Away From Politics

Why ISIS Are Not Coming To Beirut Anytime Soon

Photoshopped Picture of an ISIS Tank stuck in traffic
Forget all the conspiracy theories and geopolitical and intelligence reports, ISIS will never get to Beirut because of the traffic. Read the whole article [Here].

How To Make Meghli (Caraway Pudding)

Picture taken from here
I was looking for online Meghli recipes in English to send to a friend and I found a really cool website with a detailed and illustrated step-by-step recipe. It’s called JourneyKitchen and here’s a [link] to the Meghli recipe.

19-year Old Lebanese Behind The Free Sunnis of Baalbek Brigade (لواء احرار السنة) Twitter Account

The ISF has finally caught the guy behind the Free Sunnis of Baalbek Brigade’s Twitter account and revealed that he’s a 19 year old young man from the Baalbeck region. This kid has terrorized the whole country with his tweets specially after he threatened to attack Christians and burn Churches to the ground. The so-called Free Sunnis of Baalbeck Brigade also claimed responsibility for several rocket and bomb attacks in Lebanon, including the latest suicide bombing at Raouche’s Duroy Hotel.
Let’s just hope that this is the full story and it was indeed some kid fooling around.

Beautiful graffiti vanishes in Hamra

Hamra mural before (1)

Hamra mural after (1)

Lebanese Amale Andraos Appointed Dean of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture

Lebanese architect Amale Andraos has been appointed as the new dean of the Graduate School of Architecture, Preservation and Planning at Columbia University (GSAPP) in New York City and will assume the position on September 1, replacing Mark Wigley who announced his retirement last year.
Amale is presumably the first woman to become a dean at the school.

What Tripoli’s Municipality Did Is Illegal, Here’s What To Do About It

The nice thing about our Constitution is that in its preamble, it’s pretty awesome. It ensures Lebanon’s utmost adherence to human rights, the equality of its citizens under law and the absolute right to believe or not believe in whatever you want, and the freedom to practice that freely. The specific articles I’m referring to are the following:

Robin Williams Has Four Upcoming Movies

The Academy Tribute to Robin Williams

Coca-Cola’s Iconic Taste has its own Exquisite Glass

ICONIC TASTE + EXQUISITE GLASS = THE REAL THING A SPECIFIC SHAPED GLASS BASED ON A SENSORY WORKSHOP   Riedel, the 300 year-old family owned company credited with revolutionizing glassware for the enjoyment of wines and spirits, announces the debut of the COCA-COLA + RIEDEL GLASS. Created in collaboration with Coca-Cola, the introduction marks Riedel’s »more...

Having Breakfast at Indigo on the Roof

It’s been almost a year since I last had breakfast at Le Gray, and because of Arina’s feedback, I went to check on the improvements she mentioned in her comment. Walk into this colorful space enchanted by light jazz tunes and choose to sit inside, or on the terrace overlooking Beirut’s Central District. Indigo welcomes »more...

Adonis river runs DRY!!!

Earlier this month, Naher Ibrahim (Adonis River) set a new all-time record low. that's because Lebanon has had below-normal rainfall levels for so long .Villagers in the area say water levels on their river is among the lowest in living memory.I took the above picture of “after” photo to complement picture I took in August 2007. When you compare the two , the result is Shocking!

Brazilian Football Team Not Coming To Lebanon Anymore?

Annahar is saying Brazil may call off the friendly game they had planned with Lebanon on September 4, mainly for security reasons.

The Coffee Making Alarm Clock… Yes You Heard Right

During the time we are actually waking up each morning we are making our coffee or waiting for one… Well to help get a jump-start on things, designer Joshua Renouf has developed a striking alarm clock that starts the process before you even get out of bed.   The Barisieur is an alarm clock and »more...

Farah Samman's great design for Julia's album

Let's face it, Arab singers have horrible designers working for them - it is so very rare for the albums to be well designed and what's worse are the concert promotions which are usually horrendous collages of photos of several people badly cropped and intermingled mish-mashed together. Sure, you will now accuse me of being biased considering the new album by Julia Boutros has been designed by Farah Samman - someone with whom I have collaborated frequently in the past.

Hannibal Race In Lebanon

There’s a Hannibal race taking place in Lebanon on September 7th at Zaarour from 8am till 5pm. There are two types of races, the 7K and the 15K both with obstacles. It’s a pretty tough race so think twice before joining it as you won’t be able to finish unless you are fit.
Check out more info [Here].

Street Fooding in Saida: Rosto, Shawarma and Oriental Sweets

Last week, I decided to visit Saida. It wasn’t a planned visit but I ended up trying a few interesting things. It was a great start for a next trip that will be planned properly and will be more extensive!  I decided to keep it simple and try some of their famous sandwiches, which many »more...

Pharrell Williams’s Creates His Own Burger

Add chef to various talents that Pharrell Williams has been showing lately – a singer, actor, designer artist is there anything the “Happy” singer doesn’t know how to do…In Japan, Williams created his own burger available at friend and collaborative partner NIGO‘s 2-5 Café. Between two crispy toasted buns are layers of the freshest ingredients including »more...

Satrbucks is lost in (Arabic) translation

"Yes to an all-time favourite" is according to Starbucks "The drink of choice for all times" in the Arabic version - notice the subtle but drastic difference? "all-time" becomes "all times". Still don't get it? An "all-time favourite" is a "classic" or something that has been enjoyed for a long time, "all times" refers to the hour of the day of consumption, or the occasion in which it was being enjoyed.

Pop art invades the city via Roy Lichtenstein

Khoury Home as inpired by Roy Lichtenstein

#Tripoli_Loves_Beer: 10 Things Tripoli’s Mayor Should Worry About Before Banning Beer Ads

Removing the beer ads in Tripoli may be legally correct, but I think Tripoli’s mayor should have other priorities on his agenda that are way more important than removing alcohol billboards. Here are some of them:

Where To Party This 3eed El Saydeh

So, over the past few years, 3eed el sayde has become a hotbed for large-scale parties in areas outside of Beirut. Of course, Faraya and Faqra come to mind, with 3-day long exhibitions and festivals all over the place, which I do recommend you check out (Faqra Club, Jardin du Mzaar) because the weather is awesome and there’ll be a lot of people enjoying their time there in the day. But, this post is about the nighttime parties, and here are the ones I’m going to be at and feel are worth going to!

Art Of C At City Centre Beirut: Creativity For A Good Cause

Five Lebanese artists were showcasing their creativity for a good cause at the Beirut City Centre on Saturday. Famous Tattoo artist Hady Beydoun, Graffiti Artists Rami Mouallem and Alfred Bader, Fashion Illustrator Sandra Bakhamian, and Dispatch Beirut were all decorating a huge C letter and turning them into giant pieces of art.
I passed by to check out what they’re up to and took pictures of their art work. I love Sandra and Rami’s structures the most.

What Is Wrong With The Lebanese Basketball Teams? Why Are They So Determined To Kill The Game?

I am really surprised that basketball players in Lebanon are still quiet over what’s happening recently. The Lebanese Federation may be obliged to take a decision soon that will literally kill basketball in Lebanon and harm first and foremost the Lebanese players. As you can see from the report, All the teams (except Riyadi) want 3 foreign players instead of 2 and their arguments are as follows:
Allowing three foreign players:
- will increase competitiveness.
- allow the Lebanese players to improve.
- lower the budgets of all the teams.

Annahar Writes About A Gay Marriage In Faqra Then Removes The Story And Apologizes

via lfadi
I saved this story to read it later, only to find out that Annahar removed it and posted a clarification stating that it was a fabricated story to harm the paper’s image. They also apologized to the groom showing in the picture and to his bestman showing in the picture.

Beirut Beer redeems itself in English.

Research credit: D.P.

Now that established that the Arabic version of Beirut Beer was close in spirit and expression to Pepsi, it seems they redeemed themselves with the English version which is more Whisky worthy (no direct corelation but reminds me of Chivas "live with chivalry" and Ballentine's "some things are worth doing" in terms of positioning and upscale tone of voice). "We've got what it takes" which is a better English adaptation for the Arabic line "ne7na adda".


I shall pack my bags and leave.
I don’t know where.
I don’t know why.
But I know that I shall not be here any longer.
I pile new absences atop my old ones;
I shall sniff them one more time, and disappear.
The terrazzo shall feel cold beneath my feet,
and the stale smell of the peeling blue walls shall
part ahead of my sadness. The flaps of the doorway
shall embrace me one last time.
And you, you shall not be there.

I tear myself out of my life,
and seek myself anew.
I shall renounce myself.
I shall hone my solitude.

(originally posted on October 11, 2003)

Mahmoud Darwish, "Memory for Forgetfulness" 7 - محمود درويش، "ذاكرة للنسيان"

منهم أخجل دون أن أعرف أني أخجل منهم.. الغامض يتراكم على الغامض ليحتك ويقدح الوضوح وفي وسع الغزلة أن يفعلوا كل شيئ، في وسعهم أن يسلطوا البحر والجو علي، لكنهم لايستطيعون أن يقتلعوا مني رائحة القهوة ساصنع قهوتي الآن. سأشرب القهوة الآن، لأتميز عن خروف على الأقل، لأعيش يوماً آخر، أو أموت محاطاً برائحة القهوة...
تُبعِد الإناء عن النار الخفيفة لتجري اليد أولى إبداعاتها، ولاتكترث بالصواريخ والقذائف والطائرات. فتلك إرادتي: سأذيع رائحة القهوة لأمتلك فجري. لا تنظر إلى الجبل الذي يبصق كتلة نارية في إتجاه يدك. ولكنك لا تستطيع أن تنسى أنهم يرقصون هناك، يرقصون من النشوة. كانت سيدات القرنفل في صحف البارحة يرتمينَ على دبابات الغزاة في الأشرفية كان النصف الأعلى من نهودهن، والنصف السفلي من أفخاذهن عارياً من الصيف ومن المتعة، ومعداً جيداً لاستقبال المخلصين،

10 Guestlist Passes for DIXON at The Garten This Saturday!

DIXOOOOOON!!!!! Ok, I won’t lie, after Ten Walls (Mario Basanov), Dixon is the artist I’ve been looking forward to most this epic summer at The Garten.

Old Beirut City Map From 1911

By Wagner & Debes
This is an amazing map of Beirut from 1911, showing various places as they looked like at the break of the 19th and 20th centuries and shortly after the World War I. For those interested, the map is available for download in high-res and you can even have a printed copy delivered to you.
Thanks Mark!

Dfouni’s Super Quinoa Salad

If you like Quinoa, you should definitely try the one Super Dfouni makes. I’ve been having it almost every day for the past 2 months. It contains grilled Halloumi, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, olives, parsley, cranberries and almond. It’s home-made, fresh, delicious, filling and costs only 12,000 LL.

Beirut City Centre Checking Car Plate Numbers

I was at the Beirut City Centre on Saturday and I noticed the security people were using a machine to check car plate numbers. I’m assuming they are checking if the car is stolen or not, pretty much like what I’ve suggested in my Masrou2a App post.
I am hoping the ISF will implement soon a license plate recognition technology to track down stolen cars and maybe figure out where they’re setting up the cars with explosives or catch random car thieves.

Rolex Boutique Open In Jounieh

I posted about Rolex opening soon 3 weeks ago and it’s already open now. Here are a couple of pictures I took yesterday. I am still surprised they chose Jounieh souks as a location.


There was honking outside,
rare, but reminiscent
of other more vocal towns.

There was an image inside
of what you could see
in such a place.

There were footsteps and barking,
the sounds of my silence;
there was me nodding and moving,
if only for the sake of motion.

There is this never-ending floor
and you somewhere dying -
- are you breathing still?

There is this scar, refusing to heal,
itching like an absence...
If I hold my breath, would you feel it?
If I hold still, would anybody notice?

Somewhere else, something else,
If I leave this unfinished,
would -

(Originally posted on November 21, 2011)

Holidays Part 7

Playing backgammon on the Corniche (an old one, as you can see from the fence)