Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Almost Ready to Burn my Victoria's Secrets' Bras

.... and not only for the right of my Kuwaiti sisters to vote, either...

Dear Victoria. Yesterday marked the 4th under wire in your $40 T-shirt bras that became possessed by Satan. This time, it was the pastel pink. Previously, they were all black, so apparently Ibleez has now crossed over the color lines. Victoria, what I want to know is this – why you can’t create a bra that won’t fall apart after washes? (Hand washes in Woollite, I might add.)

I was in Abdali with some friends – and just as we arrived, I felt that all-too-familiar under wire scratch… Why don’t I just buy other bras, you ask? Because I have yet to find one that keeps The Girls in check the way that Victoria’s Secrets’ do. (Oh - and they’re cute.) I think that I am going to box them, and send them via Fed-Ex back to Vicky with a hand-written “thank you” note for phucking up my day. I’m not going to bother washing them first, either.

I made the 100 km trek to Abdali with my friend and her husband in search of a dachshund puppy. My friend, Faisal, raises all kinds of animals (gazelle, cows, sheep, baboons, 4-legged donkeys, horses, guinea pigs, ducks, swans, chickens, pheasant, turkeys, goats, fish, and about 5 breeds of dogs). He, believe it or not, has dachshunds. So, I called him asking if he had puppies and he said he did. When we got up there, the puppies, unfortunately, were all still INSIDE the mother dogs. We have to go back after they're out and weaned. Not a happy discovery after a full work day, and a 100 km trip in a Toyota Corolla with a speed-conscious friend behind the wheel. My back still hurts today. I think that the only reason they make Toyota Corolla’s (for “normal” humans), is so that you can watch them go over cliffs for fun. Maybe it’s just me. It felt to me yesterday, like a Griswald family day trip movie or something.

I forgot to stop by the bank on the way to work yesterday, so I had approximately 300 fils to get something for lunch. I called Bunny and, in the kindness of his heart (God bless him), he brought me a quarter pounder (with NO icky fake cheese) meal from McDonald’s. What a guy. Once in a while, he just warms my heart and coming to my rescue with a bag from McDonald did it for me. You rock, Bunny Man!

I got home last night at 10:00 and Desert Dog KNEW I had been in the company of other dogs and was quite perturbed. (She always knows.) I got The Look. I have promised her that tonight – it is Mommy/Doggy quality time. We will go for our walk next to the sea and hunt cats and she’ll stop and sniff various disgusting things and all will be right with our world again.

Sending my dirty, damaged bras back to VS has reminded me of something funny from my childhood: My friend, Cyndy, and I (ok, I was the instigator at 10 years old), used to write to Kelloggs (and others) and tell them, “I found a hair in my box of cereal. What are you going to do about it?” This was in the days before bar-coding, sophisticated tracking systems or e-mail. They would usually send us coupons for another box (or other products). At 10, it was always a big deal to receive another free box of cereals (or cookies, or the other products we did the same for); which makes you kind of wonder about a company that sends responses to letters written in 10-year-old-kid handwriting. Cyndy, are you reading this? Chocolate frosting! (I’ll save that one for another day. Everyone thinks that story is hilarious – especially my 10-year old nefew!) By the way, girl, IBBSQFALDDBW.

We were always sure that Cyndy was going to be a judge on the Supreme Court someday (you go!), so I have promised her to keep all our secrets about the illegal and semi-illegal activities we partook in when we were young. (Boone’s Farm. Scott Colin’s “special” secret garden, and others.)

My mom is doing better. She is at my sister’s house today. Her only fear, she said, is being knocked over by one of my sister’s enormous dogs. I was worried for a while, but she sounds fine and happy.

I feel TERRIBLE about not going to the demonstration yesterday. I had to work. That sounds lame, but it is so true. Women’s rights is an issue that I am passionate about in Kuwait for several reasons...

My mother’s generation of women had a very difficult time (although they were able to vote). My mother was fired because she was pregnant with my sister (legal to do in Kuwait; now illegal in the States. An acquaintance, a senior executive manager at MTC told me recently, “Of course, I can’t hire her because she’s pregnant.” Major law suit material in the US.). She was passed-over for promotions because people believed that men deserved the jobs more (supposedly because they were the main source of income for families: still legal to do in Kuwait). (We weren't even allowed to call my mother at work, growing up because she wanted to be completely equal with them and give them nothing to talk about.) Men were able to quietly beat women (or children) at home and the police did very little about it (sound familiar, Kuwait?). Women were sexually harassed at work, and again, the authorities did very little about it (now illegal in the US with fines, but common in Kuwait).

I was in Washington when Rula Dashti (you go, Rula! Tell your mom I said, 'hi'!) slept in her office in a sleeping bag on the floor, at the Kuwait Reconstruction Office, working to help liberate/rebuild this country. She talked to Kuwaiti government officials who, at that time, promised that women would have their rights in “free Kuwait.” Guess what. Kuwait is still not free for most women – certainly not free to determine their own destinies on the same level with men. Kuwaiti women fought in the resistance during the occupation by Iraq; many were tortured and raped (remember Esrar Qabandi and others like her). Other Kuwaiti women worked with the Allied forces to liberate Kuwait. They became soldiers when many men were sitting on their sofas watching CNN. Kuwaiti women have earned the right to determine who their representatives in parliament will be and who will speak in voices for them. If anything, the tribal members of parliament should realize that it is in their own best interest: there are many women in the tribes who can vote, especially if they have more than one wife.

Some articles on the rally yesterday:
(I love this picture. It gives a great cross-section of the Kuwaiti female population!)http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/40900000/jpg/_40900539_womenparl203.jpg
Arab Times: (most detail) http://www.arabtimesonline.com/arabtimes/kuwait1.asp
BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/4325207.stm
CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/meast/03/07/kuwait.women.ap/index.html

3 comments:

Ms.Baker said...

Desert girl, Victoria's Secret bra's are junk, ditch them - even their clothing and PJ's suck.
Marks and Spencer do a better job with underwire, so does Bali at www.onehanesplace.com.

Ow, on the underwire poking you at the wrong time and place!!

So when is your baby dachsund due?

Ms.Baker said...

Check my email to you Desert girl.

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