I love coffee .. The false sense of energy in the morning coupled with the caffeine addiction makes the start of every day a great one. After a drowsy wakeup bashing my relentless alarm into the wallâ€¦ I religiously show my affection to the gods of caffeine by starting off my day with a prayer of two canderel tablets, hot milk and Arabica. However, my devotion for noir in the mornings is only faltered by one thing… the *baristas* at Starbucks.
While other coffee shops usually abide by the simple rule of welcoming you in filipino-english as Sir/Madam and then taking your order… The atheists at Starbucks (conspiring to complicate life) always attempt to shift you another ungodly creation of crap.
Me: Hi, I would like an espresso.
Atheist: Would you like to try our Caramel Cinnamon Tea with whip cream and pine nuts?
Me: Nope… just an espresso.
Atheist: We have a special offer, Caramel Cinnamon Tea with a half eaten almond donut.
Me: Nope… just an espresso.
Atheist: Itâ€™s very tasty… We can make you a Caramel Cinnamon Tea with three pumps of vanilla ice shaken.
Me: Nope… just an espresso.
Atheist: Inside the blender we put the half eaten almond donut and mix it with the caramel, cinnamon, vanilla and whip cream.
A simple order of an espresso in the morning is extended into a ridiculously long banter about the million different variations of beans and water that they offer. They ask you if you want to add several layers of caramel, chocolate, vanilla, coconuts and almonds. After the exhaustive repetitions of the word no, no, no… They attempt to sell you yet another drink which has absolutely no correlation to your intended order. You want an espresso? Then how about you try our frozen cinnamon mango shake with a crushed snickers bar. By the time your order is complete, your constant begging for an espresso has evolved into a seven shot caramel affogato accompanied by a chicken quiche.
While you are left clenching your numbered receipt for an unwanted orderâ€¦ you are surrounded by two types of people; the ditsy mithajbas wrapped in their skin tight leopard body suits looking at you as if you stole the last of the empty yogurt cups and the prepubescent teenagers, under the impression that the corner couch resides in their personal living room as they send each other IM messages. After your order number is screamed out, and you retrieve a burnt latte… It dawns upon you that sitting inside might not be the best choice… As you move outdoors to sit beside the chain-smoking students of Kuwaitâ€™s academia staring aimlessly into a translated book about The Secret .. your realize this wasnâ€™t the experience you were looking for.
The experience of a hip coffeehouse playing Norah Jones with the upcoming writers crafting their creations is dead and gone (if it ever existed). The allure of a chic central perk faded long ago when they started using darts to target the last three buildings to place an emblazoned green twin-tailed siren. To which you are left pondering? What brings me back to this god forsaken place? it isn’t the coffee or the atmosphere â€¦ As you make your way to your car realizing that the lack of an answer wonâ€™t stop you from coming back the next day and attempting to order an espresso.
Filed under: Coffee, Kuwait, Tao of K. | 100 Comments
Apparently we got listed in Abwab magazine because Marzouq has connections. Iâ€™d like to thank the Academy, God for giving me so much that I do not deserve. … My friends, my family. Fans, thank you. God bless you. And, of course, the person that started it all. … I would not be here if it werenâ€™t for Nibaq.
Link: Z district
Filed under: Blog, Magazine | 14 Comments
I enjoy both types of a good Will Smith movie, the ones where he is either the suave womanizer/action hero or the broke/depressed guy who rises above it all. You leave the film with an aura of feel-good nature, reminded how the world is a wonderful place with Will Smith. However, the latest depressed/hero guy movie fighting a horde of mutated vampires alone left me feeling quite normal as it was eerily similar to the current life I am living.
Keeping aside the clichÃ© jokes about Lions running around Kuwait and gasoline costing next to nothing; The main correlation between my/our lives and I am Legend, is that the vampires in the movie are very akin to our current generation of misunderstood youths… the ‘others’. Aside from the obvious behaviors traits: the constant roaming (with no real goal), the ‘interesting’ hair styles and the need to invade public settings in droves when the sun sets. The ‘others’ also follow the same lack of purpose in life; as anyone has yet to see them shopping, eating or enjoying the endless pleasures of our just as endless malls. This leaves the majority of â€˜normalâ€™ outings severely limited to avoid the nuisance of the â€˜othersâ€™.
Although… it is true, as ‘normal’ people, we get our Friday mornings, our bouts of shopping before noon and the strands of the day left for coffee after a quick lunch… However, as soon we begin to see the dusk, we find ourselves scurrying off to our homes, diwaniyas and secluded restaurants to escape the hordes of ‘others’ after the sun has set. The constant beeping of a wristwatch in the movie is a reminder to return home before the city becomes overrun with vampires. Many a times we have thought silently… Quickly, its 4.30… If we don’t leave now, they will catch us at the one of three parking exits of the Avenues and we will be stuck here all night listening to ‘dagnee’ from the once working speakers of a rusted Mustang.
Which led me to think… how can we resolve the issues with the ‘others’, as we do not have the pleasure of Will Smith scouring or streets for a cure. To which it dawned upon me, and for the sake of purchasing a pair of jeans before you go on a vacation or the occasional movie out; I suggest a truce with the ‘others’.
An initial draft of the requests:
- The ‘others’ can have all hair salons between noon and 5pm (except for Fridays) to create your hairstyles.
- The ‘normal’ people each have alternating days at the shopping malls of Kuwait; the schedule jumps betweens malls weekly.
- If a woman has any form of glitter on themselves, they are fair game for harassing. This goes double for any variation of the Hijab which contains the remnants of a Pringles can.
- No screaming, shouting, talking or lasers allowed at the Movie Theater; a discussion panel will be held afterwards to explain the storyline for confused viewers.
- The ‘others’ will abide to proper spelling of stickers and sentences, a service will be provided to fix common mistakes. If they are not capable of forming a sentence, they will be given a list of suggestive terms (Bob Marley, Tupac) to choose from.
What would be your additions to the list of requests?
Filed under: Kuwait, Tao of K. | 26 Comments
Is it just me or does today feels like a Thursday?
I am contemplating missing work tomorrow in the interest of fixing my mental schedule; Either that or I need to find a constant from two days in the future.
Filed under: Tao of K. | 9 Comments
Have you gotten your loved one a Shani today?
Filed under: Events, Kuwait | 18 Comments
Firstly, I would like to thank you for canceling all of my NBK credit cards without prior notification or warning. This was especially amusing to the retail stores to which I attempted to use my credit cards. Regrettably, I was in Kuwait while my cards were canceled, if I were traveling it would have been much more entertaining.
Secondly, I would like to show my appreciation for giving me the opportunity to evaluate the other banks in Kuwait. As I have had a NBK bank account for several years; I was not aware of the superior services at other Kuwaiti Banks; especially those who care about their end customers.
And finally, please refund the 100 KWD visa subscription charge to my new bank account at Al-Ahli Bank.
P.S.Â Please inform your Hala Watani staff why the Credit Cards were canceled; as they are currently unaware of the cause (like myself).
Filed under: Kuwait | 62 Comments
There are two things I tend to keep a distance from, drugs and politics…
However, the latter tends to encompass our lives and requires us to intervene every few months when our local peacemakers are too busy fighting between themselves to run our country.
Based on the recent ramblings in the Diwaniya’s of Kuwait… The current issue in the ‘Umma’ is the grilling of Nouriya Al-Sebih by Tribal MPs. Apparently; the MPs feel that she isn’t doing a bang up job with our immaculate educational system. And this is supported by evidence that students (gasp!) are intermingling in private schools, in turn are causing all sorts of havoc on our society.
So, you ask, how do they plan on showing that the educational system (in the couple months she has run it) has faltered in the past few months?
In between hours of unnecessary speeches they are going to show private videos and pictures of (College/High School) students participating (again, gasp!) in afterschool events.
Now, there are a few things (off the top of my head) that I find disconcerting (for lack of a better word).
- They are not presenting any real solutions to our educational system.
- The videos have absolutely nothing to do with our ‘pristine’ educational system or how it’s being run.
- Private videos are private… They should not be used in any public form (and especially not in Parliament for personal gains).
- If the parents do not want their children to participate in such events, either forbid them from going or put them in other schools.
They are not going to discuss any real matters like educational goals, lack of capable teachers, low high school graduates, or availability of higher level facilities (as she has only been in charge for a few months).
I might be going off on a tangent here, but I think the real reasons behind the grilling could be the firing of useless staff members and her being the only non-covered women in Parliament. And coming from the same group of people who didn’t want women in Parliament to begin with… It’s to be expected.
I actually find it quite appalling and ironic that when we get someone with the capability to fix our educational mess (or realistically any mess); they are being harassed by people who don’t bring any real value to the government (or common good). A message to members of Parliamentâ€¦ You have been chosen to lead our country; leave your internal arguments, bickering and personal vendettas at home … keep the grillings for the crooks and liars.
Filed under: Kuwait, Political | 17 Comments
I am beginning to freeze, still waiting for the first person of the season.
Filed under: Kuwait | 50 Comments
It has been over 72 hours since the start of GulfRun; After a couple days of lost sleep, several missed meals and over 15 hours at Saudi Border* .. We have finally reached Bahrain.
It been a long few days but in less than 10 hours we will be on the track .. and thats worth every sleepless night.
Filed under: Car, Events, Kuwait | 9 Comments
I am not a man of few words .. but episode 7 (season 2) of heroes has left me speechless.
Excuse me while I watch it again.
Filed under: Television | 20 Comments
This is a repost from last year.
Chicken Nuggets rejoice .. here are some common Eid sayings and replies:
Saying: 3eedik Mubarak
Reply: Ayamik Sa3eeda
Saying: 3asak min 3awada
Reply: 3asak min il 3aydeen wl fayzeen
Saying: Kil 3am w’nta ib5air
Reply: W’nta ib su7a oo salama
Saying: 3eedich Mubarak
Reply: Ayamich Sa3eeda
Saying: 3asach min 3awada
Reply: 3asach min il 3aydeen wl fayzeen
Saying: Kil 3am w’ntay ib5air
Reply: W’ntay ib su7a oo salama
When leaving a place, you might hear this: “3asakum it3oodona hal sina oo kil sina.” If there are any I have left out, leave a comment and I will update the list.
Filed under: Arabic, Culture, Events, Kuwait | 30 Comments
Good news for those who have spent long nights unlocking their iPhones (or been ripped off by some guy with a computer and credit card) only to find that they are unable to recieve calls on the
MTC Zain. There were some compatibility issues between the iPhones and the celltowers (they work in certain areas). MTC Zain has acknowledged the issue and has requested a software update to fix it. Everything should be working fine within the next ten days.
Many thanks to the
Technical Networks Team at Zain for looking into the issue and resolving it.. If they were in charge of Marketing we might have a decent logo.
Update: The iPhone will be working on the
MTC Zain network sometime tonight/tomorrow (September 20th). I want to extend my gratitude to the MTC Zain IT Networks Team for taking the time to address and resolve this issue (especially since the iPhone is currently unsupported).
Update 2: I can confirm that the iPhone now works with Zain!
Filed under: IT, Kuwait | 67 Comments
Sometimes I think it is completely useless to own a sports car in Kuwait. The dealerships rip off you off for every drop of oil, spark plug and faulty light (but sir, your car will explode if you don’t change your brakes every month). Then you have the budding Schumachers of Kuwait; who are usually inches away from ramming you into the wall in an attempt to prove their prowess in a beaten-up Trailblazer. And in the rare chance that you don’t overheat on your way to work, the coarse roads of Kuwaits Bermuda Triangle (Jabriya/Hawalli/Salmiya) will rip apart the undercarriage and bend rims; while massive potholes swallow your car whole.
However, as logical as it seems to get a bulletproof ’98 Landcruiser to run over jaywalkers on the Sheraton Roundabout, there is a addictive nature to driving a sports car. The sound of the revs as they bounce off the redline .. beckoning for a gear change, the slightest slip of the rear tires as you enter a turn, and the kilometers as they climb on an on into the horizon.
Â Yes, I know .. what I wrote was pretty gay.Â
So .. Where is one left to drive their sports cars? The GulfRun.
I just finished registering for the one in November as I have been waiting for GulfRun3 since January: the roads are perfect, the trailblazers are left to circle the parking lot and the heat will be nonexistent. My car has undergone a couple of adjustments since the last GulfRun (suspension, exhaust, tires) which should give the others an even harder time keeping up.
Filed under: Car, Events, Kuwait | 31 Comments
To the people sending me emails about the iPhone not working in Kuwait .. need I say more?
Well .. maybe a little bit more:
- This iPhone is NOT for sale.
- The unlock was done using a TurboSim (by Zaid and myself).
- It is operating on the
- Edge works fine, albeit a bit slow.
I apologize for the ridiculous watermarks .. but somoene ‘borrowed’ my images and is pretending to sell unlocked iPhones.
Filed under: Kuwait, Telecommunication | 77 Comments
How I read the commercial:
- Only from Wataniya Telecom
- Full Concierge service
Er .. so.. yeah.. ok.
Filed under: Advertising, Kuwait, Telecommunication | 24 Comments
Apple owners piss me off.
They talk for hours upon hours about how their Mac’s are not susceptible to viruses, hackers, crashes and reruns of blossom. Then they think they are ultra-individualist and defying the rules of society itself, because they own a white laptop and use an African vacation for browsing the internet. Then, the nerve of these people, they claim its easy to use, more powerful, the best for media and can make your morning coffee while you oversleep.
Apple owners go home (and to work) to their Windows computers, browse Microsoft-hosted websites and use Internet Explorer (on bootcamp no less). As they slowly realize to themselves that Macs are utterly useless when playing games, networking, or doing any sort of real work.
However, the prophets at the cult of Apple did get one thing right .. the damned iPod. I remember seeing my brothers lowly 1G white ipod with its turning wheels and bright blue screen. I was at awe .. it did everything you expected with so little buttons. Generation after generation I was hooked to the little bastard as my main source of music while away from my Windows computer .. even my car had ipod integration. Then they release not one .. but two new ipods today, the ultra tiny mini .. which puts the past two iterations to shame. And the fabled touch iPod with browsing and calendar capabilities.. I must have one.
Now, I don’t really need the new ipod touch (or nano for that). My current two ipods do a fine job (somewhat) of playing my Nina Simone tunes while assholes in leased envoys cut me off. But, I want one .. I need the new ipod .. I slowly lie to myself explaining how the next ipod will change my life for the better. This is the thing holding me between the drudgeries of a repetitive life and paradise. I will wake up in the morning to birds chirping at my window, my servers at work won’t crash anymore and the asshole in the leased envoy will learn to stay in his lane; sweet sweet lies.
So here I am at my computer into the first minutes of the (urs) day, viewing my cart at the Apple Store wondering if I should push the button. While the Sugababes song plays non-climatically in the background .. my mother walks in and asks for the red thing, she wants to help the Product Red foundation and their cause to rid the world of Aids. As I realize that her personal lies are just as imaginative as mine, I push confirm and place the order for yet another iPod(s).
Filed under: Electronics, IT | 39 Comments
I was going to continue dedicating the rest of the week to posts about
MTC Zain .. however the fun will have to stop here: the official logo, look & feel and press release has been leaked by Fastlink Zain in Jordan MTC Zain -Bahrain.
Regarding the color scheme:
The meaning of the new logo? The logo consists of three colors, Pink refers to the heart, Blue refers to affiliation and Green refers to brilliance
Well .. there goes my inverted image conspiracy theory and this ultimately ends the cycle of
MTC Zain posts.
(More on Moey’s blog)
On another note .. for those nostalgic about MTC, you can check out their previous websites on the wayback machine: link.
Filed under: Kuwait, Telecommunication | 9 Comments
During lunch, me and my friends concluded that the colors for the Zain Logo are too ridiculous to be true and it actually seemed inverted (with the black/green). Here is the logo redone and inverted to display our ‘conspiracy theory’. Still looks a bit funny, as some have mentioned it seems more suited for shampoo or an energy drink.
I found an easier way to make your own Zain logo in photoshop.
1. Open a new image.
2. Put a small strip down the middle.
3. Apply filter: Distort > Twirl at 999
4. Flip Horizontal and then 180
There you go .. your own Zain logo.
Filed under: Kuwait, Telecommunication | 11 Comments
MTC Zain launched the teaser for their new website, and there was parts of the new logo with some messages in a flash movie. Some (ghetto) photoshopping and we now have an idea of what the logo ‘officially’ looks like .. and personally, I think it still looks like crap. They shifted around the swervy logo and changed the fonttype .. colors still seem futuristic (for a 90’s cartoon).
On to the
cryptic, hallmark, cliche, inspirational messages in the flash movie:
Mind is what counts you can be whatever you make up your mind to be (A Robert Collier quote)
The difference between a mountain and a molehill is your perspective (a Al Neuharth quote)
Beautiful things cannot be seen they must be felt with the heart (a Hellen Keller quote)
Er .. sure.
On another note, Bahrain? Really? Couldn’t you just buy a small country and set your own rules by now?
Filed under: Kuwait, Telecommunication | 16 Comments