A Blog from Amman, Jordan, Online Since 2004.

Month: August 2005 (Page 1 of 5)



The other day while shopping at the mall, I came upon a product that I am perhaps a little too familiar with- Hot Head Temporary Hair Color, “guaranteed to make your hair look fabulous, dah-ling!”

Yes, fabulous without a doubt, because after one experiment with a tube of hot pink Hot Head, I loved my new pink do so much that I decided to go permanent- a headful of fuschia fluff.

(click on images to appreciate full pinkness)

Naturally, but for reasons more related to parental permission than to sheepishness, the first time was modest. My hairdresser also absolutely refused to pink me up any further than streaks and tips, so I ended up with a simple front, but a rather artistic back as it literally looked like glued-on pink feathers.

combed =P

The second time was a little blunter. My hair was longer then and already highlighted, so I used a home-kit to pinkify the highlights. I wasn’t very happy with it though, and often resorted to a bright pink wig for special occassions(the now abandoned pink bright wig that’s still tucked lovingly in a little box in one of my drawers after many, many years).

Perhaps around 2 years after the 1st time, I decided that I wanted to experiment again, this time with a crazier color. So, I found myself some salon-formula “Enraged” hairdye, took a deep breath, and wrapped my hair in aluminum foil for 15 minutes over the initial required 15 minutes mentioned in the directions(you see, I wanted the job well done).

And well done it was, resulting in what was probably my worst hair experience ever, even worse than the foresaken mullet. I looked like a complete punk, but I won’t scare anyone by posting a front view picture here(but if you are really gutsy and able to withstand nightmarish pictures, you can look at it).

That was my last “crazy teenager” hair experience, although I did go blonde for a while a little later in my teens(and I swear to God that I am brighter as a brunette!)

Now, I only go with brown, which is my natural haircolor.

As I was looking at all of the very experimental pictures that have piled up on my harddisk over the years, I couldn’t help but think wow, my parents are beyond cool dude. I mean, they had a bright pink daughter for a good amount of time and neither of them ever said anything. There is a set of drums and an electric guitar in the livingroom and they’re both cool with it. How patient is that?

And that is only a little sample of what wonderful parents they’ve been to us, I can go on and on about my great upbringing. Understand, in a country as opressed as Saudi Arabia, my parents created my childhood.

I am not in a particularly eloquent mood and I can’t squeeze any sappiness out of me, so I will say it simply, minus the icing-

You guys totally rock, bright red and hot pink are not even cool enough to describe how wonderful you are. I love you. Happy anniversary :)

Self Indulgance

Haha, because Omar wants to hear what my answers will be like ;)

10 years ago:
I flunked Arabic and Math in grade school and had to spend the whole summer getting tutored in my grandmother’s dining room while I started longingly through the window at the garden while the boys played.

5 years ago:
I was kicking Arabic’s and Math’s asses by getting As in all my high school courses including those monsters(I beat you, you evil, evil things).

1 year ago:
I was rid of Arabic and Math forever and sinking happily in the sea of the fine arts(ok, ok, I still have to deal with Arabic 101 and Arabic 102 but leave me alone).

Read the rest of this post here.

Because ice cubes are sooo out…

This tray makes little cylinders of ice, that are considerably easier to insert into plastic bottles than their cubic counterparts.

How come no one ever thought of that?

+ Oh, Gizmo!

Short Movie of the Day

Starring: Sami Elzaharna(top right corner with the afro, I’m glad that’s gone!)

Weeeeeh! I’m friends with a movie star! :P

Yes, yes, he DoEs have a “cute smile”.

Watch the movie here.

Yours truly, Piaget

Wow, jewelery with a geek quotient! Just send a copy of your fingerprints to Piaget, and they’ll make a watch or pendant design out of it. An expensive geek gadgetry too- the swirls are laid out in diamonds and white gold.

Hm, and surprisingly, the watch is not all that bad.

What say you?

Pirates are cool

You would not appreciate this unless you have a thing for pirates.

Big Arr! Little Arr!

(and well, while we’re at it ya Soos ya amar, why did a man who just ate seagulls after his ship sunk kill himself?)



Andy Warhol is one of my very favorite artists. Who else would say something like “I think everybody should be a machine”, “I never fall apart because I never fall together”, and “I’m not more intelligent that I appear, I never have time to think about the real Andy Warhol, we’re just so busy here. Not working, busy playing because work is play when it’s something you like.”

He’s just so awesome… How can I not love someone as eccentric? Of course, there’s so much more to pop art and Andy Warhol, but I will leave that to another day. Today, I will share these really cute Andy Warhol inspired table ware by Precidio Objects(via D*S).

Absolutely fantastic don’t you think? They would look, oh, so good in the restaurant I designed last semester!

Kan ya makan…

(thanks Kevin!)

There are some really delicious milestones in one’s childhood- milestones where you stopped and thought, wow, I grew up. A recent happening surfaced the memory of one milestone that I’m sure you can relate to– the first time I walked to the “dokaneh” without adult supervision.

I grew up Saudi Arabia so Jordan was only an annual summer retreat, a place where we’d spend the three months of vacation at my grandmother’s in Shmesani, Amman. Living in Saudi Arabia is literally experiencing a heaven within walls, and although that naturally had its great many advantages to us as kids, we would count down the days to “Nsafer 3ala Amman”- the city of the 7arat, the ice cream, the sha3erilbanat, and ultimately, freedom.

I mention Shmesani in particular because this word is of huge significance to the milestone I’m about to share. Shmesani, an area in West Amman, was my first taste of liberty and my first experience with the outside world.

This experience started in a very little part of Shmesani, my grandmother’s front yard- a sloping stone deck(in picture) perfect for skateboards, balls, and hide & seek. Much growing up was done in that yard whether it was in regards to my dealings with my brothers and cousins, uncles and aunts, or the gardeners.

In the front yard, I grew up enough to progress to the 7ara beyond the fence- the round dead-end street that accommodated my grandmother’s house.

In the 7ara I learned even more- I learned how to deal with grouchy old ladies (chant Sabee7a il Qabee7a), I discovered that you always keep “ili bil 7ara lal 7ara”, and I developed my social skills. The 7ara was my domain for years- trying (unsuccessfully) to play soccer with the boys, learning (successfully) to ride a bike, and having more places for hiding while playing hide & seek.

After many years of being confined to the 7ara, the day finally came where I was “old enough” to be allowed to cross over to the other side of the street to get to the dokaneh, which to a young child seemed like the delicious domain of the candy man himself.

I can clearly see myself walk that very first walk as a big girl, armed with a couple of Shelens and with strict instructions to HOLD BASEM’S HAND VERY TIGHTLY. I can see Basem and I trotting happily down the street clutching each others hands safely and looking anticipatively at the dokaneh down the seemingly endless street.

And as my mother says, “falatat il masba7a”, because soon enough the Dallal kids dominated the whole of Shmesani in different places ranging from Safeway (the only Safeway those days was in Shmesani), Frosti’s, Tom & Jerry’s, Haya’s, and of course, Istiqlal Bookstore (who, for sake of mentioning, are the most spoiled shopkeepers in the WORLD!).

I grew up- we grew up- and our personal 7aras grew too to include all of Amman, but Shmesani remains my ultimate domain. I know every little nook and cranny by heart, every little dead end and alley by name, and every little off beat store by experience. I know every single house and which family resides in each- I know that this is Dar Il Majali and that that is Dar Imseeh. I know that the Khourys have always lived there and that the Rantisis have a big scary dog. Nothing has changed for the past several decades, the same houses welcome my car every time I go visit my grandmother.

When we decided to move to Jordan a couple of years ago, we naturally decided to reside in Shmesani, which had kindly accommodated us as guests for two decades. Unfortunately, the only suitable apartment we found (and which we now reside in) was several blocks down on Tal3et il Plastic, closer to the Il-Madeeneh Il Riyadeyeh area than to the Shmesani we grew up in.

A few months ago though, my parents came upon a house up for sale- a house two houses up the street from the dokaneh, across the street from Dar Khoury, 2 houses down the street from Dar il Majali, and 4 houses down the street from my grandmother’s. It feels so weird, like they just bought back a part of my childhood.

Today, I was standing there, getting caught up in a discussion with the engineer about whether to use marble or ceramic tiles, and my eye drifted down the street to the dokaneh. In a second, I was transported to that little girl again, clutching Basem’s hand, looking triumphantly at the dokaneh and thinking, hey, look, I grew up.

We should be moving in a couple of weeks, and the second best part is, moving comes with a “ta3zeeleh”, so I can finally find all of the stuff that’s been lost for years ;) Well, unless I get lazy and decide to just pull out the actual drawers with all their belongings and transport them in my car…

Head over heels in love…

…with Google

GMail has been rocking my world for a year, and now Google Talk has emerged as the new kid on the block in the IM neigborhood.

I’m not a fan of chatting, I’d mostly rather communicate via email, but an IM client on one’s computer has become essential.

I totally love Talk so far. It’s so simple, so clean, and straight to the point. No needless ugly, yellow, over-excited smiley faces ruining my day and no visual pollution stuffed into a tiny square on a screen.

I really hope that doesn’t “evolve”!

Too bad my list is relatively empty…

Download it here. For those who are not yet familiar with the heaven that is GMail add a comment with your email for an invite.

Related: Malakha’s review, Haitham

[google, googletalk, talk]

Lookie who’s home!

My life is back on track :D

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