Our secret? we had the biggest campaign in AUB this year, and the best part is, every single member feels like family.
Humanity has undergone important Identity crises, Intellectual ones, Economic ones and Political ones.
We are part of a generation that’s undergoing an attention drawing crisis. We don’t know where to draw our attention;
Is it towards the lack of jobs or the refining of our CVs?
Is it all about following our passion or supporting our families?
We don’t know whether we should draw our attention on the people dying of thirst, or those who are of hunger. We don’t know whether it’s about the orphans or our retirement wage.
We don’t know whether it’s about salaries or being overqualified.
We don’t know whether it’s about avoiding traffic or avoiding terrorist attacks.
Our attention is being fought on by national politics and the price of petroleum.
Between our family’s future and our sexual identity.
Between our children’s freedom and their safety.
We’re the generation of ulcers, of sweating, of heat and global warming. We’re the generation of waste, of money, of depression and ecstasy.
We’re the generation of fast cars, fast food, fast money. We’re the generation of speed.
We’re the over ambitious ones; we’re the ones who smile with pride on High tech’s advances and frown at the rise of crime.
We laugh at new sitcoms and cry over newly discovered diseases. We’re the fabricated ones.
We’re the generation of medication and iron deficiency. We’re the insomniacs, the anxious, the crazy.
We’re the ones who are either ignorant or know too much to be at ease. We’re the ones who choose to try and fight or drink and flight.
We’re the ones who do both.
We’re the generation of a denied misery. We’re the generation whose attention’s drawn between denial and threat.
We’re the generation of advances and fallbacks.
We’re the generation of imagery and not reflection; the people who need to see in order to believe.
We’re the generation of movement and stagnation.
We’re the generation of freedom of speech and cell bars.
We’re stuck in front of Yellow lights.
We’re the generation of instant reactions.
We’re the population who begs for patience but lost the ability to give it.
We’re the sons of music; we’re the fathers of bombs.
But this generation is the only one that could ever give birth to a generation I like to call the revolutionary one.
There are things that you don’t expect when you agree to be “Une Cheftaine”.
I never expected to have as a main struggle a race with time in teaching them as much as I can before I let go. Looking at you today all I could think of was “I have so much more to teach you”.
This little one had to slip from my fingers earlier than I ever thought. This little one is in the ring of a main fight with life; “Leaving”. All I could think of was “I wish I had taught you more, I wish I had more time”.
Being a scout isn’t just about having fun or camping. This little girl right there knew what it was all about; loyalty, friendship, honor, respect, love and courage. A heart like hers is rare to find. A mind full of her crazy ideas is what I will miss the most. Texas Hoes, you are an amazing little girl, and it’s time we let life teach you more than I ever will.
Thank you for everything you’ve add up to mine but mostly for teaching me that it’s not always about how much I teach or give, it’s about the love in giving it.
Fière d’être ta cheftaine,
– I listened to an opponent volunteer tell me how he wished he could help us out, that he was here against his free will and for money.
– I met amazing people from all ages, different ideas both men and women.
– The volunteers with me carried people in wheelchairs in order for them to vote; defeating the lack of electricity, social justice and infrastructure.
– I heard endless hopeful wishes from the Lebanese army and security forces that Beirut Madinati would win; they were begging for change, begging for cultural respect and justice.
– I saw corruption with my own bare eyes knowing I could do nothing about it but stand there; and I stood.
– I saw bullets in the sky because of results that weren’t even official – one more proof of how corrupted this is.
– I saw bullets, not hugs. Bombarding sounds and not laughs.
– I found happiness helping hungry, poor people with the rest of our food; giving our balloons to kids regardless of their family’s political views, they understood politics better than we ever did.
– I found hope in children’s eyes and elderly’s hearts.
– I found people who think the same way I do; who accepted different political views and respected them fully.
– I saw the politicians who were once enemies’ team up for a common enemy; and yet they can’t seem to do so over basic civil rights (or a president).
– Yesterday I saw a bigger hypocrisy from the citizens, and not from the candidates.
– I saw the biggest diffusion of responsibility amongst the people I respected most.
Yesterday I witnessed sadness, frustration and anger. Then again, haven’t we been witnessing these things ever since we were born? Aren’t we immune to this?
The only difference about yesterday is that hope was born. A hope that wasn’t there before and that just tops all of the above and made me smile, dream and have a good time.
I believe in hope, I believe in Lebanon and I refuse to give up. Six years won’t change my mind nor will 12 or 24. I understand why people leave and I can’t blame them. But I have decided to be among the few who stay and fight. I’m not doing this for my own sake; I’d be long gone by then, but for the sake of my children, and yours.
I will respect the war, I will respect the martyrs, I will still hang out with a “Byerteh” and have lunch with whatever color a person’s wearing.
Beirut madinati, Jounieh madinati, Jbeil madinati even Saida, Akkar, Trablos and all the cities I haven’t visited yet madinati.
Lebnen baladi; and I will stay, I will stay, I will stay.
I wonder how it feels like to look down and see; your country feeling nothing but disgust over you.
I wonder how it feels like to be illiterate, not even an owner of a master’s degree. When you haven’t attended one course of Politics, Philosophy, Sociology and see; Doctors, Artists, Life Saviors, Writers, Thinkers, Leaders longing to have the right to earn the 1% of what you steal.
I wonder how it feels like to look down and see; the bits and pieces of Hope in your country striving to flee.
I wonder how it feels like to be in denial while you see; that obviously something’s wrong. Denial is everything I could think of to explain your stagnancy.
I wonder how it feels like to be elected upon a position and see; that you weren’t trained for it. That you haven’t worked for it, that you know nothing about it.
I wonder how it feels like to be a Politician here and know; you weren’t trained to be a Leader, you were only trained to be who the ones before you want you to be.
I wonder how it ironically feels like, to be a Leader, and not really own a voice for yourself.
I wonder how it feels like to look down and see; your people, the ones you are responsible for, starving, getting ill and unemployed. Your people, intoxicated.
I wonder how it feels like to be in your Big Black Car and see; all of the other cars making way, just because you own a Deafening Red Button. I’m guessing that’s because you can’t wait with us. You have never waited, your oxygen is irritability.
I wonder how it feels like
To supposedly be a Leader:
Who puts himself first
Who doesn’t care about his people
Who doesn’t even care about his Home
Who puts Money first and Education Last.
I wonder how it feels like… And I am begging you to tell me.
But then again, you wouldn’t know either; you never got up…
To look down and see.
I’ve been doing some thinking this past week about students and graduates leaving Lebanon. In our 9th grade civics and geography books, they call it the immigration of the brains.
This is for every parent out there whose children are eager to finish school and leave,
This is for my mother, for my father,
This is for you newlywed.
This is for every nostalgic Woman right now, who misses her Son or Daughter.
If you want us to stay, stop calling it Gharbyye and Charkyye
If you want us to stay, start listening to music in the car, and not the news. Let your kid explore politics his own way.
If you want us to stay, recycle. Stop whining about the garbage while you still throw bits and pieces out of your car. Stop striking while you still keep the empty popcorn box on your seat. Stop cursing while you ignore a water bottle on the ground.
If you want us to stay, respect animals. Teach us how to love Nature and Forests. Take us to Museums, take us to Plays, Read for us.
If you want us to stay, stop doing good things, dressing up and buying, for your pride, or your neighbors.
If you want us to stay, don’t fight with a citizen, because he supports a different political group. Listen to each other; it’s completely okay and human to have different political ideologies.
If you want us to stay, wait till the actors come back and bow to tell YOU thank YOU, before you leave. Have some respect to performance, put respect first and not traffic.
If you want us to stay, start driving like a civilized person. And don’t be a douchebag just because “everybody does it”.
If you want us to stay, start loving and respecting your country instead of hating it. Stand up when you hear our Anthem, and shut the f* up.
Make us love it, give us its art its music, take us to Der el Amar, to the Bekaa, Sour and Saida, to Mezyara, Tannourine… show us the historical Part of Byblos and not the souvenir shop. Tell us our own story before taking us to Paris and Rome.
If you want us to stay, stop looking at IDs, start looking at people. Being Christian or Muslim on your ID doesn’t necessarily mean you are, so don’t come and criticize based on religion. Religion is a way of life, not a feature, it’s a choice.
If you want us to stay, don’t bribe.
If you want us to stay, make us craftsmen of the land.
Make us artists; make us thinkers and philosophers, make us dancers and musicians, make us true politicians; make us Leaders.
Maybe then, Beirut will be united; Maybe then, we’ll listen to Fairuz; Maybe then, we’ll save us from the garbage; we’ll stop cutting off trees and destroying treasures, we’ll watch plays, we’ll become actors, we’ll be honest and modest, we’ll fall in love with our country, with our people.
Maybe then we’ll stay.
Dear parents, all it takes to keep your Son and Daughter from running is moving on. Letting go of the devastating past, understanding that we are children of life, we’re not yours, we’re not you.
If you want us to stay; stop the cultural war, and start listening to us.
Save your tears dear mothers, save your money oh fathers; and don’t be a souvenir shop, be history.
They say that the best relationship
Is when he’s your best friend
it becomes a love you worship
The one with no end.
A mix of devotion, love and emotion
I found the one for me
He makes me happy strong and surely,
Sometimes made me angry.
To the one with whom I am free
Whom I chose and still
At times it seems he won’t get me
Getting me he always will.
To the one I owe my knowledge to,
My sickness health and smile
To the one I owe my life to,
I still tend to put him aside.
We had our fights our misunderstandings
And yet he never left me alone
He stole my heart I was still a bantling
Today he’s my sword, my words, my stone.
Love is a term
Love is a feeling
Love is still undefined
Scientists brush the meaning
It’s the reason we are blind.
Let me give you your sight back
From a different perspective
I want you to hear love’s track
It surely won’t be deceptive.
I found the term
I found the feeling
It is defined
Scholars would agree
If only they could read my mind.
He is the song
The right tune
He is harmony
How I wish you could all hear it
You’d Fall for it, eminently.
As a ringtone it will play
You’d put it on repeat
Put you on hold is his way
You’ll get back on your feet.
I would read this to you a thousand times
My prayer it shall be
Tonight a star will shine,
It’s the answer; you love me.
To the one I call the love of my life
To the one all men can be jealous of
To my best friend, tonight I write
He will listen and laugh from the above.
To the reason that I sing,
My gift to you this year
Won’t be offering the voice
This morning I couldn’t hear.
I got a different letter this time
I know what you wished for
You’re asking me to love you in rhyme
You’ll find it at your door.
Happy birthday habibi, je t’aime.
I hope this will inspire other people, this is not about me.
Today I made a decision, one I thought I made months ago over and over again.
Today I did something a lot of 18 year olds long to do, but hesitate to.
I get it you know, it’s scary.
Today I walked down my department’s hallway for the last time as a member. It’s all white, with labs everywhere; it smells like in a hospital. You see, this smell, these people, that jargon, this world is my safe place. I grew up in a home where my parents were always supportive to whatever I was passionate about. But I also grew up feeling the happiest in Hospitals’ Hallways, always looking up to my dad in scrubs. This home I grew up in however was a medical specter. My whole life I’ve learned, without even knowing it, about the different drugs, their side effects, surgeries, illnesses, new scientific discoveries. Ergo my maintaining interest in Life Sciences. “I’m so good here”, I thought.
I found my passion when I was only twelve years old. I simply never took it seriously, “It’s just a hobby” “Keep it as a Hobby” “Have a good job, and do whatever you love aside”.
Last year, I let that little beast grow and scream when I transferred to the Economics and Sociology section. I found myself. My passion wasn’t just a simple hobby anymore; it was a part of me. Something I could and would never get rid of.
If you’re a friend of mine, you’d remember the days when I was asked “So, what are you applying to at AUB?” And I’d say “God knows.” Then, “Nutrition, but I don’t think I’ll stay there, I don’t know”. And we’d just laugh, like it was a joke; obviously, Nadine the nerd will get in nutrition, fall in love, pursue it with ambition and become successful.
This vision turned into my dream. My path was clear; clinics were waiting, patients were right at the door. I’m “bent el-Hakim”.
I jumped on every-one-I-know’s necks when I got accepted. Little did they know, I’d applied for Business too, Public Administration, after struggling between PA and Literature. Still, I wasn’t ready yet. I was convinced; the good, reasonable path was the right one, and hell did I love it!
I still do, I always will. It’s this first love you’ll never stop loving.
Until my English teacher walked in the classroom. Like an epiphany, it’s like I’d been blind my whole life. I finally got THE answer to the world’s question; “How do you see yourself in ten years?” Ever since, for three months now, I’ve been struggling between the voice in my heart, and the commitment to my good, right, future. I asked so many people, the right ones, not because I wanted them to choose for me, but for simple research. 90% of the people I talked to, all of them being graduates or doctors, didn’t do what they “really” wanted to do. Why? “Ma fi cheghel” “Cava, betreka hobby” “Haram mosryyet ahle”. Also, others who did do what they wanted to do told me “Nadine, I know you want to follow your heart, but at some point, you’ll dream of the job you can have in the right, good path.”
I struggled between doing a double major, have the best of both worlds, or leave my passion for writing aside.
Double major was a really good option. I’m a nerd, I can do it. One day though, I realized that once I graduate, I’ll leave my BS in Nutrition aside, and go for my dream. My heart was just screaming too loudly, it could’ve exploded and ran towards the old Fisk building on campus.
Today, I decided to do something for the youth who died early.
For all of the people who didn’t pursue their dreams, or didn’t get to.
Who were too afraid of the future, who wanted to do the right thing.
I’ve always been a “Good, right, person”.
Today I choose not to be. Not while getting drunk or cheating on someone, not by lying or getting high.
Today I chose not to be good and right, leave my safe place, and jump into the emptiness that is my dream.
I won’t let my job status define my happiness, nor the money.
I won’t let my reason suffocate me anymore.
I refuse to take my life for granted.
This is what “You only live once” means.
With loads of support of my family and friends, I still wasn’t ready to do it. With all my prayers, I still wasn’t ready to do it. It’s so scary. It’s terrifying. I love it.
This is one of the hardest things I ever had to do. Because the problem here isn’t society, or pressure, the problem is me. I am afraid to open that door.
I’m still afraid
however I’m confident: This is my right thing.
I have big dreams, you’ll see.
Today I said goodbye to the home that is a labcoat.
I said goodbye to Erlenmeyer flasks and test tubes.
I said goodbye to my family.
Today I said hello to Art, Passion, Humanity in its source, and true Wealth.
Do I know what I’m going to be once I graduate? Haha no.
But I know who I am.
Today I left for the first time my comfort zone
Goodbye childhood, today I chose to grow.
Today I chose adventure and I’ve never felt so alive
Oh the things you’ll go through once you attend university!
Oh the independence, the parties, the friends,
Oh the amount of work you’ll have, oh how you’ll finally see the world as it is.
All of these instances trust me, I’ve seen and expected.
If there’s something I’ve learned in the past month, it’s how insecure I feel in my society. And that’s very sad.
I’m sick of having to leave the library before 10pm, because otherwise I’d have to drag my guy friend with me to the end of the street, and hold my mother on the phone till I get out of the 7 floor parking, just because I’m in a poor isolated street in Hamra.
“Walaw ? benet la hala ? Ma bi sir !” is how I got raised.
I’m sick of men staring and honking at me because I own a pair of shaved legs, a waist, breasts, and I walk like a lady. I hate it when they slow down to catch every bit of naked skin on my body, making me wonder “Is it too high? Is it too low?”
I hate the fact that I run out of the restrooms if they’re underground, just to avoid meeting the poor cleaning man and being alone with him.
I hate the fact that I have to avoid eye contact, saying good morning with a smile, or have a good day in the elevator to a man; oh the many times I did, little did I know I was being polite, and later he’d follow me to my destination asking me questions.
I hate the simple fact that ever since I’ve entered the adult world, I’ve felt like a prey.
All I can hear is “Rape”.
A little crazy you’d say, but I guarantee you 75% of the women reading this can relate to what I’m writing, even though they won’t admit it.
“Wait till you grow up, it’ll get better, you’ll be stronger”. I think you mean I’ll be in denial or get used to it. I’m taller, stronger, and more courageous than half the 30 year old women I know. This has nothing and should have nothing to do with growing up.
What if I’m fit just to have a better lifestyle? What if I have big breasts and wearing a shirt that hasn’t an opened area suffocates me? Hell, there shouldn’t even be an excuse for wearing shorts! What if I’m simply hot because of the 40 degree weather outside?
Wearing eccentric clothes is not what I’m talking about. It’s a whole other debate.
I wear very decent clothes but apparently knees appeal men just as much as thighs do.
Why can’t I feel safe in my own campus?
Again, a little extreme you say? What about the numbers? Google the percentage of reported rape in universities. Would you report being raped? Would you tell people? I’m sick of it happening around me, and still having dozens of people telling me “Lah chou beke, ma bet sir chedde halik”. Chedd hale? Out of the 50 close friends I have, 5 got raped and that’s 10% for you.
Rape is one aspect. It’s the one that hurts both physically and psychologically.
If you already called me crazy, okay. Know this :
Honking? Staring? Judging? Being rude? Making me feel like a prostitute? Don’t make you any better as a person.
By the way, having the parking people asking to park my car for me in case “a bta3rfich madame” makes me want to hit them in the face. I can parallel park my car between two trucks, I can let it stick to a wall with all of them + their egos all around, and I can use it just as well as they do thank you very much. What if a guy couldn’t park his car? Would he have the guts to ask for help? Poor little boy probably never will!
I don’t want this article to be about feminism. I want it to be about stereotypes like “She’s nice because she wants me” and about the “Hey look a woman walking! Let’s honk at it until it looks, sees our repelling expressions, gets disgusted and feels uncomfortable until we leave!”
Writing about how some women take it as a compliment is something I’ll definitely do. But that’s not the point here.
I don’t think laws and regulations are going to make me feel any safer. I don’t think anything will. I don’t, for once, have a proposition or solution to write about. Finally, I don’t think people (not necessarily women) who got raped aren’t afraid of going through it again.
I guess I’m writing this out of anger, sadness, and in some kind of support to other victims of all of this.
The fear will always be there. But you certainly don’t need masters and PHDs to control yourself from honking at a pair of legs.
A lot of women brag and talk endlessly about saving their virginity for “The One”. Yes I’m talking about staying a virgin before marriage. While most of them, if not the total number, forget to actually Save Themselves.
You worry about saving a piece of skin for the one you’re going to spend the rest of your life with, while you give away every other thing of your soul, whenever, however, wherever.
This post isn’t about any sexual aspect or ideology, it was just a strategy to grab your attention.
I am an eighteen year old girl who’s single and not ready to mingle. I have loved more than you know, and been hurt more than I can count. I’m not writing this right after a break up, this is not reaction.
My life is simple: I am happy. You know when you meet someone, and it’s going really well, and you start singing in the car, shower, class, everything and everyone seem so positive suddenly, well yeah I get that every day, without being or having someone in my life.
I now get why my mother would despise me going out with boys when I was younger. It wasn’t because she’s too traditional or because she didn’t get me, it wasn’t even because of protection. It was because ( I think), she knew, that it would be a waste to share so much of yourself with someone, and it would be unfair to the significant other to be with them, while you can’t be with yourself. At the age of 14,15,16,17,18,19,20… the list goes on! At any age: We are not ready to be with someone if we can’t be with ourselves.
“Don’t trust a naked Guy who’s giving you clothes” Will forever be my motto. How do you expect to be in a relationship that is healthy, that lasts, where there is balance, trust, while the two participants don’t know themselves yet, where they are going through changes during which they should be alone. This is not about puberty. This is about life.
If you’re not happy and jumping and on top of the world when you’re alone, if you can’t manage to feel that rush of happiness in you by yourself, would you really be “saving” yourself up for someone?
Getting there isn’t easy. Getting there includes going through hell. The good part is, you eventually do get there.
I am an eighteen year old girl, first semester of university, first taste of true freedom. I mostly live alone, and I barely invite friends over. Not because I’m boring, but because I cherish more than anything my alone time. I love the taste of alcohol and music, but I don’t go out to “fish” for guys. I love my body, the way it looks, I work out and eat healthy, I fix my nails and hair, but I don’t to do it for someone. I don’t do it to appeal to anyone. I’m not looking for anyone. How would you be looking for someone the right way, if you haven’t found yourself yet?
Girls around me just keep on being broken hearted, after long relationships something for some reason whatsoever goes wrong. They don’t get it. I didn’t get it. Now I do. I don’t think any relationship (including marriage) would work if both can’t be happy alone, or weren’t happy at some point in their lives, alone. By happy I don’t mean grateful, or successful or surrounded by good friends. I mean feeling complete. Like there’s no gap anymore, to fulfill yourself, by yourself.
I am not I can assure you a desperate person in denial. I’ve had opportunities and decided to say no. Because I knew, I wasn’t okay, I wasn’t ready. This is how I save myself up for my ones. Yes ones. Not One. “Lak rouhe tsallilik bi chi wahad ma daroure serious ma serious ! LIVE YOUR LIFE” Etsalla? Are you freaking kidding me? What if I told you I’m living the most exciting happy life, I have fun. I go out. I dress up. I laugh my heart out. I do my best. I bring out the best in me. I have been with people; I know what it’s like! It’s amazing I love it, there’s nothing I love more than to love, share, and give.
Then can you imagine how amazing it would be how upgraded it would feel to be with someone after you’ve been with yourself? To save yourself up to people?
You know that struggle of saving your virginity? Yeah it’s nothing compared to saving yourself. Saving yourself is a long, hard, painful, doubtful, way. People used to tell me “You’ll get there”. I knew that. And it didn’t make it any easier. Because at the end of the day, you will have to climb that mountain.
Whether it’s the hard way, alone, or by endlessly trying to find someone, you’ll climb it. But trust me; the hard way is the one with the most beautiful results. You’ll be complete. You’ll be a free Spirit. And then will you be ready to be free with someone.
People who are going through something hard, blessed art thou. Life is giving you the opportunity to arrive On Top of Your World, and trust me, the view is magnificent.