Author: amiramoud

Exhibit A

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Dear Homo sapiens of this planet,
Good news, bad news.

You can read this, so you still have your eyes. Yes, this is the good news.
The bad news is that you’re here. You, along with who-knows-how-much-zillions.

For whatever reason, be it religious, cultural, or even for the love of ownership, at least two people decided you were a good choice. Why? Easy. You abuse the air and water supply, then you go about abusing everyone else for doing the same. You deprive at least the two of them of sleep, health, and half a million of whatever your currency is – if you’re lucky.

Just as any decent hierrarchal citizen would, you would then decide to pay it forward. The result? Perhaps it’ll be sitting beside you as you read this.
What naiive creatures. It cries the moment it sees your face/hears your voice, yet you believe you’ll do a good job. Did you? *Dramatic pause, please.*

You will blame them for your ancestral chain of abuse. You will blame them for your creation. You will blame them for your past and ask them not only to anticipate your future, but to fix it. Meanwhile, you will blame them for not being as obedient as your competitors’ property; you will blame them for being too obedient. You will blame them for wondering, and you will beat them up in your quest to stop them from crying. You will blame them for not being you. *Guess what you would do if you found out they are terrified of turning into you.*
You will do so bad that a good day would no longer indicate something good, but the -temporary- absence of something bad. Then you will blame them for the wasting your time.

Do yourself a favor. Do their potential victims (thanks to your complexes) a favor. Do the ozone layer a favor. Do the 5 pandas and 10 people left *off anti-depressants* a favor. Most importantly, do them a favor. At least it’s less painful than having them do you a favor and spare you of their existence.

Looking for someone to blame? That’s easy. You have “the earth, together with all of its countries and peoples.”

——————
Before your instinctive psychoanalysis attempt, or not – I won’t take away the fun.
Happy hunting.

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Solo

هو اكيد احسن. اكيد فى اقل من ساعة كان اتخيط و قام و راح لفيكتوريا اللى كان مصمم يروحلها، حتى و هو مش قادر يتحرك.  الموقف عدى من زمان، انا اللى شكلى لسه محبوسة فيه.
Apparently the Egyptian definition of “help” is water-related. There was not one, not two, but three almost empty bottles of water lying next to the man lying on the street.
يا عم سيد حد كلم الاسعاف؟
-اه اكيد، عشان الراجل اللى مخبوط بره ده؟ على فكرة عم سالم بييجى الصبح، انا اسمى حلمى.
نعم؟
-عم سالم بييجى الصببببح، انا اسمى حلمى.
Wow. He seriously is waiting for it.
انا اسفة معلش. هسيب الحاجات دى هنا بعد اذنك. عندك فوطة؟
Enough dilution. The back of his skull would amaze any medical student.
مسامح فى الفوطة دى؟
– اه
اسمك ايه؟
* عادل
عادل، انا اسمى اميرة، انا دكتورة
What did my mouth just say?!
كفاية مياه. انا عايزاك ترفع راسك شوية. بس. سيبوه.
> و ايدك هتفضل تحت راسه؟
No comment.
A headlight makes its way through the dozen pedestrians crowded around and reaches his face.
دى نقط دم على مناخيره. امسحها؟ ايه ده دول على وشه كله. سيبيها. الهيه فى اى كلام.
* هو فيه ايه؟
Scheisse. I’m just a kid.
لا عادى، على الاقل تلاتة من الخمس طبقات اللى حولين مخك اتفتحوا، و الحاجة المبلولة اللى انت غرقان فيها تبقى دم حضرتك على 3 لتر مياه كمساهمة من السادة الجماهير.
What I really said?
انت زى الفل. مفكش حاجة.
This is not my language. It’s my therapist’s. Just the way he aranges the words, and just the way his tone changes, and just the way he smiles.
انت زى الفل. النفس بس يا جماعة.
Is this a genuine consideration of the heat, the shock, and the two dozen armpits crammed around? Is this some twisted alfa female thing to get rid of the girl who just arrived?
مسكت دراعى. “انا خايفة عليه اوى.” قلتلها معلش و طبطبت عليها. ايه الهبل ده؟
انت كنت رايح فين؟
* فيكتوريا. انا عايز اروح لفيكتوريا. *محاولة فاشلة للقيام*
طب استنى بس شوية. معاك تليفونك؟ فى حد نكلمه يجيلك؟
● قول الرقم بس و هتصللك عليه. شنطتك اهى، بس قول بس و انا هتصل من عندى.
* خمسة.. واحد ..
○ اهى الاسعاف جت.
Up he goes, revealing the massive amount of blood on the street, on his clothes, and on the white *correction: previously white* piece of cloth someone put behind his head.
نور عربية الاسعاف بين بركة دم صافى = مش متلوث بمياه هناك كده. حطيت القماش اللى دلوقتى احمر عليه.
هوب. ادى ازازة مياه خبطت فى الرصيف. عادى. عسكرى قرر يزيل الاذى. هوب. ادى التانية. و التالتة. “عدى يا اجرة.”
> طب اغسلى ايدك من الدم طيب.
هاه؟
Scheisse.
و عدت الاجرة، و بعدها تقريبا 500 عربية لحد دلوقتى. العسكرى ساب القماش، مطرح ما حطيته.
That “I was here” moment.
و ياليتنى لم اكن هيير.
Yup, that’s a hit. Hit, hit, so close, hit, miss. That’s how inhumane it is; you can bet on the number of cars hitting the jackpot. Isn’t life a bowling game?
بدل ما اشوف حتة قماش مرمية فى الشارع و احمد ربنا انها مش قطة، بقى السؤال المسيطر يا ترى فى خلايا كام واحد فى العشرة سنتى دول؟
Imagine having tracking device implants since birth. That way you could keep track of every corner/highway you spit, peed, and now bled on.
و تبقى التتنيحة و يبقى الرتم المسيطر.
**يا مالك الملك كن لى، ان لم تكن لى فمن لى**
Singing it didn’t help. Neither did small talk, nor 50 sit-ups.
البتاعة كانت بيضاء، و اكتسبت حمار، و اتدهست سواد.
Who designed the flag? As if the situation needs any more irony, an aspiring oud singer party starts to be heard.
“اموت اموت و بلدنا تعيش.”

عم “حلمى:” هو حضرتك دكتورة؟
No comment.

Note to self: once you get over this – and stop checking that the guy’s tissues are still being tortured – research the  Anthropsychology of accidents *critical situations in general.* Maybe that’s the way to get over this. But then again, why get over anything?
ماحنا زى الفل. مفناش حاجة.

Typing..

The closest expression that represents the feeling is portrayed by a 10-second camera pan with “and the Oscar goes to” in the background. Maybe because that’s what actors do? Well, at least those good – connected – enough to be in that oversized, definitely overcrowded room. That’s of course assuming they’re not over-botoxed enough to *upgrade* to zombie mode.

Egyptian context? Definitely. Green floor, flashy lights, red shirts – white, if you’re an MM (and no, this does not stand for Mortada Mansour .. whose heart I plead to if he ever reads this. He probably has some documentation somewhere of the precursor *first time I notice this word* things going on in my skull. Or does he *raises eyebrow*). Interruption: well, this depends. Once your nervous system gets habituated with the initially unbearable car, motorcycle, and even donkey-cart honks, all of which are amplified 16 times as a function of healthy ears, you notice the little things.

That’s the sound of a water volcano cursing the purple lipstick covering it’s plastic end. That’s the mucoid breakup that might fortunately miss your feet. That’s the compulsive burp failing to camouflage as human language. That’s the erratic hallucination of technology that has even possed the cleaning lady who has done quite well at Candy Crush.

That’s the sound of typing. And this is your Oscar-like, match-like look, with superb focus on the eye muscles, at the neglect of awareness of all the others, to reach the end of this. And, yes, this is the unconscious movement to make yourself feel comfortable enough that you’re not being described. Whatever makes you happy.

Here it is. The end of this (whatever you may call it). The question now: why aren’t you looking at your toes?

Cocoa Karma

I’m going to try and make this as less mysterious as possible – which you might notice is already a challenge!
Let me start by implying at the fact that everything is literal. No metaphors used.

A (probably wise) man once told me that life is an equation; if you put in good, you get good. The statement sounds fine – in fact, it sounds true – if you have a technical mentality. Although I did not attempt to challenge it (and I am not a Computer Science student), it has proven guilty.

Sometimes you put in good, and get nothing in return, except for a burden of negativity. You might put in good at other times, and indulge in a result much better than your initial “good.” Life becomes freaky, however, when you get both nothing and everything at the same time.

I am trying not to be mysterious, so here comes an example.
Life gives you a tiny Snickers. A random somebody randomly says that you won’t have any Snickers as a random example to prove a random point. Don’t lose track of the time factor. Time passes, and you happen to buy someone a Thank You chocolate. Not knowing what that person likes, you get Twix and Snickers and guess what? They choose Twix, leaving you with Snickers, which you don’t eat. Why? Because you randomly run into the tiny Snickers person, who happens to want chocolate. There. You just paid back and exerted loads more doing that. Life, here’s your Snickers, plus way more interest than deserved.

Here’s the twist.

Before you know it, they randomly offer you chocolate. “There’s a Lindt bar,” on the table that you’ve had your legs on for quite some time.

“Nice to sweet you.”
– Courtesy of the better result.

This girl

This girl has been born and raised in Cairo. She is currently a media student at the American University in Cairo. She is also studying medicine. Her interests are mainly attempts to simplify stuff and observe people – the proper terminology would be anthropology, photography and design. She is great at making popcorn, magazine layouts, and mistakes. Oh and she responds to comments, questions, and ‘good mornings.’

She feels weird talking about herself in third person, so she will stop now.

 

To Be Continued

This is Amira. She is five. In a population that exceeds 90 million people, there must be at least 27 million Egyptian children (remind me to check the accurate number later).

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Her name translates to 'princess.' She lives in a cemetary, yet she knows how to smile like one.

“Take my picture,” was the first – and probably the most important – thing she told me. I do not know why and I do not even know if I will see her again. I do not know Amira’s story, but this girl has something to say. Actually, at least 27 million beings have at least something to say.

Baby philosophy: you can’t physically shut your ears, so basically there is no excuse not to listen.