ThysdrusRoman Coliseum of El-Jem

Panem et Circensis

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Location: Tunis, Tunisia, Tunisia

Friday, July 29, 2005

Will Be Away

Well, today I will be travelling overseas for summer vacation coming back to the States around mid September. I won't be blogging as frequently as I used to, but I will be posting something whenever I find a subject of interest.Ciao!!

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Japanese Unveil The Most-Human Like Robot

Repliee Q1

Via Drudge- After robot pets, Japanese scientists unveiled the most-human like robot. Baptized Repliee Q1, this "female" android has flexible silicone for skin rather than hard plastic, and a number of sensors and motors to allow her to turn and react in a human-like manner.She can flutter her eyelids and move her hands like a human. She even appears to breathe.

Mmm..I wonder what's the use of this robot?!

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Al Qaida Says It Killed Algerian Diplomats

Al-Qaida in Iraq claimed in an Internet posting Wednesday that it has killed two Algerian diplomats kidnapped in Iraq, the second reported slayings of Arab envoys this month.

Just another gloomy and sad day.This is really outrageous and barbaric.Our deepest sympathy and most sincere condolences to the families of these innocent victims.

New Egyptian Movie Mocks Peace Treaty With Israel

A new movie has been released in Egypt, where the lead role is played by famous egyptian comedian and actor Adel Imam.Titled " An Embassy in the Building", the movie seeks to humorously depict the average Egyptian man's rejection of normalization with the Jewish state.

The plot centers around an Egyptian businessman and womanizer who, upon returning home after getting rich in the Gulf, finds to his horror that Israel has opened an embassy in his building...
( Via The Daily Star)

Beaujolais Has Beaten The Busch

Via Sploid- According to Gallup, 39 percent of U.S. drinkers said they imbibe wine most often, while 36 percent said beer is their favorite. The rest prefer liquor, and a small percentage rate all three equally. Technically, the pollsters said, wine and beer are statistically equal, considering the margin of error.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

The History Of Kissing

A neat article, I came across reading Arts & Letters Daily, on the history of kissing.

Married Priest Will Join Catholic Priesthood

Gregory Elder, 47, presented his application to Late Pope John Paul II by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who one month later would become Pope Benedict XVI. Last Friday, Elder was informed that he had been accepted to the priesthood. When he is ordained, likely in 2006, he will be the first married man to serve communion in the Diocese of San Bernardino, which has 1.1million members in San Bernardino and Riverside counties.

Just Puzzled!

My previous post on Pope Benedict XVI, indicates that the Pope is intent to meet with Muslims in Cologne during the celebration of the World Youth Day, but I was just puzzled reading this piece of information.

Jihad Travel Guide Found On The Web

Via Sploid-
Found recently on the Internet, the brochure is a travel guide for the jihad, a how-to for the mujahedeen. Entitled "This is the Way to Iraq: To All Who Want to Join the Mujahedeen in the Land of Two Rivers," the pamphlet was written by "The Islam Doctor." It's goal: to help would-be terrorists overcome the difficult task of sneaking into the country. It was posted on a Web site affiliated with al-Qaida.

Pope Benedict XVI Criticized By Israeli Government

Today's Express, a publication of The Washington Post, reports that:
Pope Benedict XVI faced the first major conflict of his papacy when Israel summoned the Vatican envoy Monday and expressed outrage that the Pope " deliberately failed" to condemn terrorist attacks against Israelis. In remarks he made Sunday in Italy, Benedict prayed for God to stop the "murderous hand" of terrorists and referred to the recent " abhorrant terrorist attacks" in Egypt, Britain, Turkey and Irak but did not mention attacks in Israel.
Mmmm, and what about attacks against Palestinians? should they express their outrage too for being omitted from those remarks? More on this story could be found here.

My friend at Dappled Things has a neat post on Pope Benedict's views on the theological significance of the Jewish people and at the place of Israel.

Pope Will Meet With Muslims In Cologne

The Vatican's spokesman indicated that Pope Benedict XVI, is intent on dialoging with Muslim believers during his trip to Cologne for World Youth Day.

Apocalypto: Mel Gibson's New Feature

After "The Passion of the Christ", Mel Gibson is planning to make another historical epic...

Monday, July 25, 2005

7/7 & 21/7 Possible Deadends

Via Sploid-
AT TIMES of national emergency, the habit of the news media to drop a story or a lead in mid-air when it seems to be going nowhere unsettles the public. The media betray a sort of sheepish wish to “move on” from an erroneous report, hoping that their audience will not notice. Rather than acknowledge this, they publish a new report, leaving us to compare it with what had previously been said — and draw our own conclusions. Or they start barking up a different tree, the inference being that the last tree may have been the wrong tree.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Are You Homophobic?

Try this neat quiz!

My results: Your score rates you as "high-grade non-homophobic."

Guy Trivia

I came across this neat guy trivia. Check it out there's alot to learn!

How many men wear boxers? How many prefer their tighty-whities? The answer: 42 percent of men prefer briefs, while 36 percent go for boxers. We're not sure what the remaining 22 percent are wearing--if anything.

Old Testament Scroll Found Near The Dead Sea

A 2,000-year-old biblical scroll has been found in the desert near the Dead Sea: An inscription from the Old Testament Book of Leviticus on two small pieces of brown animal skin...

Quote of the Day

Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Chinese Invent Fish Wine!

The French used grapes, Russians fermented potatoes, Koreans put ginseng in their drink and Mexicans distilled cactus plants to make fiery tequila.

Now China is introducing fish wine.

Saudis Allow Their Women To Fly Planes But Forbid Them To Drive Cars!

Via khaleejtimes-
More than one hundred Muslim clerics, shaikhs, judges, Islamic scholars, Islamic university teachers and other Muslim leaders in Saudi Arabia have signed a statement against allowing women to drive.

Those who signed such a statement
pointed out that allowing women to drive would have economic burdens “like the multi-ownership of cars in one family instead of just one being used by the driver; the replacement of a car by another one since women are known to like everything new and the burden of the government having to open special female sections in all Traffic Departments.”

Strange enough, A Saudi woman, Captain Hanadi Hindi, 27, is preparing to take to the skies...

Blasts In Egypt Kill At Least 83

I don't know how to start but I am really sick,disgusted and deeply saddend to see such senseless,horrible and tragic crimes of killing innocent lives be it in Egypt, London, Palestine, Irak, Turkey and elsewhere. Gosh!What happened to the world? I just can say that violence will never ever be the solution. Those heartless criminals should be held accountable and punished! let the perpetrators know!

Friday, July 22, 2005

Australia's Multiculturalism Dilemma

I came across this neat article in The Australian about Muslims living in Australia, who following the London attacks,
are deeply concerned by the potential for divisions to open between them and the rest of Australia

In fact, Australians are just asking whether the multicultural policies in their country
have worked against a more integrated, assimilated society with broadly understood common values.

For the author of the article
unlike the US, which deliberately works to imbue in its citizens a keen sense of national history, identity and values -- despite a multicultural population -- Australia's identity is assumed rather than explicit and few really know their own history.

On one hand, some think that Australian Multiculturalism's number one problem is that it
failed to anticipate that immigrants might one day be opposed to the central tenets of Western society.

On the other hand,
Muslim leaders in Australia argue that multiculturalism is clearly working well, given that there has been no retaliatory violence here in the wake of the London attacks and despite the wide coverage given this week to Islamic bookstores selling extremist books.

But John Roskam, an executive director of the Institute of Public Affairs, a conservative think tank in Melbourne seems to have a different point of view.He thinks,
that Australians deeply understand their national identity, but "it's not enunciated and there are not clear values that we expect Australians to sign up to"."We promote tolerance, diversity, pluralism, but that's only half the case," he says. "In Australia we haven't confronted the issue of how much we tolerate the intolerant."

Your Blog In Space

These guys are offering to send your blog in space in case some alien life will intercept it.
Blogs In Space is the first entity to allow everyday bloggers to transmit the news and thoughts of an everyday person into space. Simply put we take your feed and transmit it out on a powerful deep space transmission dish.
Strange enough!

Ashes ...To Stone?

I came across this odd piece of news reading today's The Express, a publication of The Washington Post:

Here's one practical way to keep a deceased loved one close to your heart: Have his or her ashes mixed with artificial stone and made into jewelry that you can wear around your neck. The service, offered by a Japanese company, produces round pendants that can be purchased in nine different colors and are priced at about $1,100 each.
Ok. But I wonder what will be the feeling of the owner when the pendant is lost or stolen?

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Quote Of The Day

Clocks slay time... time is dead as long as it is being clicked off by little wheels; only when the clock stops does time come to life.

William Faulkner

The MET Finally Has Its Own "Mona Lisa"

Duccio's The Madonna and the Child

Via Arts & Letters Daily- The Metropolitan Museum of Art recently purchased a masterpiece by Sienese artist Duccio di Buoninsegna, an early Renaissance painter. However Duccio's Madonna and the Child which measures eleven inches high by just over eight inches wide, and is painted in tempera and gold on a wooden pane, has not attracted the multitudes that would make it difficult to see

Reasons Behind Saudi Ambassador's Resignation

Via Sploid- According to The Guardian, Prince Bandar Bin Sultan's resignation as Saudi Ambassador to the US is due to the current situation in the Kingdom and coincides with uncertainty about the country's ruling hierarchy...

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Google Grid

Via Brainflooding- The following is a flash presentation or let's say a leap onto the future which puts on stage two giant internet actors.Indeed the Museum of Media History proposes for us a very credible and realistic battle between Google and Microsoft... I will let you discover the rest of the story.

Google Earth

Have anyone ever dreamed of flying all over the globe? well Google has the answer. With this neat downloadable program you will be able, though virtually, to travel around the Earth while sitting in front of your pc.

Quiz: How Observant Are You?


Overall, Your Observation Skills Get: B
Your senses are pretty sharp (okay, most of the time)
And it takes something big to distract you!

Starbucks: Isn't Their Coffee Wretched?

I came across this article reading Arts & Letters Daily on how the British view Starbucks.

Belgians Celebrate 75th Birthday Of Cartoon Reporter Tintin


First appearing in 1929 on a belgian newspaper, Tintin the famous comic strip reporter who was created by Hergé, will be celebrating his 75th Birthday in Belgium.

The " Arab Gatsby" Resigns

After 22 years of service as Saudi Ambassador to the US, HRH Prince Bandar Bin Sultan, has resigned and he will be replaced by Prince Turki Al-Faisal who currently serves as the Kingdom's diplomatic envoy to London.

State Departement Denounces Congressman Tom Tancredo's Remarks

Following Congressman Tom Tancredo's remarks which were considered as "insulting Islam" and probably due in part to ADC's protest urging Congressman Tancredo to give an explanation and an apology for his remarks,The State Department yesterday denounced Tancredo, who is considering running for president for "insulting and offensive" remarks toward Islam...

Canadian Lawmakers Pass Same-Sex Marriage Legislation

Via Sploid- Canada has become the fourth country to officially sanction same-sex marriage.The Senate has voted 47-21 in favour of the Liberal government's controversial Bill C-38.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Frida Kahlo

That's Really Scary!

Grand juries across California have indicted 40 pilots for fraud after they falsified medical records to hide disabilities like schizophrenia and severe heart problems that would have grounded them. Mmmm,this is really a serious matter for how can one know that the guy who is about to take off your plane is in good shape both mentally and physically???

Pompeii Treasures Unveiled

Archaeologists unveiled an ancient Roman dining set that lay hidden for two millennia in the volcanic ash of Pompeii.

The Virtues Of Dark Chocolate

Good news for the lovers of dark chocolate! According to a study published by the American Heart Association, dark chocolate can not only soothe your soul but can lower blood pressure too!

Jewish Settler Willing To Take Up Palestinian Citizenship For The Sake Of Peace

As the Israeli authorities are preparing for the Gaza withdrawal next month,
Jewish settler Avi Farhan, determined not to give up his home overlooking the sea when Israel quits the occupied Gaza Strip, is looking into becoming a Palestinian.

He explains his decision by saying:
"I have met with Palestinians. I am willing to be a test case for peace and take up Palestinian citizenship,"... "It will hurt me to give up my Israeli citizenship, but I want to remain here."

McGonagall: One Of The Worst Poets In English Language

I came across this poet reading Stuffandbother. Although I never heard about him,wikipedia tells us that William Topaz McGonagall is renowned for being one of the worst poets in English language!

New Laser Technology For Labelling Fruits and Veggies

A new technology being used by produce distributors employs lasers to tattoo fruits and vegetables with their names, identifying numbers, countries of origin and other information that helps speed distribution. The marks are burned onto the outer layer of the skin and are visible to discerning consumers and befuddled cashiers alike.

The process, government approved and called safe by the industry, may sound sinister. But it was designed with the consumer in mind: laser coding could mean the end of those tiny stubborn stickers that have to be picked, scraped or yanked off produce.
(Via Drudge)

Monday, July 18, 2005

Classical Music In DC

For classical music lovers and I am one, here is a link I came across via my friend at Dappled Things on several classical music shows that will take place in DC this week.

Fearing Polytheism And Idolatry, Saudis Have Destroyed Historic Islamic Sites In Mecca

I don't think that the Saudis have listened to Tom Tancredo's remarks and they started doing it by themselves but anyway here what I came across reading Sploid.

GOP Congressman Threatens To Bomb Muslim Holy Sites

During a radio talk show, Pat Campbell asked Congressman Tom Tancredo (Republican-Colorado)
how the country should respond if terrorists struck several U.S. cities with nuclear weapons.
and this is Tancredo's answer:
"Well, what if you said something like - if this happens in the United States, and we determine that it is the result of extremist, fundamentalist Muslims, you know, you could take out their holy sites," Tancredo answered.

"You're talking about bombing Mecca," Campbell said.

"Yeah," Tancredo responded.
Check out the audio comments here.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

The Clothes Of A Muslim Girl Spur Controversy In America

I came across this article via Elaph, which is an online source of news in arabic. Because the article caught my attention I wanted to share it with my non-arabic readers. I am, hereafter, giving a personal and modest translation of this article as it appeared in Elaph:

ملابس فتاة مسلمة تثير جدلا في أميركا
GMT 19:45:00 2005 الأحد 17 يوليو
عبدالله المغلوث

عبدالله المغلوث من فلوريدا: ملابس أسماء حسن القصيرة والضيقة، ابتسامتها الدائمة، وشعرها الأسود الذي يهتزعلى ضفاف كتفيها كلما أغلقت عينيها وداعبت رموشها توقظ غضبا في رؤوس مسلمين في أميركا، يحتج السعودي خالد البريك (34 عاماً) على كتابيها: "الجيل الجديد من المسلمين في أميركا"، و"لماذا أنا مسلمة"، يعتقد انهما لايعكسان الصورة الحقيقية للاسلام، ويصدران من فتاة "جريئة تهدف إلى الشهرة دون الاكتراث بالحقائق والثوابت".
أما الباكستاني عمار رحيم-إمام مسجد في ميامي- فيود أن يشتري فستانا واسعا لتضعه على جسدها وحجابا يغطي به رأسها، يبين لـ "إيلاف": "انها ذكية، لكنها بحاجة الى نصيحة، لن انشغل بها لو كانت تخرج إلى العالم لتتحدث عن الموضة أو السياسة لكن لن أتردد في نصحها عندما تتكلم عن الاسلام بصورة وطريقة خاطئة".
الأميركي من اصل باكستاني عزيز شاكر أرسل صورة أسماء وهي ترتدي قميصا ضيقا بالإضافة الى اقتباسات من آرائها الى بريد نحو 600 أميركي مسلم ، معلقا في سياق رسالته: "أوقفوها عند حدها، ألا يوجد لديها أب مسلم ليخبرها أنها أخطأت في حقنا والإسلام؟!".
أسماء حسن (30 عاماً)مسلمة أميركية تنتمي إلى أبوين مهاجرين من باكستان أجابت على الصحافية ديبرا كالدويل عن سبب عدم لبسها الحجاب وارتدائها جينزا ضيقا: "انه ليس ضيقاً، املك في منزلي أضيق منه، أما بخصوص الحجاب فقالت: "حضرتُ اجتماعا لجمعية اسلامية في شمال اميركا قبل فترة وجيزة أنا وشقيقتي كنا الوحيدتين اللتين لم ترتديا حجابا لكن شاهدت بعيني في الاجتماع فتيات يغطين رؤوسهن لكن يكشفن مناطق أكثر اثارة".
اجابات أسماء ومؤلفاتها ومقالاتها أثارت جدلا واسعا بسبب جرأتها، تقول اسماء رداً على سؤال آخر وهي تنظر إلى ملابسها انه لايتوجب عليها ارتداء الحجاب إلا أثناء الصلاة مثل الرجل الذي يعتمر طاقية حينها: "لاأعتقد أن القرآن طلب منا أن نرتدي الحجاب بل ان نكون معتدلين في ملابسنا ومظهرنا، انا لست عربية حتى أغطي رأسي، ينبغي أن أكون عصرية، وأنيقة، أليس كذلك؟".
أسماء تحمل شهادة في القانون من جامعة نيويورك ففي آذار(مارس)2001،حصلت على البكالوريوس من جامعة ويلسلي عام1997 بامتياز مع مرتبة الشرف.
تقول عنها الباكستانية هدى محمد (35عاماً) التي تدرس في دينفر: "ان اسماء متفوقة في دراستها، ومحامية عنيدة لكنها لا تدرك الاسلام جيدا، وتصريحاتها لاتمت للواقع بصلة ولاتمثل إلا نفسها، عليها أن تعود إلى رشدها".
أسماء ولدت في شيكاغو وترعرعت في كولورادو(غرب) أصبحت منذ أحداث أيلول(سبتمبر)2001 هدفا لمحطات التلفزة الأميركية التي تستضيفها وابتسامتها باستمرارعلى عدة قنوات وقد أثارت تصريحاتها الكثير من ردود الفعل الغاضبة التي دفعت مواقع إلكترونية إلى ضرورة توفير حماية لها خوفا من تعرضها لأذى او اعتداء من المناهضين لآرائها الجريئة.
رغم الانتقادات التي طالت تصريحات أسماء إلا ان هناك مسلمين يعتبرونها مثالا يحتذى به كونها دافعت عن الاسلام في أصعب الظروف واستطاعت أن تتكلم في وسائل إعلامية مهمة وفعالة مثل سي ان ان، وفوكس، ويو اس اي، يقول الأميركي من اصل باكستاني رشيد علي: "انها استثنائية، رائعة في طرحها وأسلوبها، حقا انا فخور بها".

The Clothes of A Muslim Girl Spur Controversy In America
Sunday, July 17
Abdallah Al-Maghlouth:

Abdallah Al-Maghlouth (Florida)-Asma Hasan’s tight and short clothes, her perpetual smile, the movement of her black hair over her shoulders, whenever she closes her eyes and playfully moves her eyelashes, are provoking American Muslim’s anger. Khaled Al-Brik (32) a Saudi, protested against her two books: “American Muslims: The New Generation” and “Why I am a Moslem: An American Odyssey”. He believes that they don’t reflect the real image of Islam given the fact that they emanate from a daring girl whose only ambition is to be famous without taking into account facts and constants.

Ammar Rahim, a Pakistani Imam at a Miami mosque said that he would like to buy her a loose dress and a veil (Hijab) to cover hair head. He explains to Elaph that : “ She is smart but she needs guidance, I would not pay attention to her if she comes to the world and talk about fashion or politics but I will not hesitate to give her advice when she talks about Islam in an inaccurate manner. Aziz Chaker , an American of Pakistani origin sent out emails to over 600 American Moslem containing Asma’s photo, wearing a tight T-Shirt as well a s some excerpts from her views. On a sidenote he wrote: “Stop her! Doesn’t she have a Moslem father to let her know that she was wrong with us and with Islam?”

Asma Hasan is a Moslem American whose family has emigrated from Pakistan. In her reply to journalist Deborah Caldwell about why she was not covering her head with a veil and wearing tight jeans, Asma said: “ It’s not tight I have at home a tighter one” Regarding the veil she said: “ Recently, I have attended a meeting of an Islamic organization in North America. My sister and I were the only ones who didn’t wear the Hijab. But during the meeting I’ve seen girls covering their heads but showing more revealing parts of their bodies”.

Asma’s answers, works and articles have spurred a wide controversy, because of her daring character. While looking at her clothes, Asma said as a reply to another question that she has to wear hijab only during prayers jut like men who wear a head cover ( Taqia), “ I don’t think that Quran has asked us to wear Hijab but instead that we should be moderate in our dress and appearance. I am not an Arab to cover my head. I should be modern and elegant, isn’t that right?”.

In March 2001, Asma got a Law degree from the University of New York. In 1997 she got her bachelor’s degree with a distinction.

Houda Mohamed, 35, a Pakistani who studies at Denver University said about her: “ Asma is a brilliant student and a stubborn lawyer but she knows little about Islam. Her statements have nothing to do with the reality and she represents but herself. She has to come back to her conscious”.

Asma who was born in Chicago and grown in Colorado, has become the host of several American TV Channels….Her ideas have caused angry reactions, urging websites to ask for the necessity to make sure she was safe, lest she gets harmed or attacked by those who are opposed to her daring views.

Despite criticism against Asma’s views, Moslems think that she is a model to follow for having defended Islam in the most difficult times and she was able to talk in important media channels such as CNN, Fox and USA. Rachid Ali an American from Pakistani origin said that : “ She is an exception, she has such a wonderful style and way of exposing things. I am really proud of her!”

Today's Lyrics

THE ROSE (Bette Midler)

say love, it is a river that drowns the tender reed.
Some say love, it is a razor that leaves your soul to bleed.
Some say love, it is a hunger, an endless aching need.
I say love, it is a flower, and you it's only seed.

It's the heart, afraid of breaking, that never learns to dance.
It's the dream, afraid of waking, that never takes a chance.
It's the one who won't be taken, who cannot seem to give.
And the soul, afraid of dyin', that never learns to live.

When the night has been too lonely, and the road has been too long,
And you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong,
Just remember in the winter far beneath the bitter snows,
Lies the seed, that with the sun's love, in the spring becomes The Rose.

Quote of the Day

Half a truth is often a great lie.

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

The Need For Economic Reform In The Middle East

A neat article in The Daily Star on the reasons behind the slow pace of economic reforms in arab and muslim countries. The newspaper states that
If there is a single person who can speak with credible authority on the many different perspective on economic growth and business development in the Middle East region - government policies, private sector policies, and activist intervention by international organizations - it is probably Mustafa Nabli.
Dr.Nabli who is by the way tunisian, indicates that
"The problem in the Arab world is that there is a private sector but it reflects the old model in which the private firms were dependent on the state and therefore has been resistant to change. I also find in almost all countries of the region that there is a very uneasy relationship between the private sector and their governments. The expectations of one from the other do not seem to be consistent, which may be a root cause of the lack of dynamism of the private sector in the region."

"Why Are We In Every Story?"

Though I sometimes don't agree with the ideas of journalist and columnist Thomas L. Friedman, I came across this oped in the NYT, which explores the reasons behind the growing "cult of suicide bombers among Sunni radical moslems"...(Via Arts & Letters Daily)

Saturday, July 16, 2005


Ne plus écrire enfin attendre le signal
Celui qui sonnera doublé de mille octaves
Quand passeront au vert les morales suaves
Quand le Bien peignera la crinière du Mal

Quand les bêtes sauront qu'on les met dans des plats
Quand les femmes mettront leur sang à la fenêtre
Et hissant leur calice à hauteur de leur maître
Quand elles diront: "Bois en mémoire de moi"

Quand les oiseaux septembre iront chasser les cons
Quand les mecs cravatés respireront quand même
Et qu'il se chantera dedans les hachélèmes
La messe du granit sur un autel béton

Quand les voteurs votant se mettront tous d'accord
Sur une idée sur rien pour que l'horreur se taise
Même si pour la rime on sort la Marseillaise
Avec un foulard rouge et des gants de chez Dior

Alors nous irons réveiller
Allende Allende Allende Allende

Quand il y aura des mots plus forts que les canons
Ceux qui tonnent déjà dans nos mémoires brèves
Quand les tyrans tireurs tireront sur nos rêves
Parce que de nos rêves lèvera la moisson

Quand les tueurs gagés crèveront dans la soie
Qu'ils soient Président ci ou Général de ça
Quand les voix socialistes chanteront leur partie
En mesure et partant vers d'autres galaxies

Quand les amants cassés se casseront vraiment
Vers l'ailleurs d'autre part enfin et puis comment
Quand la fureur de vivre aura battu son temps
Quand l'hiver de travers se croira au printemps

Quand de ce Capital qu'on prend toujours pour Marx
On ne parlera plus que pour l'honneur du titre
Quand le Pape prendra ses évêques à la mitre
En leur disant: "Porno latin ou non je taxe"

Quand la rumeur du temps cessera pour de bon
Quand le bleu relatif de la mer pâlira
Quand le temps relatif aussi s'évadera
De cette équation triste où le tiennent des cons
Qu'ils soient mathématiques avec Nobel ou non
C'est alors c'est alors que nous réveillerons

Allende Allende Allende Allende...

By Léo Ferré

Friday, July 15, 2005

Nightstand Meme

My friend at Dapppled Things has tagged me with a new meme, in which one has to list whatever is atop of his or her nightstand(s). I have two nightstands, one is mine. Though I don't have too much stuff but here is what's currently on it:

A brass lamp, a clock-radio alarm, a hand made silver box, a frame with my photo, an ashtray, a box of kleenex, a half empty bottle of mineral water, a Costco member passport to summer savings and a bengay cream.

Well that's all! I would like to tag, I am following my fish, stuffandbother, subzeroblue,Highlander, Rastacoolie,Zizou and Adib.


كما هو واضح فإن مدونتي اليومية باللغة الإنجليزية ولكن أردت أن أجرّب الكتابة بالّلغة العربية


Via Wired-
Bloggers who previously wrote endlessly about everything from politics to tech tips to how to fry an egg on a hot sidewalk can now take their commentary, advice and random experiments to the next level by filming and broadcasting their work, thanks to the latest web trend -- video blogging.

Video blogs -- also known by their shorter, clunkier name, vlogs -- are blogs that primarily feature video shorts instead of text.

Quite interesting!

The Great Pyramid May Still Contain Khufu's Intact Pharaonic Tomb

According to Zahi Hawass the secretary general of Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities,
the secret chamber of Khufu may be hidden inside the Great Pyramid.
(Via The Daily Star)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

The Power Of Nightmares

Via Sploid- I found this really interesting though I have'nt seen the documentary yet. "The Power of Nightmares" is the acclaimed BBC documentary series which has never aired in America.
This film, which is produced by Adam Curtis, explores the origins in the 1940s and 50s of Islamic Fundamentalism in the Middle East, and Neoconservatism in America, parallels between these movements, and their effect on the world today. From the introduction to Part 1:

"Both [the Islamists and Neoconservatives] were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world. And both had a very similar explanation for what caused that failure. These two groups have changed the world, but not in the way that either intended. Together, they created today’s nightmare vision of a secret, organized evil that threatens the world. A fantasy that politicians then found restored their power and authority in a disillusioned age. And those with the darkest fears became the most powerful. " The Power of Nightmares, Baby It's Cold Outside.

You can download the three chapters of this documentary at

Quote Of The Day

Love takes off masks that we fear we cannot live without and know we cannot live within.

James A. Baldwin

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Coffee Quiz

What kind of coffee are you? Via Rastacoolie

You Are a Frappacino

At your best, you are: fun loving, sweet, and modern

At your worst, you are: childish and over indulgent

You drink coffee when: you're craving something sweet

Your caffeine addiction level: low

Well I like frappacino and mmmm a tall caramel macchiato...

Mystery Sex Change

Believe it or not this story happened in Myanmar:
Thin Sandar, a chicken seller in Myanmar, had always dreamed of being a man. When she inexplicably grew a penis last month, the 21-year-old treated it as an awe-inspiring omen -- as have the thousands of stunned villagers who have traveled to a pagoda to see him.

Harry Potter- Gut Oder Böse?

Harry Potter- Good or Evil? It seems that the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger has opposed the Harry Potter novels prior to his election as Pope Benedict XVI. Indeed he sent two letters to a German critic of the Harry Potter novels telling him mainly that "
It is good, that you enlighten people about Harry Potter, because those are subtle seductions, which act unnoticed and by this deeply distort Christianity in the soul, before it can grow properly,"
(Via Drudge)

More on this story could be found here.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Which Religion Is The Right One For You?

I came across this neat quiz via Rastacoolie.

You scored as Islam.
Your beliefs are most similar to those of Islam.
Do more research on Islam and possibly consider
taking the shahadah and
officially becoming a Muslim,
if you aren't already.
Despite the actions of some - who go
against the teachings of Islam -
Islam is a religion of peace;
the word "islam" means "peace through submission to God."
"Muslim" means "one who submits to God."
Islam is the third of the three Abrahamic faiths,
and it shares much with Judaism in Christianity;
its differences are the acceptance of Muhammad
as the last and final prophet, and
the oneness of God - in other words,
that Jesus, though he was a revered prophet,
was not in fact God,
and only one God exists.
Apparently the Taliban could not read
(though their name means "students"),
because the Qur'an states that men and
women are equal as believers, and that
all believers should be educated and
seek knowledge. Modesty in dress and
behavior is required in Islam for both
men and women to preserve the values
of society and move the emphasis from
superificial appearance to intelligence,
knowledge, and God.



















Which religion is the right one for you? (new version)
created with

Gelächter Über Alles!

According to a survey, Germans do not laugh much... ( Via Sploid)

The Top 10 Deadliest Creatures In The World

Via Sploid- Here is a list of the top 10 deadliest creatures on Earth! Surprised to learn that mosquitoes rank number one on the list! and what about the Black Widow spider?

Best Town In USA

Money magazine proclaims that Moorstown, New Jersey, is the nation's best place to live. Via Newsmax

Monday, July 11, 2005

A Weired Story!

I was reading the artist and his model and I came across this strange story that happened somewhere in Turkey, where 450 sheep killed themselves leaping off the same cliff!

The Lord God Bird

Sufjan Stevens

This is the title of a nice song by singer and songwriter Sufjan Stevens. I found about this song and its singer through NPR, which has as well an article on this young singer. Sufjan Stevens
has a lofty goal: exploring each of the 50 states in song. He's already released a critically acclaimed full-length CD simply called Michigan. His latest honors the people, places and history of Illinois.
Check his website at

Scientists Finally Got Green Light To Study Ancient Man

After a legal battle that lasted nearly eight years, scientists will finally get to study the ancient skeleton known as Kennewick Man.
Via BBC News

The F.B.P Lacks Arabic Translators

The federal Bureau of Prisons is holding 119 persons with "specific ties" to international Islamist terrorist groups, yet has no full-time Arabic translators or a system to monitor their communications, The Washington Times has learned.
Via Sploid

Quote Of The Day

You can't help getting older, but you don't have to get old.
George Burns

My Birthday Cake!

Well it's official, Today I turned 32!. I need to update my profile:)

Happy Birthday to all those who were born on this same day!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Americans And The Primal Instinct

I came across this neat article via Wired, that explores the subject of Americans's standpoint when it comes to Sex.

Catholic Faith And The Theory Of Evolution

Belief in the theory of evolution as accepted by science may be at odds with the Catholic faith, a leading Cardinal has written.

In an op-ed article in Thursday's New York Times, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, archbishop of Vienna, a theologian who is close to Pope Benedict XVI, declared that "Evolution in the sense of common ancestry might be true, but evolution in the neo-Darwinian sense - an unguided, unplanned process of random variation and natural selection - is not.
Via Newsmax

US-Arab Trade Council Created

Via The Daily Star-
Arab countries established a new body to boost trade with the United States, Arab business leaders and U.S. officials announced. The group, the Middle East and North Africa Council of the American and Chamber of Commerce (AmCham MENA) will work to fully open the region to U.S. trade and encourage badly-needed economic reform.

London Attack Prime Suspect

According to the Australian newspaper,
a Syrian al-Qa'ida veteran with a $5 million price on his head is the man being hunted over the London bombings
Mmmm, is it a coincidence or just a random found? and now if this was true, I bet Syria would be in a very bad situation, knowing already the heavy pressure it is getting from the outside...

Saturday, July 09, 2005

TV Program On Muslims In America

I came across this neat blog by Velveteen Rabbi, and one of his posts caught my attention. This is what I read:
Last night we watched a fascinating hour of television: an episode of 30 Days, created by Morgan Spurlock. He finds people from one walk of life and places them in a new context for a month, allowing them to really walk a mile in somebody else's shoes.

Spurlock placed David Stacy, a Christian from West Virginia, in a Muslim home in Dearborn, Michigan. For thirty days David dressed as a Muslim, ate as Muslims do, responded to the call to prayer five times a day. And he learned: from his host family and community, from a pair of imams and an Arabic teacher... and from the ordinary experience of interacting with non-Muslim Americans, and seeing those interactions from both sides.

Unfortunately I missed this program but I hope that the producers will make it into a DVD.

World's Oldest Creature Alive And Living In Scotland

Via Mirabilis-
NATURAL history experts from across the world will learn this month that the world's oldest creature is still alive and well, and living in Scotland.

It was believed the tadpole shrimp, dating from the Triassic period, had gone the way of the dinosaurs, but it was, literally, just being a stick-in-the-mud in a pond near Dumfries.

Blogging And The Price Of Telling Too Much

We all agree that blogs are spreading like mushrooms, but
some are, however, finding that putting one's life online can have a price...

64% Of Americans Believe God Is The Ultimate Creator

Reading Sploid, today I came across this article in the World Peace Herald which states that according to a poll,
73 percent of Republican respondents and 75 percent of conservatives believe God is the ultimate Creator. The figure stood at 58 percent among Democrats and 48 percent among liberals.

Friday, July 08, 2005

US Troops Read Lawrence Of Arabia To Win The War In Irak

Via- Sploid- According to an article in The Telegraph,
the US military has turned to the wisdom of Lawrence of Arabia for guidance on how to win the war in Iraq and understand the mindset of its insurgents...

The Genius Of Salvador Dalí

Salvador Dalí, Swans Reflecting Elephants

I just noticed the existence of a standing man on the left side of the lake and more can you spot the other human figure in the shape of a tree trunk!

Despite Distrust, US-Arab Future May Be Tied Together

A neat oped in the Beirut Daily Star, on the US-Arab relations stating that despite the distrust,
there are also areas where the two regions may converge, realization of which could help foster intercultural dialogue and understanding.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Islamic And Jewish Cultural Influence On Dante Alighieri

Via Pejmanesque- I came across this neat article on the Islamic and Jewish cultural influence on Dante Alighieri's works.

In the above mentioned article Giorgio Battistoni said that he "became aware of the Islamic book `Kitab al mira' (`The Book of the Ladder'), which was translated into Latin in 1246 as `Il Libro Della Scala.' This book, which relates Mohammed's journey to heaven, was according to Spanish scholar Miguel Asin Palacios, a source of inspiration for Dante in the writing of `The Divine Comedy,'". My understanding is that Battistoni refers here to "Kitab al-Mi'raj" ("The Book of Ascent") and not "Al-Mira", which relates the story of the journey of the Prophet Mohamed (PBUH) to Heaven. However and contrary to the claims of Battistoni, some scholars assert that "Resalat El-Ghofran" or (Treatise on Forgiveness, written by the blind Arab poet Abu-al-Alaa AI-Maari) influenced Dante in his composition of the Divine Comedy.

On a sidenote, my friend at Dappled Things was smart enough to notice that Battistoni said in the article that "The Book of the Ladder" was translated into Latin as "Il Libro Della Scala", when that's italian of course.

Fiesta de San Fermín

Fiesta de San Fermín, Pamplona, Spain.

On July 7th, 1923 Pamplona's fiesta of San Fermín has begun. This feast is probably Spain's most famous one. In fact, it is one of the best known festivals in the world, to a certain extent because of Ernest Hemingway's enthusiasm for it.
The northern Spanish city of Pamplona has kicked off its annual nine-day festival. The celebration—which honors the city's patron saint, San Fermín—includes fireworks, parades, music, dances, bullfights, and religious ceremonies.

Quote of The Day

A bank is a place that will lend you money if you can prove that you don't need it.

Bob Hope


Via The Christian Science Monitor - Graffiti, though illegal and considered a nuisance by cities, nonetheless remains a feature of urban life. In some quarters, tagging is viewed as a form of expression in the hands of artists. Grafedia - hyperlinked text on real surfaces - follows the same urban grass-roots traditions, though it may yet be co-opted by commercial interests as an advertising vehicle.

The Virtues Of Circumcision

Via Drudge- According to a new study by french and south african researchers, circumcision reduced the risk of contracting HIV by 70 percent -- a level of protection far better than the 30 percent risk reduction set as a target for an AIDS vaccine...

Although the apparent protective effect of circumcision has been noted for more than 20 years, doubts linger as to whether circumcision itself is protective, or whether the lower risk may be the result of cultural practices among those who circumcise. HIV rates are low in Muslim communities, for example, which practice male circumcision but also engage in ritual washing before sex and frown on promiscuity.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

World's Best Gourmet Restaurants

The Fat Duck, the pioneering British restaurant that introduced the world to delicacies such as sardine on toast sorbet and bacon and egg ice cream, has been declared the world's best place to eat.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Muslim Teens Shift Their Views On The US

Via Arts & Letters Daily -Four students from Middle Eastern and North African countries who were among 300 participants in a State Department-sponsored one year program
described a dramatic shattering of their own preconceptions, but also of those held by their host families and newfound American friends
"Before, I thought the Americans were like the Europeans - no religion, no moral values, taking drugs, having sex, drinking all the time," said Sirine, an earnest 17-year-old Tunisian who stayed with an Atlanta-area family. "But my opinion changed. I found people going to church a lot, and some are really conservative. I found the people more friendly than I expected. I thought all Americans were for the war, like the government. But some people are different." "When people first hear 'Tunisia,"' Sirine said, "they'd be like, 'Indonesia?' They'd ask me, 'Where's that?' I'd tell them, North Africa. And they'd say, 'Why aren't you black?"'
She, like the others, fielded plenty of questions about deserts and camels, she said with a laugh.

Today In Literature

This is a neat website I came across via Sploid which provides a daily piece of information on great books, authors, good stories etc. Check it!

Bisexuality Revisited

A team of psychologists found in a new study that,
men who identified themselves as bisexual were in fact exclusively aroused by either one sex or the other, usually by other men...
(Via Drudge)

Monday, July 04, 2005

Quote of the Day

Friendship often ends in love; but love in friendship - never.

Charles Caleb Colton

Sunday, July 03, 2005

New Da Vinci Painting Discovered

According to the National Gallery in London, a new picture by Leonardo da Vinci has been discovered,
Experts think Leonardo da Vinci was probably planning a picture of an adoration of the Christ child...

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Quote of the Day

He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals.

Benjamin Franklin

Friday, July 01, 2005

Humanists To Hold Conference In Paris

The International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) will hold its 16th World Congress in Paris from July 5 to 7, 2005. The main theme of this conference is the separation of Religion and State.

Riccardo Muti In El-Jem, Thysdrus

Riccardo Muti and the Italian Orchestra e il Coro Del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino will perform this coming 4th of July in the Roman ampitheatre of El-Jem,(the ancient city of Thysdrus), I wish I could be there!

Spanish Law Will Force Men & Women To Promise Not Only Fidelity But Equal Shares Of Housework

According to The Australian newspaper,
SPANISH men will be required to scrub toilets and change nappies as often as their harried wives under revolutionary reforms aimed at shattering the traditionally macho Latin nation's patriarchal division of labour in the home...

World's Largest Catfish

Two Thai fishermen caught a 646-pound catfish. This giant catfish is believed to be the world's largest ever caught freshwater fish. (Via Sploid).