A Blog from Amman, Jordan, Online Since 2004.

Month: February 2007 (Page 1 of 3)

Oscar Outfit Frenzy

I have four confessions to make;

1)  I didn’t watch a single movie from the 2007 Oscar-nominated bunch, and for the most part, I hadn’t heard of 90% of them either.
2)  I have never ever watched the Oscars in my life, yesterday’s show included.
3)  I never check out the winners because frankly, I couldn’t care less.


4)  I always check pictures of the red carpet outfits after Oscar night.

The Fire-Your-Stylist Group:

Keisha Whit-something, whoever she is.What the hell was she thinking? The color of the dress might have looked lovely, if it was a shade less yellow, and the cut of the dress might have looked great, but what’s with the flowery action at the back? It looks like someone stole them from the top of a cake decorated with yellowing icing and Jabri’s trademark cardboard pink-and-green flowers.

Kirsten, Kirsten. I bet she skipped the stylist and was dressed by her grandmother, or perhaps Cher. Just check the feathery actions.

At first, I noticed her expression (doesn’t she look REALLY angry?), then I noticed her hairstyle with the front sticking to her head and the back poofed up, making it look like she got it done 5 days ago and tried her best to “freshen it up” for the night without bothering to wash it (check the greasy-looking lock dangling down one shoulder).
Then I saw the dress.
The Mummy Returns, anyone? Eva Green just rolled out of her mausoleum.

I have no idea who this is, but man, doesn’t anyone ever tell these people to toss their money on a dress that actually fits? I am not enjoying looking at the rolls of fat on her stomach.

The You-Could-Have-So-Done-Better Group:

Although most of the world seems to hate her, I have always really liked Kidman, I guess maybe because I really love “Moulin Rouge”. I also really love red, but I’m not so sure about this dress. It does look good on her, but I can’t help but feel like it’s a cross between a lobster (check out the collar), and a Superman cape.

I hate Reese’s dress, although it is not hideous enough to be put into the Fire-Your-Stylist Group. The whole frilly Mermaid look is so a few years ago. I also hate how its a lighter shade at the bottom, it looks like she had to walk through a warsheh of powder cement to get to the red carpet.

I had to Google whether Kate Winslet was pregnant or not after I saw her in this dress. She is not. Enough said.

Another dress that I really hate but that is not ugly enough to be placed in the first category. It looks like the string art that my 7th grade Egyptian art teacher made us do. I also hate the color, it’s so drab. Is she still with Chris Martin?

The Wow-You-Look-Good-Tonight Group:

I think Cameron Diaz looked the best last night. I love the simplicity of the dress, I love the color, I love her hairdo, and I love the accessories she chose to go with the dress. Everything looks so good and so in place, proving the age-old motif less is more.

Jennifer Lopez looked good too. I am personally not much a fan of these Greek-Goddess style dresses, but it does look pretty great on her. I love the antique jeweled top of her dress too, it’s absolutely stunning.

Penelope Cruize looks as good as she always does. I always feel like she dresses brilliantly. This dress reminds me of Nicole Kidman’s dress in the Chanel ad. Purty.

So, what’s your take?


Half way through the Grand Finale


On attention spans

Mine is this big:

–>     <–

Perhaps a little smaller even. This is the HUNDREDTH time I delete posts by mistake.



Zorabeh (zorA-beh)[noun, v. zoreb]: (Jordanian slang) to continually, dangerously and aggressively change lanes while driving a car at crazy intervals, in very short distances, and at (relatively) high speed.
SYN: batwen.

Several reasons contributed to why I decided to go to school in Jordan rather than abroad like initially planned, and one of the very main reasons was a mighty appealing bribe- if you go to Jordan, I was told, you can have your very own car.

Ah, my very own car. How can anyone say no to that?

The first time I ever got into the driving seat of a car was on the first of August 2003, a day after I turned 18, which is the legal driving age in Jordan.

I was a perfectly hopeless case; I spent my first whole hour behind the wheel trying to figure out how to balance the various pedals in such a way that the ancient stick-shift Mazda actually stayed turned on. It didn’t move an inch that day.Two months on and after forty hours of learning to gawwem on Amman’s steep hills, I magically passed the driving test on my very first try.

A couple of weeks later, sometime early in October of the same year, my bribe was delivered- the most beautiful navy blue 1700 CC stick-shift 1994 Mitsubishi Lancer.

Unfortunately, my relationship with the Milkyway (as my brothers lovingly dubbed the Lancer) coincided with the first week of my freshman year at Jordan University. Here came the problem; most of my real life driving training had to be done on the worst street that anybody could possibly start their driving career on- University Street.

For those who don’t know, University Street is a literal circus of psycho bus drivers bullying the hell out of regular sedans with their humongous size, sociopath taxis stopping at random and unaccountable for intervals, and hoards of kids thinking their cars can fly to get to class on time. Not to mention, of course, all the idiots crossing the street. This chaotic circus resulted in a daily DREADED hour where I spent gripping the steering wheel of the Milkyway so tightly that my hands would begin to ache.

As they say, only the insane are sane in an insane world, and I realized that the only logical thing I could do, knowing that I will still need to drive on that street daily for the next four years, was to force myself to lose my intimidation by starting to drive as insanely as the buses, the cabs, and the kids.

Thus was made a conscious decision to take up the “Chuffeir Taxi” persona as soon as the seatbelt was buckled in place. In that persona, I became very aggressive, making a willful effort to do everything that I was taught not to do, like needlessly switching lanes back and forth “just for fun” so fast that it’s hard to believe that I didn’t frequently lose control of the Milkway. With this fast lane-switching, the need for using signals disappeared, my hand became overtly comfortable with the horn, my tailing techniques developed, and my “safe distance” became barely two feet at 80 km/h.

A little later on, I had mastered the art of zorabeh, and kissed my intimidation away (ma3 il gal3a).

(Un-) Fortunately, I became too comfortable with what was originally intended to be a phobia lifter, and the “Chuffeir Taxi” persona became my actual driving style for the years to follow.

Today, four years on and already wallowing over the fact that I’m so going to miss the hustle and bustle of University Street when I graduate, my aggressive style has lessened dramatically thanks to the my 1300 CC automatic Lancer which I got 2 years ago. You really can’t do anything with an 1300 CC machine; it’s very frustrating, especially on University Street and while fighting with other cars on Madineh Circle. Now I resort to hand gestures or rolling the window down and screaming, “EISH MALAK YA ZALAMEH! Meen il7mar il salamak sayara?!”

It’s really a very vicious circle- the public transport system drive like fools and they force the next generation of drivers to start driving like them in order to avoid feeling intimidated, thus bequeathing the arts of Zorabeh, aggressive driving, and the famous Jordanian driving kashra.

You know, all those jokes about prepping the face with a frown before buckling up the seatbelt in Jordan are actually true.


This month’s “Ah, seriously, people” Moment is presented by…

DemirDöküm, “Four Season Your Friend”; a Turkish radiator company (?), as done by Basartan Creative, whoever they are.

Isn’t this (minus the fact that I don’t own a scanner)

Eerily reminiscent of this?

I mean, you could have at least changed the layout. The shades of blue. The font. Anything. Or at least saved yourself the embarrassement and bypassed writing the design agency’s name, which is Basartan Creative.

Creative indeed.



Remember when I was asking for laptop bags? Well, check out what my dad found me today;

Samsonite 222XXX185 - Verana Corduroy Computer Tote Bag

Thanks baba!


Alright, here comes the second hardest part of the graduation project (first being the printign and which is yet to come), and I really need some help, ideas, etc. I need to create a recycling / waste disposal company but it of course needs to have a name, and the name has to be in Arabic. So far, the only idea I have had is “دور “, but I’m not sure I like it.

What I’m looking for is something short and catchy, localized rather than generic, and easy to apply for different demographic factions in society (irrelevant to gender, age, class, etc, though a “younger” name would probably be a better idea as Jordan has a very young population, what do you think?)

Feel free to throw ANY idea around, the space is completely open, who knows, I might end up “recycling” any idea if not for the name then for campaigns, slogans, etc.

So yalla, let’s get creative.

Some keywords that might help…

سكر الدائرة

Any ideas would be really appreciated!


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Wednesday Nagging :: 1

February 14

… is the only day in the year in which I make a conscious effort to not wear red.

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