Saturday, July 28, 2007

Multi-culturalism in Estonia

Estonia has been a very interesting example of public policies concerning group-rights in mostly homogeneous nations.

Being the ardent fan of Kymlicka's notion of multiculturalism I am, I find Estonian policies appalling to say the least, and certainly galling!

Not only did their authorities move the statue of a Soviet soldier as a symbol of those who fought the Nazis, from the center of Tallinn (the capital) back in April, but are trying now to bribe (the article in Russian) the local Russian schools to convert to Estonian!

Russians are the largest minority in Estonia, almost a third of the population but are denied not only the rights of the Estonian nationals, but also those of regular citizens.

Very galling indeed!

Sudanese Festival in NY

I know I kinda lag behind, but I uploaded a couple of pics on flickr from the Sudanese Festival. More will be coming up

check those for now

Men who gossip

A dear friend of mine says all the good men died in WTO on the 11th of Sept, and today I have to agree with her.

What's up with men who gossip and backbite and get their noses in some other people's businesses? How would you categorize those?

And now I have to switch to Arabic!

يعني بالله بذمتكم الرجال ديل رجال؟ وقت بتناقلوا الكلام وبتعاوروا وهي كان شوفتوا فلانة ما قالوا سافرت هناك و علانة ما عرسوها وشنفلانة ما طلع عندها ورم.
هل دي هي طبايع الرجال؟ القطيعة والنميمة؟ وبالمناسبة يعني المشكلة إنو مافي زول بيوقفوم عند حدهم بل بالعكس النسوان اللي ما عندهم شغلة بصفقوا ليهم ويقولوا ليهم هل من مزيد!

ظاهرة مقززة للغاية والمقرف فيها إنها منتشرة عند السودانيين بطريقة بشعة! يعني من دون العرب إحنا رجالنا الفايقين بحبو يتقصوا أخبار الناس ويتشمشروا في الرايح والجاي. ياخ مافي سوداني إلا ويسألك سؤال منكر ونكير. بت منو؟ ساكنة وين؟ جنسك شنو؟ قريتي وين؟ وحتى كان حاولتي وبطريقة واضحة توريه إنك ما دايرة ونسة يقلب الهوبة عشان يوريك إنو زول مهم ومتحضر وما أدراك،، وبكرة ناس الولاية كلها تعرف اللي عرفوا بكل التفاصيل زايد الشمار والفلفل وبقية البهارات.

ياخ أبقوا رجال وسيبوا حركات النسوان ليهم! إتقوا الله!!!!!!!!

سلام عليكم

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

LOGO tv channel

Out of boredom, I've been flipping through my TV channels and stopped at one of them as a film was starting. It was "When Night is falling", about a relationship between a lesbian and a bisexual woman. Nothing strange. Then, during the commercial breaks I noticed this click list the channel itself advertised. They had on it best 50 movies, so I decided to visit their website to see what they were.

The first thing that grabbed my attention is a sidebar ad from orbitz with a guy hugging another on the beach, not the usual scene.....hmmmmm

So I find the click list of the best 50 films and tada, they are the best LGBT films

So, this is an entertainment TV channel for LGBT community. Very interesting!

Censored Report on Darfur

It is up to you to take a position, or not. My co-blogger, Drima, posted on a documentary prepared by Nabil Kassem, from Al-Arabiya News Channel two years ago but never broadcasted it, not to my knowledge at least.

Watch part 1

Watch part 2

Busted! Human Organs trafficking ring apprehended

I didn't know that a kidney cost $ 30,000, and that actually some sold it for that price.

Anyhow, I'm always late, and now the ring has been caught in Israel. Check it out

Just as I was thinking of selling my second kidney!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Is it true?

is it true?

Sunday, July 22, 2007

For film lovers

Those who are into contemporary, meaningful and short films could check the latest Golden Apricot 4th Yerevan International Film Festival site

Saturday, July 21, 2007

UPDATE on Sudanese Concert in New York

I went, I sat, I stood, I ate, I chatted, I met acquaintances, I clicked pictures, I danced, I gossiped, I flirted, I enjoyed the beautiful songs and singers and BOOOM! as usual my Sudanese people acted in the most irresponsible manner. Well, first of all and right in front of the stage two guys just decided to throw a couple of punches at each other and not stopping it until the security had to intervene to pull these two cocks from each other while one of them was shouting out the most common Sudanese swear expression "3alai al6alag ma ba'7ali!"

This will sound alright if you compare it to this sign ! The whole objective of the festival is to bring Sudanese people irrespective of their creed, color, ethnicity or race together to attempt as people express our unity, and just that! Our dream is to live in a unified and peaceful Sudan! And there they were, those who cannot stick to the message intended and just had to fling political messages in. It was, and is a shameful act to mix politics with cultural and social events!

You two, who were carrying those signs, must be very ashamed of yourselves!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

New York City explosion

So in New York City, we don't need terrorism to stall the whole city. At 5:56 pm, this afternoon an explosion of a 24-inch steam pipe, resulted in a big crater on the intersection of Lexington Avenue and 41st Street, a street I used to tread daily around that time. Just to think that I could have been among the injured, if not a casualty, sends the shivers down my spine.

For goodness' sake, how is it possible to have such a thing happening in a city where taxes eat up a big chunk of one's salary! The whole infrastructure in the city is a mess. When the sky is raining cats and dogs, as it did this morning, the subway system becomes flooded and trains don't run from one borough to another for the whole day as it did today with Queens.

It is a relief though to hear the mayor, Bloomberg, admitting the failure

There is no reason to believe whatsoever that this is anything other than a failure of our infrastructure
I did a hell of a walking to get from point A to B on that side of the City and clicked a couple of pictures with my cell.

1st Annual Sudanese Music and Dance Festival

It is more than what I thought it was.
Apparently what I had assumed a humble attempt of Sudanese artists to sponsor the idea of a "Unified Sudan" is actually the

Check what afropop published! It will even be broadcasted on

Dawn Elder, the Director of Programming for the Internet all-music and dance site said that the channel will be producing the concert video of the event for a worldwide streaming as a "Recorded Live' event.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Russian men and African women

Apparently, and to my surprise, Russian men are into dark-skinned African queens more than many might have expected. As an ardent fan of Russian talk shows, I often hear ludicrous racially implied comments by unrefined men and women who find the act of marrying from non-Russians or generally non-Slavic partners is analogous to treason to the Motherland.

Enough with the bollocks, because internet analytics have shown interesting trends among the neo-Russians.

Sunday, July 15, 2007


Well, lately I received this txt msg from my nutty friend who is full of contradictions stating the following "Procrastination is like masturbation, you're enjoying it initially but end up f***ing yourself"

Oh, isn't it just so true, for procrastination that is. In every field, level of education, or career we're always advised to plan ahead and give ourselves enough time to fulfill the assigned task. But who actually follows this advice? Not me, not you and certainly not them.

I, for instance, work the best under stress. If it is not the 11th hour, my creativity is in its below standard mode. I feel the rush in my brain and veins as I race the time in completing the assignment. I must admit though that in a hindsight I realize that certain things could have or should have been done differently.

That's it..... go back to work!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

World Trade Organization

Here I was browsing the 3Ws trying to get into the details of the workings of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and I stumbled on a number of both interesting and important links:

- For the organizational charter of the WTO organization, here is where you need to go.

- For a general insight into the WTO workings, the publication titled "Understanding the WTO" is very informative, but rather lengthy (116 pages). It could be downloaded as a pdf file in its entirety or, if you please, by chapter.

- For the benefits of WTO trading system, check the list of TEN points

- For the common misunderstandings of WTO, check this page

- And, if you're interested in interning with them, bear in mind that you've got to have an undergraduate degree and are already enrolled in a graduate programme for at least a year. Additional information is at this webpage

That's all folks!

what were the odds of that jab?!

Athletes safety has always intrigued me with javelins flying during sports' tournaments, and tada what I have feared took place recently in Rome during Golden League Competitions.

A javelin thrown by the Finnish Tero Pitkämäki, jabbed the French Salim Sdiri in the right side of his torso, inflicting minor injuries, but yet it is a serious incident that necessitates implementation of serious organizational and construction changes.

Quick recovery Salim!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Sudanese laws and Rape victims

a recent report by Refugees International, a well known NGO based in Washington DC, has exposed the loopholes existent within the Sudanese laws that expose rape victims to more abuse and trauma.

The report is titled Laws Without Justice: An Assessment of Sudanese Laws Affecting Survivors of Rape; which can be downloaded and read in full at their website.

I have not had the chance to read it all, and many of you would not have it either. An introductory to the report could also be read in this article at Refugees International newsletter.

Let me know what you think


Sudanese Concert in Central Park, New York

If you're in New York, or the surrounding areas and are Sudanese, interested in the Sudan, or simply wanting to hear a different sort of music, here is an event, actually a concert by prominent Sudanese singers among which is Sharhabil Ahmed (photo) and Al Balabil taking place on Saturday, July 21, 2007
from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM in Central Park SummerStage. The complete list of the singers is found here

It stays that the event is supported by the Sudanese Information Center, which I was not able to find information on, but if you do, do let me know, I'll appreciate it

Come and enjoy the beautiful culture of the Sudan

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Skin Progress

Yeah, my skin is clearing up despite my intermittent adherence to the regime. My next appointment is in another two weeks and I must finish with my medication, even if I have to take suicidal double dosages.

I'm beginning to go out make-up free. Beach! here I come!!

Day of Love and Faith protectors; the Russian St. Valentine's Day

Today,the 8th of July is when Russians celebrate their St. Valentine's. Perhaps I should be more precise, the Christian Orthodox Russians do.
Family Day, or the Day of loving couples, commemorates the strong love story of Prince Peter and the village girl Fervonia, who were both canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church after their death as Brother David and Sister Euphrosinia (the couple went into a monastery as they aged)
Anyhow, you can consider it a fable. I'm a sucker for love stories. So *wink wink* I'm expecting a gift !!!

and No, not a marriage proposal, as many couples did in Murom, Russia, where the couple lived in the 12th century.

May all your lives be filled with love, warmth, and understanding :-)

Saturday, July 07, 2007

The new SEVEN wonders

A lot of debate has been going on all over the media for the NEW 7 WONDERS. Unfortunately, being the 5-minutes-late individual I am (I will write about the difference between individual and person some time later), I missed voting or even posting about it to enlighten others to vote.
So this Swiss-based corporation, The New Open World Corporation, took upon itself the burden of proposing the new wonders. Before I speak of the new ones, let's see if you know what the old ones are. Yeah, you're right, the Pyramids of Giza is one of them (everyone knows that, you silly), the Hanging Gardens of Babylon is another, but what about the rest?
They are, and it took me months to memorize as a child (I earned the title nerdy!):
1- The Statue of Zeus at Olympia
2- The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
3- The lighthouse of Alexandria
4- The Colossus of Rhodes
5- The Temple of Artemis at Ephesus

The new ones could be found here, among which is the beautiful monuments of Petra (photo above) in Jordan.

The interesting part is that the voting wasn't as benign as they claim. If you've got money you got more votes. If you've got internet, you were lucky too.


I am a superstitious person and an ardent believer of numerology. the number SEVEN for no reason makes me feel relaxed, maybe coz its divine. You might ask me what is divine about it. The heavens. Oh, sorry for the atheists.
I tried googling some of its mystical features or powers, if you please, and a lot of information is out there that I won't bother to post here.
For some reason, today I feel energetic and finally was able to do the research I've been postponing forever. Maybe I'm just being my superstitious self again :)

How about you? Anything interesting on this interesting day?

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Russia beats South Korea

Vladimir Putin's visit to Guatemala augured well for the beautiful resort of Sochi. Putin's speech, both in English and French while presenting the city's candidacy to the IOC, was very impressive if compared with the Korean counterpart.

I am extremely happy as this will be the first time Russia hosts Winter Olympics. Better start planning that trip already.

Hard luck South Korea.


Monday, July 02, 2007

Day in 3 Cabs

Well today we've had a nice weather with cool breeze, warm sun and partly cloudy skies. Lovely!
2:30 pm: I hop into a cab driven by a man way into his 60s. This turned out to be a ride full of relaxation as well as sense of sarcasm. Half into our ride, he asked me whether I minded having the radio on or not, to which I responded negatively. As he turned it on, it was none other than the tenor, Luciano Pavarotti. The old man smirked and said, this is my rap. We continued listening to Pavarotti, followed by Mozart's Requiem, of which I was told by this highly educated man was completed posthumously by another composer, whose name I cannot recall now. Later, my mind was assuaged by Beethoven's lunar sonata.

6:00 pm: I take another cab for another 30 minute ride. Unlike the earlier one, this cab was more than ordinary. Quiet in the start and later noisy because of a loud babble of Urdu to bring my ataraxic state of mind into an end. The disturbing and moreover loud rattling with his buddy, or buddette, on the other side of the phone, carried on until I was dropped half a block away from where I specifically requested. Therefore, NO TIP given.

10:20 pm: My 3rd and last cab of the day. Most interesting though. The driver was a Muslim guy, later on and from the accent I concluded that he was Egyptian. Reticently driving, he decided to talk in the final minutes to my place. I was told that the number of cabis is going to plummet after November. Attempting to understand the reason for such an orphan comment, he turned the light on and passed me a pamphlet. I glanced at it and looking at his visor I saw a huge button "NO GPS". Unhappy with the process of installing a digital dispatch by NYC TLC, he expressed his concern of being monitored by Uncle Sam. According to him, its been implemented to track Muslims and Arabs, the majority of cabis.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Raising Awareness Fashionably

Kenneth Cole is one of my favourite brands. I like it for its sense of simplicity and sophistication.

Today it has launched this "Awareness Campaign" which mission is

a charitable initiative that supports a number of worthy social causes. We're launching this important campaign with a collection of graphic T-shirts that do good while looking good.
But of course, many of us don't need a shirt to voice their opinions