Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Ok, I’m not going to peeve all over work again in this post. That would just be a no-brainer and an easy target. I’m peeving on other things that have irked me of late:

Drama Queens: I think I might have possibly eluded to my distaste of drama queens in previous posts, but just to restate the fact: Why the drama? I have one friend in particular who is always at the summit of all things drama-related. She has an amazing white heart, but she just gets on my nerves sometimes and I have to bite my tongue to keep from hurting her feelings. (Obviously, I’m not biting my fingers by typing this post.) She can turn a sentence into a saga. And she is so opinionated that you can’t get a word in edgewise. I believe she has a medical degree, a pharmacology degree, a PhD in relationship counseling (although hers always seems to be in disarray), and perhaps some form of certification in holistic remedies. She binge drinks herself into brief hospital stays (where she calls her male friends for sympathy) and blames the “mysterious ailments” – not on her alcohol consumption/party-girl lifestyle – but on the “magic” that her husband’s Iraqi first wife is supposedly putting on her. I’m pretty sure she has a Customer Loyalty Card at the Hadi Clinic where she is earning enough points for a round-trip ticket to Tahiti, or perhaps a 2-door Peugeot. Don’t get me wrong – I love her and she is one of my dearest friends (who will never see this because she doesn’t read English, thank God). Why the drama?

People who misunderstand brief moments of kindness with an ever-lasting relationship: Par example: Our finance manager has been having a really hard time lately over work-related issues. Combine that with the fact that he has family members who have both been injured and are in harm’s way in Gaza, and it is a recipe for clinical depression. So, I sent out a cheerful e-mail asking people to be extra kind to him. Now he thinks I want to marry him (as a 2nd wife) and that I should be inviting him to my home (at night) for “coffee.” OMG. He mentioned the procedure for obtaining a green card….

Which brings me to my next peeve….

Green Card Hunters: “How do I get a visa to the States….;” which is only an interlude to what they’re really after – the Elusive Green Card – the only thing better than the American Express Titanium (formerly “Centurion” or “black”/African American) Card. My stock answer has become, “You need to determine which trades the US is lacking staff in, and study that trade.” My main referral is nursing. There is a world-wide nursing shortage; and the US is no different. One of the recent recipients of Desert Girls Words of Wisdom on Green Card Philosophy stated, “You are just like my mother…” (Oh no, he di’in’t!)

Which brings me to my next peeve….

If you DO want a green card, perhaps you better study up on what is appropriate to the culture – like NOT making any reference pertaining to a woman’s age. Don’t FRICKIN call me “ma’am”. As an example of what IS appropriate: I was in a shop recently where a young-looking military-type guy said, “Excuse me, miss…” Oh yeah, THAT is more like it. When did it become ok for people to start calling me “Ma’am”? I’m not old!!! I’m only 29. I don’t care what Miss Manners says – I’m a “miss” to you, mister, and I am definitely not your mother!

Which brings me to my next peeve….

Your mother doesn’t live here. If someone invites themselves to your home, I don’t think it is appropriate for them to start making continual requests (when you don’t have servants). The scenario: I sit down once the girls arrive. I ask them what they would like to drink. I stand up and go get it. I sit down. One of them inevitably waits 4 minutes, looks around the room, and asks, “Where is the phone charger?” (Yes, you know these have to be Kuwaiti female guests because they’ve been talking so much on their mobile that it actually is at the beeping point before it shuts down.) My stand on these types of visitors is that if you KNOW you are going to talk that much on your phone; if you KNOW it is your lifestyle; then keep a phone charger in your handbag. I stand up and go get the charger. I sit down. 4 minutes later, someone is thirsty again. I stand up and go get it. I sit down. 4 minutes later, someone else is thirsty again. I stand up and go get it. I sit down. (Are you starting to see the pattern here?) They should at least feign an attempt at getting something themselves (glass in hand, “Do you mind if I get…”) Do I not look like I have just worked for 10 hours? At this point, I start shouting for my “maid” (the lovely and quite invisible, Amina). ‘Where IS she?! I simply don’t know where that woman goes!’ Personally, I like the well-known American form of hospitality: “Yo! There is the refrigerator. Help yourselves.” Most of my closer friends know and understand this.

Which brings me to my next peeve….

If you are going to drink all my booze, either bring food or replace it. My home is not a charitable foundation for wine-o’s (although one would think that perhaps it is). I mean, they could bring a bag of chips, or a chocolate bar, or maybe some machboos lamb from home – I don’t care. It is the thought that counts. Whatever happened to customs and traditions of visiting other people’s homes? I bring stuff. I do – or at least I return the favor instead of mooching. I even send flowers. Don’t get me wrong, I love having visitors, but there is a proper way, right? I’m not a guy, after all: You can’t just expect to mooch off me and get away with it!

There is really no segue for this, but it is a current-events peeve…

People who forward me e-mails about Gaza. Oh…. My….. God. As if my daily life isn’t deplorable enough, but then “friends” send me forwards of pictures of dead babies and atrocities that are occurring in Gaza. I’m NOT the person to send these to: Send them to US Congress members (do a Google search!). Send them to Joe The Plumber in the mid-West who isn’t already educated on what is happening to Jamal The Plumber in Gaza. Send them to US newspapers. Not me. I am already fired up enough; I know what is happening there. Further, if you are going to send this kind of stuff and make a difference by trying to publicize events/educating people – send it in a language that people outside of the Middle East can actually read: Arabic isn’t going to be of any use to me, Joe/Jo Ann The Plumber or Joe the Congressman/woman. Don’t get me wrong – I’m totally with the Palestinians, but I’m not the right person to be bombarding with these e-mails; especially by people who don’t remember me the rest of the time. Apparently, I am only a recipient of crisis e-mails. Again – not the girl.

Well folks, I’m on page 3 of my list of peeves today – and it is only the beginning. I should probably think about doing some work now.


Anonymous said...

OMG, DG, I know exactly what you mean! I am so sick of finding out that the people claiming they want to be "friends" really have ulterior motives- mainly what can I do for them? Hello, I cannot and do not want to help you get a Visa to the States. I cannot help you get a better job here or in there. I do not have an endless source of money so I cannot "loan" you money so you will have enough to go out for a night on the town or pay off a debt. And I am soooo sick of being treated like a servant in my own home. Get off your ass and get it yourself, don't wave your hand airly at me after I have slaved over a stove all day to cook a great meal. The bread basket is less than a foot away, how about asking someone to pass it instead of expecting me to leap up and serve you?
Whew, I needed to rant. Thanks for that. I am so glad that someone else here is giving voice to some of the peeves making the rest of us crazy. Kuwait is a great place to live but like every other place in the world, there is a definite need for improvement!

Desert Girl said...

Anonymous: Beggars: You can see them comin' - slowly lurkin' around your car - and then, and then, "Salam alaykum, mama." - which in beggar-speak means, "Gimme money." (Again, I'm not your mother!!!) My stock answer for money beggars is "Sorry. I'm out. How much you got, bayaa?" (bayaa meaning "brother).

And the bread basket thing - there are a lot of princesses around here (of both genders), aren't there? I'm not limiting my peeving to one particular nationality; I have European friends who have lived here for a long time and they do the same thing. I'm like, 'Dude! Are you paralized???' They're just not paralized when they have to do elbow curls (table to mouth).

Anonymous said...

as to the visitors peeve i have to say i flushed it out of my system after living abroad for 3 years and since my place is the hangout place for me any my friends(diwaniya :p) I run it as a socialist xD and whenever they complain about a lack of something I reply "why don't YOU do something about it" and so they bought a refrigerator, a water cooler and lots . oh ya my utmost peeve is when someone is ordering food and hands me the phone so I talk to the guy (ya buddy that phone is going right back to you while pointing to that paper on the wall that has the address written on it) when the delivery guy gets lost and they expect me to talk to him (if u know how to get here that you are more than capable of guiding your own delivery guy)
sorry if i made it a rant =]
-wataniya slave laborer(not the airlines :P)

Anonymous said...

DG- I wasn't referring to beggars- I was talking about new "friends". I can't tell you often these "friends" (some of them) turn out to be friendly in order to hit me up for money or what I can do for them.
I have lived in a lot of countries and this is the first country where I have been treated like a servant in my own home. Other countries and I include European countries, have their problems but the servant attitude hasn't been a problem for me anywhere but here.
That said, I still think Kuwait has a lot going for it and I do enjoy living here.