Friday, January 28, 2005

We all run on instinct....and fall. Posted by Hello

Virtual romance

More than 31,600,000 results on google for the word "dating". I personnally never heard of this "activity" outside the U.S. God knows how interested I am in other "cultures" but it seems to me it's a unique phenomenon over here. In my great effort of integration in this great America, I tried to learn more. I bothered my friends for hours with the most astonishing questions, I called on the phone, chatted sleepless nights, talked to my Teddy-Bear, I still DO NOT UNDERSTAND a single element of that.

"These things require swallowing pride for the sake of understanding "

I thought I was smart. I thought human nature was my lifetime study subject. But I give up. I'm deeply hurt. Maybe I invested too much of myself in futile things but that's -hélas!- the way I am.

Ok, Mister Jeff Cohen ( says he's an expert in dating. Jeff -I can call him by his first name: I'm trusting him in very intimate things!). So Jeff says: "According to Liz, “if you’re spending a lot of time making excuses for your man or thinking about your man, or obsessing, it’s very likely that he’s just not that into you.” So, ladies: stop thinking about your men, they don't like you anyway!

Throw away Sex and the City, I'm talking to you about real life! And here, it visibly means shy first steps (even second steps are shy), smiles and "hi's!" and a lot of "what are you up to?". Then comes the very delicate exchange of phone numbers and the set (ing) up of the first "date". Rules: don't dress up, don't show too much interest, don't do anything scandalous, don't expect a quick follow-up, don't....wait a minute. So what can we do then? Jeff has -of course- the answer: balance talking and listening, drink responsibly and compliment, but don't over do it. These are definitely tips for a happy american life. Let me tell you, dear Jeff: in my case, it FAILED. I'm sure I can find some other people for whom your advice wasn't that useful.

"To him, it's just dating, little emotion, little investment"
Roya Aziz

I'm not even thinking about the big issues: living together, cheating, commitment, etc. I'm just curious about how to maintain alive a "date" with rare phone calls and few demonstrations of interest. Lubna says it's "only for the first month". It's mysterious to me how this "first month rule" appeared, where is it written and by what magical process the date becomes a "boyfriend". I have a thousand of other questions but I think these two are the main ones.

I'm desperate about finding the answers. For the moment, my Valentine's day doesn't seem very exciting. I'm sure it would be good to offer people classes about "become the guy women crave", or "how to talk to a woman" or even "Make the first move". Anyway, it can't be worse.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

In the Times, this week

I was holding my breath while reading what Thomas Friedman lately "committed" in the NY Times :

"Don't hold your breath waiting for a thank-you card. If the fact that American soldiers have risked their lives to save the Muslims of Bosnia, the Muslims of Kuwait, the Muslims of Somalia, the Muslims of Afghanistan and the Muslims of Iraq has earned Americans only the false accusation of being ''anti-Muslim,'' trust me, U.S. troops passing out bottled water and Pop-Tarts in Indonesia are not going to erase that lie. It is not an exaggeration to say that, if you throw in the Oslo peace process, U.S. foreign policy for the last 15 years has been dominated by an effort to save Muslims - not from tsunamis, but from tyrannies, mostly their own theocratic or autocratic regimes".

I don't know what to say. Such a renowned journalist, a star, a reference, choosing what he wants from history and "ommitting" what he wants. U.S foreign policy has been dedicated to save Muslims, huh? Hold on a second, I'm on the phone with a couple of millions of Muslims around the world, Mister Friedman. I'm sure they have things to tell you.

If my opinion doesn't count, so let me say that I'm tired. Talking of Muslims as a herd of sheep asking for help is a little bit mistaken, I think. However, Arab countries have problems, undoubtedly.

Mr. Friedman adds:
"Ah, you say, but the Europeans live in free-market democracies and they have become very anti-American. Yes, some of them. But for Europeans, anti-Americanism is a hobby. For too many in the Muslim world it has become a career".

Yes, and soon, we're going to see it as "occupation" on our passports, right?

No wonder that Mr. Friedman has so much success. His speech reminds me of the dozens of stories I read everyday, that make me sad more than anything else, just because I don't see any aim to this speech apart from more and more hatred. We don't need that.