Friday, December 21, 2007

New year resolution

I was thrilled to read today that this New Year's Eve there is an alternative to Mounir singing in the Opera car park, or Shereen warbling in a hotel; the residents of the island of el-Qorsaya are having a party and inviting people to go and 'express solidarity with el-Qorsaya.'

El-Qorsaya is an island community of 5,000 farmers and fisherman in Giza who are being threatened with eviction so that some money-grabbing bastard can build some golf course or equally horrid and unnecessary complex on the land. Read more here and here.

I went to a fantastic solidarity meeting last Sunday at the Journalists' Syndicate, where various speakers condemned the plans for el-Qorsaya. There was a contingent of tax collectors (heroes!) there - still basking in their victory - and showing support for the islanders, and their presence really added momentum to what is already an empassioned and inspirational resistance movement.

One comedy moment was provided by a tiny and ancient lady dressed in black melaya who mounted the podium and, barely visible behind the mic, spoke with great gusto about the iniquity of the planned evictions and the resolve of the islanders who would "not be moved". She then thanked a doctor who lives on the island who provides free healthcare for its inhabitants, and in the same breath said "we 3owza ashkor el-sayyed Mohamed Hosny Mobar-" [and I'd like to thank Mr Mohamed Hosny Mobar-"]

She was unable to finish her sentence because of the tsunami wave of NOs which broke forth from the audience (mostly from the tax collectors behind me) which almost knocked her over, and which looked something like this:


Most people at the meeting would probably like to spank rather than thank the president, and I can only conclude that this rogue thank you was the result of a nervous tic, or delivered automatically out of force of habit, like an 'out of office' reply to an email.


Seneferu said...

LOL. The thank you note was purely good natured, an ingrained and disinterested look at the president as the caretaker and provider of the Egyptian people.

Forsoothsayer said...

great line, the out of office one.

Raouf said...

do you actually do anything vaguely useful to help these people? or do you ponce around from meeting to meeting to fill your empty life and use their suffering for your social gain?

Amnesiac said...

Actually you know what Raouf, I attended this by accident! I had my chauffeur take me to the Journalists' Syndicate because I thought it was a trade fair where I could buy a coloured kuffeyeh and blankets spun by orphans and 3 in 1 badges proclaiming my opposition to everything (colour coordinated with the kuffeyeh) before going home to my luxury palace in Qattameyya Heights and have my Indonesian cleaner polish my knees. On the plus side, I have added another cause to my collection!

The tone of your question clearly indicates that you already have me down for a cause-whore do-gooder. In the unlikely event that you are interested in a genuine answer, it would help if you could define the following:

1. Vaguely useful
2. 'These' people
3. Ponce around from meeting to meeting
4. Social gain

Forsoothsayer said...

i myself am particularly interested in the social gain angle. do you think she said to herself, "wow. i have nothing to do on new years'! why don't i go to this party thrown by some people who are going to lose their home - i hear they mix a great cosmopolitan!"

raouf said...

no, i have you down as a person who uses Egypt to gain facebook buddies and very probably a life, by pretending to help poor people. I'm sure the natives are very appreciative.

Amnesiac said...

I notice that you have ignored my request that you clarify your original comment. Oh well. You're clearly not interested in communication and just want to bore us with a tirade against me, the colonialist.

Do you actually know:

1. What nationality I am?
2. What I do or do not do to 'help poor people'?
3. Why I was at the meeting in the first place?

Knowing this information might affect your judgement. Or it might not. I'm unsure what you've formed your opinion on the basis of,but with all respect, your comments are making you sound like a whiny, bitter, little moaner with an enormous chip on your shoulder about something.