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Once Again…

November 5, 2010 2 comments

Once again, tectonic plates must have shifted since the last time I’ve written anything here. It’s sad to see that a few bloggers whose posts I loved reading, a great portion of them Somali bloggers, decided to call it quits and throw in the towel if you may. The Somali blogger community has simply disappeared, as I can’t find any other Somali bloggers out there. Maybe it’s because I haven’t looked hard enough, but if you’re a Somali blogger or know of one’s blog, please drop me a link.

 

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Gulf Final

January 31, 2007 9 comments

It was a tough match. Both teams had everything to lose. Both teams never came within arms length of the cup (although it’s Oman’s second time to make it to the finals). But as all finals; only one team would go home victors; only one nation would have its streets filed with crazed, patriotic fans racing and skidding and performing dangerous stunts; only one nation’s citizens would be dancing local dances and partying all night; and the other team would walk back to the lockers, all teary and depressed, feigning smiles as they shake hands with their opponents to show good sportsmanship.

But screw sportsmanship. Although Gulf finals are rarely decent, some in the Emarati team sure displayed poor sportsmanship in their desperate attemp to take home the title and impress their leader who was watching from the VIP stand, obviously ready with thousands of Dirhams to pay the sole scorer and UAE goalkeeper for their job and the rest of the team.

I rarely watch soccer matches and cups between Gulf nations but this time my boys from UAE convinced me to watch the game with them. I’m not saying the only goal scored for the UAE team was not fair; no, it was perfectly fair and well earned.

Don’t get me wrong, I have no qualms about the UAE team, although there were instances in which they resorted to rugby and wrestling moves. It’s the referee who got on my nerves. Among the many instances was once when a UAE player purposely hit the ball with his hands while in the penalty box, which would in normal cases result in a penalty kick for the opposing team, but the referee never called it. Minute after minute I’d be more certain that he was not giving Omani players fouls they deserved and the UAE players the red cards they very well earned. Foul after foul I’d be more sure of my theory that he had a bank account somewhere with hundreds of thousands of Dirhams, perhaps even millions, flowing through it as the seconds ticked.

Even my Emarati friends who were watching the game with me agreed with me on how the referee was siding with UAE.

They say the English are the worst hooligans when it comes to soccer and cheering for their teams, but I’d say that a few hooligans cheering for the Emarati team have been doing a good job of giving their countrymen a bad image. Omani friends of mine have been telling me about how cars with Omani license plates have been thrashed at games. It seems that some Emaratis have seen it as ok to scratch and break the glasses of cars displaying Omani tags. Even worse was how officials have tried to coax the owners of the damaged cars into keeping it on the low in exchange for compensation. The sad thing is, most Emaratis are nice, law abiding citizens who have to put up with the handful of misfits who give them a bad name. Even worse, it’s the negative aspects of an event which leave an everlasting impression on those watching from the sidelines.

ps. To you Emaratis reading this, you know I’m right so think before storming the comments section with your violent outcries. To you Omanis, had there been an unbiased referee, I’m sure you’d have taken the cup.

Might as well live in Pluto

August 15, 2006 11 comments

I’ve been stuck in this desert for over 3 months now. It’s not like I am stuck at home like some unfortunate people, but there’s really no change once I go outside either. It’s either I stay home and feed myself some novels or work on some sketches or programs; or I go out and drive around like some lifeless retard with no home and a car with a gas thank that magically never gets empty.

You might think that the latter is impossible, as I once did, but from my years of living here, I’ve come to learn that aside from a nice hubbly bubbly hangout, the next greatest pastime for many of the younger Saudi males is driving around in their cars (usually a Camry or Hilux or Nissan pickup) and terrorizing the neighborhoods they live in by circling around the blocks hour after hour (prayer times included). 

I have a car, got gas, got free time, but what would I gain from cruising around the same street from morning till sunny morning? I’d rather ride my bike for a good cardio or jog outside…or even cleanthe car. Then a couple of Saudis ask why I still have a bike…or why I walk to Panda or even why I sometimes clean my car instead of paying an expat 10 riyals. I guess they’d be happy if I joined in their lunchtime kabsa matches and evening cruises listening to that droning voice of Mohammed Abdo (he has some nice songs tho). 

And then there are those afternoons where I feel like playing some ball and have to resort to going all the way to Aramco or someone signing me in a compound just so I can play. Although it’s a far fetched dream, I wonder when the gov’t will build some public courts…public as in aside from one or two clubs scattered around the cities. Having a make-shift soccer field is easy but you can’t just play basketball in the street.

Any suggestions of what to do…? Any places worth visiting in KSA? All ideas welcome…as long as they’re sane.

Categories: KSA, Life, Other Blogs, Sports