The Ras an-Nabeh experience

A friend of mine, Mazen, who used to live in Ashrafiyeh recently moved to Ras an-Nabeh, only to find himself unexpectedly caught without supplies in the middle of a small civil war. He’s a prolific and imaginative writer and he wrote the following as Facebook notes. I reprint here with his permission.

DEAR FUCKIN DIARY: SHOU DINIK? (transl.: what’s your religion?)

Ok listen to this beauty.
“Wow what a day! You should have smooth sailing for the entire day. What problems do emerge will be solved quickly and with little effort. You may want to take today off and go do something you especially enjoy. Better yet, be adventurous and do something you have never done before! Take a day trip to a local area you’ve never visited, or try an activity you’ve never tried before. Regardless of what you do, HAVE FUN!”

This little adorable wlik-I’ll-pull-your-cheeks

-men-ad-ma-mahdoum text was my horoscope for today. And really, bayne and baynak, 3anjad halla2, no really, wronger than this it could not really get.Seriously. Wow. What a day! 3anjad what a smooth sailing, enno 3an jad, what are your problems that are emerging as we speak? No really, tell me, wlik yalla tell me. Well no worries ya bhim, they will be solved quickly w 3anjad walla men doun effort. Bta3ref chou? I want to take today off. Ma ba3ref khayye, for some reason I really don’t feel like going to work and I plan to take today off, actually, how about a month break.
Breaking the monotony of our tedious lives, ma hek? The tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiit of a water heater blasting through the house and it’s in the kitchen and there’s a sniper on the window in front. A terrible dilemma, death by Underdose of coffee? Or death by a bullet in the forehead? “I will Hindu you ya akhul sharmouta” screamed the sniper before he sniped. Hmmm, one is a slow painful death the other is swift and glorious.
Get the fuckin’ water while ducking. 3anjad shou smooth. We can have the best of both worlds: Coffee and life.

Wlik be adventurous and do something you have never done before. How about being shot at? Is that adventurous enough for you?
Yeah, I am an idiot devoid of fear. “Being courageous means being the only one who knows that you’re afraid” says an Englishman on a horse. Bullshit, I say to the Englishman on a horse. Being courageous is simply being too dumb to understand fear. And if I’m too dumb to acknowledge most things in life, so I don’t know why I thought I would be smart enough to feel fear. So I decided to go back home.
I live at home. Home is not a place where I change my clothes and sleep. I love my home, and I was safe and sound somewhere in Christianland, you know Christianland? It’s those places where people are not shooting at each other yet. If you ever get shot in the head, then know you are out of Christianland. Retrace your steps. Trust the leaking brain on your forehead. Retrace your steps. So yeah, I was in Christianland, getting regular sex and watching the news….. Aaaaaaaah the dream coming true! Premature ejaculations and civil wars! Or was it civil ejaculations and premature wars? in any case, I was watching the news with a Maronite in my arms, oui je sais, c’est tres exotique, and we were listening at the news “wlik yel3an allah!!! the fighting is raging in Ras el Nabe3 ya Bassem!!! Innana nata3arrad li itlaq nar, 3anjad really, bayne and baynak, kess emmon. Sorry, bas 3znjad!” says the guy on TV, walla, 3anjad, this is what he exactly said. So now I know! Great! Ras el Nabe3 is on fire! And that’s exactly where home is, I know the road now! And I have to! Or else I would get lost and starve between the demarcation lines. Christianland is hard to find and it’s hard to get out of. There are crosses everywhere to confuse bad Shiites and scare off vampires, Christianland is far far away and you can’t go in unless you have a pure heart.

(Eh akeed zabbatule wasta…)
So now to go out of Christianland, and go to the headquarters of the National Lebanese Factory of Muslim Martyrs, all one has to do is to follow the bullets, put your hands in your pockets boy, smoke a ciggie, no really, smoke a ciggie, 4 checkpoints, piece of fuckin’ cakey, I’m adorable beyond belief, a smile, a laugh, a butterfly kiss, and checkpoint after checkpoint they let me pass, NO ONE, absolutely NO ONE could resist the butterfly kiss, resorted to it only twice, and I started fantasizing on my head being blown to pieces, yeah, ok, no problem, those who love me will love me more, now that I’m dead and can’t possibly fuck up their lives anymore, just remember to publish my book, please, or else it would have been all a waste of my damn time, kamen, perfect if you think about it, no worries from a fatwa being pronounced against me, because I would be already dead, hahaha, what’chu gonna do now Khomeini? I’m already dead you fuckin’ bigot hahahahahaha! oh shit! You’re dead too? Oups! Aaaaaaaaaaah! (khomeini runs after mazen, mazen runs like crazy) “Goooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrr” says Khomeini. “Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah” I says.

“Wlaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!” 6 meters away from home. Oh shit man. “Rkod rkod rkod rkod!” he screamed at me. Asking me to run in his direction he was. So I started harwuling (harwuling men fe3el harwala, ayy, rakada men doun iqtina3 kabir bi fe3lel raked) RATATATATATA “3al het!!!” And I looked at him straight in the eye. I have no idea why the ratatatatata did not scare me. Stupidity plays a big role I guess. And I had the nerve to look at him bel ma2loub, enno why are you shooting at me? No really, bayne and baynak, tell me, no really tell me, I’m sure you have your reasons, let’s share a coffee, 23od, shu baddak? we want it black waitress, ok? black, merci ktir, albe ente, 7ayete, leik, eh enta, no really tell me, why do you want to kill me? No really, elle wloooooo. He pushed me to the wall. I put my hands on the wall and showed him my sizzling heart-wrenchingly gorgeous behind. He searched me. He asked where I was going. So I told him: I’m going home brother, walla, leik wen, hone, walla hon bayte, But if you want to kill me, 3anjad, really, walla, in case you’re an Aquarius too, regardless of what you do, HAVE FUN!”


So yeah, I finished my encounter with the Hezbollah militia and I went up my building. Tenth floor. So I had time to stretch my hands real straight to see if I’m shivering. Enno I went through a traumatic experience, so I should be shivering, no? well no. My brain is too unevolved to feel fear. I was as cold, calm and collected as a …. I don’t know. Like something that’s cold, calm and collected.
So I lit a ciggie and waited.
8
9
10
I open the door and behold! A dozen people hiding on the stairs looked at me as I opened the door.
Silence.
“Mazen!! Shou 3am ta3mel hon?”
“Euuuuh…. Jeye et7ammam.” Which was true.
Silence.
A man in his fifties blinked.
“Kifkon?” I asked.
“7amdellah” which means we’re fucked in the Lebanese dialect.
Silence.
“faaaaaaaaaa hek, ana la7 fout et7ammam.” And I went in and closed the door behind me.

Where the hell is my stash? Oh shit, it’s on the balcony! RATATATATA said the guns. Shou ratatatatata? What do you mean? I said to the guns. Shou ratatatatata??? Ya khayye ratatatatatata w khalliha hon, responded the guns. But I didn’t care, kess emkon, I need a joint, and I really don’t give a shit if I’m killed for it.
Hol 3am bi muto la Beirut, w holik la allah, ana je veux mourir lal hashish ya khayye. I believe it’s a just cause, because that’s the only thing we have that works well and without foreign interference whatsoever.
Shahid al hashisha al lubnaniyya.
I smoked my joint and took off my clothes and went under the hot water. And really, walla, it was the fantasticer shower ever gone through by any human ever born. I swear it was glorious, my hair was trickly trickly drop drop that were sliding down my waist and drawing my body with water. My back with sizzling with heat and my pores were evacuating hot vapor. I came on my Greek statue leg twice so much I was gorgeous. I swear to god, if it weren’t physically impossible to do I would have thrown myself on the bed, slapped myself if I utter a word of complaint, and fucked myself till the ass crack of dawn.
“You know I love you mazen ma hek?”
“I know mazen, but please, be gentle.”
“Shut your trap Mazen and suck on this!”
“Hmmmm, ok mazen, you really understand me walla.”
“Of course, I do. And it’s only because I care about you.

So I went out and started talking with the populations. Opinions are like assholes, so everyone has one, and they all smell bad. So I listened but then I met Maya. Maya is a political analyst. She has many interesting opinions. She has brown curly hair, has an amazing smile, and is very hyper active. She writes her daily column on the column of the building downstairs.
“So Maya, what do you think of the political situation?”
“Gagou, bababababa, jika.” Maya laughed and drooled on her bavette.
“Do you think Arslan’s move is an honest one?”
“Bigooooo!” screamed Maya.
“What about Siniora? Why didn’t he give a statement yet?”
“bigoubigoubigou.”
I started analyzing Maya’s answers in my mind. And I saw that she was absolutely right. I held Maya and put her on my knees.
“Tayyeb layke, what about Nasrallah? Do you think he pushed it too far this time?”
“boubi.”
“What do you mean boubi?”
“boubiiiiiiiiiiiii!”
Suddenly we heard the sound of rifles. Maya laughed hysterically and gave a dozen people the will to survive for a few more hours.

God bless you girl.

RATATATATATA!

“Hahahahahahaha” she laughed again.

Everyone smiled again. A woman laughed. The stairs were brighter.

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