Sunday, February 27, 2011

Army Of One - Kuwaiti Rappers

Have you heard of these guys?  Way cool.

I heard their song, "Kuwait" last night on 88.8 and if it weren't for the damn National/Liberation Day traffic, I would have driven my butt down to Salmiya to see if I could get a copy.  I LOVE that song (if anybody has the mp3 for "Kuwait" - send it to me at

They are all Kuwaiti rappers.  Who woulda thought?  You GO BOYYYYYZZZ!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Kuwaiti National Anthem

Earworm DIS!  I get it stuck in my head every time I hear it.  Now, YOU  can too.

Otay here's a thing:  I don't really get the definition of the colors of the Kuwaiti flag.  They say that the green is for their grass.... (don't go there, Cheech!).  Shouldn't it be beige instead?  Or maybe patches of green on brown (to represent Abdali and Wafra)?  Just some DG thoughts for ya thar.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


OH MY GOD!  Kuwait is so frustrating.  There are all these parades going on - and people are announcing them and passing around schedules - and NO WHERE does it mention timings!  There is a parade "on the Gulf Road" (which is 25km long!) and a military parade in Subiya - no times! ( Military parade is 10 am - 4)

Here is some information I have been receiving from different sources throughout the day.  If you can add, please e-mail me.

Thursday Feb 24th
-          Kuwait Towers: Special Forces show at 3:30pm followed by fireworks at 6:00pm
-          Marina Crescent: 5000 doves will be released in less than 5 minutes in an attempt to break a Guinness World Record at 3:30pm

Friday Feb 25th
-          Anjifa Beach: Classic Car Show at 1:00pm. they will drive on the Gulf Road starting from Anjifa Beach to Kuwait Towers. Other cars can join.
-          Kuwait Towers: Big fireworks at 7:00pm. There will be launchers moored off the coastline and it will be a really great show.  1 million KWD rumored to have been spent on this show.

Saturday Feb 26th
-          Subiya Road (extension of 6th Ring Rd North past cross with 80): Military Parade that will include Coalition Forces as well at 10:00am. Subiya Road starts from the end of the 4th Ring Road heading North (past Jahra).

Sunday Feb 27th
-          Gulf Road: Carnival Parade starting from Shaab Park on the Gulf Road (Dunno what time)

Monday Feb 28th
-          Naval Display will take place along Marina Beach on Monday.  This will start at 9am with a simulated beach assault and the Saudi F18s, the Falcons, will do an aerial display at 10.30am.
-          Marina Mall: Water Show at Marina Mall Beach around noon

Monday, February 21, 2011

3rd Day of Protests by Kuwaiti Bidoon

I love that the Bidoon are FINALLY getting global coverage!!!  MASHALLAH!
(Photos from various media sources)

MPs split on bedoons as protests continue
Kuwait Times
Published Date: February 21, 2011
By B Izzak and Agencies

KUWAIT: Hundreds of stateless Arabs demonstrated for the third day running yesterday to press for basic rights and citizenship. Up to 300 protesters took to the streets in Jahra and around 200 demonstrated in Sulaibiya, and the two protests remained peaceful unlike the previous two days. Stateless Arabs, who are locally known as bedoons, claim entitlement to Kuwaiti citizenship, but the government calls them "illegal residents".

MPs made contradictory statements on the issue yesterday as National Assembly Speaker Jassem Al-Khorafi bluntly told them that demonstrating is not the right way to get their rights. Khorafi told reporters that HH the Amir would study the grievances, but urged the demonstrations to cease. Khorafi also denied that authorities overstepped their bounds. The interior ministry yesterday denied in a statement that any protesters had died as a result of injuries. It said some protesters suffered slight injuries that were treated on the scene, while others were taken to hospitals where they are recovering.

Asked whether the government had failed to resolve the file of bedoons, Khorafi said: "I do not doubt that we were all late in the treatment of this subject and thus encouraged those who do not deserve to claim rights of others. I think that there is a class of beneficiaries who had been wronged and were lost among those who deserve and others who do not deserve .. but I think the keenness of everyone to solve the problem and give everyone his rights would lead to the solution of the problem," he added.

A number of MPs, meanwhile, filed a request that part of a regular session of the Assembly on March 8 be allocated to debate and approve draft laws granting bedoons their basic rights. Opposition MP Hassan Jowhar said he had information that a number of bedoon detainees were tortured by police and some were taken to the military hospital for treatment. Jowhar also said that security forces stormed homes of some bedoons and advised the interior minister not to deal with bedoons with violence and urged the protesters not to attack security forces. The lawmaker accused the government of being responsible for the problem because it has refused to cooperate with the Assembly to resolve the issue.

Liberal MPs spearheaded by Adel Al-Saraawi stressed that granting nationality is a sovereign issue and cannot be obtained through protests. The National Action Bloc condemned resorting to violence and expressed surprise that the protests came after the government set up a special body to propose solutions to the issue of bedoons. The bloc also said that various government agencies like the ministries of health and education and the Zakat House are providing necessary humanitarian aid to the bedoons.

The bloc said in a statement that public interests requires that all should wait until the new authority on bedoons proposes solutions to the problem, especially that the body is headed by former MP Saleh Al-Fadhalah, who has the trust of all parties. The bloc reiterated that granting Kuwaiti citizenship must be done in accordance with Kuwaiti laws and to those who prove that they are entitled to it. Rapporteur of the panel MP Khaled Al-Tahous said that the committee will hold an emergency meeting today to approve all draft laws on the civil rights of bedoons so the Assembly can debate and approve them.

Head of the Assembly's human rights committee MP Faisal Al-Duwaisan said that a number of MPs have signed a request to allocate two hours of the session on March 8 to debate and approve laws on bedoons' civil rights, including the right to free education, medical care, and jobs, besides the right to get various certificates attested. MP Musallam Al-Barrak meanwhile said that the solution to the bedoons problem is not through tear gas or violent ways but through discussing a solution with the Assembly.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch yesterday called on Kuwait to free all bedoons arrested during the protests and to find a swift solution to their problem. HRW quoted human rights activists as saying as many as 120 protesters were arrested on Friday but cited Interior Minister Sheikh Ahmad Al-Hmoud Al-Sabah as saying only 42 were held. "The bedoons have legitimate grievances about discrimination and government inaction, and the government should listen and address them, instead of attacking them and throwing them in jail," said Sarah Leah Whitson, the HRW Middle East director. "Kuwaiti authorities should look around the neighbourhood to see that violent attacks on demonstrators only fuel the protests," she said in a statement received by email.

Bedoons number more than 100,000 and come primarily from bedouin, or nomadic, origins. Most say they are stateless because they or their forefathers failed to apply for citizenship at the time of Kuwait's independence, HRW said. Currently, the Kuwaiti government obstructs the bedoons' right to civil documentation by requiring them to relinquish citizenship claims before they can receive birth, marriage or death certificates, the organisation said. "The government does not recognise their right to work, and bedoon children may not attend government schools," and they cannot press their claims to nationality before Kuwaiti courts, it said.

The bedoons claim they have the right to Kuwaiti citizenship, but the government says many of their ancestors came from neighbouring states and they are not entitled to nationality. Kuwait launched a crackdown on the bedoons in 2000, depriving them of basic rights including the right to health, education and jobs, in a bid to force them to reveal what the authorities say are their true identities. Many bedoons have no right to a driving licence, cannot get birth certificates for their babies or death certificates for the dead. They are also banned from getting their marriage contracts attested. Because of stringent government restrictions, a majority of them are living in dire economic conditions in Kuwait, where the average monthly salary of native citizens is more than KD 1,000.
More Articles:
Arab Times:
Alwatan Daily:
Human Rights Watch:

Sunday, February 20, 2011

I'm so proud of you, B Al-S!!!

I forgot to mention how proud I am of a young lady in my life.  She's 16 and Bidoon.  I adore her like she was my own daughter.

She (I always call her "Pretty Girl", so I'll keep doing that) was accepted into Amideast's youth exchange program and she will be going to the US to study for a year.

PG found out she was Bidoon in school.  Her parents could never bring themselves to talk to her about it.  It was a source of hurt for them that ran pretty deep;  I can't even imagine being in that situation.  I found out that PG  knew and told her to go talk to her parents - which she did.  She's amazingly mature and insightful.

I had a feeling that she would be accepted to the exchange program because of a series of ironic circumstances.  She was accepted by her own merit; but a few guardian angels who appeared along the way helped her by providing advice and a few kind words.

I'm so so so proud of her.  I just have a deep feeling that she is going to go far in her life.  She always inspires everyone around her and now she has a chance to be a young Ambassador of Kuwait while she's in the US at school.

Please keep writing!  I want to read your books one day.  Whenever you need a push or a kind word, I'm here.

Bidoon Protests in Kuwait

I heard about the protests through US Embassy Warden notices, but I didn't know who was doing the protesting or why.  There's a lot of change happening in the Middle East.

.... and then... there was a spark....

2nd Day of Protests- Kuwaiti police use tear gas against protesters

KUWAIT CITY — Kuwaiti riot police used tear gas to disperse hundreds of stateless Arabs who demonstrated for the second day Saturday to demand basic rights and citizenship.

Police arrested dozens from around 300 protesters who had gathered in Sulaibiya, 25 kilometres (16 miles) southwest of Kuwait City, to press for their demands.

On Friday, at least five people were wounded and local media said as many as 100 protesters were arrested when around 1,000 stateless Arabs, also known as bidoons, clashed with police in Jahra, west of Kuwait City.

Like in Jahra, protesters in Sulaibiya carried Kuwaiti flags and pictures of the ruler and also demanded their right to work.

The bidoons, who are estimated at more than 100,000, claim they have the right to Kuwaiti citizenship, but the government says that ancestors of many of them came from neighbouring countries and they are not entitled to nationality.

Kuwait launched a crackdown on the bidoons in 2000, depriving them of basic rights including the right to health, education and jobs, in a bid to force them to reveal what the authorities say are their true identities.

Many bidoons have no right to a driver's licence, cannot get birth certificates for their babies or death certificates for the dead. They are also banned from getting their marriage contracts attested.

Due to stringent government restrictions, a majority of them are living in dire economic conditions in oil-rich Kuwait, where the average monthly salary of native citizens is more than $3,500 (2,575 euros).

Authorities said that following the crackdown, some 20,000 bidoons disclosed their original citizenship and were given residence permits like other foreigners.

Most bidoons claim to be Kuwaitis whose forefathers, who lived as Bedouins in the desert, failed to apply for citizenship when the state first introduced its nationality law in 1959.

Kuwaiti MPs have called on the government to quickly resolve the problem of bidoons and Kuwait's society for human rights called in a statement Saturday for the release of detainees.
Other similar stories:

Saturday, February 19, 2011

My weekends are making me tired

I had an awesome weekend.  I need more weekends to recover from my weekends.  I see a pattern forming... and I'm LIKIN it!

Wednesday night, caught up with a Shammar.   :)

Thursday afternoon, I headed over to Butterfly's and she gave me an AWESOME haircut.  Girl, you got it goin' ON. I have tried for years to get someone to do it right and BAM!  You got it right away.  Thanks.  We went to lunch and then read some cards. Fasssssssssscinating.  BTW, I read it again when I got home and it was the SAME - almost had identicals.

Thursday night I completely forgot a dear OLD friend's birthday party.  I am so so so so so so sorry.  I knew there was something and there has just been so much going on that I didn't write it down and when I don't write something down, the Old Timers creeps up. I am going to try to find a way to make it up to you.

We went to see more OLD friends who are always very kind, courteous, and extremely hospitable.  I haven't seen them in for forever and it was kinda quiet but fun. My old friend, Senior Sauza was there in all his glory.  We danced a little and then went home happy.

Friday lunch with friends at Marina Crescent.  I love PQ.  Their food is awesome and it was nice to sit outside in the sun (even if I was slightly hungofah).

Friday night went to visit The Lawyer.  (OMG, J, you have lost too much weight and I'm worried about you.  I was so sad when your mom died and it is obvious how much grief you have been feeling.  I'm so sorry.  I hope you know how much we love you and adore you.  You are one of the kindest people I have ever met and I will ALWAYS be here for you.)  Now this was a funny scene:  the guys were dancing and the girls were enjoying the show.  Wa-na-saaaaa.  I vaguely remember sticking a dinar... ok... nevermind...

We ended up heading to the desert to catch up with the Crew.  I always get lost getting to "Base Camp" and then... got stuck in soft sand.  That was just wrong.  I never do that (well, once around 12 years ago up in Kabd in my Stealth).  Envoys are NOT good in the sand (apparently Mercedes sports cars are because they were all there when I arrived!).  They could see us from the camp, so the cavalry came down to help.  The Romanian decided to get behind the wheel because she knows how to get out of sand "much better" than I do (yeah, right!).  She was still behind the wheel when the rescue team arrived, so I got to blame the stuckage on HER.  LOOL.  ha!  It was just one of those nights that you can tell stories about later and lie, lie, lie about who was driving!  ("It wasn't me.")

I was supposed to go to a barbecue in Kabd but we didn't wake up in time and Serseree got mad and went home (whiner!).  Not my fault.

I had a very lovely lunch at PF Changs Corniche with "Minnesota Man" and I laughed a good chunk of my ass off!  Thanks E.  Thanks also for being psychic enough to realize that I would want vanilla ice cream after Chinese.  Good call, dude! ("She said, and then I said....")

So here I am waiting for Slaps to get here to fill me in on her crazy Dubai weekend.  I gotta go to sleep early. I'm feelin it today.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

When you just don’t yield a high return on investment

After lengthy due diligence and research, you go into a partnership as a 3rd party and make a substantial investment.  One partner is a silent partner (but silent as can be in Kuwait where the “silent” partners call many of the shots and generate nothing but drama and paperwork).  The other partner (general partner) who is in the foreground, does very little to sustain the efforts of running and maintaining the business. 
You exert 90% of the labor, provide much of the intellectual property and creative concepts.  Several years in, you notice that your operational efforts have increased to 95% and the chain of authority has become blurred (a variance from your contractual agreement with the partners).  The general  partner isn’t putting forth any effort and spends less than one day per week at the office.  The time that he is spending in the office is usually productive, but not enough to sustain a good return on your investment.  Often, he is difficult to reach should there be any operational issues; putting the business at risk.
After years in business,  you are often just barely breaking even.  Other attractive investors are starting to lure you.  You can see the potential the business has, but the general partner just isn’t willing to put the time and effort into operational matters to make it profitable.  You’ve discussed it with him at length, but to no result. The business is no longer efficient and your stock valuation has diminished.
Do you stay and try to turn a failing business around or do you cut your losses and disband the partnership in order to start a new venture?
My personal advice to this partner would be to cut the losses and move on to a new venture.  If the partners are not willing to carry the load of their contractual agreements, then disband. 

"It's nothing personal; it's just business...."

Desert Dirt

I have been toying with the concept of creating another blog where I can write "the real deal", the skivy, the low-down, the scoop -  as I really can't be anonymous anymore here. 

My plan is to go ahead with it soon with security settings so that only certain people (allies) have access.  If you would like to be included/have access, just shoot me an e-mail at  I'm still going to leave this site open and will continue posting as usual. 
My cyber-stalkers are not welcome.   You know who you are.

Help Clean The Beach This Saturday asked me if I would post this:

"This coming Saturday from 8:30 - 12:00 noon we have a beach sweep at Messila Beach.   The more volunteers have the better chances we have a having a successful sweep."

Monday, February 14, 2011

Floral Delivery Nightmares - Kuwaiti Style

This is how we roll up in dis here floral shack...

There are several types of businesses that are really common in Kuwait:  Florists, chocolate shops, bakeries.  Seems like there is at least one of those within walking distance to anyone's home all over Kuwait.  LOTS of competition.  Lots of reasons to provide better service and quality than the other guy.

Frustrating days in Kuwait happen to all of us.  You roll with the punches:  Bob and weave; stick and move.  Get used to it.  Sometimes I have "those days" like today when the service is so horrifically bad that you just sit there, staring out to space, shaking your head back and forth and repeating your mantra in a trance, 'Oh my God!  Oh my God!' over and over and over again. (Somebody hand me the Panadol and keep it comin'.)

Granted, I know it is florists busiest day of the year.  There are going to be problems, but there are easier ways to solve them than rudeness or by just thinking that glitches will go away.

Au Nom de la Rose:  In my opinion, hands down the most beautiful roses in Kuwait.  There just isn't any other florist like it.  Slaperella often gets me flowers from the store in Bidaa, so when we made a Valentine's Day flower pact, I went to Au Nom to have flowers delivered to her and The Romanian.  I went in on Saturday.  Coincidentally, Slaps came over Saturday evening and said, "Did you order my flowers from Au Nom?"  Turns out, "Manager" at Au Nom called both Slaps and Romanian to inform them (thus blowing whatever surprise The Romanian had and potentially one for Slaps as she didn't know about "the pact") that they would be receiving flowers on Valentines day; and what were their exact addresses?

Oh my God!

Today, by 2pm, neither of my friends had received their flowers.  I called.  I called. I called. (He never  called me even though I repeatedly told him if there was a problem to call me. Again, I know it is a very busy day.)  I spoke to manager dude probably a dozen times.  He told me that he had been calling "the guy, but that he wasn't answering."  I'm like, 'What guy?' So he went into a discussion about his driver.    Slaps finally received her bouquet sometime in the afternoon.  Romanian wasn't so lucky.  It still hadn't reached her by the evening.  I called manager dude again and he had more employee excuses and oh, could I tell him what I wanted on the card (the one that I wrote while I was in the store, you mean?).  'So, you are telling me that you lost it, right?'  "Yes maam."   I don't care how pretty their flowers are.  I'm just never going to order from them again.  It would be less frustrating to build my own greenhouse and grow my own roses.

Simultaneous to these Nom dramas, I was having another florist drama.

Chic Roses Florist, Salmiya.  Case study in what NOT to do to your customers.  Some guy called me and asked me where I was in the morning and (difficult to convey by the written word) in quite an aggressive tone.  (Are we dating?  Do I KNOW you?  How did you get my number? why do you want to know where I am?)  What do you mean, "where am I?"  (Inaudible babbling....) ... florist. Oh, okay.  I get it.  Someone is sending me flowers.  Cool (but I'm kind of pissed off and happy at the same time).  I tell dude I am in Dajeej. Four times he doesn't understand that word, "Dajeej".  Finally I mention something about Farwaniya.  (Lightbulb moment.)   "We don't deliver to Dajeej.  You can come here."  Ooooooooh noooooooo I can't.  You are in the service industry:  Serve.

I love getting flowers.  I am very grateful.  Dude is pissing me off.  I have no idea who they are from (again, grateful for getting them).

He's arguing with me (the customer).  I am telling him how bad it is for him to argue with me (the customer).  He insists that "I told the lady who made order we take it to Rumaithiya."  Dead silence on the phone.  'Hello.  Hel-loooooo, are you there?'  Dead silence on the phone.  (I later figured out that he must have stopped the conversation when Madame, the owner, walked in.)  I finally get him to speak again and he's arguing with me again about how he is not coming to Dajeej.  I ask him if he's stupid because what he's doing is bad for his business. (Stupid for business arguing with customers who have the potential to give you more money in the future. Get it?)  Dead silence.  'Hello.  Hel-loooooo, are you there?'  Dead silence on the phone.  I hang up. (Then I Googled the number to find out the name of the shop because I never did quite get it.)

I ask someone who speaks Arabic to call them back and give them my home address.  She does.  She said that the Kuwaiti shop owner got on the phone and was very upset because I had called her guy, "Stupid."  Yeah, so now THEY are upset?

Sooooo, I call back with the intention of explaining to the shop owner.  She went off on me and wouldn't let me speak. She spoke over me, "I was there!  I heard the conversation!"  (You heard half of the conversation - what dude was saying and dead silences when you probably thought I was talking to him.) Honey, do you feel better now that you've chastised me? Apparently, the customer is wrong and you (as a business owner) should voice your displeasure by 1) Arguing with them and 2) telling them that they are wrong   (because hey - everybody knows that that is just damn good business practice, right?).  Yeah, like YOU are really going to get repeat orders from me and all of my friends.  Thar ya go.  That is GREAT.   I just said, "Look, just send the flowers to my home and I will never do business with you again.  How's that?"  She agreed and seemed happy with it.  Done.  I'm not losing money; what do I care?

After all that, in all seriousness, I was scared of them.  If they went off that way on customers, and they knew my address.... not a good scenario. (Give me your money, I hate you! attitude. Also known as "sell and go to Hell")  I didn't want the flowers.  Keep them.

So, I receive an SMS to ask me if I had received the flowers.  Ah, now I know.  The Romanian!  She and her son had ordered them from Chic the night before.  She and her son  both thought that the guy in the shop was (her words) "... stupid.  We spoke to them in English and Arabic (her son is a 23 yr old Kuwaiti) and he still didn't understand what we were saying."

She called the shop and they promised to deliver the flowers (this was around 6:30ish).  They said they were on their way to deliver to my house.  She SMSed me at around 7:30 and asked if I had received them yet.  Nope.  She called the shop.  They said they had called and called me and I didn't answer (nope. not true.).  The Romanian got into her car and went to the shop, walked past the customers, past the owner, and into the room with the coolers and asked where her flowers were (in Arabic).  She said the shop owner was very apologetic (probably because she was speaking Kuwaiti/Bedu Arabic which is always a shock), but by that point, it was too late (puhleeze).  Romanian grabbed the bunch and brought them over to me herself.

Thanks girl, they're gorgeous.You know, whatever else is happening in your life, your girlfriends always come through for you; even if they have to fight for it! 

Case study for positive floral delivery service:

Yesterday (short notice)  I ordered a bouquet to be sent from Slaps, Rom, and I to be sent to one of our Kuwaiti friends (Corvette Girl) who we love.  I ordered from Q8flowers.  Good ole Q8flowers NEVER lets you down.  They are like the US postal service of floral arrangement delivery in Kuwait.  They'll get them there no matter what AND they take KNET, Visa, and Mastercard online.  They call you if there is a problem (yes, even on Valentine's Day).  Q8flowers, you guys rock and I am a devoted loyal customer that will go back every time.  I had a few glitches with them during busy times and they made it right.  That's all it takes.  Thanks for getting them there on time.

Thanks, Q8flowers,  for also delivering the bigass bouquet of red roses to ME - in the morning, with a smile and a nice word. Thanks for not ruining the surprise by calling me 2 days in advance.   I am so appreciative that I would like to send you flowers, but alas, you are obviously the only place in town that I would trust to do a good job!

Help me find that Nabeel Shael Song!!!!

There is a song that Nabeel Shael sang during the Gulf War (90/91) where he said something about "I shed my blood ...." I still haven't found it after all these years. 

My mother used to hear me playing that song and cry and she didn't know what the words meant, but got emotional because of the raw pain in his voice.

What the heck was that song????

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Some thoughts on Valentine's Day

Happy Valentines Day everybody! 
I love Valentine's Day and I just don't get anyone who is dead-set against it.  Where is the love, people?  Personally (and this is my perspective, so I really don't want to hear the argument against it because zzzzzzzz - jenegiveashitpas) I don't see any religious/anti-religious significance to the day whatsoever. In fact, I believe strongly that most religions are based on love and devotion (God first, to your fellow humans and creatures you share the planet with).  So I'm all for a day that is about caring for others. I'm not just talking about male/female love;  I send stuff to my best friends and family too.  Like....

My dad used to send me cards and little gifts for Valentines Day. I think he loved it too.  I sent him flowers a few times and he used to tell me that flowers aren't just for girls. 

My mom says that the guy who doesn't give you something for Valentine's Day (or makes excuses or ditches) is never going to be serious about a relationship with you. Girls, those are some words to live by.  If a man doesn't care about your feelings or your opinions, then why are you wasting your time on his?  Moms are always right.

I go for all the mushy stuff:  the cards, the chocolates in a heart-shaped box, the red flowers and teddy bears.  It seemed a lot easier when I was 1) back in the States and B) younger and dumber.  When I was engaged (waaaaaaaaaaaaaay back before the invention of fire), my x-fiance used to get me Godiva chocolates in a box and little gifts (diamond ear rings one year - kind of a big thing!).  I was SO spoiled and SO clueless. I just didn't know what I had. (Not that I wanted him and THANK GOD I didn't marry him.)  It was nice to be treated so well and to feel so loved and cared for; even though it has taken me a while to figure out how really special it all was.  (I was somewhat of a mean girl.)

Of course, he might have been doing all that just to get in my pants, come to think of it....  But still.

Hey - Shout out to Special K (this has nothing to do with the above, but he was so nice to me today and I really enjoyed our conversation).  THANKS for the pep talk and for the fast friendship.  I hope you have a great Valentine's Day.  Send her some flowers! This is going to be a special year for you, Inshallah.  We look forward to welcoming you both to the circle of trust. ;) 

Blonde Post

No!  It's not going to be stupid, stupid!

Someone sent me a blonde joke this morning which got me started.  Then, I remembered seeing something at the salon while I was getting my hair blonded about "Latvia's Go Blonde Festival".  ("The event, originally conceived to uplift the public mood during the country’s economic crisis is rapidly becoming a major tourist attraction for the whole region, and is expected to generate significant donations for Latvian child charity.") You go, blonde girls!

While I was reading the article, my blonde stylist talked to me about how many Kuwaiti women go in (Tony & Guy Corniche) to have their hair bleached to blonde; many times, it isn't possible because you really can't go blonde blonde from deep black without 1) turning it orange and B) burning the bejeezus out of it.  StylistGirl said that these ladies are coming in - NOT necessarily because they want their hair blonde, but because their husbands have insisted.  That's bad.  If someguy asked me to die my hair black, mithilin,  I would retaliate (but hey, that's just me).  That's mean.  Why would you have to change to please some superficial dude.  Anyways... now I'm on my box again... don't get me started.

Perhapsee husband dudes should be shipped off to Latvia for the festival.  (Yeah right, then they could do a movie called, "Bye Bye Latvia."  You go home, me go home....)

About the Go Blonde Festival and the International Association of Blondes (members include nuclear physisists, neurologists, lawyers and other professionals)... I wonder if they will give me a card if I become a member?   Then I could be a "Card Carrying Member of the International Association of Blondes."  Yeah baybee.  Legitimicy. 

Romanian, are you in?  The festival looks fun.  I hope they have pink martinis.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


I've decided to join in on Slapperella's contest to see who can get more flowers for Valentine's Day, so BRING IT ON!  Flower donations are hereby accepted.

Y, M, A, and all the girls (The Romanian, Slaps, Spanx, Butterfly, Corvette Girl) - thanks for an amazing weekend!  2 nights and 2 days of desert, dessert, and all around mischief.  Y, M, A - I really missed you guys and I'm glad I saw you all again.

I'm glad we decided to go to the South desert instead of the North.  I can't believe how much fun I forgot I could have.  I still can't believe how ironic it was where we ended up (I think it was a sign from God!).  The Romanian:  I still can't believe what happened when we left!  I'm still laughing about it.  Totally cracked me up.  Partners in crime, baybee. :)

On a somber note, February 13th is the day I found out that Shamlan died.  The memory of that day will always stay with me.  I called him to wish him a happy Valentine's day from my hotel room in Dubai.   If I was in Virginia, I would throw a single rose in  the Potomac for you like I used to do - from our place in the park. I miss you, Shamlan, and I can still hear your laughter echoing in my mind.  I know you are never far away.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Looking for something to do?

Plagiarized directly from Ladies Who Do Lunch in Kuwait...

Al Jeyad Farm Outing

From the nice people at AWARE

Location: Al Abdaly - North Kuwait
Saturday, 19th February.
AWARE outing to Al Jeyad Farm. This February it's 50/20 and so to mark the 50 years of Independance & 20 years since Liberation, Aware is holding, for the first time, a special day out in Abdaly. It's still desert but there are big farms with green grass. Come along with us for a fun day out, fresh air, good food and more. 

Fee: KD5 per person/ KD3 for children.
To register please call 25335280 or email
We strongly advise participants to utilize the transport provided by AWARE as the farm is very far and hard to find.
Departure from AWARE Center: 10:00AM
Depart from Al Jeyad Farm: 5:30PM
Arrive AWARE Center: 7.00PM

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The ONLY Asian Supermarket I have seen like this in Kuwait

I stumbled upon this place today when we went to Freej Eqaab (see below).  In the DC area, we have lots of these supermarkets selling Asian-only products, but I have never seen one in Kuwait.  They have all kinds of food, spices, even cookware from Korean, China, Japan, Thailand, the Philippines.  They also have a small cafe which we are going to try later (no menus, unfortunately, but they did have this flyer below).  Take the same directions as below to Freej Eqaab. The supermarket is right behind the restaurant inside a drive-through mall (would that be a "mo-mall" like a motel?  ha ha).  I'm going to try to take pictures next time.  It is pretty large and very clean.

Are there more of these Asian supermarkets around, people?

Freej Eqaab Kuwaiti Restaurant in Dajeej

I have often driven by Freej Eqaab, although the only time that I heard the name was when The Man told me (because the sign is in Arabic).  You can see it if you are taking the turn into Dajeej coming from the North (from Jahra towards Miseelah take the exit for 60, but don't get off at 60, stay straight, veer right and there will be a small enterance into Dajeej - close to Kuwait Finance House and where the old Sultan Center used to be but isnt' anymore). It looks like an Arabic house between a bunch of furniture stores.

We went there for lunch. I guess there is an upstairs, but we didn't go there.  We stayed downstairs in the family section.  There are nothing but cabinas - which makes me claustrophobic (but I guess it is great for people dating).  Waitress lady kept shutting the door. I felt like I was in prison, so we kept opening them.  They never smiled the whole time we were there - nobody did. It feel kinda eerie.  Why y'alls trying to lock me in?  Whatchagonnado?

Anyhoo, we had tashreeba (Kuwaiti lasagna with lamb stew and thin bread instead of noodles), qaboot (Kuwaiti dumplings or big raviolis), and mutabaq zbeidi (fish on rice).  They need to add some spices.  The rice was great. The qaboot was good.  I am spoiled on tashreeba because I make my own and I am totally prejudice against anyone elses'.  The lamb was a little tough.  The prices are good.  We paid 7kd for all that plus salad.  Not bad.

US embassy workers at risk of exploitation

US embassy workers at risk of exploitation
Arab Times, 10 February 2011
WASHINGTON, Feb 8, (AP): American embassies in Arabian Gulf states are using contract laborers whose employers are illegally confiscating their passports and providing them with poor pay and living conditions, putting them at risk for exploitation, according to an internal State Department report released Monday.
The department’s inspector general said contractors who supply gardeners, maids, cooks and local guards to embassies in Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are engaged in practices that fall just short of violations of US human trafficking laws.

More than three-quarters of the dozens of laborers at the embassies in question told investigators that they had to pay recruitment fees to get their jobs, which for more than 25 percent amounted to more than a year’s salary.
All the contractors surveyed held the passports of the workers, many of whom are from South and Southeast Asia, a practice that is barred in each of the four countries.

In addition, more than 70 percent of workers interviewed said they lived in overcrowded, unsafe or unsanitary conditions, with 20 occupying quarters with less personal space than that required by inmates at minimum security prisons in the United States.

The report said that while none of the embassies or contractors are technically violating US laws aimed at preventing such abuses, steps should be taken to improve the working and living conditions of the workers.

--- end ---

Hey, I have a super duper idear:  Hire Americans!  There are lots of people coming off the CSA contract.  Why don't you have Americans working at the front reception desk (where you hand out the badges)?  To me, it is just WRONG to have someone there who 1) isn't friendly 2) doesn't know American names 3) doesn't know the proper way to address people.  Hire an Arab-American if you are concerned about language being an issue.  I'm a business person.  I assume most people visiting the embassy are there on business. I would like to be properly addressed and spoken to.

Here is my headline:  US embassy visitors at risk...

Of Frustration:  I was at the Embassy the other day and here is what I want to know:  Seriously, is there like one guy who has been hired to take my name OFF the list to get into the embassy?  Every single time I go there, people swear that they have added my name and then ... WABAM!  I wait politiely as they are not very nice to me - (either through body language or verbally) and then after Desert Girl reasonable-waiting-period (15 minutes) has passed (with many scowls from reception dude and no appologies), I leave.

This pisses me off.

Of a sprained ankle or blisters from cute shoes and a hike:  "Why don't you call your contact?"  Well no duuuuuh, except that you have made me leave my phone in the car which is parked 1/4 mile away.  Why don't you have a phone on the wall and a list of numbers?

... don't get me started today....

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

I'm feelin patriotic today...

Team America: World Police - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - America, Fuck Yeah .mp3
Found at bee mp3 search engine
Sooooooooo offensive.  I had this on in the car one time here in Kuwait.  Dropped off at valet parking.  When I came out, the valet driver screeched to a halt with this song blaring out the windows.  Sheepishly he got out and said, "I LOVE this song!"  Aaaah, a Kuwait moment.

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Early Valentine's Day

I wasn't going to post about this, but what the hey.  The Man has been so nice to me lately and really, this is my world here in blogsphere, so I should be able to write what I want.

Valentine's Day came a little early for us this year.  It was a total surprise.  He brought me a big bunch of flowers from our favorite florist - a guy that The Man has been buying me flowers from since I met him 5+ years ago.  The florist is a really sweet older guy and he always knows what I like.  I started sending my friends flowers from the same place and every time I go there, Mr. Mohammed gives me a single rose.

I love rings and I got such a nice surprise:  It has little hearts on it and is SO pretty.  I couldn't have asked for a nicer gift.  You always know me, don't you?  I don't know where you got it, but it is amazing and special and I love it.  He shouldn't have spent so much money.

We usually go to "our" restaurant on Fridays, but we decided to skip it this time.  We go there so often that if we miss a day, they ask about us the next time.  I feel like Norm on Cheers. :)

What an amazing day.  Thanks, The Man.  You really went all out.

Monday, February 07, 2011

PAWS dog show March 4th, Briddish Embassy, 11-4

Plagiarized directly from Mark's blog (because I'm too lazy to write my own.)

Registration is now open for entry into the 6th annual dog show. The show will take place in the beautiful gardens of the British Embassy on Friday March 4th from 11AM to 4PM. There will be stalls at the dog show selling a variety of merchandise, activities for the children, refreshment stalls and of course the main attraction will be the competition categories of which there are 9 this year.

Full details can be found on the PAWS website and all competition categories are listed on the application form which can be downloaded from the website as well. Here is the [Link]

KOC Photography Competition

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Pinkaliscious Style

I had a great weekend.  Went to Indian food at Mugal Mahal – I haven’t been there in forever.  I refuse to go to the one in Salmiya because I have bad memories there. 

Let me just tell you how great Pinkies Salon is! OMG!  Friday night, I called them to come over and do a pedicure for me and THE MAN.  I have just been too lazy lately to go to a salon.  Plus, I have to find one with the proper pedi chairs…. other than Strands because the girls pay no attention to me there – I might as well have a plastic bag for a head because they don’t make eye contact and they talk in Tagalog the entire time I’m there.  They’re probably saying, “ooooh, American lady have duuurty feeet,” and smiling at each other.  Uh, no, I don’t think so.  Not this girl. (That's what made me learn Arabic -  because I am paranoid and narcissistic at the same time and just KNEW "they" were talking about ME ME ME.)

Anyhoo, Pinkies had time for a pedi at my place (even though I gave very little notice on a Friday evening) and showed up with EVERYTHING.  Pinkies lady (in uniform) set up with pedicure foot baths, and paraffin wax.  They even brought their own stools to sit on.  Then, they set up a tea and coffee service – complete with Pinkies home-made chocolate truffles.  Oh.My.God!  This, surrounded by real rose petals and with a scented candle they brought.  They also asked if we wanted music, but we didn’t like it, so we asked that they turn it off (I had to spend most of the time on the phone anyways with stupid calls).  I can’t relax anymore.  But they made me… More rose petals in the foot bath.   Zoya and Essie nail polish in every imaginable color.  Woo hoo. Foot scrub.  Paraffin with the booties.  Aaaaah…  Then, at the end, they give you a neck massage.  I tried to lock them in, but that would just be wrong…. slave pedicure labor.

The Pinkster is incredibly professional.  They send along comments cards and a note saying that they want to ensure your total satisfaction  (oh yeah – I was fer sure satisfied).  You’ve got a customer for life.

While I was sitting there oohing and aaahing, Spanx called and we talked about what to get for Slaps’ birthday the next day.  I immediately recommended Pinkies and waBAM!  Spanx got a gift certificate.  Slaps, I swear you are going to LOVE it.

We had a little problem before with another at-home salon service that was totally unprofessional.  The girls talked between themselves in Tagalog the whole time (in MY house) and then went to an appointment at Slaps’ and trashed me to her (gossiped about me and my house guest who was there).  Ummmmm … not acceptable.

Anyhoo, so Saturday was Slaperella’s 40th birthday…. Okay, okay, it is not really, but I am loving messing with her. I got there late because I had a meeting in the morning.   We went to the Muhallab Restaurant in the Palms.  That place ROCKS.  I love their fish.  I pre-ordered a cake (because I knew Slaps hates being embarrassed) and asked them to sing (which they didn’t really).  Slaps’ friend (oh snap – what should I call her??? Damn.  Okay, “ChinaGirl”) ChinaGirl brought hats and we all had to wear them (I got a headache and took mine off).  Slaps wore a fluffy headband that said, “Happy Birthday” in pink.  Spanx got a few inappropriate waves from some guy across the room.  They probably thought we were party girls (well…. If the Jimmy Choo fits…).  We laughed a lot – about stuff that I can’t even remember right now.  People in the restaurant were wishing Slaps “happy birthday” as she walked by their table.  She’s a rock star.

I couldn’t figure out what to buy her that she would love, so I just bought all kinds of stuff that I thought she would like.  Now, I can’t stop myself. I’m seeing more and more.  I just wasn’t satisfied by my purchases.  It’s sad.

I had a great day… until a conversation that took place in the night.  That’s okay:  Game on. Bring it!

Zero privacy in Kuwait for matters of the Southern Region

Here's what I want to know, Kuwait....

I bank at Kuwait Finance House.  I have to go to the ladies section (as genders are separated) to do my banking.  Men and women mixing together to bank would be... scandalous, no?  I think that men and women there can't even work together either.

Men in Kuwait (supposedly) are not allowed to sell me panties.

And yet, when I go to the most expensive private women's hospital in Kuwait (Royal Hyatt) for scheduled maintenance; when I want to talk to the pharmacist about preventative maintenance medication, I have a fat man standing so close to my hind quarters that I can feel him breathing onto my hair.  I mean, shouldn't there be a ladies-only section to the pharmacy - in a WOMEN's hospital? I don't want to talk about my va-jay-jay with ugly fat dude over my shoulder.  I don't even want someone discussing my hoo-hoo if there are other females around.  What makes it OKAY in Kuwait for Pharmacies to have zero privacy?  Transferring cash gets more privacy in Kuwait than my privates.  WHY is that?

Bearded dudes, there's one for you to discuss in parliament.

By the way, I love the Royal Hyatt.  It is high class (and so are the patients who go there) and I am always comfortable seeing the doctor there.  I just wish they would re-arrange the pharmacy a little to reflect the type of service that they have in the rest of the hospital - outstanding.

This isn't limited to the Royal Hyatt.  I find most pharmacies in Kuwait to be very indiscreet also.

Lack of Blog Anonymity SUCKS Bigtime

I hate that I can't write about what I want to these days.  I remember when this happened to my blog buddies like Tatabotata and Stinni and eventually, their posts dwindled down.  It sucks when you are no longer truly anonymous.  There are several people/subjects that I would really love to bitch about (not mentioning names, but they'd still know if I did).  I'm actually pondering the thought of creating another blog where I can be me. 


I wish blogger was more like facebook where  you could have maybe a drop-down menu of IP addresses or people that you didn't want to give permission to.

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Truthful Restaurant Reviews and Freedom of Speech

I am concerned about Mark's lawsuit (Benihana vs Mark 2:48am) as it will set a precedent for other lawsuits to follow.  People have left comments for Mark, me, and on other blogs saying that it is not an issue of freedom of speech.  Ah, but It IS a “freedom of speech thing.”

I left this as a comment on Mark's blog, but I think it is worthy of a full post because I feel strongly about it.

I can’t write a TRUTHFUL restaurant review and have it published in a magazine. Why? Because the magazine owners are afraid they will be sued. If my review is negative:  no story.

(Sidenote:  I can't write about certain other topics either as publishers are afraid of being sued.  Again, that IS a freedom of speech issue.  I wrote about negative aspects of a health club in a magazine, it was published, and the health club owner threatended to sue the management rather than fixing -- what from MY perspective were - problems.)

Have you EVER read a negative restaurant review in a magazine here? The rest of the world feels free to tell the truth: good OR bad. Not here.

This (Mark's review of Benihana) was a perspective piece on a blog; A truthful personal opinion. They are SUING him for it.I don’t understand why some people think it is NOT a “freedom of speech” thing.