Thursday, 27 May 2010

Two beautiful pictures

Here are two beautiful pictures that adorn my computer desktop. With my new Macbook Pro 15" as a new member of the family (i7 all the way!), there is even more screen to show off these beauties :)

I leave them for you to enjoy at your pleasure. Please note if you own the copyright please let me know and I will remove them immediately. These are not my pictures, but some I found online. It's worth clicking on the pictures to enlarge them because the current resolution will not do them justice.

The pic below is from the National Geographic and is probably one of the most nicely taken pics I've seen in a while. Take some time to allow it to sink in.

This pic below is unknown in its source but I love its peacefulness. Also reminds me I wanna live at some point in the woods in tune with nature :)


Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Abutt's Finest Hour

[This post is written as a reference post]

We all relish on a bit of debate and dialogue, none of us have taken this to heart and to such extremes as much as aBit who is known by many names including Ultra Blue.

The authour of this blog had a debate with him about female body building which turned sour very quickly. I thought it's best to publish this properly for everyone to see him for who he is, and also because the coward is known to delete his comments after they have been read.

Interestingly.. He rudely refused offers of a hug then it took him a good few days to muster a reply.. oh well, maybe he was simmering slowly to a boil. Pathetic.

Pathetic 1:

You can bring your whore body building wife as well, the one I'll have a pakistani laborer rape after I beat you and have you jailed for whatever reason the cops can come up with.

Again, the innerwebs, its an amazing source of entertainment.


Yalla, answer that and stay fashionable tool.

Posted by ultra[blue] to BuJ Al Arab at 17 May 2010 09:55

(Interestingly, you can be arrested for saying less than what Mr ultra[blue] just wrote.. oh well)

Pathetic 2:

Oh, and my driver fucked your sister last night! Expect a 1/2 bangladeshi nephew in 9 months! Muahaha!

Best thing is, if I choose to delete these comments, you cant prove shit! YOU ARE POWERLESS UNLESS YOU MODERATE!


And and I was kidding about meeting you to talk. IF YOU ARE MAN ENOUGH come meet me in AD and I will BEAT THE LIVING SHIT OUT OF YOU and have you jailed. YOU will be jailed.

(hmmm, it seems he will teach me a lesson by using his 200kg body to sit on me! If he's such a fat-man himself why not displace his fat-self to DXB?)

Pathetic 3:

A combination of the 2 Pathetics above, as well as the words "f-you" repeated about 654 times over about 40 different comments. He probably just learned about the "copy" and "paste" functions. Oh dear me. All this was trigged coz I proposed to hug him? oh dear me.

Very Worrying 1:

Having read this in Gulf News this week...

We hope the police catch him soon and may this be a sign for all haters and pedophiles that you are not above the law.

For more details on how to get in touch, the racist lurks here. FYI, all comments and e-mails are saved should they be needed in the future. All this can be easily verified by a 3rd party.


Unfortunately, this week we saw the ill-fated airline crash to Mangalore from Dubai. Sadly, it was observed that aBit's blog had a very racist post that stirred a lot of feelings, especially from the Indian community for its racist ideas.

Read for yourself:

Incidentally, one of the fiercest critics of racism was our Prophet Mohammad who fought it fiercely and the same applies to slavery.

We pray for his mental stability to return, and for Allah to protect us from all evil.

Updated : 25 May 2010

Seems the whole blog has been deleted or blocked somehow. Very peculiar indeed.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Saturday, 22 May 2010

RIP to aircrash victims

On a flight from Dubai to Mangalore (not Bangalore) yesterday disaster struck as the plane tried to make a tricky landing at what is called a "tabletop" runway. i.e. one which is proceeded with a valley or a drop that makes overshooting the runway a scary adventure.

Sadly 158 out of the 160 passengers perished. Even more sadly, the flight departed from Dubai and included a Gulf News member of staff who perished as well. Incidentally, it was Gulf News that rocked my morning by reporting this sad piece of news.

Before people get too excited, the pilot was British with more than 10,000 flying hours and 26 landings at Mangalore. The co-pilot was Indian, and although he had less flying time than his Captain, but, he had more landings under his belt on this dangerous strip.

May they rest in peace.

The Entabulator

For all you smart engineers out there, and everyone else too!

For more information please click here:

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Historical Tweets - D-Day

This just cracked me up!!!

page reference

Please click to enlarge. (Wish most things worked like that, hihi)

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Bad aftertaste - 62 years on

I woke up this morning and looked at my Calendar that read 15 May and I knew it was a bad day. I usually have had better memories on this day in the last few years, but for the goodness of me I didn't know what today signified.

Thanks to Dubai Jazz, I remembered. I just read this post on this blog which is copied here in its entirety:

15th of May - 62 Years on the Nakba: A Few Memorable Quotes

"The cleansing of Palestine remained the prime objective of Plan Dalet."
David Ben Gurion (the 'Founding Father' of Israel)

(Plan Dalet was a premeditated plan designed in part to ethnically cleanse Palestine during the establishment of the state of Israel)

"Only a state with at least 80% Jews is a viable and stable state"
David Ben Gurion

"Arab evacuees from the towns and villages left largely because of Jewish — Haganah, IZL or LHI — attacks or fear of impending attack.......[however],an extremely small, almost insignificant number of the refugees during this early period left because of Haganah or IZL or LHI expulsion orders or forceful 'advice' to that effect"
Benn Morris. Author of "The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited", Cambridge University Press, 2004.

"This leads to a figure of 73% for departures caused directly by the Israelis. In addition, the report attributes 22% of the departures to "fears" and "a crisis of confidence" affecting the Palestinian population. As for Arab calls for flight, these were reckoned to be significant in only 5% of cases…"
A report by the military intelligence arm of the Haganah (the Jewish paramilitary force), which refutes the claim that the +750,000 Palestinians left Palestine of their own volition.

"Allon repeated the question: What is to be done with the population[50,000 Palestinian inhabitants of Lyd and Ramllah]? Ben-Gurion waved his hand in a gesture that said: Drive them out!"
The Memoir of Yitzhak Rabin "Soldier of Peace"

"I'm a Zionist!"
Joe Biden, VPOTUS.

"The Middle East is obviously an issue that had plagued the region for centuries"
Barack Hussein Obama, POTUS.


"The viciousness of Israel is testament to its knowing that Palestinians will always remain steadfast and defeat its past and present attempts to erase them"
Joseph Massad (Associate Professor of Modern Arab Politics at Columbia University)

"Revolt! you're only going to lose the tent and the shackle"
George Habash (the late Palestinian leader)

"All that you have done to our people is registered in notebooks"
Mahmoud Darwish (A renowned Palestinian poet)

"When a brown man resists, he's a terrorist. When a white man resists, he's Robin Hood"
Dubai Jazz

"It must have sucked to be an Arab in 1948/49"
A Zionist, arguing the Nakba with Dubai Jazz on some political forum.

"So, going by your logic, it must have also sucked to be a Jew in Europe circa early 1940s?"
Dubai Jazz, replying to the said Zionist.

An excellent source of maps:

Friday, 14 May 2010

Moroccan Magic

After posting videos about Italian engineering on two wheels (Ducati 796), it's time to shed some light on a different passion of mine - offroad motorcycling! Specifically, in Morocco!

The following is courtesy of the National.

We knew there was something different about this trip when the doctor started taking pictures of everyone. “So I can know which limbs to re-attach to whom,” said our sardonic sawbones. That our travelling physician, Axel Thiäner, a trauma surgeon from Munich, was (semi) having sport with us – German style – was little consolation. We had seen his mobile medical cabinet containing all the necessary gear to perform a roadside hip replacement. What was this? Just what had I got myself into?

Our small group was about to embark on a 1,000km (mostly) off-road motorcycle ride through the heart of Morocco that would see us leave the relative civilisation of Marrakech and head south and east to Ouarzazate and Boumalne Dades, over the famed Atlas and Jebel Saghro mountains and the Gorges du Dades and traversing some of the craggiest overland passes in the world.

And as dangerous as that might be, the good doctor was not here for us. No, he was here because Hendrik von Kuenheim, scion of the man who saved BMW and now general director of BMW’s Motorrad division, was here. We moto journalists may revel in delusions of our own self-importance, but there really was only one man on this trip that actually was important. Put another way, if we all lost our limbs simultaneously, I knew whom the good doctor would be saving first.

I’ll ride anywhere, but not having ridden anything with knobby tires for more than five years filled me with a certain amount of apprehension, an unease that turned into full trepidation when I thought of trying to muscle a 225kg R1200GS through deep sand. Ever the pragmatist (that should read coward), I insisted on riding the smaller F800GS.

Northern Africa may well be full of sand dunes, but we saw none of it. What we did see were rocks. Small rocks and big rocks; sharp rocks and round rocks; bare rock still part of massive outcroppings; others seemingly strewn specifically to send the front wheel of BMW GSs piloted by nervous journalists slewing sideways. Did I mention that said rocky roads were often accompanied, in the finest tradition of Third World civil engineering, by steep and prolonged drop-offs? It was the toughest/scariest/most attention-focusing off-roading I’ve done in quite some time.

Sometimes, cowardice can lead to inspired choices. When push came to shove (as in trying top push a bike out of sand wash or humping, trials-like, over big boulders), the lighter 800 was the right choice. Hardly to be described as lithe, the F800 is close to 50kg lighter than the R1200, a reduction that was keenly felt during one particularly long plod through a washed-out river bed covered in the softest, wheel-swallowing, golf-ball-sized gravel I’d ever seen. Correcting the inevitable front-wheel washouts and sometimes-spectacular rear wheel slides was a lot easier riding something that didn’t feel quite as heavy as a touring bike.

But what was surprising – indeed, extremely surprising – was how easily the big R1200 (outfitted with Continental TKC 80 off-road tyres) handled the rest of the off-roading. Yes, shaft drive and that bulky engine mean that it occasionally felt like trying to dock the Queen Mary without a tugboat, but thanks to that same hulking, opposed-twin engine, the centre of gravity is admirably low. And the R1200GS’s front-to-rear weight balance is almost ideal. There are indeed an abundance of kilograms housed in the 1,507mm between the big GS’s axles, but they are ideally situated, making traversing all but the slowest and softest terrains remarkably easy. Thanks to that lower centre of gravity and its much smoother low-speed throttle response compared with the 800, the R1200 was actually easier to navigate than the 800 on some trails, especially distinguishing itself on rough, rocky descents.

On-road, of course, the R1200GS is magical. Newly fortified with a slightly detuned version of the double-overhead camshaft, 1,170cc engine from the high-performance HP2, the 2010 GS may have lost five horsepower and a little more than five Nm of torque, but it gained an enthusiasm missing from previous versions of the Boxer engine. It responds with more low-rpm alacrity, has wonderful mid-range punch and even spins eagerly to an 8,500-rpm redline. The new engine really does change the personality of the entire motorcycle.

The F800GS, of course, can’t match the 1200’s on-road poise. Above 120kph, the front end feels decidedly light. Nor is its seating position as expansive or comfortable. But then very few bikes can match the R1200GS in this regard.

On-road behaviour, however, was inconsequential as we rode up the Tizi-n’Tazazert pass. What poses as a road looked more like a photo of rock-strewn Mars than any terrestrial topography I’ve ever seen. Approaching the summit, we, of course, congratulated ourselves on our manliness, only to then watch a local, dressed in flip-flops and a baseball hat, start down the very same goat path aboard a Docker 50 scooter complete with chrome passenger floorboards and bald street tires barely an inch wide. Consoling ourselves with the fact that he couldn’t make it down the tougher, south side of the pass was truly the last refuge of the once pompous.

But our five-day sojourn was far more than a simple test of men versus machine (though that eight-kilometre traipse through the rocky river bottom did threaten to turn our entire ride into a Survivor episode). Indeed, while I came to ride with von Kuenheim and test motorcycles, what I left with was an overwhelming appreciation of all that is beautiful about Morocco.

Rural Moroccans, for instance, are the very epitome of welcoming hospitality. And while urban Morocco borders on the Third World (with a few luxury hotels thrown in to keep the tourists happy), the countryside is positively medieval. Kids in Marrakech often have to play football in the street because the community can’t afford a playing field; kids in the dusty villages that seemingly popped out of nowhere can’t even afford a ball.

Yet we were universally greeted with good cheer, even though we were often riding through their front yard/vegetable patch/laundry room (that last would be the river beds the local women use to hand pound centuries of dust from clothing). Inevitably, every kid in the village would rush out to greet us; the girls usually to wave demurely while the boys would try to enthusiastically give us all high fives.

And the food! I now have a new favourite cuisine. Move over sushi; begone you woefully bland and unhealthy French Hollandaise sauce. Everywhere we went, no matter how far off the beaten path, the repasts were nothing short of spectacular. Nothing was fancy, but its delectability lies obviously in the details. I was so captivated by a simple salad, made of mostly tomatoes and onions, that I contemplated stuffing some in my pockets to take it home with me.

And, of course, the countryside is always full of surprises, not the least of which is that Morocco would seem to be very popular with movie producers. Outside Ouarzazate, for instance, we found the “Jerusalem” set for The Last Temptation of Christ. At Aït Benhaddou, the entire ksar, or fortified city, was renovated for the filming of Lawrence of Arabia and has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1987. Other temporary monoliths included a miniature double of Mecca and another ruin that could have passed for anything from Agadir to the Alamo.

But, for my favourite place, we have to go back to the aforementioned Tizi-n’Tazazert. High atop the Jebel Saghro mountains, despite the incredible impassability of the trail, stands a hotel. Not like anything normally recognized as a hotel, but a rocks and mortar lodge that could have well been built a millennia ago (it was actually christened in June, 2005), so basic were its accommodations. But the food, limited though it was, was great, the peppermint tea always piping hot and the view nothing short of spectacular. There was even a presidential suite – a 4m x 2.5m single room with no private toilet, a rock floor covered with numerous blankets to soften the sleep and a small desk.

But best of all was the seclusion. Other than motorcycle adventurists and the occasional, truly mad off-road bicyclist, your world would be completely at peace. Indeed, book a room atop Tazazert and you will never be farther “away from it all.”

But the hard part is getting there. You might want to bring a doctor, just in case.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Now turn to the left

I found this hilarious picture that I thought I'd share with you following the Farah Malhass post that so many of you absolutely devoured!

I believe the picture speaks for itself! I believe it's from 2008.

image link

Here is my original post on bodybuilding:

I actually went to school with one of the guys in the picture.. he's a very cool guy and I wish him the best :)

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Two high fives make ten

politics is dirty and disgusting.. that's what was going through my mind when I heard that Cameron was to become the UK's new Prime Minister. Either you get old, ugly, and inefficient leaders in the UK or you get young, ugly, and inexperienced ones.. oh well..

The fact that the LibDems are now in bed with the Tory's is a scary thing. I read that many LibDem voters will scramble to vote for Labour next time, coz the voted LibDem in 2010 to avoid handing power to the Conservatives, and what did the LibDem leader do? Oh, he went to work for David Cameron who has been able to become Prime Minster.

Also what do the new guys in power do on their FIRST DAY? Oh, they announce that parliament will be fixed for 5-year terms. This has never been done before, and the Prime Minster in the UK can call a General Election anytime they see fit. Obviously this is a weak and faltering government in the making and they want maximum time to get things wrong.

Tut tut tut..

Famous Handshake video

The British public have decided that no one really has their full mandate to government. The electorate rarely does that, and that's why hung parliaments are very rare in the UK. Hung as in without a majority, not with a noose! What some expected is that some kind of coalition/minority government will result and a new General Election will be needed before the 5 year period. This hasn't happened and this lame new weak government has dictated they will stay around for 5 years. I don't suppose they can just decide like that. It should go for a Commons vote and I hope the Labour dudes block this!

For those of you reading this in my archives in 2015 (if we're alive).. you'll probably agree with me that this government hasn't done much good in these last 5 years.. oh well.. nothing new!

BBC article

EDIT 15 May 2010

I found this funny pic on and thought I'd share:

Image Source.

Monday, 10 May 2010

We love Iran

This is a post specifically for our new commentor Mr/Ms DGray who would like to comment about Iran.

Anyone wishing to talk about Iran, please pour your comments into THIS post.


khosh amadid

Image Credit

LATE NIGHT EDIT 10/5/2010 10.00pm

I got this article from a Jewish newspaper in Israel...,7340,L-3881674,00.html

Don't worry it isn't blocked by eatzeft...

"Iran protests UAE 'occupation' remarks

Islamic Republic's state TV says country's foreign ministry summoned United Arab Emirates' top diplomat in Tehran following 'irresponsible and uncalculated' comments over Gulf islands dispute

Associated Press Published: 04.27.10, 17:43 / Israel News

Iran's state TV says the country's foreign ministry summoned the United Arab Emirates' top diplomat in Tehran to protest against comments made by the UAE foreign minister on the ownership dispute between the two nations over three islands in the strategic Strait of Hormuz.

The Tuesday report says the envoy was summoned to protest the "irresponsible and uncalculated" remarks by the Emirates' foreign minister, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

Al Nahyan last week called on Tehran to end its "occupation" of the islands.

The UAE claims ownership of Abu Musa, Greater and Lesser Tunbs islands at the entrance to the Strait of Hormuz. Iran has controlled the islands for close to 40 years."

To be honest.. as much as I admire the Iranian people I believe the Iranian Gov should have a big fat middle finger shoved not only in its face (as shown in my last post about Iran here) but shoved somewhere else too.

I have to stress that some of my best friends are Iranian and they are lovely and classy people. However this government is very lame and they are point blank occupying our lands. Moreover, they are very aggressive towards anything in the Arabian Gulf. Just coz they call it the Persian Gulf they feel anything that comes in contact with it will become Persian. How stupid.

Just like the 3iyam in the UAE (Emaratis from Iranian decent). Some of them are cool, but a good part of them are very racist towards Arab Emaratis. They still have their own language at home etc even though they are recognised as full Emarati citizens by law, yet they insist on speaking a version of Farsi at home. The federal UAE law clearly states that Arabic is the official language of the UAE, so you'd expect that UAE citizens would at least use this language at home, no? Funny if Barack Obama speaks in Spanish to his kids, and Sarkozi speaks in English, and Putin speaks in Chinese.. not good.

If Iran really wants to become a better place then why not abandon their stupid nuclear plans or modify them to follow the UAE's model (we're building powerplants but we won't touch the fuel, it will get imported, used, then exported). Let them enter into an arbitration process with the UAE to sort out the islands issue. Honestly, I don't think the UAE really needs them, but if we're treated with respect I am sure the UAE will be happy with a compromise. Plus, hold on a minute. Iran is known to be a country of intense cultural diversity (Farsi, Pashtu, Azeris, Yazidi, Arabs etc all live in Iran) and it's much much bigger than the UAE, so really, do they need those pesky islands? By the way, as far as the UAE is concerned, we still have UAE citizens living on the 3 islands that Iran is making life very difficult for them. Also, Iran should not steal any oil under the lands surrounding the Islands until the conflict is resolved.

I can go on for a while.. but that's enough for now.. what do you think Miss Gray?

Sunday, 9 May 2010

How good is your GPA?

hehe, enjoy this article courtesy of the National :)

The émigré taxi driver uses three languages in a sentence in an effort to make himself understood as he navigates traffic. While he may not realise it, he is contributing to the development of an emerging form of local communication.

“Acha, acha, acha, ana Waziristan lakin ana no danger man,” he says to a passenger. “Pakistan danger ziyada. Roh sida?”

The translation: “Good, good, good, I am from Waziristan but I’m not dangerous. In Pakistan there’s a lot of danger. Straight ahead?”

The message is typical enough, as is the driver’s way of expressing it, in a blend of Arabic, English and Urdu.

Spoken in taxis, restaurants, souqs and homes across the Gulf, this emerging patois has remained unacknowledged and even been mocked by many Arabic speakers as crass or comical.

That, however, is beginning to change. Gulf Pidgin Arabic (GPA) has caught the ear of language experts who recognise that broken Arabic and the new dialect are not same-same.

“Arabs who study Arabic mostly study classical Arabic and I think that it’s only recently that even Arabic dialects have been considered worthy topics of research,” said the Norwegian linguist Unn Gyda Naess.

“It has to do with academic tradition because Fusha, the classical Arabic, is so highly linked to higher education.”

Ms Naess found herself captivated by the conversations of migrant workers while working at the Norwegian embassy in Saudi Arabia. Intrigued, she made it the topic of her master’s thesis. She found that the pidgin had specific rules for grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation, which she believes are still changing and evolving.

Not everyone in the academic community is as receptive to GPA. To some, it is a threat to the integrity and beauty of Arabic.

The limited vocabulary of pidgin prevented people from forging the deeper cultural and social bonds they might build by speaking the classical language of the region, said Dr Ahmad al Zubi, the chairman of the Arabic language and literature faculty at UAE University.

“I don’t want to see that our cultures are not connected to each other,” he said. “The only solution is [Arabic] classes. The Government should teach these courses if they want people to communicate well.”

Pidgin, usually a mixture of three or more languages, is a simple dialect used by people who do not share a common tongue. Found the world over, they have no native speakers and are used by groups that have limited contact with each other but need to communicate for a specific reason, such as trade or military purposes.

JR Smart coined the term GPA in his 1990 paper Pidginization in Gulf Arabic, which examined its use in newspaper comics. It was almost 20 years, however, before GPA attracted the interest of other academics.

It had existed in some form for a long time because of the Gulf’s history as a trade hub, said Dr Fatima Badry, a professor of linguistics at the American University of Sharjah.

“Speakers from different linguistic backgrounds try to help each other to communicate,” she said. “So, at the beginning, you try to speak the others’ language, but when you don’t have the vocabulary to do that you go to the vocabulary of your first language. Once the words are being used frequently they become part of the conversational exchange.”

If pidgin is passed to a second generation, it can become known as creole, a more stable linguistic entity. Academics will be watching to see if GPA makes the leap.

For now, Gulf Pidgin Arabic has helped people from diverse backgrounds to communicate. Mohammed Hanif, 46, a taxi driver from Pakistan, said his experience in dealing with passengers had taught him to appreciate a simpler mode of communication. “I’ve lived in the Gulf for over 20 years,” he said.

“When I was new [in the region] I wasn’t good at Arabic. In Oman, many people were talking in Arabic and Urdu. Here it’s more English. So I had to learn to talk to everybody, so everybody understands.”
While GPA is earning recognition in academic circles, those who speak it may still find themselves chided by purists for talking like a taxi driver. Given the world of social possibilities it opens up, that may become a compliment.

Arabic base with foreign flavour

Gulf Pidgin Arabic (GPA) uses a simplified form of Gulf Arabic both grammatically and phonetically, research by the Norwegian linguist Unn Gyda Naess has shown.

For example, standard Gulf Arabic has three classes of negation, while pidgin uses only two – “ma” and the ubiquitous “mafi”, which has yielded the well-worn phrase “mafi mushkala”, universal Gulfspeak for “no problem”.

Likewise, the nine vowels and 29 consonants used in Gulf Arabic have been reduced to just five vowels and 18 consonants in GPA.

While hard-to-pronounce sounds including the guttural “kh” and “gh” have been dropped, new ones such as “p” have slipped in.

GPA uses Arabic as a base and borrows specific words, usually nouns, from other languages. Examples include “chico” for child and the Urdu word “sida” for straight.

Friday, 7 May 2010

Beirut I love you...

Just a few more days to go to our trip... :)
Just in case the guys from the Institute wanted to know...

If anything, the music is just beautiful.

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Farah Malhass - Arab Female Bodybuilder

Jordan seems a very unlikely country to produce what might become the Arab world's first female body builder. Her name is Farah Malhass and I was pleasantly surprised when I saw her picture gracing Gulf News' front page this morning.

Click on the link to see for yourself.

While I'm no fan of tattoos I'm all for Farah to persue her love for bodybuilding. What do you think? Is this amazing or gross?

Go Farah Go!

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

IDF Internet Troll


I won't copy/paste anything here except the hilarious troll picture.. so please click on the article and enjoy!

Thanks Abu al Kabab!

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Etisalat on youtube

I found this on youtube recently about Etisalat...

I think it's completely distasteful to the engineers that designed the tower, and to the workers that built it, and to the numerous guys that work to maintain it.. and of course a big insult to one of the most beloved companies in the UAE - Etisalat.

Completely wrong, I think they should block this video! Disgusting!

PS: now that the egyptian cable has been fixed, you can appreciate this disgusting video even more.