to make fun of my co worker who was laugi8ng like crazy and tell the audience that she is my sister. After I was done, an older white man smiled upon me and told me good job "what is it about older white men and me?" When I was about to leave the guy who coordinates the event asked me to come back and do some more stand up with them, he was pleased and I guess I liked the place and atmosphere. So I might be doing it again.

A thought, I think, the guys at Humor U club back at BYU were much more respectful of other people, ethnicities and preferences. Some of the comics I saw were offensive and I know they know that, but what makes them think they can get a way with it? I ma not sure, but this is just a note.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Palestine Israel Dialouge Group

This is more on the serious side, this pas week I took part of a dialogue group with some DC based Palestinians, Saudis, Lebanese and Israelis and some Americans. A member of the board of the organization where I work had to persuade me to go and participate in the conversation; it was in West Virginia, about 3 hours way from Washington DC, in a retreat center. The people in charge of this dialogue are all PhD in conflict resolution and management in campuses around DC area.

There were about 15 of us, and we drove in separate cars. I really was not feel it because on the same day, the Israelis were bombing my town, but it took 3 people half a day to convince me to go (they even paid all my expenses)

During the weekend, we had a chance, to talk, argue, make meals, eat and play volleyball with the Israelis; some even were smoking together--something I did not take part of. But I did make some points needed to be made to the Israelis, and I did listen. The only thing I learned from the Israelis is something I did not know existed in this degree. Man, the Israelis really fear us. By us, I mean the Arabs and Palestinians. For real, they have so much fear from us that we will push them to the see. I never thought some people with the fourth strongest military in the world and nuclear programs and war driven government would have so much fear, but I was wrong. I thought when they spoke of fear on TV, they wanted sympathy, maybe they did, but now I know they have fears.

I have also learned of the diversity among the Israeli society, so many of them do not agree or come together, they have different agendas and visions for the place they call Israel. In away I do admire the diversity in them because some of those who attended were Jewish and Israeli and all served in the army, but still have different ideas about the Palestinians. Most of them however, were raised in right wing families where one does not speak of the P word (that's Palestine)

Here are few sound bits of some points I made.

-When the Israelis ganged up on the Palestinian lady who is from the inside that would be an Israeli citizens who happens to be a Palestinian. They were questioning her loyalty and her allegiance to Israel. She defended herself well, but I stood up for her by saying "Guys, you should not question people's loyalty, this is not you. The Nazis and the Fascistic did this and this is what some Arab regimes do to make it difficult for Arab Jews to stay where they are. I know this is beneath you"

-They were saying the Arabs need to recognize us before anything; they should have done this and that. We told them that they offered to do that many occasions including the Saudis. The Israelis said that's not enough. I have had it by then, I said "Guys, do not push us too far, some of your Jewish Rabbis does not even recognize your "little Jewish State" do not ask too much too soon"

-They also brought to our attention that the Palestinian are smuggling weapons from rafah and not respecting their agreements by brining in more guns. I snapped and I said respectfully, "do not say weapons, it is not like you can smuggle tanks and other heavy duty machines" "They might be smuggling weapons, but look they are shooting each other with them," and I know this is not something that worries you!

-Oh, Hamas want to push us to the sea, they want us dead, we are weak! I proclaimed, wow, you guys the 4th largest military in the world can be pushed to the sea with some fireworks (that's what I call the homemade rockets) the homemade rockets have killed more Palestinians than Israelis.

-They also made the case that Israel cannot trust any Arab country on its borders because Arabs will help Arabs go train in Iran and places to hurt Israel, they were skeptical of the Egyptians allowing Palestinians to go to train army style. I told them of my story at the borders where the Israelis cleared me to ravel and leave the strip, but the Egyptians were the ones kept me in the Strip by not letting me get into Egypt out of fear that I might be a threat. So in face the Israelis with all their sophisticated technologies did not have a problem with me, but the Egyptians saw something else. I was finally allowed to leave the Strip and get to Egypt after they did their research.

-Overall, it much harder for the Israelis to get in our shoes, but it was easier for us to make their arguments. I think because we hear it in the media almost all the time. They were the emotional one this time, not the Arabs and Arabs did not have much disagreement which is rare.

-For me, it was important to really listen to what their argument was which have either taut me something I did not know or have taught me to improve my argument which what happened.

-I have also learned that the Israelis do not like nor ready to talk about a one state solution, they do not want to think about it. When I brought it up, it was like “you would be fine with that?” I said sure, but it was like the heard this for the first time in their lives.

-The Israelis do not care much for the history of the conflict nor do they understand it, but for the Palestinains history is still alive and close to memory, that is an area where communication is important and both parties do not need to get caught in the past and what happend then and I know it is painful for both espcially for my people.

-I think peace is possible only if both sides curb the extremists and uproot them. For the Palestinians to uproot the extremists is important to gain the Israeli trust and get land once this trust been established. For the Israelis uprooting their extremists (settlers and such) is essential to gain the Palestinians’ trust and help them uproot the extremists among them. The existence of an extremists group on one side justifies and fuels the existence of a counter group on the opposite side. I realize this is dangerous for both leaders because it is dangerous for a Palestinian leader to be labeled as a traitor or someone who gives in easily or jail, punish, or even, kill their own people who the Israelis would love to see dead. The same goes to the Israelis; do not want to see little returns for their "investment" by giving the land back. That is the area where Saddat failed the most.

-Language was a problem because people make the arguments using words and names the other party is not comfortable with. Names of towns were important and using Arabic names or Hebrew name kind of indicates a claim on that town. For example, when the Israelis would say "Israel gave Gaza...." I reminded the Israelis to say give "back" not just give, this is important to many Palestinians to hear and it does make a different in your attitude.

-Bottom line, Israelis were looking to get something in order to trust the Palestinians and the Palestinians wanted to get something to be trusted. So the problem was not that they both need the same thing, the problem is that they both want the same things at the time. For the Palestinians, to get something from the Israelis comes first and for the Israelis to get something from the Palestinians first and giving them trust comes second and here is why Oslo failed in my humble opinion.

At the end I did some Stand Up Comedy for the group and it went well, went well means they understood my English and laughed. I enjoyed it because I had to test some of my material outside Utah, and boy it was good, some humor is global.
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