The Bambi Top 5 of 2012

Below are the top 5 blogposts of Bambi’s Soapbox based on views and likes (from before and after the move from Blogspot to WordPress). Sure, the newer posts haven’t had time to bounce around as long as the older ones but these are the numbers:

5) 7 Lebanese Obsessions (200 views)

4) I Haven’t Forgotten You Yet (249 views)

3) 10 Things I Hate About You, Lebanon (249 views, 45 likes)

2) 10 Types of Lebanese Drivers (328 views, 38 likes)

NUMBER ONE BLOGPOST OF 2012:

1) 10 Lebanese Things We Should Be Thankful For (316 views, 70 likes)

Other posts that almost made the cut and you should check out before 2013:

Thanks for reading peoples:)

Which post is your favorite Bambi blogpost of 2012? 

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The Formula of Achilles’ Louboutins

Achilles

This is about something we all know quite well: the numerous things that you just don’t know how to say no to. The Achille’s heel is supposed to be one thing that can lead to your entire downfall. However, since we’re mere mortal humans, our heels change over time and are a ginormous cornucopia of random weaknesses.

Depending on your stage in life as well as your personality(ies), although these things could be your guilty pleasures, they are the reasons you lose control. They also differ in importance – the more important you think they are, the more they’re going to screw you up, and the less likely you’re going to say no to them when given the chance to indulge. That’s the worst vicious cycle: knowing how bad it is for you and wanting it even more.

There is also a correlation with consequences – the bigger the consequence should mean you will definitely say no. But the temptation to give in anyway is also greater because the consequence is something that comes later – it’s effect is like your grandpa’s vineyard in the north: you’ve heard it exists but maybe you’ll never see it. This condition is most applicable to foodstuff heels: you know eating a whole plate of Texas fries solo is in no way advisable for your digestive tract’s well being or the size of your thighs, but that cheddar is so fine and onions are good for your heart. It’ll only take 4 trips to the gym to work off…the sour cream alone.

There may be some sort of a mathematical formula that can be deduced using these the two variables: (c) consequence level and (i) importance level, where c and i are values (0-10) and x is an integer (-10<;x<;10).

The formula would be simple: (i-c)=x.

x >; 0 you will say yes.
x <; 0 you will say no.
x = 0 you will reevaluate the values of c & i.

x is the Achilles’ Louboutin Factor.

EXAMPLE 1:

Activity: Compulsive match lighting until the box is empty. It could be that it’s an activity that fascinates the inner caveperson but the whole sensory experience is so exciting. The scratch against the sandpaper, the smell of the sulphur tip, the sound of the flame erupting, and IGNITE. If you could taste fire, this would be a fully sensational pyromaniac orgasm.

i = Reread the last 4 words of the previous sentence = 10.
c = Worst-case scenario: uncontrolled fire and death, most probable consequence: burnt finger = 3.

x = 7. Therefore, in the words of R. Kelly, “burn it up.”

EXAMPLE 2:

Activity: Sitting on the AUB Green Oval when you should be at home/in a coffee shop/anywhere else studying for your midterm, applying for jobs, doing-any-activity-that-is-a-more-responsible-use-of-time. The sun is shining and there are no beetles around. Just in case the beetles return, the fat fluffy cat with the heart shape on her back is sunbathing nearby.

i = It’d be a lovely afternoon, you could nap, be fully recharged and happy = 6.
c = Worst-case scenario: you get heat stroke and feel queasy for 3 days, most probable consequence: have too much time to think while staring at the clouds and have a mental breakdown due to all the guilt weighing down on you for not working at that very moment= 6.

x = 0. Take a deep breath and re-evaluate.

EXAMPLE 3:

Activity: Hanging out with your circle. A Motley Crüe of characters that could easily be scripted into a primetime show on the CW who see each other during a window of 2 weeks once a year, have a domino effect of inside jokes & witty innuendos, and are the kings and queens of awkward politically incorrect statements and/or situations.

i = There is only so much time before this little circle will disintegrate into work schedules, in-laws, and diapers. Gone will be the days of flinging a boomerang of insults around a table, followed by a trail of “you know I love you’s.” However, your steady life has not been put on hold because some airplanes landed so there are obligations you need to deal with= 7.
c = Worse-case scenario: you neglect other responsibilities and you become a failure forever, most probable consequence: your family lectures you for ditching them during the holidays for the same people you saw 2 days before = 3.

x = 4. It was a DVD night with nachos. How could you say no?

EXAMPLE 4:

Activity: Beautiful cookie tins, bottles, and packages. Limited edition bottles, collectible sets, holiday themed giftboxes. You live in a room that is decorated in items that would make a burglar think you are a raging alcoholic who’s diet consists of chocolate, toffee, and macaroons. Of course, only half of that is true. It’s Christmas season and there’s this tin of an embossed crest of Gryffindor with mini Ferrero Rocher chocolate snitches in it.

i = You have no space to put this awesomely useless material possession that will only make you fat. But it’s SO COOL = 6.
c = Worse-case scenario: you get fat, and the tin gets thrown away by your evil sister, most probable consequence: you just wasted $35 on another piece of junk that makes you so happy, you complete dork = 9.

x = -3. Ask for it as a gift…IF IT EXISTS BECAUSE I MADE IT UP. *tear*

EXAMPLE 5:

Activity: Starting a blog where you pin your own personal stories on your readers by using a general “you” format so that they don’t realize what a weirdo you are. You reassure yourself that you’re making them feel comfortable with their own level of ab/normalcy because your act is fooling no one.

i = It used to be an anonymous outlet of randomness you started for fun but now it’s become your own little project(ion). = 8.
c = Worse-case scenario: you get sent to a facility for weird people AKA “design school” or someone steals your genius theories, most probable consequence: you eventually run out of things to write about and convert it into a photoblog of cups of Dunkin coffee on different locational backdrops, titled “I got the Dunk.” = 6.

x = 2. “You” keep blogging.

A Series of Compartments

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Your brain is split into a series of compartments of information, a lot of which is secretive and/or personal. These compartments are the most interesting and the ones that we try our best to ignore – you think “I’ll just put you in a little box and keep you on the shelf in the back of my mind.” They are the buried compartments and this is how I break them down.

Embarrassments

This does not refer to the fact that you like that Bieber song (but only because of Luda’s part) or how you have been told to sit “properly” by the manager of  every coffee shop in Hamra (you can’t help it if you like to sketch while sitting like a pretzel without taking your shoes off). This refers to deeper embarrassments; ones that you’re not ashamed of if you were having a discussion with yourself. But when it comes to telling a story at the dinner table, you’re not about to giggle and guffaw over that time you wrote names on a love-lock in Paris, locked it on the Pont de l’Archevêché bridge behind the Notre Dame Cathedral and walked away crying as you threw the keys in the Seine. Well, isn’t that cute but it’s wrong. Some anecdotes should just stay at the bottom of the river.

Song-Snapshots

Song-snapshots take you back to a moment when a song was playing and a memory was instantly seared onto the soundtrack of your life. A Ferry Corsten song takes you back to that night you were cruising and you had your right hand sticking out of the passenger window making the swimming-fish move; all you’re thinking about is aerodynamics and how your heart is so content it could explode. You had the right elements for a song-snapshot: perfect company, weather, and bass. Every time you hear it, you go back there. Every time you hear it, you remember. Sometimes, it sparks a conversation for those who want to share, like when your dad has to tell you that Toto’s Africa takes him back to the summer he spent in the village on the border when he was 17 or how he once left Fresh on your mom’s answering machine. However, if these song-snapshots are in your compartment, that means you keep them to yourself. You listen to them when you want to go to that place in time without anyone else knowing about it.

Self Truths

These are the things that you mock poets and songwriters for because they have the courage to write them down. Real poets and songwriters, not that awkward turtle who scribbles on napkins at McDonald’s and not Nicki Minaj. These are feelings, insecurities, and confessions. The facts that you keep to yourself because they are weapons. They are the wounds, the gaping holes, the weaknesses. The things that can be used against you if told to the wrong ears. Or they can make you a shitload of money because you’re Taylor Swift and Kanye was right.

Desires

As discussed in former posts, these are things that you want. The complicated part here is that you may want them but that doesn’t mean you can have them. Placing them into a little box is your brain’s way of coping with an unsatisfied need that you are knowingly depriving yourself of. Maybe it’s illegal or disgusting, maybe it’s something morally unacceptable, or maybe it’s just something you can’t have in your life right now. Due to the “circumstances and powers that be”, you want it but you’re saying no. Welcome to the internal daily battle of full-fledged pseudo-adulthood.

People

…Or who they used to be to you. No one is frozen, people change and, for whatever reason, your relationship with someone may change too. Now, they’re just somebody that you used to know but you can’t help but wonder: “have they changed or did I just not really know them to begin with?” You want to hang on to the person in your head, the way they were with you, and the way they made you you. And you can do that for as long as you want but that’s all they’re ever going to be: someone in your head. Imagine how many obsolete versions of you are floating around in other people’s heads. Just blew your mind, I know.

These are some of your compartments – the thoughts that keep you company on your solitary nights in while you play ping pong with all the tidbits you’ll never say out loud. Enjoy your Saturday night. ❤

All I Have to Do is Dream

Dear Dreams,

I’m writing to you to ask for an explanation on a few things. You see, ever since I was young on to my undergraduate psych classes, I have heard conflicting information when it comes to your functionality. The only one that can reveal your true nature is you. I’d really love it if you could tell me the extent and purpose for your existence, the depth of your accuracy, and your relevance to reality.

According to Freud, you are a manifestation of the true desires of my subconscious. All the trepidations and conflicts that simmer in my brain come alive when it is in its resting state. The thing is, Freud, with his twisted complexes and theories, links almost all imagery to phalli, penetration, or the womb. I’m not about to assume that we all want to be ambushed into a game of musical chairs with veiny male genitalia just because our consciousness is on hiatus. Other theories about you claim that you are essential to development; while more say that you are completely insignificant, being just a series of randomly strung together memories or thoughts like a video montage done for an 80’s teen movie.

There are so many questions. For example, if I am in a lucid state of slumber and I die, could it be so vivid and believable that my brain would quit? Speaking of lucid, how do I know I’m not in one of those Matrix pods hooked up to a stalk in a field of humans being juiced for the machines? In behavioral neuro, we were told that the best way to tell if something was actually happening was to see if information was fluid. In other words, if you looked at your watch and it said it was 5p.m., check it again. If it changed, then you’re not in the real world. Of course, I don’t remember being in complete control when I’m unconscious except for the voluntary ability to scream or fall off my bed.

And that’s another thing: why are my memories of you so selective? Is it like emotional memory versus memory about emotions? An emotional memory is stronger than a memory about an emotion. For instance, you remember giving birth to your child but you don’t remember how it feels giving birth – because if you did, we wouldn’t have a population problem. If Freud is right and my mind is revealing all that I am denying myself, which is valuable info when you’re a lost puppy in your twenties, why do you slip away so quickly before I can even take notes? Don’t you want me to realize that I should direct a music video with Alejandro Sanz playing his Spanish guitar on a pink elephant? The greatest question for me though is this: why don’t you make any sense if you know me so well? If my brain is your creator, why do you feed me baloney sandwiches when you know it makes me nauseous ever since that Thanksgiving when I had one and hurled because I refused to eat turkey breast and gravy? What good is it to make me watch my mother tap-dance on my laptop? Maybe you are just a form of torture or a way of teaching me to be grateful that a black trench-coated figure isn’t standing in my closet waiting for a moment to smell my hair.

However, I am not just referring to the version of you in my head which is a combination of surreal and impossible. There is the abstract yet tangible version that has made you into a synonym for goals, aspirations, and “American Idols.” The you that I create intentionally without the ability to blame it on the Id. These are the wants I know I want, not the ones you tell me I need when I’m asleep. This is when we switch teams and, even though they are a part of you, you get confused about the extent and purpose for their existence, the depth of their accuracy, and their relevance to reality. Since I’m expecting an explanation from you about your half, I’ll give you one for mine.

The extent of their existence is always under construction until said dream has been accomplished. This is related to their purpose for existence: they exist as a form of personal drive so that I will have an endpoint to reach for, a destination in sight, an Emerald city at the end of my yellow bricked road. The depth of their accuracy is dependent on my sanity at the time of their inception. You are not allowed to judge me on this one because I think all the dreams that I conceive are more probable in nature in comparison to your  half-baked thought bubbles laced with LSD. They are quite relevant to reality for I am grounded in my ambitions. Don’t laugh at me for wanting to travel to New York City to become a successful designer who eats breakfast on the steps of the Met every morning. I know my life is not an episode of Gossip Girl and you know that a large portion of my motivation for going to NYC is just to find out if Gray’s Papaya is truly the shit. I know I may reach for the stars with some things but no one ever said being an eager beaver was a negative trait in a world where Paulo Coelho was wrong: when you want something, all the universe does not conspire in helping you to achieve it. If I’m dreaming of it, then I have to get off my ass and go get it.

It’s all quite simple. Your turn.

Sleep tight,

Me

5 Signs Your Laptop is Like Your First-Born

1. Self Sacrifice

Your own health, sanity, and temperature are not important when your personal computer is around. If it’s pouring rain, you will tuck your waterproof-cased laptop under your shirt for fear that the drops are of low pH and the acidity will penetrate right through the shell and melt your screen. When something happens to it, like falling to the ground for example, you rush to see if it’s okay inspecting for dents or cracks. If this were a person, you would be laughing your ass off because they made a hilariously terrified expression before their impersonation of Humpty Dumpty. The fact that they nearly missed the jagged metal from that construction site makes it funnier because the hilarity of their expression is equally proportional to the probability of death or dismemberment.

2. Soccer Mom Arm Move

You’re on your way to work and your baby, like any significant other, sits in the passenger seat. Whenever the impulse to slam on the brakes occurs, you bust out the Soccer Mom Arm Move. This move is when you reflexively jut out your right arm to protect the PERSON next to you from catapulting through the windshield. Your laptop will not do this because it is not the weight of a small elephant. It will slide off the seat and on to the floor of your car completely unscathed because it’s sealed in a bulletproof bag.

3. Lying to Protect It

“Can I download this on your computer? Mine’s downstairs and I just need to open a file”, “No, it doesn’t have the right software to play that file anyway so it’ll just be a waste of time but I’m sure you can use the computer in the lab.” Get your illegally downloaded virus-infested malware away from my baby. It’s like the first time you were left at home by yourself by accident; as you’re watching Home Alone dressed up in your mom’s purple evening gown, you are interrupted by the sound of the doorbell. You tell the unexpected carpenter that your parents ARE at home, they’re just both in the shower and that he can just wait outside if necessary. At the age of 9, you don’t know that the lie you’ve just told a complete stranger is probably more graphically disturbing than the truth, but you’re lying to protect yourself so whatever.

4. Worried All the Time

They say that having children feels like allowing your heart to walk around outside of your body. When you leave your laptop somewhere unattended for short periods of time, you have what can only be described as separation anxiety. What if it’s stolen? What if it gets mistreated? What if someone takes advantage of its kindness? What if someone logs on to my Facebook, reads all my private messages, and owns me for life after changing my password? What if someone steals that folder named somethingnonchalantonlyasadisguiseforwhatitactuallycontains? OMG, MY CAT PICTURES.

5. Tete-a-Tetes

You will have conversations of all kinds: pep talks, venting, discussions. When it’s slow, not responding, freezing, or giving you the color wheel of death, you begin to cheer it on and pray for it to pull through this tough time. No baby, please, you can do this, don’t let me down, I love you. You will also curse it out when your file crashes anyway with no recovery, or when “Google Chrome has quit unexpectedly.” Your face has quit unexpectedly, hoe. You will ask it questions while singing along to Body II Body, what ever happened to Samantha Mumba? She had potential. She could’ve been one of the first generation of Mark Wahlberg and Helena Bonham Carter offspring apeople in Planet of the Apes: Evolution. 

You will realize that you’re talking to a computer that doesn’t love, think, or care about you but it’s okay because they all leave the nest sometime. You will get over it because you’ll have the younger ones to think about.

A Series of Khatt Ahmars

Khatt Ahmars.

Khatt Ahmars.

Khatt ahmar” means red line in Arabic, but the deeper meaning refers to personal limits or boundaries that shouldn’t be crossed. Although you may disagree with a few, here’s a series of my behavioral khatt ahmars when it comes to befriending someone new:

Etiquette

You don’t hold the door open for someone when you see them walking in/out…and you’re at the door. Please note the word “someone.” This is in no way a rant about chivalry – it’s called being considerate. But hey, maybe you’re in a hurry and you didn’t notice. But maybe you make sounds when you eat like you’re a full orchestra of bodily functions? No excuses there. Stomach gurgling is acceptable and can be entertaining/embarrassing but when you chew loudly and make that squeaky noise when you suck the food out from between your front teeth…that’s it. YOU CAN’T SIT WITH US. We’re so over. Use a toothpick. Far, far away from me.

Language

Using “am” without “I” before it or any other pronoun/verb combination without the pronoun. It’s one extra word/letter. You can do it. If you can’t, please refrain from using English in any way or form. Other issues with language: ghinij, mehen, and any other distant relative of baby talk. These combined with puppy-dog-eyes are prohibited unless your significant other/love interest is, in fact, a poodle.

Hormones

You have freakish levels of estrogen or testosterone and I don’t mean it in the literal blood work-up way. If you feel the need to or just happen to put on a show to prove how feminine/masculine you are, then you can go do that with your pink ladies/t-birds because I’ve got chills, they’re multiplying and I’m losing control because the power you’re supplying, it’s got me crying.

Space

You notice I’m in Bambo (Rambo Bambi) mood and you keep poking for information. “What’s wrong? Are you okay? No really, what it is? Bottling it up doesn’t help you. You can tell ME.” There’s a misconception here: sometimes, bottling it up is a good thing if I think I’m going to scratch someone’s eyes out or regret anything said due to my projectile verbal vomit. If I’m not talking about it already, I don’t want to talk about it. Yet. Or ever. Believe it or not, you may have caught me not smiling for 10 seconds and you repeatedly insisting that I’m in a foul mood will put me in one when I SAID I’M FINE.

Social Media

You write mysterious status updates or tweets about how angry/depressed you are. Perhaps we have all been guilty of this at least once in our lives but, after you’re over your shitfest and you see how ridiculous it is when other people do it, you vow to never “express” yourself publicly unless it’s by screaming your face off in the middle of a paintball battle. And sharing photos you found on someone’s blog that have an inspirational quote over a black & white photo of a person drawing in the sand with a piece of driftwood is the same thing. Remove from feed/unfollow/goodbye.

IRL Drama

The first fight I can recall having was when I called my friend, Judy, “Judy Booty.” She didn’t take it well. We were four. This is expected when you’re in preschool. However, if you have completed at least one post-puberty graduation ceremony in your life, then you have earned the certificate that verifies that you have completed +12 years of education and survived +12 years of petty drama. That means you should’ve grown out of this phase so if you call me up and interrogate me as to why I went to a movie with a friend you know (only because you met once 8 months ago at a mutual friend’s Christmas party) and I didn’t ask you to come with, reread the sentence and you’ll know why.

Comprehension

You can’t understand my pop culture references or you can’t have a conversation that’s 46% song lyrics. I am aware that this is related to my upbringing, age group, and personal preferences but I’m just a teenage dirtbag baby like you. Only I’m not. We need to be on the same Air Force Pun, plane of lame. If this is not the case for you dear reader, then you probably didn’t understand the majority of this post, you need to use the links I include for clarification, and you are not my platonic lobster. It’s okay, there are plenty of fish in the sea but just keep reading, just keep reading…

If you recognized that as a Finding Nemo reference, then we can be homies.