Saturday, May 31, 2008

Dropping the Potato Like a Hot Potato

A previously-healthy woman (will call her Amanda) comes to the hospital feeling very weak. She's kept in the ER and before any doctor can see her, Amanda becomes paralyzed and eventually stops breathing. She is placed on a breathing machine.

Unfortunately she lives alone so nobody could get a good history and tell what events could have lead to this, therefore making a diagnosis is extremely difficult. A whole bunch of illnesses can cause this.

Finally, after running a bazillion tests, a diagnosis of Botulism is made. Botulism is a disease caused by a toxin that is produced by a bacteria. This toxin and bacteria gain entry into the body somehow, through food or a wound, and once inside the body cause paralysis and often death.

Amanda was on the breathing machine. She was stable but very sick.

The question to us, the infectious disease doctor, was: where did she get it from? How did the toxin get inside her body? And how do treat this thing?
We started talking to family members separately, but nothing in what they said was suspicious. Amanda had several plastic surgeries in the past. We suspected that she had Botox done (a procedure where a very dilute toxin is injected into the face to tighten it up). However her sister who is very close to her denied that she had such procedure.

However, the sister confessed to something else. Amanda, who came form a very conservative Christian family and is single, had an abortion 2 weeks earlier and an IUD (lawlab) was placed, and she hid that from the rest of the family. The sister told us so because it might be helpful. Indeed it was. We decided to remove the IUD because it might have been the source of the toxin that was circulating in her body. We removed the IUD, tested it for the toxin, and that came back negative. Now we had to think of another source.

It turned out she had a boyfriend who wasn't visiting at the hospital. Eventually, he showed up and told us that the night before she got sick, he and Amanda bought food from a fast-food restaurant. They had exactly the same meal but because he didn't like potatoes he didn't eat them, but put the rest of the food in a bag and took it home. Being a guy he didn't throw away the food even after a week (I can relate to that!) and he was still having it by the time we were talking to him.

With help from CDC, we tested all the food he had kept from that night for the toxin, and we found that the potatoes contained exactly the same kind of paralyzing toxin that was present in Amanda's body.

Being an infectious disease physician means that you have to think of the story behind each infection, and think why did this particular healthy person get this particular infection at this particular time. Sometimes the answer is clear. In other occasions you have to dig deep and act like an investigator to try to collect every single information possible. It wasn't simple in Amanda's case. All what we saw was a paralyzed woman, with plenty of abnomral studies and abnormal lab results and abnomral X-rays and there were at least 50 explanations for each of the abnormal results that she had.

Amanda was already getting better while we were waiting for the test results to come back. One could argue that we could have left it there and not pay thousands of dollars in tests and waste all that time and effort to know where it came from. If we followed that argument we wouldn't be able to protect more than 500 daily customers of that restaurant from the food they were about to eat. In other times, it helps scientists learn more about infections, how they occur, and where do they come from, in order to help in developing new methods for prevention and treatment of these potentially fatal infections.

Last, but not least, it helps families understand why their loved one suffered from such an ailment. It answers many questions that can provide closure to many cases where the ending is not always as happy as Amanda's.

And.... you gotta do this when you still have 20 more patients to see and 2 lectures to prepare and a research you're working on, in addition to car brakes that you don't have time to fix.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Altitude of Fear

Here are some amazing short clips I picked when journalists almost got killed, or actually did die, covering some stories that very few people were interested in.
The story of these journalists getting hurt were much bigger than the stories they were covering when they got hurt!

Very unexpected, and very scary. Rated R for Language!

I talked about this before. Two helicopters in Phoenix were covering the story of a car theft. The guy talking on the clip was on one of them when his helciopter collided with another and the 2 helicopters crashed. There were 2 people on each helicopter and they all died.

I feel sorry for this guy, but he's a total jerk. See why:

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Most Obnoxious Evil Despicable Wicked Nasty Awful Appaling Dreadful News Coverage for Today with Hareega

- The Jordanian government lost about 100,000 JDs today after cancelling a deal with a British investor to open a casino in Jordan.
The amount lost was going to be only 50,000 but the ministers decided to gamble on it.

- More attacks of terrorism have struck Sri Lanka yesterday.
The results: Fear, anxiety, and a 10,000 unwashed dishes.

- Today Yale University has awarded an honorary degree to former Beatles member Paul McCartney.
This comes as another step from the University to improve its reputation after most people knew that George Bush was one of its graduates.

- Scientists have now developed a special kind of underwear for men that can measure their blood pressure.
Here's how it works.... when the underwear expands to three times its normal size, you know that the man's blood pressure is rising very quickly (evil joke).

- Today Barack Obama, who is black, clarified some of the comments he had mentioned earlier about his grandfather freeing some Jews from a concentration camp in World War II, which turned out not to be true.
He said that his grandfather had the intention to do so, but he couldn't move well because of all the chains he was tied up to.

- A study published today revealed that exposure to lead can result in both brain damage and law-breaking behavior.
Co-incidentally, there were 200,000,000,000 tons of lead discovered today in the corners of the Jordanian Parliament.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Jordanian on Top of Mount Everest

According to Al-Ghad newspaper, Jordanain Mustafa Salameh Mahmoud became the first Jordanian to plant the Jordanian flag on top of Mount Everest.

Thanks Hamzeh for the news alert!
UPDTAE: The Edinburgh Weekly is reporting on it here. Apparently it's Salameh's 3rd attempt to climb Everest. At least two Arabs before him (and not one as the paper reported) succeded in climbing the highest mountain on earth.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Most Breaking Outstanding CNNish News Coverage Around the Clock with Hareega

** The Lebanese have finally chosen a new president for their country, Michel Suleiman.
The different sects also reached an agreement on the best time and location for Suleiman to get assassinated.

** The Amman municipality decided to install 115 cameras on different traffic lights this year. The traffic lights are expected to spot about 200 speeding cars and 200 thousand middle fingers.

** A 77-year old man broke a record today for being the oldest person to climb Mount Everest.
Experts expect him to be approximately 90-years old by the time he's descended from top.

** The Jordanian government lifted the price of oil for the 8th time in 2 years earlier this month. Amman remains the most expensive Arab city.
To deal with the problem, it is rumored that government is planning to life the ban on both male and female prostitution.

** A Saudi club has paid Real Madrid 2 million dollars to play a football game with them. Rumor has it that the Saudis also offered 5 million dollars for the Spaniards to bring their Under-17 team to visit Saudi Arabia, and they don't even have to play a single game. (you have to be evil to understand this joke)

** The president of Gambia announced last week that he is planning to kick all gays out of his country.
Right after this announcement, the stock markets for all Cappuccino-making companies have significantly dropped.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

How to Become a Jordanian Citizen Without Speaking Arabic?

All what you need to do is to play basketball.

Our Basketball Federation is pushing to award the Jordanian citizenship to non-Jordanian citizens in order to allow them to play for our national team.

Let me start with some basics. On the club level (like Zain did), the club has the freedom to buy and sell whoever player they want because the team represents only the club, and you can argue about how much that club represents the country. In the NBA you can have a game where there are more non-US players on the field than US players. Same applies for European football and many other sports.

However, on national level, players have to be citizens of that country. They represent it in different games and their people stand behind them in support.

What our basketball federation is doing, is treating the national team like a club. They're even arguing which players deserve the citizenship more depending on their position on the field.

So imagine, all what you need to become Jordanian is to play in the right position in a basketball team.
Imagine a Jordanian citizen who doesn't speak your language, doesn't know the country and doesn't understand the culture.

You can argue that half Jordanians are not originally from Jordan. True. But they fled to Jordan from Palestine after disastrous wars and they share a very similar, if not identical, culture and language and heritage and history.

You can argue that the US gave hundreds of millions of immigrants green cards and citizenship. Absolutely True. But they have to be fluent in English and should have lived a considerable time in the US before becoming citizens. I was totally with giving our previous Chinese Taekwondo coach, Mr. Chen, a Jordanian citizenship because he's lived many years in Jordan and spoke Arabic pretty well. and neither his origin or race should stand against that.

You can argue that being Jordanian doesn't give these players any additional privileges they didn't have as Americans. Probably true. But that doesn't make it right to award them the Jordanian citizenship.

Maybe I'm thinking too highly of my country but to become Jordanian you need a little more than play basketball. You need to feel somewhat loyal to the place and to love it, and to feel attached to it even if you found one million wrong things about it, and I don't think that for someone who lived a few months in the country he'll able to do so.

This whole thing is making me feel one thing: cheap. Dirty cheap.

I sent an angry e-mail to the federation (their e-mail is : ) and you're free to contact them if you have anything to say.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Rated R- Some Don't Like It Hot

This is not a model.
This is not a porn star.
This is Danica Patrick, an Indy car driver and the first woman to win an Indy car race since these races started in 1916.

Like most people, I don't care about this race. I haven't seen any such race before. I don't even consider operating a machine while sitting on your ass a sport.

However, a woman finally decided to compete with men and she proved that a woman can win a competition that is considered very "manly".

Men don't have good sports in the world of sports. Whenever a woman defies and defeats them, they don't take it well. They become demeaning, condescending, and do anything to show that the woman is just a little bitch can't not taking things seriously like they do.

And here's the example. Danica has been a serious driver since 2005. The moment she started seriously competing with men, the moment all the eyes were right on her, the media started sexualising her image, just like they try to do with any female celebrity, or just any successful female. (Can you believe they used to call Hillary Clinton a chick!)

They asked her to take off her clothes, because if she had decided to leave the kitchen then she should at least entertain men and show some flesh, and indeed she did. She had the option not to, but she decided otherwise. Money talks after all. They proved that yes she might be a good driver but she will show some skin when they want her to. They couldn't call her a bitch because that's sexist but they proved she's a slut for money.
This is not good for sports. This is not good for women.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Babies Are Ugly

Every time one of my friends or family gets a baby, I realize one thing: my relationship with that particular person will not be as strong anymore. The simple reason behind it, is that their whole life becomes focused around the new creature- which in many cases was unwanted, a mistake-literally, like a miscalculation on the calender. Can you imagine that some people existed just because their mothers had poor Math skills?

Now the baby is born. To everyone reading this, I want to say this in writing because I won't be able to say it public. All newborns are ugly. Very very ugly. First they're covered with secretions that you don't really wanna know where they're coming from.
Then look at them, they don't have eyelashes. They don't have eyelids. They can't even open their eyes. They have 2 eyes that can't open but one mouth that doesn't shut the hell up. And yet family members gather around that little zombie and say how beautiful s/he is! Listen, ladies, whoever has a baby among you, everyone was lying to you, at least the men , including your husband, father, brother, and all doctors and nurses, and whoever cut his little pee-pee and sent the extra meat to the shawerma place nearby. They were all lying; they didn't want to upset you and push you to kill your little product during a crazy moment in your post-pregnancy mood swing that usually lasts for 30 years.

Don't get me wrong. I value motherhood and understand the pain a woman goes through to bring that little son-of-a-bitch to life, but birth itself, oh God!
HORROR. I can't think of any horror movie, but imagine a human being opening his mouth then another smaller human being pushing his way out of the stomach and exiting through his open mouth while dilating the neck as he's moving upwards. Birth is exactly the same, just with a different location.
I almost fainted when I watched the first birth in medical school. I've seen a lot of dead and dying people and that didn't scare me, but when I saw a lady pushing the newcomer out of there I was gonna throw up. And the pain, oooo the pain of labor. Guys, it's probably like being constipated X 10, but the difference in labor is that you don't grab your piece of shit to kiss it once you're done (although that might be worth experimenting, e-mail me at

Then the baby grows up, and you see twenty million pictures of them each day, looking exactly the same. The baby's IQ is in the range of an adult with profound mental retardation, and yet if I take a 100 pictures of such adult and send them to people they'll complain but when it comes to the baby he's "so sweat" and "karmoosh".
Then the baby says a word, or talks, OH MY GOD! The whole world should know when the little kid talks or walks. Well as a person in the medical field I have to assure you that this is what's supposed to happen. You should be telling everybody if it did NOT happen, and only then should you tell me and others about it so we can find a solution.

I know many people were offended with this post, including myself because I was a baby at one point (although looking at me gives the impression I was 15 when I was born), but I'm writing this for history, at least for my kids. If I had any and I wasn't around as they grew up, and their mother (Jessica Alba, please God) told them that your father thought you were very beautiful, I'm hoping they'll read this and realize what an asshole I was.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Jordan Blogs.... Sharrat !

Ebsar Shu malo ?

(P.S. that's my picture trying to investigate what's wrong. I offered to show some butt cleavage for free for my dear readers. Usually people pay me 50 bucks to do so. Enjoy.... Matte3 Nazarak)

Save your Money

In February 2009, the FIFA will start selling tickets to the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
The average price of a ticket is 139 US dollars.

I don't know who will qualify, don't know if by then I'll be married, working, unemployed, happy or depressed about my life.
I can't even predict who will come in second (after Argentina),
I don't know any of that,
but I know one thing, if I'm alive I will be in South Africa between June 11th and July 11th of 2010....

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Latest Hottest Best News Coverage from Hareega

** A Jordanian ship carrying aids to Somalia has been hijacked by pirates near the Somali shores.

The Jordanian authorities have blamed the Somalis for failing to protect their shores and for indirectly encouraging the hijackers by showing "Jazeerat al-Kanz" on their TV continuously since 1986.

** The number of deaths in the Myanmar (Burma) cyclone has increased to 133,000 people.
The local authorities are concerned that the number of deaths may increase to levels comparable to those of a Jordanian traffic accident.

** Yesterday gay marriage has become legal in California.
In other news, the Saudi Arabian Airlines mentioned a ten-time increase in the purchase of the Riyadh-Los Angeles tickets.

** The number of deaths from the earthquake in China increased to 29,000 people.
This deficit in population is expected to be replaced by the Chinese within 24 hours.

** Meanwhile, the Jordanian national football team is leaving to China. There is a concern that 29,000 more Jordanian will have fatal heart attacks after watching their next game.

** The price of gold has significantly increased yesterday.
This rise may affect the dozen remaining Jordanian women who haven't yet sold their jewelery.


Oliver Kahn, the great wall of Germany, played his last game today.

Saturday, May 17, 2008


I was driving. I thought about ordering something to-go on my way home.

I called a local restaurant.
"Hi, can I order something to-go?"
"Sure, under what name?"
"Can you say that again?"
"Faris, Faris, Faris"
"No, Faris, Farris, Faaaris, Feris, Ferris, Fay-rais.... Faris, Faris, FARIS"
"Sorry I can't hear you"
"It's Faris, F as in Frank.... A as in Adam...."
"So it's an order for Frank and Adam?"
"No, it's for Faris, Ferris, as in Ferris Beuller? Like in Ferris' Bueller's Day Off. No? The movie. Ferris Bueller? No?"
"Sir I can't understand you! Under which name do you want to place your order?"
"Faris. FARIS. Ok never mind. I'll go by Edward"
"Yes, I just changed my name to Edward. Please make the order in Edward's name. Edward. Do you know how to spell Edward?"
"Ok Edward"
"Awesome! Edward. Thank you! I'll go by Edward"

I took a deep breath and hung up.
Then I realized that I forgot to order.

Friday, May 16, 2008

One Million Keys

They stole the land and changed the name
they killed the people, it doesn't look the same...
but even if they change the lock, why can't they see
that it's only us who've got the key ?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

All the News from Hareega

* Jenna Bush, the daughter of George Bush, got married on the weekend. Currently she's spending her honeymoon with her husband.
So her husband is doing to her now what her father has done to the whole world for a long time.

* Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is under pressure for corruption. I don't want to say he's unpopular, but today a female member in the Israeli Parliament called Olmert the "Basem Awadallah of Israel".

* The prize awarded for capturing Al Qaeda leader in Iraq has dropped from 5 million dollars to one million dollars.
So it's now official: Al Qaeda leader is less worth than most NBA players.

* It appears that the song "Head under water and you tell me to breathe easy for a while" became so popular. Some people consider it to be the biggest hit this year.
In fact, it is so famous that the FBI is considering making it the official song of the Guantanamo Bay area.

* An American teacher has been arrested after she had sex with several students in her class. All of these students were on the honor list.

I wonder if the US court may consider this "an honor crime"

* A woman has won a settlement against a restaurant that had asked her to leave their women's restrooms because she didn't look like a woman.
The woman was excited about the settlement and mentioned that she will use the money won to shave her balls.

Just like the Tafili Joke

On the weekend I was in Atlanta. I visited "The World of Coca Cola" with another friend. We spent over an hour inside visiting the exhibition and a couple of movies about the history of Coca Cola. We saw some old commercials about Coca Cola from different parts of the World. At the end of the tour we had the opportunity to tatse different Coca Cola products from more than 30 countries. Each country had its own product of Coca Cola that came in a different flavor.
As we were leaving, I turnd to my friend, "Hey my stomach is heavy, I think it's from all the Pepsi that we drank"
Here's a great Pepsi commercial. I love the Arabic version of it but couldn't fnd it.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Declaration of Evil

(Photo from the Kenesset website)

"We hope that by Jewish immigration Palestine would ultimately become as Jewish as England is English "

Chaim Weizmann, the first President of Israel.

Nature... the New WMD

Can you see anything in this picture?

More than a million people had to live through this last week.

As of today, the expected death toll from the Myanmar cyclone is expected to top 100,000.

Argentina number one, Jordan ... hmmm..

According to FIFA, Argentina is the number one team in the world right now.
Jordan is ranked # 104. We used to be in rank # 40 in 2004.
Unfortunately teams are not ranked in alphabetical order, but rather according to their recent results.
Some of the countries ahead of Jordan are Zimbabwe, Libya, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, Tanzania and Benin.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

More Breaking News

* A 4-year old Jordanian boy was tragically killed when he was hit by a car.
Meanwhile, Egyptian president Husni Mubarak celebrated his 80th birthday.
Approximately 100% of Egyptians wished that those fates were reversed.

* An Egyptian professor mentioned recently that mens' faces should be covered because they act as a temptation for women.
He later withdrew his remarks after seeing a picture of Michael Jackson.

* HM King Abdullah visited Azerbaijan. He was really excited about the trip.
After all, Azerbaijan's president is the only person left from a place ending with an "-an" that he can talk to.

* Condoleezza Rice had talks today with Israeli PM Ehud Olmert.
During the meeting, Olmert said he was astonished from the global outrage about the price of rice, mentioning that "rice" has never been cheaper.

* Scarlett Johansson got engaged.
Based on her judgement in selecting her movies, this engagement is expected to last for approximately 48 hours.

* A recent study is showing that pain killers can cut down on the risk of dementia (forgetfulness).
In other news, John McCain was bragging about not taking a pain killer in his entire life.

* Brazilian footballer Romario announced last month that he was retiring. His fans were shocked. They thought he retired a decade ago.

* In Algeria, it was reported that 977 Algerians died in the last 3 months from road-traffic accidents.
That number was inspiring to the Amman municipality, who contacted the Algerians asking, "What's your secret?"

The Wisest Won

Club Zain of Jordan defeated Al-Hikmah of Lebanon 72-67 to become the new Arab Champions of basketball.

Great result from the team and the coaching staff. One person should be fired though- the moron who picked up the name "Zain".

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Latest Breaking News and My Observations

* A recent study in Jordan found that 94% of Jordanian journalists practise self-censorship. The other 6% are in jail.

* A Syrian and a Jordanian were arrested with accusations of trading human organs.
When questioned, the Jordanian suspect mentioned that the organ that was least expensive among Jordanians was the middle finger, due to overuse.

* Bahrain may appoint a Jewish Bahraini woman to become its new ambassador to the US.
It's amazing how minorities in Arab countries are making the news these days, speaking of course of Bahranis.

* Mahmoud Abbas underwent a heart procedure at King Hussein Medical Center last week.
There were unconfirmed reports that during the procedures, the Jordanian government offered to sell his heart to the Kuwaitis for 2 million dollars.

* The private doctors' fees in Jordan will increase this month. Doctors were delighted. Not only that this increase will bump up their profits by 20%, but it was also increase the number of their patients by 2000%.

* A new medical test that can predict menopause was developed in the Netherlands.
Interestingly, the same test could be used to detect "global warming".

Saturday, May 03, 2008

My color-blind perspective on the US elections

If you haven't been following the US elections closely here's an update: John McCain, a Republican from Arizona, is running for Republicans.

Among Democrates, the race is getting closer between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. It's also closer to the end. Obama should have won it by now, but Hillary and her husband got voters in Pennsylvania and will get the voters in North Carolina and Indiana this Tuesday to vote for her, by playing on the element of fear.

Fear was behind voting for Bush in 2004. Americans knew he was dumb. They knew he lied about Iraq. They knew he was going to screw up a lot of things, but they were afraid. They were afraid of being attacked by "the crazy Mahzlims", and Republicans played the game extremely well in showing John Kerry who actually fought in Vietnma as a coward and Bush, who ran away from the military, as the tough guy with big balls who will protect America.

America had a previous experience with a black candidate. Jesse Jackson ran in 1984 and 1988, but he ran as "the black candidate", the angry black man that characterized a lot of black men in the US. He had an enormous support from the black community but very few nonblacks voted for him. Al Sharpton ran in 2004 but was another candidate for black American and he didn't go too far.

Obama decided to run for the 2008 elections. His dream as a black man seemed far-fetched. He had a very good campaign. The primaries started in Iowa and guess what, Obama won big there and people started believing that he can become the first black president.

For many Americans, he seemed the right black person to become the president. First, he's only half-black since his mother is white. Secondly, he was not running as the angry black candidate the Jackson was. He was running as a color-blinded intelligent friendly American with a message of hope and change that Americans were looking for after suffering under Bush. What about African-Americans? Before the Iowa primary the majority of African-Americans were supporting Hillary over Obama. Hillary after all is Bill's wife, and Bill had a very good record in African-Americans issues, and they did not believe Obama could go too far in the primaries. When they saw Obama has won Iowa (96% whites) and came close second in New Hampshire (>90% whites), they started believing in him. By now, more than 90% of African-Americans in any state favor Obama over Clinton.

Obama swept one state after another and came too close to winning the nomination. The Clintons couldn't let this slip away from them, so they went after Obama with the same old weapon: Fear. Obama's pastor, Jeremiah Wright, is an angry black man. His sermons in the church are filled with anger, criticism of the government, and often paranoia from White America and in one of his speeches he said, "God damn America". Examining the context of his speech, what he meant was that God will damn America if it continues with its unjust policies just like he damned other nations in the past, but who cares about the context? He just said God damn America.

This was enough for the Clintons to jump on Obama. Obama was found responsible by the Clintons and the media for what his pastor said on a Sunday sermon. Obama made a historical speech condemning his pastor's comments and carefully addressed the race issue in America, something he didn't want to do in the past. Wright appeared last week in an interview and had another speech loaded with a politically-incorrect statements and mentioned that Obama is just behaving like a politician who wants to get elected. Obama was furious and had to denounce his pastor of 20 years in a following speech.

So, again, Obama's pastor said stupid things and Obama denounced him, condemned everything in the speech and completely distanced himself from him. Was that enough for the media?
No. All news channels for the past week have been reporting this story again and again. They couldn't get enough of it. Ironically, McCain was endorsed by Pastor John Hagee, founder of the Chrisitians United for Israel foundation, who claimed that all Muslims pose a threat worse than that of Hitler and Japan in WWII, and said that Hurricane Katrina was a punishment to New Orleans. John McCain was "very proud" to receive such endorsement and almost nobody questioned him about it.

But when it comes to Obama, it's the angry-black-man threat. The angry black man who was born to a Muslim father and went to a Muslim school somewhere in the Far East where Al Qaeda might be hiding. Amerrrrrica, this colored man will become your president! Save yourselves before it's too late. And the sermons of Jeremiah Wright yelling "God damn America" are still on and Americans are buying it, just like they bought Bush's lies.

Fear will again be the motive for people to vote. It has been moving everything in this country. As bad as things are for Americans, they're not voting for the person who's promising to fix things up, but rather for the candidate that is promising to continue screwing them with a never-ending war in Iraq.

Almost as good as a mansaf

I ate this today.
Didn't have too many options in light of the rice shortage.
Can't wait for my frog meal on the weekend.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Latest Breaking News and Hareega's Observations

* Royal Jordanian (RJ) has reported a significant profit increase of 31%. RJ have promised the Jordanian government that they'll achieve such profit once Nader Al-Thahabi leaves them.

* Bayern Munich of Germany lost 4-0 to a Russian team in Russia this morning.
The Germans were shocked. It's the first time they were crushed so badly in Russia without Hitler being involved.

* Sami Al-Hajj, al-Jazeera photographer, was released today and will return home. The US government held him in Guantanamo, isolated from the world, for six years without pressing charges against him.
In other news, the US government is considering an application to join the Arab League.

* More politicians who were under Bill Clinton are now supporting Barack Obama. Hillary cannot understand it. After all, she was never under Bill Clinton.

At the office

I was at the secretary's office when my program director (boss) walked in.

He's a very friendly older guy from Texas, never been to any Arab country, never been to the Middle East.

"Hey Ferris, what's up with Bahrain?"

"What's wrong there?"

"They're really angry over there!"

"Why? Why?"

"You know, that singer, what's her name.... Waaahbee.... they don't want her there"

"Oh! Too bad, she's a good singer!"

"Yeah, I love her singing eh eh eh"

"Sure, I love her singing too :) eh eh eh "

Boss left the room.
Secretary, "I don't know who that singer is, but looks like she's a real slut"

Thursday, May 01, 2008


I just found this on eBay!

See.. Brazil won the World Cup in Mexico in 1970.
One of the players, Everaldo, previously sold (or donated) his gold medal.

It's gonna be sold again in an auction on eBay on May 7th.
Starting bid: GBP 10,000.00, or about 20,000 US dollars.

I used to make fun of people paying so much money to buy memorabilia and collectibles.
But now I appreciate it. I totally understand all those who bought a decaying piece of hair from Hitler's butt, or a cheese sandwich that Britney Spears ate before flushing down the toilet.
(And oh Monica, you should sell that dress)


I was talking on the phone in a public place.
As usual, I was talking in a very loud voice that made everyone around me scared there was an impending biological attack.

After I was done, a 60-something man approached me.
"I heard you saying on the phone your name is Masannat", he asked with a Syrian accent.
"Yes, my last name"
"You're from Jordan right?"
"Masannat should be a huge family"
"Actually it's not, we're like 300-400 people overall"
"Really! because I know a student here at the Univeristy who is from your family"

I thought he was mistaken. I should have known it if someone from my family was studying in the university!

"Are you sure he's a Masannat?", I asked.
"Yes, pretty sure, but he graduated long time ago. He was doing civil engineering"
"Uhmm, I don't know him, unless he graduated very long time ago."

"Yes, I think I met him in 1970. It's been a very long time. I remember he used to study all the time. His name is Yousef, do you know him?"

"Yep, he's my father, he went back to Jordan in 1973, got married and had kids and he's doing well!"


Back in Jordan in 2001, I had a car accident. Some idiot hit my car as he was leaving his parking inside his house.
I stepped out of my car and was planning to smash his head against the boiling asphalt of the street, then saw he was huge so I decided to be civilized.

Our parents arrived and we made a "KROKA" then we started chatting.

His father knew I went to medical school, and told me ,"My daughter graduated from your medical school, then specilized here in Jordan in opthalomology (eyes) but then got married and left to the US. She's trying to get her medical licence there.

Two years later, I was in Philadelphia sitting for an exam for all international medical graduates who are willing to practise in the US.
Thousands of graduates do this exam every year.

On my exam day I looked at the faces of the examinees, and I found and Arabic-looking veiled lady. I went to talk to her.

"Where are you from?"
"Eh, hala walla, which university?"
"Univ. of Jordan. I graduated long time ago, was doing opthalomology there then got married and came to the US with my husband"
"AHA! And you live in Shmesani, your brother's name is AbdulHadi and he's got a white Mazda?
A Bad driver indeed. He wrecked your Mazda. He's OK but whoever gave him a driver's licence is a moron"

I like to surprise people. I was also glad that I let all the anger out from my system even if it was directed to the wrong person.