8.10.07

I can't get it off me

The way Jordan is sinking into Globalization, I have been trying to put of this post till later, till I have a solid argument, but today I took a trip to the so-called "people markets", I had enough time to go to different markets and I was appalled.

I am not going to write about the piles of rubbish and lack of sanitation, nor am I going to talk about the obvious lack of supervision, the government turns a blind eye and for different reasons I will too, for now!

I am going to talk however about a different phenomenon, when I looked at the people I could definitely sense the desperation, a civil-servant was pushing through the mini-crowd of old ladies and other men, to grab a tomato that appeared not too green. It had a hint of red, and he had to have it, I guess the "2allaya" was important to his kids who waited in the double-parked government car.

It reminded me of a conversation I had with a shop-keeper in the beginning of Ramadan, he clearly told me that he owns a farm, so he will start producing two tiers of produce, (excuse the redundancy but I am a bit aggravated) one will be for his shop, while the second -obviously lower- will be for the popular markets.

Now I am not naive, I heard tissue factory managers and antique dealers tell me the same stuff, but I want to draw attention to something, the alternative here was not placing them side by side, "it would scare people away if I did that", the alternative was "throwing it out, or maybe give it to some herdsman"

This is what is happening, animal stock are starving, no of course I am kidding although you could see where I came with that conclusion, the people are eating vegetable that used to be considered animal grade.

The prices are going down but for years the government thought the best way was to be punitive with such acts, no they are condoning it in the name of feeding the poor, while poor people have dignity and standards, they go right out of the window when you have proud fasting kids waiting to be fed.

I am not going to go into details about the horrible state of meat and chicken but I am sure you can draw conclusions from paralleling. I miss the days when price control and government salary made sure each hard working Jordanian had the ability to feed his children meat more than once a month.

I fear we are becoming like Egypt in the movies of the 80s and 90s

peace, out

6.10.07

Alternative music

I enjoy new Jordanian talent, especially if their music is a bit alternative and a bit fresh, I like hearing stuff like "samar o samira, o 3adnan o leena, o sandy bell, o Sebastian, o spunk, o flona, hadol aflam kartooooon" against a backdrop of dramatic music.

It was hilarious, exhilarating and rejuvenating, trust me, just listen to his songs here, I mean seriously he is going to be big if he ever gets a real label behind him. In the mean wish him luck

Yazan Al Rousan is my topic of the day

4.10.07

I Got Shivers

... when I read this article about his late majesty, his bravery shone through, he lived in an atmosphere that was with no doubt nerve-wrecking, and he was 22, just as old as I am today, instead of learning of the world, as any young man would like to, he had to manipulate it for the benefit of Jordan.

..but in London there was increasing talk of a "villa at Lausanne" as a suitable reward for Hussein. For Jordan, a melancholy excuse for a nation, is unable to support its people without subsidy, unable to protect its government without outside help. If it continued to exist, it would only be because everyone, at the summit or elsewhere, decided that its eradication would be worse.
Imagine a 22-year-old reading that his stay, his kingdom and the future of the region was to be weighed against the "villa at Lausanne" option. Imagine having your country called "a melancholy excuse for a nation." I am sure Jordan is now known as the last stand of moderation in the Middle East, and that's its eradication would be much worse, almost detrimental to the region.

One thing that didn't change much over the years is that Jordan is "unable to support its people without subsidy." Hopefully in the next few years, with the Petroleum prices freed, we will have for once financial independence, a pre-requisite for a meaningful political independence.

2.10.07

I Feel Old


I really do, the other day I went to a computer store and asked for an external hard-drive, I was shocked to discover the numbers they spoke off. (the picture shows the 8.0", 5.25", 3.5" from left to right)

See, 15 years ago, I was what was called a computer geek, I wrote my own programs that harassed the computer user, I remember having old computers that you needed to boot-up from 5.25" floppy, and the laughing as my brothers tried to compare the cassette to it. Then having upgraded to the first MS Windows system, we had a computer with an internal hard drive that was huge. It was astronomical, in comparison of course, "double density" floppies had a capacity of 360KB and the more modern "quad density" had a capacity of 720 KB. I remember a six 3.5" floppy which had windows 6.22, which I installed on a laptop with a hard drive of 25 MB, almost seventeen 3.5" or 35 of the 5.25"variety.



The computer store clerk could tell I was in disbelief, I was remembering my uncle saying "The Human brain is measured in terms of Terabytes,"

I had to ask my uncle "and that is?"

"1024 Gigabytes which are 1024 Megabytes each," he said. "but dont worry it wont take up a whole room, it would be as big as a book but that might be 25 or 30 years in the future."

No one accused my uncle of being a visionary, Doctors today say that the human brain is in the Exabyte range, at least, and probably in the Zettabyte. The drive I saw was external but check this out here. The size is almost the same as the size of the 1.44MB 3.5" floppy drive shown at the right of the picture above. Size equal capacity 700,000 times greater.

I didn't know that we were there already, but I was shocked. I didn't buy it but I bought a Western Digital 500GB, it is a life-saver and so cheap.