Sunday, 30 December 2018

Swan Song

Confession: Every now and then I like to go through my older blog posts; to get some sense of perspective and perhaps re-live particular moments in my life... and I'll admit, to make some edits here and there; mostly corrections to the typos and the woeful grammar and punctuation I've used in some of my earlier posts, but also to occasionally add a phrase or change a word that would -at least in my view- add a different dimension to the story I'd been attempting to weave. I've never changed something pivotal in any of my past narratives- as I believe that is nothing short of historical manipulation/negationism- but my reasoning is that the odd bit of slight beautification here or there wouldn't compromise my integrity as a writer/chronicler of my own life.

Back to my main point; for any gamers reading this, I like to compare going through older blog posts to re-spawning at a video game checkpoint -for any non-gamers reading this; a checkpoint is the point at which the game saves your progress so you can reload your save file later without losing too much time replaying the parts you've already completed... so in effect, it is saving the game at every significant milestone; which is more or less what I've always tried to do with my writing. As I've hinted in a past blog post- the title of which currently escapes me- this very specific brand of escapism essentially allows me to time travel back to who I'd been at the time I'd written a particular blog post, and that generally enables me to see things much more clearly and learn more about who I am now, who I was then and how much I've evolved in between. 

For that reason, this blog has been invaluable to me; I can basically trace my character development from my teen years all the way until my twenty seventh birthday. It can sometimes be a curse; being able to go back in time to a particularly cringe-worthy period of my life, but mostly this blog has been an excellent tool to catalog and track my growth over the years. 

Besides, I cannot overstate how big a confidence boost a particularly well-received blog post can give me, or how giddy a mood it can put me in... and yet, even the less popular posts give me a profound sense of release; the relief that can only come from venting out your worries and deepest fears to the world -which is somehow simultaneously an intimate yet impersonal act- is practically unparalleled for me. This blog has therefore not only been a way for me to get the acknowledgment I so desperately crave; but also a crucial tool for my very survival- a beautiful yet dangerous tool to be almost wholly dependent on for emotional support.

And now is the time to retire it.

It has been slightly more than eight years... eight whole years of ups and downs and pain and worries and fears and hopes and dreams and failures and successes and love and hate and, in a word, life... and while I cannot deny how big a part this blog has played in shaping who I am as a person and how I view myself, it is fast becoming clear to me that its time is long gone. Heading into my thirties as a young professional, I can no longer afford to post intimate details of my life online for the whole world to see; for I've realized that in the act of avoiding vulnerability with those closest to me, I've instead opted for vulnerability with some of those furthest away from me- many of whom may wish me harm or misfortune, and that is the exact type of people one generally avoids baring their soul to. This blog is therefore unfortunately not only my greatest source of pride, but also my Achilles' heel.

Not only that, but I've also realized that in the act of succumbing to the quick fixes of blog posts rather than putting what little talent I have into writing a single, cohesive narrative- with the view of possibly publishing a novel some day- I've been regularly draining my creative juices (masturbation euphemism not intended) with relatively limited and rapidly diminishing returns, instead of pouring them into my ever-illusive magnum opus. 

I've been seeing the signs everywhere over the past few weeks; little hints here and there that it maybe time to draw the curtains on an ambitious yet stagnating dream of mine, which I've somehow managed to keep alive for more than eight years- much longer than any of my relationships and some of my friendships... and thus, I see no more fitting conclusion to this chapter of my life than calling it quits on my 100th published blog post, in the final days of the year 2018. Few people reading this will realize how devastating this is to me -and how unthinkable it would have been only a few short weeks ago, given how I view my writing (and by extension, my blog) as an integral, core aspect of my identity and how I choose to define myself- but I saw no other way; it had to be done.

To everyone who has followed my writing up until this point; I cannot possibly thank you enough for the love and support you have shown me over the years. I truly love and appreciate you all individually; and it is no exaggeration that at times, your kind words and encouragement were all that kept me writing- and that the thought of disappointing you is what makes writing this particular post all the more painful to me... however, a good writer doesn't drag things out; a good writer knows not to overstay their welcome; a good writer appreciates a tidy, dignified ending- and a good writer is what you've all made me believe I am, or am at least capable of being.

I dedicate this final post- and this entire blog- to those few of you who've made me feel like a celebrity, time and time again; for this blog is more the product of your work than it is of mine.

I am not going to delete any of the posts; this blog is only retired in the sense that I will likely not be adding any more content. Only time will tell if I am strong enough to keep this vow -for I do see myself possibly making more posts in the future in moments of weakness- so I will not be making any sweeping, irreversible claims that this blog is indefinitely dead... but what I can possibly promise with a much higher degree of confidence is that I will at least no longer be sharing links on my social media accounts; be it Facebook or Twitter. You're all, however, always welcome to follow the blog itself or check it periodically in the future for new content- and of course, you're always welcome to shoot me a note just to chat.

Even though I have a flair for the dramatic, I am -as discussed- very decidedly not going to end this with too much finality; if only to give myself some possible wriggle room to pull off an Arthur Conan Doyle some time in the future...

For now, I will instead leave you with a very simple and heartfelt "farewell"... or perhaps an "until we meet again".

With all the love in the world,
Mahmoud Bondok.

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Twenty Seven

9,834 days on Earth.

9,833 nights... some of them happy; others miserable. Some of them exhausted; others sleepless. Some of them relaxed; others stressed... and most of them anxious.

As I sat down to write this post, I had to think back on the featureless blob of intertwined memories and feelings that is my life in hindsight; perched as I am now atop the ivory tower of my third decade... and I have to say, I wasn't too impressed.

It's not fair to compare oneself to the overachievers of yore; the times when a 25 year old could somehow find the brainpower to master three or four completely unrelated branches of science or mathematics and yet still have enough time left in the day to create inventions that can shape worlds; or cure diseases previously thought incurable; or develop philosophical arguments the ramifications of which humanity still grapples with, hundreds of years later. These people -to varying degrees of success- have influenced humanity in ways that simply cannot be measured. The world without their contributions would be unfathomably different; possibly functional but more likely dark and backwards and crude... and thus, they have earned the right to have entire chapters dedicated to them in the annals of history. There is a very good reason why we are still taught about Leonardo Da Vinci and Archimedes and Socrates, hundreds or thousands of years after their deaths.

However, mindful though I am that these comparisons are unflattering at best and completely demotivating and depressing at worst, I still can't help but wonder what has been the point of all this.

For every Leonardo Da Vinci, there are untold billions of -arguably successful- people who have completely faded from history, together with their loves and struggles and pain and triumphs and families.

Twenty seven years of age is hardly the twilight of my life- at least not unless I die unexpectedly at thirty five- and yet I find myself pondering my legacy... or lack thereof. If I were to pass on tomorrow, who -if any- would still speak my name fondly or in awe in a hundred years' time?

The answer is: no one.

Now, please don't misread my tone... this is not an emotional cry for help from someone who hasn't achieved quite as much in his life as he would have wanted to; but rather a weary, resigned acknowledgement of the human condition that we all do our best to ignore- which is that only a very lucky select few of us get to have a legacy... and I don't mean necessarily with respect to a gargantuan, dark, uncaring universe -to which not even the brightest optimist can claim that we are anything but temporary, insignificant blips- but even as compared to other humans who have lived and died on this speck of dust we call Earth.

For the sake of context, let me take a step back and explain where this is coming from; ever since I was subjected to a traumatic event roughly two years ago -the nature of which some of you may have cleverly surmised from the numerous blogposts in which I pretty much flat out explained it- I have found myself turning more and more cynical and nihilistic as the days went by. At the peak of my depression, I was known to claim that nothing mattered; that life was pointless and that in the grand scheme of things, our individual lives are laughably inconsequential. It may have been an attempt to put my woes into perspective... to tell myself that if all our lives were insignificant with respect to the universe; then perhaps the pain I'd been going through simply did not matter, either.

But what I hadn't considered is that when you start believing that nothing matters, everything starts actually not mattering to you. Human contact; friendships; relationships; work- there is no point to any of it... and that is not a healthy viewpoint for a young man during his peak years.

It took me quite a bit of time to bury that belief -yes, bury; because I still believe it on some level- but the healthy compromise I have reached with my dark alter ego is that we can make our lives matter as long as we're a positive impact on our families; our friends; our communities or our countries. True, tales of my mundane daily routines will never be told on planet Mekalurku in the Pelangau galaxy, 10 billion light years away from Earth; but maybe I'm fine with that. Maybe I'm fine with just being a positive influence on the people in my life.

Perhaps, I reasoned, that could be enough.

But what if it's not enough? Or worse still; what if I'm actually not a positive impact on the people in my life?

That is where I am at, today. The reason for my melancholy isn't that I'm one year closer to my grave; it is that I'm one year closer to my grave with no achievements to speak of- at least in my own eyes. When I ask myself a simple question; have you done something to be remembered for, one hundred years from now? The simple answer is an undisputed "no"... and the saddest part is that there is very little I can do to change that. Apart from maintaining a blog that is little more than an online published diary, that is.

Due to the cyclical nature of one's birthday -which can usually be expected once a year at about the same time- I am always forced into this particular realization every year... and every birthday, I choose the figurative blue pill and go back to the dull mediocrity of human existence; in the hope that maybe by next year, I will have made some kind of impact on the world.

But as previously discussed; that will likely never happen... and I hope to come to terms with that, some day.

Anyway, enough talk about my existential dread. Time for some cake and my yearly dose of the blue pill... and no, not that one.

Wednesday, 12 December 2018

My Baby Sister

He remembered years ago
back when he was little;
how much he had despised
that drooling little parasite.

She'd come into his world,
all puffy-cheeked and swollen,
but she couldn't fool him;
he saw right through her act.

Her cuteness was a facade;
for she was but a leech...
who hogged all the attention;
and stole all of his toys.

She giggled and laughed and hugged,
to win the adults' trust;
and when the time was ripe;
she bound them to her service.

They lived in mortal terror
of hearing a shriek of anguish...
she had them under her spell,
and used it to her advantage.

He remembered being in awe,
of her dark, powerful magic;
if she could do that to adults...
what could she do to him?

He tried to fight back,
to make the adults see;
He'd jab her with sticks,
and push her off her bed

He'd throw her toys away,
and hit her on her head;
he'd break vases and plates,
and blame her instead.

But every time that happened
they'd rush to her aid...
he simply could not win;
resistance was in vain.

For years, that's how he lived,
in a constant state of war;
he would never give up.
he couldn't let her win.

Until one day it stopped;
he had no hate for her...
they weren't exactly friends,
yet she wasn't his mortal foe.

And then before he knew it,
he was her best friend...
she'd come to him for help;
she'd seek out his advice.

He'd help her cram for tests,
and be there when she cried;
and when she had her nightmares,
he'd hold her through the night.

And as they grew older,
he hardly seemed to notice;
how much she'd grown on him;
how much he'd valued her.

For she was now his soulmate,
his backbone and his friend;
his favorite thing to go home to,
His pride and joy in life.

A single solitary tear
presently rolled down his face
as he hugged his little girl;
All grown up at her wedding

As it turned out,
he was right to fear her magic...
For despite his best efforts;
he'd never stood a chance.

Tuesday, 27 November 2018

A Letter From Your Dad

Dear son(s)/daughter(s)/both,

I hope you're doing well.

I am writing this all the way back in November 2018 because I already know -God knows how many years in advance- that I will screw up... and this is my attempt to preemptively apologize, and to make you see why I am the way that I am. I guess it won't be worth pulling this one out until I've really messed things up, because it's not like I can use it as a carte blanche to justify all of my mistakes... so I hope future me is wise enough to know when to go for this nuclear option.

Kids, your dad is only human.

I remember when I was in your shoes that it was very easy to blame everything on my own parents. In fact, turning 13 was the cue for me to declare holy war on your grandparents, and to officially hang all of my disappointments and failures on their shoulders. I blamed them for my psychological health; for my lack of direction in life; for their weighty expectations of me; for my terrible social life and for my disastrous love life. Everything was their fault; everything was their mistake; and I shared none of the blame because everything I did was a direct result of their mediocre parenting and misguided efforts to steer my life in the direction they saw as best.

Sometimes I was right.

Like all parents, my parents wanted to see their son become more successful than they ever were; and were always pushing me to improve in ways they wished they had when they'd been my own age... be it academically, spiritually, socially or professionally. In so doing, they felt that the best way to help me was to sometimes be overly critical of me and to "protect me from myself"; occasionally making narrow-minded attempts to control my life as crown regents until such time that I was deemed to have "come of age" and matured enough to seize control of the metaphorical throne- aka, my life. In a way, I was right to blame them; teenage years are when our first seeds of individuality are sown... and while a parent's attempts to force a teenager into following their own way of life can be well intentioned; it can only ever see limited success. Yes, a parent should be firm and put their foot down when necessary; however, in a lot of cases, they should only advise and allow their children to make their own mistakes... because that is how we learn, and how we grow as people. My own parents forgot that, sometimes.

But you know what? I was actually a lot harder on them than they were on me.

Children tend to have this narcissistic, self-centered world view wherein they are the center of the universe; parents exist only to help them realize their full potential, and when they fail they get all the blame... because parenting is their job. They signed up for it; you didn't ask to be born!

Granted, that is correct... however, what you often tend to forget is that a lot of parents truly have no idea what they're doing. They don't have a "how to" parenting manual that is issued to every parent when they birth a child; they're simply doing their absolute best and hoping to give you a decent head-start in life... but in reality, they're very flawed, conflicted human beings who are mostly just winging it and hoping they don't mess up their kids too much; often simply mirroring the outdated parenting techniques their own parents had used on them. They're struggling -through inhumane amounts of stress -to keep their marriages functional; keep food on the table; maintain some semblance of a social life and stay sane enough to be well-rounded parents to their offspring, and a lot of people fail at striking that balance. That is not to say that parents are allowed to screw up; rather, it's an invitation for you to open your heart and accept that your parents are not all-knowing creatures of pure light. They have their flaws; their secrets; their insecurities and their quirks. They are not perfect, but at the end of the day they always mean well and they always have your best interests at heart... whatever they do, they do for you.

Which brings me to now.

I cannot begin to guess what I screwed up, this time- and there is no way for me to write this post 20 billion times to address every possible wrong choice or error in judgement that I could have made. What I can do, instead, is help you hate me for a while; because I know that sometimes, all you need -as a rebellious teen who's still unsure of their place in life and yearning for freedom and self-actualization- is a good old-fashioned parent roast.

I will be the first to admit that I am a supremely messed up individual; I am short-tempered, and I'm sure I've lost my temper with you more times than you can count. I am non-confrontational; and I'm sure you've seen the full spectrum of my passive aggressiveness. I am anti-social; and I'm sure that that has affected you in some way. I am stubborn, and I know that the "my way or the highway" attitude I sometimes have is just about the worst attitude you could possibly have with a teenager. I am possessive and controlling and overprotective, which I am sure infuriates you to no end and triggers your rebellious nature. I have severe trust issues and I am 100% certain that you've already seen that in some capacity. I am lazy and sometimes self-absorbed- though I truly wish I will have grown out of that by the time you were born. I am extremely introverted; and at this point in time, I have no idea what implications that might have had on my relationship with you. And most of all, I'm extremely insecure and terrified that I will turn out to be exactly as bad a father to you as I have always feared I would be.

This letter is my way of acknowledging all of these thoughts, which I know you will have had at some point. For my part, I fully admit to my flaws and take responsibility for whatever mistakes I might have made; even if I am too proud to apologize to you or admit fault. I know I can be a difficult person to live with, and that you didn't ask to be my son(s)/daughter(s).

But I have something to ask of you, as well.

I need you to know that whatever I did was not malicious power play designed to manipulate you or nullify your personality. For all my flaws, I am not manipulative. What I am is brutally honest, and so you can believe me when I say that as much as you want to hate me right now, you don't. Take it from a formerly rebellious teen; eventually, you will grow up... and the older you get, the more you will realize the method in my madness. Slowly, you will begin to understand and then to relate to my decision-making... for that is the cycle we must all go through; we idolize our parents as children; hate them as teens; grow uncertain about their places in our lives in our early adulthood; then by our late 20s we understand and accept them for who they are.

Don't victimize yourself, and understand that we're a team. I want you to be the best you that you can be, and while I'm sure I sometimes make questionable decisions, I want you to know that I'm doing my best, and that I will always welcome your opinion and honest feedback. I would always much rather have a candid face-to-face discussion with you than live blissfully unaware of the festering resentment brewing in your heart. I don't ever want to be the stereotypical aloof, emotionally distant father to you... I want to be your friend and advisor; the person you turn to and not the person you hide from.

I don't know at what age you will read this, if indeed you ever will... for I am currently not at all certain that I will ever want to be a father -I understand the weight of the responsibility and do not at all take it lightly, and therefore you can rest assured that if you exist, then I have given it significant prior thought and preparation before deciding that I was ready- but in any case, know that you are the most important person(s) in my life and that your birth was the most life-changing event that will likely ever happen to me. I love you, unconditionally... even if you're pretending -or perhaps trying- to hate me right now.

Please find it in your heart to understand; to accept; and to forgive a struggling parent who may have made mistakes, but is still really trying.

Yours, now and forever,

Sunday, 21 October 2018

The Romantic Nomad

Our twenties are a scary time.

After two decades of comfort zones and safety bubbles and an almost complete lack of responsibility; we suddenly find ourselves thrust into real life without so much as a tutorial. Rudely awakened from a beautiful dream where any mistakes we make can easily be undone later, there is no shift in tone more jarring than the abrupt and awkward transition into adulthood.

Your career is no longer necessarily synonymous with your passions and dreams; but rather with your livelihood- it is now a means of survival rather than an option. Your circle of friends gets smaller and smaller as your previously fun and carefree companions are forged into the cogs they need to be to take their places in the relentless machine we call life. Your parents -the tireless, dependable safety nets that have always been there to bail you out and offer life advice and invaluable support- are either getting older and/or sicker, becoming an unwilling source of extra stress in your life as you fret over their health and livelihoods... or they may have moved on entirely.

You are still young enough that you haven't yet let go of your dreams... but you're also old enough to know that you may never realize them. The childish dreamer in you gives more ground every day to the pragmatic realist, and you are uncomfortably aware of the ticking clock that will one day signal the death of the last vestiges of your desire to make your dreams come true; settling instead for a well-paying job you might hate, for the sake of paying the bills and living comfortably... the very life you had once judged your parents for leading.

And yet, there is one aspect of life in your twenties that makes all the rest feel strangely less impactful...

A perfect romantic relationship can be your ultimate anchor to reality, while also -paradoxically- being the wings that lift you high above the clouds... out of the dark, oppressive gloom of your very existence and into the glorious sunlight.

Yes, this is the one thing that can make it all worth it... having that one person there with you, through thick and thin- leaning on each other whenever one of you feels too weak to keep going. When life gives you a particularly hard battering, your partner would be there to shore up the cracks in your defenses and prop you up to stand proud; snarling your defiance and announcing your invulnerability to an uncaring world... and when it's their turn; you rush to give them a solid wall on which to lean against and catch their breath. In essence, you become each other's last line of defense, and the ultimate comfort zone in which to collapse and regroup for a fresh fight tomorrow. In that sense, it can be your most potent weapon in this war for survival in which we are all unwilling participants.

Some of us were lucky in that regard; having already found that life partner relatively early in our twenties... and using them as a stable foundation, proceeded to build a metaphorical empire. With that one person at its core; it could hardly ever fail.

And yet...

There are a lot of us who weren't.

There are those of us who -for whatever reasons- have had to make it on our own. We have had to be our own back-up; our own safety nets; our own cavalry. When we're down, we either pick ourselves back up again, or we stay down. When something bad happens to us; we suck it up and deal with it, alone... and when it's something good; we also blow out the candles, alone. In effect, what happens is that we become a lot stronger than we'd ever thought possible... but in losing that vulnerability, we also lose the very element that makes us human.

Moreover, our solitude teaches us very quickly who we really are and what we want in life.

The uncertainties of your twenties grow a lot less uncertain when you spend the energy that normally goes into relationships on constantly obsessing about your own development and self-improvement for every waking minute... and once you've figured out who you are and who you want to be, there is no going back. There is no changing you. Your personality and ideologies are cast in steel.

And that brings me to my main point.

There are many merits to the life of the lone wolf- the freedom and peace of mind are unparalleled, to say nothing of the sillier financial aspects... but the dark truth most of us choose to ignore is that we have no need of a partner anymore. The opportunity to grow with someone -influencing them and getting influenced by them in turn, until you grow into an impenetrable, interwoven lattice of harmony- is forever lost.

Having to fight tooth and nail alone for your place in the world makes you strong, independent and adaptable... but once you've had to face the hard part alone, then what need do you have for a life partner? What value would they add when they arrive in your already established kingdom, to which they are completely foreign? Why would you give in to this visitor from strange lands with their different customs and traditions? In all likelihood, you would see them more as invaders to be fought and resisted than settlers -or even guests- to be embraced and welcomed.

In a nutshell, once you've realized that you're perfectly functional and content on your own, without needing anyone else... you've effectively shut down the part of you that yearns for love and companionship. It is not necessarily a sad existence... but it is a lonely one. Once you're used to being alone, shifting your mentality and compromising to accommodate a partner who's different becomes nigh on impossible... after all, you've worked very hard for years to discover who you are, and you are not about to let someone reset everything you've done... no matter how much you may love them.

And thus is born the romantic nomad... jumping from relationship to relationship, neither able to fit comfortably into anyone else's mould, nor fit anyone into theirs (sexual euphemisms not intended). You sometimes absently wonder if you're the problem, but then you realize that of course you are... because you are who you are, and your unwillingness to change will always severely limit your options. Your strong personality and independence are very attractive- irresistible, even- but your rigidity and idealistic, unyielding nature are very difficult to put up with, and they will always chase away the bulk of your partners.

This is for any fellow lone wolves reading this- or "romantic nomads", to coin a phrase: we didn't exactly choose this life, but we might as well embrace the strength that comes with it... and know that the time may yet come for us to find a fellow romantic nomad who would understand why we are the way that we are; and with whom magic would ensue. All is not yet lost.

You are never truly alone; we're all in this together.

But even if you can't help feeling alone, fear not; for there is a better world beyond this vale of tears. Meet me there; in a green, sunlit valley... where we may rediscover ourselves together, and be human again.

Saturday, 22 September 2018

I Believe I Can "Fly"

As the ape-like titan obliviously lumbered towards Dog Turd Mountain, a cloud of flies rose warily into the air to avoid being crushed under his heel.

Buzzy soared higher than anyone; the glint of triumph amplified in his mirrored eyes until it shone like a blinding sunburst to all the other inhabitants of Dog Turd Mountain.

"I love the smell of shit in the morning!" cried Buzzy, as he darted joyfully through the airborne traffic... but not everyone shared his high spirits. Cranky and irritable and late for work; the flies he bumped into were less than amused.

"Ow!" a young fly yelped.

"Watch it" yelled another.

"Watch where you're going, asshole!" growled a third, menacingly.

"Where's the fire?" screamed a passing moth, who seemed lost and confused and may have genuinely been asking for directions.

But Buzzy didn't care... he knew they'd have been a lot more respectful if they'd known who he was.

His was a classic rags to riches story; from humble beginnings in a stagnant pond he'd had to share with millions of other creatures, to his own feeding spot on a dog turd to which he'd managed to be the first in line. As the adventurous explorer who'd discovered that plentiful bounty, he was entitled to the best feeding spots; the respect of all the other inhabitants of their small community; and his pick of any of the female flies who'd reached sexual maturity. Sure, he had loftier ambitions than spending his whole life crawling on a dog turd, but that didn't mean he shouldn't enjoy what perks he had for now; he'd certainly had to work hard for them...

And just like that; his wistfulness took him back days to his early childhood, now much less bitter in his eyes as he peered at it through the rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia; from his disastrous stinging lessons taught by Mr. Yellowjacket the bee, who'd asked him every class in a voice thick with contempt if there was maybe something else he would rather be doing with his life; to his pitiful attempts at floating like professor Butterfly, who was flamboyantly gay and favored the passive aggressive approach of pretending like Buzzy wasn't there; even to his failed efforts at blood-sucking school, where he was tutored by none other than the renowned and widely feared Count Mosqula, who'd famously shed a single tear from his only eye and retired in shame... for he had never before failed to turn a student into an annoying, late-night nightmare for their mortal enemy; the dreaded human.

 Buzzy neither had enough aggression nor physical strength to join the hornets -nor indeed was he any good at stinging; he was not gifted with the sheer survivability or resourcefulness of the cockroach; and he didn't work well in teams, so that ruled out the ants as well as the bees -though he'd never had much luck with the latter, in any case. He wasn't loud enough for the crickets; nor was he hungry enough for the locusts; nor was he musically gifted enough for the beatles.

Everywhere he went, he was laughed at and humiliated, and the kids were the worst; the polite ones called him a maggot -which was technically a racial slur- and I'll let you figure out what the impolite ones called him (hint: it starts with an "F"). When he tried to join wasp school, he was bullied and beaten to within one tenth of an inch of his life... although to be fair, wasps were technically one of his main predators; but Buzzy wasn't exactly the sharpest insect in the picnic basket... which he proved only a day later by applying to spider school. 

Tired of being called a stupid, useless insect who'd never amount to anything, and angry at an uncaring world, which created him talentless and unimpressive, Buzzy gave up on having a career and left the pond; favoring the nomad lifestyle that only a young, unattached fly can have... he flew aimlessly in whatever direction offered a stronger stench; searching for something he didn't know... was it food? A mate? Or was it himself?

One day, after days of hard work and perseverance, lady luck smiled down upon him and he chanced to stumble upon a squatting dog... and the rest, as they say, is history. Presently, Buzzy allowed himself a satisfied smile; for he had finally found his calling in that beautiful pile of fecal matter.

He had found success, despite all the nay-sayers.

He had proved them all wrong...

He had finally made it.

But you know what they say about tempting fate...

Don't do it.

"I MADE IT!" cried Buzzy, tempting fate.

Thoroughly tempted, fate responded in the form of what seemed like a massive metal box, hurtling towards Dog Turd mountain at an impossible speed. The loud rumbling noise it made awakened Buzzy from his reverie, and he just barely had enough time to dive out of the way before he heard a sickening squelch. Hardly daring to look; he slowly turned towards Dog Turd Mountain... then his stomach lurched and he tearfully turned away again.

Dog Turd Mountain was now Dog Turd Pancake.

Before he'd had time to think, he suddenly found himself hot on the metal box's tail, boiling with rage. He would have his revenge somehow.  

After a few seconds of sustained flight at top speed, pushing himself harder and harder all the while, Buzzy began to grow tired... although it seemed to him that he was starting to gain on the strange metal box. He doubled his efforts and tried to ignore the growing pain in his flight muscles. Yes, he could definitely see it now; he was inching closer to the box... which, counter-intuitively, seemed to be slowing down! Could it not feel his approach? Was it not terrified and trembling in fear of Buzzy's wrath? The box's arrogance angered him even more, and he swore red vengeance on the poor soul who dared deprive him of his pri- SPLAT!

The box had abruptly come to a complete standstill, and the momentum of his headlong charge had carried Buzzy into some kind of transparent force field. Intrigued, he flew into it again. And again. And again... with each painful bump teaching him absolutely nothing.

"Ow!" He exclaimed.
"Ow..." He thought.
"Ow?" He wondered.
"Ow." He concluded.
"Ow..." He confirmed.

Amazingly, it seemed like the force field had weathered his insistent battering. After slamming himself into it a few more times for good measure, Buzzy decided to back away and reassess the situation. Spiraling higher and higher and higher into the heavens; he started turning in wider circles to orbit the box and look for any weak spots... but his aerial reconnaissance yielded very little results. The box looked completely solid to him, and there seemed to be no chinks in its impressive armor to offer a kamikaze fly any advantages.

As if on cue, an unnatural hum emanated from the box... quickly followed by the emergence of what looked like a humongous appendage, wrapped in some kind of black fabric... it must have been very powerful indeed, to have been able to punch through the force field with such ease. The appendage ended with a flat surface, from which protruded five smaller, stubby appendages holding a thin, white burning torch of some description.

He gasped as the realization dawned on him...

It was a human arm.

Buzzy was absolutely shocked... what was the human doing inside the box? If the box was strong enough to swallow a human, what would it do to a fly that couldn't even sting?

Then Buzzy began to think. It was slow and painful, but he persisted;
the box had come to a complete stop, and the human had apparently punched through its surface... was that a struggle? Was the human attempting an escape? That put Buzzy in a very unusual situation; on the one hand, the box had destroyed his world and everything he'd held dear, and Buzzy had sworn to exact his vengeance even if took him days to do so; but on the other hand, what was he supposed to do? Help a human? The mere thought made him shiver in disgust.

Buzzy had to think again. He thought for what seemed like hours, but was realistically closer to 3 seconds -which in all fairness was already more thinking than he'd ever done in his life. At length, he made his decision to attack the box. If the human could punch through it, then perhaps he could deal some damage too.

With a deafening war cry, Buzzy dove towards the force field on the side of the box; feeling gravity's pull accelerate him faster than anything his feeble wings could ever hope to manage. He'd chosen a steep, almost vertical angle of attack to maximize his speed (if there was one thing a fly knew better than anyone, it was flying) and at the last possible second before he hit the human's arm, he swerved right with the full force of his inertia and hurtled into the force field. He winced and mentally braced himself for impact... if he'd had eyelids, he would have closed them.

But nothing happened.

Too fast to stop now, he shot forward like a bullet into the human's face. The human swatted him away irritably with his left arm, which was still holding the white burning torch. Strangely, the torch seemed to have got significantly shorter. As Buzzy pulled away from the human, he noticed that he was pressing a rectangular object into the right side of his face and seemed to be producing even more noise than his kind were wont to produce. More curiously still, he was waving his left arm animatedly to punctuate the tiny lulls in his mysterious chant. The human seemed to be angry or in distress, but it likely wasn't caused by the box. In fact, the box seemed to remain perfectly still. Had the human won the battle? That was bad. That was very very bad.

His blind rage subsiding, Buzzy was starting to realize what a terrible situation he'd put himself in; he was now inside the belly of the beast- which in all likelihood was dead, but also inorganic so Buzzy couldn't even feed on it- and he was in very close proximity to an agitated human. He decided to make his escape... it was not his fight, and he had got his revenge, in any case; somehow, the beast was dead.

He made a beeline for the force field to escape the beast's insides, mentally chuckling at the excellent insect pun he'd just made. He was inches away from freedom when the human withdrew his arm inside the box -minus the white burning torch, which was mysteriously missing- and suddenly, without warning, the beast awoke with raucous roar. Concurrently, the ominous hum from before was back, again. It filled Buzzy with irrational fear and dread, and he pumped his wings frantically to escape before the beast had fully awoken. He was close enough to feel a fresh gust of air wafting through the force field... any second now, Buzzy would break free and fly far away from this monstrosity, his lesson well and truly learned.

But as always, the force field continued to vex him. He could not break through it this time. What's worse; the beast had begun moving again. Buzzy redoubled his efforts to break through the force field, ramming it as hard as he could.

"Ow!" He exclaimed.
"Ow!" He exclaimed.
"Ow!" He exclaimed.
"Ow!" He exclaimed.
"Ow!" He exclaimed.

But it was no use... it remained defiantly solid; teasing him with its transparency. Turning around, he saw a much larger exit in front of him, but his attempts to break through it yielded the same results. He was definitely in deep trouble now... backing away, he flew around the beast's insides, keeping as far away from the human as possible to avoid further agitating him, but his every attempt at escape utterly failed. Every time he thought he'd discovered a way out, it turned out to be protected by the same black magic that had already foiled all his previous plans.


The beast was going much faster now; it was all he could do to keep up with its speed. After a few seconds of panicked flight, Buzzy was completely worn out; the fight completely drained from him. Giving in to his fate, he found a tight corner where he would be as safe as possible from the human's wrath, and slumped in defeat.

After a few minutes of relative silence, the human was at it again; once more, he pressed the rectangular object to his ear, and began roaring with rage -thick droplets of spittle flying from his massive maw to splatter against the force field- all the while waving his arms spiritedly.

The same arms that had broken through the force field...

That gave Buzzy an idea. He wasn't strong enough to break through the field, but the human certainly was!

Bravely bracing himself for what he knew was coming, Buzzy lifted himself out of his corner; his tired wings barely carrying him as he climbed higher and higher into the air until he drew level with the human's eyes... and with another war cry, he launched himself  with all his power towards the human.

As expected, the human's massive left arm came swatting at him, but he deftly avoided it and flew into his eye. Irritated, the human tried to swat him away faster this time, but he dodged it and rammed him again. This pattern repeated itself for a few seconds, with the human angrily waving Buzzy away and Buzzy taking no heed and attacking him relentlessly. It seemed to be working! The human was roaring louder than ever; with each failed attempt at killing Buzzy seeming to make him even angrier. Buzzy now flew towards the force field on the side and began attacking it, instead. The human would try to flatten him against the force field; but Buzzy would dive out of the way at the last second, and the human would instead punch through it, allowing Buzzy to finally escape his nightmare.

At least, that was the plan.

What actually happened was much stranger... for suddenly, the eerie hum was back again, and the force field he was standing on seemed to be moving; pulled down by some invisible, ungodly force. Buzzy jumped into the air in order to avoid being pulled down with it, but before he knew it, an irresistible, unimaginably strong gust of wind had grabbed hold of him, completely overpowering him and throwing him outside. Buzzy tumbled in the air, with absolutely no idea which way was up; it was all he could do to stay airborne. Dizzy and confused and more tired than he'd ever been, Buzzy allowed himself a few seconds of hovering until he caught his breath and got his bearings... and what he he saw then almost made him faint, right then and there.

 There were literally hundreds of metal beasts similar to the one he'd barely just escaped from, as far as his eyes could see; all of them dashing by at break-neck speeds... he seemed to have unwittingly stumbled upon their lair.

Terrified and wanting to put as much distance between him and the beasts as possible, he climbed as high up in the air as he could, and then looked down again to formulate a plan.

The beasts seemed to be running on a flat surface in two directions, and as luck would have it, he was right in the middle of it. His only course of action was therefore to fly to the left or right; as he could see no other ends to the mysterious flat surface. He decided to follow an intriguing smell to his left; and began the long process of crossing the road.

Never before had Buzzy related more to the poor chicken who had simply wanted to get to the other side, to everyone's derision.

After what seemed like days of continuous flight, Buzzy finally reached the other side. Lush with vegetation and full of life, he seemed to have made the right choice; there would definitely be plenty of opportunities there.

Except that there was metal beast here as well; albeit at a complete standstill. Well, not technically at a complete standstill; it seemed to be rocking at a steady rhythm.

Buzzy was tired and hungry and afraid, but his curiosity got the better of him. Assuring himself that curiosity had never killed a fly, he cautiously approached the beast. Strangely, pained moaning sounds seemed to be emanating from it. Stranger and stranger still... perhaps the beast was writhing in pain. Was it dying? That would offer him a rare chance to take a closer look at the inner workings of that behemoth.

He managed to break through the force field without much incident, this time... but what he saw next gave him pause; there were two humans lying there, one on top of the other, unclad in the usual fabrics that humans covered themselves with for reasons that completely eluded him. The human on top was vigorously pumping away at the other human, who was obviously the female and the source of the noise he'd heard. Buzzy was old enough to know about the birds and the bees; but he also knew that sex was supposed to be enjoyable... why, then, did the humans choose the carcass of a metal beast as the setting for their coupling? Was it somehow enjoyable for them? And more importantly, why was the female moaning in pain? Absurdly -and even though they were both obnoxious, hated humans- Buzzy felt a moral obligation to help the distressed female.

Mustering his courage and summoning all his strength, he flew into the male's jaw... but the human made no response; so intent was he on his pleasure that he barely seemed to register Buzzy's challenge. Angered by that, he decided to teach him a lesson, and he flew into his eye this time. It had the intended effect; the human's hand lashed out at him, but he darted out of the way at the last second, causing the human to slap his own forehead. Undeterred, he flew into his other eye. The human yelped in pain and waved his arms blindly, hoping to catch Buzzy with his flailing limb... but Buzzy was too fast, and he buzzed into his ear now; causing the human to shake his head irritably.

Amazingly, the male's hips still rose and fell, barely breaking their rhythm... Buzzy had to admit to being impressed by his form and perseverance. He landed on the female's stomach and gazed up at the male, trying to look for other weak spots... but he never expected to be stabbed in the back by the very person he'd been trying to protect. Luckily for Buzzy, millions of years of evolution had protected him against exactly this eventuality, as his mirrored eyes caught sight of her hand just in time for him to barely avoid a fatal blow- but her hand still caught him in mid-air, disorienting him yet wounding nothing but his pride.

Buzzy tried not to hold it against her; she was visibly in distress and it was possible that she'd lashed out at him by mistake. He decided to help her again, but before he could fly back to the male to start harassing him, the female had already swatted him away yet again- this time coming dangerously close to crushing him against the beast's leather interior.

"Ow! I'm trying to help, you stupid bitch!"

But now both the male and female seemed to have turned on him, and Buzzy decided to make his exit. Feeling betrayed and confused by the sudden onslaught from the female who seemed to actually enjoy being in pain, Buzzy flew out of the deactivated force field, vowing never to help another human again.

It was getting dark now, and Buzzy was more tired than he'd ever been in his life. He was completely lost, with no chance of finding his way back to his most prized possession... but even if he did, what would he have gained? Nothing. The laws of fly real-estate were very strict, and fly lawyers -mostly blood-sucking tsetse flies; as one would expect of a lawyer- thrive on these kinds of contract loopholes; once Dog Turd Mountain had ceased to be Dog Turd "Mountain", Buzzy no longer had any legal claim to it and could rightfully be challenged for the mayorship rights. At best, he would have an average feeding spot amidst the hundreds of other flies, and at worst, he wouldn't even have that -a likely prospect, because Dog Turd Pancake would have a lower surface area. Bottom line is that he was completely broke now; cruelly knocked back to square one by fate, yet again.

Apart from the prestige and riches and sheer unlimited potential offered by the dog turd, Buzzy suddenly realized that he'd never see any of his old friends again. Scarier still, he had no way of knowing whether or not they'd survived the metal beast's charge; for all he knew, they could have been flattened, too. The thought gave him chills... he didn't know what to do, or where to go next. He was completely lonely and alone, and the world seemed overwhelmingly evil and cold to him. All he wanted to do was just go to sleep for a very long time.

After a few more minutes of aimless flight, Buzzy was just about to land on the underside of a tree branch to rest when he glimpsed a sleeping stray dog, lying on his back. Mindful of the goldmine shat out by the last dog he'd seen, Buzzy flew to the dog and landed on his abdomen. The dog made no attempt to shoo him off, preferring to just sleep there and smell delicious.

Wait, what?

Buzzy sniffed... yes, he definitely smelled it! He could recognize the beautiful rotten stench anywhere... the dog was definitely in its final death throes; but more importantly, he was the first fly to land on him.


In human terms, he had just made a fortune of Scrooge McDuckian proportions. He was set for life, along with his family for generations to come.

As the first gold-digging (or grave-digging?) females showed up, flirtatiously rubbing their front legs together; their wings fluttering suggestively with a distinctive, seductive buzz, Buzzy started looking around for a tsetse fly to help him draw up the contract.

This one would have to be airtight.

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Egyptian Human Male Penis ® Owner's Manual

Congratulations on obtaining your first Egyptian Human Male Penis ®! The absolute chaos of fertilization has conspired to gift you your very own male reproductive system and all the societal benefits associated with it, and we are here to help guide you through the intricacies of male organ ownership.

Your "package" should include:

1 penis, most likely 6 inches long and circumcised
2 testicles
1 protective ballsack for testicular storage
(Optional) 1 manhood installation pack*

* Kindly note that by not installing the manhood pack, you are technically a male but not yet a "man".

Benefits of this system:

1- Ability to fertilize a human female egg, producing the blight upon the land otherwise known as the "Egyptian Baby".

2- Ability to masturbate excessively during your teen years, often in completely inappropriate locations. Wank your way to sad, half-hearted erections as your chafed member struggles to cope with your daily vigorous self-abuse marathons and compare your personal high scores with your Egyptian Human Male Penis Owner ® friends!

3- Ability to orgasm relatively quickly and efficiently, at will.**

4- Ability to pop unpredictable and uncontrollable boners at the worst possible times; often whilst attending funerals, important meetings or running errands at governmental institutions.

5- Through our patented Dual Liquid Distribution  technology, you are also able to use your brand new penis to expel urine, offering an unparalleled aiming experience which the other reproductive systems can only gaze at in wonder!

** Speeds may vary. Not applicable for systems aged 45 and older.

⚠ Benefits do not include the ability to sexually harass Human Female Vagina ® owners

Kindly note that your male penis does not grant you the right to sexually harass random Egyptian females whose only fault in life was being born in Egypt without your God-given rights as an Egyptian penis-owner. 

This has been a confusing issue for many penis owners, and Gender Privilege Industries Ltd. denies all possible liability arising from Egyptian males harassing defenseless females and trying to pass it off as "flirting". 

Please recognize the fact that most Egyptian Human Male Penis ® owners are sexually starved predators and that even if you are not one of them, random female passersby will assume that you are, until proven otherwise... so do not claim ignorance or feign innocence and just leave them alone, because they have suffered enough at the hands of fellow Egyptian Human Male Penis ® owners such as yourself.

Thank you for choosing Egyptian Human Male Penis ® for your Egyptian human male penis needs. You are now ready to install the optional manhood pack.


Just a bit of context for any non-Egyptians who might be reading this; I wrote this post in response to a viral video of a girl getting sexually harassed in Cairo. Somehow instead of shaming the man who harassed her, the situation was made into a meme and joked about; and the girl was instead blamed because she "shouldn't have been standing alone in the street" (at noon, in broad daylight) and "she was dressed inappropriately" (irrelevant, and she wasn't) and "the guy was just asking her out" (he wasn't). The girl's life was completely destroyed because she was branded "an attention-seeking whore" for filming her ordeal and posting it online... so much so, that she had to deactivate her social media accounts and she's currently suicidal.

In a separate incident about a week later, a 50-year old woman -in full hijab, no less- was sexually harassed on a beach in Alexandria; and her husband was stabbed to death for standing up to the lowlife trash who harassed his wife. The public reaction to the first incident is what enables incidents like the second one, and it baffles me how some Egyptians still don't see the connection - some of whom are even supposedly well-educated.

To anyone who still thinks we don't have a sexual harassment problem in Egypt, this post was my least condescending way of telling you to go fuck yourself.