Away From Politics

Books not Boots: UK Embassy Donates $50 Million To Public Schools and Educational Projects In Lebanon

Public schools in Lebanon can accommodate up to 300,000 students and there are 275,000 students expected to enroll in the 2014-2015 academic year. The remaining 25,000 are usually allocated to refugees however there are 400,000 Syrian refugees wishing to enroll in public schools next year, which means that the majority of Syrian children in Lebanon will be left out of school and with no education.

A Kim Kardashian Inspired Lebanese Campaign To (Try To) Break The Lebanese Government

No one’s breaking the Lebanese government and when we had the chance as Lebanese to say no, only few of us went down and got beaten up while trying to say no to the extension. Nevertheless, it wouldn’t hurt for politicians to eat the crap we’re apparently eating everyday according to our Health Minister lol!

Roadster Diner To Donate A Full Working Lab To The Health Ministry

Roadster Diner has re-asserted its commitment to food safety and quality and has decided to donate a full working lab to the Ministry of Public Health to improve their capabilities. Of course this is a good move but I am honestly quite surprised that the full report hasn’t been issued yet by Minister Bou Faour. We know nothing about the nature of the violations, the standards applied etc …

Lebanon Solves Global Food Crisis – By Eating Faeces

The tiny nation of Lebanon has come up with a radical solution to solve the global food crisis that will go a long way towards creating a sustainable food source for the entire planet: human faeces. The bold scheme has been running for a few years now and has proved so successful that the country has decided to publicise it and launch a campaign to make it go global.

Lebanese Men With Beards: Hipsters or Jihadists?

It’s hard to be a hipster in Lebanon as cops might mistake you for a terrorist if you have a long beard, just like what happened with Lebanese Rapper AA the Preacherman back in January. Kayan Bartender Mazen Hariz has the same problem as he gets mistaken for a Jihadist at checkpoints and was once threatened by a police officer.

MTV Ursula Daccache Gets (Surprise?) On-Air Proposal

So she didn’t recognize her boyfriend’s voice?
[YouTube]

Lebanese Karen Shammas & Nacif Elias Win Medals At The 2014 Phuket Asian Beach Games

Karen Shammas was competing in the Sambo competition and won a silver medal after beating Korea and Syria in the quarter and semi finals respectively. As for Nacif Elias, he won a bronze medal in Jiu Jitsu after winning 3 games out of 4. [Sports-961]
Nacif has won a silver medal for Lebanon as well at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon back in September.
Congrats to both athletes!

Al Rifai Breaking The Internut

Chou we2fit 3a Kim?

We Google Translated A Thomas Friedman Article Into Arabic And Back Into English And Now It Makes Sense

We were perplexed by Thomas Friedman's latest article so we Google translated it into Arabic and back into English and now it makes much more sense. Below is the direct results from Google, unaltered. 
Freud and the Middle East

Thomas Friedman

What Could غير مطابق Mean?

via Al Jomhouria

London’s ‘Gherkin’ Tower Sold To Lebanese-Brazilian Billionaire Joseph Safra

Joseph Safra is presumably the richest banker in the world and is the top ranked Lebanese in the world’s richest Arabs list.
The Safra Group bought the Gherkin for a bit over 1 Billion Dollars.

Jean-Paul Goude recreates iconic photo with Kim Kardashian #paper #breaktheinternet


Strange... I've seen this photo before... To paraphrase Grace Jones' hit, the muse of none other than legendary creator Jean-Paul Goude. Goude is the man behind today's photos which broke the internet, and no wonder since Paper magazine actually wanted us to #breaktheinternet.

Kol ….. Wou Chkor!

via Al Jomhouria
Haha!

Did The Ministry Of Health Inspect Beirut’s Public Slaughterhouse?

I posted this video a year ago. Compassion in World Farming visited the Karantina Slaughterhouse and were shocked by what’s happening there. Since the Ministry of Health is launching a food safety campaign, it would be a great idea to start with the Beirut Slaughterhouse where most of the restaurants in Lebanon get their meat from.

The Ethiopian Worker Who Jumped Off The Fourth Floor Is Recovering And Will Be Fine

I am sure you all saw the video of the Ethiopian housekeeper who tried to commit suicide in Salim Salam. Well the good news is that she did not die and is recovering at the hospital right now. Unfortunately though, we still don’t know why she decided to jump as her employer is denying the fact that he didn’t book an airline ticket for her to go back home.

6 Awesome Calligraffiti Pieces in Tripoli by Hayat Chaaban

Hayat Chaaban is a young street artist from Tripoli who I had the fortune of meeting during my latest visit to Tripoli. In a city damaged with the scars of conflict, crumbling under the weight of neglect and suffocating amid the posters of politicians that disfigure its charm, Hayat’s work lifts its spirits up just a little bit, while preserving its Arab culture and heritage.
Here are a few pieces I chose, and some captions underneath them translated from what Hayat has told me about them.

Mamarowana: Yes, We Can Still Party! The Evolution of Date Night Apres Having Kids


First of all, let’s agree they were never called ‘date-nights’. We just went out, had fun and didn’t think of anyone but ourselves. We enjoyed leaving one place and going to the next and then to a few more. We would have late-night breakfast feasts to wake up the next morning feeling pretty good, only ever so slightly affected. If such debauchery was attempted today, the morning after would be filled with a pounding headache and erupting acid reflux rendering the day miserable.

Health Minister Wael Bou Faour Issues A list of Lebanon’s Violating Supermarkets And Restaurants

Health Minister Bou Faour confirmed to all the Lebanese today that the food they are eating is full of diseases and issued a list of restaurants and supermarkets that do not meet the proper health and hygiene conditions. The minister said that violating restaurants will be warned and fines will be forced.

Uber Beirut Offering Free Rides This Week!

I love Uber and I use it all the time when I don’t feel like driving to events in Beirut. The drivers are extremely friendly, always on time and very professional, the cars are super cool and the service is impeccable. If you don’t believe me, go ahead and try them as they are offering free uberX rides from Thursday November 13th till Sunday November 16th.
Here’s how to claim your free rides:

It’s True If I Say It Is, The World according To the Great Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Portrait of Mr Taleb using traditional Phoenician photography. With a swan.History is full of great Lebanese people who have contributed so much to humanity, and they never even mention it. But in the modern era nobody can come close to matching the genius of the greatest public intellectual of our era, Nassim Nicholas Taleb. The claim is largely based on Mr Taleb’s own self-perception but that doesn’t make it wrong.

Charbel Nassour plays is "un"safe with condoms to tackle parliamentary extension!


Credit: Charbel Nassour

Charbel Nassour, who was formerly a student, tackes the parliamentary self-extension of their mandate playing on the Durex condom.... The ad is self-explanatory, witty, and expresses the thinking of the majority of the population. Well done!

Update: You Can Now Edit Photo Captions On Instagram

I wrote a post back in September wondering whether it was possible to edit a photo caption on Instagram, specially after people had commented on it. For all I know, it’s not possible but it is now as Instagram has finally decided to roll out an update yesterday allowing users to edit captions.
I don’t have the feature yet as the update is not yet available on the Play Store but my friend Maia tried it and it’s working.

FAIL: GVCI?

That’s the V from Bulgari though.
Spotted at Citymall

New Solar-Powered Lights On The Dora Highway But …

I like the fact that they installed new solar-powered lights on the Dora highway but that’s not the right way to do it. They should install high safety barriers on each side of the road to prevent speeding cars from going from one way to the other or crashing into these concrete poles. Similarly, whenever there are public works, they should place safety barriers and lights which is not the case.

"The Story" by Joe Bolton

If it rained tonight
I’d lie down
For a thousand years.

—As if nothing had happened;
As if the story
Wouldn’t tell itself forever:

No more mother, no remembered loves, and my pulse
Purified, the only sound
As I lowered myself into the depths…

But the bells are ringing up the hill,
Punishing bells,
Recounting all the arguments against me.

If I’ve created the story of my life,
Why not the story
Of not having ever lived at all?

Maybe then there wouldn’t be this burden
Of what was lost
Almost before it had arrived.

Maybe then there wouldn’t be this weight
Of what is
And what I can feel myself already losing.

France 24: Le Beyrouth des Arts With Elie Saab

France24 filmed an episode in Beirut with Lebanon and one of the world’s best fashion designers, Elie Saab. You don’t know need to know much about fashion to appreciate Saab’s work and the fact that he dressed the likes of Beyoncé, Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek, Jane Fonda, Sandra Bullock, Emma Watson, Katy Perry, Meryl Streep and many other celebrities. For those interested, you can get an Elie Saab degree now at LAU.

Ethiopian Worker Commits Suicide In Salim Salam in Beirut

It’s about time the Kafala system is dropped in Lebanon and domestic workers are given their most basic rights!
PS: Someone posted a video showing the worker jumping. She was rushed to the hospital and is injured.

El Hamra Cinema Brought Back To Life As Tyre Hosts Its First Ever International Film Festival

El Hamra Cinema was built in 1952 and used to be the cultural hub of the city of Tyre before the war started. After being closed for 30 years, Kassem Istanbouli and his team decided to bring the place back to life and hosted at first an International Theater Festival back in June 2014, and then Tyre’s first ever international film festival between November 8 and 11.

The Ivy Says Radio Show on NRJ Lebanon 99.1


It’s official. I’m proud to announce that this Wednesday the 12th of November marks the first episode of my new radio show IVY SAYS on NRJ 99.1
This has been under wraps for a couple of months now and I’m absolutely delighted to join their amazing team and be a part of this leading station in Lebanon and internationally.

The Weekly Leaks: Uberhaus Epic New Venue

So, a lot of you have been asking (including myself) where the winter venue of Uberhaus is gonna be. The Garten as a summer venue remains unparalleled in Beirut and the region, and the old, tiny Uberhaus though cozy, was a bit too stuffy after getting used to The Garten.
This year, Uberhaus is moving into the Mar Mikhael Bus Station!
The massive, disused warehouse is coming back to life Uberhaus-style on the 22nd of November with none other than Solomun.